September 30, 2011

Quote of the Week

It's been a few months since I posted a quote of the week, so I thought I'd get back to it. I really enjoy finding and collecting quotes that inspire me.

"If you look at the world, you'll be distressed. If you look within, you'll be depressed. If you look at God, you'll be at rest." Corrie Ten Boom

September 26, 2011

The Colonel's Lady

This is the second novel by author Laura Frantz that I have recently read. If I had to express Laura Frantz's writing in one word, it would have to be breathtaking ...literally. I had to put it down several times, because there was so much to take in with each lovely descriptive sentence. Her writing is also very rich in historical detail. She really brought fort living to life and the language she used made me feel like I was back in time. 1779 to be exact.

The Colonel's Lady is a beautiful story of Roxanna Rowan, a women who travels from civilized Virginia to the unknown wilderness of the Kentucky frontier. She has come to reunite with her father, who is in the Continental Army. Only to find out when she arrives that he has been killed on a campaign. Here she mets Colonel Cassius McLinn and falls in love, but he has secrets that keep them apart.  As life in the fort goes on, Roxanna must learn to forgive and the Colonel must learn to trust God again.

This story kept my attention till the last page with some twists and turns I didn't expect. I love when books do that! I also found it a very moving story of love, forgiveness and coming back to the Lord.

I was so excited to win this book on Laura Frantz's blog! When I received it in the mail I was pleasantly surprised to see she had signed it with a note. I thought I'd share it with you all. :)

September 22, 2011

A Great Story from Charles Spurgeon

A few days ago my devotional reading called "Behold, the Lamb of God!" from the book "We shall see God" by Charles Spurgeon and Randy Alcorn, had a great story about how powerful Scripture is. I thought I'd share it here:

Spurgeon tells a remarkable story about an experience early in his ministry:

"In 1857, a day or two before preaching at the Crystal Palace, I went to decide where the platform should be fixed; and, in order to test the acoustic properties of the building, cried in a loud voice, 'Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.' In one of the galleries, a workman, who knew nothing of what was being done, heard the words, and they came like a message from heaven to his soul. He was smitten with conviction on account of sin, put down his tools, went home, and there, after a season of spiritual struggling, found peace and life by beholding the Lamb of God."

On this workman's deathbed he spoke of his conversion and how God spoke to him through that single verse he heard Spurgeon utter that day. Now that's a great story!

September 21, 2011


I just wanted to thank Gwendolyn Gage at Serving Through Words for awarding me the Liebster blog award! Thank-you! Since I have been awarded this before I will leave the link to that post...Liebster Blog Award

Don't forget to check out all the great blogs. Also you can check out the 15 blogs I awarded the One Lovely Blog Award  here... Another Blog Award! Check it out you may be one of them! :)

September 17, 2011

Song of Creation

  This is such a beautiful book. It's filled with paintings from Carl Brenders with poems and quotes from an array of writers and poets. These paintings are so exquisite and lifelike and the poems and quotes are all tributes to our Creator. Here are a few.
"We are beginning to regain a
knowledge of creation, a knowledge 
forfeited by the fall of Adam. 
By God's mercy we can begin 
to recognize His wonderful works 
and wonders also in flowers when
we ponder his might and goodness.
Therefore we laud, magnify and thank him."

Martin Luther                   (1483-1546)

"This is a piece too fair
To be the child of Chance, and not of Care.
No Atoms casually together hurl'd
Could e'er produce so beautiful a world."
 John Dryden                           (1631-1700)  

"Some people, in order to discover God, 
read books. but there is a great book: the very
appearance of created things. Look above you! 
Look below you! Note it. Read it. God, whom 
you want to discover, never wrote that book
with ink. Instead He set before your eyes the 
things that He had made. Can you ask for a
louder voice than that?"

                                         Augustine (354-430)

I also wanted to thank a few more fellow bloggers who awarded me with the "one lovely blog award" in the last few days. Sheri Salatin over at Farming with Heart and Faye over at labor not in vain  Also thanks again to Charity over at Austenitis  If you would like to see my orginal post and the fifteen blogs I awarded, you can visit here Another Blog Award!

September 13, 2011

Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution

I just finished this book and have to say I feel a little unsettled after reading it. From a historical viewpoint, it was very good and I did learn a lot from this book. The writing is superb and I couldn't put it down, but the author brings you into the French Revolution with all its madness, violence and anarchy, which was a little disturbing.

There were so many similarities to what is going on in countries like Egypt and Libya, that it made me uneasy as I thought of the revolutions going on in our world today. The selfishness and greed that can take over a person and the extent to which they will go to achieve what they want is unthinkable. It made me think of something St. Augustine once said:

"You made us Lord for yourself and our hearts find no peace till they rest in you."

The story of Madame Tussaud was fascinating and I enjoyed this part of the book. I couldn't get into the brutal senseless murdering rampages, but here was a woman who endured through this. The book covers about 14 years of her life during the French Revolution. I found the parts about her sketching and the making of her wax figures very interesting as well as who she met while doing this. I've been to several wax museums through the years and enjoyed them. It really is an incredible art form.

Above is a picture of the self portrait Madame Tussaud made of herself later in her life and below a picture of the Boulevard Du Temple, where she lived and worked throughout this novel.

Note of Warning: If this novel were made into a movie it would probably be rated 18A due to the graphic violence and 1 or 2 very short inappropriate scenes. (At least in my option)  :)

September 7, 2011

How the Irish Saved Civilization

I read this book, "How the Irish Saved Civilization" several years ago, and it was one of those books that stuck with me and I still think about. The book starts the readers off with the fall of the Roman Empire and continues through Ireland's early history and how their devoted monks preserved books and writing that would have otherwise been destroyed during the turbulent times of the Roman Fall. I especially loved the chapter on the first missionary to Ireland...Patrick. The book starts out like this:

"The word Irish is seldom coupled with the word civilization. When we think of peoples as civilized or civilizing, the Egyptians and the Greeks, the Italians and the French, the Chinese and the Jews may come to mind. The Irish are wild, feckless, and charming, or morose, repressed, and corrupt, but not especially civilized...And yet...Ireland, a little island at the edge of Europe that has known neither renaissance nor Enlightenment--in some ways, a Third World country with...a Stone Age culture--had one moment of unblemished glory. For, as the Roman Empire fell, as all through Europe matted, unwashed barbarians descended on the Roman cities, looting artifacts and burning books, the Irish, who were just learning to read and write, took up the great labor of copying all of Western literature--everything they could lay their hands on."

I thought I'd share some thoughts on my favorite chapter..."Good News from Far Off...The First Missionary"

Patricius, later known as St. Patrick was a British Shepard boy who was kidnapped at 16 and taken to Ireland to work as a slave. Up till then he had never really believed in God but now with no one to help him he begin to pray. He says here:

"Tending flocks was my daily work, and I would pray constantly during the daylight hours. The love of God and the fear of him surrounded me more and more and faith grew and the Spirit was roused, so that in one day I would say many as a hundred prayers and after dark nearly as many again, even while I remained in the woods or on the mountain. I would wake and pray before daybreak--through snow, frost, rain--nor was there any sluggishness in me (such as I experience nowadays) because then the Spirit within me was ardent."

 He was a slave for 6 years. Then one day he heard the Lord say "your hungers are rewarded: you are going home." "Look your ship is ready." When he arrived at the ship that would take him to freedom, the sailors told him he was wasting his time asking to sail with them. Patrick went away and prayed. When he returned the sailors had had a change of heart and said, "Come on board, we'll take you on trust."

It would be almost 30 years before he returned to Ireland. He is considered the first missionary to go and preach the gospel... "to barbarians beyond the reach of Roman law."

The thing that stood out the most for me in this chapter was, as the author states here... "His love for his adopted people (the Irish) shines through his writings, and it is not just a generalized "Christian" benevolence, but a love for individuals as they are." He didn't go to Ireland to convert the Irish to his religion but to share the love of God with them. He brought the gospel to the people there. At a time when the Irish were offering sacrifices to their gods, even sacrificing their own children, Patrick came and brought  a message of the Creator who gave up His son, Jesus Christ, to be sacrificed once for all. A message that changed the lives of the Irish there forever.

So many wonderful things in this chapter of how God worked through Patrick and answered his prayers. Even the high druid priests were afraid of him! Within Patrick's lifetime or soon after his death the Irish slave trade came to a halt and violence dramatically decreased in Ireland.

Patrick went and make disciples of Christ, "establishing bishops throughout northern, central, and eastern Ireland..." In the years to come the Irish monks would dedicate their lives to preserving the written word, when the Barbarians had destroyed so much of it... "Wherever they went the Irish brought with them their books, many unseen in Europe for centuries and tied to their waists as signs of triumph, just as Irish heroes had once tied to their waists their enemies' heads. Wherever they went they brought their love of learning and their skills in bookmaking. In the bays and valleys of their exile, they reestablished literacy and breathed new life into the exhausted literary culture of Europe. 
And that is how the Irish saved civilization."

Buy it HERE on Amazon

September 6, 2011

Another Blog Award!

Today I received another blog award! What a wonderful surprise. Thank-you Charity at Austenitis for awarding the "One Lovely Blog Award" to my blog! Also, Faye over at  labor not in vain and Sheri over at Farming with Heart awarded me this as well! There are only two rules, first share 7 facts about yourself and secondly award 15 other blogs!

7 random things about me:

1. I have the cutest, sweetest kitty cat :)
2. I love being in my garden...I especially love planting new flowers.
3. I've had the same best friend for 30 years...she's such a blessing to me.
4. I LOVE chocolate!
5. I enjoy walking, whether its at the beach or a trail...I find it relaxing.
6. I always sing in the car and my kids love it...not. ;)
7. I love Disneyland! I really want to go again soon!

Now the 15 awards goes to...

Christian Bookshelf Reviews
stories from my bookshelf
The Power of Story
The Parchment Girl
Colonial Quills
Laura Frantz
Overcoming Through Time
Home With Purpose
Stuff & Nonsense II
A Few Of My Favorite Things
Minstrel of His Grace
Legacy of a Writer

I hope you enjoy looking through these lovely blogs!