My personal testimony


My story (I apologize for the length of this but I felt that I needed to put it out here so others would see my life before and after Jesus came into it)

Over fifty years ago my world was turned upside down. The lady who was keeping me while my mom went to school was having an affair with my Dad. I didn’t know it at the time and wouldn’t recognize it for what it was if I did, I was only four years old. But…I can distinctly remember my Dad coming over while I was there and I saw them kissing on the couch. My child’s mind didn’t think much of it at the time and I promptly forgot about it for a while but the memory of it came back crystal clear later.

After my parent’s divorce, my Dad had our trailer brought to Mississippi and parked it near my grandparent’s home in Coxburg.

Life from that point on would never feel quite right. I went to school for a while without a care in the world, like you do when you are in elementary school. But by the time I had reached my teens, I suppose the idea that we weren’t wanted by my father had begun to fester inside me and I didn’t know what to do about it. I didn’t know who to turn to. We went to church on some Sunday’s but sometimes we just watched it on the TV. There wasn’t much talk about religion or Jesus in our house for some reason and I never asked why.

Although, every time a Billy Graham crusade came on TV we watched it, and we even went to the stadium in Jackson in 1975 (I think) when their was a crusade in Jackson, MS. Ethel Waters sang “His eye is on the sparrow” that day. I went down with lots of other people and got the literature that was given our, but I didn’t know what to do with it. I got a Bible at home and tried to read it but it was hard to understand, I was thirteen at the time. I prayed that Jesus would save me but I didn’t know from what and I didn’t understand why.

From that point on, I was confused about life, about my father and mother being divorced and the more confused I felt the angrier I became. I kept it inside mostly but I began drinking with some friends at school. I had at least one wreck between that time and my graduation from high school and it was a good one. I suppose I passed out on the way home from a football game on a Friday night. I hadn’t gone there to watch the game, I went there to get drunk and I did. I only remember bits and pieces of it but I do know that I went into a ditch, jumped my mother’s car over a driveway and the car flipped over when it came down on the other side, breaking every window in the car. This was in the fall of 1977, just over 1.5 years from my graduation from Central Holmes Academy.

Suffice to say my teenage years were mostly going through the motions, doing what some of my “friends” did and not caring about the future or whether I would survive to have one. I wasn’t in a very good place emotionally or spiritually. I was depressed and angry, at what I’m not sure that I knew exactly. Sometimes I would lash out at someone for no reason, usually at my Mom or my grandparents. Life during this period of time was not a memory that I want to experience again. Especially the feelings and the anger and frustration which I found out many years later was directly tied to my parent’s divorce when I was five.

So much of my life from over forty years ago was really “messed up” and I didn’t know at the time, nor did I care, if there was a way to fix it because I didn’t think that anyone, including God, cared enough to work with me through it.

Fast-forward a couple of decades and I was beginning to understand who I was and why I was here. But, I’m not going to go into all the “gory details” of my later life. God used the deaths of my grandparents and my mother to bring me to the point of knowing that I truly needed Him in my heart and on the throne of my life. After I graduated from college and became a Dad to a wonderful red-headed boy, I knew that I needed to get my life turned toward God in a big way. Especially if I was supposed to be a real Dad to my son. I knew that I couldn’t be a real Dad if I didn’t know how to be one, so I began reading the Bible during the down times while I worked in the lab at a couple of hospitals. I would listen to the Bible on CD on the way to work and on the way home. God’s Word is amazing because even when you aren’t sure about what you are reading or even what it means, God’s Holy Spirit can reveal it to you in more ways than you can imagine.

Is it hard to be a Christian? Yes and no. Yes, because Satan doesn’t quit hitting you when you accept Jesus, he just turns the heat up. No it isn’t hard to become a Christian because it is as easy as saying, “Lord, come into my heart and change me into the person that you want me to be for You. I’ve messed it up for a long time but I know that you can fix all of my broken pieces. So, in Jesus’ mighty name please make me like You. Amen” The problem that most people have is that after they say this prayer and even after they get baptized many times they aren’t taught how to go through each day with Jesus. It is a process. I mean you are saved if you meant what you said in your prayer and repented of your “old life”, but now you have to learn more about your Savior. If you don’t you won’t know how to try to live your life walking in His footsteps.

The only way to learn more about Him and His Father is to read and study the Bible…daily. Today, that is fairly easy because you have the Bible on CD and on an app for your phone. You can listen to it read chapters of the Bible while you drive or while you are at home or wherever you can listen to it with your headphones. God loves each of us and cares for us and He has cared for us since before creation. I pray that everyone who reads this blog will seek Him out as your Savior…soon. Time is running shorter each day.

Don’t be angry…


Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9 KJV https://bible.com/verse-of-the-day/ecc.7.9/288

Amen

Anger can cause many problems in your life. Allowing it to become more than an annoyance could have drastic and even tragic consequences. Ask God to help you with this problem because many people have the problem of uncontrolled anger, I did. Thankfully, it didn’t get too out of control but it could, so beware of it. Seek God’s help with it and you will be successful in turning your burner down in a manner of speaking.

Disguises


When you call something one thing and it turns out to be something else entirely. Like “playing” with a puppy or a small dog, aggravating it and laughing at it. That is cruelty disguised as “play”.

If you would do that, you would do the same to a child. Turning them into abusive children, bullies without friends except others like themselves.

Jesus never taught anything except tolerance and patience with others. Being a bully for any reason is unacceptable. If you were ever the object of a bully and you didn’t like it then why would you want your child to be one? Being a bully and racism are learned at home from parents who think they are doing their children a favor or teaching them “just how it is”.

You think you are making them tough but they are just learning a behavior which could get them killed in the future. God doesn’t like bullies whether it is in the form of slavery or oppression He will make them pay for whatever they have done. Life is too short to be cruel and if you don’t know Jesus then you need to turn to Him for your salvation soon because He is coming back. If you are left here after He takes His Bride to heaven, you may find out what kind of bully Satan and his group can be. The seven years of the Tribulation will not be a good time, so make sure that you are on the winning team. Give your heart to Jesus and turn away from your “friends” that encourage your behavior now whether they are family or just friends.

Hurting people physically or emotionally is another form of being a bully. It doesn’t prove that you are tough or strong, it actually shows that you are weak and afraid because you are imposing your will on others in a way that they have to take it or leave. In the case of a child or a dog they really have no choice. Seek healing for your soul from Jesus soon because we will all answer for our words or the wrongs that we have committed one day.

Every life matters!


Life matters regardless of skin color or ethnicity

God created all life on our world and He created the different shades of color found in humanity as well as all of the variety of life and colors found in nature. So…why can’t we look beyond our skin color? It has been over fifty years since Dr. Martin Luther King was murdered by a white supremacist and yet those on both sides of this tragedy still haven’t moved beyond the same anger and frustration fifty years later.

Life does matter and it doesn’t matter if it is a black life or a white life or any other skin tone, in God’s eyes ALL of life matters. So why can’t we realize this and find something in common and work from there? I do realize that there are many things that the white “race” has done in the past and in many ways are still agreeing with even today. Even though today we don’t vocalize it for the most part. Our crime of being racist is shown in how we react to the situation that we may find ourselves in. We may think that we aren’t showing a racist attitude toward anyone but our body language and our eyes show something else entirely, even though we may not even realize that we do these things unconsciously.

Is there a way to end the violence and the hatred in this world which has been sparked into a raging fire? I don’t know that we can find one without Jesus coming back and ruling our world. I don’t really believe that we have the ability to place our emotions and our prejudices aside in order to bring lasting peace into our world and keep it that way. Now, I’m not pointing a finger at any government or any other movement in the world. Black lives do matter but so do the police and fire service men and women. The EMT’s lives matter, who try to help those who are injured or shot in any confrontation. The doctors and nurses lives matter because regardless of color or “race” they do their best to put people back together who have been hurt regardless of the circumstances.

Yes, in the past people have treated other people differently because of their skin color or their station in life even, but that doesn’t give you or me the right to go into the street and burn down small businesses and homes and threaten people with harm for no reason other than the color of their skin! When you are doing that you are no different than the ones who did this to your ancestors many years ago. We are living in the twenty-first century but many people are acting as if they are still in the 19th century. If things keep going in that direction and someone sets an EMP off one day we will be back in the 19th century in the area that it affected.

God never intended for us to live like this or act in this way toward each other but we are doing it. Satan is the one who hates us and it has nothing to do with your skin color at all. Satan hates us because we were created in God’s Image. It is Satan’s coaxing and prodding which is pushing this movement to be as violent as it is and he doesn’t care if we kill off a few thousand or more because that is fewer than he will have to deal with later. God loves each of us and all of our unique abilities and our outlook on life. Seek to please God and walk with Him in this world so that you can be victorious against Satan and his influence over a world that seems to be crumbling around us.

We are a part of God’s creation whether we like it or not, whether we believe in Him or not, but that doesn’t change the fact that murder is wrong in every instance and it doesn’t matter if the one murdered is old or young, a cop or one of the crowd. Even suicide is wrong in God’s eyes because you are killing yourself and you are also created in God’s Image. He loves each of us and we should try to reflect some of His love back into the world and make it better than it was before…not worse.

Racism or ?


Racism-the belief that different races possess distinct characteristics, abilities, or qualities, especially so as to distinguish them as inferior or superior to one another.

I have said this before and I am emphasizing it again. God created the human race and we descended from a man and a woman that God created. We did not evolve from apes. God didn’t even use apes as the idea for us because He said, “Let us make mankind in our image”. We are created in His image and we still carry His image inside us.

So….what causes racism? It could be many things but the most likely culprit is in your own family. We see how our grandparents and our parents treat people who have darker skin than we do so the treatment or the thoughts toward those with darker skin are taught and handed down over the generations. It has become ingrained in our white culture just as other behaviors are in other cultures.

Is it hard for white people to talk about racism? Yes, it is. Particularly when some of us have worked with people of color, regardless of the color and yet those of us who are “white” are called crackers, and honky by some outside our friends at work. Why? What did I ever do to deserve such names? Have I been disrespectful to you or someone in your family? My family never owned any slaves. But to hear the “news” today you would think that every white person has been a part of the slave trade from 200 years ago.

The earliest ancestor of mine came over on a ship from England as a servant to someone who could afford a servant. So…what does that make me? I am a descendant of a slave or servant as well, even though my skin is white. God doesn’t agree with slavery or the idea of it but the Bible was used in a very evil way to justify slavery.

Jesus didn’t come to save you based on your skin color because He created all of the shades of color which adorns our human race. Each has its advantages and disadvantages but not in the way that the news media tries to spin it these days. God created us in the way that would be the most beneficial for us to be His disciples so that we could take His message of love to those that we are known by and to some who may not know us at all.

Each of us has a talent or ability which may make an impression on someone outside our comfort zone. Hopefully it will bring them to know Jesus as their Savior and Lord. I pray that our ideas of race and racism will be put behind us one day and one day in His Kingdom it will be. We just have to get there first. Lord, come quickly.

Children are not born racist, they learn this from others.

How is your PAD today?


I am not speaking of your home or your home away from home (workplace). What I am writing about today has to do with your emotional state: Pride, Apathy, and Depression or Doubt. Why are there two different emotional states for the D in this? Well, we all have each of these at one point or another in our lives but some of us live in them quite naturally. There are times when I have all four states going at the same time which is one of those days when very little gets done or I just go through the motions like a zombie or a robot. It gets done but not with much passion or fire. Sometimes these days coincide with a day that I’m at home with our Dachshund for company but that isn’t really a bad day because I enjoy my time with her.

Apathy and doubt usually go well together but when you mix pride into the pot with them it can be an explosive combination which can bring in anger and rage, that hard to control cousin of anger. Why am I concentrating on emotions and the trouble that they can cause? Because our churches and our immediate family usually get the fallout from these emotional states. It may happen after your PAD has been simmering for a while or if anger and rage are in the mix, it could just blow up like a bomb at the dinner table or at a business meeting at church.

Whenever you have a day like this or if it feels like its going to be “one of those days”, get into the Psalms and pray. Talk to your Father in Heaven about whatever is going on. Regardless of how small you think it is, He wants to help and He can! But you have to open up to Him. He knows what is going on already but just as our father or mother would like to help, God knows exactly how to help and where to point you in His Word. But you need to read it and pray to Him about it and then be willing to listen to the wisdom that you get from His Word or even from Him directly.

God can help you when you are feeling this way but only if you will let Him.

Forgiveness…


What does this mean in our society today? It means that we, as a society, should forgive those who have wronged us in the past. It means that the bitterness and resentment should be forgiven by us first toward those who we hold responsible for a wrong. Forgiveness is the closest that we can come to God before we die and it is an act of will on our part that can take away years of pain and suffering. One word and deed which can change the life of those who have held onto bitterness and anger for so long they don’t remember why they were angry, but with true forgiveness they will feel healing and a peace in their lives which has never been there before.

Our country needs a Spirit of forgiveness to sweep over this land and into the hearts and minds of those living here. It will take God’s Holy Spirit to make this happen and it will take an honest revival in our country before this will happen. Can it happen? Yes, but only if people will stop being so politically correct they aren’t any good to the people around them!

God has never stopped loving you or those who wronged you in the past, but until you forgive them and change the way you feel about them, your health and your life will suffer because of it. That is why it says in the Bible, “if you have anything against your brother, leave your offering and be reconciled to him, then come and make your offering“. Living with anything in your past which is unforgiven and causes you to feel anger or resentment and bitterness will make you sick physically. Healing can only come when the forgiveness is full and real between you and your brother or sister.

Don’t live that way because I have seen this in my family and it truly rips a hole in a family and the relationships in that family. I pray that anyone who reads this will seek God’s will for their relationships with their family member and with Him too.

Wounds which don’t heal…


The little saying which many of us used to say when we were children is not exactly true. Consider it today: Sticks and stones can break my bones but words will never hurt me.

TasteyourWordsIn today’s social media and in the news, as well as in everyday life, words CAN cause much pain and hurt. Many times cutting so deep until healing may never completely happen. Not because we don’t forgive but maybe because our mind won’t let go of the hurtful tones, whether it was in a comment on FB or over the phone or even by text.

Healing from a misspoken word or phrase is difficult, especially when the tone of it was harsh even if it wasn’t intended to be harsh. Your tongue is described in the Bible as a fire which cannot be tamed and many times in life that is exactly what it feels like. The damage which a word or the tone of a phrase spoken can cause irreparable pain whether it was intentional or not.

Between spouses, words can cut deeply when anger is involved and at times this can separate a couple and even be the cause of a divorce. The same can happen between friends or even in a congregation in church when there are opposing opinions and an argument over something happens. Words spoken cannot be taken back just as a bullet fired from a gun cannot be halted before injury or death occurs.

The only difference is that the injury caused by a comment or a word, whether spoken or written, can cut so deeply until the injury may never heal unless the Spirit of God gets involved in the healing process. God is a great Healer and He can bring healing to a painful wound from a friend or even an aquaintence.

I pray that I have not written anything which has hurt anyone’s feelings, but if I have caused any hurt feelings in any way, please forgive me. I have been told that I do “open mouth and insert foot” before and many of us do just that and sometimes we do cause pain by our words or the tone of those words. Maybe unintentionally but the hurt and the pain are real and the pain sometimes takes a while to heal, if it ever does. Unintentional pain caused by a word or a tone cuts deeper at times whether it is from a comment on FB or a spoken comment to someone which is overheard or spoken directly to them.

Angels and Demons


This is a subject which I have not been exactly jumping up and down to write about but it needs to be out here for everyone to see. We read in God’s Word that angels exist because the Angel of the Lord appeared a few times in the Old Testament. Gabriel appeared a couple of times as well. So, if angels have shown themselves occasionally then why can’t demons be real?

Of course, they are sneaky and crafty in their ways but did you know that many of our conflicts have been influenced by their presence as well? In fact, we likely invited them right into the meetings with us. Many times in the Bible you read about something which was done in anger or resentment and then regret comes and a person seeks forgiveness.

It is our own feelings of anger and resentment and fear which invites some demons that will inflame those feelings to a point that we may do something which we would regret. Don’t think for a moment that Satan and his demons and other spirits don’t exist because they exist outside our senses just as angels do. We don’t see them and likely it is a good thing! We would be terrified to go anywhere, especially at night, if we could see the realm which exists beside us here.

Christians are not subject to being possessed by a demon, but that doesn’t keep us from inviting them into our homes and our lives when we are stressed or hurt emotionally. When they are invited they will stay as long as possible and make your life miserable, so be careful about your hatred or bitterness in your daily life. Guard your heart with prayer and study of God’s Word and try to live according to His teachings daily.

GodsBlessing