Chuck Colson told the story of a group of American prisoners of war during the Second World War, who were made to do hard labor in a prison camp. Each had a shovel and would dig all day, then come in and give an account of his tool in the evening. One evening 20 prisoners were lined up by the guard and the shovels were counted. The guard counted nineteen shovels and turned in rage on the 20 prisoners demanding to know which one did not bring his shovel back. No one responded. The guard took out his gun and said that he would shoot five men if the guilty prisoner did not step forward. After a moment of tense silence, a 19-year-old soldier—stepped forward with his head bowed down. The guard grabbed him, took him to the side and shot him in the head, and turned to warn the others that they better be more careful than he was. When he left, the men counted the shovels and there were 20. The guard had miscounted. And the boy had given his life for his friends. I reread this tonight on John Pipers site. This young boys life was not over, like Jesus. He had his whole life in front of him, college, maybe a career in the service, a family but yet he gave it all. Jesus had 3 years into ministry. His whole life in front of Him. But yet He laid it all down for the sake of us. To save us. To bring us into intimate relationship with the Father, Jesus and the Spirit.
As I have told you so many times, I know, you are tired of hearing it, I have been dead for 17 years. Well I am no longer dead. I am very much alive. I have this life of faith God has given me and I am trying to learn how to live it. I want to take some counseling courses and learn myself how to counsel myself and my family. I have taken a back seat to my family for the last 20 years. I have decided tonight, no longer. I am going to teach my heart out to them. I don't know if they will receive it or not. I want to example a life of Christ, of repentance and faith to them. Not of getting it all right but one who God has been faithful to. To trust Him. To love others and God with all their hearts. It is going to take all my time. Please pray for me. This is a big step of faith for me. All I want to do is teach them Gods ways, that I know, and point them to Jesus. I have one year with my grandson before he goes to college, one year before my son gets married, one year before my daughter is brought home and one year with my daughter before her life changes drastically with the leaving of her son, one year before another daughter goes into christian counseling. This year my family is my priority. I do not want to preach. When they don't see Jesus in me and my love for them and Christ they will think I am preaching. I want to guide, lead and love with the love of Christ. I am scared. I can't say it depends on me. I know this is from the Lord speaking to me about what the next year of my life is to be. I have been praying what God wants me to do. I thought it was to be in ministry and serving the broken hearted but it is to pray and teach and show Jesus to my family in the most intense way the Love of God I have ever done anything in my life. Like Pauls example was to us and the church. I am here for such a time as this. It is so clear. I can see it now. I am going to eat dinner, travel to go see, write letters, ride horses, help clean and shop, and what ever it takes to connect with my children and their children.
I know I have told you how important my family and children were to me. I never will forget being on the cover of a magazine Todays Woman. I wrote all about putting my family right under God. Well I want to tell you I had a selfish love for my family. It was all I knew. I knew the right things to say but I was so selfish. I tried so very hard to be a good mother. I meet their physical needs and had them in church but I didn't listen to their hearts. I was so needy myself. I was such a mess looking for life in my husband and all the wrong places. I have prayed for years the Lord would restore the years the Locus have eaten. This is the year of restoration and healing. For my husband too. I am going to tell him what God has spoken to me and tell him how I need his help. We have to unite in this.
OK I have got it. God wants to reveal His plan to us. We don't have to guess. I know what I am doing and how I am going on a wing and a prayer. This is more than I can accomplish or do but not God. With Him all things are possible. Like I say I am excited and just nervous. I have never depended on God to do something through me so deliberate. I am hanging on but by faith I am going forward. It is a God size task and only He can do it. It takes a humble confidence and I have it. Not in me but in Jesus. Ya'll He is redeeming I say with tears in my eyes.. I just know it. I have prayed whatever it takes for my family to love the Lord with all their heart and depend on Him to do it. Just to not leave us. Well He has done it. Each one of my children, husband and me has gone through the fire and now He is going to bring beauty out of ashes I just feel Him saying it in my heart. It is the year of jubilee. Is that right? That was from the Lord to my heart and I looked it up and this is what it means. I did not know. It was God speaking to my heart this will be the year of Jubilee. a Jubilee year is mentioned to occur every fiftieth year, in which slaves and prisoners would be freed, debts would be forgiven and the mercies of God would be particularly manifest. If this is all He uses this mother to do in this life it will be enough. I will forever praise Him no matter what but I am going forward trusting I am hearing His voice. The results is to Him, in His hands and that is where I leave it. My son and one daughter is missing here so when you pray please remember them also.