2006 - Always on Duty
2006 – Always on Duty
What a busy year! I’ve been to 14 states since January (see the Journey Map on this website). As I’ve traveled, I’ve continued to take pictures, which you can see in the Photo Gallery of this website. You’ll notice the car on the 2006 Journey Map jumping around because lately, God has been calling me as much to air travel as to road travel.
Since January, I’ve:
Spoken on television and radio shows.
Written the devotional, Pocket Full of Grace (which I hope will come out early in 2007.)
Taken family vacations to Key West and St. Augustine.
Attended and spoke at church functions, conventions, and other events.
Hosted a large wedding for our daughter, Kelley (pictures in the Photo Gallery of this Website.)
Currently, I’m in the beautiful state of Colorado for the International Christian Retail Show where my publisher is showcasing Pocket Full of Quarters to Christian Book Stores across the world. I am humbled and in awe by the level of spirituality, commitment to ministry, and wisdom I’ve encountered as I’ve interacted with these 10,000 authors, media, and Christian business people. See the Daily Journal to hear some of their stories.
God continues His “call to ministry” to speak to people as I travel. The experiences I’ve had are too numerous to write about but I’ll give a couple of examples.
I spent two hours on a plane discussing God with a Jehovah Witness. Well trained in his beliefs, he knew the Bible and had answers ready. When I asked if his Jesus was God he said, “He is a god but not the god.” This sincere man knew the Bible better than I but didn’t know my Jehovah - God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. I felt God putting words in my mouth and sensed this attractive bright young man was listening. I don’t know the end of this story. When I left the plane, the woman behind me leaned over and whispered, “I heard you talking. I was praying for you the entire time.” No wonder I felt God’s words in my mouth.
I talked to a woman who was a church organist. “I go to church every Sunday but I’m having issues with Christianity,” she said. As we talked, she admitted to suspecting she was homosexual. “I’ve never married but just ended a relationship with a woman. This was my first. No one in my church knows about this but I’ve wondered how I can be Christian if I’m gay.”
I went to laughing. “God does say homosexuality is a sin but He loves homosexuals as much as He does anyone. That would be a little like me saying, ‘how could I be a Christian if I occasionally gossip, lose my temper, or forget my call to ministry.’ My deceased son was a homosexual. The last year of his short life, David turned his life over to God. I watched God and David successfully deal, one by one, with sins like drug addiction, alcoholism, promiscuity, dishonesty, and theft. They ran out of time before they dealt with his homosexuality but I believe in my heart that he is in heaven because of grace. Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Search the scriptures and seek God’s will and He will show you the way." Some may be thinking I was too easy on her and others may be incensed that I referred to her homosexuality as a sin. God decides what He calls sin and how He deals with it. We are all sinners and He came to earth for sinners. Our only job is to love people as ourselves and point them to God and the Bible.
I’ve been getting e-mails from people who heard me on Christian television and radio. Many have poured out their heart and troubles. Pray for me as I try to respond and communicate the love of God crippled by the bluntness and coldness of e-mail.
I led a retreat at a Catholic Retreat Center and my door said “Retreat Master.” I liked being a “Retreat Master.” Being a master sounded even more impressive than being a Chief Executive Officer. I took a picture of me beside my door (See Photo Gallery under Ohio – Cincinnati – Marydale Retreat Center.) The living room of the suite they gave me had a small sliding door that allowed the “Retreat Master” to listen to confessions. I offered to fulfill my duty as “Retreat Master” but no one was willing to give me their confessions. When I went home, Bob still expected me to take out the trash and change the cat litter. “But I’m the Retreat Master,” I argued. He wasn’t impressed.
Happy (my RV,) Belle, and I leave on Monday to begin another missionary journey across the country. I’ll be on the road approximately two months and plan to visit states I haven’t yet visited in 2006. Speaking engagements will dictate some of the route. Check the map to see where I am, follow the journey in the Daily Journal, enjoy the pictures, and pray for the people I’m meeting.
Recently, Bob and I were riding the train at the Jacksonville Zoo with our two-year-old grandson, Noah. I was giggling and pointing to a deer when I felt God whisper, “The woman sitting beside you needs to talk.” I whined a little as I begrudgingly handed Noah to Bob and began the much needed conversation. Bob showed Noah the zoo animals as I tried to show this woman God. When the train got back to the station, she thanked me. “You’ve made me remember what my life was like when I listened to God and went to church.” I apologized to Bob and he laughed and said, “I forget that you’re always on duty.” My call from God is to the streets of America. I’m honored by this call. Pray for me this summer as I try to do my duty for my country and my God.