Delivered From Bad Things & Places

In my post of Saturday Oct. 5th, I spoke of the “chastisements of our peace” and the “rebukes of life” that are sometimes the work of God acting as any Loving Father does for His children. This post will be to show a completely different side of my Dear Heavenly Father’s recent interactions with me. I know that apart from being one of a multitude of His children, there is nothing inherently special about me. What He will do for me, He Will Do for any of His children who sets their heart to truly know and seek Him sincerely with All their heart. A word picture to describe this that I tell people sometimes is, “think of God as being like an umbrella. The closer you get to the center (Him), the less you will get rained on.”

Have you ever considered that there are things in our lives that we do or we are exposed to that are not good for us but the more or longer you are around them, their “badness” for us becomes less noticeable? In psychology, desensitization would be a word to describe this.  After some time, those things become “our normal” and soon we can’t or don’t see their “badness” or ill side effect on us as clearly, or if at all.

When I was a newly married teenager  my wife wanted me to smoke cigarettes and I didn’t want to but to get her off my back I told her I would try just one. I coughed and choked when I tried to inhale the smoke from it as I imagine many people do when first learning to smoke. After awhile, they don’t cough or choke on the smoke any more. They get used to it and can gulp down huge amounts of smoke without a problem. Take those thoughts and principles and put them in the “Save For Later” file.

On my birthday this year, Sunday June 30th, Bishop Drew preached a message titled, “Breaking Out of Bad Places,” and can be seen here, https://www.facebook.com/FCWO1/videos/863320450715243/

The point of the sermon was that God , at times is working behind the scene to bring us to the “best life” He wants for us and brings ways to escape from the “Bad Places.” Bishop Drew said, “Whether it’s because of bad choices or just that it’s been dealt to us in our life, we can find ourselves in a ‘bad place’.” The text of Bishop Drew’s sermon comes from 2 Samuel 4:4,  2 Samuel 9:4-5 and 2 Samuel 9:11-15 and is about a son of David’s best friend, Jonathan. His name is Mephibosheth, and after Saul and Jonathan were killed by the Philistines, his nurse dropped 5 year old Mephibosheth and his feet were injured and he became “lame” for life.

Mephibosheth was living in a place called Lo Debar up until David remembered him and brought him to live at the king’s house and forever to eat at the king’s table. Lo Debar in Hebrew H3810 means “pastureless” or “not a pasture” a desert, barren or hopeless place. I can imagine that Mephibosheth had gotten used to Lo Debar and it wasn’t so bad living there before David rescued him.

2 Samuel 9:13 Mephibosheth continued to live in Jerusalem, always eating at the king’s table, since he was maimed in both feet. (International Standard Version)

I don’t remember if Bishop Drew had used the word “maimed” in his message but I remember thinking of Mephibosheth from the view as being maimed. The main reason for that is because “maimed” has a unique Strong’s Concordance number (H333) that I had learned of when God started waking me up so often to see the time as 3:33 on my bedside digital clock. If you read my testimony, you will easily see my past life was full of events that left me feeling “maimed” or “damaged goods” to almost any upstanding person, especially a Biblically upstanding person. Sadly, almost all the “maiming” was done by myself, to myself. We can be our own worst enemy if we don’t live lives the way God decreed a human should live.

Then two days later on July 2, 2019, I was totally blindsided by the news that the sale of our company was being finalized that day and that I would not be hired onto the new company taking over that day. My words to my company’s rep. that broke the news to me and later as I told my wife about the layoff were, “this may be a surprise to me and you but it is of no surprise to God.”

If you are wondering, since being laid off of work July 2nd, I haven’t made even 1 phone call to look for another job but that topic is for another upcoming post.

The job I lost on July 2nd was the same job that I thought I had given up freely to do something that I felt strongly was a leading of God to do 4 years earlier. I had sent out 6 emails to every person from upper management at our corporate office in Oklahoma to even the people I was bringing accusations against in our local field. I had addressed the issues on the local level and had gotten nowhere. The issues I raised didn’t affect me personally but were still of great frustration and concern to me. Actually only 5 of the emails were giving full descriptions of the actions and procedures of certain people that were being done, in total disregard to our companies policies. The 6th and last email was explaining why I had sent out the previous 5. The following is it exactly as I sent it; even the video link was included in it. I have redacted only the company name and personal names.

Jesus Is The Aleph & The Tav, The Alpha & The Omega, The First & The Last
א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω

Email Subject Title : Be Careful  What You Pray For

There was an addict living in a homeless shelter with only 3 pants, 3 shirts and a few small possessions to his name. He felt his life was complicated because he had too many decisions to make. One night before he went of sleep he prayed to God. God help me make decisions and make my life less complicated.

When he woke up his prayers were answered. Someone had stole everything except 1 pants and 1 shirt. So be careful what you pray for.

About 23 years ago I was at the lowest point a person could get in life without wanting to ending it all. Someone told me that I should pray Psalm 51 and I did and did and did again. God did create a clean heart and a right spirit in me. The problem I have now is that it works too good for my own good sometimes. In case you didn’t notice in all the emails I sent last night, they are not about me. It’s about the people that I care about.  I have a love for working on the water. I worked my own shrimp boat for 30 years before becoming a crew boat captain in 2007.  Many days I have thanked God for blessing me and giving me the desire of my heart on my way out to ****. I have grown to respect and deeply care about almost all the workers out there. Recently I have been dreading the thought that I might have to bring someone in crippled for life or worse one day because of what I see. It would have been a hard thing to live with had I kept my mouth shut and just think of myself to keep my job if that would have happened.

Then there is the moral of the workers. I have never seen it so bad. It wasn’t always peaches and cream at ****. Most of the time though the guys worked with a spirit of teamwork and smiles on their faces. It was as though they had a love for their jobs at **** too. Not too many seem to be loving their job these days. Most only talk about how they use to love their job, how it use to be a good place to work and how much more they can take before they have enough. Smiles are hard to find. What’s sad is ******** will lose even more diligent workers that have field experience in that field. Common sense tells me a revolving door of men coming in and out at **** is not good for ********.

The last point I hope you understand is that I appreciate ******** and how it has been a blessing to me and my family and I do care about it prospering. I think I did my part to the best of my ability to give **** 100% and to make it a great place to work for everyone. I told *** and Mr. ****** only a few weeks ago that I only wanted to be the best crew boat captain **** ever had.

Sincerely, Tony

Jesus Is The Aleph & The Tav, The Alpha & The Omega, The First & The Last
א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω א ת Jesus Α Ω

After being put on 8 days of paid administrative leave and a week of investigations by our companies Human Resources department was over, on July 27, 2015, the day celebrated as the 9th of Av on the Hebrew calendar that year, I was exonerated and told I would keep my job that I thought I had given up. That makes 2 life altering events that happened for my favor on that Hebrew holiday. The other event was cataract surgery to restore sight to my legally blind eye on the 9th of Av 2014, a surgery 2 optometrist had told me could not help me.

One morning soon after, as I was driving to work I told my Dad that after all that had gone on I was tempted to just quite the job they told me I could keep. I went on to tell him the only reason I wasn’t going to up and quit is because I felt God hadn’t “released me” from it yet. I had felt lead to send the emails even at the expected cost of my job but now I was feeling lead not to leave it without that inner witness from God.

Ok, now go back and get that “Save for Later” file about becoming unaware of the ill effects being exposed to “bad places or things” and just put it on top of the desk of your mind.

1. After getting laid off of my job on July 2nd I decided to stop taking the 4 sleeping pills it took me to get a restful night or days sleep. I had started taking 1 sleeping pill to get some sleep after a series of stressful events at work years earlier. When 1 didn’t let me turn off the replay of daily work events in my head I took 2 pills, then 3 pills and eventually it took 4 pills to quite the replaying of work stresses in my mind. I had determined that 4 was to be the limit even though at times 4 wasn’t enough to tune out the drama and stresses at my job. To my amazement, I was sleeping restfully every night without taking any of the sleeping pills.

2. One day, I told my wife how well I had been sleeping without taking any sleeping pills. She said, “you don’t snore anymore either.” I said “Really?” She went on to remind me that on the days I was sleeping in a bedroom I had blacked out the windows for when I worked nights, almost every day she could hear me snoring through the bedroom door, even over the noise of what she was doing in the living room or kitchen. I asked her again a couple days ago about it and she said I don’t snore at all any more and now we sleep together every night.

3. Before working at my last job my wife and I’s bed was a “full size” mattress and we decided to upgrade to a “king size” bed. I had no sooner bought it that I did very much regret it because every time I slept in it I’d wake up with aches and pains all over my body. It didn’t matter what position I slept in, either my back, arms or legs were going to be hurting for awhile after I’d first get out of bed. I had put our old full size mattress on my work day bed where I slept two-thirds of my time because of my 14 day on, 7 day off work schedule. I’d even sleep in it alone at times on my days off because it was really painful to sleep in the king size bed. After my lay off to my amazement, the 1st night in the king size bed wasn’t like before. Then the 2nd wasn’t or the 3rd or any other night. I can now sleep every night in the king size bed and wake up rested with no aches or pains.

4. Soon after selling my shrimp boat and getting a job running crew boats I started having problems swallowing food when I’d eat at times. The problem got worse over time and I really had to be careful to drink often while eating so it wouldn’t get stuck in my throat. About 4 years ago at work, my food was so tightly stuck in my throat that a coworker had to do the Heimlich maneuver a couple times to get the food dislodged. When my wife and I would go out to eat I’d order 2 waters for me and a drink for my wife because I had to drink so much and often. The regular places we went out to eat had gotten accustomed to my drinking needs and would either bring 2 glasses for me to start with or just keep a close eye on my water level. About 6 weeks ago in mid August, I noticed that I was able to eat an entire meal with way less drinking to help the food go down. Then I thought about how it had been much less often that even the feeling of food getting stuck in my throat would happen. It’s as though the problem causing the food to get stuck has gone away.

5. Rolaids. I probably had to take about 15 rolaids or more in a month. It wasn’t every day but at times, heartburn was bad enough that a couple rolaids did the trick to settle things down. In the last few months I don’t remember taking any rolaids. Isn’t that amazing too.

6. Bathroom visits to urinate were often a 2 or 3 time occurrence while trying to get a night or days sleep. It was seldom that I didn’t get up at least once. Aftering being laid off of my job I soon noticed I wouldn’t get up even once for a bathroom visit. This has continued until today. Maybe 3 or 4 times in the last few months have I needed to get up at night for a bathroom visit.

So what’s changed that could cause all these pleasant and healthy lifestyle changes to take place without ANY EFFORT on my part. It’s like ALL these things were just dropped in my lap like wonderfully and beautifully wrapped gifts from my Dear Heavenly Father. It wasn’t long after I was able to sleep restfully and peacefully without the aid of 4 sleeping pills and my wife told me I didn’t snore any more that Bishop Drews sermon, “Breaking Out of Bad Places” had me thinking.

Could God Love me so much as to remove me from a job that was really a “Bad Place” for me at a very opportune time as that. As long as the original owners of my company were protecting my job against revenge by the toes I stepped on with my emails in 2015, by God’s Grace & Favor, it was secure. As soon as that “covering” was removed, I believe God decided, “now is the time to bring Tony out of his Lo Debar.” All the coworkers that were still there who knew about the emails I had sent quickly drew the conclusion that a certain person was taking advantage of his opportunity to see me gone.

My work performance wasn’t even a factor in deciding who would be cut because my Performance Evaluation Bonus was double the largest amount I had ever received while working there. The company rep. even commented on it when he broke the news of my layoff to me. He said, “I see you will receive a nice size performance bonus.” I asked him how much it would be and I told him how it was double anything I had even received.

So how much is a high paying job worth? Is it worth your health even if you don’t realize it’s affecting you.

All those things that I have been delivered from could be stress related and then again they could have a spiritual attachments to them, I think it’s some of both. I knew the need for sleeping pills were because of work stresses but I had no idea the swallowing problem, bathroom visits, or aches and pains from a new mattress could be cured by being set free from a “Bad Place.”

All those issues that are now gone, hopefully for forever, had become “my normal” and I had just accepted that I was going to live with them. I don’t believe in coincidences or that the message Bishop Drew preached on my birthday about God working behind the scenes to bring His children out of “Bad Places,” then being laid off and removed from that situation was an accidental occurrence.

I really believe that because I choose to live my life as close to my Heavenly Father as possible, under His Umbrella, I am reaping benefits that I never even considered to ask for. But isn’t that what Isaiah spoke about when he wrote this,

Isaiah 65:22-24 They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.

23 They shall not labour in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the Lord, and their offspring with them.

24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

The Favor, Protection, Love, Grace and Mercy of Father God, Yeshua Jesus and the Holy Spirit are so far beyond anything we could ever ask or imagine in our wildest dreams. Do You Know Him? You Should Try to Know Him? He’s a Good, Good Father!!! He’s a Wonderful Redeemer and My High Priest after the Order of Melchizedek, who is

without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually. Hebrews 7:3

Jesus is ministering on the behalf of All God’s children in the Heavenly Tabernacle that Moses was told to make a copy of. The Blood of Sprinkling is His Own Precious and Powerful Blood HE Shed for us all.

The subject title of the 6th email was “Be Careful What You Pray For” but there is a prayer you can safely pray that will only bring good results. It’s to ask Jesus to forgive you for your sinful life you’ve lived and ask Him to allow His Holy Spirit into your heart to be “Born Again with God’s Spirit” because that spirit died in the Garden of Eden with Adam. Ask Jesus sincerely into your heart and life. Then be watchful for the out of the ordinary things that start happening in your life. Some needed things, maybe healthful things or things you’ve desired in your heart but never spoke to anyone. God hears those things spoken in our hearts, maybe more clearly than the ones we put words to. Our hearts tell it like it is but our minds add or forget to mention things or maybe try to dress them up in a way that will “sound” better. Our words are very powerful but in the ears of Father God, so are the unspoken thoughts, intents and desires of our heart.

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