Follow your dreams with God’s guidance

Published 7:30 am Saturday, September 24, 2022

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Clint had a lifelong dream. If only he could stand before an audience and sing praises to God. But Clint stuttered. Most words that did come out were unintelligible. Even relatives and people who had known him all his life had a hard time understanding him.

School was especially difficult for him. Besides being made uncomfortable by his classmates, even his teachers could not understand him. There were many words he just could not get out.

After graduating from high school, he got a job and met and married Celia, a co-worker. She urged him to attend church with her, which he did reluctantly. He was afraid someone might call on him to pray. He felt so insecure that he wrote a brief prayer on a slip of paper, folded it and carried it in his shirt pocket. Soon after that, he was asked to dismiss the worship service. It flustered him so that he forgot all about the brief prayer on a slip of paper in his pocket. But words did come to him. “Lord, thank you for this day. Amen.”

He was amazed that two months later he was asked to be a Sunday school superintendent. The church members knew about his problem. They understood and promised to help him.  When it was needed, it was provided. With all of this encouragement, he gained more confidence. As the months and years passed and he continued to serve as a superintendent, words came easier for him. He had less difficulty with pronouncement.

During that time, his dream to sing was as vivid as ever, so one Sunday morning at the worship service, he prayed a special prayer: “Lord if you will let me know how to sing, I will go out wherever you want to send me and sing.” Sometime later, Clinton stepped before the people of the congregation who had nourished and encouraged him. From his lips flowed the beloved and beautiful hymn, “The Old Rugged Cross.” Among that congregation that Sunday, there were some misty eyes and thankful hearts that God had blessed him with the voice to sing in praise to him.

The last I heard, Clinton was still fulfilling his vow to our Lord. He sings at his own church as well as other churches as invited. He praises God through song at funerals, revivals and homecomings. He sang at a homecoming where he was known by many of the people. Some were amazed. Smiling broadly, Clinton said that they could not believe he could do it.

Clinton did not have to give a testimony at that church nor in his home church. The fact that they saw him stand before them and sing was proof enough that God had touched him in a special way. In other places he was always willing to tell people what God had done for him.

Psalms 96:2, The Living Bible, declares “Sing out his praises…” Now with his gift from God, Clinton obeys the scripture and fulfills his lifelong dream.