tarantula zacchaeus

The ranger told us about the tarantula migration. At this time of year, every year, the males come out of their burrows and walk across the desert seeking the females. Some travel over 50 miles to find her. It’s instinct. As humans, we have the instinct to seek God, our creator. The difference between us and animals is that we can go against our god-created nature. Unlike animals, we have the free will to deny instinct—we have the choice to say no, and crawl right back into our holes.


It’s in our nature to seek truth, a truth that is deeper and farther reaching than even our conscious minds are aware of sometimes. It’s just a part of who we really are. Some people distract themselves and busy themselves so they never have to confront this essential self-awareness. Others know they’re seeking but just don’t know who or what.


That was the case with the Apostle Paul when he went to Athens. He went to where the people gathered to discuss philosophies beliefs and “addressed them as follows: ‘Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an Unknown God.’ This God, whom you worship without knowing, is the one I’m telling you about’” (Acts 17:22-23).


The Greeks were such seekers, they didn’t want to miss out on any deity, so they even put up a shrine to the one they might have missed! Hilarious, but it goes right along with our human nature to seek truth. When Paul came along he had the opportunity to tell them about the God they didn’t know, and the significance of His son Jesus Christ.


In Jeremiah 29: 12-14, our God gives just a few of the great benefits of searching Him out:


“I will hear and heed you. Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will release you from captivity.”


But like the tarantula, our journey across the desert has its obstacles and that’s why we need to seek the Lord every day and in every situation. It’s so easy to fall into some kind of mental, emotional or even physical captivity if we dare to think we can really do fine on our own. It’s pretty simple really. God created us, Jesus knows everything about us and we are just not that smart!


For the tarantula, there are the huge rocks to go over, the snakes and predatory birds to avoid, and the cholla cactus that literally throws out barbed spines if you even get close to it. You don’t even have to touch it for it to become an enemy. And then there’s the infamous tarantula hawk, a large orange-winged wasp about two inches long.


The tarantula hawk is mostly passive at every other time of the year, eating only vegetation, but when the tarantulas migrate, the female wasp becomes a vicious one.


She flashes those beautiful orange wings and injects her paralyzing venom into the spider, then pulls the paralyzed victim (about eight times her weight) into a hole below the sandy desert floor. The spider may or may not awake out of the paralysis as it becomes the first meal of the baby wasps whose eggs were injected into its hairy flesh.


The point: seeking has its dangers. The journey has unseen obstacles and hardships. But the tarantulas don’t just stop. They carry on—it’s instinct. A few get stung by the wasp and won’t make it, but most of the seekers find what they’re looking for. It’s the same with us.


God’s Word says, and Jesus confirms: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened” (Matt. 7:7-8).


Sometimes we read a scripture and/or say a scripture to ourselves and think it should work and then we get disappointed and discouraged when we don’t get results. That’s because we keep it in our own realm. We say it to ourselves and it doesn’t really go where it needs to go. We read and say, “Ask.” But we don’t actually DO the asking.


Instead of just reading and saying the scripture to ourselves, we need to speak directly to our God, and/or say it to our Lord Jesus: “Lord, your Word says ‘ask,’ so I AM ASKING You now. I am SEEKING You now.” Bend your ear to me now and answer me. I am listening and expecting. Thanks for being here with me now. Amen.”


There are many examples in the gospels of those who sought after Jesus. I love the story of Zacchaeus, who was a short man and climbed up into a tree to be able to see Jesus, unobstructed by the crowd. And what did Jesus do? Luke 19:5 tells us:


“When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” The Carolyn translation would go something like this: “Hey, buddy, come on down. I want to spend some personal time with you, so let’s go to your house.”


The male tarantula’s instinct is to seek a mate once a year. Our instinct by nature is to seek our Lord and God daily. Let’s follow that instinct and go with the plan our creator has set before us, one day at a time.


Love, Carolyn


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In my last article I talked about how my friend Hector did way more than I expected with my tree trimming. One of the names for God in the Old Testament is El Shaddai and it shows how our God is a God of more than just enough. He overflows in power, forgiveness and love. The story of Elijah and the 450 false prophets in 1 Kings 18 shows us a thrilling example of that.


In this record, we see God’s humor, a funny display of sarcasm and a spectacular show of God as El Shaddai in action.


His people had become apathetic and basically lazy. The Bible says they followed Baalim. Baalim is the plural of Baal, the god of fertility. So the people sought and followed whatever promised some kind of fertility, whether it was a bigger family, more crops, more money, anything that would seem to provide more satisfaction to their lives.


Baal and his female counterpart Asherah required certain sacrifices but overall were much looser than the Hebrew God. Worshipping many different gods (Baalim) promised wealth and power without having to adhere to all the Old Testament rules of the God of Moses.


If we put it in contemporary terms, a person who was following Baalim (many gods), could do some Bible stuff on Sunday, go to the palm reader on Monday, sex it up with whomever whenever, cheat people in business to make more money, and just about anything else they felt like. No wonder the Israelites got sucked in!


Well, Elijah challenged the people and God kicked it into high gear and the overflow came.


“Elijah came unto all the people, and said, ‘How long halt ye between two opinions? If the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him.’ And the people answered him not a word” (1 Kings 18:21).


The people didn’t want to have to make a definite decision. They’d rather keep their options open, but wishy-washy living gives wishy-washy results. Commitment to the God of the Bible is a strong decision, but the results are sure and strong too.


Then Elijah got an amazing plan from God and “said to the people, ‘I am the only one of the Lord’s prophets left, but Baal has four hundred and fifty prophets. Get two bulls for us. Let Baal’s prophets choose one for themselves, and let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bull and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the Lord. The god who answers by fire—he is God” (1 Kings 18:22-24).


The people thought that was a great idea. The prophets of Baal set up their sacrifice and “called on the name of Baal from morning till noon. ‘Baal, answer us!’ they shouted. But there was no response; no one answered. And they danced around the altar” (v.26).


This is the funny part, where Elijah starts egging on the false prophets:


“Elijah began to taunt them. ‘Shout louder!’ he said. ‘Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened.’ So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice.

“But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention.


“Then Elijah said to all the people, ‘Come here to me.’ They came to him, and he repaired the altar of the Lord, which had been torn down” (v. 27-30).


The prophets of Baal were working so hard to get their gods to do something, they had totally messed up and destroyed the altar and Elijah had to take time to repair it. But he wasn’t a bit worried.


It was show off time for El Shaddai.


Elijah “arranged the wood, cut the bull into pieces and laid it on the wood. Then he said, ‘Fill four large jars with water and pour it on the offering and on the wood. Do it again,’ he said, and they did it again. ‘Do it a third time,’ he ordered, and they did it the third time. The water ran down around the altar and even filled the trench” (1 Kings 18:33-35).


This was a wet mess! If you’ve ever tried to start a fire with even damp wood, you know how hard it is.


“At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: ‘Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, Lord, answer me, so these people will know that you, Lord, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again.’”


“Then the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench” (vv.36-38).


There it is! God’s fire not only burned the meat, but burned up the stones, and the soil and disintegrated all the water in the trench! That’s our God, El Shaddai, the God of more than enough!


“And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, Jehovah, he is God; Jehovah, he is God” (v.39).


Let’s drop all the other stuff we’ve been so enamored by, and just follow Jehovah, the Lord. If you need a show of El Shaddai, just ask for it. Matthew 21:22 says, “All things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.


Love, Carolyn


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My friend Hector came over after work Friday to cut down a few branches off my mulberry trees—the ones that were hanging over the roof of the house. I was picturing maybe six branches max, but the Lord had something else in mind. Hector became God’s fulfillment of Ephesians 3:20: “Glory to God, who is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine by his power at work within us.”


Hector stood back and looked at my trees with the eyes of an expert mechanic and an artist and he began to sculpt away. By the time he was finished with the first tree, it was perfect AND . . . the pile of branches began to grow high. He cut and I pulled the limbs and branches to the side and started making piles.


Then we started on the second tree and this one presented a few more problems—dead branches at the top, crisscrossing branches, etc. So Hector took off the major ones and came back Sunday to finish up.


Deuteronomy 28:2 tells us: “And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you.” That’s how I felt. I was getting the ultimate tree trimmer job, when I only expected a few branches to be cut. I could picture Jesus standing there with a big smile on His face, saying, “That’s what I wanted, for my girl to be blessed and surprised, over the top!”


One of the Hebrew names used for God in the Old Testament is El Shaddai. It means the God of more than enough. And God delights in overflow. That’s what it was for me this weekend and I’m so happy.


One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm 23. Verse 3 says: “He restoreth [is restoring] my soul.” And it goes on to say in verse 5: “God preparest [is preparing] a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: God anointest [is anointing] my head with oil; my cup runneth [is running] over.”


Someone might say, “God shouldn’t be wasting,” but with God there is always more where that came from. It’s His delight. I know there’s times when I’ve given a bigger-than-required tip to a waiter or waitress, a bonus $20 to my hard working garbage men, and extra presents to my nephew. It’s fun!


Our God is a God of more than just enough and I love it! When God went way over the top for Elijah and the people in 1 Kings 18 to show them that He, NOT Baal, was the true God, the people responded. “When all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, Jehovah, he is God; Jehovah, he is God” (v.39).

I didn’t fall on my face when the Lord blessed me with my tree cutting, but I did sob tears of joy and thanked the Lord for sending me Hector to help me and do way more than I expected, in a truly El Shaddai way, to carry out God’s will to bless me.


Be looking for the attributes of our God as El Shaddai these next several weeks. I’m praying for the Psalm 23:5 anointing to be poured out and overflow to you.


Love, Carolyn


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When I was cleaning my garage, I found some sculpting tools someone made for me out of rebar. I always loved the feel of those tools. I picked one up, got my mallet down off the peg board and cut away a few chips of soapstone on a falcon sculpture I started years ago. I remembered the feeling of apprehension, then satisfaction as I chipped away at the stone. I decided to start using those wonderful tools again. Our spiritual tools are like that.


We sometimes forget how useful and satisfying it is to rebuke demons and make them flee, or to pray perfectly for a situation by praying in tongues. Or what about getting down on our knees to pray like we did when we were children? (When was the last time you did that?) Or what about the golden rule of treating others as we would want to be treated? Or how about when you decided to read the Bible cover to cover and God opened your eyes to so many new amazing things?


So many of those good Bible principles and/or weapons in our arsenal that we’ve forgotten about. Maybe it’s time to take inventory of some of those old beloved friends that used to be so much a part of our daily routines at one time.


I was reminded of that just the other day. If you remember from my last article (this past Sunday), my school friend said she was inspired to stand up and say: “Every devil spirit in my mind and in this house HAVE to go, NOW, in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ.” From James 4:7 we know that if you “resist the devil, he will flee from you.”


As I was walking into a confusing situation the other day, I remembered my friend’s words and I remembered that scripture about resisting the devil. I decided to sharpen up that weapon. Sometimes we put up with things we don’t have to put up with. That’s exactly my point. I’d forgotten such a simple spiritual weapon and was enduring rather than conquering!


It wasn’t that I did any heavy duty casting out of devil spirits. I wasn’t in the position for that, but I just made them shut up and not act up. Just like when Jesus talked to the storm in Mark 4:39: “And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” When I walked into that confusing situation it was like a storm of thoughts and I could feel the demons stirring things up like crazy, so I rebuked them and everything got very calm. It was awesome.


For some reason I hadn’t thought of using that particular weapon in a while, so it was so good to be reminded of how wonderful it is.


In the Bible we see that God often urges His people to remember the things of old, bring them to mind again. Remember what He’s done for us before and remember how we used what He said—to get free of things, to get prayers answered, to be happier, etc.


David has a great way of saying it in Psalm 77. The whole chapter is beautiful, but here I want to show you verses 5 to 11:

“I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times. I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart: and my spirit made diligent search.


“Will the Lord cast off forever? And will he be favorable no more? Is his mercy clean gone forever? Doth his promise fail for evermore? Hath God forgotten to be gracious? Hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies? Selah [consider this carefully].


“And I said, ‘This is my infirmity: but I will remember the years of the right hand of the most High. I will remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old.’”


David was having a hard time so he started to have a good heart to heart talk with himself and he searched for an answer. He wondered if it was God’s fault, or if it was God that had forsaken him. He deeply considered the possibility. But then he woke up! “This is MY infirmity!” So David was his own enemy. It wasn’t God at all. And when he realized that, he made himself remember the good things God had taught him in the past. That was his answer and sometimes it’s ours too.


Let’s just take a minute or two to take inventory and list some of the good things we learned or did in the past. Let’s do some refreshing of our lives with them—sharpening our old weapons and making new use of our older tools that worked well and still do.


Love, Carolyn


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I got a message from a woman I went to school with. For two years we sat in the same classes but I never knew she had M.S. She wrote, “I have multiple sclerosis (since I was 16). I still walk without any help and go up and down stairs by myself (I told you God has done great things), etc. But I’d like to be TOTALLY made whole in every way!” I wanted to know her story. She wrote me back and I was so impressed, I asked her if I could share it. She said yes.


You’ll see how our Lord is so unique in His working with each of us as individuals. He will meet us where we’re at and take us on a healing journey that we as an individual can handle. His love is far reaching and constant.


Here is her story:


“First of all, I got delivered from some devil spirits I’d had since a child (my parents were bad alcoholics). I read a book that changed my life and made the Scriptures finally make sense to me. It was called Destined to Reign by Joseph Prince. Everything made sense to me for once. I got inspired to stand up and say: ‘Every devil spirit in my mind and in this house HAVE to go, NOW, in the name of my Lord Jesus Christ’ (I was going to say ‘all devil spirits in this house,’ but God inspired me to include my mind).


You don’t know you have devil spirits until they’re gone! It changed my heart and life in a HUGE way. Then I got a promise from God that was confirmed by a man with a gift ministry (I say ‘gift service’) who gets phenomena (a ‘thing’ runs up his spine) when God wants his attention. When I told him what I thought I’d heard from God, he got this phenomenon and stopped right where he was walking and sat down.


He said: ‘What did you just say?’ I told him; he confirmed it was from God. That promise from God was: ‘You’re going to be healed in so many different ways you don’t even know!” I hold on to that promise to me every single day of my life. If something doesn’t fit with that promise, I discard it right away.


I believe that promise with my whole heart and keep my mind from getting ‘off track’ by discarding all thoughts that go against that promise. That’s the best way to describe it to you.


You do know that I’m not totally well, yet – it’s a process. I asked God to make the healing slow, so I could handle it. I’ve had M.S. since I was 16 yrs. old (I just turned 60 yrs. old). Things get better each day! God is Good – always.”


I think my friend’s story is a great testimony to how our Lord’s love comes in many different ways to us, molded perfectly for us as individuals. His healing, deliverance and help is always available to us when we seek Him. We keep seeking and keep trusting and He will keep guiding us, one step at a time.


Psalm 119:105 says, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” I love that. He’s a lamp unto my feet> for the next step. And He’s a light unto my path> to what’s out ahead, He shines light on it.


Jeremiah 29:11-14 tells us: “For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.  And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.  And I will be found of you, saith the Lord: and I will turn away your captivity.” Hebrews 13:5 says, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”


Love, Carolyn


You can see some of my other writing if you click “LOOK INSIDE” on any of my books or booklets on Amazon




Several years ago I was chubbier and I had a goal to lose some weight. I thought I would look prettier and I’d be healthier too. But as I lost the weight I was getting more looks from the guys and it made me uncomfortable and self-conscious. I nearly sabotaged myself and thought about going off the diet. It’s kind of a silly example, but how many times have we had a God-inspired goal for a godly reason and just as we were really making progress, we ran across the first obstacle and wondered, “Did I really do the right thing?”


It’s at those points that we have to go back to our original motivation for the changes we’re making. If our reason for even wanting to make a change came from a godly point of view, then He will help us through the challenges and help us overcome any hurdle we may come across. We can clearly see that the men and women of the Bible grew spiritually as they were led by the Lord to step into the realm of the unknown.


As the author Israelmore Ayivor says in his book Shaping the Dream, “Break away from the box confining you. Positive dreamers do not follow the status quo. They keep raising the standard of the bar higher and higher. Raise the bar.”


But with raising the bar in our spiritual lives, we need to know that what we aim for, what we will gain in the end, will be well worth the jump. As one Bible teacher puts it, “New level, new devil.” Growing spiritually is not for sissies.


In Matthew 14:28-32, Peter took a bold step of faith. He could have drowned! “Peter said, ‘Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.’ And he [Jesus] said, ‘Come.’ And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.” So far, so good. In fact, amazing! “But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink.” Okay, big obstacle!


But look what Peter does and it’s what we have to do too. “He cried, saying, Lord, save me.” I just love that. Just because we have the courage to start something new, or enter a brave new phase of growth doesn’t mean we have to brave it alone!


Look at how the Lord reacted: “And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him.” Jesus then said to Peter, “O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?” That’s where believing in the original aim is so important. Peter wanted to grow his faith and that is a godly aim, so he shouldn’t have let the demon’s distraction and stormy obstacle get to him. He should have kept his eyes on the good future Jesus promised.


Jesus reprimanded Peter, but He didn’t abandon him. “And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.” Notice that THEY came back to the ship. So many people miss that. Jesus AND PETER came back to the ship. That means that Peter was again walking on the water and this time he reached his goal! The devil had to give up. He wasn’t going to win. The Bible says: “the wind ceased.” The demon was deflated!


We’re like Peter. When we get into a new phase of life, or a new spiritual level, the devil will try to back us down. If we are wanting to be more loving, you can be pretty sure the devil will put you around the most unlovable people he can find. If you’re praying to be better at exposing and casting down demons, you can be sure you will be meeting some of the most insidious. Are you are aiming at being a more patient person? You better be ready for some really annoying stressors. I’m not trying to scare you; just telling the truth.


The great thing is that there is no demonic force that can stand up to the power of Jesus Christ. Hebrews 13:8 says: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.”


As we courageously step out toward those God-inspired aims, goals and dreams, we will have times of attack, times of distraction and even fear, but Jesus will always be there, just like He was with Peter. The Lord Jesus will lift us up and we will walk on water with Him to reach what we were aiming for.


Love, Carolyn


You can see some of my other writing if you click “LOOK INSIDE” on any of my books or booklets on Amazon




When I first decided to buy a house in Las Vegas, the Lord blessed me with the absolute best realtor, Shelley Brown. She found the perfect house, and she knows all the right people. Just mention her name and you get great service. Shelley’s name has clout, and is a great example in the physical, of what the name of Jesus Christ is in the spiritual.


Philippians 2:9-11 tells us how powerful the name of Jesus is: Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”


Since God created everything in the first place, if He says everything is in subjection to the power of the name of His son Jesus, then it’s true. And if anyone says different they’re lying. John 8:44 tells us the devil “was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”


Sometimes at night if I have a bad dream, I wake up and say the name of Jesus over and over and then I go back to sleep easily. Just saying and believing in the power of His name gets the job done. There is certainty in saying the name of Jesus Christ, when you believe in it.


When I pray for someone or ministering healing or deliverance to someone, I check with Jesus first, and then often He directs me to speak straight to a demon or demonic forces and tell them they must bow and obey whatever I say in Jesus’ name. I remind the devil spirit that it is not more powerful than the Son of God. Then I believe for wisdom and revelation and do whatever the Lord directs.


James 4:7 says, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” We’ve been given the powerful name of our Lord Jesus to use in making any demon spirit flee from around us. And we can also help others. Just like I’ve told friends about Shelley’s recommendations and they’ve been blessed, we can help others by sharing what happens when we use the name of Jesus Christ and we get blessed.


In the book of Acts, we have many examples of the believers using the authority of the name of Jesus. In Acts 3, Peter and John healed a man who was born lame and the people were astonished. “And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, ‘Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or WHY LOOK YE SO EARNESTLY ON US, AS THOUGH BY OUR OWN POWER OR HOLINESS WE HAD MADE THIS MAN TO WALK? The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus” (vv.12-13).


Peter goes on to say, “Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole” (Acts 4:10).


That’s a lot of power behind a name, the biggest power in the universe, in fact! And God loves us so much He’s given us the name of Jesus to flash at any force that is coming against us or the people we love. Let’s get more familiar with the power of Jesus and His name by reading the Gospel’s and the book of Acts too, and start to walk in even more victory than before.


Love, Carolyn


You can see some of my other writing if you click “LOOK INSIDE” on any of my books or booklets on Amazon