Monday, October 20, 2014

Counting Our Blessings - Link Up!

It's such a joy to count our blessings! It really helps my attitude when I stop to thank the Lord for all He has done. Little blessings or big blessings - they all make me joyful and thankful!

 79. I am so blessed that I get to read and review some of the latest books, CD's, DVD's, Bible studies and more. I have always loved doing this, but it has blessed me abundantly since I've been home-bound and can't go anywhere. It gives me a life-line to the outside world and allows me to read or watch the latest in Christian entertainment or studies. I am so blessed to be able to do this and I never, ever take it for granted!

80. I had a friend come by to visit me and she brought us lunch to share. We had soup, cheese crackers, Italian Soda and muffins. Delish! She also brought me these



 Aren't they beautiful? They also lasted a full two weeks! Plus, the little green flowers you see in the second picture are going to dry beautifully and I have them in a little white vase and will enjoy them forever. What a blessing it was to see my friend! We talked and talked and it helped me to feel so much better and loved...What is better than that? I am so thankful for my friend, Kim!

81. I am feeling a bit better over the past two days. I know it's because of all your prayers! You all bless me so much with your sweet comments, emails and prayers! Keep praying - it works - and it blesses me SO much! Thank you!

82.  A package was left on my porch and look what was inside

Isn't it adorable? It was made by my friend, Molly, I love her work because it's so cheerful and cute! It's done on a canvas and will be placed next to the other picture she gave me. I just love this and it so blessed me to have a surprise gift left for me to find!

83. I have been wanting one of these since they came out in Spring. I just didn't want to pay the price! I told my husband that I was sure if I waited, they would go on sale at the end of Summer. Sure enough! My son went to WalMart and they were on sale! Plus, this is a much larger one than the ones I had seen in Spring. I love it! It's perfect for my iced tea!! What a blessing to have one of these fun cups and for my son to remember that I wanted one!


84. We can't forget Miss Mitzi! She continues to grow - 3 whole pounds now! - and she is so smart! She blesses my life beyond measure and I am so thankful for this little ball of fluff!


Please share your own link to your blessings!! It's so easy and fun and it blesses me and my readers to read about how God has blessed you. You can grab my button from the page of buttons to share on your blog. As always - thank you - you bless me more than you can know!




Blessings - Julie

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Book Review - Agents of the Apocalypse by David Jeremiah

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Who Will Usher in Earth’s Final Days?
Are we living in the end times? Is it possible that the players depicted in the book of Revelation could be out in force today? And if they are, would you know how to recognize them?

In Agents of the Apocalypse, noted prophecy expert Dr. David Jeremiah does what no prophecy expert has done before. He explores the book of Revelation through the lens of its major players—the exiled, the martyrs, the elders, the victor, the king, the judge, the 144,000, the witnesses, the false prophet, and the beast.

One by one, Dr. Jeremiah delves into their individual personalities and motives, and the role that each plays in biblical prophecy. Then he provides readers with the critical clues and information needed to recognize their presence and power in the world today.

The stage is set, and the curtain is about to rise on Earth’s final act. Will you be ready?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Dr. David Jeremiah is the senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, California, and chancellor of San Diego Christian College. He is also the founder of Turning Point, a ministry committed to providing sound Bible teaching through national radio and television broadcasting. Dr. Jeremiah has authored numerous books, including the best-selling "Captured by Grace," "Life Wide Open," "My Heart's Desire," and "Sanctuary."

MY REVIEW:

This book is a combination of fiction and non-fiction. In an effort to help us understand the end times, Dr. Jeremiah weaves a story of characters that are experiencing the apocalypse in an effort to help us understand what the book of Revelation is all about. He also goes through the book of Revelation in a non-fiction way - giving explanation and guidance as to what these prophecies really mean.

I found it very helpful to have the fiction and non-fiction interwoven together. It helped me to understand exactly what would happen and how it would affect those who are experiencing it. My favorite part, though, was the non-fiction parts where Dr. Jeremiah truly explains these Scriptures and it helped me to understand this book of the Bible more fully.

My copy is heavily highlighted because there was so much great information that I wanted to remember. I didn't, nor could I, rush through this book as I had to think about what Dr. Jeremiah was really explaining and I wanted to fully understand it. I have read and studied the book of Revelation many times before, but this book truly gave me a deeper understanding of end time prophecy.

I highly recommend this book as it was easily understood, held my attention and truly was enlightening as to the book of Revelation. It easily deserves 5 out of 5 stars!

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by the Tyndale Blog Network 


Blessings - Julie

Book Review - NIV Real-Life Devotional Bible for Women

ABOUT THE BOOK:

You spilled coffee on your shirt before walking out the door. Ran late to your appointment. Snapped at your children, then regretted it all day. And spent an hour at the grocery store with no dinner on the table to show for your efforts. A typical day has come and gone. Life is full of obligations, emotions, and relationships. Some are life-giving, yet sometimes the weight and responsibility of everyday life is heavy to bear. As wives, mothers, friends, and daughters, we need to know we’re not alone. We long for someone who understands—someone to help us find perspective. When our days are long, and our nights are restless, it’s easy to think we should be able to handle things on our own. Or that no one struggles like we do. And that’s when we need a friend … to encourage us, to understand us, and help us become the woman God wants us to be. You’ll find that friend on the pages of the NIV Real-Life Devotional Bible for Women. Filled with insightful daily devotions written by Lysa TerKeurst and the women at Proverbs 31 Ministries, the devotions in this Bible will meet you right where you are, in the good days and in the hard days, in the car pool line or the doctor’s office. With God’s truth as the foundation, this Bible will help you maintain a peace-filled place of balance in spite of your life’s hectic pace. Features: The beauty and clarity of the New International Version (NIV) Bible, 366 daily devotions from the women at Proverbs 31 Ministries inspire you to live authentically as a woman of God, Author biographies, and a helpful subject Index.

ABOUT THE EDITOR:

 Lysa TerKeurst is a New York Times bestselling author and national speaker who helps everyday women live an adventure of faith. She is the author of 15 books and the president of Proverbs 31 Ministries, where she and her team encourage over 500,000 women worldwide through their daily online devotional. Her remarkable life story has captured audiences across America, including appearances on Oprah and Good Morning America. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and five children.

MY REVIEW:

First of all, this is one of the most beautiful Bibles I've ever seen! The gorgeous, soft feeling cover will have you feeling so good! I felt like they really thought about what a woman would like when they did the cover. I just love it!

Inside is even better! The beautifully written devotions will have you turning your heart toward Jesus as these women share their hearts. I could relate to so much of what they shared as there were issues that a lot of us women share. It was so comforting to know that others share the same problems and how they turned to the Lord with these problems. I loved how they shared Scriptures that really spoke to them in the situation, too.

The NIV version is so easy to read and understand and is the perfect Bible for your set time with God. I also love the size of this Bible. It's not so big that it's hard to handle, yet not so small that you can't read the writing. I love the soft blue color they used on the devotions pages (making it easy to find them!), too. It's just a wonderful, beautiful Bible all the way around! It's definitely become my new favorite Bible. I highly recommend this Bible for it's wonderful devotions (366 in all) and it's beauty!

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by BookLook Bloggers


Blessings - Julie

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Groanings Too Deep for Words

I know I've been quiet lately. I have been struggling with all I've been going through and having some hard days. My hard days consist of being quiet - even around my family - for fear of dragging them into my pit and making it a hard day for them. I have been sleeping, reading, and not much else.

Praying for myself is impossible right now and I rely on the prayers of others. I tell myself that things could be worse - and they could! - but my situation is difficult and has thrown my life into a whole new way of living. It's processing and accepting this new way of living that has me struggling so.

 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. - Romans 8:26

How I cling to this Scripture. The Spirit helps me in my weakness and the Spirit intercedes for me with groanings. I understand these groanings...I have them myself and I don't know what they are but the Lord knows. Sometimes I wonder at this, yet the Lord's ways are not my ways, and He does understand what I am going through and He has mercy and sympathy.

I also wonder at my attitude. I have had months of keeping a stiff upper lip - of being positive in the face of all these health issues - but I am tired. I don't have a positive thought left in my mind right now. It's almost as if it has all come descending upon my heart and mind and I can't bear it. I do understand from my nurse that this is normal. I am grieving what once was and trying to accept what is now. 

I had another minor surgery on my knee wound last Friday. This has opened this wound up and it is large and a reminder that this healing will go on longer than I imagined. When things like this happen, I suffer greatly at the fact that I am struggling to heal and at the fact that I am weak and tired. This surgery was necessary, and I accept that, but it is still a set back in a sense. 

My lifeline is Jesus. I know He is with me even when I don't speak to Him in prayer as I normally do. I know He understands and He knows that soon I will start talking with Him again. I am not angry at God at all - He has blessed me so much! - but I am so, so tired. 

For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 
 2 Corinthians 4:17-18

Keeping my eyes on the eternal....
 
Blessings - Julie



Sunday, October 12, 2014

Book Review - The Mason Jar

ABOUT THE BOOK:

What if your old college roommate called, raving about a book someone sent her, calling it the most beautiful book she's ever read? "But," she said, "it's about you." The author is your college ex.

In The Mason Jar, Clayton Fincannon is a Tennessee farm boy raised at the feet of his grandfather. He and his grandfather leave letters for each other in a Mason jar on his grandfather's desk---letters of counsel and affirmation. When Clayton attends college in Southern California, he meets and falls in love with a dark debutante from Colorado. However, when an unmentioned past resurrects in her life and she leaves, Clayton is left with unanswered questions.

Clayton goes on to serve as a missionary in Africa, while he and his grandfather continue their tradition of writing letters. When Clayton returns home five years later to bury his grandfather, he searches for answers pertaining to the loss of the young woman he once loved. Little does Clayton know, the answers await him in the broken Mason jar.

A story about a girl who vanished, a former love who wrote a book about her, and a reunion they never imagined.

Written for the bruised and broken, The Mason Jar is an inspirational romance that brings hope to people who have experienced disappointment in life due to separation from loved ones. With a redemptive ending that encourages us to love again and written in the fresh, romantic tones of Nicholas Sparks, The Mason Jar interweaves the imagery of Thoreau with the adventures and climatic family struggles common to Dances with Wolves, A River Runs Through It, and Legends of the Fall

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

James Russell Lingerfelt is the author of The Mason Jar and writes articles for The Huffington Post. James connects with readers at his blog, Love Story from the Male Perspective, and divides his time between Southern California and his family's ranch in Alabama.

Find James online: website, Facebook, Twitter

MY REVIEW:

This book is one of the best written books I've read I a long time. The writing is beautiful and poetic and I loved every word of it!

Finn and Eden meet at Pepperdine College and almost immediately fall in love. Their connection is very deep and they both know they are truly meant for each other. This is the first time Finn has fallen in love, in fact, he really hasn't dated at all before Eden. 

Finn has been a server to people. He has been all over the world helping people to better themselves. His grandfather, who raised him, was also a server of people. Finn and his grandfather are very close and they leave each other letter in a mason jar that sits on his grandfathers desk. The letters from his grandfather are profound and always full of love.

Eden has come to Pepperdine to recover from a difficult relationship with a former boyfriend. She doesn't talk about it and Finn doesn't realize that she's had a difficult time. They share so much in common and these are the things they focus on. However, one day it all ends.

This story is written from the viewpoint of Finn and how he views their relationship and their separation and what it does to him. His grandfather has many profound things to say that were just beautiful. This helps Finn as he comes to terms with all that has happened.

I believe this book will become a classic. It's written so well, so beautifully, it will grab your heart and mind and won't let go even when you're done with the last page. I highly recommend this book!

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by LitFuse Publicity


Blessings - Julie