Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Books, Books and More Books

Hello! My name is Jerralea, and I am a book-lover.

My earliest memories involve books. I spent many an hour lost in the pages of a book. In fact, my mother used to joke the only way she could get my nose out of a book was to mention the word, "Pepsi," and my head would pop up and say, "Are we having some?"

Over the years, I have written extensively about some of my favorite books. For previous posts about favorite books, see Books I Read Again and Again, You Should Read These, and if you are interested in childhood books, this post: A Few of My Favorite Things.

At this season of my life, I have so much going that I really do not get to read for pleasure anymore and that makes me very sad. 

However, I am currently in a couple of book launch teams and would like to discuss those with you.

First up is "All the Pretty Things, My Broken Hallelujah" by Edie Rudder Wadsworth. I first came across Edie's blog, lifeingrace, and I was immediately mesmerized. I had to go back and read every post. This was no small feat as I was going back years, but I had to read. Every. Single. Word.

Although our stories are not the same, there were a lot of amazing similarities; and so when I heard Edie's book was coming out and there would be a launch team, I signed up immediately.

Y'all!

I could not put the book down. My poor husband got frozen pizza for dinner that night. (So glad it wasn't a day when the girls and the grands were coming for dinner!)

Maybe alcoholism never touched your family, but if anyone has ever burned their own life down, you can relate to Edie.

Photo credit Tina Rhea


Some favorite quotes from the book:

“There ain’t nothin’ I wouldn’t do for that girl o’ mine, and I aim to show her what kind of daddy she’s got.”


"No matter what the circumstances, the time Daddy and I spent together felt like time that stood still."


"My mama might have been alone in the world, but she was a spitfire of epic proportions when she needed to be."


"I found healing in the truth--not by hiding my story but by finally finding the courage to share it."

I'm sure you will hear more about Edie's book from me in days to come!

The next book I'd like to share with you is Shelly Miller's Rhythm of Rest, Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World.

She had my interest when she asked the question, "Secretly dream about a sick day to lay at home and read all day?" Ummm... yes!
  
I thought it so interesting that her book would come out in 2016 since my One Word for 2016 is rest. I'm needing a lot of help with the topic. God must have arranged this!

One of the concepts I've been struggling with is the idea of Sabbath because those of us in church leadership do not get much rest, if any, on Sundays. Shelly is all about Sabbath and shares much about the idea of Sabbath being a date with your beloved:

"Sabbath is a weekly dinner date with Jesus, a time set apart when we give him our undivided attention."

I'm still in the middle of reading her book but you can be sure to hear much more on the Journey about Rhythms of Rest.


~~~


I'm sharing this post at The Loft because the topic is books!

The Loft: All about Books

THEWelcome to The Loft, a link-up for Christian bloggers. Today, we will be discussing books. I'm looking forward to the conversation!


We are a topic driven link-up, which means that we link posts that pertain to the topic of the week. Posts that are not on topic will be deleted.
 

We will offer a month's worth of topics each week so you can plan and prepare for a post that helps you enter into the conversation.

Here are the topics for the next month:

  • August 24 ~ Books 
  • August 31 ~ Pot Luck 
  • September 7 ~ Labor/Work  
  • September 14 ~ Beauty 


Just a reminder that the link-up goes live on Wednesday morning at 5 a.m. and will stay live until the following Monday at 5 p.m.
 

 
The Loft
If you link up at The Loft, please do not link-and-run. We want to create conversation and community, therefore, we ask that if you linkup one post, please visit two others. There are some beautiful people who link-up each week, and visiting their posts is the best way to get to know them.

Now, it is time to get to today's link-up. Our prompt today is 
BOOKS. You will find the linky at the bottom of my post. Enjoy the fellowship at The Loft.    

#TheLoft

The Loft

 
Now it is time to linkup!


Friday, August 19, 2016

Grateful

It has long been my practice to participate in a little practice on Fridays, joining in with other bloggers to name 5 highlights of their week. This time of reflection encourages mindfulness - remembering and knowing what happened during my week as well as an opportunity to express gratitude to my Father who arranges my footsteps on this Journey.

I've missed this practice for about a month now. Life seems to be whizzing by at roller-coaster speed right now but I do not want to get away from counting my blessings.

I'm grateful for all the little highlights that come my way!

I'm on a couple book launch teams and I've been blessed to read some awesome content recently! I've finished Edie Rudder Wadsworth's book, All The Pretty Things, and enjoyed it so much. Her story grips me because some parts of it sound like my story. Actually, I think a lot of us can relate to needing a life of healing and forgiveness even if our story is not the same as hers.

And then, I'm excited about reading Shelly Miller's upcoming book, Rhythms of Rest. I'm just getting started reading it and can already tell it's going to be challenging me.  Although she speaks to having a weekly Sabbath, it's also about finding rest in the midst of your life. I love something she said this week,

 "Preparation in Sabbath is much like planning to be with someone we love. "

I remember all those years ago when Jim and I were dating. I always found time to get ready when I knew we were going to be together. What if I made preparing to meet with God like preparing to go on a date? Revolutionary thought - at least to me!

This week was a super-busy week with tons of things to do but I'm thankful to have a couple spots of fellowship in the midst of it:  a ladies meeting on Monday in Missouri with some wonderful friends eating at what may be one of my new favorite places - My Daddy's Cheesecake. (It wasn't all carbs though ... I had an awesome Mandarin Orange Grilled Chicken Salad that was phenomenal!); and on Tuesday, a girl cousins' reunion in Illinois. It's always fun to see the Lively girls and a ton of other people I don't know! I keep requesting a time of introduction so I can keep who's who straight in my mind. Next year, I'm threatening to bring name tags.

This week, I made a purchase that enriched my life.

It cost $9.74

The Ozark Trail cup, comparable to a Yeti, but costs 1/3 the price. One morning, at 6:45 a.m. I put ice and water in my cup. I refilled the water (leaving the same ice) three times during the day. At 9:15 p.m. I was driving home, and noticed there was still some ice in the cup.





Yeah, it's kind of a big deal. (This weekend, I'm going to test it with McDonald's Sweet Tea - my weekly indulgence. I cannot wait!)

I've not had much time with my twinsies this week - I will see them tonight, though! - but as I was giving them good-bye kisses they both said, "I luh you." That's a highlight for any week!


I'm sharing this post of gratitude at Susanne's Friday Fave Five community, and with Grace and Truth at Arabah Joy's, and Crystal's #FreshMarketFriday.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Social Media at The Loft

THEWelcome to The Loft! We are thrilled you chose to spend some of your precious "on-line" time with us. Today our topic is social media, and I'm look forward to the discussion this topic will generate. What's your opinion? Please share with us!

We are a topic driven link-up, which means that we link posts that pertain to the topic of the week. Posts that are not on topic will be deleted.

 
We will offer a month's worth of topics each week so you can plan and prepare for a post that helps you enter into the conversation.

Here are the topics for the next month:
  • August 17 ~ Social Media 
  • August 24 ~ Books 
  • August 31 ~ Pot Luck 
  • September 7 ~ Labor/Work 


The Loft

Just a reminder that the link-up goes live on Wednesday morning at 5 a.m. and will stay live until the following Monday at 5 p.m.

If you link up at The Loft, please do not link-and-run. We want to create conversation and community, therefore, we ask that if you linkup one post, please visit two others. There are some beautiful people who link-up each week, and visiting their posts is the best way to get to know them.

Now, it is time to get to today's link-up. Our prompt today is SOCIAL MEDIA. You will find the linky at the bottom of my post. Enjoy the fellowship at The Loft.       

#TheLoft

The Loft

Now it is time to linkup!



Monday, August 15, 2016

Rooted, Grounded and Successful





A fruitful life is the result of living godly a godly life centered in reading and meditating on the Word.

You'll be fruitful because you will have a continual supply of nourishment, just as a tree planted by water always has something to drink.

When you are feeding on the Word, there is always Living Water to refresh you.

You are rooted and grounded in God.  You won’t dry up – you’re here to stay.

A fruitful grounded believer is also a prosperous believer. (I'm not just talking about money, I'm talking about a rewarding life.) Why is that? Because you will only be asking according to the Father's will. And every time you ask according to His will, the answer is yes.

Why wait? Open the Book and drink deeply.

~~~

I'm sharing this today at #SmallWonder because the wonder is, He has made provision for us to be fruitful and successful!

I'm also sharing about Psalm 1:3 at Word of God Speak.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Singing in the Sun

Today, as I was driving to work, I passed one of the shelter care homes and noticed something unusual.

A man was sitting in a lawn chair, but not facing the road. He had his back to passersby, and he was gesturing with his arms and moving back and forth. At first, I wondered if he might be having a seizure but as I drew nearer, I realized he was singing. His face pointed to the sun and as he waved his hands I realized he was joyful.




I had never seen anyone in the yard of this home in the 12 years I've been driving this route. I admit to curiosity. Is he a new patient? If not, why has he picked a very warm summer morning to sit outside? What was he singing? Why is he so happy?

Everyone's got a story. I will likely never know this man's story but I can surmise a few things.

He's probably an early riser. He was outside before 8 a.m.

He has music in his soul. He must be passionate about it because he used his whole body to sing, out there in front of God and everybody. *Smile.

He was in his own world. Most people watch traffic go by, but he seemed to not know anyone else was around.

The fact he had his face pointed to the sun made me wonder if he was communing with God?

I've been trying to incorporate a quiet time into my morning routine; maybe, I'm doing it wrong and should come outside and commune with God in the sun like this man!

Everyone's got a story. Even though I'll never know his, just a glimpse of his life touched mine today. My takeaway from this little story is this: You don't have to say a word to share.


Mama’s Losin’ It

This post was written in response to Writer's Workshop prompt #4. Write a blog post the ends with the word: share. Join us at Kat's blog, Mama's Losin' It.


Also, I'm sharing this post with the community at #FreshMarketFriday because today I experienced a fresh way of looking at life, and at the Word of God Speak link-up. I'm blessed to share at all of these wonderful blogs.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

God's Will

There are some things we just know are the will of God. We know it is His will everyone turn from their sinful life to Him. He extends His hand of mercy patiently waiting for us to come to our senses.


The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)

In Galatians, Paul tells us the same thing:  "He might deliver us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father

And so, we can pray for people to come to a saving knowledge of Christ knowing God's will on the matter.

You can pray with confidence.


Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)

But what about other questions and concerns that arise in this life? How do I know God's will on those issues?

I once worked with a youth pastor who would lament, "If only God would send me a FAX telling me what to do!"

The truth is He sort of did ... not a FAX, but a wonderful collection of 66 books written by some 40 Holy Spirit-inspired men. God's holy Word tells us everything we need to know to live godly.

The specific answer to what you need to know might not be spelled out in scripture but if you are constantly in the Word you will find principles that will help you make right decisions.




Today, I'd like to direct your attention to something that IS spelled out in scripture as being the will of God for you to do. You'd like to know what that might be, right? I mean, as humans, we are all about doing something and crossing it off our list and getting brownie points for following the rules! (Or am I the only one?)

Here it is, in one simple statement that applies to all believers:


"In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

Notice it doesn't say FOR everything give thanks, but IN everything. For example, I can't be thankful for a stomach virus, but I can be thankful for medicines, for sick days where I could be home and nurse my sickness, or I can be thankful it passes quickly ... You get the idea. 

Having an attitude of gratitude makes all the difference in life. You can live life being torn up with anxiety worrying about what to do, or you can find things to be thankful for in spite of the challenges, trusting God to work everything out for your good.

It's your choice!


The Loft

I'm sharing this post at The Loft. Come join me!

I'm also linking up at Grace and Truth. Come see who else is posting!