A week ago on my way back to Nigeria from the US, I had a seven hour layover in New York. There was much work to catch up on and, usually, I would use the time to do some work before the long flight home.
This time, however, I decided to hunt down one of our Blissful People who had shown tremendous love and support to this mission since we began. I’ll scramble his details here due to privacy concerns.
I caught up with him in a restaurant where we spent two precious hours together. Like millions of others, he had fallen into the error of overstaying his visa there and was now mired in the murky waters of trying to legalize his stay.
As I asked him about the details of his situation, he told me he knew I would ask, and that I would not approve. Of course! I absolutely discourage people from doing that. If you want to move into any nation, move in with dignity through the front door.
Nevertheless, he had already made up his mind to tell me everything. And he did.
As I was about to give him a piece of my mind —serious rebuke and strong condemnation of his past and ongoing actions—the Holy Spirit stopped me.
“I do not condemn him,” He said, “because I know why he did what he did.”
“What!?” I was taken aback!
“I want to help him get what he wants,” the Lord continued. “And I want you to pray My Favour on him.”
“I sent you here to pray My Favour on him. That’s all I want you to do. Nothing else.”
Well, I looked across the table at the young man. He was looking at me, ready for the verbal whipping that was coming.
Instead I said to him, “God does not condemn you. He knows why you did what you did. And he wants me to pray for you.”
It was at this time that he broke down in the restaurant and started to weep like a baby. I reached out and held his hand.
“Rev,” he sobbed, “my life here has been hell. I’ve been living in hell. But all I want is to help my family. They are all depending on me and I came here to help pull my family out of poverty and suffering.”
That broke my heart—not that he was crying, or that his family was suffering in poverty.
What broke my heart was my own callousness and judgemental attitude; especially in contrast to the compassionate heart of the Hoy Spirit.
I believe that young man will have a phenomenal breakthrough; a testimony that will look like a lie.
Yet, I’m convinced that the Holy Spirit sent me there to convict me of my own judgemental attitude and lack of compassion.
For that, Lord, I’m so sorry. Please forgive me.