Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Christian Walk: Trust and Obey

The Christian Walk: Trust and Obey


Gal 2:20  I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.


The Christian Walk
The Christian Walk


The Christian walk...a term tossed around in Bible studies, sermons, and devotional books, but what does it mean?


To look at this question, I need to go back to my early years as a Christian. Not as a churchgoer…after all, I grew up in the church. I cut my teeth on the pews, but I didn’t accept Christ until I was eighteen years old. So we’ll start there.

As a new child in Christ, what did the Christian walk mean to me? In one word…perfection.

Absolute obedience to the Word of God.

In other words, I changed everything in the blink of an eye. Well, I wasn’t a “bad” person to start with…on the outside, but I spit-shined some things for God. I cleaned up my language, made sure I prayed every day, went to church and Bible study. I did all the things I was supposed to…I walked the Christian walk.

Time moved on. I grew older, and life hit…hard. The childhood prayers didn’t work anymore. I wounded people I loved as my own strength failed. Church was for the perfect, and He seemed to slip away. I fell deep into depression, and contemplated awful things. In the pit of despair, God reminded me of His love, and that a Christian isn’t meant to walk alone.

Hope blossomed in my weary soul. Inch by inch, I climbed out of my hole and back into the world only to discover my bed of roses had turned into a blanket of thorns. One obstacle after another lay upon my path, waiting to tear me apart. His voice whispered in my ear, “Trust me, I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

My road isn’t as rocky today, although I still navigate through life’s potholes. The difference? I don’t do it alone. In fact, I don’t do it at all. God does.

Through the years, I’ve learned how to walk the Christian walk. It doesn’t mean living the perfect life. That’s impossible. It means giving my life over to the Lord, every second of every day. Trusting Him to lead me down the paths I can’t go on my own, looking to Him for guidance and strength in the midst of chaos, and obeying His commandments…in order to stay on the right road.

Trust and obey…walk in the Lord every single moment with His strength and power, not your own. That’s the Christian walk.


About Author, Renee Blare:


Renee Blare Christian Author


Raised in Louisiana and Wyoming, Renee Blare started writing poetry in junior high school and that, as they say, was that. After having her son, a desire to attend pharmacy school sent her small family to the University of Wyoming in Laramie, and she's been counting pills ever since. While writing's her first love, well, after the Lord and her husband, she also likes to fish and hunt as well as pick away on her classical guitar.

Nestled against the Black Hills with her husband, crazy old dog and ornery cat, she serves the community of northeastern Wyoming as a pharmacist and pens her Christian stories, keeping them interesting with action and intrigue, of course. She loves to interact with readers and invites you check out her website, blog, and social media which you can find here:
Website: http://www.reneeblare.com/
Group Blog: http://diamondsinfiction.blogspot.com/

Check out Renee's Books! Beast of Stratton available on Amazon, B&N, Smashwords, and various online retailers... To Soar on Eagle's Wings to be release on July 10th, available for pre-order on Amazon.

Beast of Stratton by Renee Blare

to-soar-eagles-wings

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Coffee Corner Welcomes Erin Unger, the Killer Romance Writer

The Coffee Corner on Inspirational Moments


Welcome to the Coffee Corner! This week’s guest is Erin Unger, the Killer Romance Writer.


Even though she’s not published as an author...YET, she is as an illustrator. We hope to see those tales in print soon though...as in real soon! But on with the interview…

Comment after the interview for a chance to win a $5.00 Amazon gift card! Drawing on 6/27/15!

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Renee: Hey Erin, welcome to the Diamond Mine. It’s great to see you! I guess we won’t keep these eager beavers waiting. What’s easiest about writing for you?

Erin: Writing dialogue is easiest to me. I love good banter between two characters. And it helps to liven it up when you use lots of action tags while they’re talking.

Renee: I have to agree about dialogue livening up the book! It has a way keeping my attention. What advice do you have for the new writer?

Erin: Our first manuscript is our baby. We take extra time and care on it. We protect it. And we get so upset when changes and suggestions are made. Let go of the baby and accept that others are trying to make our manuscript the best it can be. And don’t spend so much time with it. Move on to the next story once you’ve done what you can do, even if it hasn’t been picked up by a publishing house or agent. We have to always be learning and growing as writers. We can only do that if we move on to the next story.

Renee: That’s some good advice. Quite a challenge too, if you think about it. What’s your biggest challenge as an author?

Erin: My biggest challenge is sitting in my office chair and getting started at the beginning of each writing session. I have A.D.D. so it’s an extra difficult thing for me to get in the zone and to sit still long enough to let concentration kick in. How I wish I didn’t struggle so with this condition.

Renee: Do you have any fun hobbies or things you like to do when you aren’t writing?

Erin: I love to paint. I wanted to be an artist long before I wanted to be a writer. Both worlds are so hard to break into! It’s so relaxing to set out my acrylics and a new canvas and work on creating something new. Now, the challenge comes when I have to find a spot on the wall to put all my art.

Renee: And you’re quite the artist. I’ve seen some of your illustrations. (Check out the cover of Memphis Learns the Hard Way, folks.) Back to writing…how do you decide what to write about and when do you do your research?

Erin: Every story I’ve written has been from some inner inspiration I get from God. He’s directed me to some interesting stories, some sad and heart-breaking, through life experiences. One of my stories I even dreamed of and it built into a whole manuscript. Research is a huge part of every book I write. I spend about a month before each book researching all kinds of things from how a certain house wants things written to settings and careers that my characters have. Readers are so smart. They know when we didn’t look things up. Always research!

Renee: Oh yes, the readers are very smart. And it seems like someone always knows more (unless you’re an expert, of course.) I’ve decided I’m NOT one of those…expert, that is...ever. So, research is vital for me. Anyway, how do you decide on a setting for your story?

Erin: A lot of times, the characters in my stories help me decide a location setting. In my most recent manuscript that made it to stage 2 of From Blurb to Book with Love Inspired Harlequin, my main character and her partners were on vacation when they were asked to investigate a murder. I love the Blue Ridge Mountains and, in particular, a farm up there that isn’t the typical farm setting. The more I mulled over the plot, the more I knew this farm was the perfect location for the book. It makes it easy when you’ve seen an actual location. You can tweak it and make the setting your own.

Renee: Erin, I’ve had a great time! Thanks for swinging by the Coffee Corner.

Erin: Thanks, Renee, for having me. It’s always fun to join you on your blog.



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About Erin Unger, the Author:
Erin Unger
Erin Unger
Erin Unger is a romantic suspense junky with her writing and reading. She loves to craft great suspense plots that keep her readers guessing to the end. She’s also an artist. Her first illustrated book, Memphis Learns the Hard Way by Karla Gragg released in 2013.
Erin's website: http://erinungerwrites.com/
Featured Releases - as illustrator.
Memphis Learns the Hard Way
Illustration by Erin Unger

Sunday, June 14, 2015

GUEST: Sharon Srock and God's Path of Promises

the-path


Sharon Srock and God's Path of Promises


“But God…”

Have you ever mumbled those words to your Heavenly Father? I know I have, especially in the last six years as He’s nudged me along the road to publication.

Stopping, starting, learning, growing. Sometimes resting, sometimes struggling up a steep hill in the dark…with my hands tied behind my back…barefoot. But never alone, not one single time. This could describe my spiritual journey as well as my writing journey.

Once I accepted the fact that fiction writing was where God was taking me, it was easy to accept the need to incorporate a spiritual journey into all the stories. I just didn’t know that some of them would reflect my own journey as closely as they have, but when words are coming from a writer’s heart, they often reflect a writer’s life.

In The Women of Valley View: Samantha, Sam has found her comfort zone. Life isn’t perfect but it’s better than it was four years ago and there seems to be a promise for more on the horizon. When circumstances rock her boat, she begins to cry out to God for understanding and direction. When those waves cover her head, the very foundation of her world and faith are tested. But God’s getting ready to work a miracle that she can’t begin to anticipate. One of those pressed down, running over kinds of miracles.

I can identify. For the last six years, I’ve poured my soul into the journey I felt God wanted me to take. I met some amazing people, and God opened a lot of doors along the way. Life wasn’t perfect, and even though I thought there should be more to the promise than I was seeing, I’d developed a routine. I was comfortable. Then at the first of the year God threw open an unexpected door. The path was dark and full of unknowns, and I hesitated to take that first step. Have you ever been yanked through a door, kicking and screaming?

Most of Sam’s prayers sound a lot like my own as I began to explore this new path. Is this where you want me, God? Can you please shine some light on my path…’cause this feels wrong for me? I don’t understand where you’re taking me. And finally…I’m sorry for being stubborn, I’m sorry for saying “here, take this” and grabbing it back. Please, just give me the faith I need to follow where you lead.

You know what Sam and I found out? God’s promises are always true. Just because the path He puts you on isn’t the most comfortable or a familiar one, that doesn’t make it wrong.  Sometimes God takes us on the steep slope to teach us lessons that we’ll need once we reach our destination. The path may be different than we envisioned, but most of the time…the destination is the same. And guess what waits at the end?

One of those pressed down, running over kinds of miracles.

photo credit: The Fog via photopin



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About the Samantha: Women of the Valley View Book 4:

At seventeen, con man Louis Cantrell left Samantha Evans broke and pregnant. But, she’s persevered. Four years later, while raising her daughter, Samantha pursues her dream of becoming a child welfare social worker. Her life is on track, and if God answers her prayers, one day she’ll marry Patrick Wheeler, the handsome law student she accidentally ran over in a parking lot. All that keeps them apart is Patrick’s refusal to accept Christ in his life, but they’re working on that.

Patrick Wheeler loves Samantha—and her little girl—but he’s done with Christ. Raised in church, Patrick witnessed first-hand how God does not answer prayers. First, his father dies at war…despite the plethora of prayers for safety. Then his stepfather dies within a year of marrying his mother. And as faithful as Samantha is, God allowed her to be taken advantage of. Yet, even when Louis returns to do more damage, she still insists she won’t marry Patrick unless he dedicates his life to Christ!

When Samantha chooses a con man and God over Patrick, he decides it’s time to leave. . .or is it? After a surprising confrontation with God, Patrick experiences for the first time how it feels to be completely alone. What is he missing about this Christianity thing everyone else seems to see so clearly? Can he reconcile with God and Samantha before all is lost?



About the Author, Sharon Srock:

sharon-srock
Sharon Srock
Author Sharon Srock went from science fiction to Christian fiction at slightly less than warp speed. Twenty five years ago, she cut her writer's teeth on Star Trek fiction. Today, she writes inspirational stories that focus on ordinary women using their faith to accomplish extraordinary things. Sharon lives in the middle of nowhere Oklahoma with her husband and three very large dogs. When she isn’t working or writing, she loves to read and travel.
Her books include: The Women of Valley View: Callie, The Women of Valley View: Terri, The Women of Valley View: Pam, and The Women of Valley View: Samantha.
Connect with her at www.sharonsrock.com..
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SharonSrock#!/SharonSrock
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6448789.Sharon_Srock
Please visit her AMAZON page to find current info on her books: http://www.amazon.com/Sharon-Srock/e/B009OB2HSO/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Free novel: THE WOMEN OF VALLEY VIEW: CALLIE:
Free Novella: FOR MERCIE’S SAKE

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sharon McGregor's Fiona's Knight of Dreams on Inspiratonal Moments

Sharon McGregor’s Fiona's Knight of Dreams


fiona-knight-dreams-sharon-mcgregor


A Note from Sharon McGregor:

Writing Fiona's Knight of Dreams was a return home to me-a return to small town life with its caring community and interactive lives. The time—1947—is a little before my growing up years (only a little), but it's a time in North American history that showed how our lives were beginning to change. WWII was over, and a lot of our innocence was taken with it, but we still clung to our roots and values. Join me in a humorous trip to that wonderful time.

Fiona's Knight of Dreams


The good ladies of 1947 Timber are ready to find a wife for their new single minister. Charles has ideas of his own when he meets Fiona, the lovely accident-prone and outspoken part-time librarian. Fiona, on the other hand, is holding out for a knight on a white charger to carry her away from her humdrum small town life. Fiona and Charles are thrown together as they begin to solve an old mystery which has turned up in a library book. Will Fiona's white knight ever show up to sweep her away? Will Charles ever run out of invitations for cream cakes and lemon slice? Fiona might just discover the sound of hoof-beats when she least expects it.

Excerpt of Fiona's Knight of Dreams:

No sooner had Charles Redpath entered her thoughts than he entered the library.
"Finished your books already?  You must be a fast reader."
"Well, I discovered I'd already read the Perry Mason and the book on Revelation was a little too much on the dry side."
"Funny, I thought Revelation was the one preachers used to scare the congregations. I never thought of it as dry. But then any book of sermons might take a little work to get through. I mean if you have to listen to one on Sunday mornings, why would you.." she broke off and put her hand to her mouth to stop any more words escaping. “I’m sorry, I didn't mean…"
"Oh I know what you meant." She looked up expecting to see an expression of censure or hurt or disapproval, but instead Fiona could swear his eyes were twinkling, very nice brown eyes with a definite twinkle. Now why did she think that?
"Sunday sermons are an occasional requisite for spiritual guidance," he said, “but a little can go a long way. On the other hand, mine sometimes have a certain soporific value."
"Not if you're preaching them on Revelation," she retorted.
"Good. Your smile is back." He held out the book of sermons, "Actually I wanted to show you something in this one."
She looked at the book suspiciously. Was she wrong in her evaluation? Was he going to start giving her a private lesson in the scripture?
He shook the book and two envelopes fluttered out to the counter. "I found these in the book and I wonder if we should try to return them to the owner."
They were plain envelopes, each bulky enough to contain a letter or note.  One had the capital letter D on the front.  The other said J in a slightly different hand.
"I can look to see who checked the book out last," said Fiona,” but it was likely a long time ago.  I mean, how many people would.." There she went again, putting her foot in her mouth.  "I'll check the records," She clamped her mouth firmly shut before she could shoot herself in the foot again. She giggled a little. What was this fetish she was developing about feet?
She checked the pouch card for the book and looked up the member number in the card index.  "Last time this book went out was nearly three years ago. It was checked out by Rev. Hamilton."
"But my predecessor was Jonas Micklethwaite."
"Yes, but he was only here for a couple of years. I think he got tired of small town life, or his wife did, and they moved to a larger place.  Before him it was Rev. Hamilton. He was here for -well forever, just about.  He christened me and my brother too. Then his wife got sick and he had to look after her until-well, until she died.  He was pretty much ready to retire then, he was quite old, and so he went over to Greenway to live with his daughter."
"I wonder if these letters are important to him."
"Well, let's check," said Fiona, starting to slide her nail under a flap.
"We can't do that! They're someone's private letters!” Fiona gave a quick look at Charles’ face and concluded the outrage of his words wasn’t echoed in the curiosity in his expression.
"And you call yourself a detective?"
"I don't call myself a detective. You asked me why I didn't become one. Anyhow, we can mail them to him in Greenway."
"Look this one isn't even sealed," said Fiona, picking up the other letter. "So they're not really private." She flipped it open and out popped a sheet of paper.
She pushed it between them sideways on the counter so they could both read.


Buy links for Fiona's Knight of Dreams:


Amazon Canada: http://goo.gl/ZOuiB5

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fiona-knight-dreams-sharon-mcgregor
Fiona's Knight of Dreams
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They will be notified by email by the author.
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About Sharon McGregor:


sharon-mcgregor-author
Sharon McGregor
Sharon McGregor is a prairie girl who has been working her way west to escape the cold. She now lives on beautiful Vancouver Island. She hasn't escaped her roots, though, as her romances are set in small town North America. When not writing or reading, she operates a shave ice concession with her daughter and follows her grandchildren's athletic endeavours. She has a constant battle with her cat Zoey for control of her computer keyboard. Sharon loves to write romance, mystery and humor, if possible all three at the same time.
Media Links for Sharon McGregor:
Twitter: @sharonmcgr
Amazon author: http://goo.gl/0toXu0