Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Book Giveaway & Guest Susan Reinhardt

It's a special day - Book giveaway Wednesday and guest blogger day. This week my guest is Susan Reinhardt. Welcome, Susan.

But before I can go any further I have to share something special. It's my son's birthday! He's thirty-eight (so hard to believe) and from the first day we met he has blessed me. He's now a fine man. 


Some summer fun when we were all younger.

Okay ... I just had to get that out of my system before I could get on with today's guest. 

Susan J. Reinhardt is a multi-published author and blogger. Her books include three full-length novels, The Moses Conspiracy, The Scent of Fear, and Out of the Mist, as well as The Christmas Wish, a novella for all seasons.

Her passion for faith and freedom are reflected in her characters and stories. She's a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and represented by Joyce Hart, of
Hartline Literary Agency.

A widow, stepmom, daughter, and follower of Jesus Christ, Susan resides in Pennsylvania and is active in her church. Her interests include reading, bargain hunting,
and searching for small treasures in antique shops.

Where you can fine Susan online:

Twitter: @susanjreinhardt@susanjreinhardt

Propelled into the Future

There are times when we face crossroads in life, and our decisions affect our future. In 2002, I came to one such crossroad.

The Lord began prompting me to go back to Bible School. What??? I had a stable job after years of getting downsized. My roots were deep in the area where I lived. The ultimate argument: I've done this before, completing Bible School many years ago. Why

was it necessary to go again?

Besides, I was scared.

After arguing with the Lord for about five months, I gave up and made the necessary preparations to enroll in school. As part of my commitment, I cancelled my membership in I released all my hopes, dreams, and visions for the future to the Lord.

Not long after, a strange thing occurred. I received an email from eHarmony that I had a match. Puzzled, I sought counsel. My best friend shrugged it off with, "Nothing's ever worked out with those matches before. Once he finds out you're headed for Bible School,

that will be the end."

But it wasn't the end.

The very thing I thought would doom a possible relationship attracted the love of my life. We began communicating via eHarmony and then by telephone. After meeting in person,

he called me and asked if I wanted to go forward. When I replied I was interested, he made a statement that almost made me faint. "Good, because I'm going to marry you."

Let me interject here that I don't recommend this as a normal way of approaching marriage. I wasn't on the rebound, and neither was he. God prepared us both over the years for this time. I'd heard many horror stories and prayed fervently for wisdom.

We were married a little over a year later. That one act of obedience to the Lord's direction brought a special man into my life and opened the door to pursuing publication.

My husband supported my writing and encouraged me to attend local writers conferences. Without him, I doubt The Moses Conspiracy, the first book of the trilogy, would have been written.

I'd been writing devotionals, pieces for anthologies, and short articles for a variety of publications. In December of 2004, we were standing in Gettysburg town square surrounded by historic buildings. I "heard" the voices of the forefathers as fading echoes.

While I knew this experience was significant, all attempts to write about it failed. We put it on the back burner and prayed, knowing the Lord would show us what direction to take. Eight months later, we were talking about "the Gettysburg experience," when my husband declared, "That's it! That's your book, and you'll write it in four months and call it Ghosts of the Past."

I thought he was crazy, but caught the vision. In four months, I had a 55,000-word manuscript. The book went through a couple of name changes and a lot of revisions. I cut my writing teeth on The Moses Conspiracy.

I wish I could say the road was always smooth, but it wasn't. Trouble comes to everyone, but how we deal with it makes all the difference. With my husband's love and support, I got a head start on writing. When he passed away from leukemia three and a half years after we married, I thought my life was over.

The Lord picked up the broken pieces of my heart and made them into a beautiful mosaic. I poured myself into writing, taking care of my Mom, working, and serving the Lord. He gave me new purpose and direction. In 2013, my first three books were published through a small press. I only wish my Beloved could have shared those special events.

Recently, my fourth book, Out of the Mist, released. It's the third book in The Moses Trilogy. Every time I hold one of these volumes in my hand, the faithfulness of God overwhelms me.

All of this happened because of a single decision to walk with the Lord.

Thank you, Susan. What a beautiful story. 

Susan has a new book, Out of the Mist, book three in the Moses Conspiracy. 

What a great title and beautiful cover.

Kendra Marshall - feisty, determined, and anti-Christian - crashes into the lives of the Zimmerman/Gruber family and their friends. The New Patriot organization, their long-time enemy, tries to use her as bait to flush them out of hiding. Will she end up being a blessing or a curse?

Amazon Link for Out of the Mist:

Susan is giving away an ebook copy of  the first book in the trilogy, The Moses Conspiracy. To be entered in the drawing just leave a comment along with your email address so Susan can contact the winner. 

Amazon Link for The Moses Conspiracy:

Last week's winner of Easy Prey by Lisa Phillips is Rebecca Booth! Congratulations Rebecca.

I'll be back to visit again soon. Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Book Giveaway & Guest Lisa Phillips

Welcome to Book Giveaway Wednesday. 

Today's guest is Lisa Phillips. Thank you for joining us, Lisa.

Lisa Phillips is a British ex-pat living in Idaho with her husband, two kids and a teething puppy. When she’s not leading worship, practicing with her kids (which looks a lot like worship-karaoke) she has her nose in a book.

Lisa is the author of four Love Inspired Suspense novels and the independently published WITSEC Town Series—Sanctuary Lost, Sanctuary Buried and Sanctuary Breached.

Lisa online:, - where you can sign up for her newsletter and the only place you can get review copies of Lisa’s books.

The more things change…the more they stay the same.

I’ll preface this with saying, truthfully, I’m not that old. Depending on you, maybe you’d even say being 34 is practically a baby, but since I have babies of my own what I do know is that there’s some mileage here. And isn’t that universal? The human experience. Wow, I’m being deep this morning. Yikes!

I’m here to talk about my new Love Inspired Suspense, EASY PREY!

About the Book

Elise has a seventeen year old son so she would probably say she has a lot of mileage. In the story, she’s back at the hometown she never thought she’d set foot in again. And yet, there she is, doing the thing she swore she never would.

When she meets up with Jonah—her deceased husband’s brother—she realizes those high school crush feelings haven’t gone anywhere. Those feelings have grown as she has, maturing to something that feels a whole lot like possibility. And it’s the last thing she imagined.

And now a word from Lisa.

God Is Faithful

No matter what happens with Elise, through all the danger and her feelings with Jonah, what keeps her solid is her faith in God. He has walked with her through all the years as a new widow, and as a
single mom. Elise has relied on her faithful God to sustain her through it all.

2 Timothy says that even when we’re faithless, when we give up all hope and turn our backs on God, He is still faithful. Because it’s who He is, it’s His character.

Don’t we serve an amazing God, to be able to do that even when we’ve given up?

Cast your mind back now… How has God shown Himself faithful through your life? Have you seen a time when God carried you even when you didn’t know it?

So true, Lisa - God is faithful. He's never let me down. 

Lisa is giving away a copy of her new book, Easy Prey. To be included in the drawing, just leave a comment along with your email address. The winner will be posted next Wednesday.

We have a winner from the book giveaway two weeks ago. Craft Mom, you are the winner of Paula Mowery's book For Our Good. Congratulations!

Grace and peace to you from God,


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

On the Road & Encounters of the Best Kind

Road Trip!  

Last Friday, my husband and I headed north to see friends and to share my new book To Dance With Dolphins. 

So glad Greg was driving. I hate city traffic.

We had so much fun!

It began by spending time with some very special people. 

Gary & Deanna Kohl 

Kyleah Kohl

(The Inspiration for Claire in
To Dance With Dolphins) 

After giving Deanna and Kyleah signed copies of the book (I've been waiting a long time to do that.) Deanna served a fabulous home-cooked meal, which included the best scones I've ever eaten, along with homemade strawberry/rhubarb jam. Yum. 

We had a good visit, but it was too short. I can't wait to see them again - you know how it is when you have special friends ... there's never enough time.

The next day, I connected with two of my high school buddies. It's been years since we've all been together. We had tales to share - joys and sorrows. And we laughed! Oh, it was fun! When it was time for me to leave we promised that we wouldn't wait years to get together again - I'm determined not to wait too long.

Love you Sue and Joni.

Late leaving Joni's, I hurried to my 45th high school reunion, where I reconnected with more of my old friends. My husband was a good sport and tagged along. It was fun, hearing about all that had been happening in their lives. I can hardly believe the years have passed by so quickly. I was reminded to cherish the "now" moments because they will too soon be gone.

I snuggled into bed that night, my mind filled with thoughts of the day and my heart rejoicing. 

Greg and I spent another day in Washington and had a heart-warming evening with my long-time friend Vicci Brunz. As girls, we lived only a few miles from each other and all through the years we rode the same school bus to and from school.

A quick stop at the Black Diamond library, a short conversation with Deanna, farewell hugs, and then Greg and I headed south to Portland where a spectacular group of ladies met with me my first night there. My friend Lyla Swafford put together a meeting with readers and friends from the group Joni & Friends. It was a special evening. I had a lot of fun and treasure the time I spent with Lyla and her friends, and my writing buddy, April McGowan.

One more stop before heading home. 

The reading group, Ladies In Touch, invited me for lunch and a chat about writing and my new book, To Dance With Dolphins. I had a great time, and Chris Koski introduced me to a new food - Popcorn Cake. Ever hear of it? My understanding is that this unusual and delicious cake can often be found at potlucks in North Dakota. (I've included the recipe below).

The North Dakota Popcorn Cake Recipe is:

2 bags of microwave popcorn popped
1/2 c. of butter
16 oz. bag of mini marshmallows
1 c. Butterscotch chips
2 c. M&M's
1 c. Salted peanuts

Pop the corn and mix in peanuts, chips, candy.
Melt marshmallows and butter together.
Pour hot mixture over popcorn mixture.
Pack into a bunt cake pan/angel food cake pan

With my heart full, Greg and I headed home. It had been a busy five days - a time too collect and store away memories for those days when I need something to make me smile.

We are home and it felt amazing to sleep in my own bed last night, but I'm thankful for all the precious encounters of the last week and for God's kindness to me.

Grace and peace to you from God,


Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Book Giveaway & Guest Paula Mowery

Book Giveaway Wednesday! 

And welcome to my special guest Paula Mowery who has something to share about following God's will.

Paula Mowery is a published author, acquisitions editor, and speaker. Her first two published works were The Blessing Seer and Be The Blessing from Pelican Book Group.

Both are women’s fiction, and their themes have been the topics of speaking engagements. Be The Blessing won the Selah Award in 2014 in the novella category. In November of 2013, her first romance released in the anthology, Brave New Century, from Prism Book Group. This book went to number five on Amazon’s bestseller category, historical Christian romance. Legacy and Love was her first solo romance and
was a finalist in the Carolyn Readers Choice Awards in 2015.

Reviewers of her writing characterize it as “thundering with emotion.” Her articles have appeared in Woman’s World, The Christian Online Magazine, and the multi-author devotional blog, Full Flavored Living. She wrote a section for Join the Insanity by Rhonda Rhea. She has devotionals included in several collaborative books.

As an acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group, Paula particularly looks for romance stories with Christian values at its core. She's especially attracted to those manuscripts that leave the reader mulling over the story long after turning the last page.

Having been an avid reader of Christian fiction, she now puts that love to use by writing book reviews. She is a member of ACFW and is on the author interview team. She was a member of the 2014 and 2015 Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference faculty.

Paula is a pastor’s wife and mom to a college student. She homeschooled her daughter through all twelve years, and they both lived to tell about it. Before educating her daughter at home, she was an English teacher in public school.

Places to find Paula on the web.

Resisting the enemy's ploys.

At the beginning of May this year, I was in deep anticipation for the middle of the month for school to end and my teaching once again at the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference. One week before the conference, our landlord called me. She had decided to get out of the rental business and thus needed us to move out of our house in thirty days.

After that call, I slumped in my chair with my mouth hanging open. That announcement left me totally devastated. Where would we go? Could we locate something and be out in thirty days? Would I have to forfeit the conference?

My husband had the same disposition as I told him about our dilemma. He, my daughter, and I jumped into the car. My husband paused. “This catches us off guard, but it doesn’t catch God by

surprise.” He prayed for guidance, and we drove around the town, writing down possible houses to call about.

A tug-o-war began inside of me. Should I cancel my conference in light of what was happening?

When I would lean toward not attending the conference, I would become almost physically ill. I talked to my husband, and he said there was no reason for me to not attend.

Though I still had some conflicted feelings, I packed up and headed to Ridgecrest on Sunday afternoon. I hinted to my roommate that I had some guilt at leaving the house situation with my husband. But, I jumped into my classes and meetings with writers.

The first evening’s speaker was just for me. She spoke about pushing on no matter what the enemy throws your way. I began to get a little encouragement momentum from the Spirit.

Though a bit nervous, I entered the classroom to teach a different type of class than I had before. In this class I would share about writing devotionals and then the class would embark on composing their own. The end result of the two day class would be creating a devotional book from Christian writers to Christian writers in hopes of publication.

I had prayed that God would lead the people He wanted involved in this project as well as direct me to guide them in the process. He delivered. After each class session, I remarked that I felt like we “had church.” Then attendees started to share stories of how they had ended up in the class and how this venue gave them just the way to share certain stories and experiences.

I wouldn’t have missed that for anything! I’m so glad I resisted the devil’s pull. 

Turns out that on Monday evening when I called home, my husband had signed a rental agreement for a house we had looked at before I left. After the conference, we would still have three weeks to move.

The enemy can be so persuasive, making us feel any number of emotions to block us from following God’s will. He is the author of confusion, doubt, and guilt. His intent is to keep us from accomplishing something for God. Let me encourage you to resist his ploys and focus on God. Following the Lord’s plan always seems to bless the follower in some way.

I love this, Paula. It's in the day-to-day that the enemy tries to keep us from being blessed and from being a blessing to others. So often we don't see his devilish work until after we've walked through the experience.

Paula's new book.

Charlie Jarvis is haunted by loss that fuels her desire to rid the world of drug traffickers.When her next assignment takes her back to her hometown, she has to confront her painful past. She has no interest in a relationship since God seems to kill everyone she loves.

Colton Thomas appreciates material things and the status of being a corporate pilot. When someone approaches him to deliver a package for a large sum of money that could wipe out his debts, temptation knocks loud on his door even as his partner, Marshall, slams it shut.

Meeting Charlie challenges his non-committal stance with women. As he considers who he has become and the kind of man he would want to be for Charlie, he confronts his own shallow lifestyle and the fear that he would never be able to help her heal her wounds.

As Charlie pursues the man causing young boys to die of overdoses, she struggles with the secrets she keeps from Colton.

With people around them shining the light of God and encouraging their courtship, both Charlie and Colton have to face hard truths about life, death, love, and faith. And maybe find a fresh start for them both.

Paula is offering a FREE copy of For Our Good to one of you. Just leave a comment or a question and you will be included in the drawing. Don't forget to leave your email address so Paula can contact you.

Last week's winner of Jo Huddleston's book, Trust Me is Amy C. Congratulations, Amy!

Grace and peace to you from God,


Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Book Giveaway & Guest Jo Huddleston

It's Wednesday! Welcome to my blog. I'm giving away another book and I have a guest - Jo Huddleston. It's wonderful to have you here, Jo.

Jo Huddleston is a multi-published author of books, articles, and short stories. Her novels in the West Virginia Mountains Series and the Caney Creek Series are sweet Southern historical romances. She is a member of ACFW, the Literary Hall of Fame at Lincoln Memorial University (TN), and holds a M.Ed. degree from Mississippi State University.

Visit Jo at: where you can sign up for her mailing list and read her blogs.
Christian authors’ books blog:
Inspirational blog:
Facebook author page:
Amazon author page:
The Book Club Network:

Cure for Loneliness

One late September day, my parents and I loaded the majority of my possessions into the car and prepared for the trip. On previous occasions, I had visited the college campus with my parents, taking along another friend or two.

Those earlier trips had been round trips. Today would be a one-way trip for me, with no return home. This was the long-anticipated day when I would get to sprout my wings and finally be on my own, away from home and parents.

My elementary school years had begun during World War Two at a time when my daddy moved from location to location, wherever the better defense jobs were—aluminum companies that made materials for wartime airplanes. Thus, from kindergarten through high school, I changed to a new school eight times.

In the primary grades I remember the changes as being nothing more than an exciting venture. But in junior high and high school, the changes proved much more traumatic. I’ll never forget changing schools in mid-tenth grade. Mother drove me to the school and spent time with me in the principal’s office getting me

enrolled. Then she went home. The school secretary gave me directions to my first class.

To get to that classroom, I had to walk the length of a mile-long (to me) hallway lined with lockers. It seemed the entire student body gathered at those lockers preparing for the upcoming class period.

That walk took an eternity. Even though I looked straight ahead, I sensed in my peripheral vision every head turning and following me as I walked by. I heard their loud whispers, “Look. There’s the new girl.” Even though I’d been the new girl many times before, each time didn’t get any easier.

The unmerited attention at each new school contributed to my withdrawing farther into my shell of protection—I became quiet and withdrawn. It’s a wonder I made any friends in high school. With such an introverted attitude many might have mistakenly called me conceited or stuck up.

But, instead, the senior class voted me as the Most Sophisticated Girl. This resulted from a combination of my reserved quietness and mature behavior. I was a mess. Going to college where nobody knew me or my past, I determined I would “reinvent” myself.

Once on the college campus that September day, my bravado vanished and reality settled in when my parents’ car drove out of sight. I was finally “in college,” but words couldn’t describe how lonely I felt in the first moments after my parents’ farewell. My assigned roommate hadn’t arrived. I had met no one. I was alone.

My parents had raised me as their only child. I had spent much of my growing-up time in the company of adults. People have said that’s why I behaved in such a mature way—adults had been my role models with hardly any input from anyone my age except during school days.

But this day at college sixty miles from home, loneliness draped heavily across my shoulders. I felt isolated despite the bustle of other people moving around me. A painful longing choked off my ability to move. I wanted to run after the departing car and wrap myself in the comfort of the two people inside.

In spite of these consuming feelings, I wanted to burst victoriously onto this new scene and belong. To combat being lonely, it’s easy to depend on others and surroundings for help. Peer acceptance seems to fill most voids at any age. But gaining that acceptance sometimes requires that we step knee-deep into peer-pressure quagmire. That decision can suck us into a position where we’re never alone, yet still lonely.

Society presents attractive cures for loneliness. We only have to watch television commercials. They show us beautiful people flooded with pleasure, seemingly with no responsibility. The not-so-subtle messages lure us into the false belief that life could really be that much fun, that attractive, all the time, for everybody.

When loneliness doesn’t wait for an invitation and sometimes overstays its welcome, God’s support provides comfort. We don’t have to depend on exaggerated beauty of worldly pleasures and acceptance.

God gives his Holy Spirit to help and comfort us in our weaknesses—even in loneliness (Rom. 8:26). We don’t have to feel weak and alone. God sent the Holy Spirit as one we can turn to. God lives within us by the Spirit. Even when we don’t know what to pray for, he intercedes with the Father on our behalf (Rom.8:26-27).

The Holy Spirit did his job for me that crisp, fall day I started college. He gave my legs the will to move, protected me, and supplied me with the right words to say. Today we can ask God to give us the Holy Spirit to dwell within us and strengthen us (Luke 11:13).

Jo, thank you for sharing your story. How good to know no matter what we face, God stands with us.

Jo has a new book! 

Trust Me

West Virginia, 1960

A mine owner. An elegant lady.

Seductive voices that scoff at trust.

Loreen Fletcher has suffered heartbreak. She resolves never to trust a man again.She has earned a respected position with no help from anyone, especially not from a man. At thirty-six, Loreen knows loving brings inevitable misery, and she won't pick at that scab again.

Claude Capshaw's life has taken another detour. Things that drove him no longer motivate him. Nothing fulfillls him anymore - except that elegant lady at West Virginia University. Why won't she trust him when he tells her he'l never betray her?

Purchase Links

This looks like another good read. 

Jo is giving away a FREE copy of Trust Me. All you need to do is leave a comment along with your email address and you'll be included in a drawing for an e-book copy of Jo's new book.

And last week's winner of Gail Kittleson's Catching Up With Daylight is Sonnetta Jones. Congratulations!

Grace and peace to you from God,