Hello! It's been a long time since we've given any sort of update, blog, video, or encouragement. This has not been due to one specific thing but mostly the busyness of life.
Since we last wrote to you, this list of subscribers has grown leaps and bounds, and we have been so grateful to God to see all four of Wes's books become Amazon #1 Best Sellers. So many of you have supported us by purchasing one of the books and leaving a great review on Amazon. So much so that Amazon has offered to publish the book He Sat Down as a hardback book in the months ahead as part of a beta group of authors. Truly a blessing!
One of the things the LORD has laid on our hearts in recent days is the Kingdom mentality of utilizing or advancing what you have been given. A couple of examples of this:
"The LORD said to him, 'What is that in your hand?' He said, 'A staff'" (Exodus 4:2 ESV).
"And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, 'Master, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more'" (Matthew 25:20 ESV).
"For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have" (2 Corinthians 8:12 ESV).
These verses (and more) have established a principle in our thinking. We often ask it the same way God asked Moses: "What's that in your hand?" (Exodus 4:2 ESV).
So what is in our hand? Sometimes we feel as though our hands are full, but that is not what this analogy is used to pinpoint. It's used to pinpoint the areas of our lives which we have been entrusted something and yet we have allowed it to either become dormant or even just mundane. And when we choose to use/advance the things God has given us (even when it seems small or insignificant), God meets that faithfulness with supernatural results. I mean let's be honest, Moses probably never imagined that his ordinary staff could turn into a snake - and that it would be part of the process of delivering all of Israel from the bondage of Egypt.
This is also not the question of a parent who just caught their children holding something they shouldn't (ie a child takes a cookie out of the cookie jar and Mom says, "What's that in your hand?" or "What's that on your face?"). Rather, this is a question from a loving Father who is pointing OUR attention to something that HE has placed there. He's doing it to arrest our attention so that we will notice what we do have that we may have overlooked, underutilized, or undervalued in some way.
What's the point? The point is that we personally are taking the final couple of weeks of 2020 not simply to reflect on all God has done (and rescued us from), not simply to rejoice that 2021 is almost here (because we, like so many others, are very grateful that 2020 is coming to a close), but also to evaluate the areas where we are holding a staff (so to speak) but not doing anything with it.
One of those "staffs" that God has highlighted to us is this list of thousands of wonderful believers who desire encouragement and specific words from the LORD in their lives. That's why we established Words That Proceed as a blogging platform and subsequent YouTube Channel and email list (also the title of my 97 day devotional).
With that in mind, I (Wes) have decided to revive and reengage these aspects mentioned above with a new blogging schedule. For Q1 of 2021, I am planning on at least one post or video per week. It may be more at times but this is the baseline I am shooting for during the first quarter. I hope you will take time to read and engage with this content and share with those the LORD may lay on your heart.
Finally, we'd like to take this time to bless you and hope you have a wonderful Christmas celebration this year. We know 2020 has had so many challenges for so many people, but God has been faithful to us, and we are living witnesses to that testimony.
We have a special gift we'd like to bless you with this Christmas and will be giving away something we never have before, so be sure to check your email (and/or junk mail) this Monday (December 21st) for this special gift.
With hearts full of thankfulness for all God has done, is doing, and will do,
Wes & Korie Raley