Posted in faith

Numbers 13: 1 – 33

Notes about Numbers 13: 1 – 33:

  • Deuteronomy 1:19 -25 provides the procedural details about the mission.
  • Fear and discouragement was sounded throughout this account.
  • The tribal representation did not include the tribe of Levi’s. (Le-Vee)
  • The Levi’s were the priests.
  • Instead it included Joseph’s tribe being divided into 2 for his sons Ephraim and Manasseh.
  • In Numbers 13:16 – Jesus is Greek for Joshua.
  • They had set up camp in the wilderness of Paran in Kadesh Barnea – 50 miles south of the Promised Land.
  • 12 men sent into the Promised land – spent 40 days gathering samples of local crops.
  • Both good and bad news reported which divides the people
  • Spying was a popular military tactic of the day.
  • The spies traveled 275 miles north to the territory west of the Jordan River.
  • The first area they explored was Negev – Very dry
  • Further north was Canaan – Much more fertile – Ideal for milk producing sheep and goats. The flowers and plants produced pollen for the bees to turn into honey.
  • This was 2 years after leaving Egypt. They had found the Promised Land but continued to be fearful. Lack of faith.
  • For their lack of faith, they had to wander one year for each day they had gone on the mission. 40 years.
  • They didn’t believe they could go against the giants.
  • The Nephilim were mentioned one other time in the Bible. Genesis 6:4 – Those Nephilim died during the Great Flood.
  • We need to have Caleb’s faith. (Numbers 13:30)

30 But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.”

Numbers 13:30
Isaacology | Wilderness of Paran
NOVA | The Bible's Buried Secrets | Teacher's Guide image 1 | PBS

Be blessed with this reading.


Posted in faith

Plant a Seed

I’m going to interrupt the Holy Week narrative for this very important announcement. But before that, I should tell or remind you what happened on Holy Monday. Jesus removed and freed the animals and cleansed the temple of all the people who were using it to make money.

““Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal.”
‭‭John‬ ‭12:24-25‬ ‭MSG‬‬

So who is that grain of wheat? Jesus was talking about us as Christians. We need to take the Word of God and plant it in our souls. Unless we water it with his Word & prayer, it’ll be just that a seed. We need to have a relationship with you.

We need to love others just as Jesus did. Be reckless. Let you serve others with the gifts you were given by God in order to be glorify God. You are to be the hands and feet of God.

He’s after your joy and eternity. Just remember that.

Dear Lord,

Thank you for reminding me that we need to love others recklessly. I’m so glad you are after my eternity and joy. All I need to do is have a relationship with you.

In Jesus name, Amen

Posted in faith

Our Sacrificial Lamb

“The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna! ” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the king of Israel!”

Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written: “Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.” At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that these things had been done to him. Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word. Many people, because they had heard that he had performed this sign, went out to meet him. So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!””
‭‭John‬ ‭12:12-19‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Everyone was cheering for Jesus as he rode on that donkey through Israel. It was almost Passover, a time to remember God saving his people in Egypt. The people of Israel spread lamb’s blood over their doorways to let the angel of death know he should move on.

Five days later, our beloved Jesus would be sacrificed just like those lambs in Egypt. He sacrificed himself not only to protect us from death but also to give us eternal life.

Right now in the Holy Week narrative, people are cheering for him. He’s a “rock star” in their eyes. Soon it’s all about to change. . .

Dear Lord,

Thank you for sending us your one and only son. He sacrificed his life for us, so we can have eternal life. Remind us to not only praise him at church, but always.

In Jesus name, Amen

Posted in book, faith

Out of the River, Onto the Raft – My Two Dads – Part 2

My Two Dads Part 1

I’ve divided the rest of the book into 5 parts: An All About Me, Meet my Mom of the Last 3 Years, Unveiling the Mirror of My Life, My Relationship with my Mom before August 2016, and Lessons I Learned Along the Way.

Mr. Duke

About 30 years ago, I started attending Clayton UMC. The Dukes had begun attending the church. I didn’t know that Paul and Shelly would become an essential part of my life.

Shelly became the pastor of the church in 1990 or 1991. Paul was my youth leader. Can I tell you how appreciative that he continues to be in my life after dealing with my teenage hormonal self? I know I wasn’t the easiest to deal with while I was in my teens. I was extremely talkative and annoying. I let people know that I was around. He never stopped loving me even when I know I was not lovable.

He taught me about my faith. Because of him, my faith has been strengthened. I also observed how he was with his two sons, Doug and Chris, and learned how a real dad should act.

Whenever I hear Opposites Attract and Promise of a New Day by Paula Abdul, I think of my years in the youth group. I introduced him to her music, and he fell in love with her for the next 15ish years.

When I was installed as Worthy Advisor of Rainbow, he was there to support me as though he was my dad. I am forever grateful for his support.

After the Goofy One and I had dated for a year, I took him to meet the Dukes. I wanted their seal of approval even though I didn’t really need it. Both Paul and Shelly approved of him.

I visit with Paul and Shelly once or twice a year. They treat me like a daughter when I come to their house. So, the feeling of a father – daughter relationship is evident to me. They welcome the boys and The Goofy One with open arms to assure we feel as though we are loved and wanted. I love visiting with them.

Paul and Shelly made sure to come to Tatiana’s celebration of life, and if Paul wasn’t getting over shingles, he would have been at my mom’s funeral.

I could babble on and on about how valuable Paul is to me. I am fortunate that God saw that I needed not only a hero, my grandpa but also a dad, Paul.

Thank you, God, for bringing these two men to my life during times that I needed someone to step up to teach me how a man should treat a woman.

Thank you for sending these men to teach me about how to have faith as small as a mustard seed.

“Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in training and instruction of the Lord.”
Ephesians 6:4

Thank you for sending me these men to show me the value of hard work.

Thank you, God, for their unconditional love for me.

God knew that I needed positive male role models in my life. I had been mistreated by the one who had given me life. The one whose job it was to raise me and to teach me how a woman is supposed to be treated.

I’ll be forever grateful for these two men.

We have one more stop on this part of the river before we change course. This last stop shows you how I cope with the stresses and joys of daily life. When I want to “escape” and not drown, I will listen to music. The music I listen to changes daily. Somedays I want to rock out to the familiar P!nk songs while other days I am in a more Christian mood. I can’t sing, play an instrument, or dance but that doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy music and admire those who are musically talented. It’s just something that I was not gifted with from God.

To be continued . . .

Posted in book, faith

Out of the River, Onto the Raft – My Two Dads – Part 1

Purpose in Life – Rewritten

I’ve divided the rest of the book into 5 parts: An All About Me, Meet my Mom of the Last 3 Years, Unveiling the Mirror of My Life, My Relationship with my Mom before August 2016, and Lessons I Learned Along the Way.

“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.”
Psalm 103:13

Throughout my life, God has brought people to me who would change my life path. I would be approaching a fork in the road called life and a person would be there to tell me which way I should go.

Two people stepped up and taught me what a dad is supposed to be like. They took over being the dad I never had for the first ten years of life. I mean I had a father, but he was never a dad to me. He gave me life but didn’t love me enough not to abuse me and make my life a living hell.

If these two men didn’t come in my life and stay, I would have probably had taken a much harder path in life. I wouldn’t be the wife, mother, and teacher that I am now.

“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old, they will not turn from it.”
Proverbs 22:6


My maternal grandpa welcomed us into his house. He built us a bed that we slept in for our first years in Ohio. He continued working to assure we were taken care of and drove us around so that we could experience life. Something that I continue to enjoy even 16 years after his death.

He taught me about the importance of vocabulary. He loved reading Reader’s Digest, especially the word power. Whenever he had a new magazine, he would have me try to take the word power quiz so that I could expand my vocabulary. I wasn’t that good at the word power quizzes. Now that I’m an adult, I understand the importance of having a vast vocabulary.

Grandpa taught me about faith. When he was 19 years old, he was a tail gunner in World War II. He carried a heart Bible in his pocket throughout his tour in Europe. His faith continued for the remainder of his life. How Great Thou Art was his favorite hymn. He instilled in me the importance of having faith and believing in a higher power.

Grandpa also taught me how a marriage worked. He was married to my grandma for 56 years before his death. She was his one true love.

He also taught me the power of just listening. You don’t always have to speak. There are times that I wish I learned that lesson better, but other times I have realized how important it is to listen.

“The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered.”
Proverbs 17:27

Grandpa took the road less traveled. He was forever driving different ways whenever we went out. I inherited that skill. When I call The Goofy One and say, “I’m pulling a grandpa,” he knows that means that I’m not taking the usual route to somewhere. I know about 10 different ways to work.

He was also a big believer in education. While in college, he told me that it was okay to get married, but you need to make sure you graduate from college first. I kind of didn’t listen, because I got married a month before graduating from college. My degree is in my maiden name even though I was a Gasho by that point.

He loved his coffee and chocolate. How I wish I could sit down with him right now while drinking a cup of coffee and eating some chocolate.

Most of all of Grandpa was my hero. He listened to me and took me out of a bad situation so that I could have a better life. He sacrificed having an empty nest so that my family could recover from the trauma of my childhood. Thank you, grandpa. I love you and will forever be grateful for you changing my life.

To be continued . . .