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Showing posts from May, 2012

Cultivating Blessings

For the very first year I pulled on my boots and tilled our garden. Yes,  I did it, with my husband standing near, video taping me for proof of the task. I put on my pink John Deere gloves and went to work. I must tell you it wasn't easy at first, but after a while I got the hang of it and learned how to move with the tiller instead of me doing the brunt of the work. There were still times I had to have my husband's guidance. He had to teach me how to turn. I gotta tell ya, planting is hard work. For a girl who doesn't like to sweat, I was sweating.
But don't we do the same with life too? I know I do. I don't give God the reigns. I take them and try to lead, which leaves us feeling as though we have tilled for hours when we have only been at it for thirty minutes. When we try to control everything it leaves us feeling exhausted and empty. I have never walked away from a situation I was trying to control feeling full. Instead I was needing fuel because I lost sigh…

Fruit of My Spirit by Deanna Nowadnick

I received a copy of, "Fruit of My Spirit", from Deanna. This is a little gem that makes a big impact. Deanne takes the Fruit of the Spirit and shares how God has moved in her life. She brings us to clearly see how the Fruit of the Spirit is alive and well in our lives when we are present with the Lord.
Each chapter takes, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, and brings them to life through Deanna's own eyes. She shares touching stories that will give you a glimpse of just what God can do when we surrender all to Him. Through one seed a garden can blossom.
She pens beautifully how God has moved in her life and blossomed fruit in those unexpected places. I enjoyed reading the stories of her life and seeing God move in places bringing about blessings and filling her life with plenty.
To find out more about Deanne, and her first book, please visit her site. Fruit of My Spirit

Wildflowers From Winter by Katie Ganshert

Okay, it's summer. Your searching the aisles of the book store for that perfect book that will lead the escape route to another place and time. A book set apart from others that will captivate you until you close the last page. This is it!

Wildflowers From Winter was that all night read for me. I couldn't put it down. I could relate to the character, Bethany Quinn, on so many levels. I found myself in tears throughout this wondrous read. It took me to my past and the death of my father. It took me to places I have tried to hide away from and brought out memories of great blessings. This book left me full. My heart was overjoyed by the last page. This is award winning! I love when a book can reach the depths of my soul and bring about change and challenge.  
This book is beautifully written. The words just seem to flow and for me they flowed straight to my heart. Bethany is the girl who left the country and the pain of her past for the big city and the even bigger career, but s…

"Women in High Def" (Boldy Living Your Purposes with Vibrant Clarity), by Diane Markins

Need some clarity? Maybe some inspiration and encouragement along the way of our crazy lives? We are forever busy, but what are we really busy with? Is God taking more space in our lives than anything else? Is He our priority?
Sometimes I need to take a break and pick up a book. My friend, Diane Markins, has written this newest gem of my collection of treasures, and has inspired me through story after story. Being a High Def Woman is surrendering all to God and standing in His promises and being witness to His glory. It's realizing we are imperfect and in need of a perfect Savior.
I love everything about Diane's new book. I love the foreword written by Kathi Macias. I love the dedication. The introduction is a huge blessing. Diane has placed a Bible study in the back and lists all those who have contributed this beautifully designed gem.
What happens when you give women room? Their gifts flourish and their passions ignite to show the glory of God. That's what happens i…

A Jumble of Thoughts Today

How are all of you? I have been away for a few days and I gotta tell ya, my mind has been churning and my heart has been full. One of my favorite places to be is right here in front of the keyboard writing. It's a time I get to spend with the Lord and feel a new peace wash over me.
I have been spending time with my grand daughter and since hubs has been laid off, he has been quite busy here at home being Mr. Fix it. I must share with you, being with my grand daughter and just watching my hubs gives me inspiration. Sometimes we just need to take the time to sit back and soak it all in before it disappears into a memory.
Time is so precious, isn't it? I realized how much time I simply waste on things that don't really matter. I think those days are over for me. At least for now, until I fall back into that pit. But the Lord will be there to draw me out once again. We allow such crazy things to take our time and capture it and then we sit back and think, "Gosh, I have…

"After All" by Deborah Raney

Hanover Falls has been one of the greatest places I have visited. With each installment in this series we learn something new and the people within these pages seem like family. I love how Deborah Raney brings these characters to life. I love the title. It says so very much about what God has done and is doing in this town and the people. After all that has happened, God still shows Himself. He can take ash and bring beauty.
The Grove Street fires has changed lives forever. The rebuilding of one homeless shelter has the potential to bring healing to a town and it's people devastated by fire.
Secrets come out and fears are faced. We see these characters grow in forgiveness. We see God's grace wash over them. Healing doesn't come quickly, it's a journey for these characters and I love that. We can see how one person's actions touch every life around them and how we should be responsible for those actions. We too often blame others or allow that blame to fall on ot…

Roll Out The Welcome Mat

Lydia was the queen of hospitality. I'm not even sure it was something she had to work at. I think it was her gift. She just had that way of making people feel comfortable. Do you know people that have that make you feel warm and welcome? I do. My best has more hospitality flowing through her than most people I know. She is the Martha Stewart of making you feel warm and welcome. She might even top Martha in all the other departments too.
Lydia was the girl who loved celebrations. Yep, she was that girl we read about that loved using purple cloth to make clothing. She was a woman of many gifts. On the list of Proverbs 31 women, she would have led the pack. The example for all women to follow.
Her life changed in a moment. Don't you love how God works? He just sets up the perfect time and place for the meeting that is about to change everything for us. All we have to do is show up. That's what happened to Lydia when Paul and Silas came to town. Here they were preaching an…

"MOMumental" Winner is..

Mystic Mom, you are now the owner of a copy of, "MOMumental" by Jennifer Grant! Yay, for you! Everyone loves winning a book. That makes for a great day!  I hope you enjoy this book and share with me your thoughts.
Please shoot me an email, leaving me your snail mail and I will get this out to you.
Blessings and Happy Reading!
This book was given as a gift for a give a way by Worthy Publishing.

Disguised for Battle

Have you ever heard of Francis Clayton? Probably not, unless your a huge Civil War history buff. I hadn't heard of her until my visit to the History Museum with my husband a few days ago.
Francis Clayton was a woman who disguised herself as a man so she could fight next to her husband during the Civil War. This woman who once wore a gown and coiffed hair, now wore short hair and a uniform. She carried a gun and fought with intention.
She didn't sit on the sidelines. She didn't even stay home and wait on her husband. She followed him right into battle after battle, until she was wounded in Tennessee in 1863. Now there is a woman standing by her man.
I wanted to stand and cheer for this fearless woman. I wanted to say, "You go, girl!"
Her story was powerful for me. I asked myself, "How do I disguise myself?" Am I disguised in God's clothing? Have I allowed change in myself to totally reflect Him? Do others see more of me or do they see more of Hi…

Victory or Death

We have all heard of Patrick Henry and his famous words, "Give me liberty or give me death". But have you heard of Private Patrick Ahearn? Until yesterday, I had never heard of this young man.
He fought during the Civil War and he was captured in Tennessee in 1864. He lived a life of integrity and honor. A young man not afraid of what was to come, but stood in strength. His life shouted, "Victory!"
While visiting the History Museum with my husband yesterday we walked through the Civil War exhibit. I stood in front of a portrait of this young man, a flag, and his story. What caught my eye? His words and his actions.
As this young man went into battle he would carry the flag under his uniform, for it's protection. As he went into every battle, he shouted the words, "Victory or Death".
I gotta tell you, hot tears rolled as I thought of this brave young man. As I stood, looking at the flag before me, my reflection caught my eye. It was almost as if a …

Ready for a Challenge?

Today I am making a new challenge. I want to make an intentional change in my daily walk with Christ. I want to move out of my comfort zone. I want to make a difference in the lives of others. For the next 365 days I am challenging myself to do something nice for someone, friend or stranger.
We serve a God who places opportunities in front of us so He can shine. If I never move outside of my comfort zone and leave my fears behind I am never going to see those opportunities.
I am going to keep a journal for this journey of giving. I am sure there are days where my flesh will struggle, but isn't that what the walk with Christ is all about? It's a journey of moving outside of ourselves and moving closer to Him. It's not only a daily walk, but moment by moment, journey seeking all Christ has for us.
I mean,  it could be taking time to call  a friend to give encouragment to putting groceries in the car for another. The possibilities are endless. Just think what we can do wi…

Calling For More Rain?

Ever feel like your having a perfect day, no clouds in the sky, and all of a sudden out of no where, the clouds roll in and the rains begin to pour? Even as I write this morning, the clouds are beginning to roll in. It's one of those mornings where you can smell the rains heading in.
But doesn't that make it better when we have notice of the coming rain? With that notice we have time to shut the windows and grab that umbrella as we head out the door. We might even decide to stay in for the day. But what happens when there is no warning of impending rain? When you live in Missouri, the weather can change at the drop of a hat, so you learn to be prepared for whatever may come.
Yesterday on my fb status I wrote, "I don't really understand those who say we shouldn't pray for patience. Today I am praying for patience." Not long after that status update I received a call from my husband who was on his way back from Pennsylvania. It wasn't exactly the call yo…

"MOMumental" by Jennifer Grant

Jennifer Grant shares her perspective and her stories on motherhood and raising a family. Let me share with you a few sentences.
These days, instead of focusing on creating a conflict-free home, raising picture-perfect kids, and being an ideal mother-comprised of equal parts of June Cleaver, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Angelina Jolie- I have embraced a more realistic view of what I can and cannot do as a parent. this reality-based, "Velveteen parenting", includes, but is not limited to, the following general guidelines:"
After reading this statement and adding Angelina Jolie into the women as ideal mothers, she totally lost me. I was a bit let down as I read this book. I was expecting more and was left feeling a little empty as I closed the last page.
What did I take away from these pages? It's okay that we are not perfect parents. No matter how much we try it just simply isn't going to happen. God's grace washes over us and the more we can draw near to Him the…

"MOMumental" by Jennifer Grant (GIVE-A-WAY)

Hey friends, I am having a give a way once again. This time Worthy Publishers was nice enough to send along an extra copy of, "MOMumental" by Jennifer Grant, just for you to enjoy.
I am preparing for my review now, but so far, I am enjoying this book. If you are a mom, a parent or a grandparent, this book was written just for you. It would make a great gift for Mother's Day. If your thinking of having children anytime soon, this would be a great book to grab up for encouragement and laughter.
"Adventures in the Messy Art of Raising a Family". Now, how could that title not be interesting? A cover with cheerios and milk splashed across the front. Who hasn't had that experience? I must say this would have been a great read to curl up to when my children were all still at home at those tender ages of going back and forth with, "Yes, No, Yes, No", and wondering if I would have hair the next day. Parenting is the hardest job in the world, but the mos…

"A Heart Like His" (An Intimate Reflection on the Life of David) by Beth Moore

What a great study! Beth literally takes us through David's life in the new and revised, "A Heart Like His". We enter the books of Bible beginning with 1 Samuel and we go through ending in  1 Chronicles. Beth is one of my favorites. I love her natural style of teaching. She truly brings everything into perspective. With Beth's sweet spirit, coming through her penned words, it's easy to learn and grow.
There are review questions gathered at the end of the study. Each chapter, all 52 of them, begin with God's Word. I would suggest reading the full scripture to prepare for the lesson's reading. You too can also grab the workbook which I think would add tremendously to this study.
If you are searching for a great study and want to dive into the life of David, this would be one of my first choices. You cannot go wrong with Beth Moore. I have been blessed to do many of her studies and each time I walk away richly blessed.
This book was a gift from BHPublishin…

"Love Does" by Bob Goff

I picked up, "Love Does" and read the words, "Discover A Secretly Incredible Life In An Ordinary World", and was blown away. This book holds great stories about the life of Bob Goff and those people surrounding him. Some of the stories made me laugh out loud, others tugged on my heart.
He shares a story of a young man who wanted to ask his girl to be his bride on the back deck of Bob's home. The story didn't end at the one request. Unlike most people, Bob was happily overjoyed to not only help this young man, but partake in the feast of love about to happen.
This is Christ wanting to court us. This is Christ at His best, showing His great and mighty love for us. We have the greatest love story ever written. A story about a Savior willing to give all for those He loves.
Bob shows us we can be extraordinary in our daily lives. Through his life we see pure joy and nothing less. I absolutely loved this book. I love the cover of the balloons floating upward.…