“From Stranger to Stronger”

To be a ‘stranger’ to something or someone, is to be unfamiliar or a foreigner. Someone who is ‘estranged’ has made a conscious decision and moved in the other direction and gone from the familiar to being alienated.

I remember when my children were very young and teaching them the concept of ‘stranger danger.’ This was to instill the necessity to understand that not all strangers have good intentions. They needed to be instructed and guided on how to discern when to protect themselves and each other in the event they were in a situation that made them unsafe or uncomfortable.

To this day, as a woman who enjoys freedom of movement in public, I am aware of my surroundings and environment at all times. It’s when you least expect it, that the unpredictable happens. This includes being fully aware of the ‘stranger danger’ in the cyberspace environment as well.

When I worked in the health and fitness industry, it was the goal to be ‘strong.’ Not necessarily thin or physically attractive; but to be healthy and strong. This meant workouts were more than regular — they were often very challenging. It was par for the course, when you are responsible for leading, teaching, guiding and training those who entrust themselves to you. Many times, I would have to spot or support weight that my client would need assistance in offloading after several repetitions. Sometimes, it was their own body weight. So it was necessary for me to be strong enough to brace or carry weight to keep us both safe.

With strength, there is a general sense of confidence — in knowing you can handle a weight-bearing challenge.

Coming from a childhood that was rocked by an unusual familial environment where there were two sets of parents and two households (without the issue of divorce), life was complicated. To my school-aged peers, it was frowned upon and called ‘strange.’ And no one wanted to be around anything weird or unusual. Not a good way to start out in life.

This made for an ocean of explanations that no child my age seemed to be able to comprehend. So it goes without saying, my true friends were few and far between. Very rarely did a child of my generation seem to grasp the complexities of my living dilemma. So I simply didn’t share the experience. What child wants to audience others who constantly ask, ‘why is it like that?’

During that same span of lifetime, my relationship with GOD was very similar in nature — strange. Meaning, it wasn’t close or intimate. Somewhat undefined and irregular. It was very ‘one way’ if you viewed it from an aerial perspective. GOD knew all about me — I knew nothing about the nature or character of GOD. I would bring my wants and desires to Him (missing the mark on true prayer) but not listen to anything He had to say to me.

As I’ve come to a fuller, richer and more intimate relationship with my Savior, I can confidently say I am stronger. My relationship with Him is strong. I know Him. I trust Him. No longer is there this ambiguous and vague, undefined ‘thing’ called a spiritual belief in a ‘higher power.’ GOD is no longer a stranger to me. GOD is a Person. And I recognize that I am made in this Person’s Image.

So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27 New Living Translation

When I look at the two contrasting words: strange and strong, the two vowels that make the significance are ‘a’ and ‘o.’ And that’s where my tiny brain says: Alpha and Omega.

It was always the Alpha and Omega that was my missing peace (piece).

LINDA R. JOHNSON

“I am the Alpha and the Omega—the beginning and the end,” says the Lord God. “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come—the Almighty One.” Revelation 1:8 New Living Translation

I used to mourn my past life. Thinking back on it had always given me a sense of sadness and unhappy memories. But that has changed. It is in those difficult and painful seasons that I came to know the One Who was there all along. My determined spirit met those challenges with tears and relentless pursuit of GOD Himself. I believed GOD existed, but I just didn’t know Him personally. And I didn’t know He cared enough to want to have a one-to-one, up close, in person, in-your-face relationship with me.

Coming to the realization that I was worth dying for — on that Cross — made all the difference in the world.

LINDA R. JOHNSON

Just like those two letters ‘A’ and ‘O’ represent His Character — the Beginning and the End — He transformed me from stranger to stronger.

And He is still in the business of doing that for anyone who will call on His Name.

  • Where or Whom do you place confidence?
  • Are you satisfied with your relationship with GOD?
  • Do you have a relationship with your Maker?

My best advice to you would be: “Don’t put it off one second longer, Friend.” As the Scripture verse in Revelation declares, He will be back to close that last chapter in the Book. And when it’s all said and done, the choice that you make today, will make all the difference for that tomorrow.

Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. John 11:25 New Living Translation

It is no coincidence that you are reading this during this Easter season — the time of remembrance of the sacrifice Jesus Christ made for you and me. If your decision has long been made, you are in celebration mode. However, if you have yet to come to terms with your eternal destiny — facing it head on with all conscious knowledge of where you choose to spend eternity — now is the time, Sweet Friend. That rapid heart beat yearns to know peace.

No Jesus, no peace. Know Jesus, know peace.

I love you to Heaven and Back, Girlfriend ~~

LindaRJohnson, TitusTwo Visionary

3 Comments

    1. Robingerblick: Thank you for your words of encouragement, Robin. I’m learning that as we walk this Journey, the Lord will open our eyes to the things we may have overlooked in life — because we were too busy ‘living’ (as we thought) and looking for other ‘important stuff.’ But when we slow down enough to let Him point our focus onto what He wants us to behold, it is in THAT moment that so many examples of His Love coming flooding to the frontal part of our brain and overflow within our hearts.

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