Joe Williams from Good News Baptist in Chesapeake Virginia has been an inspiration to us. Back in March as he was leaving the hospital after having visited a friend, he chatted with a young man on the elevator who was quite downcast. Joe discovered that this man’s mother had a 90% chance of not waking from a coma. The elevator doors opened and they went their separate ways, but in Joe’s words, “God tugged very hard at my heart.” So Joe took off to search for him and found him leaving the chapel. “I told him how I was pulled to come back and check on him and asked if we could talk about what was going on and about his relationship with God.” Joe engaged him in conversation and discovered that he had not left his mother’s side for three days. Even though he explained to his boss the critical nature of his mother’s illness, he was fired because he couldn’t go to work. For three days he had nothing to eat.
After getting to know Chris, Joe turned the conversation to the gospel and found that Chris felt one must believe the Bible and do what it says in order to go to heaven. Joe writes, “I went through the GPS with him. He accepted Christ’s offer of salvation…. We had a time of prayer and I left him in the chapel…I didn’t think it would be right to leave him physically hungry, so Karen and I went to Burger King and bought him some food and brought it to him in the hospital. He seemed appreciative…I believe this was a Divine Appointment where God allowed me the privilege of being present when he saved someone from an eternity in the lake of fire. I praise God for His mercy.”
Joe’s story was a poignant reminder that we often come in contact with hurting people who are ready to hear the Good News of the gospel. Joe listened to the voice of God’s Spirit and followed up with action. All of this takes time, but in light of eternity it was worth it. And it all began on an elevator!