I was sitting in a coffee shop in Alaska and overheard a young man talking about the soon coming birth of his son and how he described it like being in the midst of a hurricane that is approaching. He described his newfound fatherhood as a flurry of preparing for an uncontrollable event that would radically change his life forever.
He said, “My baby boy is running around inside my wife’s belly kicking and screaming. He is coming and he will be here soon!”
He was talking with another couple who want to open a restaurant to help ex-addicts have a place to work and get on their feet as they come out of recovery. This restaurant would be a place of sustainability and help to the many ex-addicts and alcholics that are in Alaska. It is amazing how the Lord will seat you next door to others who have the same heart and passion for souls. I call these people Soul Care Providers.
Then I get a text on my phone, “Is your flight to Florida going to be delayed?” I’m already crying about leaving Alaska and over the relationships and connections I have here, wondering, “Ok Lord, I’m going where you lead me.”
I know that God has a sense of humor. I’m flying in Tuesday morning at 8:30 and into Pensacola, Florida from Alaska, and directly into the direct path of the subtropical storm Alberto at guess what? The exact time it is scheduled to hit the Pensacola area.
Instead of anxiousness, I have such a peace that I’m flying into the “Eye of the Storm” and am exactly on the right plane at the right time, No fear, just complete faith, in a God who has such a passion and love for not only my soul, but the souls of the entire world and with those whom He brings in my path.
I hear Him saying,
“Marlene, you are right where you need to be. You’ve been a father and mother to your boys, but you are also a Soul Care Provider, and no matter where you go or who you encounter. This is who you “be.”‘
God desires for Fathers to arise to the position of head of their homes, and to be the providers, protectors and examples of Christ in our homes, cities, states, nations, and world.
The young man who was meeting with this other young couple recently had a scare with their unborn son. The baby went from kicking and lots of active movement suddenly to no movement and no respiratory score. After testing and waiting , they found out the baby is fine. When the reality hit him that this baby might die, he was was totally unprepared for the emotions and feelings that followed. He and his wife have been married for fourteen years and are now suddenly having their first child. He came to the revelation that he was already a father and in my words a “soul care provider” even before the baby had arrived.
Soul Care Providers
So, it is in the case of
crisis, trauma and lost souls.
Storms of life come suddenly and how can we prepare
and provide soul care?
How does God want us to use our giftings and talents for His glory?
Marching as to war
With the cross of Jesus
Going on before
Join our happy throng
Blend with ours your voices
In our triumph song
Leads against the foe
Forward into battle
See His banners go
Kingdoms rise and wane
But the cross of Jesus
Constant will remain
Songwriters: Arthur L. Sullivan / Sabine Baring Gould
Getting ready for the Tsunami of Souls coming our way!
I dreamed I was in a military vehicle being deployed when all of a sudden all I could see were vehicles, buildings and water being swept over and under into what appeared to be an infinity pool. I didn’t see or hear any people crying out. It was eerily serene and calm. In just a few moments I saw millions of dollars worth of material things go under.
In a matter of seconds everything that once was normal was immediately changed into a different scene before me. It was as if I was watching a giant movie screen.
As I saw and recognized the giant tsunami wave approaching I began to yell to the driver to stop and to not turn onto the upcoming bridge. The wave, water and debris was coming in quickly from that direction. The sound of the truck and the approaching wave drowned out my voice. It was now certain the wave would broadside the bridge and we would be directly hit.
My next recollection was being out of the truck and walking, but more like suspended in air and almost running across the water. It was as if my tennis shoes were just lightly skipping across the tops of bobbing vehicles, boxes, containers and building parts that were partially submerged in the water. I felt so young, exuberant, free and able to lightly skate from one floating object onto another. I felt as if I was a sea animal jumping, and walking on chunks of floating ice. I felt as if I was in my natural habitat and unaware of the danger or the catastrophe around me.
I was right where I needed to be. I was an agent and missionary of God’s love and care in the midst of the raging storm. Even though our vehicle had been taken out by the tsunami, we were thrust onto the storm waters and all ready (prepared); to be there to rescue and retrieve those who had been overwhelmed by the waters.
I believe the Lord is preparing His people around the world to be ready to take in the harvest of crisis and trauma survivors that are thrust into the path of soul care emergency workers. Without others who were ready to come to their aid, those cities, states, countries but more importantly, souls will surely perish.
As I got to the end of all of the floating debris and the wave had passed, I looked out into the endless ocean of water, blue skies & beyond and thought to myself,
“Lord, is this my end? What have I done? Will the next thing I see be your face? Will the next thing I hear be ‘Well done, good and faithful servant?'”
The next chain of thoughts I remembered thinking was something like the following:
“I don’t think I’m ready to meet the Lord yet and I’ve wasted time and talent.I’m tired and alone and have become too comfortable in life. I’m truly afraid and I don’t think I’m ready for this task. I need strength, hope, vision and most of all a second wind!”
The next thoughts I had was the story Jesus told about the Three Talents and my pastor’s message the following day was on this parable. God always confirms His Word with me. I equated myself with the man who was afraid and buried his talent because he was afraid of losing it.
“Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’
26 “His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27 Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest. Matthew 25:25-27
I remember crying out in my sleep, “Lord, don’t let me be afraid, help me to risk it all.”
This next season I feel called to look for a soul care place and home. It will be a place for prayer, Bible study, counseling and healing. I’m looking forward to hosting others, providing food, fun and fellowship. It will be a “Joy Recovery Center.”
Right now, I’m not certain of the exact location and funding, but the Lord has already been providing a few things in preparation so I’m trusting the Lord for it’s exact location and the community of others to come alongside of this dream.
Please consider helping by praying or asking the Lord how you can become a prayer partner and/or a financial support.
Searching for God’s Treasure,
from ashes to beauty
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