The word God gave me to meditate on this year is Jesus. Jesus my Savior, my Healer, my Provider, my Protector. There is amazing power in the name of Jesus! Yesterday my first connection with Jesus was brought to mind when an old friend and her husband came by for a visit. As kids, Lana and I had attended the same Lutheran church and schools. We saw each other periodically after high school, but kept in touch over the years. It was so nice to have such a long visit and reconnect with someone who has played such a pivotal role in my life.
I have known Lana since I was 11 years old, so we have a long history together! She and her mother took me under their wing when I was in fifth grade, and besides their gracious love, I enjoyed some good food and fellowship in their home. More importantly, when I was between the ages of 12 and 13, this dear friend spoke to me about asking Jesus into my heart.
I can still see us together in a recliner in the house of another friend. The two of us sitting close in a big overstuffed chair, speaking quietly about Jesus. She talked, I listened. She asked, and I responded, and unbeknown to me at the time, this conversation would have a powerful impact on my life.
We reminisced about it yesterday.........that moment together. As I mentioned, we were in the home of another friend, but we were in an environment that was not healthy. Around us God did not reign, commandments were willingly being broken, and lives were in chaos, but the Lord whispered in Lana's heart to ask me an important question....."Have you ever asked Jesus into your heart?".
She spoke, I listened.....I asked, and together we prayed. Then Jesus moved and my heart was filled with His amazing love.
I did not understand it totally nor did I feel anything at the time, but Jesus entered and a seed was planted. From that day forward, God was central in my life and I never wavered far from His Presence. There were still challenges, and just like all of you, I have had my share of difficulties, but Jesus took up residence and in His patience and infinite love we have walked hand in hand through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
She spoke, I listened....I asked and together we prayed.
Jesus our Savior. Jesus who heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Jesus who suffered and died for all sin, disease, brokenness. We thank you Jesus that You, as our Shepherd, will not forget the one.....that You want all to be part of Your Kingdom.
Lana, Roger, Joel and I had a wonderful time blessed by good food, tears, laughter, and prayer. We spoke....we listened....we asked questions.....we prayed! We are indeed rejoicing that old friends could join together in faith and friendship once again. Only God.