Thelma Wells: God Is Not Through With Me Yet
By Thelma Wells
CBN.com Thelma Wells, author and popular speaker on the Women of Faith tour, specializes in the art of motivating, inspiring, and equipping people to “be their best.” Her latest book, God Is Not Through With Me Yet, offers readers the encouragement to face times of testing and uncertainty in life. As a writer, Thelma possesses the unique talent of communicating with her audience in a disarming, folksy manner, as if she and the reader are already good friends. As she shares some of her own memorable life experiences, her “tell-it-like-it-is” style, combined with her natural tendency toward motherly warmth, makes God Is Not Through With Me Yet an uplifting, irresistible read.
When she was just a little girl, Thelma was locked in a dark closet for hours at a time by her abusive grandmother. In this environment she discovered the power of praise. As she sang every old hymn she could remember, God met her in the darkness and exchanged her terror for overwhelming peace. Since that time, Thelma (or Mama T, as she is affectionately called) has been spreading the message of prayer and praise to everyone she meets, encouraging them to “sing in the closets of life.”
Thelma has seen God do mighty things through the fervent prayers and praises of his people—including her own miraculous healing from breast cancer. After recovering from two surgeries and months of sickness, Thelma is one energized great-grandmother who is truly convinced that God is not finished with her yet.
Recently she discussed her book.
Why do you feel that, despite trying all the programs and reading all the how-to books, many believers feel so distant from God?
I believe the how-to books go as far as they can in giving the human side of situations/circumstances, but they cannot answer the core of our being which is rooted and grounded in God. Once we’ve read the how-to’s, we find that they really don’t apply to everybody. A relationship with Jesus applies to everybody. Therefore, in order to be close to God, we must talk to Him (pray) any way we know how; we must listen to Him talk to us in our spirits (minds); we must study the Bible to see what He has to say to us from His Word; we must praise Him (say thank you to Him, sing to Him, love on Him); and we must watch the company we keep because people who don’t believe as we do can weaken our trust in Him which creates a breach with Him.
In your book, you discuss the importance of “singing in life’s closets.” Would you tell us why the act of singing is so meaningful to you?
In my experience of being put in a closet when I was a girl, I would sing hymns and Christian songs that would put me to sleep. When I got out of that closet on those days, I had no anger, vengeance, bitterness or anything that caused me to hate my grandmother who put me there. In later life, I’ve found that whatever the circumstance or however hard it is, when I sing Christian songs there’s a peace that surrounds me that I cannot explain. The Bible talks about praising God in Zephaniah 3:17 when God hears the praises of His people and He rejoices over them. When we praise God in singing, I believe He dispatches His ministering angels to protect our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Are there any areas of your life in which you have struggled with an attitude of disobedience?
Yes, there have been times when I struggled with going to church like I should, with spending money like I was a billionaire, with not doing or saying something God told me to. The most difficult was totally surrendering everything I am and have to God. You see, I was afraid to give Him my all because I didn’t know what He would want me to do, and some things I just didn’t want to do. In 1994 I totally surrendered to the will of God. That was the most freeing time of my life. God is in charge and is in control of my everyday events with my job, family, church, career, finances, relationships, etc.
As a child in the segregated South and, later, as a young woman battling segregation, you felt no fear. When did you first experience real fear in your life? How did God help you to overcome that fear?
There have been several times of fear in my life. When I was sick, I was not at all scared about the cancer or lungs. I did get disturbed about my ability to do for myself. To have someone have to bathe you, prepare your meals, comb your hair, and all the other things people were doing for me was a humbling experience. I had thoughts of not being able to be a help to others as I had in the past.
How would you explain prayer to a person who is not sure what it is or how to practice it?
Prayer is as natural as breathing. Can you talk? If you can talk or think, you can pray. Prayer is the heart’s sincere desires unuttered or spoken out loud. A pray can be as simple as saying “Help me Lord!” or “Jesus” or as in-depth as telling Him everything about you. Prayer is not to anybody but God. So, when you pray, be honest and true and just tell it like it is.
Want to read more? Purchase your copy of God Is Not Through with Me Yet.
Interview courtesy of the B&B Media Group. Used with permission.
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