Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Road Signs - Part 2

Joseph Herrin (04-07-09)

Note: I am currently in Fort Wayne, Indiana. I will be meeting with some saints in the home of Andrew Eberly in North Manchester, Indiana on Thursday (The first day of Passover). This will be an informal meeting where all are encouraged to share. Should there be any saints in the area who are desirous of attending, I am supplying the following information.

Location: 11344 North 700 East, N. Manchester, IN 46962.

If you're coming from Fort Wayne, you will take Hwy 24 west out of town and will turn right on Hwy 114 before you would get to Roanoke. You will take 114 west the rest of the way to our house until you get to 700 E. Make sure you cross Hwy 9 (interesectin with red flashing light) and Hwy 5 (another intersection with red flashing light) before you start looking for 700 E or you may get confused. We are about 1/2 mile down 700 E. on your right. It is an old white two-story farmhouse.

Time: Beginning at 3 P.M. until...

Please RSVP if you plan to attend.

Road Signs - Part 2
Matthew 28:19-20
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

I have found since I have begun following the Lord wherever He would lead me that His presence has become exceedingly precious to me. When we surrender to be led of the Spirit in all we do, we find that there are few companions along the way. The way of the disciple of Christ is often a lonely path.

There are many examples from Scripture that give testimony of the lonely aspect of following Christ. He is our pattern man, and He also had to walk alone. In the moment of His greatest crisis and distress the Lord longed for a friend to stay awake to provide some comfort and fellowship, yet Peter, James and John all fell asleep.

Matthew 26:40
And He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, "So, you men could not keep watch with Me for one hour?”

The apostle Paul also had a moment of darkness when he was hard pressed and none stood with him.

II Timothy 4:16-17
At my first defense no one supported me, but all deserted me; may it not be counted against them. But the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me...

Because the Lord experienced the pain of standing all alone at Gethsemane when His soul was crushed to the point of death, He is extremely compassionate to us in our trials. He has been tested in all ways as we are. Yahshua did not abandon Paul in his our of testing. He neither slumbers, nor sleeps. His eye is ever upon His saints.

God often gives us companions to walk with, even as Christ had twelve disciples, and Paul had traveling companions on his journeys. Yet both of these men found that a time came when they were all alone. Companions do fail us. Christ’s fell asleep and Paul said his abandoned him.

I was thinking of my own journey as I was traveling to New York from Georgia. God has given me companions along the way, yet quite often I have found myself alone for various reasons. When I was about 500 miles into the trip, and driving through the mountains in the middle of the night, my senses were alert to how the van was doing mechanically. I think perhaps the Lord allowed me to be tested a bit, and I noticed something occurring with the transmission which had just been rebuilt before I left. Whether it was abnormal or not, I could not tell, but thoughts of the transmission encountering problems so far from home entered my mind.

I think the Lord allowed me to be tested in this way that I might become more aware of His presence with me. I began praying to the Lord and confessing that I did not know if there was a problem or not, but I did know that God had directed me to go to New York, and I was on my way in obedience to Him. I knew that whatever might happen with the van, that God was with me, and He would have some provision.

Right at that moment God sent me a sign that greatly comforted me. You would have to know the background to understand it. For many months God has been speaking to my friend and brother in Christ Randy Simmons whenever he sees a truck from Covenant Transport. This is a Christian company, and Randy has often seen these trucks just when he was struggling with the promises of God which have often been delayed. God has used the name on these trucks to declare that He is faithful, and what He has said, He will accomplish. His word is His covenant, and if we will simply believe and follow where He leads, He will be faithful to fulfill all.

I had not seen a single one of these trucks on my trip, but at that very moment as I was driving along in the dark with my attention focused on the sounds and functioning of the van, praying to the Lord, I looked beside me and there was a truck bearing the name Covenant Transport.

The Spirit of Christ used this occurrence at that exact moment to reassure me that He was with me and He would get me to my destination. I know that the Scripture is true, “Man's steps are ordered by the Lord” (Proverbs 20:24). It was the Lord who put that truck beside me at that very moment, and my mind relaxed as a result. The van has been driving wonderfully.

The next day, as I was now over 800 miles from Georgia, a sense of loneliness came over me. I had left all companions and familiar places behind. I was driving with New York City as my goal, not particularly relishing driving through the press of traffic there, and I began reflecting on how I was once more alone. I spent a few minutes speaking to the Lord about it. Yahshua sent His disciples out in pairs, but those with whom the Lord paired me were often dealing with stresses of their own that led them to not relish the journey.

I was not complaining to the Lord about the fact that I was traveling alone. I considered my isolation, knowing that the Father had ordered my steps, and He had some purpose in my experiencing these things. At that moment the Spirit prompted me to look at my trip odometer that I had set when I began my journey in Georgia. At that very moment it read 888 miles.

The number 888 is the gematria value of the name of Christ in Greek. The English name Jesus in the Greek language is Iesous. Each Greek letter is also a number, and the value of the characters in the name Iesous come to the sum of 888.

The Spirit spoke to me as I looked at the odometer and assured me that I was not alone on this trip, but that Yahshua was with me. Through the course of my travels I have continued to receive this witness.

Last Thursday I went with two men from Long Island into Manhattan for the day. One of them took the following picture of me while in the city.

God gives us encouragement along the way. There have been many proofs of His presence with me on this trip. I experienced another one bearing the number 888 as I left Schenectady, New York on Sunday and began driving toward Indiana. I prayed and asked the Lord to let me know where He would have me stop. I did not know if He would have me get a campsite, or get a hotel room. I just left the matter in His hands.

I was in Western Pennsylvania in the late afternoon when the Spirit told me I had gone far enough for the day. I saw I was approaching the town of Brookville, PA and there were gas stations, restaurants and hotels there. I pulled into a Truckstops of America to get gas and then asked the Lord where He would have me to stay. I noticed that right next to the truck stop was a Super 8 motel. I had recently acquired a Verizon wireless air card for my laptop computer which allows me to access the Internet from practically everywhere, so I got online and checked the hotel rates in Brookville. The Super 8 was actually the best deal I saw.

That evening as I was in my hotel room, I received an e-mail from a sister in Christ. She mentioned that she knew I was not traveling alone, for Christ was traveling with me. My attention was then drawn to the phone number for the Super 8 motel chain which was on the room ticket they gave me. The number is (800) 800-8000.

One thing I have found to be true is that when we walk alone with the Lord down paths that few others are walking, He supplies us with a greater grace. I know that during the past ten years I have been led to walk in places that the majority of Christians have not walked. Because I have followed the Lord alone much of the time, He has given me a greater grace. I have truly known His presence and encouragement in an abundance of ways. He is truly compassionate to those who walk lonely paths.

I know from the correspondence I receive that many who read these posts also are walking lonely paths. If you are doing so in obedience to Christ, then I am confident that He is also abundantly present with you. I am sure that we often fail to recognize His presence because we are not recognizing how precisely He orders our steps.

Yesterday I received a very encouraging witness from the Lord. I had gotten back on the Interstate in Brookville, PA to complete my trip to Fort Wayne, Indiana. I contacted three people in the Fort Wayne area before leaving to arrange a meeting for Thursday. I was not sure where I would stay until the meeting, but I was looking forward to a few days when I could attend to e-mail and writing some posts for the blog.

The Ohio state line was about a hundred miles away, so I prayed to the Lord about the matter of where I should stay. I knew there would be a rest area just over the state line, so I asked the Lord to let me know when I got there where I should stay. I had stayed in the home of Andrew Eberly during my previous trip to Fort Wayne last year. He was no longer living in the home, but still owned it, and was in fact scheduled to sell the home in a couple weeks.

I told the Lord that if I heard from Andy that I would stay there, otherwise I would call the Super 8 reservation line and make a reservation in Fort Wayne. I had received other invitations, but I sensed that I needed some time alone to tend to writing.

When I arrived at the rest area I checked my e-mail, and I received a confirmation from Andy for our Thursday meeting, which would be held at his home. There was nothing else, so I called Super 8. I gave them all my information and was waiting patiently for the young lady to give me my conformation number when she came back on with an apologetic voice and said her computer had crashed and she did not know if the reservation had gone through. When her computer was back up she informed me that it had not gone through. A moment later Andy called in on my phone to invite me to stay in his vacated home in Fort Wayne. He said the efficiency apartment was still furnished and the power and hot water were on.

Such events are very precious, giving us an assurance that we are on the right track. When we walk alone the Lord does give us a greater grace and many encouraging signs along the way.

If you find yourself walking apart from earthly companions, know that there is a divine companion who will never fail you or forsake you. He knows the grief of walking alone, and He will not be lacking in supplying encouragement to His sons and daughters who follow in His steps.

Heart4God Website: http://www.heart4god.ws
Parables Blog: http://www.parablesblog.blogspot.com

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

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