Norma Budden-Aningat leads a full and active life. She has her moments of trials and tribulations and sometimes makes mistakes, as we all do.
However, Norma has Someone who remains beside her through every moment of her life.
He carries her through difficult times and shares in her triumphs and joy. Norma is passionate in so many areas but her greatest passion is for others to come to know the greatest man - the One who protects her soul from danger- the man Jesus Christ
Table of Contents or Excerpts
Excerpt from Crossing the Bridge Chapter 5
You may have been thinking of giving your heart and life to Jesus before actually surrendering to Him, but you were not walking with Him.
It is only when you take the first step and get saved, convert, or dedicate your life to Jesus, that you take the first actual step onto the bridge.
You look ahead but cannot see where the bridge ends. You have no idea how long journey will be, but you know you are going in the right direction. You know Jesus is leading the way.
You hold on to the rails and the sweat may begin to pour from you as you look over the edge of the bridge and see that to fall would be tragic. You have no idea how long the journey will be, but you know you are going in the right direction.
You take your second step. You realize you are still closer to where you came from and could still turn back if you chose to. However, inside your spirit something leads you on toward your destination.
You take your third step and realize this bridge has it high and low points. You begin to hold the rails a little tighter and your breathing becomes a little heavier. Three steps backwards and you're back where you started. It would be so easy to turn back but you keep pressing on.
You take a few more steps and looking back, it seems you have come a long way. You feel you have made progress and begin to feel good inside.
You take another few steps it seems, when you look back, you haven't advanced at all. You are no further ahead.
You begin to feel tired from the weight you carry. Too much unnecessary baggage is slowing you down.
You throw something over the bridge and your load becomes lighter, enabling you to continue.
You can still see where you came from but you're walking further and further away from it.
You keep walking along the bridge and realize you are still carrying a lot of baggage.
Piece by piece you throw away the excess baggage and continue to walk straight ahead, while your focus is only on your destination.
When the wind blows, you aren't scared.
When the bridge leads to a higher or lower elevation, you hold the rails tighter.
You look back and cannot see where you started, though certain aspects will stand out in your mind.
You keep walking.
You were once so afraid to look over the side of the bridge, almost so afraid that you wanted to turn around and go back where you came from.
Now, although you are still aware of the tragedy if you fall from the bridge, it serves as a reminder. It's not a source of dread because your faith has grown.
You still have no idea how much longer the journey will be but your focus remains strong. Your journey gets better, though not always easier, each day.
You know there are no deviations from the path. You will always have to go through the highs and lows, unless you turn back.
You will encounter obstacles trying to distract you from your purpose.
You will have to walk through the strong winds which try to push you off the bridge.
Yet, you continue walking.
Rain will beat down upon you, blinding your vision, but you keep holding onto the rails.
Snow will blow against you, causing your blood to turn to ice, while your fingers begin to freeze while clasping the rails.
You continue walking.
Still, you have no idea how much longer the journey will take.
You think back to the beginning of your journey and realize how much stronger you've become.
At first, you were so scared. You feared the unknown. Yet, you've come through and survived so much.
Your persistence has increased. Your dedication is complete. Hope continues to grow within your soul.
You know where you're heading. You know when you arrive you'll be glad you took this journey, this walk along this particular bridge.
You also know you could never have made it by yourself. You know Jesus has walked with you every step of the way.
The more relaxed you were, the more you were able to talk with Him.
The tighter you held onto the rails, the tighter His embrace became.
The colder your journey became, the more He warmed your heart.
The harder the rains fell, the more He wiped the tears from your eyes.
The more snow that fell upon you, the more you resembled purity.
The quieter you became, the more you learned to listen to His voice.
The more excited you became, the more His heart rejoiced.
The more tired you became, the more He carried you.
Excerpt from Crossing the Bridge Chapter 9
When the Master plays your song, people will begin to envy you. They will yearn to sound as good as you and will desire to learn more about your Player.
They will want to trade places with you, to claim your Player as their own.
They will hear your music and will want to hear it played forever; marvelling at the One who plays your instrument.
They will claim to have never heard such music played before and will seek Him.
If your Player was to put you aside and leave (which He wouldn't), people would look for him.
They would search inside closets and open every door in the building, looking for Him, desiring to claim Him as their own.
They would shout His name from the rooftops and search for Him on every street corner.
They would walk into the dark alleys and investigate every shadow.
They would leave no stone unturned trying to find Him.
The Player says if you search for Him you will find Him. (Heb.11:6; Luke 12:31)
People are searching for your Player.
Can you believe it?
Because you were faithful, because you chose to carry your cross, at all costs, and because you were willing to let the Master play your instrument, the world wants Him to be their Player.
What a reward!
Is there a greater reward for the faith-walker, the faith-talker, the cross-carrier?
Is there a greater reward for the one who is a willing instrument, who crosses the bridge called Jesus?
Our reward is eternal life.
Our reward is Heaven, our final destination.
Excerpt 3 Heaven: The Final Destination Chapter 3
Life is an adjustment.
From the moment we are born, we learn to live outside the womb.
We must get used to the brightness, the loud sounds around us, and the temperature change.
It's no wonder we cry at birth. We don't realize a whole new world has opened before us.
We sleep a lot, drink milk, and are carried everywhere. We steal attention from everyone, especially if we smile, and we like to think we've adjusted quite well, living outside the womb.
But we grow older. We begin to roll over, to sit up by ourselves, to crawl, and to walk.
Guess what happens?
We don't get carried everywhere anymore. We lose some of the attention we used to have. We find ourselves in the process of adjusting all over again.
Within a few years we're faster than our parents. We run to the store with Mom or Dad calling out for us to slow down.
By the time we turn five, we're starting school. Suddenly, we're supposed to be comfortable with strangers.
We adjust. We make some friends and like some teachers more than others. We begin to think for ourselves more than we used to.
A few years pass by and we have another adjustment to make. We'