Philippians- A Church Born from Suffering

Have you ever experienced disaster, disappointment, set backs only to see God show up and do something amazing? I know I have. Sometimes what seems like a set back leads to a divine appointment. But for any setback I have had, it would pale in comparison to how the church in Philippi got started.

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To understand Philippians, we should first look at Acts Chapter 16 for the backstory.

Paul and Silas were in town. They were looking for a place to pray when they encountered some women. One of them, Lydia trusted Christ. She invited them to visit sometime. Another day Paul and Silas went to pray again, but were followed by a slave girl. In Acts 16:17 we read:

She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 

After doing so for many days, Paul got annoyed and commanded the spirit that possessed her to depart from her. The spirit left her. Her owners instead of being happy for her to be freed, were angry they lost their source of income. Not exactly nice guys. So they dragged Paul and Silas to the town magistrates who ordered Paul and Silas to be beaten with rods and thrown in jail.

The jailer’s orders? Acts 16:23- the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully.

Paul and Silas had a response one would not expect from two guys who were beaten and thrown in jail. Acts 16:25:

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 

What happened next would get anyone’s attention. Acts 16:26:

Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. 

God moved big time. The doors were open. The jailer having thought he failed in his duty was about to fall on his sword, but Paul stepped up. Acts 16:28:h

But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

The jailer responded in Acts 16:30

He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

After hearing the gospel from Paul, the jailer came to faith. He took Paul and Silas home with him and all of his household came to faith in Jesus. The jailer tended to the wounds of Paul and Silas and fed them.

That is how what we consider the Epistle of Joy was birthed. Not exactly a modern day church planting strategy, but the results were amazing. For two thousand years, Christians have been blessed by the Epistle of Philippians.

So dear reader, when we find ourselves in adverse circumstances, let’s try to remember what God can do through them.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

My Book Lifted Out Of The Pit/Called To The Nations

There used to be a radio program by a man named Paul Harvey. He would start by saying, “You know what the news is. Now you will hear the rest of the story.: He would then share the story, the background, behind someone famous. Well, I am not famous, but there is the rest of the story behind my book Jesus Understands Trauma.

It is a testimony to the saving power of Jesus who can transform lives. It is about how Jesus reached down and lifted me out of the pit in life, worked to change me and my life, and called me to share his love with people from and in many nations,

When I started writing the two books, I crowd sourced on my blog for input on whether to make them one book or two. Most people responded by saying I should make them into the two books-Jesus Understands Trauma and Lifted Out Of The Pit/Called To The Nations. I appreciated that input and followed that path.

It will be ready for purchase next week. I will do the same thing with this book of donating $1 for each copy sold to a ministry or non-profit that helps people who experience trauma. This month I will be donating to the local chapter in my city of Royal Family Kids Camp which is a ministry that provides a one week summer camp and an ongoing weekly meeting for children who have suffered severe abuse.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Our Heavenly Home Will Come To Earth

Revelation 21:2-4 “I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

At times it is good to pause in our hectic lives and meditate on the future that is wonderful beyond words. A day is coming when Revelations 21:2-4 will be realized.

The imagery of God will wipe every tear from our eyes. Think of a good parent who does that for their little child. Think of a husband doing so for his wife or a wife doing so for her husband. Wiping the tears from someone’s eyes is a deeply loving act.

Think about no more death, no more pain. As someone living with chronic illness and chronic pain for over thirty years, it is hard to comprehend no more pain, but I would certainly welcome it.

This is the eternal destiny for all who have trusted in Jesus. It is that eternal destiny of being with Jesus forever that keeps me going because I know it will not always be what life is now for me.

This is my thought for today. There is a glorious future waiting for me that I do not deserve and did not earn. It is a free gift to all who trust in Jesus.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Book Info- Ministry Donating To

As I shared in my book and previously here in my blog, my plan is to donate $1 for each e book and each paperback book of Jesus Understands Trauma to a ministry or non-profit that helps people who experience trauma.

In May I had a very soft launch of Jesus Understands Trauma and it was only ten days ago. My other book will be out soon, Lifted Out Of The Pit/Called To The Nations, and I plan to do the same with that book. Once both are out, there will be more marketing.

So due to all of that, I have decided to donate all of May’s royalties to Royal Family Kids Camp. I also plan to donate $1 for each book sold in June to Royal Family Kids Camp.

Royal Family Kids Camp is a ministry for children who have suffered severe abuse. They get to go to a one week summer camp and be shown the love of Jesus and treated as children of God. The ministry continues throughout the year with a Saturday group. It is a wonderful ministry. I will be donating to the one in my city that a woman from my church works with. I do not have the final amount yet due to any sales processed today will show up on my repot tomorrow. As of now the total is $55.

The link for the national ministry is Royal Family Kids Camp.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Keep Focus On My Task

However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace. Acts 20:24

This was the verse of the day in Bible Gateway yesterday. It is a theme that has been on my mind a lot recently. At my age, the reality of one day being absent from the body home with the Lord is growing in awareness.

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My main task from Jesus is sharing about him with the nations living in my city and in other countries. I do not know how much longer it will be my privilege to do so, I hope to be like a colleague who passed away recently at the age of 80 years old,. She kept teaching up to the last week of her earthly life.

God keeps connecting me with people and those connections could lead to more opportunities to testify to the grace of God in Jesus. Among those are making videos translated into other languages, getting my book Jesus Understands Trauma translated into other languages, and hopefully more divine appointments.

While there are many issues in our society that cause concern, with my time feeling shorter by the day, my attitude is that of Paul in 1st Corinthians 2:2:

For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.

There is a hurting world out there with so many wounded souls in need of the healing that only Jesus can bring.

So today will be my Sunday morning group with friends from Brazil, El Salvador, and Venezuela, then worship service and in the afternoon a celebration with friends from Mexico. I would welcome divine appointments today and any day.

What will your day include?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Thankful Prayer Is Not Like Internet Connection

Yesterday one of the main internet providers in my city had a major outage that lasted several hours. So what started as a humorous intent for a blog post of what to do about coffee shops, ended up being fortuitous. I had added unlimited data for my cell phone for mobile hotspot thinking of my coffee shop unaware that it would be needed to be able to host my Zoom class last night.

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Technology is great when it works, but when it doesn’t, it can really mess up plans. I am thankful for technology in the classroom such as the computer cart that connects to the projector, My handwriting is terrible, so I use the computer/projector to type for students to see.

Zoom allowed classes to continue during the shutdown in 2020, but for some students it was a bit tricky. Internet connection is so important in our daily lives now, it could make one wonder how people survived before the internet. 🙂

Thankfully our connection with God in prayer does not depend on the internet. Jesus opened the way for us to pray and nothing can stop our prayers. There is no buffering, slow connection, or any such thing when it comes to praying.

The only interference in our prayer lives is ourselves. At times I can feel lazy, or let things that happened hinder me from praying. Satan can try to hinder me from praying but that only works if I allow it. The interference is never on God’s part. He always wants to hear from his children.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

By Consensus Dilemma Solved-Update On Book Translation

A few days ago I posted- My Dilemma- What To Do About Coffee Shops, sharing about trying to decide what to do, which one to choose.

Crowd sourcing the problem with my fellow bloggers led to a decision. It was unanimous among the responses to continue with both coffee shops by alternating. Pure Glory asked me if $10 is in my budget for the unlimited data for mobile hotspot which caused me to realize I was being too stingy. 🙂

So both coffee shops will remain on my agenda. How the time will be divided I think will depend on my mood each day or even better on how Jesus leads that day.

It is already in process. A friend from the Ukrainian church I work with ordered a copy of my book Jesus Understands Trauma. He is one of the pastors and is fluent in English. After he reads it, we will talk about translating it into Ukrainian and perhaps doing a video interview with a translator. Another friend has offered to help me with the Spanish translation. There are other languages Jesus has placed on my mind.

This afternoon will be nap time due to it being the day after methotrexate. I injected yesterday and still have the after taste in my mouth. A nap will be needed before teaching this evening.

How is your day?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Music Mondays- Second Chances by Iveth Luna

God never runs out of second chances for us. We cannot earn a second chance. We can only receive them by God’s grace and mercy and returning to God.

If we have made mistakes, he is there to help us pick up the pieces and start over. If obstacles overwhelmed us, he is there to help us overcome. If we are in the midst of a trial. his grace is there for us.

We do not need to dwell on our failures. We can come to Jesus and ask for help and then focus on the here and now not the past.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

A Video About Why I Wrote Jesus Understands Trauma

This is a simple video about why I wrote Jesus Understands Trauma. It is one I can post in my Author’s page with Kindle On Demand but only shows in other countries-not the USA. Not sure why that is. 🙂

This morning I spoke with a woman at church who is the Director of Royal Family Kids Camp. It is a wonderful ministry for children who have suffered abuse. They have a summer camp each year and also an ongoing Saturday morning meeting during the school year for the children.

I had a preliminary discussion with I’ve Got A Name. They work to free teens and women from sex trafficking and to prevent it.

I have communicated with Love Justice an organization that frees victims of trafficking around the world.

These are a few examples of ministries/organizations I hope to network with by donating one dollar from each book sold to one of them each month.

Also in the plans are to have the books translated into various languages.

Here is the video. It is not high production. Just a simple video message from me to you.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

My Book-Jesus Understands Trauma- Is Ready

It is exciting for me to announce that my book Jesus Understands Trauma is ready and available to purchase on Amazon. I am thankful for Jesus giving me the strength and grace to complete the book in what has been a turbulent year for me these past several months. I am also grateful for my pastor encouraging me throughout the process. I am also thankful for all of the people who prayed for me.

There are three ways to obtain a copy of my book. It is available in paperback for $10.95, available for purchase as an e-book for $5.95, or if you are a member of Kindle Unlimited you can read it for free.

Here is the link- Jesus Understands Trauma.

The next few weeks will be spent on getting my other book Lifted Out Of The Pit/Called To The Nations ready for publishing on Amazon.

So it is back to my office aka the coffee shop 🙂

Thank you for reading. God Bless.