He Chose You

9 May 13

The waiting game seems to be over for now. The powers that control our schedule for installing office furniture have decreed that ALL the late trucks will arrive next week. The first one arrived today, and the boss man unloaded it, so we are off to Paducah, Kentucky tomorrow to get some work done. All this being off is good for the house, but not so great on the bank account.

I got news on a potential IT job today. It was a referral from a friend, but it sounds right up my alley and it is pretty close by too. I am trying really hard not to get my hopes up again, but I am praying that if this job is what He has in mind for me, then let me breeze right through that open door, and if not, slam it shut with no question about it. I refuse to deny God’s power in my life. I will do everything I can through prayer and counsel to discern His will in this. I will not give up.

While pressure washing the deck today, my mind wandered (as it often does), and I was thinking about how grateful I was that I had accepted God into my life. Warm fuzzy feelings followed for a bit, and then I experienced a revelation that was very humbling. It struck me that who did I think I was congratulating myself on allowing the Creator into my life? God’s will is that I follow him, and it is wonderful that He has worked miracles that I can see to lead me to Him. He is mighty and merciful, but to think that I allowed HIM? I am more grateful that he took the time to put those signposts out there so that I would see that He has ALWAYS held me in his grasp, at no point did He ever give up on me.

 Isaiah 41:9

I took you from the ends of the earth,
from its farthest corners I called you.
I said, ‘You are my servant’;
I have chosen you and have not rejected you.

How cool is that scripture? The Lord our God has chosen me. “Me. Me? Seriously, you want me??” I remember gasping out those words back in 2009. I was attending Lifepoint Church of the Nazarene in Covington, Georgia. It was a Sunday morning, and I had gone down to the altar that morning to pray. Without expecting anything in return, I gave my life over to Him to do as He willed. I was ready to surrender anything, do anything no matter what. I had messed up my life so badly at that point that I knew this was about the only option I had left. After leaving church, I had to pull off the side of the road because I was overwhelmed with the words, “I want you.” I wasn’t hearing voices, but I heard these words. And beyond the simple meaning of these three words, I knew what He wanted of me. The Lord was telling me that, yes, I was His. And that His calling on my life was my service in ministry.

Go ahead and laugh, it’s okay. Because after the shock wore off, I did. I doubted what I had experienced even though I had never felt anything like that before in my life. Maybe I thought He had a wrong number. It had to be a mistake; had he seen the way I had lived my life up to this point? Of course he had. He had wept at my horrible choices. But He also knew that I was finally ready to walk with Him. He also knew that there are people out there that cannot accept testimonies about how wonderful their life has been. Most people cannot relate to that kind of testimony. If that is your witness, get down on your knees daily and thank the Lord for it. Most people I know would kill for that. But people CAN relate to an honest account of struggling through abuse and bullying and frustration and being mad all the time and reacting inappropriately and just being plain mean.

I will never forget the first time I shared my story outside of a 12-step group or therapy session. This guy at church came up and asked for me to tell him what had happened. He knew something had changed in me. Now, this gentleman is a big burly bald biker type. He is a man that I knew, but at the time we were nothing more than acquaintances. So I was nervous, to say the least. But I led the way to the front pew in the sanctuary, and we sat. As I shared what God had done in my life with him, his expression changed. His eyebrows creased together and I could see he was not happy with what he was hearing. Then he started to cry. Then I started to cry. When I finished, he hugged me and thanked me for sharing. On another day, he shared his testimony with me and today he is a great friend, and he and his wife serve as surrogate grandparents to our children.

Since then I cannot begin to count the number of times I have shared that testimony. It does not fail that no matter how scared I am as I start to tell it, people relate to it. Not necessarily the details, but to the roughness. There will probably come a day when I will tell it and I will be mocked for it. The enemy loves to hit us where it hurts. If and when that day comes I will pray for the person I am telling it to. But it is my story of how God was able to take the life I willingly handed over to Him, and redeem it. And with the amount of grace and mercy and forgiveness that He has given me, I will continue to tell the story of Him in my life until I no longer have breath with which to tell it.

1 Corinthians 1:5-6

For in him you have been enriched in every way—with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge— God thus confirming our testimony about Christ among you.

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