I Wanted to Just Skip It All

Filed in Christian Walk, Encouragement, faith, Grief, Suffering, Updates by on June 26, 2017


It was Father’s Day weekend and it was just too much. So at the last minute, in an effort to avoid anything and everything Father’s Day, I loaded the car and we headed to St. Louis for the night. I wasn’t planning on going to church either but Jenny didn’t want to miss. How can you say “no” to that? 

And soon I found myself sitting in a pew a FBC Arnold, MO. 

Anytime I am going to hear God’s word preached, I pray that God will teach me something and speak to my heart in an area I need to hear. But every now and then you hear one of those messages that stick with you for a long time. A message that changes you and really speaks to the very core of where you are in that very moment. 

In my efforts to avoid anything and everything Father’s day, I didn’t even bring “church clothes” but there at FBC, we were truly welcomed.  A sweet lady named Juanita took us to the nursery where I dropped off one happy child and one screaming child and then lead me to the sanctuary for the service even showing me the bulletin where I could take notes during the message. The worship was worshipful with such convicting songs like Travis’ Just As I Am and the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir’s I’m Amazed. Singing …”I come broken to be mended, I come wounded to be healed, I come desperate to be rescued, I come empty to be filled” while watching and hearing a crowd full of people lifting their voices and hands in praise, especially this sweet older man on the front row of the choir.

It was like water for my dry soul and the tears streamed down.

And then the pastor, Kenny Qualls, shared one of the most memorable biblical messages I have ever heard on the life of Samson. He started with an illustration about a man in the early 1900’s, Bobby Leach, who went across Niagara Falls in barrel. But after recovering from the various injuries he sustained during such a great feat, on a tour with his barrel years later through a tragic twist of events he slipped on an orange peel, injured his leg and later died of an infection as a result.

Samson was someone who had an amazing background. He had the right upbringing. He was a Nazarite. God used him to do amazing and miraculous things. But through a series of orange peel incidents, the man that was strong literally beyond my comprehension was brought down in such a tragic way. Through a series of events he shows how anger escalated and caused so many events to transpire. It was truly an amazing message that I recommend you listen to.

Samson Part 3: FBC Arnold, MO

But it was mostly convicting for me because right now, as I have come out of the “coma phase” of this time in my life, I feel like for the first time ever or at least in a super long time, I am more vulnerable than I ever have been before. I am weak. I know I am weak and my greatest fear is to make a mistake. Make a mistake that has lasting and long term consequences. Because as Pastor Kenny said, God gives us stories in Scripture for us to learn from, but no one is above Samson. We are all susceptible to sin. And God can redeem sin. He can make all things new. He can cleanse us and forgive us. But my heart is to keep my eyes focused on the Lord, even in these dark and vulnerable days that He will protect me and keep me close to Him and not slip on the orange peels that can come my way.

It reminds me of an older Casting Crowns song, “Slow Fade.”  

It’s a slow fade when black and white are turned to gray
And thoughts invade, choices are made,
a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day
It’s a slow fade, it’s a slow fade.”

So often the path of sin is just one small step followed by another small step sometimes seemingly insignificant but in the wrong direction and one day you find yourself on a totally different path. 

And I don’t want that to be me.

We had a great time in St. Louis doing some fun things and eating some great Asian food per Jenny’s request. But most of all, I believe God used that short trip to refresh me spiritually through a wonderful church who didn’t even know me. Thank you to FBC Arnold. Thank you to Juanita, the nursery workers who kept my children, the awesome choir and orchestra and worship pastor who led us in wonderful worship and to Pastor Kenny for a wonderful message. 

I was just an unknown broken person in capri pants and a t-shirt needing to hear from the Lord, and He met me there. Even when I wanted to run.

Sometimes in the humdrum of each and every Sunday those that volunteer so faithfully each and every Sunday may not always see that their sacrifice makes such a difference. But I hope that you remember that it does, for those of us that randomly walk in your church doors that are broken and need to hear from the Lord. Your sacrifice matters.

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