Posts tagged ‘England’

August 26, 2011

Just Talk To Me

by pastortimfowler

Copyrighted photo  http://www.flickr.com/photos/ithicuspictures/2852196227/

 

I had the privilege of sitting in on our Thursday night Lady’s Bible study last night. It is one of the perks that comes with being the pastor. The study was on how to have and effective prayer life and the discussions were interesting and thought-provoking. You would be amazed at how much women can talk when they get together.
When I was a new Christian I use to love listening to the old deacons of the church pray. They had the deep voice and spoke like they were from England only with a southern accent. They would say stuff like, Thou art holy and righteous and henceforth we must be cleansed of our unrighteousness and go hither to over yonder, thus saith the Lord for ever and ever Amen, or something like that. It sounded good and for the longest time I was obsessed with reading Shakespeare and the King James Bible so that I could pray like that.
As I read the Bible more and more I got the feeling that I was not getting this prayer thing right. God was talking to me through His word, and if I did not use the KJV I could get some plain English from God, and, I never really understood why God wanted to talk like that to begin with. The guys that Jesus chose to follow Him back then did not talk to Him like He was in a stage production. They just had a conversation with Him. They would talk, He would listen, then respond and so forth, hither to…(LOL). I got to thinking that maybe our prayers that we hear so much in church are not as much talking to God as they were a speech for others to hear.
It was about 15 years ago that I heard this man praying at a conference that I think I started wanting to quit giving speeches and start talking to God. It happened a couple of times before I got it, but he would start praying and it sounded as if he had just quit talking to the audience and started talking to someone else, God. I did not even catch the fact that he was praying until I looked and saw that he had bowed his head. Then I realized that was how I spoke to my wife, with head bowed in reverence, and he must be talking to God. So I started trying to talk and not sound different. It as hard, but something about it felt good.
Later, like about 2 years ago, I learned another really cool thing about prayer from someone else who prayed different from the rest of us, my grandson Nicholas. He would just switch gears and talk to God as if He was right there in the room with us. Once he heard me tell my wife, with my head bowed, that my back hurts and I wished it would stop because the next day I had something to do that hurt backs did not mix well with. Nicholas looked at me and asked if he should pray for me. I said sure, and he did. “Jesus. You heard that Papa’s back is hurting and tomorrow he needs it to feel better, so when he wakes up, please make it feel better. I will be sleeping in Mimi’s bed and he will be on the couch, that way you will know where his back is. Thanks” Then he continues talking to everyone else in the room. I am glad he told God where I would be that night because strangely enough my back felt better the next morning. I have heard him pray about any number of things and it always seems as if he is talking to someone right there with him. Maybe that is because God is always right there with us and not sitting up in heaven waiting for us to sound all holy and old.
For a Christian we are told that God is our Heavenly Father and we have been given the right to call Him Daddy. The only time I ever talked to my dad with Victorian English I think I remember getting whacked and told not to be a smart a–. Most of my conversations with dad were right there, right now and real. I talked perfect southern English, much like I do today, and dad understood and responded like a dad should.
God wants us to pray. Prayer is modeled in the Bible over and over. Most of it is a man of woman talking to someone they love. It was not in Victorian English or any other English, it was translated from the language of that day. I think that when we are told to pray without ceasing and to pray about everything, God is saying…Just talk to me.

July 29, 2011

Going Inter-planetary

by pastortimfowler

I was blown away this morning when I opened an email response to a blog I wrote a couple of weeks ago. It was from England! It said that they were looking for help on a subject and did a search and my blog came up on top. Usually the only way my name or something I do comes up first is if I am getting blamed for something. So, I wanted to say thanks to everyone who read my blogs and to God for using me in something that I enjoy so much.
I can remember a few years back when I was really fighting the trend for tweeting, Facebook and blogging. It wasn’t that I was against them as much as I did not understand it all. For the record, I still don’t understand tweeting, but I continue to tweet. (I feel like a bird watcher every time I say that).
Blogging has gotten me several blasts from folks who disagree with what I write. Although I do try to speak the truth, blogging is just another way of voicing one’s opinion and we are all entitled to our own. My opinion is right and those who disagree with it are usually married to me, or vegan, or even people with hair, and God loves them too. But I enjoy the feedback no matter which side you are on.
One of my goals is to offer fuel for hope, and a bit of humor. I love to see and hear people laugh and I love it when people have to stop and think about something they thought little about before or even had firm feelings about something that now have to be at least given another look. Sometimes I purposefully blog about something that I know will ruffle feathers, but I never set out to hurt or offend and if you are ever offended by one of my blogs, get over it. See, humor, fact and hope, right there.
I never dreamed that anything I would say or write would ever have an impact on someone in England. I rarely ever thought anyone would care much outside of South Carolina or really, ever care at all. I hope this is nothing more than God showing me that He can still use any of His creatures to say something, even an ass, or me. (Referring to Balaam’s animal, nor what some of you gasped about).
I will never apologize for giving God glory, pointing to Him as the answer, or tell people about the God who allowed His Son Jesus Christ to die for the sins of humanity. God has forgiven me of more than most will ever know and still forgives me daily. Because of Him, I have hope and love life because it is a gift from Him. There was a time when I said that there was no God, but when I decided to open my mind to the possibility that I could be wrong, He forgave my stupidity and forgave me. So I blog from my heart, from my experiences, and my warped sense of humor. Thanks for giving your time to read. To the person in England, we drink sweet iced tea on this side of the pond, and thanks for the prayers.
Now that my blog is international, my next goal is go inter-planetary. To boldly go where no blog has gone before!