The following are a few suggestions I’ve collected over the past weeks for self-published authors to market their books. I’d love to hear if you’ve tried any of them and if so, how they’ve worked.
That’s it for now. I’ll pass on more marketing tips as I gather them. In the meantime, never stop writing and never stop marketing your book(s).
“So using only a sling and a stone, David proved to be stronger than the Philistine. David struck down and killed the Philistine, even though David didn’t have a sword in his hand.” (1 Samuel 17:50 NOG).
The Philistine had defied David and the God of David. “…’Am I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?’ Then the Philistine cursed David by his gods. The Philistine said to David, ‘Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the heavens and to the beasts of the field.’” (Verses 43-44 MEV).
David didn’t shrink back. He said to the Philistine, “‘You come to me with a sword, a spear, and a shield, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have reviled. This day will the Lord deliver you into my hand…’” (verses 45-46). David knew he had a covenant with God and the Philistine did not. David said, “…For who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” (Verse 26). David had seen God work before when David killed the lion and the bear. “…”’The Lord who delivered me out of the paw of the lion and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.’..” (Verse 37).
You know the account. David put a stone in his slingshot and struck the Philistine in the forehead. The Philistine fell on his face to the ground and David took the Philistine’s sword and cut off his head. “…When the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.” (Verse 51).
The God we serve doesn’t rely on natural means to bring victory and deliverance. He is a supernatural God. One meaning of supernatural is something that departs from the usual, or what is normal, especially so as to appear to transcend nature’s laws. Remember the widow of Zarephath? Even though she was gathering sticks for her last meal when she encountered Elijah, he asked her for some water and bread. Contrary to logic, she made a cake for Elijah first, as he requested, and then for herself and her son. True to the word of the Lord, “the barrel of meal did not run out, nor did the jar of oil empty, according to the word of the Lord, which He spoke by Elijah.” (1 Kings 17:16 MEV).
Or another widow, the wife of one of the prophets. Her husband had died and a creditor was coming to take her two sons as slaves to repay a debt. Elisha, the servant of God, asked her what she had in her house. She told him she had nothing except a jar of oil. Elisha told her and her sons to gather as many bottles as they could. “Then go in, shut the door behind you and your sons, and pour the oil into all these vessels. When each is full, set it aside.” (2 Kings 4:4 MEV). The oil kept flowing until they ran out of bottles. Elisha told her to sell the oil to repay the debt. I believe that oil would have kept flowing as long as they brought containers for it to fill.
There are so many examples I could give but I’ll just mention two more. In 1 Chronicles 14 (MEV), the Philistines had come against David again. David asked God what to do. God answered and said, “’Do not go up after them, but turn around behind them and come to them in the front of the balsam trees. Whenever you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the balsam trees, you will advance the battle, for God has gone out before you to strike the camp of the Philistines.” (Verses 14-15). David did as God commanded, “…and they struck the camp of the Philistines from Gibeon as far as Gezer.” (Verse 16).
David could have told God he didn’t believe Him or that it was a crazy battle plan. But David listened and obeyed and that brought a supernatural victory.
In the New Testament, Paul and Silas were in jail, fastened in the inner prison with their feet in the stocks. As they prayed and sang hymns to God, “…there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s shackles were loosened.” (Acts 16:26 MEV). As Paul and Silas praised God, in spite of the predicament they found themselves in, God gave them a supernatural victory.
I’m sure most of you reading this blog know these accounts from God’s Word. But I’ve put them down to remind us when we face difficult circumstances, not to look at the natural, what our five senses perceive, but to expect God to show up with His supernatural. Our God is an awesome God.
What do you do when you’re faced with a problem? Do you hide your head in the sand and pretend it isn’t there? Do you run out and tell everyone and ask for their advice? Do you become depressed and discouraged? Today, I’d like to look at how a king in the Old Testament, named Jehoshaphat, responded to a major threat. Jehoshaphat was the fourth king of Judah, who, at age thirty-five, succeeded his father Asa, the first good king of Judah.
The account is found in 2 Chronicles chapter twenty. Jehoshaphat was told that a vast army of Moabites, Ammonites and some Meunites was coming against him. I’d say that’s a pretty big problem. The Scripture says that, “Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. The people of Judah came together to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him.” (2 Chronicles 20: 3-4 NIV). Jehoshaphat was wise. He didn’t consult his neighbours, or his friends, or his relatives. He and the children of Israel consulted the Lord.
Then he stood up and prayed and rehearsed what God had done for Israel in the past. We are emboldened in the Lord when we remember how He has delivered us in previous times. He told God what he was facing. God already knows our struggles, but it can help us clarify things in our minds when we lay them out before Him.
In verse twelve, he humbled himself. “…For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” Sometimes it’s challenging for us to admit we don’t have the answer. But the truth is, we often don’t. That’s why God’s Word tells us to, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV).
Verse thirteen says all the men of Judah with their wives, children, and little ones stood before the Lord. They waited. Sometimes this is the hardest part – to wait. We want to run ahead. We want the problem solved. We want it out of our way. But Proverbs 3:7 GNT says, “Be patient and wait for the Lord to act…” Jehoshaphat obeyed the Scriptures and his obedience was rewarded. The Spirit of the Lord came upon a man named Jahaziel and through him gave the Israelites a battle plan. God told them where the enemy would be. Then He said, “You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’” (verse 17).
Then they did something I know we often find thorny. They praised the Lord BEFORE the problem was solved. “After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army…” (verse 21). Verse twenty-two goes on to say, “As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated…” No one was spared. “When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped.” (Verse 24).
Remember Paul and Silas in Philippi, chained in prison with their feet fastened to the stocks? At midnight they prayed and sang hymns to God. “Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.” (Acts 16:26 NIV). Praise brings VICTORY!
Just two more things about Jehoshaphat before I finish. Firstly, God gave Jehoshaphat and his army a GREAT victory. They spoiled their enemies.” So Jehoshaphat and his men went to carry off their plunder, and they found among them a great amount of equipment and clothing and also articles of value—more than they could take away. There was so much plunder that it took three days to collect it.” (Verse 25).
And secondly, the kingdoms around Jehoshaphat were affected by the victory. “The fear of God came on all the surrounding kingdoms when they heard how the Lord had fought against the enemies of Israel. And the kingdom of Jehoshaphat was at peace, for his God had given him rest on every side.” (Verses 29-30). Your neighbours, friends, and relatives will take note when they see how God fights for you.
What to do when problems arise? Follow the example of King Jehoshaphat.
In closing, this is my prayer. “Dear Lord Jesus, the next time Satan throws obstacles and enemies in our way, help us to remember Jehoshaphat, Paul, and Silas and that You are ALWAYS faithful. In the precious Name of Jesus. Amen.”
In my writing blog dated September 23, 2021, I promised as soon as I unearthed more writing tips, I would pass them on. Well, I’ve been doing some digging and here are the most recent ones I’ve extracted:
“But those who depend on the law to make them right with God are under his curse, for the Scriptures say, “Cursed is everyone who does not observe and obey all the commands that are written in God’s Book of the Law.” So it is clear that no one can be made right with God by trying to keep the law. For the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.” (Galatians 3:10-11 NLT).
In Deuteronomy 27:26, it says, “Cursed is anyone who does not uphold the words of this law by carrying them out.” The Book of the Law refers to the covenant laws God made with the children of Israel during the time of Moses.
The law demands perfection, which is impossible because we are all sinners. “For there is no distinction to be made anywhere: everyone has sinned, everyone falls short of the beauty of God’s plan.” (Romans 3:23 Phillips). That puts everyone of us under a curse. That’s the bad news.
The wonderful news is that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law. “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a pole.” (Galatians 3:13 NIV). As believers in Jesus, we are no longer under the curse. We live under the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus. “For in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set you free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:2 Berean Study Bible).
Because Jesus became the curse for us and took the punishment we deserved, He exchanged His righteousness for our sin. “God made him, who did not know sin, to become sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21 EHV). Think about that. When God looks at you as His born-again child, He doesn’t see your sin. He sees the righteousness of His Son, Jesus.
You’ll sometimes hear people say, “I’m just an old sinner, saved by grace.” It is true – you WERE a sinner, but when you made Jesus the Saviour and Lord of your life, you became the righteousness of God in Him. Instead of living in sin-consciousness, we need to live in who we’ve been made in Jesus.
As those who have been delivered from the curse of the law, oppression is far from us. “In righteousness you shall be established; you shall be far from oppression, for you shall not fear; and from terror, for it shall not come near you.” (Isaiah 54:14 ESV).
If we abide in the secret place of El-Shaddai, “He will rescue you from every hidden trap of the enemy, and he will protect you from false accusation and any deadly curse. His massive arms are wrapped around you, protecting you…” (Psalm 91:3-4 TPT).
The next time we’re tempted to fear or to doubt, we need to remember who we are – a child of the Most High God, delivered from the curse of the law, and made the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. God’s massive arms are wrapped around us.
In this Blog, I want to share with you some of the things I've learned from many years of following Jesus.