Well, here we are still in some kind of lockdown – in my case, Level three. I think it’s day 63, but don’t quote me!!
We’ve been keeping in touch with Dad via phone and Skype. He is so delightful!! He’s been wearing a cap that isn’t his, but he’s just so darn proud of it 🤣😄 Funny thinking my Dad goes ‘shopping’ in his own ward!
We sing Frank Sinatra songs, I reintroduce him to my husband and children, and he tells me what he’s currently eating. When I tell him he is my father and I am his daughter, that means nothing to him. He smiles. It’s ok, we’re used to that. He thought being a Poppa was a hoot – albeit he has no frame of reference for that either…
Having spoken with his doctor, I was surprised to hear that Dad has been the happiest he’s been in years. He’s joining in with activities, he’s put on weight, and he’s just had his vaccination. A far cry from the man who was rushed to hospital just three months ago. It’s all a bit odd really 🤔
In navigating the highs and lows of yet another lockdown, I for one am so darn thankful that Dad is safe and healthy – and I look forward to my next Skype with him.
I took the month of September to draw aside and seek wisdom as to where we are going and what we are doing next. I felt discontent in my heart over many things, especially the publishing business. Somewhere along the way, it ceased being a joy, and became a drudge. There are a few reasons for this, but mainly one that is glaringly obvious – I am NOT cut out to be a publisher for other people. I am NOT a business savy person, or someone who likes networking. I did all I set out to do, and I am proud of what I’ve achieved, but I must lay that hat down and move on to the next adventure.
As I am writing this, we in the Auckland area, are still in level three lockdown. We can go outside and exercise, we can go to the petrol station and supermarket, but that is our lot. Having homeschooled Sammy for over a month now, and having no time to myself, I am spent.
The night that we went into lockdown, was Mum’s 80th birthday. We had a lovely dinner cooking, decorations up and were excited to help her ring her this new decade – until. I had been warned by the Lord two weeks prior that it was coming – but not tonight, not on Mum’s birthday!! I went outside and shouted as loud as I could, then came inside and poured us another wine. Hmmm.
The next day, Mum and I came down with the worst cold that either us have had in probably a decade. I was in bed for five days, and Neil took over running the house. Interestingly, I tried speaking to people during that five days on the phone, but all my words were garbled and non-sensical. However, the Lord got my attention. As is his way, he’d given me a dream a couple of months prior, which I had shared with a handful of people; but they’d all interpreted it incorrectly. I knew instinctively what was required of me, but I hesitated. Whilst laying in bed and enquiring of the Lord, I knew it was time to surrender.
Someone asked me, ‘what next?’ In truth, I am enjoying being a homemaker, sowing my summer garden, doing alot of baking and cooking for the family, and taking care of my own. I don’t need a name out there, I don’t desire fame or fortune. I desire to be obedient to my Lord and do his will – it’s really that simple. How that takes shape, is his business and he will let me know!
So in the meantime, thanks to all of you who have encouraged me in this publishing journey, and have supported the work I have done.
I have so many threads running through my mind – which one do I pull upon?
So many dreams that hurtle to the ground at a resounding force of violence and ferocity. How do I proceed?
A heart pounding, beating for the ONE and yet so entrenched in the myre and clay that surrounds me. Of whom do I seek? Flesh and bone; spirit and life?
Insults, injuries, sickness devours my mortal soul. Wounds gaping and screaming to be heard, but nonetheless no voice to voice the pain or roar as the lioness I am.
Demons come and choke at my throat causing my breath to skip a beat, and words to be gurgled in the darkness. Breathing becomes shallow as rasps shudder my body and heave from my exhausted mouth.
I see you. You accusing spirit, I hear your words, but will not allow them to take hold. I blame no one. Words are spoken, opinions given, but it is not my desire to take offense – you cannot make me, accuser, even though they tantalize generously.
I rest. I pray. I give my burdens up and onto the Hands of Grace. I sleep.
Fitting dreams of lands I do not know. But we are there. Helping those in need, offering solace and practicalities to those pilgrims running for their lives. I see a great city fall. A nation besieged. A terror group overtakes another nation and causes great war.
My dreams exhaust me…
Opinions, opinions, opinions everywhere. Clawing at me, beseeching me to listen to yet another great fear wrapped up in another person’s lie. I shall not succumb. Truth is weighed up against the collective opinion, and is left wanting. I need only THE truth.
We pit one against another. We no longer walk in love and grace. Us against them. Me against you. The world has gone made. Good is now evil, evil reigns supreme in the hearts and minds in the citizens of this world.
Wonder – where have you gone? Wonder of all that is good, beautiful, true and lovely. I hear the distant sound of Louis singing about this ‘wonderful world’ but somehow it seems a bittersweet memory?
The threads are interwoven, they speak all so loudly, clamouring for my attention immediately. But I will not give over to the balls of messy threads, the odd lengths, the knots and ties, the unevenness of the mat, nor the colours bleeding into one.
I choose to look instead, at the Tapestry being woven throughout this life, and marvel at the beauty that comes from pain, devastation, love and truth.
The marvel that is Yeshua living in and through me.
Galatians 2:20 TLV. “And it is no longer I who live, but Messiah lives in me. And the life I now live in the body, I live by trusting in Ben-Elohim—who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”
I have had the most intensive, remarkable, gorgeous, stunningly beautiful weeks, here in this new office space. I knew I was about to enter a new season, and I knew I needed to be surrounded by a lighter atmosphere that would help inspire a deeper sense of creativity, but I never envisioned THIS.
“What is THIS,” I hear you asking? Quietly and ever so shyly, I can only say, “Him.“
The One. Yeshua. Lover of my soul. Keeper of my heart. Him. Divine truth. Divine creativity. Playfulness. Beauty. All that is Good. All that is Holy. Abba Father. Holy Spirit – Ruach HaKodesh. Him. The I AM. Him.
The One my soul has longed for and not experienced, in the longest of times. And yet, He chose this time to meet me and adorn me in His loving Grace. Yes, Him…..
Those of you who knew me pre 2011, would have remember how different life was back then, for me. You would remember someone who lived in two very different worlds, and who had two very different lives.
One world was where I existed with Yeshua. In divine intimacy. A student of love, of the Word, of mysteries and wonder. Someone whom had been romanced, courted and taken into a world that was so extravagant and other-wordly; one can’t describe in terms magnificent enough, all that Yeshua shared with me.
The other world, was this one. Tough, mean and brutal. Always struggling to make ends meet. Failing dismally at being the woman of God I thought I was supposed to be. Pressure; never ending cycles of poverty, physically, emotionally and spiritually. Alongside uprooting me from the place I thought I would be forever, and away from my spiritual parents and home church; this world was hard. Living up here in Snells Beach (in the beginning) was like mourning every day. The wonder, the exuberance, the love of life and the peace I encountered, were all gone. It was just me and my three kids. Until. Until a man came along and swept me into a world of dreams that were foreign to me. It was all so wonderful, but where was Yeshua now?
My deepest desires had come true. My hearts cry and been heard by my Abba, and here was the man I was destined to be with – although our path has been fraught with trials and tribulations that many wouldn’t cope with, we found our way, together and with the Lord.
I sit here now, elated and yet wounded. Deep sobs have wracked my body for weeks now. A repentance that is so soul shattering, and yet in the shards and fractals of light, I am experiencing Yeshua again, outside of time and space, and in the arms of an ever loving Abba.
How did I get it all so wrong? How did I go from the deepest of intimacy, from hours spent in His word, to dealing with mental illness, dementia, autism, dyspraxia, anxiety, marriage, separation, illness, fatigue and simple exhaustion?
Where was HE in all of this?
That’s the joy in this great tale – HE was always here, beckoning me, calling me. Giving me dreams in the deep of night, giving me hope in the early morning shards of light that would fall upon my face. He was here speaking through His word still, calling me through creation. The kereru that would fly over and sit upon the palm tree, so I could watch in wonder. The miracle of seeing a butterfly EVERY DAY for two years. The tui that come to our tree, and sing with their two voice boxes. The love of three beautiful children who have filled this house with untold hours of joy, raucous laughter, magic and delight. The husband who delights in me, who speaks so much love into my soul, who cares for me so tenderly. Yes, I am blessed and I know He has been speaking.
But until recently, it had been through others, and not face to face like it used to be.
And now? Now when I sit in my yellow chair, His presence comes and I am undone with wonder. I joy in Him. I delight in Him. I minister to Him, as I was created to do, and I worship Him in spirit and in truth. I meet with Abba and ask Him what very few do, “How is YOUR heart Abba? How can I minister to you today?”
“Take me past the outer courts Into the Holy place Past the brazen altar Lord I want to see your face Pass me by the crowds of people The priests who sing your praise I hunger and thirst for your righteousness And it’s only found one place
Take me in to the Holy of Holies Take me in by the blood of the Lamb Take me in to the Holy of Holies Take the coal, cleanse my lips, here I am Take the coal, cleanse my lips, here I am.”
I know a tiny snippet of where this journey is taking me, however I also realise that it is different to times in the past. Imprinted on my heart and mind are the magnificent verses from Isaiah, that I am now starting to live. Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it spring up; do you not perceive it?”
He is SO good. So very, very good.
Him. My everlasting love. Ishi. My beloved kinsmen redeemer. Him.
I was just sitting in the back of the car while Neil drove, Dad sat in the front, singing his heart out to Frank Sinatra. I was remembering. Times spent with Dad, in the home and the trips that we frequently take him on.
One such time, we went to Waiwera, and found ourselves in an area that was not too familiar with me. It was along a single road, on the beachfront, but in an area that was quite private. We parked the car, and I helped Dad out. It was a lovely sunny day, so we ventured onto the beach, however, Dad seemed a bit unstable, so I held his hand to steady him.
It was odd. I hadn’t held Dad’s hand like that, since I was sixteen years old. One remembers these things. The moments when subtle little changes become the norm, and holding hands with your father was no longer the ‘done’ thing.
But on this particular day, he needed me. And I was there. I guess the little girl in me, needed him in that moment too. It didn’t last long, but it was just us, just a special moment in our collective history, that will always remain with me.
Walking through the home, alongside Neil, I held Dad’s hand again today. He was a little nervous, as we had to walk a different way than usual, but he gripped my hand as I led him through the maze of hallways.
He can’t think of much to say at the moment, but he does remark time and again, how much he enjoys Neil and I! It’s lovely. His shock of hair standing on end, his teeth seemed to have moved and he’s developed a lisp now. His hands, like my Nana’s, are bony and slender. His appetite seems to have returned, which is a big relief!
It is the first day of winter, here in New Zealand, June 1.
I am sitting in my new office, quite mesmerized by a scene I have looked at a thousand times, but has new meaning for me today.
Today also is the day, that Jo’s second book in her series, Journeys of the Heart, is released. It’s a page turner that had me quite heated up several times, and had me wiping my glasses even as I edited it!!
Today is also the day that my two published books are featured in a nationwide catalogue, that goes to all the Christian retailers around our nation. That has been quite the surprise!
But also today, I was asked something that really struck me: how is your heart?
The mere thought that anyone would ask me that, is Heaven on earth to me! I am such a passionate heart girl, that is indeed where I meet with Abba and Yeshua, and yet it’s a question that we as the body of Christ, very rarely ask each other.
So today is beautiful. Not because good things are happening, because actually, behind the scenes, things are mad – but today is a good day, because it is crowned with loving kindness and tender mercies.
I stopped. Just silent and still. I looked, only moving my eyes. It was perfect, just stunningly perfect. Nothing unusual or outstanding, a scene that has graced our eyes many a time, but today there was just something extraordinary about it.
I knew walking into the theatre, that I was setting myself up for an abundance of emotion and tears. And I wasn’t wrong. But it turns out, they weren’t mine. Well, not till the last five minutes, and then I felt myself crack.
To my left was a young couple, who found the content too much, and left part way through the movie, utterly sobbing. With all of the best intentions, I wanted to go to that young lady and tell her it was ok, that she wasn’t alone. I wanted to give her a hug and tell her I completely understand; but I actually don’t.
You see, for each of us who are the child of a Dementia sufferer, there are coping mechanisms we have formed; there are emotions we won’t show; there are areas where our experiential expertise don’t cover. And therefore, whilst we should have empathy and compassion for all concerned, we shouldn’t go butting our imposter noses into other’s suffering. We need to be invited into the suffering, then offer ourselves to the one hurting.
The movie, ‘The Father’ is a brilliant portrayal of a Dementia sufferer, through his own eyes. I clicked onto that notion with a couple of scenes at the beginning of the movie. As the storyline unfolded, evidence of my own Dad, came raring to the forefront, and I was left feeling somewhat vindicated.
The non stop comparisons. The nit picking. The angry outbursts of swearing and cursing. The silent treatment. The endless demands. The accusations of being up to no good. These are all things that my Dad heaped on me, time and time again. Fortunately I have a wonderful husband, great brothers and a mother with the patience of a Saint – although since long divorced from my Dad – still a loving friend and a great listening ear for me.
If any of you are either curious, or have a loved one battling Dementia or Alzheimer’s, then I thoroughly encourage you to go and see this movie. It helps tremendously. It gives such a compelling insight into the mind of a former intellect, who now is at the mercy of this dreaded affliction. Anthony Hopkins gives a stellar performance, bringing all the pain, emotion and frustration right towards you.
I walked into Dad’s Dementia unit the other day, and there he was, sitting having a cup of tea and biscuits. His hair sticking up like a scarecrow, runny nose and scruffy jumper aside, the smile that greets you, is immense. He’s like a kid in a candy store, and he knows he’s about to have a lot of candy! Always the question, ‘are we going out now for something to eat then a drive up north?’ Always, a kiss and hug and the words, ‘you’re the best thing in the world.’ Of course I am; I’m the Sugar Fairy and Taxi operator! 🙂
Coming back from our afternoon excursion, I was shocked to see a formerly vibrant and active resident, now needing a carer on both sides, to assist her walking. Colleen, was a gummy bear, who refused to wear her teeth; could swear like a trooper; and propositioned my husband on our first day there, asking him to meet her in the laundry afterwards! She loved dancing, and could flirt up a storm; if only in her own mind. It was nothing for her to stroke my arm and do a little jig with me, then start weeping. On the flipside, she could spot me across the room and start marching towards yelling expletives, and promising to ‘get me!’
My heart is saddened, for I know the day will come when my Dad will need that kind of help too.
In the meantime, when he sits in the café with us, his latest fixation is on the ‘fire exit’ sign, alongside the ‘toilets’ sign. His most recent revelation? Toilets are where you go poos and wees!!
The goat track seemed incredibly narrow and full of hoof marks. It didn’t offer the sturdiness of a footpath with any kind of secure railing or steps. No, this track was hewn from many a goat and ensuing animals that had walked carefully up the path towards the peak of the mountain.
Claudine looked at the peak. It beckoned her, called to her in the deepest part of her heart. She pulled her cloak closer, pulled on the hood and took a sip of her water bottle. Her nerves were frayed, tripping and falling all over this track, but in her mind, she focused on the love of The One.
His eyes were flaming fire, his skin as cut diamonds. His face radiated a warmth that could flood the whole universe, and yet He gleaned all that love on her. So broken, so wounded and yet, so whole in His presence.
He looked at her and motioned for Claudine to come closer.
She fell down in front of him, not able to withstand the glory that radiated from him.
His hand touched her and slowly moved down her arm to her hand. He gently lifted her, and she smiled at The One. She glanced at his very eyes, which just a moment before had been like a flaming fire, but this time they were human. They were moist, and a single teardrop fell from His eye. She reached over, and ever so tenderly, without fear, wiped the tear from his face.
‘Claudine,’ said The One, His voice breaking, ‘will you sing for me?’
She looked at him, and without thinking, her voice rose to a note she’d never been able to sing on the planet earth. She took both her hands and tried to cup this giant face within them, and looked straight into his eyes. Her heart was bursting and love was emanating from such a deep place within her that she wondered if this did come from her, or elsewhere?
He wept. He wept more and more. Then silence.
‘Many are called, few are chosen. Even few still want to come and be with me. They want my presence, to a degree. They want to hear my heart, hear my secrets, to a degree. But I have been here since time eternal, and not many have wanted to come and BE with me. Many are so terrified of coming through the dark clouds and seeing me for who I am. And yet, I am always here to welcome my children, every single one of them – if only they would come.’
Claudine looked at The One, and with a heart of deep compassion, she looked intently at him. ‘You are terrifying to me. And yet you are my true comfort. You are lost in the world of religion, fighting, factions, denominations, debate and terror. So many don’t come because they have believed the lies of the enemy of our souls, and they seem to believe that there is a formula that must be heeded to enter into your presence.
I know very little of you. I just know I deeply love you and nothing satisfies my heart more than singing your praises and being your daughter. Papa and daughter. Claudine and Yahweh. Is there anything greater? I don’t think so….’
He looked at her. He smiled, and fractals of light shone through into other dimensions. She startled a little at the bouncing of this light show, and then she and The One laughed and laughed.
‘Will you come again?’ The vulnerability and innocence of Him seemed so out of place, and yet she knew, He of ALL creation was deeply emotive and true.
‘It would be both my honour and my pleasure to come and spend more time with you in this way.’ Claudine stroked his cheek again. How she loved Him so. Not in the ways of earthly love and pleasure, but in the way that her whole being was surrendered to her Creator. There was nothing, not even in her brokenness that she wanted more than to lavish her entire soul upon The One who gave her life, and INDEED saved her life.
It was a paradox. The One who created all of life, gave his only son, and has made a way available to all, he longed for her? His vulnerability, his depth, his kindness – and yet this is the one who judges the earth and directs the stars? How could this be? And yet how could it not be?
Claudine opened her eyes. She was back on the single rocky goat track, but this time her heart was elated! She had met with her Redeemer in the most profound way – what in the stratosphere would happen next?
This is a sneak peek of my upcoming sequel to Mirabelle, called Claudine.
It’s an absolute honour and pleasure to introduce you to my Spiritual Ma, my dear friend, confidante, butt kicker and fellow Lover of Yeshua, to the blog today! Joy & Dave have such a deep passion for people, for God and for revival. Having spent time living in the Solomon Islands in the early seventies, they witnessed full blown revival amongst the people there, and saw validated miracles. This marked them for life – I should know because they convinced me to go with them back to the Islands in 2000! My life was indelibly changed. Joy & Dave returned with VSA (Volunteer Services Abroad) to live again in 2019, in their beloved Islands, where Joy as a Defense Attorney, was given the privilege of training up young lawyers whilst there. Dave is a mechanic and a deep intercessor with a heart for the Father that burns bright! They have since returned home to the wonderful countryside town of Cambridge, NZ.
Without further ado, I introduce you to Joy E. Allen 🙂
Interpreting the Times
The Prophetic declaration for 2020, amongst other words, was that it would be a year of insight, understanding, clarity of vision, and notwithstanding the naysayers and critics of the prophetic voice, it has been just that. I came to that realisation when reading the book, “Live not by Lies” and reviewing the past year.
2020 for me was an adventure in faith and discovery. An adventure does not always import excitement and awe, in fact my journey was often punctuated with dread and fear, but most of all I learned more about myself, destiny, and inheritance. Given that I was born shortly after the end of World War II, I am socially classified as a “white baby-boomer”; so while rhetorically that gifts me, in this current political and cultural climate, the status of being “cancelled” by default, I do however have a voice, I do have identity, I do have a future, and I do have purpose.
The first enlightenment of 2020 was when we were living and working in a South Pacific island nation and observing what I call the manifestation of victimhood. The leaders of the Solomon Islands sold their souls and the soul of their nation to the “kindness and generosity” of the CCP. They effectively surrendered the Sovereignty of their nation and the future of their children motivated by greed, entitlement, self-interest, and lust for power.
The next and principal enlightenment of 2020 unpacked gradually as we observed with growing interest and disquiet President Trump’s tenure (we had prayed for his 2016 appointment) and the repeated attempts to impeach, discredit and undermine or block his presidency. The hatred palpable, the lies and fake news so blatant and disturbing. We were staggered by the treasonous and vile rhetoric, but knew we were witnessing the battle for the soul of the nation. We were mindful of the tenuous position of our own small country the media perpetrating the deception by regurgitating the lies with impunity and no accountability. We were fascinated by the gradual exposing of the “swamp creatures” their evil agendas, the hijacking of the media and the truth, the extent and depth of corruption, the real political and cultural intent of the “elite” and Globalists, surpassed only by the criminal activity to steal the elections.
In 2015 I had a dream the interpretation of which was about China as a Trojan Horse, the word was that “China will conquer by stealth”. That same year I became aware of China’s expansionist agenda when one of New Zealand’s largest beef and sheep stations (Lochinver Station almost 14,000 ha) was under a conditional agreement for sale and approved by the OIA (Overseas Investment Office). I remember being intensely burdened to pray for that sale to be blocked. Thank you Father God, the Government at the time rejected the bid because the benefit to New Zealand did not meet the Legal definition of “substantial and identifiable”. China have however continued to buy up our assets, steal our intellectual property and appropriate some of our most valuable resources. The Chinese Communist Party are like Mafia bosses they make an offer you cannot refuse, and when you succumb to, or are beguiled by, their “attractive” offer (usually large sums of money) they then take ownership of you, a strategy we observed in the Solomon Islands. While in Honiara I was watching a Chinese Television program early November 2019 which reported at first, 2 cases of Pneumonic Plague. I remembered those reports later when news of the Wuhan virus started filtering through, and the CCP tried to keep secret the source and progress of the virus. Another 2020 expose and manifested through the cyber-attacks, interference and hijacking of the American elections, and the further revelations of Chinese ideological influence in the Universities of the US, Australia, NZ, and other countries.
The most recent insight was from my bible reading in Ezra (which I had been studying for more than a year). There are so many parallels and lessons from Ezra and associated prophets of that time (Haggai and Zechariah) in relation to our time. Ezra 1 verse 1 speaks of the Lord stirring up the spirit of King Cyrus so that the word of the Lord through Jeremiah might be fulfilled. The Hebrew word for stirring up (Uwr) is defined as “opening the eyes, literally or figuratively, out of sleep and into a sense of excitement or triumph”. God stirred or awakened the spirit of Cyrus the gentile king. His spiritual eyes were opened to direct the return of the Jews to Jerusalem.
So to those who came to the end of 2020 and claimed the Prophets were wrong and that there was no 20/20 insight, revelations, or understanding, then they are asleep, and their spirits need to be awakened!! Lest they miss the hour of the visitation that is coming.
Joy and husband David, have recently celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary. They have six daughters and ten grandchildren. Recently retired from a career in Law as a Criminal Barrister (though not from life), Joy is actively pursuing her next assignment. As an unashamed lover of God, she is passionate about Justice and Truth, and is now finding her voice through writing.
 Live not by Lies, A Manual for Christian Dissidents: Rod Dreher