Sunday, December 30, 2007

So, What Do You See

It’s not often that we ask our friends or family what they see that we could be doing better in our lives. If you want to be really honest here we don’t really ask people for advice about our lives unless we know what they are going to say. It is a rare thing to ask a friend “what do you see in this circumstance that I could be doing better?”

We are so quick to invite help into our lives only when we are in our comfort zone of asking. Take water skiing for instance, while skiing I see and feel the things that I am doing wrong or need to improve in. When I get to the end of the course I usually ask “what did you see?” You would not believe the responses I get sometimes. If the person was paying attention they will be sharp and quick to tell you, “lean more behind the boat, don’t pull in with your arms, your giving up your angle.” The list goes on and on. I won’t always ask, sometimes I will just look into the boat with a look of “help me.”

If the person riding in the boat says something like “well, I really didn’t see anything,” then you know they may not have been paying attention to your skiing. This is not a problem by the way, sometimes I prefer for them not to be watching me, I can stay focused on my task and that is simply getting through the course. Think about that statement just for a minute “I prefer them not to be watching so I can just focus on getting through the course.”

We don’t like people watching us with the intent of telling us what we need to do to become better at what we are trying to accomplish. This is especially true in the case of our spiritual lives and our family life.

Has anyone ever told you how to raise your child? I have been told and my response to them was not Christian. Has anyone ever told you “you're wrong in what you are doing, you are hurting the body of Christ with that attitude and your sin is causing problems.”

That’s a tough one I know but these are statements that we don’t often hear. I wonder why that is? I believe it’s the fact that some of us are bound by pride, some bound by embarrassment, and some are bound by fear. We may not want to know what others are think about our inner lives. This is a very trusted area and granted you shouldn’t go to everyone asking for their advice. One thing for sure there isn’t a shortage on advice. The other thing I might add is, be careful of the person who has put their life in a tiny box and if you are not working inside of those boundaries then you will always be wrong. Just be careful in who you are asking and what you are asking for.

There is a madness behind this story. I was reading in Jonah the other day and though about this. This is one of my favorite books in the Bible and holds many principles of life. In chapter one it says, “One day long ago, God's Word came to Jonah, Amittai's son: "Up on your feet and on your way to the big city of Nineveh! Preach to them. They're in a bad way and I can't ignore it any longer." But Jonah got up and went the other direction to Tarshish, running away from God. He went down to the port of Joppa and found a ship headed for Tarshish. He paid the fare and went on board, joining those going to Tarshish—as far away from God as he could get.”

I thought what if Jonah had a friend who he trusted and could have talked to and ask “what do you think about this?” Would the outcome have been any different? Would he still have run from God? I’m not sure what I would have said to Jonah, maybe I would have agreed with him and said run, those people are crazy over there in Nineveh. Maybe I would have said “let’s pray and seek God on this, He will confirm this for you and give you the strength you will need in this task.”

The point I am making is in life you can’t always go it alone. God has given you friends for a reason, you may need an extra set of eyes and an extra set of ears for any given circumstance. So, give up that old prideful attitude, give up that spirit of embarrassment and give up that fear of being told something you don’t want to hear. Remember you are asking them for a word of advice and what you get you don’t have to use. Before you ask anybody for anything, ask God first.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Accident

It was one of those Friday nights I will never forget. It was a beautiful evening in October. I had the task of taking the guys to the movies on that night. Not sure how I ended up with this duty being only sixteen years old at the boys home but it gave us all an opportunity to show some responsibility. Sometimes we drove station wagons but tonight I was driving the big van, a fifteen passenger dodge van.
Whiteville was eleven miles from the lake, a straight shot on highway 74-76. I had driven this route many times, taking the guys to the movies. This particular Friday I didn't care to stay and watch the movie so I dropped the boys off and came on back to the lake. Not sure why I came back but I did.
About nine-thirty or so I was getting ready to go back to Whiteville to pick up the guys. I knew the movies would be ending soon. On the way out the door Bobby and Preston ask if they could ride. I said "sure, let me make a couple of banana sandwiches to carry with me" . I used to love those things.
Heading up highway 74-76 I would pass the grave yard and  the one-hundred acre pecan grove with Spanish moss hanging in the tress, kind of spooky at night. I would pass the the sandwich shop that was never open and then into the small town of Hallsoboro, right past our high school.
I had already eaten both sandwiches before getting to Hallsboro, this was just four miles into the trip.  When I was passing the high school I reached down for my seat belt. I had it in my hand and decided that I wasn't going to wear it. I never did, but for some reason I had picked it up and was about to latch it but then said "forget it, I don't need that thing". I had glanced at my speedometer and was at the perfect speed of forty-five miles an hour. The police were never really bad in this area I just remember being at that speed and looking at the finger printed glass on the instrument panel.
Approaching the intersection of state road 1001 and highway 74-76 everything was great. Then out of nowhere a car appeared in my windshield. Everything went into slow motion, almost like a dream. The van went into a tumble after hitting a car that had ran the stop sign. 
I was ejected out of the tumbling van through the windshield and I found myself about one-hundred feet from the wreckage. I stood up and wondered into the highway and was making my way down to the hardware store. My body was covered in blood and I was shaking violently. My destination seemed so far away. I looked over at the van which was now across the road and saw people fighting. I didn't know what had happen to Preston or Bobby. I had my eyes fixed on that hardware store. There I felt the arms of a friend come around me giving me his coat. He told me everything was going to be okay. I was slipping into shock moment by moment. My body was numb to the pain.
The ambulance had arrived and they ushered me off to the hospital in Whiteville, there they checked me out and I gave up my banana sandwiches that I had eaten earlier. My body had gone into realizing the pain. They decided to transfer me to Wilmington as my skull was crushed in one place and I had internal bleeding.
I would spend the next few weeks in the hospital. My face and body were scared from the wreck. I found out that Preston had taken several hundred stitches and Bobby had a broken leg. Bobby was also beaten up at the wreck by the family of the girl who was riding in the car I had hit. They didn't know what had happen or who's fault it was. All they knew is their sister was dead. My soul was now scared with the news of her death. Her brother was in my graduation class. My return to school would prove to be very difficult but my friends made it easier. Many of which thought I had died that night.
After many years I still have the scars of this accident, my head is still numb and my jaw still pops when I talk sometimes. The real scars are much deeper. They are the ones that wonder "what if". I wonder what if I had left just a second or two later, what if I had not made those sandwiches and what if I had reached down and put my seat belt on? All of these "what ifs" Even though I didn't know Jesus Christ at that time I believe in the total sovereignty of God. God knew then and still knows today what will come my way. He is and always has been in control of life. There are no accidents with God! Do you believe in the sovereignty of God?  Who is in control?  When trouble is in air who do you turn to? When the still voice in your heart says "buckle up, trouble is on the way, be ready" what is your response?
I didn't listen, I threw it back and said "I don't need this thing". Years have gone by now and understanding the providential will of God and now knowing Jesus Christ, He has spoken many times to me in this still voice. Sometimes I listen and sometimes I don't. He does remind me by saying "didn't I tell you to buckle up".
Life isn't an easy road but it can be a road of great journeys and many blessing. One of the greatest blessing is through relationships God has allowed me to have with many of you. God has used many of you to walk with me in trails and in glory. I am blessed but am no accident. The "what ifs" in life belong to God. Is there a 'what if" in your life? Give it to the sovereign God who created all things.
1 Peter 1 (The Message)
1:18-21Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God. It cost God plenty to get you out of that dead-end, empty-headed life you grew up in. He paid with Christ's sacred blood, you know. He died like an unblemished, sacrificial lamb. And this was no afterthought. Even though it has only lately—at the end of the ages—become public knowledge, God always knew he was going to do this for you. It's because of this sacrificed Messiah, whom God then raised from the dead and glorified, that you trust God, that you know you have a future in God.


George Beasley
Copyright 2007  A Lake Front View. All rights reserved

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Elaine's Pain Chapter Two

Elaine and I continued in our relationship for several more months. Looking back now I can see that the arguments were never about us but about what was eating at her inside. I knew nothing about her pain, only that I carried pain in my own life.
So many years have passed, I miss Elaine from time to time. I will say if you are carrying some deep rooted pain, if you are carrying a horrific life changing event please get help. These events can lead to death and destruction. They are the events that have such a hold on you it's hard to function in the world. They are the quite secrets inside of us that never are revealed to anyone. They will kill you if you let them.
Proverbs 16 says "Guilt is banished through love and truth". Condemnation is not from God, what happened in the past doesn't have to steer your life to a tragic end. As I talked with a great friend this past weekend, speaking in truth sets free a condemning spirit, this is a spirit that will ultimately wreck your life. We have to choose to speak in love and truth, every word that comes out of our mouth should be that of truth and love.
If I knew then what I know now things may have been different. But for me I know that God made everything for a place and purpose. Every event, every word, every song, every smile, every hug and every death has a purpose.
My only regret is I can't say I'm sorry, I can't say to Elaine, I can help you, I can't say to her Jesus loves you, I can't say God wants to restore you, I can't say God has a plan for your life, I can't give a hug, I can't give a smile, I can't give a kiss, I can't even give a word of encouragement. Elaine is dead.
Do you know an Elaine? Don't be so busy in your life that you can't call her, don't be so busy you can't go to lunch with her, don't be so busy you never hear her cry for help. I never heard her!
I am forever grateful to have known Elaine. One of the greatest tragedies is the fact that she lived down by the lake for so many years and her cry's were never hear. Elaine's pain died with her. I love you Elaine.
Copyright 2007 A Lake Front View All rights reserved.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Elaine's Pain


The voice on the phone said, "did you hear about Elaine?" I replied "no, what happen", she continued to explain that Elaine had died, she had committed suicide. My heart sank deep and sadness prevailed my countenance. My heart ached with pain and to this day I am still sad about the life of Elaine.
Elaine was a sweet girl, she was very pretty with her long blonde hair and perfect build but yet as pretty as she was she had some deep rooted pain that would often come out of her. Her pain usually came our in the form of rage after a few drinks. Looking back now I can see the pain she was carrying around. We often talked but the root of her pain was never reveled to me.
For Elaine it began in high school as it does with most teens. She was part of the "smoking area" crowd and ranked high in this group. Elaine was the one in the group that would call out anyone at anytime. Saying a few choice words to explain herself, but away from that she was as sweet and gentle as any one woman could ever be. Her smile was beautiful and she attracted many of the guys in the group. One was a friend of mine. His name is David.
David and I lived at the boys home together, we were really good friends and talked a great deal about the issues of life. One hot summers night David came to me and said "I need to talk with you", his voice was shaky. I could tell something was eating him up. So we went outside the cottage and sat against the house. The moon was riding high that night and I still remember the heat of the bricks on my back as this was the side of the house the sun most of the day. We both sat down with our backs on the warm bricks. He started to ask these questions about marriage and babies, things that neither of us were well versed in. It didn't take long before David had told me what all the questions were for.
"Elaine is pregnant", his voice was shaky and nervous. "What do I?" he ask. The answers were not clear to either of us. We talked for several more hours and a decision was made. David had to marry her, that was the only option, being careful to say "not because she was pregnant but because he loved her. That was my only question to him. Do you love her enough to marry her? This I knew nothing about. Love to me was a distance word, my mom was the only one who had ever told me that she loved me, to understand what love was much to deep for me at the time.
Keep in mind before you go all judgmental on me, both David and I were in our late teens and had no idea of what life was about but like most teens thought we knew it all. I was proud that David entrusted me enough to hold his story, a story as you can guess would rock the high school and all of the families involved. I was careful to guard it and not tell anyone. Even to this day only a hand full know this story. I am not even sure if my best friend Amy knows. We never talk about Elaine.
David and Elaine married and they had a son. This rocked the entire community of this small town. I was excited for David, he seemed to be happy but inside I think he was torn.

As you would expect the marriage didn't last long. Elaine would end up back at the lake and David joined the Army searching for a better life. He later remarried and then divorced again.

You see David's pain was as deep as Elaine's. The root of his pain has never been addressed. He had only been treated for his symptoms as we all had been back then. The reason I know this is I was able to meet with David last year and talk about this deep rotted pain that only Jesus can take away. We will hold David's story for another chapter.

Elaine and I remained friends through this and she would eventually move to our town and move in with us. We fell in love and planned on getting married but the story would soon take a tragic turn.

Before I go on to Chapter Two of "Elaine's Pain" I feel lead to say to all who read this.

What part of Elaine's pain are you carrying? I know you know this girl, everyone does! Her pain is deep, her laughter is sad, her strength is weak , her words are full yet empty, she is lost! Did you hear me? She is lost! Do you know her? Do you know where she is? Please find her and tell her Jesus loves her and wants to take her pain. Jesus is the only answer to our hurting and dying world.



Sunday, August 12, 2007

Down by The Lake (Introduction)

Psalm 36
5-6 God's love is meteoric,  his loyalty astronomic,   His purpose titanic,  his verdicts oceanic.  Yet in his largeness nothing gets lost;  Not a man, not a mouse, slips through the cracks.
7-9 How exquisite your love, O God! How eager we are to run under your wings, To eat our fill at the banquet you spread as you fill our tankards with Eden spring water. You're a fountain of cascading light,  and you open our eyes to light.
10-12 Keep on loving your friends; do your work in welcoming hearts.

Before I publish my next series of stories I need to set it up for you. I feel the need to set it in a time and a place where I didn't know the astronomical grace of God. We all have the points and places in our lives as none of us were born into the kingdom of God.
I need the above verses to get me through the next series of stories. For so long I didn't know His plan. Looking back now, I can see what He was doing in my life. Some clear and some not so clear. The chapters in my life are being sorted and arranged in this book I have titled "Down by The Lake". It  deals with the many of my most inner thoughts and twisting turns in my life that have developed me to who I am today.  
For the past two years I have been down by the lake in order to see myself as I once was and now who I am today.  Looking into the water each day and seeing a reflection of myself, transparent and at times disturbed deep in my soul. God allowed me to travel the many highways and back roads of our great country seeing the most abused, forgotten and hopeless people in America.  I was allowed to bring a message of hope to these people through the ministry of In His Wakes with the support of my sweet wife Lisa and daughters Sara and Laura. I could mention a host of others that supported me through this but the list would be long and I am sure I would forget someone. For the most part my wife Lisa would see me at my lowest points and the rest of you would see me at my highest points. 
To make this really clear, this book is not about the ministry of In His Wakes but the way God allowed and used it in my life to bring an image to me of His greatness and the condition of real people in our land. Not only was I seeing myself in the reflection of the water each day but at each event I was looking at myself, reliving my child hood all over again.   
Some of the people you have already read about but some are still deep in my memory. It's my hope to introduce you to these people and the many that have crossed my path even before In His Wakes. As I reflect on the events leading up to and before the ministry I am reminded that it started at the waters edge.  
First at Kennedy Home, then the Haven House in Raleigh, NC and then to the Boys Home at Lake Waccamaw, NC. These group homes along with the many sessions in the "nut hut" would mold me to who I was and who I would turn out to be, so I thought. The puzzle of my life was so scattered, it never seemed to fit the way I thought it should. Until one day I was introduced to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ. This journey has proven to be most difficult but God is a God of truth and has never let me go. He has always held me tight even in the most difficult circumstances. I am blessed to even write about this great journey I have been on and is no way finished.
My plan is to write in chapters, they won't be in chronological order but as God leads me to write and release them. I am not sure if the book will ever have an ending but if it does I hope it's a message of hope.
 I will change the names of some of the people so to protect their privacy and respect their families. It has taken me more than two months to write this. I have several chapters in the works and will publish them here as they are completed.
God allowed me to work with the most disadvantaged and hurting people in the world, being in front of and beside the most abused and forgotten people. These people that have names but no address, they have faces but little hope, they have finger prints but no identity, seeing myself in the mirror as I once was the most haunting experience I could have ever imagined.
I thank God for a loving family that has seen me come through this, to my wife Lisa, who watched me cry for days, who watched me in agony as I told some of the stories of my life, who watched me get so excited that I could hardly contain myself. To Sara and Laura who were with me the whole way.  I could not have made it this far with out their love and the love of my wonderful wife.
I also thank God for my closest friends, who supported me even when they really didn't know. They showed me the love of Christ, they were there in my darkest hours and in my brightest hours. They loved me and love me today. I hope to mention them in the chapters to come, they are exciting and some "goofy acting" on my part went on the the early months of getting to know them. I learned through them, no matter what people do or who they are, they are still just people, all with a past, all with hurts and pain and all going in a direction and getting closer to death each day just like me.
This book will take you back to a period that most have forgotten. My intent is not to glorify this period but to give you some insight on what God has done in my life. In Psalm 36 it says " God's love is meteoric,  his loyalty astronomic,   His purpose titanic,  his verdicts oceanic.  Yet in his largeness nothing gets lost;  Not a man, not a mouse, slips through the cracks".
Can you get a hold of that?  I had nothing to do with it, it was always Gods plan, nothing is done in this universe without Him knowing, no thought, no idea, no touch, no hug, no look goes without notice from our great God. So for me to say my life has been bad would not be fair. It has been what it is, it has been what God planned.
I write with joy, I write with tears, I write for the sake of others hoping they will see there is hope. 
I was told by a great friend "George, you can never quit". I didn't understand at the time but now know what he was talking about. I can never quit!  I can never quit telling my story, it has hope for a hopeless world, it has the Gospel of Jesus, it has all the elements of His grace. 
Lets get into the stories and see what happened "Down by The Lake".

















Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Black Creek


As we all grew into our mid teens we started to experience new and exciting things. Looking back now I guess you could call it life but for us it was not just life but an adventure. Everyday was a new adventure for us, especially in the summer. As I have said before, the summer always brought new adventures and with it came some of the greatest memories of all times. This is one of those memories.

It was sure hot that day, hotter than I had ever been before. This summer was one of the hottest on record. The lake being shallow was like a warm tub, we couldn't escape the heat that summer so we headed down to bella coola.

Bella Coola the name of the road that took us to the back side of the lake, there your would find these creeks that flowed into the lake, the creeks never seem to move, the water just stood still.

The water was so dark and the unknowns were real. It's funny looking back now, the snakes and alligators never seem to bother us. We just tried to make sure they knew we were there.

Black Creek, was our destination. The water was cool, black and deep. There was just enough room to pull your car over in tall grass before getting to the bridge. The silver guard rail on the bridge was flatten by some that went before us, their names were carved into the thick painted surface, ours were to by now. We had earned our right to put our names on that rail. Anyone who would swim there really had the honor.

At anytime there may be two or twenty of us swimming at that hole. One thing was for sure, if we were first on the scene we always picked up a large rock and threw it in. This was to announce our arrival to the snakes and alligators. The first one in was pretty much a dare thing, "you go first, no you go, no you go". Once we saw that person make it to shore with all their limbs we figured it was clear.

One game we loved to play was "under water tag". The water was so dark you couldn't see anything once you went under a foot or two. To get tagged you had to be under water, the rules were the name of the game. I would always shoot for the bottom, grabbing a log or something that was sticking up from the bottom. I would just sit there in the dark water, wondering sometimes what was near me. Every now and then something would tickle my leg or back and I would swim the top of the water, running up the shore to the top of the bridge screaming "snake!!alligator! We all would clear out and jump in again, laughing so hard sometimes we would lose our breath.

One thing about black creek, it brought out the best in you. You may ask how's that? How can you be so stupid, one to swim where you know the snakes and alligators live, two the unknown of the bottom and three the darkness of the water. Well, to tell you the truth this is life.

We live with the snakes and alligators of life every day, we live in the unknown of what's next and as for the darkness, if you know Jesus Christ, there is never darkness. As with black creek, there may be dark times but some day you will surface to the top victorious. You will surface screaming "I made it! I made it! I made it! You will live to tell others your story of the black creek you swam in.

One more thing about black creek that I need to mention, it's really quite and lonely in the darkness. When you're under the water about ten feet down, there is nothing but stillness, no sound, no light, no hope of being found, it's so lonely in the darkness. So the question to you is "are you in black creek?

If you are, there is always hope! Hope in Jesus Christ, don't let Satan keep you under that deep dark water, it will kill you, that what he wants to do!

1 Timothy 1:15-19 Here's a word you can take to heart and depend on: Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. I'm proof—Public Sinner Number One—of someone who could never have made it apart from sheer mercy. And now he shows me off—evidence of his endless patience—to those who are right on the edge of trusting him forever.
NOW! Fight to swim to the top, fight to get up that hill, fight to get back on that bridge and jump for joy when you reach the top, thank God for His mercy, by His grace we will make it, by His mercy we will stand and get ready for another amazing adventure.
George Beasley

Monday, June 11, 2007

Not My Plan


Psalm 31

8 You have not handed me over to the enemy but have set my feet in a spacious place.

24 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD

I would say that most of my greatest memories were conceived in the summer months. The summers of my teen years were full of fun and what I call "life lessons". I remember all of my summers being really hot summer. Maybe it’s because I lived near the lake and could go and cool off. It seemed every summer was different and to this day they continue to be that way. No summer has ever been the same and has always had one or two of those life lessons tucked away, waiting for me.

In my later teen years we all wanted to be our own person, we were developing into what our environments had programed us to be. We were products of our surroundings. If you think about it we all are. We do and think like those that are around us. Their were few exceptions to this rule.

At our high school we were know as the "boys home boys". You could spot one of us a mile away. We tried very hard to blend in and some of us were successful in doing this. One of my best friends had helped me to make this transition from the "smoking area" group to the "A-B" group. Although I would go between groups, Amy had taken an interest in me. She says it was my curls. We never dated or fell in love, we were best of friends and still are to this day. Amy had some friends though, that were really pretty. Paula was one of them. Paula had long blonde hair, the prettiest eyes I had ever seen and was chiseled out of a mold that would melt any teenagers heart.

I was in "love". Paula and I would meet up at school and sit under this big oak tree at lunch, talking about everything in life. I was so nervous to be around her, she was so beautiful. Amy would join us from time to time, I think she was making sure I was treating her friend just right and saying the right things. Amy would often coach me on the things women want to hear, what to say, what not to say.

Amy had arranged for us to meet on Friday and Saturdays nights at her house. Amy parents were so nice. They were the first and only parents that I had known to allow a "boys home boy" into their house, let alone around their daughter. We would go over and meet up, sitting in the formal area of the house. First, just talking and then making out. Not the kind of making out of today. This was what I would call "monitored" making out. Amy’s parents weren’t stupid, they kept a close eye on all of us. They were right on the other side of the wall. If I remember correctly there were no doors on this formal living room. They had this beautiful furniture, Paula and I would take one seat and Amy and her date would take the other. I guess you could call it a double date at the house.

Amy’s mom was beautiful also, she had a heart that just breathed love. Her eyes could tell you anything. Her dad was always nice and stern in his commands to Amy. This was a model that later I would use in life.

I found myself dating one of the most beautiful girls in school. This gave me something that I had never had before, confidence. A confidence that would soon teach me a lesson about life and love. Paula and I were getting along great, loving every minute of our teenage years. Then it happened. This tall, long legged blonde walked by us one day. I had seen this girl before but never really notice her, until now. Her name was Gina. Was it this confidence of dating Paula that made me notice her? Was it the fact that she was at the top of the "A" group along with her sister? Or was it the fact that I had Paula and couldn’t have Gina.

I must omit I was happy in my relationship with Paula and had no need to try and date another girl or even look at another girl. Paula was a beauty-queen. Gina didn’t even know my name and maybe that was the problem. I did get the nerve up to try and talk to Gina. She was very shy and quite. She was not a talker and didn’t seem to be interested in me so I backed off and continued my relationship with Paula. But there was a problem. A problem that I had not foreseen.

Amy had found out that I was wanting to talk with Gina. I will never forget standing under the walk way at the entrance to the school. Amy told me that it wasn’t right to try and talk to Gina and say your in love with Paula. After all Paula was one of Amy’s best friends but so was I. Was she going to turn me in? Would she tell Paula? All I had done was try and talk to the girl, but deep in my heart if Gina would have said yes I would have ended the relationship with Paula. I think this is what Amy knew to. She knew me better than anyone.

The story goes on and Paula ask Amy for advice "what should I do, should I break up with him? Amy, without hesitation said "do it". So that ended my relationship with Paula. There were no hard feelings at all, we remained friends throughout high school and I lost contact with her after we all graduated.

Amy and I still remain best friends. When we get together, it’s always fun bringing up these stories that truly did have an impact. Looking back you can really see God working. A few years later I would meet the woman of my dreams, Lisa and I have been married for twenty-three years now, raised two wonderful daughters and have been blessed with more than enough. God used all of these little things in life to make the big things seem easier that came our way. It’s His plan after all.

I believe you can pick out many life lessons in this story. When we have all that we want we always want more. We always seem to feed on wanting some things that just aren’t meant for us.
You see, God has a plan for your life. Sure this was high school and who could have known what could of happen. Some of my best friends made the most life changing decisions in high school, some decided to have sex and have babies, some decided to kill people, some even decide to take their own life.

This story, as with all of the others doesn’t seem to end. It’s still going. So what can I used here to apply to my life. I suppose you can say two things. One, God is in complete control of your life, no matter what you think or where you are at, your plan has been set out before the beginning of time. Sure we make bad decisions and do stupid things but the God who holds the universe on it’s axis and ushers in billions of star’s every night has a plan and you really can’t mess it up.
The second thing you could say is that every experience in life is set in your path for a purpose, it may not be a mountain, it may not be a valley, what ever it is, these experiences mold us to what we become, how we think and how we react to situations.

In a final word, there is nothing wrong with wanting more, wanting something different or wanting something new. When you have what you have be content and love it, take nothing that has ever happen to you for granite, there is a reason and a purpose behind it. God will use it for good no matter how bad it was or how bad it is.
George Beasley

Monday, June 4, 2007

Hidden Sins


Isaiah 60 says "I am God. At the right time I'll make it happen."

It was a hot summer night in Lake Waccamaw, not much going on as usual. We could have walked down to "Dupree Landing" or went fishing, but this night we chose to do something that would take our summer away and change us all forever.

There were about ten of us, all in our early teens. We weren’t looking for trouble just some fun on a hot summers night. There were several suggestions thrown out but none seem to satisfy out inner craving to have fun. So we took the last request and decided to go with that. We decided we were going to "egg" the first car that came around the corner on lake shore drive. We first needed the key ingredient and that was eggs. So we raided the pantry at the cottage and got several dozen and headed for the lake.

We had our plan mapped out, "hit the car with all we have and dive into the lake, splitting up and then we would meet back at the cottage later for the laugh. That poor car came around the corner on lake shore drive and it sounded like hail hitting it, I mean we tore that thing up, laughing and running at the same time.
We all hit the lake wide open, the car didn’t stop, you could hear the engine’s four barrel kick in, they were out of there and so were we. As we all went our separate ways, Rick and I found ourselves at an old boat house, we climbed out of the water and made our way back to the cottage. Then little by little the rest of the crew showed up.

We were laughing our heads off, carrying on like only wide teenagers could do. We all retired for the evening and had a peaceful nights sleep. We knew we had done something big and gotten away with it.

The next evening, Jim called a meeting with all of they guys in the cottage, there were about fifteen of us. He suggest that a car was "egged" at the lake last night and wanted to know if any of us had involvement with that terrible act. Of course we all said "NO". He gave us several chances to confess but we all held our ground. Then something crazy happen. He called each of us by name that had been involved with this terrible act, who would do such a thing we all said. As he lined us all up in front of the other guys, we were still denying what we had done. This didn’t seem to sway Jim at all. He had already decided our punishment. He said "meet me at the tool shed tomorrow night and every night after that until I say different".

We all hung our head low and went to bed that night. Knowing that we had to pay the price for that few minutes of fun. We all were in disbelief that we got caught, thinking how did he know. Did some one tell? If so that would have been grounds for "out casting". You never told on anyone or anything!

The next evening we all met at the tool shed, lined up, he was handing out "sling blades" and "chop axes", he pointed towards the rail road tracks and said "start over there and work your way to the east". The tracks went slam to Wilmington I thought to myself. Well, that summer we chopped grass from six o’clock until dark, then ran a mile. Jim was with us the whole way, telling us we had way to much energy. I remember how hot it was and how thirsty we would get. We could see all of the other guys playing on the field, going to the gym or just sitting around. We were in a place that had not bars or fence but was unescapable.

There was a great deal of talk that summer of running away but no one ever did. Our hands were full of blisters, our backs were hurting, we complained to deaf ears. There was a great life lesson being taught to all of us and the ones to come behind us. I think this story has made it to the "book of legends". I can see the boys talking now, "lets egg a car", then silence comes around the circle of guys and one says "you remember the story of those guys back in the day, There are many of these stories in the "book of legends". I had heard most of them from my years at the home.
I heard one of the guys that was with us that night became rich and had those train tracks removed from Lake Waccamaw to Wilmington. I visit the lake from time to time driving right past the place where we worked so hard to learn a lesson that none of us would ever forget. I can still see us out there. While we worked hard for our mistake we walked away that summer with a different view of life. If you do something that you shouldn’t be doing there will be a price to pay. It’s the law of the land, it’s God’s law. You reap what you sow, or better put there is always consequences to your sins.

In the act of doing a bad thing it was fun, but just for the moment. Later we paid the price! How did Jim know? Only he knows and to this day he has not revealed to us who told.

Well, as you can guess, we never even thought about "egging" another car. We learned a great deal about respect, respecting those who knew more than we did. We learned that we did something wrong, discipline was sure to follow, a striping of our pride and bad attitudes. We learned that there are some things in life we will never know, that no matter what you are doing someone knows about it. This is a great picture of God. He is all knowing.
I think the most important message in this story is, when we are in sin, we either deny it or confess it, to deny it means we are to prideful to omit we are wrong, to confess it means we know our wrong and are willing to correct it. Pride will either take control of your life or you can control it, we all have it to some degree. When that is put into check God can do more than you could ever imagine. That my friend is a great picture of Jesus on the cross, who died for your sins and mine!

I have thought for days on how I could end this story just right. There is no right way to end it because it never ended. Most of us involved that night are still alive today and are still living out this story. There were many stories after this one, we just got smarter and wiser......we thought!
George Beasley

Thursday, May 31, 2007

All About The "I"


Isaiah 55: 8-11"I don't think the way you think. The way you work isn't the way I work." God's Decree."For as the sky soars high above earth, so the way I work surpasses the way you work, and the way I think is beyond the way you think.

I have found myself in more than one conversation lately concerning the will of God for my life. Each time I find myself saying things like "I have tried this, I have tried that, I am going to do this, I think I will do that, I’m going to do that". All of which have turned out to be nothing but a waste of time talking and thinking about things I wanted to do. Twice this week I have been challenged on using the word "I" in these terms. If you noticed there is nothing in the statements above that lends itself to God. There is only "I".

So what do I think about this? After being where "I" have been for the past two years, by the way, was with an incredible water sports ministry called In His Wakes, I have decided that God has me here for a reason, a reason that I can not explain. There has been a great deal of thought put into the reason God allowed me to depart form this great ministry. I must omit I have tried to explain it many times, all the while using the terms "I" and "me".

This week "I" learned that God does have an incredible plan in the mist waiting for me. Do I know what it is? No! But God does and "I" am content to wait on Him and learn and prepare myself for the next chapter in the story as GOD writes it, not "I".

Isaiah 55: 8-11 sums it up. We all know these verses and are quick to make them ours but the reality is we like doing things our way, we like knowing the plan. Lets get humble in the site of God and be big enough and honest enough to say "I" ain’t got it figured out but God does.
Please visit In His Wakes at www.inhiswakes.com
George Beasley

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

No Where To Run


Isaiah 49: 8-12God also says: "When the time's ripe, I answer you. When victory's due, I help you.I form you and use you....

Have you ever wondered why we do things that just don’;t make a great deal of since? Is it God’s will or our will? This is an age old question that is not answered by just a brief comment or letter.
In studying this week and through conversations I have decided that it’s okay sit still for a minute or two, it’s okay to let God redirect you onto a new path. It’s very hard not to run ahead of God and start something new and exciting. I see many pieces of a great puzzle but none fit together yet. For the past few months I have been running over there and then back over here and then back to there. I am tired of running, so I am walking and listening now.

I remember a guy I grew up with at one of the homes I was in. His name was Philip Myers. If you ever went anywhere with him you had better be in shape. He always wanted to run. I remember he came over to our cottage one day and ask if we could make a trade. I said "sure, that sounds like a great deal". The only problem was, the stuff he was trading for was across campus so off we went.

The second we stepped out the door, he took off. I was a runner back in the day so it was no problem keeping up with him. In the mist of our sprint to the other side of the campus I asked "Philip, why do you run every where you go? He replied quickly "you never get anywhere in life by walking, it takes too much time. This statement I have pondered on for many years, often wondering if he is still running, or did he finally slow down and enjoy the beauty around him.

The message can be taken many ways in what he said. We can run every where we go, that can be good, but you may get tired, you may run right pass the very thing God has for you.

To live a life of victory, we need to know where to run. Once God has given us the task, take off like we did. Remember that the deal was made in the cottage and then we knew where to run, we had direction.

The deals we make with God will be on our knees, then step out, take off, run like you never have. God can keep up.

George Beasley

Friday, May 25, 2007

Shelter from the Sun


Isaiah 49 says "Nobody hungry, nobody thirsty, shade from the sun, shelter from the wind, For the Compassionate One guides them, takes them to the best springs. I'll make all my mountains into roads, turn them into a superhighway".


Let me bring you to a time in my early teen years. Haven House was my second group home. It was to be short term. I had a great deal of people who cared about me but my stubborn attitude pushed many away. Although young, I learned so many life lessons here. This was a time before the "mental games" were introduce into troubled teens lives. I call them "mental games" because as time would go forward, we all learned how to beat the system. The system being ideas like "if you let them think this, then they will act this way. Haven House was not that way at all, they taught us by life itself, teaching us that for every action, negative or positive there would be a reaction and a price to pay at some level. I hope you immerse yourself in this story as it is as true as it gets. Lord willing I will take you from this point in my life to now in the up coming stories. Here is the Haven House story as I saw it and remember it today.


What controversy there was in the neighborhood on Shepard Street. This thing called a home for troubled youth was coming. Maybe now looking back we were pioneers of our present day culture and Haven House was the pioneering concept of "fixing" us. I had already had an idea that none of the neighbors wanted us there but this was not really new to me. It had seemed for most of my life that I was just in the way.The experiences I had there would forever change me. Not knowing at the time what changes were being made but they would mold me into the person I am today. It was not the experiences to me that made the difference but the people. To prove this I have thought about all of the experiences both good and bad while at Haven House. What effect did they have? I can say mostly positive and impacting to some degree.


When I think about the people, what effect did they have on my life? There is an overwhelming deep desire to tell you that these people who gave their life to try and teach me something had such a life changing impact that it would be hard to put into words. I guess what I am saying is that it was never about the experiences but the people.To prove this after some thirty years I can tell you of only a couple of experiences I had but I can see in my mind and tell you each persons name and what I remember them doing for me.


That to me is impacting.There was Charlie, not really sure what his job was but I do remember him spending time taking to me, that's all we really wanted, just to talk and someone to listen. A lady name Anita, who did the same, always a sweet smile and a warm hello, eyes that would warm your heart no matter how bad things were. I can remember her always asking on a hot summer day "would you like something to drink?"Although not part of the Haven House my court appointed officer, Ellen. I must say she had an impact that is still lasting on me. I can remember sitting with her and talking out things, she had me do some crazy things with my fingers to test my concentration, I still do that today.


Then there were three, Michael, Peter and Barbara. They were our house parents. Now I could go into detail into each one as they each had their own special way of trying to get into my brain. They without doubt are the most interesting people I had ever met and to this day still are. I have so many wonderful memories and could write a book on my experiences with each of them but to keep this short I will just give you a brief summary of each one and the impact they had.We can start with Michael, he loved to meditate, this was his way of teaching us to relax and get in touch with our inner being if you will. We would sit for hours and just sit, sometimes talk but mostly sit. This was very relaxing and taught me a great deal about myself.


Peter I do believe loved to write, I am not sure if that is where I developed the love for writing or not. Only to say that he had this big book and he would sit and write all of what he saw going on. Peter had a heart and really loved us. As a matter of fact all three of theses shared the same heart. They truly loved us no matter what. A really good picture of how God loves us. Peter also loved to cook and grow his own food, thinking back they all three loved to grow their own food. This is where we would spend time when we did things we were not supposed to do "in the garden".


Then there was Barbara. She wore this long robe , saddles and smoked a pipe. For some reason I am hearing her say "George, what are your feelings on this". She was always caring and seemed to be very sensitive to feelings. What I remember the most about her is she cared and she loved us.I am just trying to give you some insight on Haven House, from the start. Keep in mind this was 1974 and the culture as we know it today was forever changed by the people of Haven House. It was never about the program, the event or all of the other experiences. It was always be about the people. It was always showing us they loved us. That is all we ever wanted, to be loved. It's love that make the difference.


George Beasley

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Loving Me


Ephesians 3:19 (The Message)

14-19My response is to get down on my knees before the Father, this magnificent Father who parcels out all heaven and earth. I ask him to strengthen you by his Spirit—not a brute strength but a glorious inner strength—that Christ will live in you as you open the door and invite him in. And I ask him that with both feet planted firmly on love, you'll be able to take in with all followers of Jesus the extravagant dimensions of Christ's love. Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God.

I remember standing there in the hot sun that day. All fifteen of us were trying to get in the picture. We had our best clothes on, for me it was a three piece suit, black with pin stripes. I had a pair of borrowed shoes on and I had an attitude.

This was a special day at the Boys Home, picture day. The whole day taken up by some stupid picture taking. That was my thoughts then but now I look at this picture everyday in my office and thank God I have it. It’s really the only one I have of that time in my life.

I have all the names of the guys written out beside them. I think of where they all are now, so much time has past. This picture was taken more than twenty-seven years ago. I look at it and wonder what happen to the other fourteen guys. I know some have died, some have gone to prison and some are on drugs and will never be freed of that addiction apart from God. I know that a few have trusted Christ with their lives but can’t seem to get past the pain, not really letting go of the past. But that is not what this picture is about. It’s about the two people on each end, the sixteenth and seventeenth persons.

They were the young couple that sacrificed their lives and gave it all they had for all fifteen of us. Jim and Thora Maready had given so much of their lives for us. Could you imagine raising three kids of your own and fifteen teenage boys? That’s really what gets me about this picture. Jim and Thora were the best "house parents" there ever were. Believe me I know, I had seen my share come and go.

I guess you could sum them up by saying they cared. It wasn’t just a job to them, sure I have had others who have cared but Jim and Thora really loved us and it showed. It showed because the told us we were the best. Even when we knew deep inside that we were not, they had this unique gift of making us think that we would be something one day. This my friend is love that does surpass all understanding.

Jim and I were like father and son, he treated me like and son and Thora treated me the same. It felt that way most of the time. There were many life lessons taught at that cottage by the lake, many I still remember today and are part of who I am.

Last year I did get a chance to call Jim and thank him for all he had done for me, Thora I have seen once since I got married twenty-three years ago. It has taken a long time to get to the point of really understanding sacrifice. To both of them I owe my life to as I know it today. God had put them in my life then, He knew just the right people to put in my path that would make a difference. It was all part of His plan.

Thank you Lord, thank you Jim, thank you Thora for sacrificing your life for me. You made a difference!

George Beasley

Monday, May 21, 2007

History


Isaiah 48
1-11 You have all this evidence confirmed by your own eyes and ears. Shouldn't you be talking about it?And that was just the beginning. I have a lot more to tell you, things you never knew existed.This isn't a variation on the same old thing. This is new, brand-new, something you'd never guess or dream up.When you hear this you won't be able to say, 'I knew that all along.'You've never been good listeners to me. You have a history of ignoring me,A sorry track record of fickle attachments— rebels from the womb.

But out of the sheer goodness of my heart, because of who I am, I keep a tight rein on my anger and hold my temper. I don't wash my hands of you. Do you see what I've done? I've refined you, but not without fire. I've tested you like silver in the furnace of affliction. Out of myself, simply because of who I am, I do what I do. I have my reputation to keep up. I'm not playing second fiddle to either gods or people.

Our independent history is deep rooted. Each of us were raised in a different way. That makes our history unique. Some of us have a "civil war" type history, some of us have a "southern bell" type history and some have a "rebel" type of history. The rebel is the most sought after of all the generations today. When we think of the word rebel we think of young people but this is not the case in reality. We all are rebels to a degree. We do what we want to do and then justify it by the means of our relationship with God. I guess what I am saying is we all have a different way of making our own history.

In the above scripture there is more than enough to tell us that we don’t have a good history of listening to God. We hear this preached week after week. So, why don’t we get the message?

I do believe that the first part of the verse that sums it up. God says "You have all this evidence confirmed by your own eyes and ears. Shouldn't you be talking about it? And that was just the beginning. I have a lot more to tell you, things you never knew existed.
In reading this it has become apparent to me that no matter what type of history you have, it is God who can change it. If we would just put all of our energy into God, focused on Him and Him alone for all the we have, then we would be able to say our history is dependent on God.

So, if you have a history of a civil war, a southern bell, or you are just a straight up rebel, put that history in the book where it belongs, let it go. It really doesn’t matter after God has opened your eyes to His great salvation.

If you wonder why you don’t see the wonders of God in your life, look inside and ask yourself "am I being independent of God, am I doing what I want and not what He wants? The answer doesn’t come easy, we are independent and have this thing of writing our own history.
George Beasley

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Gifted ??



Exodus 28
1-5 Consult with the skilled craftsmen, those whom I have gifted in this work, and arrange for them to make Aaron's vestments, to set him apart as holy, to act as priest for me.

Have you ever tried to do something that you thought you could do but in reality you could not? Or how about this, have you ever consulted with someone that you knew before hand they really didn’t know what they were talking about and about half way through the conversation your blank stare gave it away?

Lisa and I are about to finish up a project that has taken us a month to build. At the start of the project we had our son-in-law, Allen come over and do the work. He is very skilled and precise in wood working. As for Lisa and I we have our own way, this is evident as the project is nearing it’s completion. Allen built the first two section of this deck, then Lisa and I decided we really enjoyed the time we had together in doing this. So, each night for the past few weeks we would get home from work and build for a few hours together. Saturday, after an early morning round of yard shopping and picking up a few good deals we started on the project. We were just a cutting and hammering.

We move over to the entrance way where Allen had worked on the right and left sides, his work is beautiful, I knew we could never get ours to look that good so we thought of a way to hide the imperfections. During us cutting these boards, Danny stopped by and ask "how are you cutting those, you ain’t got no square. I responded that we just draw a line and cut the board. He being skilled in this area went to his truck and got me a square. This turned out to be a very useful tool. Not that I had never used one but just thought I could do without it. With the guidance of these skilled craftsman the entrance way looks beautiful.

I find myself more times than I like to omit working on things I know nothing about. This was a fun project for Lisa and I. We enjoyed being together and working. It turned out looking great to us and that’s all that matters in the end.

To apply this story to us and to our lives is a challenge. The text says to "consult with". Who are we consulting with in our life? Do we run to Jesus first or do we find ourselves all over the place crying the blues looking for direction. I have seen and heard people talking about things they know nothing about, they were not skilled in the area of which they were talking. We do a lot of things in the name of Jesus. Thinking we are doing something good but in reality we know nothing about what we are doing or saying. Sometimes we find ourselves in conversations we really don’t need to be in, what you say will have an effect, positive or negative. I do believe our flesh is like the paranĂ¡, that flesh eating fish. We take anything we can get and eat it up while making our entrance way look beautiful, hiding all of our own imperfections. God has blessed us all with gifts, use them for His Glory and not our own.
George Beasley

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Shade Tree


Jonah 4 7-8But then God sent a worm. By dawn of the next day, the worm had bored into the shade tree and it withered away. The sun came up and God sent a hot, blistering wind from the east. The sun beat down on Jonah's head and he started to faint. He prayed to die: "I'm better off dead!"

9Then God said to Jonah, "What right do you have to get angry about this shade tree?"

Sometimes we all need rest, sometimes we all gather in the same place to rest, and sometimes we just sit and cry about our lives. Don't you think God knows your heart? Do you really think Jonah had to say anything? I know if you have done any growing at all this hits home. Verse nine is the what I am talking about "What right do you have to get angry about this shade tree?"
Think with me for just a moment. What right do we have? When God gives us peace and rest from what ever mess we get ourselves into, what right do we have to be angry when that rest is gone. Is God telling us "lets go now, you are ready" or sometimes as in Jonah’s case "quit wining and do what I ask you to do to start with.

What shade tree has God given you lately? Did you ask God anything while you were there? Or did you indulge yourself in the world thinking "life is great?

This morning I was riding back from my coffee run , I had the Hillsong pumping out "Jesus Is". I was in my prayer time and God said "you know George all I want is to talk to you. I said well "lets talk" and God said " I just want to ride right now, lets just sit here together. So I looked up at the moon and said "that is so cool" and thought about just how close God is to me right now.

These verses are about that. God not only wants to talk with us but wants us to reserve space for him in our lives. He wants to be close, where ever we are that’s where God is. We could have more shade tree days if we would just do what God ask us to do in the first place.
George Beasley

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The Whisper


John 11
25-26"You don't have to wait for the End. I am, right now, Resurrection and Life. The one who believes in me, even though he or she dies, will live. And everyone who lives believing in me does not ultimately die at all. Do you believe this?"

27"Yes, Master. All along I have believed that you are the Messiah, the Son of God who comes into the world."

28After saying this, she went to her sister Mary and whispered in her ear, "The Teacher is here and is asking for you."

Continuing my reading in John I find some verses that really speak to my heart. These are some of those.

In life as things die, people die, seasons come to an end, life changes but the only real truth in life is that we will never die. We will spend our life somewhere. Either Heaven or Hell. I know I am writing to Christians and love you all greatly but God has given us gifts and talents not just to sit in the room by ourselves after the death of a season or persons. Yes this is life changing and all part of God’s plan. This is a reality that is not easy to deal with. It houses many compartments and is more complex than just saying or writing it.

To take this deeper and find a deeper meaning here in verse 25, we don’t have to wait until the end, the end for us is the beginning. I made a statement recently "there is no telling where God could have taken us had I...". This statement in it’s entirety is true but as a part is not. I know that made no sense but you have to know the whole story so lets just say "we don’t have to wait until the end". Life is right now, where we are at, what we are doing and what we are going to do. The end of verse 26 is something that the Spirit of God continues to teach me, "do you believe this.

I mean that is the real question here. Do you? When praying the Spirit is saying "do you, you do don’t you?". Some of you have heard this, kind of crazy but the Spirit of God in the mist of praying ask me this. My response is the same as verse 27 "Yes, Master". But mine is more "yes Master and a little laugh", I just can’t believe it sometimes, just how powerful God is!

Now for the end of this story. Have you had anyone recently or have you recently practiced verse 28? Have you whispered in someone’s ear and let them know that God loves them, God cares for them and God can change their life? I have had this recently. Let me tell you something that this does. It heals, it mends, it builds broken hearts, broken relationships and broken spirits.

This is bit deep and streach on these verses but it's how I saw them. So, again as you guys go out, as we all go out into our own mission field that God has us in, whisper to someone. "Jesus is here, and he is asking for you".............
George Beasley

Friday, May 11, 2007

Come On Now

John 11: 38-39Then Jesus, the anger again welling up within him, arrived at the tomb. It was a simple cave in the hillside with a slab of stone laid against it. Jesus said, "Remove the stone."
The sister of the dead man, Martha, said, "Master, by this time there's a stench. He's been dead four days!"

40Jesus looked her in the eye. "Didn't I tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"

41-42Then, to the others, "Go ahead, take away the stone."

They removed the stone. Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and prayed, "Father, I'm grateful that you have listened to me. I know you always do listen, but on account of this crowd standing here I've spoken so that they might believe that you sent me."

I have really been excited about seeing what happens next in the story. As you may can tell by now I am not a "read a chapter a day" kind of guy. I will read until I see what truth the Spirit has for me, think on it, walk through it in my mind. I would like to say I think on it all day but that would be a lie. I can say I try.

These verses could be a continuation of yesterdays note on how our faith and trust in Jesus goes back and forth no matter. I mean. Jesus is standing right there and in vs 40 Martha is telling Jesus the man is going to be smelling. So I have decide to go a different route and call this one "Come On Now"

"Come On Now" these are words that I heard often as I skied this past weekend. I think it is one of those geographic statements, kind of like "believe that" or like my sweet bowling shirts.
Do you think Jesus is saying to us sometimes "Come On Now". In vs 38 Jesus made a statement "Remove the stone". Now here is God who is getting ready to raise a guy from the dead and He is "asking people to move the stone". Why is this? Not one time but twice He ask! Could He have moved it?

Look in 42-42, it was as if He had to get someone else to move it. "Come On Now"! The point is really simple here and I do believe a kingdom principle is being applied.

God loves us and want to use us. How would you liked to be the ones who move the stone? In other words "are we?" Are we doing what God ask us to do or are we just standing in front of the tomb making excuses "it’s going to smell" or "it’s too heavy" or "I’m too busy". I have a long list of why I can't move the stone when Jesus ask.

Or maybe it’s we are doing all that we can and we just need to be reminded that Jesus prays for us. They removed stone and just look at the prayer He prayed.

Lastly, don’t leave vs 40 out. Jesus looked her in the eye. "Didn't I tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"

That’s enough...........

Jesus, I pray for all those who have need at this time. There are many amoung us. All of us seem to be in some type battle where we may need some help in moving our stone. Lord send us help when we need it and give help when we can. Lord, you ask us to just do one thing and that is believe. We believe Lord!Show us your glory.....amen

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Don't Ever Quit


2 Timothy 4
1-2 I can't impress this on you too strongly. God is looking over your shoulder. Christ himself is the Judge, with the final say on everyone, living and dead. He is about to break into the open with his rule, so proclaim the Message with intensity; keep on your watch. Challenge, warn, and urge your people. Don't ever quit. Just keep it simple.

Have you ever said something that you really thought you were in the right to say and no matter what, we find ways to justify those words that were spoken out of anger and selfishness? Maybe a better way to put it is, have you ever said something that caused separation between you and a friend?

Words can do so much damage to people and relationships. I once heard a preacher say "that’s why God put two gates in front of your tong, your teeth and lips". I have sat in my quite times and often wondered about this friend. God continued to bring him to my mind.
Would our paths cross in life again? Would we ever speak again? Would God be able to restore what I had torn apart? The answer of course is, yes.

I sat this past weekend thinking that I really need to talk to this friend, it was urgent. I prayed several times as we kept missing each other on the phone. Every time my phone rang I wondered if it was him. Finally we were able to talk. We started with the basic hello’s and how are you’s. Then I could hardly wait to get it out. I had to say "I’m sorry, I’m sorry for the words I had spoken, sorry for getting in something that was really not my business to start with. He said with a soft voice "I accept your apology, George. My heart was free, it was as if I had been set free of some type of invisible chains.

But, it was not finished yet, I was reminded that it was good to say I’m sorry but I needed to be forgiven. I then ask him for forgiveness for what I had done. Some would say that saying you are sorry is enough but that was not true in this case. I wanted a fresh start, a clean slate. I did ask for his forgiveness and he graciously said "I do forgive you".

All I want is to be able to see this friend, see him in a light that I once knew. Forgiveness has brought this back. Sometimes we say things that we really don’t mean, sometimes we do things that make no since. We are not perfect but we have the ability to set things right when we know we are wrong.

So, now what? Are there more in my life that I need to right? Without doubt but God will have to go before me and help me. The important thing here is the act of forgiveness.

I know all of us have these situations in our lives and are not always solved with just a call. Again, it was the act of forgiveness that ended up setting me free and restoring a friendship. Will things ever be the same as they once were? I think with this person, they will. With some, things will never be the same.

There is two rules of life that may apply. I have been taught both in my Christian life. One says "to forgive means to forget, so it’s over and we are supposed to forget about it". Two says " to forgive is to let go, never go back to, let God have it all, we will remember but no need to rehash". I think number two is more accurate. We are all human and may never completely forget anything, good or bad. However, we can move on and let Jesus take on what He came to this earth to do, take on our sins.

My question and point for today. How many of us go through life with these wrongs that deep down inside we know we have the ability with the Holy Spirit to try and make right? Have you prayed and ask God to help? Do you have a sincere desire to restore something you have torn apart with words?

Sometimes we end up talking to everyone about a situation except the people who can really change it. That my friend is strife. That’s it isn’t it? Talking to someone who has no ability to change the situation you created. Seeds of strife will only continue to separate and cause destruction. This I learned from a great friend in St. Louis.

The end of verse two is another thing I learned from St. Louis "Don't ever quit". As long as we are breathing there is time to restore, there is time to try and make a wrong a right, there is time to see the Glory of God. Don’t wait, like I did. You have heard the old saying "time heals" haven’t you. Well it doesn’t. It’s God who heals, it’s forgiveness and love that heals. God is time, God is love and He wants us to live in victory.

Thank you friend for your grace and understanding towards me. Thank you for being a friend even when I didn’t deserve it. Thank you for your forgiveness. Timothy was an odd verse for this life story and life lesson but I thought if we really believed that God was looking over our shoulder we may wait just a minute before saying something that will take a month, a year or a life time to set right.

George Beasley

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

In Awe


Genesis 28
10-12 Jacob left Beersheba and went to Haran. He came to a certain place and camped for the night since the sun had set. He took one of the stones there, set it under his head and lay down to sleep. And he dreamed: A stairway was set on the ground and it reached all the way to the sky; angels of God were going up and going down on it.

13-15 Then God was right before him, saying, "I am God, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac. I'm giving the ground on which you are sleeping to you and to your descendants. Your descendants will be as the dust of the Earth; they'll stretch from west to east and from north to south. All the families of the Earth will bless themselves in you and your descendants. Yes. I'll stay with you, I'll protect you wherever you go, and I'll bring you back to this very ground. I'll stick with you until I've done everything I promised you."

16-17 Jacob woke up from his sleep. He said, "God is in this place—truly. And I didn't even know it!" He was terrified. He whispered in awe, "Incredible. Wonderful. Holy. This is God's House. This is the Gate of Heaven."

Have you ever ask God to show up to a certain place or come to you at a certain time? Have you ever done that? You know, "ask God to show up". I do it all the time. There is so much to Genesis 28 but I want to focus on one thing and one thing only. Is God showing up for us? How do we know, do we just trust He does? Man, these are some great questions, don’t you think?
I was excited to write about this today, mostly because I have been here more times than I would care to omit. The text says it all in verses 16 and 17. Jacob woke up from his sleep. He said, "God is in this place—truly. And I didn't even know it!" He was terrified. He whispered in awe, "Incredible. Wonderful. Holy. This is God's House. This is the Gate of Heaven."

I have been in awe before of God’s Holiness, His awesome power, seeing Him work right before my eyes. Whether waking up, praying or sitting in a car, whispering "Incredible. Wonderful. Holy. God has shown me His power and is where I am. It great to hear people pray and even to say "God, will you come to us, will you come in this place to help us, come and be with us. I have no problem at all with this so please don’t read into this. What I am say is more times than not, we "wake up" and say "God is in this place—truly. And I didn't even know it!"

Do you know where God is? The Holy Spirit? Where is He in your life? This my friend is "Incredible. Wonderful and Holy.

George Beasley

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Fenced In


2 Corinthians 6
11-13Dear, dear Corinthians, I can't tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn't fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren't small, but you're living them in a small way. I'm speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!

Do you ever feel like the world is just not big enough? You know, like you are cramped up in a small place, getting no where in life. I have ask myself in recent times "is this it, is this what I was made for, is there any more for me to do God?

I may have told you that I was challenged to go to Bible study on Sunday morning, so I went. As I sat there I was reminded on how small I have made my world. Gene reminded us of how many times we use the personal pronoun "I" in a sentence. I was also reminded and challenged to get into God’s word more. We do tend to get into a pattern and then the pattern gets less and less in size and before we know it we have made our world so small that we can’t even function in it ourselves. This I have found to be a very dangerous place to be. The decisions we make while at this point are usually bad and nothing good comes out of them.

In the preceding verses of Chapter 6, Paul is talking about all the things in life we do and ends it up with "having nothing but having it all. Then falls into verses 11-13. This is where I want to write today. I have been accused of late of being to long in my writing but as I have learned and some of you know there are those who are not as brief as me. I am smiling now. I guess I could have written on 1-10 to start with and then moved into 11-13 but not today.

I want to talk to you about living openly and expansively as Paul has described here. To live a wide-open life, full of all that God has for you. How can we do this? How can we live a life that is wide-open and spacious, not fenced in?

Paul answers that question with one statement "The smallness you feel comes from within you.
What we feel is who we are. At any given moment in life, if we feel small we are small, if we feel big we are big, if we feel sad we are sad, if we feel happy we are happy. It all starts within. Here is the question for us today. Who is within us? Is it the Holy Spirit? Is there evidence of this?

I have built my own fence and if not broken down in time, life gets smaller and smaller. God has great plans for all those who know Him. We must depend on the Holy Spirit of God to direct us.
It is the Holy Spirt who lives in us. I was reminded of this yesterday as I was praying.

The point I am making today is the world is much bigger than we think, your world is much bigger than you think. As Pastor Jeff told me one time "God is only bound by His word, you cant’ put God in a box. These words are so true. The sad reality is most of our Christian culture or religions have put God into this tiny box that fits their world which becomes our world. We have fenced God in and made all these rules and regulations that really don’t apply in life, we have not only bound God, but have bound Him by our words.

Can this be broken, can this fence be torn down? Yes, of course it can, I am living proof of that. It starts with you understanding God and His word. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!

George Beasley

Monday, May 7, 2007

It's What I Want

Today seems to be one of those days. Just not sure what to write. Do I edit an old story? Do I write a new one? What to do? This is my third story this morning. I sent this one out to you all a few weeks ago. None the less, it is relevant for me today. It kind of falls into the story I wrote yesterday on love. It deals with the emotions. I guess after rereading this and the story from yesterday I would ask one thing. Who is driving your life, what is guiding or directing your emotions? Have you truly giving everything to God?

Jonah 4
3"So, God, if you won't kill them, kill me! I'm better off dead!"

4God said, "What do you have to be angry about?"

5But Jonah just left. He went out of the city to the east and sat down in a sulk. He put together a makeshift shelter of leafy branches and sat there in the shade to see what would happen to the city.

6God arranged for a broad-leafed tree to spring up. It grew over Jonah to cool him off and get him out of his angry sulk. Jonah was pleased and enjoyed the shade. Life was looking up.

7-8But then God sent a worm. By dawn of the next day, the worm had bored into the shade tree and it withered away. The sun came up and God sent a hot, blistering wind from the east. The sun beat down on Jonah's head and he started to faint. He prayed to die: "I'm better off dead!"

9Then God said to Jonah, "What right do you have to get angry about this shade tree?"
Jonah said, "Plenty of right. It's made me angry enough to die!"

10-11God said, "What's this? How is it that you can change your feelings from pleasure to anger overnight about a mere shade tree that you did nothing to get? You neither planted nor watered it. It grew up one night and died the next night. So, why can't I likewise change what I feel about Nineveh from anger to pleasure, this big city of more than 120,000 childlike people who don't yet know right from wrong, to say nothing of all the innocent animals?"

I have deleted and rewritten and am trying to get this just right. This book is about so much of life that it’s just not funny. It deals with all of the human emotions. Jonah is happy, Jonah is sad, Jonah is angry, Jonah is mad. On and on we could go. There is a great kingdom principle here in these last verses and I don’t want to miss it. So for the sake of being to long in this story I may split it up into a few parts.

Have you ever been where vs 3 is "I'm better off dead!" You don’t have to tell me, just be honest. It just you and God right now. Have you ever said this to God. The giver of life the very one who can grant you that request. This is a sad place to be but it can also be a growing place.

I love what God says to Jonah "What do you have to be angry about?" This is what God will ask you when you are at the point of no hope, a point of not being able to see past the horizon in life.
What do we have to be angry about? We are here for one purpose, no matter how complex we like to make our lives and how busy we make ourselves the cause of Christ is why we are here.
In verse 5 we can see a great example of how we react when we don’t get what we want. The text says "He went out of the city to the east and sat down in a sulk. He put together..Try and follow me here as this is where it gets a little deeper. While he was pouting about not getting what he wanted and not what God wanted, look at what it says right after "he sat down and sulked. "He put together". You can call it a play on words, not theologically correct, reading into the text but one thing you can’t deny, he did it himself. He went out on his own into a bearing land, he walked away from God, he tried to do all of this against God. The whole time talking to God.

The point is simple. God had one simple request and I believe that same request is for us today. Go and preach the gospel! Just Go! Just do it! Why is that so hard for us to understand. We try so hard to make things so complex. Have we made the cause so complex that we can’t move? Have we just diluted the gospel so much that the message is not heard?
This story is one of truth, it makes us really take a good look at ourselves and what we are doing in life. Have we built this shelter around us and are we just sitting back to see what God will do? Or are we at the point "you know what, God! I am angry at you. It’s okay to be here but don’t camp here. Ask God, he will answer you just like he did Jonah.

George Beasley

Sunday, May 6, 2007

A Life of Love

Ephesians 5
1-2Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn't love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.

There are some things in life that we just can’t fake. In the end "love" really has no boundaries. I’m not sure how many times I’ve read these verses but today they seem to really hold me where I need to be. As I look around in our world, where is this love. I don’t want to come across judgmental in any way but just want to express to you all what I am seeing.

Where is this love that has no boundaries? Where is the love of giving oneself up for others? I’m just not sure. In recent months we have talked so much about love. The love that Christ has for us, the love that we have for Him, the love we have for our children, the love we have for our mates. Our culture has taught us that love is just another human emotion, we can turn it on and off. I am quick to say "I’m not sure about that now.

In the past I would have fought you on this. I will agree that love is the greatest of human emotions but how can we just say "I do or I don’t. I have been taught in my Christian walk that I have to love even when I don’t feel like loving, to always give this. It is true that we have to learn to love some things but in recent times I have seen people that I love. I do not know them, I have never met them, I have never spoken to them but I love them. Explain this, I ask myself.
I guess to start I will say to love with an unconditional heart it will be that of the Holy Spirit, a love that pours out even when you don’t feel like loving. A love that never ends, a love that can cross all boundaries, a love that is not judgmental, a love that doesn’t look at circumstances but at the person. I do not see this love as a human emotion but one of the Spirit of the living God. The Holy Spirit that lives in every Christian.

This being true, then why can’t we all love with this kind of love? I guess I will now say and introduce the world to us all. To learn to love as Christ did, then we will have to observe Him and how He reacted. I love the verses above, especially this, "mostly what God does is love you.
I will end by saying that it is the Holy Spirit in us that loves this way, a way that we can not explain at all apart from the word of God. The word says "Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. Let’s be extravagant with our love, to keep company with God is an awesome thing, talk to Him and learn this life of love.

I am not really sure of the point I am trying to make or even if there is a point. I guess what I’m saying is "life is so short and our time here is at an unpredictable end, so love, love everyone you meet, love your children, love your spouse, love your neighbor, love all those God puts in your path but more than anything in life love God and allow the Holy Spirit to love through you, this is a gift. Love the life God has given you.
George Beasley

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