Window (3) THE SCAR

My first year in the Iowa schools was the 3rd grade.

School was much harder in Iowa than Wisconsin. After I had the mastoid operation, Mom and Dad decided that I wasn't well enough to go to school anymore that year. So the next year I was in second grade again. In Iowa, I was having trouble with my school work. One day I met the principal, Mrs. Kober, coming out of our apartment, and found out I would have to go back into the second grade for the third year in a row. This is all the trouble I had in school. In 1948, I graduated from high school.

While in grade school I had a lot of stomach trouble and raging temperatures. For days at a time I couldn't keep anything on my stomach. Mother always came when I called her, whether it was day or night. The first thing I would hear my father ask when he came in the back door was, "How is Arlene?" Finally, I would get over it and go back to school again.

The second fall we were in Iowa Dad was able to rent a house and the family was all together again. Dick had a tutor who came to the house and taught him 7th grade. His strong determination was an example to all who knew him. With God's help, nothing was going to stop him from being all he could be. As I reached the age of puberty, my mother explained to me the changes that would take place in my body. As the months went by I noticed the changes in my girlfriends, but nothing happened to me. One day I realized that I WAS A FREAK "OH, MY GOD, WHY ME? Couldn't it have been someone else. OH, MY GOD, WHY ME?" was the cry of my heart at that time. No one, but God, could ever understand the humiliation, the frustration, the hearts break I went through. My parents took me to different doctors, but they couldn't find anything wrong with me. When I went to the University of Iowa Hospital they couldn't do anything either. One doctor gave me shots, but they did nothing. Being very short I looked like an eight year old child. Children would stop me on the street and ask me how old I was. Because I was a Christian, I didn't want to lie, so I would tell them and they would have a good laugh. My family encouraged me and never let me know if they felt embarrassed because of my condition. God was good to me to give me such a loving and understanding family. They are all so precious to me.

Dick skipped 8th grade and started back to school in the 9th. He'd wrap his sack lunch around one crutch handle and put his books under his other arm and go off to school over the ice and snow. He graduated from high school on the honor roll. His courage and strength did a lot to help me meet my problem. When we didn't have a car, Glen and Dick would walk two miles one way to prayer meeting. Yes, Dick on his crutches! He couldn't walk without them. They really set the pace for me, and I had a lot to live up to.

Through it all God was so faithful to me. He made life worth living. In my humiliation, He lifted me up. When my heart was broken, He dried my tears. He walked by my side through every day. He was my constant comforter and kept me through those difficult days. He did not fail me and He will never fail you. You may never be called to go through what I have, but whatever your problem is, He is there to help you, if you will let Him. One of our big problems is, we want to understand everything. We want to add two and two and get four. In God's kingdom, that is not always possible. Some things we will never understand until Jesus explains it to us in heaven.

Solomon wrote in Proverbs 3:5, "Trust in the Lord with all shine heart; and lean not unto shine own understanding." My brother Dick would get abscesses on his leg and Mom would put hot packs on the affected area. She could not wring them out as hot as he could take it. So she took toweling and sewed hems in it and ran sticks through them, dipped this under the packs and twisted the sticks to get the hot water out. One day she told him she didn't understand why he had to suffer so. His answer was, "Well, Mom, I may have not been a good boy if this hadn't happened." We must learn to turn over to God everything that comes into our lives, and let Him work through us, that we might glorify Him.

The most beautiful rainbow I ever saw, was in North Dakota, but the sky was blacker than I any sky I think I'd ever seen. It is in these dark, and wearisome days, we can see the Brightness of His Glory. It is then He takes us into His loving arms and shows us how much He loves us. Many times we pray and ask God to use us for His glory, but then when we end up at the hospital, or something else serious happens to us, we wonder why. If we have surrendered our all to Him, we must just relax and realize, that anything God calls us to go through, He has confidence in us that we can make it with His grace and power. He gave us this promise in 1 Corinthians 10:13; "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way of escape, that ye may be able to bear it" God's grace is sufficient for our every need. It is when we start relying on our own strength that we fall on our faces. Paul found the answer when he said in Philippians 4:13, "I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me." There have been times in my life, as I faced the fact I was a freak, (note: At this point in Arlene's life she felt she was a freak because of the fact she did not develop like other girls) that only His strength enabled me to go on. Everything in life can become a stumbling block or a stepping stone. God can enable us to grow and to know Him better as we rely on Him. If we are not careful we can fall over our problems rather than making them stepping stones. Here is a poem God gave me about this.




STUMBLING BLOCK OR STEPPING STONE



Is this a stumbling block or a stepping stone?

Only you can decide.

You don't need to stumble or fall,

With Jesus at your side.



They come in many different forms.

Heartaches, troubles. and loss.

But Jesus showed His love for you.

When He died upon the Cross.



God's word tells us when we are tried,

More than we can bear,

He'll provide a way to escape,

There's a crown for us to wear.



No one could ever make it alone,

On our strength alone we'll fall

But our God is there to help us

If on His name we'll call.



There is no shortage of His power.

He's Master and Ruler of all.

He has plenty of grace for you,

He's listening for your call.



It doesn't matter how big the stone,

Or how small that it may be.

We're safe if we lean upon,

The Man of Galilee.



So Friend, when you've been tried,

Don't feel you're all alone.

Don't let it be a stumbling block,

But make it a STEEPING STONE.



by Arlene R Wright




One of the things in my father's life that Satan would have loved to trip him up with, was the fact he didn't have much education. Shortly after Dad was saved and sanctified, God called him to preach. By this time he had a family to care for with no way opening for him to enter the full time ministry. He preached whenever he had a chance--always preaching under God's anointing. In the churches my husband and I have pastored, my Dad held four revivals for us and God truly used him.

When we stop and remember what our Lord went through, how can we complain? Yes, I have suffered, and perhaps you have suffered too, but have you stopped to think that He went through something that we will never have to go through? He was alone on that cross, because of our sin. God the Father could not look at Him, because of my sin. You and I will never have to be without His presence and power, as long as we keep our heart right with Him. We don't know suffering like He knew it

In 1975, my husband was a student at the University of Minnesota and I worked at the redemption center for General Mills. This was in downtown Minneapolis. It was where they redeemed the coupons that are on the General Mills products. At this particular time, I was a typist and also worked in their lunch room. It was the beginning of summer session at the University. When I came home from work on this particular day, Howard had gotten his new books for the term. One of the books had some objectionable material in it. Rather than encouraging him to wait until he got into the class, and see what it was like, I suggested we go back into the pastorate. So we made an appointment with our District Superintendent, Dr. Norman Bloom. He encouraged us to go ahead with the college work, since we had been so sure that was what God wanted us to do when we came there the previous fall. When Howard got into that class, they didn't even cover the material in the text book. Later I realized how much I had failed my Lord and my husband. A few days later as I was cleaning one of the dining hall tables, I was singing a song about walking with God's hand in mine. As I did, I heard God say, "If you're walking with My hand in yours, you'll feel My scar." After I went home I wrote this poem, and I hope I will never forget the lesson I learned that day. The scar I might wear because of my physical problem, could never be compared to the scar He will wear through out the endless ages of eternity for me.




THE SCAR



It's wonderful to walk with God,

Along the Christian way;

To know He is my Master,

And my Guide from day to day.



When all is bright around me,

And the way ahead seems clear,

I can feel His very presence,

For He is so very near.



But then there are other days,

When the road is rough and steep.

And then it leads me downward

To a valley very deep.



I'm tempted to complain a lot

And ask why it must be,

That I must take a harder road,

When an easier one I see.



But Jesus comes and comforts me,

And tells me not to fear.

He's traveled down this very road,

And victory is near.

Sometimes it is affliction,

Or headaches or troubles sore;

I'm tempted to complain,

And wonder what's in store.



It's then I feel the pressure,

Of His precious hand on mine.

Oh, what joy and peace,

With His presence so sublime.



"But what is that?" I asked, "Dear Lord?

I'm not sure I understand,

Oh, it is the nail scar--

In the center of Your hand."



Oh, my precious Savior,

How dare I complain

When you paid so great a price,

My lost soul to reclaim.



You see He walked a rugged road

Where He died for all my sin,

That I might really know Him,

And have such peace within.



I want to keep my hand in His,

Yes, each and every hour!

He'll give me grace enough I know,

And keep me by His power.



My Prayer: Dear Lord, If I do complain

That Heaven seems so far

Please put a little pressure on,

And remind me of THE SCAR.



by Arlene R Wright


Contents Window 2 Window 4 The Winds of the Spirit The Voice of the Nazarene