The first time I heard the term “religious nut” was in the 1950’s when my mom spit those words out of her mouth. It happened when we shopped at Meiners’ Grocery Store in Forreston, Illinois. Mom picked a few items off the shelves and carried them up to the checkout. Lillian Meiners, the cashier, attempted to talk about the Lord to Mom while totaling the purchases on the cash register. It was a one-sided conversation with Mom saying nothing.
“She’s a religious nut!” Mom proclaimed as we walked to our 1955 Pontiac, parked outside the door.
From that day forward, Lillian Meiners personified a religious nut to me. I would often see her and when I did, Mom’s words popped into my mind. Lillian never knew my true feelings about her. It was one of those inner character assassinations I never spoke aloud to anyone.
Lillian’s name was filed on a forgotten corner shelf of my mind until late 1985. It would still be there covered with layers of dust and cobwebs except for the question I asked the Lord one morning during prayer.
“Jesus, why did you save me?”
A clear voice whispered to my heart.
“Because of Lillian Meiners’ prayers for you.”
His words shocked me, but a few years later, I talked with her pastor, Rev. Orin Graff. He told me Lillian was a diligent prayer warrior for kids who attended Bible Camp.
The first saint I am going to hug upon my arrival in heaven will be Lillian Meiners. I want to thank her for faithfully praying for an agnostic who always thought she was a religious nut. We can have a good laugh about my ignorance and how Jesus set me straight.
(Excerpt from The Hunt for Larry Who by Larry Nevenhoven, 2014, Amazon eBook)
My prayers for today:
Lord, I ask that you raise up faithful prayer warriors that keep on praying for Asia, no matter what others think or what they themselves see, believing that You are just as influenced by a single voice as You are by a million.
Join with me on Tuesdays to fast and pray for prisoners in Asia, according to Hebrews 13:3.
1. 4.4 billion people live in Asia.
2.. 85.4% of world’s unevangelized people live in Asia. (Unevangelized means they may have heard the gospel but have no understanding on how to respond.)
3. The world’s three largest non-Christian religions – Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhists – are based in Asia.
4. Of the 37 countries of the world that are less than 10% Christian, 32 are in Asia. Of the 14 countries, that are less than 2% Christian, 12 are in Asia.
5. 85-90% of unreached people live in Asia. (Unreached means that they have never heard the name of Jesus.) (Operation World: The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every Nation)