Tuesday, March 5, 2002

37 Years of Blessings

My wife and I have just celebrated our wedding anniversary. It’s been 37 years and we are still in love. That’s quite a feat in these days. God has brought us through all kinds of things together. Pallie Sue and I would do it all over again. Only we want to know all that we know now, please. Thank you.

God has blessed us through the years. When we needed Him most, He was always there for us. When the pantry was bare, He filled it. When the gas was empty, He always filled the tank. When the fever was raging He cooled it. When the clothes were worn He always gave more. We did without things we wanted many times, but never what we needed. We can say, ever need His hand has supplied! For 37 years God has been right with us. Oh! Sometimes we had to be tested, but he always brought us through.

Let me share one story with you, about how God has help. You will know that there were many.

We were pastoring a home mission church in Oakdale, Louisiana. (Seems to me, most of the churches have been home missions). Karla was a toddler and we were expecting the twins. I could not find work and we were out of food. We didn’t want to beg and we didn’t know what to do.

Pallie Sue had fixed the last food in the house. A can of pumpkin, some rice, and a pitcher of KoolAid. I remember this as if it were yesterday. For the only time that I ever knew, we knelt down beside the table to ask the blessing. I remember praying. "Well, Lord you said that you would take care of us and here we are! I can’ t find work and this is all the food we have. We are trusting in your help."

I can’t remember all that I was telling the Lord while kneeling there that day, but I do know that God came through before I stopped praying. While still on our knees, a knock came on the front door. I know, you have read stories like this before, but this happened to us! I went to the door and there stood a woman and her grown son. She had attended the services at the mission. She ask me if I could marry people. I said, "Yes. Why?" She said that her son wanted to get married. I thought that she meant he was planning his wedding, and would a set date to get married. The son then left. I asked her when the wedding would be, and she said her son had gone to get the bride and would be right back. Then it came to us that she meant now, in our house! Well, I went to change clothes, and the lady thought she would be nice and help Pallie Sue clean up the dinner table. She raked out the pumpkin and poured the KoolAid down the drain. Our last meal was gone. Now we were living on faith.

After the wedding the man asked how much he owed for the service. I told him I didn’t charge for weddings. He handed me $10 anyway. Back then, that was enough for a week's supply of groceries. The bride, broom and mother left. We picked up Karla and went to the grocery store.

That was a promise that God would always supply our needs and He always has.

Saturday, March 2, 2002

Never Alone

Birds, birds, birds everywhere! All around my bus, in the fields, in the sky, all around are black birds. I see them every day. I have wondered how many there are of them. I know there must be thousands. They are feeding on last year's grass seeds I guess.

Yesterday as I came to this certain place on the bus route, they were there again. When they hear the sound of the bus they take to the sky. Yesterday was a little different. Right in the middle of the road there was one little black bird. I approached Him with the bus and he never moved. I passed on one side of him and looked back in the mirror. He was still sitting right where he was. I began to wonder if he might be sick, or if maybe he was hurt? Well, there is no way I can ever know, but I do know he had been left alone with his problem.

There was no way I could take time to see about him, I had a bus to run. The other birds didn't seem to take note of him. I guess they were to busy with their own problems.

I began to relate his plight to life. Have you ever felt alone? Others seem to be doing great, and things are going good for them, but here you are in the midst of others and you feel alone and hurt and there seems to be no one that cares. Or it seems there isn't.

Did you know that sometimes God lets us be alone ? He lets us go through things that are not fun! He lets us see what it would be like without Him! Alone with our problems! Sometimes we try talking to others but they can't understand what we are going through. Then we come to the conclusion that we are left alone for a while.

But we are never alone! God is always there! The clouds will pass away and the sun will shine again. Early this week I took a bus to Fort Smith. Just before I got to where I was going a black cloud came up and I could hardly see to drive. The next day the sun was shining and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. What different a day makes.

God and time has a way of healing all things. Well, like the bird on the road, through it all, we are never alone.

C. Albert Tindley wrote:
"If the world from you withhold of its silver and its gold,
And you have to get along with meager fare,
Just remember in His word, how He feeds the little bird;
Take your burden to the Lord and leave it there.
If you trust and never doubt, He will surely bring you out."

I continued down the road and made a turn around, as I came back down the same road, I began looking for the little black bird, but he was gone. I don't know If he was only resting and then flew off or what, but I didn't see any signs of him again. (Maybe the Lord took him! Well, He could have you know!)

"Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them." Matthew 6:26

Do you feel hurt and alone ? Just remember God does care, and He will come to your aid!