Tuesday, September 28, 2010

God Spreads a Miracle Lobster Picnic

Miracle Witness!

God provides a miracle lobster picnic for our little family in a deserted park on the coast of Maine.

MAINE LOBSTER BOAT RETURNS, photo by Bill Hunt (c) 2010.
My wife, Mary, and I felt tired, poor, between paydays, frazzled, and needing a break. So, one Saturday morning, we strapped Monica, Brian, and baby Emily into three car seats and drove the country roads for a few hours toward Camden.

We journeyed a rather lengthy, sunny spring drive through the Maine countryside toward the rocky, scenic, coastal areas.

We were about to learn for the first time that God really would work a miracle out of love for us just to meet our need.

Parents with young children
understand what I'm saying.

As we drove, Mary and I sang worship songs together. I really enjoyed my canary soprano spouse singing along with me. We recently joined a Life in the Holy Spirit seminar, and we savored our refreshed walk with God.

By early afternoon, we grew hungry. With concern, I knew we carried no money to buy lunch.

"Boy, I'm hungry," I finally said to Mary.

"God knows it,” she said.

Surely, he who multiplied the loaves and fishes could provide us a little food,” I replied.

You should pray specifically,” Mary said.
Tell him what you want.”

My wife is always right.

Mary said she brought along just a couple of slices of white bread, peanut butter, and jelly, only small sandwich snacks for the kids. That didn't sound too beneficial. Not ready to admit defeat, I turned my desire into a daring prayer.

"Father, we'd like some food for our little family to settle our hunger. And if you don't mind, God, I'd really like some lobster! But we'll appreciate anything you provide. Father, I thank you for hearing my prayer." 
Twenty minutes up the road, we unexpectedly came upon an open roadside picnic area with spacious green fields.

We turned into the coastal park.

This secluded park lay just across the road from a scenic blue panorama of salt smelling ocean water.

What a sight!

The place appeared deserted until we noticed in one parking area an older couple loading the back end of a black pickup truck.

At our picnic table, Mary spread the peanut butter and jelly on to sandwiches to split among the kids. While she prepared the snack, I twirled Monica and Brian on a small merry-go-round, giving them rides.

Fathers teach their children to play. With hair flying, they squealed in delight.

In a minute or two, the white-haired gentleman from the pickup truck walked all the way across the open green field to greet us.

"My wife and I celebrated a picnic with our organization," he said. "We just packed away our supplies.

I hope you don't mind if I ask.

We boxed some extra food, and we wonder if your family would like a little, at no cost, of course."

"What kind of food?" I politely asked, knowing any kind of food would sound great.

"We barbecued chicken halves, ears of butter and sugar corn, potato salad, and some fresh lobster," he said, "actually quite a bit. Would you like some, whatever you can eat?"

He eyed our jar of peanut butter.

I barely dared to believe my ears as I recognized the wondrous blessing of an Almighty, Loving God taking shape.

I walked over to the man's truck with him.

Back at our weather beaten picnic table, my heart cheered and my eyes teared. My little family enjoyed the delicacy of the barbecued chicken and the bright red lobster feast.

I now know about how hungry the disciples actually felt when Jesus blessed a few small loaves and fishes.

I experienced a new awe for God's overwhelming love for people.

Bill Hunt © 2010

NOTE: Please let us know your thoughts in the comment box. Have you ever experienced a miracle? Tell us, give God the Glory!

WINDOW SHOP your choice of books on Maine, Prayer, Children, or Family. Note the Five Star Ratings and how many voted!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Arrogance Brings the Downfall of Men

Holy Spirit
King Saul's life shows humility wins the favor of God, while arrogance brings the downfall of men.

HUMILITY WINS THE FAVOR OF GOD  (publicdomainpictures.net)
Arrogance brings the downfall of kings, presidents, government leaders, CEO's, potentates, evangelists and pastors; men in all walks of life. Have you seen them in the News? Arrogance brings the wrath of God and loses his divine favor.

Man needs to remember who he is, and who God is!

The difference between the behavior of the “politician” and the “statesman” who labors for the good of his people is a matter of the historical record.

Adolf Hitler led his nation to devastation and committed suicide hiding in a bunker. Saddam Hussein persecuted his own people, yet was found hiding in a dirt hole, tried and executed.

King Saul's life exemplified the fall.

Initially, Samuel the prophet, at the instruction of God, anointed the young Saul with oil.

As a result of this anointing, Saul encountered a company of prophets. They celebrated a joyous time with lyres, tambourines, flutes, and harps and freely prophesied in the power of the Spirit of God.

Samuel forewarned Saul of the effect of God's anointing.

The Spirit of the Lord will come on you in power, and you will prophesy with them; and you will be changed into a different person. Once these signs are fulfilled, do whatever your hand finds to do, for God is with you” (1 Samuel 10:6 NIV).

However, Saul failed to stand in the spirit of the anointing. For instance, when Samuel summoned all Israel to announce the King, he actually found Saul hiding afraid in the baggage.

For a time, God's anointing blessed Saul. When the Ammonites attacked Israel in overwhelming mass, the Spirit of God came on the young leader. Angry in spirit, Saul summoned all Israel and Judah for battle. Israel assembled 300,000 men and Judah, 30,000 men.

With this anointing, Saul strategically divided his army into three divisions during the night, attacked, and destroyed the powerful enemy.

The people confirmed him as King, and he reigned over Israel the next forty-two years.

Ultimately in pride, Saul grew arrogant
toward Samuel and to God.

When the Amalekites attacked, Saul failed to destroy the wicked enemy as God instructed. Instead, he captured King Agag alive and seized much forbidden plunder.

Samuel chastised him with words that loudly ring true through the ages.

Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. For rebellion is like the sin of divination, and arrogance like the evil of idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has rejected you as king” (1 Samuel 15: 22-23 NIV).

Samuel never returned to advise Saul again. King Saul died in battle shamefully, and David succeeded him king.

Humility wins the favor of God.

The power of humility dominates in Moses' tremendous leadership in leading over a million people through the barren wilderness for forty years.

Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth” (Numbers 12:3 NIV).

Jesus taught humility with his sacrificial life.

Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden light” (Matthew 11: 29-30 NIV).

The prophet Isaiah proclaims
God dwells with the man of humble heart.

For this is what the high and lofty One says – he who lives forever, whose name is holy: “I live in a high and holy place, but also with him who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite” (Isaiah 57:15 NIV).

Humility is the secret of the prayerful man or woman who draws close to God or the statesman who effectively leads for the good of his people.

– Bill Hunt © 2010

(See books on Humility, Prayer, and Leadership.)

NOTE: Please let me know your thoughts in the Comment Box!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

By Divine Appointment God Selects a Wife


God truly directs our paths and can surprisingly lead us to the spouse he has chosen when we “do it God's way.”


The girl I wanted to meet was not present playing the grand pipe organ at the next Sunday service in July, nor again all through August. In fact, I didn't see her again week after week as I searched through the summer at Crouse Auditorium, Syracuse University.

Finally, one fall day in September between the two morning services, I waited downstairs in a crowded corridor for the first service to let out.

"She's coming!"

Very quietly, but very definitely, the Holy Spirit suddenly impressed my heart. This was a new experience for me.

"Wait! she's coming down around the stairway."

I dared to listen sensitively to this voice of God.

My heart pounded. Impressed with expectation, I waited patiently, wondering if I was truly about to see her again. Standing with my back to the wall, I forced myself not to move.

Could this be true or just my imagination?

Sure enough! The coed appeared on the landing and entranced down the staircase. Step by step, like a princess in regal beauty, she entered the grand ballroom. To me, she seemed to sparkle as if she wore the crown jewels.

Diplomatically, through the crowd, she greeted people lined all along the white-walled corridor.

She made her way person-by-person stepping sideways towards me. I waited in grand expectation.

"Oh!" she said.

This girl finally stood before me eye-to-eye, looked up and smiled.

"Hello! You owe me a cup of coffee."

I could hardly breathe.

WEDDING RINGS (C) Bill Hunt 2010
"I have never seen the Holy Spirit so strongly present in a wedding."

The elderly Pastor Liddy quietly remarked after the ceremony on the day we married in Mary's home town, Upstate New York.

"You two deserve each other!" said our other clerical friend.

With his famous Italian smile and Friar Tuck tonsorial, he solemnly officiated at our wedding.

Charles Borgognoni, chaplain of the Newman Center and the Syracuse University Football Team, knew hundreds of students by first name. He was so loved by the students, they called him "the fourth person of the Blessed Trinity." He was quite familiar with this couple's passion and vitality through campus activities.

He was the friend who first told me "that girl's" name.

Doy-lee?” He teased a nickname, grinning wide at me. “So you want to meet Doy-lee?! Her name is Mary.”

I think we husbands should hold very dear the great gift for our lives.

"He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22 NIV).

Bill Hunt © 2010

(See Books on Wedding and Marriage.)

NOTE: Please let me know your thoughts in the Comment Box.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

As the Angel Foretold, I Meet My Future Wife


Marriages Are made in heaven. God plans a collision course where I meet my future wife in Sunday service. 

GOD'S CHOICE (c) Bill Hunt 2010

I wasn't actively looking for a wife, but God had other plans for me. I returned to Syracuse University for my second year of special studies. What the angel in Pakistan foretold a year earlier, as I related to you, was no longer on my mind.

On a Sunday in July, I enjoyed reading the scriptures from the podium during service in the packed Crouse Auditorium at the Music School. I sat at the left side of the stage and noticed this coed play the magnificent organ with exposed silver pipes.

The refrains ran all the way to the high ceiling and echoed the melody throughout the auditorium. This organist sat barely seen behind a white shielding screen. I watched only her energetic legs busily playing the organ pedals as her hands simultaneously played the keys.

There were thousands of attractive coeds on campus. But at a certain moment in the service, this brunette stood up from behind the screen where I could see her.

"I want one like that!"

I spoke to my Heavenly Father, surprised at my own prayer.

I was serious. Her classic beauty overwhelmed me. Not only was she a great musician, but she appeared very intelligent, tall, and definitely most attractive. 

I approached her shyly at the altar after the service was over. 

"There's a little shop down the street serving hot chocolate and cream donuts. Would you care to have some with me?"

"No, I don't even know you," she said.

"My name's Bill," I flustered.

"Beside, I have some friends with me. I'll take a rain check," she answered and walked off.

My heart sank.

I walked outside without talking to anyone.

I found my car, and started to drive away around the back of the building. Suddenly, I noticed her and her lady friends entering a parked car.

At the car door, she turned and glanced a super flirtatious smile at me.

My disappointment jumped back to excitement.

I'd like to meet that girl!

(To be continued!)

Bill Hunt © 2010

(See Books on Courtship and Marriage.)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

You Can Possess Samson's Great Strength

Holy Spirit
Q. How can you be empowered with great strength, as Samson, to undertake the mission of God?

Samson's Lion by James Tissot, 1896-1900
Samson's great source of strength was not his bulging muscles. His body, arms, neck, and legs may have appeared thick. He was certainly a big man to extend his arms around those pillars and pull down Dagon's pagan temple. His great exploits were beyond the scope of nature.

His strength flowed from the Spirit of God, as ours should.

The angel of the Lord instructed his parents, Samson must be consecrated to God as a Nazirite. His purpose in life was to deliver Israel from the Philistine oppressors.

The angel ascended to heaven in the high blazing flames of the cooking fire. Samson's father, Manoah, and his mother bowed their faces to the ground, overcome.

Samson loved a beautiful Philistine girl.

On his travels to court his love, a young lion viciously attacked him, roaring. The Spirit came on Samson, and he easily tore the lion apart with his bare hands.

Later, he discovered a swarm of bees and honey in the lion's carcass. He ate some of the honeycomb and shared the sweetness with his parents.

Thirty Philistine men attended Samson's bridegroom party and in play he proposed a riddle to them.

Out of the eater, something to eat; out of the strong, something sweet” (Judges 14:14 NIV).

After seven days, the men, frustrated, threatened his wife, to kill her and burn down her father's house unless she would coax the answer from Samson for them.

That evening the men reported back to Samson.

What is sweeter than honey? What is stronger than a lion?” (Judges 14:18 NIV).

As a result of the forced deception, the Spirit came on Samson and he killed thirty other Philistines. He awarded the party companions the dead men's clothes as a prize for answering the riddle.

The angry Philistines gave 
Samson's wife to another man.

The battle was on! At the time of the wheat harvest, Samson, now infuriated, captured 300 foxes and tied their bushy tails together in pairs. Again, this is not by natural strength.

He tied a flaming torch to each pair's tails and set them free to run through the wheat fields, the vineyard, and the olive groves causing great devastation.

In retaliation, the Philistines burned Samson's wife and her father to death. Samson returned and slaughtered many, and he retreated to a cave alone.

By now Samson was the talk of the town.

3000 Israelite soldiers from Judah, fearing attack from the stronger Philistines, found Samson and asked him to surrender peacefully to the enemy.

The Philistines arrived shouting at Samson. Once again, the Spirit of the Lord came on him as he broke the ropes that bound him. He grabbed the dry jaw bone of a donkey lying on the ground. And he later proclaimed his victory.

With a donkey's jawbone I have made donkeys of them. With a donkey's jawbone I have killed a thousand men” (Judges 15:16).

Of course, Samson's exploits continued until the end when the Philistines dug his eyes out. Blind, he destroyed the pagan temple of Dagon with 3000 people in the rubble.

As a Christian disciple, you can possess Samson's great strength, the anointing power of the Holy Spirit.
    • All true ministry or mission comes through prayer.
    • Learn God's assignment for your life.
    • The Lord provides for what he truly assigns.
    • The Lord alone gives the Gift of the Holy Spirit (books).
    • Discern and obey God's assignments whole-heartedly.

Samson (books) followed the assignment God gave him. The Spirit of the Lord empowered him to accomplish his mission. He obeyed God whole-heartedly, even to the point of giving his life.

Bill Hunt © 2010

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A Cup of Cold Water for Muslim Women

Miracle Witness
Q.  A Cup of Cold Water rings a scriptural promise. Could a male traveler dare to overcome a taboo and relate to Muslim women wearing black burkas?  

Photo by Bill Hunt (c) 2010. 

We traveled across the lowlands toward the steep mountainous terrain of the Hindu Kush in Northern Pakistan. The rickety black bus periodically braked along the very narrow roads more intended for lumbering ox carts and gala painted rickshaws.

We stopped for a few occasional villagers here and there who waved to travel in the same direction. Giving rides seemed the tribal touch of hospitality in rural Pakistan. 

On the last pickup, our Pakistani driver boarded three women wearing black burkas which covered their heads and bodies full-length. They carried two little children on their arms, one a young baby. 

These women sat down quietly in the back of the bus apart from the others. They selected one seat behind me just across the aisle. The children, however, soon began to fuss. On a very hot, typical summer day, the temperature broiled about 120 degrees. 

As the fussing babies in the stifling bus cried, I thought about a story I'd heard where a husband knifed a young American visitor in the back for trying to help the native wife to her feet when she stumbled and fell. 

The babies cried.

Unsure of relating to these women, I sought a non-threatening way to help them.  The babies continued fussing from the heat, and the women nervously tried to calm them.

"And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward” (Matt. 10:43 NIV).

The words of Jesus rang repeatedly in my spirit. I could not succeed in ignoring them to avoid my inner fear. Finally, I unscrewed my red thermos cap, poured it with cold water, and daringly turned to hold it out toward the women. 

"Here, a cup of water in the name of Jesus for your babies," I spoke softly. 

Quickly, they took the thermos cup and gave the drink to their babies who stopped crying. Unexpectedly, the women let their veils fall open, and I was most surprised to see their youthful beauty. They were very pretty. One spoke in clear English.

"Thank you," she said sweetly. 

The women began to chatter busily among themselves as women do. 

Our bus suddenly lurched sideways.

I saw a gasoline tanker truck push pass in a flash forcing us off the main road. 

The frontier roadbeds are paved only wide enough for the wheel track of one vehicle. Two vehicles oncoming from opposite directions “played chicken” as a matter of custom. The first to flash his headlights took the right of way. We braked and skidded to a stop in the side gravel, scoring second best. 

Something felt very wrong.     

Our front left wheel hung out over the abyss, an 8000 foot cliff, balancing at a dangerous point in the Hindu Kush Mountains. 

“Freeze!” a man in the front of the bus ordered.

I looked down through my open window.

I could make out tiny specks, trucks and vehicles that dropped in past times all the way to the bottom of the mountain. 

I surrendered my life now to the hands of the Lord.

"Jesus, if I live I live and if I die I die."

I quietly prayed in his name. Fear kept me from saying much more. I knew this was God's call.

With one man directing, the other men from the front of the bus moved one-by-one, step-by-step, hand-over-hand along the seats. They crept very slowly back toward the mid section of the bus to balance the vehicle hanging over the cliff.

The Pakistani driver, under direction, very, very carefully pulled the shift lever and changed gears. 

He slowly accelerated the gas pedal, keeping his other foot on the brake. The engine pulled against the brakes. The driver reversed the bus inch-by-inch on to the solid roadbed to all four wheels. 

A sigh of relief sounded through the bus.

A beautiful day now blessed us. Around one bend in the road, we waved at mountain women bathing clothed, waist deep in a stream-fed pool of flowing water. 

Unlike the desert village women, the mountain women did not wear burkas and appeared to be quite free in their actions. They returned a dozen cheerful smiles and waves to us as we passed. This friendly scene marked such a contrast to the precarious experience of just a few miles earlier.

I reflected within my thoughts. 

In impossible danger, I yielded myself to God. His Word proved true. He cares for us. 

In exchange for a cup of water, God granted me back the Gift of Life.

– Bill Hunt © 2010   

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Black Cobra and a Mysterious Angel

Miracle Witness
In this true story of a cobra and a mysterious angel, God saves me from a venomous death-bite and delivers a surprising message about my future wife. 

Photo by Bill Hunt (c) 2010
East meets West. There's no more strange a day. On my adventurous arrival in Pakistan, I settled my bag into a temporary stay at the white-walled hostel, and headed right into the sun-hot streets to see what I could see. 
From a dirt mound nearby on the outskirts of the City of Karachi, I sat down and watched the activities of a desert nomad encampment of Bedouins. This was an intriguing scene right out of the Bible. 

The tribesmen, camels, donkeys, sheep, dogs, brown cloth tents, campfires, and shade overhangs were a sight that reminded me of Jacob and the twelve patriarchs. 

Along the outer road, I came upon three snake charmers stationed at the side of the road. Being an avid photographer, I squatted down with my movie camera near one snake charmer to get vivid pictures of the snake. 

These were not the giant king cobras, but the black cobras, hooded cousins, considered one of the most deadly venomous snakes on earth. They can paralyze and kill a full-grown man within fifteen to thirty minutes. 

With my camera, I moved in very, very close to the cobra swaying from the basket and the charmer with his wood flute. The snake abruptly turned his black, sinister hood toward me, eye-to-eye. 


The small group of Pakistanis around me distinctly groaned. I suddenly knew my assumption of safety mistaken. 

Face to face, the snake waved, dangerously excited at my presence. He was set to give me a venomous death-bite. 

In emergency prayer mode, I struggled to crawl back very slowly and smoothly not to startle the snake to strike. 

I backed on my hands and feet right through my now very serious case of double-layered goose bumps. 

The snake charmer capped the cobra back into the red straw basket. I noticed he, too, was sweating and trembling. 

"Thank you, Jesus," I said as I stood up relieved, "for delivering me from that snake -- and death."

The Mysterious Stranger

At that moment, a handsome Pakistani in his thirties, spoke. 

"Are you married, Sahib?"

"Am I married? No!" 

I wondered what he wanted.

"Do you have a picture of your lady friend, right now?" he asked. So I reluctantly pulled out a wallet portrait.

"This girl is not the girl you will marry!" he stated. 

"No, the girl you will marry has brown hair like this one, but she is taller. In fact, you have already met her. Where does this one live?"

"On Long Island, New York," I said.

"The girl you will marry does not live there," he said. "She lives up, further north." 

"My parents live in Maine." I tested him by giving leading information.

"No, she is not from Maine," he said. "Where have you just come from?" 

"Upstate New York."

"Yes!" he said, "she is there. 

You have already seen her. She lives there, way up, in Upstate New York, farther north. That is the woman you will marry, but not this one, Sahib.” 

I offered him rupees to test him. 

No Sahib! Not rupees. I just wanted to tell you." 

I had no idea who this man was, or whether I should consider anything he said. He did not seem ominous. 

I looked down at the snake charmer and raised my head again to look at the stranger. 

He wasn't there!

I turned to look for his face in the crowd of bystanders. He had vanished! There was no one like him in sight along the open road. 

Was he from God? Was he an angel? 

Puzzled, a stranger in a strange land, I wasn't sure how to judge what had just happened. 

A year later, I met the girl he described in the place he foretold. He spoke a true word. She would, indeed, become my wife. But that's another story. 

Our lives are meant to walk with God. 
-- Bill Hunt (c) 2010

Friday, September 10, 2010

Muslims and Christians choose Peace or War by God or Satan

Q. Would you pray for Peace among Muslims and Christians?

Photo by Bill Hunt (c) 2010
In my dream, there is this vast wilderness trial of life. But far back in the wilderness is a CORNER RETREAT, a garden. In the green and flowery garden is a white marble bench. And sitting on the bench is Jesus waiting to talk with us in prayer.

In prayer, I grieve for Pakistan, a kindly nation I visited as a young man. I grieve for Swat, a sovereign and very peaceful mountain people.

I grieve for Afghanistan, a desert people so long torn by terrible war. I grieve for Iraq, so slaughtered by tribal hatred. I grieve for Iran where many seek truth and freedom under a blind religious dictatorship.

I grieve for Americans and people from all over the world who have suffered and died as a result of these conflicts.

A Muslim is brother to every other Muslim,” I have been told.


If so, the Al Qaeda and the Taliban violate their own Muslim faith! Not to mention, God's universal law that all mankind are, indeed, brothers on this earth. Jesus told the story of the Good Samaritan.

God is goodness; Satan is evil.

Both religions believe this. Violence is the offspring of evil, both Muslims and Christians know.

The key is to choose God and goodness. I pray for wisdom and peace among Muslims and Christians.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Crucifixion of Christ Vision

Q. Did you think Christ's cross religiously pretty?

Art by Daniel Casey, France, 1817-1885

Through all the unbearable pain, visionary clouds appeared and slowly parted left and right. In full living color, between them I could see the bloody head, shoulders, and arms of Christ crucified on Calvary.

His head hung limp to his right side, crowned with long, protruding, jagged thorns, and oh, so bloody! He, like me, bore still more terrible pain. The sight felt gruesome.

Slowly, he turned his head toward me and looked at me. From amidst his disheveled, blood-knotted hair and beard, he looked at me with piercing eyes. A small, delicate smile came across his lips.

Christ smiled at me!

It was then I noticed how round swollen appeared his face and head, like the size of a painful watermelon. My heart cried out for him. No art had ever pictured the swollen head I could see! The vision disappeared.

Offer your pain to Jesus on the cross.”

My daddy always said this as I went through my years of casts and braces. Now, a nine year-old boy, the pain was excruciating as the white-jacketed orderlies attempted to use a burning electric saw to cut through my leg-bound cast.

I told them my vision. One believed and one didn't. I refused the lollipop he attempted to give me as a bribe. The other reached for a nonelectric hand saw and proceeded to cut open my cast painlessly. Gently, he unwrapped the stained cotton around my leg. 
-- Bill Hunt (c) 2010 

Note to Reader

When you enter in the CORNER RETREAT, your prayers and thoughts are so valuable to our conversation.
What spiritual topics would you most like to see treated? Prayer, scripture, miracles, Holy Spirit, marriage, guidance, or other?
Do you have a prayer request you can list?
What have you experienced in prayer to share? Examine Truth in the light of scripture.
Can you give Glory for a Blessing God has worked in your life?
Please leave your comment in the Comment Box.


Saturday, September 4, 2010

Death by Stoning at the Steps of the Mosque

Miracle Witness

Q. How do you respond to severe trials in life?

Photo by Bill Hunt (c) 2010.
I wondered as I walked if God's presence was in this Mosque for the prayerful Muslim.

The artistry of intricate, multicolored, inlaid tiles covered the walls of the Mosque in a tree-shaded village in Northern Pakistan. The decor glittered in streams of hot sunlight.

Off the open central court, beyond the rectangular reflecting pool used for prayer washing, we found within the outer walls a hidden sanctuary, an open alcove shaded and cooled by a high curved ceiling.

Within a few moments, my Christian friend, Chris, another young American serviceman, with our Pakistani host, and I, each dressed in casual clothes, exited the Mosque and leaned over to tie on our shoes.

"Stand still. Don't say a thing!

Don't move!" our alert Pakistani host exclaimed.

I looked up alarmed to pay more attention to our surroundings. Before us a crowd of Pakistani villagers assembled, and a strong-voiced spokesman addressed them.

"They plan to stone you!

They believe you are spies!" our guide warned under his breath.

Sure enough, the men throughout the crowd threateningly held big gray stones in their fists and shouted toward us angrily. 
"They won't stone you as long as you stand here on the steps of the Mosque," said our guide.

Instantly, the thought came, I'm not leaving these step!

Could there be food in a Mosque? Could one live here for days?

The gravity of the situation turned my thoughts quickly to Jesus and I surrendered my life to him.

In a few moments, I could die a painful, bloody death as a target of heavy flying, fist-thrown rocks.

I thought of Jesus in the courtyard facing Pontius Pilate. I thought of Steven or Paul before crowds of bloodthirsty men. But now I prepared for death. In my spirit, I began to pray.

Never had I planned to die in such a way.

Our brave Muslim host suddenly acted on an idea. He approached the crowd and began shouting to the assembled men. He seemed quite a spokesman in his native dialect, but I couldn't understand his Pushtu or Urdu language.

"These men are not your enemies, they are our friends," he may have said. "Look, they have visited the Mosque with me. This agitator is lying to you and dishonoring our nation. These men have come in peace, not as enemies." 
All I know is, by God's wonderful grace, the crowd amazingly turned on the agitator.

He darted up the street trying to escape as the angry villagers quickly followed around a corner after him.

Our Pakistani host, my Christian friend, Chris, and I escaped down the street, not knowing what would befall us.

"Keep running!" they yelled back at me.

I noticed both my friends racing a distance ahead. My lungs hurt, my feet grew sore. I ran as best I could. I ran with my face in the air, swinging clenched fists.

Something made me look up. The sunlight slapped through tall leafy treetops over my head all along the village way.

In such an anxious moment, I recognized the unmistakable presence of the all-seeing God.

Amazed, I realized at the same time absolutely no one else appeared on this wide village street which served as our avenue of escape. No one peered out a window, no one stood in a doorway. One woman closed her shutters as we hurried by.

Running for my life, physically, I felt my heart beat a strained rhythm in my chest. At the same time, spiritually, I found myself experiencing an incredible, overwhelming inner peace.

In CORNER RETREAT, among things we can talk about are faith, hope, love, prayer, scripture, miracles, blessings, marriage, and living through trials in the neighborhood, the nation, and the world today.

I'm a BLOG neophyte. I request prayers to develop this BLOG.

Your comments are extremely Valuable. Leave your comments following the A-B-C's, as one teacher said. Make them Audible (clear), Brief, and Christ-centered.

Blessings to you,
Bill Hunt (c) 2010