My Messed Up "Good" Life: Part 3

The Surer Path Discovered

My service in the Air Force then took me to Patrick AFB, Florida.. Yet essentially those years were a continuation of my introverted ways, in that “good” life I had taken on through my churchgoing upbringing, and thus as well attending chapel services as often as possible. As so induced perhaps by my upbringing and my introverted temperament, I had no desire for the carousing so familiar “worldly” ways.There I continued my active duty as a vehicle operator. Those years at Patrick set me on a new course.

Completing a Navigator Bible study on the person of Jesus Christ, which my second brother had sent to me, I consider that the time when I received Jesus. I signed and dated the invitation at the end of that study acknowledging that I had done so—a quiet acceptance of Jesus into my life it was, I being alone there in my barracks room at the time.

Two years later I met a Navigator representative who had moved into the area purposely to begin an outreach among the servicemen stationed at Patrick.  My name being on the Nav mailing list, he looked me up. He shared with me Steps to Peace with God by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. I consider the meeting with that Nav rep a gaining an assurance of my salvation. (See John 1:12-13; 1 John 5:11-12)

Hence, the surer path I discovered, and as I would also realize even over any “clumps or uneven clods[1]” I yet might come upon in my going that way, as Jesus has so promised (consider John 14:27; 16:33; Romans 8:36-37; 1 John 5:4-5). Yet also as He has said, “Be sure of this: [all along the way], I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20b NLT)

For the remainder of my time there at Patrick, I was involved with The Navigators, receiving helpful encouragement for Christian living essentially through Bible study, prayer, and Scripture memory. The witnessing part, however, in particular, was somewhat hard, for one being not-so-much-of-a-talker[2].

That period of time was when I was encouraged to consider Bible College. Also in discovering, as one shared, that I could “express myself well in writing”. (Ah, a thought that I should or not consider as a vocation? As the years passed I'd realized creative writing is something I enjoy trying, at least if nothing more as a hobby.)

Attending a large Navigator conference (my first such), over a Thanksgiving weekend, in Estes Park, Colorado. I responded to the invitation given at the closing message of the conference. Standing with several other guys, I answered the call as Isaiah did, “Here I am. Send me” (See Isaiah 6:8).  What all that meant, at that time, was not fully then made clear to me.

[2] Through my journey onward I have spoken the name of Jesus at so being attentive to the Holy Spirit’s leading, realizing too, I being not so much spontaneous in conversation, to have always handy a gospel tract ready to share.

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