Highlights, Testimonies, and Answers to Prayer in the Life of Sister Iula Stephens
For sometime I have felt led of the Lord, and have had others ask me to put my testimony of Salvation and answers to prayer in writing. The Lord has made it possible for me to share some of the highlights in my life, all to his Honor and Glory.
My Early Life from Childhood
I want to give a little background of my life before God saved me. My mother, who was not saved, told me that she left my father before I was born and returned to her father's farm. My parents never reconciled so my sister, who was a year older than I, were brought up without a father. My mother later moved to Oklahoma City to work leaving my sister and I on the farm, until we were school age. Our mother was not able to keep us herself so she would pay some other family members to keep us and provide our room and board. When she would come where we were staying, to pay for our keep, she would only stay and visit us for a short time. Even after she sent for us; we didn't really know her very well because we seldom saw her through our younger years; when school ended we would be sent back to the farm and did not see her all summer. When school resumed we returned to the city to live and there was always a new family with different religious backgrounds such as Catholic, Baptist, Methodist and Dancing Holiness, and so on. I'm not sure if this is what later turned me away from going to church, but I grew up at some point thinking that there wasn't anything to religion.
However, at one time, the Methodist congregation was putting on a play about meeting God on Judgment day. I was chosen to play a Mother's daughter. On the left side there was a man dressed as the devil in all black with a tail and pitchfork. On the right side there were people that played God and His angels. I was very frightened by the devil and was glad that my Play mother was chosen to be on God's side; this made an impression on me which stayed with me and caused me to desire to go to Heaven.
We were taught that if one would pray when in trouble, God would help us. God proved this to me. Our mother never gave us any money and I wanted to buy candy. One day at school, I stole a dime off of a girl's desk. *1. When the girl missed her money, the teacher said she was going to search every child in the classroom. I was terrified and afraid that the children would know that I was a thief. I could not bear that, so I prayed to God asking him to not let the teacher find the dime on me. I told God, "I would never do that again.' When my time came to be searched in the cloakroom, she searched through my braids and made me take off my shoes and socks. She did not find the dime on me. I knew God had answered my prayer and ever afterwards when I was tempted to steal I would remember what I had told God and it helped me to overcome temptation. Needless to say, I did not enjoy what I bought with that dime.
1. James 1:12-14 Blessed is the man who endures temptation for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to them that love HIM. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempts he any man. But every man is tempted when he is drawn away after his own lust and enticed.
My mother was a cook on her job; she would bring home food for us from her job. We did not like the food and would throw it away and only eat the rolls and butter which caused me to have a health problem of constipation. I was afraid to tell my mother because she would give us Castor oil, Black Drought and Epson salt. I couldn't stand to take them; and if I vomited them up, she would make me take more. I suffered for at least 17 years with the problem getting worse. I will tell you more, later.
While still in High School, I married my husband Oliver Stephens Sr. A few years late we moved to California from Oklahoma with one small child. After a while my husband stopped working and started hanging out in the streets, everyday. I was a stranger to California, and by then had 2 small children. One day I said, "If what I have experienced in life so far was all this world had to offer, it wasn't worth living. I would rather be dead and at peace." So I decided to take poison and kill myself* 2. Just as I was about to drink the poison, the thought came into my mind, "suppose you find out afterwards that you have made a mistake, you can't come back" So I did not drink it. (The poison).
2. Exodus 20:13 Thou shall not kill.
My mother in law saw that my husband, her son, was not supporting his family. So she went to the draft board to put him in the Army; then I could get financial support. My husband lied to them and said that he had hit his head and injured it while diving in a swimming pool. They told him that he had better get a job or he would still be drafted. So things did improve for me and the children.
We lived in a low income housing project for nine and half years. I began working to buy a house; I wanted my three children to get out of there. We lived on my husband's salary and I saved mine for the down payment. Somehow the Housing authorities found out about me working and gave us a 30 day notice to move out. We bought a house and I have lived in for 52 years, so far.
How I Found God
My mother who was still living in Oklahoma became ill so we sent for her to come live with us in California, where I could nurse her back to health. After she was better she moved to Bakersfield, California about 2 hours away, to be near her father and other family members who had moved there. She eventually met a man and set up housekeeping with him. He bought her a house, a car, and would get her anything else she wanted. One day my grandfather called and said, "come see about your mother she has lost her mind." I went there and found that my mother had left the man, home, car and all with no money to care for herself. I too thought she had lost her mind to give up everything to be in a Church. (She had gotten saved) I told her I would send her some money every week. Later, she asked me to forgive her for the life she had lived, in front of me. She then began sending me a paper called the "Faith and Victory". I was fed up with religion and had made a vow to myself, to never put my foot in another church as long as I lived. So I put the papers on a shelf on my back porch. I called them "trash" and would not read them.
One Sunday, my mother came to Los Angeles on the Greyhound bus, and asked could she take her grandchildren to church? I was upset about that, and did not want her to take my children to church, but I could not find an excuse to give her, for not allowing them to go. The thought came to me, 'go see where she is taking them.' I was very worldly; wore lipstick, and dressed in tailored pants which not many women wore back then; I smoked, went to dances and did everything else sinners do.
At the church service, I liked the songs the people sang, but nothing else impressed me. The next Sunday my mother came again, asking if she could take the children to church. I wanted to tell her off but could not find the words to tell her, to stop her from coming and bothering us. So I went again and was determined to stop her after this time. The Preacher spoke from the Bible and my mother followed where he was reading in the scriptures. The more he talked and read the more uncomfortable I became. In the preaching I learned that I was a sinner and ready for hell, living as I was then. That made me feel bad because I thought I was alright, and I didn't want to go to hell. I kept my head down to not let those strangers see me crying. I said, "I would do anything I was asked to keep from going to that awful place, (Hell). I wanted to KNOW that all of the sins that I had ever done were forgiven by God, but I didn't want anyone to just tell me my sins were forgiven, I wanted to know for myself. The Preacher said, "If anyone needed help come and kneel at the altar." I looked up then and saw that he pointed to an altar bench in front. I went to the front and knelt at the Altar and repented of my sins. I had never heard of conviction (where God talks to your heart and conscience about your sins), nor of the words "born again, saved or altar." I was too shy to pray and did not know how, anyway, but God saw my heart and forgave all my sins. *3,4. And I knew that they were gone, but I didn't know what had happened except, I felt as If a load had been lifted off of me. I was so happy and at peace for the first time in my life. At that time I was in my late twenties.
3. I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
4. 2 Corinthians 7:10,11 For godly sorrow works repentance to salvation not to be repented of:but the sorrow of the world works death. For behold this same thing that you sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yes, what clearing of yourselves, yes, what indignation, yes what fear, yes, what vehement desire, yes what zeal, yes, what revenge! In All things you have approved yourselves to be Clear in this matter.
When I went back to work the next day, after I had gotten saved, the ladies stared at me so much and said, "Something was different about me."*5. I knew it too, but I did not know what to call it. (I learned that it is called "being saved," saved from our sins. We repent and forsake our sins and God forgives and cleanses us). I was saved, I knew my sins were forgiven, but I was still smoking cigarettes because I didn't know it was wrong. *6,7. One day my husband said to me, "every time I look at you, you have a cigarette between your lips." I was not a chain smoker. A few days later he said, "You are a cigarette fiend." That comment cut me into my heart and really upset me. I felt that I needed to smoke a cigarette the first thing in the morning when I opened my eyes. I could not make it through the day without a cigarette. I had the habit badly enough to where, if I ran out of cigarettes, before I could buy more, I would have to go looking in the ash trays for a butt to hold me until I could go to the store. My husband smoked too but could not stand for me to smoke in the bedroom, first thing in the morning.
I went to my secret place of prayer, crying and telling God, "He knew I had tried to stop smoking but cold not, the craving for them was so strong." I prayed, "Lord, if you want me to stop smoking take this craving away." The next day, I did not think of a cigarette; and I went through the whole day without one. That evening while I was making pie crust, the thought came to my mind, "you have not had a cigarette all day." I was amazed and said, "as soon as I finish this crust I am going to go get one." The next thought came, "You asked me to take the craving away." This was my first answer to prayer for a physical need, as a new Christian.
5. II Corinthian 5:17:Therefore if any man be in Christ, he (she) is a new creature (person) old things have passed away:behold, all things have become new.
6. I Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of THE FLESH, and SPIRIT, perfecting holiness in the fear of the Lord. (Cigarettes defile the flesh/body)
7. James 4:17 Therefore to him that knows to do good, and does it not, to him it is Sin.
Before we moved from the Housing projects, there was a Jewish lady that I thought was trying to be my friend. She would visit and talk about her black husband. She had 3 children and one day she told me she was divorcing her husband and wanted to know "when was I divorcing mine." (Later, I felt that she was the one that had told the Housing authorities that I was working and where.) After we moved my husband would go back to the Projects everyday, instead of coming home. I could not understand until one of my children went with him, and that Jewish woman told our daughter that she 'was going to marry her daddy'. She told her so she would come and tell me. Later the woman also moved from the projects and bought a house on the west side of town. When my husband would come home from work, he would keep the phone within his reach, and when it rang, he would pick it up and never say a word. He would just hang it up.
The neighborhood children told our children that a lady was picking up their daddy everyday about 3 blocks away at a phone booth. I knew it was the same woman and that she meant business about breaking up our marriage; she meant to get my husband to marry her. One time she told me, If she couldn't get him to marry her; she was going to at least break us up. Since I was saved at this time and God was my Father, I told the Lord that I had married this man in his sight and he was my husband and I wanted Him (God, my Father) to fight this woman. She had according to the world, a lot going for her, good job and everything. I said, "Lord all I have is you, and I am going to wait and see what you are going to do about this situation..." * 8,9
8. Romans 8:32 What shall we say to these things, If God before us, who can be against us?
9. I John 5:14,15 And this is the confidence that we have in him that, if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us:And our petition if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petition that we desired of him.
At one point, I was going to leave but the Lord let me know that he wanted me to stay with him. I had ministers tell me that I had a right to "refuse to have anything to do with him", and I know that I did but I believed in letting the Lord make the decisions in my life, and they have always turned out right. I may have suffered some, but God always took care of me and supplied my needs. The Lord didn't allow her to break up our marriage; we went on to be married 59 years.
If God requires something in our lives he will give us the grace to perform it, if we are willing to obey Him. I treated my husband like he was the best husband *10,11, but he treated me mean. He would hardly give any money for us to live on. I had to give up my job because I became expecting again. And when the time came for me to go to the hospital, he did not come to take me, I had to call a cab. He didn't visit me while I was there, and I had to call a cab when I was discharged, to take me home. There were many other grievous and hurtful things that he did. But the Lord helped me to forgive him *12 and I kept a good attitude, so I would not hinder God's working in my life, and with him.
10. Romans 12:21 Be not overcome of evil but overcome evil with good.
11. 1 Peter 3:1 Likewise, you wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; while they behold your chaste (pure) conversation coupled with fear (respect).
12. Mark 11:25, 26 And when you stand praying, forgive, if you have aught against any:that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in Heaven forgive your trespasses.
The Lord began to deal with me about making all the wrongs I had said or done before I got saved, right. I had stolen some stainless steel silverware from the restaurant where I had once worked. I went and confessed it and paid for them. I had some serious confessions to make to my husband; some that he did not forgive me.
My young son had found a wallet under the clothesline, and brought it to me. I was in need of money, and I used the money in the wallet, intending to put it back and give the wallet back to the neighbor, who lived in the apartment complex where we lived. I put the wallet under the mattress, after a year, I finally threw it away and put the whole thing out of my mind. We moved from there and bought a house at some distance across the city. Unknown to me, my neighbor that owned the wallet, moved 3 blocks away on the same street. Every time I passed her place or saw her at a store, I remembered her wallet. The Lord told me that I was to confess to her what I had done, but I felt I could not face her or have her to know what I had done, so I put it off and told the Lord, " I did not have the money to give back to her." The Lord supplied the money and I still refused to do what He told me to do. I could feel the Lord backing away from me because I would not obey. *13 I still felt that I could not face my neighbor. I finally got the courage to go to her house and I stood there trembling. She lived in a back apartment. The Lord said to me, "Why are you so afraid, "If I am for you who can be against you?" *14
13. Psalms 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart the Lord WILL NOT hear me.
14. Romans 8:32 What shall we say to these things. If God before us, who can be against us?
I still stood there trembling looking back at her apartment. I saw her open her door and come out to where I was. I was then able to ask her for forgiveness and to pay her. She did not want to take the money but I told her, I was living for God and that the Lord had told me to make it right. It was so wonderful to know that I had cleared up my record before God and man. *15 I had some very hard tests but the Lord gave victory, every time.
15. Acts 24:16 And herein do I exercise myself to have always a conscience void of offense toward God and men.
I Timothy 5:24 Some men sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment and some men they follow after.
Some Early Experiences of Growth As A Young Christian
And as I grew in the Lord and when I had opportunities, I prayed with my neighbors, I read scriptures to a quadriplegic man that was paralyzed from the neck down that lived across the street. I pointed out the scriptures during the preaching, in Church for a deaf Brother. And I was faithful to pray daily with my children and read the Bible or Bible stories morning and night, and sometimes they invited their friends over. I made Bible verse memory games for them, to help them learn the scriptures. And sometimes asked them after the preaching what they had heard to make sure they were listening to the preached word. I was concerned for souls. The Lord even helped me to get over my shyness to the place that I could pray out loud in service, lead the singing, and for many years I taught the young children Sunday school class. As I said, I was a shy person, to get me to teach the Sunday school class the Lord had to really deal with me. I could read and teach my children but before an entire class was different, especially since we would have to review the lesson before the entire congregation. My pastor had spoken to me about teaching the young Children. I tried to run from that responsibility. I would drop my children off to Sunday School and I would take off to the store around the corner. I just didn't think I could do It. When the Pastor asked me to teach the class I just thought it was him, I didn't know the Lord wanted it. The Lord spoke to me and said, "You are running just like Jonah."* I said, "Lord I didn't know that was your will for me." I consecrated to do it, and I told the Lord, "You will have to tell me what to say to those little children." And HE did. Many of my Sunday School students who are now grown, have come back to me, to say that they were blessed because of my teaching that class.
* Scriptural Reference
Book of Jonah
In the neighborhood where I have lived, I have ministered to many families, some my children can remember but I have forgotten. A couple that I do remember are:After this family moved away, one that had been a neighbor came to my house to tell me that her daughter was having a baby. She was in the hospital and had developed Perionitus. The doctor's had said they had done all they could for her. She said, "I came to you because I only know of you and one other person that I really believe are living for God, and I felt that you could get a prayer through." The Lord did hear prayer and spared her daughter and child's life.
Another neighbor that lived across the back alley from me told me one day that she was going to take her daughter to a Faith Healer. I said, "Oh, please don't do that, I am going to ask God to heal her." I prayed for the child but I didn't hear back from her mother. One day I went on their block to talk to another neighbor, and the neighbor to the woman whose child I prayed for kept watching me from the window. Finally she came out and spoke to me, and asked, If I was the woman that lived behind them (across the alley) I said, "Yes". She said,"I thought you were the one, the lady over there (pointing to the house of the woman and her child) told me that you prayed for her child, and she said, the Lord healed her." Praise the Lord.
Sometimes we have personality flaws that need to be healed. The same God that saves the soul, heals the body, and takes care of our financial needs, can take care of personality flaws too. We don't have to say, "That's just how I am, I can't change myself." God can fix those things too.
The Lord helped me to get over a terrible habit of laziness. I was so lazy as a child that my mother couldn't get me to do anything. Even, after I was married, I wouldn't wash dishes until every dish in the house was dirty, and then I only washed those I needed to eat from. I didn't let people come inside my house because I was ashamed. But the Lord through prayer, and humbling myself and admitting that I needed help, conquered this flaw and I have kept a clean house, since that time. In fact, even in my 80's I am still cleaning and helping my children and at the Church grounds, and wherever I am needed. Praise the Lord.
I had started earlier, talking about the awful constipation condition I had growing up. My mother would come from Bakersfield and when she saw me taking the mineral oil, (I took it for years but it did not help), she said, "The Lord can heal you." I didn't know about God being able to heal, so I just ignored her. She still insisted, "God can heal you and I will pray for you." I started forgetting to take the oil, something I had never done before. When I was unsaved, I had been examined by doctors and was told nothing would help me, except an operation. The examination itself was so extremely painful that I could not see how I could stand the operation, plus I knew a man who had had the operation and needed to have one after another, and wasn't any better. In the end, after so many operations, he had to have his rectum sewn up and an opening was made in his side in order for him to be able to eliminate his bowels. I had said to the doctors that "if they could guarantee this operation to work, I might submit to it". They set the date for me to come in, but I called back and told them I could not make it. I am so glad because the Lord healed me in answer to my mother's prayers. I was so thankful that I did not have to bear those awful pains, anymore. About eight years later the awful pains came back, and frightened me. I could not understand why the pains and condition had come back, when I knew God had healed me before. The Lord brought the scripture to my mind, 'He has not given us the spirit of fear, but of love and power and of a sound mind' *16. That did help my fears some, but I continued to suffer terribly. I started saying "I know the Lord healed me and I am not going to believe the devil or his symptoms; I am going to believe God no matter what." After a long fight, I won the victory. My mother had won the first victory for me, and now I had fought this battle alone, and by the Grace of God, I had won. Thank God.
At the congregation where I attended services, I had found out that these people in the Church of God *17 believed in God's power to heal their bodies *18. I thought I might be able to trust God for the healing of my body, but I was sure, I could not trust him with my little children. The Lord knew that the devil was going to challenge me, right there. My baby girl of 18 months seemed to be born with something wrong with her rectum and screamed and cried all the time In pain. I could not stand it, yet I wanted to trust God. My husband was gone most of the time and did not see her suffering. I prayed for God to heal her and nothing seemed to happen. My baby was anointed with oil as the scripture says, and prayed for, many times. I begged every Saint I spoke to, to pray for my baby and still nothing happened. I got discouraged and started charging God. I got to where I could not take any more and was hoping my unsaved husband would see her suffering. I knew what he would say, "take that child to the Children's Hospital." And that is just what he said. I was so glad, thinking, at last my baby could get some help. I was so desperate that I was like a drowning man clutching a straw. I went on the bus with my baby and said to myself, if any Saint says anything to me, I am going to say, "I have to obey my husband." *19
16. II Timothy 1:7 For God has not given up the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
17. Approximately 10 times in the Bible the Church is called "Church of God." Acts 20:28
18. James 5:14,15 Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of Faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up, and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven.
19. Ephesians 5:22 Wives submit yourselves unto your husbands, as unto the Lord.
I registered at the desk in the hospital at 8:00 AM, and I was told to take a seat and I would be called. I sat patiently for the nurse to call but by 4:00 PM, no one still had called me. So, I went up to the desk to see why no one had called me, and the receptionist asked, "How long have you been sitting there?" I said, since 8 AM this morning, (and it was 4:30 then) She said, "The doctors are getting ready to go home now". (She felt sorry for me, after I had waited so long), "I will try to get a doctor to help you," she said. The doctor asked what was wrong, and I tried to tell him but he seemed to be preoccupied and just wrote out a prescription for me to give to the baby. I was so disappointed, but the thought came to me, 'that God had covered up my name so they could not see it, to give me another chance to trust him. I tore up the prescription. I had turned to the arm of flesh, but now I was going to trust God completely. A part of her intestine was hanging out of her rectum; I called for the minister. He prayed for her, and when he said "Amen" it was gone. The Lord had healed the child right then, but I didn't know it because she still cried and had the same symptoms as before.
One Sunday in Los Angeles at another congregation of the Church of God, I was in the lounge and my baby was crying like she had always done. I was feeling bad against God again. I was sitting there with a frown on my face, feeling pity for myself, when a Sister said to me, "You are just sympathizing with that child." Her words cut me to my heart because I didn't understand what she was talking about, besides, I thought, she hasn't had any children, who is she to tell me I was sympathizing with my baby. But a voice said, 'when a Saint tells you something, don't just throw It away, (ignore it) pray about it. So I went home and prayed about it. I said, "Lord, she says I am just sympathizing with my baby." The Lord spoke to me and said, "That's what you are doing." I had to think back and search to see what I had been doing. I had been upset with God and having a "pity party." I had allowed my child to have tantrums because I felt sorry for her because of the suffering she had done. After the Lord, spoke to me, I took a stand against my thoughts and feelings, and actions, and I rebuked the devil out loud every time the baby appeared to be suffering, and in 3 days my baby was completely healed. Praise God for Victory.
Another incident where the Lord healed me happened after the congregation had a picnic for the young people; I was one of the chaperons. While I was there, I drank 2 soft drinks, which caused my kidneys to have a burning sensation. I drank plenty of water to try and flush out my kidneys, but I began to have chills and fever, and then I started hemorrhaging when I went to urinate; this continued for a month, day and night. At that time I was caring for my mother in law who was in the last stages of breast cancer, and now I was ill too. My husband was very upset about it. I was praying and examining my life to make sure that everything was clear with me, between God and man.
20. Lamentations 3:32,33,40 But though he cause grief, yet will he have compassion according to the multitude of his mercies. For he does not willingly afflict nor grieve the children of men. Let us search and try our ways, then turn again to the Lord.
21. Psalms 139:23 Search me, 0 God, and know my heart:try me, and know my thoughts.
I told the Lord I could not raise myself up out of that bed, only He could, and I needed to know what His will was concerning me, and if He was intending to raise me up. It didn't make any difference to me at all. * I just wanted to be in His will. As I searched my life the Lord made me to know that I had not been as diligent in reading His Word, and praying as I should have been. I asked Him to forgive me, and told Him that I would do better, by His grace.
I was in a lot of pain. One Saint told me if I would not eat any salt on my food it would relieve some of the pain. I followed her advice, and it did make the pain, more bearable, (before it felt like I was pouring salt on an open wound). The children and others told me I was as white as a sheet. When the blood tried to pump through my body, it was so loud in my ears that I thought everyone near me could hear it.
After I had been in bed about a month my husband said, he did not want me to just lay there and die and leave him with the children. (Our youngest was only 2 year old.) I told him not to worry, I had been living so that I would be ready to go when my time came, and that God would raise me up if it was not my time to go*. He said, he wanted to know what was wrong (physically) with me; and asked if I would be willing to go to the hospital to find out. I said I would be willing on one condition. I was not going to let them do one thing to me. I asked him, was he willing for me to go on that condition? He said, "Yes." So I went.
22. Romans 14:8 For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord:whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's.
The first thing the doctors asked for was a urine sample. It came back all blood. When the doctors saw the urine sample, they said, "woman why haven't you been to the hospital before now? He knew my husband had a medical plan that paid for all of our health care. I said, "Because I want to trust God." He said, "Well, why are you here now?" I said, "My husband wanted to find out what was wrong we me and I didn't mind knowing also."
They took X-rays of my kidneys, and found out that I had a tumor on my right kidney. The doctor went out and started telling my husband how serious my condition was. There were 3 doctors now. They asked my husband, what church I went to and he told them, the Church of God. They said to him, "here is the telephone call her minister to come, if he knew the condition she was in he would persuade her." My husband said, that will not do any good, he believes just as she does."
The 3 doctors came to talk to me again and said, "We believe In God too, but God cannot help you without our assistance." (One was an Episcopalian, another a Lutheran and I forgot what the other was) I said, Doctors, I have nothing against you, no doubt, because of your skill you have helped many people, but my faith takes in that God can take care of this body without your help." They left the room and it seemed as though I was getting nauseous and going to blackout (faint). I prayed "Lord please don't let me blackout here in this hospital or they will have me up on the operation table." God spoke to me and said, "Be Strong, yea, Be strong." *23 And I received strength and knew I was not going to pass out there. They would send the nurse in to ask questions to see if I was mentally ill. I called my husband and said I was ready to go home. The doctors came back in when I was ready to leave and told me again how serious my case was, they said I had lost too much blood and was going into a state of shock at any time and asked, "Would I at least allow them to give me a blood transfusion?" I said, "No thank you doctors, all I want to do is go home. I felt stronger going home than I did when I came to the hospital.
23. Daniel 10:19 0 man greatly beloved, fear not:peace be unto you, Be Strong yea (yes), be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened and said, Let my Lord speak; for thou (you) have strengthened me.
After we returned from the hospital, my husband put me to bed and pulled up a chair close by and just sat and stared at me. I stared back at him but I was praying and telling God, I had lost so much blood, even though the Saints had been serving me iron rich foods like beets, spinach, steak, liver and other foods. But I could not eat enough to build back all the blood that I had lost. I said to the Lord that I needed a blood transfusion, I said, "I am going to let you give me a blood transfusion right now by Faith." I was lying with my hand on my cheek and my unsaved husband's expression changed, like he was amazed. He said to me, "I just saw some pink come in to your fingernails." I said, "Honey I'm letting you in on a little secret, God just gave me a blood transfusion by faith."
My husband brought 3 of his drinking buddies by to see me, he brought 3 chairs into the bedroom for them to sit and look. One took out a cigarette and started smoking. I called my husband and told him, I could not stand the smoke in the bedroom and he took them out of the room. One came back in, and said "I don't know but one prayer, that's the "Lord's Prayer" do you mind if I say it?" I said, "No, I don't mind." Tears were flowing down his face. When he finished, I said, "God Bless You." He left the room. When they were leaving, one came and stood in the doorway and said, he would be calling back to see how I was doing. I replied, "You are going to call back and I am going to be healed." He said, "I hope so."
After I came home from the hospital I wanted to be anointed and prayed for, like the scripture says. I needed a minister to come and pray for me as the Pastor was on an evangelistic trip, back East. Another minister named, Bro. I. Stover was at Pacoima Campgrounds at that time, so some of the young people brought him to L. A. to encourage and pray for me.
While lying in bed praying, I had told God that I had done everything he told me to do. I asked, "Why am I not healed?" God said to me, "Because of your unbelief." *24 The devil tried to make me believe that it was not God saying that to me, but I felt it was the answer I had been seeking, the six weeks I had been ill. (The Lord, God will speak to us if we are willing to listen, and obey) The Lord helped me to see that I had been looking to see if I the hemorrhaging had stopped, and if I saw that it hadn't, I would conclude that I wasn't healed, which wasn't an act of faith. (I would also look because my husband and others would ask me, if the hemorrhaging had stopped.) The doctors had told me that the hemorrhaging would not stop until that kidney was removed. But after the Lord talked to me about my unbelief, I stopped looking to see if there was any change as it was hindering my faith. I kept my eyes on the Lord and his promises. Three days later, I accidentally looked and the bleeding had stopped. Glory to God.
A day later a Saint came over to fix my lunch and said, "I want you to get up out of that bed and come into the kitchen to eat your lunch." I said, "I can't walk in there." I wanted my lunch brought to my bedroom as usual. She said, "If you get your lunch today you are going to have to get up and come to the kitchen." I saw that she was serious. I was very weak after being down for 6 weeks of hemorrhaging day and night, but I got up slowly and went and ate lunch. I did not go back to bed after that time, only at night, because I was healed of that tumor. God's healing power has stood the test of time; that has been over 35 years ago. Years later, my husband wanted the family to all have a physical examination. I went to the doctor's office for the examination, and the doctor did not want to believe that my previous x-rays were truly mine. He said, "The woman who's X-rays these belong to, is dead, no one could live with kidneys in that condition." I said, "Doctor, those are my X-rays, I am that woman, but God healed me." Praise God forever more.
24. Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please HIM, for he that comes to God must believe mat he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.
25. James 2:17-24 Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone. Yes, a man may say. Thou (You) have faith and I have works:show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
As I said, earlier, I was caring for my sick mother-in-law, when I took sick. She was in the last stages of breast cancer. My poor husband had his wife and his mother both seriously ill. After my mother-in-law saw the Miracle of my healing, she wanted to be saved. The Pastor came and she gave her heart and life to God. If nothing else but to see one soul brought to the Lord through this "test of faith," *26,27 it was worth it. God did not see fit to heal her body, but He did save her soul, He made her ready for Heaven.
26. James 1:3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience.
27.1 Peter 1:7,9 That the trial of your faith being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory, at the appearing of Jesus Christ. Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of souls.
Another incident of God's healing power:I had been having trouble with my scalp itching, even before I was saved, and it grew worse and worse. My hair started falling out, from ear to ear in the back of my head. The itching was so intense that I would scratch until it bled, and it would still itch. After I was saved and living for God, I sought the Lord for my healing as this condition took all of my hair off and left it about an half inch short all over. I finally shaved my head bald as I could not stand the intense Itching. With my head shaved, I could wash and shampoo it, and not scratch so much; this went on for 12 years. I begged for prayer and was anointed many times. Then I would stop shaving it and it would grow back about a half an inch, and stop. It seemed as if my scalp was allergic to my hair. My husband said, "It was never going to be any better."
One day the thought came from the Lord to review my consecration *29 what I had put on the altar? (On the altar is an expression of what we put into God's control, we have made a covenant with God, of our life, to His will; to consecrate means to keep it sacred for God's use) And I said, "I gave myself to the Lord from the crown of my head to the sole of my feet, it all belonged to Him, and he had the right to do with His Own as he pleases." I was finally able to rest this case Into the Lord's hand and let Him have his way. *30 I had tried every way to make God heal me, and now I rested the case. Not long afterwards, I was reading the Holy Bible and read, Romans 8:32 which says, "He that spared not his own son but delivered him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things." I said, I freely accept healing for my scalp and my scalp stopped itching and my hair started growing. God healed my scalp condition. But when the hair returned, it came back white. I was ashamed of the white hair back them because I felt I was too young to have all my hair white. We had an elder sister in our congregation nearly a hundred years old; and I told the Lord, she was the only other person with white hair, in the congregation. The Lord said, "An hoary head is a crown of glory if it be found in the way of righteousness." Psalms 16:31. And He had given it to me.
My husband looked so young, and he was older than I was. I thought, people will say, look at that old woman married to that young man. I told the Lord that I could not bear that. The Lord changed me to where I looked young also. Strangers on the street would stop me and say, "You have such a young face to have all that white hair," they would also say, "Your hair is so beautiful." I got so many compliments that I had to pray to the Lord to not let me get pride in my heart. *31 Even my husband said he liked my hair that color. God can turn what seems to harm me into ever lasting joy. *32 The Bible says a woman's hair is her Glory and I had lost all of my glory, when it grew back God said he had given me a crown of Glory. Thank the Lord for victory.
31. Proverbs 6:16,17a These 6 things doth the Lord hate, yea 7 are an abomination until Him:A proud look.....
32. He can take what seems to harm us and turn it into everlasting Joy.
Test of Trust
My husband was drinking and throwing away our money and I was working to pay the bills. The Lord told me to give up my job. I said, "Me and these children will starve if I don't work." He insisted that I belonged to him and everything, including my life is on the altar for sacrifice or service; I obeyed and gave up my job. It made my husband really angry at me. He cursed at me and said, "You get your —back on a job." I said, "The Lord told me to give up that job." (This made him angrier than ever.) He wanted me to obey him but I chose to obey God and take the consequences. I was afraid to not obey God. *33
33. Acts 5:29b We ought to obey God rather than Men. (also, Acts 4:19)
After months of mistreatment, he said one day, "Don't you hear me talking to you?" I said, "Yes." He said, "Then why don't you answer me?" I said, "My only answer is that God told me to give up that job." (When the Lord decided that I had borne this trial long enough, he gave me words to say to my husband, to answer his question). He told me to say to him, "it would be a sin for me to go back to work and let you throw away God's money." When I said these simple words that the Holy Ghost had given me, he was speechless. He turned and left the house. When he came back, he said to me, "As long as I have my health and strength, you never have to work." A year later he told me, if he did not work and take care of us, he would be dead or in prison. I don't know how God got that message to him, but He did. Many times my unsaved husband would say, "I fear God that is why I am still here." He had seen God answer many prayers.
Because I no longer had a job of my own to depend on, it put me on my knees in prayer to God for help. *34-37 He proved to me that He is a prayer "hearing and answering" God and that nothing is too hard or impossible for him to do. I learned to trust and obey Him. Thank God!
34. Psalms 121:1,2 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from where comes my help. My help comes from the Lord which made heaven and earth.
35. Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of Grace that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in the time of need.
36. Psalms 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
37. Psalms 34:9 0 fear the Lord, you, his saints:for there is no want (lack) to them that fear Him.
I talked to the Lord about not having any more children. I had 3 children then and said I could not afford any more. He answered by letting me get pregnant and having 2 more children, close together, (about a year and some months apart), that brought the total to 5. At the time of the first of the two pregnancies, I did not have the money to go to the hospital. The Lord put it on a saved sister's mind to ask me, had I paid my hospital bill yet? *38 And I said, "No." She asked, "Why?" I replied that, "I am waiting on my husbands vacation check." The Sister said, "Honey don't you know that babies don't wait for vacation checks?" She came and took me to the hospital and paid the bill, then said, "When you get your vacation check you may pay me back." Sure enough the baby came before the vacation check. I thanked the Lord.
38. Isaiah 26:24 Before you call I will answer.
Eight years later I became pregnant with my 6th child, who came in a very bad time in the marriage. I did not have the money for prenatal care or the hospital. I kept seeking the Lord and putting the responsibility on Him. When I was 7 months I went to the hospital to see how much it would cost, (they put me in a high rating because my husband made good money, although we got very little of it.) They also told me that my baby was sitting up; the baby was breech. That was a term I had never heard, but they said not to worry they would take care of it.
Since I trust the Lord for everything, I did not want them to do anything to me. I prayed much that last 2 months and asked the congregation to pray for me. I could not understand why the Lord permitted this to happen. With the baby sitting up, I did not have contractions to know when I was in labor. In answer to prayer, the Lord again put it on a Minister's heart, her name was Sister Clark; she called and asked me who was taking me to the hospital and I said my husband. She said, "Call him at work and tell him to come and take you to the hospital." I said, "Sister Clark, I am not in labor, they will only send me back home." But I obeyed and went. *39 (I knew the lives of these sainted Sisters that were giving me instructions, I was not putting my trust in them, my trust was in God) When I arrived at the hospital they examined me and said it was time for the delivery. The delivery room was unavailable but they said as soon as the other patient came out, I would be going in. Two doctors asked me if would submit myself into their hands to do what they thought would be best. I said, "No," (because I already had this situation in God's hands.) He had allowed this baby to be in this position. I trusted Him. I was taken into the delivery room and the baby was born in the sitting up (breech) position without any labor pains; that was the easiest birth I ever had. Praise God for victory.
39. I Thessalonians 5:12 And we beseech (beg) you, brethren, to Know them that labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you;
My daughter's miraculous childbirth deliveries
Years later, my oldest daughter was expecting and was huge in size. When she went in to labor the doctor said the baby was stuck and that they were going to have to give her a Caesarean. She refused the Caesarean and they left her alone in the room to herself, saying that there was nothing else they could do for her. As soon as the doctor left she started praying and telling the Lord that she did not want them to give her a Caesarean. She immediately got sick on the stomach and started retching; this dropped the baby into the right position to be born. She told her husband to call the nurse that the baby was coming, but he kept telling her she had better be quiet or they were going to take her and give her the Caesarean. She called out, "Nurse, Nurse." The nurse thought that by leaving her alone, she had changed her mind, but instead she told the nurse that the baby was coming. The nurse checked her and was surprised to see that the baby was about to deliver itself; so she started running her into the delivery room, to get her there in time. The baby was 11 pounds. The doctors told her each baby she would have was going to get bigger and bigger; that was her fifth son.
In about a year and a half she was expecting again, and was bigger than ever. She had made up her mind after the last experience, that she was not going to the hospital. The Lord had helped her sister and her husband, and cousins in Florida to have their babies at home, and she knew the Lord could do it for her too. She told me, "I'm not going to the hospital so they can give me a Caesarean." I asked her what was she planning to do, we don't have any midwives in Los Angeles to deliver babies, that we know. She said that she and her husband would have to deliver it. I knew that I had a very weak stomach when it comes to helping with deliveries, so I knew I wouldn't be much physical help, but I would pray down help from God.
When she went into labor, she called my other daughter and I to come. When we arrived we saw that we were in trouble. I called the only young minister in our congregation at that time, to come and help us pray but he said he was not coming, "she isn't sick, only having a baby." His wife called to ask if we wanted her to come, and I said yes, anyone that can help us. She brought her sister in law; that made four sisters and my daughter's husband.
My daughter was in such distress and misery. She said her back felt like it was breaking, and she wanted us to rub it. I rubbed her back until my arms were tired, and then her husband took over until he was tired. Every time I would stop she would say, "Rub my back." I told the others, "let's have prayer for her back as we can not rub it anymore." Then she began to say, "I am so weak, and just let me die." I said, The Lord has plenty strength for you." She was in labor all night and I was asking the Lord to send the baby before the other children woke up.
We prayed together and would go to separate places to pray. After calling, her sister in Florida that had had her baby at home, and had delivered babies, we found out that the baby was breech. We were determined to put our faith with my daughter's faith, as she wanted to trust God instead of the doctors. When we found out that the baby was breech, I who usually cannot stomach such things, was given strength from the Lord to help deliver the baby. The Lord had mercy on us all and delivered the baby breech, weighing 12 pounds. My daughter said her insides hurt so I knelt and prayed and asked God to fix everything and to not let her have any more children; this was her 6th child, and in answer to prayer, her last one. Thank God for coming to our rescue and having mercy on us. In less than 3 weeks my daughter came out to church service.
Answers to prayer in the Workplace
Thirteen years later my husband was laid off of his job and had applied for unemployment. When jobs were offered him, he refused to take them because he said they were not paying enough money. He finally came to his last unemployment check and he gave it to me and said, "This is all." I went to the Lord in prayer and said there is no more money coming in. I asked, "What was I to do?" (Remember, He had told me over fifteen years ago to give up my job, and I did), He said, "Find a job." I had not worked in so long a time that I did not know where to look. I still had the phone number of a lady I used to work with, we were upholstery seamstresses. I called her and asked if she knew where I could find work. She gave me a man's phone number and I called him. He sent me to downtown L. A. and told me to ask for a certain man and tell him that he had sent me. I did that. The man was called away before he could interview me. He asked me how long it had been since I worked last. I said, 13 years. He replied, "You are rusty by now" and did not want to hire me. I was very disappointed because I needed a job right away.
When I arrived home I called the man who had sent me downtown and told him what had happened. He told me about another sewing Job. It was very far away where hardly any buses ran. I had to be downtown at 5 o'clock in the morning to catch the bus and it was dark. I did not want to leave home at 4 o'clock; so I waited until it was light outside and went on the bus. They hired me and I wondered how I was going to get there on time. I started asking different people if any of them could take me to the nearest bus stop so I wouldn't have to go downtown to catch the 5 o'clock bus. A lady told me she had to pass by my house going to the West side of town and she would pick me up and take me home; this was an answer to prayer and more than I expected. *40
40. Ephesians 3:20 Now unto HIM that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in US.
I went to work the next day at the Simmon's Mattress Co. I had never done that type of work before but I could operate the power machines. My job was to turn under the edges of the mattress panels. I would try to sew down the panel and would start to run off the edge. I would have to take it a loose and start over. I did this all day and still could not do It. I needed this job real bad. Every time I looked up the 2 bosses were looking my way to see how I was doing. I said, "Lord, they are going to fire me because I can not do this hemming." I was supposed to supply the lady in front of me with work. Her job was to put the labels on the panels. She would turn around and face me, fold her arms and prop her feet up on the empty belt and stare. If the Lord hadn't been with me, It would have made me very nervous, but I kept praying to God and saying, "Lord, help me to get the "know how" to do this work." *41 I had no sooner finished that prayer when he helped me to understand that it was the way I held my fingers on the panel. I stopped running off the panel. I would pile the panels so high on the belt until, I could not see the lady doing the labels. (The lady that had once propped up her feet,) She would turn around and say, "I am going to catch up with you," I said, "I know it," and I kept sending the work out.
Another problem surfaced. I am allergic to dust and lint; that place had both, you could see it flying in the air. Also they would blow the machines and the floors with air guns. I told the Lord that I could not breathe in this lint and dust, to please help me. He answered my prayer and stopped it from bothering me, completely. Some times the boss would stop and give me rush orders. I would do them and put the lot numbers on top of the orders and send it down the belt. The lot number would disappear on the belt and the boss would have to inquire, to where it was. I would have to stop sewing to look through all of those panels for it. The floor lady was hiding them under all those panels so I would have to stop and look for them, to slow me down, so the lady could catch up. *42 I learned to stand up after each order and fold the lot number in the last panel and they had to stop hiding them. The lady was not able to keep up and they moved her to another department.
They hired a pretty Mexican girl to take her place and they would let her stand and watch me, to learn how I was able to hem so fast. They said, "I was the fastest hemmer they had ever had, on the job. The Lord had done more than I could ask or think in helping me to know how to do the work.
One day the boss said he was putting me in a different department and letting the Mexican girl have my job. I did not want to move, so, when I went home I prayed and asked the Lord to not let them put me in another department. The Lord told me to go back to my regular job tomorrow as though they had not said anything to me, about moving. I did and they never said another word about moving me again. I stayed at my same job with the new girl. Thank the Lord! I worked there for about 3 years and bought myself a car. In the mean time my husband found a job and I did not want to stop working, so I told the Lord he would have to really help me if he wanted me, off that job. (To stop working)
One day I got up to go to the rest room and bent to get my purse and a pain hit me in my back like someone had stuck a knife there. I could not rise up, the pain was so bad. I called one of my co-workers and asked her to call my husband to come and get me as I was sick. I asked the Lord, "Is this you causing this illness, to get me off this job?" The boss said I had to go to the Company Doctor, because I had gotten sick on the job. When I got to the company doctor's office and he examined me, he said, I had fluid in my lungs and he was admitting me in the hospital right then. I said, "I have to go home." He told me to go home and do what I had to do and come back so they could admit me into the hospital. When I left his office I knew he would not ever see me again, as I trusted God for everything, even my body. The pain was so bad I could hardly breathe. Every time I tried to take a deep breath it felt like a knife stuck me in the back. Some times I screamed out, the pain was so severe. I could not raise myself up or move without some one helping me. It was awful. I was seeking the Lord to help me.
41. Psalms 34:17,19 The righteous cry, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles. Many are the afflictions of the righteous:but the Lord delivers him out of them all.
42. I Peter 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called:because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps.
After 2 weeks, I seemed to get better and the job was calling me to see when I was coming back to work. In about to more weeks, I was better even more, and decided to go back to work. I called my driver to come pick me up Monday. The condition came back worse after I made that call. My husband told me to call them and tell them I would not be coming back. They liked my work so well that they told me any time I needed a job they would hire me to work for them; but I knew God wanted me to stop working, that is why he allowed me to get sick with the Pleurisy.
Other Trials and Tribulations
My old car "played out" and I was praying to God to supply me with a car. Later, my husband said, he was buying me a car and had me sign some papers for the car; but the car did not materialize. One day a business man called me and said my husband was behind In the payments on the car. I told my husband what the man had said, and he didn't say a word, but I knew he had a new car and someone else was driving it. He felt bad after that about me not having a car when he had promised me one. So, he went out and bought another new car. I tried to discourage him as I knew he could not afford 2 new cars. The Lord told me "the (2nd) new car is not yours." So I did not get attached to it. One day I got up and the car had disappeared from the drive way. It had been repossessed. I kept praying for my car.
A lady called one day and said she wanted to take me out to dinner to talk about my husband. I said, "Fine." She never called back or set a date. Much later she called again and handed the phone to my husband without him knowing who she had called. He was surprised to find me on the other end of the line, and said, "I'm sorry you have to be bothered like this."
I said, "Jack, don't let that woman pull the wool over your eyes; she can not tell me anything about you. I know more about you than she will ever know." I felt that she was trying to blackmail him by threatening to call me. She was the one with the new car. I found out that he had been caught with some illegal stuff on him while he was in her car, and they both were taken to jail, and her car was taken from her; that is why he bought her another car. Later, he told me he was going to take the car from her as it was in our name, together. I told him if the person who had the car was in an accident in the car we could lose our home. After he took the car from her, he let another couple have it, as he could not make the payments. They kept it for 2 years. After the wife of the couple, lost her job they could not make the payments they were going to turn in, the car. My husband said, "I'm going to keep the car."
One day, someone was in the driveway blowing a horn. I went to look and my husband said, "Come look at your car." The Lord spoke to me and said, "That's your car that you have been praying for." Later, my husband took the car back and began to drive it, and left me without a car. The car started giving him a lot of trouble, so he gave it back to me; it wouldn't give me any trouble at all. God wanted him to get out of my car. It pays to trust God in all things and wait patiently on Him, He will bring it to pass. *43,44.
43. Psalms 27:14 Wait on the Lord:be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart:wait, I say, on the Lord.
44. Psalms 37:4,5 Delight thyself also in the Lord and he shall give you the desired of your heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in Him; and He shall bring it to pass.
About to Lose our Home
My husband was drinking and had come home drunk. Our car had been insured but the insurance had expired. I was praying to God to send in money to pay for the insurance and He had not answered yet. I said to my husband, "Honey don't leave, stay home" (not wanting him to drive under the influence) but he left anyway and in a short time, had an accident. The other car had insurance. My husband promised to pay to fix their Cadillac but after almost 2 years, he had not done anything and would not open any mail from them about the car.
I was in my bedroom looking out the window when a Sheriff's car stopped in from of the house and he got out of the car, and nailed a paper on our house and drove away. I went and tore off the paper and read it. It was a judgment from the court saying the property (our house) was to be auctioned off to the highest bidder in Southgate on a certain date. I did not believe the paper because we had our home; Homesteaded and I also did not know we had been taken to court by the other car owner's insurance company. (When we didn't appear in court they were able to get a judgment against us to auction off our house.) People started coming by to see the house and wanted to buy it from us, before the auction. I asked them how they knew about it; they said it was in the newspaper. I went and bought a copy, and sure enough, it was in the daily paper.
I went in earnest prayer *45 as I did not want to be put out in the street with no place to go for me and my children. In Pacoima California the Church of God Camp meeting was in progress; I put a request about losing our home in the 6 AM (Early Morning Prayer) meeting. I also asked a sister in Los Angeles to be in agreement of prayer with me.
45. James 5:16.....The Effectual Fervent Prayer of the Righteous man availeth much.
The sister called one day, and told me that 2 Jewish brothers had come into the Real Estate office where she worked and said they were looking for a family that was destitute for money. She said, "I know a family like that" and she gave them our address. She called me and said she was sending them over. When they came they asked, what was my problem? I told them about the accident and us not having insurance and our not showing up for Court, and the judgment against us; how our home was going to be auctioned off to the highest bidder; we had no credit or money to pay it. They said they were going to look into it and help us. These strangers, whom God had sent, took their money and paid off the debt and saved our home. Praise God from whom All Blessings Flow.
When my oldest son, Oliver Jr. (Jackie we called him after his dad's nickname Jack) was between 16 and 17, he said to me one day, "Jack has his fun and I am going to have mine. ( He was going to follow In his footsteps). Sad to say, he went far beyond his father. Sometimes the ungodly example of an unsaved father can affect our children's lives.
One day I sent my son and my oldest daughter to the store for me, and told my son to be sure and come back when his sister did. When she arrived home he was not with her, and I asked her "where is your brother?" She said, "He met some friends and would not come back with me." Later when he came home I got after him for not obeying me. About nine o'clock that night two police were at my door looking for my son. I asked them what they wanted to talk to him about (because I did not allow my children out at night without me.) They said they wanted to take my son and talk to him. I said again, "my son has not been out of the house this night." But they took him anyway and did not bring him back.
I found out later that a fight had broken out when my son hadn't come home, earlier that day, and one of the 4 boys hit a another boy with something. The boy was an only son, and his mother pressed charges against the boys. The judge sent all 4 of the boys away for 2 years. I did not have money to hire a lawyer and my brother-in-law who was a lawyer in a different field, told me that the Court wasn't going to do anything. I believed him. I asked the Lord, "Why did you let this happen since you see I have been trying to raise my children up for you?" The Lord later told me this boy had made a decision which way he wanted to live and God backed away and let him go, and when God moved back the devil came In. From that time on till the age of 35 when he was killed, he spent most of his days incarcerated, in and out, for minor things, for some he was guilty, and for some he was innocent. My son started thinking the world owed him a living and that he did not have to work. During one of his incarcerations, the Lord burdened my heart to pray, that my son was in trouble. I could not see how he could be in trouble when he was locked up. I told my children that were home, "let's pray." I prayed and the Holy Spirit impressed me to ask God to let his shadow *46 protect my son. After prayer the burden lifted. And the Lord let His shadow come between the boy and the danger.
46. Psalms 36:7 How excellent is thy loving-kindness, 0 God! Therefore the children of me put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.
Two weeks later my son wrote me thanking me for praying for him because the Lord had spared his life. There had been a gang war at the prison between the Mexicans and Blacks. My son had been on the prison yard running, to get away from one man, when another Mexican tripped him and the other plunged the knife in his back when he fell. The Doctors said, "A fraction more and he would have been dead. My son was wicked and God's presence could not be with him but God let his shadow come between the knife and his heart, and spared his life. God is so merciful and good.
Years before when my son was in trouble because he had broken into a woman's house to steal her TV, she saw him. He left the TV and got out of her house, but she reported it to the police. My son was picked up. But before me son went to Court, he came and asked me to Pray for him that he wouldn't have to go back to jail. He said, "If the Lord helps me to not go to jail I am going to give my heart to him." When he went to Court, the woman dropped the charges against him, even though she was advised not to. Without her testimony they had to let my son go. I reminded my son was he had promised the Lord, and at that time, he said, "I'm going to keep my promise, but not yet, I have things to do." *47 God had done his part toward my son, but my son failed to keep his part toward God.
47. Ecclesiastes 8:11 Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily the heart in man is fully set to do evil.
When he was 35 and living back at home with his father and I, the Lord was dealing with him about his soul and he would ask me questions about the Lord; my son was rejecting God again. The Lord would not let me to talk to Him any more about my son, all I could say was "Lord have mercy." The Lord told me he was going to be shot. It stayed on my mind and I told my daughters about it, and I finally told my son he had better stay off of the streets because he could get killed. He was upset and angry, and one day he told me "I don't want you to talk to me any more about God, I don't want you to pray for me, and I don't want you to mention the Bible any more, I want to live my life like I want." He was so angry when he said it that I said, "Alright!" After the conversation I had some business to take care of, so I left the house and when I returned home, he was gone, and I did not see him for 3 days. He came home on the 3rd evening with a friend and said he was moving out but was only going to take a few of his clothes. I knew he didn't have a job. I was concerned that he would get Into trouble. He said he was sorry for the way he had talked to me 3 days before. He said he always wanted to respect me. He left and that was the last time I saw him alive as someone shot him the next day at 3 PM, April 1, 1978. "All fools day." *48,49
At the time of the shooting, my son was walking and he asked to men to help him. He said, "He shot me" but he did not say who. One man went to call for an ambulance and the police; but my son went into eternity before help arrived, unprepared to meet God. At midnight 2 policemen came to bring me the news of his death. We do not know to this day who or why he was shot.
The Lord would not let me shed a tear, every time I would begin to feel sad or want to cry, He would bring the scripture to mind, "The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, Blessed be the name of the Lord" *so and the grief would go away. The Lord told me he had done everything he could do for my son and that he (my son) had answered my prayers for him many times but he refused to love and serve God. The Lord prepared me before hand so I would not be shocked. Praise His Holy and Precious name.
48. Be not deceived God is not Mocked for whatever a man sows that shall he also Reap.
49. Psalms 29:1 He that being often reproved hardens his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed and that without remedy. The wicked shall not live out half his days.
50. Job 1:21,22 Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither (there): the Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.
The Lord also prepared me by helping with some of the funeral arrangements. Before all this happened an older sister in the Lord came by and wanted me to go with her to Forest Lawn Mortuary in Hollywood to make all of her burial arrangements in advance. So I rode with her and while I was there the assistant told me of a bicentennial special, where one could get 4 plots for $800.00. I did not have the money but I was babysitting a little girl and could pay a small amount each month. I bought the plots and had no idea that I would use one so soon. God was supplying what I would need and He took care of every detail. For He that is mighty hath done to me, for me, and in me great things and Holy is His name." *51
51. Luke 1:49
Other Answers to Prayer
My younger son was a Red Cross driver delivering blood to the different hospitals. He asked me if I would pray for him to get out of driving because he had to go to far areas and he saw so many accidents while driving. The fellow he worked with when he was not driving was an infidel and talked to the people on the phone so bad that he was causing trouble to the Red Cross. I had been praying anyway asking the Lord to keep my unsaved son separated from that man. The man liked my son. I was afraid that my son would imbibe that man's spirit. God answered prayer and the man quit the job and my son was able to take his position and stop driving.
I took my mother-in-law to get eye glasses and had my 2 year old son with me. After I paid our fare on the bus, I did not realize that my purse was gone until I transferred to the second bus. When I arrived home I call the transit company to see if anyone had turned in a purse. No one had. I went to prayer and asked the dear Lord to please help me get my purse back with all of its contents and money. I really had no idea where I lost it. I prayed for 2 weeks about the purse. A neighbor in the next block who had once worshipped where I worshipped, called me and said a man was trying to locate me. She asked him what he wanted, and he said I have something that belongs to her and he left his telephone number.
When I called him he said, "Lady, I have been trying to locate you for 2 weeks and everyone in your phone book from A to Z said they did not know you." He said, "I have your purse." I asked where did he find it. He said he was in his truck on the corner of Vernon and Vermont (very busy streets in Los Angeles) when he saw the purse near a bus stop bench; that is where I had been sitting waiting for the bus when I forgot it. The man said, I could come and get my purse. The Lord returned my purse with everything in it, just as I had asked. Praise God for answering prayer.
Lost Dental Partial
I have 2 missing teeth in the back and I wear a partial. Many times I get tired of it being in my mouth and I remove it and put in my purse, pocket, dresser or wherever. One day, I needed it and could not find it. I had visited my daughter for a day and asked her to look around and see if I had left it at her house. She could not find it there and I could not find it at home. I started asking the Lord to help me find it as I did not want to pay to replace it. I said, one day, "Lord, you know where it is, will you please send an Angel to put it on my dresser In the morning? When I awoke I looked on the dresser expecting it to be there, but it was not. I said, Lord you didn't see fit to let and Angel put it there."
I asked my daughter again if she had found it, and she said, "No." I was still depending on the Lord. Two weeks later, I again called my daughter and asked her, if she had found it and she said, "yes". I asked her where she had found it? She said "On a big rock used to prop open the Chapel door in Pacoima. I wondered how it got there in Pacoima as I live in Los Angeles, about 30 minutes away. I began to inquire about it, and Brother Harold Reed, a brother in the congregation said he found it in the grass on the Church Property, and did not know whether it belonged to someone In the Senior Citizen Home (also on the property). The thought came to him to put it on the rock. I started thinking how did it get in the grass and remain there 2 weeks? Then I remembered going home after Prayer meeting, and taking my scarf out of my purse as I went to my car across the grass. My partial must have fallen out then. The Lord did not let them throw it away. I have been going to Pacoima Chapel for 30 years. At first my husband did not like me to travel alone, at night to prayer meeting, but I told him I was safer than he was because God was with me and I knew it. I am now 80 (will be 81 in January 2005) and am still driving the 30 minutes away, on one of the worst freeways in California. I go to Wednesday night prayer meetings, weekly, and on Sundays. I stay all day for Sunday night service.
God As my Lawyer
My unsaved husband got himself into trouble and was to receive time in jail. He wanted me to let him borrow money on our home so he could leave town. The children and I were depending on his income from week to week. I told him I could not sign and put us in debt for what I could not pay back. I told him I would pray about the situation and God would help us, some way.
I told the Lord that I had no money to retain a Lawyer and I needed one, and was going to let HIM be my Lawyer. I said, "Lord, talk to that Judge as I have no way of making it without my husband's income. Please Lord, talk to the Judge."
My husband was stopped by the police for some reason and taken to jail. When he had to appear before the Judge, he later said, his legs were trembling because he was so afraid. The Judge talked to him so kind, just like he was his father and said, "I know you know better, but I am going to give you 10 days and said, "No doubt you have a family depending on your salary, I am going to let you serve your time on the weekends." For 3 weekends he would let my husband turn himself into the jail and stay from Friday to Monday, so he could go to work, and the Judge dropped one day from the time. Praise the Lord!
These are just some of the Highlights of my life and answers to prayer. There have been many other things that God has done for me and others in answer to prayer. Many can witness to these testimonies that I have shared. My Children that are saved have also by my example had God do many mighty miracles in their lives, in answer to prayer. My God is not a respect of person, what he has done for me and mine, he will do for you. God will keep his part if we will keep our part. It is my desire to continue to bear fruit in old age. As the scripture says, it is my prayer that God inspire Faith in you as you read this written testimony and the Scriptures that He inspired.
GOD BLESS YOU ALL