Well, here is one for the journal.. This just happened so I wanted to journal it while it’s fresh. I’m going to cut to the chase here while everything is in the noggin’.
Well… this is hard to admit but that’s just the pride of life stopping me. Concerned about how I’m viewed by the world, how people gossip, take things out of context, etc.. Who cares, I have an audience of One, I’m interested in what He says. He says to share these things so here you go, for someone’s benefit..
Anyways… the sin is drugs. A while ago I was talking to a man and asked if he had any vices. He said drinking and then mentioned a drug that I had tried 28+ years ago. Sinful me said, “O wow, if you ever get any I wouldn’t mind trying it again!” Sigh…. this makes me weep and tremble typing it… please don’t judge, I’m fully aware that I have a greater One that I must answer to on these things….
This was months ago. Well, I’ve let that type of thinking go, but a few days ago, it showed up at my door. Man, I want to throw up right now. This is very hard to do… Anyways… I tried a small sample. During the sampling, I’m in a struggle between right and wrong, and I didn’t choose life, I chose death. I was extremely convicted, and so it sat where it sat for the last few days. But it wasn’t just the conviction that had me refraining, I was hearing and sensing nothing but death.
When I tried this, it was indeed a small sample because I wanted to be safe, but of course that’s the devil’s way of convincing us to dabble. This small sample made me feel like I was going to have a heart attack. It surely was not safe. For the last 3 days, this has been going through my head repeatedly every time I walked by it.. Many times, “You’re going to die. Fentanyl.” Can anyone guess what the sinful nature said? “Surely you won’t die….” For 3 days I’ve been battling with this, struggling between dumping it and doing more.
I’ve been focused on the sin in my life and repenting. Confessing sins, praying again, reading the Word, etc. Doing the things that I need to do for the strength to get me through. The timing of this showing up was bad (or good?). I guess bad for me, good for the lesson and good for a friend. I don’t know, depends how you look at it. It was a huge struggle because repentance is where my mind is at and here is the temptation on my counter, walking by it every day. My flesh wanted it bad, but I kept thinking death and fentanyl. Earlier today, I had a passing thought of getting up, grabbing it, and immediately dumping it. The source was repentance and the constant nagging inside that this is going to kill me. Of course, the flesh spoke too.. “Surely you won’t die”, and it didn’t happen.
Well, about an hour ago now, I got hit up on Facebook by an old friend. A friend I haven’t seen in about, um, 28 years or so. She’s not a drug user, she’s from the town I grew up in. She proceeded to catch me up on her life and her first words were, “My son died 4 years ago..” :( Within me, I knew what this was. I guess the spidey senses went off? I knew within me that a testimony was happening… Don’t know how/why.. but as she continued to catch me up on her life, I zero’d in on what she said about her son because I knew that’s where I needed to go.. I knew in me it was drugs. I knew in me it was fentanyl. I knew my Savior’s voice, I just knew. I almost blurted out, “Don’t tell me, drugs? Fentanyl?” She proceeded to tell me that her son died from Fentanyl….. man. man..man.
Needless to say, we both praised God. She had something to thank God for, and she said, “My son, do you remember his name?” (Unfortunately, I didn’t). We were of the same name.. She was so thankful to God for giving her this. We ended the conversation with praise, praise, praise to the One who giveth and taketh away..
For me, it is without a doubt I was a dead man. I had a pressing on my heart non-stop about death and fentanyl for days. I knew that if I did the drug, I was going to die. That is why it sat there for days. My flesh wouldn’t allow me to throw it out, “You surely won’t die.. go ahead, eat.. you’ll be better than you were.”
I chose life… but, did I really? I mean I did, but, the lesson isn’t over. It took the hand of God to move in this mannerism. It was in my face, bam! Without this contact from my friend, I may have died tonight. She also received a new perspective, peace, etc after witnessing what just happened. God was present, a help in time of need, but I shouldn’t need that in order to obey that which I knew to not participate in. Lord, I don’t care what it takes.. break me in pieces if necessary to restore my heart. Sin needs to go, help me. In Jesus name, amen. (funny thing happened after I posted this. I started to read an old article that talks about this topic. – http://serious-things.com/eating-liver-sin
He showed me much on this the other day when I lost this little package.. I misplaced it when I was high. smh. I thank God it was lost because I was looking for it the other day with every intention of doing it, and I couldn’t find it. Guess what happened while I was turning around every nook and cranny trying to find it? Literally turning over every stone, on my hands and knees, and I hear something like, “You seek around everywhere, with a sense of urgency, trying to find your sin, but you seek Me half-heartedly? Where’s the urgency? The time is late.”
Anyways… God is good. Indeed the drug is no longer and I’ve repented. My friend is praising God and going to Church on Sunday, she has something to give thanks for. She believes that the sharing of her son’s passing just saved my life.. I do too. Manifold grace of God.. praise the Lord.
Well, here I am, about 5+ years later – completely humbled by God, again.
This is now the 3rd round of returning, as the wayward son. Exiting the pig pen only to see our Father’s love and grace, as if I never left.
A quick rundown of the last 5 or so years –
I re-entered the workforce as what appeared to be an item that was God-led. Watched the mind get transformed back into a business-man, of the world again. Completely 100% consumed, and it sucked every drop of energy and will from this being. No more thoughts of scripture, prayers dipped, stopped going to church, sin… Back in the world 100%.. The job had me by the throat, I couldn’t breathe, couldn’t move.
Praise God that He didn’t stop pressing in for my soul, praise God. Now I’m in the midst of repenting and seeing God’s good grace and love again. He’s having me pick up where I left off, imagine that. :)
At this point, I’m not certain what’s going on with this site.. maybe an overhaul to clean up the outdated software. I plan to pray and seek out His next steps in life and will journal things here, God willing. In the meantime, please pray for me as I continue on this pilgrimage back home..
18 I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”’ 20 And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’[c] 22 But the father said to his servants,[d] ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. 23 And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.
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I’m titling this Radical Faith, but please take heed that this is not a testimony that someone should take out of context. There is a lot of prosperity teachings out there and if this comes across as such, then please let me know so that I may correct. Remember, it is written – James 4:3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Basically saying that we do not receive because we ask selfishly.. God is not a genie in a bottle.
At any rate, here is a lesson I have been learning over the past few years.. I pray it blesses you, in Jesus name, amen.
I had spent a cpl of months in pain because of my right arm.. I couldn’t sleep at night.. All day long, I would shift my shoulder/arm/neck trying to get comfortable. Basically, I had a constant pain, 24/7.. all day, every day for at least 2-3 months. I did what we all do when we need healing – Google search and youtube videos of course! Searching all the ways to heal myself of this thing. According to a nurse friend of mine, I had a pinched nerve in my neck..? Idk.. and I don’t care now. ha. I received much advice for healing: visit a Chiropractor, stretching, posture, take pain meds, etc., but finally 1 day.. I got the needed medicine –
Here is a powerful Muslim Testimony (a woman who converted from Islam to Christianity). This DVD was shared with me by a brother in the Lord who received approval by morethandreams.org for re-distribution. This is one of the testimonies out of 5 on the DVD. Please consider making the small purchase of a DVD to help them get the word out. Enjoy (click the link directly to watch in your browser, or Right click the link then “Save as..”) – Muslim Testimony
If you have any troubles playing the file, I suggest using this free media player: VLC – It’s the best media player out there mainly because it isn’t a resource hog like Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, etc. Plus, it’s free, updated regularly, etc. :)
All that can be said is that “God is Good, Good, Good..” Amen. Here is something I titled God’s Bicycle Testimony. A testimony of God’s work.. I pray this encourages any readers to seek to hear His voice and most importantly, to be a doer of the word that we hear. In Jesus name, amen.
For many months I have been praying and waiting for whey protein powder to go on sale. Since it is a staple food item for me, it’s bought in bulk. It was realized last week that I’m getting down to my last couple of pounds (again), so I reminded the Lord. :)
A few days ago while riding my (His) bicycle to Church, the Lord guided me to a man standing on the opposite side of the road with a bicycle. “Go talk to that man.” I rode over and asked what he was up to. He said he was traveling north to find work (homeless). After a short discussion about his confusion of which direction to go, I invited him to come along for a ride to Church. He accepted. While we were on the way, I noticed that the man had a 1/2 flat rear tire. I decided to help him by using an air compressor at a gas station after Church.
Before and after Church, the man was talking a lot about his 2 ex-wives, the last being 14yrs ago. He was very bitter. He revealed that they both committed adultery. Outside of his travel plans, it was pretty much the only thing he discussed. His heart was obviously scarred.
After Church, we rode to the gas station. I asked, “What are your other needs besides air?” He said he was good on everything. (He had water, 2 bags of food, and received another bag of food at the Church). He said all he really needed was his bicycle tire fixed. We looked at it and the tube was blowing out. He said that it’s holding air for around a day of riding and that he would be ok with just getting some air. As I grabbed the quarters out of my pocket to place them in the air machine, the Lord pressed in, “Is that all you can do? The need won’t be met tomorrow.” I decided to run home and get a wrench to swap a tire off of my bike. All during this event, in the back of my mind was that still small voice, “Give him the bicycle.” I quenched Him with my own reasoning.. “Replacing the tire will meet his need.” bla bla bla *sigh*
Upon returning with the wrench, we realized a swap wouldn’t work because it was the back tire. Oops! Imagine that! My own understandings fail, once again. There was a difference in the sprocket/gears.. they were not interchangeable. Then again, “Give him the bicycle that I have blessed you with. Don’t worry, have I not been faithful in taking care of your needs?” Ugh.. I bow, “Yes Lord.” So I gave him God’s bicycle. The man was obviously thankful.
As I was taking personal items off of the bike, he continued to talk about his ex’s. The Lord laid the word ‘unforgiveness’ on my heart and ‘7×70’. When we were ready to depart, I asked, “Do you recall a verse that mentions 7×70 in the bible?” He did not. I explained that it’s about forgiveness. We discussed how unforgiveness ushers in bitterness, stress, depression, anger, and other things of this world and compared it to God’s way of forgiveness, which ushers in peace, contentment, love, kindness, etc. He had that look.. praise God, seed dropped. After we were finished discussing this, we prayed. During the discussion about 7 times 70, there was a song in my head..
At the moment I began to depart on his bicycle, I was singing: ~7 times 70 times, there’s healing in the air tonight~ Just as I pressed down on the pedal for the first crank, I look down:
My eyes immediately fixate on a 7 at the same time the word seven was rolling off my lips.. confirmation.
As always, God doesn’t stop there. Later in the day, I receive notice of a sale for protein powder. I’ve been ordering protein powder for around 5yrs, always keeping eyes out for sales. This was 20% lower than the lowest sale price that I have come across in 5yrs. Thank you Lord..
This evening, I learned of another branching out from this event (the homeless man’s bicycle that I had). God is Good! Good! Good! When this originally happened, the bicycle was offered to a neighbor. He was very thankful because he was needing new pedals for another bike. As I was talking to him tonight – “I hope you don’t mind.. but I gave that bicycle to my neighbor. For a long time, he has been talking about how he would love to have 2 bicycles so him and the wife could go for rides together. I gave him that bike and his wife is using mine. You should have seen them leave together for a ride the other day, they had smiles stretched from ear to ear.”
Lord, I’m sorry that I almost grudgingly and selfishly held onto that bicycle. Thanks for keeping on me.. and thanks for the lesson..
1 Peter 4:9-10 Use hospitality one to another without grudging. As every man has received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
Thank you to brother Marlin for sharing his heart with this writing. I pray that the manifold grace of God is also received by you –
Do you remember the moment that God first spoke to your heart and convicted you of your sin? Well, I will never forget the night the Lord opened my eyes to who and what I really was. For twenty-one years I had convinced myself that I was a sure enough decent fellow, “a good ole boy,” you know. My parents had raised me with manners and respect for others and I figured that was good enough.