Sunday, November 17, 2019

"Glimpses of God, A Winter Devotional for Women" by Shirley Crowder & Harried Michael Book Tour & GiveAway


Glimpses of God in Winter FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Glimpses of God, A Winter Devotional for Women
Author: Shirley Crowder & Harried Michael
Genre: Non-fiction, Christian devotional
Release Date: November 6, 2019
Glimpses of God in WinterAs Christ-followers we also experience spiritual seasons. These seasons do not come in order like seasons in nature, which come regularly without fail. Each spiritual season we experience is defined by certain features also. In spiritual winter we think of the coldness of our relationship with God; in spring, new growth; in summer, warmth and heat; in fall, shedding the old and preparing for difficult days ahead.
This book is focused on winter—both calendar and spiritual. During our spiritual winters, when it feels as though God is far away or we feel stuck or dormant, we must rest in the truth of God’s sovereign mercy, grace, love, and care for His children. It is the first in the Glimpses of God” series.


"Glimpses of God, A Winter Devotional for Women” is the first book in  “Glimpses of God” series by  Shirley Crowder & Harried Michael. This book  is a book of devotions written for woman for the winter months. There are thirteen chapters with five days in each chapter. Each day starts with a short Scripture to read, then includes a personal story and ends with a prayer and thought for the day.

Each devotion contains encouragement for the dark times we go through. I especially like the devotions that share songs and the encouraging thoughts that are shared about these songs. These devotions encourages us to keep looking to Jesus and to know that “Jesus is more than enough  for us in the winter months.

I am looking forward to reading the rest of the books in the “Glimpses of God” series!


I was given a contemporary copy by the authors and Celebrate Lit. These opinions are my own.

About the Authors
Shirley CrowderShirley is passionate about disciple-making, which is conducted in and through a myriad of ministry opportunities that include biblical counseling, teaching Bible studies, and writing. She is Biblical counselor commissioned by, and serving on the national Advisory Team for, The Addiction Connection. She is co-host of “Think on These Things,” a Birmingham AL radio/TV program for women; and a freelance writer.
Harriet MichelsHarriet is a wife and mother to four grown children and grandmother to two precious grandchildren. She has authored a growing number of books, including “Prayer: It’s Not About You”, a finalist in the 2011 “Women of Faith” manuscript contest. She is also a freelance writer with numerous published pieces, including more than a hundred devotions in various magazines.

More from Shirley and Harriet

From Africa to America, Life Long Friends
March 14, many years ago …
In the heart of the African jungle in the Niger River delta of eastern Nigeria, the first cry of a newborn baby echoes from a small jungle hospital. The baby is a girl, Harriet Clarice, the third child of medical missionaries, Alice and Keith Edwards.
Harriet and her family stayed in this remote part of Nigeria for a year until the other family returned from furlough. At that time, they went for another year to Oyo, Nigeria to language school and then on to Ogbomoso in central Nigeria, where they stayed the next ten years. Keith practiced medicine at the hospital in Ogbomoso, and Alice worked with him as a nurse.

October 24 of the same year Harriet was born …
Deep in the Yoruba country of southwestern Nigeria, some 260 miles away from Joinkrama, piercing through the tropical night sounds, the first cry of another newborn baby cries out at a guesthouse in Ogbomoso. This baby is also a girl, Shirley Jeanne, the fourth child of missionaries Jeannie and Ray Crowder.
In 1962 the Crowders moved to Ogbomoso. Ray served as administrator of the 96-bed hospital, and Jeannie taught kindergarten and ministered to the Nigerian women with home visits and Bible studies. Harriet’s parents worked at the Ogbomoso hospital with Ray.

Lifelong friends
Harriet ended up living just up the dirt road from Shirley. They played together nearly every day and formed a friendship that remained, even after years and distance separated them.
Harriet and Shirley, and the others in this unique group of individuals, who shared a common childhood in Nigeria in our beloved tropical homeland half a world away from where most of us live now, grew up calling each other’s parents aunt and uncle. Even as adults, we still feel a kinship as though we are family—cousins perhaps.
Some years ago, at a mission reunion, Shirley handed Harriet a book to which she had contributed. That was the first time Harriet knew she was a writer. Shirley had discovered a few years earlier that Harriet was a writer, too.
Several years ago, Shirley suggested that they prayerfully consider writing a devotional book together. Through that experience, they learned that they work well together. Their similar understanding and views on scripture is a good foundation for the different strengths each of us bring when it comes to writing.
Since that first book, we have worked and continue to work together on other projects. Glimpses of God: a winter devotional for women is the first of a 4-book devotional series. Through our devotionals we want people to see Glimpses of God all around them. Creator God made the world and the seasons throughout the year. By using the seasons in nature, we help readers see correlations to the spiritual seasons Christ-followers experience and to get “Glimpses of God” in and through everything that happens.
So, we guess it could be said that we are once again “playing” with our childhood friend in spite of several decades having passed since they played together happily beneath the shade of mango trees.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, November 10
Artistic Nobody, November 11 (Author Interview)
Jacquelyn Lynn, November 11
Sara Jane Jacobs, November 13
CarpeDiem, November 17
Texas Book-aholic, November 19
janicesbookreviews, November 20
A Reader’s Brain, November 21

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, Harriet and Shirley are giving away the grand prize package of a copy of the book and a $25 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Friday, November 15, 2019

"Love’s Allegiance" by Linda Shenton Matchett Book Tour and Give Away

Love's Allegiance FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Love’s Allegiance
Author: Linda Shenton Matchett
Genre:  Historical Romance
Release Date: August 15, 2019
Love's Allegiance ebook jpg coverWith most U.S. boys fighting for Uncle Sam in far off countries, Rochelle Addams has given up hope for a wedding in her future. Then she receives an intriguing offer from a distant relative to consider a marriage of convenience.
Conscientious objector Irwin Terrell is looking forward to his assignment at Shady Hills Mental hospital to minister to the less fortunate in lieu of bearing arms. At the arrival of the potential bride his father has selected for him, Irwin’s well-ordered life is turned upside down. And after being left at the altar two years ago, he has no interest in risking romance again.
Despite his best efforts to remain aloof to Rochelle, Irwin is drawn to the enigmatic and beautiful young woman, but will time run out before his wounded heart can find room for her?
Inspired by the biblical love story of Rebekkah and Isaac, Love’s Allegiance explores the struggles and sacrifices of those whose beliefs were at odds with a world at war.

Click here to get your copy!
"Love’s Allegiance"  by Linda Shenton Matchett is book four in the "Wartime Brides" series.  This story is a twist on the Biblical story of  Rebekkah’s and Isaacs’s love story.  This is a clean love story dealing with standing up for what you believe in even when others are being unkind to you.  This book is a short read and well worth the time spend reading it.  I like this series because they are all standalones so even if you haven't read the other three books, you will still enjoy getting to know Rochelle and Irwin.

I received a complimentary copy from the author and Celebrate Lit. These opinions are my own.


About the Author
Linda Matchett Head ShotLinda Shenton Matchett is an author, speaker, and history geek. A native of Baltimore, Maryland, she was born a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry and has lived in historic places all her life. Linda is a member of ACFW, RWA, and Sisters in Crime. She is a volunteer docent and archivist for the Wright Museum of WWII and a trustee for her local public library.

More from Linda

Love’s Allegiance is the fourth book in the Wartime Brides series that retells biblical stories by setting them during World War II. Each story was challenging to write in some way, and this novella was no different.
While brainstorming ways to twist Rebekkah’s and Isaacs’s love story, I happened to take a phone call from my younger brother who is a pastor. I mentioned my quandary that I wasn’t sure which aspect of the home front to address with their story, and he suggested the topic of conscientious objectors (COs).
After we hung up, I realized I knew very little about COs and that I wasn’t sure how I felt about them. Were they cowards, as many people assumed? Were they right? Wrong? Were their convictions biblically based?
I began my research by reading first person account articles and watched oral history interviews with men who served in the Civilian Public Service, a government organization created to use COs who refused military service as medics and other non-combatant roles. More than 12,000 conscientious objectors chose not to take up arms during the war, and I knew I had to tell their side of the story.

Blog Stops

Batya’s Bits, November 9
Betti Mace, November 11
Rebecca Tews, November 11
Genesis 5020, November 12
mpbooks, November 13
As He Leads is Joy, November 13
Back Porch Reads, November 15
Texas Book-aholic, November 17
For Him and My Family, November 17
janicesbookreviews, November 19
Inspired by fiction, November 19
A Reader’s Brain, November 20

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving away all four books in the Wartime Brides series and a $10 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

"The Bright Unknown" by Elizabeth Byler Younts Book Tour

The Bright Unknown FB Banner

About the Book

Book: The Bright Unknown
Author: Elizabeth Byler Younts
Genre:  Historical Romance
Release Date: October 22, 2019
cover Bright UnkownTwo young friends embark upon an epic journey across 1940s middle America in search of answers, a family, and a place to call home.
The only kind of life Brighton Turner understands is the one she has endured within the dreary walls of a rural Pennsylvania asylum. A nurse has thoughtfully educated and raised Brighton, but she has also kept vital information from her in order to keep her close. Brighton befriends a boy whom she calls Angel—he doesn’t know his name—and as the two of them learn more about what lies beyond the walls they call home, they fight for their release and eventually escape.
However, the world outside the only place they’ve ever known is not what they expect. They have no real names, no money, and no help—and they must rely upon the kindness of strangers as they walk and hitchhike from Pennsylvania to Michigan to find their last hope of a home.
This heartbreaking journey, narrated in gorgeous prose, explores what it means to belong—and to scour the universe with fresh eyes for the brightness within.

Click here to grab your copy!

"The Bright Unknown" by Elizabeth Byler Yount is a book that will pull at your heart strings. It is a fictional look at how mental illness used to be treated. Those stuffing for this would be locked into a asylum and treated badly and then grow worse. 

This is a story of Brighton, who was born in the asylum and her life they and how she and her friend Angel finally escaped.  It is also a clean love story. It truly showed that love can triumph. 

Even through this story is fiction, I am sure most of did happen back in the 1930. 

This story makes the reader feel sorrow, anger and hope. 

I am glad mental illness treatment has improved so much. 

I really loved the ending! 

I received a complimentary copy from the author and Celebrate Lit. These opinions are my own.  


About the Author
Elizabeth YountsElizabeth Byler Younts gained a worldwide audience through her first book, Seasons: A Real Story of an Amish Girl. She is also the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Solace of Water and the Promise of Sunrise series. Elizabeth lives in Central Pennsylvania with her husband, her two daughters, and a small menagerie of well-loved pets.

More from Elizabeth

The Bright Unknown was born out of a seed of a true story that my husband’s grandmother, Gigi, shared with me. Gigi told me that when she was a young girl living in Oklahoma her mom had a friend who was a nurse. During one of her visits over coffee she would occasionally talk about her patients at the local asylum. One particular story really intrigued Gigi and even decades later she still remembered it. The story was about a patient who had a baby while at the hospital and while Gigi remembers nothing about the patient or the child, she knew that when she moved out of Oklahoma several years later that asylum-born girl was around eighteen and still living within the walls of that hospital along with her patient-mother.
That story stuck with me. This trapped girl and her mother wouldn’t let me go. I began to wonder over her and ask all sorts of unanswered questions. Slowly but surely my imagined story for her came to life. Layer after layer I learned about Brighton, my name for her. I also named two characters after Gigi, her first and middle, as an honor to her. This story was born from a memory but now these characters feel real and present in my life today and I hope you will journey with them in The Bright Unknown.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, November 2
A Reader’s Brain, November 2
Inspired by fiction, November 3
Fiction Aficionado, November 4
Genesis 5020, November 4
janicesbookreviews, November 5
All-of-a-kind Mom, November 5
The Becca Files, November 7
Bigreadersite, November 7
Connect in Fiction, November 8
Moments, November 9
Simple Harvest Reads, November 10
Betti Mace, November 10
Pause for Tales, November 11
Inklings and notions, November 11
Mary Hake, November 11
Texas Book-aholic, November 12
Hallie Reads, November 12
For Him and My Family, November 13
Remembrancy, November 14
mpbooks, November 14
Godly Book Reviews, November 15
*No Giveaway

"Are You in the Game or in the Way?" by Ross Holtz Book Tour and GiveAway

About the Book

Book: Are You in the Game or in the Way?
Author: Ross Holtz
Genre: RELIGION / Christian Ministry / Pastoral Resources
Release Date: March 10, 2017
Front Cover
Are You in the Game or in the Way?
A men’s ministry reality check: What is standing in the way of a vital men’s ministry in your church? 
The guy who should be at the forefront is often in the way of the program getting off the ground. 
·         Are you, as pastor, the main obstacle to the growth of a vital men’s ministry? 
·         Are you the guy who wants to start a men’s ministry in your church but don’t know how? 
·         Is fear or a sense of inadequacy keeping you from starting such a ministry? 
Pastor Ross Holtz tells his personal story of how he became a catalyst for growth, instead of an impediment will inspire pastors and men’s ministry leaders. 
What works, what doesn’t, and what is required in forming a vital men’s ministry. Practical and honest teaching filled with relevant and tested examples from recognizing the problem to finding the fix.  
Pastor Ross Holtz is a man who has earned the right to speak on ministering to and through men . . . One man’s journey from being a sceptic to a fully-engaged pastor who sees the power of a clear ministry to and through men . . . Pastor Ross bares his heart, and is, at times, brutally honest in a way that will resonate.  
—Chuck Stecker, president, A Chosen Generation

Click here to get your copy.

"Are You in the Game or in the Way?" by  Ross Holtz is a book that I really did not want to read. The reason being I am not a man nor am I a pastor. But, after saying that, I did read the book and was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to read and understand. The book was not at all technical.

I think the guidelines and stories the author shared are ones that  pastors and men's ministry leaders  would find to be actual.

I did have a few problem( but again these are just my own personal objections and bias opinions) this pastor talks about smoking cigars and drinking beers with the men in his church( I admit I wouldn't want my preacher to be drinking beer) I think it would ruin his witness. There are two words he uses, hell ( he wasn't using this in a good way, he wrote you want to tell someone to go there, but in the author defense, he did mention that people doesn't like Christian using that word unless you are talking about unsaved people going there, the other word is bitchy, again I find these words to be offensive when used by a Christian, especially pastors.  I know pastors are human and are not perfect but I find cursing and drinking just wrong when you are a pastor.

The book was a short read and even after writing the above paragraph, I am giving this book to my pastor to read. 

I was glad that the author admitted that he wasn't always right in his thinking and was honest.

Again, I am not a man, but I tend to agreed with his statement that a pastor needs to show up to events because if the event isn't important enough for the pastor. than it isn't important for them. 

I was given a complimentary copy by the author and Celebrate Lit . These opinions are my own. 

About the Author

Picture
Geoffrey Ross Holtz, DD, is founding and senior pastor of The Summit (ECFA) in Enumclaw. He was awarded “Pastor of the Year” in 2014 by the National Coalition of Ministries for Men. Ross and his wife, Athena, the founder and publisher of Redemption Press, have a blended family of eight adult children and seventeen grandchildren and enjoy time spent sailing.  

More from Ross

I’ve been asked to tell something about myself or tell a personal story. I’m not adverse to talking about myself, but I’d rather tell you a very personal story.
There was a show on television, maybe still is I guess, called Overhaulin’. The plot of the show was that each week they would sneak a person’s car away from them, with family help, and overhaul it to make it really cool. It was every car-guy’s dream; to have someone restore a vehicle for you, that was special to you. And to restore it at their expense; Wow, doesn’t get cooler than that.
I never was on that show, but I have a story that I want to tell you. It was late summer in 2014. I had just remarried after having lost my wife of 49 years awhile before. The church that I pastor was having a car show as a community outreach on this particular Sunday. The day had started out rather weird. Several people seemed to be inordinately interested in my movements and where I was going to be as we set up the show.
“Oh, Ross, you need to go into the church, someone is looking for you.” Or, “Hey Ross, would you run get this for us across town?” Yeah, weird things. But I obliged and made myself scarce for the time leading up to the church service before the car show officially started.
So, we do the obligatory service; it ends, and my new wife and I start walking through the grassy field looking at the custom and restored vehicles that had come to the show. I, as is my style, was meandering along the cars talking to people I knew and folks with their fancy cars. Athena, my wife, seemed to be hurrying me along which was not like her at all. And, which was like me, I was just strolling along enjoying the cars.
Then, down the row a few cars, I spot the open hood of a 1961 Chev pickup. That year had a very distinct hood which was used only one year. “Oh, look at that. I had a truck like that years ago. Wow, and look at that, it’s yellow. Isn’t that gorgeous.” Funny, I failed to see the horde of people and cameras set up in front of that vehicle, all looking towards me.
Anyway, I hurriedly moved towards it and recognized it as a limited addition of that year’s Chevy truck. I said, “Hey look at that. It’s the same model that I had. That’s not your normal ’61.” I wondered if someone had restored my old truck.
I must give a bit of back story on my old truck. It had been purchased new in Los Gatos, California by my dad. He had needed someone to drive it home so he pulled my out of school to do that. I was 14. My father was not a stickler for legal technicalities. So I was the first to drive his new truck. It was new, but it was ugly. It was painted an ugly shade of puce. I mean it was really an awful color. My mother called it “Rosebud” because it reminded her of some kind of flower.
In 1975 my dad gave me the truck because he had no further use for it. So I drove it until about 1988 when it was totally worn out. So I sold Rosebud to a friend named Randy who had plans to restore it eventually. I sold it with the understanding that if he should he ever sell it, I’d get first right of refusal.
Fast forward Twenty-five years. A bunch of guys were sitting around a campfire talking and Randy announces that he’s moving to another state and getting rid of everything he owns.
“What about my truck? Are you taking it with you?” “Oh,” he said, “I gave that truck away a while back.” Those who were there said I looked disappointed, or something. I don’t remember feeling that, but it was said.
Now, back to the story. I was looking at this beautiful truck, wondering if it was the same truck, when I saw Randy on the other side of it. “Randy, you son of a gun, you restored my truck.” He said, “It’s your truck.” “Yes, I can see that. You’ve done a beautiful job with her. But why didn’t you tell me?” He said once more with strong emphasis, “It is your truck.” “Are we playing games?” I wondered out loud. And, to make it more cruel, someone had entered the truck in the show under my name. That wasn’t nice.
I was not very situationally aware at that moment. I didn’t see all the cameras and people that were focused on me. People were laughing and cheering. I didn’t notice. I was focused on the pickup that had been my dad’s. It took them four or five time to finally get across to me that this beautiful bright yellow, completely restored truck was a gift from the men of the church to me. Randy had given it to the men’s ministry of The Summit with the request that they make it new for me as a gift for nearly 30 years of ministry to the church. Dozens of men had spent 18 months completely disassembling and rebuilding it from the ground up. It now had a fresh corvette motor, disc brakes, power steering, and a custom paint job. I had been Overhauled. Not by Chip Fouse, but by a group of men, and boys, who cared enough for me to invest months of blood sweat and tears. Not to mention the thousands of dollars it took. I wept. I still weep when I think about it.
One final part of the story that needs telling. I remarried after Cathy died, as her instructions (another story). I guess I didn’t wait long enough for some people, or something. People, about 100 people, abandoned me and left the church. They might not call it abandonment, but I do. I asked some of the more prominent people, “Is there a sin issue here?” “No,” They said, “We just don’t think it’s good for the church for you to remarry.” As you might imagine, it was an extremely painful time for this 67-year-old guy. I had found another person to finish off my life with, which I didn’t think possible, and some people considered it wrong for me to do. They didn’t consider my feelings, and needs, only thinking of  theirs. Or so it seemed.
But all the while this tragedy was taking place, a whole bunch of good and committed friends, were investing their time and efforts, in secret, to rebuild my dad’s old Chevy truck. All the time I was in such pain, these good men were giving up evenings and weekends to do this wonderful thing for me. Isn’t that like God? Sometimes while we are in the dregs of misery, He is working, unseen, to bless us, to encourage us, and to show His love for us.

Blog Stops

Vicky Sluiter, November 12
Artistic Nobody, November 13 (Author Interview)
Just the Write Escape, November 14
A Baker’s Perspective, November 16 (Author Interview)
Texas Book-aholic, November 17
janicesbookreviews, November 18
Christian Bookshelf Reviews, November 19 (Author Interview)
A Reader’s Brain, November 20
Inklings and notions, November 21
My Devotional Thoughts, November 22 (Author Interview)
Simple Harvest Reads, November 23 (Guest Review from James Barela)
Lukewarm Tea, November 24 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Ross if giving away a $50 Amazon gift card and a signed copy of his book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.