Mel: Beth certainly has become a good friend, I'm so glad that our kids are in school together and we have time to talk once in awhile. She seems to have some strange ideas about life sometimes but also has much peace hum, she is out working in her iris garden, maybe we will have time for coffee today. What in the world is going on with that truck of hers?
"Bethany, what is your new Tundra doing in the driveway with hay sticking out of the extended cab and the bed? I think I even saw some mice running around in the hay."
"Well, that Toyota owner's manual wanted me to change the oil a nasty job and use gasoline in the truck. I read that gasoline can cause fires and make a big mess. You know our neighbor, John Jamison? He raises quarter horses and has written a wonderful book about them and their care. I got his book and decided to try his suggestions on the Tundra."
"Beth, your Tundra is not a quarter horse. Tell me this doesn't have something to do with our conversation last week about owner's manuals?"
Melissa walked slowly around the pick-up truck shaking her head. "There ARE mice in there on your new leather seats!"
"Mel, the enemy of your life can come as an angel of light. Before there can be a counterfeit there has to be an original. Does it make sense that the one who put this truck together might have the best ideas for its care and maintenance? You were telling me about consulting a psychic for a kick and that it was no big deal. Well, I tossed the Toyota owner's manual and am using John's book to "feed and care for" the Tundra. Never mind that John didn't create the Tundra and is writing a book about horses. I don't LIKE the Toyota manual and want to do this my way."
"I can't believe you are letting MICE in your new truck they could ruin the seats and chew the wiring"
"I love you, my dear friend and think this makes a good visual.who is your owner, Mel, who made you? Does it make sense to seek the advice of a psychic or spiritualist or go to a palm reader for help? Besides there is only one mediator between man and God and that's Jesus. Let's go into the house for coffee while the kids are in school."
Mel: I remember the talk we had about electricity. You can't see if but that doesn't keep you from turning on the switch and expecting the lights to come on. Our lives would be pretty miserable without electricity. Yes, used incorrectly it can kill. And we talked about power sources and being plugged in to the right one. Hum, where IS Beth going with this one?
"Coffee sounds good, do you have any of that amaretto creamer? Beth, I am in control of my life and there are things that I, well, like to pick and choose and just see how that goes, know what I mean?"
Beth: She didn't know me years ago how can I communicate that I know all too well what she means. Actions have consequences and some of them are terrible to you and those you love. We have all broken God's heart and done things which have badly hurt ourselves and those we love. He has written a wonderful "owner's manual" for us with a bunch of promises in it. Man, they are sort of like gift certificates made out to us ready to use. He also has parameters to keep us safe and healthy. It isn't like he is a great cosmic kill joy in the sky He loves us and knows what makes us tick and what will destroy us too. That's one reason why He inspired the writing of His "owner's manual".
"Mel, I do know what you mean. Do you know that years ago I was into astrology, tarot cards and transcendental meditation? I found out that by doing some of these things I was opening the door to entities I had no idea about."
"Well, like electricity, there are other things that we can't see.."
"OK, I could agree with that but what are you saying, Beth?"
"There really is an unseen part of our life, our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. There are some things that we should not be messing with and things that we do that invite unwanted involvement."
"Now don't go getting all spooky with me, Beth!"
"Mel, we are back to that owner's manual again. God loves us, he wired us and made our personalities and, believe it or not, He has a purpose for us being here. SO does it make sense that He might have a few insights into how we should go about that perfect plan of His?"
"OK, I will give you that but it sounds so, so restrictive."
"When your Josh was a toddler did he ever run towards the street when a car was coming?"
"Oh, Beth, I can still remember one time in particular when I scooped him into my arms just in time. He was looking back over his shoulder giggling and running away from me thinking it was a big game. He had no idea that car was coming straight towards him." Mel was getting tense just thinking about how close of a call that was.
"Can you picture us as the toddlers and Jesus as our loving God scooping us up into His arms just in time?" Beth reached over to gently touch her friend's arm.
Several days later:
Ding dong. "Hey, Beth, what happened to the Tundra, not a mouse house anymore?"Mel grinned as she opened the door to go into the house.
"Hey, come in coffee's on and the amaretto creamer is out on the countertop, good to see you! How did Josh do in the soccer game Friday, Melissa?"
"Well ,he's had better nights but he did make one goal"
"It is so exciting to see those guys play, isn't it? Micah's team lost but they are getting better each game."
"Beth, I have been thinking about what you said about power sources, you know, where we get our power from. It reminded me of when we were in Germany and I tried to use my hair dryer. Even with the supposedly right converter, what a mess that was.I was plugged into a power source but it sure wasn't the right one."
"Interesting, Mel, guess that brings us right back to what we were talking about regarding the Owner's Manual."
"Yeah, and I am beginning to see why it would be not really very smart to go to a psychic or card reader to find out about your future. If God created me and put all my interesting parts together and has a plan. Why would I want to go to someone I don't even know for advice about my life? I was doing a bit of reading in your Owner's Manual and found something that fits here, I think. It is in Isaiah 8:19-22 (New International Version "19 When men tell you to consult mediums and spiritualists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? 20 To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn. 21 Distressed and hungry, they will roam through the land; when they are famished, they will become enraged and, looking upward, will curse their king and their God. 22 Then they will look toward the earth and see only distress and darkness and fearful gloom, and they will be thrust into utter darkness." I wrote it down because I wanted to ask if this is what you were talking about last week?"
"Mel, that is a great passage for what we were discussing, I'm glad you wrote it down! God knows us so well, He also knows the unseen things we shouldn't be dabbling with. Some things are not as they appear to be. This takes us back to the power source. Basically, what power source is behind some of the seemingly innocent things out there for us to pursue?"
"I was thinking about that too, what we talked about regarding electricity and not seeing it but it was there and could be wonderful and it could also kill us if we didn't use it properly. I have learned enough to know that besides the world we see and function in there is, well, a spiritual world. When we talked about satan coming like an angel of light.I was thinking about that."
"What thoughts did you have?"
"Does that mean that he can appear as something or someone good, yet really be trying to pull us in with lies and deception or maybe that he appears to be something wonderful to drag us in?"
"I sure have found that to be true in several ways. Little things that just seem like games; tarot cards, Ouija boards, seeing a fortune teller, consulting a psychic they can all seem like something to do at the fair or a party game but you can be opening the door to entities you never dreamed were there or were interested in you. They are very real and not what they are posing to be."
"Do you think that is why I began having nightmares after going to that psychic? I just did it as a kick, for something to do with Zach when we were in New York City for the afternoon. I sure didn't mean anything by it but those awful nightmares began right after that."
"You might have a point there would you like to pray about that now?"
"Do you think I could get a good night's sleep again if we did pray, Beth?"
"Mel, there is so much to learn and Jesus wants us to be FREE. Have you asked Him to forgive you for the things you've done to break His heart and to be your savior and Lord?"
"Well, I thought that might be a direction I wanted to go but there were so many other things in life which seemed to be presenting "The Answer" guess I have gone down a few rabbit trails since I was at the point of praying to ask God, Jesus, to be my savior. I know I have made kind of a huge mess of my life."
"It isn't something to be done without thought, Melissa. Jesus is fully God and fully man he lived here among us and was sinless, that's why he could pay the penalty that I owed and that you owed. Something about the wages of sin is death."
"Yah, that's one payday I wouldn't mind missing.oh, Beth, my tears are like a faucet but they don't make me clean. Besides God, I have hurt so many I love by my words and actions; things I have done that were just flat out wrong."
"Mel, let's talk to the Lord about all of this."
The following week:
"Beth, how can I ask God to forgive me? I have broken His heart and those hearts of my family and friends I guess that's what sin is, right? Messing up and making bad choices and hurting everyone, even myself in the process"
"Melissa, we have all been there it is a matter of just talking to Jesus like we are talking right now. You don't need an appointment He is always ready and waiting to talk with you, you know. Just tell Him what is on your heart, those things you are sorry for and need forgiveness for and, well, talk to him like he was right here in the kitchen because He is."
With a muffled sob Mel began to talk to God "Jesus, I have made a real mess of things hurt my best friends and my marriage and I know I have broken your heart too with my choices. I shouldn't have gone to people seeking advice when I didn't even come to you. I have lied and called them "little white lies", those lies were not true and lies just the same. I have maneuvered things and people to get my way and hurt others in the process. I have been nasty to people at work for the same reason because I wanted what I wanted no matter what. Please forgive me, Jesus? I want to be new from inside out and start putting you first.."
"Wow, it is like a huge weight was just lifted off my shoulders Beth. I feel clean and how can I tell you? But, you already know don't you?"
"Mel, do you know how long I have waited for this day? How I have prayed that God would make himself real to you and be your best friend?" Beth walked around the table and gave Mel a really long hug.
"I had no idea I feel so calm and "feet on the floor" kind of well, solidness AND I want to dance! And Beth, there are questions, SO many questions."
"It's good you live so close and that when we put our boys on the school bus we can have some time together, isn't it?"
"Beth, how did you figure out which parts of the Bible you could take at face value and which parts were allegories or illustrations boy, do I have questions that need answers."
"I hear you, getting to know Jesus and the Bible are exciting I can't believe how many questions I still have but so many were initially answered just as I began to read. Things that never made sense before got clear and some scriptures seemed to just jump off the page for me."
"Beth, thanks doesn't begin to cover what I am sensing. And to think you had to let those mice get into your Toyota to make a point you sure do know how I learn, don't you? I have to run but can't wait until our next coffee time together."
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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