KEYWORDS: lord, time, spirit, things, people, helpers

Ask Mama!--No.3

Karen Zerby

Maria #494 CM/FM 3249 6/98

Maria's parents

Maria as a little girl

Maria's spirit helpers

Occasional battles with discouragement

Maria's pet peeves


1. (Dad: ) My dear children in the Lord, I present you with another beautiful tribute to your queen‚ who loves you dearly and lives to serve you! Here is another GN with your questions and her answers, dealing with personal aspects of her life, particularly her childhood and grow­ing years.

2. Actually, with Mama it's hard to say when her growing years stopped, ha! She's still so young in spirit, and learning and growing every day. It's impossible for her spirit to grow old when she's maturing and changing and continuing to flow and move with the life of God, praise the Lord!

3. She truly is an amazing woman—one of the greatest gifts of the Lord's love He ever gave me, besides salvation, and the gift of His love. She really was His love to me in the flesh—as she is to all of you. Though many of you cannot see her and be with her physically, she's just as near and dear to you as she is to those in her Home, and when she hears from you, she feels the same intensity of love for you and desperation to pray for you as if you were right there in her arms.

4. It's a unique gift that the Lord has given her, and it enables her to truly feel your heart through your letters. I've been amazed at the times when Mama has received a letter from some of you, and without even knowing the full picture or hearing all the details, she understands so perfectly, and is able to clearly hear your heartcries.

5. I've sometimes wondered what your situation was really like, and in going to visit you in the spirit, I've found that she couldn't have under­stood any clearer if she'd visited you in the flesh. She's in tune with the Lord‚ and she has His love for you. Through this deep love and commitment to you, the Lord helps her to understand your battles, your needs, and your situations, without being able to go be with you personally—which she would love to do if her health and security permitted it.

6. So‚ dear Family, she's yours to love and to cherish, and one day to hold! Praise the Lord! It won't be long now and we'll all be together forever! What a day that will be! Until then, keep being faithful and hang on! The best is yet to come! I love you! Love, Dad (End of mess­age from Dad.)

Maria's Parents

7. (Question:) What are your memories of your parents? What did you appreciate most about them?

8. (Mama:) Overall, my memories of my childhood and my parents are very happy, good memories. I think my parents really did their best‚ a good job in training me and my sisters in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. That's the thing I'm most thankful to them for—that they brought me up to love and serve the Lord. They taught me from the very beginning that it was my responsibility‚ my commission or duty in life, to serve the Lord.

9. As I was growing up I figured I would be a pastor's wife; that's what my mother was‚ and I assumed I would be too. I knew I wanted to serve the Lord in some capacity—although what the Lord eventually called me to do was far beyond what I had in mind, and my parents weren't exactly prepared for it either, ha! But God bless them, they've really tried to accept as much as they can‚ and now they've come to realize that I am serving the Lord, albeit in a different capacity than they had planned.

10. One thing that amazes me when I look back now on my childhood is how much my parents trusted me. As strict and conservative as they were, they were still surprisingly open to letting me do as I wished when I became an older teen. I think this was because I had demonstrated that what I wanted to do was to please them and the Lord, and therefore they were able to trust me. I realize now that it was the Lord that they trusted in me. I was very thankful for their trust, and it made me not want to abuse the liberty I was given.

11. From the age of 16 they would let me drive all over Tucson (Arizona) in my little car at night, doing things like spending time with my girlfriend, picking up and dropping off ­others from my Sunday school class, etc. When I think back on it now, that was an amazing amount of liberty and trust that they gave me, considering they were so strict, and would have been so very disappointed if I had misused their trust.

12. Another thing that I've always been thankful for—and I think I've said this before—is that they never argued in front of us children. I'm sure they must have had their times of disagreement, but they never showed it in front of us. They always presented a united front, not only in their discipline of us kids‚ but in every other way as well. God bless them, that was very commendable. I'm very thankful for that.

13. They never discussed "church gossip" in our presence either. My father being a minister, I'm sure they had a lot they could have talked about—the problems that came up between people, negative things that were going on, or criticisms of some of the folks in their congregation‚ etc., but they never did. They must have had to discuss it sometime, but it was never when we children were around or could hear or pick up on the conversation. I really admire them for that.

14. It's so easy to influence people's opinions of others through negative comments or discussing problems. The sad thing is that if you don't have the maturity and understanding to balance it out, it can really hurt your relationship or the way you treat that person—­especially children‚ who might get their only impression of a person through the negative comments they hear you make. My parents never discussed anything negative about anyone in front of us, never a critical comment, and that was a very good sample to me.

15. God bless my parents‚ they really tried to give us a good foundation in the Word, and loving the Lord most of all. They weren't perfect, and they definitely weren't right about everything, but they instilled in me a healthy fear of the Lord and a real love for Him, as well as a good foundation in wanting to serve Him, for which I will be forever thankful!

Maria as a Little Girl—

A Message from Her Grandmother

16. (Question:) Can you remember what you were like as a little girl?

17. (Mama: ) No, my memory is pretty much blank as far as my early childhood is concerned. But we can still find out, because I can ask my grand­mother‚ who lived with my family from before I was born until I left home at 23, and who is now in Heaven! Of course, the Lord knows and could tell us too, but He usually delegates things like this to people who have been intimately involved with the situation‚ and whose ministry it is to help us in these particular things.

18. Please remember, though, that my sweet, wonderful grandmother, Esther Cadwell, will probably remember all the good things and none of my badnesses. That's what love is like. She'll probably tell you a lot of nice things about me, but as with all children‚ there's always another side, and I know from my parents' accounts that I got plenty of correction! Even as a toddler, I had some pretty bad moments where I would lie down on the floor and scream. My parents soon stopped that, however‚ with a glass of water poured over their naughty little daughter! It didn't hurt me in the least, but it sure made me want to stop screaming. Well‚ I'm glad I had my good side too, which I'm sure Grandma will tell you about now.

19. (Esther Cadwell speaking:) You were such a joy, child, such a joy! You were a joy in every way; a joy to be around, just like a little angel of light. You were pretty quiet and meek, often reserved, and much less outspoken than your peers.

20. You were very studious and enjoyed reading books once you were old enough. When you were too young to read, you loved to sit on my lap, or any other available lap, and hear us tell our tales and stories‚ or perhaps read from some storybook.

21. When you were a baby you were content just to sit for long periods of time with some items and toys to keep your little mind and hands busy. You would rarely ever cry unless something was seriously wrong; you were very ­patient, quiet, and mild-tempered.

22. When a little older, you were never heard yelling at others, and rarely ever got mad or upset at anyone. Sometimes you would be found sulking in the corner or on your bed because of something mean someone said to you, or something that happened that offended you.

23. You were pretty shy and didn't like un­due attention being directed at you. You'd blush and cringe when meeting new acquaintances, but this only made your cheeks rosier and caused everyone to adore you all the more.

24. You were pretty independent and wanted to be able to do things by yourself, without the help of the older folks. You wanted to be able to prove that you could do things on your own—and you were a pretty smart cookie and could usually tackle anything you put your mind to!

25. You were very affectionate as a child and I just loved your soft cuddles. Our favorite activities together were talking, reading, and cuddling. You were such a joy to me and to your mother and father. You also used to love it when I sang to you. I'd sing you to sleep, and also began teaching you some of your favorite hymns.

26. I knew that one day you would be something special. I knew the Lord had a wonderful plan for your life. I spent a lot of time with you because your parents were very busy with the church work, and I tried to impart to you a love for the Lord and mankind, as I knew that my investments in your life would not go astray‚ but would be used to help bring others to know the Savior. I had failed the Lord because I didn't do His highest will, and that was giving my life as a missionary. But He still used me. He gave me a new ministry—that of loving and caring for you and being an influence in your life.

27. You were very respectful to me and to your parents and had good Christian morals in­grained in you from the very beginning. Thus you were polite, respectful, well-mannered, and mature for your age. You enjoyed being around grownups and learning all you could about the adult world. Although you would never say much, it was always obvious that you were absorbing all of the input that you could get.

28. You were quiet, shy, independent‚ and sometimes sensitive. Yet at the same time you were graced with the qualities of love, sweetness, tenderness‚ contentment, understanding, attentive­ness‚ maturity beyond your years, and the ability and desire to learn all that you could. You were a blessing and an uplift to all who knew and loved you. A real joy you were‚ child, to the heart of your grandmother.

29. And now that I can see you from this side, I'm grateful that my little darling has become such a great woman of God! Even I would never have imagined you, such a meek and reserved child, being where you are today and being used of the Lord in such a mighty way. I knew the Lord was going to use you‚ but I had no idea that it would be to such a great extent.

30. You're a granddaughter to be proud of, and I'm thankful that the Lord allowed me to play a role in your childhood, to teach you all that I knew. You learned well and you've gone way farther and have done so much more than I ever did in my life on Earth. You're a glorious overcomer, and I continue to watch your pro­gress and love you and pray for you from my vantage point in Heaven. (End of message from Esther Cadwell)

Maria's Spirit Helpers

31. (Question:) Do you know who your spirit helpers are? What do they do to help you?

32. (Mama: ) Oh, I'm very thankful for my spirit helpers! God bless them, they really have a big job trying to help me with all that I have to do. I'm quite sure that they play a very major role in my being able to accomplish anything—much less get it right, the way the Lord wants it done!

33. I'm very prayerful‚ Lord helping me, when I have to make decisions and work on the pubs, counsel people, etc. But even when the Lord shows me clearly what to do, I still have a very hard time actually doing it—just because I'm very weak, I don't have a lot of gifts and talents, and I certainly don't have the abilities in the physical that I would need to do the job I have to do. So that's where my spirit helpers come in, and through them I do have the abilities. Thank the Lord!

34. I do know who some of my more permanent spirit helpers are. As you read in "Birthday Yieldedness" (ML #3141, GN 750)‚ the Lord has given me Catherine the Great as one of them. I'm very thankful for her. The Lord has said, and she's told me as well, that she helps me with the ruling of the Kingdom. She was a great queen here on Earth‚ and she has a great love and respect for the children of David, so she helps me with my queenly duties.

35. Rianna is another of my permanent spirit helpers. She was an amazon fighter, and is one of the great warriors of the spirit world, as you heard during my birthday celebration. She's given us a lot of very good fighting counsel‚ especially regarding the battle for our young people.

36. Another one of my helpers is dear Victoria, who went to be with the Lord in the Austin accident. It was more recently that I found out she was commissioned to help me. She said that because she's a young person‚ one born and raised in the Family, she was helping me to understand our young people, their reactions, needs, desires, etc. God bless her!

37. I know I have other helpers as well—some permanent, and some that come only when I need them for a certain job or time period. As was brought out in "Hearing from the Lord Step by Step" (ML #3149, GN 754), the Lord told us that our gifts and anointing come from the helpers of the spirit that He gives us—some which are with us permanently and provide us with cer­tain gifts of the Spirit, and others which change according to our current ministry or need.

38. I asked the Lord if there was anything further He wanted to say about my spirit helpers—whether temporary or permanent—and this is what He said:

39. (Jesus speaking:) My dear queen‚ the weight and burden of your responsibility is great! It would crush you if you had to carry it alone. For that reason I have hedged you about with a great host of helpers of the spirit, each up­holding a portion of the responsibility of the King­dom‚ and together they keep the weight off of you.

40. Picture them standing around, each one holding in their hands a part of the job you must do, the role you must fill. It's too much for any one person, so I delegate it to many helpers‚ upholders of the crown, who carry it for you. Like I've told you before, some I give to you for the entirety of your lifetime on Earth; they stand by your side and never leave. Others come and go as I bid them, or as you call them.

41. Some of your helpers are very busy, and while they would love to spend their full time with you, My dear queen, learning from you and partaking of the excitement of the spirit which surrounds you, they must also fulfill other duties of the realm, and so only come back when you need them by your side.

42. One of these who comes and goes is Daniel, who helps you as you fight to exercise your gift of prophecy. He knows of the struggle, and is able to help you and encourage you. Another one is Rasputin, and another is Taurug. Dr. Koger is also a frequent guest at your Home, counseling you and your helpers.

43. And of course your Father David—beloved husband, lover, king and prophet—is always by your side in spirit. Though he also must travel, I've given him a special connection with you, for I know how much you need him. Whenever you need him, he can sense it, and so is always there when you need him. In that sense, he is always there. For though he comes and goes, there's never a moment when you reach for him that he's not swiftly there‚ helping and counseling according to the need. So trust Me and lean on Me and your multitude of helpers, My queen.

44. There are many, many others who also fill different needs. Indeed, there is no one that you would desire to have whose time and ex­perience you cannot partake of. To all of My children of David I have given access to the libraries of Heaven, so that whatever the need, there's a willing helper to fill it.

45. Then there are others who come from their countries to help you as you counsel and advise the Family in those nations, or as you pray for their people. They intercede at your throne and punch through in your thoughts, helping and guiding and giving you the wisdom and understanding that you need.

46. And, My dearest, of course I am always with you as well. If you ever do lack for experienced help, I fill the need Myself, for I have promised that you will never be in want!

47. Let us carry the burdens of the Kingdom. Continue to be our yielded vessel, that we may work through you, and thus relieve you of the intense and heavy pressure that it could be. You have not felt it, nor will you ever feel it, as long as you continue to yield and ride on the wings of the Spirit! (End of message from Jesus)

Occasional Battles

With Discouragement

48. (Question:) Do you ever get discour­aged, and what about?

49. (Mama: ) Yes, I do get discouraged sometimes, Lord help me. Dad used to say that I never got discouraged. In a way, it's true, I hardly ever do get really discouraged, and it's not something I battle with in a big way. The Lord has given me the gift of faith—especially for other people and situations. I really just have the faith that the Lord is going to do it. No matter how difficult or trying the circumstances are, I know that what the Lord has promised, He is able to perform. So as long as we're looking to Him and following His instructions, He's going to bring us through in the way He knows is best!

50. I'm very thankful that the Lord has given me that faith, as I do have to hear about a great number of problems and seemingly impossible situations. But the more I hear about, and the more we seek the Lord for, laboring in prayer and also receiving His answers‚ the more my faith grows, because I see the Lord answer prayer and fulfill His Word time and time again! It's really thrilling!

51. But the thing I'm tempted to get dis­couraged about the most is myself. I have weak­nesses, just like you, and when I feel they're hindering the work, I'm tempted to feel discouraged with myself. One that comes to mind is my poor memory, with very little recall of the past‚ even the recent past. I really wish that I could remember details, stories or past events better. I feel if my memory were better, it would make my work easier, or I'd be able to do a better job.

52. However, the Lord recently told me that He had purposely not allowed me to have a clear remembrance of things so that I wouldn't rely on this, but rather would look to Him to remind me of the things I needed to know. He said that He's able to direct and help me a lot more that way. So I really should be thankful for that weakness, and I'm working on that. But at times I've been tempted to feel discouraged over it.

53. Another thing that I've battled dis­courage­ment over, which is more recent, is my gift of prophecy. Again, I really shouldn't be dis­cour­aged over it, because the Lord has told me time and time again that He's teaching me what I need to learn, and in His time I'll become more exercised and able to receive more. But at times when it's a real struggle for me to get even the smallest things, I do feel a bit discouraged. The good news is, I don't stay there for long or let myself really go under, because I usually ask the Lord to tell me why I'm having such a hard time. He gives such wonderful encouragement and lessons through it that I can't stay discouraged!

54. But maybe this is a good place to share with you my request for prayer about this. The other day when I was again discouraged about it being difficult to get messages, as well as not seeing much progress, I asked one of our dear folks here if she could ask the Lord what the prob­lem was and what I should do about it. He said:

55. (Jesus speaking: ) The reason you have a hard time with your gift of prophecy is because the Devil knows how greatly you'll be using it‚ how you're going to wield it, and the formidable instrument that it's going to be! So he's trying to cut it off. He's trying to devour the child before it's born—to kill it off by discouraging your faith in your own channel. He knows that if he can steal your faith in your own gift, then you can get discouraged, or hesitate when trying to receive.

56. Ask for prayer for your channel, for warriors in the spirit world to fight for you to defeat the Enemy who battles against you to hinder and delay the messages from reaching you. (End of message from Jesus.)

57. (Mama: ) I guess it should be an encour­age­ment to you that I battle with discouragement as well—at least enough that I can relate to how difficult it is. I certainly pray for those of you who struggle with it on a regular basis. In the past, Peter had to fight discouragement a lot, but he's gotten wonderful victories to where he just gets hit with it occasionally now. The victory comes largely through looking to the Lord for the answers, and when He gives them, receiving them with faith. One thing that's always helpful for me is if the Lord tells me that He has faith for me, and that I shouldn't worry about it because it's His problem! All I have to do is yield, and He'll perfect His will!

Maria's Pet Peeves

58. (Question: ) What are your pet peeves?

59. (Mama:) Generally speaking, I don't think there are too many things that really bother me every time they occur. Most of the time I pray desperately that the Lord will help me to look behind the circumstances and try to see the person's motives—which makes every case different. So even if there's something that I don't normally like, or that would bother me, when I see why the person did it and they explain their reasoning to me, it's often easy to understand them, and many times I feel I might have done the same. So while the action still wasn't justifiable in some cases, putting myself in their shoes and asking them about it before passing judgment in my mind helps me to be more understanding and less bothered by situations.

60. There are, however, a few things which I really don't like. And while there might be reasons for our folks to do them on rare instances, I really appreciate it when they try to avoid them most of the time!

61. Now when I talk about pet peeves here, I'm mainly talking about little things that bother me. Peeves can be either big or little things that aggravate us‚ but for most of us, they're little things that people do that you wish they wouldn't‚ or that they don't do that you wish they would. Something to keep in mind about personal pet peeves is that the Lord makes room for our individual preferences and personalities. He has incredible love and patience with us and all our faults and shortcomings, which should motivate us to pray for the same.

62. As far as my pet peeves, the four that come to mind are:

63. (1) When people are not completely open and honest with me. We had a discussion at the dinner table the other night, and we discussed the difference between honesty and openness. Honesty is telling the truth: For example, if I ask someone a question, and they answer it honestly. Openness goes a step further and will volunteer information. For example, if someone is going through a battle and they ask for prayer; or they don't understand some­thing and they ask the question and explain what they thought. Their feelings were not directly solicited in those instances, but they were open and volunteered them.

64. I was telling our folks that they should learn to be both honest and open. That's what I usually make people promise me—that they will do their best to be honest and open with me. That's something I really appreciate, and it's also one of my pet peeves—it bothers me when people aren't!

65. For example, if I call someone on the intercom and talk with them about a work point‚ and in the course of the conversation I ask them how they are, and they say, "Fine, Mama, thank you." Then later I find out that they were having a huge trial, or hadn't eaten dinner yet‚ or that someone was expecting them to have a get-out with them at that time, or they were in the middle of a date, or whatever. I really wish that they had just told me. I could have prayed for them, or we could have continued our discussion after they'd eaten, or had their get-out, or finished their date, or whatever the case may be. When I know someone is honest and open with me, I feel much more comfortable with them.

66. (2) Another one is if someone writes me a letter or report and barely touches on a subject or a situation, but then says, "But I assume someone has already told you about that, so I won't get into it." Chances are, no one has told me about it yet‚ and then I'm left hanging with only a small portion of the picture. It's not only frustrating, but then I'm left wondering what important information I'm missing. Of course, the Lord can help us see things clearly when we ask Him‚ even if we don't have all the facts. But it really helps when people give the full picture when they write, rather than assuming someone else has already done so. It also gives me a chance to see the situation through their eyes, as even if someone has already written me about it, it's likely that their perspective is very different. It also helps me to assess the situation and determine what questions I need to ask the Lord so we can try to help if possible.

67. (3) Another one I can think of right now is when our folks don't take their intercom off the hook when they're sleeping, taking prayer and prophecy time, taking their quiet time, or having a date. I especially hate to wake them up, but I really don't like to disturb them in these other things either. If I call them and they were sleeping‚ I just feel terrible! I've told our folks that if they want me to call them at night, to be sure and take their intercom off the hook when they go to sleep, as then I feel free to call them and I'm not worried that if they answer, I may have waked them up. I think it's part of love and consideration for others to do so, because if someone disturbs you, they feel very bad about it!—When actually‚ it's not their fault, because you should have taken it off the hook!

68. (4) Something else that bothers me when it happens is having people whisper to each other during meetings—either ones I or anyone else may be leading. It's disrespectful when someone is talking to you to turn and start talking to someone else. Just because the speaker does not always have his gaze solely on you does not mean he's not talking directly to you. It's not only dis­respectful, but it's very distracting for others who are trying to listen. Not only that, but it can seriously distract the speaker, who may wonder what in the world he has gotten wrong, or what in the world somebody doesn't agree with.

69. I know that whispering in meetings can sometimes be difficult not to do—difficult not to comment on something that's being said to your friend who's sitting next to you. It seems some people almost have a habit of this. However, for the sake of the speaker and the other listeners, the loving thing to do would be to ask the Lord to help you to break this habit. You can also ask others to help you by stopping you at the first whisper.


70. (Question: ) Do you and Peter ever argue?

71. (Mama:) I wouldn't want to call it arguing—because when most people think of arguing, they probably think of a pretty unloving spirit and unkind tone of voice. I'm very thankful to say that Peter and I have almost never spoken to each other in that way. We do disagree sometimes, and we do discuss it, if you want to call that arguing, ha! But we really try to do it lovingly. Usually we're able to resolve it just by discussing it. Through our conversation we're able to work out anything that we might have misunderstood‚ or see more clearly the other person's point.

72. If there are times when we reach an "impasse," so to speak‚ and can't come to an agreement, well, we just ask the Lord, and that solves it very simply! Of course‚ for that to work, we obviously have to have real respect for each other, and faith in the Lord's Words, and faith in each other's channel as well! Because we have that as a good foundation, asking the Lord about it is a very effective solution, and never fails!

73. I don't mean that to be an excuse for any of you who might be thinking, "Oh, but we don't have as good a foundation of faith in prophecy and love and respect as Mama and Peter have‚ so that won't work for us!" Why don't you ask the Lord to give you the faith, and first of all to clear your minds together as you pray and commit it to the Lord?

74. The first step is to both acknowledge that you might be wrong, and that you really want the Lord's answer, no matter what it is! If you can have the humility to admit that you might be in the wrong, then if the answer is not what you had originally thought, your pride won't hinder you from re­ceiving it.

75. Secondly, tell your mate how much you love them, and that you respect the Lord in them. You're sure they have good reasons for feeling the way they do about whatever the issue is, and that no matter what the Lord gives, you will still love them just as much and this won't come as a wedge between you. Saying these words and asking the Lord to help you mean them sincerely will help to give you that good ­foundation.

76. You also probably want to tell the Lord that you're sorry if you were being out of the Spirit in your discussion. And if you still feel "hot" or up in arms about it, even after trying to switch into neutral gear, chances are it might be better to wait a little while. However‚ if the situation is timely, even if you still have strong feelings on the subject, you can desperately pray for the Lord to remove those feelings and allow you to receive His thoughts clearly—and He can and will answer!

77. So while Peter and I do discuss things, and sometimes we both feel very strongly on opposite sides of the issue, when we take it to the Lord, we find out His answers and His views‚ and that solves it and keeps it from becoming a crisis or a point of division.

78. Thank the Lord for the wonderful gift of hearing from Him! He's given it to us not only to help us hear His direction and thus do a better job for Him, but also as a gift of His love, to help us in our everyday lives and make our burdens lighter. The more we ask the Lord about things and include Him in on our discussions, the easier it is when something comes up to just naturally ask Him about it. We've found that it's not a big deal, doesn't take a lot of time, and sure saves a whole lot of time and effort in the long run, praise the Lord! If you aren't sold on it yet, just give it a wholehearted try, and I know you will be soon! It works—and it's wonderful!