God Rigged the Game

God Rigged the Game

But you are holy, O you that inhabit the praises of Israel. Psalm 22:3

Do you ever get the distinct impression that things are being orchestrated by God in your life?  I do.  And now, so do several of our Elders and Stakeholders at the Bridge at Highland.

Here’s what happened.  Not long ago we were playing a sharing game during our weekly Bible study.  I had a wheel we had rigged that would spin like a Wheel of Fortune.  It was painted in black chalkboard paint, and I had the numbers 1, 2, or 3, drawn in each space around the wheel.  I had given each number an assignment: 1. SONG: Share or sing a favorite hymn or worship song 2. TESTIMONY Share a testimony of what God has done for you, and 3. WORD Answer a Bible trivia question, such as, “what are the first three words of the Bible?”

We progressed around the room, each Elder taking turns spinning the wheel.  They chose whether they wanted the wheel spun left or right, fast or slow.  The energy and excitement grew as each Elder in turn kept landing on 2. TESTIMONY. Each had a beautiful story to share, and we were feeling especially blessed in our fellowship.

Nearing the end, the last Elder spoke up eagerly “I have a testimony to share!”  I encouraged him that when his turn came, if God wanted him to share it, his spin would land on TESTIMONY.  By now several Elders began to say the wheel must be rigged, to always be landing on 2.  I assured them it was not so, but to make absolutely sure, just before the last Elder’s turn, I erased the numbered assignments and renamed them 1 TESTIMONY, 2 SONG, and 3 WORD.

“Are you ready?”  I asked.  “Spin it hard to the left” He told me.  So, with dramatic flair, I spun it hard to the left.  Everyone watched as the wheel slowed, until it appeared that it would indeed stop on number 2 once again.  One of our Elders, Ms Emma, quipped “See, I told you it was rigged…!”

But then the most unusual thing happened.  If I hadn’t watched it myself, I would not have believed it.  The wheel spun on to number 3, and then, as if it were moved by an invisible hand, it turned BACKWARD, past the 2, and stopped on 1… TESTIMONY!

The room was filled with gasps of surprise and awe.  I was overwhelmed with a feeling of God’s presence as the last Elder began to share his testimony.

Our Elder shared that, though he had been raised in the church, he had strayed from God.  During the time in his life where he had turned from his faith, he struggled with guilt and the burdens of an ungodly lifestyle.  He doubted whether he could ever come back to God.  “But one night I had a dream,” He continued.  “I saw a lake of hellfire that I was told had been prepared for the devil and his angels.  I slipped and began falling into the lake and I could not see God anywhere.  I felt terrified and cried out in desperation to God for help.  Immediately I felt God grab my arm and pull me up on solid ground again.  God told me, ‘the lake of fire is not prepared for you’.”

“That was a turning point in my life”  He concluded.  “Since that time God has been the most important thing in my life.”

After such a moving session of sharing testimonies, we all sensed the moving of the Holy Spirit.  Elders and Stakeholders alike who gathered and listened to the stories were inspired and blessed in a special way that day.  God was glorified in a powerful way.

This experience reminded me of some beautiful Bible promises.  Psalm 40:2 says, “He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps.” And these words in Revelation 12:11 “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their TESTIMONY….”

Truly, it was a day for overcoming in the name of the Lord!

(All verses are quoted from the King James 2000 Bible.  Emphasis supplied.)