Well, folks, it’s time for another one of those honest personal posts with all kinds of feels added in 🙂 I’ve contemplated writing it many times before. And if you could see my “draft” section in the backend of my blog, you’d know that’s true!
I could say it all started back in March, but that’s not necessarily true. I was stronger then than I am now. Well… maybe that’s not entirely true. I guess, in many ways, I’m stronger now than I was then. But nobody would know that but me. Honest.
This year has been hard. Not just because of the viral atrocity that “is or isn’t”… and that’s not open for debate. And not just because we’ve watched as people’s livelihood’s crumbled beneath them as the whole earth caved in and shut down. Not just because we’ve seen suicide and mental illnesses skyrocket. Not just because hoarders have driven prices up so high that many people can’t get what they need.
It’s waaaaaay more personal than that.
But let me step away from the story here for a minute. There have been just as many highs…maybe more of them, in fact….as lows. And I’ll get to those in a minute, so please don’t think I’m just bellyaching. I’m just being honest.
I lost my Daddy this year. I know, I know, I’m not the only one, but in light of how it happened, which I don’t particularly want to talk about right now, it’s hard to let it go. And you know what’s even more mind-boggling?
I haven’t cried YET.
He left us on August 14, and I haven’t been able to shed a tear. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that he had Alzheimer’s, so I tell myself it’s kind of like he was already gone. For a good handful of years. But it’s still a little disconcerting. I think about having to be strong for my kids, especially my son. But I haven’t been to the gravesite either. I don’t even know if I will. Or if it would matter.
I lost access to my Mom, too. She spent a long, long stay in the hospital, battling for her life. No, she did NOT have the virus. She had a rare case of histoplasmosis and pneumonia and spent a lot of time on a ventilator. And I wasn’t able to go to the hospital. She was well looked after, though, so I can’t complain too much about that. But now, because she is fragile in health, and I travel for ministry, I don’t get to go and see her freely. She doesn’t live in her home… MY home, or what WAS my home. I guess, in reality, it’s not that big a deal, but when whipped in with the rest of this nightmare that “2020” has been, it compounds the emotion.
But you know, all of these things, it’s all “flesh” related. Life. You win some, as they’ve always said, and you lose some. In reality, my Kingdom purpose is being established more every day. As if it’s on some kind of fast track. And to read any common headline in what might still somehow be construed as “news,” it’s not hard to see why.
Thank God, as a professional freelance writer, I have not been out of work. I’m so incredibly thankful for my clients and the work they have for me. Things have been tight a time or two, but God always comes through, right one time, every time. So, that’s a huge blessing all by itself.
So is the honest fact that our position as worship ministers and prayer warriors has been utilized where it is most needed. The Bible tells us, in Matthew 6:33, that if we seek FIRST, the Kingdom of God, and HIS righteousness, that all “these things” will be added to us. And we have seen it come to pass.
He calls. He sends. And He equips.
Then WE GO.
It doesn’t matter if “going” puts us into what is construed as harm’s way or what IS harm’s way. And it’s funny… as Apostolics, we have always called ourselves “the New Testament Church,”… but when it comes to going up against the tough stuff, today’s church melts like a popsicle in a toddler’s hand.
I mean, really, though. Someone said it best last week in a Facebook post… American Christians must think they’re God’s favorites, thinking that we’ll be taken out of this world before “persecution” starts. When, right now, in North Korea, if a person escapes the country and just simply comes in contact with a Christian, they are imprisoned FOR LIFE. And so is their family. Up to the fourth generation.
And we think Christians are going to be translated “before the persecution”?
When missionaries are currently, probably even as we speak, being beheaded for sharing the Gospel. Being tortured, beaten, burned, stabbed, separated from family members…the list goes on. Just grab a copy of the latest Voice of the Martyrs magazine.
So anyway… we went. And we have served. And then, just as the Word SAYS He would, He ADDED all these things to us. Our daughter was baptized about a month ago, in Jesus’ Name, for the remission of sins. GLORY TO GOD!! This has been a prayer note in my prayer box for over five years, and I praise His Holy Name that I saw the answer come to pass.
Because you know what? The stuff that’s in the Bible? The Word, the Living Word, of God? If you work it (do the principles, abide by – as far as it is possible – His commandments), it works.
Numbers 23:19 says, “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?”
And I have found it to be true and honest, over and over again.
Matthew 7:21 says, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.”
See, we have a part to play! We have to DO His will! Believing is one thing, but even the devils do that! And TREMBLE when they do! If all we do is believe, are we really any better than they are?
All that to say, I’m thankful that we can do a Kingdom work. But there is much work to be done. The fields are as white for harvest now as they were when Jesus spoke of them in John 4:35. There may be those that rot on the vine, as those that reap seem to be weary of the work.
2020 has been a hard year. We’ve ALL lost a lot. There may not be an easy out, either, as the road ahead looks to be long.
But this I know…
“…weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” Psalm 30:5