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Showing posts from August, 2012

Nothing Is Left Void When The Lord Is At Work

Yesterday I picked a post from a few years back and did some rewriting. I do that quite often. It's wonderful to look back through my posts and see where I was and see just where the Lord has brought me. Proof that I am a work in progress, flaws and all.
Not only can I see how my writing is changing, but even more so I can see how the Lord has been working in my life. There were times He carried me through heartache. Walked me through confusion. Steered me away from sin. He has been  my ever present encouragement. It seems that He is always teaching me. Always loving me to tomorrow.
I finished the post and sat back in tears and thought, "Wow Lord, You are so mighty and good". It was titled, "When We Cry Out He Turns To Us". It was one that I had worked on for quite awhile. So, I posted and seen I had still had a few corrections. Made my corrections and went back to post and it was all scrambled up. I couldn't read or make out anything. It was as though someo…

The Guest Book by Marybeth Whalen

I have been blessed to read every book penned by Marybeth Whalen. She has a style all her own. It's almost as though you could pick up a book, without knowing the author, and after reading it you would know, yep, that's Marybeth Whalen. Her writing style is easy and classy. Her focus is always Christ, but she has this gift for telling a story within a story. Most likely, you will find yourself in one of the characters being portrayed.
In her newest book we have a hurting family. Who can't relate to that on some level? I think we all can. Macy has a young daughter. The father is in and out of the picture. Her brother has hurts of his own and their mother is still grieving the loss of their father.
I found  I could relate to all of the characters in this story. After losing my dad when I was young, my family went through many of the emotions shared by these folks.
I see this story as teaching us that we can't really move forward unless we go back and settle everything of…

No Other by Shawna K. Williams

No Other is one of those stories that you envision a grandparent sharing of their past. Shawna has a beautiful way with words. They grab you by the heart strings and carry you away to another place and time. Her writing style flows. It's as though she is sharing her story with you over a cup of coffee. It's clear to see the passion she has for telling a story of great love. This is a novel that will carry a  great legacy behind it.
The characters are rich and vibrant. They are real, with flaws, trials and heartache. We see how the Lord brings beauty from ash. There is beauty found within these pages that will stay with me for years to come. I was sad to close the last page. The story continues with, "In All Things", available now for your eReader.
Jakob's story is one of loss, tragedy, trial, and forgiveness. He holds His Christian values dear to his heart, but he is hurting. His family has been through so very much. The war has taken place and things are not the…

Abducted by Janice Cantor

What a treat to read a suspense novel written by a veteran police officer. This is the first book I have read by Janice Cantor. I missed the first book in the, Pacific Coast Series, entitled, "Accused". Janice Cantor is a first rate suspense writer. She has penned a novel that flows continuously. One that definitely keeps you guessing.
Cantor has woven a story of  love, relationships, trust, and forgiveness, all while she brings us a plot that thickens and a mystery that unfolds before our eyes. There is a thrilling twist at every corner. I enjoyed the characters. Carly Edwards is a strong and courageous woman. She not only is an awesome detective, but she is new to the Christian faith and is finding that she truly needs Christ daily to walk this life journey.
I love the foundation of this book. Forgiveness, reconciliation and redemption. We see second chances and what happens when we make a choice not to give up on others. This novel is intertwined in faith. It's as tho…

A Lesson On The Persecuted (Beatitude Series Part 8)

"Those who are persecuted for righteousness are blessed, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs." Matthew 5:10
Who of us has been persecuted for our faith? We see it in other countries across our world, as people must make a choice, much like the disciples. It's a choice of living out our faith. In many cases it's a choice of life or death.

Many times family will not accept us because of our faith. We can lose friendships because of Christianity. But friends, that doesn't mean we give up. It means we live our lives in prayer. It means we live in such way that through each word and action Christ's love is seen.
Sure, I've been called names. I have been gossiped about because of my walk in faith. But I have never faced real persecution as others have. So, that brings me to my question at heart. Am I then truly living out my faith for all to see? That's a hard question for me. Have there been times where I have hidden my faith? I really don't think so, …

A Lesson On Peacemakers (Beatitude Series Part 7)

"For the peacemakers are blessed, for they will be called sons of God." Matthew 5:9
Resolving conflict has not always been my strong suit. In fact, my husband, calls me, "The Fixer". I have earned that name, with foot in mouth. I think at some point all moms are fixers. We don't want to see our children hurting and we don't enjoy seeing others hurt. I suppose that's part of being a mercy. But for me, I often step in and act before I have prayed and asked for God's guidance. That is my first mistake. Second is thinking I know what's best. I think that's the point where the Lord gives me a little push and says, "Um..Rob, would you like to get out of My way, so I can do My work?"
I too have often had to prove I'm right. I might be in an argument and rather than walk away, I have stood for the battle. Oh goodness, not a pretty picture.
Over the years I have learned humility. I have learned to pray first and act later. That is, if th…

Fireflies by Ruthie Lewis

Ruthie Lewis sent me a copy of, "Fireflies" for review. I was immediately drawn in by the cover. I mean, who doesn't love fireflies? As a kid and still today they captivate me speechless. I see them now and I'm a child all over again.
No, this book isn't about fireflies, but in way you could say it points to the glory of our Savior who created this little beauties just for our pleasure. Ruthie intertwines her story, the characters and the message so brilliantly that you are immediately drawn in and left speechless.
I felt the more pages I consumed the more I knew the characters, Tammy and Charla, and those who surrounded their lives. Friendship combined with love seem to set these ladies free from the chains that are holding them captive in the bottom of the jar. They are yearning to be set free, but just don't know the means.
Fear has held them for much of their lives, but faith conquers their fear and even as a firefly, they see the way out to finding what …

A Lesson On The Pure In Heart (Beatitude Series Part 6)

"The pure in heart are blessed, for they will see God." Matthew 5:8
In studying the Beatitudes this week, if it's possible to have a favorite, this one just might be it for me. Oh, to be pure and to see God! This verse is filled with grace. I love how each of these verses spoken directly from Christ connect with one another. They all point us to Christ. Again, we see that with Him, all things are possible.
The pure in heart is someone who is authentically righteous. To point to someone, who wasn't of a pure heart, would be the Pharisees.
"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self indulgence! Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup, so the outside of it may also become clean." Matthew 23:25-26
Isn't that the beautiful part? We can be real with Christ. We don't have to pretend and be fake. Although at I think at times we think we must put on a show. Yes,…

A Lesson On the Merciful (Beatitude Series Part 5)

"The merciful are blessed, for they will be shown mercy." Matthew 5:7
How wondrous it is to open my Bible and see the words in red. Words spoken by my Savior. This verse is penned in red and is speaking of mercy. Not just receiving mercy, but giving mercy.
What does merciful mean? The good Mr. Webster puts it this way.
MercifulFull of mercy: Compassionate: Providing relief
Mercycompassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power; also : lenient or compassionate treatment  and a blessing that is an act of divine favor or compassion;compassionate treatment of those in distress

CompassionateHaving or showing compassion; granted because of unusual distressing circumstances affecting an individual —used of some military privileges (as leave)

Compassion Sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it;

Mercy is looking beyond yourself. It's reaching in the depths of your soul and reaching out to g…

A Lesson On Hunger And Thirst (Beatitude Series Part 4)

"Those who hunger and thirst for righteousness are blessed, for they will be filled." Matthew 5:6
Before we can understand this verse we must first understand righteousness. I mean how are we to hunger and thirst for something if we don't understand the meaning?
Righteousness: Righteousness is the state of moral perfection required by God to enter heaven.
So, those who hunger and thirst for this will be filled. Hunger and thirst are powerful words. They are living words. We must be fed and we must have our thirst quenched for life. The key is filling those needs with the right notions. If we are not careful we can begin to fill ourselves with potions that will not lead to holy living. Body, mind and soul.
"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you." Matthew 6:33
I can devour a cheeseburger and fries and be full for the next few hours. I can devour God's Word and be filled for the day. But it is some…

A Lesson On The Gentle (Beatitude Series Part 3)

"The gentle are blessed, for they will inherit the earth." Matthew 5:5
When you think of gentle what comes to mind? A hand reaching to help another? A tender moment between a mother and daughter? What about the tender touch of a father messing his son's hair as he shares how proud he is of his son? Oh, the soft breeze that touches your face through an open window? All of these are gentle moments. I think we can all think of gentle moments with a smile upon our face. Gentleness fills the soul with love.
We go to the grocery store for bread, eggs and milk. We are gentle with the bread so it doesn't smash. We are gentle with the eggs so they do not crack. We wouldn't want spilt milk all across the floor with a crashed carton. When we are gentle we take our time. We make sure nothing is bagged on our bread. We make sure our eggs are seperate. We formulate things. We take the time to think things through. We don't just haphazardly move. We take account for each act…

A Lesson Of Mourning (Beatitude Series Part 2)

I have been studying the Beatitudes and am finding myself once again in awe at how the Lord uncovers His Word for our heart to take in and our life to breathe out.
"Those who mourn are blessed, for they will be comforted." Matthew 5:4
You gotta love when you see something as if it were for the first time. As I have read this verse before I have always taken it as anyone who is mourning. But there is more. Yes, with the Lord there always seems to be more. Don't you think? It's as though His Word is brand new each time I open His Word.
This verse takes us back to Isaiah 61:1-3. As I read these words, I am again seeing a Savior of love and hope. One who wants His children to feel His patient love.  
"The Spirit of the Lord God is on Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and freedom to the prisoners; to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor, and the day of…

A Lesson On Being Poor In Spirit (Beatitude Series Part 1)

"The poor in spirit are blessed, for the kingdom of heaven is theirs." Matthew 5:3(HCSB version)
How do you read this verse? I think many of us have misunderstood this verse. First we must go back to the Old Testament and read Isaiah 61:1, "The Spirit of the Lord God is on Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and freedom to the prisoners."
Now lets take a look at Isaiah 66:2, which says, "My hand made all things, and so they all came into being. This is the Lord's declaration. I will look favorably on this kind of person: one who is humble, submissive in spirit, and trembles at my word."
This verse isn't at all speaking about those who are whiny and complain constantly. It isn't speaking of those who hold their head down and say, woe is me. It's not having the attitude that the end is here and all is lost. It is entirely different. …

Touching The Sky by Tracie Peterson

First I must say that Tracie Peterson is the queen of historical fiction. She does her homework and sets the scene for the story. She makes it real and vivid as if we are being given the gift of going back in time and being there in person.
The Civil War has touched the lives of everyone and has left a scar on every heart in some form or fashion. Two sides. Who is right and who is wrong? There is more than just standing for what is right in this story. It's heart against heart. Hate is alive and real. But God reveals beauty within these pages.  We find love and healing. We see characters that cling to your heart long after the story has ended. Why? Because of the message they give. To be yourself and to know your heart. To live faithful lives and surrender your anger for peace. Most of all we see growth. You either grow or stay stagnate and you sure can't touch the sky that way.
I loved all this book brought to my heart. The story is captivating, but it is hard. It's a tim…

The Power of The Prophetic Blessing by Pastor John Hagee

Wow! Wow! Wow! Pastor John Hagee is a man on a mission. He is a man of God and He is spreading the Word of God quickly as He works to equip all with the wisdom and knowledge we need to be just who God created us to be. Prayer warriors! Prayer is power. Prayer is needed. Prayer is something we are lacking in as Christians today. We misunderstand the power that prayer holds when spoken in the will of God. Nothing is too big for our God. He is in total control and when in prayer we are meeting with Him one on One. It's personal. It's intimate and it's real.
In The Power of The Prophetic Blessing I learned a great deal. Each page and chapter was filled with great insight into God's Word. In reading this book it made me have a deeper passion for God's Word and I dove in with a great splash. This is one of those books that is timeless and perfect for us to have a deeper understanding of all that can be and all that we miss by merely limiting God.
This book was more than …

Nothing To Hide by J. Mark Bertrand

The first book I read by J. Mark Bertrand was Beguiled in which he wrote with Deeanne Gist. I was hooked from the first page. I was then blessed to read Back On Murder. I was instantly captivated by Roland March. I have finished reading, Nothing To Hide and absolutely loved it. This is the third installment of the Roland March Mystery Series.
This is one of those great mystery reads that keeps you on your toes. Reading is at its best when I have no idea what is coming next or how the book is going to end. Bertrand is outstanding at bringing a story together. He weaves the plot with twists and turns that keep you guessing.
If your searching for a superb mystery I suggest you begin with Detective Roland March. As you read this mystery it's as though your right there on the scene and your learning as Roland is seeing everything happen first hand.
What I love is that as the mystery is being unfolded we are learning more and more about Roland. He quickly becomes one of those guys you w…

The Haven by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Stoney Ridge is becoming one of my favorite places to visit. It feels like home. What else can you say about, The Haven, but it's a gem. Suzanne Woods Fisher works wonders at the heart as you turn each page. This is book 2 in her newest series, Stoney Ridge Seasons.
Hope is alive in Stoney Ridge and we see God's amazing work as He brings people together. Isn't it beautiful to see His will come alive as He brings others into our path for a distinct purpose?
No one pens Amish Fiction like Suzanne Woods Fisher. The words flow and the story is presented in a real and powerful way. One thing I love is the fact that the characters are believable. I too love the title. The Haven has a meaning filled with hope. Although you could just pick this selection up and enjoy, it would be even better to pick up the first book in the series to get a gist of all the characters and just where they have been. This is surely one you too will enjoy.
This book was a gift from Revell for it's …

A Garden Visit

Lets go to the garden this morning. Jesus is there with His disciples. Can you hear their conversations? Can you see the love between these friends? Jesus knows the time is near. For Him this must be a bittersweet moment of His journey.
There is one who is missing, but is about to interrupt the conversations in the garden. Oh that Judas. Jesus loved him so. The thing that gets me is the fact that Jesus knew when He chose Judas that he would in the end turn against him. But, even though he knew, don't you think, He still held out hope?
See, before their time in the garden, they shared dinner. Jesus sat with Judas and Peter too, breaking bread. A treasured moment between friends. A moment that Jesus knew was bittersweet. Even though Jesus knew what was about to happen, He still broke bread with these men He loved. He didn't allow their sin to overshadow the love He held for them. How many times do we a persons sins to keep us from breaking bread with them? Too many times. Where i…