Handicapped for LIFE!
On my first day of class the professor said, “Tell me about that limp, Jacob!”
I could have reacted, thinking, “Hey! There’s more to me than just this limp!” I could have felt ashamed or humiliated. The old me could have retorted in a sarcastic wisecrack.
But learning not to be overly sensitive about my obvious handicap and since my professor had not been schooled in the “psychology of correctness,” I said without hesitation, “It is part of my new personal ‘branding.’ What do ya think?”
Stammering somewhat, a little stunned, he began to apologize offering the typical condescending condolences that healthy people are wont to do.
I continued, “You see, if people notice this limp, it gives me an opportunity to tell my story. This must be your lucky day! Not everyone gets to limp like this. Some folks are boringly ‘normal!’ (The old me is still dying out.)
“Over 20 years ago I was running from my dysfunctional family situation. Completely worn out, I made a decision (with a bit of divine intervention) to go home. That was difficult because of all the old baggage in my past. I had lied and stolen from my own kinfolk, especially my brother.
“One night while trying to sleep, I ended up wrestling all night with The Man! During that dramatic encounter I was damaged in my hip, but I would not let Him go until my inner turmoil was settled! You could say I have a strong will.
“That night I came face to face with God and myself. My whole frame of reference changed.
I became aware of His agenda and my part in it. He affirmed me and imparted to me a confidence. An assurance settled upon me for life. My name changed from ‘Jacob the Liar’ to ‘Israel, Prince with God.’
“That whole encounter was transactional. God was dealing with me about my view of the past and the future. I guess you could say I am genetically predisposed to wrestle. Even my father and grandfather had similar dealings with God.
“From that night until now I have begun to make decisions based on His purposes, not mine. I learned that taking responsibility is obviously, primarily a response. All my future decisions will be based upon God’s larger-than-life perspective! You see, I did not choose Him; He chose me. I am not being arrogant, but God is the One Who does the picking, not me. I just fought my way to saying yes to His irresistible grace!
“Some may continue to think, ‘After what he has done, the lying, deceiving and stealing, the harm he has caused, he deserves nothing!’ Ironically, I agree with them! But God…
“So this limp you noticed serves a higher purpose. It is a constant reminder of that night and more, of His bigger assignment for my life. You get all this?”
For the original story see Genesis 32:22-32.
Testimony of Alana Barnes
At age 39, Alana Barnes has finally gotten it right! She says, I was in the grip of a terrible heroin and ice addiction. Prior to that, for 13 years, she was an opiate/speed addict. These addictions made her a slave to sexual and mental abuse.
While having an awareness of God, she continued to cycle downward until, I found myself in a horrific life/death situation in Texas. Frankly, I was begging to die, but God.
God is faithful, even when we are rebellious. Because I had come to know Him as my Savior, His hand of protection kept me even though I did not want to live.
I came to the Home of Grace for Women in June. Riding down “Hallelujah Lane” I felt the peace of God settle on me. I submitted myself to God, resisted Satan and now I am redeemed!
I have entered the Graduate Program here. I am sober and saved today because of Mrs. Littleton’s faithfulness and her obedience to the call of God. Because of the ministry of God’s Word through Brother & Sister Browning I was able to find my identity that the Devil tried to steal from me. I am thankful! I can now live happy, joyous and free in Christ Jesus!