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Monday, December 29, 2014

A Girl and Her Warhorse by Angie Goeke

I recently read Angie Goeke's book A Girl and Her Warhorse. This was not a publisher review. I bought a copy to support her. I loved the premise of her book. 

"The war horse is a false hope for salvation, and by its great might it cannot rescue." Psalm 33:17

The book is more of a Bible study with questions and scripture to meditate on. In the study, she talks about her husband being her warhorse and how her warhorse fell. It's really a powerful thing to think on. What are you truly looking at to rescue you? 

John Piper says that we read books for the sentences. One sentence that I took away from the book was about having a rebuilding year. After there is a problem in a marriage, the couple will take time to rebuild their marriage. After we confront our warhorse, Angie encourages us to have a rebuilding year with our first husband. This is a powerful and beautiful thing to do heading in to this new year. Make room for Christ. Allow rebuilding.

Congrats, Angie! 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Gomer's Weekend

 Here are a few custom pieces I did last week. If you have need of anything, let me know. I love to create custom orders.
 The roots of a family tree begin with the love of two hearts.
 We had a good number show up on Saturday and burn things, rake leaves, and pick up pecans.
 This is what I worked on all day. I followed this girl in a circle.
 These fabulous gentleman began putting up bead board in my studio. Aren't you just crazy about them. Right now it is about two thirds of the way finished. I never thought I'd see the day, y'all. So grateful.

 Craig put some drywall up in our bedroom. You never know what a great thing drywall is until you live without it for years. 
 Sidenote: This is what I am reading. So good!
 Dave helped with the ceiling and installed bunch of fence on the hay side of the house.
 Look at my drywall, y'all. It is pure magic.
 It's hard to see, but my neighbor Fritz is up in that tree putting up lights for my girls to look at out the window at night.
 Sorry his eyes are closed, but look at his awesome mustache. Hey, Fritz!
 All the boys were getting rides and getting dumped out.
 In other news, our heart daughter graduated from college! We love her and her husband so much. He lived with us and he proposed to her on the front lawn several years ago. The Lord bless you, Synda! We also had a lovely houseguest Saturday night. 

I am really thankful to everyone who came and helped here over the weekend. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. We get a little weary and your beautiful efforts encourage our soul. Thank you.
 Come caroling! We will have s'mores, cocoa, and witty banter fireside. 
Love y'all.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Look and Live by Matt Papa

I started reading this book and thought it might be some cheesy, cliche book. Around page thirty-four, it hooked me. The way Matt started sharing about the glory of God and it's purpose in our lives resonated so deeply within me. That's what the whole book is about. I mean, it sounds too simple, but it is perfectly true. I want to read it aloud to all of you. I wish I could get you a copy for Christmas. It made me yearn for the Lord afresh. I wish I could type the whole thing out here. 

I found so many profound and soul stirring things in this book. I had to share them with friends, write them in my journal, and send out bits over the inter webs. Know that its good. Get yourself a copy.

"No matter how deep the pain is, a clear, warlike articulation of the gospel can always eclipse and outweigh whatever I am enduring." -Matt Papa

This book was graciously provided by Baker Publishing for review.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Daring Heart of David Livingstone by Jay Milbrant

I have read the bare minimum about David Livingstone in the past. My daughter read about his missionary journey in homeschool. Reading an in depth biography about his life was truly fascinating to me. He began his career as a missionary to Africa attempting to set up a mission colony in the interior. His funding was dropped and he was disheartened. He had done such detailed work in documenting parts of Africa and  making discoveries that the Royal Geographic Society decided to sponsor him to go back.

During all of this he was a heralded national hero because of his discoveries in Africa. He spent years in Africa attempting a great challenge and lost many of his crew and his wife in the process. Eventually, his mission failed. He went home to England and was treated as a outcast for failing his country. Eventually, the country needed him again and sent him back to look for the source of the Nile.

There were many interesting parts to Mr. Livingstone's journey. The harsh conditions he traveled through for years are unfathomable to me. The many times he had fevers and was near death are numerous. The other aspect I had not explored much was the slave trade in Africa itself. We have all read about the effects of slavery in the United States, but reading about it at the source was nauseating. He wrote first hand accounts from his journal of the 40 bodies that would float by them down the river each day. The tribes and mercenaries hunting and killing their own for gain is incomprehensible. I grieved over and over as I read of people tortured and killed who could not make the terrible journey to the ship to be traded. Their homes were raided and families were torn apart. It is the lowest state of the human condition.

Our Mister Livingstone kept writing letters and telling of the inner horrors of the inland slave trade. He was instrumental in seeing slavery abolished. False reports that he had died led to a media frenzy and opened the door for him to speak to world-wide media outlets about his expedition and about slavery. Dr. Livingstone died without completing his mission of finding the source of the Nile. His death sparked a fire to abolish slavery at it's source and shortly after his death.

I highly recommend this book. See deep into history and freedom.


Monday, December 01, 2014

Keepers of the Covenant by Lynn Austin

This is the second book in Lynn Austin's new series The Restoration Chronicles. I enjoyed this book immensely ... all 476 pages of it. I have read and heard the story of Esther many times, but always from the view of one sitting in her courtyard. This story gives you the historical background for the entire Jewish kingdom. It tells of what happened in Babylon where many of the Jews were still in exile. I thought it was a fascinating portrait of what these people endured and the depth of their trials.  

We see how the decree led Ezra to be over the Jewish exiles of the time. The underbelly of the story shows how God used this to start journey that would lead many of the Jews to return to Jerusalem. We also see how many were so entrenched in Babylonian customs that they refused to leave. I thought the portrait of the beautiful people of God assimilating into the pagan culture was such a trumpet call to our day. 

I loved this book. Sometimes I think Christian fiction is written for school age children. It is so overdone that it is ridiculous. I enjoy Lynn's writing. This is my second series of hers to read. The first is The Chronicles of the Kings. I highly recommend it as well.