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Have a BLESSED Resurrection Weekend, the best Free Gift ever given.
Welcome to my new blog! It's my old Facebook format, but with a slightly new title and graphics that are a little more fun. I will continue to share on Facebook, but I hope you subscribe, so you won't miss any posts.
My fun fact today is that I am almost through with the second Tale in Book III of my Tresia series. (Each book has three separate, but connected tales.) It takes place in the Highlands of Tresia and this photo of the heather covered Scottish Highlands has been my inspiration. I have always enjoyed stories that take place in Scotland so I have been having a lot of fun with one!
The story also has a train that runs through the hills. While writing yesterday, I was reminded that it was the 25th anniversary of my dad's move to Heaven. Daddy liked planes and trains and often took us to see this one in the park in Lawrence, KS. Since I'm spending a lot of time packing for our move in July, I came across this photo of us. Yes, that's me. I was a Daddy's Girl. Now I love to think about Stacie and her grandpa taking fantastic rides on Heaven's rails. I know they would both love this story. They were and still are a big part of my inspiration and love of books and writing. Have fun in Heaven today, Daddy and Stacie!
Y'all have a Blessed and fun day, too.
A friend of mine, Georgia R. Wilson, recently published a speculative fiction book, "Lost Legend of Vahilele." I had the privilege of writing a blurb on the back cover. As many writers do, Georgia changed it from its working title, "Rampart of the Phoenix." I was partial to the original, but it is her book, so I tried to be supportive of her final choice. It's what writing buddies do.
This week, in one of my daily devotions by Catherine Marshall, the word rampart came up again, in a different context. Her subject was spiritual warfare, and she referred to the story in Genesis 2 of Abraham and Isaac as they climbed Mt. Moriah. Marshall speculated that Abraham probably listened to the devil all the way up the mountain, tempting him to doubt the God who had made a promise to him. God told Abraham that he would be the Father of many nations, and here God was asking him to kill his only covenant son. (Side note: Dennis wrote a great song about this story.)
Abraham may have been struggling with his thoughts as Marshall stated, but I tend to believe that the Father of Faith had no doubt that God had a plan. Abraham trusted Him and knew God would not break his promise. But either way, whether he battled doubt and fear from satan, or his faith was strong and steady in spite of the circumstances, something was happening on the other side of the mountain.
God's provision was climbing, too, toward the same altar. The ram had been provided and began his journey up the mountain at the same time Abraham and Isaac started theirs. The message? Our job is to obey and trust that God has a plan. God's job is the "ram-part."
That may be kind of funny, but it's worth thinking about. I looked up rampart in the dictionary and the definition in light of this story is interesting. Rampart: A solid protective barrier, a broad embankment, a strong fortified place surrounded with defenses. A safeguard or support.
Doesn't that sound like what God provides for us every day? Especially when we struggle to understand his instructions? When nothing makes sense to our minds? He protects, strengthens, fortifies, and defends. We run to Him and find support and safety. Next time the devil tells you lies, and everything he says is a lie, remember that God has provided a way of escape even if you can't see it yet. The answer is on the other side of the mountain making its way toward you. Let God take care of the ram-part. Our loving Heavenly Father will set you high above on His rampart of love.
Natural rampart photo: from headland on the west coast of Vatulele, setting of Georgia Wilson's book.
I have shared this before, but this month marks the 45th Anniversary of this team's KS State Basketball tourney 2nd Place finish. I'm partial to #12. I'm at the Carolina Christian Writers Conference, but Dennis is home watching basketball. His favorite time of year.
When you've been married to a basketball coach for over 40 years, you know that March is all about the tournaments. Dennis is watching in our camper already. These are a few of my fav March Madness photos, past and present. Rock Chalk, TarHawk!
J.A. McPhail is the author of five books, has been married to Dennis for 43 years, enjoys living near the North Carolina mountains. and is an avid collector of books and book related stuff.