Prayer To Stand in the Gap

1 med Res Enforcer Front Cover
Similar prayers are in this book.

Hi, Lynn Donovan here,

I want to share a short but powerful prayer when we are standing in the gap for someone in the spirit. 

Lord, let me stand in the gap for_________________. So that his eyes will be opened, and he will be freed from demonic bondage, so he can see his need for, You, Jesus.  I also forbid any affliction, illness or attack to come against me, my family and all under my love, stewardship, jurisdiction.   And I also forbid the same for the person whom I’m standing in the gap for.  In Jesus name.  

Pray this aloud. 

Print this out. Place it somewhere that you frequent and then pray it aloud whenever you see it.

Blessings and hugs, Lynn

PS. Thanks for the prayers for Mike. He is in remission, and we are awaiting a donor for a bone marrow transplant that is in the near future. I'll drop an update when we have more info.

I LOVE YOU. I LOVE JESUS. LITTERALLY, HE HAS SAVED ME AND MIKE OVER AND AGAIN!


Spiritual Reflections from the Camino

My friends, this morning I woke and thought I would like to share some final reflections on how walking the Camino impacted me spiritually. Jesus sculpture

I had actually written a completely different post for today, but that one can wait. Funny how this happens! 

The Camino (which Bryce and I have just walked a part of) is essentially a celebration of the life of one of the twelve apostles, James. James is a character in the Bible whom I had not thought much about before. Yet, even though I had not given him much attention, James was one of Jesus's three closest disciples. Jesus named him and his brother John 'sons of thunder', for their sheer passion; and then there was Peter. The three of them, together, were chosen to be at the transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8), a significant fact.

Peter went on to be the rock on whom Jesus built his church, John went on to be entrusted with looking after Jesus's mother and write some books of the Bible (it's likely he was the author of Revelation). But what about James? He was the first of the twelve to be martyred. And, before that happened, tradition says he went to Spain and brought the Gospel there. A son of thunder working for his deeply loved Lord: I pictured it as I walked.

The Camino is supposedly the path James walked, and his bones are supposedly buried at the end of the pilgrim trail. Whether that is true or not, we can't tell. The part about the bones could be superstition or legend; the history of him evangelizing Spain is also difficult to confirm, but I did find it meaningful that there was a whole pilgrim trail that celebrated his life. I mused to myself that perhaps God even set it up as a celebration of what James gave to, and did for, the church.

John got to write books of the Bible. Peter was the rock on which the church was built. And for James the walk he walked was celebrated. Church

On the trail, there were many ancient churches -- Some of them were very basic, like this one here. I stopped in them and prayed. I thought of the centuries of Christians. What was church life like for them?  Different to how has been for me. No mega-churches! This was all they knew. But it would have been complex, as church is. Imperfect. 

We also saw a few nuns, here and there, as we passed through villages. "What does it look like to dedicate your life to God in such a way?" I asked myself. "What does your life entail?"

Throughout the walk we saw artwork of various kinds that depicted either the life of Jesus, or Bible stories. This artwork came in various forms: sculptures, paintings, models. Sometimes the artwork rooted me to the spot, making me think about the scene it was portraying. For example, when I saw the statue of Jesus that I've included here, I imagined myself standing there in the crowd, watching him carry the cross past me. 

So that was how it went. It was an interesting experience, and one that got my busy little brain pondering all kinds of new things, purely from being in such a new scene. 

Well, that's the Camino. I will be back later in the week with another SUM thought, and in the meantime, have a great week!

Ann


Weariness in a Spiritually Mismatched Marriage

I've been thinking about weariness in a spiritually mismatched marriage. IMG-20240611-WA0029

Are you feeling weary of the wait? Or weary of the journey?

Weariness can be common. Some in our community have trekked for decades in this situation, holding out hope for their spouse's salvation, or for some kind of change to be seen. Others don't necessarily hope for change, but are just weary. 

This is despite Jesus promising that his yoke will be easy and his burden light. Well, we're human and this SUM situation is a place of spiritual growth for us all: Sometimes Heavenly promises don't come to fruition easily or instantly. They take some intentionality to reach.

While we're growing in the things of Heaven, sometimes we will feel embattled, or completely wiped out.

So what's to be done? If you're weary try this:

1. Ask God to refresh your Spirit.

Ask him to fill you with the living water that means you never thirst again. Ask him to be like an oasis, a place of calm and refreshment to you. Say out loud, "Lord, refresh my spirit!"

2. Take some rest days

Consider building a routine of Sabbath into your life, a day of rest, enjoyment and play. Or go away for a little 'retreat' for a couple of days

3. Get someone to pray for you.

When someone prays for you it strengthens your inner man. Ask them to pray specifically for the fatigue you are feeling.

4. Stay connected to church

Church, for all its difficult moments is a water trough that sustains and feeds us. Even just being in the room with Spirit-filled believers is healthy.

And finally,

5. Pray that your heart be guarded from a root of bitterness.

It is easy for bitterness to set in if your walk has been years. This is one we have to guard carefully against. Prayer does wonders. Create in me a clean heart, Lord!

**

As for news from here: Bryce and I have just finished walking the Camino today. We walked 130km in ten days and our whole bodies ache now. At points the weariness of the walk felt too much. That said, the walk itself was a rich experience.

We are now refreshing ourselves and taking a physical rest; but the experience of walking g many kilometers sure did get me thinking about the parallel of a SUM journey!

Well, SUMites, I will write again on Mlnday. Have a lovely weekend.

Ann


His Name Is...

JESUS

Hello SUMites, Amanda here! I was listening to a teaching on Jesus this morning and the priest started talking about the names and titles of Jesus found throughout the New and Old Testament. As he started saying the various names of our Father, I could not help but lift my hand in praise as I drove! Sometimes we just need to be reminded of all that he is!

I wanted to share a similar list with all of you for this week! I hope it inspires you as much as it did me!

Read this list out loud today! Maybe even every day for a week to remind you of all that he is! 

(This is not a complete list! If I miss one you love, please share it in the comments!)

He is our CREATOR! The God Who Sees ME! Yahweh! Jehovah!

He is Jehovah-Rapha (LORD that heals)! He is the I AM!

He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

He is the Star out of Jacob!

He is the Consuming Fire! The Shield! The Sword!

He is the Judge of All!

Faithful! LIVING! My Strength and Power!

The Father! The Friend! The Rock! The Fortress!

The Alpha and Omega!

He is all of these things and so much more! He is a great and divine mystery! And how amazing is it that he chose to share himself with us?! He chose us when he did not have to. He had (and still has) the universe under his feet, every planet, every moon, every star, yet he chose us!

I hope the weight of those words will stay with you in the coming days. If you are struggling in a hard season, or just get distracted with the business of life and need a reminder, come back to this list to remind yourself of who he is!

Rest in him. Hope in him. Depend on him.

Trust him!

Have a great week and be blessed my friends!


Camino de Santiago: Side by Side

Hi SUMites!Pooped at Pamplona

In the last week, Bryce and I have walked 78 Km, from France into Spain, phew! I am now writing this from a little guest house in the vibrant Spanish city of Pamplona. 

The Camino has been glorious, so far, but exhausting. This photo here captured how it felt to reach the city gates of Pamplona after hours of walking in the hot sun, LOL.

Is that a metaphor for what it might feel like to reach the gates of the Kingdom of Heaven?!

Have Bryce and I come together in any way spiritually by being on this 'pilgrimage' together? Well, I didn't have any expectations on that front, but there has been one pleasant little surprise:

On this walk, I brought my Bible to read, which I always read through chronologically. Currently I'm in the time of King David. 

Well, just before we started the Camino, Bryce wanted something to read and downloaded a novel onto his Kindle called 'The Source' by James Michener.

It turned out to be a fiction book about the history of Israel, starting from the beginning of civilisation right through to modern times.

The book itself is a story about a fictional town in Israel, and what happens to it over the centuries. It is well researched, draws heavily on details in the Bible, and brings in characters such as King David and Abraham, as well as cultural details like the Canaanites burning their first-borns in fire, concubines, pagan gods, and then Israel's special relationship with YHWH.

Strikingly, on the first day of the Camino, there I was in the middle of the life of King David in the Bible, and I discovered that Bryce too was reading about the life of King David in James Michener's book!

A little coincidence. Or a God-incidence.

So we started to talk about King David as we walked....

... And then we started to talk about other things in James Michener's book as we trekked through country paths, and villages. It's all about the Old Testament.

"Where are you up to now?" I said to Bryce yesterday.

"Oh about 200BC" he said.

"The Israelites have been captured by the Babylonians, returned from captivity, and now it's the Greek empire, right? Or is it the Romans?" I like history.

These have been stimulating conversations, and it is a tiny coming together, of sorts.

In our SUMs we have these almost imperceptible moments. Every so often it seems as if our spouse turns their head a little to our world.

Well, onwards! I hope you are all well.

Ann


Unlikely Pilgrimage

Dear friends, Ann here.Camino Ann

Today Bryce and I start walking the 'Way of St James', otherwise known as 'The Camino'. Yay!!

The Camino is a well-known pilgrim walk that takes the walker deeply into Spain. It is several hundred kilometers long, and involves staying in local hostels, monasteries and humble guest houses, with many a communal meal, and conversations along the way with fellow walkers.

The Camino has a deep spiritual history, and I am only discovering it now, with my backpack ready.

I originally wanted to do the Camino for completely non-spiritual reasons: I simply wanted to have a lot of coffee and cake in nice Spanish villages, LOL. That was all! Give me my Spanish hot chocolate and tapas! I think I was inspired by the film 'The Way', which made the walk look ever so idyllic. BUT, as I have spent the last 24 hours at the starting point, I have come to see that this walk is not about hot chocolate and tapas at all. It's going to be special for me in a different way.

A couple of days ago I received a clear word from the Lord. He asked me to spend a great deal of focus praying extensively along the route we walk. He also told me I was meant to be on this walk. He said, "You are exactly where you need to be at this present point in time." Pilgrim statue

So I will see what that feels like and looks like. I have asked God to bless my tongue, to inspire my prayers, and to pour his fire onto the words I speak.

Today I went into a church and spent an hour in prayer, asking him to bless this journey and this time with him. 

The Camino attracts people from all over the world, and I can see already that there is a colorful mix of characters on it. It takes several weeks to complete, though Bryce and I are only going to walk ten days. It ends at Santiago de Compostela, where tradition says the bones of James, one of Jesus' 12 disciples, are buried. Who knows if that is true. But Christians have been walking it in droves since the eleventh century. 

Even now, many people come on this walk to find time with God. For others, of course, it's a holiday. But there are serious God-lovers who walk it. Ian has suggested to me that it may well be a place where the veil is thin between heaven and earth, because of the number of Christians who have trodden the path.

In fact, testifying to this, I met a young woman a couple of weeks ago in France who told me she had actually become a Christian ON the Camino. She had had an encounter with God, and since then her life has not been the same.

It is my hope that I can slip away into a few churches to pray at various points. It is also my intention to only read scripture while on this little 'personal pilgrimage'. 

Well, I'll keep writing blog posts as I go, and let's see how God inspires this time. 

Much love,

Ann


Marriage Adventures in France

Hi SUMites! Ann Bryce France

I said I'd share a little of the marriage adventures we've been having while in France. It's been a funny little time.

Being here for a month in this rented house, with few responsibilities and no friends in the neighborhood, has meant we have spent 100% of our time together.

We have done the laundry together, planned our evening meals together, cooked together, food-shopped together, hiked together, washed up together, binge-watched TV together, and made every. single. decision. Together.

Today we bought train tickets together, and then we helped my Dad with his computer -- Together.

There's a Friday food market here, and it's been the highlight of my week, so off we trundle together. There's a gigantic 'Pyreneen Mountain Dog' there, whose owner sells onions. We spend at least ten minutes with this dog, who soaks up cuddles like a love sponge. Then we dry ourselves off from the drool and carry on round the market. As we go, Bryce follows me from stall to stall, and puts all my purchased goodies in a bag. Mountain dog

Putting the items in the bag, he starts to huff and puff at the expense. I get irritated. Then I check myself. 

At points, I do feel like I need some space!

But God loves marriage, and our time of togetherness is perhaps making Him smile. It's putting new meaning on the word 'one flesh'.

Jesus:

'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate. (Matthew 19:5-9, NIV)

Have you had times where you've had a lot of time with your spouse?

Love you all!

Ann


Faith Adventures in France

My SUM friends Bakery

Hello!

I have now been in France for four weeks, and it's been both a curious faith adventure, and a curious marriage adventure, but I'll save the marriage part for the next post ((smiling)).

I have had serenity and plenty of time with God. Every morning, I read my Bible. Currently I am deep in the story of David's life, and his Psalms (2 Samuel, 2 Chronicles, and Psalms).

Bryce gets up and quietly potters around while I sit on the couch having my God time, wrapped in a blanket. 

But the adventures I've had have really been around the church. I noticed something curious:

The suburb where I live, in New Zealand, has 14,000 residents, and I can count six different churches of different flavors. Essentially one could 'church shop' there.

In contrast, here in Foix there are 9,000 residents, and only one church. Though there are a couple of churches that existed previously, they are not active. There was an 'apostolic' church that was advertised, which sounded like my cup of tea, but I turned up my first Sunday to find it non-existent. Dead.

That's discouraging, Lord. I was sad that day. Where are the Christians?

The only active church here seems to be the beautiful and ancient 11th-century church in the town square. It rings its bells several times a week, and a small number of Foix's residents trickle in. "Is this where I go, Lord, if I want to be where you are being talked about?"

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching (Hebrews 10:25, KJV).

I pictured the New Testament church that used to eat together in small number, gathering in houses for meals. 

I pictured King David, who carried out his relationship with God in the desert and the fields; partly I felt like him, sat on my couch with God quietly connecting on my lonesome.

Then I turned my mind again to this ancient church in the town square, and contemplated the fact it represents the history of Christianity in Europe.

My Dad, who lives here, told me: "This area of France is very irreligious." Nevertheless, my heart leapt when I saw this poster displayed in a house window, in a neighboring village:Jesus in the window

Lord Jesus

I give glory to the Father and I implore your aid.

Happy are those who will have believed. Happy are those who die in the Lord.

The heavenly Father wants that all are saved. He has given us Jesus for that purpose. He was resurrected to open up the way for us. Don't ignore this essential event in the history of humanity. The consequences of sin are death. Don't delay to purify ourselves and to turn to him. He does not turn those away who come to him.

Ahhh. Even when an area seems 'irreligious', there will be a remnant.

That ancient church here in Foix runs a 'Cafe for friends' on a Wednesday and Thursday. Not only have I wanted to connect with Christians, I have also wanted to talk to French people. So, with a dose of curiosity, I went.

I walked into the room: There sat three older woman, two older men, and a younger woman. 'Welcome, welcome!' they said, in French.

I joined their table, and their chat. "Oranges?" one of them said, kindly, holding out a plate of fruit to me.

The younger woman had just become Christian the previous year. The older ones had been Christian for years, but one had converted late in life and it had changed her whole life. "Je comprends," I nodded, leaning forward, "I understand." I sure did understand that.

We sat and talked a little about what it looks like to have an encounter with God, and what it looks like to "have Jesus deeply in your heart". The young woman needed some encouragement in her faith; the older ones lent it. 

I left hopeful. Sometimes God places us in entirely new settings. And that little 'Cafe for Friends' has now become one of my little 'go-to' places in Foix.

Well, that's me. What is the church scene like where you live?

Love you all,

Ann


Prayers for Lynn and Mike

SUM family, Ann here. Our hearts go out

Our hearts are with Lynn and Mike, having heard the news that Lynn shared last week

The leaders of SUM recently wrote out some prayers for Mike and sent them via WhatsApp to Lynn. I've written these prayers out below, and if you have some time I wonder if you would speak these prayers out for the two of them?

It would be an amazing thing for us to stand as an army, speak out prayers jointly, and fill the bowl of incense of the prayers of the saints in Heaven for Mike! (Revelation 5:8).

Let's pray:

"Right now, in the authority and name of Jesus, I lift up Mike and Lynn as they stand in this place. I release shalom peace over and into them. I bind chaos and all forms of darkness coming against them. I release all provision into this situation. Peace, healing, right steps forward and His assurance that He is in control. Lord be their shield, and their faith."

"I pray that the chains of leukaemia be broken in Jesus' mighty name. I declare that Mike is a born-again son of the most high God, his name is in the book of life and he is covered by the blood of the Lamb. I speak healing miracles and divine reversal in Mike's body. I bless him with healing and health in Jesus' mighty name. I bless him with perfect peace and pray that he will experience his Father's love like never before. I lift up Lynn to the throne room of Grace, and I bless her with peace and strength, that she will hear God's voice directing her, leading her and encouraging her. I pray the Holy Spirit will fill them both to overflow. I stand with Lynn, I love her and I bless her. I stand on God's word that no weapon formed against Mike will prosper, and I speak life and love over them both.  Thank you, Lord, that you hear every prayer, even when our prayers are groans, and you collect every tear in your bottle. Lord, hold your daughter Lynn close, put your arms around her and gently rock her so that she knows she is held in tight and safe in her Daddy's arms. In your precious name, Jesus, the name above every other name. Amen."

A scripture that one of our leaders prayed over him:

"Because Mike has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver Mike; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with Mike in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy Mike And show Mike My salvation." (Psalms 91: 14-16 NJKV)

"Jesus, Jehovah Rapha ... as said above we are all in agreement with Mike living a long satisfying life, and that You Lord have heard our prayers and pleas! Prince of Peace and Mighty Warrior, fight this battle like only You can. We speak shalom over our sister. We command fear and chaos to leave her now and we bless her to be calm and full of wisdom to make needed decisions. We command all foul, unclean, demonic presence to be out of their hospital room right now in the name of Jesus. We speak Jesus over this leukaemia. It's a trespasser on Mike's holy temple. Jesus' blood flows through his body and it's healing now! We tell the mountain of sickness to be removed and cast into the sea now! Mike will live and not die and declare the works of the Lord. Amen so be it."

And finally,

"May Lynn and Mike be saturated in God's love and life. May the next steps be very clear for them and the doctors. Lord, you know what's going on in Mike's body, please pass that knowledge onto the medical team and give them the wisdom to make the right decisions in regards to treatment and next steps. May all treatments target and hit the leukaemia cells and please supernaturally protect every healthy cell in Mike's body. Lord, we love you, we're in awe of your goodness and faithfulness to Mike and Lynn. Amen."

**

Thank you SO much for praying in agreement, SUMites, and may God pour oil on the flame of these prayers!

With love and thanks to you all,

Ann


SUM Nation Lynn Donovan Here Today

Hi Everyone, TWO AWESOME THINGS TO SHARE TODAY. 

First, the Lord showed up strong and right now Mike is on his way to recovery. Hallelujah. I'll keep you posted.

Marriage initiative
Second, I want to share an interview with Amy Morgan. Her fabulous ministry is The Marriage Initiative. And it's filled with so much helpful marriage information. The link is below. But I want to share some of the feedback from a listener about the interview. I hope you are encouraged in your unequally yoked marriage. 

(From a listener)

"I wanted to thank you again for the invite to the marriage initiative presentation. It was timely and there were things that were said that I so needed to hear. Lynn Donovan's experience is so similar to mine in some ways, and it was so inspiring to hear how God used her challenges with an unbelieving husband to change not only her own marriage but to positively impact others going through the same. It was so touching. I felt so seen and so much of what she talks about I have experienced. It hits at a hard time for me. This year has been such a struggle. Homeschooling hasn't been what I had hoped and has negatively impacted my mental health and not been the best for (her daughter) either. I've been down and unmotivated for some time now, and the transitions and moving have put me in a very "sad, stuck" place. It has affected every part of my life, including my walk with God. Hearing this today, and what to do about it, was very encouraging. I loved when Lynn said to step up bravely to be the spiritual leader of your family if your husband cannot or will not. I had not heard it put like that before and I needed to hear it. I also loved how she encouraged us by saying we become strong warriors in prayer and spiritual warfare as a spouse to an unbeliever. It made me realize how important it is to stay in prayer and scripture, to not give up, that I'm not alone. (Her husband) is a very "hardened" person and I often struggle with the way he perceives life and people and purpose, and this presentation just reminded me that I'm not doing this alone, that God is with me. 

I immediately purchased a copy of Winning Him without Words and I'm looking forward to reading it. 

Here is the link to the broadcast on YouTube.


Donovan Clan Update

Thank you for your love and support of this ministry as we share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

On April 27, 2024, my husband, Mike, was admitted to the hospital and diagnosed with acute Leukemia. He was sent to the ICU twice two weeks ago and literally was saved on Saturday and Monday nights by the physicians, his oncologist, nurses but especially through the prayers and hands of our Lord Jesus. It’s been two weeks of overwhelming..... Everything. 

Every word I have written in my books and the Bible remain absolutely true and I stand in peace upon the truth. I’ve seen the miracles already.

Mike will remain hospitalized for a number of weeks as they treat him and sort out a long-term treatment plan. It’s very complicated. His cancer was likely the result of his treatment two years ago.

MikeWith this said, I’ll be taking a break from my prayer ministry for May and June. I hope to have a new normal by the end of June and open my calendar again the first of July.

I’m so blessed there are leaders in this ministry who can and do step up to carry the torch. THANK YOU!! 

I’ll try to write once a month with an update. As of today, Mike has received his first round of Chemo and it’s working. But he is vulnerable to infections. Every day is a roller coaster of emotions, as you might imagine. My children were here last week and were a tremendous help. My mom is here for Mother's Day and my birthday. GOD IS SOOO GOOD. 

I truly feel the love of God and his hand holding mine and Mike’s as well. Thank you for your understanding. 

Love and hugs, Lynn Donovan


Happy Mother's Day

Hey there SUMites, Amanda here! It is Mother's Day here in the U.S., so I wanted pop on here and show some love and appreciation to all of the wonderful Moms out there! Mother's day 2 

Whether you are a mom of littles, an empty nester, a grandmother, foster mother, or spiritual mother.

Whether you carried your babies inside you or met them through the miracle of adoption.

Whether your babies are here on earth or in the arms of Jesus.

You were (and are) a chosen vessel! A sacred and vital part of God's creation. You personify unconditional, sacrificial, longsuffering love!

As a mother, you are a sweet whisper of the great gift that is God's love.

As I was contemplating what to write today, I started thinking about how often mothers are mentioned in the bible. Not just specific women, but the imagery of mothers and their love, comfort, protection, and care of children. You certainly don't have to look too hard to find a reference to this kind in the word!

Isaiah 66:13 says, "As a mother comforts her child, so I will comfort you."(NIV)

I just love how this passage uses the analogy of a mother to her child! This whole chapter in Isaiah is a really beautiful example, and worth a read! And we can see this all throughout the bible! In psalms, proverbs, Isaiah and more!

I believe that is because a mother's love is beautiful mystery.

How blessed we are to be women! To be mothers! To be chosen to bear this beautiful burden! 

Precious mommas, I hope every one of you reading this feels appreciated, seen, and loved today by those around you. If you don't, I hope you will remember how precious you are to Jesus. He counts every tear and hears every prayer.

Find time to rest in him this week. Even if it is just five minutes before you start your day.

And when the baby won't stop crying, the toddler has destroyed the living room, and the teenager won't talk to you, remember that you are a representative of God's love. You have a special calling in this life to grow disciples. You are blessed and you ARE important!!!

P.S. The picture in this post is the card my daughter made for me today :). If any mom reading this was not acknowledged in the way that you should have been, consider this your card too! It was made with love by the sweetest little hands, and you deserve it!

I love you all! Have a fantastic week!

Happy Mother's Day!


Boundaries -- A Whistle-Stop Tour

Hi SUMites Two pronged approach

Today we are wrapping up our series on boundaries. How about today we take a quick whistle-stop tour of where we've gone with this topic?

Ok, let's go!

In part one we talked about the fact we walk a two-pronged approach in our spiritually mismatched marriages. On the one hand, we throw ourselves into LOVING our spouse generously, but equally we stand up for certain non-negotiables.

In other words: We set certain boundaries in our marriage, where we don't allow our spouse to take certain important things away from us. That might sound tough but I believe it is a critical part of walking out a spiritually mismatched marriage well.

We talked about what kinds of boundaries are important to set. Here's what we agreed:

But with all that said, there's an important boundary that we, in turn, must respect in our spouse's life, and it's this: Honor their free will, and do not override it.

Well, that concludes our series on boundaries. My friends, there are a number of books on boundaries in marriage -- And while our series on this blog looked specifically at SUM-related issues, there are wider areas of marriage that call for boundaries. For example, it might be important in your marriage to set boundaries in the area of sex, verbal communication, finances, time together, friendships, addictions, extended family and so on. In some of these areas we might set boundaries naturally, but in other areas we might need to have a think. It's a big topic -- But thankfully one that these days is getting air-time. 

Do you have any final thoughts you would like to share on boundaries?

Love to you all,

Ann


An Area We Must Not Over-Step ......

Dear friends Close

Over the last week or so, we've been talking about boundaries in marriage. We've toughened ourselves up, discussing areas in which we must stand our ground.

It's important to stand our ground on certain issues, in certain ways. It's important to be strong.

However, now let's turn to a different side of this topic:

What lines must we not overstep when it comes to our spouse?

In what ways do we need to be careful not to negatively invade our spouse? 

It's worth mulling this over, as it is so tempting when we are in a SUM to try to control our spouse, especially to control their church attendance and beliefs. What about their friends or activities -- To what degree is it tempting to want to control that? To what degree is it ok to control those things for the sake of our spouse's spiritual health, and to what degree should we back off?

When we're married, we're one flesh. Whether or not we feel close to our spouse physically and emotionally, there's that spiritual truth.

... A man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh (Genesis 2:24, NIV).

Shared house, shared activities, shared bodies, shared life. And so that shared nature of daily, physical life, including bodily intimacy, suggests a boundaryless existence. This boundaryless existence -- if it plays out in a healthy sex life -- is illustrated here, also:

But since sexual immorality is occurring, each man should have sexual relations with his own wife, and each woman with her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control (1 Corinthians 7:2-5, NIV).

We might find when we're old we have to care for each other's bodies in other ways too -- like showering or washing the hair of an unwell spouse, acting as their eyes and ears if they go blind/deaf, or even wiping their butt!  

But even though we are one flesh, and share our bodies, we are two spirits, and this is important. We feel this keenly as SUMites, don't we? We are two separate spirits who each have free will when it comes to responding to God.

Free will is an invention of God, and one that feels a little painful, but we have to trust God knew what he was doing when he created it. If he had made us without free will, we would be like robots -- Like the movie 'The Stepford Wives' where everyone acted in submissive obedience. How boring for God that would be! No, instead, he gave us the choice to fall in love with him or walk away. And, in so doing he consciously does not overstep our free will.

He never forces us to church, he never forces us to believe, he never forces us to love him. 

And so in the same way, we are encouraged to honor our spouse's free will and allow them some leeway of their own in making a choice.

This has played out for me this week:

Right now, while Bryce and I are in France, I'd love him to come to church with me. In my mind I want him to help me meet the locals, stand by my side as my partner, and soak up the atmosphere of the worship and God's felt presence. Well, I asked him yesterday if he'd go with me, and he said 'No'. Oh. Well ((dusting myself off)), so be it. I won't guilt-trip or try to force it -- I'll leave him be, and I will do so cheerfully.

... And in that way I guess I'm respecting his free will, and a boundary of some sort.

Your thoughts? When do you think it's appropriate to control our spouses, and when is it not? 

Much love

Ann


Boundaries in Marriage, Part Five: Respect

Hello dear SUMites Boundaries 2

It's Ann here and I'm writing from France, where Bryce and I arrived yesterday. We're staying for a month in a town called Foix in the very south of France. It has always been a dream of mine to live in France, and so perhaps this is the closest I can get. 

If there are any French SUMites out there reading, please write to me, say hello and tell me where you're from! 

Our first activity in France has been to go to the supermarket to plan our next couple of days of food. We negotiated over every ... single ... item we put in the trolley LOL. Marriage! 

On the plus, this morning I got up early and went to the bakery a few doors down, to ask for "Deux croissants s'il vous plait" -- Two croissants please. I paid for them with my Euro coins and took them back for a lovely coffee-n-croissant breakfast with my hubby. Ahhh.

**

Anyway, back to SUM matters! We're talking about boundaries that are relevant to spiritually mismatched marriage, and we're now on the last boundary in this series: Respect. Today's post is about asking our spouse to respect us but, of course, it works both ways: We should make every effort to respect our spouse, which is something we've talked about a lot on this blog.

How much disrespect or criticism of our faith is too much? Well, as carriers of the Gospel we are going to have persecution. Jesus said --

If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also (John 15:20, NIV)

He also said some of that persecution will come from our family --

Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law— (Matthew 10:34-35, NIV)

And --

Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you (Matthew 5:11-12, NIV)

Persecution is a natural outworking of what we carry. Our family members won't always 'get' us, and sometimes things will be said that hurt. We will feel alien, sometimes. Fine. It's the deal.

Jesus got whipped, stripped, and crucified, and, interestingly, he did not put up boundaries there. He allowed his tormentors to cross that boundary because it was God's purpose. Similarly, for a season, we may find that people make fun of our faith or are unfairly critical of it, and we might quietly ride that out until those people come to a softer place.

However, if it's happening in our marriage, and if it's happening too much, there can come a point where we say "That's enough," as a way of standing up for God's purpose in marriage. It is God's will that spouses honor each other, and that's ultimately the kind of marriage we want to fight for.

I guess what I'm saying, then, is that a little persecution will happen, but there can come a point where too much might call for a boundary to be put in place. After all, it is possible to disagree but still respect each other.

Every marriage is different, and some in our community are unfortunately in very difficult marriages. My heart goes out to you if that's the case for you - I know it is an extremely difficult path. If disrespect is part of that, it could be time to say "Stop, or I will need to remove myself from you for a time." And, of course, we encourage those who are enduring abuse of any sort -- including emotional abuse -- to seek help and not stay in that situation.

I guess it's all a balancing act, and one that takes discernment and prayer. But our hope in this community is that -- where we possibly can -- we can grow healthy marriages where there is respect despite the faith difference. 

Do any thoughts spring to mind for you about this topic? If so, I look forward to chatting in the comments. 

Much love.

Ann


The Power of Remembering!

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Photo courtesy of Tara Winstead and Pexels

Hello, Ian from Sydney here.

As many of you might recall, I’ve been reading the Psalms most days for the last few years. I’ve now forgotten how long it’s been as I never tire of their goodness, wisdom, and passion.

As you’d expect, across 150 psalms, most of which are written by only a handful of people, there would be words, phrases, and concepts repeated. Two of the words I find often repeated and sometimes together are the notions of God’s ‘steadfast love’ and ‘faithfulness’. Some Psalms even repeat them several times in the same Psalm. Psalms 31, 32 and 33 in the ESV are great for the repetition of both words.

Choose to Remember

Many times in our lives we find ourselves in a similar situation to one that occurred previously. For example, a friend of mine has recently retired from teaching and is now thinking through what’s next. I asked him, how often he’d been in a similar situation during his life and to reflect on what God did in those situations.

SUMites, God is faithful. He’s demonstrated it repeatedly in our lives in a variety of ways. His faithfulness reflects His steadfast love for us.

If you find yourself in a moment of whatever, perhaps it’s in your marriage, cast your eyes back to how God acted last time you were in a similar moment. Trust that He will come through again this time. Why do I know?

Because of His faithfulness. He can’t stop loving us. He simply can’t. Because it’s His essence, it’s who He is. God is love! Choose to trust Him because He is faithful.

Go well, dear SUMites. May I encourage you to dive into a Psalm or two.

Warmest blessings.


He is Our Rewarder

Hello my friends, hope you had a nice weekend! Peak district

Bryce and I are currently in the north of England spending two days with my sister, who lives in the most delightful cottage in equally delightful countryside (the Peak District). My sister, an architect, restores ancient churches for a job -- some of which come from the Norman era, the 11th century. What an amazing job.

Speaking of old churches, in the middle of our boundaries series, I found the following comment from Ian to be a little 'oasis', and it fit with the fact I am currently visiting a lot of ancient churches -- so I wanted to pop it on here today.

Ian said, in response to my last post:

"I, you and others in this group have experienced God's faithfulness to us and our marriage when we do set the boundaries you outline.

Fi and I are home together a lot these days and my office is an 'open room' (no door), so having time with the Lord can often be interrupted. One thing I do each week is go to the prayer room at our church so I can have complete uninterrupted time with the Lord. I love Prayer Rooms. They're a liminal space, a thin place where prayers have soaked into the floorboards, walls and the soil underneath for hundreds of years (well my church that is). Fi understands how important this time is for me."

I just loved that.

It is true: If we are courageous, and fight for the things of God that are precious -- In this case, these positive boundaries -- he will reward us. 

... For he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him (Hebrews 11:6, NKJV)

We take a lot of brave steps for God in our spiritually mismatched marriages, he is well-pleased with those acts of faith, and will reward us. Many of us in this community can attest to that.

... So let's keep making space and time for him in our marriages. Like Ian, let's seek out quiet spaces, places where we can find him -- Churches and prayer rooms included!

SUMites, may we all have a beautiful week with the Lord, seeking out the things of him that are precious; and I'll continue the boundaries series later in the week. Bye for now!

Ann


Boundaries in Marriage, Part Four: Bringing the Gospel to Your Children

Hi everyone Boundaries 2

A few times over this past year I've received an email from a young person who has found themselves in a spiritually mismatched marriage. In each of those cases, they have expressed their fear about having children: "What do I do when it comes to teaching our kids? Should I even have children? I am fearful of whether I have the ability raise them in faith."

Yikes -- Those thoughts are so hard.

The first thing I say is: "YES, you should so have kids! God will sustain you and surround you as you raise them in faith,"

I tell them that Jesus in them is so strong that they have every ability to walk in victory in this area.

But second, there is the question of what are our rights and responsibilities when raising young children? Say I am a Christian, and my spouse is atheist, what should I fight for in terms of my desire to raise them in faith, and what should I allow my spouse to bring in? This is another area where it's helpful to figure out what some appropriate boundaries might look like.

I really liked Amanda's comment this week, where she said one boundary she and her hubby have agreed on is that neither of them disrespect each other's beliefs. 

I think the same can be a good rule when raising children. Each spouse in a marriage may feel strongly that their own views are correct. They might even feel strongly that the other's views will damage the kids: Certainly being Christian, it would mortify us to think of our spouse expressing atheist views to our kids; but, to be fair, an atheist might feel the same way: It might mortify them to think of a Christian parent bringing faith to kids.

Aggh!!! Catch 22 -- What's to be done? How do you walk this one out honorably to your spouse, but faithfully to God? 

Bryce and I have friends who are in a SUM with young kids. The Dad is the believer. He takes them to church, which he finds very difficult to do solo, but he does it. However, I was heartened when the mum told me once, "When I'm reading books to the kids about the world, I say to them "Your Dad believes God made this... Whereas other people believe xyz." She said it matter-of-factly. I guess they've fostered an atmosphere of respect.

So in terms of rights and responsibilities, here's a good way forward --

First of all, courageously bring faith to your children, even if your spouse reacts negatively. Be brave, be bold. We have to be! If this is currently challenging for you I pray boldness into your soul!

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6, KJV).

It may be that it causes unhappiness for your spouse; if so, express to them respectfully that you do have a right to share your views with your child and expose them to faith so that they can make an informed choice of their own. However, to be fair, if you ask for that from your spouse, you should really give them the same courtesy. In the spirit of walking out a respectful marriage, don't muzzle your spouse, just as you would hope they wouldn't muzzle you. Just explain to your children that you each see things differently but you respect and love each other.

Then, pray your heart out. Prayer is the most powerful thing you'll ever do for your children anyway. Pray for protection of your children's ears, eyes and hearts. And fear not, because what's in you is stronger than what's in the world --

But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world (1 John 4:4, NLT)

Our children will always come across other views, but as long as you have made sure they have plentiful access to the Gospel, you have done your bit.

Tough stuff! For those of you who've walked this out, how has all of this gone for you? Let's share our ups and downs in the comments.

Love,

Ann


Boundaries in Marriage, Part Three: Get Me To Church!

My friends, Boundaries 2

We're writing about boundaries in marriage; and to catch up, here are the previous posts:

Boundaries in marriage: Part one

Boundaries in marriage: Part two

On Monday we talked about how important it is to guard our own oil -- that is, guard our own connection with God, our own flame for him, our own infilling of the Holy Spirit. In a spiritually mismatched marriage our spouse can pull us away from that -- even if they don't mean to -- so we do have to take steps to fight for it.

So, what are some healthy boundaries that we can put in place to protect our own oil?

For me, this has taken two forms:

(1) I fight to protect my personal time with God

(2) I fight to protect my connections with the church

Fight to protect time with God

Our spouses will often, quite rightly, want our time; and in honor of marriage we should give that to them generously -- IF they want it. But that can come at the expense of our quiet time with God. Remember COVID lockdown? I don't know about you, but I struggled to connect with God when Bryce and I were constantly in each other's space. Well, Bryce and I are once again together 24/7 now as he is not working, so I am currently having to think through what is reasonable for me to ring-fence, in terms of my own personal time.

A couple of weeks ago Bryce -- newly unemployed -- came into the bedroom where I was sat reading my Bible. He was ready to start the day -- And I was in my God space. "So, how's this going to go?" he said. "There's you, sitting in bed reading, and here's me, wanting to do stuff with you -- Can we chat about this?"

"Ok!" I said. "Look, in the mornings before I hang out with you I'm going to need a cup of tea, a cup of coffee, then another coffee and four chapters of the Bible. After that I'm all yours!"

"Mm."

"I need it."

"Mm. OK"

So that's how it goes. He's since been coming in and saying "Are you on your first, second or third cup so far? Just so I can plan..."

I have told him it's non-negotiable; that I won't be well and happy unless I have that time. And that is my boundary.

I know other SUMites have said they've been criticised by their spouses when in prayer or with a Bible. Perhaps a boundary there might be to swallow the fear of their views and press in: Keep the Bible open, and keep going. After all, what harm does it do them? Press in to know the Lord, against all the odds!

Oh, that we might know the LORD! Let us press on to know him (Hosea 6:3, NLT)

Fight to protect connections with the church

The second boundary is around church. I think many of us have had a season in our SUM walk when we've stayed away from church for weeks on end to please our spouse. Uggh, well I have.

But the longer this SUM walk continues, the more I become like tough old boots on this one, and my boots must be on the ground in church. Attending church -- in some form -- is so critical to our spiritual life, and to the Body of Christ, that it's perfectly OK to say to our spouse that our church attendance is non-negotiable.

In fact, if a spouse is saying to their significant other that they cannot attend church, I would argue that's the kind of control that we should be careful not to bow to. After all, God loves freedom and wants us to be free; not bound in chains to the whims of another human being. 

Us SUMites need church more than most. Because we have unbelief at home we need to put ourselves into the oasis of church to keep ourselves spiritually alive. The same goes for Christian friendships and connections who pour spiritual influence into souls: Keep those relationships thriving -- As long as they don't take away anything from our precious marriage.

With all that said, then, we hold tight to those good things that help our faith life -- Because they are our oil.

My friends, have you had to put boundaries in place around church or your time with God? I'm looking forward to hearing about your experiences! 

Love

Ann


Boundaries in Marriage, Part Two: Hold onto Your Oil

Hi all Boundaries

Ok, let's dive into the topic of boundaries in spiritually mismatched marriage.  Have you been thinking about what kind of boundaries are important in a SUM? I've been jotting down various ideas over the last few days.

(And in case you missed it, here's part one in this series)

To start off with, let's take a look at this parable from Jesus. Do you see boundaries in it?

The Kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

At midnight the cry rang out: 'Here's the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!' Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.' 'No', they replied, 'there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.'

But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. Later the others also came. 'Sir! Sir!' they said. 'Open the door for us!' But he replied, 'I tell you the truth, I don't know you.' Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour. (Matthew 25:25, NIV).

I know as we're a Bible-reading bunch, many of us will have read this parable several times over the years. However, a parable will often have more than one lesson to it, and sometimes you see something completely new in it -- Which is what happened to me a few days ago. I happened to read it as part of my daily reading and suddenly thought 'Oh, this is about boundaries!'

See, I had always thought of this parable in terms of keeping yourself filled with the Holy Spirit. And that is certainly what it's about. But what I had never noticed before was the fact that half the virgins were trying to take the oil from the other half. And the wise virgins had to put their foot down and say 'No, that crosses a line.' In other words, the wise virgins had to put a boundary in place to protect their most precious thing.

What was their most precious thing? It was their oil, which enabled their lamps to burn, without which they could not access their master. It was their Holy Spirit, their very source of life. 100% precious.

Yes, it would have been seemingly 'generous' of them to give up a little of their oil. But the outcome of that would actually have been disastrous. So they took a step, and protected their own access to Jesus at the risk of being unloving.

The moral might be for us that we need to put boundaries around holding tight our access to Holy Spirit, our infilling of the Holy Spirit, our time with God, our ability to worship him and keep him close, and our very source of LIFE, at the risk of being a little less 'generous' to our spouse.

This can involve a little bit of a fight, because our spouse doesn't yet see the value of the oil. They naturally might want to pull us away from the oil. 'Stop reading the Bible now, you've had enough of that!' 'Turn that worship music off!'

Practically, then, what kinds of things should we fight for in a marriage in order to keep our oil? 

How do we stay considerate to our spouse without giving up our oil?

Have you had to fight to hold on to a particular thing in your faith life?

I might pause there and see what you have to say in the comments. And then we'll continue on Wednesday.

Love you all!

Ann


Spiritually Mismatched Marriage -- A Two-Pronged Approach

Hello friends, Ann here. Two pronged approach

I'm writing from Singapore airport, where Bryce and I are sipping coffee and waiting to fly to England. Once there, I have a week with my parents to look forward to, and much-anticipated time with my siblings.

Cannot wait -- I love, love, love being back in England.

Meanwhile, what to write next for SUM?

Well, over the next week or so, I'd like to reflect on a particular topic that's critical for us: Setting good boundaries in our marriages.

"Have you heard of boundaries?" I asked Bryce this week. "Nope," he said. 

A boundary can be defined as a line in the sand, where you don't allow someone to take something precious from you or invade your life in a negative way. It works the other way too. Your spouse might need to set boundaries with you, not allowing you to negatively invade or take something from them.

Too few boundaries are not a good thing, but neither are too many boundaries. What's more, any healthy marriage - or relationship, for that matter -- has boundaries in it. 

But of course, in a spiritually mismatched marriage, healthy boundaries have to address some specific areas, and are an essential part of staying alive faith-wise. I think of it as a two-pronged approach. We do two things:

(1) LOVE our spouse well

(2) Set appropriate boundaries.

LOVE involves us doing everything prescribed here:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, NIV)

We need this prescription, and we need to make this our great mission as SUMites, because that's what God asks of us: To love others.

But love doesn't mean being a doormat, and it mustn't come at the expense of our own spiritual health. It is possible to be too kind, too patient, too honorable with a person whose behaviors are unhealthy for us.

So with that thought in mind, here's a question to start us off:

What kinds of boundaries need to be put in place in a spiritually mismatched marriage? 

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Love to you all,

Ann


LIVE Training for Spiritual Enforcer: Part II

1 med Res Enforcer Front CoverHello SUM Nation. Lynn Donovan here.

Next week I'll offer the SECOND of two LIVE video training sessions that expand on the teaching in Spiritual Enforcer. This will include an open Q&A at the end. April 24th at 11 am PACIFIC, I'll cover the concepts of closing open doors, the benefits we receive and the Spirit of Wisdom (my personal favorite).

It's not too late to read the book and join the fun. You can buy the eBook, paperback or audio book here. 

If you gave during our annual giving in November, you have received an email with the Zoom invitation. If you want to attend purchase a pass; click here. 

Write down your questions. Admittingly, I don't know everything, but I've gained an enormous amount of effective strategies that truly make a difference in our faith battles. 

THIS is worth your time. THIS is worth every effort. THIS training is the real deal.

Jesus needs us, His Church, to discover our power and authority and to bring the Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. I can't wait to share as I've already gained more info since the writing of this book.

Love you all. Be expectant, filled with hope and walk in joy. Love and blessings, Lynn


A Little Testimony

BLOG POST 1

Hi friends, Amanda here! I don't know about you all, but I cannot get enough of stories where God fills a big need in a big way! So today I want to share a big something God did for me and my family last week.

Last week my washing machine quit working. It was mid-cycle with our large bath sheets and just gave out! Let me tell you, hauling sopping wet towels up a set of stairs should count as a week's work out! Haha! The next day I called our repairman and prayed he could fix it as he has done many times before. He showed up right after lunch and got to work looking at the inner workings of the washer. It took him no more than 10 minutes to reach a verdict. In his words, 'This machine is dead." Not only that, but because the washer and dryer were a stacked set, we would have to replace the whole thing! He was very kind and hated to give me that kind of news, but there was nothing else he could do. I thanked him, paid him, and he left.

Then I started to worry.

I wish I could say that I walked in perfect peace and stayed totally calm, but I didn't. I was wringing my hands, pacing the house, and fretting over having to tell Daniel - who was working 7 days a week - that we had a new expense... a BIG one! 

I started talking to God, "How are we going to afford this? Where are we going to wash clothes in the meantime? Where are we going to find a replacement set? God, WHAT AM I GOING TO DO?!"

He responded to me so calmly, "You're going to trust me."

"Okay, but God I-"

"No buts, TRUST ME!"

Every time waves of worry would wash over me, I would hear him say those two words over and over, "Trust me."

After my initial panic, I messaged a group of local homeschooling moms I have been blessed to become good friends with and let them know the situation. I also posted on good ol' Facebook asking everyone to keep their eyes open. I started scrolling Facebook Marketplace and worrying some more. The price for a decent set, even second hand, was really going to hurt us. 

Within a few hours, one of those mom friends I had contacted texted that she had found a FREE dryer for us! All we had to do was come and get it! At the same time (literally within the same hour), another friend from the same group texted and offered us a BRAND NEW washer for a fraction of a fraction of what they normally cost! Again, all we had to do was pick it up! my friend with the washer said, "My husband has been waiting to bless someone with this. He just didn't know who!"

My washer broke on Wednesday night, by Friday evening I had a whole new set!!

I could feel God smiling throughout the whole ordeal. I could practically hear him chuckling and saying, "See? I told you to trust me!"

This was a reminder I needed more than I realized. Our needs matter to him, even our regular, boring, every day, household needs! They matter! 

If there is something you are in need of this week, talk to him about it! No matter how small you think it may be. I promise you, he cares about the little things too.

If you would like, share a need in the comments so we can all pray for each other's needs! Have a blessed week my friends!


A prayer for you

Dear SUMites Heart

This Friday, I pray this for you:

In the name of Jesus,

I pray for His comfort to flood your soul.

I pray for the gift of faith for you.

I pray that your faith will be cast-iron solid, unshakeable, unmoveable, unmeltable.

I pray that He will fill the loneliness in your heart, and delight you with His romance.

I pray that your ears will be fine-tuned to hear His voice.

I pray for hope to fill your mind, and your imagination to be sanctified.

I pray that every place the sole of your foot treads, He will give you, and I pray that your faith will be catching to others like wildfire.

I pray that you will grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ.

And that all these same things will spread to your family.

In His name.

Amen.

**

Have a beautiful weekend, SUM family!

Ann xx


Thank you Dear Friends

THANK YOUSumites,

Some of you have been readers here for more than a decade and some only a short time. We have shared faith, our families and lives, difficult situations and so much hope in Jesus. Today, I want to say thank you. Thank you for learning with me as I grew in faith and in my marriage. Thank you for your precious time and your trust. I hold my responsibility to lead from a place of wholly relying on the Word of God, God's grace, wisdom, and the love of Jesus Christ with great reverence.

I want to thank you for every encouraging word you have spoken over me. Thank you for the emails and prayers you sent my way.

THANK YOU!

I also want to thank you for the many recent emails and notes about Enforcer. Many of you have shared how you've been greatly encouraged through the book. I spoke to someone last week, a precious daughter of God, who said, "My eyes were opened to what I am really facing in my marriage." So many of you have plowed through the challenging chapters to uncover areas that the Lord is now revealing where change is needed. And many of you have been galvanized into action to see the victories and promised that the Lord has for you. 

You have been so brave!

Your hunger for God, over all else, is such a beautiful gift to our King. 

Well done my family. WELL DONE. Keep marching. Swing your sword. Wear your armor. God is moving with such amazing change. Hang on as we are going to watch His hand move and destroy the evil that we have faced. And we will help as we pray and believe.

Today, I bless you with greater courage, greater awareness of the Lord's presence in your life, and with so MUCH HOPE for your future and family. In the Mighty name of Yeshua, our Lord and Savior. AMEN

Blessings and hugs, Lynn