Several weeks ago, one of my online friends posted about a man who had impacted her life so much and prayed that he recovers from the sickness that was ailing his body. Curious to know who he was, I checked him out on YouTube and what I saw was quite humbling. The more I listened to him, the madder I got at myself for having not heard of him before then. He was an ‘apologist.’ I didn’t know exactly what that meant and so, I checked it out and found that in simple terms, an apologist is a defender of the Gospel. His Name was Ravi Zacharias; an Indian by birth, who came to the knowledge of Christ at age 17 after a failed suicide attempt. The name of his ministry is RZIM (Ravi Zacharias International Ministries).
That period, I kept seeing posts from time to time of people all over the world praying for him. The comments about him were just amazing. I kept thinking; ‘What kind of man is this? Who is he? How did he become so endearing to the hearts of many? What did he do? How come he makes love sound so easy?’
The more I listened to him speak, the more I got answers to my questions. It was awesome to see how calm he seemed in the face of oppositions, and oh boy, were there oppositions!
And then not long ago, I came online to the news of his passing. Men and Brethren, I felt so sad and sober; in fact, my whole week was spent in a reflective mood. It was then that the impact of this man’s life on the lives of others hit me! He loved people. Not just in words. He genuinely and deeply loved people and it was very obvious in his communications with them. In his line of work as an Apologist and Evangelist of the Gospel of Christ, he was faced with all manner of questions from different people from all walks of life; but the gentility, patience and wisdom with which he addressed them was unprecedented; at least for me. His voice was so soothing; his demeanor, calm and relaxed; his answers, non judgemental and loving. He was very concerned not to lose the person all in a bid to ‘prove’ a point. He often said, ‘’Behind every question is a questioner.’’
He was so different. His approach to the things of God reminded me so much of 1 Peter 3:15 which says, ‘’Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with utmost courtesy.’’ (MSG)
“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” (NIV)
He was good to all. Treated a driver same way he would treat a CEO. He understood that people mattered, no matter their lot in life. He knew how to give his undivided attention to people and was unhurried even as he sought to know more about them; he was really interested in them! He lived what he preached. He was a family man who couldn’t stop speaking on his love for his wife and how blessed he was to have met and married her. They were married for 48years. Wow! He also spent time with his children and played with his grandkids. He was so funny eh! He loved sports and good food.
I was honored to watch his funeral service live on YouTube on the 29th of May 2020 and it was amazing. I sha cried. Everyone had the same testimony; that really, the man loved like God. Even the coffin he was buried in was made by some prisoners in Angola who I believed he had impacted at some point.
The internet was abuzz with different testimonies about him from different people of different backgrounds.
This man through the God-kind of love truly changed lives.
Even though he has passed on to eternal life to be with his Savior Whom he loved, lived and worked for, he will no doubt be thoroughly missed here on earth, but I believe that; like all the other saints of God who have gone to be with Him (God), his impact will still be felt generations after generations.
May His loved ones receive comfort knowing that he is in a better place with his God; where there is no sickness, suffering, pain or death.
May we learn to love like God.
May we learn to love people over things.
May we be relevant even in death.
P.S; If you, at any moment as a believer have questions you are struggling to find answers to, can I suggest you listen to his messages on YouTube? Or if you are one who is still trying to believe this ‘faith’ thing and have questions you would like to have answered; or if you just want to see a man who loved like God, may I suggest same? I promise you won’t regret it.
He was known to make the ‘’believer think and the thinker believer.’’
If at the end of the day all you have is God, then you have more than enough.
LOVE LIVES HERE
#God is Love#