Something that has stuck with me from the Abolition Summit 2013 is this – a phrase I keep reminding myself and telling others over and over again…
“Tell me the Gospel. The Truth sets people free! It always has, it always will.”
This simple message is what stuck with me the most from the entire conference. Why? Because Nicole, a Saint who is in love with Jesus, used to be in chains of slavery. She once was lost, but now she is found. Nicole blessed us by sharing some of her personal story with us at the Abolition Summit.
As a child, she was trafficked. Man after man came in to rape her. They degraded her. They abused her. They sinned against her and against God. Nicole said that more than once, a man raped her, then cried in front of her. They felt remorse. She wondered why they cried and why they did this evil to her. She wondered, ‘Why do this act of injustice – this act of evil – and then cry? Why feel remorse?’ Nicole asked herself these questions, knowing there was something more to these men. “They’re not all wicked; they do have hearts,” she thought out loud.
Her mind processed this Truth – that all men have hearts. Nicole realized something the Bible points out. All men have hearts, but some hearts are of flesh and some are of stone.
Ezekiel 36:26 And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
There are two types of hearts. There is a heart of stone and a heart of flesh. God can turn hearts of stone to hearts of flesh. He can give people new hearts – hearts of flesh. For those who do receive new hearts of flesh, they also get a new spirit. A two for one deal! God is always giving abundantly. This new spirit is the Spirit of God.
Ezekiel 36:27 And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statues and be careful to obey my rules.
When we get new hearts and a new Spirit, which is the Holy Spirit, we change. When God lives inside of us, we begin to change. We cannot stay the same once God has dwelt inside of us. Nicole experienced this firsthand when she encountered God through hearing the Gospel. She explains the importance of hearing the Gospel in a profound way when she shares her story.
Back to the story…
“They didn’t know what to do with me,” she said.
“I would tell people my story. They would hear about my past, and they would be scared of me. They were scared of the questions I asked, because they didn’t know how to answer them. But I wanted to know the Truth! I just wanted them to tell me the Truth! They would say, ‘what do we do with you’? You know what they should have told me? The Gospel! Tell me the Gospel! The Truth sets people free! It always has, it always will.”
The Truth sets people free. It always has, it always will.
Church, do we believe this? …I mean, REALLY believe this? Do we believe Scripture when it says that the Word of God will do what God intends for it to do?
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. – Isaiah 55:11
Do we believe that Truth sets people free?
…and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. – John 8:32
We do not need to look far to examine if we believe. Our actions will tell us loud and clear. If we are preaching the Gospel and speaking Truth to people, we have faith that the Words of God will impact hearts and minds. If we are not speaking the Truth of the Gospel to people, we need to start; because somewhere in our minds, we doubt the power of the Gospel. This is a problem. We cannot keep living as faith-lackers.
The solution to lack of faith? Pray. Pray for faith. You don’t have faith that your faithless prayer will give you faith? LABOR to believe the promise of Matthew 21:22 and the promises of God, and let me pray for you.
And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”
– Matthew 21:22
You are a good and gracious God. (Psalm 145:8-9). You promise to finish in us what you started, (Philippians 1:6) and we say yes to this. We agree with Your Word that we want you to complete in us what You started. Give us more faith, God. Give us grace to believe You. Give us grace to believe Your Word. We cannot trust You without You. We need Your help to believe. You are the only One who can help us trust You more. Pour out grace on us, God. We are stuck in disbelief until Your grace allows us to believe You. Thank-You, Jesus, for Your promises. We stand on them. We believe that You are good and that You are a good Father who gives good gifts to His children. (Matthew 7:7-11) We receive these gifts and we say thank-you. Thanks God! We love you!