Sunday, September 28, 2014

A Review: Beyond I Do by Jennifer Slattery



The Book:

Marriage . . . it’s more than a happily ever after. Eternally more.

Ainsley Meadows, raised by a hedonist mother who cycles through jobs and relationships like wrapping paper on Christmas morning, falls into a predictable and safe relationship with Richard, a self-absorbed, socialite psychiatrist. But as Ainsley’s wedding nears, a battered woman and her child spark a long-forgotten dream, a hidden passion. One that threatens to change everything, including her fiancé.

If she wants to embrace God’s best and find lasting love, this security-seeking bride must follow God with reckless abandon and realize that marriage goes Beyond I Do.

The Review: 

Safe and secure in the arms of God...or man?

Marriage draws close for Ainsley and Richard. Her job’s on the rocks and she’s searching for the best wedding location. Well, no need to panic. Everything’s under control. As always, Richard’s here.

Ainsley discovers another side of her fiancé when she ventures beyond her comfort zone to deliver a care package in a rough neighborhood of Kansas City. Although rekindled and on fire for the Lord, she’s reluctant to be Richard’s bride. But he’s determined to make her his own even at the expense of his future.

Almost as if in answer to prayer, Chris moves in next door to Ainsley. Their friendship blossoms as he establishes a Christian coffee shop and provides for his ailing mother with early Alzheimer’s. He becomes a thorn in Richard’s side and thwarts his plans at every turn.

A tale of grace, obedience, love, and obsession, I give this book five stars!

A parting thought: What do you do when the Lord says leap?

The Author:
jennifer slattery
Jennifer Slattery
Jennifer Slattery is an avid reader who enjoys long, leisurely strolls with her husband, mall dates with her daughter, and chatting with her girlfriends over hot milk flavored with a hint of coffee. She writes for Crosswalk.com, Internet Café Devotions, and writes and edits for Christ to the World Ministries, which broadcasts, via radio waves in 32 countries. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her serving in her church, community, or home. Visit her online at jenniferslatterylivesoutloud.com

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Alexis Goring Visits the Coffee Corner

A Touch of Relaxation

Hello and welcome back to the Coffee Corner! Today, we have Alexis Goring with us. Pull up a chair, pour your cups and grab a cookie (or scone, if you like those.)

Welcome to the Corner, Alexis. I’m so happy you’re here today. This is the first interview from my new home in Wyoming! I almost can’t sit still to type. We’re in the process of preparing for winter. In fact, the first snow has already fallen. Where do you live and what’re you looking forward to in the upcoming months?

Thanks for having me, Renee. I live in a metropolitan area on the East Coast. I am looking forward to Autumn because it is my favorite season due to the vibrant colors of the ever-abundant, beautiful foliage and the perfect weather!

Oh, yes, Fall’s an absolutely beautiful time of year. The mountains are a sight to behold, especially the aspens. I hope to get some awesome pics of the Black Hills. The leaves are already starting to change. Any inspiring thoughts?

“‘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.’”
~Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

What an awesome verse…one to cling to in these times. Speaking of plans, do you have anything in the works? New releases or books you’re working on?

I am working on my next book that explores my passion for food, writing and photography.

Really? Three things I love…well, writing and photography, definitely. Food’s my husband’s passion, hence, my enjoyment. What’s your new book about, if you don’t mind?

It’s about a fictional five-star restaurant in Northwest Washington, D.C. The main characters are closely connected to the restaurant. I have not yet decided if this will be the only story presented as my first full-length novel or if it will be one of three stories in another novella similar to my first book, Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories.

Food…restaurant…How else do you get ideas for your novels?

Everyday events, people and situations, movies, television and music give me new ideas for creative stories. Just the other day, I was thinking that it would be interesting to write a story about a non-Christian professional wedding photographer who is led to Jesus Christ while photographing a client’s wedding.

Now that sounds like a cool idea too! Do you get to travel? I didn’t travel much last year but I have been to the Bahamas, Mexico, and Canada. I’d love to visit Scotland or Australia. I’d think it would spur such great ideas.

I cannot travel abroad right now nor have I been anywhere special in this last year. But I’m pretty sure a trip to London, Paris, Switzerland, Denmark and the Caribbean would do wonders for my writing! Meanwhile, I drive to PANERA and my favorite mall to absorb the atmosphere, relax and people watch which gives me more ideas for writing fictional stories.

It’s a fact. We write…the more important question? Why?

I write inspirational romance because I believe in the power of storytelling and what better way to inspire hearts and encourage a relationship with Jesus Christ than to create fictional stories that move people with the power of love?

God offers examples of unconditional love every day. Sometimes it’s simply through the brown eyes of my cocker spaniel. How does he remind you of His love?

God shows me examples of unconditional love through hugs from loved ones, sunshine streaming through my windows that illuminates my room with a soft brilliant glow. God also demonstrates His unconditional love for me through surprise notes of appreciation and encouragement from friends.

God shows His love so many ways, and we know our future in Him is secure. Thanks for stopping by the Coffee Corner, Alexis. It’s been fun!

Thanks for hosting me on your blog, Renee! Don’t forget, everyone…for the giveaway, one lucky winner will receive a signed copy of my book for free!


GIVEAWAY!!!


Leave a Comment to Enter, Drawing on 9/28/2014



Free signed copy of Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories



About the Book:

Hope in My Heart is a collection of short, heartwarming stories with characters in need of hope.
In “Love Unexpected,” a car crash brings commitment-wary Sebastian and career woman Chandra together. Neither is looking for romance, but those around them see the potential, and Sebastian and Chandra discover that sometimes love shows up unexpectedly.
Christmastime is the setting for the middle story, “The Best Gift.” Christina desires to lose ten pounds so she can fit into her dress for her sister’s wedding. Jordan wishes her mom would stop trying to marry her off. And Joshua hopes to be reunited with his ex-girlfriend but eventually learns that the best gift this Christmas will be the restoration of his relationship with God.
In “Peace and Love,” three characters living in a metropolitan area are desperately searching. Elle, a starving artist, aspires to become a paid professional. Eric, a divorce attorney, wants to resolve his issues concerning his parents’ divorce. Kristine anticipates finding her birth mom before she marries Derek. All characters pray their searches will conclude this holiday season and fill their hearts with peace and love.


About the Author:


Alexis A. Goring is a college graduate with a degree in print journalism from Washington Adventist University in Takoma Park, Maryland. Writing is her passion. She hopes that her stories will touch hearts, bring smiles to faces, and inspire minds to seek God whose love for humanity is unfailing.






Lead photo credit: HalasiZsolt via photopin cc

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Guest: Safe in the Fold by Becky Lyles





“But Jesus remains a priest forever; his priesthood will never end. Therefore he is able, once and forever, to save everyone who comes to God through him. He lives forever to plead with God on their (our) behalf.” Hebrews 7:24-25 NLT

We sing songs in church about how God’s love endures forever and how we’ll live with him forever. Yet, what does that word mean? Don’t know about you, but I have a hard time comprehending eternal life and unending love and salvation.

I like the NIV translation of verse 25 that says “he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.” The word completely gives me security, knowing the salvation Jesus offers us is a “once” event, a done deal; yet, it’s timeless. Another version says he is always able to save because he always lives. He will never die, and because of the redemption he provided by shedding his blood for me, he is eternally available and able to plead with God on my behalf. I don’t need to worry about getting kicked out of the family of God – or heaven.

“So,” you ask, “what does this mean for the here and now?” The author of Hebrews goes on to say: “(Jesus) entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God.” Hebrews 9:12 & 14 NLT

We are redeemed and cleansed from sin to serve our living, eternal God. “But,” you say, “I’m not a priest, like Hebrews talks about, or a pastor. How can I serve God?” Those who are redeemed are made members of a royal priesthood (I Peter 2:9) chosen to “declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” We serve God by praising and obeying him (John 14:21) and helping each other (John 15:12-14; I Peter 2:12). The Bible, the most complete, most interesting instruction manual ever written, reveals a host of ways we can show our love for God by honoring him and sharing his love with mankind.

But we can’t serve God wholeheartedly or convince others of his love if we aren’t secure in our own salvation. Be “confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 NIV

God’s promise of eternal security is beautifully summarized in the words of this old hymn.

Under the blood of Jesus,
Safe in the Shepherd's fold.
Under the blood of Jesus,
Safe while the ages roll.
Safe though the worlds may crumble,
Safe though the stars grow dim.
Under the blood of Jesus,
I am secure in Him.


Special Giveaway!!!

Leave a comment for your chance to win Becky’s Short Story Collection – Passageways.



About the Author:

Rebecca Carey Lyles grew up in Wyoming, the setting for her award-winning Kate Neilson novels, “Winds of Wyoming” and “Winds of Freedom.” She now lives in Idaho, where she serves as an editor and a mentor for aspiring authors and women transitioning from prison to life “on the outside.” She just published a short story collection titled “Passageways” and is writing the third book in the Winds series. http://www.beckylyles.com





Sunday, September 7, 2014

Streets of Gold




Malachi 3:17 “They shall be Mine,” says the LORD of hosts, “On the day that I make them My jewels.  And I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him.”

God’s promise… I actually get shivers each time I read this verse.
Hope, joy, and incredible peace fills my soul at all the Lord’s promises. In my finite, little mind, I see it this way…
On that special day when all come before the Father, there won’t be a simple checklist. He’s not Santa Claus, checking off who’s been naughty or nice… slipping a piece of coal to the bad while lavishing praise on the good. Somehow, I don’t think it will work that way.
But I've heard of this book. It’s a powerful one. And He’s knows every single name written in it. On that day, He’ll read and the names within those pages will be spared the Lake of Fire.[1]
The people He calls His own will shine with Him on the streets of heaven. Why? Love. God’s sacrificing love.
So, in the midst of this uncertain world with all of its mounting violence and fear, I cling to the hope of a glorious day. I know when God opens His Book of Life and reads my name, I’ll be home.
I can’t wait to walk the streets of gold.
So… you ready for God to read a book?

In Christ,

Renee



[1] Revelation 20:15