Elvis

5 pm: I parked my car and walked slowly towards the nursing home entrance. I wanted to pray over my cousin Susie and wasn’t sure how my Auntie Evonne and several other family members would react. I decided I would just pray quietly so it wouldn’t offend anyone.

I introduced myself to the first nurse I saw and told her I was looking for my aunt. She flashed me a huge smile “Oh you just missed them! Your aunt and her granddaughter just left for dinner 20 minutes ago, but they’ll be back.”

Yay! I’m alone and can pray in tongues now!

“Ok. I’d like to see my cousin Susie Johnson. What room is she in?”

“Hmmm I don’t think she is here. I think she is gone, but let me check her room”

As I waited for the nurse to return, I glanced down both long hallways looking for any sign of residents. It was so quiet that I figured since it was dinner time that they must all be in the dining room.

The nurse reappeared from a room with an armful of towels “ Yes. She’s gone.”

“Gone? For dinner?”

The nurse smiled ” No, no ….as in passed on. I think she left right after your aunt did, but you can go in and see her if you want. Room 102” Then she turned around and walked away.

I was like WTH? Passed on? Nurse Jackie just said “gone” like my cousin was only temporarily preoccupied. Maybe away dining on some gravy lathered mystery meat. Or in the shower. I then got on the phone to call my aunt and cousins to tell them that sadly Elvis had already left the building. Evonne replied “ Ok, well we haven’t ordered yet so it will be awhile”. What? Was I the only one distressed?

After the calls, I walked into Susie’s room and laid my hands on her feet and briefly prayed. I didn’t know about dead raising back then so I didn’t stay long. I finished my prayers and then apologized that I hadn’t gotten there earlier.

As I walked out Nurse Jackie waved to me and called out” Have a nice evening ! I’ll tell Evonne you were here!”

Today, I relayed this old story to my cousin Tom and we both started laughing! Like hysterically laughing! Isn’t that terrible! He said “they must see so much death that it no longer affects them.” Maybe.

I still wish I would have gotten there earlier. Time here is short. Please never pass up an opportunity to pray with someone.  Or tell them you and Big Sky Daddy loves them. Even if it’s by phone or text. Some day we will all leave the building and only the living will have regrets.

Make it a great week peeps!

Speak Up

I am a part of a weekly prophetic mentoring group that meets thru Zoom. This week, the leader asked if anyone wanted to share a time when they saw God working in their life. I decided to sit back as I wanted others to share as I frequently add to the conversation. God kept pressing me to say something and I thought it was just me. Nope. Going to drink my Cold Brew and be quiet. Finally, 10 minutes before the class ended, I gave in and told a quick story about bad boyfriends and how God wants us to wait for our Boaz. I started to prophesy to the single women in the group that God needed to pick out their next relationship and to stop grabbing onto the next thing who “looked” Godly. Time would tell if they were. Several people said, “Oh you are speaking to me! I needed to hear this”

One woman wrote in the chat that she had been waiting for me to say something as she knew I was supposed to. I thought really? Maybe that was the struggle in staying quiet.

What is the lesson here? If you think someone might have a word for you OR for the group speak up! Months earlier, in that same group, I said hey “so and so” I think you have a word for this person and it is JUST one word. He said the one word and then the rest rolled out and it meant so much to the recipient. We make this too hard. God is continually speaking to us ALL. Share what you are hearing.

Ha! Except for the time when a person told me God wanted me to join his MLM downline. I knew that was the “only $50 a month on auto-ship” devil.

Chips In The Oil

Recently, I was talking to a guy friend. Former boyfriend actually. I asked him if he had met anyone interesting and he said “no, my life is pretty boring lately. Besides, I have changed so much. I used to manipulate women with my sad stories and am just too old for the games now.” “Sad stories?” “Yes. I used to tell women how poor I was as a kid and then they would feel sorry for me and I would get sympathy sex.” “Oh really?” I nonchalantly replied as I quickly ran a scan on my memory hard drive. “Yes, one story I told was how we were soooo poor that we could not buy potato chips so my mother would peel a couple of slices off of potato and drop them into the oil so we could have a couple of chips with our lunch.

I started to laugh knowingly. Embarrassed, he asked if he happened to tell me that story too. “Yes, actually you did.” “Did it work on you?”  “No, I recall I told you that I was sorry you were poor and offered to buy you the biggest bag of chips I could find to make up for it.” He laughed” Sometimes, you are just cold.” I just smiled and thought…Not cold, it just took you a little longer to suck me in.

Now I am talking about a lovely man who just happens to be a non-believer. He does not know how to act or think any other way than the flesh. If you recall I just asked him if he had met anyone interesting and I never asked if he was sleeping with anyone. Now I know some of you are thinking but I don’t know those kinds of men. I only know GODLY single men who would never play games. But just because you found yourself a single “Christian” man doesn’t mean anything until he repeatedly proves it by his actions. Don’t be so naive to think that some Godly men aren’t tossing a few slices in the oil and calling it Jesus.

I know some single Christian women who cry about not having a man but never venture out to find one. They basically drive to work and back home again. Now unless a man hurls himself onto your windshield how do you expect to ever meet one? It’s impossible. Reminds me of the homebody roommate I had years ago who developed a strange crush on the Dominoes delivery guy.  Yep. Ordered it every weekend for over a year. Big world out there when you decide to participate.

Or what about the single women who continue to throw their lines into a limited pond? You know the ones. They go to church on Sunday, Wednesday and any other day it is open. They attend every conference, talk, or workshop, and all fight over the same 5 single men who are not available because they are also on the hunt and you ain’t her!

Then one day these women start to panic at living life alone and they jump at the first sighting of something that LOOKS Godly. You say well that is certainly not me but then you find yourself putting on something nice and starting to hit the groups you have never been to. You have traded a past life of hitting the bars for a church crawl so you can soberly scope out the available Godly talent. You are determined not to spend one more Holiday alone. You look around the room and observe the pack for a while. You ignore the speaker because you are too busy categorizing every male in the place. Hmmm, married, taken, too old, too young, crazy, weird, homeless, potential stalker, and then you see someone who appears normal and available. You watch from afar and are suddenly mesmerized by how he raises his hands and voice in worship. His left hand is ringless and you are encouraged. He occasionally pauses to flip open his bible and you know the Lord is speaking words of wisdom to him. He is not easily distracted and listens intently to the speakers. Your heart races and you think oh I want a Godly man just like him! One that worships and reads his bible! I can even bring him to conferences instead of going with my girlfriends. We can volunteer together and start a ministry and and and….. Girl wake up. Let me slap you upside your head right now before you get caught up in the trance. As soon as he bags you or his ideal woman he won’t be going to any more conferences. I don’t care how Godly he looks as only time will tell if he is just playing your game. The “I know you all are looking for a Godly man so I will gladly play the part” game. Are all men like this? No. But take the time to check it out. Just sayin.

Next time you spot someone new take a breath and pause before you get all tingly because he appears to be the man you have been waiting for. Or stop when fear grips you and you feel like you will live the rest of your days alone. So ALONE that you will probably lie dead on the floor for days with your face half eaten away by your 8 cats before anyone thinks to check on you. Don’t let that fear or panic control you so that you plan to grab the next available guy that comes along just because you are afraid you have no other options.

You shake your head and say that is not me but we all know how it starts…ha! Is he single? Yes? Really? Oh my! Single AND a Christian! This must be the one. I know Papa God said I would meet my mate in church one day. He is kind of cute but I would definitely have to dress him differently and OMGoodness his hair! He does need a woman. I hope he has a job. No? That’s okay we can start our ministry right away. What? He does? A good job? Yay, God! DING DING DING DING DING!!!!! Winner Winner Chicken Dinner! Now I KNOW he is the one. Why else would God have me come here on this particular night AND me having a good hair day? Single, Christian, and a job! Yes, I could definitely make this work!!!!!

Slow down Ruth and wait for your Boaz. God may have some work to do on him yet. Or worse yet maybe some work to do on you. Gasp! Be open to being led by God, even if it means having to get out of your house, church, or nearest revival center to do it. There just might be some lovely man out in the world who isn’t quite a Christian yet. Remember you weren’t always quite the believer you are now. Or it might be someone you would never think would be your type. Or someone you already met or see on a regular basis and I am not talking about the pizza guy. Might be someone who would be perfect for you if you just gave him half a chance to prove he is or could be the Godly man you always hoped for.

Plant Parent

Many years ago, I belonged to a large church and there always seemed to be someone promoting their kid’s school fundraiser. I bought a live plant arrangement but didn’t pick it up for two weeks. Of course, by then, it was almost dead, and the parent told me she would refund my money. Nah, that’s okay, I told her and planned discreetly to discard it on my way out.

I then saw an older couple with their 40-something son, Billy, who had recently gotten out of treatment. He had moved back in with them and they were concerned, as he was extremely depressed. He felt like a huge loser who would never redeem himself in life because he had wasted so much of it with drugs and alcohol. The couple had asked us to pray for Billy, as he spent most of his day in bed, and they were afraid he was suicidal.

I smiled and waved as I passed them by and God said, “Stop and give Billy the plant. Tell him I want him to bring it back to life.”

I thought, Nah!. Why would God want me to give this depressed guy a dead plant? God persisted and whispered, “trust me”, so I finally turned around and handed it to Billy. “Yes, I know this is weird, but God told me to give you this plant and that you would bring it back to life.” Billy laughed, ” You mean resurrect it?” ” I smiled. “Yes. I’m serious.” I laid my hands on him and said a prayer for healing, and then I left.

A month later, I ran into this same family again after church. I was so glad to see a happier Billy, who was also sporting a new haircut and a sharp buttoned-down shirt. “Hey, Jeanne! I saved that plant you gave me and I now have it sitting in my bedroom window.” I thought he was kidding and figured the plant had died the next day. But as Billy wandered off to get coffee, his mother told me he tended to that plant every day. He was so touched that God had spoken to me about him, he was taking the responsibility seriously. She said she watched as he came out of his depression because he now had something to put his focus on other than himself.

God brought this memory back to me yesterday. I got teared up all over again. God is so amazing. He can take something so simple and heal through it. He can work through anyone and that means you and me! Next time you feel like God is asking you to do something “odd” feel stupid and do it, anyway. You might just be planting a seed or literally helping to bring someone back to life.

No High like…..

Tonight I was in a live zoom meeting and was distracted trying to listen while multi-tasking. At the end, Shawn Bolz was praying over us and God said “You need to hear this” and BAM……

The Holy Spirit hit me and I was just completely wrecked! My head fell into my hands and I couldn’t move as Shawn finished speaking. Then they announced the recording had stopped, but some people were still hanging on. I am sure, on camera, I must have looked like I was high or in a sugar coma :). I sat motionless, with my head down, for several minutes until I could reach up and shut my laptop. I then sat for another 10 minutes glued to my chair! Second time this week. Been a long time since I have felt a tangible Holy Ghost presence. It was an almost daily occurrence when I was a new believer.

While He had my undistracted attention He said:

“This is what you in Me and Me in you feels like in your flesh. It is overwhelming and your mind can’t comprehend it. It spills out of your heart or your spirit center and floods your body. I give my children this tangible feeling so that they know I am real and that I abide in them and they in Me. Hold this feeling in your heart. Imprint it on your heart. I haven’t gone anywhere. My spirit does not come on you, my spirit is always in you. In you. With you. Not beside you. You are in Me and I am in you. You won’t feel this 24/7 but that does not mean it is not TRUTH. It’s the Spirit’s truth.

I knew exactly what He meant even though I find it hard to articulate it now.

I believe we are all going to have more incidences of the tangible presence of the Lord. I still feel like I have had a couple of glasses of wine.

No high like the Most High 🙂

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.

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.

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.