It was Texas in blustery February. You cannot get dressed without checking out the thermometer because it could be 60 or 30. You'd have no clue from one day to the next. The quip was "if you don't like the weather, stick around, tomorrow it could be totally different"
I had been "babysitting" a trailer for friends who were gone on a field trip (short term missions) and out of the staff room at the girls' dorm and just came back last night. I had forgotten my outdoor thermometer at the trailer and had to get it on my lunch hour. Couldn't live without that!
During the lunch hour, I'd grab the food served and go walking with or without a friend, doing some praying. Today it was me and the thermometer. I grabbed it quickly thinking it was sort of funny how much I depended on that little piece of metal and glass. Just then a car honked behind me.
"Hey, what are you doing?" It was Mick in his "he-she" as he affectionately called his old El Camino.
"Oh, left my thermometer and can't survive too long without that!"
"I was wondering if you'd like to go to a movie Friday, maybe we could do dinner first.?"
A bazillion thoughts were running through my mind. I hadn't dated is over 14 years and certainly hadn't gone out with anyone since I became a Christian and this was Mick, the one with the TESTIMONY.
I remembered back to the time my big sister in the Lord had driven me back to Twin Oaks Ranch from California. She took one look at Mick, the first person we saw as we drove on base, and said "He looks like a nice young man for you, how about him?"
This was my friend Betty, who had never talked to me about a man in the same breath with inferring a relationship in all the years I'd known her. Surely she couldn't be saying."WHAT do you mean Betty? Are you saying what I think you are? He is trouble with a capital T.."
I should have recalled that my unassuming Sister had been quietly prophetic in my life over and over. She was the reason I was at Youth With a Mission in the first place through some things she said that I decided to pray about.
Anyhow, I had no clue what the Lord was up to but was beginning to get a hint.
"Well, you pick the movie but know this. I am very suggestible if there is violence I go to sleep and dream violence all night, same way with a bunch of other topics also, I am thinking if it needs parental guidance then maybe I shouldn't be looking at it either. SO pray and then pick the movie."
I had my thermometer and went back to work in the front office. A good friend, Jan, asked about my lunch. I told her I was going out with Mick that Friday and that I was nervous. I must have seemed rattled too. "What if he tries to kiss me? What if he doesn't understand where I am coming from? Jan, he has a son from a relationship before he came to the Lord. What if" It was then I felt that "still small voice" saying "Marijo, you are really underestimating the gentleman".
Jan and I took some time and prayed together giving me, Mick and Friday to the Lord.
We had dinner at a Chinese restaurant that we ended up going to the night we got engaged but that is getting WAY ahead of my story. Peter and Anderson waited on us the first night and the engagement night!
We ended up at an interesting movie, one with many scenes from India the cinematography was outstanding. We dialoged about how sad it was that the main characters didn't know the Lord, how bleak and hopeless it made their lives.
The Lord was totally correct, I had really underestimated the gentleman. He ended up touching my elbow to help my up the steps into the dorm. Hum, must not have escaped his notice that I was somewhat of a klutz.
OK, Lord, that was kind of fun. Not a bad evening at all for the two of us in our 30s who have "been there and done that" and are starting over in You. This is my very first date in the 10 years that I have known You, Jesus and it was more than all right! THANK YOU!
In reflective moments, I often wonder how we as Christians can go to movies or watch things of TV calling them "entertainment" when they were the very things that sent Jesus to the cross he died for our sins; fornication, stealing, violence against another person etc. How can it be "entertaining" then to go and partake of those very things through watching and supporting those who make money from this "media"? This leads to conviction to pick a good and wholesome movie. Granted they are few and far between but there really are other fun things to do also. Shortly after Mick and I became aware that the Lord was indication something other than "friendship" for our relationship he gave his roommate his TV. He told me "we have both been married before, I think we need to learn how to really communicate with each other, don't you? I don't think having a TV is going to help that at all." What a blessing this man was to me!
Freedom in Christ
1It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
Freedom is the power to do what you ought to do.
There is no greater slavery in the world than immoral/illicit sexuality.
God created sexual relationships and the right way to use those relationships.
Genesis 2:20 (New International Version)
20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.
God "made" man but "built" woman He is aware of the difference.
The container will become beautiful with Jesus inside even though she/he might be - by world's estimation - an "ugly" woman/man.
My value as a person is not how I LOOK, it is not based on physical appearance.
God's value system is based upon character.
Enslavement to sex drive leads to dishonesty. The flesh of the Godliest saint on earth is no more dependable than that of the vilest sinner.
Our flesh hates Jesus.
Deuteronomy 32:42 (New International Version)
42 I will make my arrows drunk with blood, while my sword devours flesh: the blood of the slain and the captives, the heads of the enemy leaders.
The Word of God/sword devours the flesh. If we get into the Bible and read, study, chew and absorb it has an effect on our "flesh", our "carnal man". Our spirit is built up and the flesh is destroyed what a wonderful situation. Destruction of the part of me that wars against the spirit and the Holy Spirit, I NEED this so very much. So, I need to make time and take time to live in the Word of God. Makes sense to me! Mick and I need to be is God's Word together.
Psalm 119:9-11 (New International Version)
9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word. 10 I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands.11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.
So get in the Word or your flesh takes charge over your spirit.
Bible study is based on notes taken from a lecture series called Sex and Dating by Dale Crall and is used with his permission.
There are many more articles in this Outrageous series...
My blog is: http://myincrediblelord.blogspot.com/
(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.
Saved by His grace in 1974, from 9 years of professing atheism into His loving arms. RN for 23 years, missionary with YWAM then statistical analyst for Every Home for Christ over 9 years. Living with my husband in the middle of a mountain meadow. GRIN! Wanting to spread the good news
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