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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Pocket Full of Quarters Trek 2014: The Calling

By Cheryle M. Touchton
The Pocket Full of Quarters Lady

It always starts the same way. “God, do you really want me to go?” It is actually a two-part question – do you want me to go again and do you want me to go now? I get an answer from God and then I argue – with God and Bob. I say things like, “The signs seem like I shouldn’t go” or “maybe God is trying to tell me to delay.” My personal favorite is, “Maybe God is trying to tell me it is time to stop traveling.”

Hubby Bob won’t argue about this. Supporting this call to ministry is a call on his life and he takes it seriously. His life scripture is James 1:5-6. His shortened version is, “Ask God and don’t blink.” My paraphrase is ask to God for wisdom and act or you will get seasick. Once either of us hears from God, Bob forges ahead with the preparations…without blinking. When I want to slow it down and examine things, he sees that as blinking – which of course I argue with because I don’t want to admit that I blink so much. The reason Bob works so hard preparing for these trips and at ministry events is because He has heard the call, said yes to God, and refuses to blink until He hears differently.

I wish I could say it is that black and white for me but it isn’t yet. It is easy to talk myself out of going on these journeys across America – especially if I’m walking by sight and not by faith. I don’t know anyone else (with the possible exception of Jesus and the apostles) who actually travels the country proclaiming what God says about salvation so I can scare myself into thinking it is a little nuts. I doubt myself and wonder if I heard God wrong. If I tried to describe how hard getting ready for these trips was, you would think I was exaggerating so I dread the preparation. I love my husband and miss him when we are apart. These trips are physically and financially challenging and even potentially dangerous so I can get almost anyone who loves me to try to talk me out of going. Gas prices are high. I could evangelize anywhere – why not just stay home and evangelize? Oh…and let’s not forget the business person side of me – there are more cost effective ways to evangelize. If I look at it by sight, traveling around simply makes no sense.

Here is the thing. The Bible promises that I can have wisdom from God – that I can have knowledge of God’s will for me and the power to carry it out. I don’t have to depend on signs from God, all I have to do is ask, listen, and act. In fact, trying to read the “signs” from God is a little like trying to read tealeaves and is potentially just as dangerous because when God calls us to do something, the enemy usually puts roadblocks in front of us. Those roadblocks can look alarmingly likes signs from God and we could end of doing the enemy's will instead of God's.

Here is what God said to me first in 2002, in each year afterward, and again in 2014. I’m called to proclaim what the word of God says about salvation and to help other Christians learn to do the same thing. Specifically, I’m called to do this in America – in all 50 states. It is my call to patriotism because I know that Jesus is the only hope for America. Even more specifically, I’m called to demonstrate living by faith by allowing God to lead me where in America He decides to send me, do what He says, and then testify to what I see God doing. Tools like campers, cars, tents, blogs, Facebook, computers, iPhones, specific events, and even dogs may change, but the call is the same – help Americans hear and proclaim what God says about salvation.

So what does God say about salvation? All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God. The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life. All who call on the name of the Lord will be saved. The Greek word for “saved” is Soza and it means four things; 1) saved for eternity, 2) healed, 3) preserved, and 4) delivered. The big events God calls this ministry to do are thrilling – they are the fruits of what you and I faithfully do together. After all, the Bible says that the harvest is ripe and we are blessed to be called to reap. At events, we work fast and do one thing – we lead lost people into an eternal relationship with Jesus.

These events are so amazing that this year, I asked God why I couldn’t do less wandering and focus on more events. Events are shorter and less time away from Bob, sometimes Bob gets to go, more people get “saved,” and events cost less than wandering. It made sense to me. God promises understanding and while I’m sure He sighed heavily, He blessed me with a deeper understanding of His purpose for these trips. Yes, on these trips, people will still get saved for eternity but there is so much more to salvation. On these trips, I can slow down, live by faith and go where God sends me, dialogue with Christians and non-Christians, spend hours or even days with them, deal with the rest of what it means to be saved – healed, preserved, and delivered and take the time to share stories with you. Christians who stop at what we jokingly call “fire insurance” because it keeps them out of hell are cheating themselves out of the rest of their salvation. When God instructs this ministry to proclaim what He says about salvation, He wants us to proclaim the complete definition. Like Paul Harvey was so famous for saying, these trips are “the rest of the story.”

Thank you to everyone who helped me this week gain a deeper understanding. Thank you Bob for continuing to prepare for this trip while I was busy blinking. Thank you to everyone who cares enough about people and your country to be a part of this amazing call from God. Let’s go out and together, proclaim all that God says about salvation.

To those of you who get just as excited about how many people get saved for eternity at special events, don't be disappointed if you don't see the numbers as high when I walk by faith across America. Remember the rest of the story, read the blogs, look at your life and make sure you are experiencing all that is available to you through your salvation, and help Christians around you do the same thing.

Email Cheryle

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