Did you know that Oreos can talk?
Sit down; break-open a package, and listen.
Do you hear something like, "Ohhhh, did you have a bad day?"
Then, does some voice deep within you answer, "Yes, it was horrible, thanks for always being there for me?"
"Eat as much as you want ... we're here to help."
I know that when you're stressed and threatened, you may not find refuge in a stack of Oreos, but everyone finds refuge somewhere.
Where do you find it? In food, television, shopping, sports, or a visa card? Perhaps you're like me, struggling with finding refuge inside the resources of your own mind? "After all, if I just think about it more, concentrate harder, and search deeper I can figure it out, myself."
Well this weekend the preacher spoke simple words, but the Spirit of God convicted me. Instead of choosing God as my refuge, I've slipped into choosing my own creative abilities and strategies.
I find myself praying ... "Please, God! Do this! Do it now! Please."
Well, I repent! I'm turning to a better choice. I choose God as my refuge. He is my source of strength and help.
Now, my prayer is, "Please God! (No comma) No matter what happens I want to please you." It's a faith step. "Thank you God for being sooo close, sooo faithful, and sooo understanding."
That little comma is more than a subtle difference. It's a total turn around ... It's a sign of personal choice ... a mark of repentance.
J.W. had accepted his need for surgery. It was serious. The surgeons were about to begin the process of attaching his lungs to his chest wall. Shirley, his wife, was anxious and consumed with apprehension and fear.
She was praying ... "Please, God" "We want J.W. back home, Please"
Her preacher suggested that she pray, "Turn J.W over to God and ask God to help you accept whatever happens."
"I just couldn't do that," Shirley said. "At that time it felt like I would be letting him die if I prayed that prayer, as if I had some control over our circumstances. In my mind, I felt like I would be betraying him."
It was late in the evening when the Doctors actually performed the surgery. Shirley remembers, "I was the only one around when they discovered J.W. had been hooked up backwards to some vital machine. My husband was now in critical condition and could die and he was in so much pain that he kept pushing me away. Nothing the doctors did was bringing any relief. J.W. was in serious trouble and I felt totally useless. I was just in their way."
"I left the room and wandered across the hallway and into the nearby stairway. I simply could not bear to see him suffer any more. I now realized that just like I was in the doctor's way, I was also in God's way. At that moment I turned my husband over to the Lord. I stood in that dark stairwell all alone, scared, and in tears. I finally prayed in faith that God's will be done, regardless."
Now her prayer changed. "I don't want to get in the way, Lord, I just want to please you, whatever happens."
When Shirley walked back into that hospital room, J.W. looked up and smiled. While God was lifting Shirley's burdens, he was relieving J.W.'s pain. As she held J.W.'s hand and put a cool cloth on his head, she thanked God for his fingerprints that night and for his eternal refuge.
J.W. and Shirley found God in the deep that night and they have a faith story people need to hear.
Do you find yourself praying ... "Please, God" more than "Please God?"
Where is your refuge? When you get stressed or threatened, where do you go?
Faith cries out, "God is faithful." He is the perpetual source of help and strength. So, the question of the day is: Do you want his help and strength?
It's your choice.
Call 1-877-STORY60 and record your latest faith story.
Check out the Faith Team home page — FaithTeam.org.