Thursday, December 18, 2008

A SOFT VOICE SPEAKS IN THE NIGHT

The journey had been long and I was hurting bad, real bad. Kristy was in heaven and I was here alone and feeling pain in my physical, spiritual, emotional, mental being. Yes, I did feel the comfort of the Holy Spirit and I had so many friends--hundreds and into the thousands who were praying for me. But the months of pain watching my beloved suffer and leave this world had taken a harsh toll.

I had just returned from a brief get-a-way to Steinhatchee, Fl. Does anyone remember where Steinhatchee is? My sis Norma and her husband drove me to a condo provided by mutual friends and I rested and recovered for several days there and then had returned to my home. 

It was my first night back to sleep in my master bedroom where Kristy passed. I wondered if I could sleep there and if I could stay in our home? Would I have to sell it and how was all this going to come down?

Early in the morning just ten days after Kristy's funeral, I was awakened by a voice that came from the corner of the bedroom where I held Kristy's hand and placed it in Jesus' hand as she left this world for heaven. The voice wasn't Kristy's and it wasn't audible. It was surprising and mildly shocking but at the same time I felt unusual warmth, peace, comfort as the voice spoke to me. 

The voice was very strong and clear and I heard these words, "Wanda Dunsford is the one I have for you. She will bless you and bless your children, and you will bless her and bless her children."

And that is all the voice said. I was amazed, stunned somewhat, but yet there was sweet comfort and peace. I felt it was God's voice and I held it closely in my heart. No one else heard it. I guess some reading this might not believe such a thing happened or ever happens. I wasn't thinking about the future. I wasn't looking to move ahead in any manner toward a new relationship or new love, but the voice spoke--what I have just described happened.

There was warmth, peace, and a feeling like soothing oil that moved over me. I can't adequately explain it, but this is what I felt. 

So, what do you do when such a voice speaks to you? These were unusually unexpected words. They were words that would change my life forever if they were really true words from God.

For me, I let this rest in my heart and went on toward healing and recovery from a very bad storm in my life. I did not tell anyone. I certainly did not contact Wanda. I was hurting all too bad for anything like that. I hadn't asked God for direction in this matter and then heard this voice as a response to my prayer. I hadn't prayed or thought about anything like this. Everything was all too fresh, too raw, to surreal to move ahead. It was only ten days after Kristy's funeral.

The voice spoke to me early on that Sunday morning and later I got dressed and went to my church and heard my brother-in-law, Ron McGee, preach. The next morning I  got into their SUV with them and headed North to the Carolina's for a month sabbatical. To be honest, I didn't think about this voice for several weeks. There was no reason to think or act or do anything about this. Remember, I didn't ask for this to happen to me and I assure you if I had done something about it at that time Wanda wouldn't have talked to me or been open to me. She is a lady and would have spurned any advances that I might have made at that time. It wasn't in me to do anything like that because I wasn't ready. I wasn't sure about what had happened and what to do about it. I didn't ask for this and didn't have a clue how any of this would ever work out or if this was something that I wanted to work out. And, obviously Wanda would have a say in all this. She might not feel this was God or might not like or love me or might not want to be a pastor's wife or might not.......

Four weeks passed and I returned to Jacksonville from my sabbatical and preached one Sunday and then left for another few days off to see my daughters and grands. No one knew what had happened. I didn't think about it and obviously didn't talk to anyone about this voice and what I had heard. 

I drove to Tampa to see Julie and Alex and Nic and then flew to San Juan, Puerto Rico for another few days with Jennifer, Javier, Claudia, and Lorenzo. 

There is a reason why that voice spoke to me and I will explain why in a future post. It took me weeks to understand and fully accept what had happened early that Sunday morning, but over and over the Lord confirmed it in my mind and heart. Still I didn't tell anyone. 

God had spoken to Kristy and she told Julie and Norma--though she never talked to me about Wanda--and now God had spoken to me. How would God speak to Wanda? Would she be open to God or to me if I ever contacted her? Would we be attracted to each other? How would all this to come to pass? 

Wait until you read what happened there in Puerto Rico with Jennifer. This is an amazing story of love. Another page turns tomorrow.

20 Comments:

At 7:52 AM, Blogger Pam Meyers said...

Wow, Milton. If a writer put that in a novel it would be a hard sell LOL. But I believe in hearing an audible voice.

It has happened to me a couple times and I had no doubt it was God. Only the voice didn't come from across the room. It was like it was deep inside me, but I heard it in my ears. No one else heard it. Just me.

The first time, the voice told me to invite a non-believer who was sitting in the church pew to my place that day. I was doing sign-language interpreting of the service at the time and she was watching me because she was trying to learn sign. I invited her after church but she had other plans. I began to doubt I heard what I thought I heard. Later that day she called me and in the conversation she gave her heart to the Lord and received Christ.

So when I heard the voice again years later, I obeyed it. This time I don't have a joyous report, but I believe I was a seed planter.

Can't wait for tomorrow's installment!

 
At 8:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the next segment. I am sure Kristy did not want to leave you or her family, but knew God was calling her. I doubt it was easy to think of giving her beloved husband to another woman, even a good one. How precious the depth of love and concern she had for you and yours. How wise to tell one of the daughters. Blessings, Milton.

 
At 8:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, just 10 days after Kristy's funeral. It just seems unreal. I will wait and watch for the rest of the story. Why would God put this on you, even though it sounds wonderful, how could you even grieve with this in the back of your mind. Hard to wrap my mind around this.

 
At 8:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Big Brother,
I'm in with Tricia and Mom and Dad's posts, we are very happy for you. If anyone knows you at all they know you don't jump into things. I think that was the biggest surprise to me more than Wanda was. I know you wouldn't make this big a decision this quickly, unless it was the Father's doing, ( and Kristy's). I don't remember too many people from your days at Bartow because I was a wee young lass, but I do remember Wanda, and I believe it's because she was just as everyone has said, a fine sweet lady, and that made her stand out in my mind.
Anyway, from someone in the family who IS impulsive by nature, I say "Kudo's to you and Wanda" Love is precious and though you may not have been the coolest kid in high school you must have done something right for the Father to bless you twice like this.
love ya,
janet

 
At 9:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Milton,

You're killing me! Won't you please just take the day off from work today and just finish this story??? :-)

Is God cool or what!? What I have a hard time wrapping my mind around is that the God who created this whole universe and everyone in it cares about the smallest detail of my life, or your life, or anyone's life! He is so amazing! We cannot even begin to fathom His love for us. WOW!

Milton, your story, and Kristy's story, is such a testament to God's love for us. THank you for putting your life out there for us to see. You have blessed me greatly.

I am so happy for you and cannot wait for the next installment.

Love,
april (reece) gordon
Jimmy Reece's daughter

 
At 9:31 AM, Anonymous Norma McGee said...

Knowing the enormity and depth of your grieve as Kristy was dying and after her death, I believe that God knew you needed hope dropped in your spirit. Hope for someone in your future, hope that you would not be alone, hope that help was soon to come....

This hope at times has kept the grief from completely overwhelming you. I, along with many others, had prayed for God to help you. Wanda was part of the help God sent. She understood your grief from her own firsthand experience.

I could go on, but you will be telling more....

Congratulations to both of you!

Love,

Sis

 
At 9:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! I had pretty much guessed this by the few clues that you sprinkled in to your writing, but hearing you say it still caught me by surprise! I am happy for you both. God is good :)

 
At 11:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

February 9, 2008 8:03am
(((((((((((((SweetWanda))))))))))

 
At 12:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What an awesome love story. I can hardly wait till the next "chapter"!

 
At 12:52 PM, Blogger Kim said...

Milton -
How I praise GOD for answered prayer! My own mother married a young man recently widowed from brain cancer. My dad's best friend was a pastor, and some time after he married my mom, he told my dad that my mom was one of two women she hoped my dad would marry to raise their children. (my brother and sister were only 4 & 5 when their mother died)

My parents recently celebrated 45 years together, and the love story my dad has shared with us over the years is such a powerful testimony of how God cares for us even in life's darkest moments!

I'm excited to see what God has planned for you! Truly, He is answering Kristy's most tender prayers for the man she loved so well!

 
At 2:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think what Norma said is so insightful! Amazing that God knew what you needed... hope to get you through the very sad and dark time...

 
At 3:01 PM, Blogger DayleShockley said...

I agree with Norma. To have hope, in our darkest hour, is the greatest gift, and it was a clear sign of God's great love for you.

 
At 3:19 PM, Blogger kate said...

we are not promised time - you learned that with Kristy. I think the only thing in life to do is to follow your gut, your voice, and to love like you've never hurt!

God does more than we can ever imagine. He brought your Kristy and He is here again to calm the storms that raged in your soul.

I'm with the other poster - please just tell us the whole story. I'm the one that always reads the last page of a book before I read it!

 
At 3:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When seeds of love are scatter about and planted into good soild, why are we surprised when love springs up?
Milton has sown seeds of love and faithfulness throughout the years with Kristy, family, friends and other ways. When harvest time arrives, he will be found with a field of bountiful and plentiful love to gather up.

 
At 3:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

After the hint posted earlier, I read Milton's post from 2/9/08 and I was astounded at both what he wrote and that Wanda left a lovely comment on that very day! :)

 
At 8:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love what Norma said about hope. My father passed from stomach cancer, and it was so devastating for my mom, and all of us, to watch him suffer so much. We all need hope.
God = Hope!
Praise Him!!

 
At 8:48 PM, Blogger Gayle said...

I agree with Norma. The words you heard were God's way of giving you hope for a brighter tomorrow. As my sister posted, what a loving God.

I also agree with April: You're killin' us!

 
At 9:31 PM, Blogger Karen Eve said...

What a wonderful gift, although I'm certain that you wondered what God was up to at the time. This is like reading one of those old serials, like Perils of Pauline (not that I was around then). I look forward to the next installment of this testimony.
Blessings,

 
At 6:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kristy's words from a blog posted in 2006 (I think)

I bless you, that whatever your hand findeth to do today, you will do it with your might, that your strength will increase with the help of the Lord, that you will accomplish the plans and tasks He has for you today, that when you feel too weary, or too frustrated, or too uninspired, or too discouraged, or too at-the-end-of-your-rope to continue on that you will break through the fetters that bind you through the power of the Holy Spirit, and your joy shall be full! Now go, and do His will, happily, confidently, exuberantly, expectantly.

 
At 6:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

More of Kristy's Words from a 2006 post.

Coincidence, some might say. No, it was providence. God's hand. God's interest in all things that concern us. (Remember the scripture about God being concerned about the birds but even more so His children?) Someone said, "Coincidence is when God chooses to be anonymous." However, I feel that if we "give God the glory" for things, He's honored, AND He'll do even more for us. I always attribute good things happening in my life as coming directly from the Lord.

 

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