Tuesday, July 19, 2016

How Do You Know Part 3

Hello, all. I hope that you BYDWP; if you didn't, there's still time. Just come on back to the blog when you finish. I should be well into the rest of it by then. Okay?

Let's jump right back to where we left off yesterday, shall we? You can see that our little third grader jumped on what Momma said just like she did most things. Her mother took the time to explain to her that she should never ask Jesus for trivial things like a doll. She explained how special a privilege being allowed to pray to Him was.

Needless to say, I was that little third grader, and I took a lesson from that conversation that changed my life for the better. The lasting thing that I took away from that conversation with my Momma was that "If you pray to Jesus, He will hear your prayer and answer it in His own good time." I was taught to pray and learned to wait in patience for the Lord to answer my prayer(s). That premise has carried me over many a mountain and through many stormy patches in my life as I continued Chopping My Row (the name of my new book that I am working on).  Learning to wait made my faith in Jesus stronger.

Somebody once said that "If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always gotten." That is so true, but in this case, I want to use it in a positive sense. Since I have always prayed and have gotten answers aplenty, I continue to pray (i.e., I have always prayed and been helped with my problems, so I continue to pray in hopes of getting help with my current problems too.) Somebody else has said, "If it ain't broken, don't fix it.")

Just like Alicia did on pages 36, 37 and 39 of W.O.W. created w.o.w., I had been praying and waiting for something all of my life, but I didn't know when I had been given it. (By the way, if you have not gotten the chance to read our book, you really should do just that. Borrow one from somebody. Read the short story on pages 34-39. You will be glad that you did!) That is why this blogging series has been entitled, "How Do You Know?" Some of you are probably sitting there thinking, "How can you ask for something and not know when you have received it? That is just plain illogical!" To that thought I say, Hold on there, my friend. Not so fast. That very thing can happen.

Let me explain it to you a little better than I have. I had been praying since I was a child for this thing. You know what I had been praying for all of that time? I had been praying for Jesus to let me be somebody one day.
That is simple enough; I know. But, at what point do you know that you are somebody? You see the audience that made me feel insecure in the first place is no longer the audience I am playing to now, is it? Nope, it's not. When I became a teacher, I was around other teachers, and I was no better or no worse that the others. I was nothing special. I was just a teacher who cared. Now, don't get me wrong; I thanked the Lord for allowing me to become a teacher, but I still was not at the top of my game yet. I didn't think, anyway. When I received Who's Who Among America's Teachers, I still didn't get it. I was just one of many. I was too busy making sure that I did all that I could to help my kids and be caring at the same time. When I did think about the prayer prayed in earnest all those years ago, it was to think, not yet. I have not arrived yet, nope not yet. I am still one among many.

When my husband became a preacher and the sisters in the church wanted to dress as I did, I thought, "No biggie." That is just because he is in the limelight. It has nothing to do with me. When I was expected to speak at Ladies' Days, that was no biggie. Many preachers wives do that. I was one among many.

When I wrote my books, it was not until my third one that someone said something that bothered me a little. Let me tell you in a brief moment what happened. There was this young lady that I had taught and she had not seen me in a while. She threw her arms around me and squealed and said, that she was so glad to see me. Then she told me that she wanted to get all three of my books. I told her that they were on Amazon, and she could get them there. She became a little hostile and said that she wanted to get her books right then because she wanted me to sign them. I told her that I didn't have any books with me. She became hostile and yelled out, "Why not?" I tried to shoosh her and told her that I did not have the money to order any more right then as I had just finished a book signing. I still didn't get the picture. I just thought that some people were so bent on telling me not to change when they were acting funny over a book. I made sure that that would not happen again. I keep books with me at all times now. Well, I  don't have any right now because they cleaned me out at the ALA Conference & Exhibition in Orlando.

Now here is the finale of this little blogging session.
Remember this

that resulted in this?
As a preacher's wife, you are supposed to be able to cook. Okay, no biggie, right? Here is what happened to me not very long ago. I periodically take meals to help out various church functions. I was checking to see what was needed so that I could help another church out with their food preparation. I was told what to bring, and I said, "Okay." then I was told, "Bring some of that cornbread of yours, but leave it in the car." It was to be taken to a particular house. Another time I was told to fix some dishes but to be sure and do some cornbread because there was no cornbread for the house.
Those words about the cornbread astounded me to the point that I said aloud, but to myself, "Cornbread! It's just cornbread!" Those words took me back to 8 years old when I had to fix my first pan of cornbread. Then it hit me. The Lord had looked down the road in my life and knew this was going to happen, so He made sure that I could cook a fine pan of bread. Then I thought about the other things that had happened in my life. I thought about the week before when a former student of mine called me a Phenomenal Woman; about the great number of responses I got when I posted something on Facebook; the number of birthday well-wishes; people's reaction to me when they hear that I am an author, etc. That is when it hit me folks, Alma Jones, the Lord has answered your prayers and allowed you to become somebody!

Wow! I was bowled over when I realized what the Lord had done in my life. Now, y'all know how introspective I can be. So I went back through my life, and I thought about the things that I could do well now. I used to play being a teacher. I used to write stories for my friends. Even back then folks, He was preparing me for what lay ahead. And as far as being a preacher's wife, He made sure that I was close to Him. Wow! What a wonderful, mighty God we serve!

Doing What I Can, While I Can,
Alma Jones

Aside - What do I do with this new found knowledge? I make sure that I do my best to give Him glory through my daily living. Humbly, I say, "Thank You, Lord!"

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