Sunday, January 7, 2018

Keturah by Lisa Tawn Bergren - Book Review

Keturah is another great story by Lisa Tawn Bergren! I have read many of Lisa's books and this one is another excellent one. The story is of three sisters that travel outside their comfort zone and outside the culture norm to run their deceased father's sugar plantation. In this era, women would not have embarked on this kind of journey and definitely not by themselves. The three sisters leave by ship to an island where this plantation is at. They are all alone on the ship except for one gentleman that is also heading out to the island to start his own plantation.  

The story deals with the struggles that the sisters have while on the boat and when they arrive on the island. All the odds are against them, yet they strive forward. I love the courage that is shown among the sisters. Because they have each other, they are stronger. While this book deals with many hard struggles in life, I really enjoyed the story of love between sisters, neighbors, and friends, the courage shown in difficult situations, and the faith to overcome the struggles that were before them. I can't wait to read the next two books in the Sugar Baron's Daughters series! I am looking forward to more great stories by Lisa Tawn Bergren! 

2018 Resolutions

I don't have many yet. I am still working on them. I may do more quarterly goals instead this year. :)

So here is what I have so far:

Word of the Year: FAITH
(See previous post)

1. Read the Bible in a year. 
It has been a while since I have read the whole Bible in a year and am going to try to again this year. I will read 25 chapters a week to finish in a year. I will be jumping a round a little, but will read one whole book at a time. I am reading four chapters in the morning from my chosen book and one at night from one of the poetry books.

For example, this first week looks like this: 
Genesis 1-20 and Psalms 1-5

I will read on 4-5 days depending on what works for that week. As of this week, it is looking like Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and maybe Saturday, if I don't get it all done.

2. Read 52 books.
This boils down to one book per week. I was able to make my goal of 50 books last year, so I am excited to do this again, and am actually hoping I make it over my goal!
(Also, I am excited to be sharing some reviews of a couple ARCs that I am currently reading.)

3. Have monthly goals.
January - I really want to focus on getting back in the habit of consistent Bible Reading. 
February and beyond: To be decided... 

Hopefully, I will get a few more posts up on here this year! Happy New Year! And blessings to you as you work on your goals!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

My word for 2018 is...


The word I picked for 2018 is faith. It is different from past years. Last year was intentional. The year before was trust. But I felt God laying this word on my heart. Through December, I kept hearing the word. We just need enough faith. We need to have faith in others. And ultimately have faith in God. 

My faith in God does not waiver. However, there is always room for more faith. There is room to grow in our faith. I think of the Bible verse where Jesus talks of a mustard seed with His disciples.

“He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you.””
Matthew 17:20 ESV

Somedays, I think we have so little faith. It is so small, just like that little mustard seed. If only it was bigger... So that is my goal for this year. To have Faith, Big FAITH! 

I also want to have faith in people. It can be so hard to have faith in people. We are all humans. We let each other down. We fail. We are definitely not perfect, but if we are willing to put our faith in people, in the people God calls us to, we may be the ones to encourage them in their walks of lives. Maybe it is not so much about putting our faith in them, but rather walking out our faith, being real with the people God has placed in our lives. Sharing our faith with them, going the extra mile to support people. 

I think of having faith in people as different from having faith in God. God is the only true source we can put our faith in. When I say that I want to have faith in people, I mean more that I want to believe the best about them and help them strive for the life that God would have for them.

This past week, 1 Timothy 4:7 spoke to me. 

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
2 Timothy 4:7 ESV

When we have finished our earthly race, this is what I want to say, "I have kept the faith."

Finally, I wanted to share with you the best definition I think there is for what faith is:

“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
Hebrews 11:1 ESV

And faith we should move forward to what God is calling us to, even if we can not see what that is yet.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Day 3-7 - Gratitude Challenge

Day 3: The Sunrise

Day 4: Rend Collective Concert

Day 5: My job and co-workers. I love working in Children's Ministry. The children are learning about Gratitude this month and this is their grateful chain. Someone wrote my name on the board. So sweet! I am blessed by the people I work with, the children, and their families. 

Day 6: Christian Authors!

Some of the authors I have had the opportunity to meet over the years.

Day 7: Northern Lights!!!
I was so excited to see the Northern Lights, but I was driving and didn't get a picture, so this is just a screenshot from my phone...

What are you grateful for this month?


A Gift of Twins by Gabrielle Meyer - Book Review

A Gift of Twins is another story in Gabrielle Meyer's Little Falls Legacy series. I really enjoyed this Christmas story. It is the story of a teacher that comes to Minnesota. When the town sends for this teacher, they think a man is coming. They wanted a man because every female teacher has gotten married and has then left her teaching position. The town has had to continue to look for teacher after teacher. This teacher convinces the school board to give her a chance because she has no plans to ever get married. 

A Gift of Twins is well put together and a great story. Throughout the whole story, you see how different characters have to make difficult decisions. We all face hard decisions in our lives and we can relate to the situations in the story. Ultimately, we see that even when we don't think we can move forward, we should still keep going and persevere. The friends of the main characters encourage each other and strive to help them succeed and follow their hearts. In the end, you will see just what "unexpected holiday blessings" await! 

(On a side note, the book accurately portrays what a Minnesota winter truly can look like!)

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Day 2 - Gratitude Challenge

Day 2: I'm grateful for my nieces and nephews! All 17 of them! #rohgratitude #thankful #grateful

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Gratitude Challenge - Day 1

This month I am going to do the Revive Our Hearts Gratitude Challenge. 

Day 1: a warm wood stove! 

It is snowing today and quite chilly out. :(

#rohgratitude #thankful #grateful