Friday, January 22, 2021

Refusing to Eat the King's Food - January 22, 2021

 Morning by Morning, January 22 - Refusing to Eat the King's Food

 
Good morning, Lord Jesus. Help me begin my day and live out my day grounded in Your Word and filled with Your Spirit -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit of God. ...
 
"In the third year of the reign of King Jehoiakim of Judah, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it. The Lord let King Jehoiakim of Judah fall into his power, as well as some of the vessels of the house of God. These he brought to the land of Shinar, and placed the vessels in the treasury of his gods.
 
Then the king commanded his palace master Ashpenaz to bring some of the Israelites of the royal family and of the nobility, young men without physical defect and handsome, versed in every branch of wisdom, endowed with knowledge and insight, and competent to serve in the king's palace; they were to be taught the literature and language of the Chaldeans. The king assigned them a daily portion of the royal rations of food and wine. They were to be educated for three years, so that at the ends of that time they could be stationed in the king's court. Among them were Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, from the tribe of Judah. The palace master gave them other names: Daniel he called Belteshazzar, Hananiah he called Shadrach, Mishael he called Meshach, and Azariah he called Abednego.
 
But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the royal rations of food and wine..." (Daniel 1:1-8).
 
Daniel found himself under the authority of a new king with power to force his influence on Daniel's life and the life of his nation. He was commanded to be "educated" in the ways of Babylon. He was even given a new "name" and expected to conform to this new identity and accept the new ways of this new world that suddenly had such influence over his life.
 
But Daniel would not eat the king's food. Daniel would not "defile himself." Instead, Daniel fasted and prayed. He chose to eat what was good for him and not to eat what would defile him.
 
It took great courage to stand firm in his faith and to stand against the pressure of the culture of the new world around him. But You gave him the courage he needed and even Your "favor" in the midst of all pressure he endured to conform to ways of Babylon (Daniel 1:9). 
 
By the power of Your grace, I join so many of my brothers and sisters who are fasting and praying and refusing to eat the king's food and conform to Babylon's ways. May our hearts not be defiled nor our sense of identity be changed into what the world would name us and try to define us to be. May we remain true to You and true who You say we are -- "of the royal family and of the nobility." In You, we are "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation" (1 Peter 2:9). In You, we are the "children of God" (John 1:12).
 
There came a day when Daniel's prayers were answered, when Daniel's faith and obedience was rewarded. There came a day when You sent Your mighty angels to war in the heavenly realms on behalf of Daniel and his nation and to let him know You had heard his prayers and You were moving all along on their behalf in ways he didn't see and couldn't yet know (Daniel 10:1-21). And our day will come too.
 
When Your angel came, in the fullness of time, at just the right time, he said to Daniel, "Do not fear, greatly beloved, you are safe. Be strong and courageous!" (Daniel 10:19)
 
May we "be strong and courageous," refusing to eat the food of the kings of this world or be "educated" in the ways of Babylon in the ways of the world, but eating only the food of the One who is "the Bread of Life" (John 6:35). May we keep offering our hearts as Your vessels in the house of our God. And may we keep worshipping and serving the One who is "the King of kings and the Lord of lords" no matter whose authority we're under (Revelation 19:16), even as we continue to pray "for kings and all who are in authority" (1 Timothy 2:2). In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.


Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend, may you filled with the Holy Spirit, strong and courageous, refusing to eat the food of the kings of this world but eating only of the Bread of Life who is the King of kings and Lord of lords, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 




Friends, please keep us in prayer as we minister at Olney United Methodist Church with my great friends Pastor Jeff and Lisa Bealmear this weekend. Free to Be Like Jesus! God bless you!

Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.

Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


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Thursday, January 21, 2021

Praying for Truth "And At The Same Time" Praying for Those in Authority - January 21, 2021

Morning by Morning, January 21 - Praying for Truth "And At The Same Time" Praying for Those in Authority
 
Good morning, Lord Jesus. My hope is in You -- built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness. You are the Solid Rock on which I stand. ...
 
Like so many who are standing firm in the faith for what we believe You've stirred in our hearts to pray, I'm also wrestling with the unfolding of events. But I have to say I don't feel confused. Even in the deep heaviness of heart I've sensed in my spirit, I don't feel discouraged. Your Word has not changed. Your will has not changed. Though the battles are intense and the circumstances are hard, Your Word never falls, Your Spirit never falters, and Your Love never fails:
 
"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, 
    His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
    great is Your faithfulness.
'The Lord is my portion,' says my soul,
    'therefore I will hope in Him'" (Lamentations 3:22-24).
 
So I'll keep praying for the revelation of truth and for the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, life over death, freedom over tyranny, faith over fear. I'll keep standing firm for the principles of the kingdom of God and the principles of righteousness that exalt a nation. I'll keep expecting a sudden shift in the heavenlies and miraculous breakthrough in the land that only You could do and where only You can receive the glory, honor, and praise. 
 
And at the same time, I'll also pray however Your Spirit leads, for those who are placed in positions of authority in my life, in our land, in our world. That part of Your Word and Your will hasn't changed either:
 
"Above all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving be made for everyone, for kings and all who are in high positions, so that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and dignity. This is right and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires everyone to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth" (1 Timothy 2:1-4).
 
As You said and taught us to pray, "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous" (Matthew 5:44-45).
 
So come, Holy Spirit. Show me how to pray -- standing firm in my faith for revelation and truth, while at the same time also praying for those who persecute me, blessing those who curse me, and loving those who hate me   -- just like Jesus. "For as He is, so are we in this world" (1 John 4:17).
 
Father, give me grace for that, give me Your words and Your prayers and Your attitude for that. Above all, give me Your Spirit for that:
 
"Likewise, the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints accord to the will of God" (Romans 8:26-27).
 
Come pray through me the will of God by the Spirit of God, as I keep looking to You, trusting in You, O Lord, my God. My hope is built on nothing less. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend, may you be bold and Spirit-led in your prayers as you pray both for truth, and at the same time, for all who are in positions of authority in your life and our world, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 


Looking up to God with you, my friend! 
Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.

Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

"Yet Will I Trust Him" - January 20, 2021

 Morning by Morning, January 20 - "Yet Will I Trust Him"

 
Good morning, Lord Jesus. My eyes are on You, Lord. Through the wind and the waves, I know to keep calling on Your name and trusting in Your nature -- as best as I can and all by Your grace. ...
 
On one of Job's most challenging days, when his faith was shaken to the core, he spoke out some of the most faith-filled words in all the Bible:
 
"Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him" (Job 13:15 NKJV).
 
By the look of things with his natural eyes, his hopes were dashed and his dreams were denied. His heart was crushed and his spirit was weary. Yet he kept looking to You, speaking out his heart to You -- seeking Your answers, Your guidance, Your help.
 
Those near to him seemed to turn against him. Even the one who was bone of his bones and flesh of his flesh, called by God to stand by his side to the end through it all, came to the place of her own hopeless despair to attack his faith in the promises of his God to say, "Curse God and die" (v. 2:9).
 
But You were not the source of what seemed like his curse. The source of his curse and all the misery he was going through was the spiritual enemy of his soul and of all You had entrusted to him (v. 1:7). Yet even though Job's losses at the hand of his spiritual enemy were real and were devastating, his enemy would not have the last word. He would not have the final say.
 
Despite all his suffering and disappointment and disillusionment in the midst of his reality in the struggling, suffering and attacks of this broken and fallen world, You moved in Job's heart to turn over his heart to You (v. 42:1-6). After all he endured -- maybe even because of all he endured -- he could now say to You, "I had heard You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You" (v. 42:5). Even after all he endured and was even still enduring, he could now declare his full trust in You and Your faithfulness to him to redeem all things to work together for good, proclaiming, "I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted" (v. 42:2).
 
You didn't change the facts of his reality. You didn't change the facts of his past and all he had to go through. But You did change the effects. Not only did You cause it all to work together for good, You even caused it to multiply and increase all that You were now entrusting to him for all You were setting before him in the days to come (v. 42:10).
 
You did move in the midst of all he went through to bring him closer to You, to open his eyes to see differently than before, with a faith even stronger than before. What he declared by faith at the beginning was revealed to true in his heart all along: "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him."
 
As it was with Job, so it is with us, as we go through our struggles, as we fight our battles, as we endure the wind and waves that would try to take us under to shake our faith, to steal our hope, and crush our hearts. "The testing of (our) faith produces endurance; and (we) let endurance have its full effect, so that (we) may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing" (James 1:3-4). 
 
We'll be lacking in nothing, because there's nothing our God can't do. And all He will do, He will do to make us "mature and complete" in Him alone. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.


Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend, may you be filled with the Holy Spirit, trusting in the Lord our God no matter what tries to shake you faith or crush your spirit, knowing He is at work for good and will be making you mature and complete in Him, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 


Looking up to God with you, my friend! 
Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.

Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


Please share this word to encourage a friend!
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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

"Is There Not a Cause!" - January 19, 2020

 Morning by Morning, January 19 - "Is There Not a Cause!"

 
Good morning, Lord Jesus. Align my heart with Yours, my mind with Yours, my words with Yours, as You make me more like You today (Romans 8:29). For as You are, so am I to be in this world (1 John 4:17). ...
 
What stirs in my spirit as I come into the communion of prayer with You this morning -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit -- is the stirring of this question. But's it's not really stirring as a question. It's more like a battle cry, like a fire in my belly and flames in my spirit:
 
"Is there not a cause?" ... "Is there not a cause!" ...
 
"Is there not a cause worth fighting for! Worth dying for! Worth living for! Worth laying down my life for, worth taking my stand for, worthy pressing in and praying through for, without ever backing off or giving up for!" ...
 
What comes to mind, with the eyes of my heart, is David standing before the armies of Israel in the face of the battle against Goliath. David was full of faith and full of passion for the Lord and the honor of Your name. But his elder brother tried to shut down his faith, question his heart, and silence his voice, accusing him that he had only come to watch and not fight in this great battle in the history of his nation (1 Samuel 17:1-28).
 
But David would have none of it. David would not yield. In his heart was no surrender, no retreat before those who had defied "the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel" (v. 45). And he couldn't understand the heart and mind of those who would. So he spoke those very words in reply to the accusation and challenge of his elder brother:
 
"Is there not a cause?" (v. 29 NJKV)
 
And I believe Your Spirit is speaking that question in the hearts of Your people who are called by Your name at such a time as this in the history of our nation: "Is there not a cause?" 
 
Is there not a cause for standing up and speaking out for the rights of the unborn? For the freedom of speech? For the freedom of expression of religious liberty and faith-filled conviction? For the authority of Scripture? For the right to give voice to the values we hold according the convictions of our conscience as we are led by Your Sprit? For the sanctity of marriage and identity of gender as defined and determined by God? For the advancement of the Kingdom of God in the love and power of God for the sake of Christ from the shores of this land to the ends of the earth? For the fulfillment of our God-given identity, destiny and redemptive purposes of our Creator and Redeemer in our hearts and in our land?
 
Is there not a cause? ... Is there not a cause! ...
 
Yes, there is a cause! And Christ is my cause!
 
"The cause of Christ" is worth all that I have and all that I am (Philippians 1:13). "The cause of Christ" is worth all I may face and all I may endure to stand firm to the end in all He has put in my heart to pray and proclaim, to live out and express, to insist upon no matter what I come against or what comes against me (Philemon 1:23). "For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes!" (Romans 1:16)
 
So come, Holy Spirit. Fill me with "the Spirit of Christ" (Romans 8:9). Give me "the mind of Christ" (1 Corinthians 2:16). Put the desires of Christ in my heart, the mind of Christ in my mind, the words of Christ in my mouth, and the cause of Christ in my spirit. "For as He is, so are we in this world" (1 John 4:17) 
 
"Is there not a cause?" ... Yes, there is a Cause! And Christ is my Cause worth fighting for! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend, may you be empowered by the Holy Spirit to stand firm for the sake of Christ for the cause He has put in your heart, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 


 Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.


2021 Hope and Healing Conference and Ministry at Moore Than Enough Ministries Worship Center in Ohio This Past Weekend.

Friends, thank you so much for all your prayers for us during our ministry trip to Ohio this weekend at Grafton United Methodist Church outside St. Paris and with our good friends Pastors David and Linda Moore at More Than Enough Ministries' Worship Center in Sidney! Such hunger for God and passion for Jesus! We saw and heard many testimonies already of healing and deliverance, physical miracles and emotional breakthrough, all with a fresh filling of the Holy Spirit and the fanning of the flames of a holy Fire that will not be quenched! Much powerful prayer and intercession for our nation and for this movement! We're praising God for all He has done and all He is doing! Praying the same for you! Rocio and I are so grateful for your prayers for us!




Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


Please share this word to encourage a friend!
Anyone can sign up for free to receive them at:
 

Monday, January 18, 2021

From Intimidation and Timidity to Intimacy and Authority! - January 18, 2021

 Morning by Morning, January 18 - From Intimidation and Timidity to Intimacy and Authority!

 
Good morning, Lord Jesus. I welcome You here in my heart and every moment of my day -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. ...
 
"'And now, Lord, look at their threats, and grant to Your servants to speak Your word with all boldness, while You stretch out Your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.' When they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God with boldness!" (Acts 4:29-31).
 
The rulers of their age tried to silence the voice of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ. They called the followers of Jesus before their councils and demanded that they submit to their control (v. 5). The rulers challenged their authority and their right to speak and to pray in the name of Jesus (v. 7). They tried to silence their voice, shackle their freedom, and shut down their movement -- even forbidding them to speak in the name of Jesus (v. 17).
 
But the disciples of Jesus, the followers of Christ, would have none of it. In the face of all the intimidation and threats of the rulers and authorities -- who were actually the ones who were deeply afraid to the power of this mighty name of Jesus and the move of the mighty Spirit of God -- they would not relent in their passion for this movement the Lord Himself had seared into their hearts, as they responded in faith and stood their ground with courage of conviction, declaring for all to hear, no matter the cost:
 
"Whether it is right in God's sight to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge; for we cannot keep from speaking about what we have seen and heard" (v. 19). "Filled with the Holy Spirit," they would not back down (v. 8). No surrender. No retreat. This mighty movement that was stirring in their hearts and stirring in the land was not coming to end, but just beginning! The stronger the opposition, the greater the intensity of their determination. 
 
Intimidation was only fueling the flames of deeper intimacy with their God and greater authority in His name in a great outpouring of His Spirit:
 
"They raised their voice to God with one accord and said: 'Lord, You are God, who made heaven and earth and the sea, and all that is in them, who by the mouth of Your servant David have said:
 
'Why did the nations rage,
And the people plot vain things?
The kings of the earth took their stand,
And the rulers were gathered together
Against the Lord and against His Christ.'
 
For truly against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done. Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus!'
 
And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness!" (v. 34-31)
 
Hallelujah! Lord, let it be so in our and our day! Fill us with Your Holy Spirit. Turn intimidation into intimacy and timidity into authority in a great move of Your Spirit in our hearts, in our land, in our day! In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend may you be filled afresh with Holy Spirit of God, letting Him turn intimidation into intimacy and timidity in into authority in your life and in your prayers for all the Lord has entrusted to you, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 


 Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.


2021 Hope and Healing Conference and Ministry at Moore Than Enough Ministries Worship Center in Ohio This Past Weekend.
Friends, thank you so much for all your prayers for us during our ministry trip to Ohio this weekend at Grafton United Methodist Church outside St. Paris and with our good friends Pastors David and Linda Moore at More Than Enough Ministries' Worship Center in Sidney! Such hunger for God and passion for Jesus! We saw and heard many testimonies already of healing and deliverance, physical miracles and emotional breakthrough, all with a fresh filling of the Holy Spirit and the fanning of the flames of a holy Fire that will not be quenched! Much powerful prayer and intercession for our nation and for this movement! We're praising God for all He has done and all He is doing! Praying the same for you! Rocio and I are so grateful for your prayers for us!




Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


Please share this word to encourage a friend!
Anyone can sign up for free to receive them at:
 

Friday, January 15, 2021

Standing Firm with Both Our Tools and Our Weapons - January 15, 2021

Morning by Morning, January 15 - Standing Firm with Both Our Tools and Our Weapons

Good morning, Lord Jesus. Put Your thoughts in my mind and Your desires in my heart, as I seek Your face and listen for Your leading -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit of God. ... 

Like many in our nation, I've been wrestling lately with the focus of my attention. Daily, we're in a spiritual battle for the soul of our nation. And daily, we're sent forth to fulfill our calling in the spheres of influence You've entrusted to us. So do we fight the battle or do we do our job? Do we spend so much time in prayer to engage in a realm we do not see with our natural eyes or do we make ourselves productive in the everyday realm to address the everyday needs we see set before us? ...

This morning, this Word came to my spirit to guide my heart and my thoughts, from the effort and the battle to restore the nation and rebuild the wall in the days of Israel and Nehemiah: 

"Now when Sanballat heard that we were building the wall, he was angry and greatly enraged, and he mocked the Jews. He said in the presence of his associates and of the army of Samaria, 'What are these feeble Jews doing? Will they restore things? Will they sacrifice? Will they finish it in a day? Will they revive the stones out of the heaps of rubbish-and burned ones at that?' Tobiah the Ammonite was beside him, and he said, 'That stone wall they are building-any fox going up on it would break it down!' Hear, O our God, for we are despised; turn their taunt back on their own heads, and give them over as plunder in a land of captivity. Do not cover their guilt, and do not let their sin be blotted out from your sight; for they have hurled insults in the face of the builders. 

So we rebuilt the wall, and all the wall was joined together to half its height; for the people had a mind to work. 

But when Sanballat and Tobiah and the Arabs and the Ammonites and the Ashdodites heard that the repairing of the walls of Jerusalem was going forward and the gaps were beginning to be closed, they were very angry, and all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and to cause confusion in it. So we prayed to our God, and set a guard as a protection against them day and night.

But Judah said, 'The strength of the burden bearers is failing, and there is too much rubbish so that we are unable to work on the wall.' And our enemies said, 'They will not know or see anything before we come upon them and kill them and stop the work.' When the Jews who lived near them came, they said to us ten times, 'From all the places where they live they will come up against us.' So in the lowest parts of the space behind the wall, in open places, I stationed the people according to their families, with their swords, their spears, and their bows. After I looked these things over, I stood up and said to the nobles and the officials and the rest of the people, 'Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your kin, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!' 

When our enemies heard that their plot was known to us, and that God had frustrated it, we all returned to the wall, each to his work. From that day on, half of my servants worked on construction, and half held the spears, shields, bows, and body-armor; and the leaders posted themselves behind the whole house of Judah, who were building the wall. The burden bearers carried their loads in such a way that each labored on the work with one hand and with the other held a weapon. And each of the builders had his sword strapped at his side while he built. The man who sounded the trumpet was beside me. And I said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, 'The work is great and widely spread out, and we are separated far from one another on the wall. Rally to us wherever you hear the sound of the trumpet. Our God will fight for us!'" (Nehemiah 4:1-20)

 Yes, Lord! "Our God will fight for us!" You are the God who is building the wall and restoring our nation. And You are the God who is fighting for us. 

In Your wisdom and sovereignty, You choose to build and to fight through Your people who are called by Your name. So with the weapons of our warfare, let us pray in this spiritual battle of the unseen realm. And with the tools You've place in our hands to fulfill our calling to build up and retore what You've put in our hearts in the place You've positioned us on the "wall" of our community and our nation, for our families and for Your people, let us build. It's not either "fight" or "build;" it's both "fight" and "build" with both our tools and our weapons -- all by the power of Your grace and the Presence of Your Spirit at work within each one of us. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Be encouraged today! In the Love of Jesus, Tommy Hays


My friend, may you be empowered by God's grace and God's Spirit to stand firm, to build and to fight, at your place on the "wall" as He rebuilds and restores in your life and your land, in Jesus name. Please pray the same for me. God bless you, my friend! 


 
Standing firm with you in faith,
in our hearts and in our land.


21 Hope and Healing Conference in Ohio This Weekend.
Friends, please keep us in prayer for a move of the Holy Spirit as Rocio and I minister in Ohio this weekend! 

We'll be at Grafton UMC in St. Paris, Ohio Friday Night through Sunday morning. 

We'll be at More Than Enough Ministries' Worship Center near Sidney Sunday Night. 


God bless you and thank you, as we pray for a move of His Holy Spirit in you and your community!
Mailing Address for Messiah Ministries:

Tommy & Rocio Hays
Messiah Ministries
17503 La Cantera Parkway, Suite 104407
San Antonio, Texas 78257


Please share this word to encourage a friend!
Anyone can sign up for free to receive them at: