Deciding To Rest

Okay, you made the decision to rest. The phone will ring, children will scream, pots will boil over. You get it! The enemy does not want you to rest! And he will try to discourage any belief in Jesus for any reason, whatever you have prayed for. And if distraction works, well that great, he can send in destruction to defeat you.

Your rest has been distracted and destroyed. Jesus is our rest and we have to go to Him. It is a decision. You do have to decide what and you may have to implement a few new rules and be aware of the those tactics, so you can guard your heart and mind, and to rest.

We are coming to a close on our study but we have to keep our minds on Jesus and rest. On His grace and His peace. And the greatest of all His love.

Let me remind you that there is also a deeper rest called sanctuary. It is like a refuge from being hunted. It is true we have been stalked by an adversary, he would like nothing more that to make you just give in, give up, lose hope. Rest is key to remaining a strong woman of faith.

It makes no difference your age, God is not a respecter of persons. He cannot lie. The devil doesn’t care how old you are either or young he will go after you if you have a testimony, a ministry or even a calling as a parent, just because you are a believer. It would be his intention to stop your miracles, your healing, and your testimony.

Young people make the mistake of thinking they are invincible or can handle it, I have hear the foolish phrase, ” I sleep when I am dead. ” That is a dead phrase, Jesus says you will give an account of inoperable words. Phrases like that have no place in a believer’s vocabulary. You may regret it.

I want you to rest, if you are young mother, middle aged or older, rest. It is a very big deal to rest. It is important to rest. Jesus would not have mentioned it. God would not been angry for His offer to be refused. So let’s make a decision to rest. Today and everyday.

Let’s decide to rest and to call healing, peace and good things into our lives. And let’s be ready to stop those distractions and the destructive behaviors that would befall us. And if you rest or decide to or have found a way to, a nap, a walk, deep breathing, or meditating on His words, leave me a comment, let me know how you are doing.

 

Having Trouble Resting?

I know this is a funny picture, but it isn’t funny if it is you or me or anyone really. Too many women are too stressed. And I want you to be blessed, too blessed to be stressed and how do we get there? Rest! We all know the ” Are we there yet? ” and get tired of hearing it.

Well, are we there yet, in His rest? No, often we are not. And rest does not always mean just sleep. So, what keeps you from resting? People? It is like you are on their radar and when you’re resting and not just asleep. Noise! Let’s TALK LOUDER, turn up the volume, some ridiculous distraction, while you read or study, something happens and you can’t go for a quiet walk, or listen to music.

I have tried setting boundaries. People will ignore them, children will, grownups will. Christians will. You have to learn from yourself and the Holy Spirit how for you to rest the best way. For me, sometimes, it is changing for one thing to another, tired of laundry? Clean the fridge. Studying to write a post or a series of them, stop and go to Pinterest, or do a puzzle.

Writing is a great stress release, but eight hours over a computer, isn’t happening. Neither television or social media. It is too much, too distracting. It will divert your attention to other things besides His peace and His love, His healing power if that is what you need.

Fibromyalgia is a common ailment among women, the bladder problems, even migraines, so many things can keep you awake. God wants you to rest, all ailments are not necessarily caused by worry, fear or stress, but they have a major role in both mental and physical health.

I’m not telling you not to go to the doctor or to seek help. But let’s face it, they can only do so much. They can’t be with you every minute but the Lord can. He knows all about you, what you don’t even tell the doctor. He knows if He has forgiven you or if you have never asked Him for the gift of salvation. You can talk to Him and confide in Him.

We have a lot of distractions that lead to destructive behaviors. We do not want to self destruct. Don’t let your relationship with God be what is keeping you stressed or awake, what is keeping you from receiving His rest or His peace. God wants you to have it.

He was angry when the Israelites refused, and withdrew the offer. Jesus offered rest as well, don’t you think it hurts Him to be refused? We should respect Him and just rest with Him. It is a conscious decision, it will have to be a firm one. It could very well face attack, the enemy of your soul does not want you to rest. It will empower you.

I can tell you he hates women, but we scare him too, because when we are submitted to a loving Lord and in line with Hs plans for our lives, he has had it. Jesus defeated him so we could. He overcame the world so we could. The world will say rush, work and even hustle.

But God says rest. My presence will go with you and I will give you rest. Exodus 33:14

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Returning To His Rest

Here is our verse, Return to your rest, my soul, for the LORD has been good to you. Psalm 116:7. One translation says  to rest again. Great right? You can get back there if you have wandered away. The Israelites refused God’s rest and I think a lot of have accepted the rest Jesus offered us and have just let it slip away as in the sower sowing the Word parable.

There are so many snares to trap us, but He will deliver us from them all, especially, if we learn to remain in His rest. I like the version that says He has dealt bountifully with us. I know He has me. I have overcome so much more than ever I expected to face, only with His grace and rest and finally understanding what His peace and receiving it daily as His gift to our heart can do. Speaking His peace is very helpful, to others and our soul, we are returning to rest and shalom.

Because I thought it was such a powerful word for us, a really, right now and relevant one, here again is our verse and the one before and after, such a beautiful Psalm, here is verses 6,7, and 8.

The LORD preserves the simple hearted; I was helpless, and He saved me. Return to your rest, O my soul, for the LORD has been good to you. For You have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.…

Simple hearted, I may have to include that in another post for February.  So many people believe Christians to be simple minded, but simple hearted is a better description. The old hymn says we often forfeit peace and bear needless pain because we do not carry everything to God in prayer. If that isn’t simple what is? Just leave it and rest in the knowledge that He is control so we don’t have to panic.

Return to His rest if you have left it. Remain in it and don’t complicate your heart with fear and worry, or let it grow calloused and hard, simply rest. Love should not be so very difficult. His love for us isn’t. Look at the price He paid to redeem us, He bought us with His own body and blood on a cross, we are His as believers.

If you have walked away, return to rest. I used to go to a small church, every now and then they would have people re-dedicating their lives to Christ. No wonder I was always so self conscious, always repenting, watching every little thing I did or said, and feeling so guilty, that was not rest. Jesus gave us grace and truth, and we are to grow and walk in it.

If we are so focused on our walk and our shortcomings we are not resting in Him and giving Him the glory. Jesus is our focus and His beauty and love never fails. We will be much better Christians if we look at Him and not us or even others. We will not always be striving for what He gave us if we rest in His grace, peace and love.

Surely, we do get off track at times, but if we have truly believed we will not have the desire for things that are sinful, and He will deliver us and forgive us, we just have to keep a repentant heart and not be stumbling as the Psalm says. He will keep us on track and another beautiful truth is like the rocks in the picture above, He is our refuge and fortress, from Psalm 91. Why not rest in Psalms?

And here’s another one for you in closing as I again invite you to His rest, and if you don’t know Jesus, look to Matthew 11:28-30, He says come and rest, your heart can believe and rest simply and safely with Him.

…..from the end of the earth I call to you when my heart is faint. Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, Psalm 61:2 Some versions say overwhelmed that’s a good description or me when I couldn’t rest.

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Healing Rest

Healing rest, yes, there is a place of rest not to be refused and it does bring healing. It is not just sleep for the beloved though that is wonderful, but state of mind and heart that can trust the Father to answer prayer and keep His promises because of our covenant of peace through His Son Jesus.

In case you are curious, I looked at the lady’s T shirt carefully and it says, ” Don’t look back, you’re not going that way. ” Jesus said the same thing. Remember Lot’s wife. Looking back only leads to destructive behavior, it dredges up old wounds and scars on our hearts, we just repeat patterns and cycles of behavior, rehash the past. I am guilty, even in the pretense of trying to explain something or say I don’t want to make the same mistake.

I have found myself consciously having to say that I still love someone and know I forgiven them, for something purposeful or inadvertent. Sins against us can be committed or of omission, I think mine was more the latter. I knew the Word and followed it but there were still things I omitted, like being offended.

I was offended quite often as to what I believed and even personal comments. Some were out of ignorance and others deliberately hurtful and cruel. Not being offended takes maturity and grace. I was once told I treated people better than they did me, I really hadn’t noticed, I was just trying to follow Jesus. He was not even offended when the disciples asked didn’t He care if they perished in a storm, but admonished their little faith, it was short lived.

There are sins against the body and they are because we are the temple of His Spirit. Yes, promiscuity and drugs, are factors but I know my problem is was overdoing everything. I was always running on empty, draining the very dunamis or power of God out of me. Love kept me going and it was all that did many times, it is as powerful though, His love, and a place of healing rest.

Let’s meditate on and appreciate some healing verses today, and it is my prayer we find healing rest, Isaiah 53 says it all.

But He was pierced for our transgressions;
He was crushed for our iniquities;
upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with His wounds we are healed. Isaiah 53:5

I am the Lord who heals you. Exodus 15:26

I have heard your prayer and seen your tears and I will  heal you. 2 Kings 20:5

Lord, my God, I called to you for help and you healed me. Psalm 30:2

Return to your rest my soul, for the Lord has been good to you. Psalm 116:7

I will take up the cup of saving health and invoke the name of the Lord. Psalm 116:13

Heal me, LORD, and I will be healed; save me and I will be saved, for you are the one I praise. Jeremiah 17:14

I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security. Jeremiah 33:16

The centurion answered, “Lord, I am not worthy to have You come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. Matthew 8:8

Take heart daughter, your faith has made you well. Matthew 9:22

But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength. 2 Timothy 4:17

And remember the greater one is in us 1 John 4:4, He can and will heal, when we go do as the Psalm says return to rest for he has been good to us, I know He has me.

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Relaxing Rest

I love to rest and relax, and I really had to learn how to find the rest of faith from Hebrews 4 and the rest Jesus offers. I dreamed of walks on the beach but my life was far from that so much of the time, then enemy of my soul was at work trying to steal the rest Jesus was giving me, but now I know.

Rest is like a gentle breeze over your face and it will make you close your eyes in a moment of peace even a silent prayer of thankfulness, when He fills your heart with His rest an His peace. It is is worth the effort, getting some preparations made to give you that quiet time.

Sometimes, I make muffins or fruit salads, bag snack bags of grapes., it cuts down on cooking time. I spend time at night slicing vegetables, anything that helps save time, so I can have my quiet time and prayer time. When He offers me rest I want it, do not want to refuse the rest or favor of God.

When the God of peace offered the religious Jews commandments, even though He wanted to be God, they broke them. When he offered them rest, they refused Isaiah says, and He was angry. He allowed Jesus to come and be crucified for us and do we enter His rest?

We are back under grace and people have taken that to mean that you can go on sinning, and that is not so. When they insult the Spirit and make His blood a common thing, doors are opened to the enemy and rest is gone, grace is not in place though it is there if your turn and get back on track.

I don’t watch a lot of these newer television shows, I find them way too loud obnoxious, and I love television. I am careful about what read and study. I want life more abundantly sown in my heart, not fear, worry or stress. I even cut out a few blogging links. I just can’t read everything I’d like to.

Story lines and plots, movies are one thing. Real life is another, you don’t just kill off someone, a character you don’t like in a novel or soap opera. Real life is not sociopaths pretending to be Christians. The world was not created evil, and God is not employing the wicked one to teach us a lesson. We have His Spirit to do that.

And we have to have His Spirit working in our lives, we need all the spiritual gifts, the baptism of the Spirit will give you power.  We want to have His wonderworking power of the blood over our lives and loved ones and to be able to pray for others but we have to also relax and rest. The enemy will drive you to distraction and destruction, wear you out as a saint, why the Lord’s prayer so powerful, and a daily renewal, deliver us from evil, why Psalm 23 gives us green pastures.

I pray you find a way to rest and relax in the Lord, whether it is walk, a spa day, or a nap. Don’t give into the world. We aren’t to long for the good old days, we have so much better ones with His blessing and rest. And we want Him to close the doors on the enemy, so let’s don’t open them, we need a simpler life, a peaceful, restful one in Him.

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Exhaustion Or His Rest?

 

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I have seen what exhaustion can do to a person. And I have been there. You last nerve is frayed and hanging by a thread. You have tossed and turned night after night. Oppression hangs over you like a dark cloud with no silver lining. The good news is that silver can represent redemption, it is also what Judas was paid to betray Jesus.

The enemy of the soul may not let you rest but Jesus will. He says to come. Remember, from our study God offered rest and it was refused, we don’t not want to be stubborn and stiff necked. If you think you are being strong, like I did, you may just have fallen in to an enemy trap, rest will get you out, we can be good at deceiving ourselves as well.

I have used the phrase beyond exhaustion. I admit having pushed the envelope of faith, trying to be a good example, to receive God’s best and even to be healed. Healing and rest walk hand in hand. I was working for a gift Jesus had already died for. He bought on a cross of shame, and He ransomed my soul already,

I was saved very young. He had already paid for everything for me, making me a pearl of great price and I had no idea, how He really expected me to rest. I was driven, but who was driving me.? Jesus was tempted out in the wilderness, the Spirit was with Him. He is with all of us and even deeper with those who walk in spiritual gifts.

Mothers will understand, in fact, fathers too. Parents can watch their children run all day and night if you let them. Setting a nap time, a quiet time are important to teach babies and toddlers to rest in the natural. Too much stimulation is never good. And when you add in medications, well you get the picture. And don’t think I am against taking medicine, it is just that some of it has side effects that affect sleep, and some is just overly prescribed. I have see plenty of people I could not stand to be around most likely without their medicine, and I hate to admit that.

What I want you to understand is that your exhaustion can be a call from God to accept His rest. You’ve studied the Bible, now do what it says. Come to Him and rest, let Him have the heavy burden in exchange for a lighter one. It has to come off your back, mind and even heart.

I am all to familiar with it. So I want to share that like loneliness is sometimes a call to listen to God, exhaustion can be a call to rest. This is an important study. It has really been on my heart for a long while, that we, as believers, should be speaking His peace to the body of Christ and our own. And resting, that is from God, rejected by the Israelites and offered again by Jesus, so let’s listen. It could literally be a matter of life and death to some.

Please don’t think I am exaggerating this, it is very serious. My readers are important to me. I am always delighted to hear that someone is enjoying my writing, whether it is thi blog or another of my stories or a poem. But even more than that is that you are blessed, healed or even led to Christ as Lord. That is His love at work.

Exhaustion or rest? He is giving us a choice. Take medicine if you need to, the correct dosage and safely. But be sure to realize that Jesus is offering rest and we don’t want to fall short of it as believers, is you are too tired, even to the point of physical or mental exhaustion, He will give you rest.

Eric Antunes

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Choosing Rest

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We make choices everyday. It is inevitable. And many of those decisions have a lasting impact on our lives and the lives of others, often whether we realize it or not. Especially, when it comes to faith, whether we choose to believe in Christ as Lord or not is and has been our most important choice ever, red or white heels, not as important at all.

The Bible makes it clear that we have choices, God puts them forth everyday. Death and life, blessings and curses. Why did I put death first? Because when we are carnally or flesh minded we are operating in that mode instead of life more abundantly. We want to have the mind of Christ as believers and keep it renewed. Remaining in His rest is key.

We are given the opportunity to speak life or death. Most people speak death as their first or native language. It just comes naturally. They find it easier to expect the worst. The power of the tongue from Proverbs is important, words are powerful and affect our souls and spirits, and yes, even bodies why I titled this Choosing Rest.

Rest or weary, heavy or light burdens, feast of famine? It’s about choices and consequences, corresponding actions. His peace or confusion? Love or fear, and yes, I realize that most of us think of hate as the opposite of love, and it is, but in the Spirit, it is the opposite of fear, because it has torment. Sometimes, you will that fear is the opposite of faith, I’m not so sure about that. I have had faith, and it can come under attack. His love is all that will halt fear in its tracks. That alone is reason to enter His rest of faith, the Sabbath rest that God offered and it was refused, now Jesus offers it, dare we refuse?

Jesus said His words were life and health. He is the healer of all brokenness. People are always choosing what to eat but are they as concerned with what they say? Running yourself ragged to be popular, thin or to fit in isn’t faith. We all need rest, and there is healing in His rest. Women will drive themselves crazy sometimes, won’t they? When there choice should be an easy one, rest in the Lord, sow His peace in your heart, it is a lasting gift.

It can be a challenge, it is like throwing down a gauntlet. It will appear selfish or lazy, you will have to make choices about cutting back or out. If women are so willing to put the effort into other things, why not rest?

God is saying to you today, blessings or curses, life or death, love or fear, grace or law, the world or my kingdom, your thoughts or my thoughts, my ways or your ways? Heaven or hell? We often create that in our lives as well as it being a final destination. Let’s speak His peace into our situation and to the body of Christ.

Our minds and hearts, even homes and churches, are not meant to be battlegrounds. We all want to go to heaven, right? Well, let’s start right here, with His rest, the deeper sanctuary, our hiding place. This is where we are safe in a world that is not.

The body needs His peace, both the body of believers and  the physical ones as well. If our hearts have His peace there will be rest. Choose rest, shoes can wait.

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Life Looks Better From Your Resting Place

The Bible says that believers are seated in heavenly places. But are we, really? Yes, because God adopted us, but no, not when we are not taking advantage of His rest. I know this because I have been writing about rest this month and it has been challenged.

I wrote about it before and it was then as well, just that I didn’t realize it as much. It was the same with healing or most anything you prayed for. God will let you grow in grace and favor, and have you on that wheel like the potter’s clay, let you be refined in the fire and become a beautiful vessel. Even a vessel of honor.

You can’t pour new wine into old wineskins, or His Spirit into old ways. You can’t pour water into a broken glass, can you? That is one aspect of rest and renewal in the Spirit, another is the enemy attacks with an almost out and out lie, ” That will never happen. Who do you think you are? ”

It is almost as if you can hear him saying he’ll never let you rest while God says, ” You are my beloved, sleep. ” In Psalm 127:2, He does. Without getting into detail, I can promise you this last week has had some trials, especially as I tried to rest. It was as if the enemy wanted to stir the pot a little and give me more messes. I had to do as Paul told Timothy, stir that gift in me and keep sleeping.

We had some storms that caused some plumbing problems, need I say more? With the yard and bathrooms backing up with sewage, I was sitting in my heavenly place of rest. My mother and I and the Lord came into agreement for the Him to make a way and He did, and at a lesser price. I’m glad we rested.

Now, we can get laundry done and flush regularly. I am always grateful for a washer. I can remember trips to the laundromat when I was little, my mother had to iron and do washing by hand. I have had to wash by hand once until we got a new washer. That is hard work. We used to hang out clothes too. Never forget to be thankful for conveniences and plumbing especially, be glad you don’t have a tub to bring out on Saturday night or have to go to the creek. Or have an outhouse.

Things look better from your resting place. Though estimates were costly and we needed a solution, patience and faith kicked in the door of fear and worry and Jesus made a way. And that is a praise report. Yes, life looks better from your resting place, He has set on high because we know His name, the last verse of Psalm 91. Jesus is in our lives and is our life, He knows our needs and how to take care of us, if we will not panic and let Him.

That is why He called us to His rest in Matthew 11:28-30, and why Hebrews 4 is so insistent on entering that rest so we will not fall by the way. I have been to the Smoky Mountains, huffed and puffed up a trail, looked out over three or four states at once and did not appreciate the spiritual application. I do now.

I wrote a fictional story about two girls on a mission trip to the desert and how they went rock climbing, a lady who read it had me laughing because she said would never have known I had not had that experience, so I had to laugh and tell her about my hike and how little I knew about that sort of thing, or that I could not have done it either.

I have been around the mountain, and spoke to it to move, even asked Jesus to move it, faith does move them, and faith works with hope and love and love the greatest. His love moves mountains for us, and we can sit up in our heavenly rest of faith and watch it move. Life looks better from your resting place, it is a quiet and peaceful view, but that depends on where you are seated, how your stand, and who you trust.

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Rest and Rhema?

We’ve been talking about rest now and our month is winding down. A word I heard and learned early on as I began to study healing was rhema, it means a word just like logos from the Greek. I also like to dig deeper in the Word, and we find the word rhema used at least seventy times in the New Testament.

Some Christians, including myself, see a rhema word from God through the Holy Spirit as specific to individuals whereas logos is more for everyone. The Bible is for everyone to read, however, a believer who is baptized with the Holy Spirit and fire as John said of Jesus has more  of a rhema knowledge at times. Any believer has the Holy Spirit at salvation, but there is John’s baptism and Jesus’.

“Rhema” is a broader term including any method God uses to reveal more of His specific will to an individual, whether by is a divinely directed desire, illumination, revelation, visions, or dreams. A glimpse into the spirit realm, angelic visitations, or specifically a word.

A word or rhema birth in your spirit by the Holy Spirit, is like a whisper but it leaves the very fingerprints of God on you and your soul. It could be a right now word or one that will come to pass in His perfect time. It can also be firm or authoritative. You do learn to discern the Holy Spirit as a believer who spends time in the Word, in prayer or praying in the Spirit or tongues.

The Holy Spirit gives you a blessed assurance and a deeper understanding. A lot of people will no longer ” get you “. Let’ look at some instances of a rhema. Jesus has been accused of casting out the devil with the approval of beelzebub but He tells them specifically that he would be dividing his own house and lose power and that they would give an account of every lazy or useless rhema.

Mary received a rhema word from God, and accepted His divine will. Many of the patriarch were the same, the build of the ark for example. God’s word was for a specific individual and for His will and purpose. Rhemas are different from prophetic  words in the sense, that they do not have to come as a word of knowledge or prophetic word from another, although they may, I have found the Holy Spirit to be the one to drop that word into my Spirit.

And that is why I took the time to explain rhema. I know His word was for me about rest, but it is also for someone else, anyone too heavy laden or burdened. And He will confirm it to you by two or three witnesses, either as a logos, word in general or a deeper rhem for your soul.

Keep speaking His love and peace over you life and you will find understanding as you seek His rest. He is coming for a pure bride and how will be? By the washing of the water of His Word. Or maybe, a rhema, rest?

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Rest Easy In The Lord

 

Rest has always eluded me, though there are some who would say I don’t actually work. When you love what you do it isn’t work, and believe me praying for people and any kind of volunteering, is work. Good ministers are worthy of their salary, so I don’t get paid to blog. I can do lots of other things. It is easy to confuse rest with lazy or should I say accuse.

So many women feel guilt or even shame about it, but they shouldn’t. Forget the Netflix, go to sleep, turn off the phone, if someone needs you that badly the Lord will tell you, if it is as emergency they will call 911. Have sandwiches for dinner or order out on occasion, take a hot bath go to sleep. Get a sitter if you have to. Your health and well being are important to God, and He offered rest but the Israelites refused.

Can you imagine walking or wandering around like that and God says, ” Here’s the place of rest. ”  And you keep going, just like driving by a rest stop with a backseat full of hungry and whiny children and passing the rest stop, even with a sign saying here it is? Well, they did it! And God was angry and withdrew rest, but Jesus invited us back in Matthew 11:28.

Was I ever weary and heavy laden, as I said, rest eluded me, I still tried to fix my life and help everyone else. I was tired, beyond exhaustion. I could hear the Holy Spirit’s whisper that I was working too hard, while everyone else wanted me to do something else.

But enough about me and my ordeals, rest. Jesus said to come and rest. He calls the weary and heavy laden. Our burdens can get too heavy and He took them, all our cares and so much more. His yoke is easy and light. Now, most of us are not exactly familiar with being yoked as a team of oxen or horses, one usually guides the other, the stronger one takes the lead and guides the other one making his burden light.

So, in effect, if our yoke is not easy and our burden light, we are not in step with Jesus or are not fully receiving His rest. The burdens and worries, all the turmoil and confusion comes right from the wicked one. And his yoke is oppressive, isn’t it? We would rather be reined in to Jesus.

Our figurative bridegroom calls the beloved to His rest and it is easy. He tells us not to get up too early or stay up too late, it doesn’t do any good, that He gives sleep to the beloved. Psalm 127:2 I do stay up late to write when I have inspiration, He also instructs at night, that is not a burden because I have no set schedule and can rest.

Back in my wilderness days, I was on the go from about seven in the morning until after midnight and wrote very little, got a lot of rejections, the enemy want me to give it up, the Lord wanted me to keep going and here I am. I hope I can help you rest easy in the Lord.

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