No Monsters

Do you enjoy monster movies? Not me. I used to hide my face at the scariest scenes when I went to the movies with my husband, but now that we watch most of our movies at home, I just go in the other room and let him watch them alone. We now have 3 TVs in our house, so I can watch the news while cooking supper and watch what I want when he is watching some monster movie.

This is the time of year that thoughts turn to monsters. For some people, Halloween is their favorite time of year. They love to decorate their house with fall leaves and pumpkins, fake spider webs and black paper bats. They set out bowls of candy for the children who come trick-or-treating.

I always have candy to give out and delight in seeing  the trick-or-treaters in their costumes. When my children were little, my sister and I spent hours making costumes—angels, Superman, Chew Baca from Star Wars, Indian maidens, but we never dressed our kids up as monsters.

Sometimes when my grandsons used to spend the night, I had to tell them, “There are no monsters at Mimi’s house. No such things as monsters. No monsters under the bed, no monsters in the closet, and no monsters in the darkness.”
There are no monsters, but there is evil, pure evil. Satan is evil and the father of evil. He is out to get you. He wants to “steal, kill, and destroy.” (See John 10:10.)

There are evil spirits and evil people in the world, but not monsters. And I pray away those evil spirits and evil people, by the power of the Holy (good) Spirit and the Word of God. Satan is no match for the goodness and power of God.

 “No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you to keep you in all your ways.” 
Psalms 91:10-11 KJV.

My angels are always watching over me.
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Daniel Repented for his Nation

Daniel was one of four of the most prominent Jews in Babylon. He and the three Hebrew children–Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego–obeyed the law even in a foreign country where they had been carried captive. Through the lions’ den and the fiery furnace, they prevailed and were promoted by the king, with Daniel rising in rank right under the king himself.

Daniel stayed loyal to his faith, yet served the king faithfully for many years. He kept the commandments of God, followed the guidelines of his religion, and studied the Torah and prophets.

One day while Daniel was reading the scroll of the prophet Jeremiah, he discovered that Jeremiah had foretold the captivity of the Jews in Babylon and had predicted right down to the very year when the captivity would be over, which was very soon. Then Daniel did the only thing he knew to do—he prayed.

“We have sinned.  We have not obeyed Your voice. All Israel has transgressed Your law.”  Daniel identified himself with his people. Although he was probably the godliest man in the whole nation of Israel, he repented.  He repented for himself and for all of Israel as their representative.  Then he called on the God’s mercy.

“O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and see our desolations, and the city which is called by Your name; for we do not present our supplications before You because of our righteous deeds, but because of Your great mercies.” Daniel 9:18 NKJV

That is not the typical Christian’s prayer these days. What do we pray? “Lord, do you see those heathens who are killing unborn babies and promoting sex and violence? What are you going to do about it? We want justice. Get’ em, God.””

No, let’s take a lesson from Daniel. Let’s repent for our nation including ourselves, even if we are not personally guilty of the sins that have been committed.

Father, have mercy on the United States. Forgive us for we have sinned.


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Crickets in the House


We have a cricket in the house. Most of the time we don’t even notice it, but when the TV is turned off and it gets quiet, we hear that single cricket calling for his girlfriend.  He calls over and over, but never gets an answer, because he’s the only cricket inside the house.

The Chinese have kept crickets as pets since the 12th century and build tiny houses for their pet crickets. They don’t live very long, just a few months. The Chinese used to have cricket fights, with betting and fierce competition.

The cricket in my house is not my pet. In fact, today I wondered if he’s passed away, since I haven’t heard him. I’m pretty sure he didn’t find his girlfriend cricket either. My cat frequently sees an insect and chases it around the house, so maybe she chased him until she caught him and ate him.

Lots of people in foreign countries eat bugs, but that’s one thing I’ve never had any interest in eating. No chocolate-covered ants for me. No salted caterpillars. No grub worms. And absolutely no crickets or grasshoppers.

Crickets are only spoken of in the Bible in one place, and that is to say that crickets are okay to eat, approved by God. “Of these you may eat any kind of locust, katydid, cricket or grasshopper.” Leviticus 11:22 NIV.  One version interprets this to say, “But you can eat some of these, namely, those that have jointed legs for hopping on the ground: all locusts, katydids, crickets, and grasshoppers.” The Message Bible.

God is interested in our diet, what we eat, what is good for us, and what is not good. God watches over us, and tells us, “If you have to, you can eat a locust, katydid, cricket, or grasshoppers—they are all okay to eat, but dark chocolate is good for you too, so it’s alright if you just skip the insects, and eat the chocolate.”

Lavon Hightower Lewis



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The River

Years ago, I went to San Antonio to a telephone company school for 2 weeks. That weekend while I was there, several of the students who were from the area invited us who were from out of state to go downtown to The River.

We parked on the street, which was almost totally deserted and walked down the stairs to where shops and cafés lined the river on both sides. The river was packed with people, walking on the banks, shopping, and riding in flat-bottom boats on the river.

When I saw the famous “River,” I was astonished. “You call this a river? It’s no bigger than Bull Creek in Vinita, Oklahoma,” I told them. “I’ll bet I could wade across that river and it would never reach my waist. We have the Grand River in northeast Oklahoma, and what about the Mississippi River? Now those are rivers.” But of course, those San Antonians were proud of their river, as they should be, so no offense.

I remember lying on a quilt in the back of the station wagon in the dark, listening to Daddy and Granddad talk in hushed voices while they fished off the bank of some river all night. It was probably Grand River, below the dam at Langley.

There’s another river that I love to think about, but I’ve never been there. It’s been described several places by different people, but my favorite description is in Revelation.

“And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb….. There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light.” Revelation 22:1, 5 NKJV.

I can just imagine Daddy and Granddad sitting on the banks of the River of Life in heaven, pure and clear, fishing and enjoying their new life, but they won’t be fishing in the dark. No, the Lord Himself is the Light.
Lavon Hightower Lewis

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Building an Altar

The dearest place on earth to my heart for many years was the old wooden altar where I asked Jesus to be my Savior when I was 7 years old. And I frequently knelt there in that same tear-stained spot at my end of the altar to meet my Lord in prayer.

Years later, at a different altar, I rededicated my life to Jesus and then put my 3-year-old son on the altar to dedicate him to the Lord. That same altar was where I was married the second time and where I dedicated my daughter when she was two weeks old. I found my place there at the end of that altar too, where I shed many tears in prayer over the years.

Abraham built an altar at Bethel, which means “House of God,” in Genesis 12. Then he built an altar in Hebron, which means “Friend of God.”

Abraham’s last altar was on Mount Moriah, where Abraham made the ultimate sacrifice, his only son Isaac, but God stopped the sacrifice and provided a ram caught in the thicket to take Isaac’s place. This was symbolic of God providing His own sacrifice, His only Son Jesus. Abraham named that altar Jehovahjireh, “God, my provider.”

From Bethel the “House of God,” to Hebron “Friend of God,” to Jehovah Jireh “God my Provider,” the names he gave the altars suggest he was getting closer to God as he traveled on his journey.

Can you point back to the altar where you gave your heart to Jesus? In your journey through life, have you moved from worshiping at the House of God, to being a friend of God, to knowing that God is your Provider?

Hebrews 10:19, 22 NKJV, “Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, ….let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith.”

God always hears our prayers, no matter the position of our bodies, as long as our hearts are knelt in prayer before Him.

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Called by Name

We have an indoor cat named Sassy, but she doesn’t know her name. In fact, most of the time we just call her “kitty,” as in “here, kitty, kitty, kitty,” so I guess her name is really Kitty.
We used to feed 5 or 6 cats outside. That practice got started innocently enough. A couple of cute little kittens wandered up, so hubby felt sorry for them and started feeding them. After a while, he wanted to quit feeding them, but it was winter, so I asked him to keep putting out food till spring. Then it was almost winter again and the cats had more kittens.
The outside cats didn’t have names and they scattered when the back door was opened. If you tried to call them, they ran out of the yard. Since hubby fed them, you would think he could get close to them, but they were too wild. They should have been named, held, touched, petted, and talked to when they were babies, like we did with our indoor cat.
Jesus said in John 10:3-4,14 “The sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name. . . And the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.”
Just like my indoor cat has become familiar with my voice by being around me, I have become familiar with Jesus’ voice, by hearing Him speak through His Word, the Bible. A non-Christian might think this is strange, that I can say, “I hear Jesus speak and I know His voice,” but I have been listening for His voice since I was a baby Christian, just like my indoor cat listens for my voice.
Spending time reading the Bible and talking to the Lord gives me a relationship with Him. When He speaks through His Word, I hear Him. When I speak to Him, His ear is open to my prayer and He pays attention.
Jesus is my Good Shepherd and He calls me by my name.
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The Harvest is Ready

Fall is truly upon us. The hay is in, the pumpkins are almost ready for harvest, and we are getting ready for winter.
This time of year, the farmer walks the fields, checking the harvest. The machines are repaired, oiled and gassed up, and ready to go. All the harvesting supplies are made ready.  Everything that has been done all through the year has lead up to this point. From the plowing, planting, fertilizing, right through the irrigating or praying for rain, the farmer has been preparing for this moment when the crops are gathered in.
God has given us the good fruit of the earth another year, just like He promised in Gen. 8:22. “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, day and night shall not cease.”
God has been preparing us all our lives for the harvest. One plows, another plants, one fertilizes, another waters, but God gives the increase.
The church has been planting and watering a long time. Most churches are full of people who have been prepared for harvest time through the teaching of the Word of God. Many faithful workers in the church are now being prepared to be harvesters in the fields.
Spiritually, too, the harvest time is nearly upon us. God has oiled and gassed us up, repaired what need fixed, and now we are getting ready to go. God is walking the fields, checking the heads of wheat, looking at the clouds, gauging the season. He knows it is just about time. Any time now, the harvesters will be heading into the fields to gather in the precious grain of the Lord—the people.
Jesus Himself spoke of this moment when the last great harvest would take place at just the right time. Don’t you have a saying, ‘It’s still four months until harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.John 4:35.
The call of God is going out. “Prepare for the harvest.”
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The Shaking


Several years ago cracks developed in our walls and at the doorways and windows, and in the exterior brick. To preserve the value of our home, we called a company that repairs foundations and after a hefty amount of money was exchanged, our home was fitted with 14 piers, buried in the earth at certain places around the perimeter of the house.
These piers were screwed into the ground until they hit bedrock, about 14 feet down and they now hold our house level, which is guaranteed as long as the house stands.
The workers dug up my plants and shrubs all around the house, dug holes as deep as a man is tall, to place the piers. They were to replace the shrubs just as they found them, but one hibiscus disappeared, one or two shrubs were planted too close to the foundation, and a couple were almost sticking out of the dirt. I was so glad to have that job finished, I let it go.
Our world is going through a shaking. The sandy foundations that we have built upon have allowed cracks to develop in our walls. It isn’t just the natural world, which is experiencing earthquakes; or the financial world where the solid companies of our past have fallen; or the political world where changes are happening. There are also major changes in the religious world.
It would be really easy to be shaken in our faith. Maybe you have been planted in a different spot and it is uncomfortable. Maybe your roots are sticking out. Maybe some of you have been lost in the re-planting. Wherever you are, you must not dry up and die. You must dig your roots back into the soil, even if it isn’t the place where you previously were planted. If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ, you belong to the kingdom of God that cannot be shaken.
“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may  serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.” Hebrews 12:28 NKJV
You must drill down to the bedrock, to the Rock of Ages, the solid Rock of Jesus Christ.
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Pictures of Jesus



My favorite picture of Jesus is the one on my little Primary Sunday School card I found recently, with brown hair and beard, and such a kind face, holding the little lamb He had rescued over his shoulders. If you showed that picture to people, many would say, “That’s Jesus.”

Then there are the black-and-white drawings of the laughing Jesus passed around the internet recently—Jesus with a baby, and Jesus with young children gathered around.  Just the thought of Jesus laughing, a big deep belly laugh, makes Him seems so real to me, so human. He was human—all man and all God.

About 20 years ago, the large church I was a part of put on an Easter program, complete with a cross that was lifted up on the stage with a man playing the part of Jesus tied on the cross. He hung there suspended as Jesus had been, but the marks and the blood were all fake. Very realistic, but fake. I told him, I don’t know how a man who is Polynesian from Hawaii and part native American can look so much like Jesus who was Jewish.

The most important part of every picture of Jesus is His eyes. Every artist has worked hard to capture the essence of Jesus Christ in His eyes, no matter what the rest of the picture looks like.

However the truth is we have no idea what Jesus really looks like except for the description in Revelation 1:13-15, “and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet were like fine brass.”

I just know that when I reach heaven, I will know without a doubt just Who Jesus is, when I see Him face to face.  He’ll be the One looking at me with eyes of love and a smile on His face, saying, “Well done, Lavon, and welcome home.”

Lavon Hightower Lewis


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Do Unto Others

One important thing our mama taught us was to say we were sorry. I can remember saying, “But Mama, I was right. They were wrong. I shouldn’t have to apologize.”
But she’d say, “Yes you have to. Even if you were right, you should tell them you are sorry that you had a fuss. Or you are sorry that you got angry. Or you are sorry you said those words.”
She had a whole repertoire of famous sayings for each situation, one of which was “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”
And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise..” Luke 6:31 NKJV.
Oh, yes, we had to live by that one. I can just hear her saying, “Do you want Frances and Velta to act that way to you? No? Then don’t act that way to them.”
We had to share and share alike. If we were drinking a bottle of pop when company came, we either had to share it or put it away. We didn’t drink pop or eat candy in front of anyone without offering to share with them.
When Velta the next door neighbor girl came over, if we were drinking pop, we had to share. She lived with her grandmother who didn’t buy pop, so she only got pop when she came to our house. I remember many times Velta taking a drink of my pop out of the bottle I sat on the edge of the piano while I played music.
If company came, such as the family which eventually had 7 boys, we either let them play with our toys and risk breaking them, or run and hide them before they came in the house. It wasn’t their fault, they were rough little boys, and we couldn’t refuse to let them play with our toys.
Everyone loved our mother and loved to come visit at our home. She was often known by little kids as Mama Hightower. She was very loving but she also taught us to live the way God and she wanted us to live.
Now I’m glad that Mama and God never let me get away with anything
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