Monday, February 24, 2014

FROM ISAIAH... MY "WILLING AND OBEDIENT" STORY

ISAIAH 1:19-20

 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land;
 But if you refuse and rebel, you will be devoured by the sword. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken it.
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During the summer of 1970, while living in San Mateo, California, having been a Christian since April, 1966, and being obedient, the Lord truly broke into my life.  However, there was a difference, compared to what was anticipated in normal Christan ways.  I obeyed the Lord, if He laid something on me, because I knew I needed to do whatever was dropped in...but it usually didn't mean that I wasn't on alert, but frequently that I wasn't happy.  I still didn't consider the Lord as my Father, because my understanding of Fatherhood meant I had to be on alert all the time, and didn't expect to feel love, acceptance, or kindness from Him.

That summer, my spiritual Mom and Dad, John and Joyce Davis, were going to a retreat conference south of our area, and arranged for me and my daughter to be there for a night.  That was a real treat to be with so many special friends.

The main speaker, Bob Mumford, was quite funny, often, and talked a lot about the Isaiah Book.  I'd read the Bible, of course, but not been buried in the prophetic portion then, so learned much that weekend.

However, the Lord dropped one verse on me, and piled it into my heart over and over again.  I "numbered" it in my Bible...and have moved it forward from Bible to Bible all these years.  

This is it:

If you are (1) willing and (2) obedient...

The key is that, yes, as often as possible, I was obedient.  But I was still pretty frustrated with life in general, and "willing" wasn't part of my life.  This word got buried in me.  I could never ignore it ever again.

Did I change?  Not right away.  Tried, but kept getting so angry over things and so frustrated that, yes, I would obey, because I didn't want to get "spanked" too hard, but in so many ways my life might become more and more physically and emotionally dangerous, and I wasn't "willing".

Renae and Steve
In May, 1974, a miracle occurred.  Another story that would take too long to explain, but I and my two kids were quickly shifted from Redwood City, CA, to Omaha.  It truly was a miracle.  And in February, 1975, the Lord said a specific thing to me when a dear pastor/counselor friend had died.  The Lord said, "Now that I've taught you how to love and trust a man, I'll teach you how to love and trust Me."  And it immediately began, increased, and since then I've never seen Him as my "Boss" or "Controller"... but now as my Father Who loves His daughter.
 
Anyhow, it began at the retreat nearly 5 years earlier.  Didn't change the Isaiah process immediately, but the Lord tapped at me many times.  Then officially entered February, 39 years ago, quickly filled with "willingness"... and even though I'm filled with "willingness", I'm still filled with "obedience".  But, as the Word says, "If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land."

And, I'm showing the next verse, which is filled with seriousness.  "If you refuse and rebel...".  Well, I didn't want to get in trouble, since I had been rebellious from age 5 forward to 20, my heart was still intensely filled with anger and frustration.

Now, moment-by-moment, day-by-day, I am seeking the Lord's instructions and looking forward to serving, worshiping, and thanking Him.  I am truly "WILLING".
8 months after the Lord's breakthrough
My spiritual parents are in heaven ... and hopefully seeing my physical parents ... and I look forward to seeing all 4 of them.  Joyce and John entered my life quickly in May, 1969, and have never been forgotten.

And, have I been perfect?  NO!  Sinfulness breaks into me occasionally... but my Lord breaks into me with love, forgiveness, compassion, and a reminding/teaching form of how to break free.

Now the photos I shared are mostly my daughter at those ages, because reality will be shown.  Had nearly no photos of me in those years.  Renae was about 10 months old when at the retreat; the photo was taken in our apartment driveway at about that same age.  She was 5 years old when the Lord broke through my heart more deeply. The final photo was taken when she was just turning 6, and, believe me, my life had changed significantly.  Steve was 2.

And, just for fun, here's the newest of them. And I'm still worshiping, heart-filled to rejoice for my dear Heavenly Father.


3 comments:

Hazel Moon said...

Thank you for sharing with us here at “Tell Me a Story,” on becoming "willing" as well as "obedient." It is important to obey our Lord, but our attitude must be joyful and happy to be used by Him. (willing)

Janis Cox said...

Thanks for being willing to link to Sunday Stillness. Many blessings on your walk with the Lord,
Blessings
Janis www.janiscox.com

Floyd said...

I too struggled with being willing. Seems the strong willed of us take a bit more convincing… or spanking as you so well put it!

In time we realize that our instinct should be that of humility… and once it is all things in life seem to bring a peace and joy from the inside out.

Great story and wonderful pictures of your family. God bless you, sister.