Sunday, July 06, 2008

The story of a lost soul.

So today someone at church called me "the accuser of the brethren" and "Satan". And then rode away on a bike.

Over a year ago when I was still pastorin' for a livin' we were doing a Wednesday night renewal service where I would select 10 or so songs, make an iTunes playlist and then pipe it through the sound system. A bunch of us would just kind of quietly wait and worship. There were lots of beautiful moments. We did this for a while, and it was a good season.

One night out of no where this random guy showed up. We welcomed him in and he started coming regularly. He came to church one Sunday when Paul was preaching through Matthew and came to the passage on the unforgivable sin. Afterwords I ended up praying for this guy along with Paul to rededicate his heart to Christ. He'd spent years believing he'd commited it and was filled with joy as bondage's and shame came off him that day. He started coming out more and more of the following weeks and even brought his step-dad too.

One day he surprised us to say that God had told him to reconcile with his wife and he was flying her out. God had been restoring their marriage apparently. She showed up and we started to get to know her too. By this time, he would stop into the church about once a week during the day and I would pray for him and give him tapes to listen to. One day he shared with me he and his wife were going to move up north for work. Knowing he already had a good job and nice place to stay I cautioned him that he should consider sticking around a bit and stabilizing his renewed faith walk and restored relationship with his wife. He didn't.

A month ago he popped up. Without his wife. I got the feeling right away something was different. He started coming around a lot. Things got wierd. I'm not going to get in to it, but within a week he'd already kind of worn out his welcome and it's apparent that things aren't right. Before I'd really had a chance to connect with him he had shown up one night to the renewal service, walked up on the stage, told everyone God had given him a song to sing, grabbed a guitar and played the ever spiritual "Stairway to heaven". A few days later he told Paul our pastor that the music at the church sounded like funeral music and that we weren't using his giftings. Paul very politely disagreed and this guy snapped and stormed off. His step-dad (who by the way has become a great friend and awesome member of our church) confirmed things had been horrible around the house, with suspected drug use, bizarre behaviour, the police coming out, ect...

Well today he popped up. He sat quietly in the back all service and I wasn't sure what was going on. Afterwords the report got back from my wife he was spouting off weird stuff . So I looked around and saw him out in the parking lot talking to a group of people trying to get in their car. They looked a little freaked out so I went outside. I called him over and the first thing he brought up was how great it was when I had prayed for him way back and how God was doing such deep things in his life. A really long story short, I challenged him that I didn't think his life and story were adding up (Cause mine sure does lol!) and he freaked out on me. He was really delusional, angry and all over the place and the whole time I really thought I was going to have to protect myself when he attacked me. I sat there trying to figure out if I should try and chuck a demon out, reason with him, ect. He ended up telling me that I was the one who had a spirit and that I was the accuser of the brethren and Satan. He hopped on a mountain bike that was stashed in some bushes and rode away.

Long story I know. It's just sad to remember back during that time when we were doing that renewal prayer service and saw this guy as fruit of our pressing into God. I know God isn't done with him. I'm praying for him. But there isn't anything tougher than to see someone freed from prison just to go right back there again but with screwed up theology on top of it. You start to question your methods. Who knows? Was the mental illness dormant? Was retreating back to drugs one last time what scrambled his mind into chaos?

Who knows. Pray him if you think about it. Pray for his step-dad Bob too. He is scared, crushed and saddened a ton by all this.

Later on today Noah and I stopped by our feeding/blue bus ministry in Abbotsford, about 20 or so miles from our church to see the team over there. Sure enough in the middle of the crowd of folks was this guy (must have rode his bike fast to get there!)spouting all kinds of his nonsense. The look on the team (who didn't know what had happened at church) was that he was just another messed up homeless guy. I didn't say anything to him and kind of slipped away. Just another messed up homeless guy... something isn't right about that...


Steve Oberg said...

Definitely sounds demonic. As for him being genuine fruit - I think so, Jason. It may seem funny, but it sounds like he really was getting his life together, but slipped back. I know in my lifetime I have broken the father's heart many times by falling back into old patterns and bad habits.

Even laziness, apathy, cynicism (my favorite) and loss of zeal are just signs that we're not where we're supposed to be.

I am a firm believer, however that the story is still being written as it were, for all of us.

Steve Oberg said...

Also, you definitely aren't SATAN - maybe Gizmo the little furry gremlin, but definitely NOT Satan. Sheesh!

Jason_73 said...

Yeah I didn't take it too personally. I might need a 6-week healing prayer track soon enough, but for now I'm ok!

I should rejoice for the season when he was well and not think it was all for naught so quickly... I need to trust God's expert hand in it a bit more... He is doing something that isn't as black and white as I see it.