Every family needs a conscience.
I have a child who is the Jiminy Cricket in our family. His youngest sister has affectionately called him “the old soul.”
With extra time on his hands while waiting for the new college semester to start, he has filled his time with taking old cassette tapes (one of his loves) and transferring these to CD’s. He is fascinated with listening to old recordings of people like August Luelf and The Edwards Trio from over fifty years ago.
He will come into the house recounting sermons he is devouring from Brother Gary Filsinger and Brother Tommy Wade from thirty years ago. These godly men are a part of his daily life. They have influenced his thinking.
He has come across a historical issue from The Flaming Sword, telling of Ben Young, a founder of the old Fire Baptized group. He read us this issue, inspiring us with the fervor, fire, and godliness! (Personally, this has inspired me to pray that God would send me a digital artist to start making holiness stories in graphic novel form for pre-adolescents who are currently feasting on something else.)
This story includes places across the border in Oklahoma where I visit regularly. They sound familiar, but they are a world away where Ben Young was visiting and praying with the bandits and outlaws that roamed this area one hundred years ago. At one point, Ben Young was in a wagon when they come upon another wagon. He was full of God…his group was excited to try to see if they could win for Jesus the people in the wagon that they are passing.
My conscience is pricked because I realize that if I had been in the wagon with these preachers, I probably would not have been thinking about the souls of the outlaws. I might have been oblivious as I looked up from my phone!
Another one of the old-time preachers who helped shape the Fire Baptized (and recently also shaped my son) was Nellie Johnson. He has started asking all the rest of us at random times, “Would Nellie Johnson do that?” We will be at the table in a conversation that my son does not think is profitable, and he will interject, “Would Nellie Johnson say that?”
It’s obvious that he has developed a taste for what Nellie Johnson and the others had!
Honestly, we aren’t coming up to the measuring tape that my son’s been whipping out for us.
Finally, one of his sisters exclaimed, “I don’t know if Nellie Johnson would do this! I don’t know what Nellie Johnson would do today.”
She’s right. I don’t know what Nellie Johnson would do if she were alive in 2024. She was not handed 2024 like we are.
And yet, the day and age that she was handed had its own problems, and she overcame. She overcame with holiness. A careful walk. A detachment from everything that would taint her around her in the world.
That was the instruction given to every church in Revelations…overcome, overcome, overcome, overcome, overcome, overcome, overcome. All seven churches had the same command!
This is my goal.
I need Jesus to baby step me in today’s culture on how to be untainted, how to have a single eye, how to walk in holiness, how to have careful living…how to make sure that this world is not my home!