inspiration (5)


Do you take a Sabbath from your writing. I recommend that you take one if you can. I say, if you can, because many of you write while maintaining a real job. And you won't write much if don't write in every free moment you can muster.

After retiring from active pastoring, I began trying to write full-time. At that point God was convicting me of not having taken days off or taking enough time for spiritual and physical renewal in my 40 plus years as a pastor. So I begin my full-time writing with a Sabbath. I don't write or work on my writing from Friday evening to Saturday evening. I have found it rewarding in a number of ways.

First, I have not had to deal with burnout. Most of the time I chafe because I feel like I have not got enough done by 6:00 when I quit on Fridays. Frankly, this keeps me motivated. The break always refreshes my passion. I am usually anxious to get started again on Saturday night. Of course, we are often doing family things on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Those things add to my motivation rather than distracting me.

I also gain inspiration in a Sabbath. I do not necessarily recommend that you stop thinking about your writing while taking a Sabbath, whenever you try to take it. But some of my best ideas come when I am not thinking about writing at all. If I didn't discipline myself a little, I would hardly ever have a time I was not thinking about my writing.

Finally, and most closely related to Biblical observance of the Sabbath, by taking a break I acknowledge that God is the source of all writing. I show that I am trusting Him to help me think. I am asking God's help in finishing what I working on. A Sabbath declares that everything I am, and have, and do comes from God. I give it to Him much like I worship with a tithe of our income.

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Better Than A Pain Pill

I have written off and on since I was in college. But I did not begin my most industrious writing until I was diagnosed with cancer. After I retired from pastoring I began writing full time. So my writing has been integrated with my cancer in the past few years. My writing has actually been a means of dealing with and praying for my health.
Here are some ways I connect with God in my writing: Concentration, Prayer, a sense of Calling, Personhood, Satisfaction, and inspiration. I will leave it to you to decide if any or all these things are actually prayer.
I couldn't title something "Better Than A Pain Pill," without mentioning Concentration. The concentration of writing can be a form of prayer. I have to admit that concentration is not enough to deal with severe pain. But at least in the early years concentration has been a good friend.
Actual Prayer is part of my writing discipline. I don't necessarily pray for my cancer or my pain while I am writing. But I do break my writing up with prayer. And any prayer is a blessing.
A sense of calling is crucial for the kind of writing I do. God has spoken personally to me in Habakkuk 2:1-3. I know many people that I think should write. Some of them can tell marvelous stories. I know some, especially pastors, who have so much to say and hold people spellbound week after week with their sermons. But many of them just don’t want to write. I tell them writing is an opportunity to expand their pulpit. But I have come to realize that they need a sense of calling from God to write. Interestingly enough, I have read books by secular writers who admitted with some embarrassment that they sense a calling from God.
I am not yet the person God plans for me to become. But there is a sense in which I am the person God created me to be. In that sense my personhood can be an obedient response to God. I would like prayer to be, or at least become, the heart of my personality. I believe someone's personality makes her a writer or keeps him from being one. I am not sure what this is. I suspect it is different with every person. I certainly don't want these words to discourage anyone. There are so many things to discourage writers. It is easy enough after a dozen or less rejection slips, to say, "I guess I am just not the writer-type."
There is also a great deal of satisfaction to writing, especially when you have a sense of the calling. That satisfaction is a type of answer to prayer. This even applies to individual books and articles. Knowing God wants me to write something brings joy even in pain.
Nothing is as satisfying to me as a sense of inspiration as I write. This is not to be confused with the inspiration of Scripture. My inspiration is not even close to that level. But I often sense God speaking through my writing in the same way I see evidence of God speaking through sermons. This does not make me great, although it certainly makes what I write better. But I am not called to be great, or popular, or even successful. I am called to faithfully communicate what I believe God wants me to say. And if that is not prayer, it is closely related.

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Blessing of the Ages


On the day when your inner child
Curls up in fetal mode With thumb in mouth
And blanket clutched

May a thousand memories of childhood play
On rocks, in creeks
On lookouts, in hideouts
Call out to you, caress you
And carry you onward

When the inner crisis of mid-life
Grabs your throat tight at midnight
And drowns you in droves of unrealized dreams
May you find a pause on the path
A rock on which to rest
With a view above the valleys
And a peace in the present

When your soul feels as useless
As hunched-back old man
In nursing home wheelchair
May you awaken in the world around you
A renewed hope in humanity
By welcoming care and concern
With a single, simple smile

May the wonder of children be yours
May the dreams of youth be yours
May the pragmatism of adults be yours
May the wisdom of elders be yours

And may the Ancient of Days
He who looms large and long over your life
Your past, your present and your path yet unknown
Whisper deeply and daily
Into the depths of your soul

David Brazzeal from
(in the spirit of John O’Donohue’s “Beannacht”)

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Fresh Manna News May/June 2010


Kingdom Greetings Women and Men of God,

It gives me great pleasure to release today our May/June 2010 issue Fresh Manna News.

Inside this issue:
Update on Prayer Summit

Names of God - Article is an Excerpt from the One Year Book of Psalms Devotional Book by William J Petersen and Randy Petersen

From Milk to Meat "Relationships are Important" Part V by Prophetess Sarah Ransom
The Atonement of Jesus Christ Part II - Prophetess Vicky Panenic

Our next issue will be released in August 2010.

We are currently seeking Volunteer Writers for Fresh Manna News if you are interested or know of someone that is please do see the details in our Announcements section.

Also we would like to hear your comments, remarks, praise reports and testimonies. You may email our Editor

Yours in Kingdom Building,
Pastor Lisa Martin aka Virtuous Lady

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Just Feel a Prayer

9651001893?profile=originalIf I really wanted to pray I'll tell you what I'd do. I'd go out into a great big field alone or into the deep, deep woods, and I'd look up into the sky - up - up - up - into that lovely blue sky that looks like there's no end to its blueness. And then I'd just feel a prayer. ~L.M. Montgomery

...the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know what prayers to offer nor in what way to offer them. But the Spirit Himself pleads for us in yearnings that can find no words... Romans 8:26

What does this mean to you?

Please see my website regarding prayer! I would love your ideas and comments. Or would you like to submit something to post? There is a contact page on the website. ~Thank you
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