“  This, in part, is an update.
It’s a necessary one, I’m convinced.
It’s been, you see, a week since my last writing when I was clearly staggering through a full-on physical and mental challenge of my faith.
And the column, produced in that midst, seems to have peeked many readers’ interest in my progress through that whole situation.
So – in all honesty as usual, I say out front, the battle ain’t over.
It will never be over until I leave this time side of life.
Yet I can more readily accept all of that today greatly because of what I re-learned through last week’s  challenges.
God is with me – oh, maybe not always in the ways that I think, but He’s here.
And He won’t let me fail Him or myself.
I know all of that said and written this way could smack to some as arrogant Pharisee-ish bragging.
But I trust that no one – especially those who know me – will take it as such.
This ain’t bragging because it ain’t.
When God is with you once, especially when you truly need Him, you know He’s going to be there again – and again – and again.
And you know you’ll feel Him there even when the results of what you’re struggling against may not come out quite as you’ve envisioned.
That’s how I felt all through last week, especially when I could feel the devil trying to sift me and turn me around.
In the pitch of the battle, God never let me forget: you’ve got to have faith.
And so I held my faith and I built on every little victory that the effort would seem to afford me:
Oh goodness, my whole leg feels as stiff as a board and as painful as one being whacked by a hammer.
Ah, but it is so cool inside my room where I am even though the temperature outside seems to be above boiling.
Hey, you know? This doggone leg doesn’t feel quite as stiff and painful as it once did….
Oh my goodness, with as badly as I feel at this moment, I can’t see that I’m ever going to get better.
But somehow, despite all that, there are parts of me that feel almost better than they’ve ever felt.
And that’s especially true when I think about Jesus and what He went through on that cross.
Hey, you know? I might just be getting better. I feel good….
The Holy Spirit clearly made those little epiphanies and others like them carry through to today’s writing.
And today I can write that all things considered, I feel great.
How great?
Well, I have this mental picture of Satan at a moment last week when he genuinely thought he had me.
In my head, he is dripping sweat, but beaming and clearly thinking: “I’ve got him; I’ve got him; I’ve got another one. I’ve got another one. I can hardly wait. I’ll make Him see that I’m as strong as He is.”
But then suddenly, the master of evil’s countenance drops and he slinks out of my minds eye, crying: “You fooled me. You fooled me. But this is not over – I’ll be back; I’ll be back.”
I love it.
Nobody can tell me I don’t feel good today.
Thank you God.
“And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith” (Luke 17:5).

Ozzie Roberts

August 4, 2019