Peter Stone : September 2004 Prayer Letter

Posted in Peter Stone

I remember witnessing in high school to my teammates and desperately trying to get them to pray the sinner's prayer. My objective was accomplished if they would just say the words to that prayer and mean them at least to some extent. Once they said the words I felt so relieved and satisfied that I had accomplished something, and I felt I could rest at ease knowing that no matter what passed in that person's life or however they would regard Jesus in the future, their destiny with God in heaven was sealed--simply because they prayed those words to the sinner's prayer.

I recognize now, of course, that repentance leading unto salvation doesn't come from the mouth--through words uttered--but from the heart. Nevertheless, conversion from spiritual death to life and rebirth happens at some point in time, and never without the confession of sin and belief in Jesus as the sole source of salvation from sin and certain destruction. That's why, although I am hesitant to get too excited, when someone follows me in praying the sinner's prayer, I am encouraged that they are at the very least making definite steps in the direction of true, saving faith.

This process takes on an interesting twist in a Catholic culture where saying prayers is part of the process of earning one's salvation. I am experiencing these cultural complexities as I engage people with the gospel. The other day I was the only student in class with one of the professors with whom I've been sharing the gospel since my arrival in her class. It had been evident to me through her questions and many of our conversations that the Holy Spirit had been working in her heart for a long time. So, two weeks ago in the middle of class after we once again entered conversation about the gospel, I asked her if she would like to pray to invite Jesus to save her from her sins. She said yes. So I led her in a prayer of confession and repentance of sin and belief in Jesus as Savior. She repeated my words with what I sense was sincerity. We finished praying and that was that. She expressed a desire to begin studying the Bible with me and then it was back to subjunctives and Spanish vocabulary.

A few days after her prayer, my professor informed me that her mother was in the hospital and had received a very negative prognosis. Her mother expressed interest in seeing me.

I arrived with roses and chocolates, the Bible and a fervent prayer that this devotedly Catholic woman would respond to the pure gospel of Jesus Christ. I read to her passages of Scripture that defined the essence of the gospel and explained each passage.

At the end of my visit I asked her if she would like to be certain that her sins are forgiven and to know that she has eternal life (many of you were praying for this visit). She said that she would and wanted to follow me in a prayer of salvation. After leading her in a prayer she asked for a blessing before I went. So I blessed her in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and then she crossed herself as Catholics do, and closed her eyes. I kissed her on the forehead and left her alone in the in the darkness.

The sovereignty of God in salvation is a great comfort to me, and compels me to rest in trust. God alone knows the heart. God alone knows what happens in the heart of someone when they pray words of repentance. God alone knows the moment that a person is reborn in the Spirit. It is God's work, not mine. He chooses, calls, and convicts. All we do is pray and wait for the leading of the Spirit, and follow. I will continue to labor in prayer and look for opportunities to lead them in discipleship. But this, too, is the work of the Spirit. Let's continue to be faithful in our part to pray and be available to the Holy Spirit. Please pray with me that my professor and her mother would both begin to study the Bible with me and grow in the grace of Jesus Christ.

Prayer Points

  • Please pray for me to have wisdom as I begin to take a more active role in leading our church plant that meets in my apartment.
  • Please continue to pray for excellent language acquisition.

Please make support checks payable to NEM, write Peter Stone on the memo line, and send them to:

10600 SW 40th St
Miami, FL 33165

Peter Stone
1803 North Hills Blvd.
Knoxville, Tn 37917
(865) 522-2585



quisiera saber mas acerca de sus ministerios

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