Friday, March 16, 2018

Reframing the Soul

REFRAMING THE SOUL : How Words Transform Our Faith
By Gregory Spencer

 I stumbled across this book on netgalley. The title intrigued me.
Reframing means to place in a new frame or to express something differently. This book helps the reader to look at circumstances through a new window frame, to see others with empathy and to release the reader from 'victim mentality'. Not to ignore or just slap a pretty label on hard experiences, but to view those circumstances differently.

"one of the noblest roles of a communicator is “to render the unspeakable speakable,” to point to qualities others have been unable to articulate." I love this quote. It conjures up great writers who dared, those who wrote of terrible, horrifying truths. From the holocaust recorders writing down names of the dead and what horrors their eyes witnessed to Maya Angelou's poetry and prose singing out from the darkness.

"We are used to looking out through the windows to the world outside. This book refocuses our attention to the windows themselves, to the words we use. Sometimes we notice that the words we use need to be cleaned up or replaced. We realize that last night wasn’t “awesome”; it was “pretty ordinary.” Sometimes our “houses” need to be remodeled. A significant disappointment such as a death or a divorce might shake our faith to its very foundation. A surprising joy such as a pregnancy or a hike in a rain forest might awaken belief in a Creator."

"I believe we all need to reframe our stories, at least parts of them, in order to heal, to discard lies, to move from partial truths to richer, fuller explanations, to see our lives as God sees them."

"But the goal is not to frame everything positively. This book is not about spinning things toward cheerful words."

"Framing well does not mean pretending to ignore the pain of a broken relationship or the tragic aftermath of an unexpected death in the family. Even the man called the Messiah wept."

This is a mind changing and thought altering book based on many foundational principles laid out by the Apostle Paul.
"He (Paul) wants us to stop making life-crushing choices— but he also wants us to stop justifying them by the way we frame them. We are more likely to sin if we give sin our verbal blessing. Since every word is a window, we are all called to examine our speech, our conversation and writing, to ask whether the view out a particular window is worth our gaze, whether our THAT should actually be a THIS."

Rather than viewing the world, ourselves and circumstances, or others thru anger, hurt, or fear, the author strives to communicate our need for grace and to view things through The Word of G-d and with compassion.
Read this book and tell me what your thoughts are.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Real Life Romance

A generation ago, Quest for Love was published. It was a hit. Why? We needed hope that as young believers, we were on the right path.

There is still a need those stories.
Stories of inspirational lives waiting for G-d to write their romance into being.

This book is that hope for this next generation. Hope that G-d still hears and listens to our hearts. Hope that in the midst of technological advances that we still have the best match maker.

I adore Rhonda Stoppe. There are a bunch of books on my shelf that are written by some one I know in real life. But very few by some one who has spoken truth onto my life. 10-12 years ago, Rhonda sat with me in the woods and listened to me whine and showed me a track back to where I was intended to be.
Rhonda holds a special place in my life, as it is not easy to speak truth into the wounded, and do it well.

This same Rhonda from the picnic bench in the woods, is the same one writing these wonderful books. She doesn't change who she is in her writings. Her smile, her passion, and her ability to see a broken heart are all there.

When you pick up, Real Life Romance you are sitting down with a girlfriend and listening to stories of hope. The stories collected in her book are beautiful examples of G-d's Love, how He shows up in the unexpected and brings something new to life.

Whether you are single and waiting or married and love a good romance, this book is for you.

If you are on the hygge bandwagon, then this book, a warm cup of tea and your reading spot, are exactly the hygge trifecta.

Join the launch party and enter to win a date night!

One grand prize winner will receive:
  • One copy of Real-Life Romance
  • A $50 restaurant gift card
  • A $25 movie gift card

Warm your heart and soul with Real Life Romance.

Monday, November 20, 2017

On being a Pauper

This is the 3rd book in the series, so it is difficult to not give away too many spoilers for those who have not read the other 2.

Thomas escapes Magnus after  the Priests of the Holy Grail  take control of the castle through apparent acts of magic.  Gervaise and Thomas set out on a journey  to the ancient Holy Land.This journey brings Thomas through a time of testing his beliefs and confronting ancient powers that the Merlins and Druids have been searching for.
All the while Thomas has to get 
himself out of one mess after another while learning inner discipline.

This is an 
engaging fantasy series, and will entertain many readers.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Tea and Sympathy and Rhonda Stoppe

About 10 yrs ago, at a beautiful mountain retreat, I was a pregnant, hormonal mess.
Over a cup of coffee, Rhonda Stoppe came along side me and spoke truth into my life.
It was exactly what I needed and made an impact in my life.
Since then, Rhonda has written 2 books. Her newest book, "If my husband would change I would be happy....and other myths wives believe" is exactly like what a described above. A friend speaking the truth into your life and telling you to straighten up...but with sincere love and laughter.
We have a real need for a Titus 2 movement of older women teaching  younger women. I was once the younger woman begging for some one to tell me how to survive 4 children under the age of 5 and be a wife and some how find time to crack open my Bible. (Now, I am getting to the older side and have 3 adult children. )
Maybe you can relate. Maybe you have been crying out for some one to hold your hand and speak some truth into your life. If so, go get this book.
Rhonda is not just a woman of faith on paper. She praises the Lord with her whole being and diligently serves the Lord. I have seen it.
If you have been longing for that woman from Titus 2 to show up, you have found her.
You can sit down with this book and know that a real woman, who is obedient and has struggled and come through it, is speaking to you.
You can trust her words to not be the same old story,  to not play to your ego, to not lie to you. They will challenge you, encourage you go further, and make you laugh.

About the book:

If My Husband Would Change, I'd Be Happy: And Other Myths Wives Believe (Harvest House, August 2015)

Like most brides on their wedding day, you no doubt were filled with love for your husband and the hope of a happy life together.

But perhaps today, as the realities of life together have settled in, those happy expectations are going unfulfilled. And it's tempting to think, "If only my husband would change, I'd be happy."

That myth is but one of many that Rhonda Stoppe dispels in her easy-to-read exploration of what it takes to experience a truly happy marriage. In the process, she addresses such important topics as

-understanding your husband's need for your unconditional respect
-rekindling the love that drew you to your husband in the first place
-refusing to believe the lie that you'd be happier married to someone else
-learning to be content in the midst of financial struggles
-thinking about sex from a biblical worldview
If you desire to rekindle the love and hope you felt on your wedding day, this book will go a long way toward making that dream come true.
Contains discussion questions and personal reflections at the end of each chapter.

Purchase a copy:

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Coming Clean

Last year, our family had an acquaintance brought back into our lives.
After jail and rehab, we were so happy and amazed at all that was going on in his life.
I requested this book to review to gain further insight and find ways to encourage the recovering.
It is a wonderful book. Full of heart ache and redemption.

I believe it will offer hope to those in recovery and to those who love an addict.
Our story doesn't have the happy ending. The addict has to want life more than addiction. Heroin called our friend back into its prison. This book was really what I needed at the time. It did share hope and make me look at my own life, at ways that I may medicate my wounds, stress, and seek areas of control to compensate for a lack of control.

Seth took a chance at sharing his vulnerable moments. In writing this book he embodied what Paul talks about in  2 Corinthians 1 v 3-8:
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 5 For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. 6 If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. 7 And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.

From the publisher: Like Seth, we’re all seeking balms for the anxiety of what sometimes seems to be an absent, unresponsive God—whether it’s through people-pleasing, shopping, the internet, food, career highs, or even good works and elite theology. We attempt to anesthetize our anxiety through addiction—any old addiction. But it often leaves us feeling even more empty than before.
In Coming Clean, Seth Haines writes a raw account of his first 90 days of sobriety, illuminating how to face the pain we’d rather avoid, and even more importantly, how an abiding God meets us in that pain. Seth shows us that true wholeness is found in facing our pain and anxieties with the tenacity and tenderness of Jesus, and only through Christ’s passion can we truly come clean. 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Word of Promise

I received this audio copy of The Word of Promise® New Testament Audio Bible at Thanksgiving. In the midst of the usual holiday busyness, it provided a nice and calming back drop. I had already owned the audible version of The Word of Promise Complete Audio Bible: NKJV. This made me familiar with the voices and the body of work.
Thanksgiving week also brought a terrible accident and shooting in our community and involved a boy who had been in our youth group. 
The boy had said he was afraid of dying. My husband was able to pray with him and remind him of the truths he knew. We had gathered up the scents of Chirstmas in essential oils, being paralyzed there were not many other options for his enjoying the season,  and a cd player. The day we planned to pay another visit and bring these things, we received the news that he passed away. Although we were not able to play the readings for him, I still think they would be very useful for someone who can't hold a book on their own. For myself, I fall asleep with an audio file on a timer. I think I just need some one to read me to sleep. :) These set a positive, obviously, tone and bring rest for my self.

It is an amazing cast and really well done. my only complaint is in the performance of Richard Dreyfuss. Everything has a judgemental or angry tone in his readings. If familiar with those verses he reads, it can be like stepping into a cold puddle while wearing your best socks.
The Word of Promise® New Testament Audio Bible is a 20-CD set and includes a bonus “Behind-the-Scenes” DVD. 
Cast Includes:
  • Jim Caviezel (The Passion of The Christ, Déjà vu) - Jesus
  • Academy Award winner Richard Dreyfuss (Mr. Holland's Opus, The Goodbye Girl) - Quotes from Moses
  • Academy Award winner Marisa Tomei (My Cousin Vinny, What Women Want) - Mary Magdalene
  • Golden Globe winner Stacy Keach (Prison Break, Hemingway) - Paul
  • Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Louis Gossett, Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman, Roots) - John
  • Kimberly Williams-Paisley (According to Jim, Father of the Bride) - Mary, Mother of Jesus
  • And many others

Monday, November 2, 2015

NKJV Bibles for Kids

NKJV Study Bible for KidsThe Premiere NKJV Study Bible for KidsBy Thomas Nelson Publishers Published by Thomas Nelson

Faithgirlz Bible, NKJVBy General Editor: Nancy N. Rue  Published by Zondervan

I received 2 bibles in the mail this last week. I was really pleased with both of them, and found that I loved that the NKJV Faithgirlz Biblehad the verses in purple ink. Wouldn't my daughter love that?
Turns out she was not fond of the girly Bible, but being the tie dye loving girl, she adored the rainbow pages of the NKJV Study Bible for Kids and its bright colours.

Isn't that just how it should be? How often am I choosing what I like for her rather than what she would like? I love how we can be so alike and so different. PURPLE INK! 

The page set up for the NKJV Study Bible for Kids took some getting used to. The references are not in the top corner, but on the outer edge of the page. Which makes this a formidable weapon in sword drills. Thomas Nelson did really well at creating a Kid friendly, appealing Bible for kids. 
Both have excellent resources including definitions and devotional material.
Which one would your child like? Well, I guess you will have to ask them.
I still like the "pretty one". But it is so overly geared to a specific type of girl.

Talia scrutinizing each Bible while visiting her favourite reading nook (Lighthouse On The Ridge).