Monday, May 25, 2009

Announcing the Enduring Love Contest!

I love contests. Don’t you? Beginning on May 1st, in honor of my book, Enduring Love, I’m launching a new contest.

Throughout the Sydney Cove Series, John and Hannah have relied on God to carry them through the worst of circumstances. You've read their story, now share your own!

Do you have a testimony about how God’s enduring love met your needs during a difficult time? Or a story about a friend or family member who stood with you faithfully through a challenge in your life?

I'd love to hear how enduring love has made a difference in your life, and your story could win you a spectacular prize

Tell me about your experience in the comments section of my blog, and your name will automatically be entered into a drawing for my Enduring Love Gift Basket.

This basket will include a gorgeous tabletop plaque, two mugs with scripture tea, The Wonder of His Love—a Journey into the Heart of God by Beth Moore, and a signed copy of Enduring Love for you or a loved one.

I’ll draw for a winner on June 1st, so get your entry in now. I can’t wait to hear your stories!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Tips For Triumphant Living -- The Mountain is Out

In the state of Washington in the Enumclaw area there is a saying, "The Mountain is out." All those living on the plateau know when someone says this it means Mount Rainier is visible, which also includes clear skies and sunhine. In the spring this is a special event. I know, I grew up in the rainy northwest.

On Saturday, May 16th, it was a gloriously beautiful day. My friend Ann Shorey and I were driving from our hotel to Enumclaw when I said, "Uh oh, the mountain is out."

So, why would that be a problem for two visiting authors? After a long, wet winter locals do anything but stay indoors when the skies turn blue and the sun warms the earth. And Ann and I were on our way to the Salt Shaker Bookstore to teach two writing workshops and sign copies of our most recent releases along with local author Susan Marlow. Conditions meant turn out would likely be low. After all, The Mountain was out.

The Salt Shaker Bookstore is a first-rate store that specializes in Christian books and gifts. They also serve coffee and goodies. I think it's a terrific place to spend a day.

As it turned out, on the 16th I was one of the few who felt that way. We had only one attendee for our workshops. Two of the store employees graciously joined the class and of course Ann and I took part when the other was speaking. I suppose the natural inclination is to see the event as a flop, but not so.

God knew what He was up to. He had a plan and May 16th belonged to Him. It was a delightful day. Our one attendee, Judy Gann, is a non-fiction author who has just begun her journey into fiction writing. She was happy to be there and ready to learn. Ann and I enjoyed her company immensely. We were both touched by the store employees who sat in on our classes. The folks at the Salt Shaker are super nice people. Throughout the day there were unexpected visits from special friends and readers. And I was especially surprised by a visit from my Junior High principal, Charles Wilson. What a special treat.

May 16th in Enumclaw is the day, in my history, that I taught my smallest class ever(thus far), but it will also be remembered as an absolutely lovely day filled with unexpected blessings. It definitely was NOT a flop. And I was especially happy to be in Enumclaw on a day when The Mountain was out. :-)

Praising God for His blessings!

Grace and peace to you from God.


Friday, May 08, 2009

Quiet Moments With God -- Hurrying Through Life?

Lately, I’ve been in a hurry. I have a new book launching and another one due at the publisher’s. There is so much to do and little time for pleasures or rest. I long to tarry, to drink in life’s abundance, and to linger even in its sorrows. We need to linger, to think and explore.

Not so long ago, a dear friend of mine was going through the worst kind of heartbreak. To help her cope, the doctor put her on an antidepressant. At the time they were needed, but the medication hindered her ability to grieve. She couldn’t even cry. She needed to experience her grief, to mourn. So she chose to discontinue her medication and the tears came and the healing began. She needed to linger in her sorrow.

This morning while reading from My Utmost for His Highest these words leaped out at me from the page. “If we will take this view, life will become one great romance—a glorious opportunity of seeing wonderful things all the time.”

Life a romance? Seeing wonderful things ALL the time? YES!

Life is a mix of mountain tops and valleys, but there is beauty in it all. God has so much to show us. Most importantly we’re to know Him. Experiencing life introduces us to God. He reveals Himself in creation, through the people who come and go, and in the midst of life’s adventures we will find Him.

Stop and look. Savor what comes your way. Time can be a gift or a thief. Which will it be for you?

Grace and peace to you from God.