The rush is on, the clock is ticking, and the hangover is not helping. Emma is going to church with her cousin Laura, and they are late. She barely has any memory of last night. All she wanted was a good time, but she woke up with a terrible headache, her mouth tasting like evil and her body hurting. She runs around the house with that unpleasant feeling like she is going to die anytime. The effects of the booze are gone, and only the nasty ones remain. It’s her cousin Laura’s birthday, and all she asked was for Emma to accompany her to church. That’s easy enough, right? I wish everybody asked for such things for their birthdays. Do you know those people who demand ridiculous stuff for their birthdays? Like a remote-controlled flying fish, or a selfie toaster that imprints their face on the bread!
Laura is her best friend, and she doesn’t want to disappoint her, she has to go to church with her. They arrive late, and the service is underway. Emma struggles to sit through the service; her head is pounding, and she is fighting to keep her eyes open. Although she is in discomfort, she thinks this is the best church service ever. The worship is great, the people are friendly, the preacher is impressive, and she relates with the sermon. She feels she belongs here. Emma secretly commits to coming every Sunday.
Coming to church hungover is not new; in fact, most of the time she prefers going straight from the club to avoid oversleeping or getting lazy. She often comes scantily dressed, looking like she slept in a ditch. Some church members judge her harshly, and many speak negatively about her, but neither of that deters her commitment to coming to church. Soon enough, Emma starts getting involved; she finds something to help with, attends bible study and comes for youth events. She is always engaged in the church that she doesn’t even have time for dundaing (partying). Looking back she does not remember the last time she was in a club or even drank alcohol. Also, her circle of friends is not the same one she had a few months before.
Years ago I met a friend, who became a brother to me, Ziggy. Ziggy used to shout, “Yoooooooh,” to everyone he met (I wonder whether he still does that today). We were always hanging out together, in ministry together, going places together. Soon enough, I noticed I was also shouting ‘yoooooooh’ to people. And that was true about other things as well; there were things that we picked up from each other. Tony Robins once said, “…you become who you spend time with.” Just the same way this was true in my case with Ziggy, it was true with Emma and God. All relationships need time and a relationship with God, unlike many others, also follows this principle. There is no way anyone will spend time with God or spend time in His house and remain the same. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come” 2 Cor 5:17. Regardless of how sinful we think we are, or how wretched we consider ourselves, we are not beyond the redemptive power of Christ.
*This blog post was Inspired by true events