“Dear God, As I open my eyes to the world, please open my eyes to what you want me to do in it today!
‘So do not be afraid. I am with you.
Do not be terrified. I am your God.
I will make you strong and help you.
My powerful right hand will take good care of you.
I always do what is right.’
“Another version that a friend sent me:
‘Don’t panic. I’m with you
There’s no need to fear for I’m your God.
I’ll give you strength. I’ll help you.
I’ll hold you steady, keeping a firm grip on you.’
“This is the verse I live by. I have often wondered how people can endure things without Jesus in their life. In 1981, while pregnant with my son Todd, I was diagnosed with a serious blood disorder. By the grace of God, they found what the disorder was and were able to treat me. Without treatment, I would have bled to death and left my 3-year-old daughter and my newborn son with no mother. He said, ‘Don’t panic, for I am with you!’
“Marlin and I started coming to Epic Church in May of 2015. My daughter-in-law, Beth, told us of the church they had been visiting down the street from their house. She said that she was sitting in the back of the gathering room by herself one Sunday and a woman she didn’t know came to her, put her arm around her, and said, ‘I felt I had to pray for you’. I told Beth that the next time she goes to church, she should let me know, and we would come with her. We visited Epic and the rest is history. God’s plan was to keep a firm grip on us.
“Marlin and I met at the Bethlehem Globe-Times Newspaper on May 5, 1974. Eleven months to the day, we were married and our co-workers said ‘it wouldn’t last. 41 years later and we are still together. He says, ‘I will hold you steady.’
“Marlin and I were both raised as only children. Marlin was adopted when he was a baby. We often wondered if he had siblings. Out of the blue one afternoon, Jesus sent him 3 brothers: one from Bartonsville, one from Pen Argyl and one from out of state. How wonderful that God allowed us to spend time with Marlin’s family. We had brothers, sister-in-laws, nephews and a niece. Our children finally had aunts, uncles, and cousins. This is God’s grace.
“For the past few years, I have struggled with some health issues, especially my lower back. It is hard for me to walk with constant pain, but I know that Jesus has other work for me to do here on earth. He says, ‘I will give you strength and I will help you.’
“The things Jesus blessed me with the most are my children and especially my precious grandsons, Cole and Connor. They are the joy that keeps me going. Even through challenging situations, health problems, financial difficulties, [God] is my strength and rock!”