“WHERE TO FROM HERE?”
Chapter Twelve, part 2,
“Just Where To From Here”
….we had a wonderful few months of successfully leading the small church into some marvelous growth. Tom would on the first Sunday after the senior pastor had returned, as he saw his reaction, or lack of reaction to the obvious health and vigor of the congregation, and failed to see a few other significant signs, Tom felt burdened. As he sought the Lord, he felt the unmistakable unction to resign immediately. This would in the natural seem irrational, we were a young family, with our first child not yet a year old, and no prospects. But we were to learn within the year that there was a movement in the church to try and force the senior pastor out in favor of Tom. This would have been disastrous to the church, to the reputation of everyone, and to our family, for the senior pastor was Tom’s father. The Spirit’s soft words to Tom made the projected plans irrelevant, and saved so much possible heartache.
Then there was the decision to begin our music ministry with The Wings of Healing. We were desirous of a fresh sound for the music on the broadcast, and a new theme song. The cost for the rights to use the music of others was almost prohibitive. Then I had the inspiration one night for a theme song, and from our recording of that inspired theme, grew a new ministry as God brought others to our attention. God inspired Robert, Kathleen, and yours truly, and we would write some beautiful music. We then brought a new fresh approach to some of the great old hymns that are in pubic domain, which means the can be performed at no cost. It was a series of decisions all prayerfully considered, and resulted in some wonderful recordings of divinely inspired songs for the ministry.
We have also learned to take care in whom you trust, especially in matters of finances. Seek those whom you know. Those whose character, virtue, and values you know, for perhaps you have seen them in their own times of decision and trials. We must learn from those low points in our lives. The tough times are far more likely to provide lessons, and the experience necessary for our futures, than when everything seems to be going great. Here is when we are tested, learn how we will react, not only to set backs, and difficulties; like losing a job, but even more when real tragedies strike, the death of a love one, or those natural disaster that destroys so much. These things do happen all too often, and in some degree will affect us all.
Then there are hopefully second chances, if necessary, that are offered if one is willing to try. There will be barriers to your efforts to remake, remold, or reconstitute your life, like those who do not want you to rehabilitate your life or reputation. But this should not deter you. There are always other options, other venues, or other places with different people. It is you that has the primary responsibility to change when it is necessary. It is you that must be true to who you are, or who you desire to become. If you have tarnished someone with your lies, deception, or worse, God forgives. But you must also be able to forgive yourself, do what you can to rectify what you may have done, and if others will not give you any room to remake, or try to undo a past mistake, you must move on.
Obviously, such is doubly difficult in divorce, grand theft, or with lies that damage reputations. Make what restitution you can, let those you have hurt know of your sincere, and it must be sincere, remorse, and your offer to pay back, restore the damage that has possibly been done as much as you are able. And in a marriage spend the time and energy to rebuild the trust again. Love can recover; it just takes time, and the willingness of both to try.
It is poor decision we have learned that destroy lives; it can the more obvious sins like adultery, alcoholism, drugs, or promiscuity, then those often less obvious like deception, hypocrisy, insincerity, or any number of other small but debilitating misdeeds, and it will usually be a combination of at least a couple of the above or others, for they are countless. And unfortunately there are those that either never listen, or just are unable to change their decision making processes.
A good example is of a younger man who entered our lives quite incidentally. His life was adrift with no direction, although he had a good job. He had, however, become susceptible to almost every conspiracy theory being promoted at the time; engrossed in things that only brought disorder and confusion to his life. All of which justified in his mind that he could with impunity ….. (book will conclude next month)