Tucker: Let me first say thank you for this interview and commend you on your efforts to elevate authors. I am a family man, and I love my family dearly. When I am not writing, I spend a good bit of my time with them. Family, for me, is quite extensive. They inspire me in many ways. LaShanda, my wife, is its crown jewel. She unselfishly loves and encourages me. I am truly blessed..
Additionally, I am a man of faith. I do not say that lightly. Faith, for me, has nothing to do with religion rather a relationship with Yahweh [God] and service to others. I am working diligently to be a hearer and doer of our Father’s will and following the pattern of His messenger Yahshua [Jesus], Son and Servant of God.
Like all believers, I am in God’s classroom. None of us are really scholars, rather students at various stages in our relationship with Him. As a student, I am continuing to rehash past materials, digging deeper into the Bible, and allowing God to use daily experiences and encounters as my laboratory to learn of Him and His will. God through time, prayer, and reading and re-reading scriptures has provided me with some spiritual revelation. Studying has helped me to connect the Old and New Testaments, and led to researching historical references. Strabo’s Geography, Book XVI, Chapter h2, for example, sheds some light on Paul’s physical description being associated with an Egyptian revolutionist in Acts 21:38.
Life is rewarding.
Tell us about your journey to publication.
Tucker: I had no intentions of writing this book. God was dealing with me on a spiritual and personal level. I began to take notes and before I knew it, I had over a hundred pages of notes. Wherever I was, day or night, I took notes. Of course, I read the Bible and questioned what I thought I knew, and searched for answers to lingering questions and new ones. That is why I noted I was God’s secretary in the “Acknowledgement.”
Although the book is available, marketing and visibility are challenges. This is a part of the process, especially for books that are not published by the large publishing houses. They have the command of so many outlets and resources to influence readers. I am thankful for AAMBC and other similar outlets from authors to share the book with readers. The process is a blast and an education I value.
What genre is your book?
Tucker: The genre is Christian Living.
Why Success Is Your Birthright God’s Success?
Tucker: There is not a short answer. First, life resembles a roller coaster. It consists of countless moments that make us smile, laugh, cry, and ask for Divine Intervention. Life’s beauty, however, gets lost on our disappointments and hurt. We all have emotional and psychological scars from those difficult moments. Some have wounds that have not begun to heal. How do the hurt and hurting bounce back? The book takes the reader on an inspirational journey to bounce back from life’s difficult moments using the biblical Joseph Story as its basis. Success Is Your Birthright: God’s Success challenges us to look at those not so great moments as legos to a better tomorrow. More importantly, it reintroduces some and introduces others to God [Yahweh].
Secondly, our humanity is fading. The sacredness and respect for life is continuing to dwindle. Much of this is fueled by society’s fascination and obsession with self and materialism. This is worldwide and crosses all demographics. This intoxication has closed eyes, hands, minds, and hearts to the emotionally, physically, and financially hurting. There is a willingness to exploit the vulnerable, children, women, and seniors. Everything is negotiable – one’s integrity, dignity, and body. Murder continues to be excusable in the name of political interest, pseudo-bravado, “It is my body,” and God. The blurring of right, responsibility, and morality, particularly God’s standard, are inextricably linked to our fading humanity. Narratives are created and recreated to suit personal moods. Sadly, this has made its way into the corporate organizations and buildings called churches. There are those who misrepresent God and His Son, The Christ, through hustlerism and attempts to augment the Gospel to be congregational and society friendly. This is the salt losing its savor. (Matthew 5:13)
What is God’s standard?
Tucker: God’s standard is similar to the parents-children relationship. Parents have expectations for all their children in an effort to nurture responsible adults. Relationship reinforces and supports those expectations. When the children do not meet those expectations, the parents communicate their concerns and reiterate what is expected. There are times when grounding, time outs, suspending privileges, and the like are employed to get their attention and nudge them back on track. Because the parents are displeased and have taken action, does that mean they love their children less? Quite the opposite. They love them more. There are times children are adamant about opposing their parents’ expectations. Peer validation empowers them to feel their actions are reasonable. The more the children challenge their parents’ expectations, the more normal it feels. Parents are faced with compromising, walking back their expectations, or standing firm in love and continuing to nurture in hopes their children will get back on course. What does this have to do with God’s standards you may ask?
God’s standard is His expectations for us. Meeting His expectations lend to eternal life, not eternal damnation. It is not His Will that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. (paraphrase II Peter 3:9) His standard begins with loving and serving Him unconditionally. Loving Him is accepting His Son, Servant, and our Elder Brother as The Christ. Yahshua [Jesus] gave us the blueprint to worshipping God and loving one another. Does God love us any less when we do not meet His expectations? Absolutely not! He is displeased and desires a repentant mind and heart, and commitment to His standard. Opposition to His expectations is called sin. That is not a popular word. Its detractors prefer expressing one’s self or exercising ones independence. It is appalling because sin implies something is taboo, forbidden. Democratic dialogue postulates nothing is taboo and everything is negotiable, especially with the right spin and public sentiment. A number of professed clergy and Christians have entertained those notions. They deceive themselves and others. Though all wobble with God’s expectations, believers work fervently to resist sin and repent when they stumble. Are we perfect people? Far from it. Every believer has a past and every non-believer has a future. We too are working daily toward eternal life. We wrestle against thoughts, feelings, and actions inconsistent with God’s standard. Adulthood and democratic dialogue do not give us a license to do whatever we think or feel.
Is life as a believer boring?
Tucker: Of course not. Believers are like everyone else. We go to the movies, enjoy a cup of coffee at the local coffee shop, eat a slice of pizza, shop at the malls and boutiques, laugh, cry, appreciate nature, and love ourselves, family, friends, and everyone in between. God’s standard lends to a more enjoyable and less chaotic life. Life as a believer is fulfilling. Our lives are faced with challenges. Do we stumble at times? Sure. None of us is stumble free; however, believers are committed to resisting sin – a commitment not without challenges.
What lessons can we grasp in the 21st century and after from this book?
Tucker: Man is not central to the universe, no matter our discoveries or the latest gadgets. God is the central force in and to the universe. His standard of right, responsibility, and morality minimizes life’s unnecessary conflicts and chaos. Life is not about what we have or do not have but our relationship with Him and one to another. To love is to have a service agenda. Imagine if we measured success by the lives we encouraged, engaged, and assisted. Material success would not be an obsession.
What do you hope this book accomplishes?
Tucker: I am glad you asked that question. Success Is Your Birthright God’s Success is a spiritual and inspirational expedition. My hope is that people will read it and start to re-evaluate their relationship with God, and others. Many believe in a religion void of a relationship with God and people. These cherry-pick what they will or will not adhere to and engage in selective service to others, if at all, all the while calling themselves Christians or something else. Reading this book will somehow inspire them in a profound way.
In your opinion, what’s the measure of successful writer?
Tucker: A writer is already a successful. To produce a product, particularly as self-publisher, is success. Unfortunately, book reviewers, the media, and some bloggers tilt toward celebrity names and large publishing houses. Many good writers’ works consequently do not get the attention warranted. We all want to be on someone’s bestsellers list; however, we all will not due to the aforementioned bias and the limited advertising dollars. Success, for me, is measured by ones perseverance.
Any tips for upcoming authors?
Tucker: Let me say every person is an author or has the capacity to be one. The keys are listening to the voice inside yourself that says, “I can” and developing your creative process. Too often, we try to imitate someone else, his or her writing style, and process for developing a manuscript. My writing technique is to write whatever comes to mind then piece it together later. This may be considered laborious to most; but it allows me to be comfortable and creative.
Find the book and the author:
Success Is Your Birthright: God’s Success takes us on a spiritual, emotional, and inspirational expedition, prodding and challenging us to think, feel, and explore. This expedition forces us to appraise or reappraise our views, values, and traditions as well as misinformation shaped as truth.
The biblical Joseph Story is the basis for this expedition. Never before has this story been told with such passion and conviction. Those familiar and unfamiliar with this story come away with a profound perspective. Joseph becomes more than a biblical personality. The author cleverly brings him to life by paralleling our experiences with Joseph’s personal roller coaster. We, then, associate him with ourselves.
As Joseph’s biography unfolds, his difficult moments become very apparent. His character stands up and out, during those moments, instilling uncompromising hope. Within the storyline, there are several, simultaneous threads weaving this tapestry – success, coping with life’s roller coaster, God, humanity, and religion.
Society focuses on success’ smallest facet, materialism. Tucker broadens our concept of success. Success, here, is an inclusive, selfless attitude that celebrates common everyday feats of courage, love, common kindness, respect, and perseverance. Its linchpin is God.
God’s desire for relationship with us is profound. Relationship is measured by His standard of morality, right, and responsibility. Relationship with God hinges on loving Him, and “love thy neighbor as thyself.” To love yourself is to love and serve others. There lies our humanity.
God’s success is central to relationship, not religion. Tucker offers a compelling revelation on this sensitive topic. This text lays that foundation by distinguishing between the Christian and believer. “The Christian focuses on the religion; the believer focuses on relationship. Simply, the difference is, the former is a concept; the latter is a commitment.”
Success Is Your Birthright: God’s Success is a captivating appraisal, making it hard to put down. We discover life’s beauty and the confidence to bounce back from life’s unpredictable moments.