Sunday, October 28, 2012

I'm Moving

I'm moving... literally.

We have been working hard to pack up our house and do all of the necessary cleaning things.

It's a LOT of work.

But it's taught me something too.

I started out with my normal, "God can do this" attitude, but the closer the moving date came, that confidence started to fade.

Things were just going wrong - our vehicle had to go into the shop for over $1,000 worth of repairs. We were behind schedule cleaning and packing. We had promises to buy some of the big items that we didn't have room for in the moving truck, but no one had come to pick them up. The house we were hoping to rent fell through, and we were left with nothing. We found a new, better house, but it won't be ready for at least a month after we need it. Which meant finding temporary housing - another chore. We did find an affordable place to stay, but it will be a tight fit for our family of 6 while we wait for our new home to open up. It just seemed like one thing after another kept going wrong.

This move that God had clearly ordained, became stressful.

I started getting scared that we weren't going to be ready in time, and that the finances weren't going to be there. I was still counting my blessings and glorifying God for all of the blessings, but I was worried - and it was effecting my outlook on everything. The pastor at church asked if it was okay to invite us up front to pray for us our last Sunday here, and I envisioned that no one wanted to pray with us. I was sure that we weren't going to get the house clean on-time and have to pay our landlords a bundle of money we didn't have in fees. I was controlled by irrational fear.

But "God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (2 Tim. 1:7 - Young's)

This morning at church things went very well - people really did pray for us.

Not only that, but God showed me that even though I couldn't physically see Him working out the details, He still was. Several people volunteered to help us - in more ways than we had even thought of. All of the big things we couldn't take have been picked up. I can see that we are actually going to make it.

Earlier last week, I had read the verse in Matthew about seeking first the things of God, that verse is the only reason that we set aside the time to go to church today instead of continuing to work to try and get everything done on time. But it really did come true for us. We sought Him first, and everything else was added to us.

The only semi-bad thing that came from all of this is that I realized just how many friends and loved ones we would be leaving behind. We have a wonderful church family that will never be replaced in our hearts.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Update and Free Stuff

I haven't mentioned this yet, but my family is in the midst of moving. While we aren't technically moving until the end of the month, we are currently out of state pinning down some details. More to come on that soon. For now, I wanted to let you know about an opportunity to download our latest devotional book, for FREE along with 19 other Christian books. Here's the scoop:

For three days only, several best-selling Christian authors have joined together to offer their books for free to avid readers. October 17th through the 19th 2012, readers can download 20 Christian books worth over $60 for free and enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card to get even more free books here.

This sale is just one of many hosted by Body and Soul Publishing, who also posts free Christian books and giveaways on their blog daily. Here’s what one reader had to say: "I’m very grateful for this website. I’ve found many valuable books that have enriched my spiritual life immensely." - Diane Sidener 

During the 100% off sale this week readers will be able to download the following nonfiction Christian books for free on Kindle and Smashwords:

Psalms, The Sunrise of Hope by Bob Saffrin

Hola Happiness by Janet Eckles Perez

21 Prayers of Gratitude by Shelley Hitz

A Matter of Faith by Carol Round

Restore Your Marriage & Fall in Love Again by Krystal Kuehn

10 Keys to Happy & Loving Relationships by Krystal Kuehn

The Lighthouse of Asaph: Unforgettable Christian Reflections by Roberto Ornan Roche

Found Adrift:  40 Days of Recovering Grace by Pauline Creeden

Children of Dreams by Lorilyn Roberts

21 Teen Devotionals…for Girls! By Heather Hart and Shelley Hitz

Experiencing Joy by Patty Mason

My Scripture Journal: God's Promises by Heather Bixler

Amazing Grace as Christ Walks By, My Journey from Brokenness to Wholeness by Carol Cline

A Spiritual Renewal: A Journey to Medjugorje by Alberta Sequeira

A Love Story...How God Pursued Me and Found Me…an Impossibly True Story by Samantha Ryan Chandler

Finding Hope in the Midst of Tragedy by Shelley Hitz

Mission Possible by Deborah McCarragher 

Women of Strength – a devotional to improve spiritual and physical health by Kimberley Payne

Night Stories – 8 devotionals about dreams by Kimberley Payne

Growth Lessons by Naty Matos

Don’t miss out!  Download these 20 books plus enter to win the $25 Amazon gift certificate for 3 days only here:

So there you have it. Go, download to your hearts content, and please keep us in prayer as we pack up and move several states away. It will be a big adjustment, but it's totally a God thing. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Trouble with Cowboys - Review and Announcement

I'm thrilled that I had the opportunity to review Denise Hunter's new book, "The Trouble with Cowboys." This is the third in her "A Big Sky Romance" series and featured a skeptical dark haired horse trainer/author who needed help with her new column. Not sure where to turn, she strikes a deal with a local cowboy who needs help with his horse - training in exchange for help answering her letters. It sounds like a pretty good deal, but not everyone is so sure about the time they spend together or the content of her column. Will everything work out in the end, or will both of them end up worse off than before? You'll have to read the book to find out.

This is one of those books that is just plain hard to put down. From the first page I was hooked and read through it in one sitting (even if I did stay up until 3 in the morning). While this book fits in the classic pet peeve category of mine that the girl on the cover doesn't even have the same black hair as the girl in the story, the writing more than makes up for that flaw (which really is a giant pet peeve of mine... did I mention that?). My heart was touched by the characters. Whether they made me angry, happy, or brought on tears, I could totally relate to what they were going through. I totally enjoyed every moment of this book, and will forever remember some of the catchy comments made by the characters. 

I loved this book! It was the first of Denise Hunter's books that I had read and I can't wait to read more. The tidbits that she shared from the previous books in the series made me want to read them so I could hear the full story, and with her believable and well written story line, I imagine that every book she writes is well worth reading.

*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review. You can learn more about this book and read what other reviewers had to say at:

Meet Denise: 

Denise lives in Indiana with her husband Kevin and their three sons. In 1996, Denise began her first book, a Christian romance novel, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she’s been writing ever since. Her books often contain a strong romantic element, and her husband Kevin says he provides all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

Find out more about Denise at

To celebrate the release of The Trouble with Cowboys Denise is hosting a fun Author Chat Party on Facebook. She'll connect with readers and give away some amazing prizes - including a Kindle Fire! 
Save the Date for October 11th!

Grab your copy of Denise Hunter's latest book and join her for an Author Chat Party on October 11th at 8:00 PM EST (that’s 7:00 Central, 6:00 MST, & 5:00 PST)! Haven't read The Trouble with Cowboys yet? That's okay, don't let that stop you from coming to the party! (You may win a copy!)

During the evening she’ll be sharing the story behind the book, posting discussion questions, testing your trivia skills, and of course, there will be plenty of chatting and fun giveaways – books, gift certificates and – a Kindle Fire! She’ll also be giving you a sneak peek of her next book too!

RSVP today and then come back on the 11th … and bring your friends!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Book Review: Bringing Up Girls

Peer pressure. Eating disorders. Decisions about love, romance, and sex. Academic demands. Life goals and how to achieve them. These are just some of the challenges that girls face today—and the age at which they encounter them is getting younger and younger. As a parent, how are you guiding your daughter on her journey to womanhood? Are you equipping her to make wise choices? Whether she’s still playing with dolls or in the midst of the often-turbulent teen years, is she truly secure in her identity as your valued and loved daughter? In the New York Times bestseller Bringing Up Girls, parenting authority and trusted family counselor Dr. James Dobson will help you face the challenges of raising your daughters to become strong, healthy, and confident women who excel in life.
That's that book description of Dr. Dobson's book "Bringing Up Girls." I requested a review copy of this book when it first came out from Tyndale. I had followed Dr. Dobson online and had his book, "Bringing Up Boys" recommended to me on a number of occasions, so I figured this would be a great one.

As the mother of two small girls, I was eager for godly parenting advice, but this book didn't quite reach the expectations I had for it. It was very informative, but not very helpful if that makes sense. It focused on the problems that our daughters would face growing up - the problems that encouraged me to want to read this book in the first place - but it didn't offer a whole lot of advice on how to address those issues and overcome them. After things calm down, I might read through it again and see if I maybe I just missed something.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Life is Good

The past week has been simply amazing for me. I've been recovering from a pretty nasty virus, but I just keep being blessed!

Last Friday I found out that I won a copy of Jody Hedlund's newest book, Unending Devotion (and I LOVE Jody's books), AND that afternoon I found out that I had won Christian Womens Voice Magazine's Christmas Moments essay contest (my essay "Keeping Christmas about Christ" will be featured in their next issue).

Shelley Hitz and I started a new book marketing community for the website that really took off over the weekend.

Our latest devotional book, "21 Teen Devotionals... for Girls!" was published on Sunday, AND that very same day we received a 5 star review of our first devotional book from Readers Favorite.

I guess that all of those amazing things happening in a row, especially when I've been over stressed and under the weather lately, have just really been showing me how blessed I really am.