The Art (Supplies) of War


Bronze Age swords

Bronze Age swords

I’m a Navy brat, but I’ll readily admit I have no idea how to wage a war. Between writing this book and the next, I’ve learned an awful lot about late Bronze age weaponry and warfare.

There are two dates proposed for the Exodus, and therefore for Joshua’s conquest of Canaan. I have chosen the “late date” theory, which puts all my books at the very end of the Bronze Age into the beginning of the Iron Age. (The other option would put them a couple hundred years earlier, still in the late Bronze Age.)

Bronze Age Axe head

Bronze Age Axe head

Weapons of this age include those for hand-to-hand combat: swords, clubs, battle axes and daggers. Weapons for throwing included the sling and the bow and arrow. Swords and arrows were used the most. The Israelites were poorly armed compared to their Canaanite enemies. They had no armor, …

The Ultimate Kindness – It’s Not What you Think


The Burial of Christ Carl H. Bloch (1834-1890)

The Burial of Christ Carl H. Bloch (1834-1890)

Like little children, we often dislike rules. But God’s rules show us how much God values us, and His relationship with us. The many laws and regulations in the Old Testament were meant to teach the Israelites the same thing.


All the clean/unclean and holy/unholy rules were designed to illustrate that a person could not even touch something that was impure, and then approach God in His Tabernacle. God is holy, righteous, and just. One cannot simply sin at will—or even by mistake—and then worship Him. The Laws of purity were to instill a sense of holy living in His people. Most of the rules involving unclean foods and touching unclean objects required only a washing of the body, and you were unclean only until sundown.

God is the author of Life and Death. Coming into contact with death, then, …

What in the World is A Wazir?

Danel photoIf you read By the Waters of Kadesh, you remember Danel. He’s back, although about thirty-eight years older. So is the young soldier Aqhat.

After their earlier escapades, Aqhat and Danel are now fast friends—and secret worshippers of Yahweh.

Aqhat has grown to be commander of Arad’s army, and Danel is the wazir of Arad. Wazir is a reconstructed Northwest Semitic word meaning vizier. Semitic was much like Hebrew, so we only have the vowels: w-z-r.  (The Arabic word vizier has provided the vowels to give us wazir.) That Semitic root may mean to carry (a burden) or to help.

Aqhat photoScholars disagree on whether Tel (Old) Arad is the Arad of Numbers 21, but they disagree on pretty much everything. It depends on the timing of the Exodus among other things. I will say that there is a destroyed city of Arad, and a new …

The Best of the Best

Scholars disagree whether or not the Israelites had flocks in the wilderness; most say they didn’t. We know they brought their flocks with them when they left Egypt. But they were expecting a very short trip, possibly as short as eleven days. They then camped for eleven months at Mt Sinai. My research says this was a well-watered place, but even if it was, their time in the wilderness surely wasn’t.

shepherd on hillIn their thirty-eight years of waiting to enter Canaan, most of their flocks probably died from the rigorousness of the travel, the heat, the lack of sufficient food, or dehydration. A good number may have been slaughtered since we also know the Israelites complained about having no meat to eat.

They may have kept some for milk, or kept a few take with them to the Promised Land. But I believe it is doubtful that there were many true …

We Get By With A Little Help From Our Friends

Arisha photoArisha is our heroine. She arrived at the Israelite camp a refugee, having fled Arad in fear for her safety. Now Miriam, sister to Moses and Aaron, wants Zadok to marry her.

The Law forbade the Israelites from marrying Canaanites, unless they turned to Yahweh and worshipped Him as the One True God.

God always encouraged Israel to accept foreigners. After all, the Israelites themselves were refugees in Egypt for generations, and “many other people” left Egypt with them.
There are many verses that deal with how Israel was supposed to treat the foreigners among them. Here are just a few from the Law given by Moses:

When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt.

When you reap the harvest of your

What Makes a Shepherd’s Heart?

Zadok photoMeet Zadok. He is the hero of The Walls of Arad, the third book in the “Journey to Canaan” series. Zadok is a shepherd—specifically, he is the shepherd of the Tabernacle flock. He has a gentle heart, one that Miriam decides is perfect for our heroine, Arisha. (You’ll meet her later.)

Ancient shepherds have a complicated history. In Abraham’s day, they were held in high esteem. Abraham and Lot were wealthy men, as were Isaac and Esau. The occupation was by necessity a nomadic one, especially with extremely large flocks. Once a man owned such a flock, however, he himself rarely spent much time with them. Young boys and even girls were hired to keep an eye on the sheep.

In Egypt, shepherds were looked down on. Egypt was an agrarian society, and the people were clean-shaven. They didn’t like and didn’t trust the long-haired, bearded nomads, which is …

Jericho Was Not the First…

The Walls of Arad coverEveryone knows the story of Joshua and the city of Jericho.

Joshua fought the battle of Jericho … and the walls came tumbling down.

But before Jericho, there was Arad.

When the Canaanite king of Arad, who lived in the Negev, heard that Israel was coming along the road to Atharim, he attacked the Israelites and captured some of them.  ~Numbers 21

The long-awaited third book in my trilogy is coming out next month—June 15. The Walls of Arad takes place almost forty years after the first two, as the years of wandering are drawing to an end.

Arisha is a young Canaanite woman who has fled the city for her safety. Miriam has taken her under her wing, but as she is close to death, she wants to be assured this abused and abandoned young woman will have a good life, and she entreats Zadok to marry her.

Zadok …

X marks … the End

sticker-letters-vector-alphabet-set_z1Nk9lwu_LI’m thankful for x-rays. I’ve written about broken bones in my novels, and having to set them without x-rays. The Egyptians and Greeks were pretty good at it, just going by feel, but still … I don’t think Mira would be quite the softball player she is if they had set her arm without some radiographic help.Human body with internal organs

I’m thankful for the color yellow. Yellow is the most cheerful color. I don’t think I look very good in it, so I don’t wear it much, but I love seeing others in it. My two youngest have perfect complexions for it. Yellow is the sun, daffodils, softballs, baby chicks and rubber ducks! You just can’t be sad around yellow.

Yellow flowerZ……OK, I could say zebra, but I’d be reaching. I got nothing for z. Do you?

I’ve enjoyed this trip through the ABCs. I hope you did, too. What was your …

When Losing is Winning

Just Until Christmas coverI must now declare myself a Nano “loser.” They call it “winning” when you write 50,000 words, though you actually get only bragging rights and a “Purple Bar of Glory” for your website.

I did not write 50,ooo words in November. I only wrote a little under 31,500.

But I’m OK with that. It was taking too big a toll on my family. When my middle daughter rather forcefully said, “All you do is write!” that’s when I put down my laptop.

Not only did I start PT for a shoulder injury, which claimed an appointment of two hours twice a week, plus daily exercises, I also had too many other things going on in my writing world. I wanted to get my Christmas novella, Just Until Christmas, finished, so I wrote over 5,000 words for that. (So technically I wrote almost 36K, but not all of them were on …