Sunday, June 21, 2020

A True Father

“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.” — 3 John 4

As I pondered the Father’s Day celebration this month, many memories of my own father flooded my mind. Wonderful memories of a man who took his role as a husband and father seriously. I’m sure he stumbled and had faults. He was human. But, through this daughter’s eyes, he could fix any problem, mend any hurt, and protect against any enemy. He was my dad.

When we look at biblical fathers, the one that stands out for me is Joseph. Perhaps one of the most overlooked, yet greatest examples of a true father. His role was crucial in God’s plan for Jesus to fulfill His earthly destiny. Without Joseph, a pregnant Mary would not have had protection and Jesus would have been denied the love and leadership of a man of God.

God chose Joseph because he had a strong love for the Lord. That love would support Jesus’ formal and informal learning as he grew. Joseph’s involvement in the physical, spiritual, and emotional well being of Jesus had a great impact.

Just like Joseph, today’s fathers can continue to set an example for their children. Daily choices and actions teach and every decision affects the future of a child.

It is difficult for children to begin to understand the heart of God without the leadership of a man who loves and fears and worships the Lord.

In his book, How to Raise Your Children for Christ, Andrew Murray said “Every experience of the love and blessing of a home on earth can be a ladder by which to rise up and get nearer to the Great Father-heart in heaven.”

As a father, each man plays a distinct and important role in the lives and future of the children God placed in his care

Dear Lord, Thank you for placing a true father in my life, His example pointed to You always.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

A Praying Mother Lifts Up Her Children

“For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and to minister.” Hebrews 6:10 (KJV)

Much good can and has been said about a woman who prays. Evidence of a prayerful heart is carried through her attitude toward others and in dealing with daily life events. But a praying mother lifts her children up to the Lord in an unceasing labor of love.

One of the most popular examples of a praying mother in the Bible is Hannah, the mother of Samuel. She shows us that even when things are hard to see and understand what God is doing, we can be confident that He hears our prayers and is at work. Hannah was faithful and committed to God’s plan and sovereignty.

A more modern example of a praying mother is Susanna Wesley. She bore 19 children, but only 10 survived infancy. Of the surviving children, were three sons: Samuel, John, and Charles. The family faced poverty and hunger, accidents, and illness. Still, Susanna prayed for her children and led them in family devotions. She educated them for six hours per day of home school but was also intent on making her children disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ. She too was faithful and committed to God’s plan and sovereignty.

These two women were centuries apart, but they had these things in common with today’s praying mothers:
● They knew to take their concerns and problems to the Lord.
● They knew that God’s timing is always perfect.
● They knew that God has the power and ability to work on their behalf.
● They believed God would do what He said He would do and He has the final word.
● They praised God for His faithfulness.

Just as God never changes, we can be confident that He hears our prayers and is at work. He is secure and holds us steady, even when we can’t see past the present situation.

Dear Lord,
Thank you for the blessing of a praying mother and the love and example she gave.  

Friday, November 1, 2019


Yule Tidings, the latest anthology from the writing group Prosateurs, is on sale now. The holiday-themed anthology celebrates Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s with works of fiction and nonfiction.

“Besides making the perfect Christmas gift, Yule Tidings is great for planning your parties and get-togethers, too,” said Kathy Akins, Prosateurs vice president. “We have articles on easy party preparations and, of course, delicious recipes. And the stories, memoirs, essays, and poems will get you into the holiday spirit. It’s the perfect book to curl up with.”

Yule Tidings features works from these authors:

Kathy Akins has won several awards with her poetry, devotionals, and short fiction. Her short stories and poetry have been published in Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Blackbirds Third Flight, Creations 2015, and Creations 2014. She is a member of Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc., Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and American Christian Fiction Writers. Visit her website at

Debbie Anderson wrote the suspense novel Friend or Foe in 2018. Its sequel, Predators Among Us, will be published in early 2020. She writes short stories, memoirs, novels, children’s stories, and how-to books. She has been published in Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Creations 2018, and Creations 2017.

Stephen B. Bagley's latest book is Floozy Comes Back, a collection of humorous essays. He co-wrote Undying, a book of dark poetry. His other books include: Murder by Dewey Decimal, Murder by the Acre, Tales from Bethlehem, Floozy and Other Stories, and Endless. His plays include: Murder at the Witch’s Cottage, Two Writers in the Hands of an Angry God, There’s a Body in the Closet, and Hogwild. His poetry, articles, short stories, and essays have appeared in Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Writer’s Digest, Blackbirds First Flight, Blackbirds Second Flight, Blackbirds Third Flight, ByLine Magazine, Nautilus Magazine, Pontotoc County Chronicles, Tulsa World’s OKMagazine, Free Star, Dark Prairies & Deep Rivers, the Creations anthologies 2012-2015, and other publications. He is a member of Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. Visit his website at

Wendy Blanton wrote Dawn Before the Dark, the first book in a fantasy trilogy, which was published by the Christian fantasy publisher Bear Publications in the fall of 2019. She also co-wrote three fantasy novels, The Dragon’s Lady, Rogue Pawn, and Sword and Scabbard, under the name Elizabeth Joy. Her short stories, articles, and recipes have appeared in Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Blackbirds First Flight, Blackbirds Second Flight, and Blackbirds Third Flight. She is a member of Realm Makers and Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. Visit her website at

Debra E. Chandler’s debut novel, Bone Sliver, was published in 2015, and the sequel, Nova Wave, in 2018. Weathered, a collection of her short works and poems, was also released in 2018. Her short stories, poems, photographs, and articles were also published in Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Blackbirds Third Flight, The Green Country Guardian, The Sapulpa Herald, and Sapulpa News and Views. She is a member of Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. and Oklahoma Bloggers and Influencers. Visit her website at

Barbara Shepherd is the 2019 Voice of the Fair Poet, the Poetry Society of Oklahoma’s 2019 Poet Laureate, and recipient of more than 350 writing awards in local, regional, national, and international contests. Her books include: The Potbelly Pig Promise, River Bend, Vittles and Vignettes, and Patchwork Skin. Her writing has also appeared in: State Cops Cooking in the Heartland - More Than We Can Say Grace Over, Candle Flames: PSO’s 70th Anniversary Anthology, Oklahoma Centennial Heritage Collection, Harp Strings, A Centennial Celebration of Oklahoma Stories, travelin’ Music, Elegant Rage, Poetry Is For Everyone, Imagination Turned Loose, Beads On a String–Peace, Joy, and Love, From the Heart of Galaxy, Ain't Gonna Be Treated This Way, and other publications. Visit her website at

Joanne Verbridge was born in Oakland, California, spending her early life experiences in Northern California. Family brought her to Oklahoma where she enjoys writing memoirs and crafting. She works to inspire her young nieces to take an interest in storytelling and writing. Her memoirs, short stories, and articles have been published in newspapers and Prosateurs: Tales & Truth, Creations 2015, Creations 2014, Creations 2013, and Creations 2012.

Yule Tidings is now available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BooksAMillion, Lulu, and other online retailers, and from the Prosateurs members while supplies last. For more information, including book signing dates and locations, visit

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Fathers Should Lead

“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath; but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4

The state of Washington celebrated the nation’s first Father’s Day on June 19, 1910. However, the day honoring fathers did not become a nationwide holiday in the United States until 1972 – 58 years after President Woodrow Wilson made Mother’s Day official.

Regardless of our relationship with our mothers, our society has always held them in high esteem as the nurturing parent. Fathers were important, but in a role more distant to the hands-on child care. In today’s world, we see more stay-at-home dads with mothers taking on the primary financial burden. Neither of these views are what God had in mind when He created the family. Both parents are to share equally in the responsibility of raising a child. Each reflects a side of God that, when brought together, shows His love for us.

The responsibility of fathers is to lead. They are not only the physical leader of the family, but are to be the spiritual leader as well. What better way to lead than by example. There is truth in the old adage of “Actions speak louder than words.” If you want children that are strong in faith, show them the proper path forward.

To be this example, always seek wisdom. Recognize the power that God has to mold and shape individual perspectives. Know that essential wisdom and knowledge from God can be passed on to children. Embrace the power of the truth of the gospel.

Fathers need to reassure their children that just as they will be there for them, God will always be there. No matter the struggle, God never abandons humanity. Sometimes discipline is required. Understand that at times this can be painful, but essential for teaching the importance of making good choices.

Above all, understand and embrace love. To see what true love looks like, read 1 Corinthians 13:4-13. The Lords tells husbands to love their wives. Compare the power of that devotion to Jesus’ love for the church. Let this love serve as a model for your children as a basis for God’s love for them and a healthy and fulfilling marriage in their future.

As we celebrate Father’s Day, let us honor the men who received the gift and responsibility of raising children. Pray for their strength to be an example of faith, showing God’s love in words and actions.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

2018 Prosateurs Christmas Gift Catalog

any last 
minute gifts? 
The Prosateurs have 
the books for you! From 
cooking, children's books, humor, 
mysteries,  horror, inspirational, and 
more, you can find the right book for all
the lucky people on your list--and for you!

Saturday, August 11, 2018

The Loveless Church

“I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:
And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast labored, and hast not fainted.
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.”
Revelation 2:2-4

A few years ago there was a British comedy called Keeping Up Appearances. The main character, Hyacinth, wanted so badly to be part of high society, that she would regularly get herself and her husband, Richard, into an embarrassing situation by pretending it was so. She looked good on the outside, but when you examined deeper, trouble brewed within.

The book of Revelation is one of the most popular and neglected books of the Bible. It is scary because many who read it don’t understand the symbols and imagery. To make it simple, there are two things to remember when reading Revelation:

* The focus is on the vision of Jesus. He is the front and center of what this book is all about. He is victorious and so shall we be.
* It fits partly into the genre of “apocalypse.” This genre almost always deals with judgment and end-times themes.

In chapter two, Jesus is instructing the Apostle John to write letters to seven churches. Each one was dealing with issues that required repentance or encouragement. The first one addressed was the church of Ephesus.

From the outside, this was a strong church. They were keeping up appearances. They had been doing the right things and fighting the battles for so long.  It’s possible that some of the older members were getting tired. Perhaps some of the younger members didn’t feel like they could devote the time required to maintain the various ministries. Maybe they didn’t feel qualified. Their devotion to Christ was waning and they were crumbling from the inside out.

This can happen to some of the most faithful and devoted churches, if the focus becomes the ministries of the church rather than the love of Christ. It can also happen just as easily to an individual Christian.

The church of Ephesus was called upon to refocus on Christ. To return to their first love. The works of ministry are a result of loving Jesus, not the other way around. We are called to do the same. Love develops devotion. Devotion develops sharing. Sharing develops ministering to others.

We Christians need to return to our first love. When we do, keeping up appearances no longer brings trouble and trials, but joy and peace in Christ.

Dear Lord,
Thank you for reminding us that to focus on You allows everything else to fall into place.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Biblical Friendship

“ And David saw that Saul was come out to seek his life: and David was in the wilderness of Ziph in a wood.
 And Jonathan Saul’s son arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God.” 1 Samuel 23:15-16

Many wise and intelligent scholars, doctors, and scientists have studied the subject of relationships for years. A chemical in the brain is said to trigger the level of response and the type of love for those who share a bond. The interesting thing about this is that it’s not unique to humans. Animals feel love too. They can have relationships with other animals and with humans. Our Lord has instilled that emotion in all creatures.

Friendship is probably the best word to describe how the seed of love grows to become a relationship. As it grows, it will branch out into different paths. Some friendships last for a season during a time of transition, such as school or a job. Others will last a lifetime through many seasons of good times and hard times. We need all levels of relationships in our lives, but the truest reflection of God’s love is biblical friendship.

The story of the bond between Jonathan and David is an excellent example of such friendship. Love, stronger than a blood kinship, knit these two men together. They shared a love for God and recognized the role each of them would play in the Lord’s plan for the Israelites.

Biblical friendship isn’t limited to the Old and New Testaments, however. Here are three defining characteristics of a biblical friend:

Be present. Provide an arm to lean on, an ear to listen, and a heart to care. Just as Jonathan was there to support David, present in his time of trouble, we can give that presence too.

Pray every day for your friend. Talk to God on your friend’s behalf. God already knows the needs, but this keeps you aware of it, too. The more you share the burden, the lighter the load will become.

Protect through reassurance. Encourage your friend with the knowledge that all is possible with our Lord. Many times, the stress of life will cause one to retreat into a world of isolation.

Jonathan was there to help David through one of the darkest times of his young life. He was present. He prayed and protected his friend. The love of God reflected in his actions. We can follow this biblical friend’s example in our own lives.
Dear Lord,
Thank you for the biblical friends in my life. Help me to follow the example of Jonathan and David.