A Radical Yes

Great Testimony from a recent Missions Venture from the Northshore to Romania.

what really struck me on this trip is the grip that religion has on the country. (By “religion,” I mean a set of rules that people try to follow to please God – in other words, legalism.) As I stood on a street corner waiting to catch a bus, everywhere I turned I saw churches and steeples and monuments and crucifixes and other external signs, but not much freedom or joy.

Having such a keen mind, I said to myself – this is going to take a miracle. Doesn’t it always? For example:

Donna, a 20-year-old hotel receptionist, couldn’t fathom how she could have a personal relationship with God, much less how the creator of the universe could live within her. Having been raised by a Catholic mother and a Romanian Orthodox father, she knew and agreed (intellectually) with the basics:

– yes, I am a sinner
– yes, I am separated from God because of my sin
– yes, I believe Jesus Christ is the son of God
– yes, I believe that he died on the cross to pay for my sins
– yes, I believe that he was buried and rose again

But when it came to actually vocalizing that she wanted to put her faith in Christ as her Savior and Lord – that she thereby wanted to receive the free gift of eternal life – she balked. “You can’t just say yes,” she said, “it must be a radical yes!” Amen. It takes a “radical yes!”

As we continued our discussion, Donna came to understand that the only way to have eternal life is to receive it and that the only way to receive eternal life is to receive it by faith in Jesus Christ. When this realization hit her, she said, “yes, I want to receive this free gift.” I asked her, is that a “radical yes?” She exclaimed, “YES, A RADICAL YES!”

What a great reminder from a young Romanian girl who saw the light. We are born of the Spirit as a result of God’s divine influence on our hearts, which causes us – by grace through faith – to utter in our own way a “radical yes.” And the way we are born is the way we should walk, continually responding to God with a “radical yes.”

Thomas Keiffer lives in Mandeville and serves as a Church Planter with E3 Partners. Contact him about future missions trips or speaking engagements at thomas.keiffer@e3partners.org.

Posted on September 28, 2010, in Church Planting, World Missions. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Oh, so they weren’t smiling as much as the Americans, so they must be lost…

  2. Actually, being lost has nothing to do with being an American or any other nationality. It also has little to do with personality type, such as a person who smiles a lot or not. Being lost is just a word some Christians use for being separated from God and unable to relate to Him because of sin. This is the predicament of everyone on the planet.

  3. I honestly believe your proselytism isn’t needed in Romania. We have been Orthodox ever since we can remember; Protestantism will never speak to us, we don’t use the same language your questions and assumptions don’t make sense and are often bizarre to us.

  4. I understand. What language does your church use for salvation and to describe humanity’s need for God?
    I think for most people that go on mission trips from America or any other country, it’s not about proselytizing to one religion or another – orthodox to protestantism – but meeting physical and spiritual needs whatever they may be. I love the beauty of the Orthodox tradition and would not wish for anyone to leave it, if it helps them worship the one true God and trust upon Him for salvation.

  5. If you want to know what is the language that our Church uses “to describe humanity’s need for God” you’d have to become familiar with its services. It’s basically the language of the Bible itself , of the holy Fathers and of the ecumenical councils.

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