"Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." (I Thessalonians 5:16-18)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Testing...One Two Three

I am really being tested as God grows my faith. I'll write about it later.

Just know this one thing...

The testing makes me happy...

If God didn't love me...he wouldn't test me.

It's time to expand the elastic of my heart and trust Him deeper.

I just can't wait to see what God is going to do with this willing heart.

(Am I shaking in my boots....? You betcha!)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Being real

I touched on the subject of this particular blog with my daughter in law and it has just 'haunted' me. I need to tell the story, the whole story. It's not something someone can make up...this really happened.

I was five years old in my Christian walk. 35 years old...old enough to know better. Hadn't dated in over 5 years. Wanted someone to love me, desiring to be desired.

A man I know from work hopped on my desk and asked me out. I was so giddy. This is what I knew about him...he was not a Christian and he was a very wild person. But then I thought I could be good enough for both of us. And anyway...he had been the ONLY person that had acted like he was attracted to me. He pursued me for days and days and days. . . until I decided it must be GOD'S will, because God would protect me if it wasn't.

So I went out with him. We 'dated' for two years. It is true the bad people never rise to a good person's status...it's always the other way around. I compromised everything I believed in. Many of my Christian friends warned me I was going to get hurt...but they didn't know him. They didn't know how he loved me...they didn't realize that no one else was interested in me...and it just HAD to be God's will for me.

And then it happened. One day he left. He said as he walked out of my life "I always thought you were different than most women I knew...but now...I see you're just the same."

Compromise makes you blend in with the world.

My heart was broken in two. I think I cried non-stop for 3 days. My insides hurt. I hurt because I had loved him so much...and then I began to hurt because reality set in and what I had done to my Lord and Savior was even worse.

I sat on the bed and wept because I had sinned so flagrantly. And didn't even want to acknowledge it until I had lost everything. My friends...my family kept telling me I was going to get hurt... and after two years of warnings their words came true.

I began to teach literacy to this HUGE black man. His name was Ollie. He was 45 years old. He knew the Bible, could quote any scripture for you, but had never learned to read. And his desire what not only to know the word of God, but to read the word of God.

What a godly man he was. He was not only a man's man--6'6" and as muscled wide as he was tall, he was God's man. We had known each other while I was in the middle of my sin...and now here I was, broken in two...trying to pretend that nothing was wrong.

This is the part that sometimes people have a hard time putting their minds around...but it really did happen.

This particular Wednesday night, Ollie and I met in one of the classrooms at church and started on our lesson. He always called me "Ms. Teacher".

"Ms. Teacher," he said. "Something is wrong, tell me."

I declined and said we had to get back to our studies.

The room became dim --and Ollie-- I guess I can only describe it as he was 'glowing.' There was an aura around him .... I just kept staring at him wondering what was happening.

He pointed to his right...and as I followed his hand his finger pointed toward a chair...sitting in a room full of chairs...but I only saw that one.

He said "Ouida," (he never called me by my name!!!!) "You see that chair sitting there?"
"Yes," I said very quietly.
"God told you to sit there and wait. But while you've been away, your mate came by and you missed him."

I stared at Ollie and the lights came on again and he was looking normal again acting as if nothing had happened. And I sat there with my mouth opened and tears of regret, tears of remorse and tears of denial falling down my face.

Ollie wanted to know what was wrong.

"Don't you know what just happened?" I nearly screamed! He shook his head no.

"Ms. Teacher, why are you crying?"

And I confessed to him about my sin. He laid those big hands on my head and prayed one of the sweetest prayer for me. After he had prayed, I asked God to forgive my sin, cleanse me, break me, bend me, whatever He needed to do to keep me from rebelling again.

It was a very hard time of revelation for me. Knowing my sin caused me to lose what God had in store for me. I know too well what happens when we don't listen to those who truly love us... and I know even 20 years later that God doesn't change to accommodate for the sin...He allows our sins to have consequences... life long consequences.

I still regret my sin...not hopeless about it, for I know I've been forgiven. As God allowed Moses to walk to the top of the mountain and view the Promised Land...I know too well how he felt as he realized he would never enter it.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! My sin, not in part but the whole, Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more, Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

I cling to Isaiah 54 these days. Knowing that God is my husband...and that is and will be the best for me.