Treasure In Earthen Vessels

Discovering the Indwelling Holy Spirit

An Unusual Man of God October 9, 2019

Filed under: Amazing People,Faith,Humility — Janie Kellogg @ 12:13 pm
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We have had an unusual revival at my church this week with an unusual evangelist. I can’t say that I have ever met a man of God like Dr. Charles Graham. Actually, he is quite unusual and has blessed my life in a quite unusual way.

 

Brother Charles is African-American and a highly gifted singer. He has a doctorate degree in music and has ministered around the world. His music alone is worth every minute given to attend a service. But his unusual-ness goes far beyond his music and his delivery of the Word of God to his audience.

 

One thing that has come to the forefront this week is that Charles is unusually like his Savior, Jesus Christ. He is perhaps the most humble preacher I have ever met. He has an unusual depth in his spirit that clearly shows through his unusual presentation of the gospel. No one could possibly doubt that this unusual preacher lives what he preaches.

 

Several years ago I read a book by Frances Havergal titled “Kept for the Master’s Use,” in which she encourages followers of Jesus to actually follow His example. You see, Jesus’ entire life was given completely for the Father’s use.

 

I’m afraid that most of us would have to say that we live as we choose and then trust the grace of God to cover our mistakes. Not so with Jesus. And that is how I see Bro. Charles. His testimony of unusual faith tells us that at every turn, every decision, and every stage of life, he waited on God to show him the right way to go, the right choice to make, and the right attitude to have in order to be the most useful to his Heavenly Father. How unusual.

 

As he shares his life’s story from growing up in the cotton fields in the South to singing before kings and presidents, his unusual humility and surrender to the will of God are enormous. He has shown us what it means to live by faith,  and how through his unusual obedience, has seen the fruition of that faith. His book “No Back Doors” is worth a read.

 

If he has said it once, he has said it at least a hundred times this week: “I don’t know it all, but I’m growing.”  What an unusual statement since many Christians today think we do know it all and have reached a place where we don’t need to grow anymore. He has challenged us to press in closer to our Lord.

 

As for me, my life has been forever changed in an unusual way by this unusual man of God. But that in itself is not unusual—since I serve a God who often moves in unusual ways. ~ Janie Kellogg

 

 

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I’ve lost the faith, but not all October 29, 2016

2016 has been a hard year for those of us who try to live by our faith. While I can honestly say that my faith in God—the faith that matters most—has not failed one iota, my faith in many other things has. Here’s why.

Never in my lifetime have I seen Americans marching and shouting to kill the police men and women who are willing to die to protect them. Never in my lifetime have I seen people indifferent to such atrocities as shown in the Planned Parenthood videos of the murder of innocent babies. Never in my lifetime have I witnessed tolerance of blatant corruption in high places, at all levels of government and on both sides of the aisle. Today, I have lost faith in people and in government.

Furthermore, I have been a proud Republican all of my life—that is, except for a few months when someone convinced me it would be better if I changed parties so that I could make a difference at the local level. Later, I decided I didn’t care because I was a true conservative at heart, and I changed my registration back. My Dad was the 8th person to register as a Republican in the county where I grew up, so you can see I didn’t exactly grow up in “red” country. I have always believed the best of the Grand Ole Party and had faith that it represented my values. But come January, I will register as an Independent. Today, I have lost faith in my political party.

I have also watched “political correctness” re-shape the American church. We Christians have been shamed for clinging to our guns and Bibles, and we accepted the shame without resistance. In our churches, we have been suppressed to withhold the truth of God’s Word if it might in any way, shape or form offend anyone for doing anything, including sin. We have watered down the Gospel of Jesus Christ that has given us so great a salvation until the next generation can hardly recognize it, much less experience it. Our culture has influenced the church much more than the church has influenced our culture. Today, I have lost faith in the organized church.

Yet, all is not lost. There are some things in which my faith still stands tall and strong. First, my faith in God has not faltered, and I pray it never does. He has always been faithful to His Word, His Name, His people, and His promises. You and I can bet the farm and everything else on God’s faithfulness!

I have not lost faith in the Constitution of the United States, and I hope I never do. Our forefathers did an incredible job of framing it 240 years ago, and while some have tried to interpret it to suit their fancy, it still stands tall on the world stage as the model and envy of every modern civilization. I have not lost faith in its ability to ensure the freedom and justice for all that’s embedded within its structure.

And lastly, I have not lost faith in love. God is love and He created mankind—out of love. He has a plan and purpose for every life—out of love. He sent His Son to die a sacrificial death in order to save us from eternal damnation—out of love. He is in control of this world, as well as the rise and fall of every leader and every nation—out of love. He has a group of born-again, blood-washed, Spirit-filled believers who will be witnesses of His redeeming grace as long as the earth remains—out of love. And when He says enough is enough, He will take His own out of this sin-sick world to spend eternity with Him—out of love!

Make sure you know where you stand. And if your faith feels that it is failing in some areas like mine does—whatever you do, don’t let your faith in God fail! Faith in God is all that will matter in the end—and it’s nearly the end. ~ Janie Kellogg