Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23
Around the time I started going out with Elaine, My cousin June decided she was moving to British Columbia. We have always been close. She has been more of a sister than a cousin to me. Always willing to listen patiently to my problems. It broke my heart that she had to go.
June and her sister Bonnie were raised by their mom as their dad had abandoned them when they were toddlers. They lived just a few streets away from us in Verdun and were often over at our house. We had some fun times together. Her mom was a Christian as well and they also went to Verdun Pentecostal Church as children. Like myself, June fell away as a teenager from the Lord. Many of my girlfriends were introduced to me through June including one with which I lived with when I was about 19 or 20. That girl had a brother with whom June developed a relationship and got pregnant from. She gave birth to a girl and named her child Sherry.
That guy was a major problem, he was involved in stealing cars and other things and one day he was arrested on suspicion of a series of rapes that had been happening in the city. He was tried and found guilty. June cut off the relationship with him at that point, but still maintained a friendship with another of his sisters named D. Just before I came back to Christ, June had come back as well. This woman also gave her heart to the Lord along with her. D. wanted her brother to know Christ as she really believed that Jesus could change him.
It was set up that I could go and visit Him in Laval maximum security and it was there through the glass I was able to lead Him to the Lord. He became very hungry for Christ and started studying the bible. June decided it would be good to reconcile with Him and they decided to get married. But there was a problem. The federal government would be transferring him to a prison in B.C. June had to make a decision to move. It would be hard as she knew no one there, but she believed it was something she had to do. I was going to miss her greatly and I still do.
While in B.C., A. Became a model prisoner and June and him were wed. Because of his model prisoner status he was given an early parol and he went to live with June. He was doing very well and had a really good job, but one day started acting strange and coming home at strange hours. His job began to suffer as well. It wasn’t too long before the police were at their door and looking for A. Apparently there were a series of rapes going on in that area. He had made the mistake of taking one of the women’s bank cards and going to an ATM to withdraw funds and was caught on video. He was put away again in prison, this time as a dangerous offender with no chance of parole. June had to testify against him and it was one of the most trying times of her life. But it was her faith in God that sustained her. We wanted her to come home, but she really felt God still wanted her in B.C. She is now divorced from this man and has since remarried. She has 2 other daughters and is now a grandmother as well. She has been through so much and yet her faith in Christ has sustained her through everything she has passed through. I thank God for my cousin and yes I still miss her, but there is eternity coming and there will be lots of time for us to spend together.
After June left, God started moving in other areas of my life. He started bringing other family members such as my mom and her boyfriend John. John was a good man. My mom had gone through so much with my dad and had been lonely for quite a while. John was everything my mom needed. He treated my mom like a queen. He was divorced and had 5 children as well, when he moved in with my mom one of his daughters moved in with them. They started coming to church and because of conviction of the Lord they got married.
My brother David was the second oldest of my brothers, me being the oldest. There always seemed to be a rivalry between us. As much as my dad picked on me, it seemed David could do know wrong. David also liked to joke around and had an out going personality, where as I was shy and closed in. It seemed that whenever I had friends they would eventually gravitate towards David. I used to get so angry that many of them would choose David over me. I would also be jealous over some of the girls he would go out with and I would try and compete for them as well.
One evening, I sat down with David and confessed my heart to Him. I told him how I had been so jealous of him when we were younger and I asked him for forgiveness. I couldn’t believe what I saw. Tears began to fall from his eyes. I could tell it was the Holy Spirit touching him. There was one thing about David and that has been that he has always had a sensitive heart. I invited him to church. On that morning I sang There Is a Redeemer by Keith Green and my heart swelled with emotion and pride to see my brother there sitting in the congregation. After the message Pastor Ken Bombay gave an alter call and my brother Dave was the first one up there. It was a glorious day. God had brought family into the church to replace what I had lost in my cousin June.
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