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Genesis 25:29-34

29 Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished. 30 He said to Jacob, “Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I’m famished!” (That is why he was also called Edom.) 31 Jacob replied, “First sell me your birthright.” 32 “Look, I am about to die,” Esau said. “What good is the birthright to me?” 33 But Jacob said, “Swear to me first.” So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left. So Esau despised his birthright.

Have you ever been so hungry, tired, overwhelmed, frustrated, ______________________, that you were willing to sacrifice something important (valuable) just to alleviate the feeling? That is exactly what Esau did. He was famished (starving)! He wanted food NOW and didn’t care what he sacrificed to get it.

Jacob, who wanted Esau’s birthright (the right to be recognized as first born) saw an opportunity and took it.

Let’s take a look at the two sins that were committed here:

Jacob: 

Jacob had a jealous heart and stole Esau’s birthright. He knew exactly how to manipulate his brother and he didn’t have any hesitation doing it.

Esau:

Esau was impatient. He was hungry and he wanted instant gratification. Instead of making his own food or waiting for something else, he sacrificed his birthright and didn’t seem to care.

The Lesson For Us:

Although Jacob turned into a man of God, at this moment Jacob was a snake. He was jealous and manipulative.

God does NOT want us to hold jealousy in our hearts. 

God does not want us to use manipulation to get what we want. He wants us to be content with what we have. When we covet what someone else has, the Devil gains a foothold, and sin takes root in our lives. If you find yourself jealous of someone else right now, ask yourself why? Also, ask yourself what sacrifices, responsibilities, etc. might come with what you are coveting? One more question I want you to ask yourself is: what would I do to get what so and so has? If you are willing to break the law or sin to get what someone else has you have a heart issue and you better be on your knees before God in repentance.

Esau was impatient. He wanted food, he wanted it NOW and he didn’t care what he gave up to get it. He wasn’t willing to wait and he suffered the consequences of his actions. He regretted it later, but it was to late.

God does NOT want us to have a spirit of impatience.

God does everything in His own timing. When we try to take control of things and jump ahead of God, we suffer the consequences, just like Esau did. What are you impatient about right now? Why? Are you trying to control the situation or the timing of something? Is God telling you to wait? Why aren’t you obeying God? What could some of the consequences be of going it alone? You will be going it alone if you allow your impatience to cause you to disobey God.

I know that we live in a world of instant gratification. We are able to do or get anything almost instantly and it has made us not want to wait for ANYTHING. Are you that person who needs to be instantly gratified? Are you REALLY satisfied when you get what you want? What are you willing to give up to get what you want right NOW? Is your need for instant gratification causing you to lead a sinful lifestyle?

I want you to reflect on all of the above questions, asking the Holy Spirit to guide you and convict you if necessary. I want you to dig deep. Heart work is sometimes painful, but as a Christian it is something we need to do on a regular basis. If there is the tiniest of sinful roots taking up space in your heart, it is an open invitation for Satan to take up permanent residence. God will not stay where we allow the Devil to reside. I would rather have the love and goodness of God in my heart any day!

You choose: The love and compassion of God or the anger, chaos and evil of the dark one? The decision is yours.

 

 

I have been using this time at home to develop my single mom ministry. It is something that I have wanted and tried to do since 2006. I have felt through the years that my ministry was to be an online ministry. The idea of an online ministry appealed to me because I am an introvert and can be socially awkward due to social anxieties. I fought God on it though because every other ministry for single moms that I knew about were in person ministries. I argued that I couldn’t have a successful online ministry. I was fixated on the idea that I had to have in person support meetings/Bible classes. ENTER COVID-19 and life as we knew it has changed over night and I hear God telling me, “I told you so! I told you I knew what I was doing!” YES! God knows what He is doing! Everything He does is for a reason. When He leads us in a specific direction it is for a reason. Even when that direction is going against the norm, don’t question it. God knows what He is doing.

So, I now find myself in full writing mode, developing the L.I.F.E discipleship program for single moms, setting up a Facebook group to go along with it, writing content for my blog, promoting this ministry in order to be able to serve single moms locally and nationally. I Know that others might oppose me because it is not a “paying job”. I know that others might ridicule me as being lazy and settling for the easy thing. I know that I may make others angry because I choose to obey God rather than man.

TESTIMONY TIME:

I left my job May 3rd of 2019. I moved to Georgia where I went through the training and became a certified Biblical lay counselor. In Georgia, I finished God Is: A Seven Week Bible Study For Single Moms, I volunteered with a community ministry, and I wrote my first 2 articles for The Life Of A Single Mom Ministries. It was a preparation time. I did not have a job. Fast forward to the present (August 2, 2020) and I still don’t have a job, but somehow I have not run out of money. I am not perfect. I sin just like everyone else, but I try to live in obedience to God in everything I do, even when others don’t get it. I believe this is why God provides. I give as God leads. I try to be a good steward without hoarding my money. I trust God to provide. God has taken care of me as I step out in faith to minister to single moms. Is opposition uncomfortable? Of course it is. It can be downright painful, but God is bigger than those who oppose us! I trust in HIM!

 

 

 

Dear Single Mom,

I know how easy it is to feel anger towards or even hate your kid’s father. I know how easy it is to stay in that defensive position of, “Well he did such and such. He deserves every bad thing that happens to him.” I know how easy it is to get stuck in that resentment and bitterness. I’ve been there! I have been eaten up with hatred and bitterness. I had so much rage inside me that I became physical and went after a woman who is now my ex-husband’s wife and my best friend. I’m here to tell you that anger and hatred just eats you up inside. It doesn’t stop the other person from moving on and being happy. It hurts you and in extension, your kids.

Forgiving a wrong is never easy. It may take daily reminders to let go of the negative feelings and forgive the wrong. Heck, it might take hour by hour reminders, but you deserve the peace that comes with letting go. Your kids deserve to have a peace-filled mom who can model forgiveness and grace.

Here’s what the Bible says about forgiveness:

Colossians 3:13

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Matthew 6:14-15

14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.
Ephesians 4:31-32
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Mark 11:25
And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.
Ephesians 4:26
“In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.
Psalm 4:4
Be angry, and do not sin. Meditate within your heart on your bed, and be still. Selah
While we are talking about forgiveness, is there anything you have done to cause someone else hardship or pain? It goes both ways single mom. I challenge you to do some research on your own and see how God feels about un- repented sin. God expects us to ask for forgiveness when we wrong someone else. We need to ask God’s forgiveness and then make things right with the other person when appropriate. If you wrong your child, repent, and ask forgiveness. When we confess our sin and ask forgiveness, we are setting an example of how a Christian should act, in front of our kids. And don’t think for a second that they don’t see your sin. I hate to tell you, friend, they see more than we realize or want to admit.
Real peace comes from the act of forgiving and from making right a wrong that we have done to someone else. Allow your kids to see forgiveness in action and you will be setting an example that they will carry for the rest of their lives.

 

I am wondering these days how not to give into the panic that has rocked us all this year. With every passing day, we hear something new that has the potential to terrify us even more than we are already terrified. Early in the year our world was turned upside down very quickly. None of us had any time to breathe before we were given stay at home orders. Everything shut down almost over night and left us reeling. Around the world thousands of people are getting sick and dying and none of the experts knows how to get rid of it. To mask or not to mask, that has become the question. Major league sports have been cancelled. Amusement parks and beaches have been closed. EVERYTHING shut down overnight and we all have been trying to adjust to a new normal that may last for a long while.

Then in June, the racial tensions that are and always have been boiling under the surface, boiled over. Protests and riots in the streets across America. People are being killed in the streets and once again, it seems that no one has the ability to stop it. DEFUND THE POLICE! And then what? Is that really the answer? We have all turned against each other. No one wants to listen to anyone else’s opinion or perspective. No one has any compassion for anyone else’s experiences. Those perspectives and experiences that could bring us together if only we would stop the fighting and LISTEN to each other. No one feels safe anymore.

Now, we have a coin shortage and businesses threatening to go cashless. Now, we face a whole new reason to panic. A cashless society. Will the chip (what evangelicals are calling the mark of the beast) be next? People are running around in a panic. People are still hoarding supplies. Stores are still out of products that we need to survive.

The reality is that things are not going to change anytime soon. We have gotten away from our relationship with God and Satan is wreaking havoc. America has become his playground and he is not going to leave until Christians turn back to God. We are listening to conspiracy theories, contradicting advice from the experts, and we can find articles to support any view on the internet. We are listening to everyone accept for the ONE who IS the TRUTH, JESUS.

We, the masses of people who this effects, have no idea who is telling the truth or who is lying. We all have our opinions based on who we have been listening to, but can we really trust anyone anymore? Has it all been manufactured to bring this nation down? Do we believe that circumstances have been manipulated to turn us into a communist country? Who do we vote for in November? Because one side isn’t any less criminal than the other. We don’t have to worry about outside terrorists groups taking us down, because they can sit back and watch this country implode.

God has given me a burden for this country. My heart aches deeply for this nation that has the potential to be a beacon to the world. We are fighting against each other, when we need to be fighting against the devil.

Ephesians 6:12

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

What is the answer?

REPENT! REPENT! AND TURN YOUR HEARTS TO GOD!

Jeremiah 18:7-10

If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, 10 and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do for it.

WE CAN TURN THIS AROUND!

HEED THE WARNING AMERICANS!

This nation will be destroyed if we do not, as a nation, turn our hearts back to God.

We need to REPENT

We need to PRAY

We need to READ THE BIBLE

We need to EMBODY THE LOVE AND COMPASSION OF GOD

We need to TURN OUR HEARTS BACK TO GOD!

Do we really need more warnings to wake us up? Do we really want to see what else will happen?

I think that most of us agree that we are nearing the end times. I don’t know when the rapture will be. Will it be before the tribulation period or after? Does anyone, but God really know? Is the CHIP the mark of the beast? No one but God really knows. That’s the point. We don’t know, so we need to be ready.

I watch the masses running around in a panic, not knowing what to do with the worry, anxiety and fear. Suicide rates have gone up. Hopelessness, anger and hate fill the hearts of people. So, I pray and I pray and I pray.

Our Father in heaven,

Protect this country from the evil one that is so intent on taking us down. Wrap a hedge of protection around the borders of America to keep the evil out. Shine a light on the darkness within our borders and stop the evil plots against us before they cause anymore destruction and pain. Bring justice where injustice lives. Pour out your Holy Spirit to overflowing. Gives us hearts that radiate love and compassion in abundance. Give each of us a desire to abide in Christ so that others will see Christ in us. Give each of us a heart for unity instead of hate. Heal our hearts and our differences. Heal our land. Allow the winds to blow the Coronavirus out, so that we, as a nation, can heal physically and financially. In this time of uncertainty, help us to learn that we can survive this better if we work together instead of against each other. Give us each a heart for you, Lord. I am praying that each person in this great nation will be filled with a burning desire for you and to do ONLY your will. Bring us together under YOUR banner, crying out to you in repentance. Bring us together in UNITY in such a way that our voices raised to you in prayer will give the devil no choice but to flee. We belong to the Lord! Bring us back to you, Lord!

All of this in Jesus name,

Amen

 

 

 

 

Dear Single mom,

Did you know that you are beautiful? YOU ARE! I know that it is hard to feel beautiful when you are exhausted from juggling job, kids, homework, housework, and the to-do list. It is hard to feel beautiful when you are up to your ears in dirty diapers, piles of laundry, a sink full of dishes and the other daily messes that kids of all ages tend to make. But, what you see as the dirt and mess of an overwhelmed mom, God sees as the beauty of a mom who has made the decision to do the hard thing. God sees the beauty of a mom who is there for the long haul and who is not going to quit when the days are long and the kids are sick.

This is what God says about YOU:

Zechariah 2:8

For this is what the Lord Almighty says: “After the Glorious One has sent me against the nations that have plundered you—for whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here!

Galatians 3:26

So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 

Romans 8:17

Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

Genesis 1:27

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Jeremiah 1:5

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

This is not all that God says about you. I encourage you to do your own research to see what else God says about you. You are STRONG! You are WORTHY! You are LOVED!

If you need prayer, a compassionate ear, or an encouraging word, please contact me. I am here for you, single mom! I have been where you are and I am here to walk your journey with you.

 

Exodus 16:6-8

So Moses and Aaron said to all the Israelites, “In the evening you will know that it was the Lord who brought you out of Egypt, and in the morning you will see the glory of the Lord, because he has heard your grumbling against him. Who are we, that you should grumble against us?” Moses also said, “You will know that it was the Lord when he gives you meat to eat in the evening and all the bread you want in the morning, because he has heard your grumbling against him. Who are we? You are not grumbling against us, but against the Lord.”

The Israelites complained ALOT! Nothing was ever good enough for them. God in His patience listened to their complaints and gave them what they wanted. Manna, quail, water, clothes and shoes that never wore out and guidance through the wilderness. Still, the Israelites grumbled.

Sounds like us. No matter what God does for us, we grumble and complain, “well, you answered our prayer, Lord, but that wasn’t the way we wanted it answered.” Really? Can’t we just be grateful?

We are especially ungrateful here in America. Life is not perfect, but the majority of us have what we need. We may not always have what we want, but we have what we need. I raised 5 kids as a single mom. We lived in a low income neighborhood and struggled financially, but we had what we needed.

There are 2 things I want you to remember:

  1. There are those that are truly suffering. There are those living around us that really are suffering and in need. Those that are homeless and food insecure. Those that have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and can’t pay their bills. Look around you and be grateful for what you DO have. Be willing to share what you have with those around you who really are in need. Be willing to give someone else a hand up to help better their  life.
  2. You are grumbling against GOD. Moses tells the Israelites that they aren’t grumbling against him and Aaron, they are grumbling against God. When we complain and whine like petulant 2 year olds, we are whining against God. We are telling God that we don’t appreciate what He has done for us and that we think that we are entitled to so much more. When we grumble we are telling God that we don’t believe that He knows what He is doing and that we think that WE could do better. I would rather be grateful for the goodness in my life that is because of God. Life is not perfect, but life is still good.

 

Don’t be like the grumbling Israelites. Is it to late to warn Americans not to become entitled, snot nosed, whiners who think they deserve the best of everything because they are Americans? America is a nation of spoiled brats and God is now reminding us that HE is the King of kings and Lord of lords. God is now warning us to start thinking about others and to stop being selfish or the days ahead could be full of suffering for many many people. God had patience with the Israelites but He also allowed them to suffer because of their attitudes and disobedience. Be warned Americans. God’s patience is wearing thin!

 

 

 

Matthew 6:28-29

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.

It has been a hard few months for all of us. We have all been thrown into chaos between the Coronavirus and racial tensions. Some of us don’t feel safe anymore. We question are own thoughts and motives. We try to erase history instead of learning from it and bringing our different perspectives/experiences to the table in a inclusive discussion. Each side thinks they are right and each side is right, but each side is also wrong in some ways.

We rebel against being told what to do, but is it for our safety? Can we listen to the media or are they trying to instill fear in the masses? Are deaths being inflated to benefit the hospitals? Our world is growing more and more chaotic. We have all sacrificed the last few months. I am missing my mom and dad, who should be here for their bi-yearly visit from California. They could not come. Praying for September, but nothing is certain anymore.

I have to remember the ONE thing in this world that will NEVER change: JESUS.  I remind myself that the God who made the flowers in all of their beauty, is still in control and I am not to worry about the future. I LOVE the Spring and seeing the hundreds of varieties of flowers that God has given us. He has blessed us with gardens of so many vibrant colors. He dressed the flowers in beauty. He will dress our futures in beauty too.

         

 

In these days of uncertainty, remember the ONE who still blesses us with beautiful things to remind us of His presence and LOVE.

 

 

Dear Single Mom,

This has been a crazy year and it isn’t over yet! I know that many of you have lost your jobs due to the Coronavirus and many of you have struggled to balance job and e-learning. As we head into a school year that will be an adjustment period for parents, teachers and students, know that you are NOT alone in your struggle.

Your life has been tough enough already, without the added stress of a pandemic. On a normal day, you balance job, bills, housework, discipline, homework, meals, demands from the ex, and other miscellaneous responsibilities. You are stressed out, depressed, and lacking sleep. I have walked in your shoes, single mom, and I am here to tell you that certain situations may not change, but life can be better!

If I did not have Jesus in my life, I would not be here. I am being real with you. Will having a relationship with Jesus suddenly make the Coronavirus disappear? No. Will you still struggle in some aspects of your single mom journey? More than likely. Life is not perfect. Welcome to a fallen world, where sin and evil lurk, waiting to snatch whatever happiness we have been lucky enough to grasp.

The answer, plain and simple is Jesus! When you have a deep, abiding relationship with Jesus, this is what God promises that you will have in your life:

HOPE

Isaiah 40:31

But those who hope in the Lord, shall renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. 

Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the plans I have for you,” Declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”

Romans 15:13

May the God of hope fill you will all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. 

LOVE

John 3:16

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 

1 John 4:9-11

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Romans 8:37-39

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 John 4:16

And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

JOY

Romans 12:12

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Psalm 28:7

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.

Nehemiah 8:10

And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”

PEACE

John 14:27

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Phillipians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Psalm 4:8

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.

REFUGE

Isaiah 54:10

Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

Isaiah 43:2

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

Psalm 91:9-13

If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, 10 no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. 11 For he will command his angels concerning you  to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. 13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

I offer these verses as encouragement in these precarious times. I challenge you to continue the search for other scriptures on the above topics. The verses I listed are in no way exhaustive and much comfort can be found in the pages of the Bible. You may wonder if these promises are really meant for you. In Mark 9:23 Jesus tells us that EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE FOR THE ONE WHO BELIEVES! Have HOPE that you will find JOY and PEACE in the ONE who LOVES you and HE will be your REFUGE!

 

 

 

Exodus 16:4-5

Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions. On the sixth day they are to prepare what they bring in, and that is to be twice as much as they gather on the other days.”

Exodus 16:15-20

15 When the Israelites saw it, they said to each other, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, “It is the bread the Lord has given you to eat. 16 This is what the Lord has commanded: ‘Everyone is to gather as much as they need. Take an omer for each person you have in your tent.’” 17 The Israelites did as they were told; some gathered much, some little. 18 And when they measured it by the omer, the one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little. Everyone had gathered just as much as they needed. 19 Then Moses said to them, “No one is to keep any of it until morning.” 20 However, some of them paid no attention to Moses; they kept part of it until morning, but it was full of maggots and began to smell. So Moses was angry with them.

The Israelites did NOT starve! They were given manna in the mornings and quail in the evenings. God gave them enough for that day. They did not have to hoard their food, because God provided for them daily. When they did try to hoard, the manna was not edible. Some trusted God for their daily provisions and some did not.

Like many of us today, we have a hard time believing that God will provide for us on a daily basis. We want to hoard our wealth or our resources for a “rainy day” instead of sharing what we have or leaving behind enough for someone else. I was astonished at this hoarder mentality at the very beginning of this pandemic. The store shelves emptied quickly of things like toilet paper, hand sanitizer, cleaning supplies, meat and other food items. The words “pandemic” and “stay at home order” were enough to send the masses into a frenzy and I believe that even many Christians forgot their faith and stocked up “just in case.”

In my household, we did not stock up. I live in a house with my ex-husband, Howard; his wife, Tami; and our 18 year old son, Ty. We trusted God to provide as we had need and He has. Howard was out of work for 3 weeks and we still ate well, paid the bills, and lived life as we always had. We live simply anyways and give to others out of our abundance. But, God provided. We NEVER had to stock up. We NEVER had to worry. God provided what we needed EACH DAY, as He did for the Israelites.

I know that these days are filled with events that cause us to worry. I know that it is easy to follow the masses into a panic and forget that God has EVERYTHING under control. If you belong to God then you don’t have to worry! He’s got you covered!

If you don’t belong to God then today may be the day that you decide that you need God on your side. I wouldn’t want to live in this world without Him. My only assurance of security and refuge is through my all powerful, all seeing, all knowing, always faithful Almighty Father in heaven. If you have been thinking about accepting Jesus into your heart or have felt a tug from the Holy Spirit, please contact me via my contact form or email me directly at pattiburris@yahoo.com. Do you really want to do life without God on your side? I don’t!

 

 

 

 

Article #3 is up!

In a Facebook post reflecting back over her first year of teaching, my daughter, Cree, made the statement that a flower planted in the right soil blooms, and then she added, “so plant your children in the right soil.” This simple statement made me reflect on raising children as a single mom…click HERE to read the rest of the article.