Even though elementary school had some sexual talk, puberty and junior high brought about a whole new level. Sexual acts on buses and even in school happened. People were singled out and teased about masturbation. I remember hiding on the bus hoping I wouldn’t get teased. I knew it was wrong, but my sexual problems would continue off and on for the next 20+ years.
There was also the ongoing drama about who was “going out” with who. I remember “making out” with a girl on a bus trip to a basketball game in the 8th grade. I also remember feeling physically sick afterwards, much like when I saw pornography when I was around 10. God was trying to protect me, but we all have free will. I then remember breaking up with the girl the next day.
Looking back, there was so much dysfunction. I know many have had a much worse childhood with sexual abuse and many other things. Even in North Dakota, probably considered one of the more conservative and traditional states, much sin still abounds.
I believe sexual perversion has only gotten worse in America. I don’t mean to sound depressing, but all you need to do is look at a PG-13 movie from 1990 and then look at one now. Our standards as a society slowly slip away… but, Jesus!! The light of Christ shines ever brighter in the darkest places. In fact, I think we are living in such exciting times for America. The more people who are slaves, the more freedom is needed.
Jesus is truly the answer. Jesus is hope. Jesus is life. Jesus is deliverance. Jesus is freedom. Jesus is the embodiment of love in a man. Without Jesus we have nothing. He is everything and deserves our praise.
Many people talk of Sodom and Gomorrah in the Bible as a reflection of what God wants to do to homosexuals, prostitutes, and other people with sexual sins. However, Jesus hung out with prostitutes. He ate and drank with what society considered the worst of His day. If we are truly Christ followers, then we should be able to do the same.
If you feel like you have no hope in your struggle with sexual sin, look to Jesus. Surrender your life to Him. Learn His ways. Read His word. Do everything you can to follow Him. He really wants you to know God the Father. Jesus made a way to know Him. He loves you right where you are, and He has an amazing path for your future.
Where do we even begin? So much has transpired throughout this past month! We have been traveling around North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida back to the Carolinas, Tennessee and back to North Carolina. Whew! It’s been an interesting month of travel and new relationships.
This post is going to be filled with pictures of our adventures! I’m so excited to show you :)
God has been moving us forward and we feel like our only "job" is to stay in love with Jesus. When we are in that place of love and surrender, God just puts us on His rail car and transports us on the path of His glory covering the whole earth.
We spent the first part of March enjoying camping-life with our kiddos. We had numerous bonfires, exploration times, hikes through the Georgia woods, and mini golf fun. It was honestly another time of puling back to refocus on the kids God has given us. We so long to raise up our children knowing that we love them and that they are important to us. It's so easy for kids to sorta come along for the ride and not get much attention. I believe God sets up these mini reprieves to let our family feel connected.
Toward the middle of March, God began to speak to us about new beginnings. We received a random text from this guy named Jason. Him and his wife, Katie, were traveling with their 5-yr-old son, Dax and they were preaching the gospel and sharing the love of Jesus. They had checked out our website and felt that our stories were extremely similar.
After our first video chat, we felt an instant bond. We actually felt an anointing on our relationship and Josh and I went to bed that night with our faith renewed and a great sense of expectation. We didn't know what the future would look like, but we new God was taking us into a new phase of His story for our lives... and, it would all be for His glory!
There is nothing like family. Seriously. The last piece of the puzzle God gave us before we left was that it was all about family. Josh heard very clearly that we were supposed to share the gospel of Jesus by inviting ALL into family. We have seen this in unique ways as we have traveled, but nothing to the extent we believed we would see.
Enter Jason, Katie and Dax. We met up with them for a face-to-face in Franklin, TN. In those 2 days, we knew that God was up to something big. They talked with us about committing to travel in family and join with us in ministering the gospel of Jesus.
I cried. It was a beautiful moment.
We have felt honored and loved in such profound ways this past week. There is a fresh anticipation for what the future holds and to see where God directs our families.
It is also a very humbling experience to open our lives and our hearts up completely. Feelings of inadequacies and insecurities threaten to keep part of us protected and shut down. But, we strongly believe God is leading us to do family completely and wholly with others.
With that being said, please pray for us. Pray that we would trust and be sensitive to where God is leading us as family.
Here is an obvious question: what does it look like traveling with 2 buses and 9 people? Large parking lots, lots of noise and joy and laughing and eating and (a little) crying and awkward times figuring out how to divide up food stuff ;) and large party-like trips to Sam's club ...
Totally worth it all!!!
If this travel thing interests you or you feel like God is speaking something BIG to your heart, please contact us! We would love to chat and pray with you. Also, if you believe God has been asking you to invite people into your family, we would encourage you to take a step and pursue that...
I don’t ever want to make sex sound bad. I think I felt like that growing up. It wasn’t talked about and the only thing that really got through to me was, “sex is bad… until you’re married.” The truth is that sex is a beautiful creation by God. It is a wonderful gift, that in the context of marriage, glorifies Him. I think it’s amazing that God uses the same word (yā·ḏa‘) in the Bible for sex and for knowing Him. Seriously!
Genesis 4:1 says, “Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, “I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord.”
In 1 Samuel 3:7 it says, “Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him.”
Samuel was a prophet in training. He was training to know God intimately, to be able to hear God’s word for the people. God could have chosen any other word to use in these contexts, but he chose the same one. I will go more into this further in future posts, but let’s get back to 1989 and me being ten-years-old...
I remember in the fifth grade my teacher walked in right when I was copying an obscene gesture that I had seen other kids do. My teacher was furious and took me outside the room. He questioned me repeatedly where I had seen the gesture and if I knew what it meant. The only thing I could muster to reply was, “It’s really bad.”
I felt completely humiliated. My face got red-hot from embarrassment and I just wanted to get away from him. At just 10-years-old, there was already so much shame attached to the concept of sex.
Of course, I already knew about sex in a very perverted way because kids talked about it. Friends would tease each other about sex. There was no honor in it, no respect. Sex education wasn’t until 8th grade, but we already knew so much. We were only children and everything we knew about sex was what other kids talked about. It was very twisted and very harmful.
I can’t imagine having a smartphone at age 10! Just a side note to parents: Please don’t give your kids unsupervised electronic devices! It’s really sex education 101. It’s not smart, you’re putting your kids in a dangerous place. They are not protected and you can literally damage them for life. I know this sounds harsh, but it is truth.
On to the story...
I thought that sex was “really bad.” I didn’t understand the beauty of God’s creation and intention. I didn’t understand that God intended “knowing” one’s wife to be an amazing thing far beyond a physical act.
I could give you a bunch of stats that you may or may not believe on porn use. However, I’ll just give you a few. According to a survey by the Barna Group in 2016, 76% of CHRISTIAN men ages 18-24 actively seek out porn. What is heartbreaking to me, is that for most people, that’s not a surprise.
Women aren’t left out. 87% of christian women have looked at porn, and 33% of christian women under 25 look at porn at least once a month. OK, let me give you one more statistic. Only 7% of pastors say their churches have something to help people struggling with pornography.
Have we, as the church in America, just accepted this as normal? When Paul said in Galatians 5:13, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love,” was freedom truly an option?
Well, we do have free will. Our choices are always life vs. death or freedom vs. slavery. When they are written in black and white, isn’t it obvious what the right choice is?
We are going to come back to this truth and discuss it in depth, but for now, you are called to be free! Your brothers and sisters are called to be free, your parents and children are called to be free. God has called us all to be free, so why is the majority of the church trapped in slavery with this issue? I’d love to hear your comments.
You’ve brought an idol into my holy temple!
This morning God woke me at 4:45 and began to show me the depravity I had been in. For about 1 hour, I laid in bed by my wife knowing God’s love, but slowly understanding God’s hate.
You see, God hates sin. It is detestable to Him. He is Holy. He is one of a kind. He is set apart from anything in the universe. Read Revelation 4 to just get a glimpse of what’s going on around the throne of God. There is no one like Him. He deserves more than all the glory and praise and honor we can ever give.
Before we go any further in my personal story, let’s get this out there to everyone! GOD HATES!!! He HATES idols, He HATES sin. It is detestable to HIm. He can’t, by his own nature, associate with it. I would say maybe 100% of us have them or have had them. Do you?
I brought an idol into the temple! A quick read through the ‘evil kings’ in 1 and 2 Samuel and 1 and 2 Kings will quickly tell you that they often brought idols into the temple. They worshiped other gods. We do the same.
I set up a false image in my heart. I worshiped it, I protected it. God hated it and despised it. Instead of hiding His word in my heart, I hid deceit and lies and heartache and shame. God had given me the key, but I instead chose to live in my own prison: A self-made hell hole that no one but Jesus could get me out of.
Jesus tore the veil to the Holy of Holies, the place where God dwelt in old testament times. Jesus made it possible for our bodies to be the temple (1 Corinthians 6:19) of the Holy Spirit. Now, God can dwell in us! It’s an amazing, glorious thing and it’s possible for all of us.
But, don’t bring an idol in there. It grieves Him unbearably. And listen, pornography and other sexual issues are at the top of the list, but Christians everywhere are bringing all kinds of idols into the temple: money, cars, the American dream, retirement, Netflix, leisure, entertainment, business, and the list goes on and on.
If you think about something more than you talk to Him, you better check your heart. It is meant to be the well-spring of life and filled with the joy of the Lord.
As I cried this morning, I knew God was showing me this out of love. When I first was delivered from the web of addiction (it’s not just pornography -- so many things were tied to it), God showed me so much grace and love and FREEDOM! I needed it. I had been self-centered, self-absorbed, wallowing in my own pity for a long time.
The devil had me distracted from God’s purposes for my life. I think the enemy is pretty content with Christians doing whatever as long as they have an idol in their lives.
God showed me love and grace, and I began to have more and more healing. My wife, Mary, began to heal. My family began to heal. Today, He showed me something I couldn’t have bared then. He showed me His holiness and His hate for idols… and I’m so glad He did.
~ ~ ~
I will continue posting on Tuesdays/Fridays. Please if you have questions or need help, let me know! There is no shame for those who come to the light.
I grew up liking girls. I mean really liking girls. It was apparent to me at a very early age that girls were different than boys. I would chase them around at recess and catch them. Then I would let them go and chase them again.
One of my best friends growing up was a girl. We use to play “horses” and “store” and go sledding in the winter together. I don’t remember the age, but somewhere between ages five and seven, we got married. A friend 5 years older was the pastor officiating, and my brother and others threw leaves on us.
What we saw adults do, we did. We kissed and hugged, because that’s what married people do.
God reaffirmed something in me just this past week at a house of prayer meeting in Fletcher, NC. He told me I created you the way I did for a purpose. That purpose was not to ‘like’ girls, but to eventually marry a beautiful wife and serve her faithfully. God actually created Mary and I to perfectly compliment each other!
More than that, God created man and woman in His image! When he created man, He said something was not good. Do you understand that? Before sin ever entered the world, He said it wasn’t good for man to be alone. Women bring a part of God’s image that men just don’t have. Isn’t that a beautiful thing? God’s creation was only perfect once He made women.
Let’s keep women in a place of honor where God designed them. They are made in His image and have specific purposes that men can’t fulfill.
They are not an object to be lusted after to gratify our desires. Yes, God made men to be attracted to women, but marriage is the end result of that attraction. Sexual dysfunction is a primary focus of the devil’s plan as he seeks to steal, kill and destroy you.
And, that was exactly the enemy’s plan for my life...
Pressing my face violently into the pillow, I screamed at the top of my lungs. All the rage, shame and fear had come to a tipping point. It was time to change. It was time to beat this thing. It was time to be a man. Once again, I resolved that this would be the last time. This time was different. I was going to try harder and be better. Of course, I would eventually fail for maybe the thousandth time. And, it would bring me back to the same place again. Despair. Impending doom. A failure.
I grew up in what many would call the middle of nowhere. Binford, ND, “The Biggest Little Town,” was a whole six blocks long and filled with 200 people. My brother and I, along with other kids, would spend our summer days riding bike all over town exploring every inch. When we heard a not so regular train horn blowing, we would race to meet it and feel the ground shake as it went by.
Binford was the kind of place where the whole town would show up to a basketball game. Like many towns around there, they’d have one big summer weekend a year where there’d be a carnival of sorts, a 5K, a rodeo, a streetdance all on Saturday--oddly followed by a city-wide church service on Sunday morning in the school gym. Mom would often tell us to check in every thirty minutes, but we’d ride bike and play with our friends for hours. I’m still amazed when I go back to visit at the city’s peace and quiet. Time goes a little slower it seems.
It was a different time. It was also a childhood experience that not many have had. My parents were both teachers and would eventually both live and teach in that area for 40 years. My dad coached primarily girl’s basketball and even led them to a state championship, which was no easy feat in such a small school. My parents were very hard-working. My dad would teach and coach nine months out of the year and then work 60+ hours/week in the summer painting and shingling houses and barns.
I grew up in a trailer house, as we called it. I didn’t think it was strange, even though the ‘trailer court’ comprised of a total of four mobile homes--most of which were occupied by teachers. It was actually very convenient--half a block from church, school and the grocery store. I’m pretty sure there were times where we didn’t drive anywhere for a month.
So this was my young life, and I didn’t know much of anything else. All of that unknowingly changed one regular summer day. One of my friends had invited me over to play and he was excited to share something. I followed him upstairs, and as he dug under his parents’ bed, he pulled out a VHS tape. I knew enough to know there was a movie on it, so we went downstairs to the living room and put it in the VCR.
Miraculously, I don’t remember anything that was on that TV. What I do remember was numbly sitting and having no idea what I was looking at. I remember feeling physically sick, like I wanted to throw up. And then it was over. My friend and I took the VHS back upstairs and put it precisely the way it was under the bed. Then we went out to play like nothing happened. But, something did. It was my first exposure to pornography.
I actually didn’t even remember this story for many years. I think it traumatized me enough that I pushed it down deep and forgot about it. Through a series of events many years later, God showed me the root of where the devil got in, so to speak.
Now I don’t start with this story to gain your pity. My hope and belief is that this story will help many people not only with sex-related addictions, but also addictions of any kind. I’m not a Licensed Addictions Counselor, but I do know the Counselor Jesus spoke about with His disciples before He ascended into heaven. In fact, it’s only at the Holy Spirit’s prompting that I write this story down.
Jesus said you will be my witnesses, and I am a witness to the awesome power of God.
Rest. Refreshment. Reconnecting. These are all things our family has been living in for the past week. At first it’s as if we forgot that God will actually lead us into a place of solitude. Instantly, I had a feeling of wandering around looking for my purpose again. I felt all those old mindsets begin to surface. Mindsets that said if we weren’t working hard and doing things then we weren’t being productive.
However, this time around, we sat together as a family and prayed and listened. And, what did we hear? Not much. Ha! I heard, vacation. I thought it must mean that we could do whatever we wanted, sort of like a vacation. Turns out that wasn’t how God meant that word at all, but I’m still learning how to process what I hear.
Another thing that God reminded me was that we already know what to do: love God; spend time seeking His face and abide in His presence; love the people God puts in front of us. Also, Josh and I both heard Savannah.
So, we headed back south to Georgia. We pulled into Savannah and found a Walmart that would let us set up camp for a few nights. Then, we tried to head to the beach. However, since we have to drive our massive RV around, beach parking proved impossible. We swallowed our frustrations and regrouped at a McDonald’s playhouse. And, that is where the magic happened…
The kiddos are so amazing at so many things, but especially meeting new friends! They instantly began playing with this 10-yr-old girl. Turns out that her and her mom are on an extended vacation. What?! The clarity is starting to emerge. The word I heard from God was “vacation!” How stinkin’ cool is that?!
Savannah + Vacation = God’s plan for our week. We recently heard that God speaks in riddles so that we will ask Him questions. He wants to have dialogue with us. He loves us so much! :)
The mom/daughter duo are from Quebec and speak French. It was a fun (and funny) few days as the kids played and we attempted to communicate. The 3rd day, we invited them to ride with us in our RV to explore downtown Savannah, the Savannah Candy Kitchen and to attend an Irish festival. It was a blast!
After a hot day walking miles in the sun, we started driving back to Walmart. That is when Josh had an inspired idea: Google Translate! We began to learn more about them and their journey. Then, we dove headfirst and shared all about Jesus.
We shared that Jesus set us free, gave us hope and is the reason we travel. She listened intently and then informed us that she was a Buddhist. We continued to utilize Google Translate and converse with her that evening. Just telling her we trust God to provide for us for finances and that we know He loves us.
They didn’t give their hearts to Jesus... yet. But, seeds were planted. In fact, seeds were planted before we even shared. She had mentioned that our kids are so kind and that our family loves well. After we shared the Gospel, she said that our family proved the gospel true.
“...your family proves that love true…”
After all of our adventures, God brought us to Savannah to meet a family on vacation. Josh told her that God arranged for us to meet and that He loves her. We prayed for them, and then we left.
Seeds were planted. We trust God to continue His pursuit of them…
Now that you've read my post, you can keep scrolling for some awesome pictures of the Savannah Candy Kitchen. I don't really eat sugar anymore (it makes me feel like I got hit by a truck!) But, put me inside a fabulous candy shop and I turn into a child again. Seriously. I love it.
God has birthed something in us that we are so excited about! One of our concerns when we left Grand Forks, ND, was a possible lack of community on the road. God promised us that we would have community wherever we went... and we have! However, we still desire to have a team with whom we travel, pray, fellowship, worship, eat, etc. on a regular basis. Well, it's happening!
These are some of the beautiful people we'll be traveling with! In the middle are Trent and Siobhan Walker. We rented the RV from the Walker's after "meeting" them on YouTube. On the right are Jim and Amy Miller. I (Josh) met Jim randomly at Catalina State Park in Tucson, AZ back in December. There's only 4 kids in this picture but there is a total of 12 between the three families!
So what will we be doing? We'll be doing exactly what we have been doing, but in a slightly more organized way :) The tentative plan is to all meet up in Virginia near Siobhan's family in late March to start a Gospel Caravan of sorts.
We will have times of interceding for cities, for people to know Jesus, for healing and so much more. We will eat together! This is often an overlooked practice the early church participated in, but it's so good for bonding as a team, and really, a family. We will worship our heavenly Father. He is worthy of it all. We will tell people about Jesus. This is a mandate for all those who call themselves Christians (followers of Christ). Finally, we will disciple. It's obvious that we disciple our own children, but our hope is that we will have opportunities to disciple people in the churches we work with as well as others who travel with us.
"We thank you, O God! We give thanks because you are near. People everywhere tell of your wonderful deeds" Psalm 75:1
This verse has really spoken to me (Mary) over the past week. We are anticipating a time when EVERYONE will talk about the wonderful deeds of God because they know that He is so NEAR. He is always closer than we know. In Luke 10, it says to heal the sick and tell them that the Kingdom of God is near.
The point of us doing what we do is so that people will know that God is near, that He desperately desires a relationship with them and has created a way (Jesus) for all people to live in the Kingdom of God.
So, there it is! Many have asked what we're doing in the future, and now you know. We're so excited to continue to live out the simple gospel by inviting all into family. We will have more information in the future about where we will be traveling/ministering. If you are interested in physically being part of this "Gospel Caravan," don't hesitate to contact us!
When we started this journey, we had two things on our schedule. Our first stop was a conference in Northern California last Oct, and the second was The Send in Orlando, FL on February 23rd. Well, those dates have come and gone! We made it five months on the road. So, now what? Well, first let us share about the last two weeks!
We spent 5 wonderful days with our friends the Yanov's in Lynn Haven, FL. They were hit by hurricane Michael back in October, and it was still very apparent! There had been tons of work done in the previous months, but it still looked like a disaster zone in many areas. We were able to help a lady who had just gotten an RV but had no idea how to work it.
After leaving the panhandle, we went straight to Orlando to help with the outreaches and services leading up to The Send. We went out on the streets with people from YWAM, Lifestyle Christianity, and so many other ministries to share the gospel in the greater Orlando area. Literally, hundreds of people got saved and healed all over Orlando. Then, we would get together every night at a local church to worship God, intercede for laborers and get excited for what's coming.
FINALLY, The Send.
JOSH'S TAKE AWAY: It was amazing. There were so many awesome things that happened, but my favorite was seeing my boys, Judah and Xander, raise there shoes in the air as a sign that they would go anywhere God told them for the sake of the gospel! It was so great for a father to see that.
Many people got healed and even saved at the event, but the one that hit me the most was right in front of me. Awhile back, God spoke to us about loving the person in front of us. Well, the guy literally in front of me was actually scheduled for a hip surgery. The short of it -- HE ISN'T ANYMORE!
We asked if the people in front of us wanted prayer for anything. The man's sister said, "He has a bum hip." So, we prayed for his hip to be healed. The sister said, "Well, try it out!" The man squatted and lifted his ankle up his opposite knee. When he did that his head snapped to the right as he said, "I couldn't do that before!" Tears began streaming down the faces of everyone in the group and one of the other guys looks at us and says, "You have no idea what this means... no idea."
We were so overjoyed with God's love and presence, it was a special moment. This happened at the very end of the night, so we didn't get to know them better. However, I had a sense that the man had been resistant to the gospel and possibly even the supernatural healing power of Jesus. It's possible that he reluctantly came to The Send at the request of his sister. Whatever the case, GOD. IS. SO. GOOD.
One last testimony... We stayed at YWAM Orlando base for The Send weekend and got to connect with a lot of cool people. More to come on that in our next post :) However, one great testimony was that normally YWAM Orlando has 150 applications for their 6 month training program. This year they already have 350!! The Sending Out of laborers has already begun!
MARY'S TAKE AWAY: All I can say is that, at this moment in time, we have no idea the impact and eternal significance of that day. Without a doubt, it is the most significant event we have ever experienced as a family.
Honestly, I would say that it wasn't an overly emotional event for me. The sun was HOT and the little girls were NEEDY. We didn't have enough snacks (God bless the Yanovs for sitting by us and sharing their abundance!) and the food in the stadium was EXPENSIVE (can you say $15 for a sandwich and chips?)
However, all of that stuff is just life. And, life often tries to rob us of the moments. That was not the case at The Send. We were spiritually present and we were 100% committed to the eternal ramifications. The day consisted of 4 focused segments: High schools, Universities, Neighborhoods and the World. It was fantastic hearing about how God is moving in these areas where we so often see only the negative. Personally, and as a couple, I feel God is preparing us to be sent to the neighborhoods and to the world.
Jesus has come to move across the nation and to bring hope and life. We are so excited to be part of this amazing time in history.
We would implore you to be part of this move of God. There will inevitably be some who sit on the sidelines and miss out on how Jesus shows His love to the world. Don't let that be you! Talk to God and tell Him that you will do anything and go anywhere to bring the gospel. Because, in the end, that is all that any of this life stuff is really about.
It's all about Jesus.
"Monday started the 24 hour prayer and worship leading up to The Send (thesend.org) on Saturday. This week is called, "The Flood". People from many different organizations and churches have descended on Orlando, FL to flood the streets with the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's so exciting!
Yesterday we went to a very busy shopping area to show people the love of Jesus. I was talking with one of my friends who just got back from the Philipines. He took his family of 7 there, and saw people come to know Jesus. His group also witnessed miraculous healings!
We were talking about how many see a family as a hindrance to sharing the gospel. Our day was about to prove that wrong.
We had been in a few stores, talking and praying for people, and decided to go to Chick-fil-A. All four of the Hoeckle kids and one of my friend's kids went straight to the play area. We sat around a large table in the middle and prayed together for direction.
During the prayer, I felt like I should go into the kids area. I did and I immediately met a 5 yr old boy named Ethan. He began showing me all his "ninja" moves. Then he flipped me off. He looked at me and raised his middle finger high in the air. I was speechless and as if I didn't notice, he explained, "I'm showing you my middle finger."
Now, a 5 yr old kid learns this stuff somewhere, so I felt an urgency to share quickly with him. I hadn't seen his parents the entire time and I had visions of an angry parent coming in to yell at me. I eventually talked to him between kicks and jumps to ask him if he knew Jesus.
He said, "Oh yeah, I know all kinds of stuff about Jesus. I go to Christian school."
I replied, "Well, you keep learning about Jesus, because He's awesome. OK?"
It was then about time to leave and I walked out and waited with Mirabelle, our youngest. An elderly lady commented on what a cute 2 yr old we have. If someone talks to you, this is always an invitation to talk with them. So I did. I asked her lots of questions about her family and found out she only knows where 6 of her 7 grandkids live. I asked her if we (at this point it was Xander, Judah and I) could pray for her 9 yr old grandson. We did and she was very thankful. The love of the Father is a precious gift.
My friend was praying for a family on the other side of the store, and Mary was praying for an elderly man near the back corner. I went back by her, thinking she was almost done, when I saw a guy with a scowl on his face... sitting as far from the play area as possible. He was covered in tattoos and piercings and could possibly inflict fear into more than a few people.
As I'm praying about what to say to him, my ninja friend walks up to him and grabs the drink on the other side of his table and smiles. I say hi to Ethan as he walks back to the play area and turn my eyes to the man I now know as his dad.
Any fear I had was now gone.
"Hi, how are you doing? Is that your son?""
"Yes," he replies as his face changed from scowl to confused.
"He was just teaching me ninja moves in the play area," I said.
He began to laugh and I had an open door to share Jesus. This hard man's heart had a soft spot and the Holy Spirit knew it.
Think back over this story:
1. I wouldn't have went in the play area if I didn't have kids
2. I wouldn't have talked and prayed with the elderly lady had Mirabelle not been there
3. I had no idea how to get at a hard man's heart without first meeting his son
I would say without a doubt that children only help in sharing Jesus. They lighten the mood. They can create an instant commonality. They have childlike faith! They're a blessing.
You can do this with your family or with a friend. It just takes time, some prayer and a willing heart.
Hi! We're the Hoeckles.
We're a family of six living full-time in a skoolie (aka a school bus converted into an RV). We are inviting you to join us as we live life to its fullest and empower others to do the same. Welcome to the family!