“And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play. And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves: They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them: they have made them a molten calf, and have worshipped it, and have sacrificed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.” Ex. 32:6-8    “Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose…

“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. And Simon and they that were with him followed after him…And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also…”Mark 1:35-39 I was sitting quietly with my Bible seeking the Lord to speak to me after  studying as I sat in a hallway of the hotel where I am staying now that I’m on the road for the Lord when a man I met the week before sat by me. He was waiting for breakfast to start. I was spending my usual morning time with the Lord out of my room, away from the dogs. I loved the quiet…

“If any man come to me, and hate not…his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” Luke 14:26 One of the worst and most dangerous things I have ever been taught, which I was taught decades ago courtesy of the American world of psychology, is I should love myself. I was taught I “hated myself” and needed to learn to “love myself” when in fact I was despicably, sinfully, undeniably consumed with self. I was utterly broken thanks to others’ sins and most assuredly my own, could barely function doing even the most basic of things, and the answer to the addictions, post-traumatic stress disorder, debilitating depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, etc. was to love ME, find and achieve MY dreams, live MY purpose for MY life for MY glory…

“And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” Matthew 8:2-3 “He’s a control freak,” a friend said to me one day regarding someone she knew. She was unhappy with some of his actions, and explained them. Her discontent with what he had done was understandable. We moved on to other matters in conversation, and the subject was forgotten. But it arose another time. “He’s a control freak,” she told me again, and we proceeded to discuss whether perhaps the Lord wanted her to address his actions. Then again we moved to other matters. But this time the subject…

“I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.” Isaiah 42:8 For years, I quoted my pastor incessantly. Every opportunity I had, I would tell people what my pastor said. My pastor said this. My pastor said that. Oh, how excited I was to tell people what my wonderful pastor said! Then the Lord woke me up. And led me to repentance. Five things I did back then bear warnings for us all. I quoted and referred to my pastor more than the Lord Jesus Christ. I exalted my pastor and made him and looked to him like a god. I turned to my pastor to be my primary teacher rather than the Holy Spirit whom…

“O worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth.” Psalm 96:9     “Isn’t it wonderful?” a pastor preached one day to his congregation. “We only owe [X] million dollars more on our new church building,” he essentially said as though it were a praise beyond measure. This is a true story. I was there. In fact, I had earlier that morning walked into another church in a nearby area, the area that was the first stop on my going full-time on the road for the Lord and ministry. I had felt such a sadness when I walked into that other church building, a new building for an enormous congregation in the area. I was sad because the church building was exceedingly large, exceedingly fancy,…

Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thess. 5:16-18 How many of us cry out seemingly incessantly to God to tell us His will for our lives only to despairingly frustratingly feel we simply can’t get an answer from Him? Oh, if we would only open our eyes and our hearts to the truth! His Truth! God’s Word, the Bible, is His will for our lives! And not only does His will for us begin with loving Him with all our hearts and our neighbors as ourselves, and not only does He make it abundantly clear the only way to have a forever relationship with Him instead of to spend eternity apart from Him…

“Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God…” Exodus 20:3-5    “I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.” Isaiah 42:8 “I start the day with Joyce Meyer,” a woman told me once. “And I end the day with Joyce Meyer,” she essentially told me. A restaurant I knew of had Joyce Meyer and her show on the…

“I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1 Within months, the Lord blessed me with leading me to cross paths with three beautiful women diagnosed with cancer who clearly and powerfully have defied the odds. How so? Not because they were diagnosed with early stage easily treatable and curable cancer. Each was diagnosed with major life-threatening cancer with an extraordinarily tough prognosis and a grueling treatment plan. Nor because they were miraculously and instantaneously healed. All endured fiery trials through treatment that wreaked havoc on their bodies, and how long they would still have on this earth was unclear. In fact, all three had endured a resurgence and/or extreme progression of cancer. How did they defy the odds? What stood…

“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23 “How long will you be in Virginia?” people have been asking me since I arrived on my first stop in going full-time on the road for the Lord and ministry. It’s a perfectly understandable and ordinary question, isn’t it? But the answer isn’t so ordinary in the world in which we live, is it? “Oh,” I tell people easily, simply, clearly, without hesitation. “I don’t know. I’ll be here as long or as short as the Lord wants.” For a woman who has lived most of her life in the flesh, according to my own wishes, wants, and ways, this is in…

Just wanted to let everyone know by God’s grace alone I have arrived safe and sound on my first stop of going full-time on the road for the Lord and ministry. I am now in Loudoun County, VA, with the Lord Jesus Christ filling my heart, totally devoted to God, with my Bibles, bare essentials, writing & printing equipment, 6 special needs & senior rescued dogs, & their supplies. A few people have asked how they can help. My absolute top needs right now are donations, particularly monthly sponsors, and continued love, prayers, & encouragement as I press forward with the Lord. Love & blessings,

“… for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Phil. 4:11-13 “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.” Phil. 4:4 “Is depression a sin?” a woman asked me one day. An awesome question, isn’t it? A question that deserves an answer. Now I’m not a Bible expert. I’m just head over heels in love with the Lord Jesus Christ and a passionate pursuer of Him, of learning of Him, drawing closer to Him, and digging ever deeper into His Word to understand and live by His Truth. I am also an expert in depression as someone who was debilitated by it for years and who had suicidal thoughts for about two decades.…

“And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.” 2 Cor. 5:15 How much of our lives do we spend trying to get comfortable, to be comfortable, to remain comfortable, to avoid being uncomfortable, craving comfort, desiring comfort, lusting after it, living for it, indulging in it, frantically clinging to it, clawing at it, desperately seeking it, holding onto it for dear life, chasing after it like we can’t live and breathe without it, making decisions based on it? “Die to self,” the Spirit of God spoke to me early one morning as I climbed up off the floor from praying briefly there. Believing in and following the Lord Jesus Christ for the…

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Gal. 2:20 I have made many moves in my life.  To all sorts of places. For all sorts of reasons. In all sorts of seasons of my life. With all sorts of intentions. With all sorts of dreams. Or none. With plenty of expectations. To run. Away. For one purpose. Or another. But never have I made a move as the one I am days away from making. A move for the Lord Jesus Christ. As a Christ follower, I have come to understand, accept, and…

Lara’s Update & Prayer Request  “And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Mt. 28:18-20 ESV  Dear everyone, I am leaving South Carolina on April 25 to follow the Lord as He leads me forth to fulfill my life’s calling as Christ’s servant to help people to find and follow the Lord Jesus Christ forever. My house will immediately go on the market, and I am taking my Bibles and bare…

“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 If you’ve ever struggled with self-pity, you probably know it’s an awful lot like quicksand. Once you take a step into it, boom. You start slipping down. Then down some more. Down, down, down. A downward spiral into pure thick yuck and mud and stuck. I’m plenty familiar with self-pity. I’ve held a zillion pity parties, found people don’t tend to like to attend them, and gotten stuck into way more quicksand than I care to recall. One day the Spirit of God caught me quickly. Just as I was about to start the downward spiral, right as my foot started to stick. He showed me where I was headed and…

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” Luke 4:18-19 “Remember years ago when I told you to stop calling me knucklehead?” I told my ex-husband on the telephone about a half hour after we had met at our usual fast food restaurant where we gathered periodically to study the Bible and catch up. He couldn’t remember. Age had gotten us both when it came to our memories. But between the two of us we could patch together different memories. I…

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:7-9 ESV    I hope your dog dies. The words weren’t just words. They stung. Like heck. They hurt. Oh how they hurt. I remember vividly those words a little girl spewed at me about 40 years ago. How can I forget? Not that I haven’t forgiven her. Not that I don’t understand we were just little girls,…

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” 2 Cor. 12:9-10 Met the weakest woman in the world? If you know me, surely you have. That’s how I feel anyway. Like the weakest of all. I am so weak in so many ways it astounds me I can get through the day – and come out the other end with love, joy, peace, hope, etc. Let alone accomplish a single thing the Lord sets…

“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.” Phil. 4:4 “This is what makes her happy,” a husband told me about his wife one day referring to a big volunteer endeavor she had taken on that seemed to have become all-consuming and per her husband had helped her deal with an enormous personal challenge. “And our happiness is what matters, isn’t it?” he essentially said. Well. Um. Hmm. I started to agree with him because I knew it would make him happy. No pun intended. Clearly he wanted and expected I would agree with him. So I began to validate what he had said about our happiness being what matters in life. But the Spirit of God quickly convicted me. I shouldn’t have hesitated at all. I should…

    “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” Rom. 14:17    “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” Rom. 15:13     HOPE. JOY. PEACE. These are words people tend to talk and write about around Christmas, right? Oftentimes they get dropped or little regarded anyway for the rest of the year. Sure, we toss them around occasionally. We may pray for them a bit. We may experience them periodically. One or the other or some combination of them. Maybe all three. For a while. Or not at all. But do we really understand what is promised us…

   “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” 1 John 3:16 ESV    “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8 ESV    “And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.” Eph. 5:2 KJV     How’s your love life? Please read the verses above. What do you see? See all the conditions? We should love others when they’re good to us, kind to us, nice to us, generous to us, giving to us, love us, share with us, encourage us, compliment us,…

“That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days:…” Deut. 30:20 “Trust me,” the Spirit of God told me one night as I knelt on my knees praying before bed. “You need to obey. You don’t need to understand.” I had been questioning something He had told me to do. Had it really been God? Would He tell me to do something like that? It didn’t make sense. To me anyway. It wasn’t comfortable. Not to my flesh. It hadn’t been my idea. I had resisted Him. Then obeyed. Then questioned Him afterward. More resistance. Lack of sweet humble submission. His Spirit reminded me. I am…

A New Heart for Your Enemy  ““You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven…”” Matthew 5:43-45 It’s one thing to pray for someone who’s an enemy because we have to. It’s another thing because we want to. I was shocked and blessed one day to find myself in tears as I prayed for someone who had deeply hurt me. I wasn’t in tears for myself. God had already convicted me I needed to repent of the hurt and self-pity, lay down my life and what I had wanted and how I was treated, and realize…

“Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets…” Luke 6:22-23 Sometimes God calls us to do stuff that looks totally crazy to the world. Love for God obeys God no matter what our obedience looks like to others. Whether we are ridiculed, criticized, judged, gossiped about, rejected, abandoned, hurt, hated, lectured, and/or persecuted, no matter how crazy our faith appears to our loved ones, co-workers, teammates, classmates, cellmates, homeless buddies, teachers, strangers, anyone, we need to…

   “These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.” 1 Peter 1:7 NLT    “so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:7 ESV I am not a Bible expert nor a Bible translation expert. I don’t know Greek and Hebrew. But I am also not a fool. Words can…

  “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” Mt. 7:21 ESV    “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” John 3:36 ESV    “And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” 1 John 2:17 ESV    “You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.” James 2:24 ESV     Some wake-up calls come from alarm clocks. Some wake-up calls come from hotel clerks calling us in our hotel rooms at the time we desire.…

   “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18    “Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,” Jude 1:24 A woman told me one day she had taken a fall. Not just a fall, to be precise. She had been falling. That day she had merely recounted one of her numerous falls. She wasn’t particularly old, mind you. But she had a disability, in medical terms anyway. Spiritually she seemed to have one also. The same one lots of us are prone to have – if we’re not careful. The kind of disability that leads to falling. And all the hurts and hardships that come with taking…

   “Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3 ESV ///    “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil…” Isaiah 5:20 ESV “I was born that way,” someone told me one day in referring to a particular sin with which he struggled. He was not the first, nor the last, to believe such a thing. Countless others struggle with the same sin – and same justification. As though being “born that way” condones the sin and makes it okay. As though it is not sin. As though God would create anyone to live in direct opposition to His Word. I don’t struggle with the same sin, but “I was born that way”…

    “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Eph. 6:12 KJV     There’s nothing more obvious and basic when it comes to winning a war than that you need to fight your enemy to win, right? One time many years ago my pastor at the time called two people to the front of the sanctuary and asked them to stand one behind the other, with one person’s arms wrapped around the other person’s back so they were stuck together and looked like one person. Then he called two other people to stand facing them in the same manner. He then went on to use them to illustrate a…

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