“I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content — whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need.” – Philippians 4:12 HCSB
What a difference a year makes.
This year represents several transition events. Going from:to in many areas of my life, has been the way of 2013.
From being employed to knowing unemployment.
From having plenty to having nothing.
From having a home to being homeless.
From having plenty to eat, to wondering how to feed my family.
There have also been some outstanding transitions, as well.
From hating life to loving life.
From being alienated from God to understanding that God loves me.
From fear to assurance.
From hate to love.
From death to life.
From being unemployed in 2013, to starting my new job in 2014.
From the death of the old self, to the birth of the new self.
From losing useless friends to gaining real and meaningful friendships.
These last 11 years in Missouri are a mixed bag of great memories and some sot so great ones. Mostly, being here has given me the opportunity to be refined in a way I doubt I would have known had I been living where I wanted to live.
During my spate of unemployment, I sent out over 500 resume, and applied for several hundred jobs. It wasn’t until I gave up trying and asked God to take over this process that I got a job. I asked God to do this, and within 3 minutes of my praying that, I had my first phone interview with a company I had not applied to. The company is located in the opposite direction from where I wanted to move my family.
Sandy witnessed all this. She saw her husband go from being a monster, to becoming a child of God. These last 9 months of unemployment have been the most productive months I have ever lived through.
I am now a child of God. I am the redeemed through the finished work of the cross. I have faith, hope and love, literally for the first time in my life. Anger is a vague and distant memory for me. Love is the theme in my heart.
My prayer for you, for 2014 is this:
I pray that you learn what I learned. That God is not mad at you. That you are loved by the being that created the entire universe. That, on your behalf, Jesus Christ became every sin that ever existed and will exist, and absorbed all the wrath of God in judgement for becoming all of sin. Jesus died of all our sin so we can live. An exchange took place on the cross. Jesus took all that had become our inheritance: sin, death, disease, and hell, and in exchange for that, He gave us His inheritance: Life, Love, Healing, wholeness, His Kingdom and His Father, our God.
I pray for you to discover that when Jesus rose from the dead, He gave you the power to rise, a new creation, with Him. I pray that you understand that all you have to do to be saved is understand in your heart what Jesus did, and accept it, and confess it with your mouth.
I pray for the same transition I had, from death to life, from hopelessness to hope, from despair, to joy, from being lost to knowing you belong to God, and nothing can take it away from you.
The Kingdom of Heaven is in you, and God dwells in you, and the Spirit of the Living God empowers you when you make this transition. No religion ever brought you this. It is not a religion, but a relationship.
I look forward to this new life we will live in Texas. Sandy and I are going to get certified and ordained in the Ministry. I am going to work for my new employer as if I were working for God Himself.
I am going to give and give and give all that God has given me.
I pray that you prosper and grow in the Lord in 2014.
I am glad I have experienced 2013 in all its various shades of joy and despair. I would not have learned that, no matter what state I live, whatever my condition, God is my father, and He provides. I will cherish 2013 for the rest of my life, and remember Missouri with fondness.
My next blog will be written in Texas. I look forward to sharing the adventures God will be taking Sandy and I on.
God bless you in 2014.