God’s Garden

One plants, one waters, one harvests.

We need to stop thinking that we have to do it all or we aren’t a true son. That unless, in a single encounter, we can make Jesus real, score a “sinners prayer” and build a Holy Spirit down line that we are failures!

Andrew was the first of the apostles to share his faith and bring another to Christ. Andrew’s testimony touched Peter who then went on to become one of the most influential apostles. Peter wrote 2 books of the Bible and brought thousands to Christ thru Holy Spirit signs and wonders! I don’t recall a book of Andrew in my ESV, but without Andrew there would be no Peter.

I’ve had people tell me there is no way they could do what I do. Nice pat on the back and I wish I could take more credit. But, I told God a long time ago that He had to land them in my lap and then light ‘em up. No guessing who He wants to chat with. Then fill my mouth with His words. His love. His healing. With no Mall Police escort out of the building. I am not kidding 🙂

You see I don’t like to be bothered when I am shopping. Or dining. Or getting a mammogram. If you know me well, you know that I get panicked in crowds. And the first thing I look for when I enter a room is the exit.

But when God turns on the light I get out of the way and He shines. Not me. I don’t have to do anything but repeat what He tells me.

Le Him decide what part you and I play in His garden.

Have a lovely week, Beloveds!
Andy

Jake

Months ago, I had some repairs done on my home. As soon as I met “Jake” my eyes lit up. Like I had just seen an old friend. I told Jake he looked familiar “Do we know each other?” “Nope.” I figured as time drew on that I would figure out where we had met. Jake was in and out of my house for several days and we rarely said more than hello. One day, I realized why he looked so familiar. God had a word for him!

I told Jake that he was going to be the father to his children that he never had. That he was a hard worker and I appreciated his perfection and attention to detail. That all of this came easy to him because God had given him these gifts and talents. That Jake would never have to worry about securing work, because of his craftsmanship and integrity which would walk before him and pave the way. That he had struggled through some issues earlier in his life, but that was all over with. God wanted to bring him into a season of ease and provision. I then told him that the woman he was with was perfect for him. That they would fill each other’s holes from the past and heal the hurt from all of the crappy relationships each had experienced.

Jake’s mouth opened. “Did Pete tell you about me?” (Pete is his business partner) ” No. God did.” He teared up and told me about his childhood and wanting to be a better parent to his children. Jake also had an engagement ring in his pocket that he carried with him everywhere so his fiancee, Natalie, wouldn’t find it. They had been together for 10 years and he had planned a surprise for the following week. Natalie thought they were driving to the airport to pick up his cousin, but instead, he was flying them out to California where he would propose on a beach. A lot of planning had gone into this and he was nervous about making their relationship official. He was so happy about the confirmation that he had found the one.

I told Jake, who didn’t know what a WOK (word of knowledge) was that I was happy that he didn’t think I was a nut case. “No, I am a believer.” He then pointed to a tattoo on the inside of his forearm that I hadn’t noticed before. It read John 3:16. How cool and what a great reminder! Jake, God not only wants his kids to have everlasting life with Him but also experience Him AND His kingdom here on earth.

I was reminded of this story today when I was thinking about how much Big Sky Daddy wants to speak to us even more than we want to hear Him. In fact, if we can’t hear Him for ourselves, He will make sure He gets the message to us through someone else.

Have a lovely week, Beloveds.

Love To Hate

Do you have anyone you love to hate? Or do you harbor un-forgiveness towards anyone for the pain they have caused you? To the point that anything they do becomes another reason to re-ignite those negative feelings or justifies your willingness in pointing out their flaws or mistakes? To anyone that will listen to you?

No? Are you sure? I had one of those people in my life, until just recently. I heard they were going to a conference to encounter the Holy Spirit so I asked a couple of people to pray with me that “Tori” would be whacked. So WHACKED that she would do carpet time and be laid out for a couple of hours until all of the stuff that ever irritated or hurt me would be healed right out of her. So she never does it again! Fix her Lord!

When I asked Tori how her conference went, I was surprised when she said it had been amazing. That she had finally just gave everything over to God to heal. All of it. That she had been profoundly touched and felt God in such a tangible way that it had been life changing. She started to cry and I could see a visible change in her. She looked softer and 10 years younger. I could see on a spiritual level that she was really free. I was overwhelmed with emotion and started to cry with her. She suddenly got up and said I need to hug you. Tori put her arms around me and we just stood there. Not saying anything. Just both crying.

If anyone, that knows us both, would have walked by and saw this, they would have thought Jesus had returned. Shared tears and hugs? Never in a million years! But God had other plans. I cried off and on, for most of the day. The Holy Spirit just kept hitting me over and over again. Not only was I happy for her, but I was happy for me. God suddenly removed 20 years of anger and hurt towards her. In a heartbeat it was gone!

Gone were 20 wasted years of loathing someone who had just as many issues to heal as I did. I just never saw it that way. She wasn’t evil, just in pain and hurting people hurt people. The beautiful thing was that I had just asked God last week to heal this issue between us, once and for all. I was willing to just give it all to Him. First time ever that I was ready to let it all go.

Isn’t it amazing what surrendering can do? Not out of fear, but out of trust? Trust that He can fix the impossible. And you don’t even have to wait until Jesus comes back. 🙂 He can do the impossible now. What do you need Daddy God to fix? Fix once and for all?

Don’t Exclude Jesus

A young person started asking me about God and formalized religions. Their main issue was that churches don’t involve their communities and embrace everyone. That they needed to offer something for everyone regardless if they are Atheists, Wiccans, Muslims, Buddhists, etc. I responded, “Do you mean like one big general church service?”

“Yes, so that everyone felt included.” Wow… God, how do I even answer that one?

“Well, Most churches have an outreach type of ministry where they go out in the community and help others regardless of their beliefs. Also, no one is usually turned away and can attend a service. But Christians believe in Christ and it is the central focus. So to provide a service to include everyone, and especially those who don’t believe in Jesus would have to leave Jesus out. So basically, the inclusion of all would be the exclusion of Jesus.”

Deer in headlights! You could tell this person had been brainwashed to think that Christians were hypocritical, self-righteous, and excluded others out of discrimination.

I continued, “Besides, if you were a satanist would you really want to go hear about Jesus? Wouldn’t you rather hear about Lucifer? Or the Muslims hear about Allah?

The Atheists? Hmmm… I think they’d rather just hit Perkins before the church rush got there.”

I got a laugh, and a lightbulb went off.

We ain’t all bad. We just aren’t giving up our Jesus to make ourselves look PC.

Stash

This afternoon, I finally had time to sift through a stack of mail. I was surprised to see some changes had been made to my homeowner’s policy.

Apparently my policy will not cover property damage or theft due to any Cannabis/marijuana that I may have in my possession. So if that kilo in my closest goes up in flames, the only compensation will be to my hood…as in a big neighborhood BRICK block party! Ha!

Who would make a claim for lost weed? Seriously? I don’t care if it is medicinal, if you have that much dope to make a claim, than you aren’t just ingesting, your sharing for a profit.

I’m still laughing.

Do You Want Fries With That?


WARNING ELDERLY PARENTS WITH HEARING PROBLEM RANT!


Hi Dad! I am on my way over, what do you want for dinner?


Cheeseburger from Mcdonald’s.


Ok. Fries?


Ok, goodbye!


No. Do you want fries?


Lies? Lies? What are you talking about?


No fries. FRIES! FRENCH FRIES!


Oh. No. Not fries. But anything sweet. Cheeseburger and something sweet.


Apple pie?


Ok, goodbye.


No! PIE! PIE!


That is what I said! Goodbye!


No, DO YOU WANT APPLE PIE?


NO, I don’t want any fries! They’re too fattening!


NO! I said APPLE PIES! PIES!


OK! Goodbye! See you when you get here.


Ok. Goodbye. I’m bringing you freakin cookies

Joint Custody

Aggghh I feel like I have joint custody of a 92-year-old toddler. Yep. Like a 2-year-old with a more extensive vocabulary. My sisters and I take turns bringing or making our father dinner. One night, the kid’s meal is “too much” to eat and the next, he wolfs down a Culver’s Double Deluxe.

It is always a mealtime adventure.

Last month:
“This is really good! I’d like this more often. What’s it called?”

“Spaghettios, Dad”

Tonight:
“This is horrible, What is this?

“Spaghettios, Dad.”

“Who eats this stuff, anyway?”

“Yes, Dad, it’s like ghetto spaghetti in a can. I get it. Just trying to make you happy and you loved it last month”.

“It wasn’t this stuff”.

“Yes it was.””

“I can’t keep track of what you girl’s bring me. Just don’t ever buy it again. And don’t bring me a sandwich, like you did tonight, with a lot of stuff on it.”

“It was only turkey and cheese on toast. What was too much?.”

“Just make me a normal sandwich”.

“Normal as in no cheese? Or normal as in no turkey?”

” Hmmm, How about just plain toast Jeanne?”

“Okay, Check. I’ll remember a normal sandwich is just plain toast. Love you Dad. I need to leave now” (before I burst into flames)

“Ok, thanks. I appreciate you girls. And thanks for not arguing. You were actually nice tonight.”

“Easy to be nice dad, when you are nice to me.”

“Ok, but I still miss the arguing. Kind of boring. Maybe next time we can argue about something.”

Aggghhhhh. At least he doesn’t throw food on the floor.

Holy Hat Trick

It has been stressful looking for a car after mine was totaled in a recent accident. Thursday, I was even up all night looking at cars online. A photo listing kept popping up of a RAV4 that looked faded like it had sat out in the sun for a couple of years. it was also an odd color. Like the color of an old Eggplant. I could see what looked like dirt or dents on the hood and bald tires. That was probably why the car hadn’t sold and the price had dropped several times in the past month. I couldn’t understand why it kept coming up! NOPE. Unless it’s free, that ain’t my car. I imagined my friends asking me if I was in the witness protection program and sending me Eggplant emojis… 😉

I was so overwhelmed looking at cars that I finally gave in and set up an appointment to see the Eggplant as I needed to start somewhere. A saleswoman at the dealership emailed me back and set up a test drive for the next day, which was Saturday. As I was getting ready for bed, I was surprised when God started downloading a word for the saleswoman. I rarely get a long WOK or Prophecy prior to meeting someone. “God if this is you, I won’t remember all of this tomorrow!” God laughed “No, but I will.” Ok. I decided I would wait until we were done looking at cars as I didn’t want it to hinder any negotiations if I saw a car I was interested in. I just knew I wasn’t driving the Eggplant home.

When I woke up I didn’t want to go. I was tired and not excited about being trapped at a car dealer on a busy Saturday. I decided to text “Sherri” and change our meeting to Monday instead. Of course, God had other plans and He soon put my shoes on and drove me to the dealership.

As I pulled out of the parking lot to take the car for a test drive God said “tell her NOW.” I was too tired to argue with Big Sky Daddy and let it rip, “Sherri, I know this is weird but God told me last night that you really should be in the finance department so you can have better hours and make more money. Are you a single parent or have a lot of people you are responsible for? God wants to make things easier for you this year.” I went on to tell her that her coworkers loved her and that she was a bright light at work. She was a hard worker, went over and above, and was very direct. It was a lengthy word and I won’t bore you with the rest BUT…she starts crying! I am test-driving a car and the salesperson is CRYING!

She said, “how did you know all this?” I said, “God told me last night.” She said “there is no way you would know this! I cried on my way to work today and told my manager when I got in that there is an opening in finance and I want it. My daughter decided she is moving to Texas with my brother and leaving today. She is also leaving my two grandchildren with me to take care of. She can’t handle them anymore. They are 1 and 3. You don’t even know how much I needed to hear this today!” Now I started to tear up and took the next exit, “Wow. Ok, I’ll take the car. I know God set up this whole day for the both of us.”

So we went back and sat down to start the paperwork. Sherri kept telling me how blown away she was. Then she found her manager and asked me to tell her what God had said to me. The manager smiled and kept nodding her head. She is a believer too and remarked, “Yes when it comes to God there are no coincidences.” Then another employee got introduced to me and I gave him a word. I said ” Do you like your job? Because God is telling me that you are in the perfect place for you right now.” He smiled ” Great, I think so too. Besides, I was in car sales for a while and I sucked at it.” He then asked me if I was a psychic or if I gave readings. This is ALWAYS a fun one to answer.

I finally ended up in the finance office with two managers, one of them I’ll call Pete. “Pete,” asked me what I did now that I was retired. “Hmmm. Working on a book and I am in ministry. “Really?” “Yes” So Pete leaves the office and when he came back asked again, “Are you really in ministry?” “Yes” Apparently, the red hair must just throw people off as no one ever believes me 🙂. He left the office again and came back in and asked if I was a minister would I pray for him as he really needed it. “Ok, I’ll do it now”. Pete started to kind of freak out because he wasn’t expecting that. People always expect you to say yes, but forget later to pray. Why wait? 🙂 I winked at him as I assured him I wasn’t going to read his mail. Even though God showed me generally what was going on with Pete, He put these words in my mouth ” God is telling me that you regret moving here. You wonder if you made a huge mistake. But God is going to smooth everything out for you. No matter what it looks like now. You also need to stop worrying about money. God is also going to heal a relationship that you have been struggling with for quite a while this year.” Pete’s mouth dropped open and his eyes teared up for a heartbeat. It was so beautiful to witness. You can always tell when God has connected with someone’s heart because you don’t have to give out any more details. The Holy Spirit is a big boy and can handle it from there. Pete thanked me numerous times and told me how much he needed to hear from God today.

I finally got home at 5pm and sat for 2 hours unpacking what had just happened. I was more excited by Big Sky Daddy’s Hat Trick than I was about my new car! I wondered what God’s kids told their friends and family later. Sharing God’s love in action always has a ripple effect. Good reminder to share your stories.

Oh, and my car looks nothing like the photo. Clean and scratch-free, inside and out. New tires. Low mileage. MN Viking Purple. It is perfect and was waiting for me.

It was a God-awesome Saturday! This stuff NEVER gets old!

Bye Bye

Many years ago my very wise older sister Kathy stopped me cold mid-rant and said “Do you need permission?”

“What?” “Do you need permission not to involve yourself with this person any more? I give you permission to just stop subjecting yourself to this person’s abuse and end the friendship.”

I was dumbfounded at first. Then relieved! I ended it that day and said goodbye to the drama. I guess I just needed someone to say that it was okay because I couldn’t myself. Ever feel like that?

Why is it that we sometimes hang on to old stuff, new stuff or even someone else’s stuff that isn’t working for us? Why do we feel we have to continue to struggle to make things work? Or to fix things? Especially with people who are crazy-making companions at best? Sometimes it takes too much energy to pretend someone’s behavior is well…normal. I think because there is something inside of us that wants to complete something that we started. Cross the T’s. Dot the i’s. Finish off the chips. Make sense of it all.

Sometimes it is good for us to finish everything we started and sometimes it is just plain wrong. Can anyone hear me out there about this? God isn’t expecting us to fix anyone or any situation. Only He can do that.

You aren’t a failure if you can’t or don’t want to hang in there to see something through that was never your burden to bear in the first place. Sometimes it starts out good and we don’t see the crazy card until we are well into the game. Or sometimes we have invested too much of our own secrets or given up too much of ourselves to another person and dread what would happen if all of this ended. Abruptly. What would be exposed? So we hang on to something that should have been cut off years ago, worrying about our reputations and our other 6 degrees of separation and hang on to madness just to protect ourselves. But if you can’t fix something, you can’t also protect yourself if someone decides to GO there for whatever reason. I have people who still talk about me from years ago. Now, I just call it free publicity.

Don’t worry. I give you permission today to stop anything that isn’t working for you. I promise you God will pick up the pieces and make wrong out of right. If He is for you anyone who is against you will not win in the end!

I really feel like there are a couple of people who need to hear this today.

Life here on earth is way to short too throw pearls before swine. Give it up and give it to God. Tell the person you are taking a break. Giving it a rest. An indefinite pause. Time to let go of the lies, abuse and negativity. Time to let go of someone or something that is holding you up or holding you back.

Time to break the news. Even if the person you are breaking it to, is yourself.

Imperfect

Sometimes I wonder how I can even be in ministry. I admit I can be terrible. Especially when I am really angry or afraid. I won’t even be fully aware of spontaneously dropping F-bombs. Rapid fire, machine gun F BOMBS! 🙂 I like to blame it on my red hair. Or the devil. It definitely isn’t His spirit in me 🙂. My therapist told me a long time ago that I need to make peace with my sometimes “highly excitable personality.” Yikes. Why can’t I just be a new person in Christ and stay there?

I was recently in a car accident. It was a shocker because I didn’t see the other car. I heard a loud bang and then saw a grey blur of metal as the impact spun my car a 180. It all happened in a heartbeat! I sat in my car shaking. What just happened? I looked down and I had red marks across my chest from the seatbelt and my left thumb was already turning colors. I looked in my rearview mirror and saw that the other driver looked much older than me. Was she okay? I was shocked and sat frozen, unable to get out of my car and access the situation. I finally caught my breath and called 911 and told them there had been an accident.

Where are you located?

I am not sure. I’m really rattled. In Maple Grove. By Walmart. Across from Valvoline. By Starbucks. That side.

Where are you? Southbound? Northbound? What road?.

Uh Uh Uh, Southbound.

I started to hyperventilate. I couldn’t recall the name of the road even though I probably drive it every day. I continued to tell her the landmarks, a block from X highway etc. and she starts screaming at me!

SCREAMING!!!

MAAM! WHY DON’T YOU KNOW WHERE YOU ARE? YOU NEED TO BE AWARE OF WHERE YOU ARE DRIVING!!! YOU NEED TO KNOW THE NAME OF THE STREETS YOU ARE DRIVING ON AT ALL TIMES!!! YOU NEED TO….

Her screaming was not making me think any clearer. I’m thinking, why are you yelling at me? Lady, you have no idea if I have a head injury or if my breast is cut off. Hmmm Maybe I hit my head and am worse than I realized! Now I am really panicked so I start screaming back….

Me: What the F$#@$!##@!!!!! I am rattled! I am trying to F@#$#@-ing tell you where I am and F@#$##……

OP: Stop yelling at me! Stop swearing at Me!

Me: You stop yelling at me!!!!! I’m sorry but aren’t you supposed to be the calm one? You aren’t helping this……

I mistakenly gave her the name of a street across the highway from me and she says “No you aren’t there you are on X !!!” Ahhhh….so she knew all along. 🙂 Ha! Maybe she was trying to find out if I had been day drinking.

OP: Are you blocking a lane?

Me: We are off to the side of the road and cars are going around us.

OP: THAT IS NOT WHAT I AM ASKING YOU!!!!!!! ARE YOU…..

This exchange goes on for a couple more minutes and then she finally screams “ YES YOU ARE BLOCKING A LANE!!!!! WAIT FOR AN OFFICER!!!!” Then hangs up on me. I’m thinking, don’t leave? I can’t even talk right now. I then decided to reach out for prayer so I could calm the F@$@#$# down.

We both were obviously not having a good day and she was just trying to quickly assess the situation. I cannot imagine this exchange if it was a murder scene or an abduction. Later, I told the officer that the 911 OP was a real @#$#@#. He just smiled. Hmmm, Maybe he knows her. 🙂 My sister, who showed up to help later said to me “ Do you realize when you said that he had his body cam on?”

OOPS. God is still working on this Redhead, but that doesn’t stop Him from using me. Or you.

Forgive yourself for not being perfect. Only Big Sky Daddy is perfect and He already loves and adores you. Even if you spontaneously drop an F@#$#%%.