January 21, 2012

Ademir.

A devotional, told by Daddy, written by yours truly.

"Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days." - Ecclesiastes 11:1

 Sao Paulo with all its crowds, traffic and movement, is the most heavily populated city in Brazil. I had the opportunity of working in Sao Paulo as a Bible Worker for our church in Artur Alvim (a Sao Paulo district).

While in service there, I came into contact with a mechanic by the name of Ademir. We became friends, and our conversations led to Bible studies. However, every time we met for Bible studies, we met at his mechanic shop, for his wife harbored dislike towards Adventists.

After a few visits, and studies, I invited him to attend church. He did. He attended conferences, special meetings, yet due to family opposition and friend's influences he didn't make up his mind to become a member. But he remained friendly towards the church, and kept us in the back of his mind. Soon thereafter, I was transferred to another field, and Ademir and I lost contact.

Fifteen years later, I was invited to hold a conference in Suzano, a town a few kilometers away from Sao Paulo city. As I entered the conference hall, a man approached me and asked, "Do you remember me?" I smiled and answered, "Yes, I remember we used to have Bible studies in your mechanic shop." It was Ademir. He was so happy, and told me he had heard I was to be preaching at the conference, and he'd been waiting for my arrival, looking towards the entrance of the hall, anxiously hoping I'd be the next one to enter. He wanted to tell me what had happened- his story.

He had moved from Sao Paulo to Suzano a couple of years before, and one day, while he and his wife were visiting a neighboring town, they passed in front of our local church. He had, throughout the years continued speaking highly of our church to his wife, and little by little she became less and less prejudiced against Reformers. Now, years later, seeing the church's familiar name, he remarked to her, "Look! That's Brother Eli's church!" He invited her to attend it with him some day.

They attended the church a couple of times, and eventually his wife came to enjoy church attendances, and together, they prepared for baptism. Today both are active members of our church. Especially his wife, who attends more activities, and holds even more offices than Ademir does. In fact, I had the privilege of attending one of the prayer meetings his wife held.

I felt blessed and encouraged to hear his story. Not always will we have the opportunity to meet with the people whose lives we have impacted, but in Heaven, when we get there,  we will meet people who will be anxiously waiting to tell us what happened- their story, and how we had a part in their making it to Heaven. Be it by small acts of kindness, by an invitation to church, by a cheerful smile, by advice, by lending an ear or helping hand, by a book, you will influence people. Let's strive, with God's help, to influence people in a positive manner, so one day, we may meet people who will tell us, how we influenced them to be better versions of themselves.

 

10 Wonderful people made my day!:

  1. Wonderful story! We impact people in so many ways. What a blessing to get to meet those we have encouraged in some way or another.

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  2. That is a beautiful post. And a very important message.

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  3. This made me cry it's so beautiful. Such power.

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  4. This is a touching story, and the message is indeed very important. Two years ago I received a postcard from a student to whom I had taught a french course during my first year of university teaching. I remembered that she did not make stellar grades, but was so enthusiastic and worked very hard, coming to me for extra help during every office hour. Her postcard was from France, saying that she was there on an exchange, because of the confidence in her ability and the love of French I'd inspired. I still have that postcard, and it makes me tear up to look at it. I think the sweetest influence we can have is one we are not even aware of at the time. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. Wow. That's amazing.
      And very true, the best influence is the one we have naturally-without planning.

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  5. Very moving, compelling, and well written!

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