Sometimes I have to wonder if I have Anxiety attacks JUST so I have Blog material and Testimonies. This morning I woke up feeling rather odd, in fact I was quite certain that my good half had been Raptured yesterday and my bad half was left behind. I woke up confused, irritated, anxious, depressed, feeling like crying and hiding in a corner. The dark place is not a good place. I say things I do not mean, I do things I do not mean to do, I am harsh, critical and I put myself and others down. I throw my pity party, walk around confused and in all honesty I look and sound ridiculous. My mind becomes a whirlwind of random issues, it’s like ALL my problems attack me at the same time and I only have a minute to analyze EVERYTHING.
I began walking to church and I turned back and went home to continue my little pitty party. More harsh words were said to Nick, I’m certain that anything I did say between the hours of 9am and 10:45 are null and void and DID NOT happen. Nick is used to me and even though I get VERY IRRITATED that he ignores me when I’m in a state of confusion I am sure it’s for the best and he has faith that I will, with the help of God, get out of my storm. Over the years I have gotten better and better at dealing with such storms that randomly pop up. I was late going to church But I grabbed Aurora and we began to walk. I began to argue with my mind. I actually felt demon possessed during my walk. Something was pulling me back but at the same time something was forcing me forward and assuring me it would be OK. So I continued forward and Pam picked us up along the way…
Normally there is nothing out of the ordinary about Pam Wright picking me up and driving me to church but this particular time she had photos on her front seat. Photos of some of the prison men she ministers to. These men are in prison, they faced hardships and are certainly in a deeper hole than I am. Here I am throwing a pity party for nothing and here are these men who did something wrong and are serving time. The photo had been taken last year, those three men are still in prison but one will be released next week and he will be leaving knowing that he serves an amazing God who forgives and gives many chances. These men have an amazing testimony! Some were slaves to various things such as drugs and alcohol but now many are free. Prison Ministry isn’t always cherries either, many of these people relapse over and over and over again…just like how I relapsed today with my anxiety attack. There are victories and then there is pure heart ache. Prison ministry is a tough job that requires A lot of faith and determination and Pam is one of those people who have chosen to teach the Gospel and give hope to these men who face so many uncertainties in the future.
Today’s sermon did me in as well. It isn’t every day you see your pastor tear pages out of the Bible. Yes he DID and before you read in shock there was a perfectly good reason Why! First of all the lesson was on “Undervaluing the Scripture”. The lesson started out like normal lessons do, how Believing 100% in what God says is foundational to a relationship with Him, how God’s word is pure Gold etc. But then it got to a point where Pastor Ron explained how when you don’t NEED something you toss it out. The same goes for the Bible, we read the Bible and once we read it many of us just put it aside and feel hat if we have read it a few times then there is no need to read it again. So many people have Bibles but never open them. Many people ignore MANY parts of the Bible. Ron is right, do we REALLY need Leviticus, and Genesis? I mean we’ve heard Genesis Over and Over and Over again! Nothing in Leviticus is done today. Who even reads Song of Solomon? Do we really need the map in the back of the Bible? Do we need the book of Matthew after we have read it hundreds of times? So as he was going over this he was LITERALLY ripping out pages in the Bible. I am certain many people looked on in horror…I sat there thinking “Yeah we probably don’t NEED Leviticus.” What was the point of this? To show us that we really do in fact NEED God’s word. The Bible is not just random words, they are words from God. Words meant to be passed down through generations, words that still apply today in a technology driven world.
Ron told the story of a man named Hien Pham, a Vietnamese translator who worked for Dr. Ravi Zacharias back in 1971. Hien Pham had been taught the gospel and believed in God. But one day he was sent to a concentration camp on accusations he had helped Americans. While there Him and all the other people were taught about Marx and Engels and day by day he began to question his faith thinking that he might have been lied to and the Bible was a big sham. He was going to give up praying and following God the next day. He was put on latrine duty that day and he had found an english peice of paper in the toilet so he kept it and read it later. We’re talking about a paper that had poop on it by the way. The paper was a page of the Bible. Romans 8:28-39 to be exact which reads “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. … For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Pham was brought to tears. It turned out that one of the officials was using the bible as toilet paper. Pham volunteered on Latrine Duty and saved these pieces of the Bible. Pham had discovered just how much he NEEDED the Scripture. He needed it so much he dug through poop to get it! Would you dig through poop just to read God’s word? For most of us it’s as simple as reaching onto a shelf and opening the Bible. Ron tore up a Bible to show us just how important those words really are. And yes, Leviticus is also important, those instructions are not used today BUT when I read Leviticus I can’t express how grateful I am that Christ Died on the cross so I don’t have to sacrifice animals or separate myself from everyone when I am having my Period. (yes that’s actually in there among many other crazy things). The Bible is God’s word, we don’t read the Bible to Learn it we read it to become more. To be transformed.
Ron had one more comparison. He bought a dishwasher yesterday at the Yardsales. And not just ANY dishwasher. The same dishwasher Nick had his eyes on. Yes I was going to be replaced by a dishwasher. But Luckily for me Ron bought it and not Nick. Turns out Ron had a dishwasher just like the one he bought, while searching for the thingie (I don’t know what it’s called) that attaches the sink tap to the dish washer he had discovered they had tossed it because the other dishwasher broke and they no longer “Needed” that piece anymore. The same goes for the Bible, we throw parts out when we don’t need them but come back to them when we do. I am also grateful that Ron has that dishwasher and not us. All day yesterday I had been set against it. Nick was confused as to why I wouldn’t want to be replaced! Why on earth would I be upset to have one less chore? I suppose I should have explained my self then but today is a much better timing to give my actual explanation. When I do the dishes, I take that time to pray to God. Sometimes I sing praises in my head. I use dish washing time as a time to talk to God. The dishwasher would take this time away from me. I might hate doing dishes but I do not hate having time to dedicate to talking to God. I usually keep how often and how long I pray to myself but this was just too good to pass up. So now everyone knows that when I do my dishes I am spending some quality time with God and thanks to Pastor Ron, Nick can’t take that precious time away from me.:D
So I learned much today. It has been interesting. God does amazing things. And I am off to do my dishes now. And don’t worry, I forgive my Pastor for tearing up a Bible…at least he didn’t eat it like my Dog ate parts of Matthew. And I have needed those parts of Matthew too! My Bible is not on a shelf thankfully…it’s in full reach of my dog! How does the saying go? “It’s better to have your dog eat your Bible because you left it in a place she can reach it than to never use the Bible and have it on a shelf out of Dog’s reach.”