Excerpt for Drowning in Plain Sight ...A Survivor’s Story by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

Drowning in Plain Sight

A Survivor’s Story

by Len Parsons


To Nelda and Angie,

You Mean The World To Me!

I dedicate this book to my friends who went under and have passed over. I will see you again on the other side safe in the arms of Jesus.

I also dedicate this book to my friends Who have kept their head above water no matter how high the waters have risen!

Keep yourself afloat.

Keep your head above water.

Don't rock the boat.

Love to All,

Len Parsons

Jesus didn't come to tell us the answers to the questions of life, He came to be the answer.

“Romans 14:8 For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.

Smashwords Edition

Copyright © 2017 by Len Parsons

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned,

or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.

First Edition: 10-2017

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 The Pool

Chapter 2 Drowning In Plain Sight

Chapter 3 Putting On A Great Front

Chapter 4 Husbands Wives and Kids

Chapter 5 Money

Chapter 6 Health

Chapter 7 Waves of Emotion

Chapter 8 Church

Chapter 9 Temptation

Chapter 10 The Sign At The Lake

Chapter 11 Keep Your Head Up

Chapter 1 The Pool

It was the summer of 1965 a very hot day in Carrolton Texas, just outside of Dallas Fort Worth area. I was Going to be 6 years old in the fall and I loved to watch Saturday morning cartoons. One day my family decided to go to the pool, in our family just going somewhere as a family was strange in itself, I don’t really recall going Anywhere we didn’t have to go. So as you can imagine I was very excited about going to the pool, now I hate to admit this but I don’t think I even knew what a pool was, Mom said you go swimming there, well I didn’t really know what that was either. My Big brother Larry was excited and so was I, it was going to be great!

When we got to the pool there were so many people maybe a hundred if I could count that high. Kids, parents, picnic tables and people running all over everywhere, it was really something and my brother and I joined right in. Daddy told me to go down to the ladder and jump in and I did. It was so much fun splashing and flopping around that I made my way back out of the pool tip toeing on the bottom as I went. It was so much fun I did it over and over. Momma said not to run or the Lifeguard would blow the whistle at me, so I slowed down but kept right on having the time of my life. Then I made a fateful decision I ran back down to the ladder and jumped in on the other side of the ladder and found there was No Bottom to tiptoe on!

What happened Next was like slow motion. Try as I might I could not keep my head above water, I managed to get to the top a couple of times just to sink back down. At 5 years old My Entire Knowledge of life came from the cartoons I watched on Saturday mornings and if I was sure of anything I was drowning! I kept count and I had gone down 3 times and I really thought I had died because that is when you got your wings and flew off into the sky in the cartoons. I must be dead I thought very clearly. The panic stopped and every thing slowed down except for the sounds, I could still see up past the surface and see the kids, parents and the Lifeguard on his tower right above me. Today at 58 years old I can tell you what he looked like but he never noticed me Because as I was drowning in plain sight he was talking to a beautiful girl. I remember thinking I’m gonna miss my Mom, and suddenly there was this big splash, an explosion of water and sound as I saw this Blur of Someone jumping in to save me. My Dad had Jumped in bluejeans, shoes, wallet, watch, paper Drivers License and All! I was Not dead but Alive! My Dad loved me enough to save me.

Chapter 2 Drowning In Plain Sight

“I felt really Impressed to do this picture tonight!” I posted to Facebook one evening. My inspiration was a memory that gets Stronger as my years go by”

I remember nearly drowning when I was a kid, it was so Much like drowning in sin, emotional depression and fear, there were people all around me unconscious to my plight, watching me Go Under for the last Time, then my Dad Came, Jumping in clothes and All, to Save His Child, just Like Jesus Did for me. From the Water Lifted Me now Safe Am I!”

“I have often reflected on this experience and cannot help but see parallels to it in the 52 years I have been privileged to live on this earth since that event took place. I cannot help but see the many times I nearly went under for the last time but my Heavenly Father has rescued me just in time. Sometimes the waters were composed of Fear, and doubt, often times Discouragement and Depression were about to take me down but God has always gotten to me just in Time. i have looked addiction in the face and felt the certainty it would kill me in a year if I didn’t change but yet have no power to change. I have also looked back at the situations “I have walked through and realized that no one around me Really had any Idea of how bad they were or how hopeless I had become. Was it because they were indifferent or uncaring or was it that I kept up a really good front?

“Last year at a lake near where I live a group of college students went out on a boat to spend a summer afternoon. Someone had the idea to get off the boat and go for a swim ,so many of them left the boat and entered the water. They were laughing and joking just kidding around when one of them went under, the other guys thought he was still playing around and panic set in as they realized it had indeed been a serious situation and at 19 that boy with the bright future left this world for the next. The summer before a group of guys were swimming at another location and a similar thing occurred, another tragedy where a young guy drowned surrounded by friends.

“I began to think of the possible reasons for these events, I will share them again and again in this book, why would someone drown in reach of help? I guess I had always assumed people went under, in Whatever kind of situation, because they were alone. Possibly there was no one who heard their cry for help or cared to get involved if they did hear. However as I have researched story after story Two things have become very clear to me.

“One it is hard to tell if someone is really in trouble.

Two it is hard for someone to admit they are in Trouble.

This leads us to have to face some hard questions about the signals we send to those around us. Am I sending Self Confidence vibes out to my friends when I really can’t swim? I knew a young guy who hung out one night with friends and waterskiing came up and he said he loved it and was great at it.Well a few weeks latter the group was going... you guessed it... waterskiing, and Pride kept him from admitting that not only had he never been waterskiing before but he didn’t even know how to swim! Did he go? Yes he did! He even tried to ski but thank God he didn’t drown. I want us to consider the fact pride may “prevent us for telling people the truth of out situation. I know this is a extreme example but it is a true story.

I also believe it demonstrates the two reasons given above. It is hard to tell if someone is really in trouble and it is hard for someone to admit they are in Trouble. So many time we deceive ourselves and become our own enemy. Study after study of people who have tried to end their lives prove people over estimate their ability to cope. Similar studies show the same results for persons involved in serious accidents. Similar words were used “I’d never do That” or “It will never happen to me” or “It isn’t really that Bad” demonstrate how hard it is to see you are in danger of drowning. You can move from a Comfort Zone to a Danger Zone in a matter of seconds.

Things can get serious very quickly.

Get a Life Jacket... Jesus is My Life Preserver!

Chapter 3 Putting On A Great Front

Imagine Not having to live our entire life with a front up to others That says we are Stable and we are Able, When the reality is, under the surface we’re about to go under all the time. It’s the idea of a person that’s swimming and looks peaceful on the outside, yet on the inside, he’s so panicky … this fear cause to feel as if he’s going to drown at any moment. God wants to make us Real.

“Putting on a Front is like the old Hollywood film sets, entire towns that looked real on the front side but were empty inside. Sounds like my family.

In fact my whole family is good at that Putting on a Great Front. We are Great At It! It has been taught and passed down from one generation to the next. “What happens in this house stays in this house.” I learned to deflect the seriousness of a situation by humor, just make a joke about it. I'd make everyone laugh, great entertainers come from families like mine. Sarcasm is am art form that hides the bitterness and pain within. I have heard true stories of people entertaining as they literally drown. How many great comedians have Drown in Plain Sight? It is sad people we love can’t see past jokes to the pain inside but it is also very sad we keep it hidden from them as well.

Anger and pessimistic attitudes are just as dangerous as joking about the Situation. If you are Always Going Under no one will Respond when you really are about to drown. We Must Regain the Ability to be Honest about Where We Are!

“We are using the illustration of drowning in water, but we can also drown in many other areas. Despair and Depression are so commonplace we barely sense the danger of The Rising Tide. Emotional and Financial problems fill us with Stressful Anxiety that can transform from bearable to Life Threatening in a few minutes. A Health Crisis or Legal Trouble or any Situation we can no longer feel the bottom solid under our feet. It seems the moment we recognize we are in to deep sneaks up on us. Surprising us with how quickly it manifest into a situation where there are are only seconds to decide a course of action.

People struggle so long it looks normal or natural to do this. A grim statistic is that Most people who drown Know how to Swim! Most people who commit suicide are used to being depressed. Most people who hurt someone else are used to being angry. Most couples who end up divorced are used to the conflicts and fighting. It seems nothing new then all the sudden a line is crossed!

“A danger zone has been entered into and Immediate Intervention and Rescue is Required!

Once the instability starts to surface, it just seems like the more you look, the more unstable we are. At that moment our greatest need is to become stable.

If you are in that Danger Zone please call for Help!! If you always Use sarcasm and humor... It is Your responsibility to break the cycle! Get help now! Call Someone a friend, a professional, a “pastor and Don’t forget to call on the One who Loves You, Call on God, maybe you haven't prayed for years call on Him. He Loves you, He understands you. He Recognizes the emergency and it is up to you Make That Call!

“The coolest things about God is ... God is stable, God is very stable; God is the only stable person, force, being, constant in the universe.” Pastor Len

“The love of God will stabilize us. No It is not performance-driven love. It is Not I’m loved because I’m doing well. It is I’m loved, period, by God. The stabilizing effect that balances my uneven legs … my uneven walk. The love of God … knowing that I am loved by God in an active, viral, vicious manner. His love is aggressive toward me.”

“I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for Thou, Lord, only make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8

“1Pe 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you. “Great peace have they which love Thy law: and nothing shall offend them.” Psalm 119:165

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because He trusts in Thee. Lord, Thou wilt ordain peace for us: for Thou also hast wrought all our works in us.” Isaiah 26:3, 12

“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27

“For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” Romans 8:6

“If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men.” Romans 12:18

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith.” Galatians 5:22

Chapter 4 Husbands Wives and Kids

“A marriage is like a river full of rocks just waiting to turn your boat over” unknown.

Marriage and family, wow, the dynamics of a husband and wife can be as turbulent as hurricane. If you add the unique personalities of the children you can be facing the Mother of All Storms.

“A Boating trip can be a lot of fun for a family but you want to avoid the risk of overturning the boat. Picture your home, your family on a boat trying to live a normal life in peace. Lets Imagine all the differences all the baggage all the drama...

Marriage and family, wow, the dynamics of a husband and wife can be as turbulent as hurricane. If you add the unique personalities of the children you can be facing the Mother of All Storms.

Many years ago my wife Nelda and I went to an event put on by a river boating group. We waited in line trying to decide which boats we wanted to go out in. We decided we would get in a canoe, I had always wanted one, this was going to so easy the water was calm the sun was bright. Some people look at marriage the same way. This going to be so nice to experience this great adventure together.

As soon as we entered the boat the illusion of peaceful floating on the river vanished. In it's place was the reality that my partner was making the canoe very unstable. The only advice the men gave us as they pushed us out into the stream was “Whatever you do … Don't reach out and hold on to the sides of the boat or it will Turn Over”. If you've ever been married you can guess what happens next. I discovered I was in a boat with someone who could not resist the urge to try and steady the canoe by holding on to the sides. I have never felt more insecure in a situation as I did in the river. We nearly flipped it over time and time again. We ended up stuck under a big old tree and if I could have I would gladly have got out of the boat and walked back! Some veterans of watercraft came and got us turned around and safely back to shore. Before I ever made to the bank of the river I decided that was my last canoe trip with my wife, we were to unstable together in a boat.

We tried two kayaks next and Much to my surprise we were much more stable in separate boats going side by side … Together Alone! We loved it so much we bought Kayaks of our own!

You learn a lot in a kayak, about yourself and who you are in regard to balance. In a marriage you will never be a stable couple until you become stable as individuals. I cannot fix my spouse nor can they fix me, we each must learn to balance life for ourselves. It is True of your entire home, each member of the family has to learn balance their own life. All we can do is come along side to encourage one another. Share our experiences along the same river. For example “the water is really swift up ahead” or “there are rocks ahead” are great non accusing ways to help one another stay afloat.

On different kayak trips I have witnessed experienced boaters be taken by surprise by rapids and low hanging tree branches, no one was ever offended when our guide would point out submerged trees and other unseen hazards. We shared a common goal, you may have heard “stay alert and arrive unhurt”. Our mission was to have fun enjoying the journey with our boats upright and our heads always above the water.

The pressures facing todays kids is unlike any other generations have ever faced. Pressure to look perfect, be perfect, added to the pressure within and without to be a grown up when they are not through growing up. We Need God as The Stabilizing Force in our homes.

“When I define stability, I mean our emotions are not up crazily high, not down crazily low. I mean our experience as a families not way up and way low. We must stabilize our families.”

“ You stabilize a structure by increasing its foundation or the width on the bottom, not by increasing its height. In a family it is Not about Great Family Moments it is All About a foundation of Communication. God wants to increase the Real stability of Communication. Our goal is not a bunch of overachievers but individuals who can successfully navigate Life. There will be highs and lows, your kids need to be able to handle sudden change on the river of life. To do that they Must Feel It is Normal to reach out for advise or counsel.” How did you handle that bend in the river”?

We want to realize that is the Kind of stability we need Ask God for. The Bible says that “if we ask, we’ll receive; if we seek, we find; if we knock; the door will be opened. ” Begin Today to ask God to stabilize your family.

He is the only one who can balance the hormones, personalities and the age differences. He alone Knows and Cares about what each individual member needs to hear and feel to be stable and able to live in peace together.

Chapter 5 Money

Money is a huge category where financial storms cause people to drown.

I had a friend who on the outside was the most level, balanced, clear headed man I ever knew. He had been through some business adversity but seemed unfazed by it. He was faithful in our church, served as a deacon and was a great friend. our families ate lunch after Church on Sunday’s.

I would pray and say God please make me as cool and stable as my friend, I am so emotionally driven by stuff going on in my life. He is so calm and I am so hot headed. well we both left the church at the same time, I went into a battle with depression but couldn’t tell anyone, what would they think, someone called to the ministry depressed. So I did the Christian thing and waited to get the victory over the depression before I admitted I was in a battle. My friend and I talked once more on Thanksgiving telling each other how good things were, I got off the phone and said Lord it must just be me fighting this thing, I wish I was Strong like Bob.

Months passed and we went to another friend house and they said it sure was terrible news was’t it? What news we asked? Bob shot himself was the reply. I was in shock but on they went with the details, He did it the note said to get the life insurance money, to make up money lost is the business failure, so his family could be secure and his son go to college. He had planned it for two years!

This man I had looked up to and admired was even more unstable than I was. I often wonder what could have changed if we both were not putting on a front of being happy and could have shared our struggles with one another. I could have told him he was worth more than money to his family and to God! He could have told me this is just a season you are passing through trust God it will get better! but instead my friend Died, he Drowned in Plain sight. I would have reached out but he never let on he was struggling. I really look forward to seeing Bob in heaven and hugging his neck and letting my heart tell his heart No More Secrets my friend No More Secrets.

Chapter 6 Health

Friends drown because they misjudge the conditions and the true situation they are in.

One of my very best friends left this world to soon because he misjudged his own strength and his value to the Kingdom of God. He was a Real mans man, another way of saying everything I’m not. Strong in body, mind and soul,& filled with the Spirit of God. He was my mentor in the prison ministry, someone who recognized my gift when it was very rough and treated me as his equal when I was a babe in the ministry. We could talk for hours about the Word of God and go ages without talking and pick right back up like we had never been apart. In all the years I knew him we never had a personal talk. Never a single word about struggles or discouragement or besetting sin, I am a slow learner, but I took it to mean he didn’t have any so something was just wrong with me.

When I finally received deliverance from a lifetime addition he said I wouldn’t tell anyone if I were You. People tend to judge you for what your sin was and not remember your delivered from it.

A lot of what we call faith or strength is just denial. Sometimes we get so good at denying the waves we go under. He had come through many battles and had been able to overcome them all. He told me one time hospitals were too expensive and he didn’t want to ever get on medication. He looked healthy as a mule and was traveling the world as an independent missionary. The last time we talked was on the phone & I’m glad we talked a long time. We discussed the Word of God and minor foot pain and how much joy it had been to watch his youngest son marry. That was the last time I spoke to him in a few days a lady from church called and said can you believe the news (she said his first name) I asked what about ? he”s dead! died last night. I’m in shock saying who is dead ? I’m saying can’t be true, are you sure, how do you know that when He’s my best friend and I didn’t even know he was sick. It turned out he had been having chest pains but wouldn’t go to the doctor “ God was either going to heal him or he was going home” He went Home! I loved him so much but he went Home! Here we were two grown ministers of the gospel who couldn’t be real with a health struggle we were facing but keeping up a front of health and faith till the end. When I see Him again on the other side I’m gonna Hug his neck and tell him heart to heart No More Secrets... no more Secrets!

If he had reached out even faintly stated I feel like I’m going under I would have assured him of his value to the Kingdom of God! How he was more valuable on medication that most of us healthy!!

Never be afraid to reach out over a health issue we all need One Another.

God made it that way!

Another example with a better ending is the story of my wife who lost 50 pounds in six months. She was experiencing random things, but nothing serious. She thought she must be getting a little older, maybe going through the change, or maybe vitamin deficient . She was taking vitamins for her skin, vitamins for her hair, and natural energy boosters. I was watching from the outside and could see what she couldn't see. I watched her waste away before my eyes. Women friends were complimenting her weight loss and telling her how great she looked, but I knew something was very wrong! She was drowning in plain sight!

She had become so used to the symptoms she couldn’t discern the Danger Zone she had drifted into. Sometimes we allow what we are afraid it might be... to keep us from finding out what is actually going on!

I finally made her Mad Enough and Convinced her to go to a real doctor and not a walk in clinic. An hour latter I received a call form my wife saying to come down to the doctors office, as soon as I could, “they are Calling the hospital to get me admitted right now!” When the doctor who ended up saving her life saw me he went off on me, he was Mad! “ Why haven’t you let your wife go to the doctor?” “Couldn’t you See She was Sick?” I told him I was the Reason she was here today,” I had to force her to come”. I told him she had been to several walk in clinics who said it was just a virus.

She had become so used to being tired and worn out it had become normal to her. She had passed from the Normal Zone into the Danger Zone and was drowning in plain sight.

The waters of Cancer nearly took her under, Drowning in Front of my eyes, but she got help just in Time. Today she is over 7 years Cancer Free! Thank God!

Chapter 7 Waves of Emotion

When my little girl was in the maybe Four we went to a kids pizza place. You know the kind I think, lots of games, tokens and the little paper tickets to win a prize. Well this one also had a place they could climb into that was full of balls. So she’s in there doing great until she lost her footing, backwards into the balls she fell, and it caused her to have the sensation of being in the water. She panicked like she was really drowning. Screaming for help, thrashing her arms, and gasping for air, I could not convince her to just stand up. Her mom tried to but there was No reasoning with the way she Felt. It was Real to her in her mind she was going under and no one cared. I looked all around but there was no door to get her out so I had to squeeze through the child sized door at the top of the slide, yes a grown man had to slid down the kiddy slide head first to reach her. As all the people watched I had to Stretch out and get her by the hands, pull her up and show her all she had to do was walk out of the balls. Well it wasn’t quit that easy now we had to climb back up the kiddy slide and through the little door to an ovation of parents and kids who were watching this rescue take place.

Things Are Not Always the Way they Feel to you!

When Life is not worth Living anymore. The waves of emotion can go over our heads causing us to want to die. People with their future ahead of them Life to live being so close to ending it all. I have two friends who before I knew them or they knew the Lord came very close to death. One with a successful music career and one who was brokenhearted.

Waves of emotion come and go! Hold on Life gets better! In both cases God intervened in their plans. In one case she had a gun pointed to her head and the trigger just would not move no matter how hard she tried she could not shoot herself. God asked her if she wanted to throw her life away why not just give it to Him and she did! She Ministered for many years for Him all over the world.

In the other case he couldn’t get it to work in a satisfactory way, so he decided to wait till the next day.Thank God by the next day the winds and waves had shifted and he no longer felt like ending it anymore. Latter he was saved and called into the ministry married a beautiful wife and has great kids, God has truly been good to him.

Every time I see him I am thankful to God for bringing him out of the stormy waves of emotional distress. He is probably my closest friend on the earth and One I won’t have to Hug his neck in heaven and say No More Secrets No More Secrets for we have None here.

Your future is before you do not leave this earth Alone!

Give you heart to Jesus, let Him give a future you would never expect full of the joy of rescuing Drowning people in His name.

Chapter 8 Church

“Church the one place free from the Pressure of real life” said no pastor ever.

“ God send me a stable pastor. One of the things I’ve noticed working with other ministries down through the years, is I thought it was just church people that were unstable as water. What I’ve learned is that ministers are just like church people. In fact, they’re just church people that moved into ministry. Some of the ones that are the hottest for God have got the biggest problems. Some of the ones that preach the best on a Sunday are so discouraged on a Monday. “Dear Pastor, you just got through saying all these things you were sure God was going to do, and here you are within a day or so as unstable, unstable as water again;”

One reason people drown is because they over estimate their ability. How far they can swim or for how long in an unknown environment. Miss Judging the Pull of a Tide or the power of the Current causes even a strong swimmer to tire faster and can lead to going under. to often we Preachers over estimate our emotional strength and endurance.

The unimaginable increase in Pastors going under, giving in to sexual sins, and downing in the lusts and pleasures of this world, is only surpassed by the increasing number of pastors actually committing suicide. I know from experience the pressure of time, Money and expectations are only surpassed by the nagging question “Am I Making a Real Difference?

A few years ago an Atlanta Pastor left after the Sunday morning service drove home and shot himself. A few weeks latter, a successful pastor of another church in Florida went home and did the same thing. What is Going on here?

I’m thinking of one who had an affair with an underaged girl in the church, and said he just wasn’t himself., he was unstable. He was unstable before the sexual situation. Another well-known case, is a man who had a relationship with a male massage person. They were caught in the rip tide of emotional temptation. How ministers have fallen by the wayside because we’re doing the ministry, we’re working, we’re trying to do all the right things, but yet we become unstable Unable to continue to Swim to the Other shore.

There is a sign at a lake near our home that has some startling numbers written on it. It has the Number of People who have drowned in the lake. Several hundred people have died in this lake.It also has the Number of People who have drowned in this Lake wear a approved Life Jacket. The Number was zero! No one with an approved Flotation Device has ever drowned in this lake.

Pastors have become so used to the raging waters of emotion all around them, they have forgotten their Life Jacket.

God says my ministers have focused so much on rescuing the Lost they have Lost their Personal Flotation Device.

They have lost connection with their source of peace their source of Strength,

They have let their personal relationship with Me be misplaced and by the time they realize they are in trouble they try to save themselves when I never created them to save Themselves or anyone else. I created them to connect to Me and Call other People into connection to Me through My Son Jesus Christ.

I am their Personal Flotation Device! Don’t go into the swirling waters of emotion alone!

“Emotional stability is important and it’s important because we want to be emotionally constant ; consistent with God that He’s my savior today. He’s my savior tomorrow, He’s my savior next year and the year after. He’s the one that called me on Earth, He’s the only that’ll receive me in Heaven. He’s the one that gave me commission on the Earth. He’s the one that I will give account to for that commission when I get to Heaven. The He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Stability comes in the fact that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.”

“And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.” Isaiah 30:21

“...if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father which is in Heaven.” Matthew 18:19

“And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” Matthew 21:22

“Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believes.” Mark 9:23

“...What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” Mark 11:24

“Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.”

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

Chapter 9 Temptation

“Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee.” Psalm 119:11

“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 you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that you may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

“Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.” Ephesians 6:11, 16

“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations.” James 1:2

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7

“The Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptations.” 2 Peter 2:9

Temptation is common to everyone. Being tempted is not a sin unless you yield to it.. The temptation could be to embezzle money at work to cheat on your spouse ,temptation is common to all. If you are not careful your senses will misread the situation and take you quickly from the Normal Zone to the Danger Zone.

The Bible says " we will not be tempted above what we are able without a way of escape."

This tells us there is always a way out of the Temptation.

The biggest mistake we can make facing the rapids and waves of temptation is to keep silent and go it alone. People drown in plain sight, destroying marriages, families and lives. We must seek the way out like we would see a life preserver.

Jesus made these statements "the Truth will set you free "And "Who the Son sets free is free indeed "

We must find someone who can help us! We must find someone willing to tell us the truth.

The Truth is our only defense against Temptation. The forbidden water looks good on the surface but under the surface are the currents of death and destruction just waiting for you to dive in!

It is the picture of a man looking at Good the water looks below and is tempted to dive in, but sees a warning sign "Danger No Diving or Swimming "A person may say "I see the warning but it is only for those who aren't good swimmers It won't effect me" Temptation always Lies to you and says you are special, you can do it and get away unhurt! Now if A man in a wheelchair rolls up and says "friend I know what you're thinking, the water looks fine but under the surface are hidden rocks and strong currents "I was the lucky one my friend died.

This is the way truth destroys temptation. Truth shows the hidden facts about a situation.

Jesus has been here ahead of you, the Bible says “He was tempted in all the ways we are yet He did not sin” and Jesus is able to rescue you.

“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

Heb 4:15 .”.. but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”

Run to Jesus as you are be honest with him he will help save you now.

Chapter 10 The Sign At The Lake

“Don’t overestimate your strength”

There is a sign at a lake near our home that has some startling numbers written on it. It has the Number of People who have drowned in the lake. several hundred people have died in this lake. It also has the Number of People who have drowned in this Lake wear a approved Life Jacket. The Number was zero! No one with an approved Flotation Device has ever drowned in this lake.

One reason people drown is because they over estimate their ability. How far they can swim or for how long in an unknown environment. Miss Judging the Pull of a Tide or the power of the Current causes even a strong swimmer to tire faster and can lead to going under.

Buying a Good Life Jacket

When we began talking seriously about kayaking on the rivers of Tennessee i told my wife I want to get the best Life Preserver I can, and You do to. I want to know it will hold me up in an emergency. So we are out shopping and she is finding bargains,10% off, 30% off but they just didn’t feel substantial to me. I finally just had to tell her “I do not want to drown and go to heaven and tell them I got a really good deal on a bad life jacket”

Who is your Life Preserver ?

Don’t under estimate His Power to rescue You!

“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” John 8:32,

The real Question Is...

Do you belong to God ? Do you Know Jesus?

Will You Accept Jesus As Your Personal Savior Today?

The Bible says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved,” (Romans 10:9).

Pray this prayer from your heart today! “Dear Jesus, I believe that You died for me and rose again on the third day. I confess I am a sinner...I need Your love and forgiveness...Come into my heart. Forgive my sins. I receive Your eternal life. Confirm Your love by giving me peace, joy and supernatural love for others. Amen.”

Chapter 11 Keep Your Head Up

Keep Your Head Up!

Get into the Word of God

“The Word of God is a stabilizing force.

The Love of God Is a stabilizing force.

The consistency of God is a stabilizing force.

“Psalm 9:9

The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.”

The Word of God is permanent, and unchangeable.

The love of God is permanent, and unchangeable.

“Many are the afflictions of the righteous:

but the Lord delivers him out of them all.

Psalm 34:19”

I am stable in my relationship to the Word of God, and to the love of God. I am stable because the Word of God is the same for me yesterday, today and tomorrow. “The love of God is the same way. It is personal to me, what it says about me is true, and it will be true forever!

“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me.

Psalm 138:7”

The Word of God works for me, and not against me. It causes me to be stable. The love of God works for me, and not against me. It causes me to be stable, another word for stable is faithful.”

“The Word of God allows me, causes me, draws me into faithfulness.

At the same time, the love of God causes me, draws me, enables me to walk in faithfulness to the God

Who first loved me. ”

“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

John 16:33”

“I am stable because the Word of God is about me personally.

I am stable because the love of God is to me personally.

The Word of God is expressed to me personally.

The promises are for me, the commandments are for me.

Everything the Word of God has to say, it has to say to me.

The love of God is the same way. It is personal to me, what it says

about me is true, and it will be true forever.”

“I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Philippians 4:12-13”

“Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.

Psalm 31:24”

The Word of God gives substance to my hope.

No more empty believing, but a rock solid, sure stable thing that I'm asking for. It is the object of what I am praying. The Word Of God equips me because the scripture says, "Faith works by love," and I am confident that the Word of God was expressed through the love of God. Then I know that what I ask from him, I receive because He loves me.”

“Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land,

and verily thou shalt be fed.

Psalm 37:3”

“Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen

thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.

Psalm 27:14”

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