Jesus is Alive!

John’s Vision on Patmos
17 “When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. But He placed His right hand on me and said, “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last, 18 the Living One. I was dead, and behold now I am alive. I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and of hades. 19. Therefore write down the things you have seen, and the things that are, and the things that will happen after this.…Berean Study Bible

Jesus the Christ, the ONLY Savior of the world, is alive! He was crucified on the cross over 2,000 years ago to pay for the sins of every person, and His pure blood paid it all! Then He rose again on the third day. He now lives in Heaven, forever praying for us to the Father, and He is returning to earth soon to gather all who believe in Him, that we may go with Him to live forever in the true Paradise!

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Call out to Him in sincerity, and He will answer! All who call upon the name of the LORD will be saved! Get a Holy Bible and ask Him to help you understand it. Go to a church that preaches the entire Bible and ask the leaders to pray with you and help you understand.

Pray this to discover God: LORD, although my brain says this is crazy, I choose to believe that You exist and that You are good. Me and all these people and this amazing earth did NOT just happen by accident! I am calling to You now to make Yourself known to me; to help me discover You. I want to know You. I need Your help to make it in this strange and troubled world! But I hear that You give peace and rest and safety. I need that and I thank You for all this now.

HE WILL ANSWER! It may be different than you think –But He is forever faithful!!!

Blessed be the LORD, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever!

Truth Wrapped in Mercy

“Moses gave us the Law, but Jesus, the Anointed One,
    unveils truth wrapped in tender mercy.”
— The Passion Translation, John 1:17

Don’t you love that? God through Jesus loves us enough to tell us the truth (always!), but is very merciful and kind, compassionate, patient, and understanding; always leading us deeper into loving relationship with Him. 

HALLELUJAH!!!  HOW GOOD IS OUR GOD!!!

And, if you don’t know Jesus Christ, here’s a secret: Jesus is truly the most easy and loving Person to know–and He is eager and excited to help you and become your Friend for life! If you want to have Him in your life from now on, just say this prayer: “LORD, I need You to please forgive me for all I’ve done wrong. I know You are holy and in Your amazing Love, You wanted me to be free and cleansed and fit to live with You in Heaven. I ask that Jesus come into my heart and be my LORD and Savior and very best Friend, so that I may know Him on earth and get to live with You and Him in Heaven after my body dies. I receive Jesus now, in Your Name, amen! Thank You!”

And, when you ask in the Name of Jesus (meaning whatever is His will when you use that name), YOU GET! So now, Jesus and the holy angels are having a party in Heaven–over YOU coming into the Royal Family! And the next step is to find a Holy Bible, and a church that really lives it. If you need prayer or guidance about any of these things, write us at Ministry@RiverRainCreative.com!

Victory At Every Step!

Who has roused up one [Cyrus] from the east, whom He calls in righteousness to His service and whom victory meets at every step?” (Isaiah 41:2, AMPC)

The steps of a [good] man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way [and He busies Himself with his every step]”. –Psalm 37:23, AMPC

We trust in Him with all our hearts and lean not to our own understanding. In all our ways we acknowledge Him, and He directs our paths, says Proverbs 3:5,6.

These are just a few of proofs from the unchanging, infallible, eternal Word of God that, as we do our best to follow our darling dynamite Daddy God, we are always at the right place and the right time! If we are not and got off track innocently (and we only see in part and know in part while on this earth), our Father God’s mercy is so great that He covers us and protects us from harm and gets us back on track. HE IS SO GOOD!

So, as I heard Dr. Chuck Swindoll say years ago (from what I remember), “There is no accident in the life of a child of God.”

Our Father through His Holy Spirit (the Spirit of Truth) and His angels are always watching over us, inspiring us to good works, and leading us in right paths.

The LORD always leads us to read and listen to and speak His Word, and if what is happening in our lives does not line up with the Word, it is NOT God, and it will NOT bring victory. God’s Plan and Word ALWAYS brings Victory! It may not happen today, but IT WILL HAPPEN!

Keep the faith. Do what you know to do. Honor God in every part of your life, and realize that, if you have Jesus Christ, YOU ALREADY HAVE THE VICTORY!

Share the Wealth!

James 1:21, TPT, So this is why we abandon everything morally impure and all forms of wicked conduct. Instead, with a sensitive spirit we absorb God’s Word, which has been implanted within our nature, for the  Word of Life has power to continually deliver us.”

Psalm 49:6-7, TPT, “They trust in their treasures and boast in their riches, yet not one of them, though rich as a king, could rescue his own brother from the guilt of his sins. Not one could give God the ransom price for the soul of another, let alone for himself.”

1 Corinthians 1:5 TPT, In him you have been made extravagantly rich in every way. You have been endowed with a wealth of inspired utterance and the riches that come from your intimate knowledge of him.”

You are extremely wealthy–you just need to open your eyes! And you need to share the wealth!!

River Rain Ministries is now collecting every Bible and book, CD, DVD, tract, and anything other item of such eternal wealth that you would like to sow to those ministers overseas who truly want and need them to feed themselves and those whom they are leading to Christ and discipling! We collect these, then distribute them to two other ministries (Mission Cry and Love Packages) who load them on to sea containers, where this wealth is distributed to Jesus-following ministries in other countries; up to 175 other nations who crave more of the living Word of God!

Those who need and want these either cannot afford them, or don’t have easy access to them, or both! We have such freedom and extremely low costs to enjoy the Word of God in the United States of America–thank the LORD!

It costs money to store and distribute these items, of course. But there is no obligation to give anything other than what the LORD leads you to give; the Bibles and other materials full of the Truth of Christ is THE valuable thing!

If you would like to share your wealth by giving such materials to those who give materials, please contact us at Tonja@RiverRainCreative.com or riverraincreative@gmail.com, and we will discuss details of acquiring these materials to send to those eager to receive them so they can grow in Christ!

Forgiven

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36, ESV

New American Standard Bible 
And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise. Galatians 3:29

“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,  that everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3;14-16, Berean Study Bible

The man driving the semi truck in front of us was sharing the good news, that he was “FORGIVEN”! The fish symbol Ichthys used by Christians throughout the world containing this one huge word says it all: If you have believed on Jesus Christ as the Savior of the world, and that He shed His blood to pay for the sins of every person, and received Him as your personal Savior and LORD, then you also are FORGIVEN–FREED. You don’t have to pay for your sins!

How can it be that simple? Don’t ask me. Just be glad that I’m not God. I am sure I would have made it much more complicated to be free and get to Heaven to live forever in Paradise with God!

But the LORD is good, and His mercy endures forever (Psalm 129:4). He created mankind, then, when man betrayed God and bowed to the devil, He sent Jesus to die and give His life to buy mankind back, forever (Galatians 3:13) .

The Gift of true Life is yours. Choose Christ today, and live! (John 10:10)

Son or Sin?

I John 5:1-5, states: “Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—[a]our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? And verses 11 and 12 from the Word of God state, “11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has [d]life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

Do you have the Son–Jesus Christ? If not, then you have sin, you are without God’s protection, and your spirit will go to hell forever when your body dies (Matt. 7:21)

God makes things simple: We either agree with Him and come into the Royal Family and enjoy His blessings and benefits–including amazing protection from evil–or we stay outside and try to do this complicated, pressure-filled life on our own. If we do not know the LORD Jesus as our Savior and become friends with His Son (Jesus), then God is not our Father, and we don’t have relationship with Him. We are on our own.

But thank God this earthly life is NOT all there is!

So there are two choices: God, or not God; Son, or sin.  Today, you choose–life, or death. The LORD Jesus Christ and the abundant life (John 10:10), where “the Good Life” truly does happen (and all the more as we learn God’s ways and follow them, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever! Psalm 118)–or doing life on your own, where things get harder and harder, and you wind up at the end of it all, going to literal hell (Luke 12).

But the LORD is ever ready to pardon, to forgive; that is why He sent Jesus! God is a good God. He is Love (I John 4:8). He made the way for all to know Him and have a wonderful life–then literal Heaven after the body dies on earth (Acts 26:18), with freedom from everything negative, the loving wonderful Presence of God with you always, interesting and productive things to do, and a beautiful, literal home all your own!

He says in John 14:1-3 (NKJV), “1 Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many [a]mansions; if it were not so, [b]I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

You can choose to remain as you are, in your sin, separated from God. But why would you do that? The God-life is amazing, and it just gets better. God is all good, and very kind and gracious and merciful! He is holy; His Standards are high, and no person can meet them, except to be covered by the Blood of Christ, which covers us when we receive Jesus (Rev. 12:11.

Jesus the LORD is returning to earth soon, to claim and receive and take to Heaven all of us who are His. Will you be going with us? If you think the earth-life is bad now, understand this: Without Christ and true Christians in the world, there will be no light. You must choose for yourself; no one can choose for you.

Even if you’re not sure this is real, don’t you want a better life than you have? Call to God and ask Him to help you find Him and know Him. Ask Him to prove to you that He and His good life are real. He will, for all who call upon the name of the LORD will be saved (Romans 10:13)!

JESUS Felt It!

Hebrews 13:8 (ESV) says, “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.” He never changes.

Praise Him! That being said, I believe in healing, for the LORD Jesus is alive today as much as ever. He healed on earth, and now lives in every Believer as the Holy Spirit, the Comforter Whom Jesus sent back to help us when He ascended into Heaven. He works His healing miracles through us who truly Believe and cooperate with Him in His multi-faceted ministry on earth.

A few years ago, I went up to our pastor, an apostle who operates in signs and wonders and healings, and received my healing for my back. He laid hands on me and I thought, Why didn’t I feel it? I had felt the healing power go into me on other occasions–like a warm pleasant electricity.

Then I immediately repented to the LORD for even thinking that. It didn’t matter–I was healed!

My Father Who knows all things–even every thought before we think it–graciously and quickly said, “You don’t have to feel it. JESUS felt it!”

When you consider Good Friday and our LORD’s Resurrection, remember, JESUS felt every lash, every slash, every sin, every burden, every pain–all for you. All for me. All for this world’s humanity.

He took the curse and paid the price so we could be free. His Kingdom is eternal, and not of this earth–He leads us to freedom, celebration, and to full restoration. He is the good King Who will soon return, and His mandate is Love!

If you are tired of this world’s pressured mess, there is something so much more: JESUS! He is the kindest, most patient, most loving, most thoughtful, most gracious, most generous Man and most faithful Friend there is-all God and all man–Who died and rose again to give YOU the life you heart has always wanted! (John 3:16)

If you want to have Him as your fearless Leader Who will never lead you wrong, just say this prayer out loud: “Dear Jesus, please forgive me of what I’ve done wrong. Thank You for dying on the cross for me to pay for all my sins. Thank You that You rose again to give me new life! I need You in my life to be my LORD and Savior and to teach me how to live to please you and enjoy the wonderful life You died to give me. I received You now and thank You. Amen!”

If you just said this prayer, an eternal spiritual transaction just took place: You are now a child of the King of kings, with a Blood Covenant that gives you many excellent and powerful rights that you did not have before! And you did NOT have to work for it–it’s a gift from God by faith (believing) through grace (the gift of God Who WANTS you to enjoy this new abundant life! John 10:10)! The next step is to ask God to direct you to the right Bible for you, and to the right Body of Believers (church) where you can continue to grow in the Truth and have friends who also follow Christ!

No Doubt!


20 No unbelief or distrust made him waver (doubtingly question) concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong and was empowered by faith as he gave praise and glory to God,
21 Fully satisfied and assured that God was able and mighty to keep His word and to do what He had promised. — Romans 4:20-21, AMPC

John 11:40  Jesus said to her, Did I not tell you and promise you that if you would believe and rely on Me, you would see the glory of God?

After powerful services at my church and online the past few days, during which my faith leaped and I know that I know that God is doing greater things this year than we’ve ever experienced before, doubt and unbelief and after-the-holidays heaviness has tried to creep in. I rebuke these things in Jesus’ name!

Our God is FAITHFUL! He can never lie. He IS the Truth and HE has been waiting more than all of us. It is HIS Time for Him to pour out HIS Glory–and we get to be part of it. HALLELUJAH!

Father, we bless You, and we thank You that You have chosen us to work with Jesus in these Last Days to complete Your work on earth, amen! What an honor and privilege! Help us to hear and obey Your loving Voice, and as we obey, we will be satisfied, prospered, and extremely effective in expanding Your Kingdom. Amen and amen!

God’s Special Touch When My Wife Flew to Heaven

(This was shared with me by Bro. Jess Nicola, our Guest Contributor for today. What a special touch indeed! He shared it with me and I asked him for permission to share it with on our site! God is truly THE COOLEST!! –Tonja)

Brother Jess says: “The LORD supernaturally arranged for the release of balloons at Barbara’s funeral. There was symbolism in every part of the balloons; even in the way the ‘wind’ took them up at the close of the service:

28 white balloons; 29 balloons (adding Jess’ pink one); 30 balloons (adding Harley’s yellow one).

The number 28 is the biblical number for “eternal life”. The number 29 is the biblical number for “departure”. The number 30 is the biblical number for “dedication”.

The color white means: the bride; purity; surrender; holiness; righteousness; light; joy; angels; saints; peace; triumph; victory; festivity; salvation.

The color pink means: pure heart of flesh; Messiah; glory; His children.

The color yellow means: celebration; joy; Shekina Glory; memorial.

The color blue (the ribbon on Shane’s balloon) means: Heaven, Holy Spirit, grace and mercy.

When the balloons were released, all but three flew up and away. The pink, yellow, and one white balloon hung up in the tree next to the graveside. At the end of the song, “Fly to Jesus,” the yellow then the pink released from the tree and flew up and away.

One white balloon remained nestled in the tree. When the graveside service was over and Bro. Orville said “Amen,” and the family began to hug…That one single white balloon amazingly weaved its way through the branches of the tree and soared slowly, straight up, remaining in sight for a long time as the family was visiting and saying their goodbyes.

It was like Barbara stayed until everything was done–and then, “Flew to Jesus.”

“Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the LORD in the air; and sho shall we ever be with the LORD.” I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Gone Forever!

Isaiah 26:14, (AMPC) says: “They [the former tyrant masters] are dead, they shall not live and reappear; they are powerless ghosts, they shall not rise and come back. Therefore You have visited and made an end of them and caused every memory of them [every trace of their supremacy] to perish.”

And that is what came out of my mouth today, when I was literally burning several pieces of paper–upon which was written many things that had hurt me (since childhood!), that the LORD had revealed to me about 2 a.m. a couple of mornings ago, along with, ” Thank You, LORD, these bad memories, these negative emotions, and all their consequences, are powerless ghosts–GONE FOREVER, AMEN!! In the Name of Jesus, I forgive all these people of all their sins, transgressions, and iniquities against me, and I ask You to forgive me of all I’ve done wrong–or not done that I should have!–because of the hurts caused by enemy through these people! I forgive them, find no fault in them, ask You to heal them of any way I’ve hurt them, and declare Your perfect will over their lives!”

This is how we overcome–by forgiving and praying for those who have hurt us. (satan can never be forgiven; I just mean we forgive those people he has used, who SEEM to be our enemies!)

Clayton and I have been telling the LORD we yield to His Spirit for revelation and cleansing. We want to be free of all contaminants and be vessels He can use for His Glory in these last of the Last Days!

2 Timothy 2:21 (AMPC), “So whoever cleanses himself [from what is ignoble and unclean, who separates himself from contact with contaminating and corrupting influences] will [then himself] be a vessel set apart and useful for honorable and noble purposes, conscrated and  profitable to the Master, fit and ready for any good work.”

(This is a verse the LORD showed me as a 20-something, when I knew I had been born again, but that there was very much wrong in my life! I didn’t know how to fix all of it, but I knew that the Word of God was the answer! So the LORD has helped me persist in reading and meditating and living the Word, and The Word IS my life!)

I had been surprised at how many things I’d written (after hearing a female minister on a local Christian radio station say to write down all the things that make one angry, then act out the anger towards the people who hurt you; i.e., write a letter to them that you NEVER mail; or put their photo on something and throw darts or hit it with a bat……seems a bit radical, and the host was (to me) obviously uncomfortable with her advice.)

But she did, if I remember right, exhort us that we must forgive and that we’re NOT fighting people. The enemy just makes it seem like it.

But, “…we are not wrestling with flesh and blood [contending only with physical opponents], but against the despotisms, against the powers, against [the master spirits who are] the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spirit forces of wickedness in the heavenly (supernatural) sphere. 13 Therefore put on God’s complete armor, that you may be able to resist and stand your ground on the evil day [of danger], and, having done all [the crisis demands], to stand [firmly in your place]. (Eph. 6:12-13, AMPC)

Far greater is JESUS the HEALER in us; El Shaddai, the LORD our Comforter; Dr. Rapha, the LORD Who heals us; Jehovah Nissi, the LORD our Victorious Miracle Banner Who forever fights for us; Jehovah Mekadisshem, the LORD our Sancitifer (Cleanser; Purifier); Jehovah Shalom, the LORD our Peace and Restoration; and Jehovah Tskidenu, the LORD our Righteousness! And these are just some of the many names of our one true God Who is ALL we need, every time, every season of our lives, amen!

So, although I had thought there might be more, that I was not finished with this horrid list, the LORD prompted me to BE DONE WITH IT; to MOVE ON; to GO FORWARD!

So, I joyfully took it to the back porch, held it up to Him (my Father Who loves me forever, beyond what I can fully comprehend!), and proclaimed that these things and their effects are GONE FOREVER! Then I tore the papers to shreds, and took the (red!) lighter that we keep to burn brush, and set them on fire!

Honestly, these shreds of the past were NOT burning fast enough, so I set them on fire in more places to speed up the process! I rejoiced as the past literally went up in smoke! I sang of my freedom and worshiped the LORD. Then, I stomped the ashes to nothing, and so is my past–nothing!

“I’ve got the Revelation; I am a New Creation!” rose up in me; a Spirit Song the LORD gave me years ago. Hallelujah!

I heard a pastor say once that everyone needs to be healed in some way. If something has continued to bother you during the years, there is a hurt there, an offense, that will NOT go away until you fully deal with it and receive your healing and restoration!

Even if you think you have nothing holding you back; no jags; no offenses; no place where the enemy could possibly mess you up, it won’t hurt you to say this prayer. Or, at least pray it for someone you know that could use some help. (Your words are more powerful than you may know!):

Dear Father God, I know You are a Gentleman and You only reveal things to us that are hurtful in ourselves, and that others have done to us, to help us be free of them and their bad consequences. I ask You to show me and (name of the person(s)) any place the enemy has hurt us (for we know we don’t fight people, and almost all the time, when we get hurt, the people are not trying to hurt us!), and help me and them to be free and healed and restored, so we can fully receive all the wonderful things You have for us, LORD! I know You hear me, for I pray in Your will as I John 5:14-15 says, and I receive Your answers! Also, please give us grace and wisdom and encouragement as You reveal yucky stuff to us that needs to be changed. We know You love us and only have our best in mind! In Jesus’ Name, amen!

How to Experience God

10 The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it [a]overflows). John 10:10 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)

We are created to experience God and live the abundant life (“Zoe” in Greek) that Jesus died for us to have!

Here are a few ways that you can truly experience God:

  1. Thankfulness. You have much to be grateful for, and every good thing comes from our good God!
  2. Prayer. What a privilege and honor to be able to communicate in a personal relationship with the Creator and Sustainer of Heaven and earth, through Jesus Christ, His Son! Prayer is basically talking to God. There are many ways to pray, for various purposes. God hears our prayers when we pray in His Will (I John 5:14-15).
  3. Praise and Worship. God is worthy of all honor and glory. And, praise and worship is not nearly as much for Him (He already has all the elders and saints in Heaven, and all the holy angels, worshiping Him forever!), as it is for us–to make us thankful and aware of His Presence, and because when we magnify Him, it gives Him greater access to work wonders among and for us! Praise and worship can involve singing; playing insTruments; raising hands; dancing to His Glory; rehearsing His goodness to you; reading His Word out loud; serving in the Church and community and wherever you are to His Honor; giving finances and prayers and encouragements and possessions…
  4. Reading His Word. The Bible is God’s Library of Love Letters to you! It spells out His will, and is the Answer for successful life. When you read it out loud, it is even more powerful!
  5. Listening. First of all, we should stop our business and rest and listen to God. More than one pastor has stated that “God is always speaking, but we need to listen.” We also show respect when we take time to truly listen to others; God usually uses other people to minister to us!
  6. Enjoying God’s Creation. Even one tiny ant, one tiny leaf, has so much amazing creative thought and design and power in it! Elohim (the Hebrew name for God the Creator) is infinitely wise and the Master Creator, Artist, and Engineer of all things good! Can you imagine what the world must have been like BEFORE the Fall?!). Go sit in the gentle sunshine in a peaceful park or other place and just rest. The LORD often speaks through nature, and truly, as Psalm 19:1 states, “The Heavens declare the Glory of God and the earth shows forth His handiwork!”

Of course, you must be born again by faith in what Jesus did on the cross (John 3:16) to be able to be part of this Royal Family and partake of this sublime life! If you’re not, just tell the LORD JESUS out loud to forgive you for your sins, come into your heart and cleanse and save you, and be your LORD and Savior. HE WILL! All who call upon the Name of the LORD will be saved! (Romans 10:9-13)

Then go tell someone whom you can trust to rejoice with you. Next, ask Him to lead you to a good Bible-believing Church, and to the right Bible for you, if you don’t have one. He will!

If you would like more information on any of these things, or need prayer, or want to have us rejoice with you at your salvation, contact us at ministry@RiverRainCreative.com!

FORWARD!

5 Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.–Proverbs 3:5-6 AMPC

This has become a theme verse for my husband and myself. So many times, when we were starting to wilt a bit in our faith, the LORD would send a minister or a radio announcement or a magazine article (Note: Of course we were watching, listening to, and reading things that glorify God, for this wisdom does NOT come from the world!) or even a person across our paths to remind us of this verse!

So, He was encouraging us to KEEP THE FAITH, to KEEP ON BELIEVING, KEEP ON WALKING WITH HIM; KEEP ON DOING RIGHT!

He is a Rewarder of us who seek and follow Him, and when we obey and serve, we spend our days in prosperity (which includes finances but is much more than that!) and our years in pleasures, amen (Job 36:11)!

You may not believe me, but once, the LORD spoke to me, and said, “….Full speed ahead!” and another time, when I was just tired and weary physically and emotionally (and spiritually?), He said to my spirit, “Keep moving forward.”

Now is NOT the time to slow down. NOW is the time to keep doing all the right things you’ve been doing, and ask for His wisdom to do more. He can help us do more.

I don’t mean wear yourself out trying to perform. For you see, when GOD is the Author of what we do, there is a Grace and an ease and a sweetness to it, not to mention deep satisfaction, amen!

Serving our Father God, the Father of the LORD Jesus Christ, is SOOOO worth it!

Let’s pray:

Father, I love You and I thank You for Your wisdom in Your Word and through other avenues that You bring across my path. Thank You that You keep teaching me Your ways to help me become more and more obedient–and thus more and more blessed with the Abundant Life (Zoe, John 10:10) that Jesus the Christ died to give us! Forgive me for allowing my faith to weaken. LORD, keep drawing me and keep me strong in You, and thank You for it! In Your name, amen!

Have Your Way, LORD

2Many plans are in a man’s mind, but it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand.” Proverbs 19:21 (AMPC)

The LORD always knows what needs to happen, and when we are yielded to Him, He orchestrates our lives into something more wonderful than we could imagine!

Take today, for instance. I partnered with a dear sister and her husband to present workshops on Your Holy Health (Get your FREE copy of my book by the same name by clicking here). It was in a public facility, and although they are very supportive of nonprofits, and although (of course) the base of my teaching would be the Word of God and what He created in nature to help us, I had determined to “stay on task” and focus mainly on how to be healthier by using natural, organic, and Non-GMO products, that was not really God’s Plan.

Instead, His Plan was for us to pray for people and otherwise encourage and minister to them–while teaching them many things about health. Hallelujah! We go with His Plan!

We Are Confident!

We are certain, undaunted, confident, because He has overcome the world and deprived it of its power to harm us! John 16:33

We are also confident of this very thing: That He Who began a good work in us will see it through to completion until the day of Jesus Christ! Philippians 1:6.

Hallelujah!

We may not FEEL confident. I have not FELT very confident the past few weeks, but I know my God is FAITHFUL, and faith is NOT a feeling!

Praise Him!

So let’s pray: Father, our confidence–meaning our trust–is in YOU Who never fails. You cannot be unfaithful; You are forever faithful–You give us every breath, and we praise and thank and trust in You, forever! Please strengthen us with might in our inner selves today; give us grace to release all our worries and fears to You, for You love us, died and rose again for us, and ever live to pray for us and work all thing together for our best and Your glory, amen! THANK YOU!

Acknowledge vs. Submit

I was listening to “Rivers in the Desert” Scriptures on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imJZlhOsPKM&t=9031s (WOW at the magnificent waterfall!!) today, and although I have listened to them many times the past few months, I heard “submit” instead of “acknowledge.”

The verse (Proverbs 3:5 and 6) says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.”

I had taken this to mean that, when we recognize (that’s what “acknowledge” meant to me) the LORD and thank Him for having directed us, and for directing us in the future (We can totally trust Him!) , then that opens the way for Him to direct our paths–because we are thankful and trust Him and want His direction.

All of this is good. However, when I heart the word “submit” I had a different thought, for to me, “submit” means bowing the knee; giving up my plans for His; doing things His way; and also, “putting it all on the altar” and being willing to give up whatever He wants to change–even if it is never restored.

So, today, Proverbs 3:5 and 6 took on even deeper meaning, and that’s the way the Word works–deepening Revelation, as we continue to sow His living Word into ourselves! So, with His help, I am truly submitting to Him in all my ways, and then, because I am willing to do whatever and change whatever and agree with Him, He is able to help me understand the straight Path for my life. Hallelujah!

He is Joyfully Faithful!

Psalm 6:4, TPT, “Yahweh, return to me and deliver my life because I know your faithful love is toward me.”

Psalm 12:6. TPT, “For every word God speaks is sure and every promise pure. His truth is tested, found to be flawless, and ever faithful. It’s as pure as silver refined seven times in a crucible of clay. “

Psalm 22:5, TPT, “Every time they cried out to you in their despair, you were faithful to deliver them; you didn’t disappoint them.”

Psalm 25:8, “When people turn to you, they discover how easy you are to please—so faithful and true! Joyfully you teach them the proper path, even when they go astray.” ( I really love this; He JOYFULLY teaches us the proper path, even when we’ve had to repent for going our own stubborn way. Ask me how I know!)

Psalm 25:10, “All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful for those who follow the ways of his covenant.”

Psalm 25:21, TPT, “Your perfection and faithfulness are my bodyguards, for you are my hope and I trust in you as my only protection.”

We don’t like to wait, especially in America. But God is faithful, and always working. We bless the LORD forever! He never slumbers nor sleeps, nor grows tired nor weary. What the enemy meant for evil, He is
always working \ together for our good (Genesis 50:20)! HALLELUJAH!

Psalm 6:4Yahweh, return to me and deliver my life because I know your faithful love is toward me.In Context | Full Chapter | Other TranslationsPsalm 12:6For every word God speaks is sure and every promise pure. His truth is tested, found to be flawless, and ever faithful. It’s as pure as silver refined seven times in a crucible of clay.

Trust Him Totally

Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go.[a]  (Proverbs 3:6 Or “He will cut a straight path before you.”)

The Lord is with us always–even when we don’t feel like it! Thank goodness we don’t go by feelings!

This is a weird and sometimes trying time we’re in, as the LORD is shifting situations and people; rearranging us His own and bringing us into the most glorious Time ever–and what an honor that we get to be on planet earth in His will, partnering with the Most High to accomplish His Kingdom purpose!

Say this prayer to draw closer to the LORD and receive His help:

LORD, we ask You in Your gracious love and mercy to help us truly trust in You totally; to rest and rejoice, and know that, really, we are nothing without You and we can do nothing without You–yet we are Your precious children that You chose before the world was made to live now and love you and work with You. Hallelujah! We receive Your help! We love You, Father God!

Forget the Feelings!

“7 for we live by faith, not by what we see with our eyes.” TPT, 2 Cor. 5:7

What we see usually causes us to feel. This can be good or bad; we only want to choose those things that please the LORD, so what we see will cause us to have feelings that glorify Him. (2) to understand that believing in God (faith) does not depend on what we do or do not see, nor on what we do or don’t feel.

Years ago, I went up and received instant healing for my arm that had been strained. I marveled at the miracle as I walked back to my seat. I knew my arm had been healed, but wondered in my mind why I hadn’t felt it–like I had before when I’d received an instant physical healing.

The Holy Spirit, Who knows all things–including every thought we’ll ever have, every word on our tongues before we speak it–said immediately inside me, and emphatically–as if I should have already known this–“You don’t have to feel it. JESUS felt it!”

Wow, forgive me, LORD!

Pray this: LORD, please help me remember that Jesus felt everything I’d ever suffer–spiritually, emotionally, mentally, physically, socially, even financially–and that because He suffered, I don’t have to. Thank You! Also please help me remember that faith is not a feeling, and I walk by faith and not by sight, meaning, I don’t have to feel like my faith is working to know it is. I go by what Your Word says!

Rain On Me

Although some people don’t like rain, rain the in Bible often represents the refreshing of God, the sending of His Spirit to help His people.   (That is one reason we have named our business River Rain Creative Arts, and our ministry River Rain Ministries. Also, when my husband and I were first dating–definitely divinely brought together!–it rained our first four times!)

Psalm 68:9 (TPT), You, O God, sent the reviving rain upon your weary inheritance, showers of blessing to refresh it.”

Psalm 72:6 (TPT), “Your favor will fall like rain upon our surrendered lives, like showers reviving the earth.”

23 Be glad then, you children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord, your God; for He gives you the former or early rain in just measure and in righteousness, and He causes to come down for you the rain, the former rain and the latter rain, as before. 24 And the [threshing] floors shall be full of grain and the vats shall overflow with juice [of the grape] and oil. 25 And I will restore or replace for you the years that the locust has eaten—the hopping locust, the stripping locust, and the crawling locust, My great army which I sent among you. 26 And you shall eat in plenty and be satisfied and praise the name of the Lord, your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you. And My people shall never be put to shame.”27 And you shall know, understand, and realize that I am in the midst of Israel and that I the Lord am your God and there is none else. My people shall never be put to shame.

The past couple of days have been so refreshing to me–the weather is cool, as the gentle rain has fallen day and night. This has greatly cut down on the traffic and other noise in our neighborhood, and it’s been excellent to open the doors and windows and let the breeze blow through the screens. It has been very peaceful, and conducive to creativity!

This has been a long, hard, dry season for many Believers–sometimes not even our faults. It has been a time of testing, but the LORD is good and is using all things to strengthen and prepare us for the amazing RAIN of His Presence and Glory that is coming upon the earth! So draw near to Him and let His Word and ways RAIN on you, for the times of refreshing have come!

Now THAT’s the right kind of rain! And you can pray for the refreshing of the LORD right now: “LORD, thank You for Your presence, even when I don’t feel it. Please rain on me right now Your refreshing Grace, Your Holy Spirit. I receive it and thank You for it. In Jesus’ name, amen!”

He Has Made Us Glad!

Psalm 126:3 is one of my favorite verses! “The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy!”

It is such a favorite that it became the theme verse for our marriage ceremony (14 years ago, October 1!).

If you’re having a challenge being positive, start saying this verse out loud. Better yet, sing it! I do that often–sometimes as I’m overcoming, sometimes for sheer joy and thankfulness.

Truly THE LORD IS GOOD! Every good thing that has ever happened in our lives is from Him, our darling, faithful, loving, kind, merciful, generous, beautiful Daddy God! Amen!

He Will Help You

“In keeping with [the oath’s greater strength and force], Jesus has become the Guarantee of a better (stronger) agreement [a more excellent and more advantageous covenant]. 23 [Again, the former successive line of priests] was made up of many, because they were each prevented by death from continuing [perpetually in office]; 24 But He holds His priesthood unchangeably, because He lives on forever. 25 Therefore He is able also to save to the uttermost (completely, perfectly, finally, and for all time and eternity) those who come to God through Him, since He is always living to make petition to God and intercede with Him and intervene for them.”–Hebrews 7:22-25 (AMPC)

The LORD is so faithful! Thank Him that Jesus is alive and is constantly praying for us, that He sent the Holy Spirit to be with us always, and that He is ever aware of every moment of our lives–and sculpting them to do what’s best for us and bring glory to the LORD!

I’ve recently come through an emotionally tough season, and even though God is so good and faithful and there was really has not been any of what most people would call “disasters,” I’ve learned to rest more in the LORD and realize just how much care/worry/fear/doubt/unbelief I’ve had. YUCK!

So, praise the LORD, knowing something’s not right in my soul, I can ask Him to help me. I can ask Him to receive me and show me what I need to confess and be rid of. He will show me, then I can go to my High Priest, the LORD Jesus Christ, and ask His forgiveness for every word that I have spoken not in alignment with His Word–even every thought of my heart that has not been right–and receive His forgiveness and cleansing. There is nothing like it!

Then I can ask Him to help me find Scriptures and otherwise speak words in alignment with what He wants for my life–which is always the very, very best! He ever lives to help us–that is why He was born, crucified, rose again, and lives forever!

Ask Him today to help you. He delights in you, and helping you succeed–even if it’s different than you think it might be. Relax and trust His faithful, everlasting love!

Learn to be Wise!

Never stop learning. Actually, every day that you live, you may even accidentally learn something, like how to take a different route to work, how to be more efficient at something, or whatever. But when you learn intentionally, that’s when you enjoy the most and are the most engaged.

When you engage in learning more about the LORD, that’s the ultimate life experience! He is always with us and never-ending, endlessly creative, and His wisdom is beyond our comprehension. Yet He loves us so much, and delights to teach us His ways!

If you don’t know where to start, ask Him to help you learn that too. He will. He’s THE Master Teacher!

Learn to Play the Piano With P.O.W.E.R.!

NOW is the time! If you’ve wanted to learn to play the piano, especially for God’s Glory, then what are you waiting for? Starting early this month, Tonja will be recording and uploading many videos for you to access FREE to learn to play the piano and have fun doing it!

You will be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is for you to learn and play!

And very soon, you’ll be able to access Tonja’s LIVE online coaching, for piano and many other subjects, in the P.O.W.E.R. (Purposeful Operations With Eternal Rewards) classes!

Check out more info here:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCW31xsRh0biHOBdWPxkewNQ

Believe Anyway!

AMPC, I Cor. 10:13: For no temptation (no trial regarded as enticing to sin), [no matter how it comes or where it leads] has overtaken you and laid hold on you that is not common to man [that is, no temptation or trial has come to you that is beyond human resistance and that is not adjusted and adapted and belonging to human experience, and such as man can bear]. But God is faithful [to His Word and to His compassionate nature], and He [can be trusted] not to let you be tempted and tried and assayed beyond your ablity and strength of resistance and power to endure, but with the temptation He will [always] also provide the way out (the means of escape to a landing place), that you may be capable and strong and powerful to bear up under it patiently. “

Yes, these are strange times, if you’re aware at all of what’s going on in the Spirit! And we who know our God (and believe Him anyway) are strong and do exploits! Yes, no matter what happens, we choose to believe anyway!

Only by HIS power and strength and wisdom and grace, though! Sometimes we think WE are strong and can do anything. We KNOW GOD is for us, and that NONE can be against us. We believe anyway–we know our faithful God has ALWAYS got our backs!

But that’s not the way we have always felt, is it? Thank the LORD we cannot trust feelings; they lie! But the Word of God is true, infallible, and unchanging, The Word of God, our Holy Bible, IS our Rock. It is the written Covenant of Jehovah, that He made by blood with the LORD Jesus Christ, for us–all for us; mankind; humans created in His image to be in His image, to be His loving forever family!

I have, for various reasons (most of them spiritual or emotional) felt physically and emotionally weak lately. That’s because my dear Daddy God–Whom I have asked to help me be cleansed and whole and free of anything that had still been holding me back from the fullness of all He’s called me to do and be–has been answering my prayers. But although I’ve felt very weak–weaker than in a long time–I have chosen to believe anyway!

My God is faithful, forever! He will not and He cannot be unfaithful! My circumstances and feelings have many times NOT agreed with that, but I have chosen (with His help! He is the Author and Finisher of our faith!–to believe anyway!

He is so very loving and merciful, generous and kind–and He knows what we can handle. The verse in I Corinthians 10:13 that talks about Him not giving us more than we know we can bear now has a deeper meaning for me: Besides tests and trials that we encounter because we live in this sin-sick world, it means (for me, at least!) that He will not reveal to us the ugly truth about ourselves in such depths that it would destroy us! He IS the Spirit of Truth, but He is also our Daddy God Who loves us without fail, no matter how great our sin!

So no matter what you’ve done (If you know you’ve sinned, repent–ask God to forgive you. He WILL!) or how you feel; no matter what even those closest to you say (meaning if it goes against what the Word of God says), choose to believe anyway!

If you think you can’t believe, ask Him to help you, and believe anyway that He will! (HE WILL!)

Romans 5:9 (TPT), And there is still much more to say of his unfailing love for us! For through the blood of Jesus we have heard the powerful declaration, “You are now righteous in my sight.” And because of the sacrifice of Jesus, you will never experience the wrath of God.”

THAT my dear reader, is what “Agape”–UNconditional Love!–is!!

And the world–even Christians!–has no clue about it, unless they’ve encountered Christ! So now that YOU know the truth and believe, go and help others. Help them to believe anyway!

Kids, Get Your Swords Out!

National “Bring Your Bible to School Day” is October 3! Kids have the freedom to bring their swords–their Holy Bibles, the living Word of God!–to their public schools, and talk about them! Now is the time for your child(ren) to make a statement and uphold the freedoms and values upon which the United States of America was founded! For more information, click on the Focus on the Family link below!

https://focusonthefamily.webconnex.com/co-oct3-bybts2019?refcd=779601&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIm57N98rv5AIV0MDACh1EvQmyEAAYASAAEgLZyvD_BwE

Rest and Rejoice!

1 John 5:1,(AMPC), Everyone who believes (adheres to, trusts, and relies on the fact) that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah) is a born-again child of God; and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of Him (His offspring),”

2 John 1:3 (AMPC), Grace (spiritual blessing), mercy, and [soul] peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ (the Messiah), the Father’s Son, in all sincerity (truth) and love. “

“The LORD is faithful to His Promises,” the Holy Spirit whispered to me one day, when I was tempted to worry about finances and situations.

YES, HE IS! Or none of us would be here! He gives us every breath, every GOOD thing–and our lives are FULL of good things!!!

He helps and blesses and protects the just and the unjust–those born again and those not–and it is His faithfulness and mercy that keeps us all alive and heals and delivers and guides and provides–He is our good, good God and the good, good Father to all who believe in Christ Jesus His Son (John 3:16)!

If you don’t know the LORD Jesus Christ–what are you waiting for? He is the BEST Fried you will ever have, and He IS the all-powerful One Who can do everything you need Him to! He is so very kind and loving and generous and faithful! He wants to help you have the very best life you possibly can–and that is ONLY possible with Jesus Christ the Savior and LORD!

He is Love. He is Peace. He is Health. He is Direction. He is Protection. He is Restoration. He is Victory. He is the living Word of God. He IS Rest and rejoicing! He is all you really want and need, for in Him is true freedom and abundant Life! (John 10:10)

And He makes it so easy to become His Forever Friend–just ask Him right now to forgive you of your wrongs and save you from evil and come into your heart and be your Life Guide and King! He will, and you will never be the same!

In Him We Live

 “It is through him that we live and function and have our identity; just as your own poets have said, ‘Our lineage comes from him.” (Acts 17:28, TPT)

Revelation 4:8, The Passion Translation, Revelation 4:8, Each of the four living creatures had six wings, full of eyes all around and under their wings. They worshiped without ceasing, day and night, singing, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God, the Almighty! The Was, the Is, and the Coming!”

As I am learning, there is nothing sweeter, more sublime, than to experience the phenomenal living Christ! I agree with Benny Hinn and others that the Christian life is getting to know the LORD Jesus more–
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6tn590WaKDc)–that the closer we get to the LORD, the more we want just Jesus!

If you don’t know Him, or want to draw closer, just call out to Him. He will help you desire to know Him better, and the more you get of Him, the more you will want.

Unchanging God

Malachi 6 and 7, Berean Study Bible says, Because I, the LORD, do not change, you descendants of Jacob have not been destroyed. 7 Yet from the days of your fathers, you have turned away from My statutes and have not kept them. Return to Me, and I will return to you,” says the LORD of Hosts. “But you ask, ‘How can we return?’…

“It’s a new season,” we hear every few months. Or, “Change is in the air.” Sometimes we’re uncomfortable with that, especially if we don’t know what to expect. But when we know God–that He is faithful, even when we are not; that He gives us every breath and every good thing; that Jesus died and rose again to give us amazing Zoe life (John 3:16, John 10:10); that He is monitoring every moment of our lives and working through His Spirit and His angels to bring about the very best for our lives, because He loves us–then we rest. We rejoice. We release our child-like faith and trust in our Darling Daddy God, and expect His best!

For He never changes. Praise Him, or we–in our weak, carnal human flesh–would all be destroyed by His Glory, His truly awesome Power, the very Essence of Him, the Divine!

God is good, and all good, forever. That will never change! His plans for us are good and all good, forever (Jer. 29:11). Blessed be the LORD, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever! (I Chron. 16:34).