A Friend In Me: Book Review

A Friend In Me: Book Review

A Friend In Me: How to Be a Safe Haven for Other Women introduces us to the issues that prevent Christian women from building strong inter-generational friendships. It presents a case for why it’s important for us, as women, to get past our differences and join together for the cause of Christ. About the Book:  Young women long for relational connection with women further ahead of them on the journey. Yet, without realizing it, many of us tend to distance ourselves from those in younger generations. Can we really have close relationships with women who have different thoughts on church, different experiences with family, and different ways of talking about God? Where do we start? In A Friend in Me, Pam Lau shows you how to be a safe place for the younger women in your life. She offers five patterns women need to internalize and practice for initiating relationships and talking about issues such as faith, forgiveness, sexuality, and vocation. Most significantly, she reminds you that there doesn’t need to be a divide between generations of women. Together, we can have a global impact—and experience a deeper faith than we’ve ever known. About the Author: Pamela Havey Lau is the author of A Friend in Me, Soul Strength and numerous articles for such publications as Christian Scholar’s Review and Christianity Today. A graduate of Liberty University and Colorado State University, she has taught writing at George Fox University and speaks around the country at conferences and retreats. After her three daughters were born, Lau began teaching writing at private day schools until 2010 when she started her own business, Real Life Real Image, where she writes,...
Never Say No: Book Review

Never Say No: Book Review

Never Say No: Raising Big-Picture Kids is a parenting book like none I’ve read before. It is an invitation to grace-filled parenting that helps our kids explore who they are created to be individually. Mark and Jan very intentionally raised their kids to fulfill their greater purposes in this life. About the Book:  The question Mark and Jan Foreman are most often asked is: How did you raise your kids? Never Say No takes you on a personal journey to learn first-hand how they raised Jon and Tim of Switchfoot. They share practical advice for instilling wonder in a media-saturated culture, cultivating specific gifts, and balancing structure with individual choice. Our purpose as parents is the same as our child’s: to live creatively beyond ourselves, bringing the love, beauty and nature of God to this world. Let the adventure begin. Mark & Jan Foreman live in the San Diego area, where Mark is lead pastor of North Coast Calvary Chapel in Carlsbad, California. Mark is the author of Wholly Jesus, and holds advanced degrees in Theology, Education, and a Ph.D. in Counseling & Pastoral Care. Jan is a gifted teacher and artist, and also facilitates partnerships with underprivileged women and children both locally and in developing countries. Together, they love surfing, sailing, travel and especially being with their family. My Review: This book opened my eyes to a different way of looking at parenthood. Well, maybe not really different, but it opened my eyes to things I’m doing which are contrary to what I believe I SHOULD be doing. Never Say No is basically an invitation to lead your children to become the best they...

A Love Like Ours: Book Review

A Love Like Ours is the third book in the Porter family series by Becky Wade. However, even if you have not read the first two, you will have no problem jumping into the storyline of this one. It is a stand-alone story! About the Book: Former Marine Jake Porter has far deeper scars than the one that marks his face. He struggles with symptoms of PTSD, lives a solitary life, and avoids relationships. When Lyndie James, Jake’s childhood best friend, lands back in Holley, Texas, Jake cautiously hires her to exercise his Thoroughbreds. Lyndie is tender-hearted, fiercely determined, and afraid of nothing, just like she was as a child. Jake pairs her with Silver Leaf, a horse full of promise but lacking in results, hoping she can solve the mystery of the stallion’s reluctance to run. Though Jake and Lyndie have grown into very different adults, the bond that existed during their childhood still ties them together. Against Jake’s will, Lyndie’s sparkling, optimistic personality begins to tear down the walls he’s built around his heart. A glimmer of the hope he’d thought he’d lost returns, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend? About Becky Wade: Becky’s a California native who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and settled in Dallas.  She published historical romances for the general market before putting her career on hold for several years to care for her three children.  When God called her back to writing, Becky knew He meant for her to turn her attention...
To the Mama Who Feels Overwhelmed

To the Mama Who Feels Overwhelmed

When you look at the floors and realize your house is never clean enough… When you forgot the eggs were boiling on the stove because you got distracted by another “emergency”… When you forgot to cook the fish in the fridge, so you have to throw it out… and you have to explain why you forgot… When you’re interrupted 20 times during your time with God and you feel like your relationship with Him is never focused enough… When it just got to be too much and you yelled at them with those big eyes looking up at you… When the husband needs you, the kids need you, the dog needs you, the floors and the lightbulbs and the bathrooms need you…. and it just feels like there’s not enough of you to go around… When your thoughts about what needs to be done spin out of control and in circles and you just sit down and cry… When you try and try to get everyone out of the house on-time, but you’re still always late… When your insecurity and feelings of inadequacy rages because you just. can’t. get. it. all. done… When you forget to make the cupcakes or fill out the permission slip or remind your husband… and you feel like a failure… When you don’t get time for yourself and you forget who YOU are and then you feel guilty for thinking about yourself… When you’re struggling with something that no one knows but you and God… When you feel like no one understands and that you are all alone… You’re not. I hear you. I get it. I’m right there with...
Real Life Press: Firmly Planted, The Gospels Part 2 – A Review

Real Life Press: Firmly Planted, The Gospels Part 2 – A Review

I was immediately drawn to the title of the family Bible studies offered by Real Life Press, written by Heidi St. John. The name Firmly Planted draws quite close to my heart, as this blog was founded on the concept of growing where we are planted. Psalm 1:3 is the key verse for this set of Bible studies: Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord; he is like a tree, firmly planted by streams of water who yields its fruit in due season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. Yep, I was immediately hooked. For this review, our family was given a complete set of Firmly Planted, The Gospels Part 2: Stories from the Life of Jesus. This includes the Family Study Guide and the Student Workbook. You can get them as a PDF download or as a black-and-white print set, depending on which format works best for your family. This is such a great study! Each week of the 10-week study sets up with the scripture passage that will be studied throughout the entire week, plus a specific verse/passage for students to memorize, the main idea for the week, and extra explanation and activities to enhance the lessons. After the weekly overview, there are daily studies for each day through the week, which help to direct the topic of conversation to a different learning moment each day. The Student Workbook is INCREDIBLE! There are so many activity options, including nature studies, crosswords and word searches (with choices for younger or older students), coloring pages, mazes (with choices for younger or older students), copywork, journal...
Science Project Hog

Science Project Hog

As I worked on the banner for Jeffrey’s baseball team, my introverted heart was somewhat glad that I’d been given the chance to do the project myself. Jeff looked over my shoulder and said, “That’s good, Sweetie. I would have loved being on your science project team.” I kind of laughed to myself because I’ve always kind of prided myself in being a hard worker. But the laughter turned into analytical mode, as I realized that my introversion and desire to get everything right has made me isolate myself at times. I’ve not always been the best delegator. This can be a not-so-good quality. We weren’t created to be islands. God created each one of us with different gifts that we can use TOGETHER to do His work. When we only use our own gifts, we miss out on beauty that may have been intended. I wonder how much better the banner could have been if a few of us had worked together. Not only would there have been more creativity, but new friendships could have also been created. Someone I admire once told me that when leading a project, I should do only the things that ONLY I can do. Everything else should be delegated… and if someone could do something 80% as well as I could, I should let them do it. Although it’s hard, it’s true. How else can we help others learn and grow if we hog all of the tasks for ourselves? Challenge for you… If you struggle with this, make a point to give away a task that you usually are possessive over… Let someone else learn and grow. Who knows?...