Friday, July 29, 2011

Waiting on God

Each time I meet with mother's of prodigal's I am surprised by the emotions it brings up in me. I cry right along with them. I remember the pain and agony so vividly. I hurt for them. I cannot fix it for them any more than I could fix my own situation. They have to go through and learn for themselves what God is saying to them through all the day in day out struggle to keep their head above water.
Hopefully my sharing how God worked in my situation brought them encouragement. I was evidence that you can make it through. I remember the Psalm 69 passage that so often spoke of my own feelings: "Save me, O God, for the waters have threatened my life. I have sunk in deep mire, and there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and a flood overflows me, I am weary with crying; my throat is parched; My eyes fail while I wait, for my God".
Waiting for God is so hard, but I had a perfect example recently about the benefits of waiting. I had gone to a neighborhood yard sale which has been on going because they are moving. I saw a chest of drawers there that my granddaughters needed. The one they have is falling apart. They were asking $100.00 for it. It was well built by Stanley even though it was old. I mulled over it, came home and talked to my husband about it and then really forgot about it.
As I was driving in the neighborhood yesterday I again saw a sign that they were continuing the sale. I decided to go by today, as it was on my path of walking. I was surprised that first of all they still had it (I first saw it 2 weeks ago) and then that they had marked it down to $75.00. I still mulled over it and started to walk away when the lady said, "I will take $50.00 for it if that helps you decide. See $50.00 was the price I had in mind all along but I am not good at dickering. I said, "Sold". I'd say God worked in that! He knew the need and she was happy to sell it and I was happy to take it to my little granddaughter's!
It took patience. I could have jumped at it the first day and paid twice as much for it. Course it could have been gone, as it often happens, but it was intended for me.
We don't like to wait but God is working all along. If the chest had been gone I had already determined that it was not meant for me, but God gave me favor once again. It will provide a need for many years to come. And guess what, a man was there at the sale and helped my husband load it. I saw God all over that adventure.
Praise Him I have also been able to see God's hand in the life of our family also. I have not always waited patiently, but He has taught me more and more to lean on Him and wait for Him to work. I always tried to help Him, but He is teaching me more and more to let go and let Him do the work that needs to be done. I always mess it up anyway.
I pray for these mother's and feel a special bond with them already. I will WAIT to see how God works in their lives and the lives of their prodigals. I can't fix it for them as much as I want to, but I know the One who can. He will walk with them the way He did with me. As I told them and I will share with you as you read this: "You will live through it, even though it does not feel like it right now". The waters will not overtake you. God will hold you up with His righteous right hand! He loves you so much and He loves your child way more than you do. He wants them to get it too. He will arrange the circumstances that will eventually help them see but it might be a hard road to get there for all of you. Hold on with all your might through prayer, support from others, and persevere to the end. You can do it, you can.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Happy Campers

Well since I can't seem to get the recent pictures downloaded I posted one from a year ago! Shelbi and Izzy went to camp last week and returned yesterday. They hated leaving their friends but were very glad to be in the air conditioning! I wonder if they will appreciate it more now.
They sang a couple of new songs they had learned and went on and on about the things that had happened. It was refreshing to know that they had connected with other Christian friends and had bonded, if just for the week, cause they won't see some of them till next year probably. They were all hugging on each other before they left. Course they talked about some cute boys.
The complaints: No air, bugs (Izzy even woke up to a daddy long legs on her), sunburned, and feeling hot and dirty. Izzy set some sort of record for jumping off the highest tower into the water (she has a little Mama in her) but she was sporting a huge bruise on her leg from the landing. I don't really think she will try that again....lots of pain!
But even with all that said, they were planning for what they were gonna do next year when they that's a good sign.
I am so grateful that they are having the opportunities to learn and share with other's about the love of Christ. It makes all the effort spent very worthwhile. It totally gives me pleasure!
I am praying that they will grow to serve the Lord in ways they can't even imagine just like I saw them doing at our outreach the other week. They ministered to the kids who came by loving on them, helping them with crafts, and face-painting. The kids cried when it was time to leave. God is molding them into beautiful vessels to be poured out for Him. Isn't that what it is all about. Praise is exciting to see Him work in them.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

On Wings of Healing Outreach!

Many ask, what does prodigal mean? A prodigal is anyone who has ever walked away from Abba Father's plan and purpose for their lives. We have all been prodigals, we just might not have walked away as far as the prodigal son did in the story Jesus shared.
All in our On Wings of Healing Support Group have walked a journey of drugs, alcohol abuse, prostitution, lesbianism, etc. Many have experienced a time of incarceration. They come each week to seek the support they need to continue their walk of freedom from Satan's strongholds.
We had an outreach the other night to the prodigals and their families. I was amazed how each one of them gave of themselves that night in service to our Lord. They served food, loved on those who came, gave testimony of how God brought them out, sang praises to the One who set them free, and assisted with cleanup. I love each one of them and how I see the love of Christ in their lives and hearts. What a blessing they are to me. They have taught me so much about what real love is.
Many children came to our event and one little boy cried because he had to leave. WOW! They made bracelets that told them the gospel story and bookmarks with the name of Jesus on them. Hopefully they will remember the day fondly and I pray that seed that God planted that day will be watered and grow in the future.
The numbers were not as much as last year, but the Spirit......oh was it present! His work was accomplished whether with a hug, a cup of water in His name, quality time spent, in the testimonies or songs. I am confident that we did what He wanted as we reached out in love. Praise Him.

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Day of Blessings!

My friend, Debbie, text-ed me to see if I wanted to go visit another church that day. The pastor of the church is coming to speak at our Celebration Dinner in September and we wanted to meet him personally. Here are the blessings we experienced yesterday:
  • We were standing to go in the sanctuary when I looked around and there no more than 6 feet away was the pastor, shaking hands. We had an excellent opportunity to speak with him.
  • As I read through the bulletin I read that they were having a luncheon opportunity after the service to inform you of the church and to hear from the pastor and his wife. We believed that was an invitation for us, so we decided to stay.
  • They announced that if you were a first time visitor, and we were, that you could take your visitors card to the desk and receive one of the pastor's books. It was the book he wrote that first led me to invite him to speak to our group. It is Shame Off You and we certainly experience shame as families of OWLAD.
  • We ran into two old friends and who knows how God will work to connect us in the future!
  • The pastor had a great message on letting go. That we are not in control. I needed that reminder once again!
  • Then last night about 10:15 I had a call from a friend of our son's. He had accepted Christ 2 years ago as I led him to pray. He had had some major life changes in the past months and was addicted to pills. He had recently sought help. He was calling to tell me how God had been working since that time. That he had been reading the Word and how God was changing his heart.
Now was that a blessed day or what? God knew I needed those blessings as encouragement in what we do. Hope you have a blessed day yourself. I encourage you to look for them and then praise Him when they come.

Monday, July 4, 2011

The Lost Billfold

My husband and I decided to take in a movie Saturday night so we ate a bite and got cleaned up to go. I noticed my husband was frantically looking for something. He eventually told me he had misplaced his billfold. Well, that was enough to get us both frantic with the thought of credit cards, insurance cards, and money possibly in the hands of someone else. We looked over and over in the same places hoping that it would finally show up, but even after an was no where to be found.
After praying to find it I decided to go back over to a spot that he sometimes leaves it. I saw some dollar bills, but no billfold. In my spirit I heard a voice say, "look down and move the filters"that were beside the cabinet. I obeyed and there was the billfold. It had fallen off the cabinet. We might never have found it till we moved. LOL!
What a relief and a peace was felt by both of us when the billfold was found. We missed the movie but it didn't matter, we had found the lost billfold.
It made me think about the lost coin in the Bible. Jesus spoke again by parable, "What woman is there," he said, "having ten pieces of silver who, if she loses one, does not light a candle and sweep the house, seeking diligently until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls her friends and her neighbors together saying: 'Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece of silver which I had lost!' There is joy like that among the angels of God," said Jesus, turning to the Pharisees who were listening, "over one sinner who repents!"
Our candle was the largest flashlight we could find. We were shining it in every corner, under the bed, behind the furniture, anywhere to be able to find the lost billfold. We didn't call all the neighbors but they just might have heard us shouting with joy!
What if we were that frantic to search for those we know who are lost. Actually there is way more at stake than some dollar bills. After the way we rejoiced I am just wondering what a celebration it is when the angels all rejoice over the lost soul who comes to a moment of repentance.
At our support group the other week we had one of those lost souls come to know Him in a personal way. We were so excited! Wouldn't it have been nice to have heard the rejoicing of the multitudes of angels along with the Father. One day we will have that privilege. What a glorious day that will be. In the meantime, let's be searching everywhere for a lost soul. Lord give us a heart for the lost!