Sunday, May 27, 2012

Review: Covenant Child

Okay, so I know I only posted that I got this book on Wednesday last week but it sucked me in! I completed the book on Saturday, only 3 days after first downloading it to my Nook. For a 200+ page book, it felt like such a quick read!

First off, Terri Blackstock did a wonderful job of drawing the reader into an emotional tale and keeping you there. I was always wanting to see what happened next. Telling this tale from the first person point of view of one of the main characters (one of the twins) made it that much more gripping. The first person perspective caught me off guard at first since the description of the book was not in that form but that passed quickly. :) It was interesting to see the story unfold through her eyes.

It was a heart-wrenching tale of loss, redemption, and the fight to keep promises made. The unconditional love required, coupled with restraint in allowing free will and choice, was a wonderful example of God's love for us. The story used the parable of the Prodigal Son in a wonderful way to weave together that tale with the promises God has given us in covenant to provide a picture that we can understand. Yes, it's a little far-fetched, but what work of fiction isn't to some degree? I was totally immersed and couldn't believe when I finished it! For my first fiction piece to review, it was a wholehearted two thumbs up!

Happy Reading!

Soli Deo Gloria,

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

At last! Fiction!

I have finally taken the plunge! After 11 reviews with BookSneeze, I have finally requested my first fiction book! I hemmed and hawed a little bit after doing the Luci Swindoll ebook since there were no hard copy books I was really interested in. But after a little investigating and wading through the long list of ebooks available I found one that piqued my interest. Bonus: It's by one of my mom's favorite authors!

Here's the description of Terri Blackstock's book "Covenant Child":
Amanda’s heart broke as she watched them drive her beloved twins away. She resolved to hope . . . and to fight for them to her last breath.
Kara and Lizzie are heiresses to one of the largest fortunes in the country. But when their father dies suddenly, the toddlers are ripped from the arms of Amanda, their loving stepmother, and given to their maternal grandparents, who only want the children’s fortune for themselves.
While even the stipend their guardians get for supporting them is squandered, the children are left to raise themselves. Kara and Lizzie grow up believing they are worthless . . . until the day when they learn the truth.

Looking forward to enjoying my first fiction book from BookSneeze! It's already downloaded and ready to go on my Nook! :)

Soli Deo Gloria,

Friday, May 18, 2012

Dancing in the Wind

Have you ever seen the wind blowing over a field & making it dance? I looked out my office window the other day & saw this field across the way. The way the sun caught the grasses as they blew in the wind was both beautiful & mesmerizing.

It got me thinking though. How often do I feel like that single blade of grass in life being tossed here & there by the wind. But as all the moments in my life are woven together, both the tempetuous times & the calm, by the Master Weaver who loves me, they become something beautiful. In the process it also becomes a testament to the One who designed it. God knew what I would encounter & how it would feel like the wind would never stop, but He also made sure that while it would buffet & bend me, I would not break. "God is faithful & he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability..."

So the next time you see a field, notice the beauty in the chaos & know that others are right in the fight with you. The wind is blowing pretty hard here now.

Soli Deo Gloria,

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Book Review: Simple Secrets to a Happy Life

I love Luci Swindoll. I love how down-to-earth she is, I love how she tells stories, and I love her straightforwardness. All of these are on prominent display in her new book "Simple Secrets to a Happy Life".

The book itself is broken down into 5 sections with 10 chapters each for a total of 50 "simple secrets". The chapters are short which made them a quick read and easy to devour multiple chapters at a time. The organization was great and I could really see how the secrets grouped together. Since each chapter is its own "secret" though sometimes it could feel a little disjointed reading too many back to back. But all the advice was eminently practical and useful.

Luci's charm and wit is on full display here. It's like sitting down to a cup of coffee with her as she passes her wisdom down. I also love that her tips span the generations. Some may be more relevant to a younger or older crowd but every secret has something to say to people of all ages.

So pick up a copy and have your own coffee date with Luci and find out some of her simple secrets to a happy life!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars!

Soli Deo Gloria,

Side note: The most annoying thing about this whole process of reviewing an ebook was the disclaimer that BookSneeze feels the need to put at the beginning of every chapter, making sure I know not to share the book since it was provided specifically for me for review. When chapters are this short, you get the picture after the first 10 times...having the disclaimer 50 times was a bit of overkill in my opinion. But that has nothing to do with the actual book, just with the ebook format from BookSneeze.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Spiritual Retreat

Tonight, I will be leaving to go on a spiritual retreat for 3.5 days. No cell phone, no technology, no camera, and no watch even. I'm nervous, excited, and a whole jumble of other emotions. I'll be there with about 30 other ladies for the weekend, learning and listening for what God would teach me through this experience. Truthfully, the whole idea makes me think of the women's retreat we had when I was at the Focus Leadership Institute. Remembering how much I got out of that retreat, I'm praying that this is just as rich of a time.

Prayers appreciated! :)

Soli Deo Gloria,

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


On Sunday, April 15th, my wonderful husband was ordained as a deacon in our church!

He gave his testimony in front of the church along with two of the other deacons-to-be and the pastor gave them a wonderful charge from the book of Ephesians. They had a retreat the next weekend for training and teaching where Dan was given the families he'll be ministering to over the next couple of years. I'm so excited to get to know them more and support Dan as he ministers to them as their deacon. 

I am so proud of my husband for following God's leading and stepping out in faith. We've been discussing the future lately and how we have no clue what God has in store for us or how He will bring certain things about but we know that HE IS and that He loves us. Accepting this nomination and ordination was a leap of faith that God would grant us the things necessary to fulfill our roles. And in the end, we knew He would.

It all comes down to one question: "Do you really believe that what you believe is really real?" Those familiar with it know that this is the haunting question that comes out of Focus on the Family's Truth Project study. And we had to consciously choose to live out our belief that God is our Provider and Sustainer. He has called us to this point and will equip us to fulfill that calling.

So congratulations, Sweetheart, on your ordination! May God bless you through your service and use you to bless others as well!

Soli Deo Gloria,