Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Surprised (09/06/07)
TITLE: For Joshua's Calling
By Brenda Minielly
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A tear stole down her cheek, through the powder make up, making a clean line to her lipgloss. She was worried that her little girl would not get fed the following week. Since Lisa had been saved, she had never lost so much, and had so much grief. Yet, in her life, joy made her dance and sing, and fall in love. She was newly married to a man who was filled with the Holy Spirit. The two followed Jesus with all their heart.
Lisa dried her face, and smoothed her make up over her cheek. She was being drawn to her church, she felt, to pray and praise God for his blessings. She thought back to the conversation between herself and Joshua, her new husband; when they decided to put their faith in Jesus by moving to another state, changing jobs, and live their lives in Christ. Had they decided on their own, or had God led them? No, she was sure that he had led them...all along they had listened to his guidance. They had encountered many trials. God was threshing them, like wheat. He was chopping them down, to prepare Joshua's heart for his work. Lisa felt so blessed that Joshua was to be used by God, but so stripped of worldly things. She knew that she had to weather the pain of this loss to realize the bigger and better love beyond it, but what about little Ella? She prayed rigorously, followed God closely, and felt guilty because she worried for her daughter.
She fanned her face with the mail she had picked up along the way to the church. It was HOT in Texas. God began to remove the many obstacles in their life, as soon as her husband heeded the call to ministry. He had been led to the pulpit, but was afraid to listen to the calling. Yet, once he began to walk the path, their threshing began to cease. His job was showing promise, and Lisa's knotted anxiety was subsiding. The fact remained that she still had not seen money for the following week's groceries.
The live oaks canopied the entire lawn of the little community church. Lisa felt clean, self confident and upright, walking up the beautiful, quiet path. She felt so blessed, and had an assurance in her heart that God would give her the comfort she had prayed to receive. A smile grew on her face as she closed her eyes, and prayed in the silent auditorium.
The quiet shuffle of clothes towards her made her open her eyes. The young minister approached, and sat in the seat in front of the young woman.
"Hi Lisa...are you all right?" he asked. She realized that she had been crying, again.
"Yes, Sean. I feel scoured, but clean," she replied. He smiled a knowing smile.
"How is Joshua's job going?" he asked, with concerned interest and compassion in his eyes.
"He has been called to the ministry, Sean," she told him. A distant look showed reverent acknowledgement of the gift of God’s Grace.
"Oh, Lisa, what a blessing," he simply said. A sense of exhaling, after a long ordeal, came over Lisa. The young minister turned to her to speak.
"Lisa, you have been threshed, scoured and tested to prepare You, and make way for God’s purpose for You," he told her. It wasn't Sean speaking, though. "God loves you more than you can fathom, and He takes great joy in you! He sees your love and dedication in your walk with him, and weeps in response to the love you show him." Lisa's eyes poured out in healing tears, spurred by the knowledge of His love. God continued to speak through the pastor.
"Lisa, your gentle heart and merciful soul has such work to do; such joyous work. I want you to know that it will never be easy, but God will give you exactly what you need, everyday; I promise. You never need to fear again. Be faithful, and remember that He cries when you cry, laughs when you laugh, and takes joy in you, every day." The pastor was also weeping, with palms pressed together in prayer. Both knew what had happened, and felt the love of God surround them. Lisa was a little blown away; she had thought all along, that all the pain had been only for Joshua's calling.
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