Fruit Basket (painting by Balthasar van der Ast).

First Fruits is a religious offering of the first agricultural produce of the harvest. In classical GreekRoman, and Hebrew religions, the first fruits were given to priests as an offering to deity. In Christian faiths, the tithe is similarly given as a donation or offering serving as a primary source of income to maintain the religious leaders and facilities. In some Christian texts, Jesus Christ, through his resurrection, is referred to as the first fruits of the dead. Beginning in 1966 a unique “First Fruits” celebration brought the Ancient African harvest festivals that became the African American holiday, Kwanzaa.                                                 (An excerpt from Wikipedia)

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As promised, I am still using this blog space to publish encouraging words to the world during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.  It is my hope that each and every blog post will contribute to your well-being, and will strengthen your faith and hope in our Maker, Christ Jesus.

While conversing with God, I borrowed His term “First Fruits” because I wanted to relate to it as God’s divine offering to his people (rather than God’s people retuning their offering to him).  I envisioned God giving to us a recipe for wholesome and righteous living during these trying times.

The Holy Scriptures reminds us that we serve an all-sufficient, all-knowing, all righteous, all-loving, all-wise, all-existing, all-powerful and all-peaceable God…just to name a few of His attributes.

So, for this writing, please allow me to list some of God’s first-fruits that he bestowed on mankind from the beginning.  All of these truths we can rely upon and that will give us hope for years to come.

God will supply all of our food source needs, our material needs, our civic needs, and our physical needs during Covid-19.

  • Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. Genesis 1:29
  • The cattle on a thousand hills are mine. Psalms 50:10
  • The birds in the air are mine. Psalms 50:11
  • Unless the Lord builds the house, those that build it labor in vain. Psalms 127:1
  • The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.  I will make a helper (wife) suitable for him.”  Genesis 1:18
  • Children are a heritage from the Lord…Psalms 127:3a
  • Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee. Isaiah 26:3
  • “For the Scripture says to the Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth.”  Romans 9:17
  • Jesus said to Pontius Pilate, “You could have no power at all against me unless it had been given you from above” (John 19:11).

Don’t forget, there are things you as citizens and believers have to do in order to receive his bountiful blessings.

  • Ask and you shall receive.
  • Ask according to his will.
  • Seek and you shall find.
  • Knock and the door shall be opened.
  • Pray for those appointed by God in authority.
  • Be ye holy as I am holy.
  • Therefore, get wisdom, get understanding.
  • Love thy neighbor as thyself.

In summary…always remember to keep God’s commandments and live holy, both in this age and in the eternal age to come.  In a prayer-like posture…

  “Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God,
and keep the vows you made to the Most High.
 Then call on me (God) when you are in trouble,
and I will rescue you,
and you will give me glory.”  Psalms 50:14-15

Scripture Lesson:   “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”  Psalms 46:1-3

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!









God Does Not Show Favoritism

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As many godly people continue to pray for victims of the coronavirus (Covid-19), did you know that as of April 17, 2020, approximately 210 countries and territories around the world have a total of 2,182,823 confirmed cases; and a death toll of 145,551.

I was led by the Holy Spirit to remind you of these statistics while reading a familiar Bible story  during my quiet conversational time with God.  It had to do with the Apostle Peter who had gone upon the roof top of his lodging place in Joppa to pray.  There he fell into a trance and had a dream.

He saw heaven opened and something like a large sheet being let down to earth by its four corners.  It contained all kinds of four-footed animals, as well as reptiles and birds.  Then a voice told him, “Get up, Peter.  Kill and eat.”   “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied.  “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.”   The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”  Acts 10:11  [This happened a third time, then the dream was over.]

How Did God Relate These Verses To The Coronavirus?

Once again, the Holy Spirit reminded me that this pandemic is a world-wide catastrophe.  And the message that God is heralding to the churches of the living God is to feed my people the Word everywhere.  Like Peter (a Devout Jew) said after he was obedient and went down to the town of Caesarea to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the household of Cornelius (a Gentile):  (Don’t forget, Peter considered Gentiles unclean.)

“I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism but accepts those from every nation who fear him and do what is right.”  Acts 10:34

Consider this my friends, this deadly calamity that the world is experiencing is a divine opportunity for us to pray for peoples everywhere regardless of their race, greed or color.  We are also commanded to pray for world leaders everywhere, that they use good judgement as well as trusted advisors and show humility and compassion to those in fear and without hope.

Pray that the world leaders will come to realize that they have the power to initiate, control, operate, lead, or triumph over anything, BUT NOT without the authority, blessings and wisdom of the Almighty God Who heals.

Would not it be wonderful, if such a time as this, could  be used to proclaim the true Gospel of the birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension of our Lord, Christ Jesus, to every creed, nationality and individual throughout the whole world?  Let’s all do our part to make this happen…IN THE NAME OF JESUS, AMEN AND AMEN!!!

SCRIPTURE LESSON:   “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.”  John 3:16-17

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!


God Is Blowing The Trumpet In Zion

          Blow the trumpet (Shofar) in Zion.....

The title of this week’s blog is taken from an Old Testament bible verse found in the Book of Joel 2:1 which reads:  “Blow the trumpet (Shofar) in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill.  Let all who live in the land  tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming.  It is close at hand—” (NIV)

During the past week, the Lord gave me four opportunities to ‘blow the trumpet’ FOR Zion.

But first, it is necessary for me to explain how the Holy Spirit instructs me to interpret God’s word.  He (the Holy Spirit) always encourages me to make scripture applicable to my everyday life.  Yes, I realize that many references in scripture, especially the Old Testament, are historical and render background information on what was happening in the lives of nations where God’s prophets lived and traveled and were inspired by God to become sages or recorders of His word.

BUT, as for me, I believe I am called by God to equate His written word to events I personally experience in my everyday life and to blog about them on Conversations With God Using Scripture.  So, please allow me to share the four consecutive events that happened to me all in one evening as I sat quietly at a table in the lobby of my beautiful apartment building, working a puzzle and adhering to ‘social distancing’ (due to Covid-19) from my neighbors.

Approached by visiting neighbor No. 1, who said:

“You know, I had the worst headache the other night.  It awoke me and I thought someone had taken a sludge hammer and hit me in the back of my head.  It hurt so bad, I asked God to just kill me.”  “Did you take an aspirin,” I asked.  “I couldn’t. My regular doctor said not to mix any other head ache medicines with my current meds.  But the next day I called a friend and she recommended another doctor and that doctor gave me a few pills and said to take just one the next night and I would sleep like a baby.  And guest what, it worked.”  “I thought you told me you knew God.  God is the giver of life and not death.  You should have prayed for Him to provide some kind of relief.  Instead you depended on a mere mortal to subscribe relief that could have done more harm than good. Before using another one of those pills, I hope you advise your regular doctor of what you have done.  And further more, I urge you to in addition to ‘knowing about God’, to form a closer relationship with him and turn to His Son, Jesus Christ, to lead and guide you out of troubling times.  During this Covid-19 crises, we should put our trust in Him.

Approached by visiting neighbor No. 2, who inquired:

“How are you coming with your puzzle?”  “Oh, hello.  Aren’t you my new neighbor that recently moved into the apartment above me?” “Yes, and I’m sorry if I am making too much noise…I’m still opening boxes.”  “Oh, that’s alright.  I do hear you at 6 o’clock each morning.  I guess you are getting ready for work.”  “Yes, I’m still working every day.”  “Well, you don’t know this, but during that time, I’m on my morning prayer telephone line with approximately 26 other people and we pray for you and your workforce.  We lift you up and ask God to  keep you safe and protected from Covid-19 and that you and your co-workers will not dispense the disease to anyone else.  Would you mind if I prayed for you right now?”  My neighbor look surprised.  He put on a big smile, bowed his head and I began praying.  Yes, right then and there, I was not ashamed to call on the Lord to cover him with the Blood of Jesus Christ and to build a fence all around him and his co-workers each and every day.  I guess you can say I was blowing the trumpet FOR Zion.

Approached by visiting neighbor No. 3, who said: 

“You haven’t seen me lately because ever since I returned from my trip to Israel in January, I haven’t been feeling well.”  This got my attention, and I stopped working the puzzle.  “Don’t worry, I don’t have the virus, but while in Israel I became so sick that I had to go to the hospital there.  The tour group I was traveling with decided I should return to the United States and I didn’t even get a chance to visit one place where Jesus went.”  “Tell me more,” I said.  “Well, one of my childhood girlfriends is married to a minister and she had been inviting me over the years to go on one of their mission trips, but I always refused, mainly because my husband had been sick for many years.  After his passing, my friend called me and said I now had no excuse not to travel with them, and she persuaded me to go to Israel with the tour group.  So, I don’t understand why after deciding to join them, God prevented me from participating by my getting sick and having to return home.  And now with all this viruses going around, do you think we are in Armageddon?”  (Oh, now it’s God fault (and not the husband’s) and He is to blame, I thought.  Oh, Lord Jesus, help me to impart some comforting words to this sister.)

“Listen, lovie, since you mentioned Armageddon, I see you know a little bit about the end times and the Day of the Lord.  Don’t you know that perhaps you entered into a spiritual warfare the moment you decided to let go and let God order your steps. Heretofore, you had allowed your circumstances to prevent you from serving God and coming to know his Son, Jesus Christ, in His fulness.  By putting God first and going on the Israel trip, the enemy was loosing his grip on you…and he didn’t like that.  I want you to be encouraged and to thank God for loving you and being patient with you.  Continue to seek him and develop a true relationship with him that will be closer than a brother.  Instead of bemoaning your failed trip to Israel, ask the Lord to open new doors for you to walk through.  I ask this all in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.”  Amen.

Approached by visiting neighbor No. 4, she had a praise report:

That same evening, I received a phone call from my closest friend in my apartment building.  She apologized for interrupting my puzzle activity because she wanted to let me know that through prayer, God had just fixed her television.  She reported that for several days her TV stations were fuzzy and that she could not receive any assistance from the front office to correct the issue.  Out of frustration, that evening, she decided to turn to the Great Cable Man, whose name was not Spectrum but Jesus Christ.  She asked Him to adjust His route and come by her apartment and fix her TV.  She said she left the living room area for a few minutes and when she returned, she picked up the remote, turned on the TV and (by God) it was working fine!  We both shouted and praised the Lord with laughter and in awe of His sense of humor and His mighty works and pleasure to satisfy His children.


As I put my puzzle away that evening and gathered my belonging to return to my own apartment, I heard the Holy Spirit say:  My child, yes I’m moving throughout this universe, to see if there is anybody standing on my Holy Hill blowing the trumpet in Zion, warning my people of the spiritual battle that is raging in the atmosphere.  Is there anybody lifting up the blood-stained banner for the Lord.  Whether the battle is big or small, I am in them all and will bring relief and victory to all those who turn to me in season or out of season; even for those suffering from the Coronavirus pandemic.

Scripture Lesson:  “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!                       

God Speaks Not In The Rushing Wind, But In A Still Small Voice

Blog-World Map

Dear Readers:  Below is a reprint from Buckner International. 

Buckner is a Christian organization located in Dallas,Texas, that establishes and supports orphan homes all over the world.   For ten years this blogger traveled with Buckner as an international missionary, distributing shoes, personal supplies, gifts and teaching English as a second language, as well as promoting the gospel of Jesus Christ where the countries allowed.

My adventures took me to St. Petersburg, Russia; Lima, Peru; Dominican Republic; Addis Abba, Ethiopia; and Hanoi, Viet Nam.  With other Christian organizations and churches, I performed international missionary duties in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; Acapulco, Mexico;  Nicaragua and Costa Rico, Central America; Zambia, Zimbabwe and Johannesburg, South Africa; Ammon, Jordan; and the Caribbean.

The reprint of this article below reminds us of where faith and works intersect as our nation adjusts to the ‘new normal’ situation we find ourselves in today, as it relates to Convid-19 also known as the Coronavirus.

 Buckner International
Seeking God in the quiet
Seek God in the quiet.jpg

How has your life changed in the last week? For many of us, we are embracing a new culture of working from home, homeschooling our children, practicing social distancing or experiencing a formal quarantine in an effort to slow the effects of COVID-19 that continues to spread throughout our communities. It’s a new normal, but it’s different and sometimes scary.


One of the hardest parts of the new normal is the vast amount of time you spend alone. Even if you have roommates or a family, you may still find yourself experiencing some unusual alone time or just an eerie sense of solitude as walks around your neighborhood feel like a ghost town.

The quiet of the hour may be opening the door for some self reflection. And if anyone knows how self-reflection can bring you down from a high, it’s the prophet Elijah.

Elijah had just experienced the greatest of highs. He challenged the false prophets of Baal to a challenge: lay out two bulls on a pile of wood while the prophets of Baal called on their god and Elijah called on his God. He who lit the fire would be the one true God. Though the prophets of Baal tried and tried, a fire never started on their wood pile. But Elijah drenched his wood pile with water three times and called upon God once and fire instantly ignited. The prophets of Baal were defeated and the people turned to God.

But the king was displeased and threatened to kill Elijah so he fled to the mountain. He was so despondent he asked God to let him die. The great prophet who just witnessed the glory of God was now asking to die because he was alone and his circumstances seemed bleak. How often do we fall under the same discouraging murmurings?

Instead of giving in to Elijah’s depression, the Lord provided food for him every day for 40 days. Even still, Elijah could only focus on the negative: he was alone and the king was seeking to kill him. Then the Lord asked Elijah to go to stand on the mount:

“And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him.” 1 Kings 19:11-13
Sometimes, we expect God to meet us in our busy lives and speak with a mighty thundering. But often, he is the quiet, still voice that calms your soul if you take the time to listen to it.

This new normal of solitude can be scary, but remember that God provided for Elijah when he was alone and encouraged him to go back to the city and do a great work for him. God can be found in the quiet. Take advantage of this new normal and see God in the quiet and see what word he has for you.“‘Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!’ The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.” –Psalms 46:10-11

Written by Aimee Freston, associate director of digital communications for Buckner International.

I hope that you truly enjoyed reading and digesting those comforting words and Scriptures penned in the article above by Aimee Freston.  I also encourage you to seek God during your quiet time as we live out this “new normal”.

Scripture Lesson:  “Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near.”  Isaiah 55:6

“What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to him?”  Deuteronomy 4:7

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!   

God Is Opening Doors For Feet Bearing The Good News

Yes, we are all extremely nervous and anxious about the Coronavirus.  BUT, in spite of it all, there is hope.  Not the kind of hope many of us are ‘praying’ for…like “I hope the restaurants will open soon”; or “I hope that March Madness producers will at least show some re-runs on television”; or “I hope the stock market rallies soon”; or I miss my church congregation and hope we resume services before too long”.

Truly, these troubling times are about none of the above.

If you watched the short video above you heard that perhaps these troubling times are actually THE HEAD OF THE HOUSE, JESUS CHRIST, HIMSELF, opening doors for the beautiful feet of His saints that run to carry the good news of the gospel from shore to shore and from region to region and from state to state, to enter in, and deliver God’s Word, that will absolutely sustain lives through sickness and health.

Yes, government officials can shut down all types of sporting events, bars, restaurants, work places, churches, etc., in hopes of slowing the spread of the virus.  And we the people can wash our hands, bump elbows, practice social distancing, and hunker down in place.  BUT only God can speak to the wind, regulate the minds of scientists, medical professionals and government officials, hold back the hand of death and extend love, mercy and joy to all those who are calling on the Name of the Lord at this time.

Therefore, you are humbly invited to share with your family, friends and acquaintances this Daily Devotion video which was obtained from Youtube website:  http://www.Ourdailybread.org 

Allow your electronic devices to serve you well and in truth as they enlighten you concerning a God who cares.

Please ‘follow’ this blog and leave your prayer comments below.  It’s time to rise, shine, bend the knee and give God glory.  Amen!

Psalms 56:3-4 NIV New International Version

Scripture Lesson:  “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise— in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?Psalms 56:3-4

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!


God Has Spoken A Word Of Comfort!

VU's response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) | Victoria ...

God has another name for this virus…Pestilence…a contagious or infectious epidemic disease that is virulent and devastating.

Dear Readers:

Since the Lord our God is with us, who or what can be against us?  Let’s all keep the faith, take care of our families and support those neighbors less fortunate.

During this crises, I will only be posting uplifting Bible Scriptures of comfort and support for my fellowman. 

man-holding-a-warning-sign-about-coronavirus-3952235 (3)

Scripture Lesson:  “I will lift up my eyes to the hills.  From whence does my help come?  My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.  He will not let your foot be moved, he who keeps you will not slumber.  Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.  The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand.  The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night.  The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life, your going out and your coming in from this time forth and for evermore.” Psalms 121: 1-8

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!                                     

God Has A “Vitamin” For That


Today I decided to make a concerted effort to eat healthier.  So, I went into my office and searched my limited library books on healthy living.  To my surprise, I dusted off a book entitled Your Body Can Heal Itself.  Within its pages, the book cover boasted there were 87 foods that everyone should eat.  As I flipped through the book’s pages, my attention was captured by a bold sentence that read:  “Pleasant way to keep cancer at bay”.

Those words grabbed my attention because earlier this morning I had just completed my 16th radiation treatment for breast cancer.  And guess what ‘pleasant’ food product was named to keep cancer at bay?—PRUNES!

Now, prunes are a first cousin to plums and according to the book’s assertions(*), both fruits have a high concentration of antioxidants, vitamins A, C, and K, fiber and potassium.  After Googling the health benefits of those ingredients, I thought, in a humorous fashion, how similar their benefits were in accordance with God’s remedy for healthy living.

Take a look at these ingredients for prunes and plums:

  • Vitamin A – Important for growth and development of the immune system and for good vision.
  • Vitamin C – Necessary for the growth, development and repair of all body tissue your body can’t produce.
  • Vitamin K – The blood clotting vitamin that plays an important role in bone health by helping to prevent osteoporosis.
  • Fiber – Dried plums are famous for keeping a person ‘regular’ and assist in keeping your digestive system running smoothly.
  • Potassium – Fresh plums helps to support blood pressure, cardiovascular health, bone strength, and muscle strength

Some of you may not know this, but one of my most favorite scriptures is this“Wisdom is the principal thing;  therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.”  Proverbs 4:7  (You should also know that the latter part of this verse  is to become my epitaph.)

So, in order to compare the benefits of plums/prunes, I sought the Lord and He heard my cry and delivered me from all my inquiries and gave me an understanding of how His Holy Word benefits me in much the same way as eating right.  The principal difference being that food benefits are temporal; God’s benefits  are eternal.

Now, take a look at God’s biblical ingredients:

The Holy Spirit entered my thought process:  It will be well, my child, in addition to consuming vitamin pills and fruits, to also remember that my Word holds wisdom, truth and knowledge for your growth and development not only now but also for eternity in my Father’s house:

For your growth, development and vision:  My word is a lamp unto YOUR feet, and a light unto YOUR path.” Psalm 119:105  Amen!

For your blood pressure: He (Jesus) did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained  eternal  redemption.  The blood of those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean.  How much more, then, will the blood of Christ (that never clots nor is too high or too low), who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! (now and forever more)” Hebrews 9:12-14  Hallelujah!

For keeping you ‘regular’ as I did for Paul: “But those things were gain to me (Paul), those I counted loss for Christ.  Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: For whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ.” Philippians 3:7, 8  Glory Be to God!

In other words, God’s ‘Vitamin’ is the Holy Bible!

(*) NOTE: Information collected from Your Body Can Heal Itself is for information only.  It does not constitute medical advice or practice.

Behold, I stand at the door & knock Poster | Zazzle

Scripture Lesson:  Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.”  Revelations 3:20

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!   





God Desires That You ‘Use It or Lose It’

When I was a little girl, my daddy use to sing to me this song as he twirled me around and mimicked playing a piano like Nat King Cole: ‘Straighten up and fly right…straighten up and fly right…straighten up and fly right…cool down poppa don’t you blow your top.”  It’s a song about a buzzard taking a monkey for a ride in the air.  Now, while in flight, the buzzard tries to throw the monkey off of his back.  (Click the picture for more lyrics.)

Straighten Up And Fly Right
Straighten Up And Fly Right

Wherein lies the premise for this week’s blog.

I know the lyrics of this song is a stretch in comparing just how many people soar through life’s journey mounted on the wrong set of wings, heading in the wrong direction, about to crash and ending up choking on past failures and unrealized illusions.  Those of us who are Believers in Christ should seek to know what His plans are for our lives.  That way, if we adhere to His plan, we are way ahead of the game, and less likely to go off half cocked.

“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”  Ephesians 4:16

What if you don’t have a clue of what God’s will is for your life.  Well, I’m glad you asked. 

Allow me to render the following suggestions that are germane, whether you are a Believer or non-believer.  These points will help you determine if you are operating on God’s time or your own.

  • Regardless of what age you are, reexamine your life’s true accomplishments. Ask yourself if they were true contributors to your success and to the benefit of others.
  • Were these contributors of success truly recognized by others and expressed in a complimentary and audible way to you. In other words, did anyone else validate what you believed you saw in yourself.
  • Along the way, did you listen to your inner voice that prompted you to explore, exercise more faith, or to seek others advice.  Ask yourself; how did I respond.  Did I always do it my way?

I intentionally posed those points above because did you know that all of us have dozens of hidden talents and abilities.  Hopefully, during some phase of your life you have tried to participate in things you have never before tried.  You know that old saying, ‘Try it, you’ll like it’.  It doesn’t matter how old you are now, because you should never give up or stop experimenting.  Scripture reminds us to always consider our hearts and personality:

“Each one should test his own actions.  Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry is own load.” Galatians 5:4. 5

God gives each person at least one gift and to others, many gifts.  Experts say you should not try to figure out that gift(s) until you have experienced a number of things in life either physically or through studying about it.  You may even benefit by taking a personality test.  And don’t forget there is a lesson to be learned in your failures.  Pastor Rick Warren says people rarely see God’s good purpose when there is pain or failure or embarrassment.  But Jesus had this to say to Peter when Jesus washed his feet:

“He (Jesus) came to Simon Peter, who said to him, ‘Lord, are you going to wash my feet?’  Jesus replied, ‘You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.'”  John 13:6, 7

Finally, we all have a spiritual obligation to live within the plans God has for our individual lives.  He will richly reward us if and when we do.  This is true because if we don’t abide you will lose the path to God’s understanding of what is that good and perfect work.   It’s like running a race or practicing for some event.  If you don’t exercise your muscles they weaken and become useless to you.  In other words, you either ‘use it or lose it’.

God’s plans are truly an undeserving gift to us which allows us to soar like an eagle…not a buzzard.  And God’s eagle will never try to throw us off its back.  All we have to do is straighten up, seek Him, trust and rely on His word and operate with a cool head and not  blow our top when something so easily besets us.  (Get the picture?  Now does the song make sense?)

Those persons operating under their own strength will lose it and their reward will be a lie that crumbles and fades.  Therefore…

Scripture Lesson:  “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.  I Timothy 2:15

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!   

God Used Naaman’s Story to Guide Me

Blog-God Used NaamanNaaman went to his master and told him what the girl from Israel had said.  “By all means, go,” the king of Aram replied.”  So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house.  Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”  2 Kings 5:4, 9, 10

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For the past 3 weeks, the Holy Spirit has placed me in a situation where He has instructed me to observe, listen and proclaim the Name of Jesus Christ to total strangers.

How swwweeeeet is that!

(Honestly, it has been more than a few years since as a  member of a few churches, I participated actively as a member of the Sunday School teaching staff, the Board of Christian Education, the church building committees, a leader/teacher for special bible study classes and workshops, a member of the Deaconess Board, and an activist and International missionary traveling to more than ten countries throughout the world for ten plus years.)

You see, as I have aged, my health has diminished, and my church participation has dwindled, also.

But through it all, the Lord has been with me, and some years ago, He promised that He would never leave me nor forsake me.  More personally, the fact that I could no longer participate in foreign mission travels to help spread the gospel, upset me the most.  However, in that vein, I distinctly heard the Holy Spirit say that from now on, He would send weary souls to me.  And certainly, during these past 3 weeks, the third part of the Holy Trinity has been working over time in my life.

Let me explain…

This week, as I searched the scriptures to get a clearer understanding of how God was directing me to write this blog, he laid it upon my heart to re-read the following scriptures concerning a valiant soldier in Aram named Naaman (not an Israelite) who was healed of Leprosy by Elisha, an Israelite prophet:

“Now bands of raiders from Aram had gone out and had taken captive a young girl from Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife.  She said to her mistress, ‘If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria!  He would cure him of his leprosy.’” 2 Kings 4:2, 3

 (I won’t use this space to retell of the first 3 incidents that happened between me and 4 perfectly total strangers during the past 2 weeks.  You can read them for yourself by scrolling backwards through my last 2 blog titles to read about those amazing encounters.)

What happen this week was even a more challenging situation.  And that’s why I found myself praying and asking God if this was another one of his ‘virtual mission trips’ that he had scheduled for me to run interference for him.

It all happened the other day at my daily hospital visit for treatment… 

You see, I am under the care of my physician who has scheduled 16 radiation treatments for me during the next several weeks.  To date, five of these treatments have been completed. During that time, I have come to know my administering lab technicians very well.  The other day, just prior to treatment, one of the technicians engaged me in a conversation and inquired of my past work history and where had I traveled.  I briefly mentioned my 28 years of employment, as well as the names of several foreign countries I had visited as an international missionary.  She was astonished!

A second technician was readying the lab room for my treatment and was not participating in our conversation.  However, on my next treatment day, when I arrived for lab work, and was seated all alone in a private waiting room, that second technician entered, shut the door and seated herself beside me.  She looked weary and began asking me how I had managed to do so many extra things in my life and how I had paid for all of my travels.

(WOW! I thought.  This is just like the other lady I blogged about earlier.  It’s an opportunity to witness for the Lord to one of His sheep.  And it does not require for me to preach like Paul.)

But this time the circumstances were more direr.  The technician briefly explained her need to earn more money, to re-examine her field of employment and also her obligations to family, a special needs woman-child, as well as her life choices as a single mother.

As we began to walk towards the examination room, time did not permit us to converse in depth, and I did not have an opportunity to impart too many encouraging words.  However, before I left the hospital, I slipped a business card in her hand and suggested that she call me at her convenience and we could continue our conversation.  I assured her I was there for her and wanted to be of assistance, if I could.


Here’s the part where the ‘Naaman Story’ comes into play.  I’m not saying that the Lord is using me as the girl from Israel, the king of Aram, Naaman or even Elisha the prophet.  I’m just sayin’ that I believe that the Lord has whispered into the ears of the total five strangers He has sent my way and said to them, ‘I hear your cry, and your desire to change and to do something more productive with your lives, and I will send you to one of my servants to direct you on the right path.’  Therefore, I’m claiming the position of being that ‘servant’…The Master’s Servant…just as I proclaim that position as the very last words in each of my blogs.

Consequently, I am asking my followers to be prayerful in this situation, and to submit their comments and suggestions, and pray that Our Heavenly Father will use me in a mighty way, and order my steps to proclaim His holy Word, until my traveling days on this earth are over.

Please know, as these situations continue to happen in my life, they are drawing me closer and closer to Him and the power of His might.  For now, right here in the United States is my mission field…where of I am glad.  To God be the glory.  Amen!

It is my prayer that the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart will be acceptable to my God as I earnestly attempt to minister to those sent to me my Him.

Scripture Lesson:  “I will bless the Lord at all times, his praise shall continually be in my mouth.  My soul makes its boast in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and be glad.  O magnify the Lord with me; and let use exalt his name together!  I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.”  Psalms 34:1-4

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!


God Loves To Travel In Style And Incognito

What do you know about cars?  For one thing, did you know how inefficient they are?  I had to laugh out loud when I learned that cars take up a huge amount of space on this earth but get driven around mostly empty.  Government statistics have shown that the private car in the United States carries only 1.6 people in them per trip!

Okay, I know what you are thinking…What does the above trivia piece of information about cars have to do with participating in a conversation with God using Scripture?

Well, I’m so glad you asked.

Today, as I was traveling up the highway, heading to the Half Price Book store, to purchase a book by Linda Page entitled Healthy Healing, I decided to turn on my car CD player.  A highly popular gospel tune by Reverend Hezekiah Walker entitled  “Every Praise” blasted out from the speakers and immediately the beat caused me to sway with the rhythm and to pat the steering wheel as though it was a drum as I drove down the street. (Click below, skip the ads and watch the street performance of Mr. Walker.)

Every praise is to our God.
Every word of worship with one accord
Every praise every praise is to our God.
Sing hallelujah to our God…
Upon reaching Half Price Books’ parking lot, I could hardly bring myself to turn off the music.  The testimony in song was such a blessing to my soul.  I finally exited my vehicle and entered Half Price Book Store while still softly humming the melody of the tune.  I found my book, retrieved it from the shelf and approached the checkout line.

A few customers were in line in front of me, so I took this opportunity to turn aside to examine some for sale items on a shelf while at the same time still humming “Every Praise”.  Just then a strange thing happened.  I felt something pressuring against my back.  I turned and to my surprise, I was facing the customer that was ahead of me in the checkout line.  Immediately, I apologized for bumping into her, but she smilingly corrected me and said she purposely leaned back to hear what I was humming because it sounded so soothing and gave her such joy to embrace my happiness in this troubling world.

(WOW!!! I immediately thought, Lord you are doing it again.  Just like last week.  You have opened another door to present Yourself to me and to others and to give me an opportunity to witness.) 

The next thing I knew, we were both giving God praises and thanking Him for his ever presence in our lives, seen and unseen.  (You know He loves to travel incognito.)

NOW, all I want to know from you is this…

What radio station is permanently set on your car radio?  Or what artist’s music CDs do you tote around in your clove compartment for entertainment?  Do you realize that this sanctuary place of yours can become an arsenal of ammunition to prepare you to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ?  Read the verse from 2 Timothy 4:2 (NIV) below:

May I give you a word of advice:  Use the time while you are driving in your (empty) car to think about this:
Scripture Lesson:“Finally my sisters and brothers, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report, if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”  Philippians 4:8

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from the Master’s servant manager…ME!