“Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:4-5, NASB).
Happy 2021! I pray you’re enjoying peace and joy with every sunrise and sunset. As nation-wide and world events continue to evolve, I find myself looking for Jesus’ return more diligently. In the meantime, however, our Maker continues to grant life and breath here on earth. He delights in using us for His purposes, so it’s important to embrace our God-given responsibilities with faithfulness until our Lord appears to take us home.
Speaking of responsibilities, you might be astonished to read how the Lord directed me in recent days. His leading interrupted my plans—in a wonderful way—although I didn’t necessarily see it that way at the outset. (I struggle with surprises 🙂.) Even so, God clearly communicated His will and graciously enabled me to “see the light,” using a dear friend in the process.
Please read on to discover more…
Progress! An excellent article, A New Year for Writers, recently arrived in my inbox, and it equipped me to pursue my book-writing goal in a doable manner. I’m extremely grateful for the writer’s advice, which helped me reach my desired word count for last week. While I didn’t pen an enormous number of words, it felt fabulous to accomplish my objective. After all, a book is written one word at a time. Thank you for your prayers as I seek to remain on task with my latest manuscript.. I’ll be certain to fill you in as this project advances.
Another highlight involves a photo of the Indian women who are using my Bible Study, Alcanzando la Justicia, in Mexico. My sweet friend, Debby Capps, sent me the picture below, a cherished reminder that God is touching women’s lives with the words He gave me years ago. Glory to His holy name. It fills me with tremendous joy to help women understand Scripture better plus grow closer to the Lord. Look at those beautiful, smiling faces!
The Holy Spirit inspired me with a new name for my Ministry Update, which is now titled, Heart Stirrings. After praying God would give me something linked to my mission of Stirring hearts toward Jesus through Spirit-led Bible teaching, Heart Stirrings captured my attention.
Lord willing, this monthly blog post will convey how God is stirring my heart and yours into closer relationship with Him and service for Him. I’ll incorporate these themes by regularly sharing Ministry Highlights along with The Glory of Jesus segments. I’ll include other topics of interest, too, because the creative in me needs freedom to write outside the box.
So, the plan is for Heart Stirrings to reach subscribers via email on the second Tuesday of each month. It also will appear publicly on my website, replacing the blog post I formerly wrote every fourth Tuesday.
Change can introduce challenge, but it also can produce life. I pray this new format and content will add spiritual benefits and enjoyment to your Christian journey.
THE GLORY OF JESUS
Zac Poonen, a Bible teacher I discovered on YouTube, taught a powerful message on 2 Corinthians 4:1, and I was extremely encouraged by the truths he shared. But I especially was struck by his phrasing, “the glory of Jesus,” which he said can be found every time we read Scripture. This enthralled me, and I’m now attempting to read the Bible consistently through this lens. I also plan to share my findings in each monthly post of Heart Stirrings because we can never get enough JESUS.
GOD’S SURPRISING PLAN
And finally, my huge news is that I accepted a teaching position at a local Christian school!! I teach literature and writing to 9th and 10th graders, many of whom I met today. They’ve already gained a place in my heart.
This development has been a completely unexpected twist. Yet I must say, God is the ultimate Creative, and He’s provided the most amazing peace in this incredible adventure. He’s also unfailingly faithful. I’m humbled and honored to serve Him in this way—please pray for me as I navigate new terrain.
UNTIL NEXT TIME
The aforementioned changes to my blog should now make complete sense. Due to my work schedule, I need to scale back in some areas so the Lord can expand me in others. To God be all the glory!
You are very special to me. Please let me know if I can pray for you, and please know I deeply value connecting with you through my writing.
Much Love to you in Christ,