My name is James Fleurent, a father of seven grown wonderful children, a beautiful wife, and an average life in California, USA. Quite frankly, I am not sure what God has planned for me for the rest of my life. But his Holy Spirit has called on me, and I am positive he will reveal his plan for me as I feel he has led me here to CLI. I was brought up Catholic, and graduated from a Catholic high school on the east coast. I did some college and wandered through life giving Jesus just a small part of me. It seemed an occasional Sunday and prayer was all the time I had for him. God was good to me though providing a good job and two homes to own. It was like he gave me the world and I had not even asked for it.
Then five years ago, (I am 63 now) I got sick. I was diagnosed with stage four mantle cell lymphoma. The prognosis? Three months or so, or a few years if I underwent a radical chemo regimen at the City Of Hope in Duarte, California. The chemo was a brutal week of four or more chemicals non stop in the hospital, then two weeks home to recover, then back for another week and so on for 5 months. Many in this cancer trial died, but the Lord helped me through it. The fifth and sixth month I spent full time at the hospital rebuilding my immune system and collecting stem cells for a bone marrow transplant. We spent those six months in prayer, and Jesus answered his not so faithful servant.
Seven days before my scheduled transplant, I awakened in the middle of the night from a nightmare. Or, more exactly, my wife awakened me as I was screaming in my sleep (she spent every night in a chair in my room). I had the same dream each night for seven days. It was with me looking down a vortex, a tornado type structure that was black, and I would get sucked down to the bottom. Down there it was cold and I could feel souls full of hate and despair, even though it was dark and I could not see. I would scream and wake up. The seventh night, the night before my transplant, I was dreaming and got sucked up a white vortex! It was warm and blinding white as I felt souls around me full of love and kindness. I yelled out for my departed mother, but no one could hear me as I was not one of them. As I awoke to tell my wife, I had a vision of Jesus; I was wide awake and he was in front of me. He said two words—— “You’re alright,” and he faded away.
My wife and I spent much time talking about my encounter, and where it would lead us. First thing was back to church, and we were born again in Jesus. What does this mean? What do I do? I do not know, but am sure Christ will reveal his plan to me. Since 2011, my cancer has been in remission, and I share my story with all who will listen. This has lead me to CLI. We sold both homes and cars to live through this test and now reside in a mobile home, but are so thankful to God for more time to spread his word. I am disabled with arthritis and problems from the chemo. With little income, I am thankful God has shown me CLI so I can continue to learn, and spread his word. I know what God’s love is now, and have exceeded my life expectancy twofold, and with his grace I continue.
As to the definition of love, we babysit our grand children. One day, as my five year old granddaughter Rubi (we have been blessed with 13) was going out the front door, she said ” I love you Papa.” I said back “Rubi, do you know what love is? I can tell you (of my love for Jesus).” She said, “Yes, it is like today when Mimi (Grandma) said she had a bad back, then she bent over and helped you put on your shoes.” “Yes, Rubi, that’s how we love, and God loves us.”
Having little financially, I am grateful that God led me to CLI so I can continue to grow and spread Christ and Christian teachings.
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