Hooray for Insomnia

I was hoping it was at least 3:00 a.m. It was 1:30. But that was OK actually, and here’s why: I had put my jeans and writing shirt (more on that later) out before bed, right along with my water, Bible, scribble book, journal, pens and highlighers, and devotions. I was ready to sneak into John’s office (where the chairs are comfy and the computer cooperative) and have myself a little time with Jesus. Remember the song? So let us have a little talk with Jesus, let us tell Him all about our troubles . . .

I did have some troubles, as I woke from a disturbing dream and wanted to make sense of it, if sense could be made. But those troubles went away pretty quickly as I prayed and then found great teaching on YouTube.

It took a while to get through 2.5 sermons (I’ve paused in the middle of the third sermon to write this post) because I was taking notes, pausing to pray, pausing to sing scripture to God (I don’t sound all that bad and I know He likes my singing. I just know.) I also paused to pass on a sermon to people I think/hope will be blessed.

And let me admit it. I also passed it on to someone I think needs it. As do I. Especially the parts about remaining strong in such a time as this. How? Via meditating on the Word of God. Again, how? Well, let’s begin by saying it’s not how I recently heard a success guru say he does it–he “meditates” ten minutes.

Psalm 1:1-3 is helpful: Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. (That’s verses 1 and 2–I’ll leave you to see this man’s reward in verse 3.)

Here’s most of what the Word Wealth in my Bible says–“meditates” hagah (hah-gah; Strong’s #1897: to reflect; to on, to mutter; to ponder; to make a quiet sound such as sighing; to meditate or contemplate something as one repeats the words. Hagah represents something quite unlike the English “meditation,” which may be a mental exercise only. In Hebrew thought, to meditate upon the Scriptures is to quietly repeat them in a soft, droning sound, while utterly abandoning outside distractions. From this tradition comes a specialized type of Jewish prayer called “davening,” that is, reciting texts, praying intense prayers, or getting lost in communion with God while bowing or rocking back and forth. Evidently this dynamic form of meditation-prayer goes back to David’s time.

This is how we receive the Biblical promise of a renewed mind. I, for one, am in great and continual need of this. I think thoughts and act ways I don’t agree with! They’re not the real me. They’re distortions and deceptions based on the lies of my enemy. But they’re always decreasing in power as God’s power overcomes through Biblical meditation.

I think I won’t call it insomnia, which implies being unable, but wanting, to sleep. I think I’ll call it a wee hours assignation with the Lover of my soul. Hooray for Hagah!

The Opportunity Cost of Running and Hiding

I wanted John to take me away, to distract me from my wretched selfish self, but there were pesky things like roofers coming, a tow truck on its way to haul the tractor in for a new engine, the windshield man coming to put a new windshield in John’s truck, and I don’t remember what all else. I didn’t get my way, whaaaaaaaaah!

I didn’t get my way,

So it’s come to this–time to pray.

Not getting what I asked for

Life is such a bore.

Artist’s pages reveal

The thief is here to steal.

He’s taught me well to doubt

It’s time to kick him out.

——————————-

I hope you will forgive and bear with my rhyming fun. What I meant by “Artist’s pages reveal” was that when I began to journal (Julia Cameron calls it writing “artist’s pages” in The Artist’s Way) I saw what the enemy (John 10:10 says he comes to steal, kill, and destroy) was up to, and where I was giving him access.

I just so happened to have, lying next to me on the couch, I Never Learned to Doubt by Jesse Duplantis. Yes, I realized, I am doubting, and it’s making me miserable and a misery. I did some heavy duty repenting and heart-cleansing, some delving deep into my heart attitudes and among other things I came up with this: I am not to run and hide from the misery of doubt. I am to root it out!

If John would have taken me out for breakfast it would have been quite expensive–the opportunity cost of doing the one thing (often what we think we need and certainly what we want) is what we miss via that choice. I would have missed a heart-cleansing, a joy refreshing, a time with the One who heals me.

How to be Weak

If Henri Nouwen is correct in today’s e-mailed deovtional, and he is when he states,”Joy and Resentment Cannot Coexist” and if it’s also true, and it is, that “the joy of the Lord” is our strength. then unforgivness (resentment) makes us weak.

In my current quest for positivity, my Zero For Six adventure against negativity, I am aiming for joy, for strengh. Indeed I am aiming for the acquisition of the very joy of the Lord God Himself!

How is this going? I’m stumbling here and there, and seeking my way in communicating with those who, it seems, would rather be weak. It also seems as though some people prefer resentment to joy. That is entirely their business, of course, but does that mean they have a right to inflict their negativity on me? No.

The trick is in rejecting the negative person’s negativity, but not rejecting the person. Negative people have already rejected themselves, the Word of God, perhaps even God, and they expect further rejection. This is where it is helpful to say something like, “I’m doing a Zero For Six adventure of no negativity for six months! Wanna join me?”

It is also helpful to saturate that person in prayer, whereby we get perspective on their preciousness to God. This helps counter our perspective on their aggravation to us. We need a change of heart, or at least I do. Otherwise, I will not overcome evil with good. Rather, bad company will corrupt me.

Negativity is contagious, but there is a vaccine, a sure innoculation. It’s the Mighty One–Jesus. The only time I feel those sick symptoms of negativity, that debilitating weakening of frustration, is when I hold on to an offense. I am actually choosing Death, rather than God’s mandated choice–Life. I am choosing to fearfully focus on and glorify what Satan’s crowd is up to.

We can be less than worms with fear and negativity, or more than conquerors in Christ Jesus.

“You show me the path of life. In your presence is fullness of joy…”
PSALM 16:11 (NRSV)

“Thank You for Not Yelling at Me!”

That was the response of the beautiful and unmasked woman I talked to today at Scheel’s. And I could so relate. I’ll return to this story, but first let’s talk about getting yelled at.

It was yesterday and along with a friend in a local grocery store, I was maskless. I was picking out mushrooms when I heard someone say, “Thank you, Ladies.” She was thanking us for joining her in resisting the evil, unlawful, useless, stupid, unhealthy, devisive edict (not a law) to wear masks in Colorado.

Now, before I go on with getting yelled at, let me give you some background. I had discussed my reasons for wearing masks in small businesses, with my friend, who never, no not ever, wears a mask. I explained to her that I know of busybodies who call the health department, whose little minions then come and exercise their newfound power by threatening small business owners over not policing their stores.

Since small businesses are falling like rain in our state (this before a possible Biden Admin $15.00 minimum wage, which will be, according the those I’ve talked to, the end) I don’t want to add to their problems, and therefore I wear the stupid, useless, stifling, germ-filled, unhealthy, unlawful, and did I mention stupid and useless masks (if you don’t believe me, stop listening to the establishment media and so some research, such as Dr. Lee Merritt’s findings-see the bottom of this post). My friend was swayed not at all, but did talk to the store owners, saying, “Do you want my business or not? I’ll shop without a mask, or I’ll not shop at all. It’s up to you.” They assured her they wanted her business and so I joined her in, gasp, showing my entire face.

Back to the lady who thanked us for daring to show our faces in public, our buddy-in-bravery, Sherry. We’re having a great time. Sherry explains that her son was just fired for not wearing his mask on a construction site, but that the day was still marvelous as she’d talked a 19-year-old out of an abortion earlier in the day. She talked about how she and her husband left their mega church due to its pitiful and pathetic and faithless reponse to our evil state government’s unlawful edicts, about treating COVID with Ivermectin, about this and that, and so much more.

And then. From across the produce section and over by the deli, we hear a shout, “Put on your masks!” Sherry says, “Are you protecting me with that mask? I Conceal Carry, and I’m protecting you.”

This is not the kind of person who approves of Conceal Carry. This is the type of jello person (and she looks the part) who will hide under the tomatoes and scream and cry and beg and plead with a shooter. And die. My buddy adds her two-cents about the masks being worthless, and our assailant is yet unmoved.

It’s my turn. “We’re not supposed to live in fear,” I call out.

“I’m not afraid,” she yells.

“Yes, you are. We’re commanded by Jesus not to fear.”

Game over. She’s gone.

The moral of this story: Whatever the problem, situation, or conversation–Jesus is the Answer.

_________________________

Back to Lady Beautiful in Scheels.

I’m standing next to John who is checking out and I notice this marvelous looking young woman on the other side of the checker. She has luxuriant black hair, down to her waist and curly. Her skin is flawless and her make-up perfect. Most of all, her face is compelling–intelligent and lovely. I step around in front of her (I’m maskless, by the way). “Thank you,” I say, “For not wearing your mask.” She looks wary, like she’s waiting for the “punch” line. I smile. “For showing your entire beautiful face.”

She relaxes visibly. “Thank you for not yelling at me.”

Ladies and Gentlemen, if you think that dog-training mask will save you, if it makes you feel (SO FALSELY) safe, then by all means wear it. But remember, if it’s really that almighty and powerful, you don’t need to worry about my not wearing one. Just be glad of my certain and emminent demise.

And just one more thing while we’re at it. Stop with the child abuse of making your kids wear masks. JUST SAY NO!

______________________________

Dr. Lee Merritt’s Impressive and Astouding Findings

Fear Not, Only Believe

We have a pretend president, a commander-in-thief, a puppet in the White House. Seeing the presidency stolen from the people’s choice, Donald Trump, was a bitter pill. But there is a greater ill to overcome, there is that crying out in repentance we must do, that cloak of humility we must don.

Our hearts condemn us, and we are prey to fear when we keep our eyes on the antics of the Workers of Iniquity, rather than keeping a laser focus on the Word of God.

Let us see everything as working together for the good of those who love God, as we are promised. Let us believe the promises of the One who cannot lie, rather than fear the Father of Lies.

Fear Not, Only Believe!

Casual Won’t Cut It

I was searching for a good word on YouTube and Richard Roberts’ Santa Claus face caught my eye–aren’t we all looking for a smile and some cheer? He spoke two things I’ve been saying: “The time for casual Christianity is over” was the concluding statement; the admonition was to join him as a “watchman on the wall.”

As Richard Roberts suggested, I read Isaiah 62:6, which says, “I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they shall never hold their peace day or night. You who make mention of the Lord, do not keep silent.”

I believe God is calling us all to “strengthen the hands that hang down” (Hebrews 12:12) via prayer for each other and against the darkness, and that we are to never hold our peace.

Distractions abound, especially against time in the Word of God, but we don’t have to be distracted from praying. We must simply pray then and there, here and now, coming in and going out.

When my beautiful friend Pam told me how to pray about a personal issue (something in my heart that needed changing and healing) I prayed right then and there as she listened on the phone. Don’t wait for a “good time” to pray. Right now is a good time to pray!

About anything and everything.

And by the way, don’t pray like a heathen trying to appease an angry god: “Oh, God! Oh, God! Oh, oh, oh.” Along with sacking casual Christianity, it’s time to sack pathetic and pitiful Christianity. Pray the Word!

What does the Word say? “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5). You can’t do this when you’re listening to every other voice. Once again, the days when we could do that, when we could be casual about our Christianity, are over.

We’re it, Folks. God works through faith. I’ve heard it said that faith is God’s currency, and fear is Satan’s. So, let’s get faith via hearing the Word of God. Hearing. Romans 10:17 tells us how: “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”

After I heard Richard Roberts reading Isaiah 62 last night, I heard it again this morning as I read it aloud. Faith comes, the Bible tells us. By hearing. If ever in my lifetime I needed faith to come, enduring and steadfast faith, it is now, in “such a time as this” (Esther 4:14).

It’s time to roll up our sleeves, and get to it. Faith, I mean. So repeat after me (remember you need to hear): “No fear here.”

Get Thee Behind Me, Fear of COVID!

Even as I am grieved and aggrieved at masks, social distancing, and other evidences of people tormented by Fear and lies, I am glad of the changes I see.  In me.

After the third “encounter” with extremely aggressive and just plain demented-by-fear folks because my mask was below my nose, I am at a good place with it all.  I am in a place of prayer, day in and day out, and all the day long.  And even as I want “the end of masks forever and ever amen” all of it is growing me, hooray.

I wasn’t always so sanguine, and handled each mask attack differently.  To the first “helper” I said, “I don’t need a mask, I have Jesus,” which caused him to physically jerk and jump, and then scuttle away as quickly as possible.

I wasn’t feeling so smug after subsequent incidents.  “You’re not that special,” I said to three store clerks actually shouting at my husband and me across the store (about 30 feet away).  We turned and left the store, where they no doubt lamented the idiocy of stupid old goats like us who are too dumb to understand the importance to us all of wearing the masks.

Then there was the wild girl who looked like she was about to lose it, so I pulled up the mask and said just loudly enough for her to hear as I left the store, “Shove it up your ass.”  Yay, Bev.  Way to go!  That really was brilliant and beautiful.

And then.  She was a young mom who just really, really, really got under my skin.  If you’re a bit “mature” as am I, you know the one.  She thinks her child is the first and only and she’s God’s golden model of excellence in motherhood.   Along with that pride, of course, is the knowledge that anyone past fifty is passe, and must be helped and educated and somehow tolerated.  Just the memory of that encounter.  Well, I didn’t say much to her, as she made it clear that listening wasn’t her strong suit.  But I lost my joy over it to the extent that I had to come up with a strategy.

Obviously, I reasoned, these helpful little darlings aren’t going anywhere (there have been two more happy times to date).  I had gone through the usual prayers of repentance, forgiveness, etc. but I couldn’t shake the aggravation of Super Mom.  Finally, I did two things:  I made a plan for exactly how to handle it next time; and I gave her a name and went to work in prayer.

I named her Amanda and her baby Chloe, and prayed for her husband, home, finances, everything that came to mind.  I prayed her free from fear.  And I determined that the next encounter will go something like this:

Helper:  I’ll need you to pull your mask up all the way and keep your nose covered.

Bev:  Oh, certainly, even though I can’t breathe and it’s very unhealthy, and the masks don’t work.  I’ll do that for you, and listen to your views about this, and very respectfully, and in return I’d like to ask you to listen to my views about the real reason, even deeper than those I mentioned, about the mask.

Helper:  OK (not looking very ecstatic so far).

Bev:  The real reason is that Jesus is my healer.  I haven’t been to the doctor since my last child was born twenty years ago, and (if there’s a child) I can tell you how to raise that child free from the torment of Fear.

Helper:  Uh . . . (she very well may leave with a pithy comment about my selfishness and ignorance, punctuated with sighs and eye-rollings, in which case we hope Bev’s best laid plans don’t fly out the window as she blows it yet again).  But let’s just suppose things remain civil.

Bev:  Here’s my card.  I’d love to talk to you about this.  And pray with you.  You don’t have to live in fear.  Call me.  Really.

Helper takes card and I ask if she’s brave enough to shake my hand.  I ask her for her name and tell her I’m going to pray for her, assuring her that I’ve been where she is, only probably much more fearful, as I was a world-class worrier once upon a time.

I hate Fear, and I hate the author of it.  The Great Deceiver, Father of Lies.  

If you’re under the dominion of Fear nothing I can say will change your mind.  The mask, may I suggest, is your God.  But could I implore and beg you to look at the words of God, the deeds of Jesus.  “For God has not given us a Spirit of Fear, but of power and love and a sound mind.”  You can’t have it both ways, if you bow to fear, you will be powerless, unloving, and not of sound mind.

Let us all pray for victory over Fear. Let us pray for each other and let us be changed.  Amen.

Opportunities to Pray, Because Fear is NOT the Way!

Yay for the abundance of “opportunities to pray” all day!  

When our daughter Hannah was targeted for abortion – doc said I’d die otherwise – I said to my husband John, “You know what this is?  This is an opportunity to pray.”

When she was in intensive care at birth (36 units of Pitocin) there it was again, an opportunity to pray.  What else could we do?  Praise God for things we can’t possibly fix!

I didn’t die, Hannah came home the next day with me, instead of staying in ICU the forecasted “minimum two weeks”, and she is an extremely lovely, fit and healthy 24-year-old today.

I taught her by example, even from the womb, that fear is not the way.

Psalm 139:13,14 – For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb.  I will praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works and that my soul knows very well.

WHAT? ME WORRY? I’M DONE WITH DEFEAT!!!!!!!!!!!!

Watching everyone lose their minds over Covid has been more than perplexing and puzzling.  It’s been revelatory!  I am EXCITED about what God’s up to here.

Now, before anyone thinks I’m saying God did this, I’m not!  But the Bible tells us He turns what Satan intends for evil to the good of those who love Him.  For me, that is so, so true.

I am seeing (so surprising) that it is often those who never set foot in church who have the most light and the least fear of a flu bug.

I’m finding those who didn’t finish high school, and certainly never got a college degree, are the ones who see through the lies and laugh at the fear.  I’m learning from those “least likely to succeed” types, how to succeed.

There is both logic and the ability to listen without pride, to what I have to say, from those among us who are humble.  And it’s humbling.  And freeing.  To such as these I can talk about ideas.

So here’s an idea:  What if everything we’re worried about and carrying on about in the world, is simply the inevitable consequence of a church that has dropped the ball.

What if the fear that was festering in the breasts of the world, exploded when the church showed that all its talk of faith was a farce, as doors closed without a whimper, citing misunderstood scriptures as justification.

Here’s the thing about all this “obedience to civil authority” stuff.  If obedience to authority is making you comfy, question your motives.  If it’s making you very, very uncomfortable, go with it.  God’s ways are often a bit stretching.

Let me elaborate:  When the likes of Paul and Peter admonished their wildfolk followers to behave and obey laws, they (Paul and Peter) were either on their way to, in, or just out of jail.  For, you guessed it, misbehavior and disobeying “authority”.  It went without saying, so they didn’t say it, that they weren’t talking about disobeying God in order to obey man.

This Covid thing is causing us to look to the real Author and Finisher of our Faith, and it’s obviously not someone who preaches, but does not practice, faith.

“You have to be ready to go to jail,” I said to my daughter about it.  “I am, Mom,” she said.  “I refuse to live in fear.”

No fear here.  As for me and my house, we will obey the Lord.  And to help us in that we’ll hang out with people of simple, unpolluted (by Bible college?) faith.  Amen.

P.S.  If our Founding Fathers had mindlessly obeyed man, had done the comfy thing, there would be no America.  If Paul and Peter had obeyed man, there would be no New Testament, and no New Testament church.  Wait?  Is there a New Testament church?  I’ve looked all over my town and the only one I can find speaks only Spanish.

Perhaps I should learn Spanish.  Or just go to “church” with my daughter, which is on the streets, with the poor, tired, addicted.  The humble.

Church.  What is it?  Who is it?  Who’s the Boss of it, of me?  One of the speakers at the Bible college my daughter attended was saying that American Christians need to be more like the Russians, where “they don’t have the problem we have here with submission to authority.”

We became a nation in part because God wanted to deliver people who were sick and tired of tyrannical authority and who came here for FREEDOM (such as my Russian friends), not yet another yoke of bondage.

There is one God, One Savior, one Final Authority.  And it AINT a man in a suit in a pulpit with a degree giving him man’s stamp of approval.  Will the real Christians please stand up?

Yes, I am asking myself if I qualify.  Do I trust and obey?  Him.

P.S. I was never afraid of the flu, but I was distressed by the frenzied and mindless mask and sanitizer worship, by the evidence of a society-wide lack of faith. I struggled with an uneasiness and  uncertainly early on (when we still called it Corona Virus) and when I prayed about it I realized I had made a grave error.  I had judged other Christians for their faithless reactions, for fear.  Well, as you may or may not know, it’s not only what you fear that will come upon you (see Job), but it’s also what you judge.  So, I repented and began to pray for the Church, and indeed the whole world, to be free from fear.  Absolutely free from the awful torment of fear.  Agree wtih me, please.

And another thing!  The reason I am free from fear is because, day in and day out, I read the Word of God, which builds and builds and builds my faith.  “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

 

Pandemic, or Plandemic? Land of the Weak, Home of the Safe? NO!!! LAND OF THE FREE, HOME OF THE BRAVE!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just got an e-mail from a favorite local coffee shop saying we can now come in and get coffee to go – must wear masks, blah, blah.  Hip, hip, hooray, we’re “allowed,” they’re “allowed”, everywhere people are asking tyrants for permission to breathe, practically.  Through masks.  Most of which don’t work anyway.

So, I wrote them back, but haven’t yet decided to send what I wrote.  After all, they’re desperately trying to stay in business.  Still . . .

Here’s what I wrote:

What fun!  Exactly how are we supposed to drink coffee with masks on?  Let us know when we’re “allowed” to come in and act like free people – meanwhile we’ll make coffee at home (please Master, can we take our masks off at home?).  Yes, I know this is not your fault, and I feel for you and every other small business owner, but these kinds of mamby pamby e-mails are insulting and tiresome.  Just sayin’.
If I were you I’d refuse to play this stupid game, and consider suing the powers that be who, incidentally, do not own small businesses.  You could sue for damages to be distributed among other local businesses, perhaps.  Of course any funds you get will ultimately come right out of your own pocket, as a taxpaying small business owner.  The folks responsible for perpetrating this fraud (yes, “fraud” – do your homework, or simply read my husband John’s thoughts below) won’t lose a dime.
And yes, Business Owner, I know this is easier said than done, but you are bowing to the theft of your consitutional rights.  Remember, give the devil an inch and he’ll take a mile (or your business).  Or your country.
You, Small Business Owner of America, are our economic backbone.  Straighten your spiritual backbone and stand up straight.  You will be amazed at what God will do if you REFUSE TO FEAR.
P.S.  Let me know if I can put my money where my mouth is via giving to your legal expense fund.
My husband John’s thoughts:
Almost 1 million people die of the flu or  complications caused by flu every yearand as of 2017 2,813,503 from a number of other causes, and never have we responded in this delusional way.
In 2019 there were 251,454 U.S. deaths — almost 10% of all annual U.S. deaths — resulting from medical error, making it the third leading cause of death in the country. Where is the hue and cry to ban doctors?
Just a few more points to ponder and questions for you:
  • Since when do we quarantine the healthy along with the sick?
  • Since when do we destroy the lives and livelihood of a huge majority of the working class of the USA to “save” people who are veulnerable to the flu?
  • Who will decide in the future what supposed diseases we’ll have to be imprisoned for to “save” us?   Will we be incarcerated because of arthritis outbreaks?  Or allergies?  Or lactose intolerance?  It is a very very, very short step from where we are now to totalitarianism.
  • Where in the Constitution of the United Staes of America does it say the government can strip you and me of our Constiutional rights because of an epidemic?
  • Since when is it okay to inflate death numbers with suspected or unproven cases to justify what has been done to the American people?

And just one final word from me, Bev:  Let us remember the world is watching, and that it’s not “Land of the Weak, Home of the Safe.”