It was during the times when people got really excited when someone received the Holy Ghost. Can you remember those times? When old fashioned revivals were held for day without end, when people received the Holy Ghost not just at the church, but at home? When I came to, our living room was filled with our church family. The voice went out through the small town-all three of the Castillo Kids were speaking in tongues and God was filling them with the Holy Ghost. It was cause for celebration. The year 1988 had come in with a bang!
In 1988 I had NO idea that 23 years later I would be a licensed minister of the United Pentecostal Church, a Career Missionary alongside my husband, and an International Motivational Speaker. I have ministered in the countries of Mexico, U.S., Canada, throughout Central America, the Caribbean, and in South America. A little Spanish girl from South Texas? How could that be possible?
Good thing God doesn't look at our outer appearance (because if He did, I certainly would not have been the one chosen!) but He looks at the heart. He saw my deepest desire. I longed to do great things for His kingdom! My heart screamed out, even at that early age, "God, if you can use anything, you can use ME! I will do whatever it takes to reach the lost and hurting, telling them of the mighty God that I serve!"
As the first day of 2011 dwindles to a close, my heart, again, screams what it did 23 years ago.."God, if you can use anything, you can use ME! I will do whatever it takes to reach the lost and hurting, telling them of the mighty God that I serve!"
I have entered this new year with great purpose. I told my husband yesterday. I feel like a thoroughbred horse that is in the last race to win the triple crown. The gates are closed. The crowds are hushed. Everyone is anticipating for the gate to open for that thoroughbred to leap out and run as fast it can...
10[For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [b]">[b]which it exerts over believers], and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed [in spirit into His likeness even] to His death, [in the hope]
11That if possible I may attain to the [c]">[c]spiritual and moral] resurrection [that lifts me] out from among the dead [even while in the body].
12Not that I have now attained [this ideal], or have already been made perfect, but I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me His own.
13I do not consider, brethren, that I have captured and made it my own [yet]; but one thing I do [it is my one aspiration]: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,
14I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.