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Strange Dreams Lead to New Ideas

Last night I had some vivid dreams. I dreamed about my husband. I dreamed that he was at work with me and we were working with young children. He seemed to enjoy the time with them better than I did. Then I started\ dreaming all over the place and my mind was trying to make sense of it all. I became suddenly confused about what was real and what wasn’t. I dreamed that I lost my phone. When I awoke for real, the first thing I did was look to see if my phone was on the side table and it was. Now I knew I was out of dream world and into the real world. So what was going on in my dreams that they were so vivid yet so confusing?

I think what my dream was trying to do was to try to help me find a good topic for this blog as well as give me some fodder for my current NaNoWriMo project. The hours I slept did both. After finding my phone, I had the ideas for what I was going to write for both. I have ideas for two scenes in my next book that I now call Sunrise on the Mississippi (book 8 of the Locket Saga). The dream sequences are no direct part of this blog nor of the book. What they did do was remind me the value of the muse in the writing process, especially writing the first draft.

Yesterday I wrote a scene in my book, but realized that I also needed an earlier related scene. I just didn’t know how I was going to make it happen. Also I started two topics for this blog that didn’t seem to be exactly what I wanted to write for this blog today. So I slept on it and the dreams were the result of allowing my muse to take some time to play.

What Made the Muse Rebel

I think it all started with something I did a few days ago. I was teaching some students about metaphors and similes. We worked on poems about feelings.

They went something like this:

Love is pink.

It smells like apple blossoms on a tree.

It tastes like chocolate in my Easter basket.

It sounds like birds twitter-pating.  (a term from the Bambi movie)

It feels like a baby bunny’s white fur.

It looks like a field of white clover.

It makes me feel alive again.

I believe this triggered my muse to complain that I haven’t allowed her to play for a while. The past few months I have been neglecting her. I have been editing old material, researching historical events and writing nonfiction. Even as I started writing this new book, I haven’t given the muse much room. I have been organizing the material that I researched, but not allowing my creative juices to flow. Today that ends.

Today I take heed of my muse’s complaint and give her a chance to play. Today my NaNoWriMo project turns a page and I will allow my muse free range on the pages of my manuscript. Today she can play all over that book’s draft by allowing her the ability use the five senses to create metaphors and similes and most importantly, emotions for the reader to experience.

Can I Allow the Muse out more often?

I think it a shame that I have kept my muse under such a short leash for such a long time. NaNoWriMo is a great way to give the muse a chance to do her think, but I really need to find ways of allowing her to play more often. One of the areas where I can utilize her talents is in identifying with my readers. Most people buy books not because of need or rational thought, but because they are moved by emotions. When this NaNoWriMo project is done (at least for the day), I am going to look into how I can create emotion for potential readers that encourages them to purchase one or more of my books.I am sure there are more ways to tap into the muse for better writing results.

When and why do you let your muse out to play?

 

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Writing While Watching Irma

This weekend, I had been watching the progress of the catastrophic storm that Irma has become make its way up the coast of Florida. I am writing this on Sunday, so the storm has just started coming onto land in Florida. From the looks of it, the storm will be hugging the west coast of the state maintaining its strength as a category 4 storm most of the state’s length. My prayers are with the residents of that state just as they were with residents of the Houston area during Hurricane Harvey.

 

Here in Missouri, the weather is perfect. Temperatures are in the upper seventies and low eighties with low humidity. Ironically, here in Missouri, we could use some of rain (haven’t had any for almost three weeks) and it doesn’t look as though we will be getting any of Irma’s rain.

Living Today, The Power of Now, Live on Kindle

Cover B

My latest book, Living Today, the Power of Now, is now live on Kindle. The book is only $2.99 on Kindle (higher cost in print, of course) and like all of my books, it is free if you use Kindle Unlimited.

Final Edits on Two New Books

Yesterday I got the final edits back of two new books. These books I will have to work making the changes my editor recommends and then start preparing for publication. I have developed a pretty good system of getting the editing and formatting in print and in digital formats done. I also need get a good cover for my books and then they will be ready to be launched. These two books will be Book VI of the Locket Saga: The Anvil and a nonfiction book: Write a Book To Ignite Your Business.

Other Books in the Works

In addition to the edits on the two books already mentioned, I am also working on the second draft of Book VII of the Locket Saga: Two Rivers.

 

In addition, I am thinking about what I am going to write about in Book VIII of the Locket Saga (the exact title has not yet been determined. I was talking with someone about the ideas that I have for this next book. One of the things that I found during my research was about what happened during the first steamboat trip down the Mississippi. I’ll tell more about that history at a later date.

Finally, there is marketing both online and in person. I have been working a lot on twitter during the past few weeks, but one of my main events is coming up. Next weekend, I will be in Marionville, Missouri at the Meeting Place on the main road in the town from 11-3pm. I will be signing and selling not only my new book, Living Today, The Power of Now in print but also the other books that I have written. These books include all five novels of the Locket Saga, Simply Vegetable Gardening, Using Diatomaceous Earth around the House and Yard, and Help from Kelp.

My life goes on the same as usual and I will continue with all the writing that I am doing.. However, everything is not life as usual for everyone. People are still cleaning up from Hurricane Harvey and soon the cleanup will begin in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. There are ways that we all can help from praying, sending monitary support and volunteering with the cleanup.


(Scripture Reference: The book of Exodus)

israelites in captivity

The Israelites spent over 400 years in Egypt after Joseph’s intervention on their part. For a while things went well for them. They seemed to prosper there, however, as the years passed, the Pharaoh didn’t remember Joseph’s dreams and his help to Egypt.

The king saw how the Israelites were blessed in material goods and healthy children and he was afraid that they would take over the country. He determined that he would control them to the point that he asked that all the baby boys be killed so that the Israelites would have to marry their boys so that the Israelites would assimilate into the Egyptian culture and would no longer separate themselves in Egypt.

Egypt is associated with our sinful nature. Something similar has happened in the US in recent years. We have played around with sin. Even we Christians have seemed to have forgotten the positive effects that God has played in this country. Now the Non-Christians of this country see how God often blesses Christians and the world around us becomes jealous over our blessing from God.

The children of Israel spent more than four hundred years in captivity. For over 400 years, the children of Israel begged God to deliver them from their servitude. Today, Christians in our country are seeing their rights and blessings eroding before them.

When God finally rescued them from their servitude, the Israelites continued to have their doubts about God. God kept them wandering in the wilderness until Joshua trained up a generation who would not doubt God’s promises.

IMG_8330 final copy

As Author Cygnet Brown, Donna Brown  has  published  several nonfiction books including Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener, Using Diatomaceous Earth around the House and Yard, and Help from Kelp.

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga,  Book IV of the Locket Saga: Sailing Under the Black Flag is also on sale now!

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and buy her books, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


joseph and his brothers

During our first week of this series, we learned that bad things happened to Adam because of his own sin. His own sin separated him from God. If you haven’t yet read this, read When God Seems to Turn His Head, Adam’s Story https://1authorcygnetbrown.wordpress.com/2016/07/06/when-god-seems-to-turn-away-adams-story/ The next week, we learned from Noah’s experience that sometimes God’s wrath is what causes bad things to happen to us.  However, his wrath never comes before he patiently allows us to repent. Check out when God Seems to Turn his Head-Noah. https://1authorcygnetbrown.wordpress.com/2016/07/13/when-god-seems-to-turn-his-head-noah/ Last week from Abraham, we learned that bad things sometimes happen to us because we don’t wait on God’s timing. We try to help God by doing things ourselves and having Ishmaels around to remind us of our impatience. If yyou haven’t read it yet read last week’s post here.. What Happens When We Try to Help God with his Plans https://1authorcygnetbrown.wordpress.com/2016/07/13/when-god-seems-to-turn-his-head-noah/

In other cases, bad things happen to us because of what people do. Joseph had a promise from God. He was his father’s favorite son from his favorite wife. Joseph was a dreamer who had several visions that his family would bow to him. He made certain that everyone knew about his dream. This made everyone angry with him including his father. His brothers became so jealous of him that they sold him into slavery. Joseph was a good honest man. His master, Potiphar put him in a place of authority in his home. Potiphar’s wife wanted to sleep with Joseph, but Joseph respected his master too much and refused. Potiphar’s wife was so angry with his refusal that she lied to her husband and accused Joseph of making a pass at her.

Potiphar sent Joseph to prison. The king’s butler and baker went to prison and they had dreams. Joseph correctly interpreted their dreams. One was punished with death while the other returned to his position in the king’s house. He forgot about Joseph’s interpretation of his dream until the king started having dreams and he told the king about how Joseph could interpret dreams. When Joseph interpreted the king’s dream, the king made Joseph his number two man. There were seven years of prosperity just as Joseph had said. Then during the seven predicted years of drought and famine, Joseph’s family came back into the picture because they needed the king’s grain to survive. When Joseph’s brothers discovered that Joseph was still alive, they were frightened. Rather than being vindictive, Joseph told them that what they had meant for evil, God made for good. He told his brothers, “What you have meant for evil, God has destined for the good.

 

In Romans 8:28 it says, “All things work to the good of those who love the Lord who are called according to his purpose.”

Joseph realized that God had a purpose for his life. He knew that no matter what happened to him God would live up to his promises because Joseph knew God had a plan for his life and all that he was going through had something to do with that plan. Learn God’s purpose for your life by asking God to reveal that purpose to you and do it. Remember, that as long as you are still breathing, your purpose is not yet fulfilled on this earth. Have faith in the fact that God always has reasons for delaying his promises. Trust him. He has everything under control.

(Scripture reference: Genesis 37, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45)

IMG_8330 final copy

As Author Cygnet Brown, Donna Brown  has  published  several nonfiction books including Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener, Using Diatomaceous Earth around the House and Yard, and Help from Kelp.

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga,  Book IV of the Locket Saga: Sailing Under the Black Flag is also on sale now!

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and buy her books, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com

 


cross

If you have read any of my recent blogs, you know that I was on a working vacation up in Corry, Pennsylvania to visit family and to participate in several events including Corry Fest and a book signing at the Corry Public Library. I had a great time. Everyone treated me like a celebrity. Most of the way home I was basking in the afterglow of the good time that I had there, however, shortly after I crossed into Missouri, at the 18-mile marker on Hwy 57, the rear driver’s side tire blew. The tire blew in front of the weigh station and I pulled the truck off the side of the road to inspect the damage. The tire was in ribbons. I would have to have the tire changed, but after about 12 hours of driving I was too tired to change the tire myself.

In the past I might have panicked, but not this time. I knew that God had everything under control so I did the first thing that came to my mind. I called a friend where I live. I was still 3 hours for home, but calling him seemed to be the right thing to do. After discussing my options we agreed that the best thing that I could do was call 911 (Incidentally, I later learned that I would have had a quicker response if I would have dialed *55 which has access to the highway patrol.) After a couple of calls, I talked to the highway patrol which said that they were sending someone to come help me. Before the highway patrol arrived, however, the inspector from the weigh station came out to help me with the tire. He was trying to loosen the first lug nut when he broke the tire iron. We had no choice but to call for roadside assistance.

I Saw Good in the Situation Immediately

You would think that at this point I would be panicking, but I looked at the bright side of the situation and saw God’s hand in the events. The tire blew in front of the weigh station so I was able to pull off on the shoulder where the off ramp of the weigh station was. The inspector called and asked that the weigh station be closed while my truck was there so I had room to maneuver around the truck as did anyone helping me.

About this time a highway patrol officer arrived and let me sit in his car in the air conditioning while we waited for the road side assistance. The inspector was off duty so he went home. When the truck offering the roadside assistance arrived, we learned that the problem was more than just a blown tire. I discovered that the bearings and the axle were the real problem. He said that the extreme wabble of the wheel caused the tire to blow. (I had to have the front passenger bearings replaced recently, so I knew that he was telling me the truth.) My truck would need to be towed into their garage if I were to get my truck back on the road.

About a half hour later the tow truck arrived and my truck was loaded on the flatbed trailer and taken to their shop. They said that they could have it done by the next mornig so it was in my best interest to spend the night at a motel.

The Silver Lining

In this situation, I found favor all the way and I could see God’s hand in all of it. Everyone who tried to help me were extremely kind. I made it a point to thank the highway patrol officer for helping me because I knew that his was a thankless job. His response was that he was just doing his job. My response to him was that I knew that he didn’t get thanked like he should for his job and that I wanted to make it a point to thank him for his work. He said that he appreciated it.

The people at the garage helped me not only find a motel in which to stay, but also drove me to the motel and brought my truck to me. In addition, rather than charging me extra for anything, they actually shaved expenses for me so that my bill wouldn’t be too outrageous.

In addition, God provided more than enough to pay for everything that they did for me at the garage.

When I finally got back on the road to travel my final three hours home, I was smiling. I was elated as I thought about God’s provision in this situation. Again, God had my back.

God’s Favorites

The following morning, I woke up and as I was thinking about what God had done the day before, I sensed that God was telling me that I am his favorite. He then told me not to put too much ego into that statement because anyone who believes that God is and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him are all his favorites. (Hebrews 11:6).  I asked him how he could have so many favorites and it was as though he laughed, “I can have all the favorites I want, because I am God. I can do anything.”

 

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has  published a nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga. The next book Book IV of the Locket Saga: Sailing Under the Black Flag will be out in the near future.

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her books, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


nativity with angels

Do you believe that God came to earth as a mortal being?

I John 4:1-3  says “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God because  many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God. Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is come in the flesh is of God. And every spirit that confesseth nto that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God, and this is the spirit of antichrist. Whereof, ye have heard that it should come and even now is already is it in the world. (KJV)

 

How do We Test the Spirit?

What does it mean “to try the spirits?” For a long time, I used to think that testing the spirit meant that you ask a person if that person believed that Christ was come in the flesh, I have since then realized that isn’t the case. Trying the spirit means that we are to observe another person for the spirit that person is using.

The Spirit of Selfishness

One spirit that we might come across is the spirit of selfishness. When someone tells us something, we are to examine whatever they said lines up with God’s word. We also need to make certain that whatever they are saying is not just sell serving. I had a friend who told me that God told her that I was to give her a new coat that I got. I knew that what she was asking was her own doing and that God had nothing to do with it. She liked the coat and wanted it. She used God as an excuse to get me to give it to her.

The Lying Spirit

Another spirit is one of the enemy trying to prevent us from doing God’s will. This spirit tells us that there is a short cut to doing God’s will. It’s basically the same one that the serpent used on Eve in the Garden of Eden. He said “Did God really say?”  He in essence offered her a short cut. Nah, he said you won’t really die. You’ll just become gods like him. I can’t tell you how many times I personally played the fool with this one. Shortcuts are never really short cuts.

A friend of mine told me a story once about how when he was a boy a couple friends of his wanted to take a short cut home. The problem was, the road that they were taking was a straight shot to their homes. My friend did not join his friends, but took the road home. He made it home just fine, but his friends weren’t found until the next morning.

The Spirit of Lust

Proverbs talks a lot about spirits. There’s the spirit of the harlot whose siren’s song draws people to their doom. This spirit is any spirit that causes you to lust after someone that belongs to someone else.

The Lazy Spirit

There is also the spirit of the sluggard. This person sits back and waits and doesn’t take action. This person believes that tomorrow is soon enough for anything. This person decides to wait until the eleventh hour, but sometimes unfortunately this individual’s life ends at ten-thirty.

 

The Spirit of Truth

Jesus Christ coming in the flesh is a demonstration of God’s love for us. If the spirit behind what we are doing (or someone we know is doing) is of God, then God’s love for that other person will be a motivator for that person’s actions or words. His gift was the ultimate love offering that he could have given to us. He came as a human baby, lived the life of a man in the flesh, experienced the same temptations that we all share (the difference is he resisted every one and we don’t), and then went to the cross with full knowledge that he was going to suffer so that we could live. That is the spirit that we are testing. The spirit of truth is also the spirit of knowledge wisdom spoken of in Proverbs. When we seek the truth of who Christ is, when we search the scriptures to understand who we are in Christ, our spirit demonstrates that Christ is come in the flesh and that he has offered himself to us through his generosity.

 

 

IMG_8330 final copy

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .


marriage supper of the lamb

In our previous post, we saw that Sabbath meant rest and we looked at a number of verses that talked about when various Christian in the Bible met. Jews traditionally maintained their Saturday Sabbath whereas the Gentile or Greek believers met on Sunday which they considered the Lord’s Day because that was the day he overcame death. If you missed this post, click here to check it out.

Today we are going to continue with this Sabbath theme and discuss what we should do on the Sabbath. (Don’t worry, it won’t be all that painful)

First, Cease from Working

Since the word Sabbath means rest, it is a day when we should rest from our everyday work. since the old testament law is a teacher and a foreshadow of what Christ has for us, we can look at when God first instructed the Jews in honoring their Sabbath. He had taken the Israelites out of Egypt and started feeling them manna. Every day they were supposed to gather their portion of manna and eat it. The only exception was the Friday before the Sabbath Day when they were told to pick up enough for that day too because there would not be any manna to pick up that day. After the Israelites settled, they were to continue the tradition of not gathering or preparing food on the Sabbath. Everyone was to rest from their labors.

What does that mean for us today? Well, if we are to continue resting from work on the Sabbath, I would think that we should also assist others in being able to rest on our Sabbath as well. As much as we are able that its. I think that we should be sensitive to those people who work in food services on our Sabbath. Granted, our Sabbath may not be their Sabbath, but I think that we need to show consideration to those who are allowing us to rest from working, cooking, and serving on our day of rest. I think that one of the worst things that we can do in our Christian walk is to mistreat those who serve us in restaurants. Both my own personal experience in the past as a cook and waitress who had to work on Sundays (my chosen Sabbath) and those I have known in food services all agree that some of the meanest spirited, demanding people who we have had to serve were people who had just come into the restaurant from a church service. And tip? I got far better tips from motorcyclist groups. Not only that, but they often treated me as though I were a heathen because I worked on Sunday. I cannot tell you how many tracts I got in leau of gratuity. When I have brought this to the attention of other Christians, I have been given the excuse that sometimes they just didn’t have the money to leave a decent tip. My response to that is that if they cannot afford to leave a tip, then perhaps they should have gone out for fast food (where no gratuity was expected)rather than to a sit down meal.

Second, Celebrate What God Has Done

The word Sabbath not only includes the concept of resting from work, but it also denotes the idea of celebration. Because God rested on the seventh day after all of his creation, the Israelites celebrated and praised God for his creation. As Christians, we too can do this. This time of year I find it especially easy to worship God through his creation. Everything is coming to life and the colors are so vivid after the drabness of winter. We have so much to be grateful for. We have been given so much. Our gratitude and praise is what God is looking for from us as we rest from toil and focus our attention on him.

In addition to worshiping God for his creation, we Christians also have Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. We also have the gift of His Spirit living  inside of us, our helper, our counselor. We can also celebrate everything that his work on the cross gave to us. In addition to salvation to an eternity with Christ, as believers, he offers us healing in spirit mind, and body..

Third, Gather Together

One of the biggest arguments that I have heard from others about why they don’t go to church is that they can worship God wherever they are. Although that is true, God is available everywhere, I cannot recall anywhere in the Old or New testament where anyone thought that worshiping alone was what they were supposed to do on a regular basis. At first, the goal was to go to the Temple in Jerusalem for as many major days as possible. when the temple was not available, Jews built synagogues in the cities where they lived. Christians throughout the Bible also gathered together even at the risk of persecution or even death, they gathered together to worship God.

We also get together to pray. As the word says, where two or more agree as touching anything,, God will do whatever they ask. That’s some pretty powerful stuff when you think about the idea that one will put a thousand to flight and two ten thousand. Imagine what prayer could do if a whole church filled with people believed what God promised!

When we cease from our labors and gather together in prayer and  to praise of God for all that he has done for us, the Sabbath becomes a day of true celebration. At least one day in seven becomes a day of celebration. Joy begins to radiate in our lives to the point that we are gracious to all those we mean, even those who serve us.

IMG_8330 final copy

 

Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church  1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm.   As Author Cygnet Brown, she  has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener

She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga

Her most recent publication were two booklets Help From Kelp and Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard. Available in paperback 

Get a free e-book copy of Using Diatomaceous Earth Around the House and Yard, when you sign up for my free newsletter

.For more information about Cygnet Brown and her book, check out her website at http://www.cygnetbrow.com .

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