June 26, 2008
Thursday, 7:00 p.m.
Letter #39: Wait Till You Hear This!
Greetings! I pray that this letter finds you. 🙂 Actually, I also pray it finds you well-blessed, and if you don’t think you’re well-blessed, please take time to let me know. I’ll be sure to send you the life-story of any random guy on my yard, and I guarantee you you’ll be looking at your own life just a bit differently!
I know that going to Russia changed me, but my trip to India forever altered the way I’ll view what we consider normal. The clean concrete floor in my cell is considered a luxury in many parts of the world. Add to that running water and electricity? Further proof I’m in America. But when you see the Bible open on my bunk and a smile on my face, you’ll know the rest of the story: I’m royalty—a child of the King of Kings! Trust me: you’re well-blessed!
God watches out for me. I’ve known the concept for years, but it was usually when I was at the end of myself—my resources, my ideas, my hope—that God was able to demonstrate His ability to supply ALL my needs, according to His riches. (See Philippians 4:19.) I got to experience such a moment last week after enjoying a few scorching days in the sun. God sent a dynamic Christian brother, Danny, to my door. He asked me if I needed anything. I’d just been regretting not ordering sunscreen, I told him. Wow! Now I have plenty.
He also shared a Christian book with me and today—OH, blessed day!!—he dropped off a Strong’s Concordance and a New King James Version Study Bible!! YEAH! In fact, I’m gonna time myself looking up the verse I loosely quoted above. Previously, it has taken me up to 20 minutes of searching to not find a verse I’m looking for. Frustrating, because I know it’s in there somewhere; I just don’t know exactly where.
Watch this: here I go … done. Less than a minute! Praise God, because now I’m equipped to prepare Bible Studies for the guys on the yard, as well as enrich my own studies! Yippee!!
Another blessing was given to me yesterday by my neighbor, Trinity. I’m going to be practicing some worship songs for the church, but I don’t have a CD player to listen to the CD with. Trinity loaned me not only his player but also his Chris Tomlin Live from Austin Music Hall CD. Wow. Spirit-candy for the weary soul!
Sunday morning he had put his headphones up to the vent system that connects our two rooms and turned up the volume. I could hear the sounds of “How Great Is Our God” … and I cried my eyes out, standing on my toilet with my ear pressed to the vent, my hands raised in worship.
Chris Tomlin goes into “How Great Thou Art” from there … ahh. God invited me to have church with Him in that moment. Yes, it was fun to play the piano for church, with 200 guys singing along to “What can wash away my sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus!” And yes, it was awesome to visit with my dad, but the best part of my day was visiting with my Heavenly Father first thing that morning. He restores my soul! (See Psalm 23.) 🙂
Thank you to those of you who prayed for my perforated eardrum. The nurse who had checked my ears noted two weeks ago that my eardrum was damaged. I was unbelieving—so she checked again. Yep, a hole in my eardrum, so I was scheduled for a return visit to see if anything could be done to better my situation.
I remember clearly the two times Brian blew out my hearing in my left ear—for a month each time—when we were doing that dumb “stage slap” thing where he really slaps my face twice. Those two times, out of the hundreds of slaps we’d done, he went too far and—BAM—there goes the eardrum. A year later—BAM—it happened again. But, hey, it was funny all those other times …
Fast-forward to yesterday. I returned to medical, and was seen by the doctor, who, using the same instrument, checked my ears. No hole! I had him check again, to be sure. “Well, it’s a bit fleshy around the edge … but no hole …”
Praise God! I wasn’t too cracked up about the possibility of progressive hearing loss in one ear, but I hadn’t even bothered to pray about it! Someone did, though! Please let me know … I’m just passing on the word that God is still in the healing business!
I also thank the Lord that I received an incredible package of items, gifted by some of you. Thank you! These items will enhance my ministry, give needed relief, and bring some fleshly satisfaction too (pens/paper, shoes, and cookies, respectively)! 🙂
I love you all. Thank you for your prayers and letters of encouragement!