… To Adventist Leader
To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, September 9.
arek’s life began to change as he read The Great Controversy in Poland. He decided to keep the seventh-day Sabbath. He read that smoking is bad and decided to quit.
But he couldn’t.
On a Saturday, he passed a street poster offering a five-day stop smoking class. The address was a Seventh-day Adventist church. Marek had never heard of the denomination before, even after reading The Great Controversy and visiting the Adventist bookstore where he had bought the book.
Marek went straight to the church. He saw a poster for The Great Controversy on the church bulletin board and knew that he had found the right place. It was 2 o’clock on a Saturday afternoon, and the church normally would have been empty after worship services. But a group of literature evangelists were staying at the church that weekend, and they invited Marek to return the next Sabbath morning to worship.
Marek came back the next Sabbath and enjoyed the sermon about Jesus. He was amazed at the kindness of the churchgoers. They told him that a large group of young people would meet in a nearby city the next Sabbath and invited him to go with them.
On the next Sabbath morning, Marek waited by a road for the Adventists to pick him up. It was a hot day, and he was wearing shorts and a T-shirt. He waited and waited. The Adventists seemed to have forgotten him. Then he sensed two voices speaking to him. One voice said, “Stay outside, and enjoy the nice weather.” The other voice said, “Wait here because it’s really important that you go to this meeting.”
After a while the Adventists showed up and took him to a big meeting of 1,000 people. The worship service amazed Marek. Every word was meaningful to him. The preacher, a British pastor from London, spoke until noon. Then he said, “I know that I am supposed to end now, but I know that there is somebody here who needs Jesus.”
Marek thought, “Who told him about me?”
The pastor then shared his personal story. He was born into a religious family but had left the church. He had used drugs and drank. His church and even his mother had stopped praying for him.
“Then I met Jesus,” he said. “He took me up from the bottom where I was, and now I’m here to tell you about His power. And that He can change your life.”
Then the pastor made his appeal. “If you want Jesus to change your life, just come here to the front,” he said.
Marek saw 1,000 people in the crowd and cringed at the thought of standing in front of them.
With the very next sentence, the pastor addressed his doubts.
“Don’t think about others looking at you,” he said. “Just come here. Come to the front. It’s between you and God.”
Marek stood up. He couldn’t sit anymore. His heart beat wildly as he went to the front. Other people joined me. As the pastor prayed, Marek understood the plan of salvation for the first time. He had lived a bad life, and Jesus had taken his place. Jesus had taken Marek’s place on the cross and released him. Jesus was saying, “You are free. You are free to have a place in My kingdom.”
Marek began to cry, and nobody could stop him. The tears flowed freely. But Marek also was excited and joyful.
The pastor concluded by saying, “As you go now for lunch, tell everyone what Jesus has done for you.”
Marek took the pastor’s words to heart. After the meeting, he ran from bench to bench and person to person on the city’s main street. “I have met Jesus!” he exclaimed. “He has changed my life, and I will be in His kingdom!”
From that day, when Jesus changed his life, Marek has wanted to engage in a work that changes other people’s lives. Today, he is the youth director for the Adventist Church in Poland.
“With my youth ministry today, I really feel that God has saved my life not only for His kingdom but also from physical death,” Marek said.
While he was studying at the Adventist seminary, he learned that his childhood friend Matthew was found dead with a knife in his heart. He had been using a lot of drugs, and no one knows what happened. He was only 23. His other childhood friend, Martin, who taught him to sell drugs, ended up in prison for seven years.
Marek said God has given him a new life.
“I really want to help young people find their purpose in life sooner than I did,” he said. “Maybe they will live better lives after hearing my story. I’m really thankful to God. He saved me from everything, and He gave me everything. So I have given everything to Him.”
Thank you for your Thirteenth Sabbath Offering in 2017 that helped build a television studio for Hope Channel Poland. Marek Micyk is the long-time youth leader of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Poland and a speaker on Hope Channel Poland, the local affiliate of Hope Channel International.