Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Motion of Devotion

Do you ever have that time in your walk following Y'hshuwah that regular devotion time just seems like a dry read?  I've had times, not often, thankfully, in which the words just sit there on the page, and I feel like I'm just going through the motion of devotion.  It was through this last episode that it occurred to me, this relationship with my Creator is real!  Sometimes in a relationship, we just do what we do, because it's what we do.  I'm not talking about ritual, I'm talking about simple courtesy.

Praying in the wee hours of the morning is what I've done for ages now.  I enjoy that very special time with Abba and Y'hshuwah.  It's a time that life is not pressing or stressing and I love watching the sunrise, knowing it is our Creator Who ordained it.  Sometimes I contemplate just what it might have been like that fourth day of creation.  I'm often reminded of David's words of praying in the night or tears upon his couch, knowing how real that has become in my life.  Sometimes the prayer time is very deep communion and other times, it's a discussion about people and events.  It's a conversation!  Other times, it's a simple "Good morning Abba!  Thank you for a great night's sleep . . . let's roll!"

I love reading my morning Torah portion, as well as a Scriptural passage YHWH leads, with a cup of coffee before going out to do chores.  It's as if the animals know, I'll be out about 30 minutes after the light comes on.  Even Velvet doesn't make a peep when she first sees the light come on in the nook.   When I do go out for chores, it seems there is always something on my mind to share with Abba or He reveals something to me.  I don't think that would happen, if I didn't arise early to seek Him.

I also have an early afternoon devotion time.  I'm learning the difference between ritual and divine appointment.  I know I hear Him at other times, when I keep the appointment times a priority.  There are times that we meet beyond my schedule, of course, but it's important to me, for Him to know meeting with Him is important!  Again, it's a relationship.  We don't always have great insight to share with our earthly families and friends, but we're there and we care!

Even when nothing leaps off the pages of my reading, I know it's important to read.  Even when no great Word of command or insight comes at time of prayer, I know it's important to pray.  Even when it's not a mountain top experience or a valley of shadow, I know He's there.  I've known far too many people who have to have the adrenaline pumping all the time in regard to our Heavenly Father, and I'm not saying He doesn't meet their need, I just know, that isn't how every day is for me.  Some days, even in the quiet, or even in what feels like just going through the motions, that time I take is still important to "be still know that He is G-d."

Sunday, December 22, 2013

When Was Messiah Born?

I've lost count of the number of people who are celebrating Christmas, but state that they know he wasn't born then . . . I've tried to understand that logic for years, even throwing out every tradition of man, but a birthday cake, but it just won't work any more.  If we know he wasn't born on December 25, and most of Christianity will tell you that, then who or what really is the "reason for the season?"  I'm going to suggest it really is, just tradition!

Social media becomes a firestorm around any holiday, but it's wild and crazy right now, with posts and videos about the truth, and what's innocence in ignorance, and great bargains for those shopping . . . and the continuous random posts that pop up with pros and cons about it all.  I've happened on a couple of videos and articles, not arguing against Christmas or December 25, but rather offering their ideas about when Messiah was actually born.

First, let me say, Scripture doesn't give us a precise date, so anyone who states unequivocally that they know with absolute certainty, are claiming unauthorized authority.  I've heard the Feast of Tabernacle theory, in which he was born the first day and circumcised on the last day which would have been the eighth day.  Why would all the inns be full for Sukkot?  I've also considered Yom Teruah, in that is the first day of creation, the day Light was spoken, and he is the Light of the world.  Then there's the theory that since his death brought atonement, Day of Atonement isn't out of the realm of possibilities for his arrival to earth.

I viewed a video just the other day that stated he was born in the spring and also gave reasons.  I find it fascinating that most of the theories are based upon the shepherd's timing in the fields.  We are all pretty sure it wasn't in December, and this year has provided evidence for that reasoning.  Israel does have winter and out in the field by night in December would not be where shepherds or sheep are.  Upon listening to this teaching, then to have the same teaching sent again, I had to stop and consider.  Is this two witnesses, is this confirmation?  I didn't know because the first time I watch it, a thought came to me, so, I'll just throw it out here and continue to declare, it is His death we are to remember!

What if Messiah was born near Shavu'ot.  Bethlehem is only 5.5 miles from Jerusalem, so if there was no room in the Inn, which having been in Jerusalem for Shavu'ot and having heard the same statement, it would be very easy to be five miles out and still be "participating."  The city gets really crowded for Holy Days!  I also look at this from an economic standpoint, since Rome was collecting taxes.  Early spring is planting season, which would mean the tail end of last year's produce and men in the fields in early spring.  It seems that taking men from their fields and flocks at planting and lambing season might be economically counter productive for an Empire collecting taxes.

What really got me thinking about Shavu'ot was the timing of the giving of Torah, since Y'hshuwah is the Word in the flesh.  We know Torah was given just weeks after leaving Egypt at Passover.  We do know the Holy Spirit was given at Shavu'ot, after being promised by Y'hshuwah.  Could it be the presence of our Almighty Creator descends upon man in different form at the same season?  As I've already stated, Scripture doesn't specify, so I'm not going to say this is an absolute, it's only another theory among many.  We do know His death was at Passover and His resurrection was HaBikurrim.  It is His death and resurrection, we are to remember and proclaim!

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:  Holy Scripture

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Saved Means When You Die, You Go to Heaven . . .

As a ten year old, when I asked, after baptism, "Now what do we do?," the words "go to heaven when you die" were absolutely discouraging!   By the time I was a confused fifteen year old, "when you die, you go to heaven, sounded like the plan to expedite!"  Nobody in Christendom ever repeated to me, the words of Messiah in Matthew 22:32b,  . . . G-d is not the G-d of the dead, but of the living.  Granted I had a Bible of my own, but that was in the day kids couldn't possibly know anything . . . except of course what they were told.

The principal of my Jr. High went to the same church, and he very succinctly explained there was a line between church and public place.  When the deacon is the principal, where do you go from there?  The pastor worked at the penitentiary and the public town pool was "too worldly," so the girl's class went swimming at the prison . . .  It's so easy to look back and see why it didn't make sense, but it's also very easy to remember that you couldn't ask why it didn't make sense.  Any questions along those lines were a lack of respect for elders or immaturity in your faith!

Faith is not opposed to reason and shame on the religious leaders that have taught that.  Many have!  Many still do.  Although, it's not really spoken as such, many religious leaders lead struggling, questioning congregants into self-condemnation for not getting on top of their struggles or for questioning G-d!  I don't think these individuals are questioning G-d, they are questioning those claiming to be speaking on His behalf.
So many seem to be struggling with unanswered questions and examples that make no sense, but still have the same promise . . . "when you die, you go to heaven . . ."  I truly think some of these individuals honestly believe this is their only choice.

Our younger generations have enough hopelessness with the direction of the world, we simply cannot offer them beliefs without reason, and hope only in death.

Come now, and let us reason together, says YHWH . . . Isaiah 1:18a

Sunday, December 8, 2013

An Observation

There really is no tangible reason, my mind made this connection, but it did and now I'll share.  The famous or infamous founder of TBN, Paul Crouch, died last week.  He was 79 years old and his ministry had been engulfed in controversy for years.  The commentary of the secularists regarding his prosperity message had died down years ago, but his teaching, televangelist lineup, and lifestyle remained quite controversial amongst the various Christian groups.  I realize some remained faithful, but many began to struggle.

On one of my social media feeds, a link to a religious video popped up and it was four young men singing "HalleluYah," acapella.  After enjoying that rendition and seeing the number of other artists who have recorded it, I of course had to hear Leonard do it . . . again.  I'm a big Leonard Cohen fan.  It was in that moment it occurred to me that Leonard is truly getting up there in age.  As it turns out, he and Paul Crouch were born in the same year and of course, both have entertained hundreds of thousands of people.  Two differences I noted.  Leonard Cohen doesn't spend his time begging for money, he just has a ticket charge, and although he's lived a rather adventurous lifestyle, Leonard Cohen is not surrounded by controversy.

It is my humble opinion that Leonard Cohen has put the word "HalleluYah" on more lips than the sages of ancient Israel and modern televangelists combined.

That song appears everywhere and I realize the argument could be offered that it is not said or sang with a proper heart . . .  and the prosperity bunch is teaching a proper heart?  How about the universalists?  Scripture says the Word of YHWH stands forever because He said it.
That undoubtedly stands, regardless of who repeats it!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Who Wants What We Have?

As we read, write, speak, and post about our beliefs, do we share what we believe or what we don't believe or no longer believe?  As I read what I'm sure are well intentioned posts sharing newly discovered information, will readers receive the information that way?  Isn't it really about time what we believe really shows, by our actions and our speech?  We need to keep in mind, we've got nothing to offer people in what we don't do, but rather in what our Creator has done and what He sent His Son to do.

Y'hshuwah did not just come to die and be resurrected.  Although, without his death, we'd have no hope of redemption, and without his resurrection, we'd have no eternal hope, that was not his only purpose.  Matthew 5:17 tells us, he came not to do away with Torah, but to fulfill Torah.  He came to show us how to live in right relationship to our Creator!  He came to touch a lost and dying world and left his believers with the commission to do the same.  He came to illustrate the Instructions!

When we start reading the condemning posts, what hope is there in that?  I'm not even suggesting a "kumbaya it's all love and good" universal approach, I'm talking about a ministry that follows Y'hshuwah.  For those who have come out of staunch denominationalism, have we brought some of that spirit with us?  I won't do it here, but I can assure you, whether it's real time, mainstream media or social media, I could name names of people who do not present anything I want and do not demonstrate any way I'd like to be.

Here's just a few ideas.  I don't put a Christmas tree or exchange gifts, but I do bake a birthday cake, and even though Y'hshuwah and I both know it's not his birthday, I tell him on behalf of everyone who thinks He's the reason for the season, I think he deserves a cake.  It's not about preaching, it's not about teaching, it's about making my favorite dessert for Messiah, as reality is lost in tinsel and glitter in His Name.  I can tell you right now, it's not Scriptural, it's just what I do from my heart.  No tree, no gifts for anyone else, and no nativity scene, just a cake and song for Him from me.

This year I celebrated Hanukkah while many Americans were preparing pies the night before and again the next evening while many were sleeping off the tryptophan, as well as two since.  If it's not some sort of clue as to the misnomer of Thanksgiving, everyone I heard from was fixing ham for the occasion.   I haven't spun a dreydel this year and I stopped with the Hanukkah gifts a couple of years ago, after discovering the idea of Hanukkah gifts was just a merchandising ploy in America; a sort of Christmas knock-off.

I did see an anti-Hanukkah rant earlier this week about the Hanukkah Menorah having nine candles.  This individual was bantering about nothing in the Bible being in 9, everything was 7.   I do agree that days of the week and High Holy Days do number 7, according to my Bible, the fruits and gifts of the Spirit both number 9.  Hanukkah is the Feast of Dedication, so I see a correlation.   At any rate, a rant to unfriend him for all who would dare to disagree sounded so inviting to his beliefs . . . I do wish I could make the ellipses arch downward.

As for other holidays and beliefs, why don't we get really serious about how awesome our Creator is and how amazing His Son is.  If we are demonstrating the fruits and gifts of the Spirit, like Messiah did, we won't need to focus so much on what we don't believe.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Grating Statements

I'm thankful to have done some traveling and a couple of relocations through my years of ministry, so I can give examples of situations, good and bad without the audience having any idea to whom I refer.  I don't want to gossip, but sometimes we humans provide some amazing illustrations of what to do or not do in a given situation.  I've probably supplied a few speakers with more than one example of "horrible warning" along the way.

I was reading posts in social network the other day when one led me to an odd recollection.  Seems so much of what we call fellowship is really just coming together in agreement about whom and what in which we disagree.  Fellowship becomes a bit more difficult as we seek to agree on what is right!

I have two real sticklers and I have heard and seen it enough that when I relate the stories, so many faces, voices, or ID's come to mind, I rarely pin it down to one source.  The first one is simple and I would guess I'm far from the only one who has encountered this particular approach.  In a Bible discussion in which it becomes obvious there is a difference of interpretation, a.k.a. opinion, when someone says, "Does the Bible not say . . .?" All I hear are the words of the adversary temping Messiah in the wilderness.  That is not to say that's the intent of the person's heart, but suffice it to say, it doesn't open the lines of communication or unity of fellowship from my direction.

The other comment takes me back years, but still remains to this day.  There was a man who was always studying his Dake's Bible.  That's the KJV that includes footnotes telling what is wrong with any other translation or denomination, I think . . . Anyway, this man used to say, "Y'all can do what you want, but the Bible says . . . and he pronounced the word "says" with a long A.  It wasn't just to emphasize, that's just the way he spoke, and then he would proceed to tell us why we wrong and why if we had any sense, we'd see it his way.  Sadly, I didn't hear much after his comment, "Y'all can do what you want, but  . . ."  All I heard was.  "You can go ahead and be wrong, if that's what you want to do."

That still comes across in social media when I see the debates and a comment inferring a self-proclaimed individual absolute.  No, this is what I believe, or this is my understanding, but "Y'all can do what you want, but I'm going by Scripture!"  Sadly, I hear his voice telling me I have permission to be wrong . . ."  Unity isn't going to come by correcting each other or espousing our own correctness.  Unity isn't coming in by way of discussion, it's coming in our own silent understanding of who YHWH is.  Unity will come when we actually have our eyes on Messiah.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Remember Art Linkletter's House Party?

Kids really do say  . . . exactly what they think they heard.

This is what happens when your child is exposed to too many commercials on TV. A Baptist pastor was presenting a children's sermon.
During the sermon, he asked the children if they knew what the resurrection was. Now, asking questions during children's sermons is crucial, but at the same time, asking children questions in front of a congregation can also be very dangerous.

Having asked the children if they knew the meaning of the resurrection,
a little boy raised his hand........
The pastor called on him and the little boy said, "I know that if you have a resurrection that lasts more than four hours you are supposed to call the doctor." It took over ten minutes for the congregation to settle down enough for the service to continue.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Noticeable Presence

I got very serious about hiding a place of refuge a few years back.  I truly planned to stay as far off the google grid as possible, but YHWH had other plans.  I had no intentions of ever being involved in the world wide web.  As a matter of fact, my folks tried to talk me into getting a computer when they got one for my daughter and sister.  I said straight out, "It's a modern tower of babel and until I know what I'm supposed to do with one, I don't want one!"  It was just a couple of years later, YHWH told me what I'm supposed to do with one, so the web ministry was established.  It's expanded through the years, but until a little over a year ago, I tried very hard to keep my physical life and my virtual life separated.

That is not to say, I was making up a life on the internet, but rather I didn't want to "google earth" my homestead.  I still don't have my phone number associated with my e-mails, but then I don't have a cell phone, either.  My home phone number is associated only with my webpage and my store, and the store didn't come about until after the incident I am about to share.

I wrote a book a few years ago entitled, "While He May Be Found," addressing the need to remove our dependency from the 10 kingdoms or powers mentioned in Scriptural prophecy for the end of days.  This book also gave a different perspective and explanation of what those 10 powers are.  Rather than geographical or countries, I have been shown they are the literal powers already in existence that are coming together to be controlled by the one world power in the end of days.

So here I am, establishing a homestead refuge for a community to gather as the time of tribulation comes upon us, or simply for those interested in placing their dependency upon our Creator, rather than the systems.  The internet ministry was also expanding and the book was being carried by amazon, as well as more books were being written, by the time an individual with a family expressed interest in this lifestyle and my spiritual beliefs.   I continued to try to keep this establishment protected, while still hosting visitors and answering questions.

In my attempt to make this rather long story short, I'll make this simple statement.  When this individual who claimed to have read my books began her supposed interest in relocating, it was as if the devil himself was invading my life.  I couldn't get my computer work done, nothing was right here at the homestead, and the shalom that was always so embracing was no where to be found.  I felt I was literally fighting for my life and to preserve the sanctity of this place of refuge.  Finally, it ended, and of course it ended badly, but then most things that end, do end badly.

As I sat in grievous prayer trying to recover, I became so aware of something.  It was as if this individual has systematically checked off every "power" listed in the book and made sure my address was associated in some way.  I don't go to doctors, but she chose to go to the county health department and use MY address. I had no reason to be a part of the education system, but she had to enroll her kids, and then left before school started, but failed to inform the school, so my address was registered and on the bus route.  The googling of directions from my place on SMART phones seemed unrelenting.  It was quite eye opening experience!  To the point I wondered if I really could establish a community and maintain any level of decorum.

Did this person know what they were doing?  Only G-d knows that answer.  People can simply be self-absorbed and thoughtless, without forethought; but there were many overt indications of intentional disregard for the vision.  By the time it had ended, "used and mocked" were the familiar terms and I "heard" one word through the ordeal, that was not in my regular vocabulary.  I looked it up to be sure I was hearing YHWH correctly.  The word was "derision"  It isn't something I'd ever want to experience again, but it did change my perspective regarding my separation of an internet presence and a physical address.  I had really been working against my own effort and certainly missing G-d's plan for expansion.  It also made me realize I survived that, I have no fear what man can do to me . . .    

Y'hshuwah said the end of days would be "as in the days of Noah."  We are commanded to not add to or take away from Torah, but I am going to hazard a comment here.  I would guess a boat the size of the ark in the middle of a field would have been noticeable and probably viewed by many . . .  It's been amazing, in just a little over a year, since that ordeal concluded, the widespread coverage that has occurred.   As these end of days continue to unfold, YHWH does expect us to be circumspect in our dealings, but He is bigger than all the inventions and intentions of man and evil.  We have no need to hide!

But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but G-d meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.  Genesis 50:20

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Big Step Finally Behind Me

YHWH has a way of getting to the heart of matters, that we cannot even see about ourselves.  As I mentioned in the previous article, here I think I'm "ready" to get busy and He calmly patiently says, "There is an order to the plan, and this next step is necessary."  You know the step, the one we don't want to take!

I write all the time.  I write about prophecy, and I'm not saying I write prophecy, but rather connect the dots of prophecy with current events.  I write about natural health.  For our readers, here at the Goshen Gazette or those who have followed my blogs or read my books, it's obvious a significant portion of my life is spent at the keyboard!  Yet, last week's article was tough.  It felt like going to the local cafe and replacing the morning paper with my diary.  The most amazing thing happened, though; after I published that article.

The fact of the matter hadn't changed, but it was no longer a stabbing pain, it was simply a stated fact of life. The broken sharp edges of that part of me were gone.  Trying to keep that broken piece hidden and protected, ended up keeping it sharp and painfully stabbing at the most unexpected moments.  Refusing to look at something painful is not denial of self, as Samson and I both discovered.  After all these years of wondering why Samson would do such a stupid thing, over and over and over again, I found myself judged as I'd judged!  Seeing myself in a way I really didn't want to see myself changed my perspective dramatically.
In seeing what YHWH was showing me about me, I then began to be able to see things even more clearly between prophecy and current events.  I could clearly hear the Plan He had for me.  Things He has shown me about our coming food supply or lack of it.  Things to help others actually be ready.  I began to be able to hear what the warnings should be and how they should be declared.  I also became very aware of how amazingly tender our Messiah is and I have a new appreciation for the Comforter that is in my life.  There is a gentle strength in me that wasn't here before the article was written.  There is a resolve that is unshakeable in what I know I have heard from my Creator.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Back to Living Scripture

In realizing the places of my very own "Gomerdom," in the book of Hosea, YHWH then led me to a place I just really wasn't wanting to see at all.  Here, I'm ready to sound the warning, "the fish are dying, we are lacking knowledge," and He tells me to read Judges.  So, I get all excited knowing that's the book that makes a big deal out of left-handers.  I'm left handed, ya know!  And there's Deborah, my name of dedication . . . So, I get all excited and then as I read, it's good Word, but nothing hitting my spirit as in plan or purpose at this time, so I kept reading and then a deluge of my own memories began to flood my awareness in torrents, along about chapter 14.

Thoughts of my late teens and twenties nearly overwhelmed me.  Interestingly, it wasn't condemnation, because I've been forgiven, but it was reality,  none the less.  I saw how "odd ball" I'd been in my attempt to be normal.  Sadly, it got worse . . . by the time I was in chapter 16.  I knew there was something I had to see, and it wasn't going to be pretty, but it was going to bring full resolution to my mind.  It's so fascinating how YHWH allows so many "threads" to be woven into the tapestry of His illustrations.

As I read the dialogue between Samson and Delilah, it hit me differently this time.  I've read that story dozens of times, even questioned, "Why when he saw what she was up to, did he keep trying to trust her?"  But this time, I heard, "Why indeed?"  I've done that same thing with a couple of individuals in my life, as a servant of YHWH.  As a matter of fact, I've done it, thinking I'm being forgiving and going the second mile, when in reality, I just didn't want to see the truth.

I thought of my last honeymoon, and don't worry, there won't be any intimate details, because while I was in a beautiful room in a very grand hotel, the groom was in the maintenance break room, sharing wishful thinking and tall tales . . .  I mean everyone there had to know, if there'd actually been a good time going on, he wouldn't have been in their break room.  Just like Samson, I wanted to trust this person, so rather than having the marriage annulled, I stayed . . . but it didn't stop.  The lack of intimate respect was relentless.  Who speaks of past intimacies with their partner in times of attempted intimacy and what kind of a person speaks of a committed partner like a one night stand?

It took a few times, just like Samson, before I finally got the message.  By that time, coincidentally, this man had actually cut my hair . . .  Let me clarify something with the following, boring explanation.  This person didn't secretly cut my hair, I'd tried a temp color about the time I met him, then used a permanent color before the wedding because we were supposed to be going to a great place of swimming and wonderful waters.  So not only was the honeymoon humiliatingly isolating, I didn't get to go swimming, either!  So not wanting to continue dying my hair, I let it grow a few months and cut it at the "dye root line," and he helped.  I just couldn't see to do anything but resign myself to his tiresome grind.  There was one thing to which I clung.  I had heard YHWH say, "When your hair is long and gray," but no specific reference was spoken.

It was really difficult to continue reading Chapter 16, in that every stupid thing Samson did, I'd done.  Rather than get blinded, I got blind sided and tried to cover that fact with rose colored glasses for a time, but meanwhile . . . the truth came out and my hair has been growing.   My hair is now well over a yard long and quite naturally gray.   The passage states specifically that Samson judged Israel for 20 years and my 20th anniversary of serving YHWH is less than a year away.   Am I reading too many comparisons into this?   I'm not thinking I'll be surrounded by Philistines next summer, but I do know I received the closure I had longed for, and experienced a wholeness I'd never imagined when I saw myself in Samson.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Being a Gomer?

When I found myself and America reliving the book of Hosea, I of course wanted to see myself with the insight of the prophet; as do so many right now.  There are areas in which I can fully sound the warning, and then there are areas in which I am the warning.  

There are so many spiritual children right now, offering insight that I thought I'd offer a reminder and ask a few questions that I have been mulling over myself this week.  I'm guessing, unless we've just gone on over and crossed the line of hypocrite, we can all find areas of our life in which we have indeed been a Gomer and perhaps still are.  We need to keep in mind that Moses spent eighty years preparing to lead the children of Israel, and Paul makes reference to 14 years . . . Messiah came with all the credentials and he was 30 years old before his words of teaching are recorded.

I believe YHWH is timeless, therefore He can certainly use new believers as well as those who have walked away from tradition, but a great deal of our disunity seems to be in everyone trying to be an expert in all areas.  So many of us still have areas of immaturity and mixing holy with profane.  I've shared not only the admonition, but the confessions in my own life.  Nine times out of ten, we choose to overlook our own mixes while shouting the call to repentance over others.  This article is going to get serious, yet basic, about our own mix of holy with profane.

I grew up in a time in which it was so easy to put G-d, country, family, and work, basically all on the same level.  Even leisure time was often sponsored by church or synagogue.  That's the same thing Israel had done through the days of Hosea.  The assumption of being G-d's chosen meant anything they chose to do was justifiable.  In America, "one nation under G-d," seems to have inspired the same rationalization.  I was born 4 years after Congress added "under God" approximately 60 years after the Baptist minister, Francis Bellamy first penned it.  So, even the argument about the line itself, seems odd . . .

How does our time and money figure into our teaching.  It's so easy to point a finger at the upcoming secular holidays, but what are any of us doing to feed the poor and clothe the naked?  Knowing and acknowledging that YHWH is our Provider is absolute truth and brings Him glory, but if our relationship with our Creator is all about what He does for us, we just might be a Gomer.  How does our free time or even our work schedule balance out with a time tithe?  I realize employment opportunities are scarce right now, so I'm not talking about the days involved in a 40 hour work week, but more I'm asking, how do we structure our free time?  Do we spend more than 2.4 hours in front of the entertainment screen?  If so, we might be a Gomer?

Does our language erode in the company of certain others?  We might be a Gomer.  Of course, judgmental piety doesn't win others, either, but that's a topic for another time.  Does our style of dress change according to the company we're keeping?  That probably isn't an issue for us over 40 group, as far as provocative in nature, but I know in my own life, I've prayed about fellowship here at the homestead.  I always dress modestly, but here at home, I'm often too casual.  The truth of the matter is, I could be gardening Eden style before the forbidden fruit and no one could see me, but I don't . . . The fact is, though, often I am fully covered but under dressed for a community gathering, and immediately I hear, "then dress ready to be seen."  As for my interesting chore ensembles  . . . I've been a Gomer.

Gomer is historically known for her unfaithfulness and the example of Israel's spiritual adultery.  Basically being a Gomer, is placing our own comfort, activity, or company above or along side of what YHWH has ordained.

As for faithfulness, I'll get more into that next week, but for now . . . We know we can trust YHWH and Y'hshuwah, so I'll simply ask, can we truly be trusted, by our Heavenly Father and those He places in our life?

 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify G-d in your body, and in your spirit, which are G-d's.  


Sunday, October 13, 2013

The Book of Hosea Obedience, Because . . .

When I told YHWH, I just wanted to "walk the Bible," that is to "live Scripture," I've already stated He protected me from so much.  Since that same time, however; I've also found myself right in the middle of parts of Scripture I wasn't thinking of.  The Bible is a big book!  There are many, many blessings of Biblical proportion our Heavenly Father has bestowed upon me, but there is also the responsibility of Biblical proportion that He has every right to expect out of me.

As a woman who has never walked in much feminine confidence, I got a bit caught up in the idea that being a child of the King, a princess, yet still a servant, life was going to change . . . and it did, but not in the way I was anticipating.  I do believe, now, it's turned out much better than I had originally envisioned.  There were a lot of tears shed though; behind my rose colored glasses, before removing them.

Somehow, in our culture, the religious and social stand on marriage appeared intertwined until only recently.  With equality of marriage, the line has finally been drawn between social and religious standing on the subject.  The introduction of marriage licenses, brought two things,  the government into the intimate relationship G-d had already ordained and ease of divorce.  The ease of divorce is in the legal ease to obtain one, not the emotional pain of enduring and recovering from one.  We never needed the government's permission to do what our Creator ordained!

After many failed attempts at marriage before coming to YHWH, and upon coming to Him, I realized an intimate romantic marriage just wasn't in the plans for me.  My husband had already moved out, so I did agree to the divorce and he immediately remarried an old flame and they are still living happily ever after.   Regardless of what anyone may say, I still remember the day YHWH told me to write my then husband a letter of agreement to his desire of release from the marriage.  He responded in three days, with a generous plan to move forward on that idea.

So, all these years later and the spiritual adultery of our nation, it does make sense, having been forgiven of a number of wrong marriages, that I would be called to enter a marriage like Hosea's.  Ah, living the Bible . . . reading the fine print . . .

I was finally at the place of not doubting coming out of the mainstream church.  For a couple of years, I had literally juggled between Friday evenings at the synagogue and Sunday morning services, with Saturday spent in three Bible studies, but I had moved on in my call to hosting a Friday evening gathering at the Mission and Saturday Bible study and lunch for the neighborhood children.  I still liked "doing music" with the Christians, so if someone needed a keyboard player on Sundays, I was available for work.  The synagogue had professional Gentile musicians, Friday evening, so I figured it would be all right . . . I was wrong.

I won't bore you with the details that led up to this, but I will assure you, I almost backed out before arriving.  I met a pastor who needed a piano player at his little country church.  That was something I'd always wanted to do, and membership was not required.  In retrospect, I still cannot say if the desires of our heart before becoming a believer are a spiritual seed awaiting our rebirth or a desire of the flesh that we attempt to "sanctify."   Moving right along . . .

It was there that I met an angry, belligerent little man, who I felt led to reach out to.  He had a new job that was going to have him working on Sundays, so I offered him a card and told him "the Mission" had a Bible study most Friday evenings, so don't lose fellowship.  He began coming and so did his church.  It turned into quite a gathering, but it seemed all about him, rather than G-d.  I was literally praying about disbanning the gathering, as it was disruptive and leaning toward the obvious desire for charismatic "effects."  It was then, that YHWH told me I was to marry this guy.  I struggled, I argued, and YHWH told me simply, I didn't have to obey . . . So, I asked him to place in me, the love and desire a woman should have for her husband.  It would have been so much less painful to have just obeyed . . . There are a number of ways for individuals and nations to be faithless in a relationship and although I do not believe in replacement theology, America should certainly see herself in Scripture, regarding the spiritual adultery and idolatry of ancient Israel.
                                                                      . . . to be continued

Monday, October 7, 2013

Chuck Smith Moved

When I read Chuck Smith's obituary, his quote resonated with everything I'd ever read and heard about the man.  "Many times over the years he said, 'Some day you're going to read in the paper, "Chuck Smith died,"' Rolph said. "He said, 'That's bad reporting. What it should say is, 'Chuck Smith moved.'"

 In my years of ministry, I've met many Calvary Chapelites  . . . I had the distinct pleasure of hearing a number of Chuck's graduates, and there was something distinctive about many of his students.  For the most part, I appreciate everything I've ever read about Chuck Smith.  I can't say I agree with everything, but I always felt his walk matched his talk.  He knew something was wrong with mainstream Christianity back in the sixties, and he reached out to those who were searching.

I remember many Christians making the comment that Calvary Chapel was trying to be Jewish.  Although there was considerable teaching from the Old Testament, I didn't see that so much, but Chuck Smith's aim was definitely perceived to be contemporary, conservative to those outside religious mainstream.  Calvary Chapel had a very Catholic presence in my observation of the organization, itself.  Many of what I would call "third generation" Calvary Chapelites, spoke of Pastor Chuck the way Catholics speak of the Pope.  By "third generation," I refer to those who came later and were just outside of the mega-church nucleus of the pastors and elders.  There were nearly always grand references to Costa Mesa, and various "higher ups." Although the hierarchical mentality seemed quite prevalent by the turn of the 21st Century, I don't believe Chuck Smith instigated or initiated it.

Chuck Smith reached out to people who were unlike himself.  He was often referred to as a father figure.  He loved them and he introduced them to the Creator who had a reason for them to live.  Chuck Smith touched a great many lives before he moved.,0,7276715.story

Sunday, September 22, 2013

If It Could Be Done Wrong . . .

I wish I'd been a good example, all those years ago, but I do feel qualified to call myself an expert of what it is to be a horrible warning.  I think I've celebrated just about every religious tradition there is, while trying to celebrate something I thought was of G-d, and I was wrong.  Sadly, I juggled most of them simultaneously!  I've done everything from baking a birthday cake for Jesus on December 25, and taught my kids to do so, to finding every exotic nut on the planet to celebrate Tu B'Sh'vat.    Of course, I made prize winning Halloween costumes, no demonic ones, mind you!  I even went so far as to color the eggs after they were shelled when making "deviled eggs" for "Resurrection Sunday!"  Then there was the ever involved room mother, face painting as a buxom wench, at the school carnival with a Renaissance Festival theme, clueless as to what I was dabbling in.

If the wrong message could be sent, I've done it.  If the wrong day could be celebrated, I've done it.  If the right celebration could be observed wrong, I've done it.  If the truth could be wrapped in religious tradition, I'm sure I've experienced it, but I've been sorting for some time now, years in fact.  The non-Scriptural extras have been eliminated years ago.  Hopefully the unlearning of tradition is about completed.  True Scriptural observances, however; will be a lifetime of learning . . .

Years ago, my idea was, I knew I wasn't living right, but I tried my best to really be creative in my expression of these societal religious observances.  The religious traditions are so intertwined with only a fraction of a partial verse, I got lost, but very creative in my lack of direction.  I truly didn't know how offensive I was being to the Most High Elohim and His Son.  I've been to churches that have Santa visit after the Christmas show, and I've been to synagogue where the Rabbi shows up in costume the last Shabbat in October.  One of my daughters for years has wished folks a "Merry Chrismanukah."

I have come to realize, although some things are pagan tradition; in an agrarian society, some of the special dishes were simply made from items that were in abundance or ripe at that time.  I'm going to be so bold as to say, the advent of refrigeration and move away from agriculture, turned many of these practicalities in to just tradition.

Eggs are in abundance in the spring, thus; plentiful through the Week of Matzoh.  I still make "salad eggs" or "relish eggs" because they are delicious, but there's no dying, just a fun treat while eggs are in abundance before the hens begin brooding.  Due to eggs by the dozen, literally, I keep angel food cake on hand throughout that week.  Regardless of the number of guests, there is always angel food cake.  Now is it a tradition?  It may become one if my descendants continue it after I'm dead and gone without knowing the reason.  The reality is, it's a cake that contains no leavening and "cake" goes with special occasions in my kitchen.  The Feasts of YHWH are special occasions!  It's not a necessity, but I would hardly call it pagan heresy.

The tradition of dairy products through Shavu'ot has the same base.  The livestock have all given birth and the milk is flowing in top production.  As with eggs, refrigeration is an issue with dairy products.  I'm guessing milk was used in everything possible to prevent spoilage or waste.  Even with refrigeration, raw milk has a rapid expiration date!  Tradition?  It is now, that we are not an agrarian society . . .

As for the fall festivals.  Yes, I've had apples in my cake, the trees were loaded and they are ripe, and it's honey collection time.  I didn't dip any applies in honey this year, but I confess, I have in the past.  Moussaka is a favorite for Sukkot, and although my kids and grandkids don't like it, the aubergine is ripe and plentiful right now.  Moussaka for one is too much trouble, but I'm enjoying the aubergine, none the less through this feast.

I do not celebrate Halloween or American Thanksgiving, but when the pumpkins are ripe, I'll be making pumpkin butter and pumpkin soup.  My Granddaughter, Adeline, told me after tasting my pumpkin butter on Ritz crackers, I didn't need to make pumpkin pie any more!

It's been such a blessing to lay down so many useless traditions and rituals and to be forgiven for having ever done them!  I'm grateful for the grace our Heavenly Father extended to me through my years of presumptuous ignorance.  And I'm thankful for the truth, as well as the blessing to live an agrarian lifestyle.

To decorate evil doesn't make it good, but by that same token, it seems just as wrong to attach the heresy label to seasonal abundance.
 photo by Connie Evers

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Living the Bible

When I came to YHWH, it wasn't just one of those deals of "getting saved" and going back about my business.  When He came to me in that upper room, my life was changed forever; and by His power, I can follow Messiah.  So, when I asked to "live the Bible," the request seemed simple enough.  Everyone mentioned in the Bible managed to live what they did, before what they did was even written.  With the promises in writing and everything recorded, it should be easy . . .

My life is certainly simpler and calmer than it was before the Great Spirit of YHWH took up residence.  It's completely more ordered, following Messiah, than my own version of trial and error.  The fact that Messiah is Torah in the flesh makes it even simpler.  Not only do I have the illustration of His life recorded in the accounts of the Gospel, I have the written Instructions in Torah!  The only possible glitch, appears to be me.  In my zeal, I apparently overlooked some of the less than stellar details of these great people of G-d.

Moses spoke with YHWH and heard Him and I am blessed to have that relationship, as well, but . . . I also have, on occasion, Moses' frustration level and lack of patience, and I can murmur and complain, just like the Israelites in the wilderness.  The difference, Messiah has died and the power to overcome has been given.  I still struggle with surrender, sometimes, and unfortunately sometimes the resurrection power we talk about gets used on our flesh, rather than glorifying YHWH.

I remember when I realized, we do walk in resurrection power.  We need to refrain from resurrecting old thinking and old ways!

There are also amazing people of YHWH in Scripture for which everything didn't go just swimmingly, and they didn't do anything to cause it.  I've had that a time or two, but usually, I've played a part in the calamity and it's chastisement, rather than just a test, and even rarer, an attack of the adversary.  In "living the Bible" I've come face to face with some facts about these folks.  Take Abraham for instance.  While we all want YHWH to get our kids saved and make all of our own doings turn out happily ever after, the man YHWH called friend, is not only the Patriarch of the father of Israel, but also sired the father of Islam.

We all know about Job, and that wasn't the "living the Bible" I meant!  I'm very thankful I'm not sitting in ashes scraping sores.  YHWH has graciously protected me from my own zeal.  I do think we may very well live to experience what Daniel and his friends faced.  I know there'll be no salvation in compromise.  None of those guys saw the salvation of YHWH until they were fully in the dire situation.  Bible scholars say Jeremiah never saw a convert, but he sure sounded the warning.  Some of those prophets were asked to do some pretty strange things.

Ezekiel and his binding on each side . . . Clearly, I had no idea what I was asking when I asked to let me "live the Bible," but I was born on a date mentioned in Esther, born again through the week of Passover, and did receive the Holy Spirit in an upper room.  I've been forgiven and blessed beyond what I could ask or imagine, and by the death of Messiah, I am numbered in some pretty amazing company.   Considering the current headlines, I'm very thankful to be spared Isaiah's ministry!

At the same time spake YHWH by Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, Go and loose the sackcloth from off thy loins, and put off thy shoe from thy foot. And he did so, walking naked and barefoot.  And YHWH said, Like as my servant Isaiah hath walked naked and barefoot three years for a sign and wonder upon Egypt and upon Ethiopia;  Isaiah 20:2, 3

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Teaching Our Children

Americans stood by complaining and blaming one woman for having prayer taken out of school in 1962 and apparently never considered the value of one voice for good, but left their children in the public school system, anyway.  With shootings, drugs, human secularism, and now other religions, or a-theist statements, it's time to take action?  Just what action should that be?  Should the ACLU storm the schools and say no Islam teaching in the name of atheism, because the Christians and Jews have pretty much gone along with the changes?  Or how about, no atheism statements because atheism is a belief system also?

We need to face the facts.  Those in power and even those of age, had other priorities in the 60's, like money and war.  I'll admit, my early adult years were a dismal failure and I certainly did my part to fail the next generation.  Oh, I made certain statements regarding the direction of the nation, but with no direction, myself, I could only point out the similarities to 1984 and Brave New World.  Pointing out the downward spiral is not the same thing as offering a solution!

I now want to sound the warning regarding Common Core Curriculum.  This is nothing more than turning the public school system into "youth camps" modeled after Germany in the 1930's.  It's been a slow and gradual decline, a slippery slope, if you will, but in fifty years, it has happened.  Moving the responsibility of education from the home to public schools was a detrimental move on our society in general, and every adult that participated bears some guilt.

For too many years, I've heard the discussion that G-d was taken out of the schools.  Well, who in their right mind talks about a belief in G-d, then sends their children into a place they believe is G-d forsaken?  I did it and I'm ashamed that I did it!  I failed in teaching the children in my charge the truth of G-d, and in that I failed in my responsibility as a parent.  I can't change that fact and I cannot repair the damage, but I can sound the warning to young parents now.

School began for me, the year after the SCOTUS made the decision in 1962 regarding formal prayer in school, which was incidentally the same year our President was shot and killed in Dallas.  There was no sex ed for kindergartners, but we still managed to have pregnant high schoolers, and gay boys.  I believe America managed a sexual revolution with no sex education in the public school system, at all!

To be honest, I'm not upset that there are not supposed to be religious values taught at school, but I do think that should include all religions and philosophies across the board.  I do, however; believe the absolute absence of values is a terrible thing to teach children.

And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:  And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.  Torah of Holy Scripture

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Real Deal

I saw something that really caught my eye that reminded me of a sticky note I had on my first computer.  It was a paper sticky note.  I'm a writer and I can't give up paper . . . Every week, the new edition of the Goshen Gazette is originated in a spiral notebook, yet I digress.
The sticky note simply said:  The best sermon is a good example!

That thought has been on my mind a great deal these last few weeks as I go about my business.  Granted, it's not directly Scripture, and yet, it's the theme throughout the Book.  Y'hshuwah said, "follow me."  John penned, "If we say we love him, we should walk as he walked."  Paul, often times referred to his own example, both before and after meeting Messiah.  I think it's the social media that really started my contemplation on this subject.  It's easy to cut and paste a Bible verse, type in HalleluYah or Glory.  Amein, Truth, Word, thumbs up, hit the "like" button, have all been produced by my keyboard and thousands of others, but we don't really know what home lives are actually like.  I live in a very isolated part of the country, but I still interact with people, in person, and it's important that I am actually walking my talk, and that it begins in my heart, not put on like covering.  It's not only important to me, it's required by YHWH.  That is in Scripture:  Wherefore ADONAI said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:  Isaiah 29:13

Lip service is easy.  The children of Israel were managing that as they were heading into Babylonian captivity for idolatry.  I am still continuously stunned when I read swearing in social media.  I just can't believe anyone would take the time to type those, but that isn't what I'm really thinking about.  I read a lot about the fruit of the Spirit, I've written about it and even taught on the subject, but I'm not perfect.  It's easy to look at ourselves and see all the sinning around us that we're NOT doing!  Perhaps that's where ancient Israel was also.  As these end of days continue to unfold and we know there is coming another Babylon, it's time to take inventory.

First my check list of what I'm not doing . . . I don't have any household gods on display.  I don't use swear words.  I'm not shacking up with a man calling it "joined."  I'm not coveting, because I don't want any more stuff to have to keep track of!  I'm not stealing, and the list could go on and on about all the sinning I'm not doing, but eventually that list could end in pride.  Of course we know, most of us who are talking Torah aren't doing those things I listed above, but what does our witness show?

I don't think I have anything around my house that I value above YHWH, but what about something so simple as the way I spend my time?  Do I ignore things I should be tending to or entertain thoughts or conversations that should be put away?  Does HE come first, or is HE simply on my "to do" list?

It's easy to live a celibate or chaste life, but am I harboring unforgiveness, self pity, lust or covetousness in the process?  We may not physically lust after another person, but we can covet relationships.  It's included in Exodus 20!

Does my tone reflect my Savior, or do I sound harsh and uncaring without using swear words?  What about murmuring and complaining?   When I say, "Hello" and chat with the neighbors or in businesses, does my light shine or am I too busy?   Do I misrepresent my circumstances and make excuse?  Do I forfeit opportunities that might open doors to witness?

It's easy to establish a "religious reputation" as in Sabbath keeper, in real time and on social media; but do we actually keep the Sabbath as described here in Isaiah 58:13?  
If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy of YHWH, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:
To be perfectly honest, I don't think I'm on it for Shabbat, yet.  I am contemplative and I include that in something that needs to be set aside for Shabbat.  Everyone who knows me has made the comment, I'm always thinking.  The last couple of weeks, on Shabbat, I've become more aware of my thoughts that distract from YHWH and Shabbat.  They aren't wrong or evil, but they are inappropriate for Shabbat.  I don't need to stop thinking, I just need to set my thoughts on things above.

We can project any image we think we want to, but the real deal is what goes on when it's more than words. Our Creator looks upon the heart, and our actions speak louder than our words.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

First, the Falling Away

Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;  II Thessalonians 2:3

This has been happening throughout history since it was written.  The first recorded event was when Constantine officially declared a national religion, then had the Nicene Council carefully move the day of rest to the first day of the week with a societal disregard of Sabbath.  Constantine also had a line of demarcation between Passover and the celebration of Ishtar, now supposedly in celebration of the resurrection.  Once the veil is lifted, the similarity between bunnies and a golden calf becomes pretty obvious.

Moving forward in history we can read about crusades and inquisitions and conquests, all in the changed name of a man who said, "Love your enemies" and "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."  It seems throughout history, no one realized they were a part of "a falling away."  I believe there was always a remnant seeking to cling to truth.  Some of the first translators of Scripture, that sought to place the Word into the hands of the people were martyred.   And some of those same translators only furthered Constantine's work, but there was a remnant.

The last century seems to have brought the deception to a powerful culmination of nationalism, greed, self-righteousness, lawlessness, heresy, and unrepentance, all while claiming to be sharing the truth!  This has resulted in a strange compromise of praying doctors, faith healing hospitals, popular crusades, and rationalized greed, just to name a few.  In the various churches themselves, there is falling out, bizarre behavior, motorcycles, circus acts, superstition, and lawlessness.

The frightening connection through out all of this happening, is the reference to "anointed."  Dr. Rev. So-and-so is sooooooooooo anointed.  Oh the anointing was flowing . . . Did you feel that anointing?  He's anointed, she's anointed.  There's a revival going on and it's anointed!  If you have a problem with any of these teachings, a partial verse from a Psalm will be quoted, "Touch not my anointed!"   If the behavior or the teaching does not align with Scripture, it's our responsibility to question it!

The following Scripture is Mark 13:21,22; but this same warning is included also in Matthew and Luke, so obviously three of the writers felt this warning to be imperative, as did our Heavenly Father.  In all three of the accounts of the Gospel that reference this, the term Christ was not translated from the Greek word, Messias.  The term for Messiah was not used in the original text.  When I looked up the word, "Christ" in Strong's Concordance, the Greek root word for spiritual anointing, chrio, is the same base word for Christ, and the definition for Christ in Strong's concordance is "anointed."

So, I would urge you, as you read the next two verses, to use the term anointing or anointed where you see the word Christ.  
And then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not:  For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall show signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Sanctity of Marriage

I am very much for marriage, by the standards of our Creator.  Now the fact that I've failed at marriage more times than any one should even try hasn't jaded my perspective at all.  I do believe a blessed marriage would be a wonderful thing.  I am happy for those couples who find that.  My real topic here today is not whether marriage is right for all of us, but rather to suggest and even question if the sanctity of Holy Matrimony has been lost by giving authority to our government.  Who knows, if I'd have ever actually done it G-d's way, without the compromise of humanity, maybe even I would have had a successful marriage . . .

We speak of marriage as being ordained of our Creator, or even a sacrament.  Mikvah, Baptism, Bar Mitzvah, Passover, Communion, Shavu'ot, Rosh HaShanah, are all celebrations ordained by our Creator, as well, yet we don't apply for or obtain a license to celebrate those.  So, why do we actually seek the permission of our government to do what G-d already told us we could do?  While I'm on the subject of holidays.  If Christmas really was a religious holiday, wouldn't the government stay open?  Why doesn't anyone in power or government holler about separation of church and state regarding Christmas?

Back to marriage.  A marriage license is actually about creating a three way contract, between a man, a woman, and the state.  The benefits obtained for state sanctioned marriage are primarily financial, which is why the marriage equality act was in the news.  People want to say marriage is ordained of G-d, but the reality is, it's benefits are health insurance through employment, social security and medicare benefits in old age, and sometimes pension funds.  The downside is, the children produced in the marriage are a commodity of the contract.

Perhaps, with the blessing of G-d on Holy Matrimony, the so-called government "benefits" would not be necessary.

And YHWH shall make thee plenteous in goods, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground, in the land which YHWH sware unto thy fathers to give thee.  Torah of Holy Scripture

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Fearing or Hearing

It seems it's really getting crazy "out there!"  I'm discovering there are many differing definitions of "crazy" and  "out there."  While the secularists are debating old trials and social issues, the religious are debating ancient prophecies and denominational interpretation.  Then, as always, there's the four kinds of people, and the two mentioned above actually fit into the various four categories!

     I've had the pleasure and heartbreak of being one of the "trail blazers" for a life less dependent upon the social structures in place, and hopefully getting back to the almost forgotten concept of leaving an inheritance to my descendants.  I was blessed to have Grandparents that believed in leaving a legacy, but I'm now 55, and most people, regardless of their careers, are indebted to the system, or enslaved by the policy in regard to their assets acquired and end of life care.  I'm still in shock when I hear people over 35 who have children, that are still buying toys instead of investing in their children's future.  Now a days, young people are being convinced that investing in their future involves "student loans."  To be honest, higher education appears, for the most part, to be just another way to have adult status, while not actually being required to establish oneself in life.  I don't know any one of the generation of my children who are using their college degree in their lives at this time.  Many have jobs that don't require college at all, while others have openly stated, they can't make enough money in their degreed profession to pay back their student loans.

On the other hand, I'm reading about the folks who are getting off the grid, stockpiling ammo, and canning butter.  They scare me!  I'm living a simple, more sustainable lifestyle, raising my own food, while working from home, and I've been called some horrendous names by people who supposedly love me.  Our society so loves to negatively stereotype, that I've been categorized with some interesting cult leaders and religious ideology.  Interestingly, I'm not looking for followers or residents for this acreage.  As a matter of fact, I've set the record straight a few times, and had folks leave very unhappy with me.  Some left quietly and some left screeching and snarling.  Just makes me glad I'm not trying to establish followers!   Since I'm already established in the wilderness on my own property, I'm real sure I'm not going to get too involved with the die hard "preppers."

Then there's the growing portion of the population that is collecting some sort of disability so they can have time to "minister" on the internet.  I don't know how they figure that is going to eventually play out.  If they truly believe dependence upon the system will require a mark, then they need to realize they've set themselves up for exactly what they are preaching against!  Some of them are now teaching the mark of the beast is only spiritual, so it sounds like they may be teaching a "comfort compromise plan" for the end of days.  I'll pass on that one too.

Then there are the retired military and law enforcement folk who are telling the rest of us just how much we are clueless.  I would agree, I don't think anybody has a full grasp on the prophesied agenda.  I keep saying, evil doesn't need to be a conspiracy.  Since the horrors of the end of days are prophesied in Scripture and being of Native heritage as well as Hebrew, I'm not listening to anyone who made their living "just following orders!"

I consider the last two examples to be pretty much intertwined in our society.  There are a number of folks who have early government retirements or are on disability.  Although coming from different perspectives, they really are on the same continuum, just opposite ends.  For all those who believe there will be one world system and believe they will see the Messiah's return, their present lifestyle will be challenged.  As for me, I don't want to get out of the system in fear, but rather I do need to be set apart, that I can hear the voice of YHWH.

I've heard what I believe I am to be doing, and I will continue to listen until Messiah's return or my death, whichever comes first.  I had a bit of confusion and tried to fit in some extra, recently, and prayerfully will not do that again!  There is a lot of fear and fear mongering right now, but Scripture tells us we are not to fear man or even the adversary, but to seek YHWH and obey, which is to do what we hear.

And when he puts forth his own sheep, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.  words of Messiah

Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Exit of Exodus International

Exodus International came on the scene with flare, as in flame, and has officially burned out.  I do believe it was birthed in sincerity, but it lacked the fire of the Holy Spirit.  Too many issues . . .  It began as EXIT which probably says it all!
I've read the testimony of the founder who I now believe, refers to himself as a former-ex-gay.  The gay agenda is so full of terminology for gender non-specifics, I just know I'm going to write something that is politically incorrect.

First, let me say.  There are many sins that our Creator calls abominations, so we don't really need to think we'll be rewriting His Word over our choices.  Not only are several things abominations, there is a list of heterosexual sins, too.  I am openly heterosexual, but due to circumstances beyond my control, I am a disenfranchised heterosexual and that's just a fact of life.  No special interest groups, no fancy parade, just living my life without human intimacy.

Regardless of my circumstances, I do not have the authority to redefine what Scripture says.  I didn't write the Bible, therefore the Bible is not mine to edit or revise.  Even if you want to believe it is not Divinely Inspired and was just written by men, it wasn't any of us; so we still do not have the authority to edit or revise.  Now that we have that resolved, let's get to the heart of the matter.

Anyone who wants to start their own religion or belief system is welcome to do that, but you don't get to redefine mine!  Another simple resolution.  My social circle includes celibate gays, celibate heterosexual, as well as non-celibate acquaintances of both persuasions.  If our society was not so rooted in sexuality, I truly believe many people would just live their particular gender assignment from YHWH, as in male or female, and prefer to not center their life around sexual activity at all.  Oh, I know, the argument is about being with someone you love.  

Well, all these years later, heterosexual adultery doesn't get a free pass, and perpetual fornication raises an eyebrow as well, if the woman is of child bearing age.  The same President who now says his views of gay marriage have evolved, certainly hasn't had any evolution regarding adultery.  Just ask General Patraeus. A woman can now be a single mother of one, and she's applauded for not getting a divorce; but two or more, there better be a Baby Daddy in the picture!  We can't just all walk around driven by hormones and no conscience.

Let's talk parades here for a moment.  The pictures of gay parades are blatantly decadent.  Say there was suddenly a Golden Anniversary Parade and everyone who qualified could participate.  We do not want to see any of that version of frisky any more than we want to see gay hoop-ti-la.  I think much of society truly would prefer that sex went back to being a taboo subject, for everyone.  This concept that marriage changes one's social status isn't just a gay agenda.  Heterosexuals already established the trend to live together and be accepted as a couple, and have diligently determined the "special dispensation" for remarriage after divorce, but that doesn't change what the Bible actually says.  I think when the gay agenda first presented itself, it was called an "alternative lifestyle."  So, if gays want everything heterosexuals are doing, what's alternative about that?

There wasn't a closet for gays.  Everybody kept their business and discussions privately behind closed doors or in whispers at the Beauty Shop.  Back before PMS was invented and there were euphemisms for the word period, which is also a euphemism; the word penis didn't even exist in polite society, men just stood to urinate, and women in hushed tones had "that time of the month" or a "visit from Aunt Flo."   What we have lost here is decorum and nobody is gaining acceptance.  The failure of Exodus International doesn't mean G-d failed or changed His mind.

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the Word of our G-d shall stand for ever.

Sunday, June 16, 2013


The link below is not the first time this gentleman has received "accommodations" in the Maricopa County Jail.  I've followed his situation for awhile, and this second situation has really confirmed what I have seen coming in many situations, regarding the Bill of Rights.

What I see coming is not an out and out persecution on anyone's beliefs, but rather a back door shut down with state and local code enforcement.  I'm not saying he jumped through all the code hoops properly, as obviously he didn't, but the man did build an addition on his home, did not advertise, per se, and is doing 60 days over handicap accessibility.  Congress can't make any law regarding religion, but code enforcement and the sheriff's office can find parking issues or fire code issues, or any thing on a side issue that doesn't persecute per se. Now this same county that has time to raid Bible studies has a booming adult entertainment industry.  

The following statement was cut and pasted directly from the website.

The Board of Supervisors recognizes that some activities which occur in connection with adult oriented businesses are protected as expression under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.  The Board of Supervisors further recognizes that First Amendment rights are among our most precious and highly protected rights, and wishes to act consistently with full protection of those rights.

Here, so many of us were thinking the First amendment protected our rights to assemble, free speech, and religious freedom.

Upon searching the ordinances, I found all licensees are supposed to have a designated place of business. I didn't read any ordinance permitting "house calls," and no reference for a special permit for a "discreet rendezvous."  If code enforcement is an issue, why is this business still making this offer, while a man who has added on to his home for "family" is sitting in jail?  The ad itself contained more explicite information, but the point was made, if you'll notice the "I drive myself."  The "service provider" would have no need to include that if there was a designated business address as defined in the Maricopa County ordinances.

The spelling is the way it appears in the ad.
Fantacies Provided
I am an independent provider!  No extra tipping and I drive myself!
In business since 2005

Although I believe we will be seeing the "sidestepping" in many states, Arizona does seem to be setting the standard of the point I'm about to make.
Arizona has legalized medical marijuana, while it is still against federal laws.  Arizona has it's own immigration laws, while the federal government continues to play the fiddle.  I've heard that Arizona promises to protect conceal carry permits from the national data base.
While Arizona openly thumbs it's nose to federal regulation, that state has it's own regulations which are stringently enforced, and I believe we'll be seeing more of that in other states . . .
Arizona blatantly demonstrates a disregard for federal law while baiting with protection promises on hot button issues.

While the "legalize pot" crowd applauds, the feds can still come in and destroy your crop and send you to the federal penitentiary.  While the birthers and anti-immigration crowd loves Sheriff Arpaio, who is reported to run a tight ship; we still call Obama, Mr. President, and phone prompts, say press 1 for English . . . Arizona is esteemed for all of it's strawman arrogance on both sides of the aisle.
Meanwhile there's a father of six, sitting in Maricopa County Jail for having Bible studies in his home.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Biblcal Speech ---- Hate Speech?

This story was contributed by Bruce Timpany.  You can visit his page at Facebook.

{{{ Biblical Speech in Canada a Hate Crime }}}
If you want to understand where the LGBT movement is heading, just have a look at Canada. The gay movement wants to restrict free speech, even religious speech that opposes their sexual orientation and practices. “The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that Biblical speech opposing homosexual behavior, including in written form, is essentially a hate crime.”

William Whatcott was distributing flyers explaining the Bible’s prohibitions against homosexuality in Saskatoon and Regina in 2001 and 2002. “The Bible is clear that homosexuality is an abomination,” one flyer said. Another flyer, published in response to the recommendation of the Saskatoon School Board that homosexuality be included in the school curriculum, urged that homosexuality not be taught in Saskatoon’s public schools.

The court found these to be in violation of Canada’s draconian human rights law. “The justices ruled that because the use of the word “sodomy” only referred to “two men” and not also the sex acts of heterosexuals, it was a direct target against a specific group of people.”

The court noted in its opinion that Whatcott’s use of the Bible to target homosexuals was a violation of the law. They said, “[Whatcott’s] expression portrays the targeted group as a menace that could threaten the safety and well-being of others, makes reference to respected sources (in this case the Bible) to lend credibility to the negative generalizations, and uses vilifying and derogatory representations to create a tone of hatred…”

The court also placed the [Hate Crimes] Code authoritatively above the Bible. “While the courts cannot be drawn into the business of attempting to authoritatively interpret sacred texts such as the Bible, those texts will typically have characteristics which cannot be ignored if they are to be properly assessed in relation to… the [Hate Crimes] Code.”

Canada’s “Hate Crime” Code is vague and leaves much discretion to enforcement agencies. The code outlaws material that ‘exposes or tends to expose to hatred’ of any person or group. It essentially outlaws any verbal or written communication that might incite or inspire people to treat people in a prejudicial or discriminatory way.

When gay rights advocates talk about discrimination they include religious expression, and will attempt to restrict or outlaw it if it is against their lifestyle.

The court is using Whatcott as an example to strike fear into the hearts of others who may think to do something similar. Whatcott has been ordered to pay $7,500 to two homosexuals who took offense at his flyers, and pay the legal fees of the Human Rights Commission that took him to court, which could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“It’s worse than I expected,” Whatcott added. “What it means is that my life is over as I know it.”

In Alberta, Pastor Stephen Boissoin was also taken to court for hate crimes because he published his beliefs about homosexual behavior in an op-ed at a local newspaper. The lower court sided with the pastor because he described a specific behavior, not a person or group of persons.

But the Supreme Court of Canada declared that “oftentimes, it is impossible to say that one loves the sinner and hates the sin. It asserted that the hatred of the act was inseparable from hating the person or person group.”

“In instances where hate speech is directed toward behavior in an effort to mask the true target, the vulnerable group, this distinction should not serve to avoid [the hate-crime clause of the Code],” the court said.

In the United States, a number of incidents in recent years have shown that America is headed in the same direction. Several American businesses have been punished in one way or another for refusing to accommodate the homosexual lifestyle, such as the photographer in New Mexico who refused to shoot a same-sex commitment service, Vermont bed and breakfast owners whose employee told two lesbians that they could not hold their commitment service on their property, and a Kentucky t-shirt company that refused to fill orders for t-shirts that were to be worn at a local homosexual pride parade.

“And they said, Stand back, And they said again, This one fellow [Lot] came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them [the two angels]. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.” Genesis 19:9

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Sunday, June 2, 2013

Prosecuted . . . Persecuted?

Regardless of what you personally believe regarding faith in G-d, health care, the combination of the two or the exclusion of either, there is another factor that we at the Goshen Gazette will be bringing to you.

Now Planned Parenthood suggests that a botched abortion that results in a live struggling baby should be left up to the woman's discretion with her doctor.  Now, on the other hand, a sick baby that dies in the care of parents who are praying, their discretion is invalid, prosecutable, actually.  I am leaving these links in tact, so readers can see the source.  Obviously this is not mainstream media coverage!

This next situation, to this journalist, has proven that child birth is better accomplished outside of the hospital and clearly a mother's health is not the issue in ob/gyn hospital care.

We will continue to keep you informed . . .

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Week of Creation

I'd like to address the topic of creation vs. evolution from a different perspective than just arguing over the length of a day or a miraculous plan verses a chaotic explosion. That argument is nigh on to 100 years old. What I've watched though; is through time, the changes in the general society that has occurred.

The Scopes Trial was basically a publicity stunt, as it turns out. That was in the 1920s. By the 60's Evolution was a theory in the science book and prayer and Bible reference had been removed from the public schools, which ultimately ended up removed from the public sector. By the 1980's, evolution graduated from being a theory to being what was taught in school as the origin of the universe. Creationists have attempted to present "Intelligent Design" but that usually fails and it's now down to the brass tax of money. It's always money, isn't it? Schools who would include a creation perspective or theory are subject to lose their federal funding.

As a cook that pours a lot of love into my "creations," I have a very simple parable regarding evolution and creation. When my Grandkids are at my home, we partake of some pretty fine meals, that I lovingly prepare. My Grandchildren know I'm a creative cook, I wrote a Cook Book, and they wouldn't for a moment think a delicious and flavorful meal was the result of an explosion in my kitchen. That is the difference between a Creation and a Big Bang. Yet I digress . . .

Here's my idea. It's really simple. Before kids begin having to attend school six days a week, year round, let's have all the folks who believe in creation start observing the seventh day of creation as it was included in Genesis! Doesn't that seem easier than arguing with people who say they don't believe the Bible? Let's have the ones who say they do believe the Bible live according to that first week of creation. The seventh day was created for resting.

Sabbath is not a Jewish thing, it's a Creator thing. He created it to rest. Now if you believe the universe was created in one week, you've got to believe what the seventh day was created for. If you want to be convincing in your argument for creation, you have to do the part you can prove. The seven day week is still in "practice" and provable. The seventh day hasn't changed in all these years. In many languages the word for the seventh day is translated from the word Shabbat or Sabbath.

It's so simple. The argument for the week of creation would be much stronger if presented by a person who was actually living the proof!

And on the seventh day G-d ended his work which He had made; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had made. And G-d blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it He had rested from all His work which G-d created and made. Genesis 2:2-3

Sunday, May 12, 2013

When Adonai Gives a Peculiar Assignment

I find myself becoming much more quiet and reserved. I sometimes wonder if I've said too much. Often, I am relieved that I did not share certain particulars. When YHWH has given a specific assignment, yet HIS servant is told not to discuss the assignment, but simply the message that has followed, it can feel a bit like confinement. I'm by no means referring to sharing the Gospel or discussing Torah. I love talking about my G-d and my Bridegroom, and His Word is not called the Good Book for no reason. It is the Best book and I'm thrilled to know the author personally.

I'm talking about confiding in humanity, what G-d has confided to us as an individual and the discouragement that can ensue. I do find myself feeling like I have a peculiar assignment regarding my call, and nowhere to feel comfortable to discuss it, at this time. For that matter, I have no permission to discuss it and so far I'm being obedient. I think a number of the remnant are hearing some interesting assignments at this time and it's not easy to be ridiculed. Telling all my business isn't usually a temptation for me, anyway, but sometimes . . . I am also very thankful that my assignment is not nearly as peculiar as some of the guys I've read about in Scripture.

I can't imagine, even with instructions, trying to build the ark. What faith Noah had, and obedience. I have no idea if he could even envision this floating zoo he was called to build, much less imagine rain . . . He was told it would rain forty days, but we know from the recorded times of sending birds out, he had no idea how long it would take for the water to recede. Was the food supply like the widow's flour and oil that didn't run out with Elijah or was the supply getting low when the birds came back? We aren't told, and I'm sure we believe that YHWH would have made sure to their needs, but Noah was human and the outcome wasn't yet in writing. Look at all the wonders we have in writing and still we get nervous and anxious in our situations.

Speaking of Elijah, I can't imagine what it must have felt like to know a queen was wanting to kill him, and not be able to find any one else that believed what he did. I think of Elijah often as various Facebookians or Facebookites, I'm not sure which we are, discuss having no flesh and bones fellowship. We are truly blessed to be able to find fellowship and one accord, even if it is at this time touching, electronically. I am always amazed at Elijah's life, in that he had the faith to completely drench a bull for sacrifice and know fire would fall from heaven, yet going before a wicked queen was quite the overwhelming ordeal for him.

Moving right along to the prophets with books named for them. Jeremiah was told to write something that would be read to the king, only for it to be cut up and burned, then told to write it again. Jeremiah did not have a popular ministry at all, nor did he have a trendy message, it was timely, but not trendy. He spent time in a cistern and in stocks.

We all know the story of Jonah and his assignment was pretty run-of-the-mill as it "preach repentance," but his own repentance was certainly of unique circumstances. Three days and nights in the innards of a big fish. What a place of contemplation.

Ezekiel has always grabbed my heart with his assignment in laying on one side for over a year, with specifically measured water and bread with special ingredients, baked over manure. All this while restrained, only to roll over and do it for over a month on the other side. Then when that's all said and done, get up and tell these religious folk mixing holy with profane doesn't cut it and that's what they're doing!

Most of the prophets had very peculiar assignments, but Isaiah, takes the cake on peculiar assignments in the Old Testament, at least from my perspective. That poor guy had already been in sack cloth giving warning, then he was told to take off his shoes and his sack cloth and walk around barefoot and naked for three years . . .

When I think of how all these people simply stood on faithful obedience, not having in writing what we can read. In seeing this amazing faith and all these accounts of the greatness of Adonai, my perspective is completely changed and I somehow feel very grateful and humbled for the peculiar assignment I've been given.

Sunday, May 5, 2013


It's so easy to read Scripture and shake our heads, saying to ourselves, "What were they thinking?" "How in the world could they do something like that?" and yet we as a nation have done it for years, and we as individuals have made many of the same mistakes we judge these Bible characters for doing, and yet feel entitled to the promised blessings . . .

I recently read an article about a mother who said she regretted having children. I was, of course, like many of those who left comments, floored, and felt very sorry for her children. I can honestly say, I regret nearly everything I did between the age of 15 and 35. Oh, I was trying to do the right thing, but the mountain of regrets is only movable by the grace and forgiveness of my Creator, in the redemptive sacrifice of His Son. The mountain of regrets no longer stands in front of me, but there is still sorrow regarding some of those boulders which have rolled into and onto the next generations of our society. I know this next statement may be horrifically judged, but I had to confess it to my Heavenly Father and we are told in James to confess our sins, that we may be healed, raised up, and forgiven.

I regret motherhood. I don't regret my children, I failed my children. I love my children and my grandchildren! My regret is in the way I handled motherhood. I gave birth to beautiful children, I adopted great kids who were older, but I wasn't a good mother. I failed at motherhood, I failed miserably and it has horrible long term effects. I wasn't beating on them or putting them in cages or anything, but our home wasn't a refuge of shalom in the covering of El Shaddai. I didn't marry according to Scripture, and I didn't raise children according to Scripture and that was an epic failure. I didn't offer the goodness of G-d's plan. Actually, I became a mother, completely outside of the will and plan of G-d, and then set out to make it right. I can tell you now, even after working to try to make it right as long as I did it wrong, there is no making up for the wrong. The failure will be forever a part of my life and the lives that have been created in the wake of that failure. Granted, I'm in good company, considering Abraham did the same thing, but that's no excuse. I already knew how his fiasco turned out, before I began my own. Thankfully my decision doesn't bear the monumental effect on humanity that his did, I hope; but there are minimal similarities.

I became a mother for selfish reasons, and that is no reason to become a mother. I wanted someone to love and to be loved. Parenthood seemed to be my right of passage. It appeared to be for my teen-aged parents; at least from my perspective. I can now tell you, parenthood for the wrong reasons, doesn't work at all. Since I wasn't mothering according to G-d's plan and He is love, I'm guessing I didn't teach or set the example of love, properly, either. I messed up my position in the family as a daughter, so I thought I'd just start my own family as a matriarch. I hate that I did this, and there is no way to humanly fix either end of the mess I made.

I was told awhile back that my ineptness is now felt by yet, the next generation and I feel just horrible about that. I've been following Messiah now and serving YHWH for nearly 20 years. I was so sure, becoming a grandma after walking with YHWH would be like a clean slate, a fresh start, but I was mistaken. My life in Messiah came before this grandchild, long before, but apparently the damage in the previous 20 years is still causing pain and certainly can't be undone. From the feedback I receive, it can barely be endured. That information utterly breaks my heart. Nothing on this earth has made me happier, than becoming a grandma, and now they discuss my failings as well! I loved holding my grandchildren and singing to them and was delighted to help all I could, but that doesn't undo the damage of my previous ungodly years.

As I listened yesterday to the judgment, I thought of my beautiful creative granddaughter that now says I favor another. I remembered just a couple of months ago of calling three different phone numbers to wish her a Happy Birthday. Ultimately, I left a message asking someone to please have her call me, so I could wish her a Happy Birthday, but that attempt isn't even considered against the grudges that are held and the judgments which have already been formed. In the grand scheme of it all, that was very recent and already discounted, so what can I do? Absolutely nothing! I thought of how sad I was that we didn't get to share the paints and art supplies last summer, but the complete and utter break down had already taken place and it just never came to fruition. It's so pathetically sad, the situation cannot be pinpointed to a single foremost regrettable transgression, as the evidence of failure seems to keep snowballing and multiplying. I just know, I can't fix it and I regret having made the mess. I am sad about the foundation I laid for their future, so many years ago. That is not to say YHWH cannot make things right, but HE is the only one who can, and there are a lot more "free wills and choices" involved now.

Another sadness I have in this regard, is unlike Abraham in his day, I am by far, not the only one who has done this. So in our society, the problem is exponentially magnified. That should cause most of us a regret or two. I'm not advocating the cessation of procreation, I'm just stating, most of us are not procreating according to the plans and Instructions of our Creator and the results are costly. I can't even imagine all the lost souls we've created who grow up and raise more lost souls. The emotional pain is horrible to experience and to watch, and the solutions of choice for the next generations appear to be medicating and disengaging while making more mistakes in an attempt to alleviate the pain, or at least dull it. Physically, we've created an indebted generation that has no concept of anything but instant gratification or entitled dependence. We can't blame politicians because parents failed to showing them their purposed potential! For many, "stuff" equals love, virtual; is reality, and prescriptions are "necessary."

Now, as for the woman who made the news regarding her regrets at having children. From what I've read, I don't share her regret, but I can't look at what I've done and judge another. My biggest regret regarding motherhood is the fact that my failures are now behind me, while the effects of those failures, both personal and social, may be looming in the future of my progeny.