The Baptist Beacon
By Judy Holland
Kansas City, MO
I came home from Church one night and as I thought about being an Old Time Baptist and things we should do and how people are drifting away from the Old Time way; I got to thinking about as I was growing up and never taken to church much. I went back in my mind to when the Lord saved me. I tried to fall asleep but for some reason I had to get up and write this, not knowing the reason, but I was impressed so strong to do this.
As I said earlier, I never got to go to church much. As the years passed, I got to wanting to go. I had a friend that went to church just down the road from our house and I would watch all the people pass and I wanted to go with my friend, but I never did.
As I grew up, I met someone that went to church and was brought up to go to church, so one Sunday I went with him. We went a few times and the preacher would preach and something didn't feel quite right, but I didn't know what is was at the time. Sundays would come and we'd go to church. The preacher would preach and give an altar call but I said to myself, I can't go up there in front of all of those people, and I wasn't sure what you were supposed to do. I knew that something was wrong, but I couldn't understand what.
As time passed, I guess the Lord didn't aim to give up on me. One day I was out mowing the grass and all of a sudden something hit me like it never had before. Conviction hit me so bad it just knocked me down. I tried to ignore the feeling I had. I made a few more rounds with the mower and it got stronger. I knew if I didn't do something I was going to die and go to Hell. It was so strong I could feel the flames. I was in so much trouble and I didn't know how to pray. I got into my car and took off to my grandmother's house to see if she could help me. I got there and I realized that no, she couldn't help me, I needed someone else. I got on the phone and called my sister-in-law because she went to church a lot.
I got her on the phone and asked her to meet me. She did, and I told her I was lost and so afraid. She and I prayed and I felt some better, but still I knew something was missing. She said there's a church service tonight and would I like to go. I said yes I would. We went to church and the preacher gave a sermon and asked for an altar call. As the church sang "When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder" I made my way down to the mourner's bench. I believe the Lord saved me before I hit my knees. That burden was rolled away and there was no more fear. I knew if I died now I'd be alright. I got up and told the preacher the Lord saved my soul and I wanted to join the church. They started singing "Amazing Grace" I was so happy and loved everybody there. I didn't know the words to the song and it didn't matter, I sang anyway.
When the time came to go home I got in the car and oh the Devil went to beating on me. (At that time I didn't know it was the devil) I wasn't really sure what it was, but something was telling me "You never got saved, you didn't pray long enough." I worried all the way home. I kept thinking, yeah maybe you're right.
The time came for church again, I went and sat there and as soon as they went to singing I knew I was alright. I was saved. I felt so good, so safe, so at peace. I knew I was going to heaven when I died. I'm so glad to be an Old Time Missionary Baptist. I wish every sinner could get in as much trouble and as convicted as I did. Let us pray that the Old Time Way will get stronger and we'll do what we should and get on our knees more.
SEEK HIS GUIDANCE
By Judy Holland
Kansas City, MO
Refuse to be discouraged,
Refuse to be distressed,
For when we are despondent
Our life cannot be blessed,
For doubt and fear and worry
Close the door to faith and prayer,
For there's no room for blessings
When we're lost in deep despair.
So remember when you're troubled
With uncertainty and doubt
It is best to tell our Father
What our fear is all about,
For unless we seek His guidance
When troubled times arise
We are bound to make decisions
That are twisted and unwise.
For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. (from Jer. 29:11-12)