Whispersfrommyheart's Blog

Archive for October 2013

Psalm 109:22 “For I am afflicted and needy; my heart is wounded within me. (NASB)

I don’t believe there is a single human being on the face of the earth, who can say, “My heart has not been wounded.” Sometime, throughout our lives, someone, somewhere, will do something or say something that affects us deeply. So deep, our hearts feel the impact of their action.

In the Hebrew, the word used for wounded in this verse is “Chalal” and it literally means, one has pierced my heart.

The Psalmist cried out to God in the middle of pain and anguish. Saul was after him. He wanted David dead. Ahithophel, David’s trusted friend and advisor, betrayed him in favor of Absalom. He knew God’s favor was on him. David did what he thought God wanted him to do, and yet, horrible things happened to him. He was so wounded of heart that he prayed for God to repay them. Sure, David offered several suggestions in verses 6-13, and again in verses 19, 20 and 29. “Here is what you need to do God… cut him off from the face of the earth… let his descendants be cut off… may there be no memory of him… may a curse be attached to him…”

Harsh?

Maybe not.

David was being afflicted from every side. He was at the end of his rope. Saul hunted him to kill him. His heart hurt over his friend’s betrayal. He was starving. His body was weak from lack of nourishment. David needed help, and he needed it now!

He spoke out of his wounds.

I think about the prayers I prayed before my wounded (pierced) heart was healed. Many times I, too, prayed for curses to be on my abusers. I prayed for their demise. If I could have hunted some of them down, I would have. I wanted more than just their descendants to be cut off… and I wanted to be the one to do it. I not only informed God how he should “repay” them, I fantasized ways of how I could repay them.

I spoke from my wounds.

I think we all do that.

Proverbs 4:23 tells us to guard our hearts for out of them flow the issues of life.
In my book, Whispers From My Heart – Emotional and Spiritual Healing from Childhood Sexual Assault, Proverbs 4:23 is a key element. Childhood sexual assault creates a number of issues that overrun a person’s heart. Those issues are life altering. They drive our emotions. The afflict us. Make us needy. They flow out of our hearts and affect everything we do. We are weak. And, we know there is only one who can truly help us. One who can save.

David called out to God in his time of need.

In verse 20 of Psalm 109, David prays, “May the Lord repay my accusers in this way, those who say evil things about me! “ Again, in verse 26, “Help me, O Lord my God! Because you are faithful to me, deliver me!” David knows God is his source. His hope. His help. Notice that David acknowledges God as the one who repays. Not David. He knows the faithfulness of God to deliver him, and he counts on it.

We can each take a lesson from David. No matter what we have been through. Whether we have been sexually abused, maligned, betrayed, misused, lied to, or cheated on… no matter what, God is the one who can restore us when we are needy and afflicted, and he is the only one who can heal us when our heart is pierced within us.

Psalm 109:22 “For I am afflicted and needy; my heart is wounded within me. … 26 “Help me, O Lord my God! Because you are faithful to me, deliver me!

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I’ve been in the “Law of Love: Lessons from the Pages of Deuteronomy” by Beth Moore for the past several weeks. I am amazed, after 37 years of being a Christian, God still astounds me. Last night’s lesson was no exception.

I have my moments of struggle, just like everyone else on the face of the earth. I still fight against feelings of unworthiness, poor self-esteem, and feelings of abandonment. Those who have read through my blog know I am a Childhood Sexual Assault overcomer (If you want to know why I don’t refer to myself as a Survivor, you can read this). Any time I have ever thought about the years I suffered one particular feeling stood out. Aloneness. I suffered by myself. No one helped me. No one rescued me. Not even God himself. As an adult, I know God never abandoned me. I know the scriptures tell us he will never leave us or forsake us (Deut. 31:6). I know this in my head, but apparently my heart hasn’t accepted it fully.

Last night’s study took us through Deuteronomy 8. Beth’s teaching on the whole chapter was excellent – and I do recommend, if you have not been through this study… DO! – But the very last portion of her lesson is where I want to park.

The title of this section is: How to “Take Care” (vs. 11) of Yourself, Deuteronomy-Style:
(Verse 11 states: Be careful that you do not forget the LORD your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees… (NIV))
In verse 2, it says: “Remember the whole way by which he has brought you these forty years through the desert…” (NIV)
In this verse we’re going to focus on the word “whole.”

The Israelites were told to remember the WHOLE way the LORD led them.

His leading began while they were in bondage, in Egypt. As they went out, God led them by a cloud in the daytime and a pillar of fire in the night. He showed his glory in feeding them manna, which no one had ever seen before (An interesting side note: Manna had never existed prior to this time and the Manna stopped when they entered the Promise Land. Manna means, “What is it?”), and quail in the evening. He led them 40-years through harsh and dangerous terrain. The entire time he led them he provided water in places that normally was devoid of water. God made sure their sandals did not wear out, and their clothes did not tear (wouldn’t you like to keep your favorite clothes and shoes for 40-years?) the entire time he led them. He also kept their feet from swelling. Remember, women were getting pregnant and giving birth the entire 40-years they were in the desert. I don’t know about you, but when I was pregnant, my feet, ankles and legs swelled up like balloons! But, God kept their feet from swelling (Another interesting side note: Beth explained the word used for swelling was the same word used elsewhere for dough… as in bread dough… Pillsbury Dough-boy).

40-years. That’s a long time. An entire generation of being led by God himself. Can you imagine being able to witness the Red Sea parting and walking to the other side on dry ground? Can you imagine seeing the Glory of God descend upon Mount Sinai, and then, hear the thunder roll as he spoke in an audible voice? Or, see the brightness of Moses’s face as the glory of God faded away? Do you think you would ever forget seeing the power of God in the form of a pillar of fire or a cloud? And, isn’t it interesting to imagine the cloud kept the scorching sun from burning them up, and the fire provided the light, and possibly the warmth, they needed during the night… I don’t know how cold the desert night is, but, we can imagine for a moment, can’t we? I am in awe of the daily miracles the Israelites experienced.

It’s interesting to me the Children of Israel were told to remember, and never forget, the WHOLE way. The Hebrew word for “whole,” is: kol: the whole, all. The connotation of the word is: all it’s the entire, all the everywhere, all the throughout, all your concerning everything, complete, throughout and all, throughout the whole, total, whole, all things.

It’s obvious the Israelites were to keep this journey in the forefront of their minds. They were to remember throughout the good, the bad, and the ugly (There were many diseases that broke out because of their unfaithfulness, many deaths) God still led them.

As I thought over this information a realization hit me. God led me. In the darkest, most terrifying moment of my life, God led me. As I grew, he saved me out of a life of destruction. I should always remember, and never forget!

We all should remember, and never forget to remember the whole way God has led us. Each valley we walked, every mountain we climbed, every desert we trudged through; remember, and never forget, God has led us every step of every way. And, lest we forget, we should remember, and never forget!

Verse 10, of Deuteronomy 8, reminds us, “Every single time you feel satisfied, bless the LORD your God.”

Another interesting note we all need to realize is: Throughout our difficult times – and we all have them – We may not see a pillar of fire to guide us during the darkest moments. Instead of God creating wonders as he did in the desert, the wonder is you. His miracle is you. His glory is revealed in you. As he leads you through your desert; as you come out into the Land of Promise, you are the revelation of the glory of God in a land that is good. It is good because your experiences now become productive. You begin to bear fruit.

Bless the LORD our God!

If you haven’t read, “Chris Martin Writes,” you should.

It's Time.

Darkness. An endless expanse, void of light. A blackness so deep and encompassing that the dead embrace it, and the living fear it. My son passed away, and I am heartbroken. I knew this day would come. The absence of life requires the presence of death. It’s a well known fact that at the moment of birth, the long journey to the grave begins. Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. That’s how life works. Death doesn’t care if you’re young or old, male or female. It doesn’t see color or religion.

Some would say my son was unique, special even. Before he was born, I knew he would accomplish great things. He was a natural born leader. People were drawn to him, and most of the time, they didn’t even know why. When he spoke, people stopped what they were doing, and they listened. He was slow to anger and quick to forgive. He had a gift of explaining things in such a simple way that anyone could understand. He was far from simple however. He was a miracle baby.

His compassion was endless. He was always the first to help anyone in need. His friends often marveled at his gentle way of dealing with those whom most of the world would reject. The broken. The poor. The ones who had lost all hope in a society that long ago pushed them to the curb. He never had much, but he gave everything he had. It was just his way. He never lived for himself, only for others. He showed love to those who didn’t do anything to deserve it, but that never stopped him. Even when people, who didn’t understand, tried to turn others against him, he pressed on.

His mother was very young when our son was born. She didn’t fully comprehend the weight of responsibility that was placed upon her, but she accepted it, and tried her very best. He loved her so much, and she loved him. It was a bond strengthened by trials and hardships that would have severed most relationships. Even though she couldn’t understand it all, she also believed our son was destined for greatness. She often talked about his purpose in life, and expressed her desire to see him grow up and change the world. Even though it wasn’t how she had imagined, he did indeed fulfill that desire.

Throughout his entire time on Earth, my son knew without a doubt what his purpose was in life. He wasn’t called to live like everyone else and just be ordinary. Royalty ran through his lineage, but he always said he would prefer to serve rather than be served. He was a king, but lived like a common man. He could have enjoyed the best that life had to offer, but he chose to be homeless and do without. He saw the best in people, even when they couldn’t see it themselves. When others said it couldn’t be done, my son said nothing was impossible.

He stood up for the weak and defenseless. He demonstrated to those closest to him how important it was to love others. He led by example, not just in speech. He said there was no greater expression of love than for someone to give his life for his friends. Whether they knew it or not, my son loved them more than his life.

The full realization of what was about to happen descended upon my son while he was praying in the garden. The struggle was so difficult that drops of blood streamed down his face. He cried out with anguish that was so deep and raw, because he knew what lied ahead, and he pleaded for me to provide another way. What I asked of him wasn’t easy, but there was no one else who could do what was required.

I watched as the soldiers brutally hammered my one and only son to the cross. Gabriel and a host of other angels stood at the ready, swords in their hands, anticipating his cry for help. That request never came. My son took upon himself all the sin and darkness of the world, and didn’t utter a single word. As his human heart became weaker with every beat, his love grew even stronger. His mother screamed out his name over and over pleading for his life, but even she couldn’t alter his destiny. I sent my only son to Earth to take on human form, and allow himself to become the ultimate sacrifice for all of mankind.

That day was the darkest moment in my sons life. When I turned my back, he cried out “It is finished.”

It’s been three days. There is work to be done. While Jesus hung there on the cross and death celebrated a monumental victory, I set into motion a profound event that would not only shatter the chains of death forever, but create a life altering ripple in the timeline of history. As the moon descended and dawn gave birth to a new day, I rolled away the stone of the tomb that held my son in whom I am most pleased. I breathed life into his lungs.

“Arise, my son. It’s time.”

When I got out of bed this morning I was in a mood. There was a knot in the pit of my stomach. I was angry. Depressed. I began to read my morning devotion and the knot became persistent.

“What’s wrong with me, LORD?” I wondered. For the past couple of days all I have wanted to do is cry!

“Delicious.”

The word popped into my mind. Then,

“Mom.”

The tears began to fall. “Yes mom.” I whispered, “The weather is delicious.”

I can see her now.

That was mom’s thing. When the first crisp days of fall rolled around, she donned her “Someone Special Calls Me Nana” sweatshirt, soft pants & fuzzy slippers and gleefully made her first cup of hot cocoa. She would take that first sip, lick her lips, and let out an exaggerated, “ahhhhh”! As if that particular cup of hot chocolate was the best thing she had ever tasted. She would look at me, with bright eyes and a smile, and say, “The weather is delicious!”

I’d mumble something to her as I poured my first cup of coffee.
She would then proceed to tell me, again this year, just how much she loved the cooler weather. It reminded her of when she was a child. She would tell me, again, about the old, Appaloosa speckled, plow horse, with hooves as big as dinner plates, she used to ride through the fields. How she would stay outside, all day, until her grandmother would call her in to eat.

She would, once again, giggle as she told me if she wasn’t outside riding a horse, or if the Iowa weather didn’t permit her to be outside, she was inside pretending to be a horse. Her nickname was Trigger. Yes, named after Dale Evans’ and Roy Rogers’ horse. In the morning she would tear her shredded wheat into a bowl – without milk – put the bowl on the floor, and eat it on her hands and knees… like a horse eating its hay. Then, she would gallop around the house, whinnying. Saying things like, “Whoa, Trigger.” Or, “Giddyup.”

Then, as if the channel changed, she would tell me how she helped her grandmother in the garden. Or, picking a juicy peach off of the tree, biting into it and letting the juice run down her chin. Again, she would tell me how she sat for hours, in the crook of a tree while reading a book. She loved to read. The myriad of books that lined our coffee tables, shelves and around her chair, were proof of that. She would tell me, once more, how no one worried about where she was, or what she was doing. They knew, if Margie – that was her real name – wasn’t galloping in the house, or riding the plow horse, she was sitting in her favorite tree, reading.

Later on she would want to go for a ride to look at the trees. One year, after a particularly wet summer, the colors were brilliant. She oohed and awed, like a child, enjoying the beauty of God’s creation in the fall. One year, we drove to Bald Knob Cross to view the colors from the scenic overlook. Of course, the foggy, misty day didn’t dampen our spirits as we walked to the overlook. We both fell silent as we surveyed the expanse of earth from the top of that hill. As a treat we would stop for lunch, or, just an ice cream cone. Simple times. Good times.

This is my first fall without her.

The air is cool this morning. I should go get her canister of hot cocoa and make a cup, lick my lips and let out an exaggerated “aaaah,” but I can’t. I can only cry. The tears fall as I think about her and the things I miss. The sound of her voice. The light in her eyes. Her laugh. Her presence. Her.

My coffee cup warms my hands. I look out the window and let my mind linger on mom. And, even though I have heard her stories one thousand times, I would give anything to hear her tell them to me one more time, especially when the weather is delicious.

I miss you mom.

I am angry at Wal-Mart.

Usually, I am angry at the prices and how little money I have left over after going to the grocery store. But, today, I read an article  about a 30-year old man, who, during his lunch break heard a woman screaming for help. He went over to her car to see if she needed help. The man, who was on the woman’s hood at the time, lunged at the worker. The worker, apparently protecting himself now, got on top of the attacker. Two other men appeared and began an assault upon the employee.

The Mega-store, Wal-Mart, in their corporate wisdom, fired the young man because he violated the employee non-violence policy.

Besides the fact this is utterly ridiculous, I began to think, and the more I thought about it, the more I began to seethe.

Think about it.

If Kristopher Oswald, the former Wal-Mart employee, had said to himself, “Oh, wait, I can’t interfere. Helping this woman would violate my employee non-violence policy.” What would have happened to that woman? What would that man; those men, have done before the police would have arrived on scene? Would they have robbed her? Would she have been beaten? Would she have been kidnapped and raped? Would they have killed her? We don’t know what the outcome would have been because Kristopher Oswald foiled the attempt.

However, Wal-Mart, by firing Kristopher, has shown a blatant disregard for its female customers. Corporate is saying, essentially, that its employees cannot interfere with, or prevent, any crime, anywhere, on its lots or in its store, at any time. That means if any woman chooses to shop at Wal-Mart during the midnight hours, she is risking her life to do so. Wal-Mart, by policy, will let anyone attack her while the employees look on. The woman will only need to pray the cops get to her before she is maimed, kidnapped, raped or killed. I don’t mean to keep you men out of the picture. I’m sure Wal-Mart would allow its employees to let an assailant rob, maim or murder you, too.

I don’t know about you, but I am wired to help people. Wal-Mart would have to fire me too. Every job I have ever had, I have always tried to protect the owners from thieves, or other people from being hurt. It is beyond me why a corporation would tell its employees not to go to the aid of a woman in obvious distress. If a customer fell on the floor, in an apparent heart attack, is a Wal-Mart employee forbidden to preform CPR? That is violent when preformed correctly. It’s been known to crack ribs. Or, the defibrillators… that is a violent shock to the heart. Are Wal-Mart employees forbidden to put those into use? What about if a Wal-Mart employee saw a customer choking? Would said employee step back… which some employees of other establishments have… because their employee policy says they should? Who is to say a corporation should hold the power of someone’s life in their hand in that manner? No wonder the love of so many people has grown cold! No wonder so many people only think about “My four, and no more!”

How utterly ridiculous!

This article should make every woman so angry that she wants to do something about it…

I am proposing this.

Email Corporate here:

And tell them two things. #1. They should be thanking and praising Kristopher Oswald, from their Lithonia, GA store, for not only saving this woman from harm, but also from saving Corporate from a possible law suit from either this woman who screamed for help, or the woman’s family if she would have died because of Wal-Marts policy.

And #2. We, as women, should tell Corporate that we no longer feel safe shopping at Wal-Mart because of their blatant display against the safety and well-being of the woman Mr. Oswald helped to save, and their ridiculous employee non-violence policy.

Inundate corporate headquarters…. NOW!

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In today’s portion of “My Utmost for His Highest,” Oswald Chambers made a perplexing statement. “Has God trusted you with a silence…? His silence is the sign that he is bringing you into the marvelous understanding of himself.”
When I first read it, I was befuddled; confused. I thought, “How does God’s silence bring me into a marvelous understanding of Him?” As I began to ponder this question, I wondered how I got a deeper understanding of God. Where did I go to find the things I wanted to know?
I don’t know about you, but for the most part of my life, God has been silent. I don’t hear an audible voice telling me where I should go, what I should do, how I should act, or re-act. I’ve wanted him to. Especially in times of hardship, confusion, and trouble, I have longed to hear God whisper in my ear, “I’m here, Cheryl. I am with you. Go here; go there.”
But, he hasn’t.
When I came to Christ, at the age of 14, I was told, “Jesus wants to have a personal relationship with you. He wants to be involved in every aspect of your life. He wants to know your hurts, your fears, your happiness and your tears; every part of your life, he is interested in.” And so, I talk to God, in my head. I tell him things; I pray – for others and for myself. I sometimes sing, in my head, too. I pray in the spirit, and with understanding. I ask questions, in my head, during these times too. To this writing I have never heard God answer me with an audible voice. I’ve expected it. Isn’t that part of a relationship? One person talks, the other person talks…
What do we do when God is the silent partner?
I used to get jealous when people would say, “God told me…” I would love to hear the voice of God on a daily basis. I want that intimate, personal relationship where the Savior of my soul whispers in my ear! Maybe I’ve held back. Maybe I haven’t given 100% of myself to God. Maybe my relationship with God is all one sided.
But, is it?
I have pondered God’s silence before, and received… well, silence as an answer. But, what is God speaking when he has nothing to say? Is God’s silence, as Oswald Chambers has said, the sign that God is bringing us into a marvelous understanding of himself? The more I think about it, the more I believe the answer is “YES!”
As I stated earlier, I’ve been a Christian since I was 14 years old. (I now have 26-years experience at being 25. You math whizzes will catch on quickly.) I have matured in my walk with Jesus. And, like a child who grows up and lives independently of his or her parents, I, too, am not as needy, in Christ, as I once was. I’ve read the bible many times, and throughout the years, gained understanding. I know what the Word says.
There are 66 books that make up the bible. We have words telling us what the voice of God had men write down. Every aspect of our lives can be touched by something contained within one of those books. We can hear the voice of God through what we read. We hear the character of God, and his love for mankind, in the pages.
We are assured of his everlasting love; his forgiveness, and our eternal home; we know he will never leave us or forsake us, because our maturity – our growing up in Christ – and his word, have told us so. We have heard it through the Word, and we have believed it with our heart; confessing it with our mouth (See Romans 10:9). We believe it. We stand on it, even though we have not heard God speak those words to us in an audible voice, we know we can take it to the bank!
We find comfort, in times of trouble, with the Psalms. We find hope, encouragement, trust and faith between the covers of the bible. It’s all there. Everything we need to know about God is contained in the bible, and what we can’t find in the bible, can be found in creation—the love and care he took to provide a place for us—in our surroundings. We can hear the voice of God in what we see and what we read. We hear the voice of God in the people we meet; with children at play; music that touches our soul.
God’s voice is everywhere!
As I pondered the years of my life I realized something. In spite of the silence, I have grown. Even when I was angry over God’s supposed silence, I still matured. I read his word, and I grew up. God’s silence drives us to dig deeper. It matures us. It causes us to believe what we read is true. Faith deepens. Trust endures. And, in that way, we find, we have been taken into a marvelous understanding that only God could give us.
God has indeed entrusted us with his silence.
Father, God, thank you, for the words you gave us long ago. Thank you they have been compiled for us already. Thank you that you still use those words to speak to our hearts, and minds. We may not be able to hear your voice, in an audible way, LORD, but you speak to us through the written Word. In those times of silence, God, when we seek to hear your voice, comfort our hearts in knowing you have already spoken. Guide us in your words. Strengthen our hearts. Deepen our faith and trust in you. In Jesus Name.

He walked in and said I was indebted to him.

“I don’t owe you anything!” I said angrily. And, I didn’t. I had never seen him before. I had never gone into his house of debt to borrow anything. He had it all wrong. This man, whoever he was, was trying to scam me, and I wasn’t going to have anything to do with it. I am too smart to fall for that!

“The debt is yours,” the stranger said.

“No, it is not mine,” I repeated. “I have not borrowed anything from you. What I have, I have obtained on my own. I have purchased it with the funds left me by my deceased relatives. They were wealthy, and I was their only heir. I have never had to go into a lending institution in all the days I have been alive. I have always been well provided for. Even now, I do very well on my own. I have enough money to leave my own children, and their children after that. I have several real estate holdings worth millions of dollars. I have no need.”

“The debt I hold,” the stranger replied, “is transferrable debt. It transferred to your relatives, and now, it has transferred to you.”

“You are sorely mistaken, sir.” I said. “How in the world can you come into my house and demand payment from me for a debt I never incurred? You are making me angry. I have explained to you, as nicely as I can, that I don’t owe you a %#$%!^$ thing. I took what my relatives left me and built it into what it is today. I made it without borrowing anything from anyone. Me. Alone. I did it without your help, or anyone else’s. Get that through your thick skull. I don’t owe you anything, now please leave me alone. Get out of my house.”

“I have not come to make you angry.” The stranger spoke in a gentle voice.

“Do you know who you are dealing with?” I asked. “I am not some ignorant fool stupid enough to fall for this pitiful scheme of yours. I can take one look at you and know you aren’t a lender. Your clothes give you away. You wandered into town thinking you were going to get a free ride. I have very powerful friends. All I have to do is make one phone call and you will spend the night in jail.”

“You only have the power over me that my father gives you.” Still, the stranger spoke with gentleness.

“Who do you think you are?” I just about screamed at him. I was getting furious. This man… this BUM walks into my house with a piece of paper in his hands, and tells me I owe him? He is crazy! I am wealthy enough that I don’t have to worry… ever. I will always be comfortable. I can go wherever I want, whenever I want, and stay as long as I like. I have never relied on anyone for help… ever. I have always had enough… Always had more than enough. I didn’t need his money.

“Sir,” I began, “I will give you exactly two minutes to leave my house. After that, I will make one phone call. With that call there will be several police in my driveway just to pick you up. Do you understand?”

“You do not have to call anyone,” the stranger replied. “I will go, as you wish.”

“You are a crazy man.” I spit out, still angry at the stranger.

“All of your descendants have uttered similar things to the collector of debt.” He said.

I looked at him. He didn’t look that old to me, so how could he even know what ‘ALL’ of my descendants did? I was right, he is crazy.

 “Okay. Your two minutes are up. You need to leave.” My voice was firm.

“I will go,” he said, “but, just as it has been done with your descendants, I will do with you. I will leave you a copy of the debt I hold against you. It is up to you to take the time to read it, and accept it. But, you must be aware; this debt will be transferred to whoever assumes your estate when your life is over. It does not go away just because you deny it exists.”

And, just like that he walked out of my door.  I picked up the paper he left and crumpled it without looking at it. “Who does he think he is?” I shouted at the empty room as I threw the wadded paper into the fireplace. I’m still not sure what made me retrieve it so fast, but I did. I stomped out the flames and opened it.

As I read through the now charred pages tears began to fill my eyes. On this page was listed the original loan acquired to purchase my great-great-great-grandfather’s business… everything I had, even the things I had acquired myself, were tied to the original loan that had never been satisfied, and with the compounding interest that accrued throughout the years, the figure was astounding. As I continued to read, I discovered the signatures of my relatives, throughout the generations, affirming the validity of the debt. All of my grandfather’s signatures were there; even my father’s signature.

Why didn’t I know this? Why hadn’t dad told me before he left the estate to me? Was there a copy of this debt in the files? Was it scanned into the computer? Why did it take a stranger to bring it to my attention? I felt angry again. Betrayed. Trapped. For the first time in my life I felt like I was drowning and there was no way out. If I paid the debt I would, literally, have nothing left. It would take everything I worked hard to keep. Everything! The house, the cars, and the real estate holdings… every single thing I held dear. Everything that made me who I am would have to be sold in order to satisfy the debt. How could any

What was I going to do?

I put on my glasses to read the fine print. What else they can take?

The debtor, Thaddeus A. Peccator*, agrees, by affixing his signature, to assume all liability for the loan dated July 15, 1825, through Agnus Dei*. This debt shall include all heirs, administrators, and assigns forever.

Then a phrase caught my eye, Cancellation of debt.

I looked up from the page and ran to the door. Could I still catch him? Was he already gone? I had been so ugly with him.

The stranger was sitting on my porch; waiting.

“You didn’t leave!” I was thrilled. “I am so terribly sorry for the way I treated you earlier. Please, come back in! I was wrong. I do accept the debt. It is mine to owe.”

“It matters not how you come to accept the debt, my son. What matters is you have accepted it.” He was still so nice. So calm. Even after I was so rude to him. Who was this man? Why did my father never introduce us?

“You have accepted the debt, Mr. Peccator*, and, according to the terms of the agreement, by your signature, you assume liability. I will witness your signature.”

I grabbed the pen from my pocket and signed my name, and for good measure, I dated the document. I handed it back to him, beaming, “Your turn.” I said

There in his eyes, for the very first time, I saw intense love. His face was etched with deep sorrow & pain, why did I not see that before? I looked down as he took the pen from my hand. His hand is scarred. I shrank back. Who is this man and what happened to him? He sat down to sign the document. He seemed to be in agony as he signed his name, Agnus Dei*.

The story I have told is an age old story. The human race owes a debt to the Creator of the universe. It was a debt of exorbitant value; a debt we had no way of paying for ourselves. So God, even though he was the one demanding payment from us, knew we couldn’t come up with it… because of sin; we couldn’t satisfy the debt (the Law of God – 10 Commandments) of handwriting against us… so he devised a plan. Oh, we could try to be good enough, but inside, we know we never are that good. We, too, get angry, and self-righteous, showing God all the reasons why we think he is a scam; a delusion; that we are way too smart to be tricked into giving up our time for him. But still, inside, we can’t get away from the knowledge that something is wrong and we can’t fix it on our own.

God knew this and he made the way possible for us to cancel the debt he held against us. He became the solution. GOD BECAME THE EXACT PAYMENT HE DEMANDED FROM US! That is the GOOD NEWS of the gospel of Jesus Christ. God demanded payment of a debt we could not afford, so he became the very payment we needed! Just like in the story we must accept responsibility for our own debt, and then accept Jesus’s assumption of that debt on our behalf.

May you #BeBlessed and #WalkInTruthToday

Cheryl

*The names I chose are Latin.  Peccator is a male sinner. Agnus Dei is Lamb of God.