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Friday, December 21, 2018

Beloved: 365 Devotinals for Young Women



If you are looking for a good devotional to start the year for a girl in your life, I recommend Beloved. My girls and I have been going through it and it is truly inspirational. We also learned quite a bit about different women in the Bible. It is amazing what you can pick up and process in under 10 minutes a day. The book is affirming of how God created women in their beauty and helps us put the focus on what true value is. Dig in!

BOOK REVIEW – ZONDERVAN BELOVED: 365 DEVOTIONS FOR YOUNG WOMEN


Book: Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women
Author: Lindsay A. Franklin
Publisher: Zondervan
Relationships, inner beauty, and chasing your dreams are all topics on the top of a teen girl’s list. So give them great Biblical role models to admire as they grow and understand who they are. Beloved is a topical devotional that uses the inspiring stories of girls and women in the Bible—such as Ruth, Esther, Mary, and Abigail—to encourage faith and confidence in today’s young women. Perfect for everyday use, Beloved will resonate with girls searching for truth and guidance.
What others are saying:
"Beautiful devotional for young women that offers encouragement and inspiration for every area of their lives. The devotional takes an in-depth look into the lives of sixty women in the Bible. Each day features a devotion with journaling space below for notes or reflection. This makes a perfect gift for that young teen or woman who is seeking wisdom and inspiration. The Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women is a hardcover, 5×7 devotional/journal with pink metallic flowers and lettering. This devotional inspires young women to discover their true identity as a beloved daughter of God.
Learning to love yourself and embrace the beauty of who you are may be difficult for some, especially in today’s society. So many teens and young women are struggling with identity and self-love, acceptance and they are facing challenges trying to overcoming them. This devotional is a perfect resource to learn from the women in the Bible and read how they overcame the obstacles they faced. Reading about how these women pressed through their circumstances may also provide hope and encouragement for greater things to come." -Twianna, The Tickled Diva


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Pass the Gumption: I read While the Men Were Gone



Pass the gumption. While The Men Were Gone was a fabulous read. The story about this woman who bravely coached a football team during World War II is interesting in many ways. You can see things about the time and the harsh reality of how war crushed families and spirits. Many people were losing their boys to the fighting as they were shipped off at an age that seems far too young. Our female protagonist saw a deep need for the small Texas town of Brownwood to keep the Friday night lights lit because she knew it kept the heart of a community alive during tragedy. As you can imagine, this was greatly frowned upon by the male population of the area. She truly had to fight to keep the football season going after the coach was shipped off to war. Tylene seemed like a woman with a lot of grit. I would have loved to have met her. 


This is a fictionalization of a true story. The author, a female sportswriter did an amazing job writing this. I loved it. It made me feel at home. Y’all should read it.

When the Men Were GoneWhen the Men Were Gone by Marjorie Herrera Lewis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Pass the gumption. While The Men Were Gone was a fabulous read. The story about this woman who bravely coached a football team during World War II is interesting in many ways. You can see things about the time and the harsh reality of how war crushed families and spirits. Many people were losing their boys to the fighting as they were shipped off at an age that seems far too young. Our female protagonist saw a deep need for the small Texas town of Brownwood to keep the Friday night lights lit because she knew it kept the heart of a community alive during tragedy. As you can imagine, this was greatly frowned upon by the male population of the area. She truly had to fight to keep the football season going after the coach was shipped off to war. Tylene seemed like a woman with a lot of grit. I would have loved to have met her.

This is a fictionalization of a true story. The author, a female sportswriter did an amazing job writing this. I loved it. It made me feel at home. Y’all should read it.


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Wednesday, December 05, 2018

The Ministry of Ordinary Places



My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I just loved Shannan's book. It is exactly what it says it is, ministry in the ordinary space of your every day life. I can completely identify with her story of selling her white picket fence dream home to move to a scary place that needed a lot of love.

These words are a breath of fresh air reminding us to keep opening the door. Keep inviting people to dinner. Keep reaching out to the addict, the imprisoned, the hurting. Your light is a lifeline. Will you get hurt? Absolutely. Keep pressing on.

Shannan's husband is a jail chaplain. She gives us a window into his life ministering to and loving inmates. It is a great encouragement to see people pouring out their hearts to love the unwanted of society. Thanks for being brave and sharing what you are learning.






Monday, December 03, 2018

What's Your Dream


I keep hearing the guy on the street in the movie Pretty Woman.
"What's your dream? Everybody has a dream."

At the beginning of fall, I began praying through what I felt like God was leading me to do with my life. It is ridiculously easy to get to the end of the day (month, year) and not actually accomplish anything. We are a distracted people. We can also strive so hard to accomplish goals that we miss the humans we are meant to care for. I pondered through Bob Goff's question about what we would do if we weren't afraid anymore. I thought deeply about Mary Oliver's Summer Day poem that asks what we are going to do with our one wild and precious life. I made several lists and talked down fear over and over. I wrote out all the visions cast in my heart and things I have been too afraid to do. I laid out a step by step plan for each item on my list and I keep placing each item back into the hands of God. 

Each day, I have been asking him to do the work. I have been asking him to dig up every painful thing in my heart and use it for his glory. My constant prayer has been that he will himself pull up things that the enemy wants to use to shame, ridicule, and to defile me to paint wild pictures of healing. He is working. I keep going forward even when I feel stupid or desperately afraid. I keep going when people hurt me. I have learned that pain and fear are usually signs to pay attention to the path. 

My first dream is to spend time writing. I have stories etched in my soul that are longing to be told. I have put this on the back burner with motherhood and missions. I am realizing that it is time to write the words.

I listed out 10 dreams and I am going to begin sharing them with you. First up, I am going to Haiti for 10 days. I am not a foreign mission junkie or missionary tourist. I went to Haiti last year because I wanted to know how I could best pray for and support my friend Christy (Executive Director of an orphanage in Port au Prince). I went to serve her and help make her dreams for Haitians a reality. I am headed there again at the end of the month. I will be teaching art and helping at the orphanage. I have almost met my goal to buy art supplies and pay for my lodging. My ticket is booked! Would you pray for me? Last year before I went, my husband cut off his toe. This year, my daughter broke her ankle and had surgery. God hems us in behind and before. So, the plan the enemy had for harm made me book the flight. 



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Kingdom Citizen by Tony Evans

Kingdom Citizen: Your Role in Rebuilding a Broken NationKingdom Citizen: Your Role in Rebuilding a Broken Nation by Tony Evans
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a tiny little book that packs a punch. There are so many things we want to waver on every day because our culture tells us we are unloving. Tony reminds us that pointing people away from God's truth and righteousness is hateful. It is not loving. I closed the book being reaffirmed to stand the ground that God has given us. Actually invite the kingdom and love according to God's word. May we be a kingdom people.



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The news is filled with stories of violence, division, and despair. American politics have become polarized. Effective leadership is in short supply. Change may seem outside our reach. And Christians struggle to understand their role in reversing the downward spiral of our nation.

Dr. Tony Evans offers a healthy dose of hope: the solution to our nation’s problems and unrest isn’t out of reach. The solution is here―and each one of us as Kingdom Citizens has a vital role to play.

Be assured that our God is greater than any challenge―and He has promised to equip His people. In Kingdom Citizen, you’ll discover how to respond in faith, in spite of a country and culture in decline.

Here is a powerful call to action for concerned Christians. Here is a call for unity and restoration. And here is strong assurance that each of us has the ability to walk justly, to seek truth, and to stand in the gap for our land.