Wednesday, July 30, 2014

It will not come near you!

A thousand may fall at your side,
    ten thousand at your right hand,
    but it will not come near you.
 You will only observe with your eyes
    and see the punishment of the wicked.

Psalm 91:7-8 


Monday, July 28, 2014

The Power of Words!

Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. Proverbs 18:21

Recently God taught me a very important lesson. You see, I'm generally a very nervous person. Anxiety runs in my family. Several family member have been or are now currently on anti-anxiety medications. To call me a worry wort is an understatement.  Because God gave me such a vivid imagination, I can often imagine terrible things happening to me and my loved ones in the future. I mean, it's to the point of seeing it played out in my mind like it already happened. It often goes like this: I get some disturbing or shocking news. I start to panic. My mind goes in a whirl and all the possible outcomes and situations come flooding in. Things like sickness, accidents, death, loss, hardship. Then I start voicing my fears. I tell my friends and husband that such and such might happen and I'm terrified of this happening. By that time, my fears have pretty much taken residence in my soul and I'm a nervous wreck.

And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. James  3:6

Let's face it, Satan knows us all too well. He knows I'm a nervous person, so the first thing he does when I get disturbing news is flood my mind with negativity. You think by now that I'd be onto him. Instead I cling to each negative thought and do the worst thing possible, I give a voice to it. Basically every time I tell a friend what I'm afraid will happen, I'm AGREEING with the powers of darkness.  The Bible tells us that what we say, what we allow to fall off our tongues has the power of life and death.  When we agree with the Devil, we grant him power to come in and do his will. We basically open the door and invite him in.

But what would happen if instead, I rejected the fearful thoughts in my mind and spoke a truth from God's Word??  What if instead of agreeing with Satan, I agreed with God? You may not think your words are powerful, but the Scripture says otherwise. How powerful are our words! So powerful, they can save us from hell!

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. Romans 10:9

In our flippant culture today, I don't think we place much value on what we say. A man's word is no longer expected to be reliable, blasphemy is everywhere, cursing, insulting, lying. It seems many of these things are commonplace. Therefore, I don't think we realize how powerful our words are. They can alter the course of our lives and either bring curse or blessing down upon us.

For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile 1 Peter 3:10

If you're like me, when something bad happens, you like to run to your closest friend or maybe your spouse and tell them how horrible everything is. You want sympathy and understanding. But I realize now that what ends up happening is I curse myself and my situation and often bring my worst fears into reality.  Yet God is so gracious he often rescues us anyway. But He doesn't always do that. Remember how the Israelites grumbled in the wilderness???  They spoke outloud that they would die in the wilderness. And God gave them what they declared.

Recently I received some bad news about a loved one. It's too personal to share here but suffice it to say, it's something that caused me great distress. Instantly my mind was filled with horrifying outcomes. But I stopped. I rejected every thought. I quoted Scripture that came to mind, and I prayed that God would use the situation for His glory, that His will would be done, and that what the devil meant for harm would be turned around for good. I also quoted my favorite verse Romans 8:28 that ALL things will work together for good.   And then I went about my business. Did the fears return? Absolutely. Over and over again. And I did the same thing over and over. Then I suppose the enemy got mad or bored and left. Now, I'm standing on the Word of God and proclaiming Victory in Jesus's name and not allowing the spirit of fear to take root.

Will I have relapses? Probably. Does the problem still exist? Yes. But instead of walking in fear, I'm now walking in Victory and standing on the promises of Almighty God that everything will work out for my good and His glory!!

I pray that my experience can help you do the same!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Friday Frenzy

Anyone else notice that time seems to be speeding by??  I remember when I was young, it couldn't go fast enough for me. Days would drag by and nights were interminable. But not so anymore. They do say that time seems to get faster when you're older, but I've asked young people the same question and they agree! 

I thought that by my age, my life would slow down a bit. With my kids grown and my career winding down, I pictured much more spare time to enjoy hobbies and friends. NOT.  Throw in a couple of grandkids and a booming career and I can't seem to keep up.

Notice the word grandkids?  Yes, I'm having another one!. My son's child this time. So life will get even more hectic, if that's possible. 

I truly wonder if God isn't speeding things up as we near the end of the age. Maybe He's heard all my prayers asking for Him to hurry up!  Yes, I'm one of those crazy Christians who can't wait for the end. I can't wait to stand before my Savior. I can't wait for the wedding feast! I can't wait to have a new body and be without sin!  And I can't wait to rule and reign with Jesus here on earth for a thousand years. Talk about a great ending to a story!! It's the greatest story ever told with the greatest ending!

In the meantime, I sit here in my office that looks like a ship's cabin and I write my stories, praying that some readers out there will be drawn to the one and only God who loves them beyond measure.  The problem for me seems to be finding time to actually do that writing!

So here's an update on what I'm working on

Done re-editing The Restitution and waiting on the cover before I upload it for sale as both an ebook and print.  (You're going to love the new cover!)

Halfway through my mermaid allegory entitled. Tears of the Sea.  I have also hired someone to create the cover!

In the beginning stages of coming up with ideas for my next pirate book. This is a really cool phase where characters barge into my mind uninvited and demand to have their story told, and ideas and scenes play out in my mind when I least expect them.  Weird, I know.

Other than that, I'm taking care of my granddaughter, running my house, cooking and cleaning like everyone else. And praising God for all His Blessings!!

Have a Great Weekend!


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

God is Your Rear Guard!

But you will not leave in haste or go in flight; for the Lord will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard. Isaiah 52:12


Monday, July 21, 2014

You are Not of this World!

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corin. 4:17-18 NIV

My kingdom is not of this world. Jesus

Have health problems?  This is not your only body. You are getting a brand new one soon that never ages and never gets sick or tired or sweaty. Can you imagine? 

Have money problems?  Your Father owns the cattle on a thousand hills. You are a child of the King of Kings, and though you may be poor in this world, some day soon you will inherit the Kingdom of God!
giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light  Col 1:12

Have family issues? Divorce, Prodigal children, unbelieving family members, strife, arguments?  Someday soon our sinful natures will be completely gone and we will be like Jesus, able by the power of the Holy Spirit to love everyone and bring peace to every relationship.

But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:2

Lonely? Don't have a family?  You have been adopted into the LARGEST family in the universe with God as your father and every believer your brothers and sisters. It may not feel like it now but someday you will be surrounded by people who love you and want to be with you. You need never be lonely again

the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”

Can't find a job? Someday soon you will reign on the earth with Jesus. What does reign mean? It means rule as in govern and regulate and monitor and judge. You will have fulfilling work helping Jesus rule the earth. Fun, meaningful, exciting work!

If we endure, we will also reign with him  1 Tim 2:12

Depressed? Filled with Sorrow?  Someday God will wipe away every tear

‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Rev 21:4

Yes, God can help us in this world. Yes, He does help us when we call upon Him and walk with Him. But let's face it, this world is fallen and is spiraling fast into darkness. As long as we are here (in enemy territory) we will always have struggles, trials, sorrows, heartaches, pain, and suffering.  Jesus Himself declared as much when He said in John 16 . "In this world, you will have trouble......." 

But then in the next phrase he tells us "But take heart  I have overcome the world."  You may ask what He meant by that"  On the one hand He says He's overcome the world, and on the other He says we will have troubles. If He has overcome the world, why do we still have troubles? Because Jesus is talking about the future when He returns to claim His Kingship.  He's saying...  Hang in there. This world is painful. But I'm coming soon to make all things new!

So, let's keep our eyes off this crumbling world and affix them on Jesus and our eternal destination. This life is but a blip on the radar, a millisecond in eternity. Our Hope should be directed toward that time when we shed this mortal covering and begin the adventure of an eternity we can't even imagine!!!!

Thank you, Jesus!


Friday, July 18, 2014

What about those Catholics?

Ever since Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of Castle Church of Wittenberg in 1517, starting the Protestant Reformation, Catholics and Protestants have been at each other's throats!  Well, not so much at each other's throats anymore but quietly dissenting the other's views. But is there so much difference between us?

I had the privilege of watching my only daughter baptized into the Catholic church last Sunday, along with my granddaughter. I had never been to a Catholic Mass before, and especially not one done all in Latin. I hear they are rare these days, but my daughter really likes them. So, there I am, this crazy charismatic Protestant walking into this gorgeous, steepled-ceilinged stained-glass sanctuary where everyone sprinkles holy water on themselves and kneels at the edge of the pew before they sit. All totally foreign to me!

I grew up in a charismatic church with lots of singing and tambourines and healings and Holy Ghost shouts. It was great! Very exciting. My church now is much more subdued, a typical non-denominational American church with the band on the stage and several lively songs followed by a sermon, etc.

My experience last Sunday was one words cannot describe. The minute you enter the sanctuary, all is quiet. No one is talking. Everyone is either kneeling and praying or sitting in reverence. So unlike our modern day church where everyone comes into the church laughing and talking, drinking coffee and eating donuts and kids are running around. The reverence and awe that filled the place really touched me, and the quiet moments before the service began helped me focus on God.

Then as the service began, candles were lit, bells rung, and the priest and his procession walked down the aisle carrying a golden crucifix. The choir, perched above and behind me, sang in Latin with the voice of angels as  the priest stood before the altar and read the Scripture. I was enthralled through the entire service, and particularly afterward when my daughter went through a 45 minute baptism ceremony, all done in Latin. It was amazing. 

No, I'm not converting to Catholicism. But the experience impressed upon me how irreverent our churches have become. How irreverent Protestantism has become. Do we take God for granted? Are we so enamored with His grace that we forget He is the Almighty Creator of the Universe who deserves our worship?  Sometimes I wonder. Is our worship more about how great our band is on the stage, how emotionally charged up they can get us? Or is our focus on God during the music? I loved that the choir was out of site in the Catholic church. Then the focus is on God and not a performance.

Yes, the Catholics have some weird beliefs. Pergatory, Limbo, The belief that the bread and wine actually transform into Jesus's body and blood (There's a name for this but I forget), the worship of saints, and the fact that most Catholics believe only Catholics go to heaven.   But don't some Protestants have some weird beliefs too?  I mean we can't seem to agree on anything. How many different sects have we divided into? Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists, Charismatics, Non-demnominationals.. etc...  each believing they are right. I went to a Baptist high school and we weren't allowed to dance or play cards (even Solitaire!) 

All I guess I'm saying is that I believe we have more in common then not. I believe we both have great things to offer.  Maybe we could learn a thing or two from each other? The only requirement for salvation is what Paul said in Romans 10
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;

Are there people in the Catholic church who just go through the rituals yet aren't saved. Sure. Are there people in the Protestant church who just go for social reasons and aren't save. Sure. But I also believed there are many saved in both churches.

Have a Great Weekend!


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Someone is watching over you!

For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His. 

2 Chronicles 16:9