by Loyed? Petersen

Providentially, those who volunteered me to write this devotional, misspelled my name, spelling it in the “past tense” (i.e., “…ed”). But I can make something of it.

Recently I had a dream. I sometimes remember the details when it happens right before I wake up. This was what I dreamt. “I lost my identity: no name,
no driver’s license, no car, no house, no pension, no country.”
*  Well that’s like being dead. But it’s really about being a pilgrim — this world is not my Home.

*   “I did not lose my mind.”

For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.
When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Colossians 3:3-4 (Emphasis added.)

So, I will never be just in the past tense.

As a little boy learning to read — my Mom and Grandma reading to me different Bible stories — my Mom showed me the illustration of the “lost lamb”, with a leg stuck in a cleft of a rock, hanging over a steep cliff, while the Devil, an eagle flying high above, was ready to snatch me. But here comes the Wonderful
Good Shepherd to rescue the little sheep and take it home, holding it on His shoulders. Then my Mom says to me, “You are the lost sheep”. 

It’s a lonesome, dreadful feeling being lost, without a family, a home; a bird without a nest — nowhere to land.

When I was a toddler, we moved from a North Denver apartment to South Denver. The new house came with a baby brother — some of you know him as Glenn (nicknamed “Pete”). My parents found a new Bible believing church in our neighborhood, in a colonial style building — such high cathedral ceilings! (My Uncle Bob had done the plastering.) 

But that year our Mom dropped us off at a vacation Bible school at a different church. I remember a young girl teaching me Bible verses (in KJV). God spoke to me through those verses how Jesus died in my place. I immediately recognized His Voice, believing that because Jesus died for me, I can trust Him. The last day we were let out early, plus our Mom was late to pick us up in the car, so I told the lady we would just walk to my (other) Grandmas’ house. (It was about two miles away, but though I was just five or six, I knew the way.) When Mom arrived to pick us up, she asked the lady, “where’s Lloyd and Glenn?” “Oh, they walked to their grandma’s house.” At the time. I would not have imagined our Mom’s panic, scouring “Wash” Park for us.

My Aunt Margaret was not married, so she lived with Grandma Petersen. Aunt Margaret had been my Sunday school teacher at yet another church, so she was the one I told first, that I received Jesus as my personal Savior (John 1:11-12.). She immediately told me about the “Rapture”. 

… Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed — in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye,..
I Corinthians 15:50-53, NKJV

So, like the Apostle Peter, I kinda had an idea how Jesus will take me Home to Heaven some day. Much later, I learned details as I became more committed to following the Lord, and more alert to fulfillment of prophecy (especially after Israel’s “Six Day War” victory). 

(Yes, the Bible teaches that we, the Church, asleep or alive, “shall be caught up” at Jesus’ appearing. There is just a difference of opinion when it will occur in God’s scheme of things, I Thessalonians 4:15-17 KJV.)

Being “born again” of the Spirit of God, we are His children and now we have Eternal Life: 

Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.
And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;…
Colossians 2:12-14 KJV

The Witness of God Himself 

…this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son….  I John 5:9b-11, 12-15 KJV

“Who hath believed our report…” Isaiah 53:1

We, the true Church, have been believing God for almost two thousand years and have been passing the baton throughout the ages. 

Jesus said [to Thomas], “Because you have seen me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.”
Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples that are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. John 20:29-31 CSB 

So there is one book we are called to read: The Word of God, The Bible.

And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.**  John 21:25

** The Love of God, Frederick M. Lehman, 1917, Public Domain, esp. v. 3 by Anonymous/Unknown.

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