We had an unusual Uncle, to say the least, everyone in the family considered him a real recluse. He was a substantial man in stature. He was not known to attend church or any other social events. He and his wife were more into the intellectual realm of beliefs. It was once said, "He was the only man he knew who had two beautiful working horses, yet he never worked."
On one of the weekends, we were visiting family; they told us that the uncle was on his deathbed in one of the hospitals near Atlanta. We were aware of his status and the fact that he was on his way into eternity. We were concerned about the direction his soul was going to spend eternity. John and I decided to visit the uncle and at least present one more chance for him.
The aunt was the only one in the hospital room when we arrived. We weren't there long before John's family preacher, and wife entered the room. As they came into the room, the uncle extended his hand out toward the preacher and asked if he would pray, which was a surprise to me. He agreed and proceeded over to his bedside. The pastor began to share about many of the events going on at his church. After that, he talked about a couple of other patients he had just visited while they were in the hospital. He said his goodbye's, then turned to exit the room.
I could hardly believe what I was seeing! He was walking away from a dying man who had just asked him to pray for him. I blurted out, "are you aware that this man is dying, and he is not a Christian, and without Christ, his soul will spend eternity in hell!" The preacher's reaction was as though I had thrown ice-cold water in his face. He stood in shock for a moment, then replied undoubtedly. I specifically asked him to pray a salvation prayer. He went back to the bedside and led him in a salvation prayer. The uncle slid into heaven like the thief on the cross, the very last minutes of his life.
A few hours after we returned to John's parents' home, the phone rang, and it was for me. It was the preacher we met at the hospital. I began to shake in my boots, Oh my, I supposed I was going to get a reprimand for the way I reacted in the hospital. On the contrary, he thanked me for speaking out! He said he was biding his time out at the church until he could retire. He had left the calling of the Lord on his life, which was working hand and hand with Holy Spirit bring the lost into repentance. He thanked me for reminding him of that calling. That's what happens when you are in the right place at the right time. The Lord orders our steps.
Some people have the opportunity presented to them early in life, and they take it. Others have many chances to come into the family of God. I know a few that did not want to give up the life they were living because they were under the impression they would have to stop having fun and living the good life. That is what I use to think. I did not realize how much fun we could have. Then some wait until the last minute and make it in like our uncle. But many do not get another chance to receive Christ before that heart attack or accident. There are no more chances after death…. It's too late then.