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Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Fall

Something to ponder while the world plays with Halloween


October 30, 2009

You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.
-- Psalm 32:7

Out of the attacks of evil come the victories of God and the victory chants of God's people. Let's find our strength and protection in our holy God! Let's make God our hiding place, our source of security, and our hope in times of trouble.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Where To Put Your Troubles

Where To Put Your Troubles

Thanks To Bible Study Planet

“Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you. He will never let the righteous fall.” (Psalm 55:22)
Put your troubles where you have put your sins. You have put your sins onto Jesus — put your troubles there also!

As soon as the trouble comes tell it to your Father in heaven! Remember, the longer you take telling your trouble to God, the longer you will wait for peace. The longer the frost lasts, the more likely the ponds will be frozen. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

Putting your burden upon the Lord is the way to soothe sorrow. Oh, troubled Christians, don’t dishonor your faith by always wearing a frown of concern. Come, put your burden upon the Lord. “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7)

I see you staggering beneath a weight that He would not feel. What seems to you a crushing burden would be nothing but a bit of dust to Him. The Almighty bends His shoulders, and He says to you, “Put your troubles here!”

- C.H. Spurgeon

Monday, October 19, 2009

Piece de Resistance

This novel was a delicious journey! Join Sandra Byrd 's heroine, Lexi, as she creates her career, her life and some lovely cakes along the way.

Piece de Resistance

Having earned her chef’s hat, Lexi Stuart bids au revoir to her glamorous and deliciously satisfying pastry mentorship outside of Paris and returns to her hometown of Seattle, Washington. There, she finds life unexpectedly complicated.

She’s put in charge of a high-end catering bakery called Bijoux, which should be her dream job, but there’s a catch: She has to make this lavish bakery into a successful business in just a few, short months, which will require more than her ability to make an amazing wedding cake. Stir in a complicated relationship with her French beau Philippe and his daughter, Celine, then add a dash of romance with down-to-earth lawyer Dan, and life suddenly contains more ooh la la than Lexi can handle.

About Sandra:

After earning her first rejection at the age of thirteen, bestselling author Sandra Byrd went on to publish more than three dozen books including her widely-acclaimed adult fiction debut, Let Them Eat Cake and it’s sequels, and her forthcoming young adult fiction series, London Confidential.

A former textbook acquisitions editor, Sandra is also an accomplished non-fiction writer and author. Her articles have appeared in numerous publications such as Radiant, Focus on the Family's Clubhouse Magazine, Christian Parenting Today, Today’s Christian Woman, Pockets, Decision, and Guideposts. During the past eight years, Sandra has mentored hundreds of students through the Christian Writer's Guild.

Sandra resides in Seattle, Washington with her husband Michael, a chaplain, their two teenagers, and a circus dog named Brie.

Sandra Byrd Online:

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sunday Thought



October 18, 2009

A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken.
-- Psalm 34:19-20

We know that the righteous can have troubles, but how do we understand that God delivers us from them all? How do we understand that he protects all our bones, especially in light of recent tragedies and the persecution of believers in many places in the world? Paul demonstrates the answer: whatever happens to him will turn out for his deliverance -- whether it is through his death to be with God or whether it is through his release from prison to continue ministry (Phil. 1:19-23). Our deliverance is secure. We are conquerors in Christ. Nothing Satan can do to us can steal us away from God's love, not even death (Romans 8:32-39).

Father, please give me the faith I need to believe that whatever happens in my life will not steal me away from your love and deliverance for me. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Monday, October 12, 2009

When God Turned Off The Lights

If you have ever felt like God was nowhere near or you were alone in total darkness, or want to be prepared for such a feeling, you need to read Cec Murphey's new release. The subtitle is "True Stories of Seeking God in the Darkness," and the book tells of Cec's personal journeys on three different instances over the years as he sought to follow Christ.

What to Do When the Lights Go Out

by Cec Murphey

If you sincerely desire to follow Jesus Christ, life won't always be easy. Many times the Bible promises victory, and you may need to remind yourself that there can be no victory without struggling and overcoming obstacles.

In my book, I used the image of God turning out the lights because that was how I perceived the situation. I felt as if I walked in darkness for 18 months. We all interact differently with God, and my experience won't be the same as yours. Even so, most serious Christians have times when God seems to turn away or stops listening. And we feel alone.

Perhaps it's like the time the Israelites cried out to God for many years because of the Egyptian oppression. "God heard their groaning, and he remembered his covenant promise...and knew it was time to act" (Exodus 2:24 NLT). God hadn't forgotten, of course, but from their perspective, that's how it must have seemed. It may seem like that to you if you're going through your own form of darkness.

Here are a few suggestions to help you:

1. Ask God this simple question: "Have I knocked out the lights by my failures? Have I sinned against you? After you ask the question, listen. Give God the opportunity to speak to you.

2. Don't see this as divine punishment (unless God shows you it is), but consider the silence an act of divine love to move you forward. This is God's method to teach you and stretch you.

3. Avoid asking why. You don't need reasons and explanations--and you probably won't get them anyway. Instead, remind yourself that this temporary darkness is to prepare you for greater light.

4. Say as little as possible to your friends. Most friends will want to "fix" you or heal you and they can't. They may offer advice (often not helpful) or make you feel worse ("Are you sure everything is right between you and God?").

5. Stay with the "means of grace." That is, don't neglect worship with other believers even if you feel empty. Read your Bible even if you can't find anything meaningful.

I chose to read Lamentations and Psalms (several times, especially Lamentations) because they expressed some of the pain and despair I felt.

6. If you don't have a daily prayer time, start one. Perhaps something as short as three minutes--and do it daily. Talk honestly to God. It's all right to get angry. (Read the Psalms if you're hesitant.)

7. Remind yourself, "I am in God's hands. This is where I belong and I'll stay in the blackout until I'm ready to move forward."

8. Pray these words daily: "But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults" (Psalm 19:12 TNIV). Some versions say "secret sins." These are failures and sins of which you may not yet be aware. One of the purposes of your darkness may be to bring those hidden problems to light.

9. Ask God, "What do you want me to learn from this experience?" You may not get an answer, but it's still a good question. Continue to ask--even after the lights go back on again. If you're open, you will learn more about yourself and also about God.

10. As you receive "light" about yourself while walking in darkness, remind yourself, God has always known and still loves me.

About the Author: Award-winning writer Cecil Murphey is the author or co-author of more than 100 books, including the "New York Times" bestseller 90 Minutes in Heaven (with Don Piper) and Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story (with Dr. Ben Carson). He's also the author of When Someone You Love Has Cancer and Christmas Miracles, both 2009 releases. Murphey's books have sold millions and have brought hope and encouragement to countless people around the world.

Want more?
Each chapter of When God Turned Off the Lights ends with an inspirational personal quote from Cec. Here's a sampling:

Although it may seem as if God is asleep when we go through deep darkness, could it be that God is most watchful in the moments of our despair?

Could it be that moving from why to what might take us one more step closer to the light?

Our task is to hang on. We wait until God takes us off hold and deals directly with us again.

God's provision is based on unconditional love - not on my faithfulness.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Today I'm chatting with Jenness Walker on her new release, Double Take.


1) Tell us about your latest release. What inspired you to write it?

Double Take
begins with Cole, the hero, reading a best-selling thriller where the villain plays a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with the heroine. When the first scene from the book is replicated in real life in front of Cole and a woman is kidnapped, Cole believes he holds the clue to her survival in his hands. But will anyone listen to him? Or will he be too late to save her? The story is set mostly in Atlanta and includes some of the scenes from the thriller.

I’m not really sure what inspired it. I’d just read an interview about a book cover model and thought it was pretty interesting. Then I was mulling a couple plots and trying to come up with something that combined elements of the two. The result was Double Take although it really doesn’t have anything to do with the ideas I’d been brainstorming in the first place. 

2) What is your typical writing day like?

I’m not much of a schedule person, but if I guess my average day, when I’m in the groove, goes something like this—Come home from work. Check my email. Make supper. Hang out with my husband. Then settle at my computer and play around for a while, pretending to write.  Usually I can get going around 8 or 9 p.m., and if it’s flowing, write as late as 2 a.m.

3) Among your books, who are your favorite hero and heroine?

I still have a soft spot for Jake and Raymi from my first (unpublished) novel. Jake, because he’s so broken, yet so sweet—you just want to hug him. Raymi, because she is someone I look up to and want to be like in real life. I’m excited because in my next project I’m about to revisit them!

4) Tell us more about your hobbies.

Well, obviously I love to read. I also love to decorate, which over the years has resulted in a granny apple green room, a red room, brown, aqua, periwinkle…And somehow my husband still loves me. I also enjoy planning vacations. We like to find small towns with antique shops, old opera houses, etc. to visit.

5) Do you have any advice for aspiring novelists?

Be patient. Really, you don’t have much of a choice. Lol. But life isn’t perfect on the other side of a contract, either. Be content with where you’re at. Enjoy it! Trust God that The Call will come when the time is right.

6) What are your favorite writing or reading groups (online or off)?

The American Christian Fiction Writers ( Absolutely. They offer so much and are the warmest, most encouraging group of writers you’ll ever meet.

7) Which genres do you enjoy reading for pleasure?

Hm…suspense, chick lit, westerns, romance. I’ll read almost anything, although I haven’t gotten into Amish fiction yet.

8) Anything else you would like to add --upcoming releases, local appearances?
I have my very first book signing on October 14th! Here’s the link for more details.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Three Keys For Christian Living

Thanks to Bible Study Planet!

1) Keep Your Eyes Fixed On The World To Come

“We do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – 2 Cor 4:18
A Christian should keep his eye on his journey’s end, just as our Lord Jesus, while enduring the cross, kept focus on the joy that was before him (Heb 12:2). And again when the stones flew towards Stephen, his eyes were lifted up to heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God (Acts 7:55-56).

Though you may lie at the rich man’s gates, soon you will escorted into Abraham’s bosom (Luke 16:19-31). Though Israel had a rough journey through the wilderness, Caleb and Joshua, men of excellent spirits, had their eye upon the good land they were going to (Num 14).

In the same way let the eyes of your heart be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe (Eph 1:18-19).

2) Be Content With Your Present Situation

“I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength. ” – Phil 4:11-13
Though you may suffer now, your suffering will not last forever. Your sorrows shall be short, and your joys long. Remember that Christ first endured the cross before he wore the crown. And David, before he was a king, was a shepherd. Remember that Lazarus, before he was carried into heaven, had experienced sorrow and sufferings on earth.

When Jeremiah would ask the Lord why wicked prosper, he was sure to say that the Lord’s judgments were righteous. And his point wasn’t to charge God with being unfair, it was to learn understanding of him in the way of his judgments (Jer 12).

Even if the godly have many waves of trials crashing upon them, the Lord will command his love towards them (Psa 42:7-8). And, after a little while, they shall arrive at the heavenly haven. This world is not the Christian’s resting-place, their rest is still to come (Heb 4:9).

3) Let Faith And Hope Lift You Above Your Suffering

“We rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations…” – Rom 5:2-3
Find peace in the fact that through Christ, whatever your present troubles are — whether outward afflictions, or inward temptations — they will soon be over. Then your sighs and groans shall be turned into songs of praise. You have all the hell you will ever experience now. Where the wicked man’s joy ends is where yours begins – and it shall never end.


Sunday, October 04, 2009

Sunday Thought


October 4, 2009

I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all
my fears.
-- Psalm 34:4

Have you sought the LORD lately? Many of us made a commitment to
turn all of our lives over to him last week; how have you done at
that commitment? God promises wisdom to those who ask and don't
doubt. Have you asked for wisdom recently? Let's join our hearts
together, and with the Spirit's help, let's seek our Father so that
we can honor and glorify him, finding our blessing in his presence.