Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Just got back from the ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) conference in Dallas, Texas. God did SO many neat things there. I met some wonderful people (waving to Kjersten! and the gals from South Africa and Bermuda!!!) What a blessing we now have an international group!!!

STEALTH SURRENDER WON FIRST PLACE in the Mystery/Suspense/Thriller category of the Genesis contest!!! That's book two of the book sitting on an editor's desk as we speak. I met with the other editor that I subbed the revisions of that story to and she's really hoping the Senior editor will like it. ME TOO! But I'm not obsessing over it, nor will I be devastated if they decide to pass on it. If I learned one thing this week...I learned that GOD IS IN CONTROL. And well, I WANT God in control. More than I want to be published, I want His will and His timing. I want to "get it right." I want no regrets in my life...whether that be with the time I spend with my children or my writing. I want to write the words He puts on my heart and tell the stories He gives me to tell. I know He will get them to the readers they belong to.

The editor plugged my book in a workshop for me which will be good if it sells!!!! How very cool that was. Embarrassed me to death but in a good way. I'm thankful for her belief in me and I think she will be as sorry as me if it doesn't go through. But I trust in God's goodness and timing, and I also trust the editors' judgement. I don't want the embarrassment of a book on the shelves before it's ready any more than they do. So I'm resting in Him and trusting that WHATEVER happens with it is His perfect will.

It was great to see old friends again, and I tell you, it was hard to have to need help at the conference. My good friend Pammer pushed me all over the hotel. I am so thankful for her because it is extremely hard for me to ask for help. I HATE it. I hate having to depend on other people. I have NO problem depending totally and utterly on God, but for some reason I have issues God needs to work out there with self-sufficiency. I hate pride. I really do and I don't want it. Maybe it's more independance than pride, who knows but man was God trying to strip that away from me. It was HARD. I hated feeling indebted to people and dependant on people. Why am I so darn stubborn? My stomach clenched and I was screaming inside about how much I hate this immobility and inability to get myself places. I'm pitiful. And you'd think after FIVE times of God knocking me on my you-know-what for an extended period of time I'd LEARN. Some times I just wanted to go to my room and eat fifteen pieces of Slim Jim Jerky and sqwall my eyes out over not being able to move myself around.

I'm harvesting those feelings for a future book with a disabled character or something. LOL! Can't let book fodder go to waste. Or in the case of the Jerky overdose...waist. LOL!

But apparently I'm a slow learner.

I'm so, so, so glad for Pammer sticking to me like glue and that those uncomfortable moments where she had another committment were few and far between. I owe her big time. The time I spent with her was precious. Oh man...I'm thinking of something that needs to go in a Blush and Cringe. I should ask her permission first though. But it's too funny not so share. It has to do with the pretty "necklaces" we saw in the book store. LOLOL! We thought they were necklaces anyway and stood there for ten minutes wondering how to get them on our necks. We looked and looked and looked for the clasp or hook and asked many people who walked by how to open them and get them on. Well, they weren't necklaces. They were rosaries. Sigh. Me and Pammer decided we're twins separated at birth.

And she paid me the nicest tribute after pushing me around!

It was great to see Syn too. She has such a heart of compassion and of intercession and God really drew us together.

Camy Tang and Robin Miller looked absolutely gorgeous giving out awards at the BOTY and Genesis. I hope to have pics up as soon as I find my cable.....

There just isn't enough room here to tell everything He did. But just tell Him thank you for everything for me next time you settle into time with Him...Okay?

Signing off til next time,


Sunday, September 17, 2006

This came across one of the writing loops I'm on. Just so you know, I didn't write it, but the content resonated with me. I hope it speaks to someone out there today and brings encouragement.



Work is tough, full of disappointments-and that is true even of work that manypeople envy, such as my own.I have never understood why people consider writing to be a glamorous career.To succeed as a writer, you need the constitution to stare at a computer screen fordays on end, trying to craft a few pages that someone will read in five minutes on anairplane. You need a skin thick enough to not flinch when editors take your best effortsand casually clean them, cutting off the head and pulling out the guts. You need thedoggedness to take blunt rejection and try again . and again, and again.Other kinds of work are tough too, I know. Farmers play poker with the weatherand the bugs. Salesmen treat customers like friends and in return get treated like slime.And should I mention the restaurant business?

Earlier this year, I went through a time of great frustration in my job. It was partlydue to fatigue, I think. We'd had some deaths in my family, which left me worn down.And then I went through a patch where nothing I did seemed right. I proposed projectswhich got shot down, and when I wrote on assignment, editors scraped away at my proseuntil only scraps were left. That's normal, part of the process, but I felt frustratedand unappreciated.I had to go back and relearn the right attitudes.I need the right attitude to work hour to hour and long term.Hour by hour, it's simple: do the work. I had to stick my rear in my chair and not getup until I had finished a major chunk of work. That meant resisting distractions fromphone calls and emails and news reports.If you don't stick to it hour to hour, your discouragement will build. But if you workhard in the short term, you'll accomplish something. You'll find the work itself meaningful-and there's a good possibility your failures will turn around. That happened to me.

Long term, I had to remember why I was working in the first place. I had to believein my vocation all over again. In the deepest sense, I needed to know that I do the workbecause God wants me to do it.Why are you in your job? Maybe you're there to fulfill a special gift. Maybe you'rethere to make a living for your family. Maybe you're there because the work needs to bedone for the good of society.

To overcome discouragement, you need an attitude thattakes the focus off your sense of frustration. You need to remember why your work is valid.You need to remember that God is behind it.Both these attitudes, long term and short term, reflect what Paul wrote to thePhilippians: "Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus." He goes on todescribe how Jesus became a humble servant, obedient even to the point ofdeath (Phil. 2:5-8).Hour by hour, a servant's focus is very limited. Servants listen for directions, andthey do exactly what their boss expects. In the longer term, servants know why theyare working: because they have a master who has called them to service.We are meant to be servants of God.Listen to your Boss, he'll tell you what to do. Believe in your vocation because youknow who called you to it. And do your work because God is behind it.

By Tim Stafford Copyright ? 2001 - 2006 H. E. Butt Foundation. All rights reserved.Received from: Faith in the Workplace

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


I was a mite grumpy yesterday so dh (dear husband on most days) took me shoe shopping this evening. So here we are zooming all over the store in a scooter and I have two of my three kids on my lap. I do not weight 200 pounds. The guy SAID it was fully charged and new and raring and ready to go.


My kids all three together don't weigh over 75 pounds. I'm well under 200, but well over 100...let's just leave it at that.

THE THING BROKE AT THE FARTHEST POINT AWAY FROM THE SCOOTER DOCK. So here I am stuck. Dh rode another to me and we switched. So he takes two kids to let them pick out a sticker book and the oldest stays with me to help. So she's on my lap and we're racing around a corner and I'm enjoying this exhilerating ride and so is she because she's yelling, "Faster Mommy! Faster!"

I'm pushing it to the max at this point, and then it happened.

I spotted the perfect pair of shoes.

I veered right...down that aisle. The scootermagig apparently doesn't turn on a dime. It apparently doesn't turn on a spot the size of a compact car because we careened into the shoes. The scooter kept going because the handlebar got stuck beneath the shelving...then I hear this monstrous creaking and the sound of metal and then a series of rapid fire thudding and clanking and clinking. We finally come to a stop beneath a thundershower of shoes. My daughter runs for cover and I turn around to survey the aftermath.

Shoes....everywhere. Shelving....everywhere. Those little metal prongs that were holding the fifty or so pair of house slippers.....everywhere.

So my daughter runs to her dad because she's mortified with embarrassment because now there are people....everywhere. And I'm stuck in the mess only I can't escape the mortification because my dh(in this instance Dratted Husband) has my walker in his cart across the store where my daughter fled as he passed by waiting for her. Of course he couldn't come help me because all three kids suddenly had to use the restroom. Stickers must have a diuretic capability to them or something.

Here I am picking up the shoes with the reacher thingy which took a solid 20 minutes. At least I didn't race another scooter shopper down the aisle like the other day when I discovered my mother and father in fact DID know I used to drag race my Iroc z and my Firebird behind the high school. But hey, when someone pulls up beside you in the suppository aisle..and says in a low voice, "Wanna race?" and revvs their scooter....battery. Do those things even have engines? I mean, WHO could resist?

Oh Lord God in Heaven, PLEASE give my children more sense than I had as a teen. Now I know what I put my parents through. Lord help me, and grant them blessings beyond measure for letting me live past my teen years.


Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Want to know a wonderful way to support our troops and their families?

Check out www.agreaterfreedom.com

Maybe you'd like to be involved?

I'm posting from the site here...Volunteers Needed:

Resource Coordinator Needed: Do you have some free time you could spend helping add resources to AGF's Resource page? If the answer's yes, please contact Sara at sara@agreaterfreedom.com.

AGF Street Team - Do you live near a military installation? Help her get the word out to people who need to know about the site! Email her at sara@agreaterfreedom.com and let her know you'd like to be part of their very first group of promotional volunteers. They'll send you resources to pass out and spread the word about AGreaterFreedom.com.

I plan to pick up some packets myself.









UM...THAT'S Prehistoric Monster Syndrome for those of you wondering.

Sunday, September 10, 2006


Prayer is powerful. Prayer is conversing with God as you would a friend. Prayer is digging in and pressing in and persevering in it no matter how long, how hard, or what the circumstances say.

God has called me to pray. I've known this since first giving my life to Him in mid-twenties. A very good friend taught me that God hears my prayers. I don't know why, but He does. I've never doubted that.

Enter the earthquake.

I didn't doubt that God heard me, but I did lay my weapon down. I walked away for a time. I didn't turn my back on God but I did my calling.

I've lived enough days of regret in my life and I don't want to look back on my life from this day forward and have one single regret. So I'll have you know I'm armed and dangerous again. LOL! One thing about this hip junk, it caused me to press in and keep my face at his feet. Pain will do that do you. Drive you to beg for mercy.

He is.

He did.

He chased after me and put that proverbial M-16 right back in my arms. I felt the weight of it tonight when two gals were praying for me....praying for me about...prayer. My role in praying for the church. Just ten minutes a day God asked of me in regards to this. Gee whiz. I converse with him on a continual basis in my heart and mind ninety percent of the time but ten minutes a day? That's VERY doable. I'm sure as time goes by He'll ask for more. It baffles me that he only asks for ten percent of my tithe too. So I always slip Him a little extra because, well it's absurd NOT to because every single thing I have comes from Him anyway.

Even the desire to pray.

Even the fortitude to keep asking.

Even the iron will to press in until He does what I want if that thing I want is His will.

What happens on the font lines if a soldier would set his weapon down and walk away? Right. He'd likely get a stream of bullets in his back, or worse, the fellow soldiers that his CO (Commanding Officer) put him in charge of providing cover fire for may get a stream of bullets in them. So let me ask you, what is your assignment? Think of God as your CO, and your weapon as prayer. The enemy is not flesh and blood. It is principalities and powers of darkness and evil which would dearly love to kill, steal and destroy everything in and around you.

Let's be brave soldiers and fight the good fight of faith in good conscience. Let's keep those weapons poised and our prayer bullets pinging.

God hears. Try Him.



Friday, September 08, 2006


Did I get your attention? Tee hee. Actually it may not have measured on the National Richter scale but for the past three years an earthquake has cast tremors all over my life, shaking everything, and I mean EVERYTHING. . .except my faith.

I realized that the other day.

The earthquake? Chronic pain. I don't mean the kind of pain that's akin to a fly dive bombing your plate at a picnic either. I'm talking EXCRUCIATING pain. 9.5 on a scale of 1-10 kind of pain, with ten being the worst pain you could imagine. Childbirth was a cinch compared to this pain.

Feel sorry for me yet?

Okay then let me go on. . .see if I can evoke some more sympathy. LOL! Since January of 2004 there has not been ONE SINGLE SOLITARY NANOSECOND where I have not been in physical pain. Debilitating pain that has affected my sleep and altered my usually bubbly personality.

I turned into a whiney, moaney, witch with a capital B right before my husband's eyes. And though there were times I saw him eyeing the shovel and the basement and I knew he was thinking how long it would take authorities to find my body while he zipped off to Jaimaca with my life insurance money, he's been so faithful and kind. Most days. But yet, even my marriage has been shaken. We were a couple who laughed ourselves silly every day. Now scowling and strife defined our marriage up until recently when they realized the cause of my pain wasn't the nerve damage they'd originally thought but a hip dysplasia with an injury that occurred during delivery where my hip was dislocated and my labrum tore. Read: : Labrum. NOT labia. LOL. I do get some amusement seeing peoples faces twitch with the word because most have never heard it and probably think I'm mispeaking. Anyway, I digress, when they realized what the actual unjury was and started giving me REAL pain meds....ahh...for a few months my husband got his wife back and my daughters actually got to know me as I really am.

I'm not sure what my point is to this blog except to say that sometimes it's okay to be shaken. I thank God that He's grounded my faith so that was never affected by the tremors. So now I've had surgery to correct this problem and thank God that it was something they could fix.

So a few weeks post op I show up at church with my walker. I was astounded at the people who swarmed me, mouths agape. "What happened to you?" or "I didn't realize it was THAT bad!"

Yeah. Well, I did. And so did God. I'm pretty private with my pain, and I have an incredibly high pain tolerance. If I say I'm hurting, I'm near death. Seriously. It's the stubborn streak that runs through our family that teaches us to be tough.

But that's not God's way. And I've learned through this that it is much easier to give than to receive. It's HARD to admit we need help. Harder even to admit this has taken a toll on our family.. .our relationship as a couple. BUT, once people know they can pray for you and defeat any place where the enemy would seek to kill, steal and destroy your life or marriage or whatever his target of the time is.

Don't hang tough. Don't hide your pain. Tell SOMEONE you trust. Ask God to send you someone to talk to who will listen more than talk. Who will press in and pray for you and not stop until it's over. Someone who will praise God ahead of time for the victory. Someone who will love you as Jesus loves you and always point you to Him.

Maybe someone out there is struggling with chronic pain. It may not even be physical. Maybe you're struggling with depression. God acknowledges there is such a thing in psalms. Did you know that? He says, "I comfort the depressed." He doesn't send a priest. He doesn't send a pastor. He comes Himself to comfort you. He doesn't condemn you for your pain. His heart is full of mercy and compassion beyone what you are capable of comprehending and He loves you more than you or I could imagine. And believe me, I have a grand imagination.

Just know today that maybe no one knows how deep the pain runs or how far, or how long or how bad it hurts. It's okay. God knows. And He cares.

Blessed be the name of the Lord for His lovingkindness endures forever.

I hate crying in front of people but last night at Discipleship Community God busted me. Someone came up to ask me how I was feeling and you know how bad I wanted to say, "I'm feeling great!"

God whispered, "Why would you lie when they truly want to know?" Gulp. Okay, God.

So I said, "Actually, I'm feeling horrible."

So what happened? I cried my eyes out and a bunch of people prayed for me and though the pain wasn't less than it was when I came there, I knew even more that those people love me.

Something good will always come out of something bad when you trust God with it.

Praying for anyone out there today who's hurting.

He sees. He knows. He cares. Ask Him to show you how much in a tangible way. TELL SOMEONE! Let someone help you. Get prayer! Don't make the mistake I did. My marriage is stronger than it has been in a couple of years, but I know that's because I finally admitted our struggles to a close friends. Well. I Guess I just admitted it to the world but I really think if we as CHristians don't share our struggles we'll scare others away because we become unnapproachable.

I never want to be that.

I want to be there for my friends as they've been there for me.

Go get alone with God and let Him love on you. Just wait for Him. Be still. Be quiet. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you in an eternally lifechanging way.

Have a blessed day.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Confessions of a Potty Mouth Momma

Okay, so I'm just gonna say right off the bat that I acknowledge that I may be the only Christian mom out there who slipped up and said a cuss word in front of her kid. Snicker. A blog is a place where we can be real, right?

Kid number two took number three in the bathroom and locked the door. Prior to doing this, the heatherrrrrr I mean the munchkins took the tiny screwdriver out of the crack I keep it in up near the left hand side of the door frame. That screwdriver is how I unlocked the bathroom when it advertantly got locked for some reason.

So anyway, moving onward.....

I hear them in there rattling around in the medicine cabinet. I have a childproof mechanism on it but I can tell they're trying to push it in and get the door open. Panic sets in as I think of all the meds I have in there so I start knocking on the door. "Unlock the door now. Right now. RIGHT NOW! One. Two. . .if I have to say threee. . . ."

Nothing. I rattle the knob violently. "Let me in right now! No TV time. Do you hear me?" I flat hand my palm on the wood.

Profuse snickering.

Two minutes later I'm still counting to three and have counted to three enough times to hit 300. My heart is in my throat and I'm ready to splinter wood with my foot in about thirty seconds. From inside comes giggling and the ominous sound of the medicine cabinet creaking ALL the way open, AND then the sound of pills rattling around those plastic medicine containers.

You know the ones. The ones that my kids can open faster than I can though they're supposed to be childproof. Yeah.

So now I'm FUMING and scared. Being a nurse I'm terrified of them ODing on my stool softeners or something worse.

So I fist my hand and BANG-BANG! BANG. BANG. BANG! on the door in perfect time with this:



More silence. Then, "Uh. Oh. I tink mom's mad."

Yah think?


Four wide eyes are staring at me then my fist then my chest at which point I realize I'm heaving. I loosen my mouth because it hurts from clenching the teeth together. Think I probably lost a layer of enamel on that one.

So after explaining for the UMPTEENTH time why the med cabinet is OFF LIMITS and whoever gets in it may lose a hand...(Just kidding all you Child and Family Service people...honest) I think maybe they didn't think anything about the "D" word. . .even though my dh is staring me down with The Look. You know...the one where I know he's thinking, "Aw. Huh. And now they have one more word added to their vocabulary," kind of look.

"They'll forget about it by sunset," I told him. "Don't sweat it."

No matter that I kept them out of school the next day AND church two days after JUST to make sure.

So Tuesday of two weeks later rolls around and I'm going down the hall to get the toddler so we can go pick up her siblings from Christian school. Note: CHRISTIAN school.

Traitor baby is standing at her door. . .banging away. . .saying some such gibberish that sounds strikingly like, "Opie! Duh! Dam! Dam! Dam!"

Okay first off I never said it three times. So now guess what her favorite word is? Yah. At the grocery store. Sliding glass doors. "Opie dam door daddy." In front of the entire Wal-Mart. And he's giving me The Look again.

So back to Tuesday. . .blush. Cringe. BOTH of my daughters got a note. Well one got a note in her folder and the other lost a kangaroo out of her pocket because . . .yeah you guessed it. . .

They taught the class the NEW word. Only one of them actually demonstrated it though so it could have been worse right?
Yeah at church. . .now all of the jungle room kids know the "D" word thanks to me.


Baaaa-aaaad Mommy. The ONE time. . .okay okay, the *Maybe* fifth time I've said that word since I've been a Christian. . .and the ONE time I say it in front of my kids and it comes back to bite me in the da** butt.