Thursday, February 28, 2013

Who Do You Think You Are? By: Mark Driscoll

Hello World!
Yesterday was Kylar's first day of preschool.  I'm going to admit it was a little hard to let my sweet baby girl go and be a big kid.  It was fun to pick her up and listen to her talk about all her new friends and the activities she did.  Do you have any kids and if you do, do you have any first day of school stories?

Who Do You Think You Are by Mark Driscoll takes you through certain questions to help you define who you are as a Christian.  It's a book that will bring up questions to think about your past, present, and future.  It will take you through the scripture to see how to truly be like Christ.

I think this book would be a great starter book for new Christians.  Not only does it deal with struggling with past sins, but it helps you see what could possibly be holding you back from having a deeper relationship with Christ.  Now for you Christians who have been one for a while, don't think that this book wouldn't be for you either.  It really is a good reminder of who Christ is, and what we are to be too.  This isn't a fluffy book, it's chalk full of in depth research and content, but don't let it scare you :)  Just dive in and take it chapter by chapter, you dear readers will not regret it!

*This book was given to me via Booksneeze in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Romans 8:1-2 NKJV
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. 

There is a difference between conviction and condemnation and as Mark Driscoll says they're stark.  Conviction is from God, condemnation is from Satan.  Conviction leads to life, condemnation leads to despair.   Conviction ends in joy, condemnation ends in sorrow.  So when you do something that the Holy Spirit convicts you of, don't allow Satan to condemn you.

Monday, February 25, 2013

When the Heart Heals

Hello World,
How are you doing today?  So my little town of Amarillo, Texas has called in the national guard today for inclement weather.  I personally think this is the first real blizzard I have experienced in Amarillo.  It truly is a blizzard.  I will say it's nice to be able to snuggle down and enjoy the warmth of our home.  Todd's even home to enjoy family time :)  Do you do anything special when you have a snow day?

When the Heart Heals by Ann Shorey is the story of Rosemary Saxon.  Rosemary helped serve in the Civil War as a nurse.  Unfortunately because of her unfeminine position people have ostracized her in the small town she lives in.  Being a single woman she doesn't have a choice, but to continue as a nurse with Dr. Elijah Steward.  Even before she starts her job, threatening notes start beginning to be left on her doorstep telling her to stop her witchcraft.  Will she be able to stay in town or will she be forced to leave because of the towns view of women in the medical field.

Ms. Shorey has an incredible way with words.  She builds a great story with them, that touches on a little bit of everything.  From conflict, to medical issues, and history of post Civil War you will feel immersed in a great read.  If you are a history romance buff I would highly recommend this book because it's an interesting point of view that I haven't really read much about.  She also does a great job with weaving God's awesome love into each part of the story.  You will not regret reading this book.
“Available February 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”
*This book was given to me via Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Deuteronomy 20:7
For the Lord your God is going with you!  He will fight for you against your enemies, and He will give you victory!

Sometimes it's nice to have a reminder that God is on your side.  That he truly wants the best for you and that He will fight for you against your enemies.  Remember the battle is already one dear readers!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Picture Perfect

Hello World,
Well for the first time in the privacy of my own house :)  I worked out.  I loaded up a few Zumba dances from Youtube and got down and sweaty.  I had a blast and it was fun trying something new to make my workout go slightly faster.  Do you do anything to workout?  Do you enjoy working out?

Picture Perfect by Janice Thompson is the story of Irish lass Hannah McDermott.  Hannah has always struggled with coming in second.  Not only does she always seem to be putting her foot in her mouth, but she seems to ruin the best laid plans.  She swears that this will be the last time and her celebrity client will have the best pictures taken for her wedding.  The only problem is the archival photographer Drew Kincaid.  He seems to be at the right places at the right times and it doesn't hurt that he's good looking.  What is an Irish girl to do?

This fun lighthearted book was the perfect book for me to read.  It seeped with God's gracious wisdom and had the cutest romance :)  I loved that Janice Thompson wrote a romance where the man literally pursued the girl he liked.  I love a good book where the man knows what he wants and actively goes and gets it.  So dear readers if you're interested in a lively book that will make you laugh I suggest you read Picture Perfect.
“Available February 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”
*This book was given to me via Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Ephesians 4:29
Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.

Oh snap, have you ever thought that after you just said something that you knew you shouldn't?  I have, many times, actually too many times to count.  This verse is my prayer to myself that nothing corrupt should proceed out of my mouth, that only things that can impart grace to others should be coming out.  This is a good reminder for me, and hopefully for you too.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Iron Butterfly

Hello World,
How is everyone doing today?  We've been playing outside a lot and enjoying the beautiful Texan weather.  Some of the kids favorite things to do is color with chalk, bike, and play with bubbles.  I just recently bought colored bubbles at Target, that are a complete blast.  It was fun to see the kids catch them and have purple pop all over their hands :)  I was really surprised too that it was really easy to wash off.  What do you like to do outdoors?

Today I'll be reviewing the first book in The Iron Butterfly series by up and coming Chanda Hahn.  Let me preface that this is a young adult series that is for the secular world, but I was surprised when I read threads of faith throughout the two books.  Upon researching her more, I come to find out that the author is a Christian, and formerly a children's pastor for a church.  Extremely neat, and I love that this author is breaking into the secular world of young adult books.  

The Iron Butterfly introduces the character Thalia.  Thalia is a tormented young woman who was captured by a secret cult to be experimented on.  She and another prisoner finally break free of their prison and are thrown into the world with little knowledge of the hidden powers that were put into them.  This is Thalia's story of surviving a horrific time in her life and dealing with the consequences of the evil that she was forced to endure.

I'll admit I found this book in the top 100 free section of kindle.  It intrigued me enough to get it and I am so glad I did.  Not only are the characters well developed, but they have sustenance.  The plot was fast paced and incredibly well written.  I found myself totally immersed in the difficulties Thalia had to endure, and I loved how her character developed into a beautiful strong woman.  She didn't allow her past to crumple her, but instead she became strong.  This is a great book for young women and older women :) to read.  So dear readers if you're interested in a good young adult fantasy I highly recommend this book.

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Don't give up hope dear readers.  Maybe right now you have lost all hope that the future holds something good.  Please remember God's promise in this, that He know the plans for you, plans to prosper you, and not to harm you!  Cling to this and don't ever stop trusting in the Lord's promise.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Ring of Secrets

Hello World,
How is everyone enjoying their Valentine Day?  The kids were extremely excited to get treats for the day and a Valentine monkey.  I also got a very nice box of chocolate covered strawberries, from my amazing husband :)  I hope everyone is having a great day from me to you the Jesus book girl.

Ring of Secrets by Roseanna M. White is the story of Winter Reeves.  A young girl looking for a husband in the very elite and loyalist sect in Revolutionary American.  Though she plays the flirtatious young miss she is actually a young woman on the look out for secrets that she could give to the Patriots.  What she didn't expect was to meet Bennet Lane a man with his own secrets.  These two play a deadly game that could end up in death if they don't rely on the One who is in control of everything.

This was a very interesting twist to a story, and I really found myself immersed in this book.  It's been  long time since I've found myself that immersed, that I looked at the clock and was like "eek it's 11:30 at night, must put book down and go to bed".  Ms. White not only knows how to write a good romance, but I loved the historical aspect of it too.  Seeing timeless figures from history come alive was a fun aspect, and I also enjoyed how well she wrote.  I'll definitely be reading more from this author.
*Available March 1, 2013
*This book was given to me via Harvest House Publishers in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Song of Solomon 5:16
His mouth is sweetness itself; he is altogether lovely. This is my lover, this my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.

What an honor it is to be able to call my husband my lover, my friend.  He truly is a blessing from God and not only does he love me on Valentine's day, but every day he pursues me.  I am indeed blessed.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Hello World,
We are having a slow day today.  The snow is falling in Amarillo and it looks like a winter wonderland outside.  The kids and I are snuggled in watching movies, eating popcorn, and sipping hot chocolate :)  I love days like this and they are so very few.  I know how little we get snow in Amarillo because for the last two years it's only really snowed a lot on Christmas day.  Now my son Drew thinks that anytime it snows it's Christmas.  He asked me this morning where the presents were.  I was laughing quite a bit with that comment.  Do any of your kids have expectations when something happens like mine do?

Rebekah by Jill Eileen Smith is the story of Isaac and Rebekah.  The story is told from both of the characters point of view.  If you're not familiar with this classic Bible story it is a love at first sight beginning.  Isaac's Father sent his servant to find a bride for him from his family back in his homeland.  When they first see each other; Isaac and Rebekah love each other immediately.  What follows is a lifetime of love, tears, laughter, betrayal, and growth.   

I will admit I am not the biggest fan of fictional stories being written about factual Biblical people.  This being said, I was pleasantly surprised by the care that Ms. Smith handled the book.  She not only put Biblical references in each part, but she also explained the liberties that she had taken while writing the book.  If you feel uneasy reading fictional books about Biblical stories I suggest you read her author's note at the end of the book, to better understand where she is coming from.  After reading it, I felt much better about reading this book. 

Ok, now on to the writing.  This book is a great lifetime romance, beautiful and poignant.  Ms. Eileen does a great job at weaving a story that not only shows love, but the cracks that can happen when you place your own desires above others.  It's a story of learning to trust not only your husband, but God.  So dear readers if you love a good lifetime romance about the people who have shaped the Bible I suggest you pick up Rebekah.
“Available February 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”
*This book was given to me via Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Luke 5:15-17 NKJV
However, the report went around concerning Him all the more; and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities.  So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed

I love that in this verse it says that Jesus often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.  Now you might think I'm crazy, but do you want to know where my wilderness is?  My wilderness is the shower.  I lock the door and turn on the flowing stream of water and I sit underneath it.  There I have to close my eyes, there I have to bow my head (so I don't get water in my nose :).  There my worries fade, and my praises are raised to the sky.  For the few minutes of that day I am with God, in His beautiful presence, and completely adoring him.  My cares and worries are given to him, and I have peace from this world.  Where is your wilderness dear readers?  If you don't have one, find one :)

Saturday, February 9, 2013

5 Days to a Clutter-Free House

Hello World,
How's life :)  We are getting down and dirty today conquering the house one step at a time and using our weapons of cleaners, sponges, and scrubs to win one battle at a time.  The kids rooms, kitchen, and living room are clean and after I write this amazing blog I will will pick up my weapons of mass cleanliness to tackle the rest of the house.  What are you doing today?  Are you tackling anything?

5 Days to a Clutter-Free House by Sandra Felton and Marsha Sims is a great book to get your house back in order.  It's a book that talks about attacking your house with a vengeance to finally see the counter top that you haven't seen in months or that bedroom floor.  It's not only just your house, but also your life in general, like remembering to pick up the kids or having dinner on the table every night.  This book is meant to help you get control of the things that seem out of control.

I really enjoy books like this, maybe because deep in my bright chaotic mind there is a place that truly desires to be clutter free :)  Now to just be able to get it out of the back corner of mind to do it.  What I liked is how Felton and Sims wrote.  They didn't write like the clutter person was someone to be condemned, quite the contrary they showed the positives of being someone who seems to live life freely if not a little messy.  I didn't feel ambushed by the impossible either, I felt rejuvenated like I can finally do this and get a hold of it to maintain the house and my life.  So dear readers if you are a messy beautiful type like me and desire to put a little order back in the beautiful pick up this book.

“Available February 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

 *This book was given to me via Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Today instead of a verse I want to be able to give you this book, so if you want this book please comment with your favorite verse.  I will draw a name from the comment names and let you know the lucky winner in my next blog.  Happy commenting dear readers!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

To Honor and Trust

Hello World,
With a day of just sitting and getting better yesterday I was able to read a couple extra books that I don't normally get to do :)  So here is a special edition of my blog (probably tomorrow too).  I hope you guys have a great Thursday!

To Honor and Trust by Tracie Peterson and Judith Miller is the story about Callie Deboyer.  Callie is a young lady who's parents are missionaries in Africa.  With her parents in Africa she has decided to be a governess for her grandmother's friends the Bridgeport family.  Spending the winter in the beautiful Bridal Veil Island resort she encounters Wesley Townsend.   Thinking that he is a golf instructor, she soon finds herself falling for the man.  Unfortunately, Wes is hiding a few secrets and doesn't know how to be open with Callie.  With all of this happening robberies have been occurring at the resort and Callie is under suspicion.  What is a young Christian woman to do?

Peterson and Miller are a great team and they always have a very beautiful story to tell.  I enjoyed this simple story of love and the obstacles that happen when there isn't open honesty in the relationship.  It's a great reminder to the reader that dishonesty has a consequence.  I also enjoyed the little bit of mystery thrown into the book.  So dear readers if you're looking a beautiful Christian romance with a dash of mystery I highly suggest you pick up this book :)

*This book was given to me via Bethany House a division of baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

2 Samuel 7:29
And now, may it please you to bless me and my family so that our dynasty may continue forever before you.  For when you grant a blessing to your servant O Sovereign Lord, it is an eternal blessing.

Have you ever stopped to think about forever, or eternal?  I don't think I can fully wrap my mind around the fact that when God blesses us it truly is unending.  It's mind blowing to me that our Sovereign Lord will grant us such a gift.  This morning Todd and I prayed that we would be blessed by God and our family for generations to come.  I thin you should pray that too :)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A New Home for Lily

Hello World,
Well we are a sick house today.  Poor Todd has been sick since Sunday and then Liv and I got a stomach bug yesterday.  I'm kind of bummed because I was doing so great on keeping the house picked up and cleaned and then wham bam the house is back to it's usual cluttered self :-/  What can a sick girl like myself do :)

A New Home for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher once again tells us the adventures of Lily Lapp.  Here we find that the Lapp family has moved to a small Amish community in Pennsylvania.  Not only does Lily have to go to a new school, but also make new friends, and learn new traditions.  As she makes her way through this new Amish Community she will find in herself strength and character. Lily is still her winsome cheery self and we get to enjoy new experiences through her eyes.

I really enjoy that I can read this book with my daughter.  I also like that each chapter is like a small story in and of itself.  I don't have to worry as I'm reading one chapter to my daughter that we might have a cliff hanger at the end of it, and for that matter that Kylar (she's four) will not remember what happened.  I think parents will be pleased with the wholesome and winsome ways of this little Amish girl and children will get to see what Amish life is really like.  It is a must read, dear readers for your little girl.
Available February 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”
*This book was given to me via Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it.

Romans 5:3-5 msg
There's more to come:  we continue to shout our praise even when we're hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next.  In alert expectancy such as this, we're never left feeling shortchanged.  Quite the contrary-- we can't round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit.

This is just a beautiful verse to me, and I love how the message describes it.  don't ever forget that we can expect great things from God enough that we can't ever get enough containers to hold all of His generous offerings for us.  Dear readers if I can get you to understand one thing.  We have a God who loves us and loves our imperfect progress enough to generously pour into our lives through the Holy Spirit.  Don't ever forget that!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Flora's Wish

Hello World,
Well sorry that it's been a week of nothing from me, but I kind of been in a reading stump.  I have all these fabulous books to read and I just was a little tired of reading.  Maybe it was because I've been watching the Amazing Race on Hulu, that show is slightly addicting.  Anywho I am back and ready to give you some awesome books to read :)

Flora's Wish by Kathleen Y'Barbo is about the story of Flora Brimm.  Flora has the unfortunate task of saving her families plantation by marrying and having a child.  If she does not do that she loses the plantation to her cousin Winny which is just preposterous (as her Grandmother would say).  The only difficulty has been trying to keep her fiances alive!  Four fiances later Flora is desperate and takes the matter into her own hands.  What she didn't expect of a con artist or a pinkerton agent, or an adventure that would be frowned upon the society she lives in.  But right now she has a husband to catch and a plantation to save.

This, my dear readers is an adventure around every corner. You will have fun reading how Flora gets herself in a bind. You'll giggle out loud at the witty conversation and fun by plays of Lucas and Flora. You'll wonder if Will Tucker is really a con artist only out to get money, or does he truly want to be married to Flora. Either way you find yourself immersed into the sweet Southern world and into a good book. So if you are wanting a light read with sprinkles of God's love and everlasting amazing will in it you need to read this book.

*This book was given to me via Harvest House Publishers in hopes of my honest opinion and I honestly gave it :)

1 Chronicles 16:11-12 NKJV
Seek the Lord and His strength; Seek His face evermore!  Remember His marvelous works which He has done, His wonders, and the judgments of His mouth,

How's your quiet time going?  I find that when I'm closest to God when I'm truly seeking Him and His strength I'm in the Word daily.  I'm digging into the Bible early in the morning, before the kids are fully awake or are eating their breakfast, seeking His face and reading about His works.  My day may be horrible, but I have a calm and a Holy Spirit dwelling in me reminding me of God's perspective of the day instead of mine.  So once again I ask you, how's your quiet time going?