Peggy Joyce recently recorded broadcasts for “Sid Roth – It’s Supernatural” show, “Something More” show, and a Podcast that will air later in the year. Four of us traveled by automobile to Charlotte, NC for the recording. The back filled with luggage, but we made sure we had ample room for books to share along the trip. We marveled on the last leg of the 2500-mile journey once back in Texas at all the wonderful encounters we had with “strangers” along the way.
A few of our favorites:
Approaching a full day of travel, we were nearing West Memphis, AR around 8 p.m. and began thinking about dinner. Stephanie heard the words, “Cracker Barrel”. We found one just off the interstate and stopped there. Our waitress, Cimyia, told us about herself at our prompting. “I’m talented, I’m smart, I’m outgoing, and I have a dog.” Stephanie and Angie both heard to ask her, “Why did the Lord send us to you?” Taken aback, she searched for an answer. As the conversation moved to the Lord, she said it stirred her spirit – surprising language for someone who didn’t have a spiritual upbringing. Ann had grabbed a book in the dark to bring in and it was on Peggy Joyce’s testimony of deliverance from depression and fear, “Tormented Eight Years and Back.” At first, we thought we needed to return for a Psalm 91 book but as the conversation continued, this was the book for her. Honestly, the food, being cooked earlier, was a little overdone, but the conversation did not disappoint.
We didn’t have reservations on the first day of travel as we didn’t know when we might be ready to stop, so that night after three attempts for hotel accommodations, after 10 or 12 hours in the car the polished night clerk asks Angie, “are you okay?” “Yes! We all got a kick out of this after a long day of travel and immediately knew this would be our place to stay. She got a book and seemed very thankful. Maybe almost as thankful as we were to have a bed to crawl into.
The next morning, the hotel clerk with a very southern and country accent also covered the breakfast duties due to being short-handed. We had a great time in sharing books with the hotel cook/clerk and guests in the breakfast area. Peggy Joyce signed books for a grandmother of nine and a couple from New Jersey to name a few. They were excited over the books, and we knew we had been led to the right place. We are glad we didn’t rush off as we had left the room in such a hurry that one of us had left a phone in the room.
For a mid-afternoon Sunday meal, we only had one prerequisite: we can’t have this restaurant at home. We pulled up at a Mexican restaurant and the consensus was, let’s keep going down the road. We weren’t sure why, but just felt led to keep going. We ended up another 30 minutes later and discussing our options all agreed upon Conners Steak and Seafood. Our waitress came across as friendly but “proper” and our jokes seemed to be not as funny as usual. The steak knife under Angie’s arm where Stephanie had “stabbed” her got a response of “Where did you say you were headed? I’ll call ahead and warn them!” And a smile. As we neared the end of the meal, Ann said, “we are about to get back into the car and we will be praying. Is there anything we can pray about for you?” She put down her ticket pad holder and began to tell us that she didn’t usually open up to talk personally with her guests and she didn’t really like working the Sunday crowd because the church people were among the worst customers. (Sad!) She had been called in due to someone else not showing up. She shared that she wanted to get her license and go into Real Estate. She is a God-fearing, Bible-believing, Spirit-filled Christian from a Dutch background. After caring for her aging mom and getting her children grown, she is now living alone, ready for something new. We shared books with her, the podcasts, and the website for testimonies. We ended up praying with her in the restaurant as we were her last customers, and she was off the clock. We prayed for her again in the car. Aubrey, we loved meeting you!
Upon arrival at the hotel, we were checking into one evening for an extended stay, we bring in luggage… and hanging bags… and books. The night clerk is smiling at our carts overflowing and is handed a Psalm 91 book during our conversation. We mention that the author is with us for a television recording and that the woman whose picture is on the front is with us too. He said, yes, that’s right, I recognized the same shirt. We think he meant color of shirt, but it made it memorable for him and we all laughed. We hope he is reading his copy of Psalm 91. He took great care of us during our stay.
One of the hotel clerks shared she was a new Christian and expressed yes, she would love the book Peggy Joyce was offering her on Psalm 91. She went to church until she was four, but many years had passed since then. Not long before we met her, she was working in a restaurant when just before closing time a woman came in and had no money for food. The young waitress bought a meal for the woman and as the restaurant closed, they talked for an hour as the gospel was presented. The moneyless woman had a Bible for the waitress as well. So, a recap: a woman with no money, shares the gospel to a waitress who pays for her meal then sits with her as she eats. During the conversation the waitress accepts Jesus as her Savior. Shortly afterward she takes a new position as a day clerk at the front desk of the hotel where she receives a signed copy of Psalm 91 from Peggy Joyce. Lord, continue to lead and guide this young lady into all truth!
Stopping for fuel, Angie took her God’s Smuggler, Jr. book into the convenience store to share with the clerk. He seemed happy to receive it. Another man, the manager working there who by sight looked to be “not a reader”, saw the transaction and hollered across the way, “I want a book too!” Both wanted signed books and found it interesting that Angie told them: God has an exciting life for you!
We found that walking around the beautiful rest stops on the long stretches of highway did wonders for us all. One of the nice stops in the mountains had a man working from an office inside the building; the Bible App was blaring for all to hear. He received a Psalm 91 and Tormented book. He didn’t have much to say but Angie quipped that he might be doing more for the kingdom than a lot of people who do No-Thing! A man making random conversation to Ann from the window while sitting in the passenger seat of his car parked next to ours got our attention. I asked for book to give him and Angie said give him this one, a copy of Psalm 91 First Responders Edition. He smiled at the surprise gift, and we were on our way.
The hotel breakfast server met us daily and got so acquainted with our group that the morning Peggy Joyce stayed in her room, she asked “where is Mama today?” We got her booked and listening to podcasts. Angie told her she was going to miss having breakfast ready for her when she got back home. She was a jewel.
A quick trip into the mall, we found a couple in Chico’s who attended an Assembly of God Church. It definitely caught our attention when this older man told Peggy Joyce that the turquoise outfit was definitely the right one for TV. They were interested in the books and podcast. We believe it was yet again, a divine appointment.
At an Italian Restaurant, Enrico’s, we met a Swedish woman from Brooklyn. In asking about her story, we found she was a Christian, and as it was the slow mid-afternoon time, she had a minute to pull up a chair and share her testimony. She had been a bartender at a strip club as a young woman and later worked a day job bartending at a restaurant where she met “Bugs”, a woman who was a Christian and helped her find Jesus. Bugs never knew she accepted the Lord as her personal Savior. When the pandemic shutdown first came, our waitress and her husband moved home to Brooklyn to share Christ with her family. The highlight was getting to baptize her mom who could no longer leave the house. The presence of the Lord filled the home as they worshiped the Lord together with a friend who had joined them. Great meal, prayer together and conversation about the Lord. She received a signed copy of the book.
We were eating another meal out and our waitress didn’t have a lot to say until Ann offered to pray for her. Yes, she said she had kids, and asked us to pray for them. We got books to her: for herself and her teens and young children that Peggy Joyce personalized and signed. Another woman working there expressed, “I like to read.” Another trip was made to the car for a book for her. Upon receiving it, she pulled it close and said, “I love to read. Thank you!” Peggy Joyce signed hers as well. They both seemed excited to listen to Peggy Joyce Ruth and Crosslines podcasts.
Upon going to dinner with ministry friends from the Charlotte area, a Hindu got a book from Angie. He was college age and began immediately reading the book to the girls there, a great start for him for sure.
At a truck stop, Peggy Joyce asked a woman if she’d like a book. She seemed excited but when she saw the title of the book, her countenance changed and she said, “I’m not a religious person” and didn’t receive the free gift. We prayed the Lord heals her heart and she becomes one of “His.” A young man was sweeping the parking area when Angie asked him if he’d like a Smuggler’s book. The topic perked his interest. He said he really looked forward to reading it. As he began walking away, he said was going to go put it somewhere safe.
We’ll end with a stop in Birmingham, AL. We came down from our room for breakfast and met Cory. In school he designed prosthetics on a computer, then his instructor said, ‘now make them come alive.’ He later did on a mission trip to Honduras where he built a man a leg. When Angie mentioned the Psalm 91 book her mom wrote, he did a double take. He, as server, and the cook at the hotel had been in conversation only ten minutes earlier, on what? Psalm 91! He was shocked like someone had been listening in to his private conversation just a few minutes earlier. The Lord knew and we believe sent us. He took a variety of books and a stack for the cook - who he affectionately and enthusiastically called, an ‘expiring’ Jehovah Witness. He is witnessing to him and believes he will come to know Jesus as Lord soon. (See Cory’s picture nearby.)
In the same hotel parking lot, Stephanie saw a toddler running and asked the mom if he could have a Psalm 91 coloring book. She prayed as she pulled out the one copy we had left. Then Stephanie gave the mom a copy of “Those Who Trust the Lord Shall Not Be Disappointed”. She felt led to do one more and offered her “Psalm 91 for Mothers” and the woman then said, ‘the Lord knows’ as she held the book to her chest. In the same hotel, Peggy Joyce heard the Lord say to give a young boy Psalm 91 for Youth. The family was heading for the elevator when Peggy Joyce sprinted to catch up to them. The boy seemed thrilled to receive his book.
Recorded in the gospels, we see that as Jesus “went”, ministry happened. In sharing these stories, we wanted to show you what sharing a book can do for another even when you’re on a schedule. We prayed to be led to the people God wanted us to speak to. People were encouraged, testimonies and tears were shared, prayers were prayed, and we believe lives were changed. One lady out of many refused the gift of a free book, and we didn’t push her. As one minister said, SW, SW, SW – Some will, some won’t, so what. Even her unwillingness got us to pray for her when back in the car. In the hour in which we live, people want to know about protection, and many are living in fear. Sharing a book, a prayer and hope is not hard. You too can book ‘em. Hope you do.
book ‘em [ book ‘em]
verb (used with object)
to share a book with another, often by divine appointment.
“Did you book ‘em?” “Yes, we shared a book with the waiter at the restaurant.”
Below is Cory with his Psalm 91 book.