Monday, February 27, 2006

Nuggets 8: Married to an Unbeliever

When we walked into Roy's living room, we saw something we never expected to see.

One night, fifteen years earlier, Maria told her husband Roy that she had just been baptized. Roy groaned and turned his face toward the wall. Maria saw in that moment how hard her path would be. But she had read from Peter that a man who doesn't believe the word may be "won without words" by the Christlike attitude and behavior of his wife. Maria decided right then that she would be the best wife a man ever had.

We met Roy and Maria through missionary friends in Malawi. Roy was a gentleman and quite sociable but had no time for religion. He was christened as a baby but had no faith of his own. Briefly when Roy had cancer surgery he began to read the Bible and talk about his soul. But as he got well he lost interest. When the couple retired to Cyprus, I wrote him a letter: "I won't force anything on you, but we love you. If you ever want to talk about your relationship with Christ, we are ready."

Years later Roy and Maria came to see us during a tour of America. Almost immediately Maria said, "Roy wants to talk to you." Roy wanted to give his life to Christ, but being a proper British gentleman, was embarrassed about getting all wet in a baptistry in front of his friends. I said, "Roy, maybe one of the reasons God gave us baptism was to test our humility and obedience." Roy promised to think on it that night. Next morning he was ready and I baptized him. A few years later Ruth and I visited the couple on Cyprus. As we entered their living room, there beside Roy's recliner were his Bible and concordance. The couple was hosting a house church.

1 Peter 3:1-6


Copyright 2006 by G.B. Shelburne, III. May be freely reproduced or forwarded for non-commercial purposes provided content is unchanged and this copyright notice is included. These shepherding messages are sent to members and friends of New Beginnings Church (, to students and alumni of South Houston Bible Institute (, and to other interested persons. TO UNSUBSCRIBE, hit "Reply" and type the word "Remove" in the message area. TO SUBSCRIBE, email

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