Monday, August 17, 2009

Stepping Out, Part II (As it relates to me....)

I ended yesterday's post with this: God calls all believers to step out of their comfort zone and to tell a sin cursed world about Him. Often before we can minister to a person thru God's Word, we must first minister to their needs.
I want to share a small portion of my testimony here.

I grew up in a South Georgia family with nine siblings....praise God we didn't grow up in the same house at the same time, there were two generations of us. My parents divorced when I was 4 years old and my mother assumed the role of both parents at that time. I praise God for a praying mother and grandmother. Both of them instilled a desire in me to know God. I grew up "churched", said the sinner's prayer at a young age and thought that was all there was to it. In those days there was no discipling or mentoring taking place. No fruit ever manifested in me. By the time I was in my 20's, I was married, had 2 children, rebelliously went to church, but served everything but God. There is a saying used in biblical counseling: There's just two choices on the shelf, serve God or serve self. Well, I was serving self big time! I eventually gave my life to Christ at the age of 35 years old when I couldn't stand to clutch the back of the pew any longer and my life has never been the same. I still stand amazed that God could take a sinful, wretched person like me and clean me up and make me new. II Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come." Never forget that if you have a personal relationship with Jesus, you are a new creation. Now I am 11 years old. God is continually doing a work in me through progressive sanctification. That is just a $50.00 phrase that means God is constantly moving me forward in an effort to make me holy and set apart. In the simplest of terms it means this: God is daily purging the ugly out of me and often it hurts. I'm a work in progress that won't be perfected or completed this side of heaven. If your a child of God, the same holds true for, quit pressuring yourself toward perfection, you never will be! As a new christian, I could not get enough of God's Word. I would read it and ponder over it most of my days and I believe that is exactly where God wanted me at that moment in time. God wants us to study and love His Word but along with that He wants us to be doers of His word. Early in my christian walk God enabled me to work only two days a week (and I casually tossed the other five days away, didn't see the blessing before my eyes).
I eventually found myself in a job outside of God's will, working 5 days a week! That was such a humbling time for me. There is nothing more painful than knowing you are doing something contrary to God's will. For over a year, I pleaded with God to give me time at home again and I would use it wisely. After much purging, God gave me time again and began to lay ministry opportunities at my feet. I don't do near what I could for God but today He enables me to volunteer at a crisis pregnancy center, co-teach Sunday School class, Witness through my blogs, and a limited amount of biblical counseling (I am mostly just a help mate to my husband in this area). PLUS, God has given me time to boot. ....
So, let me ask....What would you do for Jesus if you knew you couldn't fail? Ponder that question and tomorrow I am going to continue with Part III of this series!
Let me go ahead and assure you, if it is for Him, it will not fail!


AngelRhoden said...

Sue, I'm so glad to get back on here and see posts on your blog! I know I missed a great conference, but I didn't realize it was the week of our vacation. Really enjoyed reading this portion of your testimony.

Angie said...

Sue...I enjoyed this on Saturday...and I am enjoying it again! God was so GOOD to me! To allow me the opportunity to meet you and fellowship with all the awesome ladies!!!

Whew! I don't know if I can stand it! It was great! I will miss you in October for SURE!