Grade school bullies with sneers on their faces used to ask me (with a fist cocked in front of my face), “Are you sceered now!?” The only person I ever feared was my dad, but he was a big stern Spanish/Irish bruiser. And so it is, “If we fear God we have nothing else to fear.”
The reason for my writing the things below is for you the reader to take heart; strengthen your arms and legs, straighten your back and walk uprightly in the evil day. And, “May our Lord Jesus Christ …comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.”
I love adventure. In addition to what I have written previously, I have explored most of Central America, climbed ancient temples and scrutinized the inscriptions found on them. I climbed the hundreds of steps to the top of the Mayan Temple of the Moon on a central plain in Central America. I’ve also been on an archeological dig on the first Spanish colony on mainland U.S. in Pensacola, Florida, where a young lady’s skull was brought up out of the ground while I was there, not but thirty feet away.
I “discovered” the landing place and the remains of the fort that Hernan Cortes and his men built, along with the foundation of a chapel in front of it. (It was shown to me by a distant ancestor of Cortes’ right hand man, Pedro De Alvarado, before it recently became a tourist destination.) I saw for myself the first church in the New World, the first hospital and the first school, also built by Cortes.
I did all of this while researching a screenplay which I was writing a few years ago. Just look what God’s done for me. I’ve rubbed shoulders with numerous celebrities, been on stage, sang on stage; been in movies and television, and all with a degree of virtue, character and thanksgiving. Believe me, I’ve been there, done that.
This to me is living, living the life of faith. This means living life with limitless possibilities, and living life with gusto. I consider every experience a gift from God and thank Him for it.
Now, that isn’t to say that I haven’t experienced less gratifying experiences, setbacks and defeats. I have. But defeat only happens when you try to achieve something. In spite of my varied experiences, I’ve also endured failure like most other human beings. But when I received Christ I became “More than a conqueror though Christ who died for us.”
Whenever I’ve felt totally defeated, I’ve cried out to God, “Help Me!” And He always does, even while I’ve fallen asleep with exhaustion He is working things out in my favor. Believe me, I’ve had my share of tragedy, but that has only made me rely on the promises of God. It has made me dig deeply for the nuggets of truth and promises that are only found in the Bible.
On awakening from a dreadful previous day, I find myself invigorated and my strength renewed. Optimism fills my soul and I attack the day with renewed strength and vigor, inviting adventure and victory into my life as I breathe in the very breath of God and say, “This is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.” His blessings are renewed day by day.
I’m not trying to disparage my hum drum, politically correct, fellow Christians, but I can only assume that many, by the way they act, and the things they say, have lived a sheltered life. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but frankly they for the most part don’t know anything about the real world, that is—unless they came to Christ later in life.
Many of them have never breathed deeply and felt the rush of sweet, clean invigorating air filling their lungs while relishing their surroundings. Instead their lives have become institutionally driven and geared. Their lives are mechanical and miserable. By that I mean that their lack of joy comes from having lived a cloistered life; they may as well be monks living in a monastery! Most are paralyzed by fear of their fellow man.
Some are lacking in social graces, being intimidated by outsiders. Their lives have become stifled and introverted. Is it any surprise that outsiders view us with suspicion and ridicule when we lack compassion for them and even fear them? (We are in the world but not of the world.) We are light in an ever darkening world. The Bible says we are to be salt in the world. Yet we are losing our savor and are ready to be tossed out into the street and be trodden upon by men.
This may sound ironic, but I have to pity the man who’s never had trials and tribulations in life so he can experience joy. Even the men closest to God, which includes Moses, Jeremiah, David and Peter, have had their times of discouragement, and failure, even to the point of bitter tears. I pity the man who has never cried or tried to achieve something worthwhile.
Whenever you are experiencing tragedy, defeat, set backs or heartache, remember that eternity awaits us and this life is only a tiny part of it. What we believers sometimes fail to realize is that we have God on our side (even though we all too often fail to appropriate his promises and internalize them, making them a part of who we are.) Sometimes we don’t even know what His promises are for lack of reading Scripture.
For the majority of us, myself included, life isn’t always pretty and is often hard even for those of us who know Christ as personal friend and Savior. But sometimes tragedy is often what it takes to draw us closer to God.
Recently, I went to the world famous Naples fishing pier where thousands of people from all over the world visit each year. I felt that I might be able to share Christ and the Word of God there since the last time I was there I overheard the local fishermen discussing recent world events under the shelter at the end of the pier.
Lo and behold, there was Eddy, a man in his fifties sitting in the shade of the shelter, to whom I had given my double sided card the day before (the one with my website on the front and Rapture Ready link on the back). Eddy called me over and asked me about my prophecy movie. “Hey Jim, tell me more about your proposed movie, The Prophecies 2016.
Apparently he had checked out both sites on the Internet in his hotel room. So naturally I jumped right in and explained the premise of it, along with a few Bible prophecies, particularly the one given by Jesus Christ about the Second Coming and the prelude to His arrival.
Eddy paid very close attention to each and every word with a look of concern on his face. Once in a while he would misquote a passage and I would gently correct him, thus I was able to explain things that were prophesied in the Bible and to quote specific verses.
We were surrounded by a few other men, and when I began talking about spiritual things you could have heard a pin drop. (Usually there is constant chatter and banter.) Everyone was soaking it in, just like I thought they would. Indeed, everyone is “sceered” now and alarmed by all the things happening in our country and around the world. It seems that the whole world is just waiting for someone to explain spiritual things to them.
All through the conversation the older black man sitting beside him never said a word, but I had a feeling he was being convicted by the things I said, which included my testimony.
The fish weren’t biting so I had a captive audience. But since we’re supposed to be “fishers of men” I felt that I had a good catch that day. This for me is the apex of adventure, adventure that really counts for something.
In closing, I’d like you to know that the spiritual and miraculous things that have happened to me in over forty years of one-on-one street ministry are too many to include in this short essay. However, some of them are included in my proposed movie The Prophecies 2016 making it a true to life story.
So hang in there, be strong, and be of good cheer; relish life and the opportunities it affords.
Trust God and His promises in Christ Jesus.
Jim Torres “Towers”
Write me at – email@example.com