Posted in guest posts, Saturday Spotlight

Saturday Spotlight: All My Tears by Kathy McKinsey

I am honored to have Author Kathy McKinsey as my guest today on the Saturday Spotlight. She is an amazing author and an inspiration.

Be sure to check out her latest release All My Tears.

ABOUT THE BOOK

All My Tears

Five women search for God’s hope through sorrow and deep troubles.

Meet five women who struggle with life’s deep sorrows. Beth fights to recover from alcoholism and to mend her relationships with her family. Ann doesn’t believe God will forgive her. Kathleen wrestles with a years-old fear and with saving her marriage. Cassie needs to learn to deal with chronic depression. Martie finds herself the single parent of the eight-year-old niece she barely knows when the child’s parents die in a car wreck.

See how God gives them the gifts of hope, healing, and love.

ABOUT KATHY

I dedicated my first book, All My Tears, to my mother, Lila Mae Brinkmann. She has been with me since my writing dream began 50 years ago.

From when I handwrote my stories when, because of my visual impairment, I was no longer able to read them for myself. Since, as a teenager, I shamelessly sent out many poems and short stories to magazines. I had a manual typewriter and no way to edit or correct for errors. And until I finally published this first book in 2019, Mom has shared this dream with me.

HOW TO CONNECT WITH KATHY

https://www.kathymckinsey.com

https://www.facebook.com/kathy.brinkmann.mckinsey

https://twitter.com/kathymckinsey

Kathy’s Amazon Page

Be sure to check out Kathy’s other books, Millie’s Christmas and Gifts of Grace.

Posted in Book Spotlight, guest posts

Saturday Spotlight: Anchored Hearts by Julie Arduini

It’s an honor to have Author Julie Arduini as my guest today on Saturday Spotlight. Julie is here to discuss her latest book, Anchored Hearts. Read on for an excerpt and be sure to follow Julie on her social media to keep up-to-date about all of her upcoming books.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Can two go-getters surrender their need to control and find a happily-ever-after?

Jordyn Bell Hart succeeds in everything she does. Her promotion to morning show co-anchor blossoms her career in the same way her mother’s work had. Jordyn keeps tabs on her family and enjoys helping them grow. When life around her starts to change, can she surrender her desire to control?

Spencer Collins knows how to balance a busy life. He has his work as a reporter, his time caregiving for his grieving father, and looking out for his little brother. When he learns he’s the new co-anchor of a morning show with Jordyn Hart, can he handle working with a celebrity who brings a lot of challenges to life on and off the set?

Christian Romance/Clean & Wholesome

Free Kindle Unlimited

Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09XH1KVXD

Softcover: https://www.amazon.com/Anchored-Hearts-Julie-Arduini/dp/1733687645/


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Julie Arduini loves to encourage readers to find freedom in Christ by surrendering the good, the bad, and —maybe one day—the chocolate. She’s the author of the new contemporary romance series SURRENDERING HEARTS (Anchored Hearts, Repairing Hearts, +four more.) Her other romance series is SURRENDERING TIME (Entrusted, Entangled, Engaged.) She also co-wrote a YA series with her daughter, SURRENDERING STINKIN’ THINKIN’ (You’re Beautiful, You’re Amazing, You’re Brilliant.) Her stand-alone romances include MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN and RESTORING CHRISTMAS. Julie maintains a blog at juliearduini.com and participates in the team blog Christians Read. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two children. Learn more by visiting her at http://linktr.ee/JulieArduini.


AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Welcome, Julie! Can you give us a little background about you?

Absolutely! I love to write Christian romance that features surrender issues and chocolate. I’m married and we have two children. I’m also a step-mom and grandmother.

So, what’s Surrendering Hearts about?

It’s a six-book series featuring the Hart sextuplets. Each sextuplet gets their own book. The premise is what if a family shares a unique birth story but stays in the national spotlight because of tragedy? Anchored Hearts is the first book featuring the oldest, Jordyn Bell Hart.

Tell the readers about Anchored Hearts.

Anchored Hearts features Hart sextuplet #1, Jordyn. She’s used to taking care of everything and everyone, but times are changing. Her dad has recently married their neighbor, Shelly, and Jordyn isn’t used to the idea. Her siblings are moving on and not keeping Jordyn in the loop. Then there’s her work at WFRN. She’s the new morning show co-host who falls for her colleague, Spencer Collins. However, she’s made a vow stemming from her childhood that could ruin everything. Spencer has issues of his own. The morning show job wasn’t part of his plan, and he’s constantly tuned into his home life. The both of them need to let go of their control issues. Question is—-can they??

What, if anything, surprises you about writing?

How God takes me through the surrender theme before or as I’m writing about it. I never realized how much control was a problem in my life until Anchored Hearts. In fact, I lost a year of writing because my mom became ill and then passed away. That grief and how I handled it led to anxiety. When I sought counsel, I realized a lot of it was grief and my wish to be in control.

What’s next for you?

Surrendering Hearts is six books, so up next is Hart sextuplet #2, Ryan. His story is Repairing Hearts, and I’m SO excited about it.

Thanks so much for having me, Penny! Here is an excerpt to give readers a taste of Anchored Hearts.

Thank you for being my guest! Readers, be sure to check out the following excerpt of Anchored Hearts.

***

Spencer Collins reached into the potato chip bowl for a third time as the conference room monitors faded to black, signaling the end of the live interview. The heavy wooden door opened and Vince, the station’s GM, blew in like a microburst.

“Amazing show, right? I feel as though when Julia Turmeric graces this building, everything she touches turns to gold.” Vince’s smile could power all of New York’s Southern Tier. “Anyway, thanks everyone for staying late. Jordyn’s taking her mic pack off and will be in shortly. I won’t keep you long. Help yourself to more snacks. There’s plenty left.”

Spencer poured an ice water and took a seat across from a couple Elmira-based reporters. He pulled out his phone and checked to make sure he didn’t miss any texts from his younger brother, Carson. Seeing none, he reached for a couple chips and tried not to get grease on his suit pants.

When the door opened again, Jordyn Hart pushed through with a friendly grin and a glance round the room. Even though the studio lights weren’t around, her hair carried a sheen as she stood near Vince. “Hi, everyone. I hope I didn’t keep you all waiting. I wanted to find my dad after the show.”

Vince poured her a glass of ice water and handed it to Elmira’s only noon anchor. “Nonsense. Now that you’re here, let’s get down to business.” He gestured for her to sit on the other side of the table, while he sat at the head.

Spencer sipped on his drink, stealing a glance at Jordyn. They’d crossed paths a couple times when he gave a live report from Binghamton, but this was their first time in the same room. Something about those big brown eyes and the lingering trail of rose and vanilla created an energy around her. He took a deep breath and intentionally shifted his seat so he’d instead focus on Vince and the big announcement.

The boss cupped his hands together and placed them on the table. “WFRN is the Southern Tier’s leader in news. Rise and Shine is the most watched morning program in America. We’re going to marry the two by creating a local morning show that will usher in Julia’s national program.” He walked over to the conference room laptop and touched a few buttons. An image appeared on the huge screen in front of them. “I present Early Rise and Shine, premiering sweeps week in November.”

Spencer stretched his legs under the table as he took in the bright blue, orange, and yellow logo. Impressive. The move made sense. Why though, was he invited to attend?

Vince returned to his seat; his smile as electric as the logo. “The co-hosts will be Jordyn Hart and Spencer Collins.”

Posted in author interviews, Book Spotlight, guest posts

Saturday Spotlight: A Second Chance by Alexis A. Goring

I am thrilled to welcome Author Alexis A. Goring to my blog this weekend for the Saturday Spotlight.

Read below for all the details about her book, A Second Chance, her bio, and where to connect with her online.

Welcome to the blog, Alexis!

Alexis A. Goring is a passionate communicator with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the written word and God’s Word (The Holy Bible) is her favorite book of all time. Alexis knew from the age of 9 that she wanted to be a writer when she grew up. She is grateful that God allowed that dream of her heart to come true in so many wonderful ways! When she is not writing, Alexis enjoys eating good food and posting about it on her Instagram. She enjoys photography as a hobby. 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Newly single food critic and newspaper reporter Traci Hightower is done with dating. After the man of her dreams left her at the altar on their wedding day and ran off with the woman she thought was her best friend, Traci resolves to focus on work and resigns herself to being a bachelorette for life.

Marc Roberts is a political reporter who is known as Mr. Nice Guy, the one who always finishes last. However, Marc’s compassion and kindness are of invaluable help to his newly widowed sister Gina Braxton who is trying to raise her two kids in the wake of her firefighter husband’s death.

Traci and Marc may be the perfect match, but they don’t know it yet. With God’s guidance and the help of Gina’s matchmaking skills honed by her career as a bestselling romance novelist, there is hope for a happily ever after for these two broken hearts.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alexis A. Goring is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the art of storytelling and hopes that her stories will connect readers with the enduring, forever love of Jesus Christ.

CONNECT WITH ALEXIS

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAlexisAGoring/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PennedbyAlex

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/capturing_the_idea/

Website: https://alexisagoring.jimdofree.com

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/capturingidea/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7260528.Alexis_A_Goring

“God is Love” (blog): https://capturingtheidea.blogspot.com

“On My Heart” (blog): https://coveringitall.blogspot.com


Before you go, check out these other posts:

7 ingredients for creating the perfect character

the importance of new beginnings

10 awesome websites for writers

8 things I want my daughters to know

28 verses for uncertain times

for writers

mom-approved movies

Posted in author interviews, guest posts, Saturday Spotlight

Saturday Spotlight: Home Where She Belongs by Penny McGinnis

I am thrilled to welcome Author Penny Frost McGinnis to my blog this weekend for the Saturday Spotlight.

oday I’m interviewing Penny discussing her new book, Home Where She Belongs. Read below for all the details about her book, Penny’s bio, and where to connect with her online.

Welcome to the blog, Penny!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Tired of being a pawn for her father and an emotional punching bag for her ex-boyfriend, Sadie Stewart runs away. She leaves behind a lucrative job, at her father’s financial company, and narcissistic, abusive ex-boyfriend, Bryce Shaw. Her heart longs for a peaceful, simple life on beloved Abbott Island in Lake Erie, Ohio where she spent magical summers with grandparents she adored.

On the island, Sadie takes over her grandparents’ small island home and her gram’s rental cottages. With a fresh start on the island, she tries to push the past behind and dig in to make the rental business thrive. As Sadie and her dog, settle into her new home, her thoughts wander to Joel Grayson, her teen crush. As soon as he crosses her mind, she dashes the thought away. Not ready to share her heart with anyone, she pushes herself to finish her tasks.

Joel Grayson left the island long enough to train at the Police Academy. The folks in the community trust him, even with his failures. Before Sadie’s grandpa died, Joel had promised him he’d look after their cottages, with a secret hope Sadie might return. When he’s on patrol and finds a woman on his friend’s property, he bristles until he realizes his dream girl has come home.

Sadie recognizes Joel and immediately guards her heart. Her experience with Bryce left her untrusting and hesitant. Even handsome and kind Joel won’t tempt her to open her heart.

When someone is set on sabotaging Sadie’s future, she seeks Joel’s help. As they are drawn together, Joel wants to protect Sadie as a police officer and a friend. Sadie begins to trust Joel and allows the wall around her heart to crumble, just a little. As Joel tries to find the person behind the menacing, Sadie fights to build her rental business and latch on to the peace she longs for.

Even as Joel and Sadie grow closer, a dark cloud hangs over them. Ugly graffiti, a fire, and threats cause Sadie grief. She wants to believe in God, the way her grandparents did and longs for the peace that passes understanding, but her heart hesitates to trust anyone.

Joel needs to place his past behind him and allow God to work in his heart. In his attempts to protect Sadie, he falls for her all over again, even though she keeps her distance.

Will Joel and Sadie overcome their fear and lack of trust? When they discover who is sabotaging Sadie’s future, can they stop them? Will two broken people find their path to love?

Home Where She Belongs is a romance with a dash of mystery and the promise of hope, as Joel and Sadie discover what it means to trust in the God who loves them.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

If Penny Frost McGinnis could live in a lighthouse or on an island, she would. Instead, she and her husband are content to live in southwest Ohio and visit Lake Erie every chance they get. Blessed with five children, their spouses, and a passel of grandchildren, she adores her family, indulges in dark chocolate, enjoys fiber arts, and grows flowers and herbs in her tiny garden. Penny has been published in Chicken Soup, and The Upper Room. She blogs at Hope for Today’s Heart and believes God has called her to bring hope to people’s lives through the written word. Contact Penny at penny.frost.mcginnis@gmail.com or visit her website at http://www.pennyfrostmcginnis.com.

Social Media:

Website/Blog https://www.pennyfrostmcginnis.com/&

Facebook Author page: https://www.facebook.com/PennyFrostMcGinnisAuthor

Twitter https://twitter.com/PennyFMcGinnis

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/pennyfmcg/hope-for-todays-heart/

Bookbub https://www.bookbub.com/profile/penny-frost-mcginnis

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

If I could inhabit a lighthouse on an island, I would. Instead, I’m happy to live with my husband and dogs, Olive and Rosie May, in southwest Ohio and visit Lake Erie every chance we get. I enjoy hanging out with our grown children and my wonderful grandchildren. In the spring and summer I grow flowers and herbs in my tiny garden, and in the winter, I work on arts and crafts. I love books—reading them, writing them, and making them. I blog at Hope for Today’s Heart and believe God has called me to bring His hope to people through the written word.

Tell us about your current release.

I write contemporary romance with a dash of mystery and the promise of hope.

Several years ago, my husband and I vacationed in northern Ohio and visited Kelleys Island. I became enamored with the simple, quiet life on the island. Modeled after Kelleys Island, Abbott Island came alive as the setting for Home Where She Belongs. Proverbs 3:5-6 reflects the theme of the story. How to trust and who to trust.

Tired of being a pawn for her father and an emotional punching bag for her ex-boyfriend, Sadie Stewart escapes to Abbott Island where she spent summers with her grandparents. She plans to resurrect her grandmother’s cabin rental business, she inherited, and find the peace she’s desperate to embrace. Would the love and faith she learned from her grandparents be enough to fuel her new life? She wants to believe God’s promises, yet broken trust holds her back. 

Joel Grayson left the island long enough to train at the Police Academy. The community trusts him, even though he’s failed. When he finds Sadie at her grandparents’ cottages, his heart skips a beat. He’d love to get to know her again, but no one needs to share the hurt he harbors. 

When Sadie discovers someone is sabotaging her future, she seeks Joel’s help. As they are drawn together, will Joel let down his guard and let her in? Will Sadie trust the man who loves her and the Father Who cares? 

If you knew ahead of time your book would benefit only one person on their spiritual journey, would you still write it?

I would. I believe God has called me to write, whether for one person or many. It took me a while to come to this conclusion. Like many writers, I was dazzled by the possibility of publication, but in writing a blog I learned that if the one person who needed the words the Lord gave me, read them, I am doing a good work. When I applied that to writing fiction my attitude changed, and I started enjoying the writing process. Granted we all need goals and perhaps publication is one of them, but I also believe in nudges from God as he directs me on my path.

What inspired you to start writing, or did you always want to write?

Reading inspired me to write. From the time I was old enough to read, I was fascinated with words. My mom signed me up for the Dr. Seuss book club. With anticipation, I waited on my monthly book to come. I wore those books out. At a young age, I was introduced to Robert Frost’s poetry. That inspired me to write poems as a teenager and for many years after.  Writing poetry gave me the tools to create word pictures, which eventually led to what I write today.

What made you take the plunge and finally do it?

When I retired, a friend challenged me to finish my second novel, the first one is still tucked away in my computer. She gave me a deadline to complete the rough draft. My husband encouraged me to work toward publication and do what I needed to do. With the help of a wonderful critique partner and beta readers, I used the stay-at-home time during the pandemic to rewrite and revise my story. When I found out Mt. Zion Ridge Press was taking submissions, I felt God nudge me in their direction. I guess the short answer is encouragement from my family and friends and God’s push.

Thank you for joining me, Penny, and readers, be sure to join me several Saturdays throughout the year when I spotlight author friends and their awesome books!


Before you leave, check out these posts:

reading suggestions for kids of all ages

book news and giveaways

5 ways to jumpstart your writing project

fantabulous pumpkin muffins recipe

resting in the arms of an unchanging God

how to become an undercover prayer warrior

tools to help your child succeed in life

Posted in author interviews, Book Spotlight, guest posts

Saturday Spotlight: DECEIVED by Madisyn Carlin

It’s Saturday and I am thrilled to once again welcome a fellow author to my blog!

This week, I’m honored to have Author Madisyn Carlin as my guest. Her new release, Deceived, is in the Christian fantasy genre. I’ve personally read this book, and it is definitely one to add to your TBR list. It is available at Amazon in both paperback and ebook formats.

Welcome, Madisyn!

ABOUT THE BOOK

In a land built upon lies and deception, uncovering the truth can be deadly.

Therese Westa is sick of death, but taking lives is what provides for her younger sisters. When a client approaches her with an unusual request, Therese takes the job offer, which includes the condition of “no questions asked”. As Therese uncovers the reason for the request, she is faced with a choice: kill an innocent man or save her sisters.

Therese’s hesitation to carry out the assassination thrusts her into the aftermath of a dangerous chain of events. Caught between security and truth, Therese must choose where her loyalties lie, for the answer will determine who survives.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Madisyn Carlin is a Christian, homeschool graduate, blogger, voracious bookdragon, and author. When not spending time with her family or trekking through the mountains, she weaves tales of redemption, faith, and action.

Want to connect? Find her social media links here

Posted in Book News, Book Spotlight, devotionals, guest posts

Saturday Spotlight: Praying Against My Fear by Jennifer Slattery

I’m excited to launch the new Saturday Spotlight Series on my blog. On various Saturdays throughout each month, I’ll be spotlighting fellow authors. My goal for this new venture? To introduce you to some fantastic authors and books you might never have heard about.

Today, I’m excited to host Author Jennifer Slattery. She has blessed us with a wonderful guest post below about fear and anxiety.

But first, Jennifer has a new book out titled “Her Small-Town Refuge”.

Her Small-Town Refuge

To secure the future she’s been wishing for, she must earn her boss’s trust.

Escaping to the Texas Hill Country with her daughter for a vet tech internship is Stephanie Thornton’s chance at a safer life. But when medicine goes missing from Caden Stoughton’s struggling vet clinic, all evidence points to Stephanie. With the new life she’s been searching for hanging in the balance, Stephanie must convince Caden to trust her with his business…and his heart.

Buy it here: https://www.amazon.com/-/es/Jennifer-Slattery-ebook/dp/B09C2D79TY


Praying Against My Fear

I’ve learned, in my ongoing fight against fear, I won’t experience the peace of Christ in my own strength.  I can’t take my anxious, and often snowballing, thoughts captive (2 Cor. 10:5) without supernatural help. But I’ve also learned, I can live in the victory of Christ, during my most hectic and uncertain moments included, if I’ll actively and consistently pursue Him. When my world feels chaotic and like I’m being whipped about in a never-ending cyclone, I prayed for reprieve, yes, but even more so, I prayed against the storm raging within me. That was when I began taking my greatest steps toward freedom. 

2011 was an incredibly rough year for me, for so many reasons. We’d recently moved, which meant saying goodbye to some close friends, uprooting ourselves from faith communities, grieving the loss of both while battling loneliness. That was also the year I got sick with what was, initially, an unknown illness. This triggered my anxiety, my anxiety fed my desire for control, and that desire led to an obsession with myself, my illness, and germs. The worse I felt, the more I cleaned. 

Soon, one thought dominated my thinking: what was or wasn’t making me sick. Bit by bit, one handwashing at a time, germaphobia developed. Eventually, I became completely enslaved to my fear. But then one day, as I was walking to the laundry room, a realization silenced my normally loud brain: This is not how God wants me to live. He promised me freedom. 

And I knew, with the certainty that can only come from the Holy Spirit, that the same God who called me to live in freedom would give me the tools to do so. 

That was my call to action moment, where I sensed God challenging me to make a choice. I could remain stuck in my gunk, slipping further and further into fear. Or I could follow His lead, however He led, in this battle for freedom. Praise God, and by His grace alone, I chose the latter and began actively, persistently, and consistently praying against my fear. Every time I felt that knot in my gut, I paused to seek God’s help and His strength. I asked Him to break the power my fear had over me, which at the time felt insurmountable, and in its place, to flood my soul with peace.  

I was following the biblical example of the father who began in fear and anguish, but received that which he desperately sought. We read his story in Mark chapter 9. Scripture tells us, one day Jesus took Peter, James, and John up onto a mountain where He revealed to them His glory in an unforgettable, awe-inspiring way. 

While they were gone, a deeply distressed father came searching for Jesus. Not finding Him, he sought help from His disciples, maybe because he’d heard about all the miracles they’d performed not long before (Matthew 10:1-20). His situation, it seemed, was simply too hard; the disciples failed. But then Jesus arrived, and, noticing a conflict between His followers and the teachers of the law, asked what they were arguing about. 

Scripture says, “A man in the crowd answered, ‘Teacher, I brought You my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked Your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not'” (V. 17-18).

Then Jesus summoned the child, and the demon “threw the boy into a convulsion.” The child “fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth” (v. 20). 

After a short explanation, the father said to Jesus, “If you can do anything, take pity on us and help us” (v. 21).

To which Jesus responded,“‘If you can’? Everything is possible for one who believes” (v. 22).

Hearing this, the father let out a guttural, shriek-like cry, krazo in the original Greek, perhaps because he feared his son’s healing depended on his faith. He exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (v. 24).

Here’s what I find encouraging. Jesus didn’t get upset at the man. He didn’t rebuke him and send him away for his weak faith. Instead, He responded to the father and son in love and grace. He commanded the demon to leave the boy, never to return again.

This passage reminds me to bring my anxieties to Jesus, and to seek Him in the midst of my doubts, knowing He won’t chastise or reject me. Instead, He’ll give me precisely what I need–increased intimacy with the only One whose love has the power to cast out my fears. (1 John 4:18).

Friends, He’s been so faithful. That fall when I began actively and persistently praying against my fears? That was a life-changer for me. I didn’t notice much difference at first, and there were times I wondered if my constant requests were doing any good. But I kept praying, day after day, sometimes moment by moment, month after month. Then, one day some six months later, I realized a situation that had once triggered intense anxiety barely bothered me anymore, and other situations no longer bothered me at all. God indeed had been working. 

He was working on a spiritual level, using His supernatural power to break the chains that kept me bound. He was also teaching me how to grab hold of His freedom, step by step. To turn to Him in times of fear. Through this, I practiced stopping my anxious thoughts before they gained moment and rerouting them onto the good, in essence, onto God. 

Lessons I probably wouldn’t have learned, had God immediately eradicated my anxiety. 

Let’s talk about this! Do you suffer from anxiety? And if so, how often do you pray against your fear specifically? 


Jennifer Slattery is a writer and speaker who has addressed women’s groups, church groups, Bible studies, and other writers across the nation. As the founder of Wholly Love Ministries she and her team help their local, national, and global community experience increased spiritual and emotional freedom through an ever-deepening relationship with Christ. She cohosts, with Grace Fox, the Your Daily Bible Verse podcast and also cohosts, with her Wholly Loved Ministry team, the Faith Over Fear podcast. She also maintains devotional blogs found JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com and is a regular contributor to iBelieve.com. Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband. Contact her through her website to book her for your next women’s event.

Posted in guest posts, Other authors' books

DECEIVED Cover Reveal

One of the things I love to do as an author is support and promote other authors. I’m excited to announce a fellow writer’s cover reveal today. Check out this new NA book by fantasy author, Madisyn Carlin!

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Title: DECEIVED (The Deception Trilogy, Book One)

Genre: Christian Allegorical Fantasy

DECEIVED releases April 26, 2022

BLURB:

In a land built upon lies and deception, uncovering the truth can be deadly.

Therese Westa is sick of death, but taking lives is what provides for her younger sisters. When a client approaches her with an unusual request, Therese takes the job offer, which includes the condition of “no questions asked”. As Therese uncovers the reason for the request, she is faced with a choice: kill an innocent man or save her sisters.

Therese’s hesitation to carry out the assassination thrusts her into the aftermath of a dangerous chain of events. Caught between security and truth, Therese must choose where her loyalties lie, for the answer will determine who survives.

Preorder the ebook: here
Add book on Goodreads:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Madisyn Carlin is a Christian, homeschool graduate, blogger, voracious bookdragon, and author. When not spending time with her family or trekking through the mountains, she weaves tales of redemption, faith, and action.

CONNECT:

Blog: https://madismusingsblog.wordpress.com/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.dk/madisyncarlin/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/56238198-madisyn-carlin

Instagram handle: madisyn_carlin

Join me Wednesday for our regularly-scheduled program!

Posted in book giveaways, family/marriage, guest posts

Guest Post: I’ll Never Get My Life Back (and a chance to win Disney tickets!)

Penny Zeller, Christian Author

My friend and fellow writer, Jessie Gunderson is my guest this week. She and her family are in the process of adopting two beautiful children from Ethopia. Jessie is holding a fundraiser on her blog where you can help out and have a chance at winning a pair of Disneyland tickets.  She’s also giving away a second place gift – your choice of one of my books (McKenzie, Kaydie, Hailee, 77 Ways Your Family Can Make a Difference, or Hollyhocks).

This is such an awesome opportunity to give two children a chance at a forever home!

I’ll Never Get my Life Back

By Jessie Gunderson

I’ve never thought of myself as the mothering type. I was the girl making mud pies and riding horses. The delight I experienced once I started having kids surprised me but I still longed for a day when they’d be grown up and I’d get my life back.

One day I was thinking about God’s profound love for us and how Jesus gave up his life so we could live and I began to change. I realized I couldn’t love God and despise His creation. I prayed for Jesus to show me how to love people.

slide fam sm
The Gunderson family

I’ve been a mother eleven years this December, learning how to love, surrender my agenda and the perfectionist tendencies, and grow to a place where I no longer want a different life. Isaiah 58:10 says to spend yourself. And as I studied God’s selfless character, I realized that’s how I want to be.

I delivered a little boy, my fifth child, at our home in the woods and I knew that our family wasn’t complete. God revealed over the next year and a half, His plan for further growing our family to include internationally adopted children. We’re currently in the process of adopting a 5 and 7 year old brother and sister from Ethiopia. She wants to be a judge when she grows up and he wants to be a runner. The journey toward them is immense and the heart change has taken me a lifetime but I no longer want out. I want to surrender to Christ’s strength and lean on him so I can spend myself loving the least of these.

Don’t forget to stop by Jessie’s blog to read about how you can help the Gunderson family bring home their two newest members of their family and in doing so, have a chance to win!

Posted in devotionals, guest posts

Grabbing the Moment

Penny Zeller, Christian Author

I am excited to have a special guest writer on my blog today – my friend, Jennifer Slattery. Today, Jennifer shares with us of the importance of spending time with the Lord.  Be blessed as you read her fantastic post!

Grabbing the Moment

By Jennifer Slattery

Something happens during the teen years. That child that used to follow you around with wide-eyes and constant questions disappears and an independent, resident expert on all areas of life takes their place. Or at least, that’s the way things are in the Slattery home–most days.

It’s almost comical how far the tables have turned. My doting little princess is growing up and now I’m the one following her around, bombarding her with questions, hoping to find a way into that ultra-independent heart. Which makes those rare moments when my adult-sized, emotionally-childish teen curls up beside me, special. A stop-all-time-and-grab-the-moment-with-both-hands special.

One morning, before my daughter left for school, she curled up on the couch beside me. We sat for a good ten minutes, not saying anything. As I held her, my mommy instincts took over and I had an urge to protect, even though there was nothing to protect her from. I didn’t want her to do anything for me. I didn’t need her to say any magical words. All I wanted was her. And I could have sat there indefinitely.

She left and I turned to my to-do list. After four days zonked out in bed with the flu, it had quadrupled. The house was a mess and laundry was piled so high I was ready to send out avalanche warnings. But another voice called just as urgently, although much softer. In fact, it was just the faintest whisper. If I chose, I probably could have ignored it. Even convinced myself I didn’t hear it. But somehow that tender moment with my daughter had opened my heart, reminding me of another parent recently forgotten.

In Isaiah 6:5 I hear the tender heart of an ever-pursuing father in God’s words, “I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for Me. I said, ‘Here I am, here I am.”

And in Isaiah 65:12, “For when I called, you did not answer. When I spoke, you did not listen.”

Only this time I did. I ignored my to-do list, let the clutter piled around my house wait, turned on some praise music and grabbed my Bible. And I could have sat there in my Father’s arms, indefinitely. He didn’t need me to do anything. I didn’t need to say any magical words. All He wanted was me. It was one of those stop-all-time-and-grab-the-moment-with-both-hands experiences.

Jennifer Slattery writes for Christ to the World Ministries, the ACFW Journal, The Christian Pulse, Internet Cafe Devotions, and Jewels of Encouragement.  She loves to hear from her readers at http://jenniferslatterylivesoutloud.com

Posted in author interviews, book giveaways, guest posts

And the winner is…

Well, actually, we have two winners! Drumroll please…

The winner of John Hileman’s book Messages is Linda!

And the winner of Laura Hilton’s book A Harvest of Hearts is C.C. Almon!

Thank you to everyone who entered! Winners, you will be notified by the authors about winning and CONGRATULATIONS!

Don’t forget to visit every Thursday for great author interviews, giveaways, and guest posts. Here’s a sneak peek at what’s coming up in the near future…

Thursday, October 20 – Author Stephanie Shott

October 27 – Author K. Dawn Byrd

November 3 – Author Amanda Beth

November 10 – Author Jo Huddleston

Also coming up next…

Monday, October 24 – Movie Monday – another awesome movie review for your family!

Tuesday, October 25 – How to know you’re a writer of historical fiction (my humor post)

Monday, October 31 – Movie Monday