Some Say Love, Book Excerpt 9/10/2021

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by Staci Stallings

From the newly-released Finale of the Hope Series…

How she would ever say good-bye to Scott and Lane again, Jenna had no earthly idea. As she walked to the gate, tucked under Scott’s arm, holding Lane’s hand with her other, she let the thought of what the coming minutes would bring into her consciousness, and it gripped her heart so tightly that breathing was becoming an issue.

“First boarding call for Flight 9351 to Newark…”

Already. She forced herself to take a breath. She couldn’t lose it now. Not now. You have to be strong. They need you to be strong. This is no time to fall apart. She swallowed the jumble of emotions back down into her heart. “Wow, good thing we left when we did. We barely made it.”

“Yeah.” But he didn’t sound wholly sure or happy about that.

Understanding what he didn’t voice, she slowed their steps and tightened her hold on his waist. “Oh, I was going to tell you, I packed some extra snacks in the bag. Animal crackers.” She grinned up at him. “Can’t fly without those.”

He pulled her closer to him and kissed her head. “You think of everything.”

Some Say LoveShe kept the smile on her face even though her heart was about to abort the mission. “It’s a mom thing.”

When they stopped at the gate which already had people lined from one end to the other, boarding the jet bridge, his gaze swept across the area and fell right into hers. It took actual thought for her to hold onto Lane because getting lost in Scott’s blue eyes was always a possibility.

He reached up and brushed the hair off her shoulder. “You’re going to be okay getting back? I know the traffic…”

She let her gaze go soft. “It’s a whole lot better than getting on that plane would be.”

His face came close to a smile, but it fell from his eyes before it found his lips. “I’m gonna miss you.”

“I know, but just think, the next time you get here, no more leaving.”

“No more leaving. I like the sound of that.” And right there in the terminal, he put his hand on her neck and laid his lips on hers. They were warm, soft, safe, perfect. She felt the love pour through them and right into her being. She soaked each molecule in with deep, abiding joy.

“Second boarding call for Flight 9351 to Newark.”

Scott broke the kiss for one second. “I really wish they’d stop doing that. It’s kinda killing the mood.”

However, Jenna hardly heard anything other than her heart begging for more. She put her hand on the back of his head and tugged him back to her. “Not a chance.”

By the time Scott got on the plane, settled Lane and Laylee the bear in, and pulled out the little box of animal crackers, he felt more loved than he ever had in his life. She was incredible. Remarkable. Amazing.

A man in business casual clothes showed up and sat without fanfare in the aisle seat, and Scott remembered with no prompting the moment she had sat down with them. He had never experienced one other thing in his life that had rocked his world so fiercely. After giving Lane an elephant cracker to keep him occupied, he put his head back and looked out to the still-bright sunshine of the late Texas afternoon. The next time you get here, no more leaving… He couldn’t wait.

About the Author:

Staci StallingsA stay-at-home mom with a husband, three kids and a writing addiction on the side, Staci Stallings has numerous titles for readers to choose from. Not content to stay in one genre and write it to death, Staci’s stories run the gamut from young adult to adult, from motivational and inspirational to full-out Christian and back again. Every title is a new adventure! That’s what keeps Staci writing and you reading. Although she lives in Amarillo, Texas and her main career right now is her family, Staci touches the lives of people across the globe with her various Internet and writing endeavors.

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CrossReads Book Spotlight: Antidote For the Guilt of Sin 9/9/2021

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

Antidote For the Guilt of Sin

Justification By Faith Alone

by Martin Murphy

Antidote For the Guilt of Sin

This book is not an academic commentary of Romans. However, it is an exposition of the first 5 chapters of Romans with an eye on the doctrine of justification by faith alone. The theological themes and topics found in the book of Romans are deep and wide. The doctrine of the righteousness of God and justification by faith alone is a primary interest in this study.

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CrossReads Short Takes: Knowing God & Pursued

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CrossReads Short Takes

Knowing God

How to Build a Relationship with God

(Knowing God, Jesus, and Holy Spirit Teaching Series)

by Chelsea Kong

Knowing God

Do you feel like something is missing? Joy is a key of intimacy with God. Do you want your child to know God? God’s desire is for His children to know Him and have a relationship with Him. This book teaches basic principles to children on building a relationship with God. Children will get excited as they learn to stay alone with God. Their faith will grow as they draw close to Him.

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Pursued

Christian Comtemporary Romantic Suspense

(Dangerous Series Book 6)

Pursued

The man Cristina Torres has fallen in love with kisses her and then disappears for ten years. Now he’s back but with two detectives as shadows, and someone’s trying to kill her. Should she trust him or run for her life?

Dr. Chase Richards has fled his Christian roots long enough. He’s returning to his hometown in Tennessee to make amends—at what he thinks is God’s direction. But the way is not just hard, it’s almost impossible. The girl he once loved is now a woman—and she wants nothing to do with him. In addition, the opioid study he started and left in Virginia has followed him across state lines. The police have warned him that he’s in imminent danger. His well organized life is no longer safe or ordered—and neither is Cristina’s. Can he discover who’s trying to kill them before she becomes collateral damage?

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Let Every Created Thing Give Praise to the Lord 9/7/2021

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by Robin McKinley

I love to sit outside on the deck behind my house to write. As I am writing this devotional post I can hear, very loudly I might mention, cicadas singing in the trees. This is the summer they have emerged from the ground. They will mate and die with their offspring returning to us in about 17 years. The Psalmist said, let every created thing give praise to the Lord.  

 Cicadas can produce their sounds because they possess an organ that is almost unique among insects. It’s called the tymbal organ. These small insects can only praise the Lord a few weeks every 17 years. We can praise Him every day.

Praise the Lord!  Psalm 148:1

The writer of this Psalm began and ended it with the words, Praise the Lord! Between those two phrases, he divided this chapter into two sections. The first one says . . .

Praise the Lord from the heavens! Praise him from the skies! Psalm 148:1 

Let Every Created Thing in the Heavens Praise the Lord 

He said every flying thing must praise the Lord. The next time you are in an airplane, take time to praise the Lord. The Psalmist went even higher in the sky than the heights we are aware of. He spoke about the heavenly beings in the very next verse.

Praise him, all his angels! Praise him, all the armies of heaven! Praise him, sun and moon! Praise him, all you twinkling stars! Psalm 148:2-3

Further than the eye can see, God is being praised. Noises have been detected in outer space that can only be a result of the stars offering praise to their creator. That statement isn’t far-fetched. Look at what the writer said next.

Let every created thing give praise to the Lord, for he issued his command, and they came into being. He set them in place forever and ever. His decree will never be revoked. Psalm 148:5-6

Let Every Created Thing on the Earth Praise the Lord 

God receives praise from creatures of the ocean depths. Some of those created beings live so deep in the waters, they have never seen the light of day. Yet they offer praise to the Lord. 

Even fire and hail, snow and clouds praise Him. I like to sit on our front porch and watch a rainstorm go by. Yet I never looked at those storms as a praise to the Lord. Their power and fury are just samples of the majestic power of our Lord.

God receives praise from wild animals and all livestock, small scurrying animals and birds. Then the Psalmist mentioned people.

 . . . kings of the earth and all people, rulers and judges of the earth, young men and young women, old men and children. Psalm 148:11-12 

 We are all mandated to offer praise unto the Lord. If we turn to Psalm 150, it says, Let everything that breathes sing praises to the Lord! Are you breathing?

One time the Pharisees asked Jesus to tell the people to quiet down from praising Him. His response was, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!” I don’t know about you, but I don’t want the stones to do any praising for me.

The writer in Psalm 148, covered who should praise the Lord. Everything in the heavens, the skies, and the on earth. Then he made this blanket statement.

Let them all praise the name of the Lord. For his name is very great; his glory towers over the earth and heaven! Psalm 148:13

Lord, we are in awe of how all of your creation praises you. From the stars above to the cicadas in the trees. We will not be left out. Receive praise from our lips as we offer it to you.

About the Author: 

Pastor RobinRobin, with his wife Cindy, became children’s evangelists early in their ministry. They ministered to children full time for 8 years. During that time they developed several children’s stories which were told with visuals and puppets.

Robin recently turned two of those stories into children’s books. One is called “The Contest,” a book about the Fruit of the Spirit, and the other is called “Twas the Night of Christmas”. He has also authored 5 volumes of devotional books called, 3 Minutes Alone with God. Each entry is a product of his personal biblical Journaling.

These and his other writings are available on his website called Christian Perspectives at www.ramckinley.com. When you visit this site, you can sign-up for newly written devotions as they come out which will be emailed to you. 

Presently Robin is the pastor of Calvary Christian Center in Pottstown, PA. He is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God. He and his wife make their home in Birdsboro, Pa. He also serves as the president of the local ministerium. He and Cindy have two married sons and four grandchildren.

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CrossReads Weekly Devotional: The Longing to Be Desired 9/6/2021

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Authors Note: This is one of the most personal posts I have written. It’s difficult to share, but I think it’s important to share it anyway. God bless you!

Sarah Smith, writing as Precarious Yates

by Precarious Yates

“I am my beloved’s and his desire is toward me.” ~ Song of Solomon 7:10

“Your desire shall be for your husband and he shall rule over you.” Genesis 3:16

This may sound controversial at first, but think about it: Isn’t it problematic for men after the fall to have a woman desire him over desiring God? How many men have relished in taking what should belong to God? How many people in general, regardless of gender, have done this?

I know the temptation to be desired. Of all the things I wrestle with in life, most of my sins stem from wrongful pursuit of this longing.

In the words of Peter Gabriel, “I want to be wanted…I need to be needed.” I long to be adored and desired.

This is really hard to admit. It’s one of those parts of my being that I most want to bury. I want any kind of band-aid solution you can imagine to make sure no one sees this. But in fact, it is painfully obvious to most people who know me.

For me, some of my greatest pains came from rejection. Rejected for my body because I was too weak or not beautiful enough. Rejected for my mind because I was not witty or charismatic or smart enough. Rejected for my heart because I was not loving or compassionate enough.

Those last two always stung deepest. Especially the last one. Would God still accept me if people (rightly) assessed that I was not loving or compassionate enough? Or if I was not courageous in my care for others?

What if I desired more to be desired for my compassionate heart than to actually have a compassionate heart? Would God still love me? Of course He would, but closer to the heart of the issue is this: would God still invite me to work with Him in spreading the Gospel? Would I still be invited up the hill, like those in Psalm 24:3-4 (Who may ascend the hill of the Lord…)? Would I still be invited up the mountain, like those in Isaiah 2:3?

The stark answer is: not in an unrepentant state. I would not be invited to hear secrets, guard treasure (which is His church, and you reading this), or be called a friend, because I would be a thief. And a thief comes only to steal.

People are stealing from others what rightfully belongs to God.

Church leaders are.

Ministry leaders are.

Husbands. Wives. Parents.

Me.

I am stealing from God when I long to be desired by people and the nations more than I long to point others to the Desire of the Nations (Hag. 2:7).

When we steal, we kill and destroy in others what God wants us to protect, nurture and disciple.

It is time to repent.

So what do I do with my longing to be desired? Do I repent of it?

We cannot repent of this desire! But we can allow the Holy Spirit to redirect the desire.

Proverbs 21:1 says, “The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes.”

(We are kings and priests to our God!)

That word “wishes” can be translated to delights or pleasures. God can steer you toward what He desires.

What does He desire?

Relationship.

What if at the end of the day, God is teaching us how to love and be loved? What if He is teaching us, like a parent teaches a toddler, to receive and give love. Not to wish for it. Not to philosophize about it (which I’m really good at, by the way). But to live it. Not just understand, but embrace the fact that His desire is toward us.

God is for me. (Psalm 56:9)

He rejoices over you. (Zeph. 3:17)

He jealously longs for you. (James 4:5)

What happens when we let Him fulfill our desire to be desired? How can we do that?

What if He is teaching us, like a parent teaches a toddler, to receive and give love. Not to wish for it or philosophize about it but to live it. To not just understand but to embrace the fact that His desire is toward us.

He is for you.

Rest in Him.

God bless you!

Precarious Yates

About the Author:

Precarious YatesPrecarious Yates has lived in 8 different states of the Union and 3 different countries, but currently lives in Texas with her husband, her daughter and their big dogs. When she’s not writing, she enjoys music, teaching, playing on jungle gyms, praying and reading. She holds a Masters in the art of making tea and coffee and a PhD in Slinky® disentangling.

Links:

Facebook Amazon Author Page

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The Strange, Strange Life of Being an Author 9/3/2021

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by Staci Stallings

You may think that being a romance author is all about reclining on a couch, eating grapes as you spin stories of wonder, love, and romance. I would love to tell you that is the truth, but for me at least, it is not.

Instead, it is dragging myself out of bed in the morning, getting my (last) child to school, coming home, and still dressed in whatever I happened to pick up from the floor in the dark, plopping myself down in my chair and trying like mad to remember something I thought of at 3 in the morning that I just KNEW I was going to remember at the time but that now has disappeared completely.

That’s part of it anyway. The other is one-part knowing you’ve done this in the past and three-parts having absolutely no idea how to do it now. Somehow my writing life always seems to hover over that ephemeral “whole” like Jell-O over a flame—precarious and sure not to last much longer.

There are many things about what I do that I simply can’t explain. I can’t explain them to you nor to other authors who I would truly like desperately to package this “how-to” and hand to them tied with a bow.  For example, how to know precisely how a book will be written from start to finish, how it will turn out, if it will turn out, and how a single book turns into a sequel or a five-book series.

Honestly, I don’t know how that happens…. At least for me.

Take the series I’m working on right now.

I remember how it started about seven years ago. It was one small idea. A piece of his life experience that fit perfectly with a piece of hers.  It seemed so simple at the time, and the first book was. When I got to the end of Book 1, I thought that’s all there was. THE END, and it’s done. Move on to the next project.

Then I got up the next morning, and I knew more of the story that I had thought was finished. So, to humor myself, I started writing Book 2—like five years ago.

Now, like I’ve said, I don’t understand anything about my writing life, how things work, why God chooses to start and stop projects much like the pillar of fire or the cloud in the desert.  All I know is that things work better when I follow, going when He says, “Go.”  Stopping when He says, “Stop.”

So about 100 pages in, Book 2 suddenly stopped—for like FIVE YEARS.  During that time, I would think about the story. I loved what I had down, and I even knew certain pieces of how it would go going forward, but for whatever reason, those pieces stayed locked in my heart and mind until the middle part of January when my sister dragged me to the movie, “The Greatest Showman.”

I know I’m not the only artist in the world who was somehow set free with watching that movie, but it “gave me the key” and unlocked this story in a way I had not expected.  After the release of The Hope Series and putting “For Love’s Sake” up for preorder, I was kind of floundering and trying to decide what to work on next. A day after watching the movie, I knew which one.

And now, here I am just a few weeks later, not just writing “The End” to Book 2, but fully ready to jump into Book 3, can’t wait to write Book 4, and in awe that there will be a Book 5 I didn’t even know about.

So what’s it like for me to be an author?

It’s a lot like being on a roller coaster in the dark. You never know what’s coming next, so you get really good at just holding on for the ride!

While you wait for this new series to hit the virtual shelves long about August, here’s another series that took me by surprise. Enjoy!

About the Author:

Staci StallingsA stay-at-home mom with a husband, three kids and a writing addiction on the side, Staci Stallings has numerous titles for readers to choose from. Not content to stay in one genre and write it to death, Staci’s stories run the gamut from young adult to adult, from motivational and inspirational to full-out Christian and back again. Every title is a new adventure! That’s what keeps Staci writing and you reading. Although she lives in Amarillo, Texas and her main career right now is her family, Staci touches the lives of people across the globe with her various Internet and writing endeavors.

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CrossReads Book Spotlight: Charity’s Challenge

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

Charity’s Challenge

(Westward Home & Hearts Mail-Order Brides Book 21)

by Lisa Prysock

Charity's Challenge

Milly Crenshaw does it again when she succeeds at finding a groom for a destitute social butterfly from Fairfax, Virginia. She sends Miss Garner west to marry an Oregon farmer, Sterling Adams, widowed with four children who desperately need a mother while he tries to prove up his claim.

Charity Garner, suffering from the shock of an accident leaving her injured and bereft of her parents and their wealth, has two choices. She can rely upon distant relations she’s never met before by relocating to England, or follow the tug on her heart to become a missionary wife to Sterling and a mother to his children. Although she may never arrive at finding true love, she decides having purpose and a family of her own is a dream worth pursuing. Nevermind the fact she’s suddenly afraid of horses and hasn’t done anything of the sort before.

When Charity arrives in Oregon, she must hit the ground running with no household or parenting skills whatsoever, accustomed to having servants and hired help for such things, practically raised by a nanny herself. She must also learn to do all of these things while overcoming grief and some new fears brought on by the accident. With no other means of survival, winning her husband’s heart is merely a distant dream and hope in the back of her mind.

Sterling Adams has buried his wife and infant child named Hope, but he has to admit the mail-order bride he sent for is captivating, full of charm, and a breath of fresh air. Still, he can’t shake his losses. Just when he thinks they may have a chance, will a surplus of crops resulting in a community financial crisis devastate his new home and family? Needing cash to survive, he leaves his children behind in the care of his new bride when a friend convinces him to join an expedition panning for gold. It’s his only chance, but will the weight of his absence crush his family? Can Charity survive for a few months without him? And can he even find any gold, or is it merely a fool’s errand that could cost him everything?

Get your copy today of this inspirational, heartwarming Historical Christian Romance and mail-order bride story taken from another case in the files of the eccentric matchmaker who runs the Westward Home and Hearts Matrimonial Agency.

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CrossReads Short Takes: The Master Planner & A Christmas Home for Hannah

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CrossReads Short Takes

The Master Planner

God is Never Too Late

by Chinonye Ewenike

The Master Planner

There was a time I lived my life without knowing the reason why. Year after year I exist without knowing God’s purpose for my life; and when I see bad things happen to people, I begin to ask “what is the meaning of life?”

As a Christian I wanted to make decisions according to God’s will, but how can I do this when I don’t know God’s plans for my life? Sometimes I would expect a loud voice from heaven, saying, “Dear son, this is what I want you to do; this is the decision I want you to make, or this is the job I want you to take.” I grew confused and sometimes lie on my bed thinking about what the future holds.

I struggled with this and kept on praying to God for guidance.

Can you imagine what will happen when you don’t know what direction God wants you to go?

Every day most people live their lives without knowing God’s plans. Just like me, they exist without knowing the purpose of God in their lives.

I know everyone wants to be happy, and we all have some ideas of what makes us happy: But True happiness Emanates from following The Master Planner.

There are so many reasons why you shouldn’t quit now!

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A Christmas Home for Hannah

Mail-Order Brides’ First Christmas Book #15

by Joi Copeland

A Christmas Home for Hannah

All of her life, she’s only wanted to be wanted.
He just wants to inherit a legacy.

When Hannah Gallagher’s mother dies giving birth to her, her no-good father leaves her with her mother’s parents. They didn’t have much, but they loved each other. When her grandmother passes suddenly, her grandfather forces her to respond to an advertisement for a mail-order bride. Reluctantly, she agrees, but does everything she can to make sure the groom to be won’t pick her. After all, who would choose a barely educated woman who only knows how to grow the basic of vegetables and shoot squirrels for supper? And then her life turns upside down when she receives a letter asking for her hand in marriage. Doubts assail her as she gets ready to leave the only home she’s ever known and tries to convince her grandfather to travel with her.

Briggs Blackwood is stuck between a rock and a hard place. While ranching is in his blood, and he loves it, he has to meet one requirement to take over his family legacy: get married and produce at least one grandchild within five years of his mother’s death. Briggs never wanted to get married. Even though his mom and dad’s relationship had been loving and kind, he doesn’t know if he can have a loving marriage like theirs. Hoping his father changes his mind, Briggs waits until the very last minute to find a wife. After placing an ad for a mail-order bride, Briggs reluctantly settles on a woman from Illinois. Once she arrives, he finds her to be more than he bargained for.

Will Hannah and Briggs discover just how much they need each other? Or will life’s challenges become too much, with the only solution to annul the marriage and go their separate ways?

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Change The Heart 8/31/2021

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by Suzanne D. Williams

A few months ago, the LORD said to me, “Change the head, and you change everything they touch.” Head, meaning of a company, an organization, a political body, or a nation. In other words, if the person in charge changes (think Hallmark movie, one minute they are horrible and making wrong decisions, the next they have this revelation and a complete change of heart), then the entire way they conduct business alters as well and the lives of everyone they affect.

We don’t think this way. We’re revenge-oriented. Our human mind says, “Remove the head. Replace the head.” We don’t care what happens to the guy or gal who’s causing the problem. We don’t think in terms of mercy. We say, “Look at what he did, pull him down, and stick someone else in there.”

Now, let me pause here and say I am not speaking of any particular person or group of people. Nor is this a debate on government leaders. But I heard a man talk about saving the Taliban recently, SAVING THEM, as in “putting Jesus in their heart,” and it all came back to me again. WE HAVE TO START THINKING MERCY BECAUSE THAT IS THE FATHER’S HEART.

Jesus came to SAVE THE LOST, which included the men who sent Him to His death. (Lk 19:10) He knew that when speaking to them, when calling them hypocrites, when referring to them as thieves. That is who He meant in John 10 with all that talk about Him as the One who enters through the gate and the robber entering another way. He called out their deception, all the while planning to die for their sins.

“I do my Father’s will,” He said many, many times. These words are particularly poignant in the Message Bible.

“I’ll not be talking with you much more like this because the chief of this godless world is about to attack. But don’t worry—he has nothing on me, no claim on me. But so the world might know how thoroughly I love the Father, I am carrying out my Father’s instructions right down to the last detail.” (John 14:29 MSG)

The Father’s heart, the Spirit’s heart, Jesus’ heart is ALWAYS to save. They never change from that. Yes, there comes a moment when salvation is not happening because that person refuses to repent. Therefore, judgment must come. But know this—THEY HATE PASSING JUDGMENT. The very idea someone has been judged should be horrible to us. We should mourn it as they do.

We should TRULY LOVE OUR ENEMIES. (Mt 5:44)

Do you get that? Not tolerate them. Not say a quick prayer, simply to ease our conscience. WE SHOULD LOVE THEM. (Lk 6:27, 35) 

I read the story of a military officer who served in Afghanistan and was trained to listen in on the Taliban’s conversations. His bottom line struck me hard. He did several tours there and said that much of the work was repetitive. Nothing really changed on either side, ours or theirs. We still dropped bombs meant for buildings on 10 men in a farmer’s field. They still came after “the Americans” brandishing 30-year-old weapons. No matter how many of them died, they still believed in jihad and the lie that is their religion.

Don’t you see it yet? Change their heart and the nation of Afghanistan alters forever. Is that really possible? I don’t know. Nor do I pretend to like who they are or what they are doing. But how dare we condemn a man Jesus died to save.

And that is my point. That is God’s point because He had me write this. As horrible as they are, as awful as what they believe may be, they are as deceived by the devil as those who pretend to run this nation. One deception is not bigger than the other. Both will send men and women to hell.

GOD LOVES EVERYONE COMPLETELY.

We’ve done it all wrong. Money cannot fix this problem. Nor military might. Nor counterintelligence. Nor diplomacy. Only Jesus changing the heart will ever cause the total turn-around the world needs, and that is what He came to do. Change each person, one at a time. 

We are all that one lost sheep He went out seeking. (Lk 15:4) It isn’t that Fred was the lost sheep but the rest of us are just one-of-the-crowd. No. He sees us all individually right where we are, in whatever culture we grew up in, with whatever wrong beliefs we hold, and those make no difference to Him. He loves the woke celebrity in the United States, the tribesman in the heart of Africa, and the radical Muslim who has been taught to kill as many infidels as possible.

We are all sinners that grace can save, and that grace when manifested in us makes a complete difference, a total turnaround. (Eph 2:8)

Change HOW you pray. We aren’t praying OUR WILL over this or that situation. We pray the FATHER’S WILL. It’s not, “Thy kingdom come, OUR WILL be done on earth as it is in heaven.” It’s, “THY WILL BE DONE.” (Mt 6:10) And His will is salvation for every man and woman from the moment of their conception. Long before we were ever born, while we were still in our mother’s womb, He planned for our salvation. (Ps 139:15-16)

That salvation, that change of heart in us, will then change everyone and everything we touch. Suddenly, all the lies we’ve defended, all the mistruths we thought we knew, crumble into dust.

Our God is that loving, that merciful, that forgiving, and His love is for anyone living anywhere in the world. Afghanistan or the United States.

A Good Life: A Daily Walk In God’s Presence 

Amazon https://amzn.to/2y6R1IA  

Other Retailers https://books2read.com/u/4EkqAA  

A-Good-Life

“There is no better portrait of God than in His Word. Though many men held the brush over thousands of years, God directed each stroke, never altering in His purpose.

We have access to God on a personal level. He desires to spend time with us, for us to know Him so well that we think like Him and talk like Him, react like Him. Such a close relationship with Almighty God comes only through obedience.

Obedience paints such a negative picture in our mind. We see ourselves having to do something we dread and hate. But obedience is how a child of God will grow to maturity. Through obedience, we come to know our loving heavenly Father intimately, and in knowing Him, we find true joy and success.

In these pages, author Suzanne D. Williams paints WHO GOD IS from the image He has drawn in His Word of a GOOD God, a LOVING God. Speaking from her personal experience, she shares an image of the Father and Friend, who lifted her from a dark place of fear and panic to one full of peace and love and heavenly light.

To a beautiful life, a joyful life, a good life exceeding anything we can ever imagine.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Suzanne D. WilliamsBest-selling author, Suzanne D. Williams, is a native Floridian, wife, mother, and photographer. She is the author of both nonfiction and fiction books. She writes devotionals and instructional articles for various blogs. She also does graphic design for self-publishing authors. She is co-founder of THE EDGE.

www.feelgoodromance.com 

www.suzannedwilliams.com 

Facebook – suzannedwilliamsauthor 

Twitter – @SDWAuthor

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Verse of the Day and Devotional 8/30/2021

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Verse of the Day

August 30th, 2021

Scripture

So we should be thankful because we have a kingdom that cannot be shaken. And because we are thankful, we should worship God in a way that will please him. We should do this with respect and fear, because our God is like a fire that can destroy us. – Hebrews 12:28-29 ERV

 

Devotion

World events are devastating because the damage is often related to the human life loss, abuse, or degradation. There has been a lot political, social, and economic unrest bubbling to the surface around the world over the last few years. Now, you need to understand that world events drive the future of the nations. World events are unpredictable, often coming when least expected—like the COVID-19 pandemic. The extent of damage and death is often related to where and when it happens. Perhaps the spiritual life is much the same.

The fragility of the world reminds us of the fragility of our own lives. It’s easy to grow cold and callous about life, taking it for granted and becoming arrogant in our belief that we have the power to control our destinies. We do have choices in life, but as the prophets of old remind us, not everything is in our control. It often takes a devastating earthquake, tornado, war, flood, or loss of a loved one to wake us up to the realities of life, to wake us up from our slumber, so that we might begin wrestling with the uncertainties of life. Too often we ignore the words of the prophets until the reality of their words hit home—that is, unless we’re prepared spiritually for the tests that come our way.

According to Hebrews 12, when God called Moses, he heard the voice of God and trembled with fear, largely because the voice of God shook the earth. As for us, the word of God comes in a different way. As Hebrews puts it, “You have not come to a place that can be seen and touched, like the mountain the people of Israel saw, which was burning with fire and covered with darkness, gloom, and storms… But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to a place where thousands of angels have gathered to celebrate,” (Hebrews 12:18, 22).

When the world events are miscalculated, we have to trust God. Hebrews reminds us that we should treasure that which is eternal.

As we face the challenges and difficulties of the new year, as our lives are shaken by the coronavirus, in whom will we put our trust? Do we put our trust in our own abilities or vaccines? In the government? In our families? Or, even in the Church? Or do we put our trust in the God who laid the foundations of our lives? As we wrestle with these questions, it’s important to recognize that the temporary often seems more attractive and enticing than the eternal.

Fads come and go, but at their revealing, they seem so exciting. The eternal may not seem as glamorous or as hip, but when the temporary disappears, the eternal one remains standing. Quite often, the temporary collapses under its own weight, when the time of shaking begins. The question then is: how will we respond to the times when God sifts our lives?

When we stand on the Rock, on the God who created us, redeems us, and sustains us, we discover that when the shaking starts, like the unpredictable world events, nothing will move us. If we choose to walk in faith and put our trust in God’s grace, goodness, mercy, and love, then we will build our lives on the bedrock of eternity.

By Thomas Resane, Bible League International staff, South Africa

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