The Day I Died

What's Your Story?

What's Your Story? The Day I Died

I don’t remember the exact date or time when I died but I remember it as if it was yesterday.

When I was ten or so, I became the 1000th member of St. Mark’s United Methodist church. At least that’s how I remember it. But who is to say how accurate a 10-year-old’s memory is when they are decades removed from the event. Not long after my parents grew disillusioned with Malloy Owens and stopped attending St. Mark’s. For reasons I still can’t explain, sometimes I would ride my single-speed Spider bike up Six Forks road to sit in the balcony during Sunday services a Bayleaf Baptist.

During my years at Millbrook High, at the urging of my friend Greg Martin, I attended MYF (Methodist Youth Fellowship). Later, during my first year at N.C. State, another friend, Greg Rogers, encouraged me to join Campus Life.

Then I died.

I’m not one hundred percent sure which came first: the incident at the pond or the encounter on the second floor of D. H. Hill library. I only know at some point I was alive and then I was not.

No one was with me that night in the theatre on the second floor of the library when I confessed to God that I could never kick my sin-habit: that given the choice, I would always steal, lie, cheat, cuss, and demand to be in charge of my life. My mind tended to wander towards lewd thoughts and violent fantasies. So that day at the pond on the property of New Life Camp I waded out, took a breath, and fell in.

After my baptism in New Life’s pond and receiving the Holy Spirit in D. H. Hill’s library, I died and came back to life a new man. To be honest, few things changed after my second birth. Most of my habits and inclinations remained. But one thing had changed: my desire to become more like Christ and less like the old Eddie. I’m convinced that when I became baptized with water and the Holy Spirit of Christ my spiritual DNA began to change. Slowly, so very slowly, but changed I am. I have an inner peace, a confidence, that when I die I will see Christ, His Father, and all my relatives and friends who also died and were born anew with the Spirit of Christ.

I come from a family of individuals who went to church on a regular basis but that couldn’t save me. My great grandfather was a primitive Baptist preacher but that couldn’t save me. I went to church most of my youth and became a member of a church at the age of ten but that couldn’t save me. I lived under a death sentence due to my sins. The only thing that could save me was exchanging my life for the life of Christ.

That’s my story. What’s your death-to-life story? If you do not have one ask yourself this:

* If Jesus Christ is a real historical figure … and
* If He claimed to be the Son of God … and
* If Christ was executed for claiming to be the King of the Jews and One who takes away our sins … and
* He was none of these things … then

Why would those closest to Him agree to be beaten with rods, stoned with rocks, whipped until their flesh peeled, and beheaded and crucified for a lie? What was their motive? What did they gain by spreading such a scam? Is it possible that a group of first century Jews despised the religious authority so much that they welcomed the destruction of the Temple — that they invited the mass slaughter of their friends and family?

Would you be willing to die for such a lie?

If not, if it makes more sense to agree that Jesus must have appeared to his disciples and at least 500 followers (as Biblical accounts claim), then at the very least consider that everything he said about himself is true. And if it is, then why not invite Christ to have a conversation with you. Ask. Start with a simple, audible request for the two of you to have a chat. Invite Him to join you.

If you have questions or wish to talk about any of this, contact me: eddie@eddiejones.org.

I love to tell His story.

As a prison inmate with no family or money …

Buncombe_Co_DF

 

As a prison inmate with no family or money, I am an inmate requesting your book “Regener8: Straight Talk for Street Smart Teens” by Robert Cook without cost or obligation. I feel like this book was written to help me grow in my relationship with Jesus. Please send this booklet directly to me. So I pray, and now I am submit my request letter to your business or organization. I am so sorry I do not have anything to donate at this time. I read some of this life changing book, the Prisoner was released and took it with him. With this book I connect with god in a whole new way. I thank you in advance for your help / response to this request and I look forward to receiving your book and letter in the future.

Your for Christ because of his love.

How the Second Coming of Jesus Could Happen By 2033

And Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. is hailed as a prophet.

This is not an endorsement of a political party or individual, but only an observation.
I’m not saying THIS WILL HAPPEN. I’m only saying IT COULD HAPPEN.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

* Democratic nominee locked in by May of 2020.

* June 2020 polls show Democratic nominee leading Trump in key battleground states Trump needs to win to be re-elected. (Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and Pennsylvania). Polls show troubling numbers for him Texas and Arizona. In Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio, North Carolina and Arizona the president and the Democratic nominee are polling even.

* By July stock market reacts and begins to slide as cautious investors plan for the possibility of a President who promises huge taxes on corporations, small businesses, and the wealthy.

* Ahead of forthcoming tax law changes, large corporations and the rich begin moving jobs offshore and wealth out of the country.

* By August of 2020 US economy dips into a recession. Unemployment jumps.

* Democrat wins election in November 2020 by promising

* Open Boarders for anyone on the planet wishing to live in America
(in case you’re wondering, there are 7.6 billion people on the planet)
* Universal Child Care for everyone living in America
* Free College for everyone living in America
* Guaranteed Income for everyone living in America
* Reparations for descendants of slaves and LGBT persons
* Affordable Housing for everyone living in America
* Free Medicare for everyone living in America

* 3 months into new president’s first term, Democratic Congress cuts military spending to pay for promised social programs.

* July 2021 US economy plunges into a depression.

* Fall of 2021 the military, being the military, does what it always does when someone takes their guns. It fights back. Rumors swirl of a potential military coup.

* Spring of 2022 crime in most cities is out of control. Martial law takes affect in large towns. Things become chaotic with the military, police, and home guards staking out their turf.

* Winter 2022 the national debt reaches 53 percent of GDP. Neither the Democrats or Republicans have the will to address the nation’s soaring debt problem.  The U.S. defaults on its Treasury Notes. (The U.S. briefly did this in 1979;  it wasn’t pretty.)

* Early 2023 the global economy plunges into a full-blown melt-down.

* China can’t sell its wares to the US.

* As India’s economy implodes, riots lead to violence and a government crackdown.

* Briton, no longer in the EU, watches as neighboring countries scramble to mount a defense against Russia’s advances across Europe.

* Many Americans rush to the plain states and midwest to avoid lawlessness in urban cities.

* 2024 Yellowstone erupts. (Recently the volcano has shown increased activity.) 1/3 rd of Americans die.

* 2024 Greenland melts due to warming glaciers and fallout from Yellowstone’s volcanic ash. Sea levels suddenly rise two feet, flooding major East coast US cities. (not completely but enough to washout roads and mass transit)

* 2025 Earthquakes send the West Coast into panic and darkness (electrical grid infrastructure issues). Due to the toxic state of the midwest West Coast refuges cannot reach the East Coast.

* 2026 An asteroid hits Russia, wiping out half of Europe.

* 2026 The seven years of tribulation begins.

* 2033 Jesus returns.

* Congress, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. hailed as a prophet. https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/daniel-turner-ocasio-cortez-is-wrong-again-the-world-will-not-end-in-12-years

The Day Dad Stopped World War II

Raymond JonesOn May 7, 1945, Germany learned that Raymond Jones of Seaboard, North Carolina, would turn 18 the next day and enlist in the U.S. Army. Rather than face THAT, Germany signed an unconditional surrender at Allied headquarters in Reims, France, to take effect the following day, ending the European conflict of World War II – and sparing my father from having to open a big old can of U.S. whoop &*^# on’em.

Mom … My Biggest Fan and Best Salesperson

Happy Mother's Day, ya'll

Momma_NellOne thing about Mom, you always knew what she was thinking—whether you wanted to know or not. You also knew you were loved.

A few years ago Mom was on her way to the hairdresser when another driver ran a stop sign and smashed into her Buick. Mom got out, inspected the damage, and exchanged insurance information with the other driver. While waiting for the police to arrive, Mom popped the trunk and motioned the other woman to the trunk.

“My son’s a writer,” Mom announced, “and I’ve got some of his books. Do you want a copy?” I wasn’t at the crash site, but knowing Mom, I imagine the inflection in her voice was more like: “You do want a copy of my son’s book, right?” I’m almost certain of this because the woman bought one copy of my pirate novel. I bet the woman doesn’t even have kids.

But that was Mom–always hawking my books and asking me how my writing was going. She worried constantly I wouldn’t make enough as a writer to support my family. I kept telling her our daily provision is God’s business; mine was to be obedient and write stories that reflect His truths.

In 2012 I lost my biggest fan and best salesperson.

The last thing Mom told me was, “I’m not as young as I used to be, Son. You need to come see me once in a while.”

I will, Mom. One of these days we’ll be together, again.

If you’re blessed enough to still have your mom around, give her a hug and whisper, “Love you, Mom.” Trust me, it’s the best and cheapest gift there is.

Love you, Mom.

—EJ

Creating Compelling Characters

From the book "A Novel Idea"

A Novel Idea - Learn How to Write a Novel in Under 60 MinutesWhat makes a character compelling? Simple. Something happens to them. Even if you despise your (_____), you enjoy telling others about his failures. “Did you hear what happened to my ex? He got busted for…” We love to loath, meddle in the affairs of others, and watch them fail. Our participation in their lives expands our world, which explains part of what fuels reality TV.

 

CHARACTERS MUST…
• Reveal heart
• Face obstacles
• Pick paths
• Make a discovery
• Reveal a secret

Characters Conquer Mountains

For your characters to be likable they should be witty, charming, wise, friendly, empathetic, authentic, encouraging, secure, or vulnerable. If your lead is perfect she’s boring, so give her both redeeming qualities and flaws so the reader can relate.

Give Your Lead Goals 
• What does she want?
• What is she willing to do to reach her goal?
• What WILL she do to reach that goal?
• What is she willing to sacrifice?
• What happens if the she fails?
• Is your Lead larger than life?
(Does he lay in the middle of highway, hang from a Ferris wheel, and rebuild an old house for the girl he loves?)

Want, Need, Motivation
If the reader questions why a character reacts in a certain way, then you’ve lost credibility. There are two reasons your characters act “out of character.”
1. There is no clear motivation for the character to perform the action.
2. The motivation provided isn’t sufficiently developed.

That’s the start of character development. Question: Is your character such that others cheer for you?

From Pit to Prominence (Faithfulness)

Ernie Big EZ Baker

Ernie Big EZ BakerSo the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in the prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there.” Genesis 39:22 (NIV)

In his thirties he led an e-business technology team from a start-up company to its public stock offering. The firm made a splash in the press, sold out, and went looking for a new and younger manager.

Unemployed, he founded a new business. The job took him to Asia where he met with top executives in the semi-conductor industry. Modeling the successful strategy of his previous job, he positioned the firm to go public. But days before their announcement, the global economy burped; investors pulled back, the firm floundered. For years he watched as one angel investor after another waltzed by his office, but none came bearing good news and gifts. The firm folded.

In order to pay the bills, he began restoring homes, adding decks, and refinishing rooms. Of course, business thrived. He hired additional help, rebuilt his savings, and discovered he enjoyed working with his hands, going to bed tired, and waking up in better shape than the day before. He dropped pounds and added muscle, plus a few more clients. Over coffee one morning, a customer commented on his leadership skills. “Would you like to have a job with an office, benefits, and stock options?” his friend asked.

“Only if it presents a challenge.”

Of course it would.

He accepted a job at the customer’s firm and soon his unit led the company in growth, profits, and efficiency. The CEO offered him a promotion, one as head of a new division with increased responsibility and income. Then, on the eve of the announcement, he was diagnosed with bone cancer. The firm fired him.

Joseph also suffered betrayal, mistreatment, and misfortune. Told by God that he would become a grand leader, Joseph struggled with the mantle of greatness. Listen to the dream I had,” said Joseph.I had another dream… No one is greater in this house than I am…When all goes well with you, remember me… show me kindness… mention meI have done nothing to deserve being put in a pit.” Joseph’s arrogant attitude bred jealousy and resentment, leading others to forget and forsake him.

God has made each of us responsible for someone and some thing. Whether we’re serving time in prison, serving soup to the homeless, or serving on the board of a Fortune 500 company, our attitude toward others reflects our heart for God’s work.

When my friend arrived home that final evening, he hugged his wife, held her hand, and prayed for God to see them through the crisis—just as they’d done in times past. I have no doubt he’ll rise again from pit to prominence. That’s what men of God do.

Even when we feel imprisoned, we don’t have to yield to despair. God’s promises, power, and protection will set us free if we trust, work, and wait upon Him.

On APRIL 26, 2019, after a 9 year battle with cancer, God welcomed Big EZ home. I have no doubt Ernie heard the words, “Good job, buddy. You did it!”

 

My Father's Business(the post above first appeared in the book My Father’s Business.)