that is, until this service. the gospel was presented clearly and powerfully and the mood of the entire night was that of joy and celebration for this young man's life. sure, he cut it short, but i can only think of how God placed him on the campus of that school, for just about 8 months, to impact these kids, and then become the reason that they would hear the gospel last night.
i imagine satan probably figured he'd won this battle. he'd defeated this young man and convinced him there was no other solution but to take his own life. for a few days our enemy felt victorious, i'm sure... until God laughed in his face and reminded him [and all of us] that the gospel in its simplest form is more powerful than anything, including death. even suicide.
God used this young man's life and unexpected death to reach thousands of lives. i am quite certain there began a harvesting of souls that evening that will mock and taunt the enemy until he crawls away in utter defeat, tail between his legs. that is our God. He will use anything and everything to draw people to Himself. what the enemy means for evil, God will most certainly use for good.
"You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives." Genesis 50:20
i'm just in awe, i guess. how God turns ashes into beauty and how he has no problem putting the enemy in his rightful place- in utter defeat and complete powerlessness to accomplish any more than God allows. how He can take a terrible tragedy, and turn it around to redeem so many lives in the place of this one that was cut short. i just couldn't not share that with you. when all seems hopeless, God is working and He has a goal that's so far beyond what we could ever imagine.
i want to add, that this does not discount the seriousness and tragedy of this young man's death and suicide. i don't want to make light of it or act like it wasn't a really huge deal. but i do want to emphasize God's sovereignty and the way He works all things, even terribly awful things, together for our good and His glory.
also? at this very moment, satan can't touch this young man who is now bowing at his Master's feet, in the very presence of God Almighty. praise God for the simple Truth of the gospel.