My hope: is to provide Enlightenment for those who desire to know the truth; in regard to who and why I am, with full awareness that most likely in this present age few people will have enough curiosity to care, let alone to believe what I offer as the truth♡ I have long recognized that the number of people who believe, is of no significance; rather my responsibility is to provide the opportunity for believing so people have a choice ♡
I was taught at a young age a belief in God and learned to pray a child’s prayer; Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep and if I die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take♡ Then I asked God to bless the individuals, one by one, of my family, beginning with my mother and father ♡ There was never any doubt that my prayer would be heard and answered, because I possessed the faith of a child and I can honestly say that faith remains the foundation of all that I rest upon in spite of the contradictions and difficulties I’ve faced in the world of unbelievers; who lack the faith of a child♡ Either because they were never taught to have it or because the world in which they lived, deprived them of the strength to maintain it♡ As a result, I consider my faith to be a gift from God that in spite of the world, could not be destroyed♡ I have come to realize that the example of my father’s life and not being too poor to pay attention, sustained me in the difficulties of my youth, for which I remain thankful to God♡ At the age of seven years, I became aware that my faith was also in spite of organized religion, which I experienced in the name of Methodism, so I walked away from it’s influence♡ The issue was over how the “so called” privileged children were honored above the less fortunate on an Easter Sunday, I thank God that I noticed and was able to respond appropriately, at seven, my only option was to walk away from religion to pursue faith♡ From that point my father’s example and that of older adults whom I came to respect, became my guide, again I thank God that I was not too poor to pay attention♡
My faith gave me the confidence to question the illusion being presented by the world, as to how things are supposed to be and accepted as normal, which the more I experienced, the more unacceptable it became♡ I have come to realize the wisdom of knowing that my life is not the result of the tragedy of my experiences, but my having been given the ability to overcome through the help God has provided along my life’s path♡ I recognize that I have lived a blessed life since I was a child in spite of the difficulty, or more accurately put, because of the difficulty, for without it how could I have learned to overcome♡ I found that in this;
the scripture is proven to be true, ” All things are possible to those who love God and are called according to His purpose “
I will attempt to summarize my youth as follows: at some point I no longer felt the need to pray, as that base had been sufficiently covered, I didn’t want to be perceived as being bothersome to God, it was enough to be bothersome to my mother ♡ Apparently she found her middle son at times annoying, with all the “why” questioning, while I could not help myself and couldn’t understand why she got annoyed ♡ Upon reflection, I was the middle of seven, with two older sisters, one older brother, one younger sister and two younger brothers, perhaps it is enough to thank God for being allowed to live and the patience of my mother, severely tried♡ I learned the value of conscience when I fell into the temptation provided by the world’s standards of acceptable behavior that deviated from that of my parents♡ I had no reason to believe that I was sinning, that realization came much later, I assumed that God and I remained on the best of terms, so much for the unreliability of assumptions♡ My conscience and the watchful eye of my father, as well as others including God, saved me from drowning in the pit of dispare, literally♡ I regard conscience as a gift to be cherished and disregarded at one’s own expense as the consequences are what often can become overwhelming♡ As my faith was sufficient to maintain my confidence throughout my youth, it was destined to fail me, when faced with the responsibility of manhood♡
As I mentioned, my self confidence was beyond question, so I felt perfectly comfortable relying on my judgment having never been put to any real test♡ I had never been interested in dating, beyond brief relationships out side of friendship, which was the case till after my college experience and beyond♡ I thought I that I had fallen in love in the second and third grade years with the visiting cousin of a neighbor across the street, she was fun, beautiful and happy to have me for a companion ♡ Twice in high school and found that lust was a perfect way to destroy a friendship my second year in college; I found that lust wasn’t all it was cracked up to be, the hard way♡
Moving right along, Thanksgiving break of my twenty second year I met and fell in true love for the first time, I told my brother, I think I could marry her within two hours after we met♡ I saw her again over Christmas break and within four hours I asked her to marry me, appropriately she didn’t realize that I was serious♡ After two months, I had convinced her and she agreed to marry me in two years after she graduated college ♡ In my twenty third year; eight months after we met we married, the marital bliss lasted for seventeen and a half years and the marriage ended thirty five years after it began, when she divorced me♡ She had filed five years earlier, but I fought it in court up to the West Virginia Court of Appeals which refused to hear the case and I was forced to face the reality; a man who didn’t believe in divorce, was forced to experience it♡ You see, for most of the time God had given us together, we didn’t believe in divorce, the darkness of the times is powerful to change one’s mind and cause some to lose faith in one another♡ She held on longer because of the quality of her character, but she was not built for nor had she signed up for the Life I was called to live♡ While my love for her remains and I thank God for the time we had together, I understand why it ended and consider it the evidence of His mercy on us, enough said about that♡
Back to the path my life has taken for over forty years now, the trials I have faced to gain the understanding, of life’s difficulties we all must face in one form or another, the means of overcoming and the necessity of an enduring Faith♡ Before our marriage we decided that we wanted to find a church to belong to, which proved more difficult than we imagined. That caused me to seek an understanding of the why question, because wherever we went, we didn’t feel like we belonged and the denomination didn’t matter♡ So I started asking others what they believed and found that in spite of their religion, they too longed for something more substantial, more solid♡ So we looked for common ground, so to speak♡ What we found was the lack of faith capable of sustaining us at a time in our lives when we were recognizing the need for such a Faith♡ So we became Seekers and what we sought was the Truth♡ One day someone suggested that I go see a childhood friend who was being described as being “on fire for the Lord”; when I found him he was up on a high roof and I told him when he had a chance, that I needed to talk to him♡ To my surprise he came down immediately and when I explained what was going on with me, this is what he said: don’t worry the Lord is dealing with you and everything is going to be alright♡ I believed him and felt relieved instantly♡ I went home and told my wife and she cried, later she told me she felt that I was going to leave her behind and I assured her that it would never happen, thirty years later she decided that she had to leave me♡ So much for those who refuse to believe in women’s intuition although not always perfectly accurate♡ Soon after I was offered a job five hours away from where I had lived all my life and we resumed our search for where we belonged with no success♡ However by this time I had begun to study the Bible♡ I left out an important detail: one evening I pulled off to the side of the road I was on, to pray, this was shortly after I began Seeking; it was in my time of despiration☆ This is what I prayed, God show me what you want me to do and I will do it, and as soon as I finished, it was if a physical weight was lifted off my shoulders, believe it or not that’s your choice♡ I attribute it to the power of a sincere prayer of commitment♡ About a month after our move, my older brother who lived an hour and a half south of us, invited us to a church he and his wife had started to attend, so we went the next Sunday♡ I remember the couple who greeted us at the back when we went in made us feel welcome without any doubt, so we decided that this was where we belonged♡ I have no doubt that God led us to that church♡ We were faithful attendees, most every Wednesday night and Sunday for two meetings we made our way south♡ My desire for understanding compelled me and my wife supported me willingly♡ My job required me to be on the road during the day, so I often listened to Oliver Green and Charles Swindoll on the radio and read the New Testament (NASV, Charles Swindoll’s translation of choice) my wife had bought me when I stopped for lunch as much as possible♡ At night I often studied after supper and my wife never complained, she understood♡ For all my effort, my progress was slow, so one night at the table I had one of those light bulb moments, the Word seemed so familiar to me that I was reading with no new understanding♡ So I prayed: Alright Lord, I don’t understand anything, please show me the Way♡ From that moment on I began to get my understanding♡ By that time my wife and I had been baptized in a baptistry as they called it in the front of the church, full immersion according to their tradition, they were independent Baptist♡ I understood exactly what it meant, I was willing to let my old man die and be buried, so that I could be raised into the life God had intended for me all along, as a babe in understanding, prepared to learn, which has always been the Way that’s guaranteed to work♡ Soon afterward came the light bulb moment that I mentioned♡
As it turned out, the Preacher was very religious and pious in his own mind, with much to say by way of commentary derived from personal experience more than inspiration of the Word of God♡ He was also big on setting rules for us that can’t be found in what Jesus taught (commanded)♡ In spite of that, he pointed me to scripture that did inspire and touch my heart, the part of our mind purposed to receive the Truth, that I longed to receive♡ I never could comprehend what people meant when they would say things like in my heart I believe, this or that, then point to their chest where our blood pump resides, as if that’s what God means by believing in our heart, which when you stop to think wouldn’t make sense at all♡ Mankind seems to have always had difficulty understanding God and that difficulty is what we are here to overcome♡ For example: I was taught in Sunday school that Adam and Eve were the first of mankind, which I was willing to believe was true until about the age of twenty years when a difficulty presented itself and it was apparent that I was not the first to notice, however as far as I know, I’m the first in quite some time to overcome it, perhaps it has puzzled some for well over two thousand years without a solution being mentioned♡ Which led me to believe it may have been due to a misunderstanding having been promoted, imagine that if you can♡ Here is the difficulty: after Cain killed his younger brother Able he was banished to the land of Nod where he took a wife and begat children, right, that’s what the record shows, so where did his wife come from? I came up with the answer while reading Genesis under the Oak tree on my families farm♡ But before I explain the solution I have an important question that requires a truthful answer♡ Do you recall that it is written, ” Let God be true and every man a liar “, are we to believe that means that every man that ever lived is a liar, that would fail to be in harmony with God’s revealed Word, which is unacceptable. Rather whenever a controversy arises between men, over the meaning of God’s Word, look to the Word not men to solve the controversy, only the Word reveals Truth♡ Back to the solution: In the record of God’s Creation it says: “Then God said, let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” And God Created man in His own image, in the image of God he created him. male and female He created them. And God blessed them; and God said to them, ” Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it, and rule over the fish of the sea and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Then God said, “Behold I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing which has life. I have given every green plant for food “, and it was so. And God saw all that He had made, and behold it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. And by the seventh day day God completed His Work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made. This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made earth and heaven. (Genesis 1:26~2:4) Now any reasonable person would conclude, that this much was finished, however who in their right mind would conclude that all men are capable of being reasonable, let alone of a right mind, that would render deception and misunderstanding impossible, let us continue with that in mind♡ Moving right along to: Genesis 2:7~9, 15~18, …20~25 & 3:22~24 Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being(soul). And the Lord God planted a garden toward the east, in Eden; and there He placed the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground the Lord God caused to grow every tree that was pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it. And the Lord God Commanded the man, Saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you Shall Not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you Shall Surely Die.” Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I Will make him a Helper suitable for him.”
And the man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but Adam there Was Not Found a Helper suitable for him. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fail upon the man, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh at that place. And the Lord God fashioned into a woman the rib which He had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. And the man said, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” For this cause a man Shall leave his father and mother, and Shall cleave to his wife; and they Shall become One Flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he stretch out his hand, and take also from the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever “____ therefore the Lord God sent him Out from the Garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken. So He drove the man Out; and at the East of the Garden of Eden He Stationed the Cherubim, and the Flaming Sword which turned every direction, to Guard the Way to the Tree of Life.
So it was on the sixth day God created mankind, male and female, according to His purpose. And afterwards He formed a man out of dust for a special purpose, to care for the Garden of Eden and remain innocent so as to enjoy eternal life, communing with God; all that was required of him was to obey God’s Command, in failing he lost his innocence and could no longer walk with God when Cain was banished from the presence of his father and mother, he came to marry a female from the sixth day Creation, and so it is written♡
Though this is true, few have believed, and so it continues to this very day among those who remain unenlightened♡ I thank God for His promise: those who seek shall find, and the Truth is what I desired♡
6/2/21 @ 13:55 There was a line from a movie that came to mind; “Herein lies the rub”, in order to express a thought that came to me ♡ “The world leads people to believe, this or that, while God has always Spoken Truth through His Word and invited those who are willing to Believe “♡ “Michael” of “Allen” Neel 6/2/21 @ 14:04