Photo by Anne Nyle
Written by Georgetta Head
As far back as I can remember, as a little girl, I was petrified of thunderstorms (this was a fear I caught from my Grandmother). I was so frightened that I would hide under a table, or if in bed I would hide under the blankets. This fear traveled with me to adulthood! It was so bad that when I had children and a storm would hit doing the night, I would gather my children up and put them in bed with me, fearing the storm would hurt them. This went on for several years, and I hate to admit this, but I was saved while this fear was tormenting me. I knew the Lord as my Savior for eternity but didn't know about trusting Him from the storms of nature.
One day I was home alone during a summer afternoon, and you guessed it, a thunderstorm with lightning hit. I can remember it as if it were yesterday! I was sitting in the livingroom, petrified. Too scared to move and with tears streaming down my face, I suddenly heard a still small voice say, "where is your faith!" Parts of a scripture came to my mind, the one of the 12 Disciples in a boat with Jesus sleeping when a storm came. At that very moment I cried out to Jesus for help. "Jesus, please don't let me die in this storm, I cried out!" Immediately, an unexplainable peace came upon me. The fear I had been feeling disappeared and the heaviness of God's presence flooded my livingroom. For the first time in my life I didn't feel the fear of a thunderstorm, and being in Father's presence was even more than I could every ask for!
The scripture I vaguely remembered was Luke 8:22-24. "Now it came to pass on a certain day, that He went into a ship with His disciples: and He said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake. And they launched forth. But as they sailed He fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then He arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm. And He said unto them, Where is your faith? "
God delivering me from fear, that was paralyzing, taught me a great lesson about faith and God's character of faithfulness.
1. It didn't take "big" faith for God to help me! It was my faith of belief in His Word. With God's statement to me "where is your faith?" I responded by calling out to Father from a heart of trust.
2. God responded to my act of faith by being faithful to His Word "call unto me and I will answer.." (Jeremiah 33:3), and "if you ask anything in my name I will do it" (John 14:14).
This experiential deliverance from fear also taught me a big lesson for handling future storms, such as the storms of everyday struggles in my life. Since this incident I have learned to trust God with all my problems. He has been faithful all these years, and presently, in guiding me with answers or help I need when faced with life's storms.
What storms are you struggling with today? Put your faith in God for the answers and solutions for these storms. God responds to "faith" by calling "peace to be still" in our lifes! So, 1 Peter 5:6-7 encourages us to "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you."
Things I Learned From My Father
Photo by Jesse Orrico
Written by Charles S. Head
There are things in life, that as we get older and look back, they are precious and have been valuable to us throughout the years. Recently my memories were the years I spent around my father. As a young child I would follow him around and watch how he did things. My father was very handy at fixing things, such as repairs around the house, carpentry, repairs on cars, etc. Plus, this also included watching my father plant a garden with vegetables each year.
One of my greatest experiences learned from my father was that he was a hardworking man. I never saw him wasting his time or being lazy for one moment. What I did notice, is that my father worked a full-time job and when he would come home, he continued to do activities long afterwards. This inspiration from my father was so beneficial to me as a young boy, that at 11 years old I bought a lawnmower and started a community lawn cutting service, which brought in a nice income. Then, in the fall of the year I would rake leaves and do whatever small chores for others to earn my own money.
This experience carried over into my adulthood, and I found myself passing it on to my children the same as my father had taught me. I taught them that hard work will bring out their potential, but laziness and idle time can cause them much harm in their life.
My father is a World War II Veteran, and this year 2020, he will be 94 years old. Because he was such a hardworking man, he continued to running his business until he was about 90 years old and only quit when he had to turn his license in to the state.
The Bible teaches us that laziness is not good for us. Proverbs 26:13-15 gives us a great example of a lazy person. It reads "the slothful man saith, there is a lion in they way, a lion is in the streets. As a door turneth upon his hinges, so do the slothful man upon his bed. The slothful hideth his hand in his bosom; it grieves him to bring it again to his mouth." What does all this mean?
1. A slothful man means a lazy man.
2. Verse 13 means "a lazy man" will use any excuse to keep him from having to work. Even the story of a lion in the streets will stop him
3. Verse 14 means a door always turns in the same place, and a lazy person moves about but never advances; he suggested any excuse for inactivity.
4. Verse 15 means, the lazy man hides his hand in his bosom and is too lazy to take it out, dip it into the dish, and put food into his mouth.
I've learned that I function better and I'm able to think clearer when I work hard. Working also helps us to sleep better because we were all created by God to work, and this is part of His purpose for our life. Today I'm troubled by so many young people who feel they are entitled to many things, and for them not having any plans to even try working for a living. But me, I'm thankful to God that he has allowed me the strength to work many years and now I'm blessed to say I have reached my retirement and am still able to work.
Photo by Brett Jordan
Written by Charles S. Head
What separates someone from God’s love? This is a question we all need to ask ourselves. When we are really honest with ourselves with a self-examination of this question, we will probably find an example where we have directly or indirectly allowed our circumstances to bring a wedge between us and God. It may not have caused you to go all the way back to the world in which you were delivered from, but there was still a simple, perhaps temporary separation. God’s love is genuine and reaches all the way where we are in an unconditional state. Our Heavenly Father loves us so much that he is willing to wait for our return.
Jesus gave us an example of God’s unconditional love in John 15:11-24 by using the Prodigal son who left home and wasted all his inheritance. But, upon his return with a broken spirit, and full of shame and guilt, he was welcomed with open arms by his father. What did this young son do to cause him to separate from his father’s love? In John 15:12-13 he wasted his inheritance on partying and a fast life; and John 15:11-13 reads that a certain man had two sons: “and the younger of them said to his father, father, give me my portion of goods that falleth unto me. And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.” After this young son had wasted all his inheritance on a fast life, he was in trouble and finally learned a valuable lesson. The following three things happened in the process of this time:
1. In verses 17-20, he came to himself and realized how foolish he had been.
2. He made a determination in his mind to go home to his father and asked for forgiveness.
3. He took the action by going home to his father.
John 15:20-24 gives us the story of a great welcome and celebration, with this younger son’s father showing his unconditional love for a son who had lost his way. We may not have to go as far as this Prodigal son, but we must be careful not to allow anything to separate us from God’s love, but if we do, all we have to do is acknowledge our sin with repentance and come home to our Heavenly Father’s unconditional love. He’s waiting!
Photo by Romina Farias (unsplash)
Written by Georgetta Head
While talking with a friend the other day, she confided to me that she was in need of a change of lifestyle. She stated she wanted to change her "old lifestyle" into a "new lifestyle." This "new transformation" she said would include a new wardrobe, a new hair style, a first-time pedicure, a new facial makeover, with the final touch of getting her nails done and a body massage. She continued by saying that she was going to start traveling, allowing her adventurous spirit to take her to places she dreamed about but was afraid to venture out and explore. My friend was tired of her "current lifestyle," and thought her proposed solutions would bring her happiness and fill the emptiness in her heart she longed for!
When she finished speaking her heart, I said "I know actually how you feel! I too, years ago, needed a change. When I had my change in lifestyle, it didn't cost me a cent! I exchanged my "old self for this new self" and I now have joy unspeakable!" My friend asked, "how did you do all that without costing you a cent?" Glad you asked I said. This was my opportunity to share the wealth of the Good News to my friend.
I began by sharing my testimony of how God wooed me into His Kingdom. I started by telling her, my old lifestyle had been similar to hers, with no purpose and fillings of emptiness in my heart. I kept feeling this tug at my heart longing for something more out of life, but I didn't know what! Father God used my sister and a neighbor, who is now a very dear friend, to point me to Him. Father God's tugging at my heart went on for several months until He finally showed me the best way I would understand Him, and that was through His Word. He showed me my empty heart needed Him to bring me fulfillment and purpose. The day I said "yes" to Jesus was my total makeover. A transformation took place in my life, I was changed from the inside, which reflected on the outside. I told my friend, "you see, I immediately experienced a changed lifestyle!" Ephesians 4:22-24 is what happened to me and it didn't cost me a cent, however, my Lord Jesus paid the price. It reads as follows: "That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness." The day I said "yes" the old man of deception was replaced with the new man after God, which is His righteousness and holiness. You too, I told her, can exchange your "old lifestyle" for a "new lifestyle" in Jesus Christ - for Christianity is a "Lifestyle!" A lifestyle that teaches one how to produce good fruit for the Kingdom of God, instead of evil fruit for the Kingdom of satan. A lifestyle that teaches you a new way of thinking, by allowing the spirit of your mind to be renewed.
When we say "yes" to Jesus we are no longer clothed in our old self-righteous, we become clothed in the righteous of God in Christ Jesus, which is more valuable than any garment in this world.
This Christian lifestyle comes with promises that we don't have to work for to receive, but rather we work to serve others because the Christian lifestyle is that of love.
My friend was astonished at my response. She said she already knew I served God, but she didn't realize that by asking Jesus into one's heart could bring about such a transformation. I would love to say she said "yes," but she didn't. My friend wanted more time to think and digest my testimony. I am still praying for her, and haven't given up on her because I know God is tugging at her heart, but He will not force anyone. Her hesitations are old traditions and beliefs! But, Jesus tells us in Revelation 3:20 "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me."
Is Jesus knocking at the door heart of your heart? Will you say "yes" for a Christian Lifestyle? It won't cost you a cent, the price has already been paid for your redemption and transformation.