Sunday, June 17, 2012
It was the year 1990, I was a relatively new pastor eager to build the Kingdom. I was invited to a pastor's retreat, once there, during my first lunch time, a young woman holding a baby asked me if I wanted to go to Cuba. Well, it had been 22 years since I had left my country. Three months later I was preaching at Guanabacoa United Methodist Church, Habana, Cuba. Right in the midst of my message, the Lord gave me a vision; I saw my dad dressed as an army soldier standing at the door of the church. I had been asking the Lord what he wanted me to do in Cuba, I did not feel I had anything to do in that country. I was never closed to my family and they were all communists anyways, including my father. It was not until the moment I had the vision with my dad that I realized two things: 1. The Lord had brought me back to preach the Gospel to my dad (a santero) and 2. I was brought back because I needed to forgive my father for abandoning my mom, my sister and I when I was just 5 years old. That Sunday, as I was preaching, a man stood at the church's door, dressed as a soldier and when I was able to see his face, it was my father. As I made the altar call, he came forth and accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. We hugged and asked each other for forgiveness. That day the church was serving communion, as my dad came to partake and the pastor told me to serve him, it was the first and last time we saw each other after so many years because my dad passed away right after dad, but the beauty of it is that he went with the Lord and I will see him again. IT IS NEVER TOO LATE to forgive and be forgiven,for it might be the last time you see the person in this earth, and how wonderful it is to know that not only are you healed, but the person gets to know the God you serve. Think of who you need to forgive today, who knows? It might be the person closest to your heart and isn't that the way God works?
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Just when we think we have lost the battle with our children and grandchildren, a surprising letter comes to us. Her name is Isabella she is one of my 12 grandchildren, number four to be exact, and she is identical to me. I had nag and nag about a number of things I wanted to see her do differently; for twelve days I nag and nag; the day came for me to leave. I was teary, knew my grandchildren did not like me very much... when all of the sudden my son handed me a letter.
This is what the letter it said: "Nana, I wanted to thank you for all you did for us. The time you've been here. It means a lot to us. I know we might not show it, but that's just because we are too proud to admit that we care. I also wanted to tell you that we had a lot of fun, sharing some laughs and stories. I know when you were here, you were irratated and annoyed at some points, but somehow, you made it through. I have no clue how, but you did it anyways. Thank you for being at my concert as well, that really did mean a lot to me. I'm so glad you liked it!, and thank you for just being awesome. Well, I am going to stop because I know you have better things to do than to read this letter. I love you. have a safe trip. Call as soon as you get home, and I hope you visit again."
Boy!!! you can never tell when you are making an impression on one of your children or grandchildren. That is why we should not give into mediocracy, step up and let your children and grandchildren know you expect the best from them. Don't wait until it is too late. DO IT NOW!!!!. Tell them you care by letting them know they can be the best that they can be and no less.
"Hear, my son, your father's instruction and forsake not your mother's teaching, for they are a graceful garland for your head and pendants for your neck." Proverbs 1:8-9