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My son and his roommate won a trip for two to the Islands at a college concert a number of years DSCF0861 033ago. They were excited as I drove them to the airport, laughing and contriving the fun they would have the next three days.
Conjured horror stories raced through my mind like the clickety-clack of an old steam engine, but with their new-found university maturity, any words of warning from me would slam into cement ears.
The attendant announced the boarding call. I hugged both young men and the words “Remember who you are,” popped outta my mouth. I caught my son’s gaze and repeated, “Son, remember who you are.”
They hurried down the airbridge, I’m sure eager to be free, and I turened to tuck myself in a quiet corner and watch their plane roar down the runway and life off. ‘Cause tears were already rimming my eyes.
An older gentleman, obviously watching and listening to our conversation, rose and stepped toward me. “Those were very wise words, ma’am.”
I stammered an acknowledgment, embarrassed, and certain he heard my mother’s words of fear screaming in my heart.
He tapped a salute to me with his folded newspaper. “Yes, wise words indeed.” He smiled and walked away.
Since that early morning flight, my prayers for my son ask God to remind him daily who he is. And remind my son who God is.
But what about sons who don’t know who they are? Sons who’ve never heard the Word of God? Sons who have no moral or faith based conscience? We’ve seen the answer to that scenario along the beaches in America during the 2015 spring break.
Yet why are we surprised, stupefied with the outrageous behavior exhibited by young people in HD, every night, on national news?
DSCF9127A grand majority of them have nothing of value to remember.
Saturated by a culture we’ve allowed to consume our children’s hearts, a culture we’ve accepted and confirmed by our actions or lack of actions, why should we expect a different outcome?
Think how hollow your life would have been had their been no lessons in the home of how to live a fulfilled and productive life. No correction given by your parents to change bad behavior. No Word from God teaching what He requires. Lessons, corrections, and Words adding flavor, value, and meaning to life—defining who you are.
Young people today, even yours and mine, have become self-centered, self-gratifying, oblivious to consequences. Young people who demand their right to be right in whatever they choose. Young people focused only on their moment in time. Denying. Deceived. And destroyed. No thought given to the consequences of their choices.
The message of 2 Peter shouts to us to remember, act, and stand firm.
Peter’s voice rings through the millennia: “I write to you, to stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance…”

What does Peter want us to remember?
“…that you should remember the words spoken beforehand by the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior spoken by your apostles.”

Why would Peter address them in this manner? They were living in desperate times. The Roman government was confiscating property of Christians. The storm of hatred had overtaken them. Some Christians became human torches to light Nero’s highways. Others died in the arena. Ripped apart by hungry lions while thousands cheered.
Could Peter’s message be pertinent to us today? Sure looks that way, doesn’t it?
“Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with their mocking, followingDSCF9133 after their own lusts, and saying, ‘Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation” (2 Peter 3:3-4 NAS).

In today’s vernacular they might say: I’ve heard this stuff all my life. All this hell, fire, and brimstone garbage. And what’s happened? Nothing. And nothing’s gonna happen. I can do what I want, when I want, and nobody’s gonna stop me. This God stuff’s a lie. Now get outta my face. I’m not interested. I don’t believe in your Jesus.
And your son or daughter might be the one who has said this to you.
Or perhaps you’re reading this and asking, If God’s so real why haven’t I seen Him or heard Him? Evolution makes perfect sense to me. There’s no divine plan, no divine creator. All the text books verify that’s truth. So it must be right. It can’t be both ways. We just need to learn to love everybody.
But Peter answers that too.
“For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. But the present heavens and earth by His word are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men” (2 Peter 3:5-7 NAS).

We learn early in our lives to neutralize anything that makes us uncomfortable. Like Eve, many have listened to satan’s words—did God really say that? And they’ve fallen prey to the dragon’s old tricks. He blinds minds, causing them to refuse to believe God destroyed the whole world by the flood—a worldwide flood. A flood from which only Noah and his family survived. So they pervert the truth by reasoning it’s always been this way since creation.

No, at a point in time God said, “Enough!” And He wiped ‘em out. And promised us, next time I’m gonna take’ em out by fire.
Scoffer and mocker time is here folks. A wicked time. A storm gathering time. And if you saw the pictures on FaceBook, Tuesday of this week, depicting Jesus as a homosexual on the cross—A blasphemous time.

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But on one day certain, at one precise moment, God is going to say again, that’s it! I’m done! Son, go get my children. And all hell is going to break loose on this earth —for seven years.
Now is the time to remember who you are. Are you a child of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords?
Or are you uncertain whose you are?
“Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of Me and of My words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when He cometh in the glory of His Father with the holy angels” (Mark 8:38 KJV).

All Photographs by: Richard Farmer

“Therefore, brethren be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”

I turned onto a dark and dangerous road one night many years ago. Too busy having fun. Thinking of the next day’s opportunities. Not paying attention to the mechanics of reaching my destination, I turned onto Alligator Alley—a two lane toll road that runs across the Everglades in South Florida from Miami to Naples. A road that wasn’t safe in the daytime, much less at night.

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And several miles later, the car ran out of gas and we were stranded. Unable to see in the darkness, listening to the terrifying sounds of the Glades at night.
But how many times have we all done that exact thing on our journey through life? Too enthralled in the moment. Too busy with the problems at hand. Giving no thought to the road we’re traveling. Paying no attention to a change in direction. Never bothering to check our spiritual gas gage, ‘til the voices of peril and fear echo in our ears. Unable to find our way out of the gnarled mess we’ve made.

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God was gracious to answer my frantic cries that frightening night. He delivered two silly women—I’m convinced, by sending angels to our rescue. The amazing story can be found on page 34, in Cecil Murphey and Twila Belk’s book, Heavenly Company, Entertaining Angels Unaware.

I’d love to tell you those terrifying hours on Alligator Alley taught me a life lesson I’ve never repeated.
But I’d be lying.
_MG_9600_1_2What nightmarish road do you find yourself trapped on today? Stuck alongside or mired in treacherous swamps full of snakes, gators, and getchas threatening your sanity and safety. Is your mind filled with if only self rebukes? Precious one, you don’t have to remain ensnared—God is waiting for you to cry out to Him.
He is your Deliverer.
Or do you have a life-pattern of shoving the pedal-to-the-floorboard, paying no attention to or perhaps not even considering your destination? Just bent on accomplishing the task screaming do me first? And then the next one, and the next one—until you’re lost and out of gas. Entrenched in the quagmire of your own choices.

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That’s where I found myself this morning. Exhausted. Full of regret. Idling on fumes. Having run at mach speed for several weeks from morning ‘til night. Oh, I’d mumbled thank you prayers and asked for guidance at the beginning of each day, but I had failed to stop and refill my spiritual tank—until this morning. This morning when I looked back and saw the litter of missed opportunities and muddy trail of wrong choices behind me and smelled the fumes of empty.
But in my despair, God was there. He didn’t rejected me. I cried out to Him that dark night on Alligator Alley and He delivered us. And I cried out to Him this morning, when I came to my senses, and His Word was there to rebuke, refresh, and restore me.
And He promises to do the same for you. If you will trust Him. And then obey His Word.

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In the Book of 2 Peter I read those ancient words and thought about what was going on in Peter’s life as he penned them—sometime around 63 or 64 A.D. Christians were driven from their homes and slaughtered for their faith. And this was mere months or a year or two before Peter was crucified. Upside down, for his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Listen to his words and see how much he had learned since that infamous night when he also took a dark and dangerous turn down the road of destruction—the night the rooster crowed.
Perhaps, like Peter, we can learn through God’s Words to avoid those faithless detours in the swamp and those mired-in-the-muck dead-ends. Choosing instead to chart our course of travel—from faith to faith and filling to filling—rather than fooling ourselves into running toward ultimate destruction on the fumes of a know-it-all, prideful heart.

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…as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.

For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.
Therefore, brethren be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:3-11 NKJV).

Meet my friend and fellow Prism Book Group Author, Gay LewisCC_4 (1)!

DiAne: How did you start writing romance?

I started out writing women’s fiction, but my stories weren’t going anywhere. Deciding to try my hand at romance was difficult because I’m a minister’s wife. How could I write love scenes that wouldn’t cause my parishioners—and me—to blush when we saw each other in church? A difficult question and one I study each time a love scene is due in a book. God created romance and intimacy between a man and woman, but detailing it in such a way to bring honor to Him is a challenge. It is also fun.

DiAne: Tell me about your character, Sarah.

My title character, Sarah, is dyslexic, clumsy, and inexperienced. On her first assignment, she blunders often—like the time she appears as a biker in black leather, silver chains, and tattoos. People in the Burger Barn think she is one of Hell’s Angels, and Sarah hyperventilates over what the Superiors in The Heavenlies might say. She wonders constantly if she’ll be called up to Cloud Number Five for a reprimand.

Having never used human disguises before, choosing one is problematic for the novice angel. She is only to materialize in dire circumstances, yet when she does, her selections often bring trouble. She loves the colors and textures of women’s clothing—and she especially loves shoes—red, high-heeled ones—and that’s trouble waiting to happen!

Sarah takes on a few of the characteristics of earthlings as she helps them. She discovered she can cry while on Earth—a new experience, as tears don’t occur in The Heavenlies. Her assignments are to connect a woman and man for marriage, but this is tricky since angels don’t experience sexual passion or romantic love.

DiAne: I understand your eighth book, Sarah and a Midnight Cruise to Catalina Island is here featuring her. Would you tell us a little about it?

Sarah is assigned to assist Carolyn Baker find a mate on a cruise ship. Oh horrors! She can fly but can she swim? Dyslexic and bumbling angel, Sarah, comes to earth to unite Carolyn with a mate. Poopty doopty! She must do it on a ship while Carolyn cruises to Catalina Island. Sarah fears falling into the ocean, and she’s horrified soggy wings will drown her. On this mission, Talen, an evil spirit is assigned to thwart Heaven’s Little Love Angel’s efforts. Tomas, the Warrior Angel, must protect Sarah. Can Tomas succeed without Sarah goofing up the war between the holy and unholy spirits? Will Talen succeed in spoiling Carolyn’s romance?

DiAne: So you are writing about holy and unholy angels in this book. Was that difficult?

Oh my yes! I have several theological books about both kinds of angel, but writing about the wicked ones was scary. I prefer sweet, holy ones such as Sarah.

DiAne: Would you give us an excerpt?

Thanks for asking. Sarah has called upon her mentor, Mother Goodness for advice. This scene is from Chapter Four.

Mother Goodness smiled. “Because of free will, the Holy One allows earthlings to choose wrong partners, but with Carolyn, such a mistake will not transpire.” Mother Goodness sighed. “Humans often interfere with God’s plans. Many fail to seek Him, but not so with your charge. Her heart is in the right place and her relationship with the Father is solid. She is a virgin who has waited and prayed all her life for a prince charming, and the Almighty has answered her prayer. The evil one knows this and wishes to thwart the Powerful One of Heaven. He desires to damage her life by having her fall in love and marry the wrong man. You and Tomas will see that God’s plan is carried out.”

Sarah’s stomach quaked. “This assignment is scarier than the Ferris wheel.”

Mother Goodness laughed. “And that turned out well, didn’t it?”

“Yes, ma’am.” Sarah sighed. “One more question. Why couldn’t I practice walking in those cute shoes?”

“What were you thinking before you tumbled off the roof?”

Sarah frowned as she remembered her thoughts. “I was proud of them and thought my feet looked adorable.”

Smiling, Mother Goodness nodded.

“Oh…now I get it. Pride goes before a fall.”

DiAne: Are more Sarah books planned?
Yes. Prism Book Group has me contracted for two more Sarah books. I’m working on them now. The process of writing and publishing can be a slow one. The next two books are due by September, 2015, but I’m not sure when they will appear.
DiAne: Is waiting for a book to come out tough for you?
Yes! People can read faster than we authors can get books out.
Thanks DiAne for having me on your blog. I’m happy to introduce your readers to Sarah.

Sarah_CatalinaIsland copy best selling authorGay’s links

dianegates:

This blog is by my friend and edit partner, Kathleen Brown. If you aren’t caring for someone with Alzheimer’s I bet you know someone who is. Please share this blog with them.Going through difficult times are made easier when we learn from those who’ve walked that road before us. Kathleen’s new book, “A Time for Miracles” is available at Amazon.com.

Originally posted on Alzheimer's: Hope and Help for Caregivers:

Often it seems nothing we can do or say will bring happiness to our loved ones with Alzheimer’s. Since they gradually lose the power to choose their own pleasure, caregivers are left to use trial and error to guess what might bring a smile.

angry bluebirdFor me, when often became even more often, and even more often became ‘way too often, I re-discovered a happiness strategy from back before I was a daily caregiver…back when I was a daily mom. What I remembered is this:

Sometimes it’s what we don’t do that makes the difference between sullen and happy in those we care for.

I remembered the occasional evenings when I allowed my sons to skip a vegetable at dinner time…and decided maybe Mom didn’t need to wear fresh clothes every day. Some days I didn’t insist she drink a full glass of water at every meal; if she wanted…

View original 768 more words

Texas trudged through a month of devastating storms, tornadoes, and flash floods that left a littered trail of deaths, broken families, costly property damage, and life/death rescues—but it could-a-been worse. DSCF8996 One more storm would’ve pushed the rivers and lakes to dump more destruction and rainfall amounts to further crush past records. Thank God, we were spared—this time. Today the sun is shining and the weatherman promises no rain, but storm damages remain. And lives have been changed. Forever. Flash floods roar, if you’ve never heard or seen one. Storms miles away send walls of water gushing and crashing between the banks, gathering power like locomotives racing downstream, dumping on unsuspecting victims. You may have seconds or minutes to react—like the folks in Wimberly, Texas, along the banks of the Blanco River. Two families swept away inside their house before they knew what happened. One father survived. Violent wind and rain struck Crandall, Texas, around 7 a.m. Saturday morning, bending trees DSCF9020double, and dumping more rain. And between six to eight inches of rain fell Thursday night and causing the release of water from surrounding lakes. Again lifting water levels along the Trinity and Brazos Rivers—that ten foot high and risin’ water. Only along the Trinity it was twenty feet and rising.In either event, there’s no stopping flood water. The only options—help or ignore.Dangerous rescues, sometimes by helicopters or boats, to snatch victims from the horror of drowning. Volunteers from other states rushed to help; cramming pets, meager belongings, and people, into the back of anything with wheels to get ’em outta Dodge ’til the water recedes and clean-up begins. DSCF9023 All three Texas rivers flooded—The Trinity, The Brazos, and the Colorado. Unfortunately Houston, Texas, and points south of there are the final destination and destruction for this over-abundance of free water. DSCF9015 I sat beside the rising waters of the Trinity Sunday afternoon and thought about the dark floods swirling through our government, our courts, our schools, and our homes. And I wondered— How high are the nasty flood-waters of drugs, alcohol, anger, sexual and physical abuse, teen pregnancy, lack of respect of authority that daily shove their way through your child’s classroom, mamas? How fast do the flashes of lies rush down the halls of every school. Every day. Determined to destroy your child. Can you hear their evil roar? DSCF9025 Unlike a flash flood, this now rising flow first seeped among us like the drip, drip, drip of a leaking faucet. Unnoticed until erosion had etched hairline cracks in the foundational principles of our nation. In the ‘60’s what began as one lady’s breach over the spillway of liberty succeeded in removing prayer from public school. She silenced the voices of multiplied millions of America’s school children who acknowledged the Lord God Almighty as Father and asked their Father to provide for them each day. And we, the church family, sat silent.

DSCF8998 Then other, more powerful creeks and rivers, aimed at destruction, joined the growing leaks, carving ditches and gulleys—breeding places for snakes and vermin to hide and strike at will. The flash flood of situation ethics raced through our schools with a vengeance in the ‘70’s, ‘80’s, and ‘90’s. And many teachers and children were dragged in the undertow and drowned in this twisted deception of right and wrong. Teaching “if it feels good, do it. Do whatever you want, if you have a good reason for what you’re doing.” Birthing a generation who believe there are no moral absolutes. The situation you are momentarily in determines your choice of ethics—and we see in HD every night how that’s working. And now those deceived children are the teachers of the next generations.

Add the double whammy in 1973 of an F8 tornado—Roe v. Wade—a woman’s right to kill her unborn child became the law of the land. And we, the church family, clamped our hands over our ears—‘til the screams of dead babies roared—leaving a pathway strewn with abortive moms who DSCF9008realized too late that tissue was indeed a baby. Moms left with guilt beyond our ability to conceive. And with the stroke of a pen the majority of Supreme Court Justices brought God’s gavel of righteous judgment down on this nation when they sentenced over fifty-four million American children to die.

Eight years ago a painting entitled “The Gathering Storm” depicted the approach of the storm we are experiencing today. And over 51 percent of the nation’s voters ignored the artist’s warnings. But today that storm is reality, yet many refuse to believe or heed the coming apocalypse. DSCF9004 While the levy crumbles, we send our grown children to defend this nation. And our tax dollars pay DSCF9017their salaries. Yet these young men and women and their chaplains are dishonorably discharged unless they deny or keep silent about their faith in Jesus Christ. And our dollars pay the salaries of those who punish our children and their spiritual leaders and reject our God. While the snake infested flood-tide-of-lies continues to rise each day. Straight-line winds over the decision regarding the redefinition of marriage is due to sweep from shore to shore in America in June of 2015. And once again, nine justices will either seal the fate of America or give Americans one more opportunity to search for and believe God’s truth. Unlike those volunteers who helped victims fleeing the Brazos and Trinity to safety, where are volunteers, teachers, and parents willing to yank America’s young people out of the raging floodsDSCF9026 of evil? Have they chosen to ignore the tsunami of lies about to destroy this nation, or are they afraid to speak truth? “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good” (Romans 12:9 NKJV) In light of the times and the Word of God, what did Jesus tell His Church? • Be salt and light rescuers. • Identifying evil, lies, and false gods. • Filled with and sharing the hope and the love of God with those who will hear and believe. • Be courageous men, women, boys and girls who speak God’s truth of forgiveness and salvation in Jesus Christ, regardless of the consequences. • Ready, willing, and positioned to snatch any who will hear and believe into the safety of the ark of Jesus Christ. • Love our brothers and sisters in Christ so the world will see our relationship with Jesus and with each other and know He is Lord. “…all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another, love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous. Not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing” (1 Peter 3:8-9 NKJV). DSCF8959It’s not about being Baptist, Presbyterian, Church of God, Catholic, Methodist, Church of Christ, Episcopalian—it’s about loving the Lord your God with all your heart and mind, and loving your neighbor as yourself—‘til Jesus comes. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 22:37-40).

Conversation took an anxiety fork-in-life at a dinner party the other night when the subject turned to the state of our world. One lady announced she had just received her food survival supply that would last her two or three years should everything go-to-hell in that Dior bag.
With the deluge in Texas this past month, I had my own chaotic moment last Friday when I walked out onto the patio during an interlude in the storm to find run-off water inching over the slab stabilizing our air-conditioning unit. Terror of what the water would do to the unit, fear of the electricity and water combo, amped my anxious level to bell-ringing jangles.
Then last night, just before bedtime, a tornado warning blared from our weather radio. The DSCF8891rotating storm seemed to be swirling along the same path the Van tornadoes had traveled a few weeks prior. And I was anxious. Anxious over the security of all my stuff as we finally settled in for a troubled night’s sleep—just me, hubs, and the weather radio.
And today there’s the nagging fear over saturated soil and standing water around the foundation of our home. The blackland area of East Texas, where we live, expands when wet and contracts, cracks, and heaves when dry. Foundation problems cost jillions of dollars to repair. Dollars we don’t have.
So what’s tapping a dance over your anxious buttons today? Family problems? Financial woes? Health issues? World affairs? The list of potential hazards could fill a book, couldn’t they?
But God says:
DSCF5368 026“Do not be anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor for your body as to what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gatherDSCF8863 into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?…Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory did not clothe himself like one of these. …But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore, do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own”(Matthew 6:25-34 NAS).

So what are we supposed to do when the weather radio shrieks warning? When the world scene screams disaster? And when our country or our families seem to be on a downward spiral toward Hot in the Kitchen 4ruin? Fold our hands, kick back with a glass of tea, and just read our Bibles and pray?
Is that what God instructs? I don’t think so.
God gave you and me a brain and an ability to think. Instead of knuckling to an anxious muddle, I’m to use my God given ability to ask Him to help me think and act.
Last night, while sirens ripped the air, I called several neighbors I knew who wouldn’t have been listening to the news. Then I took my laptop and jump drives containing my soon-to-be published book and the beginning twelve chapters of its sequel and stashed them, along with a few other valuables, in what I hoped would be a safe place should the tornado strike.
And when I saw the water topping the air-conditioning slab last Friday, I grabbed a shovel, flipped the circuit breaker, and dug a shallow ditch to allow the backed-up water a place to drain. And it did.
God tells us “In this world you will have trouble…” but we are not to despair, “…He has overcome the world.” And He lays out a plan of action to lasso and rein in our ready-to-panic fears.
rainbow“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7 NAS).

So how does that work out in real time? First of all I say thank you. “Thank You, Lord, for the rain. We’ve asked You to send rain to end the drought, and You’ve been faithful. I’m Yours Lord, and everything around me, all these worldly goods, You’ve provided. It’s all Yours, to give or take away.” Then I’m to ask for what I think I need, according to His word. “Give me wisdom to know what to do, when to do it, and how to do what is needed.”
Yes, we heard the weather radio all through the night, but God was gracious to allow us to go right back to sleep. And this time there were no tornadoes. But I can affirm, other times the storms have inflicted damage in our lives—the loss of a daughter—the loss of jobs—financial woes—life threatening health problems—but God has always been faithful to carry us safely through life’s hazards and given us that promised peace to “…guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
And child of God, He will do the same for you…if you ask Him. And to those of you who haven’t placed your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ yet, the Spirit says:
DSCF3406“Come unto Me all who are weary and heavy-laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My load is light” (Matthew 11: 28-30 NAS).

“…we ought to do now!” An old saying I grew up with and was never more clearly illustrated to me than this week.

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If you’ve visited my Face Book page you saw and hopefully enjoyed the beautiful yellow flowers and farmland pastures I posted last week. I had returned from Longview, Texas, with a tight schedule and enjoyed the yellow-petal-path along I20 from Longview, through Tyler, until I reached the Edom/Van exit. Then this field called me—Stop. Take my picture.

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The voice in my head argued—Those flowers will be here next week. You can photograph them then. You don’t have time today. And they proceeded to march soldier cadence through my mind—all the commitments, chores, and chaos waiting for me at home.

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But thank goodness, I turned the chatter volume down and granted myself the privilege of pausing, turning off the freeway, and spending thirty or so minutes recording the grace and beauty of God’s creation.

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Because this week they were gone—destroyed in the tornadoes that ripped through Van, Texas, Sunday evening around dark.
When I saw the reports on the news it never occurred to me my field was in the bulls-eye of this devil storm’s destruction. Until Monday, when I drove that same route again.

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Mama’s words—What you ought to do…you ought to do now—echoed in my heart and mind since then, reminding me of a time many years ago when I heard another urging to mend a relationship. Those same you-do-not-have-time voices chanted in my head, but I chose to stop and invite the couple to dinner and restore our friendship. The very next week the wife died.

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What actions have you delayed, denied, or declined to do that the voice in your spirit has urged you to act upon?
Storms of life arrive without warning—tsunamis of grief—leaving emotional bondage that lasts a lifetime if not settled or mended before life ends. Hurricanes of turmoil that could have been avoided if we had chosen another route of travel. Or earthquakes of ruin because of foolish, ungodly decisions.

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As you read this, I’m sure God is placing His finger of warning smack-dab on that relationship, bondage, or troublesome habit. What you ought to do…you ought to do now! Because you don’t know if there will ever be another opportunity before Jesus comes, or He calls you, or them home.
Or the object of concern morphs into something much more serious. More destructive. More life changing. More deadly.

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What is the Spirit of the Lord whispering, perhaps shouting that you ought to do?
YOU OUGHT TO DO NOW!

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