Setting the Captives Free

I have always enjoyed music. I first began my musical journey learning to play beginning piano from a teacher. In fourth grade, I started playing the cello. Then, I took up the guitar during my sophomore year of high school and soon wrote songs. I later felt a need to improve my talent, so I enrolled in a Music Theory Course at a local Junior College. I met Frank at this class. He also had a love for music. But we were just acquaintances and not close friends. I sometimes prayed for him, asking God to bring him into a relationship with Jesus.

God’s Prompting

One day as the class finished, I attempted to leave the school when I felt a tugging at my heart to wait. I sensed that the Holy Spirit wanted me to minister to someone, but I did not know who. I walked over to the school café and sat down and prayed quietly. In my mind, I fought the desire to go home. I did not understand fully what the Lord was doing.  But after about 30 minutes had passed, I got up and began walking. I immediately saw Frank in the hallway.

Since I had my guitar with me, I asked him if he would like to hear some of my songs. He said, “Sure.” so we made our way to one of the music practice rooms. I began to play and sing some of my Christian songs. He enjoyed the music, and I could tell that the Lord was speaking to his heart.

Sharing the Message

I shared with him the gospel message, and I told him that Jesus died on the cross so he could find freedom within. I explained that salvation is a free gift purchased through Christ’s suffering. Gleaning from Romans 10:9-10, I told him that if he confessed with his mouth that Jesus is Lord and if he believed in his heart that Jesus rose from the dead, he would receive salvation. Frank did that. He received Christ right there in the music room. In that small practice space, we experienced God’s liberating presence.

Still Free

The Music Theory class was soon over and we did not keep in touch. I wish we had. But after several years, I saw Frank at a store. I asked him how he was doing, and he told me that he served on the worship team at his church. I rejoiced knowing that he still followed the Lord. He still experienced  freedom in the Lord. This is the power of the gospel. It sets people free.

Our Mission

I do not share this story to brag about me. All the glory goes to the Lord! I desire to encourage those who read this to listen and follow the Lord’s promptings to serve him. Let us be sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Let me also encourage you to know that we do not need God’s leading every step of the way to be a witness for Christ. Jesus told us in the word to go and spread the gospel to the world. At times, however, he will specifically lead us to others to share the good news.

In the Bible, God led Philip the evangelist to share with the Ethiopian eunuch. And the Lord led Paul, Silas and Timothy, through a vision, to go to Macedonia during their missionary travels. But the majority of the time, the leaders of the New Testament shared the gospel in obedience to the words of Jesus. We know these instructions as the Great Commission. The command from Christ for us to preach the gospel is found in many places in the New Testament. In Matthew 28:19-20 it says, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”

It is also true that whenever we witness to others we can lean on the Holy Spirit. He will enable and empower us to evangelize.

We can share the gospel with our family, friends and neighbors. With God’s help we can overcome our fears and embrace the call that we have to minister the gospel to others. And on those special occasions when the Holy Spirit directs to share with someone, we can walk in obedience obeying the voice of the Holy Spirit. I hope this encourages you to spread God’s good news to others. It is this message that sets the captives free.

Tom Toya

Tom lives with his beautiful wife, Lou, and his handsome Maltese, Muy-Muy, in the Chicagoland area. He has published articles in several magazines, e-zines and newspapers. He authored Ancient Songs for Today: Discovering Life Changing Truths from the Psalms.

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  1. I am so encouraged Tom, to see how the Holy Spirit led you to wait on God and that waiting led to Frank’s salvation. It is my prayer I learn better how to wait and listen to the Holy Spirit’s leading.

    1. I am glad this inspired you. By remembering this true story, I am encouraged to be open for other opportunities that the Lord sets before me. We all can be used of the Lord. He just wants us to be available.

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