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Showing posts from February, 2012

HARRIET BEAMER TAKES THE BUS by JOYCE MAGNIN

Joyce Magnin grabs my heart with laughter. I take a look at the cover of the book before me and I can just picture what's inside. I know I am not going  to be disappointed. She takes  you on a memorable journey and gives you a gift to treasure as you walk away.
Oh Harriet is a wonderful character. She is filled with just about every emotion as she is getting older and things are not as easy as they once were, but she isn't giving up any time soon. I love that!
Circumstances arrive and Harriet is willing to face them, but she feels the need to do it her way. What I love is the fact that although she thinks she's doing it her way, God is really at the wheel here, doing the guiding. Harriet is moving to California. She has a lot to come face to face with and one thing is her pride. Ouch!
Something I can carry away from this story is, when things get rough, I don't have to give up, I just have to allow God room to take the wheel and trust Him along the ride.

This book was a …

STAND BY ME (A SouledOut Sisters Novel) by NETA JACKSON

Have you ever found yourself being really irritated by another person, not really understanding why, but in that first meeting you really just don't like them? Yes, me too. This is at the center of this book. Two ladies. One strong willed and ready to shout glory everywhere she goes and another, a new Christian, a little quiet and reserved. God has great things in store for these women and those who surround them. Watch out, just when you think that person irritates you, well, she just might be the girl God has in store to walk the journey with you.
I loved the story line. The characters were so real. You got to see the good, the bad and the ugly. Neta Jackson writes about real people and real issues. Although you could read this book alone since it is the first book in this new series, it would be a blessing for you to read the Yada Yada Prayer Group Series along with the Yada Yada House Of Hope Series.
This is defiantly a book of faith. A book filled with faith, hope and love. W…

I Can't Do This!

"I just can't do this anymore!" Oh, the times these words have flowed from my lips. The times fear has hit me and smacked me to the floor. Anger that has come ragging like a river flowing out of control. When the impossible stands toe to toe with you and your left with a feeling of uncertainty. Have you been there with me?
You have words with your husband that cut like a knife and you just want the hurt to end. Your child is rebelling in every way and all you want is for peace to enter your home and make rest. Your parent finds themselves in the hospital and now you must make all the decisions. Your job is controlling your life. The in-laws are not making life easy. The doctor calls with news you were not ready to hear. "I can't do this anymore!", flows from your lips as despair hardens your heart. Your trying to protect yourself from the pain of unrest, so you push everything aside. Even those you love so you can feel some sort of ease. The pain is still t…

WORDS SPOKEN TRUE by ANN H.GABHART

Okay, at just the mention of Ann H. Gabhart book, I am excited to see what is to come. You hold in your hands a gift  that you  will soon not forget. She never disappoints. She has the ability to take you on a journey. One in which you travel with her to another place and time. You don't just know the names of the characters, you walk away as if they were family. I have had the honor of reading many of her books and I have yet to read one I didn't like. In fact, I LOVED each and every one I have picked up.
So far, this one just might be my favorite. From beginning to end, Ann grabbed my heart. This is a story that beckons you to grow in faith. To take a journey in the shoes of another and learn what faith and grace are all about.
This story is woven in such a way that your heart is stirred with each sentence. The main character is fearful of the dark. The light gives her solace and freedom from the fears that overtake her. When I got to the last chapter I didn't just read …

I'm An Original. Not A Reproduction

Your not a reproduction. Your an original. Do you know the Lord has been telling me this all morning. I am still trying to let those words soak in and find meaning there. You gotta love a God who tells you exactly what you need to hear. There's only one me. He created me just as I am. Shouldn't that be good enough?
You would think so, but as humans we are always trying to change ourselves. We are always comparing ourselves to others. We look at all the things those around us are doing and then we look at our life. I ask myself daily, "Am I really making an impact? Am I really where I need to be?
We live in a world where we are always hearing what we should be. What we need to do to find success. How to improve our lives. How to..how to..how to. Do we ever just stop to think, "Lord, what do You see?" We are always trying to recreate ourselves. Isn't that a gentle job of the Lord? That job doesn't belong to the fashion magazines or what the red carpet has o…

NOT THIS TIME by VICKI HINZE

First of all, I just gotta say, I hate when reviewers give the story away, chapter by chapter. Goodness, don't ruin the story! So, not this time, friends. lol Vicki Hinze is a ROCK STAR writer who grabs hold of your heart and doesn't let go. Even after that last page, your left with an imprint of the power novel you have just spent the night reading. Yes, reading Hinze at night is a must!
She sets the stage and takes us for a ride once again at the Crossroads Crisis Center. Goodness, the more good these characters try to do the more evil that gets twisted into their lives. Pretty much like our real life walk with Christ.
We get to follow the lives of Beth and Joe. Characters that I fell in love with from the start. We too meet the characters who grabbed our hearts in the other books, but it's these characters that really stand out in this third installment of this series. I must tell you, reading these books in order would give you a greater impact of the story.
Friendship…

HEART ECHOES by SALLY JOHN

This book grabbed my attention from the first pages. Tragedy hits through an earthquake. You can't find your family and you witness something horrific before you. Sally John is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. This is the third book I have read from her and I LOVED it! The first book I read by Sally John was entitled,  Ransomed Dreams, and the second, Desert Gift. I quickly knew this was an author I was going to love. This is the third installment in this series. You do not have to read this series in order. What I love is the powerful impact all three books make. In each she touches on a different subject. One that has reached us all in some form.
We have a family that is going through some difficult times. Teal, River and Maiya make up this family. I love how Sally John uses an earthquake and after shocks to perfectly capture the shaking foundation of this family. On the surface all seems fine, but all it takes is one moment to change everything. One earthquake can cause maj…

We All Need An Advocate

Everyone needs an advocate. We must stand for those who cannot stand for themselves. This is what Jesus Christ did for us. This is what He does for us. We cannot save ourselves. We cannot experience heaven on our own account. We are saved through the blood of Christ. We experience His love daily. We don't have to be saved to experience His love. But for us to see the other side of heaven, we must accept Him into our lives and into our hearts. This is what true love is. He gave us the perfect example of unconditional love. He continues to love us even when we choose to not love Him in return. We have value in Christ. He sees us as we were created to be.
It is Jesus who connects us with our Heavenly Father. Without Jesus there would be no way to reach God. Jesus is our Advocate. He is that middle man who chose to step in and stand in the gap for you and me.
We are perfected through Jesus Christ as He lives in us. Plain and simple, there is no greater love than the love of Christ. Wh…

His Word Is Our Delight

"How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to To Your Word." Psalm 119:9
A question we all ask and one in which we have an answer. We wonder how a young man sways off path. How does a young woman end up crumbled in a corner? We remove ourselves from the path God has chosen for us. Many times we don't even search Him for the answer to our life. It should be Him we are seeking for purpose. Is it really that simple? We remain pure as long as we remain with Him? I believe so. It's when we allow our flesh to run our lives that we find ourselves running to find reason and rhyme to all that is.
I found myself in Psalm 119 this morning. Oh, these words bring comfort. We see the heart of one calling out to God. A place I have been and a place I will be again. This chapter is the longest chapters in the Book of the Psalm. It is repetitive. I think there is a reason for that. God wants us to really get it. He wants our attention. We should be repetitive in …

FAR FROM GOOD (The Trial Of Sam Cray) by STEPHEN VAN ZANT

Far From Good is a tale of friendship during changing times. I really enjoyed this read. It was like going back in time and for a first time writer, Stephen Van Zant did an amazing job at bringing the characters to life.
This book shows us the many personalities of those around us. We all come with a story. We call carry baggage. Our actions and attitudes reflect the pain we carry in our heart. Prejudice comes in many forms and whatever the form it is ugly to the extreme. I thought the writer brought that out very poignantly.
This is a story that belongs in the hands of every child. A story read to them by their parents or shared in the school room. It opens us discussion and brings to the forefront just what one man's choices can do to another man's life.
This is a well written gem. A story that takes you to the heart of a matter and changes you as you read the pages. Bullying is one topic this book touches. We see both sides and the effects it leaves on the heart. Again, thi…

Run Asa Run!

Well, after teaching a lesson on King Asa last night in Awana I knew there was a post to write. Who knew he could teach us so very much? I sure didn't. I must say I had read a little about King Asa over the years, but never really got deep into his life. Well, that has all changed now. I dug in and loved it!
You can read all about King Asa in 2 Chronicles 14-16. One scripture I do want to begin with today is from 2 Chronicles 14:2. It reads, "Asa did good and right in the sight of the Lord his God." Isn't that our hope? It should be, shouldn't it? Oh, how we should want to look good in the sight of the Lord, Jesus Christ. Ya all, it isn't what this world thinks of us that matters. They are not going to be standing in front of us come judgement day. It's going to be the Lord front and center.
King Asa reigned for 41 years. He started his reign on fire for the Lord God. The thing is, he didn't finish so well. He gets busy when he begins his reign and rem…

When Trial Comes Knocking, Let God Answer The Door

You have been having a great week. Everything has it's place. All are wearing smiles. The house is clean. The car is running great. Your parents are healthy. Your children just rocked their report cards. The job doesn't even feel like a job. You are loving your life this week. Then it happens. It seems to come out of no where. Trial is standing at your door. It's knocking and matter of fact, it's just going to walk on in whether you are ready to answer or not. In fact, it's going to have itself a seat in your living room. Oh, yes, the family room, where everyone gathers.
Why do we always say, "It just came out of no where"? No it didn't. It certainly came from somewhere. We just weren't looking when it approached and capsized our yacht right in the middle of our sunshiny day.
God doesn't bring everything to us in punishment as some would like to teach us. Just because trial comes it doesn't mean you have done something terribly wrong. We o…

PROMISE ME THIS by CATHY GOHLKE

I'm going to go out on a limb and say this just might be the book of the year! I know, it's only February, but friends, this book is AMAZING! It grabbed my heart from the very first pages and carried me through to the last and left me wanting more.
This is one of the most beautiful stories I have had the pleasure of reading. In fact, it was an honor to read these words penned by Cathy Gohlke. Yes, she has a new fan!
We have the Titanic. Countries near and far.  Family and friends. Tragedy and beauty. This book simply takes you away to another time and place and I must tell you it captivated me. There are so many valuable lessons to carry away from this book. This is one to pass on to your family and friends. Through the lives of these characters we find the love of Christ. We find His intimate grace and powerful strength that draws us near to Him. We see His sacrifice and His gift everlasting.
These characters were powerful and strong through the weakness that touched them. We…

THE SCENT OF CHEERY BLOSSOMS by CINDY WOODSMALL

This was one amazingly beautiful book. I loved my time spent in Apple Ridge. First, this is a gorgeous book. The cover is just lovely. I think just by looking at the cover it would make you want to pick this gem up and a gem it is!
The characters were so likable. Each one struggled with life. Situations occurred. Tragedy came knocking and challenges were at every corner, but do you know, these characters persevered. They over came the obstacles before them. What I love is that Cindy allowed us to see the struggle and the imperfections of the characters. That made them real to me.
I loved the setting. A cafe for friends to gather and family to serve. A farm to restore a broken generator. I love how these folks come together to help one another. They stand on principles and they value a man's word. I seem to learn so much about the Old Order Amish and the Old Order Mennonite communities. Such loving people. I  find it hard to understand many of their ways. But what I love is the fac…

WHEN THE SMOKE CLEARS by LYNETTE EASON

Wow! Lynette Eason is at the top of my list of favorites when it comes to suspense and intrigue! This girl has a gift, whew! She continues to blow me away with her writing. I first fell in love with her with her first series, "Women of Justice". Now she brings us a new series, "Deadly Reunion". Wow, does she take off running with this first book. I literally did not put this book down until I finished!
This is a hold on to your seat kind of read. There is one thrill after another. I kept thinking, "Wow, this girl is gonna get blown up at some point!" LOL Alexia Allen ROCKS!! I LOVED this character! This girl never gives up! What a great message! She is blessed with protective friends who are seeking the truth and has a God watching every step she makes!
I love how Lynette brings faith into her books. It's not over powering. It's in places where the reader must realize there is more to life. In this book it takes a fire to refine Alexia. Sometimes …

Learning Stillness One Move At A Time

Don't you love how the Lord teaches us through experiences and lessons along our journey? Some are hard lessons. Some take a bit longer for me to learn, but slowly I am getting there. I love the idea of learning. We have a Teacher who gives us His undivided attention. It's like having a tutor. A one on one lesson. If I can only get myself to slow down enough and listen. Focus on what is before me, not behind me.
Lately I have gotten back into doing Yoga/Pilates. I love these work outs. Again, I try to learn something from everything I do and here on this mat before me the Lord is teaching me once again.
In this type of exercise you must learn to control your breathing. My One Word for 2012 is Breathe. Funny how that just worked out isn't it? Nothing is by coincidence in this world. We have a God who plans and sets forth our path. We just have to realize it and match our steps with His.
Not only is this type of exercise about controlling your breathing, but stretching yours…

Step Back Away From The Scissors

Have you ever had a haircut that made you wish you would have never entered the salon doors? It was just a year ago that my hair was getting long and I really loved it. I had gone into the salon for a trim, but oh no, that wasn't enough for this girl. I had to pick up the hair magazines. You all know them well, don't you? It's the magazines we just pick up and glance at thinking, "Well now, isn't that a cute hair do?"
We turn the pages and now we have it in our mind that a trim just won't do. We must have something new and different. Paleeez, I wish I had an inch of hair for every time I got the itch for something new.
So, here we are. We find the photo of the cutest short haircut ever and we begin thinking it's going to look great on us. The thing is, we are not at all the girl in the photo and our hair happens to be totally different than hers is, but we tell our self, "It's going to look amazing!"
But what happens? The stylist says, &…

THURSDAY'S TREASURE with ALISA HOPE WAGNER

Falling Asleep at the WheelWritten byAlisa Hope Wagner




When I was 10 years old, I got really good at riding my bike. In fact, I was so proficient that I wouldn’t use my hands to steer. I’d let my arms dangle by my side and use my body to balance. I remember one beautiful sunny afternoon I was leisurely riding my bike around my neighborhood. A wonderfully long stretch of road extended right in front of my cul-de-sac, and I enjoyed taking a rest on my bike as gravity pulled me down the gentle descent.


With the sun hitting my face and the breeze blowing through my hair, I decided to close my eyes. I woke up several hours later on my couch. Bruises, scrapes and grass stains covered my body. I had fallen asleep at the wheel and crashed onto a small, thin patch of grass on the curbside. As I tried to pull my aching body up, I wondered how anyone could take a nap while riding a bike.


Now, as an adult, I can see how easy it is to “fall asleep at the wheel” of our lives. We become over-confide…

Some Mornings We Just Need A Reminder

Do you ever just wake up and say, "Okay, whatcha got for me today, cause yesterday wasn't the greatest"? It seems one thing happens and then another comes along and pretty soon you are just assuming every phone call, every message is going to bring more bad news. It's as though the sun is shining and you are standing there just waiting for the clouds to come over head and the rain to begin pouring. Maybe even having hail drop on your head.
There are times I sit here and think, "Ya know, today is a good day. Every thing is going just the way I planned it." We like it that way, don't we? I can sit here alone and just ponder over the Bible. But then out of no where comes a whopper and slams down on me so hard, I just wanna give up.
Do you all just ever get tired of trying? I mean I put one foot in front of the other and sometimes it feels like I'm walking backward. Today, I feel as though I have fallen in a giant hole and it feels dark and lonely. Now,…