The key to being holy and unblameable before God is not how many sermons we listen to, how many chapters in God's Word we read daily, how we dress, or what convictions we hold to. All of these are important, but if "I have not charity, I am nothing." How is our attitude towards those around us? We can do all "the right things" externally, yet be selfish, arrogant, judgmental, and unloving.
"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven...He hath made every thing beautiful in his time..." Ecclesiastes 3:1, 11a
God's timing is always best, because He is all wisdom and understanding. He sees that which we do not see; He knows all of the details of what surrounds us. Do we trust Him?
I know I've shared this verse before, but it does me good to be reminded to spend my day -- not just serving, but with GLADNESS. And then the latter half seems to be a key with how to do that -- because I can't sing praise to God and grumble as I work at the same time.
Who's ready for some free books? If you're like me, the answer is a huge, "ME!" Always. I know. I can be pathetic.
Anyway... here's a chance for you to get some free books too. :) Seven other authors and I have gotten together and are giving away seven free eBooks this Christmas!
If you're interested, read on... it looks all sophisticated with "Rules" but it's not that hard. ;)
If you want to win one of these lovely thingies, choose one of the entry options and follow the instructions to gain a point. (Hint: you can enter with as many options as you like to increase your chances of winning.) The giveaway starts December 3rd and ends on the 20th, so you'll have plenty of time to enter. We'll pick eight winners at random and contact them before Christmas so you can have your eBook delivered whenever you like.
Authors and Books
So let's get to it. Click on the book title to read about it on Amazon, and click on the author to see their awesome bookish blogs.
Didn't I just do October's post? Wow! November wasn't a big reading month for me. I'm still in the middle of my book about writing and then a devotional book (so December's reading diet will be more than just fiction), but here's what I did get finished...
Click on the covers to read my reviews.
I also had the opportunity to read two books by young, aspiring authors. Since they're not published yet, I can't paste a review. ;) But they were fun stories set in the medieval time.
And now that I said "November wasn't a big reading month" then listed six books... two of them were novellas, and two of them I mostly read in October and just finished in November. And actually, the last week+ I've been fighting a cold, so that gives more reading time. Okay, okay... maybe I'm just making excuses. ;) I just read more than I thought I read this month. That ever happen to you?
The book I'm currently reading (and will probably finish today as I have three chapters left) is...
So... what did you read last month? What are you hoping to read this month? Any books you'd recommend? (not like my TBR pile isn't long enough as it is...)
Yesterday, as I realized that it was coming upon Wednesday and I hadn't prepared a song to record, I decided I wanted to do something different -- an impromptu arrangement. You know, just sit down and play (okay, so maybe I did actually figure out the chords for "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" before hitting record...).
I asked my FaceBook friends for suggestions and got several responses. I had so much fun doing one that I decided to do two on the fly. ;) Here they are.
What songs would you like to hear? I can't do every song suggested, but I'd like to have a list to work from. :)
"So Jotham became mighty, because he prepared his ways before the LORD his God." 2 Chronicles 27:6
Compared to 2 Chronicles 12:14, "And [Rehoboam] did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the LORD."
Too often, we try to be "accidental Christians" -- assuming that we will do right just because God is good, or because we're saved. But doing right (even for the believer) takes work and preparation - purposeful living. How much time do we spend daily, preparing our hearts and ways before God? If we don't spend any time seeking God, why do we wonder when He withholds blessings, or if we fall?
There is no better way to start our day than in praise to the Lord -- whether in song or in gratefulness to Him.
He sought God...with all his heart...and prospered. His goal was not just following the law and doing good works -- his heart sought God. It is easy to get so pulled into doing and checking off my "spiritual checklist" that I stop seeking God and just follow the rules.
"And when they brought out the money that was brought into the house of the LORD, Hilkiah the priest found a book of the law of the LORD given by Moses." 2 Chronicles 34:14
If Josiah hadn't been faithful in doing what he knew to do, they would not have "stumbled" on God's law and, by it, further led to do right. It never hurts to examine daily: am I doing that which I know to do?
Today, I'm excited to be a part of my friend's book birthday bash! When I first heard about Faith Blum, her book titles intrigued me (I mean, combine hymns and western and I'm so hooked!). I have since gotten to know this lovely young lady and recommend her books for those who like clean westerns. If you're a writer, keep reading to the end of the post, because I invited Faith to share some of her research gold mines. But first, let's celebrate!!
was the third birthday of Faith's debut novel, AMighty Fortress. To celebrate, she has all sorts of fun going on. First,
she’s released a newly revised version of A
Mighty Fortress. Second, she has most of her published books on sale.
Third, she’s releasing the box set of all five of her novels for a special
discounted price. And fourth, but not least, she now has the audiobook of her
AMF available! Read on for more party fun.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Joshua ordered. He kept his eyes on the
scene below while waving his arm in Ruth's direction. “Get deeper into the woods and stay down low
to the ground.”
hazarded a glance behind him. He could
no longer see Ruth and breathed a sigh of relief. In one swift move, he grabbed his rifle and
lay flat to the ground. Extending the
rifle, he aimed at the shorter man whose gun was pointed at Bradshaw.
Joshua and Ruth
Brookings are traveling by stagecoach to finally join their parents in Montana. Attacked by
murderous outlaws, the teens barely escape with their lives and must survive in
the barren Wyoming and Montana territories and escape the man who's
ago, Jed Stuart ran away from home and joined Tom's gang. Jed is tired of the
lawlessness and wants out. The only problem? He is the boss's right-hand man
and will never be able to leave. And what's one more stagecoach robbery,
Can Joshua lean
on God's strength to keep himself and his sister alive until they find a
town? Will Jed be able to face his
anger or will it consume him completely? All three are running--the hunter and
hunted. What will happen when they meet?
Faith is offering three prizes!
·Audiobook of A
Mighty Fortress (MP3 download)—Could be a short delay
·Feather Quill Necklace
·eBook set of Hymns
of the West: The Complete Series
Amanda actually sent this link to me, but I have found it
extremely helpful. On the sidebar there are also options for other name
generators, so even if you don’t write during the Old West, you could probably
find something useful.
When I decided to connect many of my series’ together, I
knew I needed to create some family trees so I made sure not to duplicate too
many names, that this couple really could
have a baby in this year, etc. Family Echo is a great place to create family
I got this book just last
year, but it has been a wonderful reference for everything Wild West. If the information
wasn’t specifically in this book, there was a bibliography at the end of each
chapter. Using that bibliography helped me find other books I could use to
research pretty much anything I needed.
I can’t believe I was
able to write without this book before! The
Emotion Thesaurus has been absolutely essential to helping me add better
descriptions to my books. I highly recommend getting a paperback copy of this
I haven’t used this one a
lot yet, but I got it from the library first and used much of the info I found
in there, so I bought it, too. What I have used, was extremely helpful to make
my books more accurate, especially since I’ve never personally done any ranch
I use this search engine
a LOT. It is my go-to search engine for one simple reason, the founders knew
security and privacy are important. They use Google search results, but they
will not track your IP address, your searches, or target ads to what you
searched for. That’s kind of comforting to authors since they don’t really want
a government organization to come knocking at the door asking where the bomb is
that they are building…
Those are the top seven
research tools I can think of at the moment. I’d love to hear about some that
you may have found, though, so feel free to share in the comments.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
started writing at an early age. She started even before she could read! She
even thought she could write better than Dr. Seuss. (The picture doesn’t show
it well, but there are scribblings on the page of Green Eggs
and Ham). Now that she has grown up a little more, she knows she will
probably never reach the success of Dr. Seuss, but that doesn’t stop her from
When she isn’t writing, Faith enjoys doing many
right-brained activities such as reading, crafting, playing piano, and playing
games with her family. One of her dreams is to visit Castle City, Montana,
someday to see the ghost town she chose for her characters to live in. She
currently lives on a hobby farm with her family in Wisconsin.
There are many ways to connect with Faith online.
All of them can be found in one convenient place: http://FaithBlum.com. Onher website you can find links to her various social
media sites and both of her blogs.
Every eBook in the Hymns of the West series is on sale. A Mighty Fortress is permafree, and the
other eBooks in the series are $0.99. In addition, the spin-off novella series
has a book on sale as well.
Y'all know me. I love any excuse for free things and discounts. ;) So, it's Black Friday. Let's just throw on the fun! :D I'm joining several other Indie Christian authors with discounted books and free eBooks. Hop on over to see what all we have (disclaimer: I have not read all of these authors so cannot endorse them all). From Nov 25 (that’s today!) through Nov 28th, more than 70 independent Christian books are on sale. You can findfree shipping, $0.99 ebooks, package deals, and more! And if your budget is depleted from Christmas shopping, we’ve got you covered withsome freebies!
A note on the Ebooks Only page. All books are listed as "Sold Out." This only refers to paperback copies of these titles. Please click onto the product pages to find descriptions and links to discounted or free ebooks. Also, some of the authors this year chose to not sell their paperbacks directly through the site. Those books are also marked "Sold Out" but if you click them open, you'll find a link to the site where they are on sale and a discount code for you to use at check out.
Acknowledgements: Thanks to Leah E. Good and Kendra E. Ardnek for their work organizing this sale, and Hannah Mills for her fantastic design work on the website graphics. Hannah can be contacted at hmills(at)omorecollege(dot)edu for more information about her design services.
A few of mine are ONLY FREE TODAY! So you have to get them fast!
Thanksgiving is probably my favorite holiday, hands'-down. It is probably a mix of the focus (to be honest, sometimes gifts get in the way of the focus of Christmas), or because I love the way that our family celebrates it -- each of us children makes a dish, and we all come together at Dad and Mom's home to enjoy a feast (okay, so technically only one sibling doesn't live on our property...). But that isn't the best part. After we've filled ourselves to the point of possibly-sinning-with-gluttony, we all sit around and share our hearts -- what we're thankful for for this year. Wow, it's amazing! There's usually some tears and quite a bit of laughter. I'm so, so thankful for my family and that we can be open with each other!
This year, I decided to do "30 Words of Thankfulness" on InstaGram. Since I don't do so great with keeping up daily posts on my blog, I figured that I'd just wait until Thanksgiving day to share the first fifteen. Then, hopefully I'll remember at the end of the month to share the other 15.
What are some things you're thankful for this year?