Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Women Alive Vancouver (BC)

If you live within driving distance of Vancouver, BC consider coming to this FABULOUS Women's event! October 17 & 18, go here for registration info: https://www.womenalive.org/events/vancouver08/

Keynote Speaker: Thelma Wells
You loved her at “Women of Faith”, now she’s back with a brand new message. From an abusive childhood to the founding of a national women’s mentoring ministry, Thelma Wells’ life has been a courageous journey of faith. Eventually raised by great-grandparents, she grew up to be a trailblazer for black women. Thelma, the first black core speaker for the Women of Faith Tour, has authored several books as well as founding The Daughters of Zion Leadership Mentoring Program. Through this ministry, Mama T, as she is affectionately called, has mentored over 100 spiritual daughters.

Weekend Host: Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson
Laura-Lynn is the host of Canada’s newest national daily talk show, “The Daily with Mark and Laura-Lynn.” Seasoned broadcaster and comedian, she is the creator of her own TV series, “Coffee Shop Girl”. Come prepared to laugh with her, but mostly AT her!

Special Music: Glenda Rae
Whether performing in New York, Los Angeles or London, Glenda captures the heart of her audience. Though mainstream press dithers about whether she is a pop, soul, blues, or jazz singer, there is no doubt that at her deepest roots, she is a Gospel vocalist.

Worship Leader: Tania DeMeglio
Come and enjoy an awesome time of worship with Vancouver’s own Tania DeMeglio.

Breakout Sessions:

1) Greta Sheppard
Excuse Me, Your Unforgiveness is Showing!

For many years, Greta, a sought after motivational speaker and author, lived in silence and denial about her sexually abusive childhood. Finally at age 50 she exposed her secret. Have you ever had anything so hurtful, so cruel or so offensive in your life that forgiveness seems impossible? Come and learn what it means to find freedom in forgiveness.

2) Sheryl Baxter
Money Matters
Where does the money go? Why is there never enough? Statistics show that money is the #1 cause of marital conflict. Half of all Canadians have less than $2500 in savings. Come and learn how to make informed decisions, find your hidden wealth and eliminate the money fear factor. Sheryl, a senior Field Training Specialist with FaithLife Financial will focus on household budgeting and accelerated debt reduction based on biblical principles and disciplines.

3) Candace Newton
Beyond Barriers, Loving the Way Jesus Loved
Cozy Christianity feels good but is it right? Candace’s mandate is to impart the love of Jesus and to be moved with compassion to all those that “don’t measure up.” If you are tired of nominal Christianity then come prepared to be propelled right out of your comfort zone by her challenge to live like there is no tomorrow. Candace, Founder of Unlocking Secrets for Women is the Associate Producer for “The Daily with Mark and Laura-Lynn” as well as creator of a newly developing TV series called “Luv Ya Mom”.

4) Kristy Morris
Deliverence – The TRUTH Will Set you Free

Have you, or do you know anyone who is involved in New Age, hypnosis or the occult? Are you in spiritual bondage from memories of your past or in dealing with the present? Suffering from chronic asthma, Kristy was lured as a child into the psychic realm which eventually led to the deception of
hypnosis and witchcraft. Now a pastor’s wife, Kristy will encourage you to live your life with liberty, freedom and joy so that you can be used to deliver others.

5) Marilyn Mahoney
The Truth of the Matter

How’s your thought life? Are you on a merry-go-round of allowing unproductive thoughts to drag you down? Explore how your thoughts powerfully influence your emotions and actions and learn four questions that can help you uncover Truth- the secret ingredient of a healthy thought life. Marilyn, is an Educational Consultant with Fraser Health Authority and serves in ministry with her husband pastoring the newly- formed West Coast Biker’s Church.

6) Tricia Goyer
Parenting in our Generation: Raising Kids who Impact our World.

Want to change the world? Want to impact future generations for Christ? Start at home. Tricia Goyer, author of fifteen books understands that parenting in our generation is all about raising future teens and adults who are prepared to step out and follow God’s dreams for their lives. She will
share the importance of discovering God’s unique design for each of our children, give ideas for family ministry and for fostering attitudes of giving and service in young hearts.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Woogi World

My friend's daughter is super crazy about online games. She has accounts at Barbiegirls, Webkinz, Stardollz, and more. So when I mentioned I had the goods on a new site, Woogi World, she of course went ga-ga!

I invited her over to my blog to give you all a review!

Please welcome Madison!

This site is cool. After my mom sent me the info, I logged in right away.

My favorite part was adopting and dressing my character. There are cool games that teach me about being safe, healthy (ugh!) and nice to others. I earn points and the better I do, the more I earn. I have lots of points. I sent all my friends invites to sign up! We can play 2 player games. We love it.

The leader BigWig even has his own blog. http://woogiworld.blogspot.com/

They gave Woogi to schools for free and Woogi is all about helping others. Check out what they say about that here http://www.woogiworld.com/parents/ and the cool (yeah-right) stuff they have for parents.

I know other kids would like Woogi too. Sign them up at www.woogiworld.com.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday Flashback!

This is me and I know what I was thinking. "What's up with this doll???"

Surely, there had to be cuter toy choices!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

SOS for PMS: Practical Relief and Help for Moms!

Friends, this is a wonderfully helpful and practical and hopeful book. If you suffer from PMS or have a friend who does, GET THIS BOOK!

About the Book:
The SOS for PMS: Practical Help and Relief for Moms

In her latest book, Mary explores an often frustrating topic, the symptoms of PMS, and offers practical advice and encouragement for mothers. Readers will find comfort in the stories shared by other moms, realizing that they are not alone in their struggles with PMS.

With this book, you will find suggestions designed to inspire healthier lifestyles, relationships, and daily choices for all women.

Gather any group of moms together and the topic of frustrating PMS symptoms rises up in conversation along with the guilt and concern about its effects on family members.

Now Mary Byers, author of The Mother Load, offers mothers encouragement, help, and camaraderie as she shares:
~women's stories-the good, bad, and the hopeful

~overlooked symptoms and how to manage them

~foods and activities to avoid or indulge in God's first aid for stress, depression, and anxiety

~a call for help-how husbands can come to the aid of their wives

This gathering of useful advice and shared experiences will comfort readers who have ever felt alone in their PMS plight and will inspire healthier lifestyles, relationships, and daily choices for all women.

To read an excerpt go here: http://www.harvesthousepublishers.com/texts/excerpts/9780736921701_exc.pdf

A Word from Mary about her book:
"It’s my hope that this book will bring help, hope and healing to moms who suffer from PMS. It’s been a source of despair in my own life but things are looking up now that I’ve developed my own coping plan. Those I interviewed for this book shared intimately about their own battles and I believe their stories, along with that of Callie’s (the main character in the book) will convince other women that it is possible to change their current response to PMS and encourage them to start today.”

About Mary:
Mary Byers is a professional speaker and writer whose passion for transforming lives is evident in every project she takes on. In her first book with Harvest House Publishers, The Mother Load: How to Meet Your Own Needs While Caring for Your Family, Byers teaches women how to take care of themselves so that they can nurture a happy, healthy family. The mother of two lively children, she offers down-to-earth suggestions, spiritual truths, and real-life advice on how to juggle family responsibilities while creating a balanced life through supportive friendships, stress-relieving laughter, regular exercise, rejuvenating solitude, and an intimate relationship with the Lord. The founder of Word Works, Byers graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Telecommunications. She is also a Certified Association Executive. Byers and her husband, Stuart, reside in Illinois with their two children. To learn more about Mary visit her website at www.marybyers.com

Win a copy of the book here!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Our Position as His Possession

When was the last time you were the deliverer of good news? Perhaps you were given the task of informing an employee of new position and a raise. Or maybe you had the opportunity to share good news concerning a much prayed about request. Do you remember the feeling of warmth that bubbled inside you or the sense privilege to impart such a blessing on someone else?

I love this blessing:
The LORD said to Moses, “Tell Aaron and his sons, ‘This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them:
“ ‘ “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” ’
“So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.” (Numbers 6:22–27)

Aaron’s sons had seen the worst of times. Their position had been as slaves—mere possessions—forced to give all of themselves to achieve their master’s wishes. To make matters worse, these sons were the offspring of someone whom the Egyptians would label a “troublemaker,” and they had no doubt had observed numerous curses upon the Israelites. Yet after God’s deliverance, Aaron’s sons—in their new position as priest—were given the privilege of imparting a blessing upon God’s people.

We too can be the deliverers of God’s blessing to others. And while the term “blessing” has become a catchphrase by Christians today, its original meaning speaks of a great “benefits.” In these verses, God’s followers were benefited by 1) his keeping, 2) his graciousness, and 3) his peace.

Do you know someone in need of one of these benefits? Perhaps all three? Think about it. Is there a wanderer who needs to be reminded that God will keep and protect her? Or a heavy-hearted friend who needs a reminder of God’s tender grace? Perhaps there’s someone with a troubled spirit who comes to mind, and she needs the benefit of God’s peace.

You, today, can extend such a blessing by reminding your friend of the final two blessings spoken of in these verses: God’s face and God’s name. Both of these benefits again refer to position and possession—Our position in God’s line of sight. And our possession as his delivered ones.

When God’s face shines upon his children, our position equally shines bright as we stand in the light of his presence. And with his name upon us, our possession is clear: Owned by God: redeemed and delivered by him. Isn’t that a blessing worth imparting?

Which of your friends is need of a spoken blessing today?

What words can you share with her that will remind her of her position?

What image can you see in your mind’s eye when you read these words: may “the Lord make his face shine upon you?”

Finally, what benefits do you receive as you impart God’s blessings—his benefits—on others?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Looking ahead...Christmas!


(Leafwood Publishers, October 2008)

A wonderful new gift book, A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts, is available in October for Christmas giving. Today, I’ve invited the six coauthors to share their unique story of how they came together to publish this exciting book full of stories, recipes, tips for simplifying the holidays and so much more (click on bookcover to see the trailer!).

First, let me introduce Cathy Messecar, Leslie Wilson, Brenda Nixon, Trish Berg, Terra Hangen and Karen Robbins. Thank you for being here today, ladies.

Karen: Thank you for the invitation.

You are from three different areas of the country—Texas, California, and Ohio. How did you all meet?

Terra: We all six joined The Writers View, an online group for professional Christian writers. Trish and Brenda met in person in 2004 for lunch, I understand, and on 9/18/04, after reading a post Brenda sent to TWV, I sent an email to Brenda, asking if she would like to join with me and walk alongside each other, as a Barnabas group. Brenda said yes that same day, and suggested Trish too. Very quickly Cathy, Leslie and Karen joined in and our stalwart band of six was formed. Living in California, I was so happy to find 5 Barnabas writers in other states so we could bring together a wealth of different viewpoints and expertise

Brenda: Actually, We haven’t met. We’re all great colleagues and friends via the internet. Four years ago Terra and I formed a dyad to support each other as Christians who write in the secular markets. Along came Trish, Cathy, Karen, and Leslie (not necessarily in that order) and we formed a close knit bond of support, creative energy, and professional accountability.

Karen: I met Trish through an online forum called The Writers View and she invited me to join the group.

Trish: Although we belong to the same Yahoo writing group, we met one by one online. Eventually, the six of us decided that since we all write as Christians for a secular market through magazine articles and newspaper columns, we could support and encourage one another.

Leslie: Though we met virtually through The Writers View, I have been blessed to give and get hugs from Trish (at a MOPS conference), Cathy (in the area on business) and Karen (in town for a writers' conference). I can’t wait to meet Terra and Brenda face-to-face, though I feel as though I already know them!

How did you come up with the idea to do a book together?

Brenda: The book is Cathy’s brainchild. She mentioned the concept of telling stories of events that happened for the first time at Christmas and sharing holiday historical tidbits and recipes and each said, “If you need any help, let me know.” That offer morphed into each of us equally contributing and co-authoring A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts.

Trish: Yep, Cathy came up with the idea and the title, and asked us if we wanted to join her on this project. Of course, we said Yes!

Terra: Cathy mentioned the idea for a Christmas book to the group, and someone (I think it was Leslie) suggested that maybe our group could all write the book together. Cathy agreed to lead the way on the project. The earliest email I have on this is from 9/7/05, which shows that this has been a three year collaboration from idea to publication.

Karen: (Chuckling) Terra is a librarian and keeps our historical records by saving our e-mails.

Leslie: Actually, Terra, I wrote that comment (in a group e-mail) kind of tongue-in-cheek. Cathy, the ultra-sweet person she is, took my joking at face value and here we are. However, I believe God prompted the passion and ideas we all bring to the project and that He will do mighty things as a result of our collaboration!

Why did you decide on a Christmas theme?

Brenda: It was Cathy’s concept to write a book centering on Christmas.

Cathy: For several years, I’d been thinking about Christmas as a threshold to introduce Jesus to folks who aren’t familiar with him, and I love a simpler Christmas with the emphasis on family, friends and doing for others. I knew of some families who had experienced “firsts” at Christmas—reunions, losses, special surprises—and I wanted to collect those stories.

Terra: Cathy’s idea immediately resonated with me because Christmas books are “a way past watchful dragons,” as C. S. Lewis wrote. Many people won’t buy a book about being a Christian, but will buy a holiday and family fun book, thus the “past watchful dragons.” People who want to grow in their faith, and people who have no faith but celebrate Christmas will buy our book and hopefully be led to put the focus back on Christ for the holiday, and for their lives.

Leslie: Though Cathy birthed the idea, the rest of us quickly hopped on board. Not only is Christmas special to me—especially now that I have a family of my own—but also that particular holiday cries out to be simplified, to return to the meaningful aspects of celebration, and to lose some of the hype and commercialism.

Tell me a little about what is in A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts? What is your favorite part?

Cathy: I like that you can read one chapter in about 15 minutes and, with all the different suggestions, it feels like Christmas Eve. Makes you want to set up the nativity! Many of the suggestions for family activities can be adapted for any family get-together.

Karen: There are heartwarming stories about things that happened for the first time at Christmas. For instance, one of my stories is about the first Christmas with our adopted children. And the book is pretty. When I first saw the colorful pages and drawings, I fell in love with the illustrator’s work.

Brenda: I don’t have a favorite part – I love it all!

Terra: I like the way the parts are woven into a seamless whole, like a patchwork quilt, that is stronger and more beautiful than the parts.

Trish: It’s like everything you ever wanted to know about Christmas, all the best tips and recipes, and neat stories all wrapped up in this perfect little package.

Leslie: I love reading the special stories, hints, recipes—whatever—and imagining the precious family time that precipitated each moment. Plus, the book is gorgeous, beautifully printed, truly something to be proud of. And we are.

I’ve heard that the book is really a nice gift book; can you tell me a little about the format?

Cathy: Yes, it’s a hardbound book, full color interior. The layout makes it easy to read. It has a definite scrapbooky look on the interior. Different logos identify sections, such as an oilcloth-look Christmas stocking appears beside the “Stocking Stuffer Tradition” (help for connecting family members), and the “Cookie Canister” recipes are on a recipe card, and the back ground of “A Gift For You” is a gift box with bow. It’s a classy gift that they can be placed on a coffee table or in a guest bedroom during the holiday season.

Brenda: I like to describe it as a Starbuck’s sorta gift book. It’s high quality, crisp, and practical.

With six different personalities and areas of ministry, how did you manage to put this all together and still remain friends?

Karen: We pray a lot for each other and it helps that none of us have an over-inflated ego.

Cathy: There were no squabbles. Surely, we had differing opinions, but we knew that any of us could suggest an idea for this book and that each idea would get fair reviews from others. We actually voted on some aspects—everyone in favor say, “Aye.” If you’ve ever watched women at a Dutch treat luncheon when they divide up a meal ticket, it can be intense as they split the ticket down to the penny. As the project came together, I was in awe of my gracious coauthors, unselfish women who respect each other.
For some decisions, we did a round robin—things like book title and chapter titles and what categories to put into the book. Then, as compiler, I’d send out a list of needs to The Word Quilters, that’s what we call ourselves. For instance in a section we call “Peppermints for Little Ones” (hints for children’s activities), I’d put out a call, and the WQs sent in their hints, and then I put them into appropriate chapters.

Brenda: (Smiling) Are we still friends? Seriously, we each have our own platform, ministry, and family life, and those interests kept this project in perspective – it was important but not the only thing on our plates. No one was so enmeshed in this project that she campaigned for her own way. We never had a bitter disagreement or insistence to be “right.”

Terra: We are each other’s biggest cheerleaders.We offer support and ideas for our separate writing projects and for personal prayer requests. I love these ladies, and I have only met one of them in person. So far, Karen is the only one who has met each of us, and one day we hope to meet in person, in a circle of friendship and love.

Trish: I think we are all very flexible and forgiving. We do have a variety of personalities here, but God has worked amazing things through our little group.

Leslie: Though I have seven non-fiction projects in various stages of completion, I could not be more thankful that this is the one to reach publication first. I am truly blessed to have worked with these women, learned from them, watched as they’ve poured heart and soul into crafting a product that will impact lives for the Lord.

Where can my readers get a copy of SOCF?

Cathy: The coauthors will all have a supply, plus our publisher, Leafwood Publishers, will have plenty of copies and discounts for buying five or more. Or they can be ordered at most online stores or by your local bookstore.

Karen: And anyone who leaves a comment here can be entered in a drawing for a free book and a gift basket worth $200! For a list of its contents, check our blog, A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts. And while you're there, leave another comment and increase your chances of winning!

Tell me more about your blog.

Karen: We started our blog in July and it is accumulating a wealth of information about Christmas. Each of us posts one day a week following the theme for that week. Watch for new recipes, tips, ways to simplify, stories, etc., similar to what is in our book.

Leslie: Ooh, ooh, let me answer this one. I’m probably the newest to blogging among the group, but I LOVE it. I’ve enjoyed posting and receiving comments back from readers. What an amazing adventure having an online voice can be! This blog will focus on a different theme each week—anything from tips to avoid overeating during the holidays to how to give a guest room special touches—and expand on the material in the book. I think readers will get to know the authors’ individual personalities and connect on a more personal level. Plus, they get that many more ideas, information, inspiration (!) at no additional cost.

WQs: As an added bonus for inviting us to your blog, we’d like to pass along this Christmas tidbit to you and your readers:

Enjoy a blessed Christmas this year! And thanks for inviting us to share our book, A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts, with you.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The ABCs of Supporting Young Moms

In September 2001, I was one of a dozen women waiting expectantly for the first teen mother to walk through the door. After working as a volunteer director of Hope Pregnancy Center for two years, I finally found a tangible way to meet the needs of teen mothers—through the launching of a Teen MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) weekly support group. The mentors grinned broadly when two teen mothers arrived for our first meeting. The next week we had four moms. The week after that, eight girls attended!

Now, two years later, twenty to twenty-five young moms attend every meeting, and we have over five dozen names on our roster. These young moms come to make a connection with others in the same life situation. They also learn how to be better moms and women by listening to encouraging speakers and meeting with personal mentors. During our two years as a group, we've seen a number of teen mothers finish high school. Some have chosen secondary virginity. The greatest result is that many have given their lives to Christ.

Because of the large number of attendees, we're currently planning to launch a second Teen MOPS group! How did we do it? Here are the ABCs of providing an encouraging and educational support group for young moms:

A Assemble a caring team. Many caring volunteers from our local PCC volunteered to help with the teen moms. Radio ads, community service announcements, and church bulletins helped spread the word and attracted volunteers. Former teen mothers, working moms, and even grandmothers from the community turned out. Those who believed in our mission and statement of faith soon found themselves holding babies and providing a listening ear to young moms in crisis.

B Be diligent in training yourselves about the needs of young mothers. Read books on teen parenting, talk to former teen mothers, and if possible visit other support groups to see what works. Get together with a teen mother, and you'll be amazed to hear about her unique challenges.

C Consider a young mom's needs. When planning our weekly meetings, we organize rides, meals, and childcare. We design fun games to introduce the young moms to each other, and we invite speakers such as alternative education teachers, job trainers, and child educators to provide informative talks. We also look for a neutral place to hold the meeting, such as a community center rather than a church.

Read the rest here

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday Flashback!

This is Nathan's second birthday. Note his brother trying to get "out" of the photo? I wasn't making Cory vacuum with his tongue ... promise!

Stop Lurking! Every week I will draw names for a free Tricia Goyer book from those who comment on my blogs. Winner's choice! Tell your friends.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

New Course in Sexuality

I held a notice from my 13-year-old daughter's school announcing a meeting to preview the new course in sexuality. Parents could examine the curriculum and take part in a lesson presented exactly as it would be given to the students.

When I arrived at the school, I was surprised to discover only about a dozen parents present. As we waited for the presentation, I thumbed through page after page of instructions on the prevention of pregnancy or disease. I found abstinence mentioned only in passing.

When the teacher arrived with the school nurse, she asked if there were any questions. I asked why abstinence did not play a noticeable part in the material. I was shocked by what happened next. There was a great deal of laughter, and someone suggested that if I thought abstinence had any merit, I should go back to burying my head in the sand. The teacher and the nurse said nothing as I drowned in a sea of embarrassment. My mind went blank, and I could think of nothing to say. The teacher explained that the job of the school was to "teach facts," and the home was responsible for moral training.

I sat in silence for the next 20 minutes as the course was explained. The other parents seemed to give their unqualified support to the materials. "Donuts at the back," announced the teacher during the break. "I'd like you to put on the name tags we have prepared and mingle with the other parents." Everyone moved to the back of the room. As I watched them affix their nametags and shake hands, I sat deep in thought. I was ashamed I had not been able to convince them to include a serious discussion of abstinence in the materials. I uttered a silent prayer for guidance.

My thoughts were interrupted by the nurse's hand on my shoulder. "Won't you join the others?" The nurse smiled sweetly at me. "The donuts are good."

"Thank you, no." I replied.

"Well, then, how about a name tag? I'm sure the others would like to meet you."

"Somehow I doubt that," I replied.

"Won't you please join them?" she coaxed. Then I heard a still, small voice whisper, Don't go. The instruction was unmistakable: Don't go!

"I'll just wait here," I said.

When the class was called back to order, the teacher looked around the long table and thanked everyone for putting on nametags. She ignored me. Then she said, "Now we're going to give you the same lesson we'll be giving your children. Everyone please peel off your name tags." I watched in silence as the tags came off. "Now, then, on the back of one of the tags, I drew a tiny flower. Who has it?"

The gentleman across from me held it up. "All right," she said. "The flower represents disease." Then she asked the man, "Do you recall with whom you shook hands?" He pointed to a couple of people. "Very good," she replied. "The handshake in this case represents intimacy. The two people you had contact with now have the disease."

There was laughter and joking among the parents. The teacher continued, "And whom did the two of you shake hands with?" The point was well taken, and she explained how this lesson would show students how quickly disease spreads. "Since we all shook hands, we all have the disease."

It was then that I heard the still, small voice again. Speak now, but be humble. I rose from my chair. I apologized for any upset I might have caused earlier, congratulated the teacher on an excellent lesson that would impress the youth, and concluded by saying I had only one small point I wished to make. "Not all of us were infected," I said. "One of us…abstained."

—Source unknown; submitted by Eric Reed, associate editor, Leadership Journal

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Then I felt God say, "GO."

A month ago I was walking around the village of Vysoke Myto, listening to music in the square, taking with Czech friends. I remember standing there, looking around, and thinking, "I can't believe I'm here."

I'd never planned on going to the Czech Republic this summer. I had my schedule figured out. I had books to write. I had camping to do. I was going to relax and enjoy life. Then I felt God say, "GO."

I didn't know where I was going, so I started praying and then checking around. I found out there was a church who needed a team of 15-20 Americans to teach English. Another American church had canceled, and they were in a big bind.

I didn't know who I was going with, so I started praying and then mentioned the trip at our church. In a month's time we had 19 people committed. Eight adults and ten teens--many of them I didn't know before this time. Yet four CZECH speakers! Imagine that.

I didn't know how we would pay for the trip. After all, plane tickets for 19 people in Europe AND 19 days of travel isn't cheap. So we planned fundraisers, we sent out support letters, and we trusted that if God brought us together he would take us all the way.

He did. The way was provided. The people were provided. The money was provided. And we went ... and we saw miracles happen.

One hundred Czech got English instruction.

And dozens of Czech grew closer to God ... learning more about him, asking questions, receiving Bibles, seeing our love expressed to them ... and wanting more.

One young man accepted Christ. (He was only the third Czech the missionary has seen come to Christ in six years, and the first at an English camp.)

Our team is home, but we will never forget what God did. Our faith is stronger than when we started. We trust God more.

I'd like to encourage you to take time to day to listen to God's voice. Is He telling you to say "GO"?

You will never regret it.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Ready for a Purpose-Driven Purse?

Ready for a Purpose-Driven Purse? 22 Fall Must-Haves for Christians.

I'm glad it was a joke! I was wondering if Gucci did Bible covers now!


Monday, September 15, 2008

Sweet September blog tour...and CONTEST!

Catch the buzz at these awesome blogs! Many of the bloggers have copies of Sweet September to give-away! (hint, hint!)

Make sure to check out the fun contest below!

Harvest time at Heather Creek Farm is an exciting time, but the kids don't seem to be getting into the spirit. One day while he's wandering through the fields, Christopher stumbles across an old piece of metal buried in the ground. He doesn't know what it is, but he hides it in the shed.

That night, the garden by the house is uprooted. Who could have done such a thing? Charlotte is determined to find out, but is distracted when she gets news that Sam is failing school. The sullen teen is indifferent and won't study. He starts spending a lot of time with Pete. Though she loves her son dearly, Pete never finished high school, and Charlotte is afraid he'll encourage Sam to do the same. How can she help him get back on track?

A gripping story that examines the Stevenson family's history as well as its shaky future, Sweet September will bring you deeper into the loving community of Bedford and the deep ties of love that bind this broken family together. As they forge new connections, you'll be entertained, inspired, and reminded that God's grace can make all things new.


Since Sweet September is all about family, Tricia wants to meet yours.

Leave a comment on this post sharing who your favorite family member is (think beyond hubby and kids) and why.

You'll be entered into a drawing to win William-Sonoma’s Pumpkin Harvest Loaf Pan & Quick Bread Set.


Go here to enter and CATCH THE BUZZ!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday Flashback!

Nathan still has that "deep in thought" look. I think he's trying to figure out how to get the cookies off the top of the fridge without mom catching him!

Stop Lurking! Every week I will draw names for a free Tricia Goyer book from those who comment on my blogs. Winner's choice! Tell your friends.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I was so ashamed.

I had my son Cory when I was 17-years-old. One day I was an honor roll student and cheerleader. The next day I found out I was going to be a teen mom.

I was so ashamed. Everyone knew and teen pregnancy isn't something you can hide. Yet finding out I was pregnant also made me grow up. It made me think about life and what I was going to do with my future.

Before I found out I was pregnant I had no plan. I dated different guys and I drank on weekends with my friends. After I knew I was going to be a mom I knew I had a child to care for.

I broke up with my boyfriend. He decided he didn't want to be a dad. My parents helped me as much as they could. I lived at home and I took classes from a "community school" to get my high school diploma.

I graduated with my class, and I registered for college. It was also during this time I met someone new.

John Goyer was the son of a pastor. He was kind and caring. He loved me and my son. We started dating when Cory was two weeks old and we were married when Cory was 9-months old. We are still married today, and we have two more children. In fact, I had three children by the time I was 22-years-old.

Marriage is not easy for anyone, but John and I made a commitment for life. We've struggled at times (like when an old boyfriend emailed me and messed with my emotions!), but overcoming our struggles have brought us closer. I'm 37-years-old and I've been married 18 years! A success if I say so myself.

More than that, John believed in my dreams. I wanted to be a writer, and he encouraged me. I attended writer's conferences and I wrote while my kids napped. We were dirt poor, but John made my dreams a priority.
I still don't have a college education, but I trained myself to be a writer at home. I read books on writing and sent out queries and proposals. I received many rejections at first, but I didn't give up.

In 1997 a literary agent noticed my talent. I was still unpublished, but Janet Grant took interest in me. Today I'm the author of 300 articles for national publication. I'm also the author of 15 books for publishers like Random House, Harper Collins, and Focus on the Family.

We should do all we can to prevent teen pregnancy ... BUT we should also offer hope to teen moms. Teen pregnancy is not the end. In fact, it could be a key moment when a young woman makes positive decisions to live a better life for herself and her baby.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


New Contest...Request-A-Book and Win a gift card to CBD!

Want to help me out? I'd love to get my books into more libraries--YOURS!

To participate in Request-A-Book all you have to do is check out your local library (you can probably do it on-line even) and see if they carry any Tricia Goyer books. If they don't, simply fill out your libraries Request A Book form or give the request to your librarian. And, if they only have a few Tricia Goyer titles, then request one or two they don't carry.

When you're done, send me a little note via my contact page on my website (here) to let me know.

I'll enter your name into a drawing for a $25 gift card to CBD (http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001zeq67AwBtuUqa1gVxCNIoWUp7jCxr6pdfO2uVA0Jfl6y-OG3mM25R1bPaGw54cIucjNvjm74MTPJeRtiiHyztWyPaDaTS3gBZnAJiYEhRNNRu4V3d6C2Tw==)! Fun. Easy.

You can find a list of my books and ISBNs here.The contest ends 10/15/08! Winners will be announced in the next newsletter and on my blog!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Working to Eliminate Teen Pregnancy

What's the buzz echoing over the airwaves? The media attention over the fact that Bristol Palin, daughter of Republican VP nominee Sarah Palin is pregnant at 17-years-old.

With the buzz, two questions are on our minds. If a teen finds herself pregnant are the parents to blame? Or should we point our fingers at the teen’s own bad choices?

We ask because the issue hits home. If someone like, Governor Sarah Palin, who has her act together well enough to be on the Republican ticket is facing her daughter’s teen pregnancy, what hope is there for the rest of us?

If you don’t want your daughter to be one of the one million teen girls who find themselves pregnant every year, consider this:

1. Be a Role Model. Our kids often follow where we lead. Consider your life. Are you living with integrity? Are you only having sex within the bounds of marriage? The saying, “Do what I say not what I do” never works.

2. Talk about what love is. Love is not sex. Going “all the way” with someone doesn’t prove your love. (No matter what they show on television.) True love is shown through life-long commitment and by valuing the other person. Remind teens that they are the one responsible for setting sexual limits on a relationship. Remind young women, “Sex won't make him yours. A baby won't make him stay.”

3. Remind kids it CAN happen to them. Having sex, even so called "protected" sex, can lead to pregnancy. It can happen even to kids from a good family. The only way to 100% prevent pregnancy is to not have sex.

4. Emphasize that even “good girls” get pregnant. Having a good report card, being a good person, having an important parent, or being conscientious will not protect you from pregnancy. According to teenpregnancy.org, 1 in 3 young women get pregnant at least once before they turn 20--good girls included.

5. Let your daughter know that most teens wished they had waited. Sex before marriage can not only lead to pregnancy, but there are other health concerns, such as STDs. There is also emotional baggage. According to teenpregnancy.org, 60% of teens “wished they had waited longer” to have sex.

6. Encourage your teen to plan her actions BEFORE the situation arises. Talk about set boundaries and not putting herself in situations that will cause her to compromise those decisions. Help her make good plans for her future and stick to goals.

7. Talk about media’s wrong messages. The media (television, radio, movies, music videos, magazines, the Internet) are chock full of material sending the wrong messages. Just because we see everyone in Hollywood having sex and having babies, doesn't mean it's the right thing to do. Babies are a responsibility, not a fashion accessory.

8. Encourage secondary purity. Teens can say “no” even if they’ve said "yes" before. Today your daughter can make the right choice and choose abstinence.

9. Realize parents can only do so much … but make sure it’s done! As a parent, you cannot be around your child 24/7. Yet, we can do our best to prepare our daughters. Don’t wait.

10. Let you kids know you are available to talk about every issue in life. It's also important for parents to open up a two way conversation, not a one-way lecture. Parents can do this by turning the above topics into questions such as: What are your boundaries? Do you think sex proves you love someone? What do you think of the messages media gives out?

Let your voice be heard...
Does the fact that vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's unwed teenage daughter is pregnant alter your opinion of her as a White House hopeful?
Answer here

Need help talking to your teens? My Life, Unscripted (Thomas Nelson) is a book for teen girls, encouraging them to script their lives instead of being caught up in the drama and emotions of the moment.

A former teen mom, Tricia Goyer is also the author of Life Interrupted: The Scoop on Being a Young Mom

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Monday, September 08, 2008

At first I said no.

A few months ago I got a phone call asking me if we'd be interested in hosting a foreign exchange student. At first I said no. Not because I didn't think it was a good thing. Instead, I couldn't imagine us adding one more thing to our lives.

Then, my friend mentioned they had students from the Czech Republic who needed a host family for the school year. My heart leapt. I LOVE the Czech Republic. And the more I started thinking about it the more I liked the idea. Still, I needed to talk to my family. I talked to my husband first, and he thought it was something we should consider. I talked with the kids, and they LOVED the idea, especially my 16-year-old daughter.

Next we started looking at the profiles of the students. It was so hard to choose. My family and I prayed about it, and we finally decided on Andrea.
Andy (as we call her) is 16-years-old is happy, friendly, smart, loves people and pets and ... enjoys drama and writing. She sounded like a perfect fit for our family!

We passed the family interview and I connect with Andrea online. I told her we were coming to the Czech Republic, and Andrea was so excited. She found out about the English Camp and Andrea, her mother, and her older brother came. It was great to spend a week with their family in the Czech Republic.

Then, we made plans for Andy to come into our home. We remodeled Leslie's room and I cleaned the house really good. :-) Then, Andrea arrived ... only
12 hours after we arrived home from the Czech Republic!

We've had a great three weeks spending time with our new family member.
She's great and we can't imagine life without her now.

Yesterday our family went hiking in Glacier National Park near our home.
Here is a photo of the "sisters." Aren't God's surprises the best?

P.S. Interested in hosting a student? Check out:

Friday, September 05, 2008

Sarah Palin is a Gen Xer

In case you didn't realize it ... Sarah Palin is a Gen Xer. I bet if we could sit down with her we could rehash 80s trivia. We could talk about the first time we saw Michael Jackson's Thriller video. Where we were in Challenger blew up. What Madonna fashion accessory was our fav. (For me it was the permed hair and lacy gloves.)

As I listen to Sarah Palin talk, and I can HEAR her Gen X-ness. And, the amazing thing is that the world is going crazy about it. They love that she's real. That she's a soccer mom. And realizing this I feel our generation is finally getting a pat on the back.

Listening to Palin's speeches and hearing more about her, I see glimpses of what I wrote in my book Gen X Parenting (Multnomah 2006):

"If your were born between 1961 and 1981, maybe you can relate. We're called Generation X, and to me the X stands for:

eX-cellent people, eX-celling to our potential, and eX-hausted most of the time!

We want to do it all, be it all, and parent as well as possible. And according to the experts who study society, the two words that describe our beliefs are authentic and relationships. We don't want anyone to put on a show for us. We want the real deal. And, of our, what matters most to us is people."

Palin is building a relationship with the PEOPLE of this country. You can hear it in her passion and her speeches. To quote Palin, "I’m not going to Washington to seek their good opinion. I’m going to Washington to serve the people of this great country.”

Can you see it? Authentic relationships OOZE from that one phrase.

As you also know, there is a HUGE Mommy Wars thing going on in the media. And I have an opinion of my own.

As a stay-at-home mom, homeschooling mom, and author of 15 books (all published since 2003) I think my hard work has taught my kids they can dream, I'm a living example to my children that God has called us all to do great things, and if we seek Him and work according to His lead, God can bring our dreams to reality. My kids are smart and motivated. They have big plans for their future. Sure, I travel and there are times I need to go away to work, but we have great family times, too. I think Palin's work as VP (if it happens) is going to be a great example for her children to follow.

Also, as a former teen mom (I had Cory at age 17), I think Palin will a great role model for her daughter. Life doesn't have to end with teen pregnancy. I'm an example of that! Yes, Bristol Palin may have made mistakes, but haven't we all? I believe if she turns to God during this time He can use her mightily. Don't you agree?

If you are interested in reading more about Gen Xers in marriage go to:

And Gen Xers as parents:

Friday Flashback!

Cory was the cutest sailor ever. It's hard to believe he' already graduated. That old lady in the grocery store was right, time does sail away on you.

Stop Lurking! Every week I will draw names for a free Tricia Goyer book from those who comment on my blogs. Winner's choice! Tell your friends.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Dealing with disappointment.

Dealing with disappointment is one of the hard things that comes from life. Seeing our kids deal with disappointment is even harder. Yet we know that in every person's life there will be struggles, and the older our kids get, the bigger the problems. Ugh!

John and I have always felt that one of the best things we can do to help our teens cope with life's setbacks is to handle them well ourselves. We know that what we say is only 10% of what our kids pick up. The other 90% comes from them seeing how we live. They watch and learn. (Whether we like that idea or not!)

So how do we handle unexpected problems? During our personal setbacks, we voice the problem with our kids, and we ask them to pray with us. We talk about solutions (finding wisdom from God's Word), and we look positively at steps we can take.

We also try to prepare our kids ahead of time for the challenges they will have in life. When it comes to talking about our time on this earth, we remind our kids that things will not be perfect ... ever. There is no such thing as reaching perfection on earth. Rather, we tell them it's what's on the inside that counts. It's character and honor and resilience that will pull each of through. It's having faith in God and moving forward even when you want to give up.

Another thing I do is talk to my kids about "scripting" their lives. They are the screenwriters of their own life stories. Instead of getting caught up in the drama of everyday circumstances, I've encouraged them to think through their emotions and responses BEFORE those things happen.

For example, if Leslie's friend accuses her of something, how should she respond? By thinking ahead of this type of conflict and Leslie's responses, it will help her know how to deal with the situation, instead of being caught off guard--and allowing the emotions to flow.

Or what if Nathan doesn't do well in the science far, what's next? I try to talk through different scenarios to help him to mentally prepare for what is to come. This makes adversity easier to deal with with the situation arises.

Unfortunately, we've had a recent event in which we've "lived this out":

Our oldest son Cory wasn't athletic as a elementary or junior high school student, but in his junior and senior year he really started doing well. He became a starter on the basketball team and got REALLY excited about playing. He would do more running/shooting etc. than what was asked by his couch. His hard work paid off and he was asked to be co-captain of the team. But during these two years he had problems with his knees. We took him to the doctor who encouraged wearing a brace. We assume that his pain from his knees was just pain from all the exercise and stress on his knees. Cory continued playing.

Then, less than three weeks before the state tournament, Cory was injured in a game. He went up to block a basket and crumbled to the ground. It was clear right away that it was a major injury.

After getting Cory check out we discovered both knees had shredded ACLs and he needed surgery. Also, he could not finish the basketball season. To say Cory was disappointed was an understatement. We hurt for him.

John and I tried to help Cory by helping him look at the positives. 1) He had a great two years playing ball. 2) He got injured near the end of the season, instead of the beginning. 3) He was still co-captain, and now his team needed him more than ever--to encourage them on.

Cory took this to heart. He still attended every practice, and he sat on the bench every game. He shouted encouragement and showed his support. I've never been so proud of him!

As a result, Cory's team also had a new respect for Cory. They appreciated him when he played, but they appreciated him even more when he lifted them up when he was down. Cory's friendships deepened, and later his team gave him the "Christian Character" award for his attitude after his injury.

It was hard seeing Cory sit out the rest of a season, but I also think it was a life-lesson that will carry Cory through life. Disappointment will come, but a positive attitude, trust in God, and a focus on others will always pull us through.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

On Mission Christian, That’s Me!

From On Mission Magazine!

The most effective on mission Christian to yourneighbor may be the one gazing backat your child in the mirror

By Tricia Goyer

When many kids hear the phrase “on mission Christian” they think of adults who work at soup kitchens or travel to the inner city to tell others about God. What kids need to realize is that we don’t have to travel out of our town to share Jesus with others—or even out of our neighborhood. Being on mission is a lifestyle, not a one-time event. In fact, when we give our lives to Jesus, He wants to use us wherever we are to spread His love with others and at whatever age. Sharing our faith in Jesus shouldn’t begin when we’re older.

Of course, it’s up to us as parents to teach and model this concept. Moms and dads can stress that the most effective on mission Christian to your neighbor can be the one gazing back at your child when he or she looks into the mirror!

One of the things my husband, John, and I have attempted to do with our children is to build within them a sense of community—connecting with people around us to share Christ. We volunteer weekly at church and in our town. We open our home to neighbors, and unchurched friends.

We’ve also reached out to John’s coworkers in numerous ways, such as creating special Christmas gifts or inviting his coworkers to a homemade lunch. We’re training our children to be on mission in our sphere of influence with hopes that as they grow older they’ll also feel more comfortable sharing Christ in their state, throughout North America, and the world.

Read the rest here!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

That girl

I just had to brag on my son. I knew you'd all appreciate it. This is a poem 19-year-old (never been kissed) Cory wrote. This is a photo of him with the girls he interned with at church this summer--his friends. Isn't the poem sweet?

That girl, by Cory Goyer

That girl
I don't know her hair color
I don't know her smile
I don't know her laugh
I don't know the color of her eyes
Or her favorite song
I don't know her passions
I don't know the thing she hates
I don't know her face
I don't know where she likes to hide
Or the twinkle in her eye
I don't know if I know her
But I know she is that girl

I would give my life for that girl
I would give up everything for that girl
I would die for that girl
I would live for that girl
I would love that girl
I would care for that girl
I would take care of that girl
All for that girl

I know she is beautiful
I know she is smart
I know she is wonderful
I know she is funny
I know she is amazing
I know she is mine
I know she is that girl

She may not know it yet
For I surely don't
She may mat not love me yet
But I know she will
Because I know I will love her
With all that I have
She may not even know me yet
But she will know me more than anyone

She may has a past
Wrong things
But I will not see these things
I will wipe away her sorrows
I will not remember her wrong doings
I will not regret
Because if everything
She has ever done
Will lead her to me
Then I thank her past

So God I pray
I pray for that girl
I pray you let me wait
I pray you let her wait
I pray for her safety
I pray for her happiness
God lead me to that girl

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