On the road, this week having meetings with friends, business associates, going to Richmond Va, then to Sarasota Fla, then Saint Petersburg, then Tampa, then off to Nashville for 3 days, then to Moorhead Kentucky, then back to NJ. This was not a relaxing trip as I did too many miles in the car. However it would not make sense to fly to these destinations, as there would be too many airline and car rental connections in such a short amount of time, so I opted to meditate on a long car journey, it will most likely end up over 3000 miles in less than a week. Sharing the song “Amen” and “It Is Finished” this week as we celebrate the last days of Jesus right up to his last dying breath on the cross as he spoke to his Father in Heaven, with “It Is Finished” “All churches have good and bad” “God did not create a religion, the man did” Quick recap To begin describing what happened on Good Friday, we need to quickly recap the events that led up to this point. Basically, Jesus had been betrayed by one of his disciples, Judas, who let the authorities know where Jesus was. So after the Last Supper, and whilst the disciples were sleeping in the garden of Gethsemane, soldiers came and arrested Jesus. Jesus before the court During the night of his arrest, Jesus was taken to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the teachers of the Jewish law and the elders had assembled. One of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, followed him at a distance, right up to the courtyard of the high priest. He entered and sat down with the guards to see the outcome. The chief priests and the whole court were looking for false evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death. But they didn’t find any, though many false witnesses came forward. Finally, two came forward and, after some questioning, were able to convict Jesus on blasphemy charges. Peter Disowns Jesus As mentioned earlier, Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, listening to what was taking place. At this point, a bunch of locals thought they recognized him and accused him of being a follower of Jesus. Afraid of the repercussions, Peter denied knowing Jesus three times. It was at this point that Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” He went outside and wept bitterly, full of shame. Judas hangs himself Still early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders made their plans on how to have Jesus executed. They bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of the area during the time. When Judas saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, which he was given for informing them on Jesus’ location. Judas threw the money into the temple and left. He then went away and hanged himself. Jesus before Pilate Meanwhile, Jesus stood before Pilate and the governor asked him about the charges leveled against him by the Jewish court. Pilate was amazed that Jesus didn’t try to deny the charges. During these days, it was the governor’s custom at the time of festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. At that time, they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Barabbas. When the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them if they wanted him or Jesus to be released. The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed. “What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Pilate asked. They all answered, “Crucify him!” “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But the mob continued to shout for Jesus to be crucified. When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, and saw that an uproar was starting, he washed his hands in front of the crowd, telling them that killing Jesus was their responsibility. He then released Barabbas to them, had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified. The soldiers mock Jesus Pontius Pilate’s soldiers then took Jesus into a Roman courtyard. They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him; they then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand and knelt in front of him, mocking him, before proceeding to physically abuse him. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him. The crucifixion of Jesus As the soldiers were going out, they met a man called Simon, forcing him to carry the cross that would be used to crucify Jesus. They came to a place called Golgotha. There they offered Jesus wine to drink, mixed with gall; but after tasting it, he refused to drink it. When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. Sitting down, they kept watching over him there. Above his head they placed the written charge against him: THIS IS JESUS, THE KING OF THE JEWS. Two rebels were crucified with him, one on his right and one on his left, including a man named Dismas. Those who passed by hurled insults at Jesus, shaking their heads and mocking his claims of being God. The death of Jesus From noon until three in the afternoon, darkness came over the area. At about 3 pm, Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” When some of those standing there heard this, one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. Then, when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he died. At that moment, the earth shook, rocks split and tombs broke open. The bodies of various holy people who had died were raised to life. When the centurion, and those with him who were guarding Jesus, saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, now believing that he was the Son of God. Many women were there, watching from a distance. They had followed Jesus from Galilee to care for his needs. Among them were Mary Magdalene, and Jesus’ mother, Mary. The burial of Jesus As evening approached, there came a rich man called Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. Going to Pontius Pilate, he asked for Jesus’ body, and Pilate obliged. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. At this point, many of Jesus’ disciples must have felt a sense of despair. But as we know, the events three days later on Easter Sunday completely changed that… Thanks for joining us, and be sure to connect with us on social media!
DE212 “Flyin” How Does It Feel To Have Wind Under Your Wings?
Quotes from James in this episode: “The feeling of euphoria and emancipation in your own personal life, whatever that is, it could be the end of a relationship, a situation, and/or it could be the beginning of something brand new, they are usually wrapped in the same package. As one ends, a new journey begins.” “Facing the unknown, not knowing exactly where I am going and when, and just letting God lead me to where he wants me next. I find this very exciting in some ways. You do however need to have tremendous faith in him and you must trust, and allow yourself to be led”… Maps and Geography: Maps were always so fascinating to me, as a kid I loved maps and they were always so intriguing to me, I just loved them and loved seeing the different things on maps, where you are, where you live, what is surrounding you, is it mountains, lakes, streams, forests? Or is it all a concrete jungle? I have met people who have no concept of maps, and I must immediately pull out a map and show them how it works, how you can put the mapping image in their brain and use it to give them a better perspective on where they are. Perhaps no one bothered to ever teach them about maps? NYC is a perfect example of how to use mapping to your advantage, everything is laid out in a grid North, South, East, and West. It’s a perfect place to practice your mapping abilities, all the avenues run North and South, and all the streets run East and West. We all have different abilities when it comes to learning. None of us receive interpret and disseminate information the same way, therefore no two people have the same capacity to ingest and apply knowledge the same way, we are all wired completely different! While you are discovering your new hobby of studying maps and Geography, don’t forget to investigate the Geography of Your Soul! Emancipation, Homelessness, the New Chapter, and President Lincoln: I spent the last year with my Mom, who was elderly and very sick, she had dementia and she passed away a few weeks ago. I had moved into her house a year ago, so I am now homeless! However, it feels like emancipation, let me explain. I know that she made it into heaven, so that is certainly something to celebrate. I have been feeling emancipated in some ways as a certain chapter of my life has now concluded, and I am looking at a fresh virgin canvas. Facing the unknown, not knowing exactly where I am going and when, and just letting God lead me to where he wants me next. I find this very exciting in some ways. You do however need to have tremendous faith in him and you must trust, and allow yourself to be led… Lincoln had a mountain to climb to get the Emancipation Proclamation passed, it was a political quagmire that he had to navigate using all of his brilliant legal skills, his creativity, his humor, wit, passion, and sense of humor to get this bill passed. There were four border states that could have swung towards the South had things not aligned properly, that may have changed the course of the war, and we might have had two countries today instead of one! Lincoln knew that slavery was morally wrong and he could not in good conscience allow this to continue under his administration. The feeling of euphoria and emancipation in your own personal life, whatever that is, it could be the end of a relationship, a situation, and/or it could be the beginning of something brand new, they are usually wrapped in the same package. As one ends, a new journey begins. What about Drugs, and Your Relationship with Drugs? No, I am not talking about social, recreational and illegal drugs. I am talking about the ones that you are wired to enjoy anytime you choose. Dopamine, Serotonin, Adrenalin, Oxytocin, they are all within our ability to enjoy whenever we decide to manufacture them. Like the roller coaster ride, you climb aboard and you receive that flood of endorphins, that start kicking in and you say to yourself wow where did that come from? We tend to forget about this experience, and you can receive this benefit with all kinds of different activities if you choose to, and I think you should choose to. Because there is nothing like feeling good. Eustress, and what is it?: We have stress in our life, but we also have eustress, (the good stress) We all experience stress at some point. Whether it’s daily chronic stress or occasional bumps in the road, stress can sneak up on us at any time. What you may not know about stress is that it’s not all bad. In fact, we can experience eustress, or positive stress, just as frequently as we do negative stress. If the idea of positive stress is new to you, you’re not alone. Most of us equate all stress with negative experiences. Clinical psychiatrist Dr. Michael Genovese says we rarely think of stress as a positive thing, but eustress is just that — positive stress. “Exciting or stressful events cause a chemical response in the body,” he explained. Eustress is usually a product of nerves, which can be brought on when faced with a fun challenge. Genovese says this is important because, without eustress, our well-being can suffer. “Eustress helps us stay motivated, work toward goals, and feel good about life,” he added. This is very cool as it goes back to what I stated previously, I want the dopamine, the serotonin, adrenalin, and the oxytocin then are the things that keep you young and healthy. When you are a teenager you never think twice about jumping on the fastest, highest Ferris wheel, or the meanest roller coaster, but as you get older you start to taper off and say “Nah, you know what, I’m reading the paper, or I’m going for coffee, you forget that you can still take your shirt off and just start running or jump on a bike and take a ride. So we have got to remind ourselves that these things are really really good for us, so that’s why I’m saying about the drugs, ‘that’s the stuff that I want” I want the natural drugs, I want the Eustress! Traveling: I have met a lot of travelers through the dHarmic Evolution, and what a gift, all of these fabulous ladies and gentlemen who travel the world with their art, with their talents, with their abilities, and I have learned so much through them, and traveling is such a wonderful thing and some people are just never acclimated to it or perhaps they are a little afraid of it, I think, especially having a relationship with someone and you can’t travel alone in some instances, so you are always together. I think there is something missed when that happens, because when you strip away all the crutches, and you do it all on your own, you learn one fundamental thing, and that is, you can make up your own fun as you go, and its very cool to just be able to be so aloof, and to be so free, and to be able to say, I’m ready to move on, I’m going to go do something else today. Mexico: I was traveling in Mexico a few years back and was staying at this nice all-inclusive Hotel packages that allowed you to stay at any one of 10 or 12 Hotels that were all very nice places. So I am at what is now the Hard Rock Hotel on the Riviera Mya, south of Cancun and it’s Saturday night around 11:00 PM, I am sitting by myself at the bar and I have been noticing that it is mostly families with their kids here. So I ask the bartender about another hotel, we look at a map together, I ask him to call me a cab, and I went up to my room, packed in about 4 minutes, came down jumped into a cab, and I was checked into a new hotel in less than an hour, different vibe, different experience, just will it, and it can be done! Traveling, I can’t recommend it enough, its just killer, it is awesome! “Flyin”: Flyin is one of the most magnificent things you can do to accomplish all of the things I described earlier with the eustress, getting that dopamine, serotonin, adrenaline, oxytocin, endorphins and whatever other cool chemicals your brain can create. The natural drugs that are locked up in your brain just waiting for you to insert the key and say “go baby go”! How about commercial airlines, some people are afraid to fly, and for those of you who hate take offs, do this, put on some kick-ass music, put on the most killer thing that just rocks your world, strap on your headphones, put your seat back, but your head back, and don’t resist that feeling of take off, do the opposite, embrace that feeling as your rushing down the runway to the sound of music that lights you up. It’s one of my favorite thing’s, I just love to take off’s. You can apply the same strategy on landing, just get into the music, relax and enjoy the experience. I tried this in real time with someone I was traveling with a long time ago, and it worked like a charm for her. She was all freaked out about both take-offs and landing, but the music and the strategy worked well for her. If the music is not the buzz for you, take the persons hand you are sitting next to, and say a prayer with them. Hang gliding: I did this in Saint Croix off the back of a boat, what a rush, what a great time, I was feeling all of the chemicals! I want to do a free launch off the top of a mountain, that’s on the “next” list. Skydiving: This is kind of an ultimate rush, 12,000’ and then reaching 120 miles an hour, like a peregrine falcon having so much fun! No spinning and whirlies for me! I told the lead guy who I jumped with not to do that, as it made me a bit sick, but that aside the jump was a rush! Thanks for joining us, and be sure to connect with us on social media!
DE211 “Eritrean Eyes”, Peace and Prosperity On The Red Sea!
Have you ever been in terrifying fear for your life? This episode of the dHarmic Evolution podcast is James’ song “Eritrean Eyes”, inspired by a friend of James’. For the purposes of this episode, James will refer to his friend as Martha. James gives a brief background on the country of Eritrea, located in the Horn of Africa between Sudan and Ethiopia and bordering the Red Sea. From the 1980s until 2000, Eritrea was at war or at the brink of war with Ethiopia, and times for Martha and her family were quite rough. One day, her father didn’t return home and it was presumed that he had been recruited to join the military, which was very common during those years. Another time, her uncle was rushing home to beat the curfew and when he was right outside their door, he was shot dead. The glimmer of hope for Martha’s family, however, was that her grandmother was a wealthy businesswoman who had saved up the money necessary to smuggle their whole family out of the country under the cover of darkness. This excursion started with the family being smuggled under an onion truck and walking through deep sand and ended safely in the United States. Many years later, Martha was finally able to see her father again, which was an answer to her prayers. Martha has since built a life in the US, loving freedom, Jesus, working hard, and being a dedicated mother. When James met Martha, his eyes were opened to her upbringing and culture as well as the prevalence of the persecution of Christians around the world. Additionally, the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia recently opened, and the people on both sides of the border have been pleasantly surprised by the positive impacts of this simple act of peace. Links: You can find BBC article James mentioned
DE210 Are You Victorious? It Is There For You!
Have you thought about your everlasting life, the one that is Eternity? There is not one thing that you own that you will take with you when you go, including your body. Have you embraced what has been offered to you? Let’s dig in and find out. Reprinted from the Blog of Harold Herring: Have you watched a television series where the star of the show is seemingly always in eminent peril? No matter how real the scene feel. . .you can know for sure. . .that the creator and writers of the television show will never kill the hero or the star. . .who plays the hero. Just like the movies. . .you’re a star that will never be defeated by the enemy. In fact, not only will you not lose. . .you win every single time. Here are three scriptures which should strengthen and energize your faith against every attack of the enemy. First, 2 Corinthians 4:8 in the Amplified Bible says: “We are hedged in (pressed) on every side [troubled and oppressed in every way], but not cramped or crushed; we suffer embarrassments and are perplexed and unable to find a way out, but not driven to despair.” The attack on you, your family, health or finances. . .may be intense. . .but you will never be defeated. So why be afraid? Hebrews 13:6 in the Amplified Bible says: “So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently and boldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?” Have you ever heard the song “Unbreakable” by Fireflight? Probably not, because it’s a Christian rock band. . .however, the song contains some amazing faith-filled lyrics. “Where are the people that accused me? The ones who beat me down and bruised me They hide just out of sight, can’t face me in the light They’ll return but I’ll be stronger “God I want to dream again, take me where I’ve never been I wanna go there, this time I’m not scared Now I am unbreakable, it’s unmistakable No one can touch me, nothing can stop me.” Nobody can touch. . .nobody can stop you. . .nobody can defeat you. . .nobody can do anything to you. . .because He’s got our back. Isaiah 54:17 says: “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.” You already know the outcome. . .it’s your inheritance. Here are the seven reasons why God wants you to be victorious. Your Father wants you to be victorious. No loving Father ever wants His children to lose God wants us to win…..EVERY TIME 2 Corinthians 2:14 says: “Now thanks be unto God, which ALWAYS CAUSETH US TO TRIUMPH in Christ….” The enemy only has the ability to deceive, accuse and tempt . . .that’s it. Jesus took away the power of death, hell and the grave when He made an open show of the devil. The Bible plainly states that Jesus disarmed Satan and all his demon hoards. Colossians 2:15 in the Amplified Bible says: “(God) disarmed the principalities and powers that were ranged against us and made a bold display and public example of them, in triumphing over them in Him and in it (the cross).” Remember the Word of God says we are always supposed to triumph, not just 51 percent of the time, not even 85 percent of the time, but always. How much easier this sounds when we realize Satan has no weapon that will work against us. Your Heavenly Father paid a heavy price to make you victorious. Would you be willing to send your son or daughter to die for someone you didn’t know? Many parents have faced that question as they’ve seen their sons and daughters ship out to war zones where they stand in harm’s way in defense of our freedom not knowing if or when they will return. God sent His only begotten Son. . .with the knowledge that His Son would have to die for our sins. When Jesus was born to Mary and Joseph. . .God knew that His Son would die a horrible death. When Jesus amazed the scholars in the Temple. . .God knew His Son would be wrongly accused, persecuted, lied about and killed. When Jesus rode victoriously into Jerusalem to the cheers of the people. . .God knew it wouldn’t be long before His Son would suffer and die. Yet. . .know all these things. . .He sent His Son. . .so we would be victorious over sin, death and the grave. 1 John 4:10 in the New Living Translation says: “This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” Can you even begin to imagine how much God loves us? His willingness to send His only begotten Son for the forgiveness of our sins proves it. Hebrews 9:15 in the Amplified Bible says: “[Christ, the Messiah] is therefore the Negotiator and Mediator of an [entirely] new agreement (testament, covenant), so that those who are called and offered it may receive the fulfillment of the promised everlasting inheritance--since a death has taken place which rescues and delivers and redeems them from the transgressions committed under the [old] first agreement.” You have a tactical advantage in any battle. One of the most successful military strategies an enemy can employ in warfare is to separate you from your supply lines. . .to keep you from receiving reinforcements or supplies. That’s exactly what the devil wants to do when he has you, your family, your finances and/or your health under attack. . .he wants to separate you from your supply line (God). . .to keep you from receiving reinforcements and orders from your spiritual headquarters (the Word). The only way the enemy can spiritually terrorize you. . .is by doubt, separation and isolation. When you find yourself under attack whether it’s a natural enemy or spiritual enemy indecision can be costly. Even though you may not know the best strategy to employ at any given moment. . .God does. Your tactical advantage is your personal relationship with the Holy Spirit and your reliance on the Word of God. Hebrews 13:6 in the Amplified Bible says: “So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently and boldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?” Your focus on and faith in His Word. . .gives you a peace passes understanding during every attack. You know the Calvary (Holy Spirit) is on the way. Psalm 121:1-2 says: “I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” Always remember, the battle is not yours. . .but the Lord’s. Joshua 10:8 in the New Living Translation says: “Do not be afraid of them,” the Lord said to Joshua, “for I have given you victory over them. Not a single one of them will be able to stand up to you.” You will never have to face any battle alone. Mark 9:27 in the New Century Version says: “Jesus took his hand and helped him to stand up.” Hebrews 13:5 in the Amplified Bible says: “Let your character or moral disposition be free from love of money [including greed, avarice, lust, and craving for earthly possessions] and be satisfied with your present [circumstances and with what you have]; for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not,[I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]” God will provide you with a safe house. Psalm 61:3 says: “For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.” When I want to mentally decompress. . .I enjoy watching movies where the good guy (God) wins and the bad guy (Satan) loses. When someone needs to escape from or testifies against the bad guys. . .they’re often placed in a safe house. The purpose of the safe house is to protect the good guys from the bad guys. Isn’t it nice to know that your Heavenly Father. . .the Great I Am. . .wants to place you in His safe house. . .away from the attacks of the enemy and the hordes of hell. There’s one main difference between God’s safe house and the ones you find in the movies. In the make-believe world. . .you never want the enemy to know where you are. . .because they will find a way to attack your location and kill you. When you’re in God’s safe house. . .the enemy knows where you are. . .and he can’t do a thing about it. . .no matter how much he tries or even how he lies. You’re fully protected. Now that’s something to shout about. One more scripture. Proverbs 18:19 in the Amplified Bible says: “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the [consistently] righteous man [upright and in right standing with God] runs into it and is safe, high [above evil] and strong.” You’ve already won the battle. . .it’s in the script. 1 John 4:4 in the Amplified Bible says: “Little children, you are of God [you belong to Him] and have [already] defeated and overcome them [the agents of the antichrist], because He Who lives in you is greater (mightier) than he who is in the world.” In the Book of Revelation… the one book that tells the end of the story… the Apostle John was given what I call ‘inside information’ on what would take place. He also writes for us … the key to overcoming the enemy in every way he comes against us. Revelation 12:11 in the Amplified Bible says: “And they have overcome (conquered) him by means of the blood of the Lamb (we were first born-again) and by the utterance of their testimony, (we ONLY confess what God says… not what the devil wants us to say) for they did not love and cling to life (we have given up life as the world lives it to live as the Lord instructs us to live in Him) even when faced with death [holding their lives cheap till they had to die for their witnessing].” We have the confidence in knowing our lives will one day take on total victory … You have been given authority over every trick of the enemy. Romans 8:37 which says: “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” I decided to look up conqueror in the Strong’s Concordance. It’s the Greek word hypernikaō (G5245) and it means: “to be more than a conqueror, to gain a surpassing victory.” I noticed that conqueror comes from the root word nikaō (G3528) which is translated 24 out of 28 times as overcome . So it became obvious to me that in order to become a Kingdom Conqueror you must first be a World Overcomer. What does the Word have to say about being an Overcomer? Let’s begin with an example from the story of David and Goliath. It’s found in 1 Samuel 17:9 in Today’s New International Version which says: “If he is able to fight and kill me, we will become your subjects; but if I overcome him and kill him, you will become our subjects and serve us." These are bold words David is speaking. The scriptures don’t record whether King Saul knew David was going to make such a bold statement but I think we can rest assured that David already knew the end from the beginning. He was not fighting this battle in his own strength… he knew in his heart that God would give him the victory. As you fight the good fight. . .you’ve got to know that God will give you the victory. Not only that. . . God expects you to win every time . . .because He gives you total power and mastery over the devil Luke 10:19 says: “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” The first word in this verse that is translated power is the Greek word exousia . It means “delegated power” or better said “authority.” The second word translated power is the Greek word dunamis . It means “ability.” So notice carefully what God is actually saying. “I give you authority over all the ability of the devil.” Are you getting a hold of all of this? You have total authority over all the ability of the enemy. Remember, “…nothing shall by any means hurt you” (Luke 10:19). The Bible literally says nothing shall hurt you. It also says you have total power (authority) over the devil. You never have to lose again. You can always conquer and always triumph in all things. Always remember why He wants you victorious. Why does God want you to be victorious? It’s simple. . .He wants you to be busy about His business. God doesn’t make you victorious and prosperous just for the purpose of raising your standard of living. He prospers you so that you can raise your standard of giving. Thus creating more victories than you can possibly even imagine. Genesis 12:2 says: “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great, and thou shalt be a blessing.” The call of God upon Abraham can be the model for God’s call to us. Just as God promised to bless Abraham, He will also bless us. Why does God desire to bless His people? So that we might become a blessing to others. 2 Corinthians 9:8 in the Amplified Bible says: “And God is able to make all grace (every favor and earthly blessing) come to you in abundance, so that you may always and under all circumstances and whatever the need be self-sufficient [possessing enough to require no aid or support and furnished in abundance for every good work and charitable donation].” No doubt, God wants us experiencing victory. . .so we can fund every good work and charitable donation. Hallelujah!!! Ephesians 3:20 in the Amplified Bible contains more revelation about the seventh reason God wants you to be victorious. The verse says: “Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams].” You are a winner in the game of life. . .He is giving you victory over the current situation. Special thanks to Harold Herring for writing this impressive blog about being Victorious!
DE209 Last days with Mom, an Irish Exit, Amen
Righteousness and what it means, the quality of being morally right or justifiable, Bravery is the right hand of Righteousness. It was 1963, I was 8 years old and in the car with my Mom, we had just turned onto Swain place off of Northfield Avenue in West Orange, like we had done a hundred times before over the last 8 years. I was in the front seat, we were almost at Ma and Pops house my mom parents, my grandparents. As we turned off of Rollinson street onto Swain place something changed, as we got down the block a few hundred feet, we could see some woman just starting to back out of a driveway, Further down the block another car, a convertible was coming in the opposite direction toward us. As this scene came into focus you could see the convertible start to accelerate and a rapid speed and it seemed as he was turning his car into a missile heading straight for this woman’s car who was backing out of the driveway. Betty immediately slammed on the gas, got up to where the woman was trying to back out, passed her and swung her station wagon right in front of the convertible, causing this guy to slam on the breaks and skid to stop only a foot from our car. All this ruckus caused Pop (My grandfather) to come ambling out the house, and he got into a verbal battle with the guy in the convertible who was clearly out of his mind with road rage, it was apparent that his intent was to run his car right into this woman’s car and cause her severe injury if not kill her. Pop was a sly fox as he walked in front of this guys car he was saying to him look what you did to the street here you got it all marked up with your skid marks, (he was really gathering a visual of this guys license plate #) Meanwhile this guy, is throwing a nut in his car yelling and screaming at Pop, Hey get out of the Road Santa Clause! The woman backing out now shielded by Betty’s car drove off and extricated herself from the situation in the opposite direction unscathed thanks to the bravery of my Mom. She taught me about Righteousness without ever saying the word, she never talked the talk, she walked the walk, immersed in Faith and Righteousness, her bravery showed me how it all works. #7 Daren Peter O’Connor It was March 1964 and my Father came up to say goodnight and have a very limited conversation with my Brother Andy and I, I was 9 years old, I remember him saying to us “we are going to have another baby” I remember laying on my back and looking up at him and saying “another one”? without missing a beat, he slowly turned around with a small groan shaking his head, eyes looking toward the ceiling as if looking for divine intervention, then he slowly retreated to his bedroom. Bedroom and house setup: Pull out couch, 3 bedroom house with one bathroom Back to the story of Betty, making lunches, running kids around She would take everything that nature threw at her, but there was always room for more, she would always take time to make a meal for someone and send it out all wrapped up, complete with a side of gravy, bread, and dessert. She was truly a superwoman, who never complained, she just got it done... August 1964 I was at Ma and Pops house, Ma was in her big green chair on one side of the living room, Pop was in his Easy chair on the other side watching the Mets get killed, I would always ask him, “hey Pop how are the Mets doing” Oh they stink he was say so disgusted, as he loved his Mets. He would have to wait 5 more years for his beloved Mets to become the Amazing Mets and win the World Series in 69. The phone rang and I was at my post in the front parlor with this old bench like seat where they kept the phone, a black dial classic with such an annoying ring! When I visited I was the dedicated receptionist, as I had an intuitive love of electronics, wiring, and anything that had the slightest aroma of cool and creative, the phone was the only hi-tech thing in my world at that time. I picked up the phone and it was Mom, she just delivered #7, “Hi Mom” oh its a boy? Ma and Pop now have a back and forth with the name Daren, Gavin, Gary? Gavy?, Gave, this banter went on for about 2 minutes, so on August 26th, 1964 we welcomed to the world, Daren Peter O’Connor. The Fire: It was 1965, I was 10 years old, I was at Ma and Pop’s again, and I was in the parlor again, and Ma and Pop were in their respective chairs in the living room, it was either late fall or early winter as the storm door was on and I was inside waiting for my father to pick me up from work on his way home. The phone rang and I answered again, it was Mom, her voice telegraphed into the core of my soul, GET POP, what’s the matter Mom GET POP!!! I yelled Pop, he must have picked up on the anxiety in my voice as he came into the room very quickly. He stayed on the phone for only a few brief seconds, hung up and immediately called one of his friends at the Fire Dept. Our house was on fire, my Mom instead of trying to get the fire dept or police knew she could get more action from her Father than anyone else, no such thing as 911 in those days. Pop was still on with one of the Fire dept members, just then my Dad came in with his business suit on and long overcoat, and Pop without even breaking stride with the conversation, yelled: “Gump your house is on Fire”! My father immediately exited slamming the door and damn near taking the hinges with him. So this means my Mom was at home with a newborn, and a house full of kids and had to get everyone out with what clothes and bare essentials she could all by herself, only Betty could pull this off! We were all displaced at Grandparents and friends home for a time while the second floor was rebuilt. After the repairs were all completed and were all back together again I remember we were at one of our classic Saturday afternoon backyard barbecue’s where all your cousins or neighborhood friends would come over and we have a picnic, back then everyone had lots of kids, and there was no such thing as entertainment as we know it now, except for maybe 6 or 7 channels on a black and white TV. I remember my Father talking to one of my Uncles about the size of the family in relation to the size of the house and how he exclaimed, “I think I want to Move West Bill” I was over the moon, we were moving West! I had dreams in my head of wild rivers in Montana, the Badlands, wild horses, western sunsets, the Mountains and valleys of Utah, and the coast of sunny California”! It turns out his version of West meant 8.7 miles west or 21 minutes by car West to Florham Park. But that is where we ended up and then an entirely new chapter had started in 1968. After my Dad passed in 2008 it was really difficult for my Mom to get over him, they had been together since childhood as High school sweethearts and were having kids even though they were kids, my Mom had 4 kids by the time she was 25 years old, almost inconceivable by today's standards. She suffered some hospital visits, pneumonia, double lung infection, a few falls and broken bones, but nothing could stop her gregarious nature, even after she was diagnosed with dementia a few years ago, her spirit never dampened, and she never gave up. The Blessing: On May 1st, 2018 I prayed to the Lord and asked for a gift, that Betty is blessed with being able to stay at home and pass on peacefully in her sleep without any pain, surrounded by her family, her friends, and in the home that she so dearly loved. That prayer was answered at 1:59 AM on Tuesday, March 19th as I held her hands and watched her take her last few breaths, moving from this world into the arms of Jesus. An Irish Exit Aging is Indifference My Father always warned me if I lingered Lazily Too far into the ocean The tide could not pull me back. I resist the riptide I stay close to the shore Close to sunburnt days Seasoning my skin with freckles, Only shaking off the sand for dinnertime. Wooden grandfather clocks are for decoration. Each summer’s end leads to anticipating the next. Seven decades my senior, I still could catch you stealing chocolate in the kitchen Mimicking the giggles of a toddler, Telling old stories with a sailor’s grin, Beaming with baby blue eyes. So sudden a lifetime of cheerfulness Got swept away. By Kelsey O’Connor Amen: From the Mercy Album “I AM VICTORIOUS” Written and performed by Matriarch/Archbishop Christine Mercy Johnson and James Kevin O’Connor Thanks for joining us, and be sure to connect with us on social media!