Joshua Lungu is pastor of Shalom Baptist Church in Kasama, northern Zambia. In his latest report, Joshua tells the heartwarming story of a young lady and her fiance who walked a painful path to her conversion.
“We first met Lucy when she was invited to our church by her fiancé, Emmanuel. Emmanuel happens to be a staunch Baptist who recently repented of his backslidden state and his relationship with Christ was restored. For three months he shared with his fiancé about his renewed relationship with Christ, but she showed no interest. They obviously had conflicting beliefs, and when they left another Baptist church to begin attending ours, the issue came to a head.
As members of our church interacted with Lucy, her spiritual beliefs became clear. She did not believe that Jesus Christ is God and denied the existence of heaven. Basically she did not understand the essence of salvation. When Emmanuel was questioned about the beliefs of his fiancé, he decided to break off the relationship. He quoted 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 in support of his decision – a believer and non-believer cannot be yoked together.
What followed was a very difficult time for the couple and our church. Lucy complained that, instead of the church showing her the way to salvation, we had condemned and judged her and had influenced Emmanuel to break up with her. I called for a meeting to iron out any misunderstandings and hopefully present the gospel. I explained that Emmanuel made all the decisions unilaterally without any coercion from the church. He believed God led him to end the relationship.
I pointed out that, instead of judging or condemning her, we were actually showing her care and love by being concerned about her soul. I argued that Emmanuel’s (right with Joshua and Joe)decision to part ways was indeed for their own good, since their beliefs were conflicting and they had diverse views regarding the salvation of souls! How can two walk together unless they agree? I am glad to say that the meeting ended very well and there was reconciliation and forgiveness. Lucy asked us to meet again to explain the gospel to her, which we gladly accepted to do. They also agreed to continue the pause on their relationship until further notice.
Joe Shoko, a pastoral intern from Zimbabwe at Kabwata Baptist Church, was spending time serving and observing our church. He and I started meeting with Lucy, explaining the gospel. The first day we spoke about the total depravity of mankind. After the session, she went home wondering why she was so bad and evil, crying all the way back to her home. For the first time in her life she realized how lost she was and how much she needed God’s help.
The next time we met, we explained justification by faith, and how Jesus Christ took our sins upon Himself and gave us His righteousness. We also explained how, through His death and resurrection, we have been saved from the power of sin and death. After our session, the mood was very different. Lucy was filled with joy and excitement. She was not the same person we had known a week ago, something had happened.
It was clear that we were seeing a new Lucy (left with Joshua and Joe) and the old one had indeed gone. Thanks and praise to God, who transforms lives! Even at the bank where she works, they saw the transformation and none could fathom what had actually happened to her. I would say that Jesus happened! There is no one like Jesus Christ!
Now Lucy is so excited about the things of God and reaching out to people. She loves praying, attending Bible studies, and church services. She is excited about knowing Christ more and more, and she is hungry for holiness. We are looking forward to baptizing her soon and enlisting her into membership. Just in case you are wondering what happened to Emmanuel and Lucy’s relationship, they are back together and, God willing, they will get married this year. We praise God for what He has done in Lucy. Life transformation is one of the greatest miracles in all God’s handwork”
Before his current role at HeartCry, S.R. served several years in pastoral ministry, and a few years in Zambia, Africa as a missionary. He is also a veteran of the Marine Corps. S.R. and his wife have been blessed with 3 children and 4 grandchildren. They live near Christiansburg, VA in the beautiful Blue Ridge mountains, where he enjoys deer hunting and fly-fishing for trout.More By S.R.