Marilyn Friesen

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Showing posts with label church. Show all posts
Showing posts with label church. Show all posts

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Geese Taught Him

There was once a man who did not believe in either the birth of Christ nor the spiritual meaning behind it, and was skeptical even of God. He and his family lived in a farming community. His wife was a devout believer and diligently raised her children in faith. He sometimes gave her a hard time about her belief and mocked her religious observances.

"It's all nonsense--why would God lower himself and become a human like us? Its such a ridiculous story," he   said.

One snowy day, she and the children left for church while he stayed home. After they departed, the winds grew stronger and the snow turned into a blinding snowstorm. He sat down to relax before the fire for the evening.

Then he heard a loud thump, something hitting against the window...and still another thump. He looked outside but could not see anything. So he ventured outside for a better view. In the field beside his house, of all the strangest things, a flock of geese. They were apparently flying to look for a warmer area down south, but they had been caught in the snowstorm. The storm had become to blinding and violent for the geese to fly or see their way. They were stranded on his farm, with no food or shelter, unable to do more than flutter their wings and fly in aimless circles. He had compassion for them and wanted to help them. He thought to himself, the barn would be a great place for them to stay. It is warm and safe; surely they could spend the night and wait out the storm. So he opened the barn doors for them.

He waited, watching them, hoping they would notice the open barn and go inside. Nevertheless, they did not not notice the barn or realize what it could mean for them. He moved closer toward them to get their attention, but they  just moved away from him out of fear.

He went into the house and came back with some bread, broke it up, and made a bread trail to the barn. They still did not catch on.

Starting to get frustrated, he went over and tried to shoo them toward the barn. They panicked and scattered in every direction except toward the barn. Nothing he did could get them into the barn where there was warmth, safety, and shelter. Feeling totally frustrated, he exclaimed, "why don't they follow me? Can't they see this is the only place where they can survive the storm? How can I possibly get them into the one place that can save them?"

He thought for a moment and realized that they just would not follow a human. He said to himself, "How can I possibly save them? The only way would be for me to become like those geese. If only I can become like one of them. They would follow me and I would lead them to safety."

At that moment, he stopped and considered what he had said. The words reverberated in his mind: if only I could become like one of them, then I could save them. Then, at last he understood God's heart towards mankind...and he fell on his knees.

There is a verse that goes with this story. John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Author unknown 

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Guiding Light

Well, I think it is about time I ‘get on with the program’ and start talking about what I had intended to in the first place. Remember when I wrote that title about Better than a Fairy Tale? I must have left some of your scratching your heads, wonder what exactly was I talking about.

It’s heartbreaking growing up in a broken home. A person is left feeling sad and lonely, knowing that you are different from the rest and no one really understands. Oh, sure you try to conform on the outside, do what others do, but when you slip up and others notice, or maybe even avoid you, you feel it keenly, probably far more keenly than those who are basically secure would ever feel.

But live goes on, and when I reached my later teens, especially, I had a deep longing to have a happy, stable home like those around me. Many were the times I would go for long walks and cry out to the One who did empathise better than any human could.

I still marvel to this day that God had such a marvelous plan for my life. (For me, that little, flawed grain of sand that seemed so insignificant in my own eyes.)

Like I said, I spent a lot of time going for walks and praying the year I turned twenty. There was a tall straight spruce tree in the corner of our yard and one evening it pointed directly to a star. It seemed to have a message, or more specifically direction, for me.

At this time, I was living with my Mom and younger siblings in a small town within easy walking distance to the senior’s home where I was employed. It was about two miles out in the country. On one of these walks, it became clear to me that I wouldn’t marry one of the local young men, not that I'm sure what the significance of that information was.

Fall eased into winter then the cool, pleasant April days were upon us once again. Since our hometown hosted one of the larger churches in our denomination we had a rather large annual meeting held there that spring. There was well over a thousand in attendance but that wasn’t too many to confuse our Heavenly Father.

 Okay, sit up straight now, because this is where things get exciting. I was standing in the hall next to the Mother’s Room, (nursery) when way on the other side of the auditorium God pointed out a young man to me and said: ‘That’s the one you are going to marry.’

‘Hold on a minute. I have no idea who he is: he could be from California for all I knew!’ And on and on, but I couldn’t dismiss that thought all that easily. God wouldn’t let me.
 P.S. Please check out my book. (Link below.) If you want to escape from a troubled past and hope for a better future, this may be the most comforting book you will ever read.
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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Healing Prayer

Can eight weeks of suffering disappear in one night? Nay, make that eight years, or even two-thirds of a lifetime.

Physically I was never like 'other girls' I was weaker, frailer, and had less stamina. This showed up even as a child, but it wasn't until I was in my twenties, I believe, before the dizzy spells really kicked in. I'm telling you our family doctor tried, he really tried to find the solution for many years but nothing helped.

But the years sped on with migraines, sinus headaches, and the nausea and vertigo that increased intolerably under the slightest stress.

Was I miserable? Yes: and no. God was there. And anywhere with God is a haven of comfort.

My husband had seen me suffering all these years and it became so severe that social settings were becoming intolerable. He got the idea to ask one of the pastor's in our local congregation if they could have a healing prayer for me.  They were open to the idea.

Saturday evening, April 23 has become a holy day in my heart and memories. We are a large congregation so there are two ministers (pastors) and two deacons. We met for a time of Bible reading, fellowship and praying. It was a time of sweet communion as we shared our hearts, confessing our faults one to another. Although the discomfort in my head was so bad at this time, I was willing to go through with it, to see what God could or would do.

We knelt beside our chairs with my dear friend; one of the pastor's wife's, supporting me while her husband anointed my head with oil, and prayed.

Immediately I felt a burning, but not uncomfortable feeling in the center of my forehead which lasted for about a half an hour. Was the dizziness gone? Yes. Was I able to do things what 'normal' people do after that? Absolutely.

I felt like I was treading on Holy Ground, and today which is Tuesday, the wonder, the hallowed feeling is still with me. He Touched Me. The loving Heavenly Father deemed me worthy of a gentle touch of healing and I feel like tiptoeing in His Presence, He was/ is so close.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Which Time Is Easier, Theirs or Ours?

Mariakin hovered in the back of the crowd.  For many weeks now she had been smuggling food to her father while he was in the dungeon and now she was compelled to watch him be burned at the stake with many others. Her spirit was weary, discouraged. Every day they suffered from the threat of persecution. She didn’t know how she could bear it much longer; this fleeing, this worrying, this fellowshipping in secret in the dead of night, in the storm and the cold, lest someone would reveal their whereabouts and tell the authorities.  One by one the fires were kindled in the rushes at the bottom of each stake. When the smoke began to curl up around her father’s stake, Mariakin fainted.