By Danny Duchene, National Director CR Inside
“Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up, grew and produced a crop, some multiplying thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times” (Mark 4:8 NIV).
When Ted asked the local jail commander for permission to start a Celebrate Recovery (CR) ministry, the commander pretended to relent. He said, “Sure, you can have 15 minutes every Friday.” But Ted didn’t even flinch at what was obviously a put-off. He said, “Sure, I’ll take it!” Walking out of the commander’s office, he prayed, “Father, thank you for this opportunity. But how am I going to do a CR Inside ministry with only 15 minutes?”
Over the weekend, the jail commander went to church and heard about Celebrate Recovery for the first time, with a testimony of a changed life. On Monday he called Ted back and said, “You now have two hours every Friday!” In less than a year, that time doubled. Ted and his team now have a full CR ministry for both men and women in the jail.
When Ted told me his story, I thought of how Ted’s perseverance is an example of the qualities needed to begin a CR ministry in a prison, jail, or youth facility. I also realized that Ted is a great example for all our relationships. For some parents, a good 15-minute conversation with their teen is a hard-fought battle. A meaningful conversation between father and son or daughter can pass on values that last a lifetime. In the business of daily life, husbands and wives can struggle to find time to share a moment to connect, but the daily effort is vital for a lasting marriage. Even a brief 15-minute sharing of a personal story of faith in Christ can change an unbeliever’s life forever.
When we say yes to even the smallest opportunities given to us, God can take that commitment and multiply it many times over. As Celebrate Recovery principle 8 says, “Yield myself to be used by God to bring this good news to others both by my actions and by my words.”