Wednesday, December 14, 2011

LaDonna's Papercutting and Framing Idea...

This is such a neat craft display idea that I just had to share it. My friend, LaDonna is an amazing papercutter. Her work is far superior to mine, so different in style and... amazing. They are more like paper sculptures, where the flowers she makes are 3D!! You really must go see. She also has her work published in a book. You can see more about that on the blog.

Anyway, she posted this idea on her blog, and I thought to pass it on to you. Seems rather simple, and that works for me.

Go see her post here on Framed Vintage Silverware. I would love to use this idea. While I do not have a beautiful selection of vintage knives as she has, I would certainly be able to find scissors or some other such lovely to use instead. ;-)

That is all for now. You may be wondering why I am not sticking to ONLY papercuts on this blog... well, this is my place to share what interests me as well, is it not? I love literature and the written word, crafts of all kinds and such, which is why I call my blog what it is... Wordlets (words and outlets) and Craftivities (crafts and activities)...

Don't worry, More papercuts are on their way!! :-)

Friday, December 9, 2011

From 2008... Old Art Found And Now Included...

Starting out in papercutting, I asked a couple of artists if I could try to copy their work to build my skills. One was Cindy at Scherenschnitte. She was a TREMENDOUS encouragement in the first couple years of learning. I asked her questions, and she was kind enough to answer as best she could. I used mostly her pieces, at the time, for practice, since she was so proactive in her assistance and because her work is so admirable, but I did also do some from a couple other people.

Because I was just getting the handle of things back then, including labeling everything... I have NO idea where I got this from. I made NO mention on the back as to where I got it, and I am so sorry about that. If you recognize this piece, please let me know so I can give credit where credit is due. I have tried to search online, but have not been able to find the source.

I LOVE this papercut. I gave it to my mother-in-law for her 70th birthday card in July of 2008. I recall not including it in my scanned art because it was not my own design, but now that I look at it, it is a pretty good replica for a beginner.

Please ask for permission before using someone else's art. :-) And, label whatever you DO use so you do remember the source. That is said from experience. Oh, the things we learn on our creative journey. Hahah...

Well, I hope you like it as much as I do!!

Current Redirected Inspiration... Snowflake Art...

I have found new inspiration!! My interest in papercutting has been redirected for the time being to papercut snowflakes! Even my kids are following suit, as can be seen by the many creations now decorating our windows and glass doors!! Art for a house to wear! NICE!

Here are the ones that I have created so far. I got the idea from a few contacts on Flickr. They created not just various snowflake forms but movement and people and LIFE. I did not think I could do it, but... I did! They have been surprisingly easier to create than I expected. I am very happy with them.

You will notice that Snowflake Art #5 is missing from the group. That is because it is being used for another project, which I will post about when it is complete and ready to show. For now, here you go! :-)

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Snowflake Art #1 Roots And Wings... (Got this from a song... Below are the lyrics and other info...)... One of my favorites. Very personal. It is a song I remember from my youth. While it did not mean as much then, it means very much to me now that I have my own children. Funny how things DO sometimes come back to you from the past. This has been a blessings to remember.


Singer: Clay Crosse
Song: Give Him Roots
Writer: J. SILBAR, B. VALENTINE
Got lyrics from HERE



So many voices in his ear
Are they playing on his fears
It's a bad situation
All the way around
But with a solid foundation
He's gonna stand his ground

Take a little time
Plant the seeds
Give him reason to believe

Give him roots, and give him wings
And he'll grow up to do great things
Let him know the joy that he brings
Teach him the value of the truth
Oh you gotta give him roots, give him wings

When he comes to you
And he needs your help
And he's so unsure of himself
Give him vision
So he can see the Light
Let him know the difference between
Wrong and right

Share the wisdom
Of your peers
There'll be laughter
There'll be tears

He should aim as high as the sky
There ain't nothing he can't do
If he'll only try


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Snowflake Art #2 Cross-hatched Butterflies...

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Snowflake Art #3 Spreading Seeds...

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Snowflake Art #4 Growing...

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Snowflake Art #6 Abuela's Hummingbird Flower... (This one is dedicated to my Abuela. She loves hummingbirds. I thought of this idea while half awake and half asleep. It will be sent to her as a gift, so family DO NOT say anything.) :-)

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Snowflake Art #7 Flight of the Hawks for Anthony...

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Older Crafty Things I Have Done...

I just wanted to make sure I direct you to our family blog as that is where for a few years I was posting all of my crafty things and creations. Please stop by. I hope to be able to add links to those posts bit by bit. Until then, happy browsing.

You can find our family blog HERE!

Have a great week!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Giveaway Having To Do With The Written Word...

This site has the neatest necklace giveaway for lovers of the written word, which is why I am posting it here and not at my other blogs. CLICK HERE for more on the giveaway. Below is some of the info...

These are some of the ones I liked, but go see, as there are lots of others!
















From the writers of the post:

"For a chance to win, please visit Bookish Charm and leave a comment below letting us know which charms are your favorites.

For extra entries (leave separate links of proof):


•"Like" Bookish Charm on Facebook
•Follow Bookish Charm on Twitter
•Follow Bookish Charm blog
•Favorite Bookish Charm on Etsy

•Follow Haute Whimsy via RSS or Google Friend Connect

•Follow Haute Whimsy on Twitter
•"Like" Haute Whimsy on Facebook
•Leave a comment on another Haute Whimsy post (unlimited)

•Post about this giveaway on Facebook (leave a link of proof- once daily)
•Tweet about this giveaway (leave a link of proof- once daily)
•Blog about this giveaway (leave a link of proof- once)
Best of luck! Giveaway ends 11/15 at 11:59 PM"

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Getting Started... Backwards?...

Hi!! Here is a post that is applicable to my life at the moment. Have you ever felt STUCK when trying to come up with something to write? Well, I believe that this is good advice, and it has worked for me in various other story/essay writing moments.

I hope it is useful to you as well.

See HERE!

A Post On... "How to Feel Miserable As An Artist"...

I know. I know. I have not posted in a while. I was just going write here to tell you what I have been up to when I found something I just had to share. You see, I have been feeling a little, hm, not uninspired as I have LOTS of ideas, as much as unmotivated, to create adn accomplish them. I have been doing creative things just not in my usual avenues. I have some projects that are way overdue, and yet, even with my mental coaching of "finish what you start", I cannot seem to get there. Sigh... I am sorry. So sorry. I want to do more, but life is getting in the way bigtime.

You see, we have moved our little apartment-like living space into a house living space, and I have been spending time getting everything in order. We have ordered furniture, recieved said furniture, spent time cleaning the dust that seems to always come back as if I have not cleaned it before, and just trying to settle in.

Like I said, I have been creative, but just not in normal ways. Positioning furniture perfectly is an art, I believe. hahah... But aside from that I have been brainstorming a design to have etched in the marble that will go on our marble steps landing. I made my youngest son a bookmark to fill up his empty side table a little bit. I am in baking mode, with Thanksgiving prodding me to comfort foods. And I have been planning out where to put pictures, thinking of plots and story lines for a kids' book I would like to write. And... Hm... there are so many little things that have been scattered throughout my days, but nothing to show for it. I have also slacked in my picture-taking. NO! I know!

My husband has accomplished cementwork, and a VERY original island for our kitchen. Of course I had my say, but he put it together.

So, that is more or less what I have been up to...

Now, I would like to refer you to THIS POST that Dave wrote. He does not reference these words, as they are not his own, but... they are brilliant, and a wonderful and much needed reminder to me. Hope they are to YOU as well.

Have a good day. Blessings. Be creative as unto the Lord!! Have fun with it!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Busy Crafting For My Son...

I have not been papercutting very much, but I have been keeping busy. In these days I have been making things to keep my nearly-four-year-old son happy. The other day he was sad that he did not have as many things in his bedside table like his older brothers, and to help him add something fun to his I made him a bookmark with some scraps of paper, an ad with an image that resembles Superman, and a sock tag that had the image of Lightning McQueen on it. Together it turned out to be one of his favorite items, and he doesn't even read yet. When he started leaving it lying around, I put it in his bedside table drawer for him to rediscover at another time.

Today my second son made this not-a-toddler-anymore son of mine a dinosaur out of paper, but it was flimsy enough that when he tried to play with it, the foot broke off. So... I stablized it on an old cereal box and then cut it out again. But... the foot broke off again,even so. He got really upset, so I decided to go a bit more drastic in saving this dino. I got another old cereal box, took apart the seam, colored some scenery on the gray side all around it, taped up the seam again, taped the dino on the scenery and then taped the entire box across all of the colored "torso". It did not have the top or bottom flaps. I cut those off before. But the whole "torso" of the box was intact. After taping it all together, it stood on its own, and the dino was no longer in danger of extinction at the grubby hands of my rough boy. He watched Ice Age with it nearby, even as he held two other toy dinos, and he placed it standing up, cereal-box-style on his nightstand when he took a nap. He even realized he could use it to put on his head as a hat, of sorts. It has been a very nice toy to distract him with today.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Book Review for: Books 3 & 4 of the Katy Lambright Series by Kim Vogel Sawyer...



Katy’s Homecoming by author Kim Vogel Sawyer was released in February 2011 by Zondervan (zondervan.com). This is #3 in a series about Katy Lambright, an Old Order Mennonite girl.

In this book Katy has been given the opportunity that others may have only dreamed of: to go to a normal, public high school in Salina. While she has been given permission by the elders of her Mennonite order, this permisson has only been given for her sophomore year, and the possibility of continuing depends wholly on IF she can maintain her strict system of beliefs without being affected by the world with which she will confront.

Katy is a normal teenager with a strong belief system that is challenged by the coming remarriage of her dad, relationships changing, and losing focus of prioritites. Now, as she begins a new adventure in Salina High School, she will have to face a world that will try to discourage her by scheming lies and unkindness, trickery, unwarranted hatred, being made fun of, peer pressure, and numerous other ways of making another feel badly. The biggest surprise is when she is elected as part of the Homecoming Court. How can she find the balance of wanting to be beautiful to her new friends and the boy with whom she has a crush while still being true to what she knows in her heart is real and best? Questions and doubts thrust her into a full battle of heart and soul as she needs to decide if she will give into her personal desires or choose as would be most pleasing to God. Being different from what the world likes or expects comes with a price, and for Katy that means choosing the comfort, integrity, and security of traditional faith or walking away from it all, if even for one day. But, would it truly be for only one day? Regarding this there is a constant nagging concern in her heart that does not seem to be subdued easily… When the two worlds of the Old Order Mennonite community and Salina High School collide, Katy will be confronted with what really matters in friendship, boys, and faith, and what she decides will have a profound change on her future.

The author, Kim Vogel Sawyer, shows brilliant insight into the conflicts involved in a preteen or early teen girl’s life. Elements such as these are scattered within the pages: Dealing with temptation, wrong versus right, faith and integrity versus materialism and worldliness, not judging by appearance, selfishness versus servanthood, and how to deal with first feelings of a crush. The importance of manners and behaviours even to those not liked or trusted was one I felt worth the notice, by the way.

I, surprisingly, found myself paralleling Katy’s Mennonite upbringing with my own strict upbringing. I found many of her sentiments and feelings reflected in my own, many I have experienced myself when facing challenges, especially regarding growing up. The emotional ups and downs of crushes and learning about true love, handling trust delicately, honesty even when it hurts, friendship, servanthood, and walking out faith no matter what, are each elements that have rung true in my own life.

I was not initially excited to read this book, but I was very pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed it so much. Katy has become a friend with whom I very much wish I could know more about. I wish I had the entire series, and I would wholly allow my daughter to read this and know that she was facing truth with a good dose of persistent faith. I am honored to have this book to hand down to my daughter. I was blessed in the reading of it, as some of the lessons within, though meant for a young girl, are timeless and a great reminder to my own heart.

If you would like more information regarding the author, Kim Vogel Sawyer, please go to www.kimvogelsawyer.com
For other information regarding the book, including prices and the like, please go to www.zondervan.com

Disclaimer: I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. :-)


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Katy’s Decision by author Kim Vogel Sawyer was released in May 2011 by Zondervan (zondervan.com). This is #4 in a series about Katy Lambright, an Old Order Mennonite girl.

“… Lord, we praise You because we know You are a God who wastes nothing. You will use this experience to grow the Lambright family closer to each other and to You. Thank You for giving us all we need to face challenges of this life. Amen.” (Reverend Nuss’s prayer)

Katy has great plans for the summer. With school out and her best friend, Shelby, staying with her for 6 weeks due to a broken leg and not being able to attend a mission trip with her family, many memory-making activities are in their minds to do; but Katy and Shelby are forced to reevalute their priorities when tragedy hits the Lambright family and the Old Order Mennonite community. When Aunt Rebecca is diagnosed with cancer, all plans are postponed and their focus is put to helping to run Aunt Rebecca’s fabric store while she goes through surgery, treatments, chemotherapy, and healing.

There are challenges to their new responsiblities, but the girls take it all on together; but then some other challenges approach that have Katy swirling with doubt and indecision. Three boys- who is best for her and her faith… her future? She is dealing with feelings so very new to her, and there is so much to consider. As summer nears to its close, and school is looming in the not-too-distant future, Katy is concerned about all she has worked for regarding her own life. Will she be able to go back to Salina High School? That depends on the elders and how soon Aunt Rebecca can return to the store. And what about her desire to be a journalist? And even after Katy has made her decision about one of the boys, the questions continue to come. Is he the one? He seems to have so many of the valuable qualities that mean so much to her, but… Unless a particular change occurs, even he is not a definite, even though she wants him to be. What to do? Here is another test of faith as trials mount and seem hopeless; but, there are also some surprises that God has in store for her. He is faithful.

Once again, Kim Vogel Sawyer has enchanted us with Katy Lambright. Her Salina and Old Order Mennonite worlds conflict and create some very interesting situations, some that will made me feel like crying with Katy, and others that made me laugh. All in all, it was a very enjoyable journey. Themes like “doing the right thing is hard sometimes”, heart tug-of-wars and crushes, learning to appreciate and care for a new stepmom, loving someone even when it is tough, accepting others even with their differences, and the importance of prayer in all decision-making are seen throughout the contents of this story. I would like to also make a point of mentioning the importance of good role models and supporters, of mentors and encouragers, to scatter their wisdom, love, and care through the trials. Even though Katy was cautious in what she let go to her heart, she was surrounded by others who were praying for her to have God’s wisdom to make the right decisions, those who could just give a hug of support, or those who just listened to her as she spoke. May we all have God bless us in such a way, with such as these.

I was particularly struck by the possiblity of Katy having to “let go of her dreams”. I, myself, had to deal with a time very similar to that in the feelings she expressed. I came to this conclusion: In Katy’s words, “First of all, I prayed. A lot. I wanted to make sure it was something I was even supposed to pursue. I knew I couldn’t be happy following my dream if my dream wasn’t what God wanted for me.” When I gave my dreams to God, after He did quite a bit of convincing and encouraging, I was amazed to be relieved. The weight of even my childhood-to-adult dreams had added a weight to me that I could not even understand. When I gave it all to Him, He blessed me with peace and such relief to leave it all “in His capable hands”.

At the end of reading this book, this verse clung to my brain, “All things work together for good for those who are in Christ.” Along with the verse “There is a time for everything…”, they sum up the basic messages of this story.

If you would like more information regarding the author, Kim Vogel Sawyer, please go to www.kimvogelsawyer.com
For other information regarding the book, including prices and the like, please go to www.zondervan.com

Disclaimer: I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. :-)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

September 29, 2011... Delia's Birthday Card...



Created today... it is called "Flit & Luma" ("Flit" for the flittering butterfly. "Luma" for the Italian word for snail "lumaca") :-)
I like it alot, and I love the names! :-)

This papercut is for a friend of my daughter's. She is at the party right now.

Delia, Congratulations! Happy Birthday! May God bless you, and may He fill your day and this new year with His joy, hope, peace, and love. He cares for you...

All of us!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

September 17, 2011... Serena's Peace...


A friend gave birth to a lovely, little lady three weeks ago. She is darling, precious, and a sweet gift from God. This was part of her gift.

The verse is from Isaiah 26: 3 and says (in English)...
"You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You. "


Little (Piccola) Serena, God bless you!!! (Dio vi benedica!!!)

2 Anniversaries Card...


Called: Semblance of My Self-Portrait (I tried, but it is not easy to do a profile of myself, on my own. hahaha... Besides... I still like it.)

Mid September marked three very important events in our lives. One is not pleasant to remember, but is never forgotten. September 11... Twin Towers. I will never forget.

But then we also have two other anniversaries that have had their mix of challenges, but have also been a wonderful blessing, too. My husband and I celebrated 12 years of marriage, and on the same day also celebrated 8 years of living here in Italy.

I am convinced now more than ever of God's faithfulness and goodness, in good as well as difficult times. Through each hard time He sustained us, and He has directed and helped us every step of the way.

I love you, A!! I am so grateful that the Lord brought us together. May He "bless us, protect us, make His face shine upon us, be gracious to us, and give us His peace." (Numbers 6:24-26) May He continue to guide and direct us into His perfect way and give us soft hearts to be open to His will, and ears to hear. Amen.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Good Reason...

I do have a good reason for not posting... We have been on vacation to the US. We are nearing the end of our trip, and I figured I had some down time, so it might be worth mentioning. Finally. HAH! Hope you are well... Will try to post more soon. Blessings.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Two Doves... Due Colombe...


June 2, 2011, this past Thursday, was the wedding of a distant cousin and friend of my husband. We went without the kids. Boohoo.. Yes, I missed them the whole time, but that is not the point of this post, so...

Here is the card I made them. The image is supposed to be two doves in a fig-bearing tree.

Auguri, Patrick e Rosanna!!! Vi vogliamo tanto bene!
Congratulations, Patrick and Rosanna!!! We love you very much!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Three Cuts For My Nephew...

Two weddings and a graduation. Sounds like a movie, doesn't it? No, these are just a recounting of the events for which I created the last three cards. My oldest nephew asked me to do this for him, and I agreed. So here they are. :-)


The Yellow Rose...


Roses and Buds in Cream...


Graduation Flower...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A Visual Prayer To Those In Our Armed Forces...


This card was created for my nephew's friend who just left for the war. This was created in hopes of encouraging him and as a reminder of God's love for him.

This card was also created as a reminder to me, to us, to pray for them. They need our prayers, interceding for their safety, souls, and well-being. They need God to minister to their hearts when they are lonely, afraid, sad, hurting. We cannot be there, but God is everywhere. May He take our love-and-care words and grow fruit for His kingdom, strength in weakness, hope in trial, and moments of encouragement to remind them that they are indeed thought of and loved. Let us not forget them, please. They are our husbands, fathers, brothers, uncles, cousins, friends... They are wives, mothers, sisters, aunts, as well. They are valued and needed and missed...

May the Lord "bless them... keep them... make His face shine upon them... be gracious to them... and give them peace."
Numbers 6:24-26

A World Of Dinosaurs: From The Rooftop... Son's Birthday...


My oldest son celebrated his 10th birthday. I am amazed that time has flown so quickly. I am overwhelmed at it, as before I know it, He will be grown and living a life of his own. I miss them, my kids, already, and they are still here with me. I ache to hold on to all of the memories and to never forget. I battle to let go of the negative to leave plenty of room for love, joy, and hope to grow in our hearts.

Thank You, Lord, for my family. Thank You for my son, A. You have a purpose and a plan for him that is lovely and good. Minister to A's heart to trust in, cling to, rely on, and believe in You. I know You are all I need, and I long for him to know that as well for himself. Protect him, Lord. He needs You. Bless him, Jesus. And, help him to see his value through Your eyes, his purpose through Your guidance, His abilities as opportunities to lay at Your feet. I love You, Jesus. I love you, A.

Happy 10th Birthday, my growing young man!!

(Made to corrispond with A's Dinosaur/Archeological themed birthday party. Have yet to post on that.)

Monday, February 14, 2011

February 2011...A Valentine Cut For My Beloved...


Ecclesiastes 4:12b says, "A three-strand cord is not easily broken."

My husband and I are part of a "three-strand cord". The main source is our God who IS Love. His love reaches forth individually to each of us and binds us together. No matter the storms or hard times of this life, as we stay within His love, there is hope; and He will protect us. He grows His love in each of us so we can love each other better, and it flows over into our love for our children.

Each flower represents each blessing He has given to us- the ones we're able to watch bloom and grow, and the one waiting for us in Jesus' arms.

We are blessed; I know that. I am blessed; I know that.

Celebrating God- the only God of True Love- and His workings in my marriage...

Celita

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

February 8, 2011... An Obedience Cut...


Titled: Blooming Hope

You know... one thing I have learned in my walk of faith is... when the Lord directs you to do something, obey, without analyzing, doubting, questioning, giving conflicting advice to yourself, etc... I mean, if you KNOW that you KNOW that you KNOW what you are to do, do it with all your heart- even if the world will think you are crazy.

I do it often, my husband just mentioned this observation yesterday as I relayed to him what I was up to. I want to be so sensitive to God's voice that I do and know that I have to do it and go- point blank. I have asked the God to help me have a childlike faith, and I think this is one area He has often challenged me to do just that. Trust and faith.

So, a year ago I had a feeling to do something. I did ask God, "um, is that Your voice, or me just imagining it?" I asked for confirmation for the task I felt that I needed to accomplish. Not for doubt, but to secure the purpose in my brain. He knows me, and He knows that I do not want to do something in His name that is not of Him; and I sure hate messing up. So... He gave me confirmation.

What was it, you may be asking? What was it that He put on my heart about a year ago, that I am JUST getting to? sigh...

I have two actors on my heart. Yup. I have been praying and interceding for them. One is an old classic movie actress, and the other is a young comedic sort. Either way, they have become a constant, pressing topic of prayer for me. And, I felt almost a year ago to make a card for the elderly actress and send it to her. Hm.

Now, yes, you may think I am crazy, but... I would remind you, what am I really losing by trying? I could effect positive change for Jesus by simply obeying His voice. I don't know the lives of others. I do not know what my simple act can accomplish. I DO know that I will receive "WHY would you do that?" in very dubious and critical tones. Already have (from someone other than my husband, just to be clear). But, I WILL obey my Jesus. I will practice obedience in the small things, so I can be faithful to obey in the big.

So, here it is. Almost a year later after asking God to give me inspiration for a card, as... if the desire came from Him, I sure wanted the whole subject to continue under Him and not be directed by my hand. This is HIS deal. I am just an instrument. The other day, the idea just flowed from my hands, and when it was complete, I knew it is for her.

I Googled the lead I had to an address for her. As you must know that lots of lies are spread on the internet, and I wanted to be careful to have what I thought would be the REAL thing. So...I believe I have found the address, and just sent it out this morning.

May God heal her heart from sin's ravaging and pain. May He save her heart and bring her rest in His presence. May He do so also with you, dear one.

I hope you will pray for ANYONE that God puts on your heart. You just never know how He will use those very words from your heart. He knows who needs someone to intercede. He knows the details, I am just an itty-bitty part of His grand plan. Help me pray for this card to reach her and touch her heart. Won't you?

Blessings...

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Book Review for: Roadside Assistance by Amy Clipston...


This is a book review for Roadside Assistance by Amy Clipston. To be released May 2011.

Emily Curtis is 16 years old, misunderstood, judged by her appearance and chosen hobbies, and is very lonely and hurting. She is dealing with a lot of change and tragedy all at the same time, such as the death of her mother and her boyfriend breaking up with her. Her usual coping method of working on cars is not proving to be fulfilling through recent challenges, and she has an emptiness that simply will not be subdued. It seems as if she has stalled to a stop and is signalling S.O.S., but no one is able to understand her needs. And, the worst and biggest problem is that she has forgotten how to pray. It is almost as if she has “spiritual laryngitis”.

Through unexpected friendships with her cousin, Whitney; Zander, the boy next door; and her new school friend, Chelsea, Emily learns to have faith and to open up her heart to trust and to love again. When yet another challenge comes her way, she finds the strength, courage, and will to heal. She is renewed and given a brand new hope as she leans on God, and she finds the void in her heart and her needs filled in God’s perfect way.

Being a teen is a stage in life so full of conflicting emotions, feelings, drama, and challenge. Amy Clipston captures the very essence of these throughout these pages. I recognized many feelings, insecurities, struggles, and doubts from my own life, and I was blessed to see how the messages within the story spoke to me of “When we are weak, He is strong”… God makes “beauty for ashes”… And God’s ability and immense love to romance our hearts back to Him when we forget Him, lose our way, or our hearts become hardened for whatever reason.

I was intrigued by Emily’s interest in fixing cars, and how she related to a world with which I am slightly familiar. That is what originally drew me to read this book. I am a girl who is not afraid of grease, but I certainly do not have the extent of knowledge that Emily does of cars, fixing them, and such. I wish I did, but it does not come as easily to me as it seems it is for her in the story. Being that my dad is also a car mechanic, I recalled terms and processes that my dad used to accomplish his task at hand. Memories flooded me as I stood, as a child, observing, listening, smelling, passing tools to my dad as he had need of them. There are certain scents and sounds of the garage that are endearing to me because of that time. Then as a young adult, I even got pretty good at determining if a car was idling well or not. I even test drove them for my dad to see if certain sounds indicated that something was wrong with the transmission or something else. Haha!! So, as I read this book, memories flooded forward, reminding me of days long gone. Reading this made me miss my daddy, who lives far from me.

While this book is meant for teens, I enjoyed it. Not all adults are interested in juvenile literature, but I am. I find it is good to keep in touch with the “youth” side of life and the challenges that come with it. My own kids are growing up and will soon be teenagers themselves, and I want to foster as much patience, understanding, and unconditional love as I can. I know that I will need them to pass through that time period with grace. The basic points of this book are applicable to all ages: Open your heart to God. He knows where and who you are, your hurts and challenges; and, no matter what, He passionately loves you. Trust Him and find peace, even in the hardest times in your life.

I would recommend this book to any female teen in my life.

By the way, I was not obligated to give a positive review. When I have good material to work with, it is easy to enjoy and to say good things about it. Blessings!

For more information on the author please go to www.amyclipston.com

And for more information about the book or to purchase, you can go to www.zonderkidz.com

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Book Review for: The Brave Young Knight by Karen Kingsbury...


This is a book review for The Brave Young Knight written by Karen Kingsbury and illustrated by Gabrielle Grimard. (Release Date: April 2011)

In the last few months I have felt impressed of the Lord to give a call to my four little knights, especially, to be young men of honor and integrity. They are not easy concepts to grasp when you are 10, 8, 6, and 3, but this book has been an effective addition to my campaign for their souls.

I am overjoyed to be able to share this book with you. Before I begin I would like to make an observation how the dedications at the beginning of the story express such joy and celebration of the blessing of children. That warms my heart!

This is a story about a young knight who is kind, helpful, smart, fast, and strong. He is always available to one in need and thoughtful towards all. This young knight lives in the West Village, one of four villages that make up the kingdom.

The king of the land is looking for a prince and calls one man from each village to compete for this honor. Whoever can prove to be the bravest will receive the crown.

Before the competition, the young knight’s father reminds him, in spite of his insecurities, “My son, the bravest knight is not always the fastest. Follow God and he will help you run the race… My son, the bravest knight is not always the strongest. Faith in God will give you the strength you need… My son, the bravest knight is not always the smartest. Ask God and he will give you great wisdom.”

The competition begins with, what seems to be, failure, but it ends with a fantastic lesson on the value of integrity, honesty, honor, and a reminder how God “rewards those who diligently seek Him.” It also speaks of persevering through trials; honesty when it would be easier to be dishonest; the importance of dedicating choices to God so He can help us follow the correct paths and do what is right; and, overall, it is about having faith, communication, and trust in God so that He can “help you run the race”, “give you the strength you need”, and “give you great wisdom.”

The story is remarkable in content, easy to follow, and makes its way straight to the heart. The illustrations are warm, attractive, and a perfect compliment to the story. It is a simple and valuable tool that can aid a parent or loving adult to explain the value God puts on a heart surrendered to Him, and the importance of Godly morals throughout life and challenges.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a little boy. While this book is stated to be for boys between the ages of 4 and 7, I would personally extend the age to even 9. The message is clear and is certainly applicable for all ages; not to mention that it is presented beautifully.

By the way, I was not obligated to give a positive review. When I have good material to work with, it is easy to enjoy and to say good things about it. Blessings!

For more information on the author please go to www.karenkingsbury.com

And for more information about the book or to purchase, you can go to www.zonderkidz.com

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Book Review for: Princess Parables by Jeanna Young and Jacqueline Johnson... Princess Grace and the Little Lost Kitten...


This is a book review for the new and brilliant series called The Princess Parables, in particular Princess Grace and the Little Lost Kitten. This series is written by Jeanna Young and Jacqueline Johnson and illustrated by Omar Aranda. (Release Date: February 2011)

Princess Grace lives in a grand and marvellous castle with her father, the king, and her four sisters- Joy, Faith, Charity, and Hope.

Princess Grace has found five cute, cuddly kittens and dubs the boldest of them, Poppy. They are a handful to take care of, but she is determined to do a good job.

One day, Princess Grace and her sisters become concerned when Poppy goes missing and is nowhere to be found. They go in search of the lost kitten, continuing through each challenge that comes their way until Poppy is found in an unexpected place. Upon returning home, the hearts of each family member are full of rejoicing and gratitude.

This particular story is based on Matthew 18:12-14 which speaks of God’s immense love for His lost children and how He goes after them to offer love, protection, and help, even after making bad decisions or getting into trouble. He desires to bring the “lost into His safety and care”.

I must say that I am very impressed with the illustrations by Omar Aranda. They are vibrant and leap off the page. They could easily be a delightful, animated series for television and dvd. The jacket cover was a hit with ALL of my children, but especially my first three of whom are boys and my fourth being a girl, all between the ages of 10 and 5. They were each highly impressed by the glittery touches and fun illustrations.

I felt that there were mini lessons throughout the story such as the following: showing concern and care for others; working together; taking care of responsibility; honouring your word; utilizing brainstorming and the process of elimination to accomplish something; not giving up in the face of challenge but persevering to the end; and the reminder that prayer helps us to keep going forward in focusing on God. He can give strength and help us to do right even in trouble.

I like how the story ends with a thought by Princess Joy explaining what her name means and what she has learned from her experience. I also like how it gives a simple and direct explanation of the parable as mentioned in the Bible.

I would recommend this book to one who knows a little lady who enjoys “adventure… drama… and keeping busy”. Nearly any little girl will find Princess Grace and Poppy enchanting and endearing. This book is a great way to instill God’s truths into a young feminine heart. My daughter loves it.

By the way, I was not obligated to give a positive review. When I have good material to work with, it is easy to enjoy and to say good things about it. Blessings!

For more information on the authors please go to www.jeannayoung.org

And for more information about the book or to purchase, you can go to www.zonderkidz.com

Book Review for: Princess Parables by Jeanna Young and Jacqueline Johnson... Princess Joy's Birthday Blessing...


This is a book review for the new and brilliant series called The Princess Parables, in particular Princess Joy's Birthday Blessing. This series is written by Jeanna Young and Jacqueline Johnson and illustrated by Omar Aranda. (Release Date: February 2011)

Princess Joy lives in a grand and marvellous castle with her father, the king, and her four sisters- Grace, Faith, Hope, and Charity.

Princess Joy’s birthday is approaching, and, although she is excited at the prospect of celebrating with her family and prince and princess friends, she is horribly disappointed when none of her royal guests are able to attend her party, aside from her family. After her initial sadness, the opportunity arises to include others from the local village in the activities and fun. What begins as disappointment becomes a tremendous blessing as she takes pleasure in making some new friends and receives their special, heartfelt gifts; but the greatest joy is learning that it truly is better to “give than to receive”.

This particular story is based on Luke 14:12-14 where Jesus shares how we can become children of God, and how we need to invite others to know this as well.

I must say that I am very impressed with the illustrations by Omar Aranda. They are vibrant and leap off the page. They could easily be a delightful, animated series for television and dvd. The jacket cover was a hit with ALL of my children, but especially my first three of whom are boys and my fourth being a girl, all between the ages of 10 and 5. They were each highly impressed by the glittery touches.

I feel that there are many mini lessons within the story. While the main message deals with the parable from Luke 14:12-14, there is a hint of others such as the following: it being better to “give than to receive”; the joy of blessing others; the importance and pleasure of being thankful even in the midst of challenge and disappointment; getting past hurt and disappointment to focus on making a situation better; and problem solving God’s way.

I like how the story ends with a thought by Princess Joy explaining what her name means and what she has learned from her experience. I also like how it gives a simple and direct explanation of the parable as mentioned in the Bible.

I would recommend this book to anyone who has a cheerful little lady in his or her life- a daughter, niece, granddaughter, friend- who enjoys “fluffy dresses, shimmering ribbons in her hair, and sparkly shoes” as Princess Joy does. This book is a great way to instill God’s truths into a young feminine heart. My daughter loves it.

By the way, I was not obligated to give a positive review. When I have good material to work with, it is easy to enjoy and to say good things about it. Blessings!

For more information on the authors please go to www.jeannayoung.org

And for more information about the book or to purchase, you can go to www.zonderkidz.com

January 17, 2011... A Thank You To Our Pediatrician...


Title: Thank You!!


We have lived here in Italy for nearly a complete 7 and a half years now. These years have been full of lots of things, one of which is sickness. My kids have had a good long run of illness and medications, some serious, some run-of-the-mill, and some odd. All in all, I MUST say a tremendous "Thank You" to the dearest pediatrician in our lives, Dr. N.

You have been a blessing to us in so many ways. Your kindness, gentleness, professionalism, and care stand out above so many, and I am honored to be blessed with you in our lives.

Your care has extended out to us in ways you were not obligated to show it, and yet, in spite of your busy schedule and high demand for your services, you have made time for me and my family. I cannot thank you enough.

Here is a little "thank you" from my heart. The five leafy plants represent my five growing children. The pink flower (it is a deeper pink in person) represents me, and the blue represents my husband. It is a simple cut, but I like it just for that...

(So you all know... I am going through an artistic slump, and, frankly, I needed a simple project to allow myself to feel okay that I accomplished something, but have not been able to get myself to accomplish very much. I am working on it.)
Anyhow... this simple cut may not be much to look at, but I assure you that it is part of my heart, and actually signifies big things.

Thank you, Dr. N. We love you!!!

December 19, 2010...Geremia 29:11 Follow God's Plans...


Title: Jeremiah 29:11 Follow God's Plans...

Jeremiah 29:11 says, "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
*********************************************
I created this cut for my niece, Sefora's, 11th birthday. I know that she is entering a critical time of her life, adolescence. While I know that this time period is full of many challenge, I desired to give her a visual reminder that God is always with her, to listen to His voice, and rest in His promises. I believe the idea came across well. My only regret... need to work on cutting letters. They seem a bit choppy. sigh... I still like it, though.

Below is my note to her...



“I passi dell’onesto son guidati dal Signore; egli gradisce le sue vie. Se cade, non è però abbattuto, perché il Signore lo sostiene prendendolo per mano.”
Salmo 37:23-24

(Psalm 37:23-24...
23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD,
And He delights in his way.
24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down;
For the LORD upholds him with His hand.")

************************************************
“Confida nel Signore con tutto il cuore e non ti appoggiare sul tuo discernimento. Riconoscilo in tutte le tue vie ed egli appianerà i tuoi sentieri.”
Proverbi 3:5-6

(Proverbs 3:5-6...
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.)
*************************************************
Sefora,

Auguriamo una bellissima 11° compleanno! Veramente siamo grati per la tua vita. Fida nel Signore in ogni cosa. Lui è fedele, non cambia mai, e ti vuole TANTO bene.

Possa Dio ti riempi di gioia e speranza in questo giorno, e possa quest’anno è pieno di cresci mento in Gesù. La cose più importante in questo mondo è di scegliere Gesù come tuo Dio, Salvatore, e Migliore Amico.

Ti vogliamo tanto bene… le parole non bastano per spiegare quanto.

Auguri! E ringraziamo Dio insieme a voi per questo giorno e per come Dio è stato fedele di fare cura di te.

Abbracci

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Book Review for: Mr. Shipley's Governess by Joanne Troppello...


Mr. Shipley’s Governess by Joanne Troppello

Sophie Baird is an elementary school teacher faced with the challenge of moving on through life while dealing with the fresh wounds of tragedy. Deciding that she needs a change, Sophie takes a position as tutor for the Shipley family: comprised of the young widower, Sebastian Shipley, and his sickly nine-year-old daughter, Anastasia.

This story recounts Sophie’s journey back to hope, faith, and healing; as she finds that she is able, once again, to trust and to love. As the story progresses, it seems that the heart changes are occurring in others of the Shipley household as well. These changes reveal a budding love between Sophie and Mr. Shipley, and complete devotion between Sophie and Anastasia.

The first thing I noticed about the “feel” of this book is that I became very emotionally involved with the characters. They are real-to-life. It was interesting to see that I had difficulty remembering that the story is contemporary. For some reason my mind related to the story as an historical novel, and I was startled several times in the midst of reading by a phrase or exclamation that encouraged me to return, and reassured me of it being, present day. It was an intriguing sort of occurrence.

I was blessed by two incidences of miraculous intervention: once with Sophie, who was battling with doubt, fear and mistrust of God. She received confirmation of God’s passionate love for her from a very surprising and unlikely source. I related to this and was overwhelmed to tears of gratitude and amazement. (God is so good.) The other had to do with Anastasia, her faith in a good God, and God’s ability to speak to the heart of a child.

Other elements that I enjoyed were the references to Jane Austen, C. S. Lewis, and the sites around Belfast, Ireland. The details still ring longing in my heart to see what she saw in her travels.

This book can certainly be labelled a “Christian Romance Novel”. It is easy to read and flows nicely. It is not weighty nor overly long–drawn-out. I believe is perfect for busy moms or overly stressed persons who long to read something sweet and something that includes many encouraging reminders, but who do not want to add any more stress to the day. I enjoyed it, and I am actually considering reading it again even though I have just completed the first run-through.

I would recommend this book to other moms or women who miss reading more often, but haven’t a lot of time, or who have become accustomed to light reading based on too much distraction in life and/or a busy and intense lifestyle. It is light reading but thoroughly enjoyable.

As it is an e-book, it was a bit more challenging for me to get to through while maintaining the needs of my home and family. That may not be problem for all, though. I would have preferred having a paperback in hand, but the story was enjoyable enough to help me forgive that point and make time in the evenings to complete it.


To learn more about this e-book or other books by this author, or to purchase, please go to…
http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-mrshipley039sgoverness-481158-149.html

I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Blessings…

Monday, January 3, 2011

December 29, 2010... Miranda's Rainbow Panda...



My baby girl has turned 5! The time is flying by, and I am so grateful for God's blessings to me and my family. While there are certainly challenges in our days, I want to make the most of the happy times. I am one who plans the themes of birthdays well in advance. I did animals this past year of 2010, and found that the panda seemed like the perfect theme for my daughter, along with the rainbow, as we love rainbows. :-) My daughter is a vibrant, smiley, twirling, jumping, and loving-to-be-tickled little girl. She loves colors bright and beautiful, and princesses and pretty things, too. So, what better cut than this for my dear baby girl.

I love you, Miranda... More than words can say. I sit here remembering the day I saw your form on the monitor and realized you were a girl... I remember clearly the day you were born, and I got to see you for the first time. I remember, and just feel so blessed. God surprised me with a special gift on that December day in 2005. After 3 brothers, God had given me complete peace about the possiblity, even probability, of having another boy. I was content knowing that God has plans for this family, and He would, and will, give us all we need to teach us, grow us, and help us. I longed for a girl for many years, someone who I could have just a touch more in common with because of sharing the same gender- girl. I longed, and God did not provide (at least not for a long time). When I surrendered that to Him, He knocked my socks off with a HUGE surprise- YOU!!! You are BRRRRRRUTIFUL (!), and Mamma, Papà, and your brothers (all four of them) just think you are the greatest.

Baby girl, always remember to 1)tell the truth, 2)work hard, 3) do what's right for Jesus, 4) do your best. Remember "God leads me..." Psalm 23, verse 2.

"Guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life." Proverbs 4:23

Keep being the unique, happy, and vibrant YOU God created you to be. Remember... He has a purpose and plan for making you as you are. So... Trust Him to help you, guide you, grow you, and most of all LOVE you in a most perfect way, just for you.

He is the Best Friend you can EVER have!

Always, Mamma and your family :-)

December 16, 2010... Gabriele, God's Little Warrior!...


Titled: The Little Warrior (notice 7 arrows symbolizing 7 critical days he spent in the hospital, and that was only a portion of his suffering time. God ministered to him even during those most difficult days. God loves him, and will be near in any coming challenges that are to come. Thanks, Lord.)

One hope is that when one has a brand new baby, life will be all sweet and cuddly and comfortable, but we all know it is not always that way. Gabriele is one of those babies who has suffered alot in the two months since his birth. I was unable to meet him before, but recently went to see him. Here is his "Birth-day" and "Get Well" card.

Dear Gabriele, God's Little Warrior,

We are so happy to have you in our lives. Even though you are small, you are a great blessing. Your life speaks of God's faithfulness.

Psalm 91:1-6 says, "He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust." Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day, nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday."

In t hese few months you have passed through many challenges, but we know that God has had His hand on you. Hallelujah! We thank God for how He has worked and is working in your little life and in the life of your family.

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Hebrews 13:8

Knowing this, we can have faith that He will continue to keep you for the rest of your life.

Jeremiah 29:11 says, " For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."

In every time in your life remember this...

Ephesians 6:10-18 The Whole Armor of God

"10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[a] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—"

It is information that is more than useful, it is essential.

Proverbs 3:5-6 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths."

Stay on the path leading to Jesus. The most important decision you can make in your life is to choose Jesus as your Friend and Saviour. He is the most important Person, Place, or Thing in this whole world. Trust in, cling to, rely on, and believe in Him, for He cares for you.

Romans 8:31, 35, 37-39 says, " 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?...35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?...37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."

We love you very much, Gabriele. Your family is very special to us, and so are you. May God "bless you, keep you, make His face shine upon you, be gracious to you, and give you His peace." Numbers &:24-26


Love, Celita and family :-)

Late Trade With Carey's Niche...


ATC: Siiri Seahorse...


ATC: Medusa And Goldie...


ATC: Stella Sea Turtle...

I have been a little behind in finishing up some trades. The end of this year proved a little TOO full for me, and so, I am so sorry to those of you whom have waited for me to keep my end of the bargain. Sigh.

Well, here are three ATC cuts that I did for Carey's Niche. Hope you like them!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Book Review: Voices of the Faithful - Book 2 ...



This book, Voices of the Faithful- Book 2 (by By Beth Moore, Kim P. Davis, International Mission Board), is a year’s worth of devotional chats by evangelical believers around the world doing their best to serve the nations God has put on their heart to reach in the name of Jesus. Each is a glimpse into the lives and experiences of some of the missionaries or those called to minister to other nations.
While I knew that I would be blessed by these readings, I did not realize to what extent. I have had a heart for missions since I was a child growing up in a small church. There were always special speakers and presentations showing us what others are doing to reach hearts for Christ. While I have never truly felt the call to GO into the mission field, I have been led to live in a foreign country. I have seen some of the challenges of living in a nation that is wrapped up in bondage. I have come to acknowledge that, while I have not been called here as a “missionary”, this is still my mission field. I have come to take to heart these verses from Colossians 3:17 and 23, “And whatever you do in word or in deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him… And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.” I am aiming to use my normal, ordinary, sometimes monotonous and challenging life, to encourage and bless others with the talents that I have. It may seem simple, but God uses the simple things to confound the wise, and He can grow great fruit from even the smallest of seeds. That is what I am seeing in the pages of this book. These fellow workers are doing the same, although to a grander scale and with a deeper purpose.
These daily readings are a challenge to read one at a time as they are short, but stock full of moments I crave… they are like having a chat over some coffee with a friend: sharing testimonies of God’s hand working in challenging situations; lessons on faith and trust; explaining some neat ideas used to try to reach more souls, and just encouraging another to listen to God’s voice, follow where He leads, dream big dreams, and KNOW a living and loving Lord. So many of the verses chosen are ones I have already underlined in my Bible, but some I have just NEEDED to hear again for this time or have not fully become aware of yet. They have been nuggets of blessing to my heart.
As we have entered this new year, 2011, I have been asking the Lord for a clear vision of what He has for me, and surprisingly, He is using this book to stir some things that are not clear, but are sure and being made ready. I am blessed beyond words for the unity I feel with these brothers and sisters in this big, and yet small, world. I am blessed to know that the Lord binds us together in unity THROUGH PRAYER, even while we are separated by oceans, miles and miles of land and mountains, by different languages and cultures and traditions… None of that can separate us from each other, in a way, because none of that can separate us from Jesus, who is the common bond. Nothing can separate us from Him, and while we are drawn to the tangible and visual, His Spirit links us in a heavenly bond that reaches across all spaces and challenges and differences.
I had an incident occur while reading one of the daily devotions. I was deeply touched by the words spoken by one of the missionaries, R.C.H (American Peoples), and became overwhelmed to tears. I put down the book for a time, and had to go off and find something I needed for a birthday party for one of my kids. As I browsed through some boxes I came across one of my old journals and thought I would read through it and remember… Wouldn’t you know, the very words that the missionary used and that spurred him to action, were so similar to a “calling” that I received many years ago but had forgotten. It is time to remember and act, and this book has been used in various ways to encourage me to do so.
“And He has made from ONE BLOOD every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ ” Acts 17:26-28
Those of us whom have chosen to follow Christ as our living Saviour and Lord, we are a family, a body. We each have a part to play, and sometimes, many times, another part of our body needs us. Prayer is the work! As Pat said in the book, “There is victory in prayer!” While this book is encouraging and spurring, more than anything, I join with these loved ones asking for corporate prayer from each part of this spiritual body. For… Amazing things are accomplished through prayer. Many times, God asks us to CRY OUT to Him, and HE does the work. Are you and I doing our part in interceding on behalf of our own body? I am doing some, but… I need to do more.
Beth Moore wrote an introduction that alone is inspiring, and I would like to quote some of her words to you. I believe she has nailed a predicament precisely when she says, “I see an epidemic of boredom in the body of Christ. I am convinced that one issue is primarily to blame: we are protecting ourselves right out of our callings. Right out of our God-ordained destinies. We are comfort addicts… and we keep wondering why we never feel satisfied… to miss our callings out of fear is never to have lived at all.”
“When hard times come, the key word isn’t survival. It’s revival.”
While we may not all be called to “GO” to another country to share the Lord with others, where we are is our individual mission field. What are YOU doing to reach where YOU are? And, remember, even though you may not be called to go, Beth stated this, and I believe it is so true… “your prayers matter immensely. The fact is, they matter immeasurably.” Prayer is the WORK!!!
To conclude, I have a request, please pray for Italy. This is what you may not know about this country. It is known as the "missionary graveyard" because most missionaries who come here do not last more than two years. In general, only 10% of missionaries return to Italy after their first term. Many years ago a reformation swept over Europe but never touched Italy, and we are in desperate need of the Lord’s work here in this nation. Less than 1% of the population is involved with an Evangelical Christian Church. And, even if all of the Charismatic Christian groups were added to that number, it would still only be 5% of the population. Almost all Italians call themselves Catholic "Christians", but less than 10% practice their faith. While this is frustrating, what is even more frustrating is that for as small as the Evangelical Church is here in Italy, there has been great division from church to church throughout its history. Please pray with us that God would deliver the oppressed; encourage those of us living here; purify and strengthen His church with passion for the lost and for the Living Word; and bless this nation with refreshing and changing revival. Thank you.
James 5:16b says, “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”
Amen…
There is nothing negative that I have to say about the book except this, a lot of different fonts are used in the print. It gets a little distracting. I enjoyed the prayers at the end of each devotional, and I thought it was a great idea to have an Index listing “Devotion Titles By Month” and then another listing “Scriptural References”. I also liked how there is a section at the end that specifically lets the reader know HOW he can receive Christ as his Saviour, and another section letting him know how he can pray for “International Missionaries and People Groups” across the world.
That is what I have to share about this book and its affect on me and my life. While my review is long, I hope you will read it and be blessed. May you also be encouraged to read the book and be inspired, ministered to, and encouraged to minister to others. Blessings…
I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I wasn't required to write a positive review. These opinions are my own.