By Kenneth Jackson

By Kenneth Jackson

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

"There's an "Angel" in my neighborhood!!"

     There is a scripture in the Bible that says to be careful how we treat strangers, because some have entertained angels and didn't even know it.  I am sure you have encountered many angels on your journey in life---they are everywhere!!  Not only are we surrounded by a hugh heavenly host of angels that we cannot see, but we are ministered to all the time by angels we can see.  I have been seeing one of these "angels" in my neighborhood for a long time.  She walks very slowly around the block and holds one arm up by her side.  In the wintertime she wore a green coat and would often be accompanied by a yellow cat.  Many times on her walk, this "angel" would stop to pet the cat.  As she was walking, she would always check to see if my neighbor across the street had received her paper.  If the paper was in the yard, the angel would pick it up, slowly take it up the sidewalk and lean it against her front door.  I don't know if she did this to other people in the neighborhood but she always did it for Hazel who lives across the street.  I observed her do this over and over.  A few months ago, when I saw her walking, I stopped my car and told her that she was an "angel."  She just smiled as I told her she was an angel sent from heaven.  The next time I saw her out of my bedroom window, as she came walking around the corner, I went outside and told her again she was an angel and asked her what her name was.  She could not tell me her name---she is not able to talk!!  I asked her if she could not speak because of having a stroke and she nodded her head.  I told her it was all right because I knew her name was "angel" and asked her if I could give her a hug which she did.  A few days later, a card was at my front door.  On the card, was a name and address---I knew at once it was my angel and her name is Lisa.!!!  I was so excited to know her name.  A few days ago, I looked out the window and there she was!!  I went outside and asked if her name was Lisa and she nodded her head and smiled!!  I just cried and was so moved with compassion for her!!  This precious one cannot talk but she is still ministering love, care and concern to others.
     Sometimes "angels" come and we are not even aware until after our encounter with them that it was truly an angel sent to us---they fly in and out of our lives.  They come as friends, family members and even complete strangers.  I have a whole "army" of these angels---friends and family who have prayed me through these last difficult months.  I am reminded over and over of the song by Alabama called "Angels Among Us" that says "I believe there are angels among us, sent down to us from somewhere up above.  They come to you and me in our darkest hour---to teach us how to live--to show us how to give---to light us with the light of love.  They wear so many faces, show up in the strangest places, Grace us with their mercy in our time of need."  Many times, these angels come just at the very moment we need them the most.
     They are everywhere!!!---if we will just open our eyes and see:) 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

"Just Do It!!!!"

    After more than a year of silence and after coming through a very difficult two year period, I am not sure where to begin in posting.  There is no way in one post to say everything about where I have been or to begin to thank everyone who prayed me through.  In thinking about starting to post again, I have gone through the usual excuses---what if I am not ready, what if I am not well enough, I'm not sure I "feel" able, where do I begin?, etc. etc.----which brings me to this post "Just Do It!!" 
    One thing I have learned on this journey called life is that we cannot go by our "feelings."  If we wait until we "feel" like doing something, we may never do it!!.  Feelings will deceive us--they are wishy-washy.  One day we may feel one way and the next day we may feel totally different!!  Feelings come and feelings go!!  How many times have we heard or said that we will do it when we feel like it---that our actions are the result of our feelings.  Like with love--one day we may "feel" so in love and the next day, we may not "feel" so in love at all.  Years ago, someone told me this about marriage.  Many marriages are abandoned because one partner did not "feel" in love or "feel" happy---not realizing that love is NOT a feeling-- it is a verb---it is something we DO.  It is an action.  Many times feelings will come if we will just go ahead and do those things we would do for someone if we "felt" so in love.  We have it backwards!!  If I feel like it---I will do it!!  In John 3:16, this is exactly what love does----it always GIVES.  "For God so loved the world (you and I) that He GAVE His one and only Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life."  Our God DID something!!!  He came to earth in human form--Jesus---and literally gave His life for us!!  Love is something we Do---regardless of how we feel.
    Who or what is controlling us?  If it is our feelings, then we might never even get up in the morning if we waited until we felt like it!!  How many people would actually show up for work if they only went when they "felt" like it?  How can husbands and wives love and meet each other's needs if we wait until we feel like it?  We use the typical excuses of not feeling like it---being too tired or some other excuse instead of depending on our Father God to give us His grace and strength to "Just Do It!!"  I love what a columnist who is over 90 years old said---"Every single day, no matter how you FEEL---get up, fix up, and show up!!!" 
    Love is a commandment--- in fact, all the commandments are summed up in this---"Love your neighbor (that is anyone) as you love yourself"---not if we "feel" like it----but rather--"Just Do It!!!"  You might even be amazed when you begin "doing" that the feelings follow:) Love gives first--then receives.  Amen and Amen!!
Part of my journey this past year took me to Brookhaven Retreat where I spent 3 months for depression and anxiety.  I will be sharing in future posts much of my experience there and what I learned during that time away and what I am continuing to learn since coming home in November.