An Encouraging Word

Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it!
Hebrews 13:2 (NLT) 

My husband and I belong to a large international ministry that reaches the lost for Christ through Bible distribution. I was recently listening to a testimony by a man who came to know Christ through one of these Bibles. He said, “I don’t know where all the other Bibles went, but I know where one went. And some day, in heaven, I’m going to thank that man who gave me the Bible.” Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Awaken: A Soul Scents Devotional

Guest Post from the author of Soul Scents: Awaken 

God’s timing: Terrible or Perfect?

Paula awaken

“It’s all about God’s timing—and honestly, God’s timing is typically terrible,” my nineteen-year old son said as we talked yesterday.

We laughed, but I get it. Life can feel like one long waiting game, especially when you catch a glimpse of where you want to be in the future and discover the journey there is longer than you dreamed.

But this week I’m standing in the glorious position of experiencing (not just believing by faith) the perfection of God’s timing.

I’ve dreamed of publishing a devotional book for many years. Last January I believed God released me to get serious about it. I’ve published both traditionally and non-traditionally with good experiences, but this collection was so intimate I wanted to publish it myself. I compiled devotionals I’d written over the years and began penning new ones, hoping to release for 2016.

That’s when it got rough. Writing about spiritual discoveries of recent years required digging deeper into a seven year period where life was really tough for my family. Instead of making progress I found myself sobbing at the computer. Eventually, I sensed God leading me away for healing time alone with Him. For several months instead of feeling like a productive author I curled up with my journal and some Bible study material, asking Him to give me insight into the journey we’d traveled. As winter turned to spring and summer I chose quiet days over work. Sometimes I prayed and processed. Some days I took walks and talked to my flowers!

And I healed.

Then fall came. I felt released to work again. Wouldn’t you know it? Suddenly writing devotions was almost effortless. Even stories of the hard times were no longer painful to tell. It didn’t surprise me my “unproductive healing season” was actually full of writing I now shaped to share with others.

Still, I assumed the “time off” meant my year devotional would release in 2017 instead of 2016 as I’d hoped.

That was before God swooped in and moved at a breathless pace.

Less than a month ago I suddenly realized the word count on the project was too much for one book. What I actually worked on was four separate volumes which collectively offer a year of devotions—and book one needed very little editing to be ready for publication. The same day I pondered this I “happened” to have a conversation with novelist Lisa Samson. When she learned I was working on a devotional collection she offered to design the artwork for it. She is launching a new art company which offers original illustrations, adult coloring pages, and other unique designs under the brand Lisa-Joy

Within 48 hours of this conversation, the Lord put together a talented creative team—artwork, book cover, editing, proofreading, formatting, and business consultant–who were committed to seeing the book to completion. Less than three weeks later we uploaded it to Amazon’s Kindle for a pre-launch celebration. The print version releases by Christmas! I’m still stunned to think my dream of offering others a devotional journey for 2016 has come true. I call it as my Christmas miracle.

And that’s why, at least today, God’s timing feels absolutely perfect.

Soul Scents: Awaken  is available now on Kindle and in print. 

Bio:

Paula headshot

Author, speaker, and mom of four, Paula Moldenhauer encourages others to be released into full potential through freedom in Christ and the empowerment of God’s grace. Published over 300 times in non-fiction markets, her first devotional book series, Soul Scents, releases in four volumes beginning with Soul Scents: Awaken. Paula’s first two novels released in 2012. Sometimes empty-nesters, Paula and her husband, Jerry, enjoy four adult children and a wonderful son-in-law. Paula loves peppermint ice cream, walking barefoot and talking to her flowers. For inspirational articles, book information, and speaking topics visit: www.paulamoldenhauer.com

 

Words of Wisdom

Cec Murphy is running a series on self-care for writers. Truly it is worth it for writers and non-writers to hop on over to his site and read every post. He deals with nutrition, taking breaks, and even learning to say no.

Here are a handful of miscellaneous suggestions.

Don’t over-nurture individuals. Many of us tend to feel responsible for others when they need to be able to handle their own issues.

One day I thought that if I solve their problems, I cheat them out of the challenge to do so and to grow from the experience. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Nativity Sets

We wanted to share a sweet story for you about nativities sets from around the world.

A New York pastor is looking for a new home for his large collection of nativity sets from all over the world.

Father Roy Herberger of SS. Columba-Brigid Church in Buffalo got his first nativity set about 30 years ago while attending a religious convention in Baltimore, Herberger told ABC News Today.

Learn more.

Kelly and Nancy

Need Holiday Encouragement?

No other time of the year can be more difficult to write than at Christmas. We writers are simply distracted with all the fun and preparations. Besides the season involves creativity, and we simply can’t resist the urge to simply BE in the moment. My excuses race from one exciting activity to the next-

Time
Shopping.
Wrapping gifts.
Baking cookies.
Reading Christmas cards.
Planning Christmas parties.
Attending choir presentations.
Decorating the tree and house.
Viewing my favorite Christmas movies.
Figuring out what to wear to holiday events.
Napping because I’m tired from all the above.
Gotta write.
Gotta write.
Gotta write.Learn more.

Equipping

Each of us has a plan for our lives. This inspiring article reminds us of how special that plan is.

Each of us has a plan for our lives. This inspiring article reminds us of how special that plan is.

God has a will, or a plan for each of us. Psalm 139:16 (NLT) tells us, You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.

Each of us is on this earth for a specific reason. We may not know it completely right now. We may be in a season of preparation to enter that calling. But God has a plan for each of us.

Some are called to be pastors and teachers, some doctors, lawyers. Some to be auto mechanics, electricians, and plumbers.

Some, like myself, are called to be writers. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Need a Great Summer Read?

Need a Great Summer Read?

Sweet stories of second chances from a God of second chances. The stories in this collection will warm your heart and encourage you to keep on going when all your circumstances say otherwise. No matter where you are or what you’re struggling with, these stories will touch you where you’re at. Each story stands on its own, but in total, paints a picture of a God who offers second chances, and third chances, and more. Stories include forgiveness, living out your dreams, revising your opinion of others, and finding a forever home. A sweet summer read. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Counting the Days: A 31-day devotional for accountants, bookkeepers, and financial folk

Leeann Bett’s new book, Counting the Days: A 31-day devotional for accountants, bookkeepers, and financial folk, will be releasing soon. If you are a numbers person or have a loved one who is, this might be a great book for consideration. Pre-release orders are being accepted right now!

A 31-day devotional designed to lead the reader into their daily quiet time, this book consists of 5-minute accounting-related devotionals. Immerse yourself in God’s word on a regular basis and see the positive changes in your walk with the Lord. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Second Chances

Second chances are so important. This new book is a compilation of stories about second chances. It’s a pretty good read.

Sweet stories of second chances from a God of second chances. The stories in this collection will warm your heart and encourage you to keep on going when all your circumstances say otherwise. No matter where you are or what you’re struggling with, these stories will touch you where you’re at. Each story stands on its own, but in total, paints a picture of a God who offers second chances, and third chances, and more. Stories include forgiveness, living out your dreams, revising your opinion of others, and finding a forever home. A sweet summer read. Learn more.

Kelly and Nancy

Thought Provoking Article

Here is a thought provoking article for our readers.

Decades ago when I wrote radio drama and devotions for a daily broadcast, I created a script in which two voice-over characters discussed a new program at their church. Those within the church who were devoted to prayer were given pagers so they could be alerted immediately, even if they were far away from their home or phone when the need arose. This was in the days before cell phones became the norm, before smartphones could send a message alert, before Facebook could send news of a prayer need faster than the speed of sound.

The script had its lighthearted moments and a connection to biblical truth about staying in tune with the Holy Spirit as if He were paging us as needs arise. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly