Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Touched By the Divine - Althea Bailey, Part I

Every now and again, you are blessed to a meet a person whose fiery new-found faith reignites your own desire to walk closely with God.   For me, that person is Althea Bailey.

Althea is a delightful young woman with a vibrant personality that will warm your heart within the first few moments of speaking with her.  At only 30 years old, she's had a successful career as a neurosurgical nurse, and will begin studies in Nurse Anesthesia this coming August.

Around this time last year, Althea felt like she was on top of the world.  She had a great man in her life, her finances were in order, her plans to apply to graduate school were coming along, and all was well with her family and friends.  One-by-one,  the plans she had set were coming to fruition, and she felt that her life was complete.

That is, with the exception of one thing.  She didn't have a relationship with God.

"Even though I knew God growing up, I didn't go to church regularly, so I didn't know what it was like to have intimacy with the Spirit", she said. 

She had tried seeking God in college, even to the point of dropping her old friends, and replacing them with new ones from the church she'd begun attending.  But when her new Christian friends invited her into their social life-- watching inappropriate movies and going out dancing at the club-- she became disheartened, and left the church. "I let other people turn me away from church, and turn me away from God", she admitted. 

She didn't attempt another reconnection with the Lord until just this past fall, when the relationship with her "great guy" came to an end.

"I thought that we were going to get married ", she shared.  "But the relationship didn't work out, and it really broke my spirit.  I was jaded, heartbroken, and depressed". 

Newly single, she now had a lot of time on her hands to contemplate the direction of her life.

She thought about how fortunate she had been, and how God had always provided for her and taken care of her.  One day, she spoke to Him in her heart and said, "Man... all my life, you've always blessed me, and I don't even serve you.  If you've blessed me when I don't even serve you, what if I were to actually give you my life?"

"I prayed and asked Him, 'Teach me.  Show me.  Lead me.  I want to serve you, but I don't know how. Take the people out of my life who hinder me from serving you.   And add to my life those that will bring me closer to you".

She began attending church regularly with one of her sisters.  But at first, she was still doing her "own thing" in her off time, and felt that she was only going to church to give God "blessings" .   

But the more she went, the more God worked on her heart.  "The more I got the Word", she told me, with excitement in her voice, "was the more my Spirit side got stronger, and I became convicted about some of the wrong things that I was doing."

By December, however, another road block threatened to break Althea's spirit.  She had learned that her parents were going to get a divorce.  "The news struck me hard that day and added to my own personal struggles", she said.  "When I came home from work that night, I felt beaten, broken, sad, and devastated.  Not only was the emotional pain unbearable, but I'd also had the worst menstrual cramps and back pain you could imagine. I lay in bed crying to my God, asking 'Why? Why now in this Christmas season, when families are suppose to be gathering and rejoicing?' "

She continued crying, and began begging the Lord to give her emotional comfort and to relieve her from the excruciating back pain she was experiencing.  All of a sudden, out of nowhere, the terrible back pain subsided, and a quiet calm came over her.  "I felt Him", she said, "and I fell asleep peacefully".

When she awoke the next morning, she thought that she must have been imagining things.  "Did I dream it?", she thought to herself. " Did I just fall asleep in pain and maybe wake up with relief hours after?"  She said that she knew the answer, but was afraid to acknowledge what had happened-- she had just experienced a small miracle.

And though it was the first time that she had recognized it, she would eventually remember that she had been touched by the Divine before.  And... she would be touched by the Divine again.

Please continue on by reading "Touched By the Divine - Althea Bailey, Part II"


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Abigail Jasmine said...

Wow..praise the Lord! What a great life song she has to sing about His faithful love!

Excited to read part II! Cliff hanger there!! Hehe~

Unknown said...

awesome!!! her testimony is so potent and powerful. Love you Thea ;)

joe james said...

I understand fully.. I am Althea Bailey!!! :-) I feel like huggin and squeezing you tight right now.. (but it is too hot

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