The judge handed me the photograph and said, “Mr. Durham, I need to warn you the contents of this picture are distressing, but we need you to identify the items on Stephen’s bed.”
The 4x6 shook in my hand; I knew I was looking at Stephen’s body on his blood-soaked bed. He had been brutally stabbed more than fifty times. With God’s protection and guidance, my eyes were able to recognize the only items in the frame: The Bible I had taken to him and the “Knowing God Personally” tract under his pillow.
Two months prior, I had mustered the courage to visit Stephen, a hulking binge drinker with an intimidating, angry stature. I planned to meet him around two in the afternoon, in hopes he would be sober. When he opened the door, his shirt was buttoned most of the way and only a faint slur could be detected as he mouthed off at one of his five brothers on the phone.
I reminded myself God wanted me there,
and proceeded through his doorway.
I came prepared that afternoon, having spent weeks running through this scenario in my head. “I just want to talk with you about Jesus,” I said. “I want to talk through this booklet about how you can have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.” No response. After a long pause, Stephen finally looked up at me and said, “Martin, that’s all very interesting, but it’s not for me.”
A few days passed with an occasional Stephen sighting—a stinging reminder of my failure to lead him to Christ. Two months after I had visited him at his home, his name flashed on my cell phone caller ID.
I picked up the phone, “Stephen, how are you?”
“Hello Martin. This is Stephen. I want you to know that I’ve prayed that prayer.”
Martin Durham attended the second ILI International Conference held in Atlanta, GA in 2002. At that time, God gave him a vision of “Europe ablaze with the Gospel.” He is now the founder of Kerygma180, an evangelistic organization committed to raising up young evangelists to win Europe for Christ.
Check out Martin's podcast below to hear more!
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