Part 3: Danger and Victory
My new friend and I have had many long talks over the last few days. I can feel that he is falling in love with me. I cannot let this happen. I can’t forget my Love. Oh, but I don’t want to hurt him. Shall I continue our visits? He is so kind and handsome. Maybe God has planned this to be. I’m almost obsessed with this feeling. I’m thinking of him constantly. My mind seems to wander so. I’m having such a wonderful time with my new friend. He’s so attentive and caring. This can’t be all bad.
What is going on? I can’t believe this! Whenever he comes near me, it’s a struggle. He told me that he was married but getting a divorce. Things are really getting messed up! My mind is on him more than on my love for Jesus. I can’t seem to help myself. All of a sudden, I don’t have time to read the Bible, or talk to God. I’m weakening more and more! It’s been days since I’ve read or even thought of my journey.
This evening, a man named Norton came to pray for many at the hospital. He said he was visiting a small church near by, and was leaving for Australia tomorrow. I could feel the love he had for the Lord. He said he knew that the Lord has called me to a pure walk, but I have drifted.
Have I forgotten God that much?
Today, sitting outside the clinic, a young girl asked me where I came from, and I told her a little about my journey. She noticed the Bible I was reading, and she got so excited! She said, “I’ve seen a Bible like that before! A woman visited our church, and she had some Bibles like that.” I asked her if she could take me there some time. She said she would.
But I can’t go there. I’ve drifted away from my Love. Everything has been going wrong for me, ever since I met this man. I don’t think God will even want to see me. I know I put my desires ahead of God. I can’t even feel his warmth and love anymore. I have actually turned my back and walked away from God and my love, Jesus. I must get God back. But how can I? I just can’t go back! I am too ashamed. Could I really get my new friend out of my mind and not see him anymore? I have to. I’ve lost my first love! I remember the peace and joy I felt for my love, Jesus. How God had changed me. What am I doing?
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. …Repent…
O God, I am so sorry.
This morning, the girl came to see me again. I asked if she would take me to her church tomorrow. Maybe God will look my way again. I have to try!
I’m so sorry, God, forgive me.
Help me, and change me. I need you.
We went to a small church; I was afraid, but I had to go in. Everyone welcomed me. People talked to me about the things of God and the condition of my life. I didn’t have to say a word. It’s like they knew! One man came over to me weeping and said, “Welcome back, my love!” I wept and wept. God, you’re still there. I was so sorry. God showed them everything in my heart! I felt the peace and joy again.
I love you, Jesus. Thank you.
I will never turn back again.
The church service was so neat! There was no program. Everyone moved in the gifts of the Spirit, even the children. What freedom! The minister was sitting with the rest of the congregation. He didn’t speak unless the Holy Spirit led him. Amazing! One had a psalm, one had a teaching, one an exhortation, just like the Bible says. Even the women ministered.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
I have never seen such ministry.
The church didn’t even give a pitch for money, yet I saw everyone put money in two separate baskets – one was marked “Tithe”, the other was marked “Offering.” This is just like in Malachi.
Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
Everyone is given the chance to move as God leads. That’s why so many spoke. And there was no Sunday School. All the children sat with their parents. They were so good, even the babies. How could they sit so long and be so quiet? And a little boy, perhaps two years old, went and prayed for some of the people. How did they learn to do this? I have to stay and find out.
How is it then, brethren? When ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.
The pastor came to me. I could feel his love and kindness for everyone there including me. What a shepherd! He said he learned everything from a woman who visited, a woman named Rose! “She taught us everything she knew and was truly a woman of God. It’s easy to follow and believe someone who actually lives what they preach. She taught us to be righteous, clean, and to overcome all sin in our lives. To be led by the Spirit. I wanted her to stay and teach me more so my congregation could come into all the fullness of Christ. She came and spoke the truth to us. It’s the truth that sets you free, you know. She was very humble, never taking any glory upon herself. If there were more pastors like her – putting God first, speaking the truth, and following the Spirit no matter what people think – churches would really see results and people would come into their ministries. It’s not a one-man show in church; we are all part of the body of Christ.
“I, as a pastor, must let my people grow in their ministries. They must have all the freedom to move in the gifts of the Holy Spirit like you saw today.” He said, “I can see why God led you here. You had to see how the Spirit moves so you can continue your journey. I’m glad you came. God really must have a lot in store for you. Please come back.” I said that I would.
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
This is a journey for a Son.
Am I called to be a Son?
On the way back to the clinic, I reflected that there was so much love there, and the children were so well behaved. I noticed they were all listening, even though the service lasted for three hours. And there was no call for money. I’ve heard many pastors talk about money all the time, fleecing the sheep. God never has to beg or con anyone for money. What a difference. And everyone there ministered – I’ve never seen anything like this.
This morning I moved from the clinic to the cabin of a widow I met at the church. Her name was Kate. She was very kind to me. I broke off my relationship with my friend. I knew I had put him ahead of my Lord and my journey.
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
All disobedience is sin. Be holy as I am holy.
Now I’m back on my journey with you, Lord.
Thank you so much.
It’s been a few weeks since I’ve written.
I have gone to church several times and continue to learn more and more. It is like I have always been there. I have taken my freedom and ministered as God led. I spoke a word of wisdom. I prayed for a healing. The pastor said I was ready to prophesy, but I was too scared. (Imagine me speaking the words of my great God. I was so fearful.) But the pastor was firm and insisted that I obey the Holy Ghost. He kept encouraging me. I finally obeyed and the words just flowed from deep within me. It was quite an experience. I felt so full afterwards.
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
I am praying in tongues more every day. I am becoming more like my Beloved.
I have begun to overcome things in my nature that I know are contrary to God. Jealousy, envy, hatred, strife. Works of the flesh they are called. Little by little, I am seeing things change and disappear that used to be a big part of my nature.
I have also grown strong in the Spirit and the Word through reading these last three weeks, and am able to fight Satan daily.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
He has no power whatsoever over the Holy Spirit who dwells in me. Soon I will be without sin, and I will become pure even as Jesus is pure. We will become one with the Father, God’s plan from the beginning, and I will become
The Perfect Bride.
I woke up early this morning to hear the surf – what a beautiful day. My spirit was so full with the presence of the Lord. I felt him pressing me to continue on my journey.
By the Spirit, I thought of my sister Martha. I always called her Marty. She and her husband Kurt live in Manila. Kurt is a General, based at Clark Air Force Base. They have a teenage daughter, Sara. I long to see them again. Because our parents died when I was young, Marty raised me for most of my teenage years. I decided to try to reach her.
I stopped to get something to eat and read awhile at a nearby café. While reading, I felt like someone was watching me. Out of nowhere, a man approached, and asked me what I was reading so intently, and I told him that I was reading the Bible. He was once a captain of a ship. He looked like a man of authority but very lonely, almost sad. Sensing this, I asked him to join me. He was reluctant but sat down.
He was tall, quite tan. He had the bluest of eyes. He reminded me of the ocean. Restless. Daring. I realized as we talked, that he needed to know Jesus, who had changed my life so. I knew the Lord could make him as happy as I am, and give him the same peace. He was gentle in the way he asked questions, but probing in the way he needed answers.
I knew I probably didn’t have much time with him and perhaps this was the only chance in his life to hear the gospel. I began to pray in the Spirit and asked God to lead me.
I shared as much as I could about the things the Holy Ghost had taught me. I told him that Jesus not only died for our sins, but that he gave his life that we would not have to die. I even talked about being perfect, something I would never talk about with a stranger. People just don’t accept it. They don’t understand the scriptures.
We talked for nearly two hours, but it seemed like twenty minutes. He listened intently, but seemed quite unconvinced. He never offered me his name, and I never gave him mine.
He left, and I went back to Kate’s cabin to contact Marty. I reached her on the first try, and we had a great time on the phone! I wanted to share my journey with her in person! Kurt arranged for my transportation, but I will have to wait three weeks for a transport to the Air Force Base.
Lord Jesus, I ask that you
help that poor lonely Captain.
The time has come for me to leave, and I said my good-byes, exchanging e-mail addresses with Kate. I will miss her, and all the wonderful people of the church here.
I arrived at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines today. I was so excited to see Marty once again! She and Kurt both met me when I landed. They seem so happy and very much in love. Sometimes I long for someone to hold me and to share my life with. Once I settled in their home, we sat and had coffee together, visiting for hours. At first, I thought I would explode with the details of my journey, but then thought maybe we should catch up on old memories and their life in the Philippines first. Marty always thought I was a dreamer, and I didn’t know if she would understand my new life and journey…I’ll wait.
Rose had written in her Bible,
“Wait, wait, wait in peace.”
Marty has a pretty busy schedule, volunteering at the hospital and other charity work. And Kurt works late quite often, though Marty doesn’t seem to mind. So I am left with a lot of time to read. I wondered if there is a church that I can go to. I looked in the phone book to see. There is! I am so excited. There is a meeting tonight.
I have made several new friends at the church here and have shared many of the things that I had learned in Panama and on the boat. Most of them believe that we can all have the Holy Ghost, but it doesn’t seem like the Holy Ghost is free to move through anyone but the minister. It’s nothing like the church in Panama. It’s clear in the Bible that we are a many-membered body and we all have ministries; and once baptized in the Spirit, we can move in the gifts of the Holy Ghost! Why would a minister not allow the Holy Ghost to move freely in the church?
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
A Pastor who understands the Word of God would encourage all to minister according to the Spirit.
The Journey Continues in Part 4