A Passion for Christ Ministries: April 2006 Newsletter      


“And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul” Acts 4:32(a)
I Was the Woman at the Well
APRIL 2006
 

Greetings!

Separate means to set or keep apart; become divided or detached.

Come out from among them

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols?

For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).

This is the hour

We have now come into the separating hour that the Lord spoke about so many years ago. This is the hour that you must stand up and be counted with the people who will be used as great vessels of the Lord; stand up with those who will make the Rapture.

Think not

Jesus made us all quite aware of His plan. Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me (Matthew 10:34-38).

Following God’s plan for your life requires complete separation from the world and all influences of the world. Separating from the world means drawing closer to God. Be careful, not careless. The devil is trying his best, if you are a true child of God, to separate you from God’s love by tempting you with the things of the world. He will try to draw you into the world by making you believe all kinds of lies about God, what He is doing and God’s love for you. If you are weak, the devil will get you! Watch out! He is seeking to devour each true child of God. The devil is hunting for you!

It grieved Him at His heart

Just think how separated Noah and his family had to be in order to fulfill the divine will of God for their lives. They worked long and hard for 120 years.

And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Genesis 6:5-8).

Noah gave his entire life to fulfill God’s will. It was no doubt arduous and discouraging work. Separation was a must. The Noah family could not run the risk of contamination. The Lord gave very specific instructions and those instructions could never have been followed so precisely if they had not stuck together and remained separated from the world.

I will destroy

And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth (Genesis 6:13).

The Noah family had to be set apart from all disobedience, lukewarmness and fear. Separation is the only way that the Lord will be able to prepare you for the rest of the journey. There will be many valleys that the Lord will send you into in order to rescue the lost and you must be ready. You must use total obedience, the same total obedience that Jesus used when He walked among men.

You can’t afford

Jesus is our example of how to live in this present world. He started and completed His mission. He fulfilled the Father’s will for His life. He was divine and yet He was very human. Such separation will help you to touch others and some may even be your own loved ones. You can’t afford to trust yourself. You can’t afford to put trust in man. Just think, Noah would never have completed his task had he trusted in others. His complete trust had to be in God.

By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith (Hebrews 11:7).

I am certain that the Lord gave Noah many, many anointings along the way. Noah was given divine strength and divine grace to complete his task and we can expect nothing less. We will have angel help. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? (Hebrews 1:14)

The beginning of the end

We can’t afford to be afraid of the things that are coming upon the earth. This hour that we live in is the beginning of the end. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows (Matthew 24:6-8). We must look to God.

Separated enough

There were only eight souls on the entire face of the earth that were separated enough to be used by God for 120 years. The others were not separated. They held onto the thoughts of that age. They had taken on the opinions of that age and spoke the language of that age. Noah could not afford to turn back and neither can you. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved (Matthew 24:13).

And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die. But with thee will I establish my covenant; and thou shalt come into the ark, thou, and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy sons’ wives with thee. Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he (Genesis 6:17-18, 22).

You must long for God

You must really long for God’s will. Your whole desire to do God’s will must be paramount all the days that you have left. When the devil comes against you in any way, you must run to God, run to the Bible, run to your prayer chamber and He will help you through it all. It’s in His presence that we are renewed and strengthened. Let the separation—the persecutions—drive you closer and ever onward. Child of God, it’s ever onward now, no turning back. His love will cover you. His precious blood will be your protection.

The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The righteous cry, and the Lord heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles. Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all (Psalm 34:15,17,19).

It’s a promise

We know that persecutions will come. It’s a promise. Some see only good days, days full of sunshine, days where this is no rain, no sorrow and no pain as the promises of God. Trials, persecutions, misunderstandings and rejection are all promised to each true child of God, if we dare follow in the footsteps of Christ. We can’t let anything stop us.

In Noah’s day, people heard of the end-time hour and the warnings of separation that is now upon us, but many were asleep. We can’t afford to be asleep. Now is the hour to be spiritually wide-awake. Separation from the world will keep you awake to what God is doing, what man is doing and what the devil is doing.

Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise. Redeeming the time, because the days are evil (Ephesians 5:14-16).

Watch

Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh (Matthew 24:42,44).

Only eight souls were watching and separated enough to see what was ahead. The rest were sleep and sluggish to the hour that they were in. And so it will be for many in this last and final hour. But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark. (Matthew 24:37-38).

Separation and victory

Separation was the victory that allowed Abraham to become the father of the faithful. He led a “separating” life. The deeper he went into the greatness of God, the more separation was needed to hold on to that greatness.

Now the Lord had said unto Abram [Abraham], Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the Lord had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran (Genesis 12:1-4).

Just the beginning

Abraham separated immediately upon God’s command. That was just the beginning of many separations to come. And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray thee, between me and thee, and between my herdmen and thy herdmen; for we be brethren. Is not the whole land before thee? Separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: if thou wilt take the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if thou depart to the right hand, then I will go to the left (Genesis 13:8-9). Abraham’s men and Lot’s men began to fight amongst themselves and Abraham knew that separation would be a must. I am sure that Abraham suffered because of the separation but God’s will allowed him to persevere.

Lift up now thine eyes

And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever (Genesis 13:14-15).

With each act of separation, Abraham was given more of God but the greatest of all separations was yet to come. And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt [test] Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of (Genesis 22:1,2).

Abraham’s greatest hour of separation was now upon him. All of the previous tests were just “stepping stones” for his greatest test of all, separating from his long-awaited son, Isaac. Abraham had followed God in all things. He separated and stayed separated and therefore he was ready—he had made himself ready to pay such a price. Abraham’s love for God made him ready.

Abraham’s Garden of Gethsemane

Abraham faced his Garden of Gethsemane, experiencing all the agony of separation that Jesus felt. Abraham had come into one mind with God when he gave all. This type of separation is a must for the Bride in this final hour and she will have it—she will have such allegiance to her Lord. Abraham was prepared to sacrifice all. He put Isaac on the altar and left him there. That will be the secret for the Bride, leaving all on the altar and running hard after God’s divine will.

When ye see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it (Joshua 3:3).

How do you know when you have separated from all? When you have given all and there remains nothing left to give. How much will you have to give? All of you—your whole life.

By faith

By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure (Hebrews 11:17-19). Hear the moans and groans radiating from Abraham as he lifted the knife to slay his precious Isaac. Abraham yielded to the other separations and he was ready. His “tomorrows” had arrived. The Lord has promised to get us ready for all of our tomorrows and we must surrender to His will now or we won’t be ready. We can’t get ready but we must stay ready in this final hour.

And they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut (Matthew 25:10(b)).

The making of a yielded vessel

It takes years for God to get a yielded vessel to such a point but it’s a point that the Bride will come into in this last and final hour. Don’t give up on yourself. You must go all the way. Leave the past behind and journey, journey on with God. All of Heaven is with you. Abraham faced his testing time and he was made ready. He allowed separation to make him. We, like Abraham, don’t know what it will cost to give all; to separate from all and everything in order to have God’s will fulfilled in our lives.

Are you ready?

Are you ready for the great separation that must take place in your life in order to be used by God in this final hour? Stay close to your Lord. Your Lord will stay close to you. Live in the truth. Do not separate from the truth. Disobedience means you are separating from the truth or you have been separated from the truth. You must not be separated, not one moment, from the truth in this last hour. Please repeat this simple prayer asking Jesus into your heart and soul.

Oh, God! I have sinned against you. I am so sorry! I have come home, and I’m going to serve you, Lord, the rest of my life. I do believe that you are able to deliver me and cleanse me from all unrighteousness and fear. I believe that the blood of your Son, Jesus Christ can make me clean, whole and free. I want the impossible to be made possible in my life. Come on into my heart and help me. Help me, Lord. I trust and believe that through the blood, I can make it. Oh, Lord, I want your help. Save my soul. Love me, Jesus. I must have your love. Love me, Jesus. I will answer your call to salvation today. Come on into my heart, Jesus! Come in!

If you meant that prayer, He has come.

Praise Him, He is Yours!


 

A Fictional Short Story by Reverend Beverly Thomas

Momma, I Forgot My Book Bag

Part 2: The Departure
[See Part 1 of this story in the February 2006 Newsletter.]

You’re 18!
“Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Denise. Happy birthday to you.” “Thanks mom and dad. It’s nothing like being awakened by the sound of your parents’ singing,” stated Denise. “Well today you are 18 years old and no longer momma’s little girl,” explained Sheila. “Well, you know you will always be our little girl,” commented William.

“Hi dad, it’s me”
William and Sheila left the house to run errands and take care of business. It was mid-afternoon when William’s cell phone rang. “Hello,” answered William. “Hi dad, it’s me.” “Hey Denise, I mean ‘birthday girl,’ what’s up?” asked William. “Well,” hesitated Denise. “I wanted. Well what I am trying to say is, I wanted to tell you this in person. Dad, I have tried to tell you but you wouldn’t, well I could never talk to you.” “Denise, what is this all about? What are you trying to say?” aggressively asked William.

I AM MOVING OUT TODAY
“I AM MOVING OUT TODAY,” Denise strongly stated. “What are you talking about Denise? You’re moving out, where?” shouted William. “William, what is it? What is Denise talking about? What is the problem?” repeatedly asked Sheila. “Just one minute Sheila,” sternly commented William. “Now, Denise, what are you talking about, you tried to talk to me?” Denise handed the telephone to “Z.” “William, hi, it’s Z. Denise told me she tried to talk to you on more than one occasion but you simply would not listen. Now William, this is your daughter, and I don’t understand what went wrong between you two but my husband and I are on our way to the house to get Denise and her belongings. I understand that she is packed up and ready to go,” concluded Z. “Let me talk to my daughter Z! Let me talk to Denise. Put Denise back on the telephone!”

Don’t leave home
There was a moment of silence as William attempted to regain his composure. The intensity of it all caused William to breathe funny and his eyes were enveloped with tears. “Denise, wait. Denise wait. Denise, please wait for me to get home. Let’s talk this over. We can work this out. Don’t leave home. Don’t leave home, not like this. Please, not like this.” William hung up the telephone.

All things made ready
Sheila was stunned and didn’t know what to say to William. “Let’s go home. I have to get home, Sheila.” Very few words were passed between them during the tedious ride home. The car was nearly parked as William emerged from the vehicle and raced upstairs in an attempt to speak with Denise. Certainly, many thoughts flooded his mind. Sheila felt helpless and uneasy as she watched William’s final attempt to reach Denise but it could be felt from the moment that William and Sheila entered the house, all things had been made ready. Denise had no intention of changing her mind. She was determined. William and Sheila would discover in the weeks to come that Denise had been planning and calculating her “escape,” for months and months in advance.

Shut the door
Three weeks prior to Denise’s leaving home, Sharon paid her a visit. “Hi, Sheila is Denise home?” “Yes, go right in the back. You know where her room is,” commented Sheila as Sharon proceeded down the long hallway, which led to Denise’s room. Sharon knocked on the closed door. “Hey Denise, let me in.” “Oh, hey, hurry up and shut the door before somebody comes back here,” said Denise. “I am throwing out all this stuff. I won’t need any of this junk anyway. These clothes always made me look like a little girl. Those days are over.” “Give me another garbage bag so that I can help you,” commented Sharon. “Hey I like this. Can I have it?” “No. Throw it all away.” “Well, one thing is for sure, your room has never been this clean,” chuckled Sharon. “Oh, don’t be so smart. Help me so that we can get through.”

No set rules
As parents, there are no set rules. Parents can only teach their children what they have learned. It then becomes the responsibility of the young adult to do better when they are able. It is much more difficult when there are stepchildren and stepparents involved. The stepparents are attempting to perform an almost insurmountable task, assuming the role of the missing parent. What brought about the new family structure? Was it divorce? Was it death? What led to the new union? How were the children affected? Does a viable relationship still exist with both biological parents? The stepparent is often left to shoulder these burdens, particularly if the child was of significant age when the new family structure was formed.

Parents, we need God to help us right from the very beginning. In so many cases, parents were themselves products of stepfamilies or even dysfunctionality. We must hold one another high and pray much for the family structure in this last and final hour. The enemy has set his mind against the survival of the family.

Denise wanted her father
Denise came to live with her father, William and his wife, Sheila, when she was already a teenager. She had already experienced so much. There were scars to heal and wounds, which needed mending.

William and Sheila had other children upon Denise’s arrival and there were many adjustments needed. Denise wanted her father. She needed her father but so did Sheila and her children. William was a breath of fresh air to Sheila and her children. Sheila’s children reached out and gravitated toward William. He was what they had longed for—what had been missing from their lives. There was much to be embraced by all.

It doesn’t matter about the past
The mistakes are of no importance. Who, in this life, has not made mistakes? “No,” it doesn’t matter about the past. What matters is love. When you have love, love will win over each and every situation. For charity [love] shall cover the multitude of sins [faults] (I Peter 4:8(a)).

God seeks to heal families but families must be willing to give love a chance. William, Sheila and even Denise were not consistent in communicating. It was on again, off again. Denise felt betrayed by the fact that her father had to be shared. Sheila felt stuck in the middle, unable to really give discipline to Denise because of possible rejection from William. It was almost impossible but again love was not given its proper chance.

Why waste time
Your mother and father, who care for you, right now, may not be the man and woman God used to bring you into this world. Take advantage of what is before you. Why waste a lifetime blaming others for your problems. Guess what? This life is full of them. We live in very troubling times. We all have problems. Since the fall of Adam, we have all been misused, mistreated, abandoned or rejected. It was only when Christ became the bridge back to God that a way was made for every woman, boy and girl to reunite in harmony.

Do you, like Denise, harbor something in your heart against your parents? What good will it do for you in the end? Have you been the perfect child, mother or father? Well then, lets give love a chance. What do you think about that? Everybody needs love. Why look at you, living like a pulpier, when you could be rich, rich with God’s love. You’re missing out on so much.

The driving force
Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain (Psalm 127:1).

Jesus Christ must be the driving force used to raise our children. His precious blood was given as a bridge back to love, back to harmony. Much was lost in the fall of Adam. That wonderful harmony that existed in the Garden of Eden was destroyed when Adam disobeyed God. It would take the second Adam, Jesus Christ, to build a highway for all families to exist. There is no family without love.

Longing and yearning
For he satisfieth the longing soul, and filleth the hungry soul with goodness (Psalm 107:9). Since the fall of Adam, each person on planet earth has been longing and yearning for its maker. We each carry a part of God within. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Genesis 2:7).

“False” love
The soul came from God and it longs for its maker. Many don’t recognize this longing as coming from God and, therefore, they respond to some “false” love—some “counterfeit” which often leads to destructive behavior.

Since God made us and gave us a part of Him—the soul—we long for the one who made us. We long for God, for God is love. We are creatures who cannot exist without love. We can go days and even weeks without food but we will not thrive properly without love. We will do things and say things when that love is vacant from our lives.

Are you, like Denise, longing for love? What drives your ambitions and goals? Do you find satisfaction in dressing provocatively? Do you long and long for money, material gain and attention? You are simply yearning for love, God’s love. Why not be made whole?

For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now (Romans 8:22).

Look how much time you’ve wasted. It’s time to turn to love!

Are you taking your book bag?
Sharon and Denise finished packing. “Denise, you are throwing out a lot of stuff. Did you tell Z what day to come for you?” asked Sharon. “Yes, she has all the information. I am just waiting for that day,” commented Denise. “Hey, what’s this? It is your book bag. Are you taking this with you? What’s in there anyway? It’s very heavy.” “Don’t open it. It’s not important. Where I am going, I won’t need it. Just leave it here. They can do whatever they want to do with it. I don’t care. I am glad to be rid of it and its contents,” concluded Denise. They finished packing and left the house for some lunch.

Satisfaction in suffering
William finally made it home and frantically entered the door and rushed into Denise’s room. She was all packed and sitting on her bed. Her face was filled with sternness and uncompromisable expression. It would seem that she had rehearsed this moment; she had predicted William’s response, anticipated and even longed for the hurt, which flushed in his frightful face. With each word that William poured forth in anguish and desperation, Denise felt gratified. She felt satisfaction in his suffering; she was delighted, as she looked still-faced into William’s tear-filled eyes. Denise seemed to be without feelings.

Time’s cruel joke
Time had played a cruel joke on William and didn’t allow him an opportunity to gain his composure before the doorbell rang. It was Z and her husband, and of course, Sheila had to open the door. The house was immersed with all kinds of uncertain emotions. Sheila was angry and confused, all at the same time. She buzzed Z and her husband into the building and listened as they mounted the stairs to the third floor apartment. William raced toward Sheila and wondered why she had let them in.

“William, we can’t act like this. It is obvious that Denise has been planning this for a long time. William, just let her go. Please, just let her go.” “You didn’t have to let them in, Sheila.” “William, please let her go. What was I suppose to do? Act in such a way as to validate all that they have been told about us? No, William, let her go. Please let her go,” pleaded Sheila.

Eyes full of tears
Z and her husband entered the home. Eyes full of tears, William attempted to compose himself as he took down Denise’s belongings to the waiting car. He was certainly a dead man walking that day. Only God knows how William was able to move about. Z’s husband was stellar, tall and handsome. They complemented each other well. It was obvious from their demeanor that they expected some confrontation but there was none from William or Sheila. Denise said her goodbyes to Sheila. Sheila was sitting down, faced toward her computer and halfway turned to say goodbye to Denise and then she was gone.

She was gone
Finally, Denise was all packed up and in the Z’s car. Sheila watched with heartfelt sympathy for William. She was lost at how to help him. William waved as the car spun off and Denise was gone. She was gone her way to live her life.

Questions, questions
Questions flooded the atmosphere for the remainder of the evening. William was so unsettled, moving about from room to room. Finally, William sat down and Sheila grabbed him and held him as he cried. William attempted to sleep but sleep refused him comfort.

After sometime, he went about the house. It was obvious he was confused. He found himself in Denise’s room. For a moment, he just stood in the middle of the floor. Memories of the first day she came to stay with William flooded his mind; her eighth-grade graduation, birthdays, outings, all came crashing down on him. William fell to the floor and sobbed and sobbed and sobbed. Finally, he came to himself and slothfully emerged from the floor. The sighs could be heard all over the silent house.

How could she?
William looked through the dresser drawers and opened the closet door. Some clothes were still hanging on the hangers. A dress from a previous graduation, books from school, and tokens given to Denise, were all left behind as to make a statement.

On the floor of the closet was Denise’s book bag. She had left it behind. How could she? She felt no need for its contents. Had she mastered all lessons entailed within her book bag? Did Denise become a master of life? No, Denise had no clue of how valuable the contents of the book bag were? Somewhere down the road, she would long for the contents of her book bag; she would hunt for, and “yes” even regret leaving it behind.

For now, though, she was ignorant of her great, great need of its contents. William grabbed and held onto the book bag. He held it close to him like a small child returning home from a long trip. William once again began to sob. Sheila stayed in the other room and left William to deal with his feelings of what had just happened.

Somber days ahead
There were many somber days ahead. William and Sheila spent much time reflecting on what could have led to Denise’s desire to leave home. Had all been done to show love toward Denise? Did William and Sheila work hard at keeping the lines of communication open? These and more questions surfaced from both Sheila and William. Sheila, as she reflected on her actions, concluded that she could have done more in reaching Denise.

Even though it was awkward at times, Sheila admitted that she could have done more. William always felt that Denise was troubled by the fact that he had not been there for her earlier years. You see, Denise didn’t come to know her father until she was 10 or 11 years old and by that time, William had a ready-made family. Where would the time come from for Denise? She wanted her father to herself. She wanted all of his attention but that was now impossible. It may never be known what Denise’s reasons for leaving the home were but William and Sheila felt it necessary to take self-evaluation and make changes to avoid this from ever happening to any of the other children, if possible.

Unwarranted guilt
During the months to follow, William learned the extent of Denise’s discontentment. Others whom Denise had confided in saw the misery and anguish which haunted William and in an effort to relieve him of some unwarranted guilt, began to tell him of Denise’s plans. Many shared with William about Denise’s desire for another life, a life different from that displayed by William and Sheila.

At William and Sheila’s house, living for God was paramount. Attending the services was very important. How you conducted yourself was important. It was emphasized to all the children that no matter what others were doing, following God was the standard. Every person was free, at the age of 18, to move on if they felt the need to live differently. God was not forced on anyone.

William was strong in the faith and strongly encouraged his children to find themselves in Christ. He gave examples from the Bible about those who were successful because of giving their lives to Christ. William also, through the scriptures, reminded his children of the youth in the Bible, such as Timothy and Jeremiah. They remained faithful to God. There were others that William would allude to in speaking with the children.

There was Achan. He was completely destroyed because of “what he wanted.” He wanted what God said, “Thou Shalt Not!” It cost Achan everything. He lost everything and was never able to enjoy the spoil of disobedience. The fancy clothes, worldly songs and lifestyles of others were prohibited in the home. Living for God was not forced upon anyone but both Sheila and William were examples for their children.

Sheila instructed the children
There wasn’t a lot of money and the money that was there would not be squandered away. Sheila instructed the children in the Sunday school lessons each week and the children would fast, along with their parents. There was careful scrutiny over where they went, who they talked to on the telephone and outgoing engagements. While William and Sheila did not deter them from all school and social events, the children were allowed to participate in only a selected few. Those school programs, which advocated rap, dancing or the like, were not approved. The children were not allowed to “just do anything,” but structured engagements were preferred. There was no television on school days. There were chores and responsibilities allocated to each child.

Merely existing
For several months, William and Sheila merely existed. William often thought of Denise and wondered how things had turned out for her but he refused to contact her. He wanted Denise to experience freedom. This was what she had planned for. She had longed for freedom and William wanted her to be free without his interference.

William didn’t want Denise to feel like he was hounding her or trying to get her to return home.

It’s just a bad dream
“Oh, God please help me! Oh, oh God please help me! Help! Help! Where is Denise? Don’t let anything happen to my baby. Oh, God please!” “William,” shouted Sheila. “William,” Sheila continued shouting. She was shaking his shivering, wet body in an attempt to wake him from this deep madness. William’s face was covered with tears. He was gripping his soaked and enshrouded pillow with all his might. “William, wake up! William, it’s me Sheila. Sweetie, please wake up. You’re having a bad dream.” Sheila grabbed William and held him. “William, hold on. Hold on.” “Denise. Where is Denise? She doesn’t know what’s ahead. She doesn’t know about the world, the mean, mean world,” cried William. “It’s just a bad dream. It’s just a bad, bad dream,” whispered Sheila, as she rocked her William.

Join us next time for Part 3 of
Momma, I Forgot My Book Bag.”

Please write and tell us how this short story has blessed you.

book bag

What’s in this book bag?

Be sure to come back for the June 2006 issue of the newsletter for Part 3 of this great story!


Also coming in June:

Reverend Thomas' Report from
SOUTH AFRICA

Maseru, Lesotho,
and Bloemfontein

map of South Africa

 

Yours with a Passion for Souls,


Pastor, A Passion for Christ Ministries


Please write and tell us how this newsletter has blessed you.
We want to hear from you.

 
E-mail Address:
passions@apassionforchrist.org
 
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