Good morning guys! What’s up? We hope this finds all well, and everyone is enjoying good health. On our end, once again, life is good!
You know, I knew a man who really enjoyed going to the dog track. This guy just loved to go and watch those dern dogs run.
When he could find the time, he’d be at the track. He literally loved it.
Anyway, you all probably have little things that trigger you to think, “Dern, I oughta play that number,” or you see something that makes you think, “I oughta play the lotto tonight.”
Even things such as wearin the same shirt to your favorite college football team’s game, time after time, after time.
Cause in your heart, you feel by doing this…it brings you luck.
You ever done that, or something similar?
Well, back to my buddy’s story. He got up one morning, at 5 am, which was about an hour earlier than his normal wake up time…wide awake.
He decided to go ahead and get ready for work.
He grabs his socks and drawers, both of which were in the fifth drawer of his dresser, walked into his closet and grabbed a shirt, which by chance, happened to be hangin on the fifth hanger from the left.
He went down, took out the egg carton out of the fridge, and lo and behold, there were five eggs missing.
He left for work, and caught the first four lights, but upon approaching it, light number five stayed green, allowing him to keep on truckin.
He gets to work and realizes today is Friday, the fifth day of the work week, and sees that today just happens to be in the fifth month of the year as well.
Well, he begins to see the pattern, and can’t wait for the work day to end at five o’clock, so he can get to the dog track.
He leaves work immediately, gets to the track and unbelievably, you guessed it…he’s the fifth person in line to place his bets, the whole time thinking to himself…I’m playin…NUMBER 5!
He puts 500 hundred bucks on the fifth dog, in the fifth race, and sure enough…
The dog came in FIFTH!
You guys ever had days like that?
You’re going along, bein kicked “through the goalposts of life” bout half the time, struggling to make ends meet, workin your butt off, and suddenly, out of the blue, you feel as if something you see or hear, just clicks with you…
This just has to be an omen of some sort, and by following your instincts, this may just be the opportunity you needed to literally turn your life around, only to find…
You came in fifth???
It happens, doesn’t it?
I know in my own experience there have been many times I have gone through exactly that…comin in fifth.
I gotta tell ya’ll, I HATE to lose. There is NO second place, at least not in my book there ain’t. You win, or just as simply…you lose. That’s my mentality. I cain’t help it.
I have struggled so many times, lookin back now, and I have to tell you, there have been many failures in my life, and from these experiences I too have felt as if…good night, what am I doin wrong here?
Losing Deb, for what seemed like far too long, whatever I attempted, whatever project I started, whatever I tried to help ease the pain over her loss, I kept comin in fifth.
I couldn’t focus on anything.
By now, God had come into my life, but this was all new to me. I could feel His love. I knew without a doubt that this was all good and a major upside was taking place in my life, but dad-gum…it still seemed as if I was stuck in fifth place.
This continued up until just a little over a month or so ago.
This post today, although using Deb’s loss as an example of my inability to focus, is not about Deb.
Today’s post pertains to any circumstance you may find yourself in that literally deals you a bad hand.
The loss of your job, your seeming inability to communicate with your kids, or a friend, or your spouse anymore.
Then one Sunday, “Preacher Charlie” was speaking on trusting God.
He spoke of a simple prayer that he used when things seemed they were taking a turn for the worse, and through this, he was having a major problem focusing on the tasks ahead that would be needed to…turn his life back around.
He shared with us that he’d sat down and spoken with God about this dilemma he was facing and told God that, “Charlie is done Lord. I cannot overcome the adversity in my life without some help…YOUR help.”
“Without you’re taking control of my life, things will only continue to spiral out of control, again, Charlie’s done. So please Lord, step into my life, fill me with the Holy Spirit and let me TRUST YOU in all things. ONLY You, can make this right.”
He couldn’t have hit me over the head with a sledgehammer and made his point any clearer.
Once again, Dub was attempting to grab the bull by the horns, and force things to just…turnaround.
Basically, just a me, me, me attitude. I controlled my life. I made things happen. I had the ability to do any and everything I needed to do, shoot, I’d done it all my life, right?
I understood after listening to “Preacher Charlie,” that I WASN’T the ONE controlling my life…it was GOD. All the good things that take place in your life are from Him…not you or I.
Of course we have that “other fellow” to contend with as well, and boy, oh boy, he’ll test your faith!
Just recently, that guy tested me big time, but you know what, I actually handled it pretty well, and I gotta say, I was quite proud of the way it was handled.
BUT, without God in my life, this would not have happened.
I’m coming to realize, more and more, that if you’d just trust God, and let God run your life, good things happen. I personally can attest to this.
I ask God daily anymore to show me the way. Let me learn to trust You more and more, and in all honesty…my life is really beginning to get back on track.
This is real folks…
I’ve seen God work.
Deb was a fine example of someone walking with God, talking with God, and showing others, myself included, the strength bestowed by God that enables you to face adversity, even a “death sentence,” with a smile on your face, and one in your heart!
But you know, throughout Deb’s journey, she understood that although, and she told me this in our swing, actually the last time we sat in our swing together, the hardest thing she faced…was leaving her family.
This was the only thing that she would regret.
She also told me that she KNEW…she KNEW…where she was going, and that she was ready, if this was God’s wishes. Deb was in reality, ready to begin her life with God…in earnest.
I have to tell you all how very fortunate I was to have been around someone like Deb. A finer example of God being involved in someone’s life I could never imagine.
I’ll always love her…
Acts and Isaiah
There’s a scripture, Acts 20:22-24, that reminds me of Deb, and the faith she exhibited throughout her struggle with cancer, not only to me, but anyone who came into contact with her.
“And now I am bound by the spirit to go to Jerusalem. I don’t know what waits me, except that the Holy Spirit tells me in city after city that jail and suffering lie ahead.”
But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus-the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.”
Isaiah 12:2 states…
“See, God has come to save me.
I will TRUST in Him and not be afraid.”
I’ve also seen firsthand how God will put people into your lives, and to all my friends out there who cared about an “ole red neck” enough to talk with me about God, and the difference He’s made in their own lives, I’d just like to thank you all one more time.
I’m indebted to each of you!
I’m going to start closing this out by asking you guys a question or two?
Does life seem as if you’re missing out on something?
Do you feel as if you’re trying as hard as you possibly can, but things just seem to not be workin out for you in many instances, or at least not as how you might have imagined?
Does it seem as if no matter what you touch, you always end up… “comin in fifth?”
Then why not ask for God to come into your own lives?
I have a friend who works with us from time to time…
Dale doesn’t believe in God, and would tell you this quite plainly. I mean literally, he does NOT believe in God…or, at least he didn’t. But just here recently this is starting to turn.
He has been around me for a few years now, and has witnessed and experienced Dub…prior to God coming into my life.
He saw Deb throughout her battle with cancer, even near the very end. He heard me describe the morning before her passing, of Deb, after getting to the point where our talks together has ceased, on account of her time drawing to a close, and she’d lost her ability to even turn over in bed, I witnessed something…something very profound.
I SAW, with my own eyes, Deb raise up in bed, reaching out with her arms outstretched, her eyes wide open, which hadn’t been the case for the last couple days, talking excitedly, although inaudible to me, to something that it was quite evident she was seeing.
Our dog Cheyenne, lying at the foot of her bed was just growling so very softly, as if only makin me aware that yes…something WAS in our room.
Deb did this three times that I’m guessing happened in a five minute time span.
I saw this, and I KNEW something was there, but something that only she knew what was actually taking place.
Dale listened intently to this story, and started asking me, and Bob who works with us too, a little about God.
Yesterday, he again brought up the subject of God.
It seems he’d spoken with a lady the night before, and she too had spoken about God to him. It was obvious it had touched him, and perked his interest on this subject once more.
He asked me yesterday morning, “Do you really believe…this is real?”
I replied that yes sir, it undoubtedly IS real, and spoke with him about God a little more.
I see, little by little, God beginning to work in Dale’s life, and to be quite honest with you…it makes me feel good.
God does work in mysterious ways. I too, can vouch for this.
So, finishing up here today, if you too would like for God to come into your life, you only need to ask. I strongly suggest also finding friends or attending a church where you can hear firsthand others testimonial of how God plays a role in their lives.
Read the Bible, this, maybe more than anything else, has helped me in beginning to grasp, if only a little, more and more of what this whole “walk with God” is all about.
Every answer to every question you may have…is there.
After all, it’s God’s Word!
Remember, and this from Isaiah once more, 40:28-31…
“Have you never heard?
Have you never understood?
The Lord is the Everlasting God,
The creator of ALL the earth.
He never grows weak or weary.
No one can measure the depths of His understanding.
He gives power to the weak
And strength to the powerless.
Even youths will become weak and tired,
And young men will fall in exhaustion.
But those who TRUST in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar on high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.”
You guys have a great day, and God Bless!
Please be sure to keep that smile on your face, and one in your heart!
I guarantee you, there’s one very special lady looking down on us all, who enjoys nothing more than seeing exactly that!
Dub and Deb