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Genesis 50:20. God Can Use Chaos for Good

Jan 21 Genesis 50 20 NKJV

A surgeon, an engineer, and a politician were debating which of their professions was the oldest. The surgeon said, “Eve was made from Adam’s rib, and that, of course, was a surgical procedure. Obviously, surgery is the oldest profession.” The engineer countered with, “Yes, but before that, order was created out of chaos, and that most certainly was an engineering job.” The politician smiled and said triumphantly, “Aha! And just who do you think created the chaos?”

Joseph’s brothers sure did create chaos for Joseph! They threw him in a pit – a dried up water hole used for watering sheep. Then they sold him as a slave. Placed on an auction block, the favored son of Jacob was inspected like a animal, bartered over, and sold to the captain of Pharaoh’s guard. However, the Bible tells us, “But the Lord was with Joseph” and everything Joseph did God caused him to prosper so that Potiphar made Joseph over his entire household. But chaos wasn’t finished in Joseph’s life. Potiphar’s wife takes a “liking” to Joseph and when Joseph refuses her invitation and flees he leaves behind his cloak when she then uses it to falsely cry “Rape” and the cloak becomes her “proof” to her claim. Joseph is then thrown into prison. Again the Bible tells us that God was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. (Genesis 39: 21-22).

No matter what chaos the people in Joseph’s life created, God was behind every evil intent to bring about a plan to save many people from an extensive famine. God give Pharaoh two dreams that trouble him and no one in the land of Egypt is able to interpret the dream. However, from the prison days, Joseph had interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh’s cup bearer and baker. The Butler remembered Joseph and told Pharaoh about the man that had interpreted his dream. Pharaoh summons Joseph and provides the meaning of Pharaoh’s dream while also giving him a game plan for preparing for the famine that God was warning Pharaoh would come. As a result, Pharaoh places Joseph  2nd in command of all of Egypt with only Pharaoh in more power than Joseph.

When the famine is severe, Jacob (Joseph’s father) sends his sons off to Egypt to buy grain so they don’t starve to death. Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him. He accuses the of being spies and begins testing them. He gives them grain and sends them home but tells them they can’t have more grain if they do not return with the youngest brother (Benjamin – Joseph’s only full-blooded brother). Eventually, when the brother’s return for more grain, Joseph reveals who he is and the brothers become afraid that Joseph will seek revenge. However, Joseph reveals his wisdom and shows that he recognizes how God has been at work in his life all along.

If it were not for the pit, sold as a slave, accused of rape, and thrown in prison, Joseph would not have been placed in a position to save not only his own family of thousands of people from the famine. God used each of these adversities that brought chaos to Joseph so that Joseph would be in the position God needed him. If anyone had the right to sit in corner and have a pity-party – it would be Joseph. Instead, Joseph recognized God at work in his life. He recognized that God made him prosper even in the chaos. When chaos comes knocking at your door, do you run and hide from it or look to see where God is at work? Joseph told his brothers that what they had intended as evil against him, God meant for good. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Trust God in the chaos and look for where He is at work to make the chaos work together for good.

 

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Don’t forget to memorize this week’s Bible Verse.

memory verse logoIn 2020 our emphasis is on revival for America with three key words: revive, renew, and redeem. You will begin to see the elements of our website and posts reflect this emphasis. We hope you’ll join us in praying for God to pour out the Holy Spirit with a mighty rushing wind of revival for our nation and around the world.

 

Our key verse for revival is 2 Chronicles 7:14. “If my people who are called by my name shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land.  Our verse last week focused on praying. This week, we’ll focus on seeking God’s face.

This week’s memory verse:

Jeremiah 29:13

You will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Meditate and apply:

Will you commit to praying with us in 2020 that God will revive His people, renew our faith, and redeem our land? We feel such an urgency and desperation for revival. If God is moving your heart for revival, write your revival prayer in the comments along with your state or country. 

click to tweet #revive #renew #redeem #revivalinAmerica #revivalin2020 #WCM

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Jeremiah 29:13

As we focus on Revival for America, 2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray,and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sins, and heal their land.” This design was created as we focus this week on seeking the face of God for revival. Jeremiah tells us that when we seek God, we will find Him when we search with all our hearts. You’ll find the design in tees for women, mugs, bags, and other products. Check them out in the Spreadshirtand Teespringsshops.

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Cover_mBOOKING NOW! Be a host site for the NEW God, Love & Marshmallow Wars Book Tour & Couples Conference:

This event helps couples understand why the daily activities found in the book will equip them to build a stronger marriage and the book provides them with 365 intentional activities to take what they learn at the event and apply it on a daily basis. Through the event, couples will discover the Biblical “why” behind the categories of activities found in the book and the “how” these activities are important to building a stronger marriage. Focus points of the event includes :

  • How memorizing scripture together and studying God’s Word together as they study, meditate and apply scriptures related to marriage and life issues will help them develop marriages that honor God.
  • Why utilizing fun conversation starters that spark meaningful conversations will keep interest alive as they continually learn new things about each other.
  • Why keeping romance alive is essential to intimacy and connectivity.
  • How making memories and working together builds relationship investment bonds and how these investment bonds can become the knots that keeps them together through the tough times.
  • How they can understand what they are or are not contributing to the marriage as well as how they might be contributing to problems or potential problems within the relationship through the use of targeted, intentional personal reflections
  • Why it is important that couples never stop dating and how group dates with Christian friends can be both an encouragement and accountability to their own relationship.

During the event, couples will be given an activity from each focus point to do together, making this event an interactive, fun, and engaging event with practical, hands-on learning. Unlike other couple events that are over when the event ends, couples who attend the GLMW event will be able to apply what they learn when utilizing the book on a daily basis for a year. Since the book is not dated, couples are able to reuse the activities year after year to continue being intentional in strengthening their relationship with each other and with God as they strive to live out God’s design for marriage every day.

Learn more about hosting this event at your church or conference site by clicking here.

About the book: The GLMW book contains 365 daily challenges for couples to strengthen their relationships to each other and with God. Couples will complete activities such as Scripture memory, conversation starters, relationship builders, learning about Biblical marriage, romance builders, personal reflections, and date ideas. Click here to purchase your copy. (This link will open a new widow and take you to Westbow Press’ bookstore.) It is also available at Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble

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Looking for a keynote speaker for your next ministry event? Julia is now booking for 2019 and 2020 Christian events for women’s and couples’ ministries for both small and large events.
Book with us now.

Julia is CEO of Wellspring Christian Ministries, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people and couples develop a passionate relationship with God. A public speaker, conference trainer, event planner, and blog writer, Julia is a two-time graduate from Grand Canyon University with a bachelor in Psychology and a masters in Professional Counseling. Saved as a child and raised in church and in a Christian home and private Christian School as a Pastor’s kid, Julia has taught Sunday school, led music, played the piano, served as Children’s Director, and engaged her gifts in many other areas of church life. Previously employed with the Florida Baptist Convention, Julia organized events and led conferences for church ministry assistants. Today, Julia enjoys sharing her journey as a growing Christian with others looking for a deeper connection with God. Through Bible study and her own life experiences, God has given Julia a passion to help couples understand God’s design for marriage while they learn to place God first in their marriage, cultivate meaningful relationships, build intimacy, and address the tougher issues that come in every marriage so that they can experience a marriage that honors and glorifies God. Julia also loves mentoring, teaching, and working with women to help them learn to live as Godly women.

With her history and experience growing up in both small and large churches, Julia enjoys bringing top level quality events to churches of all sizes. Her father largely pastored small churches and therefore she understands that these vital parts of the believing community need to be good stewards of the resources God provides them with. This knowledge inspires her passion for being available with a fresh perspective for those who want to provide their congregations with meaningful spiritual growth opportunities, regardless of size.

Image result for form pngTo request more information or a booking, 
fill out the online form here.

Or call us at 904.524.8073

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We are praying and seeking God for Revival in America in 2020. The path to revival can be found in 2 Chronicles 7:14. Watch the video on this verse created by our CEO.

2 Chronicles 7:14 says, “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves….” This week we have featured several resources on prayer. We hope you’ll choose one for your own personal Bible study and join us in seeking God with a heart of humility and pray with us for God to send a revival to America in 2020.

Check out the Christian Book Distributor resources below.

Our organization receives an 8% commission on any item you purchase through these links. However, the product price is the same for you. There is no increase in your cost for us to receive the commission. All commissions receive support the work and ministry of Wellspring Christian Ministries. 

Seeing Jesus: Seeking and Finding Him in the Scriptures

By Nancy Guthrie / Tyndale House

In Seeing Jesus, author and Bible teacher Nancy Guthrie shows how Jesus is revealed in the Old Testament through 60 brief, but insightful readings. Your eyes will be opened to the epic scope of the Bible’s story like never before, as you see Jesus at the center of God’s plan to save his creation from the very beginning. Adapted from The One Year Book of Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament. Features an imitation leather binding and a ribbon bookmark.

Experiencing God’s Presence: Learning to Listen While You Pray

By Linda Evans Shepherd / Revell

What if every time you had a conversation, your best friend never got a word in edgewise? Your relationship would be less than fulfilling–for both of you! In the same way, a fulfilling prayer life is more than just regularly talking to God. And it’s more than checking items off a prayer list. God loves us so much that he wants us to draw close enough not only to talk but also to listen.

Now, from the award-winning author of When You Don’t Know What to Pray, comes a bold and life-transforming book that will help nurture a vibrant two-way relationship with God. Linda Evans Shepherd shows you how to develop a dialogue with God, continually seeking him and seeing him at work in your life. Steeped in Scripture and filled with personal stories of answered prayer, this book also includes sample prayers and action steps you can put into practice immediately.

Diligently Seeking God: Daily Motivation to Take God More Seriously

By Gary Henry / Wordpoints

What difference does it make whether we seek God? Diligently Seeking God offers a complete year of daily meditations that will help you look at this question more honestly. Each page explores a different dimension of our need for God and invites you into a deeper desire for Him.

Written in a style that is both reverent and comfortable, Diligently Seeking God meets us as real people and wrestles with the questions that come to us in our most personal moments.

No matter where your spiritual life is right now, this book will beckon you to higher ground. Whether you see yourself as being a Christian or not, Diligently Seeking God will: (1) Motivate you to take God more seriously every day, (2) encourage you to focus on God, rather than on yourself, (3) challenge you to make God a greater priority, (4) help you to make positive choices for the quality of your life, and (5) inspire you to keep going when life is hard.

Provocative and passionate about life’s most important subject, this book will make a difference in your spiritual growth. Diligently Seeking God will nudge you where you need to be nudged.

A Woman Seeking God: Discover God in the Places of Your Life – eBook

By Dorothy Kelley Patterson / B&H Books

Discover God in all aspects of your life! Examining everyday experiences in the light of God’s Word, Kelley Patterson will help affirm your faith in God’s daily presence. In this collection of 36 essays, she shares insights on family life, dealing with adversity, the power of prayer, intimacy in marriage, and evangelism. A daily Bible reading plan is included. eBook Version.

Seeking God’s Face: Praying with the Bible Through the Year

By Faith Alive Christian Resources

A daily prayer book drawn from an ancient Christian tradition.

For hundreds of years, Christians have observed the “daily office”–prayers offered to God at regular times of day. This practice, now experiencing a wide resurgence, can help your life become a vital, lifelong conversation with God. In Seeking God’s Face you’ll find a simplified daily office–intended for once-a-day use–designed especially for thoughtful Christians.

Seeking God’s Face provides an entire year of daily prayers and readings, each featuring seven elements, including:

  • an opening prayer of adoration
  • a psalm and Scripture reading
  • suggestions for personal prayer
  • a prayer based on a classic creed or confession
  • a closing blessing

Forward by Eugene Peterson

Truly Seeking God

By Bernard Bonowitz / Cistercian Publications

52 Weeks: Seeking God Through His World and His Word

By Rachel Carter Welborn / Come and See Photography

21 Days of Praise: Seeking God’s Face Instead of His Hand

By Lucille Willis / WestBow Press

Overcomer DVD Bible Study Kit

Overcomer Bible Study Workbook  -     By: Stephen Kendrick, Alex Kendrick By Stephen Kendrick & Alex Kendrick / B&H Books

Many people feel they are less than who God says they are. We get our identity from our careers, our political positions, family roles in the family, and other things. This small group study uses clips from the film Overcomer to examine how we determine our identity and how we can find our true identity in Christ.

The Bible study is geared for adult groups to use prior to the movie or just after seeing the movie. The study includes clips from the movie.

The Overcomer Bible Study Kit has five sessions and includes:

  • one Bible Study Book
  • one DVD with a promotional video and five 2-4 minute video sessions

Session Topics:

  1. Who Are You?
  2. You Are Broken
  3. You Are Chosen
  4. You Surrender
  5. You Declare
224984: Overcomer, Blu-ray/DVD/Digital Overcomer, Blu-ray/DVD/Digital

By Provident Films

From the creators of War Room, Courageous and Fireproof. Basketball coach John Harrison’s high school team is crushed by the closing of the town’s largest employer. Hundreds of families move, leaving him running a struggling cross-country program. But then he meets Hannah and begins helping this unlikely runner attempt the impossible in the year’s biggest race. Starring Alex Kendrick, Priscilla Shirer, and Aryn Wright-Thompson. Rated PG. Dove approved (12+). Approx. 119 minutes.

Blu-ray Exclusives:

  • The Heart of Overcomer
  • Creating the Opening Drone Shot
  • Working with the Kendricks
  • Post-Production Behind-the-Scenes: Editing, Scoring, Coloring, and Sound Design
  • “Enough” (Lyric Video) Featuring Koryn Hawthorne
  • Don’t Mess with the Editors

Special Features:

  • The Making of Overcomer
  • Bloopers
  • 10 Minutes of Additional Scenes
  • Commentary with Director Alex Kendrick and Producer Stephen Kendrick
  • Overcomer in 60 Seconds
  • The Theme of Identity
  • The Power of Forgiveness
  • “Overcomer” (Lip Sync Music Video) Featuring Mandisa and More!

Other Features:

  • Audio: English, French (PAR), Spanish, Thai
  • Subtitles: English, English (SDH), Spanish, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Tagalog, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese

God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars: 365 Daily Challenges to Grow Your Marriage  -     By: Julia M. Bruce God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars: 365 Daily Challenges to Grow Your Marriage

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Genesis 50:20

Jan 21 Genesis 50 20 NKJVA surgeon, an engineer, and a politician were debating which of their professions was the oldest. The surgeon said, “Eve was made from Adam’s rib, and that, of course, was a surgical procedure. Obviously, surgery is the oldest profession.” The engineer countered with, “Yes, but before that, order was created out of chaos, and that most certainly was an engineering job.” The politician smiled and said triumphantly, “Aha! And just who do you think created the chaos?”

Joseph’s brothers sure did create chaos for Joseph! They threw him in a pit – a dried up water hole used for watering sheep. Then they sold him as a slave. Placed on an auction block, the favored son of Joseph was inspected like a animal, bartered over, and sold to the captain of Pharaoh’s guard. However, the Bible tells us, “But the Lord was with Joseph” and everything Joseph did God caused him to prosper so that Potiphar made Joseph over his entire household. But chaos wasn’t finished in Joseph’s life. Potiphar’s wife takes a “liking” to Joseph and when Joseph refuses her invitation and flees he leaves behind his cloak when she then uses it to falsely cry “Rape” and the cloak becomes her “proof” to her claim. Joseph is then thrown into prison. Again the Bible tells us that God was with Joseph and showed him mercy, and He gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison. And the keeper of the prison committed to Joseph’s hand all the prisoners who were in the prison; whatever they did there, it was his doing. (Genesis 39: 21-22).

No matter what chaos the people in Joseph’s life created, God was behind every evil intent to bring about a plan to save many people from an extensive famine. God give Pharaoh two dreams that trouble him and no one in the land of Egypt is able to interpret the dream. However, from the prison days, Joseph had interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh’s cup bearer and baker. The Butler remembered Joseph and told Pharaoh about the man that had interpreted his dream. Pharaoh summons Joseph and provides the meaning of Pharaoh’s dream while also giving him a game plan for preparing for the famine that God was warning Pharaoh would come. As a result, Pharaoh places Joseph  2nd in command of all of Egypt with only Pharaoh in more power than Joseph.

When the famine is severe, Jacob (Joseph’s father) sends his sons off to Egypt to buy grain so they don’t starve to death. Joseph recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him. He accuses the of being spies and begins testing them. He gives them grain and sends them home but tells them they can’t have more grain if they do not return with the youngest brother (Benjamin – Joseph’s only full-blooded brother). Eventually, when the brother’s return for more grain, Joseph reveals who he is and the brothers become afraid that Joseph will seek revenge. However, Joseph reveals his wisdom and shows that he recognizes how God has been at work in his life all along.

If it were not for the pit, sold as a slave, accused of rape, and thrown in prison, Joseph would not have been placed in a position to save not only his own family of thousands of people from the famine. God used each of these adversities that brought chaos to Joseph so that Joseph would be in the position God needed him. If anyone had the right to sit in corner and have a pity-party – it would be Joseph. Instead, Joseph recognized God at work in his life. He recognized that God made him prosper even in the chaos. When chaos comes knocking at your door, do you run and hide from it or look to see where God is at work? Joseph told his brothers that what they had intended as evil against him, God meant for good. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Trust God in the chaos and look for where He is at work to make the chaos work together for good.

 

Snowmen-Divider-85442

Cover_mHave you seen Julie’s new book: God, Love and Marshmallow Wars? This book contains 365 daily challenges for couples to strengthen their relationships to each other and with God. Couples will complete activities such as Scripture memory, conversation starters, relationship builders, learning about Biblical marriage, romance builders, personal reflections, and date ideas. Click here to purchase your copy. (This link will open a new widow and take you to Westbow Press’ bookstore.)

004Looking for a speaker for your next ministry event? Julia is now booking for 2019 and 2020 events. Book with us now.

 

 

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Happy New Year!

Image result for Happy New yearWe all have those moments in life where we wish we could be granted a “re-do.” Re-dos are a positive method of discipline that is beneficial for children who have had traumatic backgrounds. It allows a caregiver/parent to demonstrate a desired behavior and then invite the child to re-do the incorrect behavior. When the child gets it correct the good behavior is praised. Sometimes a child might need several re-dos to practice the behavior with the caregiver/parent modeling, encouraging and helping the child reach the desired behavior. As you look back on 2018, do you see more wishful redos in your life or do you see positive spiritual growth and development? Can you say that you have a deeper, more intimate walk with Jesus now than you did a year ago? Maybe you see regression in your walk with Christ. Maybe 2018 held a job loss, set backs, a medical diagnosis, financial trouble, or loss.

Instead of focusing on the past and what we cannot change, let’s look forward to 2019 and all the possibilities it holds. In Philippians 3:14, Paul writes, “Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead.” God has plans for each of us in 2019. Some will be blessings beyond what we could think or imagine. Others might be trials that He will use to help learn to depend on Him as they cause us to fully rely on Him. But when we realize that God will work all things out for His good (Romans 8:28), we can know that He is faithful and just to complete what He has started in each one of us (Philippians 1:6).

There is no better reminder of God’s faithfulness to work through the tough times for our good and His glory than in the life of Joseph. You’ll find his story beginning in Genesis, chapter 37. At 17 years old, Joseph laid in the bottom of a pit — thrown there by his jealous brothers. Despite his cries for help, the brothers had no guilt or care. They just sat down to eat a meal. Out of 10 brothers only one had any sort of compassion and stopped the others from murdering him. It was his idea to put Joseph in the pit, but he had planned to come back for him later. Only when he was away the other 9 sold him as a slave. From abandonment by his brothers, Joseph’s life only got worse. He went from enslavement to entrapment, to imprisonment. He was sold out and mistreated. People made him promises only to break them. They offered him gifts only to take them away. Despite all that, we never see Joseph giving up or becoming bitter. Instead in whatever situation he was in, he thrived. An Egyptian official promoted him to chief servant. In prison, the prison warden placed Joseph in charge over all the other prisoners. And Pharaoh made Joseph the highest in command just under him. In all of that, God used every single circumstance to work out His divine plan to save many people, including Joseph’s jealous brothers from a wide-spread famine. Joseph’s favored coat of many colors that was torn by his brothers was traded in for a royal robe. The pit they tossed him in would one day become a palace. God, in His omnipotence, worked through every evil that was intended against Joseph to redeem Joseph’s story and He can do the same for you! So despite what 2018 might have held for you, let’s look ahead in eager anticipation for how God is working through our lives to bring about His master plan.

As we journey into 2019 with you, we are adding two new posts to help encourage you and grow in your passionate relationship with God. You cannot know the God Joseph knew if you do not spend time with Him. You cannot know His plans for you or see Him at work in your life if you do not get to know Him. We get to know God through the pages of His Word, the Bible. We want to encourage you read the entire Bible through in 2019, even if you’ve done this before. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and effective and sharper than any double-edged sword, penetrating as far as the separation of soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the ideas and thoughts of the heart.” Because His Word is alive, every time we read it, we learn something new. As we mature in our walk with God, we learn something deeper. As we apply the truths of the Bible to our lives and live in obedience, we grow spiritually and our relationship with God is strengthened. Each day we will post the passages you need to read for that day to read the Bible through in one year. Each passage will contain a link to BibleGateway’s website with the scripture for that day where you can read it online. However, we encourage you to take the time to read it in your Bible where you can highlight passages where God speaks to you and make notes in the margins of what you learn. If you get behind, you can easily catch up. Just click on the link directly on our home page or go to the menu and click on the One Year Bible Challenge tab to see the daily posts. These posts will appear at 6 am each day and this page of the site will be live on January 1, 2019 with the first 6 am post.

The second post we are adding will be a weekly post. In Psalm 119:11, David wrote, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” We hide God’s word in our heart by memorizing, meditating and applying it to our lives. Every Monday morning we will post a verse that we want to encourage you to memorize and meditate on and ask God how He wants you to apply it to your life. Some may be verses you have already memorized, but take time to refresh them in your heart and mind by meditating on it and see what new way you can apply it to your life right now. We have added a button on our home page to get you to the weekly post easily.

If you have not signed up to receive emails for each new post, do so now so you do not miss the daily Bible reading assignment and the weekly verse to memorize. We’d love to hear how God is speaking to you through these two activities. Be sure to leave us a comment here on our website or on Facebook. You can also connect with Julia on LinkedIn.

Cover_mAs we move into 2019, we hope that you have purchased your copy of Julia’s new book, God, Love, and Marshmallow Wars. This book contains 365 daily activities for couples to do together to help strengthen their marriage and grow their relationship with God. It contains, scripture to memorize together, conversation starters, relationship builders, Biblical concepts about marriage, romance builders, personal reflections, and date ideas. We set up a Facebook page for the book and hope that couples who are using the book will become a community that will help and encourage couples all around the world to develop Godly marriages that honor and glorify Him. On that page, participants can post photos as they do the different activities. We will also make posts that we hope will generate conversations that will encourage and challenge the community. If you don’t have this book yet, you can purchase it directly from Westbow Press here. It is also available from Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Lastly, if your church has events planned in 2019 for women or marriage events and you are looking for a speaker, Julia is booking for 2019. Book online here to get your event on the calendar while dates are still open. Simply complete the online form and our team will contact you to discuss your event. We are open to small or large events.

We look forward to growing spiritually with you in 2019. May God bless you and may you always remember that God is constantly and faithfully working through every event (good and bad) in your life to bring about His divine and perfect plan for you.

Happy New Year from Wellspring Christian Ministries.

Julia script

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