Archive for December, 2014

TRUST

 When I was first diagnosed with STAGE IV  uterine cancer back in
the fall of 2012, my family’s reaction was overwhelmingly disbelief!
My sister especially pitched the proverbial hissy fit!  “Why you?”
she wailed.  “NO ONE works harder or louder to make the case for
Jesus than you do!!!   WHY on earth would He let this happen to
YOU of all people!!”
And now, 2 years later, she’s still asking the same question, despite
my attempts to explain that Almighty God has never developed the
habit of checking with me before making decisions on my behalf!
Go figure!
Besides, despite that obvious oversight, if you turn the situation
around and/or shuffle things up a bit, you could just as easily ask
“Why NOT me?”
I’ve certainly been an outspoken disciple of Jesus for a long time,
most especially the last 5 or 6 years.    With His help, I’ve created
an evangelical website that holds dozens of my stories and rhymes,
as it strives to introduce people to the Savior Who loves them so
much that He was willing to die for them and  also, to inspire those
who already know Him to move even closer.   Through my website,
Dustys Front Porch, my little thought for the day emails that go out
to thousands of subscribers all over the world, my blogs here on
WordPress, various speaking engagements, Facebook posts and a
natural talent for story-telling courtesy of my Irish heritage….Jesus
has given me a high rate of visibility on the Internet and the notoriety
that goes along with it.    Granted, not everyone agrees with or
believes the views I hold, but even folks who DON’T agree can’t say
there’s any doubt about my passion for Jesus and His Gospel.
Before that diagnosis was 24 hours old, I understood that God has a
mission for me and my remaining time here on earth.    I’d never
figured out WHY God saw fit to make me as well-known as He did,
but that night, it became as clear as a bell!
I believe the Lord is using me as only one of many, to show the world
what it looks like when a Christian with strong faith faces the whole
death and dying issue.   After all, let’s face it, the world in general is

never going to read the Bible.   It does, read Christians!

To see if how we act and behave lines up with what we

preach!       When we run around telling anyone who will hold still long
enough to listen what a FANTASTIC place Heaven is going to be, but
then react with grief, terror and hysteria everytime one of us actually has

to go there, well…We’re perceived as either hypocrites or idiots and neither

one is  Kingdom-building material!

Since 2012, I’ve been brought into contact again and again, over and over
with opportunities to explain the reasons for my “I’m not afraid to die”
attitude, both to individuals and the public in general.   I’ve talked to
doctors (my own is still a work-in-progress), other patients, nurses,
technicians,  relatives in waiting rooms, church-goers and unbelievers
alike.    I know that these “meetings” are what I’ve come to call “God-
winks”.   Appointments made for me by God, for reasons usually
known only to Him.    Some of these people take my attitude and ex-
perience directly to heart and it changes how they think about God,
Heaven, etc.     Others, politely nod their heads and walk away, totally
convinced that I’ve escaped from a rubber room somewhere or simply
managed to go “off my meds” completely.
At first I considered the latter just failures to make my point.   Until
the Lord let me know that I was doing His work, not mine.   I was
planting seeds, but it was God’s work to tend the garden.   Once I
understood that, I stopped worrying about who I convinced and who
I didn’t.
My focus now is on making sure that my actions, life & attitude
reflect what I know to be true — that the best is yet to come!   For
those of us who have placed our trust in Christ, even dying is a win-
win situation filled with joy and unbelievable anticipation!
And to those who ask “How can I believe?” all I can say is that I’ve
witnessed far too many ‘Godwinks’ to NOT believe!   There’s simply
no other explanation for what has happened and continues to happen
in my life!
I walk through every day holding the nail-scarred hand of the One who
gladly suffered unimaginable pain rather than live without me.   He’s
with me through every Drs. apt, side effect, chemo treatment, surgery,
family issue, etc.   He’s never left my side for a moment and I know
He never will.   That’s how much He loves me AND you.    It’s been
said that God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.  That
is SO true…..He paid our admission into Paradise with His own blood
and all we have to do is accept this wonderful gift!

So remember…..death is NOT a wall…..it’s a doorway to an eternity

filled with more joy than you can imagine!   And in the meantime?

Just make yourself available, then stand back and watch what God

will do with you AND your life!     Using you, He will change hearts,

create miracles and move mountains!    All you have to do is TRUST

HIM because like I told my sister;   I don’t have all the answers and I

don’t know the why, but I’m seeing the HOW every day.   All I need

to know is that God is in charge, He has a plan and the fact that I’m

being allowed to play a small part in that plan, well…for this Christian

disciple of Jesus that’s about as good as it can get!

PRAYER

I think prayer is probably the most under-used, and misunderstood tool

in Christianity today!   Just the word itself is intimidating to some people

because of some common misconceptions out there about what prayer

actually is and how to use it.   Most of us were taught as children to

“pray” by reciting formal prayers like the Hail Mary, the Act of Contrition

or the Our Father.     And those are all fine, beautiful prayers that have

been handed down for generations through the years.    But prayer is

also simply talking to God; opening your heart and unburdening yourself

to the Father Who loves you more than you could ever imagine!

Nothing is too trivial for you to talk to Him about — if it matters to you?

It matters to Him.

His love for you is unconditional; nothing you could ever say or do will

change it and nothing you say will ever shock or surprise Him….He’s

God after all!    He’s been waiting years for you to come to Him.

Prayer is, or should be, a simple heart-to-heart with Almighty God.

I believe He wants, more than anything, to be the first one you  turn

to for help, rather than some last-ditch attempt that you try after every-

thing else has failed.   He wants to be the One you run to to  share your

hopes, fears, dreams, questions and worries.   Come and talk to Him

on a daily basis, making time spent with Him the most important part

of your day….not an afterthought you squeeze in between the latest

reality TV show and a session on Facebook!

And please don’t sweat the details; do you sit or kneel?   Speak

aloud or to yourelf?     This is a conversation, not a performance —

you’re not being graded after all.   I’ve actually had some people

tell me that  they’re not ‘good enough’ to pray!!  SAY WHAT??

Can you just imagine what goes through God’s mind when He

hears THAT excuse?  Newsflash gang….Not a single one of us is

“good enough” to pray…..that’s WHY we have to!!   Please don’t

let that or anything else stop you!    The Lord has been waiting,

probably for your whole life, for you to start this conversation!

He won’t hesitate to hold up His part, I promise!!