From Tavern to Testimony
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure and privilege to speak at an assembly in the province of Quebec. The assembly is located at Notre-Dame-du-Nord, a small town located on the Ontario/Quebec border with a population of just a bit over 1,000 which is mainly comprised of French speaking people.
The history of this assembly is the result of prayers offered in faith (James 5:15). It also gives evidence that God will turn something evil and turn to good (Genesis 50:20). It further attests to the fact that God is on the throne and in control (Psalms 2:4).
A humble beginning
The story begins a few years ago. In this little town, there were seven hotels (taverns) which in the province of Quebec, close at 3:00am.
Five godly women from the nearby First Nations reservation were distressed that their men were spending their time at the bars and not at home. They decided to turn this matter over to God.
They went to each tavern , placed their hands on the building and prayed in faith that He would close them down. Within one year, all seven had shut down.
But the story does not end there! One of the buildings, which had been a striptease bar was up for sale. Being in bankruptcy, it was purchased for a very small price by godly people who desired to plant an assembly.
A thriving assembly
Today this assembly is thriving. Approximately fifty people are in attendance on Sundays and God has blessed them with many young families. This is a joyful, grateful group, rejoicing in the Lord and Savior as we all should (Philippians 4:4).
Instead of treating God like a spare tire, turning to Him only as a last resort, we should always turn to Him in faith and knowing with full confidence that He “supply our very need” (Philippians 4:19).
These godly women, who went out in faith, prayed in faith and their faith was rewarded.
“You do not have because you do not ask.” (James 4:2)
“Instead of taking these things to the Lord in prayer, we try to get what we want by our own efforts. If we want something which we do not have, we should ask God for it.” (William MacDonald )
Remember, He will “supply your every need” but not your “every greed”.
“You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.”(James 4:2)
“If we do ask, and the prayer is unanswered, what then? It simply means that our motives were not pure. We did not want these possessions for the glory of God or for the good of our fellow men. We wanted them for our own selfish enjoyment. We wanted them to satisfy our natural appetites. God does not promise to answer such prayers.” (William MacDonald)