I accepted the Lord when I was young. But after many years, I allowed the devil to lead me away. I took my eyes off of God and paid more attention to problems. My life had illness, family problems, financial issues, etc. I left God to the point of calling myself an Atheist. The thing was, God never turned away from me. He began to show Himself to me in ways I had never experienced before. What the devil meant for my harm, God turned the situations to be for my good. I asked God to show me how I could be of service to Him and He answered by asking me to change churches. This step too has been an amazing blessing. I now have new friends, a wonderful church family and lead the van ministry. I don’t know what is to come next. but I DO know to keep my eyes on Him. If I trust in Him He will never let me down.
I thank God every day for the good He has done for me during the bad times in my life. During the lowest times of my life I found Isaiah 41:10 as comfort, “Fear not for I am with you. Be not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” I also prayed this scripture before walking into a meeting at the bank. “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name, You are mine. When you pass through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord, your God. The Holy One of Israel.” Isaiah 43:1-3
I still had to walk through the valley in my life at that time, but my faith was strengthened by His Word so that I knew that He was walking with me. He was changing and refining me during those times. I wouldn’t know Him as I do today had I not walked through that experience. I didn’t walk out of the meeting with my debt paid, but He provided a way that we could work our way out with His grace and mercy. That is why I know it is so important to “remember where we’ve come from” with a grateful heart. I will never forget how my Lord has helped me, forgiven me, and strengthened me. I firmly believe that we must be transformed by the renewing of our mind, as it tells us in Romans 12:2. There’s a neat saying that explains this, “In order to have what you’ve never had, you must do what you’ve never done!” God allowed us to receive mercy from the bank to be able to work out our debt. But it required us to do our part, as well. It was not an instant miracle because I believe that God was teaching us rather than rescuing us by some grand prize of cash. We probably would not have learned very much. Even though the initial experience was many years ago, it will always be fresh on my heart. It involved family members besides us which made the whole situation heartbreaking. But once again, God honored and answered my prayers for forgiveness and mercy. Anger and bitterness was turned into love and compassion by loved ones. Praise God for His unending love and care. 1 Peter 5:7″ Cast all your cares on Him, for He cares for you.”