Gone in a Flash

Gone in a Flash


The purple thumb drive that stores most of the Immanuel Quilt Ministry files—died. And they were stored in no other place.

The book manuscript, the photos of the quilt, the curriculum, the pattern, the Bingo game, the presentation notes, and the PowerPoint files—are gone.

At first inkling the thumb drive was about to die, Tom copied all my files onto his work computer and external hard drive, and on another external hard drive.

The next morning when I tried to open one of the files from the second external hard drive, there were no documents in the folder, nor in any that had been copied. None.

I tried to put the original purple thumb drive into the computer, and nothing on it would open.

I took the liberty to remind God that by His breath He gives life. I asked that He allow the breath of the Spirit to well up in me so that I could blow into the original thumb drive and bring life to it long enough to get the files transferred to the new thumb drive I had purchased. He answered my prayer!

The thumb drive opened long enough for me to copy every file. Once the task was finished, the purple drive–died again.

At that point, it didn’t matter, I was shouting praises to the Lord for restoring that which was lost.

However, the story doesn’t end here.

The following morning, I got up, inserted the new thumb drive to open a file and begin work, and a message popped up on my screen telling me the drive was corrupted. I couldn’t even get into the drive.

Five-plus years of work gone in a flash—gone in a flash drive.

Though I felt like crying, instead I spoke to a couple of friends asking them to pray that my files would be retrieved. Tom, too, prayed with me for the files to be resurrected.

I blew into the dead thumb drive, hoping that God would again retrieve the files for me. After praying and blowing into the drive, Tom took and inserted it into his work computer. Praise the Lord, the files opened!

We opened every folder and copied each of the documents, saving them to new folders on his computer. This time we made sure all files were getting copied and saved.

We not only copied the files to his work computer, but to his Cloud, his external hard drive, our external hard drive, and to two thumb drives!

God retrieved that which was lost and I didn’t want to risk losing it again.

The definition of retrieve in verb form according to Merriam-Webster is this:
To locate and bring in (killed or wounded game)To call to mind againTo get back againRescue, SalvageRestore, ReviveCorrect, as in remedy the evil consequences ofTo get and bring back
Sounds alot like what God does, doesn’t it? It seemed to be a theme He was tying into my situation, and, a few others of late too.

Last week Mom was pleased to have finished piecing together the Immanuel Quilt jigsaw puzzle. However, when she got to the point of putting in the final piece—the piece was missing.

Mom knew the piece had to be somewhere, it was one of the corner pieces she had set aside at the start.

Mom searched the area where she was working on the puzzle, but could not find the piece. Tom and I searched high and low for the piece. We could not find it either. I told Mom to pray and ask God to guide her to the missing piece.
A couple of days later the missing piece was found.

The piece was on top of the Immanuel Quilt book, which was on top of the bed, more than five feet away from the desk where she was putting the puzzle together. We are convinced God placed the piece on the book knowing she would find it when she would go to put the book away.

Though we prefer these incidents had not happened, I am grateful for the message God has woven into them–that He is the One who rescues, restores, salvages, and revives the dead…with the blow of His Spirit.

The blow of the Spirit is what is taking place at Asbury University. God is retrieving that which is lost. The rescue, revival, and resurrection are to bring us to God, to the intimate presence of Immanuel, God with us.

Hallelujah and Amen.

“The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” –Luke 19:10

book review from janis price

book review from janis price

The Immanuel Quilt is a beautiful book about a holy God who sent His Son into the world, not to condemn people, but to express His love to us. Joni’s book is not just an attractive item to display on a coffee table, it is a visual reminder that Jesus lived died, and arose again. Him many Names depicted in the Immanuel Quilt showcase the many titles of Jesus, the Name that is above all name. It is a reminder that He truly is who He said He is–God with us. I highly recommend reading this book, AND sharing it with others too!

Janis Price, Board of Director
Stonecroft Ministries

Holiday Mart Experience

Holiday Mart Experience

The three days leading up to the Trader’s Point Christian School Holiday Mart, I was sick. I had signed the ministry up to be a vendor in hopes of getting the word out more about this unique ministry, and with the hopes of getting the attention of the school so that I might receive an invite to go and speak to the school body someday. There I was looking forward to going to my grandson’s school, and I was sick.

I prayed, asking the Lord to make me well, in time, if I was to go. Well, He made me well. By 1:00 a.m. the day of the event, all symptoms of sickness was gone. I was good to go!

My first visitor was nine year old Everly. Everly’s mother was a vendor, too, stationed not far from my booth. Everly came to say Hi, to check out my look-alike puppet I had setting on the table, and to find out what I was selling. I explained that I am a storyteller who tells the story of Jesus with a quilt and I told her how the Immanuel Quilt portrays many names of Jesus.  I asked if she could tell me any Names of Jesus. I was impressed with her answers, Son of God, and Savior.

I told Everly how the Immanuel Quilt is like a puzzle. Like a trooper she matched Names of Jesus to their corresponding quilt blocks. She quickly identified the block with a cross representing Jesus’ Name, Savior. After playing the matching game she asked, “Do you know that Jesus is building me a mansion in heaven?”

Everly’s mother had spoken this truth to her daughter, yet Everly seemed pleased that I confirmed it’s true. She then said, “I wonder what my mansion will look like?”

I told Everly how God knows everything about her, knowing the things she likes and the things she dislikes. I said, “I wouldn’t be surprised if your mansion doesn’t include some of your favorite things.”

Her eyes lit with the excitment of a child about to tell Santa what they hope to receive on Christmas morning. “I really like dalmations!”  I couldn’t help but grin. I said, “Everly, my friend, your mansion will not only probably have a dalmation, it may just have a hundred and one!”

My conversation with Everly was only the first of many incredible interactions that occured throughout the evening. My puppet look-alike was getting the attention of toddlers in strollers, young children, teens, parents, and grandparents and drawing them to  the Immanuel Quilt Ministry booth. I lost count of the number of interactions, but Tom can confirm, there were many. All evening,  to one person after another, I was telling people about Jesus. There were  times when others passing by would catch wind of what I was saying, and stop to listen too.

One group of teens were trying to take a sneak selfie with the puppet. They giggled at being caught. I took the picture for them and then they allowed me to tell them the story of the quilt. They diligently tried finding the hidden images representing Names of Jesus.After spotting the Lamb of God, one said, “Now that I’ve seen it, I can’t unsee it.”

Isn’t this this the heart of God? That once we’ve seen Jesus–His love, His mercy, and His grace, we will never be able to unsee it.

This Christmas the greatest gift we can give is helping others see Jesus.

“Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” – Hebrews 12:2

When We Are Weak and Weary God Carries Us Through

When We Are Weak and Weary God Carries Us Through

One a weekend I was scheduled to speak, Tom and I had the three youngest grandkids staying with us. While I would be speaking, Tom would be watching the kids– without me.

The moring of the event, chaos and busyness of trying to do all that I could before leaving the house, I had all of twenty minutes to get myself ready. My morning was rushed and void of quiet time with the Lord, and I was running on four hours of sleep. Weary and worn, I felt inadequately equipped to go and serve the Lord. Saying a quick prayer, I asked the Lord to carry me through.

Five-year-old Grayson asked where I was going. Telling him that I was going to a church to tell women about Jesus, I asked what he thought I should tell the ladies. He said, “Tell them Jesus loves them. That He loves them so much that He died on a cross for their sins. But that He is not dead now. He lives in heaven with His Father and, someday He is going to come back for them to take them there to live with Him and His Father.”

Though I had no quiet time to spend with the Lord, through the lips of my grandson, God spoke.

I gave the message Grayson told me to give, and taking his advice to have a puppet sing, Grandma Puppet sang, This Little Light of Mine. 

A high school sophomore told me she loved the story that I shared.

The trend continues of God showing His hand at work in the youth.

Later thanking God for carrying me through, I heard him whisper, “I always do.”

Char-broiled Burgers Encounters

Char-broiled Burgers Encounters

I want to let you know of a few things that happened last week that brought me great encouragement. I think as you read, you will be greatly encouraged too.

Tom took the week off. Yeah!  We combined my Illinois speaking engagement with a mini vacation to Branson where we went to the Sight and Sound Theatre to see the show, Jesus. Amazing show! The opening scene started at the Sea of Galilee and looked very much like what Tom and I saw when we were on the Sea of Galilee just a few years ago.

Anyways, before taking the trip, I began praying that the words I speak be words given to me by the Holy Spirit. The night before I was to be in Illinois to speak, I was given a vision while I slept. I believe the visison was from God showing that He would honor my request. As I explain the events that unfolded over the course of the week, I’ll let you determine if He did.

In my vision, I saw a burger cooking on a griddle over an old cast-iron cook stove. While it was still cooking the griddle was pulled out from under the burger, as if by some invisible hand, and the burger flipped up and over onto the open flame. End of vision.

The event for which I was going to speak, the theme was Jesus, the Thread of Time. Jesus is the Ancient of Days. The antique cast-iron stove represented God, the Ancient of Days!

The burger represented both me and the message I was going to go and deliver–His Story through Names of Jesus, the design of a quilt, and the Word of God. Scripture refers to the Word of God as solid food good for the soul. I was the meat (the fleshly soul) going to deliver the Word of God good for the soul. God showed me that my words would not fall flat (flat griddle), but that He (the arm of the Invisible God) would flip them so that they would be char-broiled (open flame) Words from the Spirit.

To fifty people at the Concordia Lutheran Church Women’s Ministry League dinner, I told His Story in a unique quilt. The comments I received was thanks for speaking of the Holy Spirit.

The next morning at our hotel, one of the workers was outside on his break while we were loading our luggage back into the truck.  The young man, who looked to still be in his twenties asked where we were from, and where we were heading. When I told him I am a speaker and was in town for an engagement the previous night, he asked what I speak about. I told him about this traveling ministry of  which he said, “Oh, man! God just keeps doing this to me!”

I learned Ryan is a believer. He and his friends get together every week to pray. He said he would be praying for the Immanuel Quilt Ministry. What Ryan meant by his comment is that God keeps putting people in his path who have ministries. God placed me there in his presence for the Spirit to iniate a conversation and affirm for Ryan that he is being called into ministry!

At the Sight and Sound theatre, an unexpected opportunity arose for me to talk about Jesus with my elbow neighbor seated next to me. The tall Texan and his wife while waiting on the show to begin, passed the time by looking at one of the postcards of the Immanuel Quilt and trying to figure out which Names of Jesus the blocks represent. Jesus was playing before the show began.

On Saturday I had a booth at a craft fair where to several folks I spoke about Jesus sharing tidbits of the Immanuel Quilt story. To a veteran, the Faithful and True tugged at his heart. To another, the border of the quilt spoke Jesus’ Name, Banner. To another the Name, Dwelling Place resonated great reverance for the Lord. One after another, the Spirit was speaking to individuals through the Immanuel Quilt.

It seemed everywhere I went last week I was seeing the hand of God at work.

As uplifting as it was to witness all these encounters, what brought me the most joy was meeting two girls who separately came to the craft fair.

The first was a fourteen-year-old who showed maturity beyond her years in her walk with the Lord. She just kept coming back to the booth to hear more of the Immanuel Quilt story. In the end, she purchased a book for her brother telling me that she knew it would help him draw closer to Jesus. She already hears God speaking to her, and he is telling her she will have–a ministry!

The other girl was around five or six years old. I had Grandma Puppet with me and when I saw her approaching, I put the puppet on my arm. As she got closer to me Grandma Puppet spoke to her and said, “Hi! What’s your name?”  The bright-eyed girl engaged in a conversation with the puppet. Grandma Puppet sang Jesus Loves Me for her.  The girl shouted, “Sing it again!” I asked the girl to sing along with the puppet, but she said she didn’t know the song. So, using my raw ventriloquism talents I started another round of Jesus Loves Me, and to the girl’s surprise and mine, her mother and grandmother joined the puppet in singing the song! With much delight the girl one more time said,  “Sing it again!”

Though I no longer blog the journey, I couldn’t wait to tell you << Test First Name >> about all these encounters of God at work. There is hope for the future! There are people hungry for the Lord and a young generation who is excited to sing His praises!

Thank God for char-broiled burgers!

Part Wolf

Part Wolf


​When our youngest son and his wife married they purchased t-shirts for the entire wedding party as a gift to thank them for being a part of their special day. The t-shirts fittingly said, Part Wolf. After praying and pondering on a recent vision I received from the Lord, I have come to the conclusion we are all part wolf.

Snoozing in the mid of day, I received an image of an animal that looked like nothing I have ever seen or known.  It looked to be part wolf, part hyena. The vision came, and quickly left. I woke puzzled and intrigued as to why I had received an image of such a creature. A google search returned images that mirrored, exactly, the animal as I’d seen in my dream!

The maned wolf, as it is called, is more often described as looking part wolf, part fox. It however is not wolf, fox, or hyena. It is a wolf in name only, the only kind of its species. Unlike a common wolf who travels in packs across different regions in the world, the maned wolf is a loner from Argentina and Brazil. Sharing this information on my Facebook page, I asked, “Now why did I receive a vision of this animal?”

One friend commented “The interpretation belongs to the Lord! Pray into it! God knows and he showed YOU for a reason!”

My cousin said, “Because your name is Wolf and you are from Brazil, it’s a reminder that you don’t need a pack, you can do what you need to do and spread your message all on your own! You are unique and rare, but oh so important.”
I loved my cousin’s interpretation, and I valued the advice of my friend, so I have been praying and pondering on this dream for a few weeks now, and yes, I believe we are all–part wolf.

Some cultures and religions hold onto to a belief that humans have a spirit animal that helps to guide and protect them. They believe a person holds a likeness to the characteristic traits of their spirit animal. This is a pagan belief system placing trust in the spirit of the world, not in the Spirit of God. This doesn’t, however, mean that God doesn’t use animals to teach us things.

The Book of Job tells us to ask the beasts, and they will teach us. (Job 12:7) Every creature has something to teach us if we are open and willing to learn from them. Take the ant. The ant teaches us to be diligent and hardworking, not lazy. (Proverbs 6:6) We can gain wisdom by considering the ways and characteristics of any creature made by God. God called all He created, good.

It is bothersome, for me, to accept that my name is associated with the ruler of darkness. In the Bible the wolf is portrayed as the one who comes to steal, kill, and destroy. (John 10:1-12) Therefore, it is pleasing to learn that like the maned wolf, I am a wolf in name only. I am a wolf of a different breed.

The maned wolf is known for having keen eyesight and being excellent hearers. It is my hope and desire to have keen eyesight to see the works of the Lord and to hear His Voice.

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27

“Come and see what God has done, his awesome deeds for mankind!” Psalm 66:5

Coupling this revelation with the known traits of a common wolf, I am proud to say I am part wolf.

The common wolf leads and protects his pack. He shows no fear. Respects elders. Teaches the young. Survives each day. Hunts and defeats his enemies. Howls to a new tomorrow. Explores the unknown. Adapts to new environments. Demonstrates no weakness. Never backs down. A wolf leaves his mark!

You, too, are part wolf. You have the characteristics and strengths of a wolf. You are unique, a one-of-a-kind, set apart for the glory of God. You have been given ears to hear His Voice, and eyes to see His wonders!

Still, knowing we have an enemy, a wolf dressed in sheep’s clothing, it would be wise to heed the words of this old ancient tale.

One evening, an elderly Cherokee brave told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between two ‘wolves’ inside us all.

One is EVIL. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guild, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is GOOD. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one that you feed.”

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