In 2004 I (with my husband) sold my house, gave away all the profit of the sale, gave away nearly all of my earthly possessions...and it CHANGED ME FOREVER. I will never be the same. I am not one who seeks riches, accolades or fame. I do not find personal pleasure from boasting about myself on any level. I would be embarrassed and ashamed to do so. But there is a time for everything under the sun, and the Lord has designated this my time to testify. What does that mean, to testify?
When you read all through the Old Testament of the Bible and the amazing things God asked of the Israelites and Moses, their Commander and Chief so to speak, there is a constant theme…
The people were instructed to repeat the stories to each other and to their children, and their children’s children and so on. Why, do you suppose God desired this? Because stories, positive, faith stories encourage the Faith and Hope of others who weren’t there. People who didn’t see what they saw or live through the times that they lived through. It was decided to repeat stories so the people wouldn’t forget how great their God is. He is slow to anger and abounding in Love, but He is also a God of Righteousness and absolute Authority. The Israelites did as they were told, but over time, they faltered in their enthusiasm and from generation to generation the Love and adoration of their hearts toward God’s waned, as did their story telling.
In the United States we are extremely blessed. The blessings are wonderful and I am ever grateful to live in such a blessed land. But with much blessing, over many generations, comes a kind of self-sufficiency and comfort that denies God the power to show off a bit. We just don’t need him like we used to. Hear my heart, it is good to have good things, times, and blessings. Consider the pioneers who founded this land. The conditions they had to live in were harsh, brutal even. I can only imagine how much of their time they spent on their knees seeking God for help, for Comfort, for Encouragement. We, without meaning to, have replaced His Comforts, His Encouragement for the comforts offered through abundance of material possessions and food. This shift didn’t happen suddenly, but was a gradual shift in loyalties over many, many decades.
I am deeply in love with a God who showed up so big time in my life when I stepped out on the skinny branch of Faith and showed me just how GREAT HE IS! I completely surrendered all to him and He showed me that He ALONE is the SOURCE of everything I need. I know we need a place to live, we need food and clothing, but the Bible says that we shouldn’t worry about these things either. If he can provide for the sparrow or beautifully dress the lily of the field, how much more is He willing to do for His people…the Apple of His eye? (Read Matthew 6:25-30)
God, in fact, wanted to use my husband and I as extreme examples of living by faith. By our example, God desired to demonstrate and recreate a level of enthusiasm and adoration for a God who is Faithful and wants to do great things for his people. I know what you thinking, because it is what most people think. If God really asked us to do that it makes many people uncomfortable because they don’t want him to ask the same of them. Hold tight, this is what I was called to and it is truly an extreme, but he will always equip you for what you are called to and anoints you (gives you the gifting) to pull it off. I know I have the gift of Faith. I have crazy belief in what God can and is willing to do. Just like David when he fought Goliath. I may not always like what he asks, but I have the faith to do it. The part of my story that is meant to inspire faith, enthusiasm and hope are the miracle stories along the way. I have those in abundance.
The material goods (all of my furniture, major, minor and electronic appliances, dishes, glass, etc.) I gave to some wonderful ministers of Hope, who share God’s Love with needy people, for them to give away as they were lead. Each of these people can attest to what I say is true, for they came to my storage unit with a large truck and hauled all of my belongings away.
I have always been very blessed in tangible ways. In fact, because I was always blessed it was quite a part of my life and I never realized how deeply blessed I was. Growing up we were not a wealthy family, but we were comfortable and my parents were wonderful providers. They paid for my college education, I always had nice clothes, my own bedroom in a lovely house my folks still live in. My first car my parents bought for me and it was brand new. So, you get the idea. I was a bit spoiled. I didn’t realize I was spoiled because I have always been a bit of a “minimalist”. I am not very materialistic and am extremely frugal. I like to save my money not spend it. I was never the new Mom who had to have all the gadgets and toys. I just wanted the basics, not feeling I needed any more. But you don’t realize, even as a minimalist person, how much stuff you have until you start giving it all away!
I also realized that I was more attached to it than I realized. It was hard! It was very hard, but I could hear the Holy Spirit encourage my soul and carry me in my need. I was truly like Noah to the outside world. I was preparing for greater things that hadn’t been seen or experienced before and all I had to hold onto was a Promise. I believe God for His promises. He hadn’t let me down yet and I believe the bible. The verse I would hear over and over,
“He is faithful to his promises and loving to all he has made.”
Then, a friend came by, who didn’t really know yet what I was up to (trust me when I say we did not advertise or share with much of anyone what we were up to), and she had a gift for me. She said she felt the Lord told her to buy it and give it to me. It was a framed Thomas Kinkade print that had this exact scripture on it. How beautiful. Such encouragements from random places came constantly, like a flood of God’s Presence. It was amazing. There is one story from this season I truly want to share.
We had a very attractive desk and bookcase set. We used it daily as our computer rested there and we were avid book collectors (most of them I had to give away). We didn’t know who to give our desk and bookcase to. See, the things I gave to the ministers were the special things I held onto and stuck in a storage unit (because I just knew I was going to need them). I had to let go of my possessions in phases. I was growing and learning to let go of stuff so I could more deeply grab hold of God. So, this bookcase and desk, we didn’t know who to give it to. We began just telling people, “If you know someone who needs ____(fill in the blank), let us know.” A friend of ours, great Christian gal, who lived around the corner told me that she knew a young student who hadn’t any furniture in her apartment and would probably be interested. I agreed she should tell the gal and bring her over to look at them. Sure enough, the girl liked what she saw and accepted our gift. This is where the story comes alive for me. See, my friend is a single woman who has no children of her own, but has a gift for loving on young people. They are like sponges soaking up her love and attention and this young gal was one such example. This college student was also deeply engaged in Wicca. If you don’t know what that is, its witchcraft as a religion. My friend had been loving on her and sharing her faith, planting seed of Jesus and Christianity into this girl. Within a week of our giving her this gift she received Christ and got freed from the bondage of witchcraft (once you are in that world it is very hard to get out, even if you desire to leave).
About a year later, we were all at a party together. I asked the gal what made her finally decide to become a Christian? Her answer? She said it was the love she felt when we, total strangers, gave her such a nice and expensive gift with no strings attached. She had never experienced anything like that before. How beautiful. I didn’t do that, Jesus did. He merely counted on the faithful obedience of our generosity and without a doubt all the faithful seeds our dear friend had been planting. The result was a beautiful soul harvest, rescued from a very dark place. We had several witches get set free on this journey. The stories are countless and little by little I will share more of them, but for now there are too many stories to share,
IF GOD CAN ROLL A STONE AWAY OVER 2000 YEARS AGO HE IS STILL STRONG ENOUGH TO DO IT TODAY! We, as Christians, are called to LIVE OUR FAITH. He asked me to do the ridiculous and I succeeded...then you can do what He asks of you. I know that the things God asks of me are extreme, but I also know I have an extreme calling of God on my life. Please, do not for a moment think that you have to give all your possessions away to fully serve and be used by God. Not at all! All He desires is our absolute confidence in Him, our adoration and devotion. He wants us to yield fully, knowing He is the Source of all our needs; He IS our need. We only need to do, with thanksgiving in our hearts, the things he asks each of us to do. It will be different for everyone. We are one Body, but with many important and necessary parts. Not one could survive of function properly without the others. My purpose is to heal the broken hearted and LOVE a broken and forgotten people back to health...total restoration! I have the call of a Faith Healer on me. He will call you according to your purpose and giftings. Maybe you are still wondering, “why in the world would I want to do any of that?” For me, this answer is simple, it is my “why”. There is an absolutely powerful and potent presence of His Spirit and abounding Peace that floods a fully yielded heart. I have Peace everywhere I go, every moment of the day. To dwell in such a place of serenity, despite any trials I may face, is a sample of heaven here on earth. Who doesn’t want peace? God’s got ample to bestow on all of creation, but we have to properly align our heart, our motives and our will to His.
You are a vital and important component to the gospel of Jesus Christ. People are hurting, empty, in need and don’t know how to get relief. Seek the Lord your God with all of your heart, and with all of your mind and with all that is excellent within you. Have a willingness to be the Love of God to someone, anyone. God will use you, I promise, and he will be faithful to meet your every need. He just needs a few more risk takers who aren’t afraid to get uncomfortable for him. If we give a little now, we can have more in the future, and along the way life becomes a most rewarding adventure! Trust me when I say, my life is anything but boring.
The best is yet to come. That’s His Promise!
“For I know the thoughts I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”