Friday, June 24, 2011

Today Could Be Your Last.

It could. Today could be your last day on this earth. Today could be the last time you hear the Gospel. This moment could be the last opportunity you have to surrender before your Lord and King. This very second could be the last time the offer of mercy and eternal life  is extended to you.

Today could be your last.

It was Miguel's. Not this very day, but "today" more than a month ago when the Gospel message was proclaimed to him for the last time in his life. I remember coming down from my room and seeing him sitting at the table in the dining room. I didn't know who he was. I simply greeted him and went about my business; I was too busy with my own affairs to be getting into the Urban's affairs. After all, he was there to see them, not me. I was in the house with him and his relatives but didn't witness to them.

But Lina did. Through a series of providential circumstances, he had met Josef and Lina once before, and they had preached the Gospel to him. He was really open. This day Lina sat down with them and again shared with him the hope of salvation in Christ. He received the Word and had an apparent desire to surrender his life to Christ...whatever the cost. And there would be a cost. He was a federal police officer, and like the majority of police in this country, he was crooked. And not only that--he was also buddy-buddy with the Mafia. But he seemed willing to pay the price, to repent and do what was right as a police officer, to glorify the infinitely worthy Christ with his life. He left the house hungry for the Lord and for His Word, assuring Lina that he would get right with God.

Facing death was nothing foreign to Miguel; he had already been shot at in the past--being severely wounded--due to his Mafia ties and dealings; he had already stared at death in the face, and by God's grace he had survived.

But, tragically, only a few weeks after seeing him the Lord would have him come near the door of death again...and this time he would not emerge victorious. It was a shock for me to hear it when Lina first told me. It was all over the news, she said...two gunmen murdered him in cold blood. Walking along the sidewalk, right outside a government building in the city where he lived, he was met by the hired killers. He tried to flee, but they managed to trap him, do him in, and get away. That it was a hit job was obvious; that he was the main target was undeniable.

Reading the online news reports was utterly sad. But alas! A glimmer of hope: some of the news reports stated that he had retired from his police job only some weeks earlier! Talking with Lina, she told me that the last time they spoke he mentioned that he was going to be transfered to another city soon. He was going to continue working. There was no reason whatsoever for him to quit the force.'s hoping that he actually repented and trusted in the Savior, and had had enough of his life of corruption and crime. Here's hoping that he left behind what he knew didn't please the Lord. Here's hoping that he indeed did come to know the living God. 

Will we see him in heaven? I truly hope we do. I may never know, this side of eternity. I may not know many things in this life, but there is one thing I'm certain of--

Today could be your last. Are you ready?

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