Richard E. Stanard, First UMC, Homosassa
Like many, my early years included church and parental training about my Christianity, and at the time the words and training seemed remote and irrelevant; however, upon starting college, I quickly found myself sinking academically to the point where I was on the verge of flunking out.
I felt powerless to change this, which is when I remembered my religious training and eagerly put it to work in the form of prayer because I knew failure like this was not an option for me. At first I could see no results, but I did pass enough to return for my sophomore year, which seemed just as daunting, even though I persevered with my prayers. Still, I did seem to have a little more understanding of what I was studying and had better results than my first year.
By the time I graduated (on time, I might add), I was on the dean's list.
It was only a number of years later that I came to realize the good Lord had directly answered my prayers about this even though it was so gradual that at the time I really was not aware of it, although I felt closer to Him than I did four years earlier. Since then I have been keeping written records of all the blessings He has sent my way, and I am still adding to the list, which includes situations that initially seemed negative, yet eventually turned into positives...many of which I prayed over, and some of which I didn't.
Lately I have encountered situations that were puzzling, but I know He has had a great hand in straightening things out, including helping me with actual wording as I am speaking. This essay only scratches the surface...blessings and continuing peace for us all.
Up August 20…
Barbara Crosby, Spring Glen, Jacksonville
Prayers are answered, and the dream of making a change in the lives of hungry children comes true.
The Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church
450 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue
Lakeland, FL 33815
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