Friday, October 31, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
But we are there because of God speaking to Tony's heart.
The Beatitudes don't end with Matthew 5:12. Jesus continues to speak for another thirty-six verses. In fact, He explains them further and the opposite of living according to His words.
Jesus says this: "Here's another way to put it: You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We're going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I'm going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I'm putting you on a light stand. Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
This verse challenges me. Does it you? How do we let our light shine? Does it mean I always smile, never disagree, never share my struggles or successes?
Light exposes things, no? If the light of Jesus in me shines, does it not overcome darkness, or expose what's done in darkness.
Walk into a room and flip on a light. Everything his exposed. If the room is neat, we are happy. "How lovely." If the room is a mess, we moan, "Ew, this is a mess."
We've got to come to a place of maturity Church where we can say, "Hmm, this is a mess, let me help you."
Instead, we often feel bad for exposing sin, shut off the light and leave.
Jesus is saying, "Shine! So God can get the glory!" How does He get the glory? People's lives are changed by Him. They are saved and cleaned up, delivered.
Meanwhile, we should walk in a manner worthy of our Savior. Worthy of the Cross He bore for our sins and redemption.
I'm still trying to figure out how to let my light shine. I ask Jesus for understanding, for insight. I want to be a mature believer. I've been saved 41 years. It's time to grow up. ;)
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Friday, October 17, 2008
"In this sequel to Let Them Eat Cake, Byrd again entertains with descriptions of delectable food and, this time, with exquisite details of France as well. Foodies will delight in this novel, and anyone who adores romance will warm to the story. It's easy to identify with Lexi's struggles in life, because they mirror so much of what everyone experiences, no matter what their age." Romantic Times Book Club Review
Lexi Stuart is risking it all. Saying au revoir to the security of home, her job, and could-be boyfriend Dan, Lexi embarks on a culinary adventure in France to fulfill her life dream of becoming a
As she settles into her new home in the village of Presque le Chateau to study and work in a local bakery, her optimism meets resistance in the seemingly crusty nature of the people and culture around her.
Determined to gain her footing, she finds a church, meets a new friend, and makes the acquaintance of a child named Celine–as well as Celine's attractive, widowed father, Philippe. As Lexi lives her dream, the only thing she has to do is choose from the array in life's patisser ie display window. Lexi discovers that as she leans more on God the choices become a little clearer– and making them, well, c'est la vie!
Bon Appétit is the sequel to this year's , Let Them Eat Cake.
Hungry? Enter to win a gourmet baking basket www.sandrabyrd.com
To purchase book, please visit Amazon.com
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Thursday, October 09, 2008
About Bundle of Joy
Alicia Harris says she's happily married and expecting a baby - but only the last part is true. She can't bear to disappoint her grandfather by telling him she's two months away from single motherhood.
Then Grandpa Roger, still recovering from a heart attack, drops in unexpectedly to spend the holidays with Alicia and her husband, and to protect her beloved grandfather from unnecessary stress, Alicia needs to find a fill-in - fast.
Childhood friend Joe Palmero fits the bill and is willing to play along. Still, the longer they spend playing their parts, the closer Alicia and Joe come to discovering what love, faith and marriage truly mean.
Robin Lee Hatcher discovered her vocation as a novelist after many years of reading everything she could put her hands on, including the backs of cereal boxes and ketchup bottles.
The winner of the Christy Award for Excellence in Christian Fiction (Whispers from Yesterday), the RITA Award for Best Inspirational Romance (Patterns of Love and The Shepherd's Voice), two RT Career Achievement Awards (Americana Romance and Inspirational Fiction), and the RWA Lifetime Achievement Award, Robin is the author of over 55 novels, including Catching Katie, named one of the Best Books of 2004 by the Library Journal.
For more information about Robin and her books, visit her web site and her Write Thinking Blog, or find her on Facebook and become a Fan!
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
I've started reading it and love it. Siri really captured the ere with her wording, pace and description. Great fall read.
ABOUT THE BOOK
In a world of wealth, power, and privilege. . .love is the only forbidden luxury.
"Trust was a valuable commodity at court. Traded by everyone, but possessed by no one. Its rarity was surpassed only by love. Love implied commitment and how could any of us commit ourselves to any but the Queen? Love implied singularity and how could any of us benefit another if our affections were bound to one in exclusivity? Love was never looked for and rarely found. When it was, it always ended badly."
In Queen Elizabeth's court where men and women willingly trade virtue for power, is it possible for Marget to obtain her heart’s desire or is the promise of love only an illusion?
A riveting glimpse into Queen Elizabeth's Court. . .
Born with the face of an angel, Marget Barnardsen is blessed. Her father is a knight, and now she is to be married to the Earl of Lytham. Her destiny is guaranteed . . . at least, it would seem so. But when her introduction to court goes awry and Queen Elizabeth despises her, Marget fears she's lost her husband forever. Desperate to win him back, she'll do whatever it takes to discover how she failed and capture again the love of a man bound to the queen.
If you would like to read the first chapter of A Constant Heart, go HERE
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Siri Mitchell graduated from the University of Washington with a business degree and worked in various levels of government. As a military spouse, she has lived all over the world, including in Paris and Tokyo. Siri enjoys observing and learning from different cultures. She is fluent in French and loves sushi.
But she is also a member of a strange breed of people called novelists. When they’re listening to a sermon and taking notes, chances are, they’ve just had a great idea for a plot or a dialogue. If they nod in response to a really profound statement, they’re probably thinking, "Yes. Right. That's exactly what my character needs to hear." When they edit their manuscripts, they laugh at the funny parts. And cry at the sad parts. Sometimes they even talk to their characters.
Siri wrote 4 books and accumulated 153 rejections before signing with a publisher. In the process, she saw the bottoms of more pints of Ben & Jerry's than she cares to admit. At various times she has vowed never to write another word again. Ever. She has gone on writing strikes and even stooped to threatening her manuscripts with the shredder.
A Constant Heart is her sixth novel. Two of her novels, Chateau of Echoes and The Cubicle Next Door were Christy Award finalists. She has been called one of the clearest, most original voices in the CBA.
Siri can be reached through the Contact link on her Website
Monday, October 06, 2008
Elle is going on tour...be sure to stop by the WONDERFUL blogs on her schedule, see what they're saying about Elle and Heath and who knows, you might make a new friend! LOVE IT!
Oh, and leave a comment on this post for your chance to win a copy of Love Starts With Elle! I'll be announcing the winner on Friday 10/24!
Trish at Books for Moms
When the publisher sent me this book, my 13 year old daughter, Hannah, stole it from me. Then she read it. Then she gave it to her friend. It was being held hostage because the girls LOVED IT!!! It was that good!
So I am just now starting to read it, and can't wait to get more into the story. I am so impressed with Rachel's writing style and ability to pull readers in is amazing.
Martha at Our Familys Adventures
Take a look at this delightful book! It is a sweet story with some real life struggles in it, but for those of us who like a sweet romance, you will enjoy this book.
Sunny at Life in the Estrogen Ocean
I just have to say that I absolutely adored this book and it's predecessor, Sweet Caroline. I highly recommend both of them! There was so much I loved about this book, but I think the thing I loved most was the message that says by all means, fall in love, but don't fall in love blindly; things aren't always what they seem.
Deborah at A Cup of Joy
Ah…Love! So exciting! Confusing! Frustrating! And WONDERFUL! All at the same time. Finding the One can be heart wrenching, just ask Elle. She’ll tell you. I can identify with her.
Amy at The 160 Acre Woods
Boy oh boy! I was actually starting to feel my body tense up in this book! Will Elle do this? Or will she do that? oooooooh what is that girl thinking??? arghhh she had me biting my nails at a few points in the book!
Can you tell I liked it? Rachel Hauck did a fabulous job of drawing me into the characters and bringing life to her story. I loved that it was realistic, and was still a romantic dreamy kinda thang if that makes sense?
While there are a few parts that some people may not like (because it does portray the realistic sides of life and our slip ups). I have to say I totally loved this book because of it. It showed how God can work in our lives regardless of our situations and our desperation!
So if you’re looking for a fantastic Chick Lit to read you need this book!!! I seriously couldn’t put it down!
Melody at Kids, Cakes, Dishes, Laundry…In That Order
I mentioned in a previous post that I was reading two books at the same time. One I was reading for my morning quiet time, and this book was my fiction book that I was reading just for fun. I wish I could review them together, because as I was reading them at the same time, they were working together on my heart. As Elle was going through men-issues and learning to sit quietly and hear God's voice all at the same time, I was learning the importance of daily conversations with God. I was learning both to pour out my heart to Him and to sit quietly and listen to His...sounds easy doesn't it? As Elle finds out, it's not that easy, but it is well worth the effort!
Pam at Without Fear
First off, I loved everything about this book. I had already been privileged to read another of Rachel's novels, Sweet Caroline, and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Tasra at Real Women Scrap
Rachel's writing always has a way of weaving its way into your heart and mind. The characters become my friends and Elle is no different. The characters are people I want to meet and hang out with. They get under my skin and sometimes make me forget that they aren't real!
Margaret at The Cappuccino Life
Rachel Hauck provides wonderfully for such times with romances that go way beyond mushy feelings and dive into real problems with realistic characters. While I am still stubbornly not a romance fan, I do appreciate that Rachel Hauck’s stories are a far sight more realistic characters than a lot of Christian romance.
Sarah at Real Life
From the first chapter, I fell in love with Elle, and my heart felt every twirl on the roller coaster of her life in Beaufort South Carolina! I tore through the pages, as I was hoping and cheering for her. And by the end, I was in tears. It's a wonderful story of God's grace and provision for us.
Jamie at Surviving the Chaos
Here's a book that really struck a chord with me spiritually. I'm not sure if it was just a matter of the "right thing at the right time" or if it would do it again and again on many a reading, but boy could I relate to Elle. Not in the single-chick-whose-life-is-falling-apart way, but in the how-far-have-I-strayed-from-who-I-really-am-and-what-God-wants-from-me? way.
Miralee at Coming Home
I'm reading this second book in Rachel's series right now and LOVING IT! I thoroughly enjoyed her first book, Sweet Caroline, but I think this one is going to top it.
Christina at …And Everything Else
Amy at Amy’s Random Thoughts
Rachel Hauck is one of my favorite new authors. She is right behind Karen Kingsbury, love her. This is my 2nd book in a series and I am hooked. The first book was Sweet Caroline and these are must reads if you like good Christian Fiction. I want to get to know her characters. I want to live in the towns they do..Good Stuff.
Jill at Christian Work At Home Moms
Michelle at Edgy Inspirational Author
Melissa at Breath of Life
I've read one of Hauck's previous books, Georgia on Her Mind, and I shared that experience here. Hauck doesn't just write a good love story...she delves deeper into the characters and their struggles with life and faith.
Amy at Sprightly
Loved that this sweet story had such great spiritual depth! A must read!
Kate at A Simple Walk
This is the kind of book that make you sad to turn the last page. Rachel did such a fantastic job with character and plot development that I was 100% invested in the lives of Elle and Heath. I found myself unwilling to say goodbye to them when I saw the end of the book was near.
Joy at Five J's
My interest in Love Starts With Elle was also piqued when I read that the story takes Elle from the Lowcountry, where I used to live, to the Dallas area, where I now live, and back again. In addition, having been in the ministry for many years, I also related to Jeremiah, another of the main characters in the book who serves as a pastor of a very interesting (but unfortunately not very unusual) Dallas-area church. Obviously I felt connected to the book from the start. And I wasn’t disappointed.
Kathie at Strolling
It really touched my heart. Elle is charming, funny, and way too lacking in self-confidence (just like a lot of us). Her story made me remember that even as Christians it's much too easy to stray away from God, and how lovingly He is waiting for us to return.Read the book. You'll love it! And, hey, keep a watch out for feathers!
Julie at Booking Mama
I thoroughly enjoyed Elle's story; and I found the basic premise of LOVE STARTS WITH ELLE very interesting. However, what I most liked about this book were the characters in it. I absolutely adored Elle, but there were so many other terrific (and memorable) people in her life that added to this story. Elle was such a down-to-earth and very real woman to me. Despite her setbacks, she still managed to stay true to herself while also keeping a sense of humor. I enjoyed seeing Elle discover the power of prayer and learn to listen for God's word. I guess you could say that I liked being along on her spiritual journey.
Karen at Sky High View
I picked up Love Starts with Elle, expecting a light romantic read. I got romance, but so much more. Depth, spiritual truth, human frailty, creative gifts, and the power of God to heal and revive the human spirit.
Pattie at Fresh Brewed Writer
What I love about Rachel Hauck's books is that they're fun with substance. They have fun characters, with funny scenes, yet real-life struggles and faith lessons to learn.
Teresa at Joy in the Journey
I am thrilled to be part of Rachel Hauck's blog tour and let you know about her latest release, Love Starts With Elle.
Virginia at Book Reviews
Revka at Our Family Porch
This book captured my interest from the very beginning. Elle is the perfect heroine - spunky and sweet at the same time. All the characters in this story live and breathe. They are not some fluff figures created just to fill space. Their strengths and weaknesses are the same as mine, which enabled me to connect emotionally with the story. I wanted to see Elle respond in a certain way; I despised Jeremiah for his self-centered actions; I cheered for Heath because I saw into his heart. In short, I escaped into a make-believe world that was nearly as real as the reality in which I live.If you can't tell, I highly recommend this book. Inside its covers, you will find an enjoyable story that also contains important life lessons.
Lauren at 5 Minutes for Books
Love Starts with Elle is an enjoyable read. Because most of us have learned at one time or another that our plans and God's plans aren't always the same, Elle's journey is one that is very relatable.
Beth at The Witing Road
I enjoyed reading Love Starts With Elle. Rachel Hauck develops strong characters with believable conflict who don't always make predictable choices. I've come to look forward to my "visits" to the South Carolina low country.
Kristy at I Need to Read
From my current view on life, I have to say that I was quite impressed with how Rachel portrayed the grief process in Heath's life. Given that this is obviously fiction and in no way meant to be a manual on grief/bereavement, I didn't expect much in this department. However, for somebody who (as far as I can tell) hasn't lost a spouse, Rachel did a fantastic job in her portrayal of Heath and I found it a very interesting read.
Susan at Scribbles
Deep rich characters, some spiritual a-ha moments, a setting you can almost feel, and a romance to warm your heart.
Patty at Girlfriends in God
I highly recommend Rachel's book. She is one of my favorite authors.
Mindy at Ponderings of the Heart
I want to tell you, though, that is book is more than just a great love story. It spoke some great words from the Lord directly to my heart.
Tricia at Its Real Life
Laura at LightHouse Academy
The faith message in this book really reached out and touched me—a strong message from God that I needed to hear. I’m so glad that God brought this book into my life when He did.
Robin at Writing Between Sundays
Saturday, October 04, 2008
We killed the cable.
Sigh, exhale, sigh.
I do miss it today though 'cause I love college football and the Buckeyes play Wisconsin today. But the noise of entertainment was growing too loud in our souls.
Tony said to me, "I think I'm okay watching shows, (he likes Sci Fi) but how do I know it's not desensitizing our hearts in ways we're not aware of."
Notice how he always rains down a holiness point right in the middle of a flesh feast? :)
I'm not against television and movies, or college football, but we want to guard our affections. Bring down the outer noise and see if the still small voice of God isn't whispering something we can't hear because our souls are tuned to entertainment.
And really, is there ANY place more out of touch than Hollywood? I'm tired of them trying to tell me how to feel and believe, claiming to be more than they are to society.
WE ALL CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
It'll take a bit to get used to, but we've lived without a television before. And now there are so many shows on DVD we can just rent them and watch when it's convenient.
Besides, I have a book to write! It's due Nov 1 and I deleted 15K words this week, probably more but I won't admit it to myself for fear of tears and panic.
When that book is turned in, I have to start my own, stand alone book we want to release in the midst of the these other books I'm writing with someone.
So, I don't need television at the push of a button.
In other business, like music, you must get the Alisha Powell CD "Consider." It is AMAZING, fantastic, beautiful, fun, worshipful! She's been a worship leader in the International House of Prayer-KC for about ten years and her internship in humility, leading but not being recognized, learning to wait for her day to record shows in her music. I can't recommend it enough.
So, back to football. I can watch the game at the local Beef O'Brady's. ;D
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
On the second and fourth, we prayer walk and meet the community surrounding down town, asking how to pray for them. We mention the house church, but really want to be a source of encouragement and strength.
At 9:00, we meet at the coffee house and set up for dream interpretation. Again, we want to reach the community with light. We don't shove Jesus at anyone, but sincerely try to interpret a dream and if there is opportunity, speak of the One who created dreams, we do. Our prayer is Daniel 1:17.
Let me tell you, we've had some whopper dreams. Unbelievable. Guess what. God always gives us insight. You should see the faces of people brighten as we assure them the elements of the dream don't mean what they thought. Or, we move from interpretation to encouragement. Their eyes widen. We can see our words resonating in their hearts.
The coffee house is the typical coffee house - lots of groups meeting to talk, to discuss, dialog. The Wiccans used to meet at this coffee house, but have moved locations. They had their own infighting to deal with. College kids hang out there, people discussing every thing from dreams to politics.
The past two weeks there's been a gathering of people talking politics. Loudly.
Tony was reading a book while sitting next to them, and returned to our dream table and suggested, "Let's ask the Lord how we can meet them and love them."
We prayed, asking the Lord to open a door for us to love them.
God heard us. He opened the door. Now, it's up to us to hear His heart for her and love her. Who knows if we are not the only ambassador of Christ some of these people will encounter.
Oh, Lord, use me. Us use!
So, I learned a lesson of love and holiness from my hubby last night. He's good that way.