Interview with Stacey Thacker, Author of Threadbare Prayer

Life sometimes brings difficult situations or circumstances that can leave us feeling run-down, drained, worn-out, and threadbare. Illness, the death of a family member, the loss of a job, natural disasters, a pandemic. The events of this year have left us struggling in ways we cannot articulate. These are the times we most desperately need prayer, but they can also be the times we simply don’t have the words to form a prayer. How do you pray when you can’t find the words?

In Threadbare Prayer: Prayers for Hearts that Feel Hidden, Hurt, or Hopeless (Abingdon Press), Stacey Thacker presents 100 simple yet heartfelt devotions to guide readers on the days they don’t know what to pray. Each entry in this attractive, gift-worthy devotional contains a Bible verse, a brief thought, and a simple, concise prayer to encourage the reader’s heart.

Interview with Stacey

Q: What is a threadbare prayer?

A threadbare prayer is a simple prayer based on Scripture that is easy to remember. Sometimes we go through seasons when we are feeling hidden, hurt, or hopeless and want to pray, but we just don’t have the words. I’ve gone through those times and found focusing on one simple prayer at a time was the key to holding on to Jesus.

A threadbare prayer can also be something we whisper in our hearts because we don’t have the strength to voice them aloud for others to hear. In those quiet moments, we can be sure that Jesus isn’t threadbare at all, and He will hear us and hold us together.

Q: Tell us a little bit about your new book, Threadbare Prayer. Who did you write it for and how is it intended to be read?

Let’s begin with who I thought about when I was writing this book. I thought about my friends, women I know from college and bump into at church or online who are feeling discouraged, overwhelmed, desperate and broken. Right now, I think that describes a lot of women—they feel worn and like they are hanging by a thread.

At the core of her heart, I think a threadbare woman is determined not to put distance between herself and God—but to draw near, press in, and cling to the hem of his robe. She shouts her ache to Jesus who she knows is holding her heart.

This book is a way to do just that. I wrote it so we could all focus on the Word, honestly pour out our threadbare hearts, and hold on to Jesus. He does beautiful work in our broken places if we let Him.

Q: How did the idea for the book come about?

I started writing Threadbare Prayer in my journal, during my Bible study. They were, from the beginning, very personal. I shared a couple on my blog and social media, and my friends and readers all said, “This is your next book!” I was actually surprised, but I’ve learned to listen to my followers throughout the years! So, I started to be a little more intentional about writing and sharing them and began to think about what a book about threadbare prayer could be.

I knew each prayer would have a verse, a short devotional, and the threadbare prayer. I also knew that a threadbare woman doesn’t have a lot of time or capacity for a deep dive into prayer. It needed to be meaningful and rich but simple. In the end, the idea for it to be a gift style book of 100 prayers emerged and I couldn’t be happier! It is the perfect book to leave on your coffee table or desk at work and give to a friend. I’m so happy with how it has turned out.

Q: In the book, you share stories of some of your own threadbare moments. Can you share some of the times when you have found yourself grasping for words to pray?

Throughout the book, there are glimpses of some of my most threadbare moments. They include a period of three years where my dad passed away, my almost 9-year-old daughter was diagnosed with a severe and relentless chronic illness, and my husband suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. I found myself alone, fearful, weeping, and wondering what God was doing.

During each of these times, I would describe my prayers as desperate and simple. I didn’t have fine or fancy words. I couldn’t remember long passages of Scripture. I just had small breath prayers that I repeated over and over. “Lord, you are my shepherd, and I lack nothing” (Psalm 23:1) was one that I prayed when Mike was in ICU and later in rehab. I knew, Jesus was enough. He wasn’t threadbare, He was holding on to me.

Q: Is it always a major life event or stressor that causes threadbare periods or can these times also come from busyness and general weariness?

I think right now we are seeing that being threadbare can actually be a lot of little things that we are faced with in everyday life. Pandemic? Suddenly being HOME for 6 months, virtual learning, having to figure out how to see our parents who live in another state during quarantine?

I actually found the word “threadbare” in a book I was reading. As I read it, the word “stuck” in my heart, and I looked down and noticed my jeans had become threadbare and worn at the knee. Little by little with daily wear and tear, the hole got bigger. Isn’t that a picture of how little things can wear on us and we find ourselves hanging by a thread just trying to get the laundry finished or the groceries put away?

Q: What would you say to someone who is in the middle of a desert right now who can’t seem to see the better days ahead?

I would say that Jesus is powerfully drawn to your threadbare heart. His invitation in Matthew 11:28 is to “come to him and he will give you rest.” He is a comforter. He is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24). He is not far off. When you are hanging on by a thread, pray. Be honest. Pour out your heart. Take one Scripture and tell your heart the truth about who He is. Praise him. And let him do a beautiful thing in that broken place.

He will. I’ve seen him do that in my own life

Threadbare Prayer: Prayers for Hearts that Feel Hidden, Hurt, or HopelessBy Stacey Thacker

Available October 6, 2020 from Abingdon Press
Hardback ISBN: 9781791008017 / $19.99
eBook ISBN: 9781791008024 / $19.99

About the author


https://facebook.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=312d9c42859d078a024ef39aa&id=f62ad86fac&e=7e3523fd46

Stacey Thacker is an author, blogger, speaker, and believer who loves God’s Word and connecting with women. Her passion is to encourage women in their walks with God and equip them to study the Bible. She created the blog community Mothers of Daughters and now blogs on her site, StaceyThacker.com.

Thacker is the author of seven books including Hope for the Weary Mom: Let God Meet You in the Mess and has written a series of Bible studies, The Girlfriends’ Guide to the Bible. Her latest book is Threadbare Prayer: Prayers for Hearts that Feel Hidden, Hurt, or Hopeless.

She worked with Campus Crusade for Christ for five years before becoming a full-time mom to four daughters. Her family lives on the Orlando, FL area.

Visit Stacey Thacker online at staceythacker.com (https://facebook.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=312d9c42859d078a024ef39aa&id=46ec430a65&e=7e3523fd46) . She can also be found on Facebook (@OfficialStaceyThacker) (https://facebook.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=312d9c42859d078a024ef39aa&id=743422281a&e=7e3523fd46) , Twitter (@staceythacker) (https://facebook.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=312d9c42859d078a024ef39aa&id=2d0b56848d&e=7e3523fd46) , and Instagram (@staceythacker) (https://facebook.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=312d9c42859d078a024ef39aa&id=c12b045cdc&e=7e3523fd46

Glorious Mess by Mary McCullough with GiveAway on Tour with Celebrate Lit

About the Book

Book:  Glorious Mess

Author: Mary McCullough

Genre:  Christian Nonfiction/Biblical Studies

Release Date: March 10, 2020

A woman struggles with a messy home situation, brokenness, rejection, and shame.

Know a woman like this?

Are you a woman like this?

Hannah, a powerful biblical example, was just such a woman. Through her life women can glean answers for their own life problems. Hannah didn’t stay in her grief and pain. She came to the end of her own striving and poured out her heart to the Lord—who answered her prayer.

Experience God’s love and healing in your own “messy” situations as you explore Hannah’s heartbreak and struggles in a Bible study just for women who don’t have it all together. This interactive six-week daily Bible study will help you pray transparently, praise wholeheartedly, and break off the shackles of spiritual barrenness, the need for approval, and perfectionism.

Hannah’s story will empower you to rise from your ashes, leave your messes in God’s hands, and live in service to the King of kings.

Wounds you thought would never heal will become scars that no longer hurt but remind you of the journey from broken to beautiful. As you wait, healing will come. Your soul will find rest even when the situation doesn’t change.

Click here to get your copy!

From the Introduction:

If you have experienced rejection or ridicule, found your heart wounded and longing for wholeness, or ached from brokenness, you will find comfort and guidance as you journey through this study. Glorious Mess is an interactive study designed to help you address the broken and barren places in your heart. Life gets messy, but God longs to work in your situations to reveal His character and display His glory.

As the author explains in the book section Day I, Glorious Mess is an intriguing, oxymoronic title, and the book lives up to its title.

Glorious Mess is a 6-week, 7 day a week study of the story of Hannah in I Samuel. I, like most people familiar with Bible stories, was acquainted with Hannah’s story. But, also like a lot of other people, I had not delved into the story-Glorious Mess does with depth, wisdom and many revelations.

McCollough takes examples from her own life and incorporates them into the study in a flawless and meaningful way. There is a section to make it personal, a prayer and discussion notes to round out each day’s study, except Sunday, which is a day of Rest and Reflection.

Glorious Mess can be a wonderful help for anyone searching their lives to find solace, completeness and direction.

I received Glorious Mess from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

About the Author

Mary McCullough worked as an elementary school teacher for twenty-three years and is now an assistant elementary principal and building administrator. The co-founder of God First Friends, a ministry that helps women flourish as disciples of Christ, she is a longtime Bible study and Sunday school teacher for children and adults. She and her husband have been married for thirty-two years and have four adult children and three grandchildren. They live in Decatur, Indiana. Glorious Mess is her debut book.

More from Mary

Glorious Mess is the Biblical study of Hannah. As a perfectionist and control-freak, I had a neat and tidy life. That is until everything fell apart, and I found myself crying out to God for healing when life got out of control in so many areas. The more my world spun out of control, the more I identified with Hannah. She taught me about authenticity, grace, and perseverance. Her rival, Peninnah, taught me how to handle mean-spirited people and brought my own flaws to the surface so God could deal with them.

Year after year, I cried out for the healing I so desperately wanted at the foot of the cross. Mistreatment from others, the pain of watching others hurt, and my own weaknesses led me back to Hannah’s story time and again. It was Hannah’s journey from broken to bold and beautiful that kept me going. I wanted her confidence in the Lord. I wanted to stand up from my pain and never look back again on the pain but to know the God she knew. Some may think pain is in vain, but the Lord never wastes anything if we allow him to use it. I have learned of his kindness, faithfulness, and goodness beyond understanding. I’ve learned what it is like to be broken, and now I know what it means to be whole.

It is my prayer that each individual who goes through this study will be changed for eternal glory!

I’ve learned that your messes don’t define you, but they will refine you if you will lay them at the foot of the cross.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 15

Captive Dreams Window, October 15

Texas Book-aholic, October 16

Rebecca Tews, October 17

For Him and My Family, October 18

Inklings and notions, October 19

deb’s Book Review, October 19

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 20

Remembrancy, October 21

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 22

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 23

Mary Hake, October 23

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 24

Artistic Nobody, October 24 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 25

Godly Book Reviews, October 25

Splashes of Joy, October 26

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a signed copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/101f8/glorious-mess-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Amish Menorah: and Other Stories by the Men of Amish Fiction, Willard Carpenter, Patrick E. Craig, Jerry Eicher, Thomas Nye, Murray Pura and Amos Wyse on Tour with Celebrate Lit

About the Book

Book:  The Amish Menorah

Author: The Men of Amish Fiction

Genre: Amish Fiction

Release Date: May 13, 2020

Come sit and enjoy!

Six short stories by the men of Amish fiction to entertain and educate you. You’ll journey with an Amish man and the Jewish woman whose life he saves, agonize with an Amish girl in love with an Englische man, fret with two sisters both in love with the same man, pray with the family whose child is injured in a fall, work with the Amish sheriff in a western town, and laugh at the girl forced to be Amish for the summer.

Click here to get your copy!

The Amish Menorah: and Other Stories by the Men of Amish Fiction, which includes Willard Carpenter, Patrick E. Craig, Jerry Eicher, Thomas Nye, Murray Pura and Amos Wyse, is an interesting collection of novellas about the Amish.  There is a wide variance in stories, from Amish in Germany during the war to contemporary Amish. Each author’s voice is different, lending a unique flavor to the individual stories.  

I was fascinated by the story of the Amish in Nazi Germany. I’m not sure why, but I never thought of the Amish being outside of America. I realize that makes no sense because the Amish language, commonly referred to as Pennsylvania Dutch, comes from the German word for “German,” which is Deutsch!

I enjoyed all the stories, especially knowing they were all written by men. I felt this presented each novella with a more distinctive and atypical voice.

I’m really looking forward to reading more stories from the men of Amish. I hope they write more soon.

I received The Amish Menorah from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

About the Authors

Willard Carpenter

To know Wil, one would probably not think of him as an author. He is a husband, a father, a Christian, a veteran, a business owner, and a servant. He has led a life of bold and diverse experiences that immediately capture one’s attention.  Wil has an unexpected artistic and creative side—something that might be considered uncommon, given his life’s works. Wil’s greatest inner strength is his expression and creativity. His life’s works give a credit to his writing that few other fiction authors possess. This generates a vivid degree of realism above and beyond other works of fiction.

Patrick E. Craig

Amazon bestselling author Patrick E. Craig is a lifelong writer and musician who left a successful music career to become a pastor in 1986. In 2007 he retired to concentrate on writing and publishing fiction books. In 2013, Harvest House Publishers published his first Amish series, Apple Creek Dreams.  Patrick and his wife, Judy, live in Idaho. They have two daughters and five grandchildren. Patrick is represented by the Steve Laube Agency.

Jerry Eicher

Jerry Eicher was born to Amish parents, and raised in an Amish settlement in Honduras, Central America. The family returned stateside in the late seventies, when Jerry was sixteen. He spent his youth with a beloved Amish youth group in Belle Center, Ohio, and was married in 1983 to Tina Schmucker, whose parents had moved to the community from Nappanee, Indiana. Jerry and Tina left the Amish to join the Mennonites after the birth of their second son. He wrote his first work in the early twenties, a fictionalized version of his childhood in Central America. His second title was an Amish love story— Sarah. Since then Jerry has published over thirty fiction titles and sold nearly a million books.

Thomas Nye

Thomas Nye writes novels about Amish life, with a touch of romance, and a foundation of faith in Christ. He and his wife, Shari, live on her family farm where they raised five children. They have seven grandchildren and a team of draft horses. Thomas walks a mail route for the US Postal Service. It keeps him close to nature and affords many quiet hours in which to dream up novels. “Over three decades of friendships with Amish neighbors has revealed a simple wisdom that inspires my writing.” To find out more about Thomas Nye and his books, visit: amishhorses.blogspot.com

Murray Pura

Murray Pura has over twenty-four novels to his credit and, in addition, has published dozens of short stories, novellas, and poems along with numerous books of non-fiction. He has worked with Baker, Barbour, Zondervan, Harvest House, MillerWords, HarperCollins, Harlequin, Harper One and Elk Lake Publishing. His fiction has won or been shortlisted for a number of literary prizes. Pura has lived in the UK, the Middle East, the USA and Canada. He now makes his home in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta.

Amos Wyse

Amos Wyse was born in the Midwest. Spending a great deal of his youth around good, hard-working farmers, those who lived near them and worked with them. When writing, he keeps those people and the life lessons they taught close by.

More from The Men of Amish

The Amish Menorah and Other Stories was born out of a happy meeting between Patrick E. Craig and Thomas Nye at an Amish writers and readers event put on by Connie Spradling Lynch in Shipshewana, Indiana in 2019. Most of these readers did not know that there were several men who wrote Amish fiction. So Patrick and Tom decided to do something about that. After the conference, invitations went out to Murray Pura, Willard Carpenter, Jerry Eicher and Amos Wyse. Deb Haggerty at Elk Lake Publishers signed on and The Amish Menorah came to be.

Patrick E. Craig

As always, the six of us male authors of Amish fiction, have the goal of writing interesting and inspiring stories about Amish life. Collectively, our purpose in putting together The Amish Menorah, was to offer a sampling of Amish novellas written by men. There are only a few of us guys and dozens of women writing Amish novels. This book is an opportunity for readers of Amish fiction to sample six of our writing styles in one setting.

Thomas Nye

The Biblical description of a Menorah is a seven-flame lampstand. We like to think of our six stories in the Amish Menorah as six flames, each shining a unique light on Amish life. Our prayer is that you, our readers, will become that seventh flame as you join us by reading The Amish Menorah.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 5

CarpeDiem, October 5

Inklings and notions, October 6

Batya’s Bits, October 6

Connie’s History Classroom, October 7

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 7 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

She Lives To Read, October 8

Maureen’s Musings, October 8

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 9

Older & Smarter?, October 10

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 10

Artistic Nobody, October 11 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Mary Hake, October 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

SusanLovesBooks, October 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 13

Captive Dreams Window, October 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 14

Simple Harvest Reads, October 14 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

deb’s Book Review, October 16

Bigreadersite, October 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 17

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 18

Vicky Sluiter, October 18

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, The Men of Amish Fiction are giving away the grand prize package of copy of The Amish Menorah and Other Stories, a copy of Samson and Amish Delilah (by Thomas Nye), and an Amish coloring book designed for Amish children and sold in Amish stores!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/101d9/the-amish-menorah-celebration-tour-giveaway

Cross Addicted by Paula Jauch on Tour with Celebrate Lit and a GiveAway

ABOUT  THE  BOOK

Paula was broken, traumatized, and bound by many addictions, but today she is free. And that is God’s desire for you, too!

Paula Jauch’s life was controlled by trauma and addiction. Born into neglect and addiction, she inherited self-destructive patterns and emotional prisons she could not escape She experimented with crack at age thirteen, became pregnant at fifteen, was initiated into a Hispanic gang, and bore her second child by the time she was eighteen. Starved for acceptance and worth, she began cutting her body, and developed a near-fatal disorder for twenty years.

Cross Addicted follows Paula’s raw, stumbling journey toward freedom. You will find renewed hope and practical steps of recovery.

  • Recognize that there is nothing wrong with you.
  • Learn how to forgive yourself and others.
  • Understand addiction and trauma and the healing process through recovery.
  • Find freedom by understanding what Jesus did on the cross.
Click here to get your copy!

Cross Addicted tells the story of Paula Jauch, from her dysfunctional family to her life as part of a gang, along with the abuses she suffered along the way.

I’ll be honest with you, this book was very, very difficult for me to read, for a lot of reasons. In addition to my heart breaking for her, and girls like her, it dredged up past memories of an assault I experienced. I struggled to read many of the details, and I must also confess, I skimmed through much of the book.

I never suffered from addiction, nor most of what Paula did, though I can imagine how difficult it must have been to break its chains, not to mention other aspects of the addiction culture that kept her shackled for many years.

Paula’s openness points the way to freedom. Using Scriptural text and exercises Paula helps us process our own traumas. Her book, Cross Addicted, can be a very helpful aid for those who are trying to break free from the past.

I received Cross Addicted from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

ABOUT  THE  AUTHOR

Paula Jauch’s life experience enables her speaking and writing to empower people from all walks of life. She shares her inspirational story all around the world through speaking and radio. Her goal is to carry this message to the forefront. She loves encouraging and motivating her audiences to live a life of freedom in Christ. She is a happily married mother of four and a proud Nana. In her spare time, you might find her at a favorite Mexican restaurant. Paula lives in West Michigan.

Paula’s work experience led her to realize she needed healing from childhood trauma after growing up in abuse and addiction. After she graduated from an alternative education high school and had two children by age eighteen, her heart was drawn to jobs to help children like herself. She worked seven years at the Juvenile Court Schools in Las Vegas, Nevada, and five years at the Clark County Department of Family Services, as a juvenile service assistant, working with troubled teens. In 2004 she relocated to Terre Haute, Indiana, where she worked for two years at Gibault Inc., as a youth specialist, working with teen boy sex offenders. After leaving the Gibault home, she worked a few months at the Vigo County Courthouse as a bailiff, but decided to leave her job when it became uncomfortable, because her family name was well known in the court system.

What she learned through all of her work experience is that if these kids didn’t get the proper help they needed, they would get involved in a gang, addicted to drugs or alcohol, land in prison, or even face death. Paula knew she was being called to take a step of faith and action and get the help she needed so she could help others who experienced similar childhoods.

Even though Paula’s story and passion centers around youth, men and women of all ages will be inspired by her story of restoration. Connect with Paula www.paulajauch.com or follow her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter @paulajauch.

More from Paula

Why did you write the book?

After graduating from an alternative education high school and having two children by the age eighteen, my heart was drawn to jobs to help children like myself. I started out by working seven years at a Juvenile Court Schools in Las Vegas, Nevada, and five years at the Clark County Department of Family Services, as a juvenile service assistant, working with troubled teens. In 2004, I relocated to Terre Haute, Indiana, where I worked for two years at Gibault Inc., as a youth specialist, working with teen boy sex offenders. After leaving the Gibault home, I worked a few months at the Vigo County Courthouse as a bailiff. However, I eventually decided to leave my job within a few months because it became uncomfortable since my family name was well-known in the court system. My work experiences led me to start asking questions and made me realize I needed my own healing from childhood trauma after growing up in abuse and addiction.

What I learned through all of my work experiences and my own life struggles is that if kids don’t get the proper help they need, they will either get involved in a gang, become addicted to drugs or alcohol, end up in prison, or even death. I knew God was calling me to take a step of faith and action to get the help I needed, so I could help others who experienced similar childhoods.

Trauma may be the greatest mission field of the 21st century, and the most misunderstood issue of our day.

My healing journey began when I could no longer pretend everything was okay. After being stuck in my trauma and my own addictions for years, I knew I needed to write a book and let others know there is a way out. My book was birthed out of my healing process. Cross Addicted: Breaking Free from Family Trauma and Addiction offers a hopeful path to recovery for those who are hurting and traumatized.

One in four U.S. students will witness or experience a traumatic event before the age of four, and more than two-thirds by age sixteen.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 10

For Him and My Family, October 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 12

Simple Harvest Reads, October 13 (Author Interview)

Captive Dreams Window, October 13

Inklings and notions, October 14

Through the Fire Blogs, October 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 16

Artistic Nobody, October 17 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 18

deb’s Book Review, October 18

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 20

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 22

Splashes of Joy, October 23

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Paula is giving away the grand prize of a signed copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/101f5/cross-addicted-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Butterfly Box and GiveAway!

Creator’s Description

Life is busy, and it can be hard to find the time each day to connect with Christ. Butterfly Box is here to help! We thoughtfully curate a themed box each month to help reclaim those quiet moments with God, build your intimacy with Christ, and live out your faith in the world around you! 

  • Each month’s box is designed to illustrate a biblical theme and encourage spiritual growth.
  • 5 to 6 items such as jewelry, artwork, books, decor, personal pampering items, faith sharing cards and other specialty items
  • All items are carefully chosen and undergo a rigorous selection process
  • Products are faith-based or support small Christian businesses.

My box, which was for the month of September, included:

The Power of a Praying Woman

Butterfly My Prayer Bracelet

Be Still & Know Journal

Tea Drops

Weekly Prayer Guide

Women of Prayer Sheet

             

As I opened the Butterfly Box, I was thrilled to see that it focused on prayer. I know for me, my prayers always seem to be on the fly, as I’m busy doing something else, or reading a book. With a book to read on prayer, a journal and a weekly prayer guide I should be able to carve out time for more prayers and more meaningful prayers.

For more information click the following link: The Butterfly Box. On new orders include this code: WELCOME10 to receive 10% off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Butterfly Box would make a great gift for yourself, a friend or a family member.

To Enter Click the following link:

https://www.blessedfreebies.com/butterfly-box-giveaway.html

I received The Butterfly Box through FrontGate Media. However, I was under no obligation to write a review.

@yourbuttreflybox #yourbutterflybox #butterflybox #faithsubscriptionbox #christiansubscriptionbox

Seeking Life by Brianna Holifield on Tour with Celebrate Lit

About the Book

Book: Seeking Life

Author: Brianna Holifield

Genre: Christian Nonfiction/Christian Living

Release Date: June 30, 2020

Have you ever wondered what God’s purpose for you is? Or what exactly God wants for your life? Have you ever asked yourself if what you are doing is where God wants you to be? If you have ever asked any of these questions, you are not alone. Many people, including myself, have questions like these every day.

Seeking Life will dive deep into what God’s purpose is for each of us on earth and how the fruit of the Spirit plays a role. It will go into detail about each fruit of the Spirit and how to obtain each one. All the fruit work together to help us become whole in Jesus Christ. Being fruitful will ultimately show others who God really is to others by how we act and respond to things.

Seeking Life will include:

  • An in depth explanation of what exactly a purpose is and how the fruit of the Holy Spirit ties into that
  • Who the Holy Spirit is
  • A chapter dedicated to each fruit of the Spirit, defining what it is, why we need it, and how to obtain it.
  • A practical “How To” at the end of each chapter
  • Evidence on how God communicates to us, and how we communicate to Him
Click here to get your copy!

Seeking Life is a terrific little book that focuses on the Fruits of the Spirit, along with how they apply to our purpose in life.

The Fruits of the Spirit are:

• Love

• Joy

• Peace

• Longsuffering

• Gentleness

• Goodness

• Faith

• Meekness

• Temperance

Brianna Holifield has packed a lot into this short 80-page book. She guides us through each of the fruits, their importance and how they apply to our purpose in life, along with a how-to at the close of each chapter.

Holifield’s technique in writing her book almost gives one the feeling of sitting at a table and talking with her. This makes it easy to tailor it to a Bible study, one I feel is much needed for women of today’s society. Even though it would seem our current COVID quarantines would slow down the harried hecticness most of us feel, in many ways, it has created even more chaos, turbulence and confusion, not to mention how the unrest in our country has affected us, too.

Seeking Life is a noteworthy book, one I am sure I will be referring to quite frequently.

I received Seeking Life from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

About the Author

Hey there! My name is Brianna Holifield and I wrote this book to share what I have learned over the past few years on my journey with God in hopes to help you live a more peaceful and joyful life with Christ.

I became a Christian in 2015. Over time, I went from being filled with anxiety and fear to being filled with the Holy Spirit and it has changed my life completely. I want to share my love for the Lord so more people can know God’s love for us.

A few other quirks about me: I love coffee and tea, I enjoy hiking and being outdoors, I love animals and I have a passion for nutrition.

So that is enough about me. God is our creator, He is our Father, and He loves us. I am His child and a servant of Him and I want to Glorify Him. This is to be more about God and our relationship with Him than about me.

More from Brianna

Have you ever been so at a loss as to what God wanted for your life because everything you thought you knew and everywhere you thought you were headed was so upside down, sideways, and backwards so much that there was nowhere to turn except God Himself?

Well, this is exactly where my life was before I decided to write this book. My life was shaken. Emotionally, I was distressed, sad, and in pain and I felt alone and helpless.

I can recall the day I knew I needed to write this book. January 7th. The night before I stood in my living room listening to worship music as memories and emotions flooded through my mind until I couldn’t take it anymore. I fell to my knees, let go of everything, and started to worship God like I never had before. I completely, totally surrendered myself to Him.

Sometimes, the only way for us to know we absolutely need God and know for a fact He is in control is to be left with nowhere to turn except to Him. And sometimes, only then are we able to truly listen to what God has been trying to tell us all along.

The next morning I got to work early and just prayed and asked God to show me a revelation and a vision of my life and what He wanted me to do with it. I was ready to do His will, not my own. I wrote everything He told me down. In fact, I still have that ripped up, scribbled on envelope I had found in my car to use that day.

One of the things God told me was to write. I remember the still quiet voice in my heart. Me? Write? I had never considered myself a writer. I also had no idea what to even write.

Over the next two months, God started showing me, teaching me, and transforming the way I saw things. Every single thing God taught me was something I desperately needed. By March, I knew what God wanted me to write about. This book is simple yet so foundational to living and walking in Christ. I hope the contents of this book helps everyone who reads it to grow and strengthen their relationship with the Lord and gain a deeper understanding of God’s purpose for each of us, and a better understanding of who the Holy Spirit is.

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:26, NKJV).

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 1

Inklings and notions, October 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 3

deb’s Book Review, October 3

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 4

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 5

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 6

Captive Dreams Window, October 6

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 7

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 8

Godly Book Reviews, October 9

Artistic Nobody, October 9 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 10

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 11

For Him and My Family, October 12

Mary Hake, October 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 13

Splashes of Joy, October 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Brianna is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 amazon gift card and a signed copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10196/seeking-life-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Christmas Swap By Melody Carlson

I have read many Melody Carlson Christmas stories, and they have all been cute and endearing, so it was with great anticipation that I signed up for The Christmas Swap.

The story’s premise is based on two families and some friends swapping homes. One family goes from Colorado to Arizona and the other family with a few friends travels to Colorado from Arizona. We read little about the family in Arizona as the focus of the story is the family and friends in Colorado.

Emma Daley is endeavoring to make a living as a teacher while striving to become a musician, too. Her best friend, Gillian Landers, was born with a silver spoon in her mouth, and therein lies the problem.

The story shows the overindulged, selfish, demanding and obnoxious brattiness, for lack of a better word, of Gillian and her family and friends, though her father seems less inclined to act entitled. I kept thinking, if I had a friend like Gillian or the Landers, I would have dropped them like hot potatoes years ago!

I had a hard time getting into the spirit of the sequence of events, as the constant bickering and entitlement portrayed by the Landers was so off-putting.

The overall story had many appealing moments, some quite engaging. But the story just wasn’t for me. Nonetheless, you may thoroughly enjoy it!

I received this book courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Revell, through Interviews & Reviews. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

Publisher’s Summary

All Emma Daley wants this holiday season is a white Christmas. But the young teacher and struggling musician sure can’t find that in sunny Arizona. Luckily, there’s someone living in a perfect mountain home in the Colorado Rockies looking to make a vacation trade this year.

Tyler Prescott is an in-demand songwriter and talented musician who put his own singing career on hold to write songs for celebrity acts to perform. When his mother convinces him to do a vacation trade for Christmas, he never imagined one of the houseguests would be so sweet–or so strikingly pretty. Naturally, he decides to stick around, and, to get better acquainted, he poses as the house’s caretaker. But when Emma’s friend Gillian discovers his true identity and sets her sights on him, things
get . . . messy.

Fan-favorite Melody Carlson is back with another delightful Christmas tale to warm your heart on those cold winter evenings.

Jack by Chautona Havig on Tour with Celebrate Lit

About the Book

Book: Jack

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Historical Western Romance

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Women are trouble—lying, cheating, untrustworthy bundles of trouble.

Jack Clausen doesn’t need anyone but his horse and a boss who won’t interfere in his personal life—or lack of one.

Sure, he’s a lonely cowboy, but better lonely than brokenhearted.

If only he hadn’t met a girl who made him hope that honest and true women do exist. Maybe he wouldn’t be riding off into a snowstorm with a fresh determination to avoid women—indefinitely.

When Hazel Meissner sees a cowboy risk life, limb, and horse to save a child, she knows he’s someone special. When he finally gives her his heart, she considers herself the most blessed woman alive.

However, when he rides off without a word, she wonders if her heart will survive the loss.

One broken man. One trusting woman. One orchestrated misunderstanding that tears them apart. What’ll it take to bring Jack home again?

It’s Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing mashed up with the old ballad, “Cowboy Jack.” Don’t miss a cast of characters inspired by the Bard himself—especially Dirk and Deborah (Benedick & Beatrice).

Jack: a lot of hullaballoo on the prairie.

Click here to get your copy!

Chautona Havig has done it again. This time she’s written a book of a different genre-westerns!  She reminisces about the Country and Western songs she grew up listening to on the radio and from her Dad’s guitar playing. What memories that evoked for me, too, as I grew up listening to my Mom sing and my Dad whistle many a Country and Western song! Their favorite-Marty Robbins. But I digress.

Jack Clausen rescues a toddler from a herd of cows being rounded up near the stockyards of Kansas City. In the process, he hurts his head and draws the admiration of Hazel Meissner, a woman way out of his league, which suits him just fine.

I enjoyed reading about the lives of the people in Jack. Each one was distinctive for very different reasons. The banter between two of the characters was especially witty and delightful. Havig has a way of drawing you into the story with her reliable and realistic portrayal of its characters and endears them to you. Her depiction of daily living during the 1800s rings true, also.

All of Havig’s books have a strong faith element and Jack is no exception. From forgiveness to trust, she covers faith well.

I received Jack from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

About the Author

Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

More from Chautona

The Inspiration I Hate to Love

The plaintive notes of a ballad filled the living room. People sat on couches and chairs or stood in the doorway, listening. Three steps up the staircase, out of view of most of the room, a little girl sat, chin in her hands, listening.

If you looked close, you’d see freckles dotting her nose and crooked teeth that never were too large for her mouth like most children’s were. Just a bit closer, and you’d see wide, hazel eyes riveted to the man with the guitar seated on the hearth. To his right, a cup of coffee and sometimes a shot of whiskey.

With a voice like Jim Reeves (the non-twangy Reeves, mind you), the songs told stories, like all ballads do—a little blind girl praying for her father’s future happiness, a girl of thirteen who barely escaped a massacre in 19th century Wyoming. “Hazel eyes,” the man called her. California Joe—he was a real man, although not as good of one as the song made out.

Sometimes the man sang happier songs, but most of them were slow, western ballads that could keep Nicolas Sparks writing for decades.

And the little girl loved them all—especially California Joe and one about a cowboy who left his sweetheart alone on the prairie after a quarrel. One called “Cowboy Jack.”

As you’ve probably surmised, I was the little girl, and that man who sang and stirred the hearts of our family at nearly every gathering was my father.

How I miss those days.

For years, I wanted to give Jack a happier ending. See, the song goes like this. A lonely cowboy (with a heart so brave and true) meets and falls in love with a maiden (with eyes of heaven’s own blue). Alas, as with all good romances, the couple quarrel and Jack rides away. He finds a new band of cowboys and would have been just fine, but someone asks him to sing a song to “drive all cares away.” Alas, the song he devises is one about a “lonely maiden who waited for her Jack.”

Of course, he rides off to ask forgiveness. It’s all his fault. He arrives too late. She died of a broken heart on the “lonely prairie where skies are always blue.”

After I began writing, the idea came to me to turn those songs Dad sang—old ones that had been passed on and down through many different versions—into novels. I’d write all the subtext the songs left out.

I’d give them happy endings.

Of course, that’s easier said than done. One by one, I figured out how to do it, but Jack… well, I didn’t want to change the stories. I just wanted to leave on hope instead of despair

Shakespeare to the rescue!

I was watching Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing adaptation, and the answer came to me so clearly. It had the solution I needed. So, I smooshed the song and the play together. Inside, you’ll find the characters Shakespeare created (including Dirk and Deborah and their biting repartee—they steal the show!) in the setting and with the elements of the ballad, too.

Dad’s older now. His hands are gnarled with age, swollen with arthritis. His mind is slipping away. Today, you’ll find his guitar at my house. My son now owns it, but he doesn’t know the songs I heard played on the old Goya. Still, when I take it out of the case, tune it up, and pluck the strings, everything shifts. Suddenly, I’m nine years old again, sitting on my uncle’s stairs, just out of sight, watching. Listening. Heartbreaking.

See, I’ll never hear my father play again, and I can’t play either. So, the songs will have to live on with stories of Mary, Jethro, Maggie… and of course, Jack.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 21

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 21

Connie’s History Classroom, September 22

deb’s Book Review, September 22

For the Love of Literature, September 23

Bigreadersite, September 23

Texas Book-aholic, September 24

lakesidelivingsite, September 24

Inklings and notions, September 25

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 25

For Him and My Family, September 26

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 27

Hookmeinabook, September 27

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 28

Artistic Nobody, September 29 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 29

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 30

Lots of Helpers, September 30

She Lives To Read, October 1

Mary Hake, October 1

Daysong Reflections, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Simple Harvest Reads, October 3 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Spoken from the Heart, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of the book and a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10101/jack-celebration-tour-giveaway

Scrumptious Independence by Melissa Wardwell on Tour with Celebrate Lit

About the Book

“Taste and see that the Lord is good.”

And so is Beth’s cooking! It’s a good thing, too. After a lifetime of her family’s smothering embrace, a whole new world opens to her with the passing of her beloved grandmother.

Armed with an inheritance she never expected and orders on how to use it, Beth sets off for Merriweather Island and fulfillment of a lifetime of dreams.

Or so she hopes.

What she didn’t hope for was what most women would—a man who fills her thoughts at the most wonderfully unwelcome times. She doesn’t have time or space for a relationship, but how do you tell love to just go away?

Of course, starting over in a new place is never easy, especially as an outsider in a small community. Add to that a mayor who has her dander up and a woman bound to make her life miserable, is it any wonder that Beth begins to doubt God’s and Gram’s plans?

With her heart betraying her resolve and challenges to her faith, Beth finds it takes bravery she didn’t know she had to discover just how scrumptious independence can be.

This “Merriweather book” is the second in a new series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Island Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Click here to purchase your copy!

Melissa Wardwell created another delightful story with Scrumptious Independence, and even though it is book 2 in a series, it works well as a standalone.

Beth Andrews’ Gram surprised Beth and her family by willing her Merriweather home to Beth. Beth decides to leave Michigan and return to Merriweather Island. The remembrances of her sweet childhood with her Gram lure her back. She arrives with big plans, never expecting to run into her old friend, Scott, or jealous women or, even worse, the dangerous and mysterious things that happen to her.

Merriweather Island sounds like an idyllic and heavenly place to live. The way the islanders have ensured that the island won’t become a tourist trap is wonderful. The traveling food and book trucks sound delightful. And the weather. . .well, I would love it!!

I enjoyed the story very much. There was just the right amount of romance rounded out with treachery and intrigue. Gram was the perfect foil to Beth’s reserved personality. Scott was a sweetheart, and most of the residents of the Island were treasures. The cooking aspect was appealing, also, as food is a large part of social and familial interactions.

I can’t wait to read the other stories in the series!

I received Scrumptious Independence from Celebrate Lit. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.

About the Author

Melissa Wardwell resides in Owosso, Michigan with her husband Jonathan, three children, a cat, and two pitbulls.

Besides writing, she enjoys reading, having coffee with friends, and spending quality time with her husband kayaking and fishing.

Melissa likes to joke about the voices in her head, but it is those voices that have inspired her to write several romance novels such as “I Know the Plans” (a story based in her hometown of Owosso) and “Finding Hope in Savannah”. When she is not penning works of fiction, she is busy reviewing books on her blog, Back Porch Reads.

To see more from Melissa Wardwell, visit www.melissawardwell.com

More from Melissa

“Lord, I don’t know how I can keep doing this.”

That was my prayer one evening in 2019 as I made my way to praise practice. I knew that writing was something God had called me to (because He never seems to call you to do something you enjoy) but the finances were just not there to publish another book. I felt lost in the uncertainty of the path moving forward and I needed a light. I had just shared all my concerns with my parents and left with my dad’s words ringing in my head. Are you writing to gain notoriety or are you writing for God?

The next morning, CelebrateLit had a post looking for submissions for a new and innovative series. Hope burst within me and I know I needed more information. I followed instructions and spoke with Sandy Barela and Chautona Havig. The more I was told, the more excited I became because I knew I needed to be part of this collection.

Ideas were hatched, characters began to talk, and a book proposal was sent. I continued to work on the development of characters and the mobile business knowing in my heart that God had given me this opportunity. I wouldn’t do things halfway. And when the confirmation email came, I was ready to share the beautiful story and characters that developed.

Beth is a food truck proprietor, so that means she spends most of her time cooking. In an effort to grow her recipes, I have been making videos of me cooking some of our family’s favorites as well as raiding my mom’s recipe box. The result is some amazing food to share.

Every book, pre-order card, and my YouTube channel has recipes on it. And so will this tour.

With it being summertime, our family doesn’t want those heavy meals so sometimes chips and sandwiches are all we need in the evenings. One favorite is my chicken salad.

Now, this recipe is easily substituted with other things like however, you like your chicken.

Melissa’s Chicken Salad

Feeds 4 (unless you have big eaters.)

2 cans of chicken (you can use cooked but this is quick and easy

1/2 cup of red grapes – halved

1/2 cup celery – diced

Make sure you rinse all of this well as you prep the salad

Dressing

1 1/2 cup of miracle whip (you can use mayo)

1/2 tsp mustard powder

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tsp of sugar

Mix everything together and serve on your favorite bread option or on a bed of lettuce. I like mine in a pita pocket or on lettuce. This time it was with a pita pocket with a side of lightly salted chips and a pickle.

Now, just a little side note, you can add what ever veggie or fruit you like. Apples and cucumbers would be a great addition as well. So, don’t feel like you have to do things exactly like I do. Make it your own.

Bon appétit

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 21

Soulfully Romantic, September 21

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 22

Texas Book-aholic, September 22

Inklings and notions, September 22

For Him and My Family, September 23

deb’s Book Review, September 23

Artistic Nobody, September 23 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

She Lives To Read, September 24

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, September 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 24

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 24

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 25

Quiet Workings, September 25

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 25

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , September 26

Older & Smarter?, September 26

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 26

Blogging With Carol, September 27

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, September 27

Batya’s Bits, September 27

Emily Yager, September 28

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 28

Stories By Gina, September 28

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 28

CarpeDiem, September 29

Christian Bookaholic, September 29

Cultivating Us, September 29

Aryn the Libraryan, September 30

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 30

Connect in Fiction, October 1

The Collaborative Press, October 1

Livin’ Lit, October 1

Simple Harvest Reads, October 2 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

The Meaderings of a Bookworm, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Joanne Markey, October 3

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Vicky Sluiter, October 3

Blossoms and Blessings, October 4

Splashes of Joy, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Melissa is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10105/scrumptious-independence-celebration-tour-giveaway