How do I begin such an important post….
The date is December 4th, 2011. It’s a Sunday morning, and the Squires family is headed to church. From the back of the van comes Abel’s voice. “I want to ask Jesus into my heart today.”
Travis and I look at each other in surprise, and as my eyes fill with tears, all I can say is, “Really?”
“In fact, I want to do it right now.”
Some mixture of joy and awe and shock washes over me. Travis and I have prayed that Abel–all of our children–would come to know Jesus at an early age; and Abel’s own prayers have been giving us hints that something very important has been happening in his heart. Indeed, we have expected that Abel’s salvation would come, and yet we couldn’t have known it would be at this moment….
“Okay… but can we wait until we get to church so we can sit with you and talk?”…
…That particular morning, the children of the church had been invited to the stage to lead the body in singing “Joy to the World.” Abel and Amariah were among the many youthful voices that together created a choir whose sound certainly caused the listeners to consider the purpose for which we were created. And looking back, I realize what a beautiful backdrop that was to what was about to happen next….
Soon after Abel and Amariah had joined us back in our seats, we reached the point in the service where we would be celebrating communion–a perfect time to talk to Abel about the desire he had expressed on the way to church that morning. During our talk, Abel confirmed his understanding that all have sinned and need God’s forgiveness–including himself. And after stating in that beautiful, childlike way that he wanted to ask Jesus into his heart because “I want to show Him how much I love Him,” Abel began his prayer.
“Dear God, please forgive me for all my sins, and please come into my heart….”
I remain in awe of the goodness of God towards us and our son, that He would extend His grace and grant His salvation to our tenderhearted little Abel. I realize that we (the human race) are so undeserving of this free gift of salvation which is available to all who will believe; and I feel indebted doubly–first for my own salvation and now for my son’s.
As I have listened to Abel’s prayers over the past several months–prayers such as, “Dear God, please help me to love You more,” and, “Dear God, please give me a wise heart,” and, “Dear God, please forgive me for all my sins, and please come into my heart,”–I have witnessed a miracle.
Abel’s prayer has been answered, and in that, Travis and my prayers have been answered. But this is not an end. It is a beginning. It is the beginning of a life being lived for Jesus.
Oh, Dear God, I cannot express my gratitude to You for Your grace, Your mercy, Your salvation. Thank You for the work You have done in Abel’s young heart, where Your Holy Spirit is now residing. As you have answered his prayer for salvation, please also answer his prayers both for a growing love for You and for a wise heart. Take his life, Lord, and let it be consecrated to You.
|“Jesus Dying on the Cross” by Abel Squires, 12-09-2011|