Jeremiah stepped into the pool, was immersed as a public display of obedience. After accepting the Messiah as his Savior, an angelic glow came over his countenance. He jumped for joy at the decision he had just made. My husband and I watched his baptism, an answer to many years of prayer. Tears of joy poured down my face as I saw my autistic son make a major change in his life.
Changes in his mannerisms, his language, and the light of Christ in his eyes, affirmed the work that was taking place in his heart. As a child of God, he began listening to the quiet voice in his soul. He focused on learning about his Redeemer, so he could become a blessing to others in need.
Jeremiah was all too familiar with that feeling. His past was filled with many hardships, bullying, month long stretches in mental health hospitals, hours of therapy, a plethora of medications, and multiple threats of suicide. He was defined by autism and all that it encompasses. His biggest desire was to be accepted for who he was, not by his disability. Now he had his blessed Deliverer to turn to and was in-tune with the inaudible whisperings.
As was his custom, Jeremiah walked around his neighborhood and ministered to the homeless. It was not unusual for him to spend his last cent to feed the hungry. As they ate he shared what God was doing in his life and offered them the chance to experience the same joy. Some did and others had questions for this new babe in Christ. He didn’t have all the answers, so he devoutly immersed himself in the Bible. The more he absorbed about his faith, the more he became in tune with the murmurings of the Holy Trinity.
On one special day, as he was walking, he heard God speaking to him. The message was to share the Good News with the next person he saw. Almost immediately he met a young couple. As any of those on the spectrum would do, he took the message to literally mean one person, not two. He passed them by and continued walking and praying. Within minutes he saw a young man approaching and knew this was the one. He stopped the man and introduced himself. It was evident that this man was heart broken, depressed, and in need. Regardless of what his need was, Jeremiah knew that Jesus was the answer. He began to share Jesus with him. On the sidewalk, of a busy street, the young man listened intently to Jeremiah. He accepted Christ that day and the cloud of despair lifted from him. He was experiencing a new joy for life. Jeremiah gave him his phone number and told him to call if he needed anything, had questions, or wanted to pray. Little did Jeremiah know, that was the last time he would see him.
Unexpectedly, three days later he received a call from the young man’s father. He had found Jeremiah’s name and number in his son’s pocket and wondered the part he had played in his life. Jeremiah shared what had transpired. Clay, the man’s father, had bad news to share. His son had been found dead the day before. Jeremiah was able to share that this man’s son was in heaven, at the foot of his Savior’s feet. Blessed, Clay invited Jeremiah to his home. Once there, he learned more about Clay’s son and became friends with the family. Not having a way home he called us for a ride. We went to Clay’s home and were immediately invited inside. Clay shared with us about his son and how glad he was that Jeremiah listened to his heart. We have all become friends and talk frequently.
My son had reminded me, by his obedience to the quiet voice inside of him, that I too could become a bold witness. I have rededicated my life to Christ and to sharing how Jesus has saved this sinners soul.