Home Christian News Greg Laurie: ‘God Uses Flawed People’ Like Lonnie Frisbee

Greg Laurie: ‘God Uses Flawed People’ Like Lonnie Frisbee

A Chance to Say ‘Goodbye’

“So, I hear Lonnie is dying of AIDS so he was in hospice care,” Laurie recalled. “I went to see Lonnie, and I remember it so vividly. The room was very dark. There was a big fire in the fireplace. Lonnie was emaciated. He looked horrible but as he began to speak, I sort of saw that old Lonnie spark.”

“Lonnie believed that God was going to heal him. He believed he was going to preach, but I could see this was not going to happen. I don’t know if that was the effects of the AIDS or if he was delusional, but it was clear that he was repentant,” Laurie recounted. “He knew what he did was wrong. He never was an advocate for any of it, but he fell away so okay that may trouble some people.”

“So—hello, welcome to life—God uses flawed people,” Laurie summarized.

Laurie looked to Scripture at specific accounts where God used broken people who made wrong choices.

“What about the story of Samson? What about the story of Noah after he brought the ark to safety, he goes and deliberately gets drunk and uncovers himself. What about Gideon? And the list goes on,” Laurie said. “Just because someone is used by God doesn’t mean they don’t have the ability to walk away from it. Simon Peter denied Christ three times. He had spent three years plus walking and talking with Jesus every single day, but he repented.”

Laurie explained redemption, “So, I think the key is—do we come back to the Lord? Yeah, and that to me is how you know if a person is a believer or not. So, if someone goes ‘prodigal,’ as we say, if they return to Christ—in my mind they’re a prodigal. If they never come back and they stray and they never return to their faith, maybe they weren’t even a Christian to begin with. Only God knows.”

Laurie reflected on his friend’s life. “Lonnie was a believer. Lonnie was used by God. Lonnie did play a key role in the last great spiritual awakening in America. Lonnie messed up. Lonnie fell away. Lonnie returned to the Lord. Lonnie was forgiven.”

“He was coherent, but he also thought he was going to walk out of there and preach again,” said Laurie. “I could see that was not going to happen. He was just very thin. His body was emaciated. His eye was closed. It was really tragic.”

“I only was with him that one time,” Laurie mentioned. “We prayed together, and we left very sad. To think of what could have been.”

Ruslan offered, “People want to love God, and they want to live his ways, yet there’s this dual nature that they’re fighting to suppress. Culture and society are telling us, ‘just be your authentic self.’ ‘Just be who you feel like you’re supposed to be inside.’ This is that aspect of the story I think is a cautionary tale for a lot of people—young people—who get saved and love God. God can use you, but you could still end up in a tragic place.”

“You know, God can give us potential, and we can blow it like Samson,” Laurie agreed. “He had tremendous potential, but he continued to play with sin—hanging out with prostitutes, more than hanging out. And falling into sin with Delilah. So, his life came to an end, and you think what could have been if he had not done that. We all can sabotage God’s plan for our life he does give us free will, but he does also give second chances.”