How Did I Do on Forecasting the Second Coming of Jesus by 2033

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. may still be hailed as a prophet

In January of 2019, during an event honoring Martin Luther King Jr., Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) cautioned the audience that climate change would “destroy the planet” by the year 2031.

“Millennials and people, you know, Gen Z and all these folks that will come after us are looking up and we’re like: ‘The world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change and your biggest issue is how are we gonna pay for it?’” Ocasio-Cortez told interviewer Tanehisi Coates at an “MLK Now” event in New York.

On June 5, 2019 I speculated how the representative from New York’s 14th congressional district might, in fact, be hailed as a prophet should Jesus return by 2033. Nearly two years into Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez proclamation (to be clear, she was not prophesying), let’s see how a possible roadmap I laid out for the return of Jesus has performed.

* Democratic nominee locked in by May of 2020.
✔️ Took until mid summer but by May President Biden had asserted himself as the presumptive nominee, besting Senator Bernie Sanders.

* June 2020 polls show Democratic nominee leading Trump in key battleground states Trump needs to win to be re-elected. (Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and Pennsylvania). Polls show troubling numbers for him Texas and Arizona. In Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio, North Carolina and Arizona the president and the Democratic nominee are polling even.
✔️ The 2020 election proved much closer than many in the mainstream media anticipated, but in general President Biden performed as expected.

* By July stock market reacts and begins to slide as cautious investors plan for the possibility of a President who promises huge taxes on corporations, small businesses, and the wealthy.
Wrong by miles. The stock market continues to soar.

* Ahead of forthcoming tax law changes, large corporations and the rich begin moving jobs offshore and wealth out of the country.
Wrong. Despite President Biden’s proposed tax hikes on the rich and corporations, wealth in the country remains and companies have not moved. . . yet.

* By August of 2020 US economy dips into a recession. Unemployment jumps.
✔️ Check, but for the wrong reasons. COVID caused a contraction of the economy. Unemployment increased but the government dolled out lots of money to ease hardship.

* Democrat wins election in November 2020 by promising:
✔️ Check. Open boarders for everyone
✔️ Check. Universal child care for everyone living in America
✔️ Check. Free college for everyone living in America
✔️ Check. Guaranteed income for everyone living in America
✔️ Check. Reparations for descendants of slaves and LGBT persons
✔️ Check. Affordable housing for everyone living in America
✔️ Check. Free medicare for everyone living in America

* 3 months into new president’s first term, Democratic Congress cuts military spending to pay for promised social programs.
Wrong. No cuts in military spending. Instead, the Pentagon announced new policies enabling transgender people to serve in the military

* July 2021 US economy plunges into a depression.
  ✔️  So far it does not appear that we’re heading into a depression. The government is printing money to pay for all the gifts given during COVID. Inflation is rising, but no one seems too concerned.

Other predicted events unfolded sooner, but for different reasons.

* Spring of 2022 crime in most cities is out of control. Martial law takes affect in large towns. Things become chaotic with the military, police, and home guards staking out their turf.
✔️ Check – sort of. Crime in some cities is out of control. Rioting is now expected anytime someone of color is shot by law enforcement. (And to be clear, this happens way too often.) Some in Congress continue to call for the end of the military, prisons, and police, but for now they represent a tiny minority of those in office. The trend, however, is for more rioting and oversight of law enforcement.

U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib tweeted No more policing, incarceration, and militarization. It can't be reformed.

I did not account for COVID and a global pandemic, or a nation so divided that those in urban areas wear masks and get vaccinated while those in rural areas reject government advice–and in some cases government orders.

I did not account for a nation splintering along racial, cultural, religious lines. It seems each week a new fissure appears. Within politics the Republican party remains divided over former President Trump, while the Democrats seem to be conflicted over whether to fully embrace socialism or try to hang onto some measure of capitalism. Sports fans can no longer simply pull for their team. Now they must decide if the team’s players, coaches, and owners subscribe to the “right” belief. The Methodist denomination seems headed for a split over the issue of gender and if the Bible is the word of God or man, while the Southern Baptist Convention faces headwinds over the issue of gender roles and if the Bible is the word of God or man.

In the Revelation of Christ the angel tells John the Disciple, “The waters which you saw are peoples and multitudes, and nations and languages.” (Revelation 17:15-17) The Psalmist say, “Who stilled the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations.” (Psalm 65:7) Jesus said, “On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea (peoples). People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world.” (Luke 21:25-26)

We’re not there, yet. We may not be close to there, yet. But we’re closer than we were yesterday.

In 1535, William Tyndale, who translated the first English Bible, was arrested and jailed in the castle of Vilvoorde (Filford) outside Brussels for over a year. In 1536, he was convicted of heresy and executed by strangulation. Afterwards his body was burnt at the stake.

The first coming of Christ was destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel. His death led the falling and rising of many in the world. If you’re a writer with the Holy Spirit within you, write now, write fast, and write what God places on your heart. The day is coming, and perhaps soon, when those who write for God’s glory are banned from publishing their words in print, ebook, or even online.

Rise of Mute Spirits

Is Cancel Culture of a Demonic Nature

“While they were going out, a man who was demon-possessed and could not talk was brought to Jesus. And when the demon was driven out, the man who had been mute spoke.” Matthew 9:32–33

The term cancel culture gets banded about daily, but perhaps the movement to silence opposing points of view is of a more demonic nature.

The Supreme Court has ruled that incitement, defamation, fraud, obscenity, child pornography, fighting words, and threats are banned speech. “The Brandenburg test was the Supreme Court’s last major statement on what government may do about inflammatory speech that seeks to incite others to lawless action. The Brandenburg test remains the standard used for evaluating attempts by the government to punish inflammatory speech, and it has not been seriously challenged since it was laid down in 1969.” – Wikipedia

Recently, however, private companies have begun to forbid speech of a certain nature (God, Jesus, certain Bible verses) that falls outside the Brandenburg test. One of the leading monitors and censors of this is Amazon. In a recent push the company began censoring ads and books that promote the transforming power of Jesus Christ. In fact  “transforming” “transformation” and “conversion” appear to be words flagged in Amazon’s algorithm. Below is a screenshot from Amazon’s ad team.

The Assault of Unclean Mute spirits

 

The offending language in this ad is the claim that God can help those struggling with addiction and find healing–which is one of the reasons Christ came.

Find healing and hope regardless of your addiction. Allow God to invade those dark thoughts that condemn you. Begin your faith journey today.

Amazon cites the ad because it targets “customers based on certain personal characteristics.”

By this standard we might expect that ads for expectant mothers to be banned. Dealing with cancer? Sorry, no ads for cancer books. Feeling a little large around the waste? No ads for dieting books.

Except on Amazon you will find ads for dieting books, and cancer books, and pregnancy books. Clearly “customers based on certain personal characteristics” is not the real culprit. If not, what is?

I suggest the offending phrase is “Allow God.” I say this because I have faced the Amazon ad censors before. When I ran Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, Amazon randomly banned ads for Conversations With Jesus, a 365 day teen devotional. The approval or disapproval seemed to depend on who at Amazon read the ad that day. Amazon blocked other ads with the words “God” “Jesus” or which promoted the transforming power of Christ.

My point is not to bash Amazon. I have friends, believers in Christ, who work for Amazon. If not for Amazon, LPC would never have grown like it has. Amazon is a business. For authors and publishers, Amazon is like Rome. It makes the rules, enforces the rules, and banishes or destroys those who violate its rules.

But the day is coming, and I think soon, when Amazon will ban the Bible and all Christian content. Others claim Amazon earns too much money from Bible sales to ban it from their site. Except Amazon has already banned the Bible.

If you go to: amazon.cn and search for Bibles you will see a long list of Bibles from which to choose. This might lead you to think you can buy a Bible in China from Amazon. You cannot. Those inside China see a “no results” response to their search for the Bible. Amazon does not need the revenue from Bible and Christian book sales. Amazon needs happy customers and based on current cultural trends, most Amazon shoppers would gladly applaud Amazon for pulling Christian content from its U.S. site.

Christian authors need an alternative to Amazon, and I do not mean another store site. We need a site like Bookbub for Christian books, videos, audio, and all forms of Christian entertainment and educational material. Bookbub does not sell books; it provides information about a book and points visitors to online booksellers. This is my vision: that someone build a site like Bookbub for Christian authors.

Christian authors are represented on Bookbub but we are one small segment of their platform. Some have suggested Christian authors simply point to Christianbooks.com. Christianbooks.com carries a nice selection of titles, but their policy (according to my last correspondence with Spring Arbor distributors) is that Christianbooks.com only carries Christian content. If a Christian author writes a general market novel that does not offer a salvation message, the title is rejected. I applaud the work of Christianbooks.com, but its exclusivity would leave too many Christian authors without a way to make their books found.

Thus the need for a site where authors can feature all works that honor and respect God and Christ, offer online chats with readers, stream live video events, feature video trailers and promotions, and publicize events. Imagine if Goodreads married Bookbub and their offspring produced a site similar in appearance to Amazon but without the commerce aspect. That is my vision.

In March 70 AD God’s people thought the protection and peace they enjoyed would continue to last. The destruction that followed was one half of a prophetic warning from Christ. The rest of his warning remains for some date in the future. “There will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.” Matthew 24:21

For those who have their ears to the ground, we hear the distant thud-thud-thud of Romans soldiers approaching. Let us prepare while there is still time.

 

Find healing and hope regardless of your addiction. Allow God to invade those dark thoughts that condemn you. Begin your faith journey today.By the way the book Amazon refused to advertise is: Faith House: A Journey of Faith In Addiction Recovery. Nice book, nice author, and a believer trusting God for provision and sales.

Let Us Endeavor to Speak Until They Silence Our Voices

CHRISTIANS FIRED FOR THEIR BELIEFS

Let Us Endeavor to Speak Until They Silence Our Voices

Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency Fires Agent for Having Parler and Gab Accounts

The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency fired literary agent Colleen Oefelein after the firm discovered she had accounts on social media sites Parler and Gab. Oefelein had publicly acknowledged starting the accounts two months earlier.

Kate Hartson, Former Editor With Center Street for Supporting Donald Trump

Kate Hartson, former editor with Center Street, was recently fired, “for political reasons,” she says. The New York Times reports that her colleagues considered her a “true believer” in Donald Trump.

In an industry where imagination and words are the tools of the trade, such actions should give all authors pause for concern.

The “Information Establishment” shapes minds with words. When only one voice is heard, that is propaganda.

The “Entertainment Establishment” creates false reality and has the ability to make what is evil appear good and what is pure to appear prudish.

The “Academic Establishment” shapes young minds and is the recruiting field for the expanding army of thought police.

The “Political Establishment” enacts laws and sets public policy to insure its citizens remain in line.

The “Corporate Establishment” decides who works, eats, and lives in comfort or squalor.

All the above establishments exists within the kingdom of man.

Only in the Kingdom of God will you find free will for all, love for all from God, and the freedom to live without sin and hate through the Spirit of Christ. Those in Christ are not called to wage war on the kingdom of man. That is above our pay grade. Instead, we are called to pray that God’s words go forth and proclaim his Good News. Let us endeavor to speak, write, and teach until they silence our voices.

Is There Life After Amazon?

is there life after Amazon?

“Lord, is there life after Amazon?”

That’s the question isn’t it? For authors and publishers? If Amazon conquers Barnes & Noble, LifeWay, Family Bookstores, and Books-A-Million, will there remain the freedom to write, publish, and sell novels and nonfiction outside of Amazon?

In July Amazon banished LPC from its KDP Select program. When I asked to be re-admitted, they replied, “We can’t offer any additional insight or action on this matter.” So while our titles continue to appear on Amazon as Kindle eBooks, they are no longer prominently featured or promoted by Amazon.

Thus my question to God: “Lord, reveal to me what you want me to learn from this. Show me the next step for LPC.”

Here are a few insights God gave me this week, followed by my prayers.

David was banished from the presence of Saul. I Chronicles 12:1

“Lord, may you be with us and bless us during our time of exile.”

Some Gadites defected to David. I Chronicles 12:8. The least was a match for a hundred. I Chronicles 12:14

“May the God of our fathers see what has happened to Christian publishing, and send modern-day Gadites to help change the face of publishing. Individuals who are strong in faith, where the least is a match for a hundred.”

Success, success to you, and success to those who help you, for your God will help you. I Chronicles 12:18

“I do not assume this verse of success is for LPC, but if it is your will, please give us success in the marketplace.”

Day after day men came to help. I Chronicles 12:18

“I ask that you send men and women to help LPC grow and reach new markets and more readers.”

Will not God also graciously give [you] all things? Romans 8:32

“Lord, show us a better way. Create opportunities for us outside of Amazon. If the LPC Ambassador Program is your idea, bless it.”

I do not know what will become of book publishing in the wake of Amazon’s growing influence, but the trends remain discouraging. Here are a few recent headlines from the book publishing industry.

Beacon Hill Press ClosingKansas City-based Nazarene Publishing House, parent company of trade imprint Beacon Hill Press, will shut down on December 1.

Abingdon re-evaluates publishing programs beyond 2015Abingdon Press, an imprint of The United Methodist Publishing House, announced Thursday that it is reassessing and realigning its Christian Living and Abingdon Fiction programs as a result of shifts in the industry.

Last week I received word that another popular romance imprint was shutting its doors. Each time a house or imprint contracts, another group of authors looks at the landscape and considers self-publishing with Amazon – a company that demands total loyalty.

Where are our Gadites of our day? Where are those men and women eager to change the face of book publishing? If you feel called by God to rise up and run at the giant, please email me. Together, I believe we can make a difference.

One percent of anything with God by your side is a recipe for success.

 

(All typ0s are orijinal and copywrited. Any rebroadcast or distribution without the XPress riden permission of the author is just find by me.) 

 

“What’s going on in the book publishing business?”

Below are just a few headlines that reflect the shifting landscape of book publishing.
Beacon Hill Press Closing – Kansas City-based Nazarene Publishing House, parent company of trade imprint Beacon Hill Press, will shut down on December 1.
Abingdon re-evaluates publishing programs beyond 2015 – Abingdon Press, an imprint of The United Methodist Publishing House, announced Thursday that it is reassessing and realigning its Christian Living and Abingdon Fiction programs as a result of shifts in the industry. The new strategy results in the departure of Associate Publisher Pamela Clements.
Yesterday I received word another popular romance imprint was shutting its doors. I cannot divulge the name. I’m sure you’ll hear soon enough.
And this afternoon Jerry Jenkins announced that he’s shutting down his Christian Writers Guild.
http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/religion/article/64715-jerry-jenkins-shuts-christian-writers-guild.html
Meanwhile, LPC continues to advance into the great unknown. Coming soon, a major announcement regarding our new book selling model.

Now this from our friend and author Marianne Jordan.

“WHAT IS ONE QUESTION YOU WISH SOMEONE WOULD ASK YOU IN AN INTERVIEW?  Please don’t think about this too long? It can be funny, clever, or serious. Please send me your website info, or anything you want posted. Twitter, FB, whatever. I’ll post it under your answer?” 

Email Marianne with your question. Don’t forget your Amazon links, websites, FB, Twitter

 

Dry Bones Publishing

Dry Bones PublishingOn the last day of last week’s Novel Retreat at the Ridgecrest conference center (directed by Yvonne Lehman) I mentioned to Ann Tatlock that I should start a new imprint called, Dry Bones Publishing because, as I explained to Ann, “So many books have no chance of surviving in this desert wasteland called book publishing.”

I was kidding, of course. Last thing I need is another imprint.
But the trend in book publishing can, at times, appear desolate. Especially when you look at the number of houses that are cutting back, retreating, and pushing authors to self-publish. Okay, enough of the gloom.
What I failed to mention to the conferees on the last day was the word of hope God gave me and that word was: “Go in the strength you have.” The passage comes from the story of Gideon (I think).  (The verse is in my prayer journal someplace.) Judges 6:14
Point is, all we can do is respond to God’s call, do our best, and leave the “rest” to Him.
None of us can predict where book publishing will be in six months, much less two years from now. (Two years is about how long it takes to get a book released with a large house). All we can do is write the story God places on our heart, produce the best books we can, promote in ways that glorify Him, and trust He will send rain and sunshine and keep the pests (negative reviewers) away.
In the coming days I hope to announce some exciting ways LPC will expand our print sales. I still believe this is the best time to be a writer. The key is finding your target audience.
If you think of your book as a mega-church, then your goal is to find 5,000 parishioners who share your book’s vision. 5,000 who believe in your book’s message, in you … in a God who comes to the aid of those who went in the strength they had.
That’s enough for now. Time to go watch some football / baseball.
As allways, in-e misstakes associated with this emale are Eva Marie Everson’s fault and shud bee direecter to here.

Creative Marketing Ideas For Authors – Damian Wolf

Creative Marketing Ideas For Authors

Doing a job of your dreams is a reward in itself. But doing a job of your dreams and getting paid for it – well, that’s what you’d call a win!

Writers who had the luck to have their work noticed and loved by their target readership had to work very hard and very persistently to get where they are now. Nothing just came to them, be sure of that. Especially not in the world of today where celebrity gossip is much more appreciated than wisdom, literacy and true life substance coming out of a writer’s pen. Anyway, in order to stay hip and trending, writers too need some help from marketing experts. With a little help of marketing agents and a good marketing plan, almost any author will remain one of the brightest literary stars. So, the question is – how does a writer do that?

1. Secure an audience before publishing

In case you are a newcomer and you haven’t been published before, you need to spread the word about your book release as soon as possible. Most writers start out as bloggers. Once they get noticed, their blogs turn into books. Assuming you had quite a readership on your blog, you’ll need to update your followers on novelties in your professional life – be excited to share the news about your book with everyone who is willing to hear it! If you also have a Twitter and Facebook page, along with a Linked-In profile – wonderful! Make your announcement (on several occasions) and wait for everybody else to follow up!

2. Be your own brand

Every author should be a brand for him/herself. This goes for you as well. You need to be that writer who wrote that book. Nobody is interested in plain people and/or contents anymore. You and your work need to be loud. Tricky part is if you work within several genres. If this be the case, it’s advisable you use a different pen name for each genre. Why? Well, it’s like with food – once people are used to eating that chocolate souffle with vanilla icing and they absolutely love it, they’ll probably be reluctant to try it with any other flavor. Not because they aren’t risk takers. They just don’t want to be disappointed. So, stay focused on who you are and who you want to be for your readers. Proper branding is half the job done.

3. ‘Write hard and clear about what hurts’

Oh, you clever little thing! Yes, I did quote Hemingway there and it serves the purpose. Point is, when marketing yourself and your product (this product being (a) book(s)) be clear on the message you want to send, people you want to attract, the idea you want to come-across. What is it about your book and you, and not some other writer’s, that should catch the readers’ attention? Take some time and figure this out. Know exactly who you are as a person, a writer and a presenter. Yet, don’t be terrified of this mission, people that are going to read you are most probably similar to yourself – assuming you love what you write, of course.

4. Understand the market

Once your book hits the press, you’ll have it sold through variety of channels – online as ebooks, in book shops as print, maybe on news stands, in different stores that may align with the theme of your book, etc. Some channels will without a doubt earn you more money than others. So, what you need to do is calculate which channel is most suitable for your genre and the type of audience you wish to attract. Sometimes, direct sales are a win. Other times, Amazon will deliver a much bigger return for your effort, maybe even bigger than your personal author’s web page. Who knows! Well, you will – once you dedicate some time and attention to tracking figures down. Still, knowing where to put your marketing efforts will surely pay off on the long run.

Apart for having all these things mentioned above covered, you need to keep your human side, too. Yes, you are their favorite writer, but you are also their only real link to their favorite fiction and fictional characters. So, talk to your readers, engage with them and always stay polite and patient. Organizing book events, tours, theme gatherings will only score you points! An important thing is – don’t push yourself onto the reader. Wait for them to ask for you!

 

Damian Wolf is an entrepreneur and wannabe writer. He loves to write about small business, marketing tips and interesting life topics. Damian is also marketing assistant at Cubic Promote, and proud husband and father.