I tend to roll with the flow. The season. The holiday. The routine that is my norm. That’s what I do UNTIL life hits me from the side and knocks me for a loop. When that happens I find I have a quick reality check. Gut check. Feelings rise and I take action. It’s not just me… it’s EVERYBODY!! Go to any daycare and you’ll see it everyday. Joey takes Melissa’s ball. She’ll either tell the teacher, cry, hit him, or all three. Feel and react. Even as a teen who was believer I started with emotions and then got to faith. Yet it didn’t and doesn’t have to be like that, now I find most trials and tests send me to my Father’s throne room before I internalize and respond to them.
It took me a while to learn to look up before I bowed up. I was prone to take action physically and verbally and a decade would pass by before I would find the better way -taking action by heading straight to the One with answers first. Sad, huh?
Does it have to be like that? Do we have to learn the hard way? Was there someone speaking truth and scripture application about life and I just missed it? I heard the Word EVERY week. I was taught about the saints and the struggles. They made sure I understood about the woes of a sin. They ensured I recognized my need for a Savior. They shared the gospel. But, I’m hard-pressed to remember them saying much about how to take what the men and women in the (B.C. / A.D.) Bible experienced and applying their words, needs, problems, victories and hurts to MY twenty-first century life. Yet I will tell you, that besides meeting Christ and being filled with the Spirit of the Living God, the application of the Word is what has sustained me as I faced life’s struggles.
I learned Faith’s Answers slowly, and the hard way, as trials came upon me wave on wave. I believe that is one of the reasons God told me to “write the book.” My hope is that you might skip some of life’s struggles and satan’s victories by exposing my own life… our life. In Once and Again I have been honest. I will be vulnerable and transparent. I will lay open myself in full. My husband in part.
I will call it fiction because it is my thoughts, my remembrances of what was my reality but that may not be how another would remember it. Having been married thirty-three years I am well aware that two people in the same place can and usually do view the same event differently :o)
In this first book I invite you to embark on a journey with me as I walk toward MY future (yeah that’s how teenagers usually think of life after graduation) and unknowingly toward God’s plans and purposes.
Most of you know Lenny & I because God crossed our path with your own. We are faith-family. You knew us as believers, friends, teachers, leaders and mentors yet while ministry is what He purposed for us… that is not where we started. We took some long-cuts on our journey that left us spiraling, spent, most definitely off-track, compromised and very often undone. Our lives won’t look like Joseph or Ruth (with whom I can’t find fault). This is us. This is me doing life with some Jesus and a whole lot of ideas. I pray you learn from the best and worse parts of our journey. That even our story might be used as a tool in God’s hands that will preach life and truth to you.
Lenny and I won’t be there to counsel youth about dating, teen struggles, the quest for love and God’s place in the midst of those days.
When the adversary is beating at your door attacking your marriage WE won’t be able to come to your house to share and pray with you.
WE can’t run over to offer you encouragement as you raise a defiant teen, suffer loss, face the death of a loved one.
We can’t. BUT the One who walked us through those tough seasons and watched as we made flesh choices and held us as those decisions beat us upon life’s shores of consequence… He can. He will. I could and will try but He will.
When you are reading don’t forget that God loves you, is working for your good and is faithful even when you/we are faithless.
Don’t forget the adversary knows you and your weaknesses maybe better than you do and he WILL use what he knows.
Don’t forget those Bible Stories the Savior, saints and sinners. Dig into the Word. Understand their faith, strengths and flaws. What went wrong? Right? How does it apply to your life? And when God shows you a fresh Word, memorize it. Arm yourself for the battles that will lay somewhere along your journey home. Be prepared in season and out of season. Strengthen the hands that hang down. Remember your First Love. Outrun us. Outrun me that catching sight of you I might be encouraged to speed on toward our final destination heaven’s shores of eternity… home.