Blaming God

05-28-15 071


Me:  Are you enjoying the day Prodigal?

Prodigal:  Yes and I just left meeting with friends so I am very content at the moment.

Me:  It is better to be content then to be downcast.

Prodigal:  I agree with that, why don’t you share from that book you have in your hand?


This is from the book The Other Side of Love by Gary Chapman


When we place human reason above God’s clear commands, we have made a serious misjudgment.  Cain followed his reason, offered his sacrifice and experienced God’s rejection.  Then he blamed God with being unfair.  God’s response to Cain was straightforward.  “Then the Lord said to Cain,  “Why are you angry?  Why is your face downcast?  If you do what is right, will you not be accepted?  But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door;  it desires to have you, but you must master it” (verses 6-7).

Cain’s anger toward God was not legitimate.  It was not based upon God’s wrongdoing but rather upon Cain’s perception of wrongdoing.

His experience of rejection and anger were real, but they were distorted.  God’s challenge was for Cain to deal with his own wrongdoing, release his anger, and come back into warm fellowship with God.  However, Cain did not respond to God’s overture.  The next verse records that he invited his brother Abel to take a walk out to his fields.  There Cain killed Abel.  In so doing, he became the first of many who allowed distorted anger to control behavior and thus end up compounding their problems.


You are questioning what is going on?  You have prayed and had your time with God.  You do not understand why there is no answer and why God is not moving around in answer to your prayers.  God is trying to tell you that your perception is wrong and what you really need to day is to seek the Lord with all your heart.  Ask the Lord who knows all of our hearts where there maybe misjudgment in your heart.  Completely surround all of your perceptions and what you think must be done.  Fellowship and find the Lord and then you will find your answer.


Psalms 27:1

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?


Jennifer Van Allen




I Long to Talk to Him

05-21-16 022

Me:  Are you going to church?

Prodigal:  Yep, I am trying to get closer to God.

Me:  A relationship with God can be very comforting.

Prodigal:  How?

Me:  I think Charles Spurgeon in his book Joy in Christ’s Presence describes in best.


Sometimes, when the Lord has assured me of His love, I have felt as if I could not contain more joy and delight.  My eyes were filled with tears of gratitude.  I fell upon my knees to bless Him, but I rose again in haste, feeling as if I had nothing more to ask for, but that I must stand up and praise Him.  At such times I have lifted my hands to heaven, longing to fill my arms with Him, to talk with Him “as a man speaketh unto his friend” (Exod. 33:11), and to see Him in His own person.  I have longed to tell Him how happy He has made His unworthy servant and to fall on my face and kiss His feet in unutterable thankfulness and love.


Song of Solomon 4:7

Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee.


Jennifer Van Allen,

A God Encounter

05-21-16 169


Me:  Prodigal have you decided what you are going to eat?

Prodigal:  Yep, and I just ordered it so we have time to chat before the meal comes out.

Me:  I can tell you about an encounter that happened while eating out.


This is from the book   You Were Born For This by Bruce Wikinson


Let me tell you about a mysterious encounter I had in a restaurant outside Denver with a waiter named Jack.  I call it mysterious because on the surface everything looked so ordinary.  Five friends at a table for six, waiters coming and going, voices, clatter–just what you’d expect in a busy restaurant.  But by the time dinner was over, we all knew beyond a doubt that we’d been present for a divine appointment.

It was as if God Himself had walked up and said, “Thank you for saving Me a place.  I’ve been wanting to do something for Jack.”

Here’s what happened.

During the course of the meal, Jack had served us well.  But apart from the usual exchanges about the menu and our orders, we hadn’t spoken much.  Around the table, meanwhile, the conversation revolved around some of Jesus’ more extreme teachings–ones like “Ask, and you will receive” and “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”  During the conversation I felt unexpectedly nudged by Heaven to try something I’d never done before.  At the same time I sensed it was meant to involve Jack.

My experiment involved putting three hundred dollars “at risk.”  Now, don’t let the amount throw you.  The money wasn’t mine, and believe it or not, the person who was letting me carry it around was expecting me to give it away.

When Jack came by to refill the water glasses, I posed a question.  “Have you ever heard the saying “It is more blessed to give than to receive?”

“Yes, I have,” he said.

“Do you believe that?”

“Sure, I guess I do,” he said, looking puzzled.

“Good!” I said.  “I have an interesting opportunity for you.”  I placed a hundred-dollar bill on the table.  “You have an unusual choice, Jack.  You can either receive this hundred dollars as a gift, not a tip…”

I paused.  I definitely had Jack’s attention, and the two couples with me didn’t appear to be breathing.

I looked at Jack.  “Or you can say no to the money and instead give each of us a dessert.  But this would be you buying the desserts, not the restaurant.  You can’t do both things, and there’s no right or wrong.  So what would you like to do–give or receive?”

Jack just stood there holding the water pitcher.  He asked twice if I was serious.  Then finally he said, “I’ll take the hundred dollars.”

True to my word, I handed him the bill.

“Thank you!”  he said.  Then he walked back to the kitchen.

After he left and my friends started breathing again, we all tried to figure out what had just happened.  Was my unusual test about giving and receiving fair?  What was Jack thinking now?  And what in the world was he saying to the crew in the kitchen?

All the while I was feeling increasingly uncomfortable.  You see, earlier I had slipped another two hundred dollars under my plate.  If the waiter had chosen to buy us desserts and not take the hundred–believing that it is more blessed to give than receive–I was going to give him the hidden two hundred dollars.  I had really hoped he would make the self-sacrificial choice because I’d strongly sensed that God wanted to encourage him with the larger sum.

The next time he came around, I said, “I’m curious, Jack.  Do you feel like you made the right choice?”

“Absolutely!”  he said excitedly.  “In fact, it was a miracle.  You see, I’m a single dad.”  He pulled out his wallet and proudly showed us a photo of  his three-year-old son.  “Isn’t he something!” he said with a big smile.  Then he explained his reaction.  “I have to work three jobs during four days of the week just so I can take care of my son the other three days when my ex-wife works.  But I am having a tough time making ends meet.  Just this morning I had to mail my alimony check of a hundred dollars even though my account was down to zero.  Driving to work this afternoon, I actually prayed, “God, please!  I need an extra hundred dollars, and I need it tonight!”

Well, I was speechless, and so were my friends.  How could we have known of our waiter’s crisis or of his prayer for a hundred dollars?

Then it was my turn to explain.  I told him that even if he had decided to give instead of receive, I’d planned to give him the hundred dollars.  “But now that I know your story, I agree.  You made the right choice.”

Suddenly I knew what needed to happen next.  “You have to know that none of this money was mine,”  I told him.  “The owner wanted me to pass it on as a kind of message to the right person.  And I’m sure that person was you.”

I reached under the plate for the other two hundred.  “Obviously God wanted you to have the hundred dollars, and He wants you to have this too.”


One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after:  that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.

Psalm 27:4


Jennifer Van Allen













Me:  Nice painting Prodigal!

Prodigal:  Thanks, I am no Michelangelo but I am enjoying it!

Me:  For a pig you really are not that bad.

Prodigal:  What book do you have there?

Me:  This is the book One Nomad’s Amazing Journey of Faith Abraham by Charles Swindoll


Discernment is “the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure; a power to see what is not evident to the average mind.”  When life is a blur, we miss all the details that make living worthwhile.  Without discernment, we see without observing, we hear without listening, and life becomes a series of experiences without meaning.  We are awash in random scenes that do not tell a story.  Without discernment, we are, in the words of William Irwin Thompson, “like flies crawling across the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel:  We cannot see what angles lie beneath the threshold of our perceptions.  We do not live in reality; we live in our paradigms, our habituated perceptions, our illusions; the illusions we share through culture we call reality, but true historical reality of our condition is invisible to us.”  Grow deep in your relationship with God, and you will begin to discern people and , therefore enjoy a depth in your relationship like never before.


Ephesians 6:12  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

This is an acknowledgement that there is a spiritual world.  As we surrender our life to the Lord and ask Him to use us for his Glory there will be spiritual wickedness that comes to play.  We have probably seen too many movies and think it means that some monster shows up in our bedroom in the middle of the night and tries to kill us.  In reality discernment shows us that sometimes the enemy wants to just distract us.

I have had several times where I was given two choices to spend my time.  Both seem as innocent as can be.  One would involved a couple of people around food and the other a couple of people around food.  Both situations involved Christians.  So what is the big deal you would ask.  Well without discernment one might not look to the Lord for the answer thinking that both of these do not matter because Christians are involved.  When the reality of it is that the Lord wants to show you the answer because at one of these events involves a person you must interact that night with.  Why?  Because it will lead down the road to an area that God is planning to use you.  So we pray, following the Lord’s leading and then allow the story to unfold.  The first step though is being obedient in something that does not seem impressive now but will be down the road.  This day as you make choices don’t forget to ask for God’s input, because you never know when today is the day you will start down  new road that will lead to God’s glory displayed in your life like never before!


Ephesians 6:20

For which I am an ambassador in bonds:  that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.


Jennifer Van Allen

The Discipline of Delay



Me:  What are you doing Prodigal?

Prodigal:  I am waiting for my friend.

Me:  I can make the time go by faster by sharing a story.


This comes from the book The Disciplines of Life by V. Raymond Edman.  He shared about the life of the missionary Hudson Taylor.


Hudson Taylor knew the testing that tempers the steel of the soul.  Invalided, home at twenty-nine after six years of intensive service in China, he settled with his little family in the east end of London.  Outside interests lessened; friends began to forget; and five long hidden years were spent in the dreary street of a poor part of London, where the Taylors were “shut up to prayer and patience.”  From the record of those years it has been written, “Yet, without those hidden years, with all their growth and testing, how could the vision and enthusiasm of youth have been matured for the leadership that was to be?”  Faith, faithfulness, devotion, self-sacrifice, unremitting labor, patient, persevering prayer become their portion and power, but more, there is “the deep, prolonged exercise of a soul that is following hard after God…the gradual strengthening here, of a man called to walk by faith not by sight; the unutterable confidence of a heart cleaving to God and God alone, which pleases Him as nothing else can.”  As the years of obscurity progressed, “prayer was the only way by which the burdened heart could obtain any relief”;  and when the discipline was complete, there emerged the China Inland Mission, at first only a tiny root but destined of God to fill the land of China with gospel fruit.


Fear not; you will no longer live in shame.

Don’t be afraid; there is no more disgrace for you.

You will no longer remember the shame of your youth

and the sorrows of widowhood.

For your Creator will be your (mate);

The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is his name!

He is your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel,

the God of all the earth.

For the Lord has called you back from your grief-

as though you were a young wife abandoned by her husband, says your God.

Isaiah 54:4-6


Jennifer Van Allen

A Small Village



Me:  What a nice looking quiet scene.

Prodigal:  Yes, it looks part of a nice village somewhere far off.

Me:  I can tell you about a nice village somewhere far off if you like.

Prodigal:  I am all ears!


This is from the book The God Who Hung on the Cross by Dois Rosser Jr. and Ellen Vaughn

In India, in the state of Andhra Pradesh on the east coast, one of ICM’s very first churches was built in a town called Kotasiralam.  A beautiful, unwavering young woman in that church heard the Mini Bible College on the radio; she became determined to get its Gospel message to unreached tribal people.

This tribe, known as the Sora people, lived in remote village in the hills, wearing loincloths, growing a few crops, and hunting small game with spears and arrows.  They intermarried, sometimes practicing polygamy, and looked to shamans to serve as intermediaries between the world of the living and the world of the dead.  These shamans would often go into trances, during which the spirits of the dead would speak through them.

Understandably, the Sora people lived in fear, constantly needing the placate deities who were thought to control their crops and rain.  There were darker gods to be appeased as well; those who might cause drought or sickness received offerings of animal sacrifices.

The determined young woman in Kotasiralam could not rest with the thought of these tribal people living in fear and bondage.  No one had ever made the journey to their villages to tell them about Christ.

Finally a group of Christians from the church agreed to go.  They hiked and hacked their way through the jungle for eight hours before they arrived at the first Sora village.  They shared the Gospel.  Astonished, overwhelmed with the joy of this good news, everyone in the village decided to follow Christ.  The delighted barefoot evangelists made their way to the next village, and the next, with similar results.  So they eventually built a daughter church in the area.

Three years later, that same church had built 73 daughter churches in Sora areas.

All because of one determined woman who would not give up.


Proverbs 15:5

A fool despises his father’s instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.


Jennifer Van Allen,



Prodigal:  Howdy!  I was just about to start eating!

Me:  Don’t let me stop you.  I will just share a little while you eat.


I was once lost but Jesus found me.

I was thought I knew the way but Jesus made my path straight.

Sin distracted me with a promise that could never be filled.

Christ gave me a promise that could never be taken away from me.

I rebelled and Jesus was patient.

Jesus loved me while I ignored him.

It was only by grace that Jesus showed me the cross.

It is only by grace that I cling to the cross now.

So what love do you have today?

A love from a spouse?  Maybe or maybe not?

A love from children?  Maybe or maybe not?

A love from a neighbor?  Maybe or maybe not?

A love from a parent?  Maybe or maybe not?

A love from a friend?  Maybe or maybe not?

A love from someone who died for you, and has never forsaken you.  That is what you have today.  That is what you will have tomorrow too.  That is what you will have next week and that is what you will have 3 months from now.  That can seem something small today or you can allow it to feel your heart and soul and cover up all the maybe nots.

Hosea 3:5

Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD their God, and David their King; and shall fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.


Jennifer Van Allen




Radio Program


Me:  I see you are with Pastor Adam again.

Prodigal:  Yes,  He invited me to be on the show again.

Me:  That is wonderful and a blessing.


I will be on The Adam Smith Show again on Monday from 9:30 to 10:30.  Please pray for me and that the wisdom of God will be given to me through the Holy Spirit.  Thank you for your support always.  I do appreciate the support that you show me.   It is a blessing to be asked back again after appearing on the show in Thanksgiving.  I will be talking about why we love.  I would love to have feedback from y’all after you listen to the show.  The following information is given.

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now abideth faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.



The Adam Smith Show

Monday – Friday 9am to 11am

Choice Radio Network 22135 Hwy 19 N, Clearwater, FL 33765

Download the app:

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The Adam Smith Show

Listen to Pastor Adam & His Guests 9 to 11 AM

Choice Radio and Facebook (PR)


Pastor Adam has moved to the Choice Radio Network which is an international Internet radio station heard in U.S. & 8 other countries.

13 February 2017: The Adam Smith Show will become part of the regular live programming Mon-Fri from 9 AM to 11 AM.  Jennifer Van Allen, Faith in Counseling, will join Pastor Adam in studio to talk about why love is essential to our emotional and physical health.

13-28 February: Pastor Adam and his guests will explore 6 varieties of love (1) Philautia (2) Ludus (3) Pragma   (4) Eros (5) Philia (6) Agape.


Jennifer Van Allen


Our Daily Bread

12-30-15 105


Me:  What are you doing Prodigal?

Prodigal:  Putting away the groceries.

Me:  Thank God for money to buy food.

Prodigal:  I always forget to thank Him for the little things sometime.


This story is from Breakfast for the Soul compiled by Judith Couchman


My husband Louie and I had many questions about asking for daily resources when we began to explore petitionary prayer.  We were in seminary, and had turned down a job with a regular paycheck so we could be free to do deputation work for the school.  We were doing what we wanted to do, and what we felt God wanted us to do–so we were happy.

Then one day we had to face the fact that we had hardly any food left…and no money to buy more.  Our need was specific, and real–so, putting our questions aside, we decided to take our need to God.  I remember how uncomfortable we felt, kneeling and praying together for something as practical and unspiritual as our next meal.  But we did it, believing that if God didn’t approve of it, He would somehow let us know.

Later in the day, during a study break, Louie walked down the hill to our mailbox and brought back a letter from a church we had visited months before.  As he opened it and read–“Sorry to be late–thanks, and God bless!”–a check for forty dollars fell to the floor.  Forty dollars!  We couldn’t have been more thrilled if it had been 400.  For it wasn’t just money, it was an answer to a specific asking prayer—and for us, a new understanding of what it meant to pray for our daily bread.


Psalm 78:25

Man did eat angels’ food:  he sent them meat to the full.


Jennifer Van Allen