Look Straight Ahead

Sitting on the couch in my mother’s living room day and night, doing nothing but rocking, rocking, rocking, I was uncertain if I could survive this devastating blow. Unable to eat, I was still having problems with anorexia and the slightest stress would throw me into weeklong fasts.  I was becoming weak and my already slight frame became emaciated.  My heart was broken.  Once again, I had been thrown over for someone else and my fragile pain-ridden spirit could endure no more.

I am not sure how long I had been living back home with my mother.  All I know is that I had not moved from the couch, had not changed my clothes, eaten, or taken any liquids.  I was an empty shell and had it not been for what happened next, I don’t think I would be here today.

I had lain down on the sofa and closed my eyes.  Did I sleep?  I must have, because what happened next could only have been a dream.

I found myself on a dirt road.  I remember it was hot…and the dust was swirling in places, irritating my nose; I sneezed.  I saw a man up ahead, sitting on a bench.  I walked over to him slowly as you sometimes walk in dreams…so slowly that it was almost as if I were standing still and he was moving toward me.  I stood before him swaying slightly; even in the dream, I was weak from not eating.  The man reached up and drew me down onto his lap, pressing my cheek to his shoulder.

The material of his shirt irritated my cheek, but I didn’t want to move my head.  I felt peaceful and content.  I think I may have been ready to die right there, filled with a serenity I had only found in the deep woods and rolling pastures of Southern Ohio.

He began to speak.  His voice was deep and resonant, a lot like Robert Duvall’s voice; so deep and rich, that it almost sounded like singing, it was so melodious.  “I love you,” He said, rocking me like a baby.  I remember asking, “How will I know this is not a dream?”  He answered, “When you awake, look not to the right or left.  Do not look behind.  Look straight ahead and your answer will be there.”  When I awoke, there was a cross on the wall directly ahead of me.  It remained there until the day we moved, when it disappeared as magically as it had appeared.

Excerpt from Son of My Soul – The Adoption of Christopher, Debra Shiveley Welch, Saga Books: Chapter 9 “The Forgotten.”

Networking even when not planned

Several years ago I was unemployed. Through another unemployed individual with whom I networked I was introduced to Bible Study Fellowship. I attended regularly, but was always challenged to get there on time.

One of the companies I had targeted in my job search was called FSI International, a supplier of capital equipment to the semiconductor industry. Try as I might, I just couldn’t find a networking contact into the company.

Monday night came along and I felt driven to get to BSF on time. After the introduction, one of the small group leaders was introduced to give his faith story. You can imagine my surprise when the teaching leader when he said, “Tonight we will be hearing from Peter Pope. During the week, Peter is the Vice President of Sales & Marketing for FSI International.”

I would like to be able to say the result of that meeting was a new job, but it wasn’t. It was, however, the beginning of a friendship which lasted until Peter’s untimely death a few years later. This was truly a Godincidence.

Lonny J. Gulden
Chief Connections Officer™
Deep Valley Consulting LLC

Sweet answer to prayer

I don’t believe anything is coincidence…I believe those thing we call coincidence are really “God-incidence”

Here’s a little one I would like to share…Last night after doing my relaxation tape, I decided to ask God in a special way for a dvd with a remote that I need to use for my “rebounding” ….my new exercise program. I wanted to bring it up to my office and not be in the livingroom…also when I jumped I was just in the middle of the ceiling fan!!!

So going to sleep I kept repeating, “I am joyously (I learned that in requesting you should keep the request in the present like it has already happened and use an “ly” word, and an”ing” word in the request and be specific and say when you want it to happen!!)…so again I said, “I am joyous”ly” thank”ing” God and the person who is giving me a free dvd with a remote immediately!!” I kept repeating it over and over until I went to sleep….but just before going to sleep my sister popped into my mind. I wanted to call in the middle of the night (which I have had to do for anxiety and mania…she is a pure angel!!) but I knew I could wait.

In the morning I asked her about her tv with a dvd and remote…I told her I had a tv with a dvd but no remote ( you need the remote in the exercise video to go down to play the workout otherwise you just get in to theinstruction section!!) Would she mind trading (mine is smaller) and she said, “sure I’ll trade” Viola” the answer to my prayer instantly! Thank you God!! It is small but it is a sweet answer to prayer!

Posted by angelsbreath at BBS StressCenter

Who Are You Walking Past?

I was running later than normal this morning when I went down to the post office to check for mail. As I walked along the pavement a young lady was walking towards me, her head down, reading the book in her hands. She must have just come off the train – there was a fair bit of foot traffic around. I don’t know why I was watching this lady but as she got closer, I noticed the book was moving up and down in her hands with the movement of her walking. And in a flash, as the book moved up momentarily, I saw the cover of her book and my heart jumped! The book was mine – “Worth More Than Rubies“.

I stopped and watched her as she moved further down the road away from me, wondering if she even realised she had just walked past the author. Probably not. How cool was that? Definitely a God-incident in my books!

Busted!

I have a God-incidence story for you. It happened awhile ago but I was reminded of it tonight while posting on another blog.This is definitely a God-incidence but maybe not the typical way you’re thinking…

Will (my former boyfriend) and I had a huge fight one day. I was furious and went home and began to write a letter to another friend of mine. I told him what happened but I spent a lot of time slandering Will. I wrote about 5 sentences of not-so-nice things about him. So I sent the letter and I got a reply from my friend (Robert) and he told me to dump Will. He too said a bunch of not-so-kind things about Will.

After about a week had passed (and I still hadn’t spoken to Will) I started to get convicted because of how I handled the whole situation.

I knew that I should not have said those things and wished I could take them back. I confessed to the Lord what I had done but I couldn’t bring myself to say anything to Will. I knew that it would really hurt him if he knew. I told the Lord that I didn’t want to keep anything from Will but I just couldn’t bring myself to tell him. I wanted a clear conscience and I didn’t want anything to hinder my relationship with the Father.

So Will calls me finally and he wanted me to come over. He sounded really strange – kind of irritated but not about the fight. He said he wanted to know who I was talking to. I didn’t know where he was going with that. He kept insisting that I was talking to someone about him.

I asked if he thought it was one of my girlfriends and he said ‘no’.

He said it was a guy and he was really pushing me to tell him what was said. I finally told him the only guy I talked to was Robert and that was via snail mail. So he asked me to read his letter to him over the phone. Robert’s letter was 5 pages long on legal sized paper front and back. So I proceeded to read the letter to him, omitting his slanderous remarks of course, and when I was finished, Will knew that something wasn’t right. He said something was missing. He asked if I read the WHOLE letter to him and I lied and said ‘yes’.

So then, he asked me to bring the letter over. I thought I was going to die! How was I to pull this off now? Did I confess to Will like I should have? Of course not! Instead I rushed to the store and bought yellow legal sized paper and REWROTE the entire letter (10 pages front and back) copying Robert’s handwriting with the slanderous parts omitted! I gave it to Will and he read it. When he was finished he said something like “you mean he didn’t say I was a jerk?” “Did he tell you to dump me?” “Did he tell you that you could find a better person than me?” “Did he call me an #@!z*?” Will knew VERBATIM what was said. He said a bunch of other things that were in MY letter and in Robert’s letter. I did not include everything that was said but the wording was unique – something that a person could not have guessed.

Anyway, I was terrified but I kept denying it. But Will kept insisting that these things were said. I finally said “you know don’t you?” He said “know what?” (he knew, he just wanted me to say it) The jig was up, he knew. I knew right then that somehow the Lord told him because there was absolutely no way he could have known about mine and Robert’s exchange via mail. He knew the words exactly as they were written. It’s like Will had the original letters and read from them. I was so scared, I was shaking! So I broke down and told him everything- I had to at that point because I knew that I was fighting God.

Anyway Will and I reconciled.

So God busted me big time!!!! But He also answered my prayer by forcing me to confess what I said to Will, thus giving me a clear conscience and restoring my relationship with the Father. After I stopped shaking, I praised the Lord for what He had done! I never thought that He would answer a prayer in that way! I mean he busted on me – have you ever heard of that? Incidentally I haven’t done that since. I’m too afraid because I KNOW He will bust me again. It just amazes to think that the Lord truly does watch over us and that He is involved in everything! It’s funny how He wouldn’t let me slide either! He MADE SURE I did the right thing but He had to give it a push first.

I will never forget what He has done – it was terrifying yet amazing!

I am so thankful to Him!

Blessings,
Carol from The Bible Thumper’s Soapbox.
http://thebiblethumperssoapbox.blogspot.com/

Pilgrimage

Sent to me and seen at MulledVine

This weekend we went to IKEA.

If you’re a British husband, this 4 letter word can strike fear into your heart.

Why did we go? Because my youngest daughter needs a new bed and contrary to what you might think, only IKEA seems to have the right beds. In my opinion they have very nice beds at the local Furniture Village 2 miles away, but no, it has to be to IKEA.

Our “local” IKEA is 30 miles away, a part of a huge shopping complex that serves as a Retail Mecca for millions. It provides hours of “fun”: queuing on the roads, endless browsing, queuing for bite to eat, more browsing, queuing at the tills, and finally, with the day mostly over, the long drive home with thousands of fellow shoppers. And then to add insult to injury, there awaits the hours of frustration as I try to assemble my purchases from the very compact flat packs with obscure instructions that seem to be for completely different products!

So why do I regale you with my tale of woe? Because something unusual happened.

In preparation for our pilgrimage and the anticipated purchase of a fine, and dare I say it, unique IKEA bed, I had to put the roof bars on our car and look for our binding straps. I have a wonderful collection of such straps, accumulated over the years because I constantly misplace them and have to buy new ones. Yet, once again, the blessed straps were missing.

I searched “everywhere” in our garage, through heaps and heaps of chaos. Eventually I gave up in disgust, resigned myself to yet another strap purchase, and turned to exit the garage. As I turned, there was an almighty crash behind me as a basket tumbled from the top of one of our chaotic heaps to the ground. I turned around patiently, thanked God for giving me the opportunity to grow, bent to pick the basket up, only to find it full of my missing straps!

Now you would be within your rights to attribute this to blind chance, as improbable as it is, but I would like today to thank my God for the little things in life.

Robert

God is always speaking to you

I recently read how God is always there, always seeking to get our attention, always talking to us, but in the busy-ness of life we tend to over look this. I’m definitely guilty of that, even when I do respond to promptings by the Holy Spirit to pray for people.

We are currently going through a 40 Day Prayer & Fast time at our church.  A couple of weeks ago during my prayer and bible reading time I was prompted to pray for a couple I’d not seen for at least a couple of years but probably much longer. They used to go to our old church and then shifted to another state to minister at a church there. I knew they’d been having challenges and we’d heard on the grapevine occasionally about things happening in their lives. But we weren’t close friends and we hadn’t maintained contact.

So, to be prompted to pray for them wasn’t because they were always on my mind and I knew it was not of my own thoughts. I prayed for them and that God is with them in whatever is happening currently and after my prayers for that day got on with my life. They didn’t enter my mind again… till this morning. Who should walk into my (new) church this morning but this couple and their children? I had an overwhelming feeling of joy and excitement about seeing them and fired heaps of questions at them – how long have they been back, how are they, where are they living, and so on. I didn’t know who to hug first and excitedly chatted to them and then moved off to sit in my usual spot but keeping aware of where they had sat in the auditorium.

The prompting came back within minutes for me to go sit with them and I walked around to see if there was a spare seat near them but there wasn’t, so I moved back to my seat and waited till the time for the children moved came, then I grabbed my things and moved over to that side of the building and sat with them. During the service I was reminded of the prayer and concern for them a couple of weeks ago and I shared it with the husband (because he was sitting next to me and because we had also worked together a few years ago and had some common ground and I felt we connected more) after the service, with tears filling my eyes.

I still don’t understand why I was so overwhelmed with emotion for this couple – we’d not been close friends but did know each other. We didn’t mix in the same circles and their children are very young – our’s are full grown – and yet I know I was prompted to pray for them and then totally excited to see them this morning. They’re trying to buy a home and once settled will decide on their new church home.

One more amazing thing in all this, the husband told me he was surfing the web during the week and came across my blog – I asked him which one? I own 12 🙂 He told me the one about my book and was thrilled to come across it. He doesn’t even know how he found it – so there you have it. God had me thinking about them and vice versa – amazing.

Whatever is happening I know that God was in it, and for them to turn up in the church I attend out of all the churches they could attend, I feel was a God-incident in itself – that coupled with the prompting to pray for them.

We’re on duty for God 24/7

Throughout this year I’ve been working on a new book based on The Proverbs 31 Woman. The book is called Worth More Than Rubies: The Value of a Work At Home Mum.  The journey I’ve been experiencing during this time has been amazing and the evidence that God continues to work through things I do will never cease to surprise me. The following is just one such incident.

The most awesome thing happened and I wanted to share it with you.

A few days ago I was annoyed to receive yet another email newsletter from some group I’d never heard of. Because they were obviously Australian, and bearing in mind the spam legislation here, I emailed them and asked how I got on the list – to give them the benefit of the doubt.

The guy answered today and advised I’d signed up for their regular newsletter last December and this was a special one-off. I emailed back and suggested that they actually advise who the ‘parent group’ is so that recipients know who the sender actually is. He responded and agreed and then he emailed me again:

Kathie, you’re a Believer! So am I!!

I just clicked on your link for http://worth-more-than-rubies.com/

Where do you fellowship?

He’d seen the link for my new book in my signature block and followed it and knew instantly where my heart lay.

We ended up emailing back and forth and it turns out that 3 years ago he and his wife was touched by a special ministry that operates from my church. More than that, his wife works at home but is struggling and none of their friends can relate as they are not in a similar position. He asked if I would consider chatting with her on the phone to encourage her and of course I said ‘yes’.

It is important that we always respond and ‘react’ to things in a way that is not seen as rude or bad character at any time. We never know who we’re connecting with and the internet allows us to connect with anyone and everyone at any given time. We are on duty, God’s duty 24/7.  If I had not responded ‘nicely’ it’s possible we would not have discovered what I now believe to be a ‘God-connection’ and it thrills me that once again, my Lord is using me to help others.

I thought it was spam but it was a message from God

My book “Worth More Than Rubies” is playing a role in God-connections, even when I don’t expect it. And when you read the following you will understand what I mean.

The most awesome thing happened today and I want to share it with you.

A few days ago I was annoyed to receive yet another email newsletter from some group I’d never heard of. Because they were obviously Australian, and bearing in mind the spam legislation here, I emailed them and asked how I got on the list – to give them the benefit of the doubt.

The guy answered today and advised I’d signed up for their regular newsletter last December and this was a special one-off. I emailed back and suggested that they actually advise who the ‘parent group’ is so that recipients know who the sender actually is. He responded and agreed and then he sent me another email:

Kathie, you’re a Believer! So am I!!

I just clicked on your link for http://worth-more-than-rubies.com/

Where do you fellowship?

He’d seen the link for my new book in my signature block and followed it and knew instantly where my heart lay.

We ended up emailing back and forth and he was thrilled to find out my church is Bayside Church in Victoria, Australia. 3 years ago he and his wife were touched by a special ministry that operates from my church. More than that, his wife works at home but is feeling very overwhelmed with that and managing the family and none of their friends can relate as they are not in a similar position. He asked if I would consider chatting with her on the phone to encourage her and of course I said ‘yes’. I don’t know if he knows it yet, but of course my book touches on this very subject. And yes, I’m still on his company’s mailing list.

It is important that we always respond and ‘react’ to things in a way that is not seen as rude or in bad character at any time. We never know who we’re connecting with and the internet allows us to connect with anyone and everyone at any given time. We are on duty, God’s duty, 24/7. If I had not responded ‘nicely’ it’s possible we would not have discovered what I now believe to be a ‘God-connection’ and it thrills me that once again, my Lord is using me to help others. Even when they haven’t yet read my book :-)

Addendum: This man and his wife came to my book launch – it was lovely to meet them. Additional to that his wife has a business making and selling bridal veils all over the world. My eldest daughter makes bridal gowns and gowns for the bridesmaids – this would be a great ‘partnership’ and I will be introducing the two to each other.

I think it was a God-incidence

Saw at experienceproject.com and I would have left a comment but unfortunately you have to register to be able to do so. Think I belong to enough things now, however thought I’d share the story here for others to enjoy. Perhaps the owner might drop by…

S ome might say it was just a coincidence, but I don’t think so. I was going through some personal hell awhile back. I was walking along in tears feeling no one could understand what I was feeling. Then, there it was…

A cd just laying on the ground. It was Tonic’s head on straight cd.

When I heard the song “Take me as I am” I cried. It was just how I was feeling. It was like an affirmation. Like God understood my pain.I’m out of the black I was in then, but I still can’t part with the cd.

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