By Stephanie Heading
Delivering an ordinary meal led to an extraordinary experience recently for the pastor of First Southern Baptist Church in Camden.
His church sponsors a monthly outreach, providing food to those in need, according to Pastor Greg F. Jackson. “John and Shawna Keehner lead a wonderful monthly ministry of providing meals to our community. A great team prepares, cooks, serves, and delivers.”
On a recent Tuesday night, Jackson was on the delivery team taking meals to homes in Eaton. “One of those homes was the house of a man named Fred,” said Jackson. After pleasantries, Fred mentioned that he had been thinking about visiting First Southern and shared health battles he is facing. “I asked if I could pray for him. He invited me in and before I prayed, I asked him, ‘Fred, are you a Christian?’ He shook his head no.”
Jackson asked Fred if he could share the gospel with him and Fred said yes. “How wonderful it was to hear him pray and ask Jesus into his heart right there in his kitchen. I was thrilled and left with the expectation that he might be at church on Sunday.”
Fred’s profession of faith was not random, according to Jackson. “It was a divine appointment. Travis and Carlena McDaniel are usually the ones who drop off Fred’s dinner. God has been using their faithfulness and friendliness and service month after month and that opened the door for me. He used the faithful cooking, serving, and preparing by the church members. The team prayed prior to my arrival last night, and God was already working in Fred’s heart, and we did not know it.”
Soon after, Jackson realized an additional blessing from Fred’s profession of faith. “It hit me! God had just given me the greatest privilege outside of being saved and that was to share the gospel and see a person respond and accept Christ.”
That very day, Jackson was celebrating the anniversary of his own conversion experience. “Forty-six years to the very night, what had happened in my heart continues to happen in the hearts of others recognizing their need to be saved. God is working in our church in a great way. He is answering prayer. Lives are being changed and God is using us.”