Blog Post #7: Leaper

By Marylou Wilkinson

May 17, 2016

Hi, my name is Marylou Wilkinson and I'm a Leaper.  I want you to know that I am a Leaper and many of you are Leaper’s too.  Some of you may not want to admit that you have a leaping problem…although, if you are a leaper, that is not a problem or a sickness unless you leap say, before you seek God’s will, or seek counsel from seasoned Christian friends, or before you even pray.

By now you’re probably wondering…what is this woman talking about?

Here is Encarta’s definition of “Leaper”

To jump forcefully long or high, to move as if by jumping, abruptly switch to something, to go up substantially…increase suddenly and sizably, it can be a forceful jump that goes a good distance and it is often made in the dark.  Often a leaper does the movement extremely rapidly and often it is done in the dark.

This is a brief synopsis of my walk with Jesus since I was saved 25 years ago.  The significant markers of my life’s journey with Jesus have always been monumental because of my leaps of faith.

~I was born again in 1992 and filled with the Spirit of God.  Christ delivered me from several addictions.  I leaped to the altar and into the arms of my Heavenly Father on that precious fall evening on the last day of a Revival at Linwood Brethren Church in Maryland.

~To get to Ohio from Maryland when Bruce, my husband was first led into ministry-or I should say “we” were led into ministry, took a “leap of faith” and that was back in 1997.

~Then birthing the ministry we now both serve in called The Pump House Ministries took a serious “leap of faith”.  Not knowing fully where we were going and what we were doing exactly was daunting.

~In 2005, I enrolled in ATS to receive my Master of Divinity to become a pastor.  Believe you me…that took a “leap of faith”.

~Going through the ordination process in the Brethren church to be an ordained minister…took a big “leap of faith” as well.

 

Leaps are important to understand and to recall because God calls us over and over again to do it for the Kingdom of God.  We need to learn to trust & obey God.

          WHO READING THIS REMEMBERS A TIME THEY TOOK A LEAP FOR THE LORD?

WHO READING THIS IS LEARY OF THE LEAP?

 

Psalm 18:28-34

King James Version (KJV)

 28For thou wilt light my candle: the LORD my God will enlighten my darkness.

 29For by thee I have run through a troop; and by my God have I leaped over a wall.

 30As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the LORD is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him.

In this Psalm, Psalm 18, which was written by King David, David speaks to the Lord about his faithfulness to him and how He delivered Him from the hands of the enemy. Despite the odds, interference, and obstacles…the Lord was faithful to fulfill that which he had called David to do.  The enemy was stronger than David and ruthless, David said with humility…BUT the Lord saw Him through and together they were victorious.  David did not steer left or right from the path that God had chosen for him at this time…he stayed the course…after the battle was over…God lifted up David and placed him on higher ground where he ruled with authority from on High.  Yet, most importantly, because he trusted and obeyed God…we can read in the last verse, verse 50 that David not only was delivered but mercy was shown to him and all his anointed and his descendants forevermore will reap the blessings.

Are you a Leaper too like King David?  Leaping can be a bit frightening.  I want to encourage you to trust and obey the Lord.  Recall your past leaps.  Was the Lord with you through them?  Of course He was.  He never leaves us nor forsakes us and he is Omnipresent…He is with us always, everywhere, all the time!

I am so thankful to be where I am today with my husband and family.  We have run through the troops like David, on many occasions and it never ends BUT we have heard God’s calling and we have leaped into what we believe to be God’s will for our life at this present time.  We sought the Lord when we believed we were called.  We sought counsel from those who knew us for wisdom and we received affirmation and we prayed a lot.  Clearly, God had a plan and we had to leap into the plan and put our complete trust in Him. 

You’ve all heard the story about Jonah, right?  Jonah tried to run away from God.  He tried to avoid the big leap.  Quite frankly, spending time in the belly of a fish does not sound appealing to me so I think I’ll stay the course.  It may mess up my hair. 

When the Lord called us to serve those in need in Ashland we began our journey here together.  When He told us He was going to give us the Pump House Building there were many “Nay Sayers”.  Many of them were people we knew and who knew us intimately. They said things like… “You can’t do that”  “that’s impossible”  “It would take a miracle for that to happen”  “You don’t have the money to do that”!  Well, all of that may have been true but God...God did it despite ourselves.

What we chose to do was…believe God.  He never lies and if we can’t put our trust in Him who can we trust.  Don’t get me wrong…We did struggle with the calling in our flesh for awhile…there are always the “what ifs” that run through your brain.  “What if” God doesn’t do it? What if we are wrong and we didn’t hear from the Lord?  What if someone gets in the way of God’s will for our lives…what if that someone is us? If we fail…we’ll look like fools right?  These were many of the “what ifs” that plagued us.

Well…The decision was made…we decided that we’d rather be a fool for Jesus any day then be a fool who lives selfishly and not sacrificially in this world.  The “fool” in and of this world does nothing to glorify Jesus.  A fool for Jesus’ whole life is a surrendered testimony that will glorify Christ whether what we do in His name works or doesn’t.  We knew we just had to focus on our “Audience of One” and not live to please those that are in and of this world.  They will never be as important to us as our Jesus.  We had to leap.

Once you have leaped once before, and lived through it…you’ll leap again.  As a matter of fact…you are going to look for opportunities to leap.  When you leap and see the benefits of your sacrifice through Christ Jesus…the rewards are always glorious. 

Each leap we learn something good… and we are transformed more and more into the image of Christ.  With each leap…someone’s life is impacted for the glory of God it may be our own or it may be someone else or both.  Our witness matters in this world.  How we live by our faith truly matters!  It truly does!

At this present time…The Pump House Ministries where we serve is leaping for Jesus continually. We walk through the darkness of this world serving others with Jesus as our light.  We work with homeless men in our shelter and destitute families daily and believe me…it is not always easy.  Many of those we serve we work with on a daily basis.  We serve, not just those in poverty but others too that are struggling just to get by.  Daily, the Pump House Ministries Team is caring for and loving on many of these folks because they need help.  This week, I am meeting with a woman whose life is a wreck and she needs spiritual guidance and wisdom.  We guide many of those we encounter toward other local agencies that can help them, encourage and equip them, share our faith, and give them hope.

Since I graduated from seminary the Lord has given me a vision for a women’s ministry.  It will be called Morning Joy Women’s Transitional Community of Ashland.  The plan is to be a transitional home for women who want a new beginning where they can build a stronger foundation with Christ using holistic ministry measures.

The mission is…to believe in and empower women who are ready to be actively involved in discovering more about God, themselves, and their future, so that they may be positioned and equipped for a transformed life that is filled with endless possibilities.

I believe God has a plan to love and care for His daughters in this intimate setting so that they may be nurtured, empowered, and given hope and opportunities.  Isn’t that just like our Jesus to want His people to love the poor and down trodden?  This is what I believe with all my heart that I am called to do and I’m passionate about it and looking forward to it's fulfillment!

The Pump House Ministries as a whole is taking a serious leap in the redevelopment of our property that has been destroyed by arsonists and vandalized by hundreds of trespassers over the years.  We are believing in our Lord and his continued will for our ministry.  We are leaping friends because we believe that despite ourselves, accomplishments and failures, God still wants to use us here in Ashland for His Kingdom.  His plans are always much bigger than we can fathom.  Right now, we can see clearly that this plan is a blessing not just to our ministry but to the City of Ashland, the Downtown Development, and beyond.

Yes, my name is Marylou Wilkinson and I am a Leaper.  How about you?  Are you a Leaper too? 

Friends…Jesus loves you and if you are His…He wants to use you. He always wants to use you because you are the body of Christ.   You are His hands and feet.  May I encourage all of you to go where you are sent, do what you are called to do, and trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not upon your own understanding but in all your ways…acknowledge Him and he will direct your path.  Proverbs 3:5-6

 

Fear not and Leap on into the arms of Jesus!

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