GOD IT

GOD IT

Greetings. I want to share a very personal story with you all in the hopes that it will inspire you as much as the experience has for me.
I had just flown back to New York from England this past December, when I made a knee jerk decision to road trip it down to Florida to spend the holidays with my family. This would be the first time in God knows how many years that we would actually BE together FOR the holidays. I also really needed to be around my family as I was not in a good place, emotionally, and hadn’t been for quite some time. Now, those who know me, know me to be a very upbeat and fun person to be around, but I had begun to lose all of those qualities in what felt like record speed. Life was, kicking my ass so fierce and so fast, with one blow after another, than no sooner would I manage to pick myself up, I’d find myself right back down again. So much, (forgive me) S*** was happening in every aspect of my life that not only was I feeling it, I could almost SEE the “sedimentary” layers of it all around me as I was sinking deeper and deeper. This was, dare I say, The Perfect “Sh**” Storm and it showed no signs of letting up. I was PRAYING for a miracle, kids. Divine intervention. ANYTHING from anyWHERE or ONE to somehow show me that this storm WAS going to pass, and pass sooner than later.
January 1, 2015. I chose this symbolic 1st sunrise of the New Year to take a walk to the beach and have a word with God. I’m a huge believer in signs, having had so many wonderful experience with them over the years and on this morning, I DESPERATELY needed one. I was nearly broken, yet my Spirit was still having onto what was now the very tail and frayed bits of that “Hope Rope.” ( Oooh. Hope Rope.That’s a keeper. I like that one. Have I just coined that phrase? Sadly, I googled it and that would be a NOPE on the HOPE rope. Oh well. I’m still gonna use it. )
Anyway……I made my journey to the beach early that morning and I asked God. No wait. I didn’t ask. I PLEADED & INSISTED that He/She/It present a sign to me.TODAY. If anyone knew my pain and struggle, They did, and They knew what it was doing to me and had to know just how important this day was for me. Only a few days before, I drove to that very beach and sat it my car, feeling completely broken,lost,alone. All of the above and so much so, that I actually called a helpline…..and was put on hold. No BS. I can honestly say that at that moment of being put on hold, I shook my head and laughed. It was as if the Universe had given me that Cher slap in the movie, “Moonstruck”, telling me to “SNAP OUT OF IT!”
And so back to the morning of January 1. This was crunch time. I wanted a sign and I was DETERMINED. Now you would think that in my desperation, I would’ve taken anything that was possibly offered to me and be grateful , wouldn’t you? Not the case at all. I was very specific about my intentions. Like I said, it was crunch time and I knew exactly what I wanted as a sign.
No, I didn’t ask for buried treasures, although now that I think about it, I totally stopped the ball on that one. Damn!!! I asked for a shark’s tooth. That was what I wanted. I had spent an absolutely magical day with my Mom on the beach years ago and while we were walking, I had the sudden urge to say out loud, “I’m gonna find a shark’s tooth in the next 5 minutes!” Haven’t a clue why I said it and still don;t, but all that I know is that I found not one but 2 in those five minutes! And I vividly remember some guy walking by who said, “Looking for shark’s teeth? Good luck!” He about fell over when I showed him my finds!
I’ve been to many beaches since that day and was always hoping to find another and never did. Today HAD to be the day and I made my order quite clear. I wanted a tooth and not just any tooth. This particular one had to be bigger than the tow I already had. The color gray popped into my mind for whatever reason, so I insisted it had to have gray in it, as well. I also said ,(and by now, I was on a roll) that it had to be presented to me in such a way that I’d absolutely have no doubt from Whom/What it came from. I wanted a grand reveal. I wasn’t going to walk over it or pass it by. It was going to be there just as I had asked.
And so I set forth to find this tooth, talking to myself and God while sifting through shells, plants, as well as lazy people’s plastic garbage (WTF, peeps???!!! There are trash bins EVERYWHERE! Shame on you.), affirming to myself that I was going to find what I came here for. The more I looked, the more I felt in my heart of hearts that I WAS going to find it. I’m kept saying that I wasn’t leaving this beach until i did. I even went so far as to do my best DeNiro imitation from Cape Fear, saying, “Come out , come out, wherever you are.” No BS. I said it. Out Loud.
After 1/2 or so of crawling around on my now sand/shell/plastic-encrusted hands and knees in my search for that sign from above, I tool a bit of a break to realign my back and to feed the seabirds some popcorn I had brought for them. It was while I was feeding the birds that I made another declaration to God and I said, “You see me feeding these birds. When I am finished feeding them, You are going to show me what I came here for.” ( Again, No BS, folks. I am not embellishing this story one bit.)
The birds were fed. The food was gone. I then took about 6 or so random steps in the direction of the shoreline, and right there in front of me, with a natural rock seawall as a most fitting backdrop;surrounded by only freshly washed sand for at least a 2 yard radius (and this was a shelly/plant and plastic covered area of the beach) was a single shark’s tooth sticking out of the sand like a single birthday candle on a cake. It was and OMG moment and OH MY GOD was right. It was EXACTLY as I asked it to be. Bigger. Bit of gray. Presented in a grand manner and it really did take my breath away. I gasped. I laughed. I cried. All of the above.
I pulled that tooth (pun intended) out of the sand and held it up high and just kept saying , “Thank you. Thank you, GOD. Thank you so much, over and over for only They know how many times. I kissed the tooth and held it to my heart. I’m getting emotional at this moment just thinking it about again.

I could end the story right there, but just like those TV infomercials that say, “But Wait! There’s More!” And there really is more.
I had taken a photo of the tooth to send to a friend and wanted to show its size, so I grabbed something close by (in this case, it was quarter) and took the photo. It was only when I actually really looked at the photo, as I was making it my screensaver, that I saw something else that completely blew me away. Hand to heart, folks, this was a random placement of the quarter for size comparison only.
Check out the photo. See the tooth? pretty cool, eh? Now check out the quarter and see what it says…….

( I can resend the photo if you don’t already have it )

In God We Trust. And believe me, I DO.
That morning was a life saver and a game changer. It has changed everything for me and it has changed ME.
Ask and it will be given to you. Seek and you will find it. Knock and it will be opened to you.
How strange that even the first letter of each of those phrases spell out A-S-K.
I asked. I sought. I found. I put every ounce of my being into my intentions and, by George (again pun intended to the man on the quarter, I GOD IT !
I wear my tooth proudly and close to my heart, as a reminder of a day that needs no reminding from me. I was there and it was one of the best days through the messed days……Again, I so God It and I wish these kind of moments for each and every one of you.
Thank you.

Have You Met “You”?

Have You Met “You”?

To see a world in a grain of sand,

And  heaven in a wild flower,

Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,

And eternity in an hour.

William Blake – Auguries of Innocence

 

 

Have you met you?

 

For the past week I have wanted to write about a new topic I feel God laid in my heart and every time I started to write I honestly felt God tell me to stop. He always said, “do not write about something you know little about. I will teach you what it really means to see yourself, not what it means to see your reflection but what it means to have reflectivity”.

 

After 5 days of fasting and praying I am fairly confident that I have a better understanding of the difference.

 

During my week I was reminded a few times of what it feels like to be hurt by someone really important to me, someone I placed a lot of value on. All my little confusions came back and I was quite devastated but amazingly God reminded me of a particular scripture that quickly changed my view to a lesson to be learnt.

 

Matthew 7:5 “You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye”.

 

Jesus was not talking to just one person he was talking to everyone, he also taught a similar lesson when he was with the woman accused of adultery  and the crowd wanted to stone her to death in John 8:7 “ When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”

 

It is my understanding that Jesus was not saying that sin was good and did not deserve to be punished, he was simply pointing out the deep level of hypocrisy that lies in the heart. The false view we all have for our selves. We had failed to see ourselves for what we really are.  I believe the day we truly meet ourself will be a life changing experience for anyone. This to me is what first leads to true conversion.

 

Romans 3: 9-12 “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands: there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.”

 

I realised that just as this person was hurting me again, I have also hurt many people in the past. You see one of the most amazing parts in life with God is that you will never stop learning. You will be refined all your life. You will have to come face to face with yourself several times and just like Paul, you will inevitably not like what you see, unless you are blocked by denial.

 

Romans 7:18-20.” And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it”.

 

You see one of the most amazing parts in life with God is that you will never stop learning.

 

James 1: 2-5 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,whenever you face trials of many kinds,because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything”.

 

The real question assuming this is true for every one of us  “And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature”. How will we ever see ourselves for the evil that is really in us if all we do is use our mirror image (reflection) to judge?

 

The only solution to this is what can be termed “reflectivity”. This simply means to see yourself as others see you. If you are really serious about change in your life, ask the people that really know you. Ask the people you have hurt or are still hurting and ask the people that really love you.

 

There is a big difference between what we think we are and who we really are. If you are one of the many people I have met that go around deceiving themselves saying or thinking that just because you have some concept of what your weaknesses are then, this does not apply to you. You think “well I know what is right even if I don’t do it”.  You have missed it totally for you still lack knowledge of what Gods love is meant to do in you.

 

James 1: 22-25 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirrorand, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.”

 

I don’t know about you but when I read this and meditated on it I noticed that it says “not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.”

 

James 1: 26:Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.

 

You see true reflectivity comes from beyond seeing yourself from the eyes of people around you but even from people you have never even met (imaginative others). What kind of writer would I be if I wrote a book for just my friends? It has to cut across; people who have never met you should be able to learn from you. Isn’t that what the bible is about? When Jesus says in the bible “you were told” he was very often talking about laws that were given 14 centuries before his time. Some where laws God gave Moses and others were man-given. It was really interesting to learn that he never once spoke like it was a law of the past. He spoke like Moses told them a few hours ago.

 

Finally true reflectivity or the emergence of a true view of one’s self comes from being able to evolve constantly. Remember you will never be perfect but according to the bible Psalms 51:17. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart These, O God, You will not despise.

 

This is what ultimately creates uniqueness and imaginative accountability ( i.e being accountable to people beyond what you see around you).

 

I believe that if you can do this (see yourself for yourself), you will be more accommodating of people. It is the same principle that works with Alcoholics anonymous (AA) or eating disorder groups. They are bound and show love to other members because they know that they are all weak.

 

This will help you get one step closer into actually learning to obey what are the two foundations of faith.  Matthew 22: 36-40 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

 

Seeing yourself helps you appreciate God’s mercy, it helps you understand the sacrifice and it also helps you truly love your neighbour. Since the fall of Adam we have been bound by this common problem. This however can only be done with honesty. If you fail to be honest with people at least in your private time be honest with yourself.

 

May God grant us all the courage to meet ourself and the humility to ask for his help in life.

 

 

 

 

A long way to go home but he will hold us all

A long way to go home but he will hold us all

I spent a long time thinking about what to write here and I felt that it might be better to write from the heart based on exactly how I feel.

 

I don’t even know where to start in praising God for his favour in my life. It’s like every thing I touch and ruin, he blesses and every time I fail him he forgives.

 

In the last few weeks it can easily be said that I have learnt to fall and get up. To pray for forgiveness repeat a sin and still pray knowing that God is my every present help and if not for him I won’t be here. I have seen that I need to forget about all I have done and how every sin I commit nails him back to the cross and think about what he already achieved.

 

Please do not mis-understand this message. I do not claim to be a perfect man in Christ. On the contrary, I claim to be quite the opposite. It with intense humility and pain that I write and acknowledge that just like anyone that might feel that he has squandered his inheritance like the “prodigal son” in the parable of Christ. I too am an unworthy “co-heir” with Christ. My imperfectness still astonishes me. His capacity to forgive and set straight to crooked road is beyond my comprehension.Now I have only but a faint grasp of the song “What manner of man is Jesus”.

 

I have not failed by lack of desire in that I am truly successful but through lack of action I am but rags. If my desire made me righteous then I am rich but my actions lead me into wretched poverty. If you are reading this please understand that this note is not about me. It is not even about you and all you might or might not have done and whatever sorrow and deep gutter you might be in. Lift you eyes and see what I saw. It about a real experience with a God that never see’s you as less. It is about the favour and forgiveness that comes from knowing a “loving God” that never judges a repentant heart.

 

In all my transgressions, my father has never left my side. In all my failures he has never departed me and now I truly see that the love of God knows no bounds. His love puts me to a shame that makes sin even worse to accept and the guilt that follows indescribable. I have nothing of personal worth that I should boast of now. Not even a single thing that men think are worth anything yet through the love that God has shown for me I know that my steps have been covered before I can even conceptualise my journey.

 

I bring to you the only hope we have of a future and a present. The gift of Christ’s sacrifice for a person like me. A gift that “whosoever believes in him will have ever lasting life”. This is not a tale from a book written from generations ago. This is the very story of my life till this very day. A story of Gods undying love and compassion for a dying and unworthy son and just like David in the psalms I am in awe that such a God could be mindful of man. Who are we father that you would take notice?

 

I could sit here and try to awe you and excite you just like in a multi million dollar movie with stories of Gods goodness or I can hope that whoever reads this note knows that the writer speaks deeply from their heart about a love that can only be understood when felt.

 

I have made many mistakes in my life and because of the ragged body I will still wear till the day I meet the one I put all my hope in. I know I might still fall even again but the one thing I know can never be a mistake is accepting that I cannot save myself. Heaven knows I have tried in the past and failed every time without exception. I cannot be my own messiah for in the chains of this body sin lives and no matter what I do only God can bring me peace.

 

I thank everyone that has been with me through my somewhat boring journey of faith and would like to say that I am a life that was saved. God found me through you. One person in particular who has always kept me humble through it all and made the love of God real in their own very unusual but special way. May God bless you, keep you and give you all your hearts desire. May the spirit of the lord never depart you and bring you a future that shows how blessed he has made you. A life time is not enough to show how much it has meant and will always mean to me. Ten life times is not enough to show you just how much you have given for the lord. Even though you never knew you did.

FROM TOBACCO FARMER TO PREACHER (A MUST HEAR TRUE STORY) BY PETER PRETORIUS

FROM TOBACCO FARMER TO PREACHER (A MUST HEAR TRUE STORY) BY PETER PRETORIUS

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In this message Peter Pretorius describes his life story how having being a tobacco farmer and formula one driver his life was remarkably changed. Peter and his wife Ann literally left everything to pursue the call that God had for their lives. They also head up an aid organisation based in Africa where they feed, clothe and educate over 1 million children a day. Peter and Ann spearhead evangelistic crusades across the continent of Africa. 

 

LISTEN TO A VERY POWERFUL TRUE STORY OF HOW A TOBACCO FARMER (ATHEIST) WENT ON TO SAVE AND FEED OVER ONE MILLION PEOPLE.

 

NB: This message was originally recorded in Destiny Church Edinburgh on the 12 Sep 2006 and all copyrights belong to them and the speaker.

CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON ABOVE TO LISTEN.

 

Married to a Muslim (My Hell Journey)

Married to a Muslim (My Hell Journey)

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It was 1992,I was 22 years old. I had been house hunting and came across this ideal house in the ideal area.

The Landlord showed me around and I decided to go for it, that is where it all began.

Over the coming Months the Landlord would collect rent,do repairs etc but seemed a nice quiet shy kind of guy.

After about a year he started to hang around more and become friendly. I saw no harm but then one day he asked me out,I refused and did not see much more of him for quite some time.

Then 6 Months later he was hanging around again,asking me to dinner,again i said no as i was not interested in getting Involved with a Muslim Man let alone my Landlord. He never gave up and after 3 Years i eventually agreed, that was that in a nutshell.

We started to see each other more and more and he was just hooked and madly in love (I thought). He was around every night,sometimes meeting me at work just for a cuddle,it seemed so sweet.

After 18 Months we decided to get a House together. We moved in and it was just perfect. 3 Months later I discovered I was Pregnant and we were overjoyed. His Parents decided to come and see me for the first time and insisted I convert to Islam for me and my daughter to be accepted. I felt sad but the pressure was on me and I decided to do it. It was not a big deal and I was now a Muslim. My baby was born and the family gathered round giving me all these orders about special baths for me and baby to make us pure and clean,I was so confused. I followed all their instructions etc as my Partner was telling me it was all for the best.

9 Months later we did a Nikkah,which is an Islamic Wedding in his friends House. It was not a special day by any means. I had no Family there or friends,just strangers and witnesses. It was all over quickly but I was now a Muslim Wife. No pictures,no Honeymoon,no memories,probably best way thinking about it now.

To cut this long story very short I went  on to have 3 more Children as he was desperate for a Son. I never had a Boy just 4 perfect beautiful girls. As the girls were growing up his parents, sister were always commenting on how they should dress,eat with their right hand go to Mosque every day after School. Urdu School Saturdays and Sundays,where was my Children’s life? I became quite sad but plodded on to keep the peace but no matter what I did it was never enough for him or his family,always finding fault,always treating us different.

He started to treat me terrible and was always putting me down,never letting me out,casting up bills,telling me I was fat and controlling my whole life. It was like he hated me inside and it was a lot to do with his mother as she was just a Witch and at every chance was always trying to lure him to Pakistan and whenever he would go she would have a line of girls for him to marry. He never went through with it but I still had to be nice to this Woman,like hell I would. I soon realised I was being taken for a mug and they never noticed how much I had changed my life for them.

It was time for me to be me again. I pulled my children out of Mosque,Urdu Schools,made sure they dressed how they wanted to dress,made sure they still had Christmas, Big birthdays,Santa etc which his mother hated, kept my distance from his Family which then caused more problems for us as its very important you stay close to the man’s family as they are very family orientated. I stopped cooking Asian Food and having them all over for dinner,this hurt my Husband but did I care?

No! When his Family left me and my girls out of parties etc he would still go,when they treated me bad he would say “It is your fault“. They would manipulate him in such ways you would not believe as they wanted me gone and he believed every word they said. It was awful but I stood up to them and made sure my kids led a normal happy life.

After 15 Years I saved up some Money as he always controlled me financially and barely gave me enough to live on,baring in mind he was a Property tycoon worth Millions, I had nothing. He grudged every penny he spent on me and my girls but liked the best for himself. I just had enough and while he was away on business I took sofa ,beds from our home and moved to a Rented house. He was in deep shock when he got back and hated me for doing this.

After few Months he would apologise and ask me to come home but I just could never go back to that miserable unhappy sad life. Nothing is worth going through what I went through all because of Love, Religion and culture. 4 years on and he has just finally left me alone as he has realised I will never go back. He has now Married an Asian girl and I hope this means he will let me move on but I am not banking on it,will just have to see what happens!

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THERE IS LIGHT AFTER THE DARKNESS

THERE IS LIGHT AFTER THE DARKNESS

There is light after the DARKNESS

47

 

I woke one morning looking through a dark room

thinking life’s moving too soon

No light to behold

No sign of troubles after

Wanting to fight yet not knowing how

for a second I gave up praying

nothing to believe in

Then I found your book,

A little hook was all it took

your word

Your heart, your soul

every word like freedom here, bringing me back to life like CPR

every promise a reminder that my story cant be over before it begins

No sitting here looking like life ain’t life no more

No point looking outwards for things you gave before I could walk

You taught me lord to walk proud

I had all I could

showed me the path

Walking the roads of champions

Push myself to the limit

Making a mockery of all the wisdom I acquired prior to your word

To those that say you will never make it,

those that used their words to do nothing but break you

we love you all

Those that felt you gave your all

No hard feelings

I thank you for your words

Your words made me who I am

If not for you I would never have fought

I would never have given my all to see those words untrue

Never have put it all in to ensure I dont believe those words

I thank you because I almost believed the words

I thank you because your words brought me to him,

your little reminders lifted me in a way I will never have found

I learnt opinions ain’t facts, you take it and let it be

I learnt to walk in nothing wearing nothing but my heart on my sleeves

And the days courage walked away I learnt to run out and pull it back

Being who you are comes from the heart

Telling you, that you can be all you set out to be means nothing if you don’t see it yourself

And if you cant see it now, look through the eyes of the one that never sees you as less

Look through the eyes of the one that doesn’t tell you one thing and act differently

Walk with me brothers and sisters

Leave all those lies behind

Let me show you the path I found for I know I can never walk alone

The father walks with us all

Reminds you of things long forgotten

For as long as he reigns,

your life,

your story hasn’t even started yet.

 


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