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Our Lord Jesus Christ loves you.
286863 Posts in 27569 Topics by 3790 Members
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1  Fellowship / Testimonies / Re: Heather's Testimony on: March 31, 2008, 03:51:16 PM
I'm sorry it took so long to get back to writing.  I haven't been feeling well.
Heather's Testimony: Part Four
     I lived with my mom and my brother after I flunked out of college.  I was depressed.  I wasn't able to get treatment anymore.  I felt like a complete and utter failure.  I just wanted to crawl into a hole and die.  And then my dad had one of his little "talks" with me.  He was so disappointed that I had been able to go to his dream college and had "thrown it all away."  Dad managed to convince me that I didn't deserve to breathe the air on this planet.  I went from horribly depressed to actively suicidal.  I believed everyone would be better off if I was gone.  I had my death all planned out.  There was a bridge a mile from my house that was having construction work done.  I planned to walk up there after the workers were done for the day.  I was going to find a place high enough up that was still over land instead of water.  I was going to jump off of the bridge.  But I couldn't leave a messy house for Mom.  She would have enough to deal with after I died.  I didn't want her to have to sort through all of my junk.  So I started cleaning.  I was starting to feel a lot of stiffness and joint pain, but I kept right on cleaning.  I cleaned up everything I could think of, except my room.  Something kept me from ever finishing my room.  And since I believed I couldn't kill myself until my room was clean, I'm still alive to write this testimony.
     During this time, I was also so panic-stricken that I was practically agoraphobic.  I couldn't answer if someone knocked on our door because I was frozen with fear.  I couldn't mail anything, not even my student loan payments.  Not only could I not make phone calls, I couldn't even answer them anymore.  I used to leave the phone off the hook for hours at a time because every time the phone rang I had a panic attack.  I could still leave the house to walk the dog, visit my grandparents, and occasionally do some shopping, but that was about it.  I didn't go out unless I absolutely had to.  And I started watching this really ridiculous television show on NBC called the 700 Club.  Some of the news stories were OK, but that Pat Robertson guy was a total nut.  And these "Word of Knowledge" stories were really out there.  I had never seen anything like it.  It was totally bizarre; I didn't like the show, but I couldn't stop watching it.
     After I don't know how many months of being too terrified to pay my bills, the bank that owned my student loan sent a collection agency after me.  It got to the point that I had to pay back the entire loan within 24 hours or else.  I was finally able to ask my grandmother to help me sort this out.  She called my mom.  I was in big trouble until Mom figured out just how depressed I really was.  My grandparents loaned me the money to pay off my student loan.  Mom made some phone calls and arranged for me to go back to school at our local community college.  That way I would have to leave the house and talk to people when I was in class.  I would be back on Mom's health insurance until I turned 25.  And the college had a health and counseling center, so I could get treatment for my mental health problems.
To be continued...
2  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re: Too much choice when we shop on: March 26, 2008, 10:51:41 AM
Dear Annahavil,
     I don't know if having imported food and lots of choices is a bad thing or not.  But I agree that buying huge amounts of food that mostly goes to waste is a horrible idea.  They may be acting in a way that is penny wise (taking advantage of a discount on items bought in bulk) but it is definitely pound foolish (costs them more in the long run to purchase food they don't use plus the storage costs).  Is there anybody in management that you can talk to about this?  Maybe they could come up with some sort of agreement with a local food shelf or church to donate or sell their extra food for a reduced price so it won't rot in the warehouse and go to waste.  Or they could order only the food they honestly think they need even if it means accepting the risk of running out during a sale.  They could always give customers a rain check and honor the sale price when the next shipment comes in.  But if you work for a large chain, your store manager might not be able to change their purchase and storage policies.  You'll have to complain further up the corporate food chain.  I pray that God will guide you in helping to change this.
3  Fellowship / Testimonies / Re: Heather's Testimony on: March 25, 2008, 11:50:27 AM
Heather's Testimony: Part Three
     After high school, I attended a Lutheran college my dad had fallen in love with, not so much because it was where he wanted me to go, but because they had a female physics professor.  I had always felt a bit like a freak because I was a girl who liked math and science.  It was nice to know that I'm not the only one.  The campus was lovely, with century old maple trees and limestone buildings that looked like castles.  Academically, it was a very good school, but it was a bit of a culture shock.  About half of my classmates had never worked a day in their lives, because their parents were wealthy.  Quite a few of them, including my first roommate, were spoiled brats.  But there were a lot of wonderful, lovely people there too.  My friend, Carolyn, talked me into signing up for an IVCF outreach group that held overnight Bible parties for kids.  Carolyn was one of the group leaders, and I hoped I would be in her group.  No such luck.  I liked the people in my outreach group, but the two young ladies who lead it tended to use prayer like a club.  They would pray for folks who disagreed with them because obviously these people needed God's help to see the error of their ways.  As soon as I noticed that behavior, I kept any questions or concerns I had to myself.  I didn't want them praying over me that way.
      I noticed during our Bible studies and skit rehearsals that I started crying every time I heard the words "father" and "love" in the same sentence.  My earthly father has never loved me, so I couldn't imagine God loving me either.  That was a huge problem for me for a very long time.  But I was afraid to talk to anyone about it.  And too afraid of rejection to mention that I wasn't a Christian.  I just followed what everybody else did: sang the songs, acted in the skits.  I went along to get along.  But my heart wasn't in it.  I was terribly lonely.
     Academically, my college experience started out pretty well.  Then in the second semester of my sophomore year I got sick.  I was so tired that I was sleeping half the day and had trouble leaving my dorm room.  I was only eating one meal every two or three days.  I went to the nurse's office and she told me it was just a virus.  Drink lots of water, get plenty of rest, it'll go away.  But it didn't go away.  At this time I was also going to the counseling office, trying to find someone I could talk to.  Most of the counsellors were bloody awful.  One man talked like Mr. Spock from Star Trek.  Another man kept looking out the window or down at his watch when I was talking.  One woman took one look at my chart and how often I had been coming in and decided I was a hypochondriac.  I would have been better off talking to the receptionist!  My grades dropped from A's and B's to D's and F's.  Finally, after suffering for a semester and a half, the dean of students summoned me to his office.  After talking to me for less than five minutes, he diagnosed me with depression, and got me an appointment with the director of the counseling service so I could start taking medication.  Unfortunately, by the time the medication kicked in, I had already flunked a second semester.  For some reason, the college didn't care to take my undiagnosed illness into account during their decision.  I was academically dismissed from the college.
To be continued...
4  Theology / Debate / Re: Sin Poll Question on: March 23, 2008, 04:07:26 PM
Dear Preacher,
     Please do re-read this thread slowly and carefully.  Think about what each person has written before you write your next post.  It will help your writing fit into the conversation better.  You and Littleboy seem to have the same opinion on this subject and it might be a good idea to contact him to see if you have anything else in common.  Maybe you guys could become good friends.   Grin
     It is my belief that salvation is permanent.  Even if I committed a sin and was run over by a bus immediately afterward, I would still go to heaven.  (I try very hard not to sin, with varying degrees of success.)  We do have to struggle daily to die to our old sinful selves and instead be made new in the attitude of our minds.  But that process has nothing to do with salvation.  We choose to become new creatures in Christ because we want to please God and because that is how we become an example of His love and His power to our fallen world.  Every time Christians sin we are telling non-Christians that Jesus is no good!  But we are still forgiven and we are still going to heaven.  God bless you and have a happy Easter!
5  Fellowship / Testimonies / Re: Heather's Testimony on: March 22, 2008, 05:17:30 PM
Heather's Testimony: Part Two
     When my parents' marriage was coming apart, the Christians in her life told Mom she had to stay married to Dad, even though he was committing adultery and was emotionally abusive toward us.  They blamed Mom for the marriage being in trouble, saying that Mom wasn't doing enough to please Dad.  These people wounded Mom so badly that she not only turned her back on them, she turned her back on Jesus Christ as well.  Mom became a New Age Spiritualist.  She believes in reincarnation, spirits, and psychics.  Since I spent most Sundays with Mom, I rarely went to church as a child.  My dad and stepmom always said they were Christians, but they didn't act like it.  I never saw them pray or read the Bible, and they really didn't act in a loving, godly manner.  During the fifth grade, I lived with my mom and spent every other weekend with my dad.  I found out then that Dad and my stepmom were only Christmas and Easter Christians.  They always dropped us kids off at the church for Sunday School.  And they made sure we had money to put in the offering plate when we sat with our grandparents at the service.  But they didn't come to the service with us.  My dad's parents were involved in their church, but Dad and my stepmom were not.
     My mom was a pretty good parent.  But at Dad's house, there was quite a bit of emotional abuse and neglect.  After years of therapy, I have forgiven my dad and stepmom, but I'm not at the point where I can tell you most of what happened, at least not coherently.  My siblings and I spent far too much time alone without adult supervision, and at an early age I had to act like an adult and take care of the little ones.  Both my dad and my stepmom tried to convince my brother and me to stop loving our mother.  They put us kids squarely in the middle of the divorce.  My stepmom honestly and sincerely believed that little girls were evil.  My dad practically worshiped the daughter he expected me to be and hated the real me because I'm not that thing he made up in his head.  Dad often blamed me for being forced to marry my mom and work full time when he was going to college.  He never let me forget that I was a mistake.  My dad, my stepmom, and I didn't get along well.  I was thrown out of the house twice (fourth grade and eighth grade), the first time after Dad took a rifle into our dining room and threatened to kill our entire family.  I felt completely unloved by my dad and stepmom.  I learned at an early age to hide my feelings and tell adults whatever I thought they wanted to hear.  I was a mess.  I used to be a very accomplished liar and a thief.
     A few of my friends when I was growing up were Christians.  My best friend, Diane, lived almost next door to my mom.  I spent quite a bit of time in her apartment with her mom and two little brothers.  I never went to church with Diane's family, but we sometimes used to watch Christian cartoons at an old theater.  At the time, I thought Diane's mom was really wacky because she wouldn't allow Diane to listen to anything but Christian radio or wear make-up and she only allowed 3 TV shows at their house (Nova, Highway to Heaven, and The A-Team).  But wacky or not, I'm glad I had Diane's family in my life.  At school I had a few Christian classmates as well.  They always seemed so kind and thoughtful.  Of course, there were probably a lot of not-so-nice Christians as well.  But all of the people I wished I was a little more like turned out to be Christians.  That made a big impression on me while I was growing up.
To be continued...
6  Prayer / Prayer Requests / Re: Urgent Prayer Request on: March 22, 2008, 11:19:43 AM
I pray that your student with food poisoning will be healed.  And I also pray that God will bless your work in teaching English!  Smiley
7  Entertainment / Music / Re: YOUR FAVORITE WORSHIP SONG AND WHY. on: March 21, 2008, 08:26:53 PM
I don't know if this one counts as a worship song.  It's not exactly the sort of song I've ever heard in church.  But I love "Big Fish" by FFH.  First of all, it's hilarious.  Grin  And second, it is oh so true!  I struggle so much with trying to figure out how to follow Jesus.  It's a comfort to know that He will forgive me, every single time I mess up, when I repent and turn back to Him.

Are you in the big fish
Are you sitting in the belly of a world gone mad
Have you turned your back on His wish
On His will for your life, have you made Him sad
Do you want to get out of the big fish
Listen to God and follow His plan
And you won't be part of the main dish
He'll spit you out on to dry land

verse 1:
You're one brick short of a load now brother
You're one shot away from a bullseye
You are missing the mark on your spiritual walk
You started walking away now you're sinking -
Into the deep, wake up from the sleep
See you're one fry short of a happy meal
You are incomplete by your own deceit
You turned your back, now you're going swimming

verse 2:
You're sinking low how low can you go
So low that you don't know which way to go
To the truth or to the dare?
If you take the dare then you'll be swallowed there
But run to the truth and you will find
That a rescue arrives right in time
To pick you up back on your feet
Obedience is neat

God is great!  Have a lovely evening!
8  Fellowship / Testimonies / Heather's Testimony on: March 21, 2008, 02:28:33 PM
Heather's Testimony: Part One
    I had an unhappy childhood.  My health was not the best.  Physically, I was OK back then, but emotionally I was a wreck.  I've had social phobias for as long as I can remember.  My first bout of depression happened in the first grade.  My first suicidal episode was in the second grade.  I was clinically depressed every few months throughout my childhood.  But I wasn't diagnosed with depression until the eighth grade.  I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder when I was 28, and Social Anxiety Disorder when I was 30.  But I've had all of those problems since early childhood.
     I came from a broken home.  My parents had only gotten married because Mom was pregnant with me, so their marriage was never very strong to begin with.  Mom and Dad argued a lot, Dad started sleeping around, calling in sick at work so he could be with his mistress, and coming home less and less often.  Finally, when I was two, he stopped coming home.  Dad lived out of his car for a while, and then got his own apartment.  When I was three or four, my little brother and I started visiting Dad and his girlfriend at his apartment.  Then Dad got a new girlfriend and decided that my little brother and I had to come live with them in a house trailer.  For whatever reason, Mom allowed Dad to take us away.  We spent weekdays with Dad's girlfriend (we hardly ever saw our dad) and weekends with Mom.  When Dad's girlfriend got pregnant, Dad filed for divorce from Mom and built a house.  Dad and his girlfriend got "married" (I found out later that the "wedding" took place before the divorce was final.).  My brother and I were not invited.  Four months later, my little half-brother was born.  A year and a half after that, I had a little half sister.  Twice a week for much of my childhood, my brother and I were shuffled back and forth between my dad's house (week days) and my mom's house (weekends).  I never felt like I had a home.  There was "Dad's house" and "Mom's house" but there was never any "my house".
To be continued...
9  Prayer / Prayer Requests / Re: Pray for the Ministry on: March 20, 2008, 09:38:16 PM
Dear Bro. Roy,
Yes, I will keep Morning Star Ministries in my prayers.  I pray that God will bless you with all of the people, money, and everything else your ministry needs.
Sincerely, Heather
10  Prayer / Prayer Requests / Please pray for my family! on: March 20, 2008, 07:02:14 PM
Hi folks!  I could use prayer in several areas:
1. Most of my family members aren't Christians.  So please pray that my mom, dad, stepmom, siblings, nieces and nephews will be saved.
2. Please pray for healing for both me an my mother (we both have fibromyalgia and other health problems), and also healing for my dad and stepmom.
3. I've been trying to find a church home for several years, but health problems (physical and emotional) have kept me from joining any church.  Please pray that I'll be able to finally join a church, get baptized, etc.
4. I'm in the middle of moving from one house to another, pretty much single-handedly.  Since I'm also working part time and taking care of my mom while I'm chronically ill, this move is not going at all well.  Please pray that God will send someone to help me.
5. Please pray for healing in the relationships in my family, especially between me and my dad and stepmom.
6. Please pray that my neighbors, Linda and Kevin, will find a new job that they love and are terrific at.
Thank you so much!
11  Entertainment / Television / Re: Not the History Channel! on: March 19, 2008, 10:14:26 PM
I don't watch the History Channel much, but some of their "science" shows are good for a laugh.  According to one, the Edmund Fitzgerald was taken away by a UFO.  It had nothing to do with the humongous storm that was raging when the ship disappeared.  It was this huge mystery that could only be explained by alien abduction.  And another show was trying to convince people that the disappearing ships and planes in the Bermuda Triangle are lost because a miniature black hole ate them.  Grin  I don't know what the writers and producers of these shows were thinking.  I wish they would go back to being the Civil War and World War II Channel.  I didn't watch them back then, either, but at least they made sense.
I haven't watched the Weather Channel for a few years now.  We have a really terrific meteorologist on our local news, complete with radar, so I watch him instead.  And I got really sick of trying to catch the "Local on the Eights," especially since they stop running it during their obnoxious programs.  Though I do check their forecast from time to time while I'm on-line.
12  Theology / Bible Prescription Shop / Re: God's prescription for depression on: March 19, 2008, 01:12:05 PM
Psalm 40:1-2 says, "I waited patiently for the Lord;  and he inclinded unto me, and heard my cry.  He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings."
I love that verse.  Cheesy  I thank the Lord that your depression was situational instead of medical (much easier to fix!).  I am so thankful that you refused to do the wrong thing just because it was company policy.  And thank God you were able to witness so well and for so long in an industry that really needs it!  May God continue to bless you and your family.
13  Fellowship / What are you doing? / Re: Visiting nursing homes on: March 19, 2008, 02:31:27 AM
I am very glad you visit nursing homes.  I'll bet that a lot of folks without families nearby are happy to have a visitor.  God bless you!
14  Theology / Debate / Re: Sin Poll Question on: March 18, 2008, 11:02:30 PM
I voted no.  I believe that Jesus died for all of my sins, both the ones I committed before I was saved and the ones I committed after.  I am forgiven.  I am saved.  I will go to heaven when I die.  I do my best to not add to the Lord's pain by sinning, but I tend to fall flat on my face on a pretty regular basis.  I pick myself back up and ask Jesus to forgive me again.  I'm glad I don't have to depend on living a perfect life or I would never make it!
15  Welcome / About You! / Re: Birthday Present on: March 18, 2008, 03:55:17 PM
Dear Littleboy,
I've never heard of anything bad happening before, during, or after a solar eclipse, but then again I had never heard of there being different kinds of solar eclipses, either (aside from total and partial).  I think it's really cool that you're going to see an eclipse on your birthday.  Mount Saint Helens erupted on my birthday back in 1980.  It was scary seeing the ash falling on the news, but we had gorgeous sunsets for weeks after.  Have a good day!
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