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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Obedience (01/31/05)

TITLE: Obedience and the Fear of the Lord


Sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas 2004, I became depressed. My relationships with the Lord and with my wife suffered, as well as other relationships. Although I knew the source of the depression, I did not want to correct the situation. After many years of idleness, the Lord opened my heart so I could use the gift of writing. I found an internet site for writers which I joined in September 2004. I found myself consumed with the site, and though I wanted to write for the Lord’s glory, I began to write to please reviewers.

I was addicted to the site, and craved the reviews. While a member, I received a vast amount of instruction as a writer, but my allegiance to the site was stronger than my fear of the Lord. From the time my depression began, I became a very frustrated person. I was unhappy and disillusioned with many things, especially the things of God. My quiet time with the Lord diminished and was ineffective. At home, my relationship with my wife was strenuous. At church, I was disinterested and apprehensive. Basically, I was worshipping the gift instead of the Giver.

From the late days of December 2004 to the early days of January 2005, I struggled with being obedient to the Lord. The internet site, in and of itself, was not the source of harm, but my decision to put it first in my life was very destructive. As my refusal to obey continued, I became increasingly frustrated and weary.

On Saturday January 16, 2005, my wife and I attended a conference at Mustard Seed Fellowship in Lawrence, Kansas. The spokesperson at this conference was John Bevere. Mr. Bevere’s subject was “The Fear of God.” As he talked of things that we put above the Lord, I began to have an inner turmoil, to the extent that I became physically ill. My stomach was upset and my prostrate ached for the first time in a long while. I knew the Lord wanted me to release the internet site, but I did not want to. I knew I could not fear God and continue to be active on the site. At one point in the meeting, I became so ill that I had to exit the auditorium and go to the restroom. When I returned, John Bevere continued to talk of the fear of the Lord, and I wanted more of God, but I still battled letting go into complete obedience. Without doing so, I could not demonstrate the fear of the Lord, nor could I draw near to Him.

When it came time for the altar call, Mr. Bevere asked us to leave the thing the Lord was talking to us about at our seat and come forward. The Holy Spirit was actively speaking to my heart as I continued the inner warfare. I stood up to go the altar, but then turned back toward my seat. I could not honestly give up my activity on the internet site. I took one step toward the seat and stopped. I knew what I must do, so I reversed my decision and continued to the altar. There I relinquished my refusal to obey. A true peace came over me for the first time in a long while.

When we arrived home from the conference, it was late in the evening, and we were tired. We went to bed. I awoke at four o’clock in the morning and deleted all my writings from the internet site and asked that they cancel my account. It was an easy thing to do, and I felt the frustration roll away with each step I took in closing the account. God gave me permission to continue writing, and I believe He will open another avenue. The main thing is that I have obeyed God. My frustration disappeared. I drew near to God, and He drew near to me. The stress in my marriage diminished, as my wife and I talked after the conference, and I informed her of my decision.

It’s amazing how it worked. In my refusal to obey, I was deeply frustrated. When I acted obediently, the very thing I thought so important appeared to be such an insignificant thing. I wonder why I struggled for so long to let it go. I am glad that God bestows His grace upon us.

Larry Powers

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This article has been read 792 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Melanie Kerr 02/07/05
"I was addicted to the site, and craved the reviews." Ouch! That hit close to the mark! I am amazed at how being obedient does bring release from frustration. God does know what is best for us. I am gald that God has given you permission to write!
Dan Blankenship 02/07/05
All I can say is, "WOW!"

Talk about sincere and heart felt.

May God Bless you.
Dan Blankenship

Nancy Hardy02/07/05
Your obedience to His leading will only draw you closer to Himself. My respect, dear friend, indeed. ~ His servant, Nance
Jonita (Jay) Johnson02/07/05

With writing such as above, please continue to be obedient. WHEW, fantastic. I think we all as writers can learn from your piece.
Eli Espinoza02/08/05
I am also new. I don't sell my writings; I share them. I write to help others and myself. I'm already rich without money. Great story.
paula burbidge02/08/05
Thank you for being so open. I believe that your article is a timely reminder to me to be disciplined in using any website, and always to put God first.
Thank you.
Mary Alice Bowles02/09/05
Thank you Larry, your article hit home, and made me do some very deep soul searching!
Thanks again and may God continue to Bless your writing!
Cheri Hardaway 02/09/05
Deep soul searching going on here too! Thanks for sharing!

God bless,
L.M. Lee02/13/05
Isn't John Bevere an incredible man of God? What a privilege to attend his conference.

...gee your story sounds extremely close to mine...I wonder if this is a "test" for all writers of the Internet!

Be blessed!
Phyllis Inniss02/14/05
How sincere and heartfelt your article is. We can get carried away by the things that are not important and lose sight of those that are. Thank God he saved you from all that torment. Thanks for sharing.
Suzanne R02/18/05
Ouch, that hits close to the mark. Thanks for the challenge. I'm glad it wasn't FaithWriters you stopped being active on ... but even something as good as this can lead to too much time on 'fun' things like the message boards, and checking e-mail too often to see if someone has responded. (Surely not us?!) Thanks for the good reminder. May God continue to use you and your writing.