Monday, October 11, 2021

Reflections on Sukkot


Sukkot is called "our holiday of JOY!" and I always eagerly look forward to it.  First, I'll share how we observe/celebrate at home, and then at the synagogue.  God instructs us to keep this feast in Leviticus 23, Numbers 29 and Deuteronomy 16.  Yeshua celebrated it, too, and you can read about it in John 4.

This year, the holiday began without any sign of the golden rain blossoms falling.  I went to bed thinking how much I'd miss them.  The next morning, I woke up to this:

God is so good!  The blossoms had fallen during the night and I was full of JOY!  They're still falling and I think of them as golden rain from heaven - blessings abundant - like the mercies my Father blesses us with every morning!  Here are some photos of how heavy the rain is this year.  The blossoms covered the pathway to Golden Pond, which is totally covered:


On the Shabbat before Sukkot began, we had a celebration along with our regular worship service - music, dancing, and food, of course!  Rabbi Jem taught about the holiday and gave instructions about building the sukkah.

The next day, some members of the congregation came over to Golden Cottage and helped us build the sukkah.

We decided to leave the palm branches off the top because we had a golden rain tree branch that was the perfect roof.

We had a wonderful time rejoicing, reflecting, worshiping, eating meals and having quiet time together.  


I especially love Sundays in the sukkah - that's Pampered Princess Day - and Jem always makes breakfast.  Above is his Golden Hash Browns topped with an over-light egg.  So good!

And below are his yummy Golden Blueberry Pancakes.  We were blessed with two Sundays in the sukkah and I enjoyed them immensely! 

Our dog loves sitting in the sukkah with us.

In the Sukkot celebration at the synagogue, we always have a Torah procession.  This is so moving for me.  I love seeing the expressions on people's faces as they kiss the scroll.  It brings tears to their eyes as well as my own.  Everyone has the opportunity to carry the scroll.  

After everyone had the blessing of carrying the Torah, we danced and rejoiced that Adonai has preserved His Holy Word for thousands of years. 

Then, we each waved the lulav - a reminder that God provides, and that His presence surrounds and supports us.  

Then, we did the water pouring ceremony (outside). This part reminds us that God provides our life-sustaining water, and of the day that Yeshua was celebrating Sukkot in Jerusalem (John 4).  You can read about this part of the observance in this post on my blog:  Sadly, I did not get any photos of this part of our synagogue's celebration.

Afterward, we had a feast!  Of course we did!!!!

Durking Sukkot, I painted a watercolor of a sukkah. I call it "Holy Hug" because these seven days are a time to be still and draw near to Him.  He draws near and His presence is felt in an awesome way.

 Blessings and love to you all dear Gail-Friends.  I'll have more news of happenings around Golden Cottage in the week ahead -- I hope.  Life has been very busy lately. 

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

The Birth of Yeshua the Messiah


I love this time of year and these appointed times of Adonai.. . especially this week long celebration of Feast of Tabernacles. God instructs us to keep this feast in Leviticus 23, Numbers 29 and Deuteronomy 16. 
“You shall keep the Feast of Booths for seven days, when you have gathered in the produce from your threshing floor and your wine press. You shall rejoice in your feast...For seven days you shall keep the feast to the Lord your God at the place that the Lord will choose,because the Lord your God will bless you in all your produce and in all the work of your hands,so that you will be altogether joyful."
 I've been thinking about this piece of writing below and wanted to share it with you Gail-Friends.  I don't know the original author of this article, but it's something I hope you will pray and think about:

"The Messiah of Israel was not born at "Christmas" neither was His conception at "Christmas." People often say that nobody knows when He was born for sure, so we just pick a day. There is no truth to this. Scripture tells us that He came to "Tabernacle" among us on Sukkot/The Feast of Tabernacles. (Jn 1:14)
When we dig a little deeper, we see that Yochanan the Immerser/John the Baptist was born on the Feast of Pesach/Passover. He came in the Spirit of Eli'yahu/Elijah. (Luke 1:17) The Jews have a long standing custom on Passover to open the door and cal
l out for Eli'yahu! They even leave an empty chair and a place-setting at the table for him. Why? "Why do the scribes say that Eli'yahu must come first?" And our Messsiah responded "Indeed, Eli'yahu is coming first and will restore all things. But I say to you that ELI'YAHU HAS ALREADY COME, AND THEY DID NOT KNOW HIM... Then the disciples understood that He spoke of Yochanan the Immerser." (Matt 17:10-13) 
So, how do we know that John was born on Passover? Scripture states that Zechar'yah served as Priest in the Temple under the division of Abi'yah. (Luke 1:5) A further study of 1Chron 24 tells us when this is. Elisheba/Elizabeth was 6 months pregnant when Miryim arrived to assist her, (Luke 1:26) so our Messiah was born 6 months after John... on Sukkot/The Feast of Tabernacles. He was not born in a barn, it was a sukkah. He was not placed in a feeding trough, He was wrapped up and placed in a food crib, (a storage bin to keep the food off the ground) ... as the Bread of Life.
He was indeed conceived nine months before on Chanukah/The Feast of Rededication, rededicating mankind to the Father. Chanukah is not "Christmas" as they are often more as twenty days apart. Chanukah is also known as "The Festival of Lights." The word "LIGHT" is used seven times in six verses. (Jn 1:4-9):
"In Him was life, and the life was the LIGHT of mankind."
"And the LIGHT shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it"
John came to "bear witness of the LIGHT..."
"He was not the LIGHT but came to bear witness of that LIGHT."
"That was the true LIGHT which gives LIGHT to every man coming into the world."
When we remove the Babylonian glasses, we see the tremendous beauty of the Feasts. The Word is so very awesome, but we must scrape away man-made religion to see It as IT IS WRITTEN."

Friday, September 17, 2021

Reflections on Yom Kippur


These are the Scriptures I reflected on during Yom Kippur:

Leviticus 23, especially this:

26 Adonai spoke to Moses, saying: 27 “However, the tenth day of this seventh month is Yom Kippur,[f] a holy convocation to you, so you are to afflict yourselves. You are to bring an offering made by fire to Adonai. 28 You are not to do any kind of work on that set day, for it is Yom Kippur, to make atonement for you before Adonai your God. 29 For anyone who does not deny himself on that day must be cut off from his people. 30 Anyone who does any kind of work on that day, that person I will destroy from among his people. 31 You should do no kind of work. It is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. 32 It is to be a Shabbat of solemn rest for you, and you are to humble your souls. On the ninth day of the month in the evening—from evening until evening—you are to keep your Shabbat.”

 On Yom Kippur, we gathered together at the synagogue for a holy convocation - a solemn, serioius service where we reflect on our sins.  We ask forgiveness of those sins, and thank Him for the blood of Yeshua that pays for them.  We wear white clothing as a reminder that we are made pure because of His sacrifice.

During the service, we read and meditated on a long list of sins.  Many of these reminded me of sins I had allowed to creep into my life once again.  I repented (teshuvah) and asked forgiveness.

We are also reminded to go to the people we have hurt, to ask their forgiveness, and to make amends. 

Matthew 5:7
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

Matthew 6:14
For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

Matthew 18:35
That is how My heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."

Mark 11:26
But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses. 
On Yom Kippur, we are also reminded of this:
Matthew 18:15 Now if your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault while you’re with him alone. If he listens to you, you have won your brother. 16 But if he does not listen, take with you one or two more, so that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may stand. 17 But if he refuses to listen to them, tell it to Messiah’s community. And if he refuses to listen even to Messiah’s community, let him be to you as a pagan and a tax collector.
That last one is the most difficult one for me.  I have a very forgiving heart, and I don't have a hard time admitting I'm wrong and asking forgiveness, but confronting others and talking about what they did to hurt me is very difficult.  I have to pray long and hard on that before I do it to make sure of what to say, when to say it, and the right attitude in how to say it.   It's a soul-searching process that I take very seriously.

On Yom Kippur, we are told to fast, and yesterday I meditated on this passage from Isaiah 58:

“Is not this the fast I choose:
to release the bonds of wickedness,
to untie the cords of the yoke,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to tear off every yoke?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry,
to bring the homeless poor into your house?
When you see the naked, to cover him,
and not hide yourself from your own flesh and blood?
Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will spring up speedily.
Your righteousness will go before you,
the glory of Adonai as your rear guard.”
Then you will call, and Adonai will answer.
You will cry and He will say, “Here I am.”
If you get rid of the yoke among you—
finger-pointing and badmouthing—
10 If you give yourself to the hungry,
and satisfy the desire of the afflicted,
then your light will rise in darkness,
and your gloom will be like midday.
11 Then Adonai will guide you continually,
    satisfy your soul in drought
    and strengthen your bones.
You will be like a watered garden,
    like a spring of water whose waters never fail.
12 Some of you will rebuild the ancient ruins,
will raise up the age-old foundations,
will be called Repairer of the Breach,
    Restorer of Streets for Dwelling.
13 If you turn back your foot from Shabbat,
from doing your pleasure on My holy day,
and call Shabbat a delight,
    the holy day of Adonai honorable,
If you honor it, not going your own ways,
    not seeking your own pleasure,
    nor speaking your usual speech,
14 then You will delight yourself in Adonai,
and I will let you ride over the heights of the earth,
I will feed you with the heritage of your father Jacob.”
For the mouth of Adonai has spoken.

I'm still pondering this passage, taking it slowly and seriously.  I'll post more on this another day.  

Finally, I'm reflecting on Psalm 32:1 - "Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is pardoned."  Oh, Halleluyah! Thank You, Father for Your forgiveness through Yeshua Hamashiach, and for the forgiveness of others I've sinned against.  If not for Your great love and mercy, I don't know where I would be.  Thank You for saving me and calling me to be a part of Your Kingdom.  I am so blessed.

Monday, September 6, 2021

Shana Tovah - Happy 5782



                                       L'SHANA TOVAH 


We'll be observing this commanded feast tonight at our synagogue. This holiday is called Rosh Hashanah - and  Feast of Trumpets because the blowing of the shofar is the focus.  We also make the challah round on this holiday as a reminder that the time has come around once again for us to refocus our lives on ADONAI.  The cycle begins and we rejoice.

During the service at our synagogue, there are 100 notes blown on the shofar. Here is a video so that you can hear how it sounds.  The chanting by the rabbi tells the musician how many times to blow the shofar.

That last note is very long.  I am amazed at how long the one in the video continued, because blowing the shofar is not easy, and blowing  it for 100 notes is even harder.  To have the breath to end like that is great.
The shofar blasts are a call to repentance and prayer and a reminder to be in awe of Adonai. Thus, the time between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur is known as The Ten Days of Awe. 

For the ten days, we take time to reflect on our lives and ask G-d to reveal any hidden sins.  We also ask Him to show us if any relationships need to be mended.  If so, we go to that person and ask forgiveness.  It is a solemn time of humbling ourselves before Him.  We remember, with grateful hearts, that without Yeshua's shed blood we would not have forgiveness.  His sacrifice gave us that gift. 

You can learn more about the Feast of Trumpets HERE

After the service, we eat lots of apples dipped in honey, and wish each other a sweet year ahead.

One of the things that awes me about the High Holy Days is that all Jews come aside to observe this holiday. In some towns, all businesses close down for the entire ten days.  I saw this quote and it caused me to think and I hope you, my Gail-Friends, will ponder it, too:

  “Since the days of Pentecost, has the whole church ever put aside every other work and waited upon him for ten days, that the Spirit’s power might be manifested? We give too much attention to method and machinery and resources, and too little to the source of power” –J. Hudson Taylor

Did you know that Pentecost is actually the Jewish holiday of Shavuot?  The Jews were in Jerusalem that day to obey God's command.  The observance of Rosh Hashanah and the Ten Days of Awe are also commanded by Adonai.  

Friday, September 3, 2021

Golden Cottage Happenings



Greetings Gail-Friends:

It's been a while...'cause I've been super busy.  I haven't been writing much lately because I've been focusing on art.  A friend  and fellow artist, Joy, and I are sharing booth space in the Green Circle Art Gallery in Cocoa Village.  I had some paintings done, but needed more, so that's what I've been doing, Gail-Friends.  Here's a photo of our space:

Last month, Rabbi Jem and I went to the Authors for Authors writers conference where I met Yvonne Mason, a fellow Georgia gal.  She invited me to be on her radio show, which I was happy to do.  Yvonne is so interesting to talk with, and she really put me at ease.  The show was not scripted, so we just chatted for an hour -- not so much about my books, but about God working our lives.  After the introductory song, the talking begins at the 4:45 mark Here's the link to the show:   Gail Golden interview

 Mr dear husband and I are members of the Space Coast Writers Guild, and he entered their recent short story contest -- Mischief.  Well, being the mischievous type, he entered a story -- and won second prize -- and $150.  I'm so proud of him!  




The plan-demic continues, and I've decided to keep my focus on Adonai.  He is my healer.  Sometimes I'm tempted to get anxious and/or depressed about the way things are going in my beloved country, but Adonai is also my Comforter and the Lifter of My Head.  Here are a couple of paintings I've done in the past that I hope will encourage you to keep your eyes on Him, too.




Focusing on God's Word, my blessings, helping others, doing art, listening to praise music -- all of these things are wise choices for times like these.  Also, I'm focusing on the beauty around me.  Here's some of it: 

I live in paradise - this is a marina near Cocoa Village.
Date palm flowers
This little duckie went to the Authors for Authors writers conference
beauty on my fence
my dear husband and our blind doxie reading the paper together - precious!

Blessings to you all, dear Gail-Friends.  Would love to hear what's happening in your world!


Thursday, August 12, 2021

America in a Nutshell


Monday, August 2, 2021

A Call to War


I know many are afraid of what's happening in our country.  But, remember that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7). We cannot just sit back, wring our hands, and worry ourselves sick.  This post will show how we can take action.  Most importantly, we have mighty spiritual weapons to use in this war against humanity AND our country.  

Spiritual warfare has been on my heart recently and I hope you will read my posts  HERE  and the article below.  There are things we can do that are not included in the following article, such as:  

  • Be like Esther - We were born for such a time as this, Gail-Friends. We can take action by exercising our citizenship. Stand up, speak out, and take a stand for our rights, common sense, and the truth.  Speak out one-on-one, on social media, in your town, state, and to your representatives in Congress.
  • Live in obedience to His Holy Word so that our prayers are not hindered.  Remember this verse:  Those who abandon Torah praise the wicked, but those who keep Torah fight them. (Proverbs 28:4)
  • Use praise to defeat the enemy - See Isiah 61:1-3.  Did you know that in ancient wars, the Israelites placed musicians and singers at the very front of the army?  Why?  Because praise glorifies God and the devil hates that.  Also, music has a profound effect on our strength and attitude.  Listen to praise music and sing to Him.  Read out loud the psalms that praise Him.  It is POWER-FULL!
I hope you will read this whole article (including more at the link below it) and join us in prayer and action to defeat the enemy of our souls. 

A Call to War
by Jamie Lash  (this is an excerpt from Jewish Jewels newsletter)

The shofar (ram's horn trumpet), spoken of throughout the Holy Scriptures, is sounded every day this month in traditional synagogues since August 2021 coincides with the month of Elul on the Hebrew /Biblical calendar. Elul precedes the month of Tishrei and is a month of preparation of the heart before the fall Feasts of the Lord. The shofar calls God's people to repentance.

The shofar is also a call to war. "When you go to war in your land against the enemy who oppresses you, then you shall sound an alarm with the trumpets (shofarot, show-far-OAT), and you will be remembered before the LORD your God, and you will be saved from your enemies" (Num. 10:9).

Last month, in obedience to the Lord, I wrote about two of the evil spirits that are warring against us in the U.S.A. at this hour in history: the lying, deceiving spirit and the antichrist spirit. The spiritual warfare, mentioned in Ephesians 6:12, is the scriptural basis of this war against demonic forces. My compulsion to continue expounding on our call to war is also based on another verse from Ephesians: "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them" (Eph. 5:11).

EXPOSE THEM. Plural. It was drawn to my attention recently that the world-wide pandemic was just beginning at the time of my husband Neil's unveiling (of a monument one year after his death). This was in March, 2020. No one wore masks yet, everyone was unsure about Covid-19, and the "pandemonium" had not yet begun (PAN-DEMONium, from the Greek for "all demon"). I consider
it a possibility that the enemy unleashed or at least stirred up a horde of demonic spirits during the pandemic of 2020, and they are harassing us now. The Lord wants to unveil them and give us victory over them, but we must be AWARE of them and ENGAGE in the battle against them. The End-time bride is destined to be a Warrior bride. Please be assured that we are not alone in the battle. God is ,)שופר with us. Take heart from Nehemiah 4:20, "Whenever you hear the sound of the trumpet (shofar rally to us there. Our God will fight for us." 

I highly recommend subscribing to this monthly newsletter.  I also recommend Jewish Jewels videos on YouTube. 

Friday, July 23, 2021

A Great Resource for Women


I recommend this resource for all women - young, old, single, married, mothers, and those without children also. 

God has given us a mandate to teach the younger women -- and there's always someone younger than you, right?  I am always encouraged by Nancy's writing.  I hope you will take God's mandate to heart and share God's Word with the women around you.

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Thursday, July 15, 2021

Are You Zealous?


When I was growing up, my girl friends and I would talk about what we wanted to be when we grew up.  Some wanted to be nurses, some ballerinas . . . but I only wanted to be a mother. When I was about five years old, I remember asking my mama one day, "Mama, can you have a baby without being married?"  

She said, "Yes, but why?"

I said, "Well, that's what I want to do because I don't ever want to get married."

In my little girl way, I was expressing my desire to be a mother.  I wanted a baby - because I loved them so much.  

Well, I did grow up to be a mother -- and I did get married first.  I prayed fervently for a baby, but it took four years of marriage before my first baby girl was born.  This was after I'd had a miscarriage the year before.  When I lost that baby, my heart was broken.  But, praise God, He blessed me with a healthy, beautiful girl.  She was my dream come true.

I wanted more children and prayed fervently again -- but it was six, long years before my second baby girl came.  I wanted more babies, but it was not to be.  I was, and am, so grateful for the two blessings God gave me.

Books were my passion while my girls were growing up.  I read everything I could get my hands on in order to learn how to be a good mother.  I watched other mothers and tried to emulate them.  I was passionate and I was zealous about teaching them God's Word. 

Both of my daughters are now adults, and I have two grandchildren.  While my parenting role has changed and I have made many mistakes along the way,  I remain zealous in my desire to be a good, godly mother . . . according to God's standard - not the world's.  Part of my role now is to be zealous in prayer for the loved ones God has given me.  I will not be complacent in this role.  God's word is my guiding light as I walk out my remaining days.  Do my actions and words line up with His Word?  That's the key to being  a good mother in His eyes.  My prayer is to hear Him say, "Well done, My good and faithful servant" not "Depart from me you who practice lawlessness."

These thoughts were inspired by this post by Nancy Campbell on her Facebook page, Above Rubies:  (used by permission)

Some people allow themselves to get eaten up inside with bitterness, hurt, and jealousy etc. As mothers, we cannot allow these attitudes in our lives for they destroy us and our entire family. We must keep our spirits whole—pure, blameless, and continually forgiving.
However, there is one area where the Bible tells us we can get “eaten up” inside? Do you know what it is? John 2:17 says of Jesus: “The zeal of thine house hath EATEN ME UP.” In other words, He was consumed with zeal for the honor of God’s house. These words were spoken after Jesus made a whip and cleansed the temple. He drove out all the sheep and oxen, tipped over all the tables and money, and cried out: “Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house a house of merchandise” (John 2:16).
He also cried out: “It is written, my house shall be called the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves” (Matthew 21:13). 
Your home is also God’s house if you have dedicated it to the Lord, which I am sure you have. 
Therefore, we should have the same zeal Jesus had to protect our homes and families. We are faithful watchwomen who drive all evil out of our homes. Even if we upset everyone! We won’t be tipping over tables and throwing money everywhere, but we’ll be strong enough to take a stand against any evil that seeks to bring darkness into our homes. 
We passionately keep our homes holy. 
We have the zeal of the Lord about making our home a House of Prayer! If our homes are not homes of prayer, can we call them God’s homes? We plan our schedules around our daily prayer times with our family. We don’t hope it fits in. We make it fit in to our schedule. Or better still, we make our schedule fit around our highest priority, our daily family times of prayer and Bible reading.
Jesus Christ redeemed us to be “zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14). Building your home and family for God is a good work. Do it with zeal. Don’t do it halfheartedly, allowing other things to consume your mind and time. Embrace the great commission God has given to you and pour your heart into it. 
Sometimes, some wonderful mothers become zealously involved in a specific interest outside their home and it consumes them. Now, instead of continuing to build up their marriage and their home, they pour their life into this vain emptiness that is temporary and has no eternal value. Their home lies destitute. They are building empty castles in the air instead of building their family. 
May the blessings of God fall upon you, dear anointed, zealous, passionate mother.
~ Nancy Campbell

You can subscribe to Nancy's newsletter here --
Image by Barbara Jackson from Pixabay

Friday, July 2, 2021

Reflections on the Good Shepherd and a Big Blessing!

This is a picture of how I've felt over the past year, Gail-Friends.  I hope you laugh -- I did when I saw it.  It's a perfect depiction of how confused and helpless I was.

This photo is a picture of my spirit right now.  The "Son" is coming up over a beautiful field of flowers.  That's how I feel  Haleluyah!  

The year 2020 and the last six months have been extremely difficult. Grief and loss have visited me  over and over.  Thankfully, the Good Shepherd has held my hand as we walked through the valley of the shadow of death together.  Thank you, dear Gail-Friends, for your prayers, kind words, and support you've shown.  
I confess to you, dear Gail-Friends, that I have failed to be vigilant in battle against the evil one.  There were times I grew weary.  I wanted to just stay at home and not go out.  I could not write.  But praise God, when I stumbled, He helped me up.  Psalm 23 has been my consistent meditation when tears flowed through the night. 

With God's help, I have reached the place that Psalm 23 speaks of:
  •   He has prepared a table for me in the presence of my enemies.  Even though the evil one has   been attacking me steadily, I am experiencing God's joy again.
  •   He has anointed my head with oil.  I once again feel His presence and comfort.  I know His favor is upon me, even though at times I felt like a female Job.  
  •   My cup is running over.  Once again, God has taught me lessons as I walked through the dark valley  -- truths that no one can take away from me. 
One thing I learned is that I have to be extremely vigilant about my thought life.  The evil one was roaring and roaming like a lion.  I can't just complain that there's a lion in the street.  I have to get up and destroy him. (Proverbs 22:13).  
Here's what the Word says about that:  
  Stay sober, stay alert! Your enemy, the Adversary, stalks about like a roaring lion
 looking for someone to devour. (I Peter 5:8 CJB)
 Therefore, submit to God. Moreover, take a stand against the Adversary, 
and he will flee from you.(James 4:7 CJB)

I hope hope to share more about this lesson as well as some of other things I experienced and learned in the days and weeks ahead.  

And now for the BIG BLESSING!!

God has answered my prayers -- we have a new grandson!  

And here he is - Elijah Love.  Don't you love his name?  


Can you tell I am over the moon with JOY!!!?


 Have a great week, Gail-Friends, and a Good Shabbos.

Lord willing, I will post again next week.

P.S. - and very important:

Recently, the Feedburner team released a system update, that the email subscription service (up top on the right of this blog) will be discontinued in July 2021. After July 2021, the automated emails to my subscribers will no longer be supported. If you’d like to continue getting updates on my blog, please consider switching to Feedly, Blog Lovin, or some other system. In the meantime, I will see what options I can offer on my end. Thank you for understanding and subscribing! Love, Gail