Journal Entry Date: February 17, 1997 (4 months has elapsed between journal entries)
“It’s truly remarkable how slowly and subtly Satan works! With all the busy times over the holidays, I’ve slowly lost discipline and slid from my Bible study and prayer. Recently, I have been having a hard time facing my fellow Christians because I know I’m walking out of God’s will.
So today, I organized a quiet study area downstairs which I’m hoping will give me a good place to study easily and organize my deacon ‘stuff.’ After getting that area set up, I spent most of my study time reflecting on my prior writings. What a battle! Being a Christian isn’t easy! The enemy seems to take aim and wear you down.
Regardless, God continues to move! Here are some things that God has done over the past few months that I want to write down so I won’t forget:
Christmas pageant – God gave me the plans, time, and resources to organize a ‘new’ way of handling parking at the church for special events. Such resounding positive feedback! Praise God for that answer to prayer and for pulling it all together to make it work.
L.B. – I was able to witness to L.B. who is Jewish by heritage, but is probably more of an atheist. We had some great discussions together over the course of several weeks. Not only did he allow me to share my faith, but I was also enriched by learning more about his heritage and traditions.
Values training class – Had to take a mandatory values training class at work. The material was overtly New Age, and it seemed everyone was loving it even though it was often so contrary to Scripture. I was able to share my testimony, and I pray that God was able to use that as light in the darkness. If nothing else, I realize now that people should be the focus of our service to God daily. Sounds obvious, but how easy it is for an introvert like me to forget sometimes!
‘Veronica’ – I served for the first time in the TV ministry during church service answering phone calls. Veronica was extremely depressed and didn’t know where to turn. She was flipping thru TV stations and found our church’s broadcast. She didn’t even hear the message… She just picked up her phone and dialed the number. I answered and talked with her a while. She agreed to come in to church but had no transportation. D.S. was with me, so he and his wife went to go pick her up. What a wonderful blessing! Being used by God to help others. D.S.’s wife led her to Jesus who saved her that morning! What a wonderful God we serve!
Lastly, I finally found my journal and deacon notebook! An easy excuse for not meeting my obligations has been removed. Also, setting aside this study area, even though space is at a premium in our house, removes another obstacle or excuse not to study. Praise God that He will not abandon or forsake us! (Hebrews 13:5, Deuteronomy 31:6-8)
I continue to be drawn to the truth in Psalm 19:7-14 pertaining to my prayer for there to be a fire in my heart for studying God’s Word… ‘May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.’
Also 1 Peter 4:11 pertaining to my deacon ministry.”
Author’s Note: Being a follower of Jesus isn’t an easy path to walk. But even in those times when we are not being faithful, God is always faithful and is always at work. I’m thankful that I wrote down things I’ve witnessed God doing over the years. It continues to serve as an encouraging reminder of just how faithful God is. I had forgotten about the events captured in this journal entry until I read about them again for this post… and I was once again reminded of God’s faithfulness. If you’re not writing those things down, I encourage you to begin doing so. Your future self will appreciate it.
Psalm 19:14 continues even today to be my prayer when I spend time alone with God and His Word…
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.’
Praise you, Lord God Almighty, for your enduring faithfulness! Amen.