Here’s my testimony for the Intercessor as requested.
I have to tell you how your request for an article played into what I’ve seen lately. This article is very fresh. I have been dealing with unconfessed sin for several months now and wanting to break free but afraid to and too prideful to admit I needed help. So when you called for my testimony, I was racked because I didn’t think my life was a testimony at all-given my present believing. The desire to be able to share something of substance to the readers was one of the catalysts for my final willingness to come clean.
Then as I began to see the extent of the unbelief and how out of control I’d gotten, I was so grieved that I didn’t think I could write about it. And so ashamed I was tempted not to want to she in such a public way. But I see now the independence of that line of thinking, am grateful for having seen and confessed the unbelief, and want to share it with others.
In the spirit of OA’s 12 traditions, please do not use my full name. I purposely kept other’s names out of it. I will be happy to address any responses, though.
BEFORE THEY CALL
I thought I would pass along some ideas that have meant a lot to me lately concerning problems, which we all have. You have certainly had your share. The Bible says, "Before they call, I will answer," which is a strange statement. We think that we land in a mess – financial, marital, family- and then ask God to help us and to do something about the problem. But I believe God presents us with what looks like a situation with no solution so that we will recognize that He already has the solution. We say the answer is there by faith, that is, we simply believe God and take Him at His word. "Okay, God, this looks like a mess. But simply by this problem being in my life, I know you have the perfect answer already waiting. I will believe that you have provided the answer, and I will continue to thank you for it." This is a lot different from begging God to help. He’s trying to get across to us that He’s already helped. Hebrews 11:1 says "Faith is the evidence of things hoped for, the substance of things unseen."
Rather than seeing lack, we see the supply. For example, rather than seeing your marriage in trouble, you can believe in a marriage restored, and know that whatever you and your husband are going through, it is to bring you into the manifestation of that restoration as a fact – God knows what we need, and He knows just how to tap us on the shoulder to wake us up to what He’s doing. And His will for us is perfect.
This way of seeing things has been very helpful to me in hard times, and I hope it will make sense to you. Let me hear how everything is going. Remember, it’s God dealing the cards, and Christ in you playing the hand. You can’t lose.
Much love to all –
Hello again, Brenda.
Robyn called me last night and as we talked I saw that I had not been seeing God right in how I’ve chosen to view feeling tired. I have been counting the number of hours I’ve slept and deciding if I’ve gotten enough sleep. The unbelief is not seeing that God knows better than I do on how much sleep He wants this vessel to have. I don’t get to decide how much is enough, God does. It’s a lot like thinking I won’t get enough food. The truth is that I am willing to go to any lengths to be right with God. I have decided to stop counting the hours and be grateful for the moment.
One thing I am feeling fearful about is that Robyn said that worrying over sleep or food is just a distraction from a more deeply rooted lie that God wants to address. It’s probably that same "I don’t want to get in trouble" lie that Satan wants to tempt me with. Once again, the truth is that Satan is the one who is afraid. and Christ-Vikki wants only to express flawless, perfect Christ. Satan wants me to stay self-focused on sleep, food, and time. NO THANK YOU! The it of Bret’s Grandma is something I’ve also been distracted into the future about. I think I’ll journal on that this week because I also plan to make an amend to her at that time. Let’s talk soon.
ENCOURAGEMENT BY FELLOWSHIP
I have really enjoyed the Castleton Conference. Especially interesting was the tremendous fellowship of people from different countries and their willingness to open up painful areas of their lives and their pasts.
After the Zerubbabel summer camp at Blowing Rock all four of us in our family were united in right believing which is an awesome responsibility. When the coming together took place, I was told to be aware that we would come under attack from the enemy because he couldn’t stand the idea of our being aunited family strong in belief and with determination to shut him out.
I thought if I were vigilant I could spot these attacks building up and take out the enemy front with-out his breaking through. Generally this has succeeded, but I needed a bit of help from the conference hi seeing how we can have our big guns pointing bravely ahead but yet the enemy can creep in under the barbed wire! Having heard others speak out about their lives and failings I have been helped to begin to recognise how the enemy does this by hooking into our bruised, tender places and trying to pull us off of our believing.
One of the ways he did this to me personally was by trying to get me not to attend the conference by repeating in my ear, "Don’t go, there’s going to be a big bust up. You won’t like it." This conference has shown that it does not have to be like the picture Satan painted and I have been increasingly encouraged by the may friendly atmosphere of fellow-ship and belonging.
Thank you all,
A PLEA FOR SALVATION
I have thought a lot about you these past few months and have may enjoyed talking to you on the phone those times. I’m concerned about you and want your life to be satisfying to you. I’m also very worried about you.
I imagine you have felt embarassed when I brought up my concern about your salvation. I certainly have felt embarrased doing it. But I care more for you and love you too much to let my uncomfortable feelings prevent me from saying what I have said.
I think a lot of people in and out of churches have the wrong concept of what it means to be a Christian. I know I did. Growing up in the Lutheran church for me, it meant being as good as I could and following whatever rules I thought I was supposed to. Other people have the picture that they are doing the best they can and when the end comes, they’ll let the chips fall where they may. God will understand.
I want to make this as clear as I can so that you understand what I am trying to say. I am not asking you to or thinking you need to be going to church. Church attendance or membership is not a substitute for truly being a Christian. Also, no group or church has the corner on truth. It must point us back to God, His written word in the Bible, and what He is saying.
I’ve looked in the Bible and tried to find verses that would explain bet-ter what I am trying to say to you. All the verses that I found are in the New Testament.
Romans 3:10 There is none righteous, no not one.
Romans 3:12 …there is none that doeth good, no not one.
Romans 5:8 But God commended His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Romans 10:9-10 If thou confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in thine heart that God has raised Him from the dead, thou shall be saved. For with the heart man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Hebrews 9:27 As it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgement.
I hope this did not complicate it all. Basically, salvation is first seeing you have a need of a savior, because of the sinful state that we come into the world with. Second, we realize God has made a provision for our need – He sent His only son, Jesus Christ, to die for our sins on the cross. Third, we admit our need of a savior and repent of our sins – ask God’s forgiveness – and invite Christ to come into our heart. That’s it.
If sometime in your life you have asked Christ to come in, I am so thrilled and thankful. If you are not sure or if you never did, what do you have to lose? Better to feel a little awkward and embarrassed on this end than heartbroken for eternity.
I would love to hear from you.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 11 No 2
- God’s Obsession
- Isaiah 45:5-8
- Editor’s Note
- Moments with Meryl
- Excerpts from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- Thoughts on Abraham
- The Single Eye
- The Letter to the Romans
- My Story
- Questions & Answers
- The Key To Everything
- God’s Promises
- The Mailbox
- New Light on the Twelve Steps
- Tape Talk
- Words to Live By