A Fresh Start
Words cannot possibly describe the miracles that occurred during the Birmingham conference. I would like to share our gratitude and our view of those miracles. All weekend long I kept saying "WOW," and that stands for Wonderful Opportunity for Wisdom. This time together was like a breath of life into our dying spiritual lives. We never knew how messed up our thinking was until God’s precious truth was shown.
"Christ in me, the hope of glory." What a concept! ! I was judging others on their fruit, and I wouldn’t even acknowledge the tree, the tree being Christ in them. How could I see the fruit without seeing the tree first? Well, this fruit inspector lost her job. Now I realize that the same Christ lives in me and my husband, and I see us in a different light. That is total freedom. We also learned that appearances don’t equal Spirit. Boy, that blew our minds because it was contrary to everything we’ve been taught. Now we know that no matter how it looks, we can’t judge by appearances. WOW!! That fires me up.
The second truth was that we are in God’s perfect will for our lives, and even our past was under God’s control. Even though my past was particularly hurtful, I can now rest in the fact that God’s best has always been intended for me–His utmost for my highest. The past guilt and shame was washed away with that truth. I know now I’m free to talk it all out with God and those who have been where I’ve been without fear of condemnation. WHAT FREEDOM! I can now be thankful instead of resentful.
I have served God with a heart of resentment. I was mad at Him because my life was not a bed of roses. In retrospect, I would not change a thing (if I could) if it meant that I would not experience God at the level I did this weekend. It’s as though everything now makes sense. Praise God for pain!!
I guess the most important thing we learned was that there are people who are totally outpoured for others. When I came to this conference I was desperate–so much that it didn’t take long for everyone to hear my life’s story, uglies and a11. The spirit of acceptance encouraged me to share. You listened! You cared! ! And as I watched around the room, there were head nods reinforcing in me that Satan’s unoriginal traps had snared some of you, too. You could have turned me away; you didn’t even know me. But the same love that Jesus showed on Calvary was expressed in Birmingham through each of you. We cannot thank you enough for literally saving our lives.
God bless all of you precious vessels, and thank you for welcoming us into our new family!