Under Angel Wings


Sunday, January 17, 2010

In the Beginning...

Recently, right before Christmas, I finished reading the entire Bible for the third time in the last three years. I would love to share with you how reading God's Word has changed my life.

I grew up in a Christian home, but one in which the Bible was not read. My mom had mentioned a few times in her life that she had read the entire Bible for a class in college, and she was proud of that achievement.

We did attend church most of the time, so I grew up with the foundation of Christian worship in my life, which was very important to me. During college years away from home, however, I drifted away from church as so many do.

Thankfully I married into a strong Christian family, and that is when my spiritual life began to change! My husband, David, was raised in another mainline church, but his family said grace before meals, prayed together and read the Bible. In addition, there was someone wonderful in the family who's faith made a very deep impression on me: Gram Lamon, the matriarch of the family.

            Gram Lamon
Gram had been raised in Alabama as a Southern Baptist, and Gram Lamon knew the Bible backwards and forwards, really the first person I knew well that did.  My grandparents had all passed away when I was young as my parents had married later in life, so I was thrilled to be getting a grandmother as an adult who I could really enjoy.

Gram taught me how to cook 'southern style,' old-fashioned good home cooking with roast beef, mashed potatoes, fresh vegetables and some fabulous southern desserts like three-layer fresh coconut cake!

While I was learning all those things, and giving her her first great-grandchildren, I learned to love her quaint southern sayings like, "Oh, lawsie mercy!" One day I went to her apartment to visit, carrying a child on my hip, and when I went in I asked her what she had been doing. I saw her Bible open as usual on the little table next to her chair and she said, "Studying for my final exams." By this time Gram was in her 70's.

I decided to write a cookbook for the family, with all Gram's favorite recipes that we had all grown to love, and I put her favorite scripture passages in the book as well. All of this was having an impact on me as Gram showed me what a life of faith could be like.

By the time Gram passed away, she and her faith had made a life-long impression on me. Gram was beloved by so many people, and she was an awesome woman of God in her own quiet way. Gram died in her early 80's, having lived a full life: she raised three strapping sons, all pillars of the community, numerous grandchildren, and helped found a family construction company.

Years went by and my husband and I and our children faithfully attended church, with David and I each holding various volunteer and elected positions. We worshipped God and we loved God, but we still didn't know the Bible! How could people attend church for decades and not know the Bible, the very foundation of the church?

      Pastors Joy and Steve
One day, however, our lives changed, because our church did a great thing...we called two pastors (married to each other), who really know and love the Bible. I thank God for Pastors Joy and Steve every day. Without them I would never have begun my journey reading and studying the Bible, the greatest book ever written in the history of mankind, about the greatest person who has ever lived and walked on earth, Jesus Christ.

With Joy and Steve's encouragement three dear friends from our congregation, Brad, Martha, Nancy, and I took instruction and were ordained deacons in the church on September 11, 2007.

Reading the Bible for a few minutes everyday helps us develop a deeper relationship with God. Think of the Bible as a lifeline, especially for you, from God in heaven!

John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.

Ancient Words~ Song by Michael W. Smith

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