Well... I don't really know how to start, except to just dive right in and say," Wow, I can't believe it's been over a month since my last blog entry!"
What happened to June?
Did we skip it this year?
It's not that I haven't thought of you dear friends out there. I have thought of you daily with the desire to sit down and write. Unfortunately, two things kept me from doing it. They were time and words. It seems like when I had the time, I didn't have the words or when I had the words I couldn't find the time. Fortunately, I made alot of mental notes. But, unfortunately, I forgot where I put them!
No, all jokes aside, I sincerely have missed writing to you and hopefully you have missed reading. In the past month I had the opportunity to share in some wonderful experiences with family and friends. For that I am truly grateful. I will probably share some of these with you at a later date.
I've also been busy with my nursing career which pays and my writing career which so far, does not. But, that doesn't matter. I consider it a great privilege to write and share our Father's message of love and hope. It is my joy.
I hope you are enjoying your summer and the activites that come along with it. Hopefully, you will have some time to relax, reflect, and reconnect with family and friends, but most importantly to realign yourself with the goals you've set for your life and God's divine purpose and plan for your life.
What I mean by this is, do you see your life heading in a direction where your plans and God's plans will ultimately merge and follow the same course?
The best way to tell if that is happening is to look back briefly and examine your spiritual growth. If you have not totally and completely given your life to Christ, do you feel yourself being drawn more to Him. Do you see little "coincidences" that put you in a place with other Christians or times when you are uncomfortable with certain areas of your life that you have previously enjoyed? Are you tired of that empty feeling? That nagging feeling of unrest and free-floating anxiety, where it's nothing terrible really, but you just feel uneasy, maybe unfulfilled.
Sorta like, "Is this all there is?" as Peggy Lee portrayed in her song so many years ago.
On the other hand, if you already know Jesus as your Savior and are assured that HE and ONLY HE holds your ticket to Heaven, take a moment to look back on your life since your committment to Him. Do you see growth in your knowledge of Him, in your attitudes, in your focus? Sure there are valleys and mountaintops. But, do you see a steady, leaning on and learning from the Lord?
I was saved in 1978, I immediately felt relief of an almost physical kind of weight being lifted off my shoulders. It is a very stressful thing to live without the peace of God and assurance of salvation in your heart. I had lived with so much anxiety and stress and fear. It was a tremendous relief to lay it all down at the feet of Jesus!
Dear, precious friend, we were not meant to carry such a burden. It will wear you down.
I remember as a child going to church one Sunday and hearing the preacher say that even in your last breath you could utter the words, "Lord, be merciful unto me a sinner," and you would be saved from hell. Well, I thought that was the key I had been looking for. I could live however I wanted to as long I remembered those words and had the time to blurt them out. I would be home free! I rehearsed saying them as fast as I could, you know, just in case of emergency.
The question remained; would I be faster than an oncoming car, or a speeding bullet, or a riptide or a bite of hotdog lodged in my windpipe or even the grim reaper in the middle of the night?
As you can see, the memorization of those words did not bring me lasting relief. I still felt anxious and fearful and yes, unhappy. I had part of the idea, but I didn't have the key component. I didn't have freedom in belonging to God, of knowing Him intimately as my Father and Jesus as my Savior.
It was a long time coming. I was 24 years old before I would make the decision to accept Christ. But here I am, a few decades later, oooh, does that ever sound old!
Just forget I said the decade thing. The important thing is- if I could go back to anyone of those younger unsaved years or stay here saved and wrinkled, no contest-hands down, I would pick anyone of the past 32 years.
Now, I'm not saying they've all been a piece of cake. That is most definitely not the case! Some of these years have been excruciating and painful. What I am saying is that, no matter where I've had to walk since being saved, I've never had to walk alone.
When I've had those very difficult times, I see them as times when God was refining me. Just like the verse in Zecariah 13:9 where the gold was being put in the fire to burn off the impurities.
I will bring them through the fire... I will refine them as silver is refined. And test them as gold is tested. They will call on my name. And I will answer them. I will say they are my people. And they will say The Lord is my God.
Praise God, He sees me as worthy of being refined, polished up a little for His glory! I am worth it! He calls me His!
So today I will leave you with these words from my favorite movie, Moonstruck. The scene where the priest says, "Reflect on your life, Loretta."
Look back. Look where you've been. Look where you're going. Is the course of your life yielding in the direction and paths that Christ has for you.
A message from another preacher many years later drew it all together with this prayer which I continue to pray today.
Help me to be at the place where your divine purpose and my human will meet and prosper daily. Amen.
(c) 2011 Bonnie Mae Evans