Gems From Pastor Jim

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CrossProv. 2:3-6 Cry out for insight and understanding. Search for them as you would for lost money or hidden treasure. Then you will understand what it means to fear the LORD and you will gain knowledge of God. For the LORD grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.

Do you cry out for insight and understanding, or are you satisfied with what little you know? Let’s face it, most of us do not have a deep longing for insight and understanding. We shrug off what we don’t know and don’t try to dig deeper to know. There are many things we cannot know for they are hidden in God, but there are many things He wants us to know that we don’t pursue.

What we do know and understand determines how mature we become in faith. He who knows little will not do well in his walk with the Lord. The more spiritual knowledge and understanding we have in our hearts, the more capable we will be to deal with the many ups and downs of living.

Spiritual knowledge is far more valuable than all the riches of earth. What we learn about the Lord and His ways inspires within us a fear for Him. We learn that God is to respected and treated with reverence. We learn that we are responsible for our living and thinking and must let the Lord have control of them.

Wise is he who seeks the Lord and strives to understand His ways. The more we learn of Him, the more we are able to live lives that are pleasing to Him. The Lord gives wisdom to all who earnestly cry out to Him. He will not deny anyone insight and understanding if they sincerely seek Him.

May your heart hunger and thirst for God today. May your heart cry out for insight and understanding so you can live rightly before Him today and always. Don’t give up on your quest and the Lord will fulfill your longing. Wisdom comes to those who sincerely seek the Lord.

Before and After the Honeymoon

About the Author:

Jim HughesSpending his formative years in Ft. Wayne, IN, Jim followed the love of his life to southeast Iowa where they married and have spent the majority of their lives. Jim has pastored several churches throughout his life and has worked many years in local factories to help support his family. The father of two married adult children and one son still at home, Jim is a first-time author.

C Through Marriage came into being through many years of pastoral and life experiences. The book first took on a life of its own over 20 years ago when I sought to address the much publicized moral failures of prominent leaders in the church. In the chapter on Chasity, I include the guideliness that I developed then to protect one’s self from such failures.

I am a firm believer in order to make sense out of life you have to use much common sense. We need to get back to the basics of what has worked for many, many generations. If is isn’t broke, why try to fix it? I strive to return to the basics of what really works in all my writings.

This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.

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A Review Revisited: Miriam’s Secret

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by Paula Rose

This review appeared on Books-N-Reviews on Publishers Marketplace by Paula Rose http://www.publishersmarketplace.com/members/booksnreviews/

Publisher: Harvest House | Published: February 1, 2015 | Format: eBook (352 pages), Paperback (352 pages), and Hardcover (529 pages) | ASIN: B00RYB9NQU, ISBN: 9780736958790, and ISBN: 9781410479464 | Series: Land of Promise | Origin: NetGalley

Miriam's Secret

Cover: Courtesy of Harvest House Publishers

Thoughts:

MIRIAM’S SECRET by Jerry S. Eicher is an Amish novel with a twist of money in the middle, but the only part that Miriam tells her family heightens tension to turn this story into a gripping read!

The Yoder family is large and poor and their lacks have taken hold of Shirley’s heart inside her rumspringa, and an Englisha boy with a Porsche soon follows. However, it is the eldest sister, Miriam, who harbors a secret, and it can change her life and the life of her whole family.

While Miriam took care of an English, elderly man until his death, his appreciation is shown inside his will. Being left an inheritance could cause happiness in many ways, but in the Yoder family, the father’s fear of the controlling power of money is a big worry.

Nevertheless, when he confesses to the community, he puts Miriam into the limelight and on the radar of someone whose thoughts of money are already in control.

***This opinion is my own.***

Preview:

Author Jerry S. Eicher introduces the Yoder family of Holmes County when the oldest daughter, Miriam, is going to work at Mr. Bland’s farm.  To Miriam, it was not only a good job to take care of Amos Bland, but it was an established relationship that keeps her coming back. She wasn’t sure that her feelings of an Englisha man as a second daett was an acceptable one, but it was what she felt she had in Mr. Bland.

His death hit this Amish woman quite hard, but she really hadn’t been able to express her emotions to anyone other than Mr. Bland’s sister, Rose. Miriam wouldn’t take the chance on disrespecting her own flesh and blood daett with such emotions spoken by his daughter. The strength of this bond that existed from Amos Bland puts Miriam in a place where even her parents had to ask–if any relationship besides employment with her employer existed as she was included in his will?

Meanwhile, her younger sibling raises trouble while she is romancing the money of an Englisha boy, but Miriam’s romance hopeful, Ivan Mast, didn’t choose to bring Miriam home from a hymn singing.

He chose another until her inheritance becomes known in their community.

Soon, Miriam and Shirley leave to aid their Aunt Fannie in Oklahoma with a new baby, but Miriam and Shirley yearn for new beginnings.

About the Author:

Paula RoseAuthor Paula Rose brings an “average” family into extraordinary situations, brushes with life-size strokes of reality, adding just a touch of humor, and coats with suspense inside Christian fiction. Paula’s research gives readers a panoramic view from law enforcement and lends to character authenticity. She enjoys writing in the romantic suspense, suspense, and mystery genres, but when she’s not writing, Paula Rose is reading or playing amateur photographer. Member of ACFW. 2015 Genesis Contest judge. NetGalley member. 2014 Grace Awards judge.

Website: http://paularosebooks.com/ Blog: http://www.publishersmarketplace.com/members/booksnreviews/

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Big, Scary, Trust

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by Sherry Chamblee

It’s like we’re children going to a haunted house attraction with our parents.

We’re so excited to be going to the amusement park. We prepare and we gather all our things together to make it the perfect trip. We make sure we have all we need to get inside.

Then we walk around the park, holding our mom and dad’s hands, just happy to be with them and to see all the great things. We get to visit a fun place, with someone we love, who’s taken care of us all our lives.

But then, we get in line for the Haunted House. The line is no big deal. Dad is holding our hand, Mom’s got her map out tracking where we’ll go next. Everything’s fine, until suddenly, we’re next in line. We look up, into a black hole of a doorway, weird sounds reaching our ears, a cold blast of air chilling us to the bone. We wonder just exactly what we’ve gotten ourselves into here, and clutch Dad’s hand a little tighter.

He tugs as Mom urges us over the threshold from behind, but we suddenly aren’t so excited about this. Not at all. It’s dark in there. There’s odd smells, and strange sounds, and we think we saw something scurrying across the floor just out of sight. This cannot be right. Something’s not ok here. We hold back, tugging Dad back again, but he’s looking down and smiling, just telling us it’s all ok, he’s strong and secure, and knows exactly what’s going to happen. He won’t let go of our hand.

Then it all comes to a realization in that moment – we trust Mom and Dad enough to know they’ll care for our needs – food and clothes and school. We can get in a car and let them drive us around.  We can be excited to get here to the amusement park and to be spending time with them.

But do we trust them enough to walk into a dark scary place just holding Dad’s hand?

That’s how I am with God. It’s fine when it looks like everything’s good. I can trust God to take care of me, right?

Until things get scary. Until things look out of control. Until there’s a new twist and I can’t see around the bend. Then I’m not at all sure God’s got this. I say I trust God for my food, my shelter, my clothing, my salvation, my very breath. But when He asks me to round a corner I’ve never seen before? To walk through a doorway into a dark room, and I don’t even know there’s a floor to stand on? To step out into something completely untried and untested?

Oh no, that’s scary. That’s too much to ask. That’s more than I can find the strength to trust God for.

And it’s in that moment that I realize I don’t even have enough trust to trust God on my own. God has to give me the faith to employ to trust Himself. How convoluted is that?

And yet it’s true. I have to ask God to help me even to trust Him – when He’s telling me to trust.

Imagine that though.  God loves us so much that when He asks us to do something, He then turns around and hands us what we need in order to accomplish that thing.

When He asks us to trust Him, He will give us what we need to do that. Just ask. God wants you to trust Him. God wants you to succeed. God wants to give you the faith you need to place your trust in Him to do those big scary things.

Just ask.

About the Author:

Sherry Chamblee

Sherry grew up in various cities around northern and central California. This gave her all sorts of stories that sat and festered in her brain, waiting to be let loose. She eventually went to college in Wisconsin, where she met her equally frenetic husband, Rich. They have six (yes, count them) children, two dogs and a cat, and currently reside in a madhouse in the southern California area. As a family, they enjoy being active in their local church. Sherry spends her time writing when not caring for Granny, the kids, the dogs, the cat and any number of strays in the neighborhood.

Sherry Chamblee can be found at http://www.sherrychamblee.weebly.com Or check out her books at http://www.amazon.com/Sherry-Chamblee/e/B00BA06RJ2/

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Devotional for 4/5/2017

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by Mark Malcolm

22  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  
23  gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.  
24  Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.  
25  If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.
 
Galatians 5:22-25 (NASB)

When we hear someone say we need to give, we usually think they mean money. Stewardship wants us to give more. We have a very giving congregation at our church. Those folks gave until it hurt. These are all phrases we have heard (I hope) in church but they are usually reserved for those times when someone is talking about financial contributions made or needed. Why is that? Is money the only thing the children of God have to give? Is money the only thing God expects us to give?

Our talents are also something we can give others. The skills each of us possess are unique to us. As individuals each of us can step into a role that is unique to us and thus fulfill a need that is unique to someone else as well. This unique skill set/need match is something God is quite aware of and many times engineers encounters with individuals specifically because you are who you are and only you can fill a particular need for one of His children. It is for that reason that we, as Christians, need to have a unique heart-position of openness to those seemingly chance encounters. There are no coincidences.

What does that mean there are no coincidences? It means God has stepped in and through His Divine ability to see the really Big Picture, He is putting each of us in a position to at once help someone else and grow ourselves. We, by our works to help others, help ourselves.

Look at the top left hand corner of this sheet at the second line there: Faith as Motivation to Give. Consider your faith for a moment. Verse 24 of our passage this week lists “faithfulness” as a fruit of the spirit. God has given each of us a set of skills through the knowledge we have amassed based on the experiences we have lived through. Some experiences were dangerous, others mundane. All experiences imparted at least one nugget of knowledge to us. When we use that piece of knowledge to make good decisions and learn from those decisions, we transform that knowledge into wisdom. It is this most valuable of commodities, Wisdom, we must covet, seek out, and amass like most valuable treasure.

This treasure we have gathered in is not for ourselves only but others. We must make certain it is not horded to ourselves because while we may not be able to take material possessions with us when we pass on, we will certainly take our wisdom and knowledge with us unless we pass it on to someone younger. How are you ensuring the most important things you know are passed on to the next generation or at least one other person?

Bio from my web site :

Smiling Mark IIMark Malcolm is a child of God, husband, father, project manager, technical writer, gamer, fiction writer, Marine (’87-’91), has practiced Shao Lin Kung Fu and Tai Chi, been published in magazines and newspapers (editorial anyway), and seen the Southern Cross.

The goals he has currently are to more accurately identify the path God has for him to walk, continue to provide for his family, establish a solid web presence, build a career writing novels through both traditional and independent publishing, and learn to better relate to the people around him.

http://www.firstchevalier.com/about-the-cavalier/

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Gems From Pastor Jim

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by Jim Hughes

CrossProv. 1:7 Fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge. Only fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Wisdom is the right application of knowledge. Knowledge is more than remembering information; it is understanding what we remember. Knowledge is obtained by first learning to fear the Lord. If we do not respect who the Lord, revere Him, or respond to Him as our God, we will never really know what the Lord wants us to know. Life changing knowledge is rooted in a personal relationship with Christ.

Wisdom is understanding that we need to come underneath God’s discipline from time to time. It is not a pleasant experience, but necessary for our maturity in faith.

Only fools despise wisdom and discipline. To despise is to hate. Fools hate to know what God demands of us. They hate to be told what to do. They hate to have to change their ways to conform to God’s ways. They hate anything to do with a God who takes a personal interest in our lives.

Fools despise God’s loving care who sometimes has to take us to the woodshed because we do wrong. They want a God who loves us always and never interferes with us when we don’t return his love in obedience. Fools hate to bow before God. They want instead to live as if they themselves were God.

May we be a people who fear the Lord. May we become a people who have great knowledge, who seek to know the ways of the Lord and live by them.

Before and After the Honeymoon

About the Author:

Jim HughesSpending his formative years in Ft. Wayne, IN, Jim followed the love of his life to southeast Iowa where they married and have spent the majority of their lives. Jim has pastored several churches throughout his life and has worked many years in local factories to help support his family. The father of two married adult children and one son still at home, Jim is a first-time author.

C Through Marriage came into being through many years of pastoral and life experiences. The book first took on a life of its own over 20 years ago when I sought to address the much publicized moral failures of prominent leaders in the church. In the chapter on Chasity, I include the guideliness that I developed then to protect one’s self from such failures.

I am a firm believer in order to make sense out of life you have to use much common sense. We need to get back to the basics of what has worked for many, many generations. If is isn’t broke, why try to fix it? I strive to return to the basics of what really works in all my writings.

This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.

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The Betrayal

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by Precarious Yates

“That I would know Him…and the fellowship of His sufferings…” ~ Phil 3:11 

The suffering of the cross began many hours before the nails pierced His hands. It started in a garden.

Just like the first suffering back in Eden, it began in a garden.

The first time around, there was bliss and then betrayal and suffering.

In this garden, there was the kind of stress that made Him sweat blood. He who knew no sin became sin (2 Cor. 5:21). Then came the betrayal.

We don’t know exactly how close of a friendship Jesus had with Judas. We read about Peter, James and John being in the inner circle. But we also know that at the last supper, when they all reclined at the table, Jesus sat beside Judas. So while John, the disciple Jesus loved, leaned his head against Jesus’ chest, listening to the Lord’s heartbeat, Jesus most likely reclined in such a way that His head leaned against Judas’s chest.

I don’t think He feigned friendship with Judas to teach us a lesson about forgiveness. I firmly believe that Jesus had genuine emotions—nothing artificial or superficial. His affections toward His friends are demonstrated by the way He behaved. He loved His friends and loved them to the end (John 13:1). He washed Judas’s feet even when He knew what Judas had prepared to do. Maybe to appeal to him.

Have you ever known that someone was hurting you and tried to appeal to the person’s better nature? Maybe you know what was going through Jesus’ mind and heart during those moments. Maybe you know this better than you ever wanted to.

And sometimes in the midst of all of that, when one friend kisses you with betrayal and all your other friends leave, you may feel utterly alone.

It didn’t end at the garden either. Peter followed closely enough that he could see Jesus getting interrogated by the Sanhedrin. In his fear, Peter denied that he knew his dearest Friend.

Also, Jesus came to His own, and His own knew Him not. There He stood before those who day in and day out studied the words that He gave them. They read all about Him in the Torah, but refused to recognize Him. Instead, they bound His eyes and mockingly asked Him to prophesy. “Who hit You?” they derided.

Sometimes we suffer things absolutely alone.

He did too. He knows what that level of loneliness feels like. Not superficially, not artificially, but utterly, painfully real.

Yes, He chose this road, but that didn’t mean it hurt any less.

It does mean that He’s right there to offer a deep level of understanding you may not find anywhere else.

If this is you, if you’ve been betrayed beyond what you feel you can handle, do reach out to friends. If there’s no response, do know that there is one Friend who sticks closer than a brother, a Friend who is acquainted with the whole gamut of human suffering. He won’t try to compete or say His was worse than yours. He’ll just invite you to lay your head back against His chest and listen to His heart beat while He holds you.

Father, I thank you for sending Your Son to experience everything we do. I thank you that You didn’t spare Him. I ask that You would surround those reading this with Your presence, especially those who are suffering from the sting of betrayal. I ask that You would reveal Your love for us in greater measure than ever before. I pray this in the Name of Jesus. Amen!

God bless you!

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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A Free Book For You & The Lydia Collection

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by Lisa M. Prysock

The Lydia Collection

I am pleased to share with you that The Lydia Collection is complete!  This is one collection, three different stories, and each can each be read in any order.  If you enjoy Christian Historical Romance but don’t want to be stuck in one era or time period, then this series was created with you in mind.

The Redemption of Lady Georgiana…  (FREE)

The collection includes a Regency Romance with a French and English setting during the Napoleonic Era and the time period when the Prince Regent, George IV, reigned in his father’s stead, King George III (1811-1820).  The story is based on one of the greatest Bible love stories of all time, the book of Ruth, with a theme of kindness and redemption.

Protecting Miss Jenna…  (Also enrolled in Kindle Unlimited)

Jenna’s story is an Antebellum Era Romance (1812-1861) with lots of adventure from Louisville, Kentucky.  The book features an anti-slavery theme with threads on improving self-esteem.  The story is based on real life events from my own research.  I visited a number of Kentucky plantations and even took a riverboat ride on the Ohio River as part of my research for this era.

Persecution & Providence…  (Also enrolled in Kindle Unlimited)

The opening lines of this book are a parody of Pride & Prejudice.  This is a Jane Austen-ish Pioneer Era Mail Order Bride story from the 1870’s with a theme on the depths of God’s love for us.  The book includes a satirical character sketch.  Readers will enjoy meeting Chelsea, the heroine of this adventurous story.  Animal names in the story were suggested by other readers.

Author Biography:

Lisa M. PrysockLisa M. Prysock lives in the countryside of beautiful, rolling Kentucky just outside of the greater Louisville area near horse farms and four board fences with her husband of 19 years.  She homeschools the two youngest of their five children (three grown).  She and her husband live in an average, two story, Colonial style home they are continually updating– with a funny looking Heinz 57 dog; an adorably dainty lady cat; two teenagers; a vegetable garden; numerous flower beds; and a tree house undergoing a remodel.  When not in teaching or writing mode, she is teaching herself to play the piano and violin.  In regards to that, she laughs:  “It’s a pretty painful process, but I’m truly enjoying it!”

Lisa loves all things old-fashioned and has adopted a slogan of “The Old-Fashioned Everything Girl.”  A few of her interests and passions include doll houses, long dresses and hats, gardening, reading the Classics, butterflies, swimming, walking, working out, cooking, sewing, crochet, cross stitching, arts and crafts, scrapbooking, decorating, and drawing.  Recently, her husband remodeled a room in their home with a picture window overlooking a valley which contains a creek and wooded area, transforming the space into a serene and sublime writing office/sewing room.  “It’s a great source of peace and inspiration for me… and pure joy not to be writing from the busy kitchen amidst the household chaos on a laptop.  Growing teenagers eating every five minutes makes for a constant stream of happenings!”

Lisa is an Amazon bestselling author of To Find a Duchess, an Inspirational Regency Romance; a Victorian Christian Romance Series which includes Hannah’s Garden:  a Turn of the Century Love Story and Abigail’s Melody; and ‘The Lydia Collection,’ which includes The Redemption of Lady Georgiana (a Ruth love story of modern day Regency proportions), Protecting Miss Jenna (an Antebellum Era Christian Romance Adventure), and Persecution & Providence (a ‘Jane Austen-ish’ mail order bride story from the Pioneer Era).  She is also the author of a devotional/Bible Study, Arise Princess WarriorShe recently released The Shoemaker, an Old-Fashioned Christmas Regency Romance.  Lisa writes clean and wholesome literature that shares her faith in Jesus Christ.  She is a member of ACFW and Louisville Christian Writers.  You can find out more about Lisa at:   www.LisaPrysock.com

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The Great Thirst Now Available in Boxed Set

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by Mary Findley

boxed set and all covers great thirst

All seven parts of the Great Thirst serial archaeological mystery are now available in one volume as a preorder for only 99 cents! Here’s what readers have been saying about this serial:

“I liked this story. I really liked the characters and the small town feel of the story. Plus, Mary had me turning pages trying to figure out where the story was going and what was going to happen.”

great thirst 1

“I just LOVE how Keith and Talia interact/square off against the trouble making parents. The writing is clean and you can let your child read this without having to be concerned over the content! There is a lot of history incorporated and kids will be gripped.”

great thirst 2

“This is one easy read and very entertaining. It is structured for young adult and I can see them enjoying this, including the young adult that still resides in me! I feel this is one very promising series and I am very much looking forward to the complete package.”

great thirst 3

“I loved it! Findley expertly weaves valid Bible teachings and plot together in a wonderful harmony that is sure to please fans of the Bible. I walked away from this one feeling that I’d learned many valid truths, and her scriptural knowledge was quite profound.”

gondrani bury talia

“Love the archaeological dimension. Extremely interesting. Challenged me to remember to live my life so that Christ’s love can be seen through me.”

david sharon GT 4

The complete serial, over 700 pages, is available for preorder at only 99 cents! Grab yours today.

Amazon http://amzn.to/1PzShW2

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/612678

eva sanchez olmec

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Gems From Pastor Jim

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by Jim Hughes

CrossPs. 147:4-5 He counts the stars and calls them all by name. How great is our LORD! His power is absolute! His understanding is beyond comprehension!

When was the last time you really pondered over the greatness of God? Have you considered the magnitude of the heavens? On a clear night you can see more stars than you can count. We are told that the nearest one to us is over two light years away and a light year is how far light travels in a year at 186,000 miles per second. Some of the stars we see no longer exist. They are so far away from us that we are still seeing their light as it travels across space. We are told that there are billions of stars, and most are much larger than our own. The Psalmist tells us that every one of those stars has a name and the Lord knows it. He spoke them into existence and named them! I sometimes have trouble remembering one name, let alone billions of them. The Lord not only knows the name of every star, he knows the name of every soul. How great is our God!

Now, if God has the power to create such a thing as the heavens, don’t you think he has enough power to take care of you? There is absolutely nothing that is beyond the Lord’s ability to handle. There is nothing that can stand up to the power of God. His power and authority are absolute. We cannot grasp how it can be, but we know it is so.

Who can fathom the mind of God? Who can understand how God can be and how he can do what he has done? Who can grasp God’s potential? God’s greatness is beyond understanding. We certainly cannot figure Him out. All we can do is accept Him for who he is and submit to his power and authority over us. Only a fool would dare to ignore the Lord our God!

Before and After the Honeymoon

About the Author:

Jim HughesSpending his formative years in Ft. Wayne, IN, Jim followed the love of his life to southeast Iowa where they married and have spent the majority of their lives. Jim has pastored several churches throughout his life and has worked many years in local factories to help support his family. The father of two married adult children and one son still at home, Jim is a first-time author.

C Through Marriage came into being through many years of pastoral and life experiences. The book first took on a life of its own over 20 years ago when I sought to address the much publicized moral failures of prominent leaders in the church. In the chapter on Chasity, I include the guideliness that I developed then to protect one’s self from such failures.

I am a firm believer in order to make sense out of life you have to use much common sense. We need to get back to the basics of what has worked for many, many generations. If is isn’t broke, why try to fix it? I strive to return to the basics of what really works in all my writings.

This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.

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Lifeforce

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by Suzanne D. Williams

They took Him away. Hated. Shunned. Turning their faces aside because the form and shape of Him was so gruesome. Unrecognizable.

But inside, deep down where it counts, where the core of all decisions and choices are made, in the center of His being, was a Man who knew exactly how they felt. He recognized every sadness they’d ever dealt with, knew depression and mental anguish, anxiety, panic.

They didn’t look at Him, but He looked at them. With love in His eyes. Compassion. Mercy. For the very people who through fear and greed, lust for power and things, reasoned with themselves it was all God’s fault.

God did this. Save Yourself!

Yet beaten, bruised, mauled by their actions, He submitted, willing to take the blame for all the horrible things they’d ever done, ever would do. For generations of men led astray by the deceit of darkness. For those who worshipped Him not, had no respect or regard for His actions. Those who debased and devalued this moment in time.

For them He bore it all. All. Every. The lot. The entire weight of people with no clue that the Man they sought to extinguish was the very One who could save Him.

They thought they knew better, thought they’d figured it out, charted their paths, set their feet the direction they wanted to go, when all along what they were walking on was shifting, sending them deeper and deeper into the sands of time where once moored, they’d never get out. Never.

Unless at the bottom, stuck in place, faced with their own demise, they’d look up and see He did this for them. For their sins. For their mistakes. For their problems, turmoils, and troubles.

For the kid who ran away from home. For the child molested by his father, brother, neighbor. For the teen who got into drugs and grew up addicted. For the man in prison who stole or robbed or murdered. Yes, even for him. For those who’ve done the worst, most horrible crimes society can imagine.

As well as the housewife, who yelled at her husband. The husband who worked too late and swung at her. The children who viewed it and crouched together, eyes wide, wishing it’d stop.

The sailor, the soldier, the hero, the fallen. Those who died in wars, sacrificing themselves for the greater good.

The victims of holocausts whose lives were snuffed out without care.

The cancer sufferer. The cancer survivor. Anyone captured by decay and disease. Accident or misfortune. Natural calamity. Complete disaster.

Ignorance.

He didn’t limit His act to the church goer, the saint, the clean-skinned college grad, the upright in their pressed pants and shiny shoes. This Man surrendered Himself to false judgment though all of these people and millions more, born and unborn, turned aside, gave Him the cold shoulder, discounted His death as just another one of those. Something ugly and awful and too hard to look at.

They took Him away, but they couldn’t put out his Lifeforce. They had no idea that what looked like the end wasn’t the end at all because the power behind Him still burned, an unquenchable force capable in one instant of time of wiping the slate clean for the entire world.

The entire world! Those same ones who think they know what they’re doing. That still today look another direction rather than at some poor Man who died so tragically. That fashion for themselves gods of silver and gold, paper and plastic. Stone gods who without eyes or ears or mouths can’t do anything more than stare back unfeeling, unmoving. Empty vacuous air without any ability to heal and mend.

What they meant for loss was instead their gain. What they shed to bring death, instead gives life. What they tried to extinguish is instead brighter than it ever was and able to fix whatever is broken. It’s a task already completed. A victory already won. Success. Triumph. The big prize.

Accomplished while people weren’t looking. By a Man who looked like nothing but can change your life into something. If you’ll believe it.

*This is the author‘s paraphrase of Isaiah 53:2-5.

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Talk Like a Pirate

Suzanne D. WilliamsABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Best-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.

To learn more about what she’s doing and check out her extensive catalog of stories, visit http://www.feelgoodromance.com or link with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/suzannedwilliamsauthor or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SDWAuthor.

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