Sunday, September 13, 2020

FREE Online Bible Study through BibleGateway!


BibleGateway is hosting a free online Bible study starting this Monday, September 14th! 

This study will help us to get the big picture of what the Bible is about and a deeper understanding of how to read and study it. 

Max Anders will be our guide on this journey and here's a video from the Pastor/Teacher about this study

When you sign up, you’ll receive:

FREE access to 6 teaching videos with Max. These videos will be available between September 14 – October 30. No additional registration is required.

FREE download of the the Arc of Bible History worksheet.

FREE download the Overview of the Old and New Testament History study sheets.

FREE download of the 30 Days to Understanding the Bible session one study guide.

FREE download of the 30 Days to Understanding the Bible session one audio Bible study.

Won't you join me on this exciting Bible study journey?  You can sign up HERE

Blessings - Julie

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Sunday Thoughts


Life can be difficult.  Not only that, it can be difficult in waves. Things have been this way for me and my family for the past (almost) year. I was diagnosed with cancer of the uterus, went through chemo and during that, my husband got ill and he was hospitalized for months. Then I had surgery and my husband came home. We then realized that he was not the same and it was two months of trying to figure out how to help him, only to have him hospitalized again.

I have been so sick and so stressed out, it's hard to explain. Then our sweet Cookie died.


 Oh my heart - can I take much more? Evidently, yes, because now I'm having thyroid issues that are causing a lot of other problems. I had thyroid cancer in 2004 and have been managing my thyroid well since having the thyroid removed. However, the chemo treatments have caused a whole new set of problems and, messing with my thyroid levels, is one of them.

Then last week, my youngest son got injured at work. It could have been a lot worse, but he ended up with 17 stitches and a nicked tendon. Of course, it was his right hand and he's right handed. I admire him so much, though, because of his faith in God and that this is all part of His plan. My heart knows this to be true, as well, but my mama heart just grieves that my son got hurt.

How do I go on? How do I find the strength to meet each day with hopefulness and joy? One word - Jesus. He gives me the hope and the strength to face each day.  Am I always joyful? I would love to say yes, but I can't. I've been extremely tired and little down for the past two weeks.  I think this is normal, even for a Christian who truly believes that the Lord is by her side and in control of things. Our human bodies and minds can only take so much before we just crash. I have been dealing with so much for so long, it's natural that I'm tired physically and emotionally.

We have to give ourselves grace. Just like the grace that God gives us as we continue to do sinful things even when we are saved. I have days where I feel guilty because I know I want to do more but I'm unable to physically do it. Or I'm just so tired, my brain won't function like it should (another lovely side-effect of chemo). I have the tendency to beat myself up and tell myself I should be doing more. But then I remember grace and that I need time to heal. It's hard to shut those thoughts off after always being such a go-getter and a multi-tasker. I'm good to do one task now! 😊 But you know what? That's okay! However, just because it's okay doesn't mean it doesn't make me sad or frustrated that my energy levels are so low. I have to accept that until the time comes that I'm completely healed.

My husband is in a long term facility and, while he's doing better, it's been extremely difficult because we aren't allowed inside the building to visit him (thanks Covid) and so all communication is over the phone or by mail. Even though he's doing better, he has a long, long road ahead of him. I don't think he'll be home anytime soon and that's another thing that I have to accept in my day to day life. While I don't mind being alone (I'm a super introvert), it's a huge change, after being married to my hubby almost 39 years and living together, and doing things together for all of those years.

I am so very thankful, though, that I have the Lord to talk to and to lean on during this difficult season. I'm not sure how I would cope without Him - probably not at all, to be quite honest. Even during these hardships, I have not lost the hope that God promises me in His Word. I am in my Bible reading all the time because it does sustain me in a very real way.

If you're going through hard times, I encourage you to know Jesus (if you don't already) and to get to know Him better (if you already are saved). There is no other greater sustainer of life or of mind.

Blessings - Julie

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Book Review - A Life Once Dreamed


ABOUT THE BOOK:

Where you come from matters far less than where you're going

Six years ago, a shocking secret sent Agnes Pratt running in search of a new start. She found it in Penance, a rugged town of miners and lumberjacks in the Dakota Territory. In the shadow of the Black Hills, she became Miss Aggie, respected schoolteacher and confirmed old maid--despite being only twenty-four. But the past has a way of catching up with people.

When childhood friend and former sweetheart James Harris accepts a position as the town doctor, Aggie's pleasantly predictable days suddenly become anything but. James wants to know why Agnes left behind the life they had dreamed of creating for themselves--but he is precisely the one person who can never know.

Can a healing light be shed on the past? Or will the secret Agnes can't seem to outrun destroy her chance at happiness?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Rachel Fordham is the author of The Hope of Azure Springs and Yours Truly, Thomas. She started writing when her children began begging her for stories at night. She'd pull a book from the shelf, but they'd insist she make one up. Finally, she paired her love of good stories with her love of writing and hasn't stopped since. She lives with her husband and children on an island in the state of Washington.

MY REVIEW:

I usually don't chose to read what I would categorize as romance fiction, however, when I saw the cover of this book and read the synopsis about it, I just had to read it and I'm so glad I did!

I loved the main character, Agnes and I related to her so much. I loved her selfless love she has for James and how she was willing to sacrifice her own happiness for his. I was so impressed with her strength of character to move from the home she knew to the Dakota Territory! You have to be strong to do something like this and we see this strength in her throughout the story. Of course, a lot of this strength came from her faith in God and it was so wonderful to see this woven through the book by the author.

James is caring man who follows his own dream and Agnes to the Dakota Territory. I love the scene where he is in the middle of the town and she sees him for the first time in her little town after so long. He is tenacious in his love for her and their friendship is so incredibly special and sweet.

Of course, there had to be a love triangle, which adds to the complexity of the story. Unlike some books where the third part of the triangle is usually not that likeable, Sam totally is.  He is kind and always willing to help Agnes with things. Adding him in to the story just made it that much more complex and interesting.

I found myself wholly invested in this story from the first page. I loved the secondary characters and hope we will see them all again as they have stayed with me after reading the book.

There is so much to like about this book! I give it 5 out of 5 stars.

*This book was provided to me by Revell.  I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this book.


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. When you click on my Amazon link, I will earn a small fee on this item or anything else you purchase while clicked in on this link. I appreciate your support for my blog, More Of Him.

Blessings - Julie


Thursday, August 13, 2020

Bible Study Review - 7 Feasts by Erin Davis


ABOUT THE BOOK:

In her first title in Moody Publishers Bible study line for women, Davis, a speaker, author, and blogger, leads women through an 8-week study on the Seven Feasts outlined in Leviticus 23, from the Passover and the Feast of Firstfruits to the Day of Atonement and the Feast of Booths.
“Leviticus isn’t just a book of rules arbitrarily handed down by a detached authority” says Davis. “They are opportunities to learn how to live, given to us by our patient Teacher. This paradigm shift matters, because it speaks to the heart of God.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR;

A popular speaker, author, and blogger, Erin Davis has addressed women of all ages nationwide and is passionately committed to sharing God's Truth with others. She is the author of many books, including Connected, Beyond Bath Time, and books in the My Name Is Erin series. She also contributes regularly to the True Woman blog. When she’s not writing, you can find Erin chasing down chickens and children on her small farm in the Midwest.

MY REVIEW:

As someone who loves studying the Old Testament, I was very excited about this study. It focuses on the 7 feasts and the book of Leviticus. It has been a wonderful study and there's so much to say about it.

First of all, I love how the author takes us slowly through thie study and Scripture so we get all the nuances and the understanding of everything we are reading. I love studies that don't rush me through everything with the idea of saying I finished a study. I want to know everything about what I'm reading and studying so that I can truly understand and apply it to my life.

The 7 feasts that Erin teaches about are:

Passover: Reminds us of our deliverance from death.
Feast of Unleavened Bread: Reminds us that we still face the dangerous and permeating death of sin.
Feast of First fruits: Celebrates that God gives us His very best: Himself. In return, as an act of worship, we give Him our very best.
Feast of Weeks: Reminds us that God never wastes the wait.
Feast of Trumpets: Jesus will fulfill the Feast of Trumpets with His triumphant return.
Day of Atonement: This day showcase’s God’s elaborate grace.
Feast of Booths: Shines the spotlight on God and reminds His children of His character.

Each of these feasts gives us a better understanding of God and Jesus. There is so much important information and Erin helps us to digest each section slowly by asking us to write out certain Scriptures (which always helps me), and answering vital questions about what we've learned. She doesn't leave us wondering but explains everything beautifully and in ways that are very understandable.

I absolutely love this study and I think you will, too.  It's such a great study that will open your eyes to the 7 feasts, the Old Testament and Jesus. It's in-depth and totally Biblical, which is so important.  I highly recommend this study an give it 5 stars.

*This Bible study was provided to me by Side Door Communications and Moody Publishers. I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this book.


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. When you click on my Amazon link, I will earn a small fee on this item or anything else you purchase while clicked in on this link. I appreciate your support for my blog, More Of Him.

Blessings - Julie

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Book Review - The Pursuit of God by A. W. Tozer



ABOUT THE BOOK:

More than 70 years after its original release, this A.W. Tozer classic continues to resonate with power in the heart of anyone longing for a deeper experience with God. Penned on a train from Illinois to Texas, Tozer's words echo across the decades, inviting you to think deeply about your faith as you come alive to God's presence surrounding, sustaining, and--yes--pursuing you.

"This book is a modest attempt," Tozer wrote, "to aid God's hungry children so to find Him." If you are hungry, The Pursuit of God will lead you to the only One who can satisfy the soul.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

A.W. Tozer (1897-1963) was a self-taught theologian, pastor, and writer whose powerful words continue to grip the intellect and stir the soul of today's believer. He authored more than forty books. The Pursuit of God and The Knowledge of the Holy are considered modern devotional classics. Get Tozer information and quotes at www.twitter.com/TozerAW.

MY REVIEW:

In my opinion, this is a book that everyone should read. If you're not a Christian, it will open your heart and eyes to the living God and, if you are a Christian, it will draw you closer to the Lord and create a deeper relationship with him.

This book was originally published in 1948 but it's Biblical principles and truths contained inside are timeless.  It's written in a way that is easy to read and apply to your life. It was difficult for me to put down.  I had a highlighter in hand the whole time I was reading as there was so much I want to refer back to. 

Mr. Tozer emphasizes that we need to experience God - to cultivate a relationship with him that grows through consistent time with him as we would anyone important to us in our life.  One of my favorite quotes from the book is, "God wills that we should push on into His Presence and live our whole lives there". This, for me, explains what this book is about in that one sentence.

This really is a book that I will read over and over again. With each reading, I believe there will be new things that pop out of me. I highly recommend this book and give it 5 stars.

*This book was provided to me by Bethany House. I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this book.

Blessings - Julie