A prayer for those who silently strugglegreenspun.com : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread
Dear Brothers and Sisters
Over the past few months I have been personally and professionally beseiged by the enemy. Difficulties everywhere especially at Church. I have had the opportunity to hear from others of you who are silently struggling to serve our great God. Some with issues so deep that they do not want to turn off others.
Though the battle is tough and you may feel completely surrounded. Even hope is flickering low. Remember there are others praying for you to keep the faith. We serve a great God in a challenged denomination. But God himself that he would neither leave us nor forsake us. I pray for you who are hanging in there. Keep the faith for this too shall pass. Please pray for me as well as I seek to serve the God I Love and love the God I Serve.
God Bless You All
-- Anonymous, March 08, 2003
My brother Nalton, I will pray for you and I encourage you to claim the victory of Jesus Christ. A week ago I was asked to do a funeral for a prominent person in our community. They were not a member of my church but I have done 3 funerals for this family in 11 years. The funeral director did not want me to do the funeral because I am black. (I am the only black clergyperson in my town and the only black ordained clergywoman in my state). The funeral director even was so bold he hired another pastor to do the funeral, He called one of his cronies to have the funeral held in his cronies church. The pastor of the church called me to say that the church board did not want me to stand on the pulpit. But they would allow me to sing a song. This was the day before the funeral. The family was distraught for it was their mother who had died. It was a mess! But I was not going to be moved. God told me he wanted me to do the service and the family wanted me to do the service. I could not move the service for it was printed in the paper. I called the pastor of the church back and said I would be singing a song and I would do the eulogy. They said I could do that. My thoughts were on the grief of the family. The day of the service the pastor they got to do it, opened up with prayer, he was horrible, I saw the pained look on the families face. After he finished the prayer I calmly stood on the pulpit and thanked him for assisting me with the service. I did the entire service and sang. The funeral director turned the mike off. It did not matter I have a big voice and God was in the room. The family loved the service and promised the funeral director that he would hear from their lawyer. They gave me twice the amount of money I asked for. And one of the people at the service said to me, "Pastor Rogers I hear you do not have a car, and you don't know how to drive. At the end of April after the snow I will give you a car and I will have one of my employees teach you how to drive" This man owns the largest car dealership in my town. We need that car to plant our second church, we had been unable to plant our second church because my daughters car can't get over the mountain passes. Brother Nalton, before I walked into to do the service I knew God was on my side. The enemy had no power over me, and I knew God would prevail. I have been here 11 years and I am still here. Your God has not forgotten you. One of the things that help me with my ministry is that I am AME! Everything I went through, that you are going through Richard Allen and others have gone through it! Imagine what the founders of our ame universities went through, the founders of our churches went through. They cried but they kept pressing on. The enemy is WEAK!! In the face of God. Keep posting and I will pray for you until I hear your praise report. There is a song I love called "God hears your silent tears" my brother God hears your silent tears and so do we your ame today family. Feel free to write me or others privately for encouragement. I have my angels on the board that strengthen me. Reach out and they will be there. God bless !!
-- Anonymous, March 09, 2003
Bro. Nalton I am enclosing the lectionary reading for today Sun. Mar. 9, 2003. In the hope it sustains you spiritually.
1 Peter 3
Suffering for Doing Good
8Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. 9Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. 10For, "Whoever would love life and see good days must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from deceitful speech. 11He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. 12For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil." 13Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? 14But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. "Do not fear what they fear ; do not be frightened." 15But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 17It is better, if it is God's will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. 18For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, 19through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison 20who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, 21and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also--not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at God's right hand--with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.
-- Anonymous, March 09, 2003
God bless you. What a T-E-S-T-I-M-O-N-Y!!! I applaud you for standing when God told you to do so. I pray for you and your daughter and your boldness in the service of the Lord.
-- Anonymous, March 10, 2003
Hello Brother Brangman,
I can certainly relate to your statement that you have been attacked by the enemy. I also would like to thank Rev. Rogers for her encouraging words. During the month of Feb a member of my organization and myself were lied on by a senior member of the administrative staff. I would like to give you the details but because of impending legal proceedings, I can't say much more. However, I can say that God is still on the throne and nothing can happen unless He causes it to happen or allows it to happen.
I was distraught and baffled about this whole incident but I found out the other member had been lied on three times by this senior administrator. This lady who is a victim of his lies unbeknowst to him carries out her duties as a receptionist in our facility and she stands ready at all times to encourage our homeless clients with word of God. She is a member of the United House of Prayer for All People and she goes to a praise service at her church everyday!!! How is that for dedication. I also learned that she has been coming to our facility on the weekends to take people to her church in her van. I would imagine that the enemy who is the "father of lies" and whose purpose is " to kill, steal, and destroy" was angered by her actions and my support of her. I heard a minister say that when you are working for the Lord, you should expect these kinds of attacks-That's why its so important for the congregation to pray for their ministers!!!
I felt moments of despair but the Spirit reminded me that Elijah after having shown great faith in calling down fire from Heaven to burn his sacrifice in a contest with the 450 prophets of Baal and 400 prophets of Asherah experienced moments where his faith was weak. This same Elijah killed the prophets of Baal and then afterwards fled because Jezebel was trying to kill him. How could a man who had witnessed fire coming down from Heaven be fearful of being killed by Jezebel. However, his faith was renewed when God told him to stand before the mountain and the wind dashed upon the mountain and broke it in pieces but IKINGS 19 said the Lord was not in the wind. Then a great earthquake appeared but the Lord was not in the earthquake. Then a great fire appeared but the Lord was not in the fire. Then Elijah heard a gentle breeze and God spoke to him out of the gentle breeze. God said " What are you doing here Elijah?"
I was inspired by this scripture because if a great man of faith like Elijah who was carried to Heaven in a fiery chariot experienced moments of lapse in his faith. I know that if I be still I too will be able to hear the voice of God almighty whispering to me and saying " Be still and know that God is God and I will be exalted amongst all the nations" or as David reminds us in the Psalms 103:19 "The Lord has established His throne in the Heavens and His sovreignty rules over all". God sits on the throne and can't nothing (excuse the double negative) happen without His permission. Keep on praying and keep on keeping on brother Brangman.
-- Anonymous, March 12, 2003
Dear Brother Jazzman
God is good all the time. I am keeping on my Brother and I pray you will do the same. May God Bless You and keep you through this journey. God Bless You Rev. Denise and to those who are reading, not writing, God Be With You. Always
-- Anonymous, March 13, 2003