Sunday, 21 January 2018

"The Power of Trial and Error"

"For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again, but the wicked shall fall by calamity"(Proverbs 24:16 NKJV).

One of the nice things of having a small basement bakery is, that you can experiment ... I tried out a certain recipe several times with no success and decided yesterday to have another go at it. Unfortunately I experienced another failure and was disappointed for several reasons (time, effort and cost). My initial thought was, to scratch the batch and throw it away because I did not see any other use for it.

But I changed my mind and decided to experiment a little. I poured the batter into cupcake liners to see what would happen. Oh my, right before my eyes I was able to create from scratch something new and so delicious that was initially destined for the trash can!!! Mistakes can pave the way for something totally awesome, don't you think so? :-) To my surprise, I sold them out at the Market and have received my first pre-order for next week.

I read a while back, that Thomas Edison's teachers said he was "too stupid to learn anything." He was fired from his first two jobs for being "non-productive." As an inventor, Edison made 1,000 unsuccessful attempts at inventing the light bulb.

Oh wow, does that ever speak to you, the story of the batter and the light bulb? You are valuable and it is not about making mistakes, but what you make out of them! You might say, I am useless, but the Lord says I have have purpose for you. You might think oh this is useless, but the Lord says, no I can use it. You have a God given capacity to create and even invent things that are ready to be released from Heaven. Doesn't that make you confident and hopeful. God's got you! Don't give up! Know that there is an opportunity for greatness even in the trial and error moments of your life.

Blessings to you and your loved ones.

-Suzanne Tanner

Monday, 15 January 2018

"But ... wait!"

"The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21 NKJV).

Don't you love it when the Lord takes you by surprise. While I am writing this devotional I have a smile on my face and I nearly have to laugh out loud because what I am going to tell you is so funny, so surprising and so awesome :-)

Well if you know my husband, he hates it when things break and if they break, he wants them to be fixed right away. Unfortunately he had to endure our trucks right side-view mirror malfunction for about 5 years. The function is that you press a button and both side-view mirrors fold in towards the doors. This is especially useful when you park your car on a busy road and don't want any cars to knock off your mirror. Fortunately it was only the right one, but like I said, my husband likes everything to work nicely. Because of the hassle of having to find a replacement and then installing it he let it go for years, to my surprise.

But you know what? One day just so unexpectedly and out of the blue our right side-view mirror decided to operate again. After 5 years! We have no explanation for it. First we thought this was just a coincidence, but it's not, it has been working for at least a week now, every single time. Every time we push the button we have to smile in sheer unbelief and inexplicable amazement.

It's like you cannot put God in a box. You cannot explain Him, He is too amazing. He gives and He takes and sometimes He locks you into a situation where there no escape. It's when He does something profound in you and you endure with great patience and you let go. And all of a sudden you break free.That's our God. He gives and He takes and He is awesome :-)

Blessings to you and your loved ones,
Suzanne Tanner

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

"True Strength is Found in Weakness"

The world oftentimes thinks we are weak because Jesus is our Lord and Savior, but for the task He has called us, we need to be weak so we can draw on Him, the power of Heaven.

I have to add that we are not building a kingdom of man but the kingdom of God here on earth.

"Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men" (1 Corinthians 1:25 NKJV).

Sunday, 19 November 2017

"You Don't Know Until ..."

"Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him" (James 1:12 NKJV).

The worst thing that could happen, well, it happened to me. I forgot to add yeast to the dough for an important order. The client was introducing his shredded beef sandwiches for the first time on that particular Saturday morning together with my signature rolls. Terrible, terrible. But the story ended good. My client was very understanding and kind and I got a second batch done just in time. All I could say was, thank you, thank you Lord.

When I prepared the dough I did not realize the yeast was missing. The dough looked good. Nothing seemed to be wrong. It worked just fine and I was able to kneed the dough without any obvious problems. I shaped the rolls with much care and the whole process took me several hours. Then the time came to put them in the oven. After a few minutes I noticed something disturbing as they were not rising to the occasion. Observing them a little more the worst thought dropped into my mind: "Did I really forget the yeast???" Yes Suzanne, you did!!! It was 6:30 am and I had to deliver the rolls at 8 am. I was hyperventilating.

Later on I thought about a principle. You never know what a person is thinking, what a person is really like until pressure comes upon them. That's the moment where you see what comes out of them and you see the true personality. The same applies of course to ourselves as well. So truth be known, all humans look alike very much like my dough. From the outside everything looks fine, you would not detect anything until of course the test comes.

So, what do we learn here? Don't be impressed by the looks, by the outside, by people. Just wait until the test comes and you will see what comes to the surface. Rule of Thumb would be to look out for the qualities of Christ.

Wishing you all a blessed Sunday and don't forget the yeast :-)
For the sake of expanding the Kingdom of God.

-Suzanne Tanner

Sunday, 12 November 2017

"Discern the Signs of The Times"

"Then the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and testing Him asked that He would show them a sign from heaven. He answered and said to them, “When it is evening you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red’; and in the morning, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times. A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.” And He left them and departed" (Matthew 16: 1-5 NKJV).

Right in my conversation with this man the Lord opened up my understanding and now everything was clear to me and made sense. I was talking with a man that used to be married to a woman and had children with her. But later in life he had a coming out and now lives with a man. Instead of  perhaps being critical of homosexuals and pointing the finger, the Lord showed me something really important. He showed me that they were a sign of the times: The homosexuals, the same-sex marriages, the transgender people, the lawlessness that is sweeping the earth, the wars, the earthquakes, the diseases, the deception, the falling away of the faith, the hate, the betrayals and the worst of all the growing cold of the love were all signs of the times.

There is still time for us Christians to minister (to serve) in these very challenging and perilous times. I believe as we realize how much we are strategically positioned in this world and know that Heaven is at our fingertips, we need to reach out with patience the love, truth and wisdom of Christ through the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit. 

Now is the time to for us to discern the signs of times with great compassion for a world living in darkness. Let us realize that the light of the world lives within us and that a dying world desperately needs what we have to offer to them. 

The Kingdom of God is at hand.

For the sake of making much of Jesus,
-Suzanne Tanner

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

"Be Alert!"

"Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world" (1 Peter 5:8-9 NKJV).

Already a little bit under time pressure, I was getting ready to go to church with my bible under my arm and my heavy handbag that was full of stuff. As I boarded my truck there were so many things on the console, my handbag and my bible under my arm and so I thought I won't buckle up, the church is just down the road. I have to say, that I ALWAYS buckle up but these were my thoughts in that very moment.

So I drove down the road and came to a 4-way stop. Come to find out that the car coming from the left was racing the streets following another car and did not stop (I was there first!) but continued the race in a zigzag mode. Luckily I did not proceed but remained in my position where I was able to observe the continuation of this crazy car race. You can imagine that my heart was pounding heavily just at the mere thought what could have happened.

We think we can take life lightly and casually but we cannot. Life is dramatic, life is happening right here and now and these are evil days my friends. We need to gird ourselves completely, clothe ourselves in our right mind and being fully aware of what is going on. We can only do that when we are walking in the spirit, walking closely with the Holy Spirit that leads us into all truth.

I think it would be good to consider afresh the Armor of God which is described in Ephesians 6: 10-16 NKJV: 

The Whole Armor of God
10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— 

For the Kingdom of God and the sake of Christ.

-Suzanne Tanner. 

Sunday, 20 August 2017

"Growing in Discernment"

"My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor detest His correction; for whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights" (Proverbs 3: 11-12 NKJV).

Over the years the Lord has corrected me in many areas of my life, especially focusing on the issues of my heart and attitude. It's been a long and oftentimes hard road. The way of sanctification and becoming more like Jesus just takes time, doesn't it? Recently I realized something though that made sense and so I wanted to share this thought with you:

When the Lord corrects something in you, for example for me it was manipulation and control, it is not to expose you or hurt you. No, it is to set you free so that you can set others free too. You see from what you have been delivered, will help you discern the exact same spirit in others. You right away discern your "old foe" and pray specifically and efficiently. You understand that you are not waging war against a person, but against spiritual forces described in Ephesians 6:12 "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places".

At the end of the day all is good and your life is in God's hands. Yield to Him, allow Him to free you from influences that keep you bound so that you can be a tremendous blessing to others.

For the sake of making much of Jesus.
-Suzanne Tanner