“Moab is My washpot; Over Edom I will cast My shoe; Philistia, shout in triumph because of Me.” Psalm 60:8
I read this Psalm today and it reminded me of a time many years ago when the Holy Spirit prompted me to cast (throw) my shoes over a large wire fence onto some waste ground. I’m sure some of you are reading this and thinking that’s a bit strange but please read on and I will explain.
I had been walking with my friend around a local estate where our church had an outreach work. We helped out with a Sunday School and breakfast for the children once a month. It was a deprived estate with a lot of social problems and we were walking and praying for the families on the estate.
As we walked past a piece of wasteland, which was surrounded by this metal chain link fence, I felt stirred that the Lord wanted us to pray for this spot in particular. As we prayed I saw a picture of this barren piece of land becoming a garden. A barren land being redeemed by the Lord and brought back in to use. I was reminded of the verses from Isaiah:
You shall no longer be termed Forsaken, Nor shall your land any more be termed Desolate; But you shall be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; For the Lord delights in you, And your land shall be married. Isaiah 62:4
We continued to pray into the picture and that is when the Holy Spirit impressed on me to throw my shoes over the fence into the land. Not something I had ever done before, nor has it been something the Lord has prompted me to do since.
I shared this prompting with my friend and it witnessed with her too. The thing was she had just bought some brand new boots. She looked wistfully at her boots, looked at the land and then she said Yes…her new boots were going over.
So we prayed and threw our shoes and boots over that fence.
It meant walking back to our car with no shoes on (which drew some strange looks) but we knew in our hearts that the Lord was about something and our obedience to the prompting of the Holy Spirit was a key.
Roll forward several years and that barren wilderness became a community garden. A Christian charity had a vision to create a garden where the residents of the estate could go and learn how to grow veg, fruit and also provide a place where people could meet, talk and engage with each other.
Now it wasn’t just our prayers that brought that about. We were just a small piece in God’s plan and there would have been much prayer, planning and vision from others many years later that made that happen. In that moment though, the Lord showed us with eyes of faith the vision that He had for that land and the community. Perhaps our prayers and actions of shoe throwing were the seed that was sown in God’s timing.
God is so wonderful that He gives us these opportunities to serve Him. To partner with Him in His plans for His glory and to show His love, mercy and goodness to others. When the Holy Spirit prompts you and you know (you know in that deep inner place) that it is the Lord, then I encourage you to step out in faith and trust God with the rest.
My Granddad, David was a Christian and man of faith. I never met him as unfortunately, he died before I was born but I still have his little anointing bottle which has been passed on to me and which I still use today. It came from the Smith Wigglesworth ministries.
David had a stroke in 1943 and wrote out the testimony of his healing. I have it today written in his own hand. It always encourages me when I read it and it reminds me that Jesus is the same today, yesterday and forever and He still heals. I thought it would be encouraging to share David’s testimony with you today. The language is old fashioned but the meaning is the same. I hope you find it uplifting as I do.
“I was a strong healthy man all my days having experienced little trouble up to sixty years of age. One morning on the 15th September 1943, I rose to go to my work as usual. Arriving there, I fell very sick. I tried to work on but the sickness made me give up and start for home. I arrived home, my wife meeting me at the door. I was telling her of my feeling when I fell into her arms and the power immediately left the whole of my left side.
After I was taken in bed my first thoughts were of Jesus and of His healing power and I remembered that verse in the 11th Chapter of Mark’s gospel. “Therefore I say until you, whatever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them”. Instead of a sadness and depression following, a perfect peace and calm came to my heart, a peace that could only come from Jesus Christ my Lord and Saviour.
The next day the Doctor called and said I had taken a shock (Hemiplegia), paralysis of one side of the body and blood pressure. I was to be kept very quiet as it would be a long time before I would be able to go around again. In fact, I would not be able to work again. Many friends were praying that God in His great mercy and loving kindness would lay His healing hand upon me.
On November 30th, having been 11 weeks in bed and still praying for God’s healing touch; I continually kept repeating to myself these words -” God help me. Thou has said Lord in thy precious word 11th Chapter of Mark. All things whatsoever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye received them and ye shall have them”.
On this day the Pastor of the Pentecostal Assembly, Hope Street, Leith, with his wife called to see me. He had been asked by a friend of mine to call. After a little talk on the deep things of Christ and if I believed that Christ could heal today as when He was upon earth, I said yes, he laid his hands on me and prayed earnestly for my deliverance, calling on me in the Name of the Lord to rise and walk. This I did for about 6 yards into the kitchen and sat down on a chair. I felt that the Lord had touched me, for from that moment, I began to mend, praising God with a joy unspeakable.
I sat on the chair for over an hour and a half. As I rose to go back to bed it seemed as if the evil one was determined to crush me down on the floor, as I felt so weak and helpless, but I called on God to deliver me and take me back to bed the way He took me out and this He did.
Ever since then, I have went on gaining strength every day, the power coming gradually back to me. I have had no special treatment any further than up in the morning at nine o’clock attempting to improve my walking.
A month later the Doctor called. With astonishment he looked at me and said “you are up”. “Yes”, I said, “this is the work of the Lord”. “Well, I will tell you” said the Doctor “you are a marvel, really it is wonderful, your prayers have been heard and answered. I was delighted to hear Doctor say that my prayers had been answered. I do thank God for His wonderful touch to my body and enabling me to walk when the power was completely out of my leg, no life also in my arm and fingers. To God be all the glory.
Dear friends, people of faith are not moved by anything they see or hear, not puffed up, they live in meekness and grow in grace. The people of faith, said a great preacher, do not live in time, they are begun in eternity, they do not count on the things that are but rely on the things that are not. Faith is a restful realisation of the gracious and almighty presence of an eternal God. Divine power is laid hold of through believing prayers and by its means men are fundamentally changed, circumstances modified and miracles of grace wrought to the glory of God. May we ever follow the spiritual way, for spiritual results can only be obtained by spiritual methods.
Yes friends, the life of faith here below is a life of trial from first to last and that is no more or less with every believer. The promise had been given to Abraham that he would have a son, and it was many years before that promise was fulfilled, and yet it is said of him that against hope he believed in hope that he might become the father of many nations, and staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strong in faith giving glory to God. Now this faith was afterwards crowned, the promise was fulfilled and Isaac was born. He waited long, but he learned in a peculiar manner, the faithfulness of God to His promises.
Perhaps we may have to live some years to wait on the Lord, for some good which he intends to confer upon us. It does not matter how long we may have to wait, don’t grow weary in well doing, for you can rest assured that when it does come it was worth waiting for. God never lets you down, no matter how long you may be tried. If we could only remember that, at these burning moments of test and seek the face of Christ, we would hear Him say “Fear not, for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name, thou are mine.”
The severe trials which God sometimes sends are seldom of long duration, they are not only sent in wisdom and love but held in the same grip of love and wisdom. Life itself is short, and when on some emergency the Lord calls his child to suffer, we see with what tenderness the Lord comes to his relief. He never asks his child to stand more then he is able. Whatever portion of suffering may be allotted to us here, may we be enabled to say continually, not my will but thine be done O’ Lord, thus glorifying Him forever.” The end.
It inspires me that these words of testimony were written in 1943. Praise God for those who have travelled before us and encourage us to be strong in our faith and to glorify our Father in heaven.
It’s my #TestimonyTuesday post and I wanted to share part of my dad’s story. His full name was William Easton Third but everyone called him Bill. Dad was a true inspiration to me. He was born into a poor but happy home in Edinburgh. He lived in a tenement building in Leith which I understand today is a bit more of a gentrified area than it was back then. Dad came from a large family. There were 9 of them. How they all lived in 2 rooms is beyond me but they did. Dad said it was happy times. He loved the freedom of his childhood days.
Dad’s experience of God’s healing power in his life was different to mine. We are all unique and no-one’s story is exactly the same. Every story has value and we all have something to share. This is why I believe in the power of testimony.
Your story with its uniqueness of relationship with God the Father, Jesus the Son and Holy Spirit will speak to someone.
I believe that God truly knows what is best for each one of us and learning to surrender to him and trusting God when things don’t go according to our plans is a valuable life lesson. Dad’s experiences helped me to understand and see that God’s grace is sufficient for us and how God gives us the grace and strength we need to hold on and persevere in times of testing and suffering.
My Dad, Bill was quite a character. He was a passionate Christian who loved to share the gospel with everyone he met. He was full of energy, never still and very engaging..a cheeky chappie as they say and loved to talk. He could have made a living by talking…He was a big supporter of many Christian ministries and particularly loved T L Osborn, Oral Roberts, Billy Graham, Luis Palau and Reinhard Bonnke.
Dad worked hard. He worked the night shift in a factory and sometimes I would hardly see him. I’d be going out to school and he’d be coming in from work. He had big plans though for when he eventually retired. He was going to take Mum travelling in one of those big Winnebagos. This prompted much laughter in our family as Dad was well known for getting lost and being quite incapable of reading a map. Mum wasn’t much better either so I had quickly learnt to become chief navigator on our family holidays from a young age.
However, sadly those plans were not meant to be. Dad retired at 60 but then almost immediately suffered a massive stroke which rendered him paralysed down one side of his body. He was confined to a wheelchair. We would have loved him to have been miraculously healed but those prayers were not answered. We were grateful though to have him still with us. Dad could still laugh and joke and he still continued to share the gospel. In hospital he had a poster by his bed of Jesus standing beside the empty tomb. I don’t know what happened to him when he was so ill in hospital and unconscious but when he recovered, he could not talk about Jesus without being moved to tears and tell people how much he loved Jesus. It was very humbling to see.
Further tragedy was to strike not long after though when Dad suffered another major stroke. This time it was on the other side of his brain and took his speech. He could no longer talk as he did. It was very hard to see him struggle to express himself. He could utter sounds which we started to learn to interpret and we could still understand some words, especially when he was saying “Jesus”.
During this time, Dad could have become embittered and angry at his lot and how his life had turned out, it wasn’t what he planned, but he didn’t. He faithfully attended church and loved watching and listening to great preachers. He was still grateful to God and he knew that there were also many people who were worse off and suffering much more than him.
He was always a big supporter of the Barnabus Fund and taught us that it was important to support fellow believers who were being persecuted and suffering greatly for their faith in other nations.
Dad had lost his independence and all ability to look after himself and was totally reliant on my Mum, my brother and his carers to do everything for him, getting him up, washing, dressing and even feeding. He had limited movement in his right arm but was very weak. He sometimes got frustrated when we couldn’t understand him but he maintained his cheerfulness and was able to cope with what had happened to him. It was only through God’s grace operating in his life that I believe enabled him to be like that. He was a testimony to me and others of God’s grace and peace in action.
Although, Dad was never fully physically healed, he did experience times of God’s healing in his body. One time, I recall was when he was taken extremely ill with pneumonia and was in the hospital. We were called to his bedside because the doctors did not think he would survive the Pneumonia. The chief registrar and doctor stood at the bottom of his bed and it was the first time that I had heard what is called the “death rattle”. It’s the most horrible sound of someone struggling to breathe and effectively taking their lasts breaths.
I had called my friends from the hospital to pray and I had asked God to take Dad if it was his time but if not, then to restore him to us. It was all I could think to ask God for at that time. We had the comfort as a Christian family to know that Dad would go to be with his Lord Jesus, but truthfully I didn’t want to let him go. He was my Dad and a big influence in my life. I wasn’t ready to say goodbye yet.
As we all waited by his bed, Dad suddenly stirred and pointed to the corner of the room. We couldn’t see anything but I believe that he could see something in the spiritual realm. They say the veil into the spiritual realm is thin at such times. I felt prompted to tell Dad that it wasn’t his time to go. He should tell whoever was there that he wasn’t ready to go with them. I can’t explain what happened next but Dad seemed to relax and continued on breathing but his breathing started to change. It became quieter and more regular. His face changed and was more relaxed.
After a while of this, the Registrar stated that he didn’t think Dad was going to die after all that day and they would come back later!! Praise God, Dad recovered and lived for many more years after that day.
Our appointed times are truly in God’s hands. God as our Heavenly Father loves us much more than we can understand. I thank God that my earthly father is now safe in Father God’s care. Dad went to be with the Lord in 2006. I’m sure Bill will have lots to tell me one day when we meet again which we surely will.
Dad always said he was looking forward to getting to heaven. One thing he wanted to do was meet the Apostle Paul. He had lots of questions for him…it makes me smile to think of my Dad chewing the ear off the Apostle Paul..one of his great bible heroes. Bless him.
Dad’s favourite scripture was Psalm 84: It was the reading at his funeral. His favourite verse was:
A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God than live the good life in the homes of the wicked. Psalm 84:10
Dad’s enjoying eternity in God’s courts now and I’m sure he has never been happier.
“We will not hide them from their children, Telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.” Psalm 78:4
Todays testimony is slightly different. It’s of a time when the Lord taught me that I could trust in Him because He knows everything. I only see in part but God sees the whole picture and holds the future in His hands.
I hope this testimony is a blessing and encouragement to anybody today who has experienced or is experiencing difficult times. God loves you. Place your trust in His unfailing love. He is faithful throughout all generations.
There are times when although we pray for healing we or the other person are not physically healed. It is those times when we hold fast to our trust in God, strengthened and comforted by Him, trusting in His great love for us to take us through such times of grief and sorrow. These times can be disappointing to us especially when we believe healing will take place. We can struggle to understand why not. I have experienced these times myself. However, if we let disappointment have a place in our hearts and take root then it can produce resentment, bitterness, envy, unbelief and other unhealthy emotions.
I was pregnant and everything was fine until I started to have bleeding and stomach cramps. I knew something was wrong. I went to the hospital and after having an ultrasound scan the Doctor came and told me that there was no heartbeat detected anymore and I must have miscarried. As the Doctor spoke, I heard a voice so clearly that it was almost audible saying to me “He’s mistaken”.
I knew this was the Lord speaking to me. His voice was so clear, I felt compelled to act. I asked the Doctor if there was a possibility that he could be wrong. The Doctor said No he didn’t think so but agreed to speak to the Consultant in charge. He returned to say he was 99% sure that I had miscarried but the only way to be 100% sure was by a series of blood tests taken over a couple of days. If the hormone levels in my blood kept rising then there was still a continuing pregnancy. I asked if I could have the blood tests. I could tell the Doctor thought it was a waste of time but he agreed.
Some days later on the Saturday (after having the blood tests) I was sitting at the breakfast table when I received a call from the hospital. It was a doctor saying the Consultant had just read my notes and I must come to the hospital immediately. My hormone levels were rising so there was a continuing pregnancy. It was an emergency.
I was shocked but the doctor started asking me lots of questions. How was I? Did I have a stiff neck (no), I mustn’t eat anything (whoops just had my breakfast) and I needed to come to the hospital right now. I explained that I couldn’t come immediately as my husband was away on work and I didn’t have anyone to look after my daughter who was about 2 at the time. The Doctor was insistent though that I got someone around and came straight away. Not so easy in those days where few people had mobile phones. I couldn’t get hold of my husband but managed to get my sister in law who came and took me to hospital.
I was taken straight down for emergency surgery. I had no idea what was happening other than they were very worried. When I woke up from the surgery I discovered that I had an ectopic pregnancy (the pregnancy is outside the womb) and because of this they had no choice but to remove the fallopian tube.
I was truly devastated as I really believed that I was going to have this baby. I had already had one miscarriage before and I was anxious that I wouldn’t be able to have more children especially now I only had one Fallopian tube.
However, later as I spent time with God praying things through I came to realise that God had probably saved my life. Ectopic pregnancies can be life threatening. I don’t know what could have happened if the ectopic pregnancy had not been found in time especially as the Doctors had thought I had miscarried.
If I had not listened to the Holy Spirit and asked the Doctor to run the blood tests then the Consultant would not have seen my notes. I also found out when I was in hospital recovering, that the Consultant wasn’t due to be in that Saturday – he had just popped into the hospital and happened to see my test results. The Consultant knew from experience that it was likely to be an ectopic pregnancy and because of the length of time passed it could burst at any time. He was the one who insisted I was brought in and he scheduled the surgery for me that same day. Praise God.
People could say that all of this was just a coincidence but I believe it was God who prompted the Consultant to go to the hospital that day. God had his hand on the whole situation.
Even though this was a time of pain and sorrow for my husband and myself, I did later become pregnant again (even with one Fallopian tube- hallelujah) and was blessed with another child. She is 19 now. I can truly say that God is faithful. He is good – all the time.
I hope today’s testimony will encourage all the Sunday School and Youth Workers out there who have faithfully served your churches and communities over the years.
I recently sent an email to Alan Kearns from Devotional Treasures because he mentioned in a post that he attended Glenrothes Baptist Church in Fife. Now I live hundreds of miles away in the West Midlands in England and I’ve never met Alan. We connected on WordPress but the church Alan mentioned was familiar to me. Coincidence….I don’t think so. God has a way of connecting believers together over miles and years.
Glenrothes Baptist Church was the first Sunday School that I ever attended when my family lived for a time in Scotland.
I still have the little bible given to me on 25 January 1976 by the Glenrothes Baptist Church Sunday School. It has travelled with me and was the first Bible ever given to me. I wouldn’t part with it as I gave my life to Jesus in that summer of 1976. I was 9 years old.
That gift of a bible was a seed and I’m very grateful for it. I’m not sure if the fellowship at Glenrothes is the same now but I thank the Lord for the ministry of believers in Glenrothes. God knows the other seeds which have been sown by them in good soil and produced fruit for the Kingdom and by other faithful Sunday School Teachers and Youth Workers. Young people have receptive hearts and your labours are not in vain.
My bible is very battered now as you can see and it has been stuck together with sellotape. It is very old though now.
So I just want to thank all the wonderful people who serve as youth leaders and Sunday School Teachers. The seeds you have sown over the years have not been wasted. I am sure that there are lots of believers just like me who had the first foundations of faith in Jesus laid at Sunday School. I’m forever grateful. Thank you.
Morning friends, My testimony today is about my recent travelling “travails” and how God answered our “SOS” prayers for help.
You might recall that in early January, my husband and I travelled to Rome to see my youngest daughter who had been working as an Au Pair for 3 months.
Travelling anywhere at that time with the Omicron Covid variant so rampant was no mean feat and international travel took everything to the next level of complication.
There were so many Covid tests to be taken, results uploaded, locator forms to be completed, vaccination status passports to be available (green passports), temperature checks and also special face masks had to be obtained to be worn in Italy.
Well we managed to get everything required in place and set off very early (4.00 a.m.) in the morning to Heathrow Airport about a 2.5 hour journey away to catch our plane.
Everything was going fine until our car suddenly started to misbehave. It started to jerk as if the engine was cutting in and out and then suddenly the dashboard lit up like a Christmas tree and a warning message flashed up telling us to stop the car. That was a bit difficult in the middle lane of the motorway at speed but worse was to come the engine started to lose power and our speed dropped dramatically. The motorway was not busy so my husband managed to get the car to the hard shoulder safely.
We had never broken down before and were a bit lost as to what to do. We knew that if the car didn’t start we would miss our flight. My husband tried starting the car again a few times, nothing completely dead. I said out loud “Lord we need to get to the airport and we need this car to work. Help us”. My husband said “Yes”. He’s a man of few words but that was all that was needed. At that moment the Lord quickened to me about the Prayer of Agreement -the bible verses that where two or three agree on earth concerning a thing it will be done. My husband agreed with me and I felt the Lord say that He too agreed with us. There were three of us in agreement that the car needed to work.
We decided to get out of the car. Lock the doors and wait a couple of minutes. When we got back in the car my husband decided to switch off the automatic engine controls and revert to manual mode. He tried the engine again and it started. Praise God.
We resumed our journey but our difficulties hadn’t finished. The car was clearly not right but it was going. I kept praying the Lord would get us to Heathrow in time for the flight and the car would not break down again. However, another light started flashing on the dashboard. By now most of the warning lights were on. This time it was a tyre warning light, telling us we had a flat tyre and were losing pressure. My husband checked and yes, the pressure had fallen on the rear inside tyre. We prayed that it was not a puncture and that the pressure would stabilise. Praise God it did.
We made it to the airport safely and our flight. I don’t think I’ve ever been so glad to get out of a car.
I thank God that He heard our SOS prayers and answered. Nothing is too small for God to be concerned with for us. When things go wrong and unexpected things occur, I am grateful that I have God to turn to. He is an ever present help in times of trouble. Amen.
Today’s testimony I am sharing with you is available on this YouTube link from our church service on Sunday. It is a powerful testimony from our dear brother, Rob Giles. Rob has agreed to me sharing the link to his testimony with you. Rob was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this last week. I encourage you to listen to Rob share how every step in these difficult circumstances, God has been with him and given him a song. He has woken in the night or early hours to a worship song going over in his mind. He calls them Songs in the Night.
I know that Rob’s testimony will bless you and especially the words of the song that he sings for all of us. He knows that there will be difficult times ahead but that God will be with him through it all. Rob talks about moving forward and chasing down what he calls the Elixir of Life, through worship of God, true fellowship with each other and Jesus who is the living water.
The second line of his song says “my soul thirsts for you in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water” Psalm 63.
Rob’s testimony starts at about 9 minutes into the service so you can fast forward to find it. I know you will be encouraged and blessed by it. It is very powerful and moving.
Morning all, my testimony today is slightly different. It’s about a time in my life when the Lord taught me a lesson about obedience and timing. His perfect timing. Not my timing.
I have a tendency either to jump straight in to something with both feet or go to the other extreme and procrastinate to the nth degree (even when I know it’s something the Lord wants me to do and it’s been confirmed to me).
So I was working at the time in a large law firm in the nearest city and I had been there for over 10 years. It was a very good position with great career prospects but I felt the Lord stirring my heart that it was time for a move. I started seeking the Lord in prayer. The Lord showed me that He wanted me to work in the local area where I was living. This would mean working at a much smaller law firm and leaving my current clients. It would be a big change in lots of ways.
The Lord gave me the name of the law firm where a position would be opened up for me. I knew of the firm by name but nothing else about them. I decided being me to jump straight in. I wrote to the law firm applying for a job…nothing, not a response or acknowledgment of my letter. I tried calling and leaving a message..nothing. I was really disappointed to say the least because I was convinced this move was of God.
Anyway, I eventually did what I should have done sooner. I went back to the Lord in prayer and sought Him. What had I got wrong. The Lord’s answer was simple. I hadn’t asked the Lord about His timing. I had presumed it was a “now” word but I should have waited on the Lord for His perfect timing. I had been presumptuous. I repented that I had run ahead and tried to open the door in my timing and in my strength. Praise God that His mercies are new every morning.
Then over 12 months later, one day unexpectedly I hear the Lord say in my spirit “Now is the time. I have opened the door”. I receive a phone call out of the blue from a commercial agent telling me this law firm is looking for another lawyer and they had recommended me. So I write the same letter of application again and post it. This time as the Lord has prompted me. The next morning I receive another phone call and it’s the head of the department confirming that they had received my letter and a position had opened up. Could I come to their offices that week to see them for an interview. You can guess where this is going…yes, I got the job. Praise God.
I hope this small story is an encouragement to you. The Lord is faithful and long suffering, great in mercy and He really does know best. God knows the plans He has for you. He knows the perfect timing for those doors of opportunity to be opened for His plans and purposes to be fulfilled.
I was struck the other day by these bible verses in Exodus. The Lord had promised the Israelites that He would increase their territory but it would not happen all at once because they would not be able to handle it all at once. Little by little was the key.
“I will not drive them out from before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the beasts of the field become too numerous for you. Little by little I will drive them out from before you, until you have increased, and you inherit the land.” Exodus 23:29-30
I think this could be a word for someone reading. Little by Little. The Lord has given you a vision, ministry or role but you won’t possess it straight away because it would be too big for you initially. Little by little the Lord will open things up for you so as you grow and mature you will be fully prepared for the work He has for you to do.
That job the Lord moved me into was a springboard for me then to move to another firm and progress over time into a senior leadership role. I learnt so much along the way which has prepared me for the work the Lord has called me to do now and I believe in the future.