Where does time go? It seems I’ve not visited this site in a while. After spending the last week in Kiev, Ukraine and Munich, Germany and meeting with numerous people and doing elder/elder’s wife training classes, it’s good to be home. However, I left those cities having gained new friendships and deepened love for my brothers and sisters in the churches – and look forward to return visits.
As always, there seems to be a plethora of unfinished work waiting at home. I’ve also recently been devoting my late night “writing times” to a little side project – a children’s book (thus, the lack of blog attention.) Hopefully, this book will be ready for publication by the end of this week. My goal is to have the book in my hands by July 1, and in the hands of children shortly after that.
For several years “Fruity Tunes” (that would be me) and her fruity friends have spent time teaching and entertaining young children. During these shows children help the fruits chase away the dreaded “Rotten Apple”. The fruits and “Tippety Teapot” use songs and Bible verses to keep Rotten Apple from stealing their love, joy, peace and patience. They also see him change right before their eyes. This new book is a take on this story. Two scriptures serve as its underlying theme:
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
21 Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good. Romans 12:21 (MSG)
The book,” Fruity Tunes: The Adventures of Rotten Apple”, though written for children is also quite applicable for adults. You see, Rotten Apple (like Satan) is constantly trying to sneak in to steal our love, joy, peace and patience. Loving Lemon, Smiley Strawberry, Patient Peach and Peaceful Pineapple learn the secret of overcoming evil with good. Fruity Tunes and Tippety Teapot help them use songs, prayer and scriptures to chase Rotten Apple away. (This same lesson is taught repeatedly throughout the scriptures.)
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
How can a young man keep his way pure?
By living according to your word.
 I seek you with all my heart;
do not let me stray from your commands.
 I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
The fruits also see something amazing happen when they “overcome evil (Rotten Apple) with good.” They learn that when they not only hold on to their love, joy, peace and patience – but also share it that it can change people’s lives.
I love watching the love of God, (as it is seen through disciples’ lives and also read about in the scriptures) change people’s lives. The Bible truly is, as Hebrews 4:12 states, alive and active – sharper than any double edged sword. This process never grows old and continually strengthens my faith.
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
I pray today that if “Rotten Apple” is trying to steal the gifts of love, joy, peace and patience that God has offered you – that you will find the strength to overcome available through prayer, the scriptures… and even song.
1 Cor. 10:13
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.
And…I’ll keep you posted on the book.
Hey Jeanie, I was just thinking this morning that I hadn’t seen a blog post in a while and I was missing you 🙂 Soooo great that you’re doing a kid’s book and I love the concept; I can’t wait until I can buy it!
Shari, So good to hear from you! You are so very encouraging. Congratulations on your recent honor. That is fantastic!!! Eager to hear more. Always love reading your blogs. Will you by chance be going to San Antonio? I would love to meet you and get some time with you. If not, will have to figure out another way. Actually…your Story Tree Gang inspired the Fruity Tunes troupe…foam heads and all. 🙂 We would have way too much fun together I think. I’d love to pick your brain about writing as well. Thanks much. Love, Jeanie
********************************************** Jeanie Shaw Women’s Minister, Boston Church of Christ http://www.jeaniesjourneys.com