Here is an update from Ben! There were people everywhere in the hustle and bustle of what Bethel puts on every year called the Bethel Bazaar. People sell their homemade goods and different things like that, along with balloon animals for kids and face painting. I had both girls in tow as Jo was helping by doing portraits. I saw someone from my revival group, who was helping her friend at a table, greeting someone else from our revival group. I just stopped to say Hi to them and quickly realized that I knew the others at the table selling different signs and handmade journals. As I was talking to them and seeing what they were selling, I happened to notice a Bible they were using for some décor and I said, “Hey, that reminds me of a bible I used to have.”
REWIND //\\ Last year, in BSSM 1st year, on the second day of school, I had lead worship and had used my bible and my backpack to save my seat. When I came back, someone else was sitting in the seats I’d saved, my backpack was crammed under a seat, and my bible was gone. I was so confused, but thought maybe it will show up in the lost and found that we had there. I had searched it the remainder of that week with no success. My bible hadn’t sho wn up. I began to think that maybe it was stolen, “But who would steal a bible at a bible school? Maybe someone just needed it more than I.” I had thought. Frustrated and a little upset I started saying, “I want my bible back!!” over and over again and I shared my story with others and they urged me to keep checking lost and found and so I did faithfully, almost every day, believing for my bible to turn up. They also suggested that someone may have picked it up and thrown it into the back of their car and not realized it was theirs. So I forgave whoever it was and for whatever reason it was, but still wanted it back.
There was a person in my revival group last year that had heard my story, asked what kind it was and without my knowing it, bought me a brand new, NICE bible (NOT cheap)!! I was so surprised and touched by their generosity and I was now back in the game. I kept holding on to the belief that I would see my old bible again someday. I finally started taking notes in my bible and highlighting things and all that. You know, getting to know your bible and all that takes time. Well then a couple of weeks ago I went to the church service alone because Joanna had a class she was taking, so I saved my seat in the overflow room with my bible and I thought, “I hope it doesn’t get taken.” I was half joking and left it there and went into the main sanctuary for worship. After that I returned to see someone else sitting in my seat and my bible nowhere to be seen. Checked the churches lost and found and asked around that seat and no one saw it. “Could this really be happening again??” I told Jo and we were both in disbelief.
So now both bibles gone, I began to search online for another NEW bible. I would now have two new bibles in two years. Man, was I discouraged. I looked and looked but couldn’t find one that I liked online and thought I was going to have to go into a bible bookstore to look for one and probably have to pay overprice for it. I wanted to see if I could find one like my first one. I was going to go today but we were busy all day and now we were at the Bazaar. I also have Preaching Week coming up after Thanksgiving break so I need a new bible.
BACK TO THE BAZAAR \\// “Hey, that reminds me of a bible I used to have.” I said to my friend Rachel, whom I met before 1st year started. She said, “Yeah, it belongs to some guy named Ben Overly.”(I am not sure she knew my last name) I had thought she was just joking, and that it was hers. I looked at her, waiting for that punch line and she just kept looking at me. “Are you freaking kidding me?” I said. And she just said, “No” as she was shaking her head. I said it again with a little more disbelief, “ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??” “If this is my bible….” I began to open up the cover and look for my notes and some pink sticky notes I had in there. As I opened it up and saw that first glimpse of pink my heart just leaped for joy!!! “OH, MY GOD!!” (I was really talking to Him). My emotions began to come out and I started to cry as I realized the faithfulness of a Father who returned to me what was lost. Oh, how I felt His love as I have been contending to “Wanting my bible back!”
I came to find out that Rachel had accidentally picked it up and didn’t realize that she had and she packed it into a book box that went back to Florida with her over the summer and happened to come back with her to Redding!… She found it 3 days ago in that box and didn’t think about it because there is a person in Florida with the last name Overly and was confused how it ended up in Redding.
I can’t begin to think about how this all came about, how I ‘happened’ to stop at the table because I happened to see a couple friends saying hi and deciding to say hi myself, they happened to use the bible for décor because she found it 3 days before, to looking at what they were selling and happening to see the bible, taking a second look and mentioning I had one like that, to Rachel saying that it belongs to “someone named Ben Overly” to me just looking and seeing if was actually true, and God bringing my bible back!! There is no coincidence here!!
This is not the first time this has happened. I heard this testimony about a guy who lost his pocket watch that had sentimental value and God brought it back to him. http://youtu.be/3tNZKUl4D5E (Here is the story). But I’ve had this happen with my wallet where I searched and searched for it when Joanna and I were out on day trip to one of the great lakes. I looked everywhere we had been. I tore the car apart, looked under both seats with my flashlight multiple times to make sure. We were heading back home and I said, “I want my wallet back!” and I felt an impression to check under my seat. I said, “No, God I already did check twice.” “Check again.” Came the response. As soon as I put my hand under the seat it hit my wallet. It was barely under my seat and there was no way it could have been missed the way I looked under there. It happened with a hat of mine twice and several other things that were lost for weeks and just appeared in plain sight!
So I believe this is a prophetic declaration and a time to call back things that were once lost (I’m calling back my debt free days. Haha!) This is the year of Jubilee and a restoration of things that were once wrong to be made right. The testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of prophecy. +Revelation 19:10 What He has done for me, he will do for you! He is so good!
Send me any testimonies you have like this!
I will give thanks to the Lord
with all my heart;
I will tell of all Your wonders.
I will be glad and exult in You,
I will sing praise to the Your name,
O Most High.