He Knows!

The Bible says Jesus was tempted and tried in all the ways we are. God puts people around us and provides someone to help us when we can’t go on. Last week, I shared Jesus’s prayer in the garden, asking Father if there was any other way to reconcile fallen humanity with Him. His spirit was willing, but his flesh was weak, not wanting to endure the cross. Now I take you to his journey to Golgotha with the cross on his back. His beaten, abused body gave out, and he fell under the weight of the cross. God provided Simon of Cyrine to help him.

How many times have we been struggling, thinking we’re all alone? Have you ever convinced yourself that you can’t bother someone else? Maybe God had a person for you to call, that He had prepared to help you, and you didn’t reach out. He may even have brought someone to mind, or someone was right in front of you who could help, but you didn’t realize. Simon had no preconceived notion of helping Jesus carry his cross that day, but Father God caused him to be in just the right place, at a Kairos time. He was blessed for helping, and Jesus was blessed with the help he gave. Simon of Cyrene is still honored today as part of Jesus’s road to the cross.

Here is an important scripture that is in my devotions today. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free from our past and all regret. This would be a good prayer to pray for our nation right now!

Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, for the life of your soul is at stake… Seek the Lord while you can find him. Call on him now while he is near. Let the people turn from their wicked deads. Let them banish from their minds the very thought of doing wrong! Let them turn to the Lord that he may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. Isaiah 55:3a,6 NLT

As Jesus told the woman caught in adultery, “Neither will I condemn you-go and sin no more.” This is a new day, the past is gone. Regret is not a road you want to travel. It’s full of snares and sharp rocks. I prefer the Lord’s path of grace and obedience. It’s full of faith, hope, and love. (thanks to Uta Milewski & her devotional)

As for my book, Musings Along Life’s Journey, I have reached the mark of selling as many books as I’ve given away or gifted. On Monday, I found out Sabrina Adams, my publisher, had finished her battle with the cancer that ravaged her body and has been translated to heaven. I am praying for peace for her family and that her daughters and husband can keep her publishing company going.

There is much opposition to this book being sold. Must be God has great plans for it! I encourage you to get a copy from me or order one at http://www.zoelifebooks.org, read it, write a review, and share on social media. I currently have one event scheduled if you’d like to mark your calendar. Saturday, August 12th, from 9-3pm I will be at the Henderson Heritage Day, on the lawn by the Historical Society.


Change Of Plans

Elephant crossing at Teringhetti Park from our safari trip.

🙊 Well, a new episode of Kairos, God’s perfect timing. I told you my book debut would be on Saturday, March 18th, but that plan is changing. My publisher Sabrina is starting a course of radiation, the assistant librarian left and a replacement has not been hired yet, and the librarian is taking a two week vacation. Not to mention, I’m in the middle of two dental appointments, getting a cap on a tooth, in transition with my office remodel, and still readjusting from reverse culture shock after my time in Tanzania. Yes, I’ll share more later of the construction team trip from Tanzania 2023 with Wall Builder’s missions.

😀 Wow! That was a mouthful! The new day for my reveal/ book signing will be in April, after Easter. This will give a chance to get the publishing done and books to me through the mail, which is a bit less predictable than it used to be. I will let you know new details as I get them. Due to these happenings, the part of steadfast I am using today is committed. I am steadfastly committed to seeing this publishing journey culminate in God’s perfect, Kairos time.

Galatians 6:9 Let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. [NLT]

The back cover of the proof copy of my book.

Sabrina and I have been working on the final editing before printing for almost a week.  I’m glad the time pressure is not as intense as it was last week when Sabrina mailed the proof on Saturday, and I received it Thursday afternoon. 🙃 it would not have come together by March 18th at that rate!

🙂 I  finally chose and started my devotional books seven days ago. I am using two 100-day books that the Spirit is coordinating to bring good to me. They are: GODS heart for you by Uta Milewski and Unbridled Faith from the Horse Farm by Cara Whitney, wife of “Larry the Cable Guy”, Dan Whitney.

🧑‍💻 Today’s scripture in the first book starts with Jesus saying, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”  You don’t need to be afraid that you can’t do what the Lord asks. He will make you… Use your gifts/talents he’s given you, and He will add things to your life as you humbly serve and follow.

Ephesians  3:20-21 Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever, Amen. [ESV]

💞 God is doing this in my life! I am letting Him use the talents and gifts I have, and He is making me what He needs and equipping as more opportunities come. Every time I’m close enough to my pastors, the Spirit uses them to speak forth the things God has… and is… doing, and confirming the gifts and graces manifesting in me.

😇 The second book uses Matthew 5:13, You are the salt of the earth…” We must protect the biblical truth in our life from the ideologies of this world, or we won’t have the salty flavor to bless the lives around us. Cara encourages us to grow and mature spiritually so we can minister to those God brings into our lives.  Let’s join Cara in this prayer:

🙏 Lord, I don’t ever want to lose my saltiness. Help me to grow that they may see Your good deeds. Amen.

🤠 God is really moving if you’ve been keeping track. I have been asking the Lord to rekindle the fire that burned through in other revival/renewal times. Asbury seminary is a case in point. I live close to Adams, NY, where Charles G. Finney was working in a law office when he caught the fire and was redeemed. I live in Henderson, where he had family and spread the fire to. Yesterday, we drove north to Brasher Falls to celebrate our daughter-in-love Joanna’s birthday, passing through a similar route as Finney, the bands of praying women, and revival fire that followed. I’ve had multiple trips that way and noticed  a couple of churches along the way that have recently “extended the corners of their tents” as the prayer of Jabez notes.

👮 Also, I hear of those in our federal government putting forth new legislation to bring down some of the evil things that have been put in place, as well as offenders being exposed and dealt with. This doesn’t mean things are going to be easy because there are adjustments that can’t be made without some things being torn down or demolished. Trust in the Lord and do not be dismayed. Good things are happening, and many more shall come if we do not faint!

A touch of Tanzanian beauty found at the lodge we stayed at.

The Fruit…

Photo by Geraud pfeiffer on Pexels.com

Just a reminder: Hanukkah begins at sundown Monday, December 19th. I will be joining in this festival of lights remembering God’s provision for His people and my beloved Jewish family if you’d care to join me!

Now for what’s on my mind: a person is known by the fruit that is produced by their actions and speech. For December 16th, The Prophet’s Devotional by Jennifer LeClaire is titled: Fruit-Bearing Gifts. Amid this flurry of whatever Christmas and other holiday preparations you are doing, let’s look at Galatians 5:22-23 in the Amplified Bible.

“But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge]”

This fruit grows as we abide in Christ, lean into Holy Spirit, and practice walking in these things. Notice, it’s “the work which His presence within accomplishes” and not our fleshly efforts. We all know people with gifts from the Lord that are accurate in using that gift, but the spirit behind it and their conduct do not match these fruits of the Spirit. For a vine to produce fruit it must be watered and tended. We can sow in the Spirit, feeding and watering the seeds Holy Spirit planted within by reading the Word and praying in the Spirit, and reap the fruit that will remain. If we sow in the flesh, starve and dehydrate the vine, any fruit will eventually die due to neglect.

In reality, this looks like an accurate prophet giving an accurate word, then delving into sexual sin, abuse of others… fleshly pursuits… which turns the word he gave into a falsehood. Many of us have been hurt/burned by Pastors, prophets, teachers, and others in authority. Lots of times love is shut out by legalism. Many have fallen away. They’ve turned against church in general, and certain ministers in particular. Lack of integrity and humility come to mind.

The Passion Translation puts the verses of Galatians 5 this way:

“But the fruit produced by the Holy Spirit within you is divine love in all its varied expressions: joy that overflows, peace that subdues, patience that endures, kindness in action, a life full of virtue, faith that prevails, gentleness of heart, and strength of spirit. Never set the law above these qualities, for they are meant to be limitless.”

I encourage you to meditate on these things in whatever Bible gives you best understanding. The Holy Spirit is the one who plants the seeds of the gifts, but we must water and feed them, starving out the things of the flesh instead of starving the Spirit within. By the way, have you chosen a devotional for the year 2023 yet? With my upcoming trip to Tanzania, book to be published soon, becoming a trustee for our historical society, Pastor asking me to think about becoming a deacon in our church, on top of my other obligations, it will be a year of readjusting. I am leaning toward not working at the motel for the 2023 season. Though I enjoy the work and fellowship there, it is tough scheduling. I am praying for my employer’s need for workers to be met as I pray to the Lord of Harvest to send out more workers for the Harvest of souls! Needless to say, I’m waiting on the Spirit to show me how to do devotions in the new year. As usual, I plan to fast with our church January 1-21st, which is another topic to seek the Lord on how to do this year. My first prompt is to spend the 21 days in the books of 1,2 &3 John.

Noting that not all have a prophetic ministry, though Paul encouraged us all to prophesy and we are all to use our gifts to minister, even if we are not in the ordained ministry of Prophet, I leave you with this prayer from Sister Jennifer LeClaire:

Father, in the name of Jesus, give me a hunger to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit alongside the gifts of the Spirit so my ministry will see lasting influence. Grace me to seek first Your Kingdom and Your righteousness so I can model a Christ-like prophetic ministry.

Glory to God in the highest and on earth good will toward mankind! As I am writing in my Christmas cards I’m sending: May you experience true Shalom peace and prosperity as you journey into 2023.