Posted in God's Lessons, Spiritual beliefs

Honor Part Two

Honor blog post

 

 

 

I’m back! And I thank you for hanging around to read this. If you’re new, you can go read this post – Honor Part One. :)

I’m back for the topic of honor. What I started out for….I got a little distracted. ;) But a good kind of distracted!

So yes, honor. It means a lot. Whether we know it or not, when we get up in the morning and go about our day, we will do things that either bring honor or shame – thoughts, actions, everything.

Usually, we’re only thinking about our name – keeping a good reputation, making sure others see us as honorable, making sure our actions and thoughts bring ourselves honor. It’s automatic, but it doesn’t have to be. We don’t really represent ourselves at all. When we became a follower of Christ, we became a new creation – His Creation. No longer are we our own person – we never were really. We represent our parents, our family, our lives here on earth, but more importantly, what we need to realize is that we actually represent our Heavenly Father. We are royalty and of Noble Birth because of Him. So we represent Him. We carry His banner, and it no longer is a case of “I” but rather “Him”.  I’m sure we’ve heard this before. We’re Christ’s ambassadors. But we are even more than that, because we are grafted into His line – we are children of the King. There is royal blood in us. So, we really do represent our Father. He’s in us. Our mindset is changed – we no longer are just of ourselves; we carry some pretty heavy blood in us! That is an honor to us.

We don’t deserve Him. He deserves us (yep, He does! Keep reading), and so He deserves the honor we give Him. He bought us, He paid for us, and He wants us. As a friend of ours said, “When you buy something, don’t you expect to get it?!” Yes, of course! If I buy something, I want to receive it. I want to own it, because I paid for it. It’s mine now.

So we are to Him. By Jesus’ death, our sins are forgiven and we are redeemed by Yahweh, our Heavenly Father. He desires us beyond anything we can comprehend. He has called us by His name, we are His.

So, do we want to bring Him honor or ignore His gift and live in shame? I know by choice, we’d choose honor. It’s our hearts cry to be met by the Father. And He will meet us. Seek and ye shall find.

But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art Mine.

When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee.

Since thou wast precious in my sight, thou hast been honourable, and I have loved thee: therefore will I give men for thee, and people for thy life.

Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west;

I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth;

Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him. – Isaiah 43 1-7 (emphasis my own)

Posted in God's Lessons, Spiritual beliefs

Honor Part One

Honor blog post

 

 

I feel wholly unequipped to be writing this post. Why? Because I’m just learning myself. I don’t even have all the information on it. But God’s teaching and guiding always, and I want to honor Him.

So, what’s honor? What do we think of when we hear this word?

MUSHU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:

(Via Pinterest)

Hehe, yeah, that comes to mind for me. And ironically, before my family came upon this lesson of Honor and its importance, we had literally JUST watched “Mulan” and were discussing their emphasis and reliance on honor. Not really ironic, so much as timely. God does that a lot.

 

Okay, so back to the topic at hand. I’m just going to jump to it.

If we are children of God, He is our Father, and if He is our Father, we ought to want to bring Him honor. We honor Him. In everything. Or else we shame Him.

Honor is not the same as salvation. I want to say that right away.

And by the UTMOST graciousness and lovingness of our Father in Heaven, He has covered our shame – 100%. We’re born in shame. We need a Savior.

Some personal time: I lived out of a spirit of denial for a good part of my life. I didn’t want to face that some bad things have happened. Because it’s not fair. It’s injustice! I don’t want to be broken, dirty, shameful. Nope. None of us do. But you know what? This…wait for it….is a glorious place to be. Because you know what? Read these verses:

 

“And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Luke 5:31-32

If a person is “righteous” without Jesus, they don’t need a Savior do they?

So, if we’re broken, if we’re dirty, if Satan has stripped us of our honor, then…don’t we need a Savior? YES!! And how wonderful is that? We need One, but the good news is we do not have to sit in this place of need – we already have One!!!! He’s ALREADY covered our shame that we were born with (remember, we were “born and shapen in iniquity”), and has REDEEMED us. Wow. I feel so much passion at this. I feel like I am finally getting it. Yes, yes, I know the awe-ing message of the cross. I know its magnificence, what God has done. I have gloried in it. But. But now I’ve faced my shame, I’ve seen my need. Not just seen and ignored, but seen and desired something different. Desired to let go of injustices. They go to the cross. It’s already nailed there.

Jesus is all. Jesus is enough. What He did on that cross – that did it all! Do you hear me? Don’t forget this message. Don’t go on living without it. We were dirty. We were toyed with by Satan. But that is not the end of the story! Oh no, not at all! That is just the beginning. Because God sees everything  – time isn’t a thing to Him. He knew what Satan was going to from the very start, and He knows our wills. So Satan temps us, he defiles us in any way he can, he tried to strip us of that robe of righteousness. But God says “That’s okay. Because I’ve already provided a New Way. I’ve already created streams in the desert. Will you not see it? I’ve given My SON. His blood for yours. I have redeemed you, My peculiar – special – people. I have bought and paid for you. You are Mine. I have conquered death, Satan is a defeated foe. Believe Me, My Child. I have called you precious in My sight.”

Wow. Wow. Wow.

I may be getting off topic. That happens. And so you know what? I’m going to do a Part Two Post. Where I’ll get back to the message of Honor. Till then, readers. You are loved.

 

 

 

 

Posted in animals, Books, God's Lessons, Random babblings

Upa-Data

Update. That’s what the title means. XD I can just be weird, because I can.

So… hi.

Me in front of audience trying to greet my friend

(gif from Pinterest. No, we don’t watch Frozen, but it was the only gif I could find of someone waving. ^.^ Plus, I do like Anna. And Kristoff. Definitely Kristoff.)

It’s been a while, my poor neglected blog. But sometimes I just run out of inspiration/energy to post…so I do apologize. I’m not sure I really have anything interesting to say, so this may be exceedingly random.

I have posts I need to get done – a review book *still* (I keep forgetting about it!!), a tag or two, and probably something else I am forgetting. But here I am doing a random post. A Life post. Because that’s what this is. Life.

So, what have I been up to, ay? Ummm….it’s summer, it’s hot, there’s always something do to, and when there isn’t, I’m chilling. Reading some, but mostly trying to rest. Okay, so I don’t always do so good at it, but I am trying.

“And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”...yes, God has given me that verse recently.

I hope and want to chose that which is needful – Jesus. Sitting at His feet. Giving Him my worry and stress.

 

 

I’ve been trying to keep up a constant journal, but have recently been slacking. And that’s okay. I don’t need to keep on top of everything all of the time.

Yes, I’ve been reading, but not as fast. I’ve tried a couple new books, but the past few haven’t been as satisfying. Right now I’m simply reading a Dear America, because I wanted something that wasn’t severely emotionally-draining.

I did recently try “A Time to Die” by Nadine Brandes finally. Shortly put, it wasn’t for me. And if you’re a soft/sensitive-spirit kind of person, I’d say it’s not for you either.

 

Really, there hasn’t been a great deal of time to read – or rather, God has been showing me that it’s not as important. He hit me with the hard question of “Why do you read?” Umm…I wanted to say “Because I enjoy it”, but that’s only half true. Eeek, hard to admit, but the truth is, reading can be an addiction. I pass it off, because “it’s fun! People read, it’s a good thing”, and to an extent, it is. Reading is amazing! But priorities matter. Addiction matters. Because it puts it above God. It becomes an idol, and I don’t want that. I don’t want reading to become who I am. To become more important than my Savior. So if I sit on the couch and just breathe, that’s alright. In fact, that’s great. God-time is so much more important than reading. Than getting things done. And I’m not saying I do this all the time now. I wish I did. But if you know me, you know that doing absolutely nothing is hard for me –  I often have to force myself to really be still. I want to be doing, not be sitting still.  God’s working on me though! And hallelujah for that. He’s working in all of us. We need only let Him.

 

Chores consume a great deal of our time….we have plenty of outside animals to keep us occupied. And recently, we’ve had to deal with the reoccurring skunk problem. One was in the barn the other evening – of course Dad had to dispatch it, but it still stinks out there, and we know there’s got to be more causing the horrible smell because the skunk we dealt with was several days ago, and it still smells like it just happened…ick!

 

And as random and jumbled as this post may be, I’m leaving it off here. Time for bed!

What’s new in your life, dear reader? Thank you for reading this post. I appreciate you!

 

Posted in Bethany House, Blogging For Books, Book reviews, BookCrash, Booklook Review, Books, God's Lessons, Litfuse, Moody Book Review, NetGalley Book Review, reading, Revell Reads, Reviews, update

An announcement of sorts

Good day to you, my much appreciated blog-followers! :)

As the title states, I do have an announcement to share with you all. And it’s rather large, in the sense that I didn’t think that I’d do this. But I’m content with this decision, because I know it is directed by God and He has shown Himself SO awe-some in every sense of the word. So my news is this:

 

I will no longer be reviewing books at the rapid pace that I have been – that I’ve been known for. In fact, I’ve gotten off several of the Book Review Programs. I’m taking a Sabbatical. (such a fun word, is it not?). The reason for this, in short, is that it is what the Lord has guided me to recently. It’s definitely time for a break. See, when I read and review books I am analyzing the book so I can justly review it, but by doing this constantly, I have formed a habit of being analytical in everything – and that is leaning on my own understanding, not God’s. It’s thinking through every little thing when I should have faith instead.  And I want to lean wholly on the Lord’s understanding instead of my own, and so I am obeying Him in this step back from reviewing.

 

Sabbatical

 

Truthfully, it is a relief. Yes, I have loved this season of reviewing – it has been a great experience! But I am now ready for a new season. I will still be reading (of course!) but at a more leisurely pace, and I won’t necessarily being posting reviews of every book, as the amount of review books I receive will be just about nonexistent.

However, I will be finishing out with the reviews I have already committed to, so there are a couple yet to come. And I’m not banishing myself from all book reviews, just really stepping back.

 

It’s a big change for me, I’ll be the first to admit it. I am a reviewer. But now, it is: I was a reviewer. My life doesn’t need to hinge on reviewing, and a breather will be nice!

I’ll still do my best to keep up with my blog here, and I’m still apart of some blog tours coming up. I’m just also going to be doing a lot of “de-stressing” which means de-cluttering, etc.

 

So, here’s to a new season! Thank you for understanding. :)

 

 

Posted in Bethany House, Book reviews, God's Lessons, Reviews

Release day! Book Review: “Like Never Before” by Melissa Tagg

Today is the release day for the lovely book “Like Never Before” by Melissa Tagg! And I’m so pleased to be able to share my review with you. Being on Melissa’s launch team has been amazingly fun and a great experience! So, without further ado, here is my review:

 

5 Stars//Review copy from author and publisher//Contemporary Romance fiction//Book 2 in The Walker Family series//One Word: Adorable

“A dying newspaper. An intriguing mystery. And a love they didn’t see coming.

Maple Valley became Amelia Bentley’s haven after her heart and her dreams of a family were shattered. But her new life as a newspaper editor is shaken when the small-town paper is in danger of closing. Her one hope: A lead on an intriguing story that just might impress the new publisher…if only she knew who he was.

After his biggest campaign success yet, widowed speechwriter Logan Walker now has the chance of a lifetime–a spot on a presidential campaign. But his plans are interrupted when he finds out he’s inherited his hometown newspaper. He travels home intent on selling the paper and spending some much-needed time with his young daughter before making the leap into national politics.

But instead of a quick sale and peaceful break from his hectic career, Logan finds himself helping Amelia chase her story. She’s scrappy, but wounded. He’s dependable, but lost. They may butt heads more than expected, but a series of leads on Maple Valley’s quirky unsolved mystery is just the start of the sparks that fly in the office and in their hearts.”

My Review:
This has been the first book I’ve had the pleasure of reading by the lovely Melissa Tagg, but it most certainly will not be my last!
“Like Never Before” is truly one of the most adorable-est books I’ve ever read. And what helps make it so fabulous is Melissa – yes indeed. She is one of the most refreshing and happy people I’ve ever met, and her excitement is contagious!! Being on her “TaggTeam” has been an amazingly fun experience. And truth be told, I was so eager to join her team because of her. Every post I’d read on her facebook and her blog was inspiring, and exciting, and encouraging. She is truly an uplifting person. Okay, I’ll move on from gushing about the author to gushing about the book itself now. :)
So. Like Never Before is written so amazingly well, and captured me right from the start. It begins so cleverly, and the characters are utterly love-able. I really loved Amelia and Logan and little Charlie!! So sweet. Another added thing that guaranteed my love for this book is that Amelia has a love for “The News” – she’s the editor of the town’s newspaper. And some might already know this, but I’ve been in love with the idea of reporter/newspaper since I was little. :) And the Amelia Earhart thread!!! That made me happy instantly. Another one of my childhood obsessions. I always loved AE and chose her for homeschool reports, etc. :)
Logan is a fantastic character, and yes, he’s as love-able as Melissa has been saying he is!
And the plot is oh-so good, and the faith-thread is great. There were definitely parts that really hit me. One of my favourite verses was quoted frequently (“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” – Isaiah 43:19) and reading it came at a great time – I very much needed to hear that and  know that it is hope.
“Maybe her wasteland wasn’t a place, and her river wasn’t a job or a person or a plan. But simply a hope.”
Really beautiful. All of this. This book is beautiful. I don’t read a ton of books that are labeled “contemporary romance” but this…yes, I will read this over and over again. The romance was sweet, and cleaner than some romance I’ve read in Biblical fiction even. So very sweet.
It was a refreshing book, and I highly recommend it! You won’t be disappointed!!
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author/publishers in exchange for my honest review which I have given.
Posted in God's Lessons, Spiritual beliefs

Guys: Strong AND Gentle?

I know I am no expert on guys by any means. I do not claim to be. But I have come to notice some things. And my question of observation today is:

Where is the middle ground?

I’ve seen many men who are either at one extreme or the other. Which extremes are these, you ask? Well the extremes of being TOO gentle or not gentle enough. From what I have observed, either guys think they have to be ALL tough and show no gentleness of heart, or on the other side, they are perhaps too “in touch with their emotions”. Now, let me say that I am NOT saying that men should not show any emotion – not so! But showing emotions and being…”girly” are two different things. I would like to see men with a middle ground. One being strong, while still gentle. A man who is willing to cry when his heart is pricked, one who has a heart for the Lord, but one who also is strong of heart and can lead and simply be a man. To quote Minnie from “Larkrise to Candleford” – “Men are better when they’re men, aren’t they, Ma’am?” ^.^

I see guys who act more like girls in their show of excitement over things and get all “fangirl-y” and are often into…weird, girly things, like My Little Pony for example. And of course they can enjoy things just as girls can, but in a guy-like manner. Guys can sometimes seem more feminine than manly, and that saddens me because the Lord has called them to great things. He created men and woman so uniquely, and I want us to act like that. Let women be women and men be men.

And then I’ve also seen guys who are so closed off to anything that would be near to a soft heart, and I don’t agree with that either. We must have mold-able hearts for God to work with. A heart that is open to God, open to His leading, and strong in God’s guidance. Gentleness doesn’t have to mean weak. In fact it means the opposite. God’s gentleness makes us strong!

“Thou hast also given me the shield of Thy salvation: and Thy right hand hath holden me up, and Thy gentleness hath made me great.” Psalm 18:35

It is by God’s gentleness that makes us great, and I think gentleness is an important trait in all of us – even men. I don’t think that means men have to be ‘soppy’. Middleground, people, middle ground.

So, if there are any guys reading this, my message is this: Be who God has created you to be. Be a man of courage, of strength, of His gentleness. Be a man. :)

Posted in Chuck Black, God's Lessons, Pinterest

All is Love

Happy Valentine’s Day. :) I don’t really celebrate this holiday or give it much ‘stock’ myself, but it does bring to mind ‘love’ and ‘romance’ doesn’t it?

Pretty much my life as a whole. Unless they want to hear about what book I'm reading.

Haha, I do like to joke about my single-ness, but in truth I am not actually worried about it. Because I want the right man, not just a boyfriend.

Today I want to share something with you, doesn’t matter if you’re female, or male, single, or married, etc. This is for everyone:

You may be wondering why I am sharing The Articles of the Code (which is from Chuck Black’s books “The Knights of Arrethtrae” and “The Kingdom Series”) on Valentine’s Day. What does this have to do with love or romance? Well…quite a bit actually. I have this poster on my wall, and as I was reading it the other day, something hit me – these words are not only applicable to how I want to live my life, but what I want to look for in a future spouse. I want a man who will honor the King (our Lord) with his whole life and serve Him as God only. I want him to hold truth, justice, and honor as important. I want him to have a servants heart, always willing to serve, and ultimately living for the King above all else.  I don’t want him to abandon me – I want us to work side by side in all things. I want him to persevere in all fervency in knowing the Lord and fighting evil, and leading me and our family to do the same.

Every trait on that poster I want my future husband to have, and I also want to possess such admirable traits.

I am putting this to a spouse, but these traits can also be applied to our everyday life, no matter who we are, no matter what our situation is.

And any single young women reading this, I want to say to you: don’t give up. Don’t settle. If God wants you to marry, He will provide a way. Don’t be afraid if it takes longer than you would like – He hasn’t forgotten you, I give you my word! He will bring that right young man into your lives at the right time if that is His will. Be open to Him and He will guide you. He loves you more than any man ever will and will provide for you. If He wants you married, He will bring the right one to you. Trust Him. I know it’s hard. I know it can be scary, but please, wait for His best.

Also remember that no mortal man is perfect. God’s best for us will be perfect for us. That doesn’t mean he will be perfect – neither are we! But that he will be right for us just as we are right for them. :)

 :

May you all feel treasured by our Heavenly Father today and always!! His love is everlasting! <3

 

 

*First and third picture used from Pinterest; I claim no right to them

**The Articles of the Code belongs to Chuck Black, used here with permission. Please visit his website here: www.kingdomseries.com

The photo of The Articles of the Code used with permission came from this page where you may purchase your own copy: www.kingdomseries.com/page20.html