Archive for December, 2011

December 28, 2011

Overheard

I’ve been realizing how much we pass on our testimonies to our close friends and through the grapevine of the church community. I am constantly hearing all of these great stories of God’s work and often think, “They should type that up and send it to me for the Stone Pile!”. Some people don’t have time, or maybe don’t think this is a place for short-winded testimonies, so I decided I am going to start posting whatever I hear. The stories below were left anonymous, although I did get permission to pass them on and you may know who they are anyway. I am going to post groups of these brief “overheard” testimonies often, so if you have a one-liner, a one-paragrapher, or something you want to tell me in person, let me know!  I will ask permission before sharing any testimonies I “overhear” on the world wide web. You can now also submit testimonies using this easy form on our church website.

Ok, now to the stories. Hear’s what I overheard last week:

A few weeks ago, a family in our community realized they had underestimated their expenses and were exceeding their income by $400/mo. Tempted to stress and thinking of every way to quickly trim the budget and make additional income, the wife told the husband she thought it was a good opportunity for them to learn to trust God. “Not that I thought we should’t do anything about it, but just that we should trust him with the situation. I had seen his faithfulness to others, but I just wasn’t sure if He would do the same for me.” She was tempted to think that because they had gotten themselves in the situation, God would make them figure out how to fix it alone. After finding a way to trim $100 off of their monthly expenses, the wife found $300 in her pocket the next day. Her mom had “just felt like” giving it to her. The next week, their bank sent a letter with a large check saying they had been over-paying their mortgage by $400/mo. and here was a check for the difference! God is faithful to even you! Praise Him!

Another friend had a traumatic experience months ago that she realized was still affecting her relationship with God. She felt as though He had abandoned her and she could not really trust Him. “Why, if I’m his daughter, did He allow this to happen?”. At the church retreat in Michigan, Ken asked her to declare that she trusted Jesus. She can’t explain it, but since that time she has felt complete freedom and ability to trust God, despite months of trying to mentally overcome the doubt on her own. Perhaps there is an area for you to confess truth with your mouth today in order to get past a spiritual hurdle that is holding you back.

Thanks to these friends for passing on their stories! Looking forward to hearing yours.

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December 14, 2011

Running Injury Quickly Healed

Thanks Amanda for sharing this testimony of physical healing!

 

I trained this whole summer for the chicago marathon. At first, I was
not entirely thrilled with how much time it would take to train, but
as the race drew closer, I became so thankful for those hours on the
lakeshore, just me and God. talking and running lots. He showed me so
much about Himself and myself through those times together.

A few weeks before the race, my back came out of alignment, and my
left ankle started to hurt really bad. I “babied” it for the next few
weeks until the race, in hopes that I could run on race day. I really
felt that He told me that He wanted me to run and finish this race
that He had marked out for me. So race day, I was feeling okay, and
was running. it wasn’t until mile 5 that my ankle started hurting
again, and by mile 7 i could not walk at all. I was watching all the
runners pass me. But because I believed that God wanted me to finish
this, I started hobble-walking, then hobble-running. My ankle hurt the
entire 26.2 miles, but God brought me to the finish line. I was able
to finish the race in 4hrs and 12 minutes. I knew that it was only the
Lord that I was able to complete the Chicago marathon.

Since then, my ankle has been really bothering me. Last Sunday,
though, people prayed for my ankle to be healed. Sunday it immediately
felt better, but as soon as I left Church in the City, it started to
hurt again. The next morning, it felt almost completely better. I
have been able to walk normally since then, and there is only a slight
pain in my ankle now.

God is good and gracious, and He not only showed me what He wanted
from me, all I had to do was trust in Him, and He provided the
strength and courage to go through with what He called me to do. He
has taught me so much through this simple trusting of Him.

Amanda

December 7, 2011

“What I knew in my head has become alive in my heart”

Here is a testimony from a friend of Church in the City. Let this be encouraging, not only to CITC, but to anyone ministering to others that the work we do to point people to Jesus is making an effect and changes lives! Thank you, Kathy, for taking the time to bless us with your story.
I was very grateful to share this wonderful retreat with Church in the City.  I have visited Church in the City with my dear friend, Ranni Matar , and only wish I lived closer so I could come on a regular basis.  At services I always felt the presence of the Holy Spirit and the genuine love of the people.  Yet this retreat in New Buffalo, MI was the best!  The teachings of Ken and Michelle were so helpful in understanding the “schemes” of the enemy and knowing how to combat the enemy through the Word of God and the Love of God.  In addition to learning a wealth of information that is useful for equipping I was especially blessed during ministry time on Saturday, prior to returning home.  The things Ken and Michelle had to say to me personally (or pray about) were ‘right on the mark’.     There has already been evidence of spiritual breakthroughs in my life and a far greater assurance of the Lord’s amazing love….what I knew in my head has become for more real and alive in my heart.

I returned home to a very sick mother, who is now in the hospital again.  She is 82.  Within a week after the retreat I learned the reason for her extreme illness and pain, as we found out she has an inoperable tumor.  Despite the sorrowful implications for the road ahead, I am able to see (bett er than before) the hand of God and His lovingkindness, ever seeing little miracles amidst the hardship.  I am more than ever confident Jesus will never leave nor forsake those who trust Him.  Another break through that occurred after the retreat is that dear Christian friends I’ve known over the years and had lost touch with at length began to call.  I’d lost touch with one of these ladies for 6 years, another 5 years, and another close to 2 years.  During this season of suffering the Holy Spirit had put me on these ladies’ hearts.   He has brought these sisters to comfort, encourage and pray.   I feel the Lord is surrounding me with a warm blanket of love and support.  It brings a sense of being ‘restored’, and I immediately associated all three calls with breakthroughs achieved at the retreat.   It is hard to explain fully, yet I can sense a refreshing in the midst of suffering.  It is delightful to see how much can be accomplished as a result of prayers and ministry received at the retreat.

Also, in addition to sharing the room with Ranni, I met and was delighted to get to know the two other room mates, Diane and Amy.  We shared some wonderful fellowship.  The fine food and many snacks provided by Church in the City were delicious and created a sense of celebration.  What a wonderful, meaningful retreat in was.  Thank you so much!!!!   Also, I’d like to thank Church in the City, once again, for sponsoring me in 2/3 the cost for the retreat.

I can hardly wait to obtain the CD’s I requested of the retreat and also the Sunday service.

Kathy Peterson