I’m walking out of the Southeast Software association meeting with Bill Leonard of Wm Leonard & Co and founder of the High Tech Prayer Breakfast. I said to him, “I want you to know something big happened in my life.”
Taking the First Step
“What’s that?” he asked.
“I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior. I am born again!” I said proudly.
“That is great! You need to become a table host at this year’s High Tech Prayer Breakfast,” he said without hesitation.
“No way,” I said.
We walked into the parking deck, and the next thing I knew, I was pinned against one of the support columns. Bill had me trapped.
He said, “This is your opportunity to let all the people know you are now a Christian.”
Big Decision Made Timidly
“You don’t understand the life I lived. These people know me really well. I don’t think I am ready to tell them,” I said.
He was pounding me, and I was pounding right back. But I knew in my heart he was right. I needed to tell my friends and business associates, including my family.
Then Bill said, “Yes, you are ready. Jesus made you ready. It is not about you. It is about Him and what you came to believe he did for you.”
“Ok. I’ll do it,” I said timidly.
I had just agreed to invite nine people to a prayer breakfast. Those invites were really hard for me. I was so concerned what my friends might think. After all, they knew me!
Same Friends, Different Me
Not one of the people I invited to the breakfast was a Christian. This is because I didn’t hang out with Christians. All my friends were just like me. We believed and behaved pretty much the same way. Now I was different, yet we were still friends.
As I look back, it was the best table I ever hosted. Each of the men I invited thanked me for the invitation and said they enjoyed the breakfast. I was so glad it was over.
But it wasn’t over. From that day onward, our relationships changed. They knew I was a born again Christian. They saw me differently and expected different. Our conversations were now sprinkled with questions about God, Jesus and religion.
This led some of them to attend Bible studies. They were curious. They wanted to know more about this new faith of mine. Some of them even became born again themselves.
Becoming a New Person
Twelve years ago I was attending a friend’s 60th birthday party. At the time he was a self proclaimed atheist. While making his remarks to all his friends and family, he singled me out and said, “I have known many men throughout my life. But I only know one who truly changed from who he was into a new person. That’s my friend Charlie.”
I was stunned. That’s when I realized Jesus had changed me. I am a new man in Christ. The old man is gone.
It is time for you to sign up as a table host for this year’s breakfast. Only God knows where he will take this simple act of obedience.