A Brother’s Struggle, A Sister’s Hope 8/5/2022

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by Staci Stallings

An Interview with Janet Elliott, Jonathon Danforth’s Twin Sister

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So you want to know more about my brother, Jonathon Danforth, huh? (Janet sits back and thinks moment then sits forward.)  Okay.  I’ll tell you about him.

For one thing he’s a lot smarter than he gives himself credit for.  He always has been.  He could get into and out of more trouble when he was younger than any kid I knew.  And he was always into something.  Not bad things necessarily–like drugs or something–just stuff.

Like the time he was running that gambling ring in the third grade.  He aced more kids out of dimes and quarters than most kids could ever dream of doing.  Of course, Mom made him give them all back when she found out about it.  But that was just Jon, you know?  He was always looking for the angle, making deals, and trying to one-up somebody.

Okay, so it got him into some fights in school.  He spent most of junior year in the principal’s office.  In fact, they very nearly kicked him out of school more than once.  Not that he was a bad kid exactly.  He just couldn’t sit still, couldn’t just be.  He always had to be pushing the envelope, always testing the water, always trying to see how far he could go before someone pulled him back.

I think that’s why the last year has bothered me so much.  Yes, I know all about people grieving and needing time.  But Jon like checked out of life, you know?  I mean, he wouldn’t even leave that stupid apartment for Christmas last year.  “Nah, Janet,” he said when I called him and begged him to come over. “I think I’ll just stay here. I’m not really in the mood for tinsel and stockings.”

He had me worried sick if you really want to know the truth.  I mean, okay, I’m not his mom, but I am his big sister, and I know that living on pizza and beer in a dark pigsty of an apartment is just not healthy.

That’s why I talked him into taking that class–the one over at the community college.  Of course, English was never really Jon’s style, but it was either that or Chemistry, and I didn’t want to hear he’d blown the whole place up.

(She laughs and then sits back again, lost in thought.)IYB FINAL COVER 1-1-2014

I just worry about him so much.  (Pulling forward, her eyes are filled with tears that never fall.)  It killed him… what happened.  It did.  It was like one minute he was one guy–my baby brother, into everything, wheeling and dealing with the world, and the next second he was this guy I didn’t even recognize anymore. It scared me, you know. It really did. (One tear slips from her eye and slides down as she wipes it away and sniffs.)  We’re all we’ve got in the world now. With Mom and Dad gone, it’s just us.

I didn’t want to lose him too. (Her smile is tight and sad.)  Plus, he really is a great guy when you get to know him.  He has such a big heart for people and for things he really cares about.  I guess I just hope he finds something to care about again, you know.  (She lets her gaze fall to the table.)  I just want him to be happy… or at least not completely miserable.

(With a laugh, she jerks her hair back and smiles.)  Sorry.  I guess I get a little carried away when I talk about him.  I mean, he’s my baby brother, right? (She tries to smile again, this one is in apology.) I hope I haven’t bored you to tears with all of this. (She shrugs slightly.)  I just want what’s best for him, you know? And I hope and pray he can find whatever that is, whatever the next chapter of his life is. (She nods.)  Yeah, that’s what I want the most… for Jon to be happy.

If You Believed in Love, by Staci Stallings, featuring the story of Janet’s brother, Jonathon Danforth now available via Kindle at:  If You Believed in Love: A Contemporary  Christian Romance Novel

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: I call him HIM 8/4/2022

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

I call him HIM

A Post-Apocalyptic Survival Thriller

(I call him — HIM trilogy Book 1)

The End of Time

by Scott W Kimak

I call him HIM

A nameless warrior hungers for revenge. Can she save HIM from losing his soul?

Reeling from the loss of his family, a lone warrior embarks across a post-apocalyptic wasteland on a quest for revenge.

But his need for vengeance has consumed his soul and there is only one person who can save him from the call to darkness — a young girl with a mystical power.

In a desperate battle of good vs. evil, can the duo defeat the ultimate darkness? Or will they both be doomed?

Bestselling author Scott W Kimak takes the classic theme of good and evil and gives it a modern twist in this action-packed tale of the importance of keeping hope in the bleakest of circumstances.

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CrossReads Short Takes: Hope Amid the Pain & The Promise 8/3/2022

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CrossReads Short Takes

Hope Amid the Pain

Hanging On to Positive Expectations When Battling Chronic Pain and Illness

A 60-Day Devotional Journal

by Leslie L. McKee

Hope Amid the Pain

Why me? Is God punishing me? Is my faith not strong enough for God to heal me? How can I achieve my dreams? What’s my purpose?

If you’re someone living with a chronic illness or chronic pain, these are just a few of the questions you’ve likely asked on more than one occasion. You may feel overlooked or even resentful. You try to stay positive, but some days it’s hard. It’s natural to feel this way and grieve, but it’s still possible to have a hope-filled life. God has a purpose for the pain.

Christians aren’t immune from pain and illness, but we don’t have to go through it alone. Jesus promised that He would “never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV).

Millions of women suffering from chronic pain and illness want the reassurance they’re not alone. The devotions in HOPE Amid the Pain are written by a chronic pain warrior with over twenty-five years’ experience and will point the reader to hope and encouragement. It’s possible to Hang On to Positive Expectations (HOPE) even amid the pain.

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The Promise

(To Protect and Serve Book 3)

by Anne Perreault


The Promise

When tragedy derails your life, how do you respond?

Dakota Taylor is still reeling from the events that occurred only two days before her wedding. Instead of lounging on a beach somewhere with her new husband, she practically lives in the hospital room of her fiancé, Shane, fearing he’ll never wake up from his deep coma. Her carefully crafted plans are shattered further when unwanted feelings creep in, making her question the depth of her love for Shane.

How will their story end?

After months in a coma, Shane Donovan awakens in a hospital bed, to find a young woman by his side. She claims to be his fiancée, but if that’s true, why can’t he remember her? More importantly, will he ever be able to go back to being the one thing he loves above all – a police officer?

As Shane and Dakota grapple with the reality that their stories may not end the way they anticipated, other relationships threaten to derail their future together.

Did God really mean for them to be together?

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Gems From Pastor Jim 8/2/2022

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by Jim Hughes

CrossPs. 26:4-5 I do not spend time with liars or go along with hypocrites. I hate the gatherings of those who do evil, and I refuse to join in with the wicked.

The Psalmist shows us a sure fire way to keep our souls out of trouble with God. We stay away from those who would lead us into sin. When we choose carefully those whom we spend most of our time with, we can avoid many of the pitfalls of sin.

It is a waste of time to hang around with those who are liars. You cannot trust those who do not have the integrity of heart to tell the truth. You can be easily deceived by them. Listen to them and you will find it difficult to distinguish that which is true from that which is false.

It is not a good idea to spend time with those who profess one thing and live another. One can easily fall into the trap of justifying one’s own sinful behavior by believing that if it’s okay for someone who professes to have faith to do it, it’s okay for him to do it. It is never okay to do what you know God says not to do just because someone else is doing it. Sin is sin and will always be sin even if the whole world does it.

We can keep our souls pure before God by not hanging around where sinners hang around. We should despise being in places where we know people are sinning openly. It ought to shame us to be where sin is displayed and promoted. When we hang around in the cesspool of sin, we will more than likely fall into it.

A pure heart takes charge of his soul. He refuses to compromise the truth. He refuses to expose his soul to the ways of the wicked. He surrounds himself with people who can help him stay pure instead of hindering him. He just says “no” to sin and means it.

About the Author:

Jim Hughes

Spending 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.

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CrossReads Weekly Devotional: How to Let Your Light Shine 8/1/2022

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Matthew 5:14-16

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” 

These are some of the most famous words of Jesus. But what does it mean to let our light shine?

We let our light shine in relationship with one another.

The blessings Jesus pronounced, before He gave this admonition to let our light shine, give us an indication of how to let our light shine. Let’s look at just one of these to start out with. 

Blessed are the poor in spirit…

Poverty, whether in the natural or in the spiritual, affects our relationships with others. In Matthew, Jesus talks about the blessings of the poor in spirit. In Luke, in Jesus’ teaching about this, He simply says, “Blessed are the poor…”

I don’t know if you’ve been digging-through-the-dumpster-for-dinner kind of poor, but it definitely affects your relationships with others when you live in this constant state of need. It’s frightening. And what’s often frightening about it is how people relate to you. Are you coming to me because you want something from me? Or do you really want a friend? Most people who are the poorest of the poor are treated as if the former is their motive. 

I don’t know if you have ever been rich, and I mean shopping-without-a-budget kind of rich, where you can walk into a high-end car dealership and customize the exact vehicle you want to drive away with, but it changes how you relate to others. People who have this much affluence often wonder if people approach them as friends because they want money or gifts from them or because they genuinely want to be friends. 

I don’t know if you’ve ever been spiritually poor, where you constantly feel depleted and the bootstraps you used to pull yourself up are so frayed and broken that any time there is a call for prayer you can hardly wait for the preacher to stop explaining the call before you are running to the head of the line, but it can feel awful at times. Always in need. Wanting to give, yet all the wells have run dry. When people approach, will they offer friendship? Or will they see the gaping need and run away?

I don’t know if you’ve ever had the overflow of the Holy Spirit cascade through you where you minister to numerous people and they are blessed, but it is a beautiful place to be. Yet at the same time, when people approach, are they offering genuine friendships, or do they just want another spiritual experience at your expense?

Did you notice similarities in the questioning of motives?

Can their ever be true reconciliation between classes, both spiritual and natural, need and overflow? 

The whole gospel is about reconciliation. Our light shines brightest during reconciliation. It’s the healing of relationships, genuine love for one another in the places where we in the natural would guard and protect, lick wounds and savor bitterness: this is how the light of the gospel shines. 

This is what James was talking about in James 2:1-8. The Kingdom of God levels the playing field for all of us in terms of spiritual riches and poverty. In the same way, the Kingdom of God levels the playing field for those who are rich and poor in the natural because we are all one in Christ. We are all sisters and brothers in Him. We can approach genuine friendships and real relationships from this holy ground. In this way, we shine our light before people everywhere just as a byproduct of our love for one another. 

If you go through the beatitudes one by one, you’ll see that there is so much more about reconciliation. I will share more next month. Between now and then, may God’s blessings flow to you and through 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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Nobody Warned Me 7/29/2022

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by Staci Stallings

When I first started writing Contemporary Christian Romance in 1996, nobody told me what a crazy, twisting road this journey would turn out to be.  First of all, back then there was no such thing as Contemporary Christian Romance.  It literally did not exist as a genre.

I had been told to go and get books in the genre you want to write and read them. So I tried, only to be told, “Oh, you mean historical, right?”  When I insisted on contemporary, they laughed at me.

It took five years for contemporary Christian Romance to even become a thing. By then there were lines for it and a band of authors who got together to form the American Christian Romance Writers Association (now the ACFW, when Romance morphed into “fiction”).  I was member #75 of that fledgling group, and while both the genre and the visibility of Contemporary Christian Romance had risen, the lid on what you could write had clamped down firmly upon the genre.

It was in this environment that my first book, “The Long Way Home” was published. I went with a POD publisher because the lines had strict guidelines and my books just didn’t fit into them.  So this romance about a son sent against his will to a little town in Kansas was molded by this company trying to become one of the big boys, and unbeknownst to me “formula” was their goal all the way.  My editor and I worked and honed and fixed, and finally, I thought it was ready.

Then he emailed me one day and said, “We’re just over 89,000 words, and they want it more like 84,000, so I’m just going to go through and hone it to that word count.”  Now, in my defense, I was a new author who was way big into people pleasing and I wanted my book published.  So I said, “Okay.”

Well, you would be surprised how much difference 5,000 words makes to a book.  “The Long Way Home” was the sixth book I had written, and I had many readers at that time who had read my other books.  When “The Long Way Home” came out, they all eagerly got a copy.  But as I started reading, I realized in those 5,000 words, he had completely stripped my voice right out of the book!

I started getting feedback, and everyone said the same thing, “It’s a good book, but it doesn’t sound anything like you.”  But what was I to do?

That was in 2001, and by 2002, I had three other books out (now self-published so no editor could take my voice out), and I set the boxes of copies I had of “The Long Way Home” into the corner and left them there.  I didn’t want anyone to read it and think that was how I write.

In answer to your question, yes, over the last couple of years I had thought about rewriting it and putting it out on ebook.  The problem was I was working with 2001 technology. Remember 3.5 floppy discs?  That’s what I had the book stored on, and that, to me, seemed an insurmountable obstacle until a friend of mine mentioned she had an external drive that would read those.

Best $35 I ever spent!

So at the beginning of October, with my real-life commitments behind me, I pulled up my copy of “The Long Way Home,” and lo and behold, it was the one still written in my voice!  I went through it twice to fix and reshape a few things, and now… here I am… 13 years later seeing “The Long Way Home” listed on Amazon with the rest of my books—right where it always should have been.

And I’m already getting feedback about how romantic it is and how many tears people have shed over it. “One of your best yet” a friend said the other day.  I’ve never lost my love for this story, and I’m so glad God didn’t give up on it.

Interestingly, the technology in the story will make you laugh, and on that point, it almost becomes a “light history” story because as you read, you will remember what it was like as the technology revolution got going.  How laptops were new but not connected to the thing we now know as the Internet.  Cell phones weren’t smart, and faxes were cool.  Makes me smile just thinking about it.

I guess all that’s to say, nobody warned me how long the journey with this one book would be, but I am thankful for every step, including this final one of putting it out there and letting others enjoy the story as it was always meant to be.  God works miracles.  I’m so honored to get to share this is one of mine with all of you!

When I first started writing Contemporary Christian Romance in 1996, nobody told me what a crazy, twisting road this journey would turn out to be.  First of all, back then there was no such thing as Contemporary Christian Romance.  It literally did not exist as a genre.  I had been told to go and get books in the genre you want to write and read them. So I tried, only to be told, “Oh, you mean historical, right?”  When I insisted on contemporary, they laughed at me.  It took five years for contemporary Christian Romance to even become a thing. By then there were lines for it and a band of authors who got together to form the American Christian Romance Writers Association (now the ACFW, when Romance morphed into “fiction”).  I was member #75 of that fledgling group, and while both the genre and the visibility of Contemporary Christian Romance had risen, the lid on what you could write had clamped down firmly upon the genre.  It was in this environment that my first book, “The Long Way Home” was published. I went with a POD publisher because the lines had strict guidelines and my books just didn’t fit into them.  So this romance about a son sent against his will to a little town in Kansas was molded by this company trying to become one of the big boys, and unbeknownst to me “formula” was their goal all the way.  My editor and I worked and honed and fixed, and finally, I thought it was ready.  Then he emailed me one day and said, “We’re just over 89,000 words, and they want it more like 84,000, so I’m just going to go through and hone it to that word count.”  Now, in my defense, I was a new author who was way big into people pleasing and I wanted my book published.  So I said, “Okay.”  Well, you would be surprised how much difference 5,000 words makes to a book.  “The Long Way Home” was the sixth book I had written, and I had many readers at that time who had read my other books.  When “The Long Way Home” came out, they all eagerly got a copy.  But as I started reading, I realized in those 5,000 words, he had completely stripped my voice right out of the book!  I started getting feedback, and everyone said the same thing, “It’s a good book, but it doesn’t sound anything like you.”  But what was I to do?  That was in 2001, and by 2002, I had three other books out (now self-published so no editor could take my voice out), and I set the boxes of copies I had of “The Long Way Home” into the corner and left them there.  I didn’t want anyone to read it and think that was how I write.  In answer to your question, yes, over the last couple of years I had thought about rewriting it and putting it out on ebook.  The problem was I was working with 2001 technology. Remember 3.5 floppy discs?  That’s what I had the book stored on, and that, to me, seemed an insurmountable obstacle until a friend of mine mentioned she had an external drive that would read those.  Best $35 I ever spent!  So at the beginning of October, with my real-life commitments behind me, I pulled up my copy of “The Long Way Home,” and lo and behold, it was the one still written in my voice!  I went through it twice to fix and reshape a few things, and now… here I am… 13 years later seeing “The Long Way Home” listed on Amazon with the rest of my books—right where it always should have been.  And I’m already getting feedback about how romantic it is and how many tears people have shed over it. “One of your best yet” a friend said the other day.  I’ve never lost my love for this story, and I’m so glad God didn’t give up on it.  Interestingly, the technology in the story will make you laugh, and on that point, it almost becomes a “light history” story because as you read, you will remember what it was like as the technology revolution got going.  How laptops were new but not connected to the thing we now know as the Internet.  Cell phones weren’t smart, and faxes were cool.  Makes me smile just thinking about it.  I guess all that’s to say, nobody warned me how long the journey with this one book would be, but I am thankful for every step, including this final one of putting it out there and letting others enjoy the story as it was always meant to be.  God works miracles.  I’m so honored to get to share this is one of mine with all of you!

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: Texas Wildflowers 7/28/2022

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

Texas Wildflowers

Thanksgiving Books and Blessings Collection Five

(Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga Book 8)

by Caryl McAdoo

CrossReads Book Spotlight  Texas Wildflowers

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CrossReads Short Takes: Redemption’s Hope & God’s plans and purpose for humanity 7/27/2022

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CrossReads Short Takes

Redemption’s Hope

(Western Dreams)

by Kathleen D. Bailey

Redemption's Hope

Two distinct sets of villains. Two orphaned children. A man without a country and a woman with too much past…All in a rambunctious young country where anything goes, especially in the West. Seriously. What can go wrong?

In this latest installment of the best-selling series, “Western Dreams”, join Jenny and White Bear as they cross the historic West in an epic story peppered with grit, guns, and glory that award-winning author Kelly Goshorn calls “a sweeping tale of faith, dedication, and perseverance set in the American west.”

“…masterful wordsmithing!” says Clarice G. James, author of “The Least of These,” “Party of One,” “Double Header” and “Manhattan Grace.”

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God’s plans and purpose for humanity

by Henry Perez Miranda

God’s plans and purpose for humanity

Have you ever wondered how you came to be? Do you ever wonder how the universe came into place? Do you wonder what your purpose is in this world? Henry Miranda’s “God’s Plan and Purpose for Humanity” takes us on a journey through the beginning of the world, God’s unwavering love for man, and down through His very plan for each and every individual on the surface of the earth. Delving deeply into how man’s existence is based solely on God’s purpose for you and me. It, however, exposes the need for each believer to guide their loins in constant, unwavering fellowship with God while tapping into the full potential of their purpose on earth. It is not only an exciting time learning about God’s overwhelming love; “God’s Plan and Purpose for Humanity” sheds light on the need to search for God diligently and wholeheartedly and seek genuine salvation from him to discover His beautiful plans for you and me. This book also provides deep insight into how we can reclaim the fellowship that our first parents, Adam and Eve, lost and why God is so committed to reconnecting us in our fellowship with him. The juicy part of this book is how the author provides hidden secrets on how we can effortlessly love God and, as a result, be in eternal fellowship with Him.

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God Himself 7/26/2022

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by Suzanne D. Williams

It was the plan of the ages, set in place by GOD HIMSELF. God would send God to earth, conceived by God, so that God could die and inherit what God willed God to have. 

God wrote the rules. He made a God-promise with a man named Abraham, whose descendants would become as innumerable as the stars in the heavens, as the sand by the seashore. God swore by God to keep God’s Word because there was no God any greater. 

It was ALL GOD, the people created in God’s image after God’s likeness, the nation set apart as God’s. The God-rescue was underway. God would do what God said He would do according to the Laws He wrote to do it.

It was God’s plan. It was God’s story, God’s plot, to be done in God’s timing, the way God had chosen. And no other one could do it.

He prophesied it. God spoke through God’s prophets of the type and measure of God’s plan. Over ages of time, He detailed God the Deliverer as Emmanuel, God with us. God would come and God would accomplish everything God required of Himself. The LAMB OF GOD provided by God in a body prepared by God before time began.

Son of Man, Son of God, the LIGHT, the LIFE, Lord of all, Lord of Hosts, Lord of the Sabbath. Healer, Savior, both High Priest and Sacrifice. God’s body on earth was the curtain into God’s Presence. God giving access to God so that God could come and live in men and be their God.

God as Father revealed by God as Son through the power of God as Spirit, a God-union eternal and forever and everlasting. One God of all. One Father of all. The First-begotten Son of God. God the Holy Spirit, the very Breath of GOD HIMSELF.

God as LOVE. God as GRACE. God as HOLINESS. GOD as RIGHTEOUSNESS, as WISDOM, as FIRE and GLORY. GOD as KINDNESS. GOD as COMPASSION. GOD as PATIENCE, such LONGSUFFERING. Never rushed, never surprised, never absent-minded, never late.

All the aspects of God, all His GOODNESS sent to earth on God-display. GOD walking as MAN and GOD in order to lay down the life of God at the hour of His choosing. BUT GOD. But God knew the end before the beginning and what God had decided would happen would come to pass as God had spoken it when He spoke it. BECAUSE GOD. 

This was a God-finale. God would raise God from death, victorious over hell and the grave. It was GOD HIMSELF from start to finish, a triumph underscored by God, a RESURRECTION powered by God, a KINGDOM designed by God, for one reason only.

Not because ONLY GOD could do it, although that is true. Not because God was all-knowing and all-powerful. These are for certain. No, God’s Story came to pass because God longed to reunite with His children and return to them the God-power given before the first chapter was written.

A God-narrative which is still ongoing. God is seeking those who haven’t heard what God did, who don’t know God as Jesus, who haven’t seen God as Father, who once baptized in God as Spirit will never be the same again. Full salvation as GOD HIMSELF offers it, no strings, no condemnation, and complete forgiveness.

But time is short, and the rest of this tale on the horizon. Because one day soon, at an hour ONLY GOD KNOWS, GOD THE KING will descend from heaven with a shout, and we who are GOD’S CHILDREN shall be caught up together with Him, and forever be WITH GOD. 

Don’t miss the story.

References: (God Himself) 2Chr 13:12; Is 45:18; 1Th 3:11; Rev 21:3 ~ (the Lord Himself) Is 7:14; 1Th 4:16 ~ (the Spirit Himself) Rm 8:26 ~ (God-story) Rm 4:1-3 MSG 

Conversations With God

FREE at all retailers 

Amazon – https://amzn.to/3HTtDO4  

Other retailers – https://books2read.com/u/3LZkJ4  

*also in paperback 

About the Author: 

Suzanne WilliamsSuzanne D. Williams, is a native Floridian, wife, mother, and photographer. She is the author of both nonfiction and fiction books. Visit her at www.suzannedwilliams.com 

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CrossReads Weekly Devotional: Verse of the Day and Devotional 7/25/2022

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July 25th, 2022

Scripture

The righteous person faces many troubles, but the Lord comes to the rescue each time. – Psalm 34:19 NLT

Devotion

In this world we have and will have troubles. King David says even the righteous person faces many troubles. And he would know, for he was a righteous man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14), and he faced many of them. Although we face troubles of all kinds, we may take comfort in the conviction that the Lord rescues us from them all.

How does God rescue us from them all?

First of all, God may rescue us by totally delivering us from our troubles in the here and now. The Bible is full of examples of the people of God being rescued from their troubles. Although Abraham and Sarah could not have children, God gave them a child in their old age (Genesis 21:1-7). When the Israelites were stuck between the Red Sea and Pharaoh’s army, God parted the sea and let them cross on dry land (Exodus 14). When the Apostle Peter was in prison, the Lord sent an angel to free him (Acts 12:1-19).

Secondly, there is a sense in which God rescues us from our troubles by turning them from something that was meant by Satan to destroy us into something that actually benefits us. The Apostle Paul says, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them” (Romans 8:28). God uses the troubles of Satan to make us more and more like Jesus (Romans 8:29). With those in Christ, trouble loses its significance as a destructive force, for “our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Corinthians 4:17).

Finally, God ultimately rescues us from our troubles in the next life. Sometimes the sick die, sometimes the lives of the persecuted are sacrificed, and sometimes, like the Apostle Paul, we live with a “thorn in the flesh” for all of our lives (2 Corinthians 12:7). If our faith does not see its breakthrough in this life, however, it will see it in the next life (Revelation 21:4).

Satan is the trouble-maker. His evil and illegitimate regime functions like a parasite within God’s very good earthly creation. That’s why we see troubles of many kinds.

Take heart, however, for the Lord comes to our rescue each time.

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