Interactive Sermon

"Those who have the disease called Jesus will never be cured" ~Old Russian Proverb

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

The Hound of Heaven

A friend showed me a beer bottle cap she ran across. The underside of the cap had a somewhat spiritual message that seemed to relate to conversations we've had recently. I told her, "Look!God's even sending you messages in bottles now!" Of course, I said that in jest, but...

Another friend told me some gospel literature was left on her car in a parking lot. The booklet read "How To Find God". I quipped back at her, "You don't need to find God, He's found you." And I reminded her of a number of strange coincidences she'd experienced in the last several months. She hasn't told me yet what her conclusion is, but I believe that God is working overtime to demonstrate His love to her. And to that friend if she happens to read this: Look at that sky... do you see that???

There was an occasion when a number of my friends (of the Jesus Freak variety) and I were sitting around and one by one we shared when we had come to trust in Christ. I was amazed at the many different settings in which the reality of God's love came to dawn on us. There were no two stories alike. One guy came to Christ during a real crisis in his life. Another after a long time watching the faith of another person he admired, and desiring to have a little of what that friend had. Still another thru a evangelistic crusade. Another thru the ongoing witnessing attempts of a persistent preacher. Still another thru some book on some computer software he bought. Yet, for all of the difference, there was one constant in all of our stories. Can you guess what it was?

In each case, we recalled the distinct impression that God was pursuing us with His love. Everywhere we looked there was a gentle reminder. Everything we experienced seemed to have some correlation. Each one of us agreed, God found us. What's been your experience?


  • Nice title....The Hound of Heaven!
    Reminds me of a song by the King, "You ain't nothin' but a hound, God!"

    I'm making a list of my new experiences....... :)

    By Jackie, at 9/13/2005 11:56 PM  

  • Four years old. In later years I thought it was too young. I doubted that God could really reach one so young. I doubted God had reached me.

    But He HAD reached me. And in reaching me He pulled me aside from influences looking back I realize should have so ripped and tortured my soul and driven me into an almost impossible trap from which to escape.

    Four years old. I'd done something wrong. Who knows what, something Mom was really upset about. Something I felt bad about. But I just couldn't seem to find peace from a child's awful guilt.

    She was busy, I remember that. She sat me in an old easy chair. It had that hard upholstery with the little knots that come up individually to make some obscure (and usually ghastly) pattern. The knots pushed into my skin and made little nasty red marks that kinda hurt.

    I was sobbing and she was upset. Angry at me and still, concerned that I wasn't calming down. "You know, you can give that bad feeling to Jesus. He will forgive you. That's why He died. All you have to do is say, "Jesus, I accept you into my heart, please forgive me.""

    She left the room. She never saw me do it. I turned into the back of that chair and with every ounce of who I was I threw myself on Jesus.

    AND I KNEW. I was His.

    The Hound of Heaven cornered me early. Like a sheltie, he nipped at my little erring feet and corralled me.


    By Higher Up, Further In, at 9/14/2005 2:33 AM  

  • Okay… I’ll try to make this short… you asked for it…

    I went to a Catholic kindergarten, so I always new who Jesus was and that He is the Son of God, but I never knew what a true relationship was…

    In 2000 I was working at my dream job… life was going well. November 13th, my father had a stroke so I went down Thanksgiving weekend to visit him in Florida. He was in a rehab center and could not walk. While I was with him I would massage his left arm and try to make the muscles remember what they are there for. During the time that he was in therapy I would drive around checking out all the cool houses that are built too close to the ocean. One of these days I looked up in the sky and saw a sky writer and was eagerly watching what he was writing as I drove around… I noticed the “I” and then the “L-O-V” and I was thinking to my self “is it a marriage proposal??” A while later I looked up and it said “I LOVE YOU G”, I then thought jokingly to myself they love me!! Then a bit later I looked up and it said “I LOVE YOU GOD”. Well at this moment my brain did one of those “Whoa” things and I drove through a stoplight (thank God no one was coming the other way during my mid-afternoon drive). By the time I had to leave my father was able to walk with the assistance of a walker and was home within 2-weeks.

    The first week of January came and Cisco was no longer hiring due to the industry dive-bomb… needless to say an Employment Coordinator was no longer needed. Although, I was a bit bummed I was confident that God had another plan for me. The next day I went to my mom’s house (since I did not have a computer) to check to see if there were any jobs available. I saw a position as a Training Center Coordinator (which was a lot like one of the positions that I held at Oxford Health Plans) so I applied for it. I was back at my house within an hour and by the time I got home I already had a message on my answering machine. I had never been to this place called CompUSA, but it was right down the street from Oxford, which I thought was pretty cool… and much closer than my last commute to Salem. While at my interview I was told that the position was mine if I wanted it and I could start the following week. I called him back the next day and took the job.

    Okay… long story I will start to abbreviate better…

    Two weeks later this guy Benjamin started in the tech shop and one night couldn't start his car… I told him I’d give him a ride… I then found out he lived in Milford so we started to commute together. Right around this time was when the missionary family from Peru was shot in an airplane and the wife and baby were killed with one shot. I saw the father on GMA and he was so content with the fact that it was God’s will and that it was sad, but livable. I was amazed… and thought how cool it was to be a missionary with that contentment. A couple weeks later Benjamin mentioned that he met his wife on a mission trip to Kenya, and I could not believe that a missionary was actually a “normal guy.” Within a couple months Benjamin invited me to his church… of course I was nervous having been to a million different churches. I walked into a school building (which I thought was a bit strange) and was introduced to a million people and I knew I would never remember all their names. As I sat there I could not believe how comfortable I felt. I had never felt that comfortable in a church before… One more strange God sighting (and many are not mentioned) in this… November 13th is Benjamin’s birthday…

    And so the story continues...

    By germaine, at 9/14/2005 4:58 PM  

  • So... I woke up this morning (at least a week after I posted this) and I suddenly realized that I left out on of the most important parts of my story... so... here goes... don't worry it's not that much longer!! ;-)

    On my way down to Florida to visit my father I was on my second flight and I was sitting next to this couple that I really didn't want to sit next to. The wife kept talking and asking me questions and all I wanted to do was have the plane land and me be "free" from having to listen to her talk about how NH voted right during the election and how Bush should be President (this was during the whole Florida chad saga... when I really didn't like Bush at all... I've since changed my view). As the plane was getting ready to land in Orlando the woman asked me if she could pray for my father and I told her that would be fine. When she was nearing the end of her prayer she asked God to reveal himself to me and of course I rolled my closed eyes... So, now you know the main reason that I had a "Holy crap moment" when I saw the writing in the sky... My love letter from God...

    By germaine, at 9/21/2005 5:01 PM  

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