Joel of Jerusalem Oct/Nov 1976

I have a sixty-year-old uncle who lives in Haifa. When he learned that I had received the Lord as my Saviour, he wanted nothing more to do with me. He said, “I don’t want to hear anymore about you, even though you are the son of my late brother. You don’t belong to our family anymore.” This was twenty years ago, and all this time he has been very hostile to me.

One time I went to Haifa to visit my uncle, but when he saw me, he closed the door and said, “Go away. I don’t know you!”

I told him, “I have come from Jerusalem especially to see you. How are you feeling? Won’t you even give me a drink of water?” But he refused. “Even after you have mocked me, I do not hate you because the Lord gives me much love, and I am able to give it to others.” But he refused to listen to me, so I left.

I was very sad, not because he had rejected me, but because he was in darkness. I knew that there was nothing I, myself, could do to bring him to the Lord, but I continually remembered him in prayer.

Now, after twenty years, the Lord is answering my prayers. Imagine my surprise just recently when, upon answering a knock at my door, I found my uncle and aunt standing there. (My aunt was even more against me than my uncle after I became a believer. When I visited them in Haifa, she wanted to call the police on me.)

I received them into my home as best friends, forgetting what had been between us. Of course, my children played special songs from the Psalms on their instruments for them. This seemed to make them very sad, and they cried. They have no children, and my uncle began to tell me that lie could not understand why God had given him so many troubles. He said, “You are happy because you have nice children. I have nothing. Now I am sick, and I do not know how long I will be in this world.”

I said to him and his wife, “Do you want to be happy and have a good life?”

“Yes,” he replied, even if I have to give away all my money.”

I said to him, “The Lord says you were sold for nothing, and you will be redeemed without money.”

“How do you know this?” he asked.

“Please take the Bible and read it for yourself,.”’ I said.

He said, “What? Do you also, as a Christian, believe on the Bible? How can this be?”

I told him, “We have the same God, the same Redeemer. If you will believe, you will see the salvation of our Lord. What we believe is all written in the Bible!” I then read to him many chapters of the Bible, all showing that the coming again of the Lord is drawing very near. I said, “Now is the time to receive Him as Saviour. Shall we pray in the name of our Saviour?”

“You may pray if you wish, but I will not,”  he insisted.

My son, David, then opened in prayer. He prayed, “O Lord, our lovely Father, help our uncle to be happy as we are. Amen.” After this, one by one, we all remembered my uncle in prayer before the Lord. My daughter, Ruth, prayed, “May the Lord turn to them and give them new hearts, and the Holy Spirit come upon them.” After our prayers, my uncle and aunt said “Amen”  for the first time!

My wife then brought supper to the table and we ate. After supper my uncle wanted to know how I had come to my faith in the Lord. This was a big surprise to me, and with much joy I gave them a witness for the Lord. They listened quietly, but I do not know their hearts. Only the Lord can save them, and now they are on the way.

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