Monday, February 27, 2012

God isn't Moving....He's LOVING!  Guest Post by LaToya Brown 

I use to think that God would only be pleased with me if  I was doing something for him. After all, heaven must be waiting on me to cause to move before anything happens. That thinking was so far from what God wanted me to know. He didn't send Jesus to make us work for his love and grace. He sent Jesus to break us for religious tradition and to embrace his amazing grace. I wish I could tell you that I changed my thinking after this revelation, but I didn't. Breaking free from a works mentality was more difficult than I thought.

You're probably guilty too. Guilty of fasting, praying, witnessing and reading the Bible to move God. When we want something from Him we usually change up our routine to get his attention. When in reality, we already have his attention and nothing we do will move him. While those things are not bad in and of themselves. They are just not a magical potion to cause God to move on our behalf. He is not controlled by our actions. Is he honored by them? I'm almost sure of that. He loves it when his children have a heart to please him. Any parent would.  Just like any parent is proud of a behaving child, they are undoubtedly more honored when a child desires to be in their presence more than in their favor, that should make you shout!

It's not our love for God that moves's his love for US that compels him to move on our behalf. Jesus came to demonstrate God's love for us. How much does he love you? He stretched out his arms to show you. Everything God will ever do for you was done at the cross. Jesus is SITTING at the right hand of the father. Yep, sitting. Jesus is sitting down because he has already done everything for you. All your sins are forgiven into eternity. All your dreams and prayers are answered in all eternity. Just believe and receive...believe and receive...believe and receive.

There are times in our lives when you must push past the struggle and know that God hasn't only called you to minister to those around you, but that God has called you unto himself. That means he wants to be with you more than he desires to have you doing so much for him that you never spend time with him. I challenge you to believe that he loves you and receive his love for you and all it's meaning.

Prayer: Lord, I've tried to do all the right things so that you would be pleased. I am guilty of trying to impress you with all my works.  Lord, help me receive the love you have for me today and to be aware of your presence around me. I lay down all my tools, tricks and trades to be loved by you..infinitely in Jesus Name..

Jody here:
I met this precious lady at the East Texas Christian Writer's Conference. Her enthusiasm is contagious, and she does wonderful work in the Kingdom. Thanks, LaToya, for letting me share your post today.

Here's a link to LaToya's blog:  LaToya Brown Speaks

Go on over and "Like" her Facebook page, too.  


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

  Here's an interview with Janice Hanna Thompson about her book  I Must Decrease: Biblical Inspiration and Encouragement for Dieters
which is a free Kindle download for a while today.
Being overweight is nothing to laugh at, but most people who want to lose weight are tired of the serious, "Thou shalt not" approach. Many are ready for a lighthearted look at weight loss--"a practical devotional approach that offers scriptural advice in a way that encourages and never condemns. Award-winner Christian author Janice Thompson shares light-hearted ways to lose weight and keep your humor intact. Based on her own experience of losing 100 pounds without surgery, Janice keeps the laughter going in this day-to-day format. Whether you want to drop five pounds of 150, this is the book to help you achieve that goal.

I Must Decrease contains tips and testimonies from several well-known (and much-loved) Christian authors, including Mary Connealy, Lena Nelson Dooley, Martha Rogers, Kristin Billerbeck, Laurie Alice Eakes, Carrie Turansky, Marcia Gruver, Deb Ulrich, Gina Bishop, Pam Hillman and Lynette Sowell.

Special Feature: This e-book version of Janice's devotional contains some of her favorite low-cal recipes. Bon Appetite!
ANNOUNCING New e-book release by comedic author, Janice Hanna Thompson: I Must Decrease: Biblical Inspiration and Encouragement for Dieters

Janice, can you tell us a little about your non-fiction e-book book, I MUST DECREASE?
Sure! As a comedic author, I usually write light-hearted stories. I’m known as the funny girl. I get the giggles and chuckle my way through most situations. Not everything is funny, however. When it came to my weight, however, I had very little to laugh about. Most of my readers didn’t realize the health crisis I was facing as a result of the added pounds. I needed to get things under control, so I started counting calories and watching what I ate. Out of that came my non-fiction book, I MUST DECREASE (which released in paperback in 2005). The book is set up in a daily devotional format and it meant to bring humor (as well as dieting tips) to Christians who need/want to lose weight.

Why did you choose the title I MUST DECREASE?
The title came as a result of a prayer time at church. I’d gone up for prayer and the gentleman praying for me used the scripture (John 3:30) as he prayed for me: “He must increase, but I must decrease.” For whatever reason, it got me tickled. I’d never thought about that particular scripture having anything to do with dieting before, but it suddenly felt right.

Can you tell us about the layout of the book?
Each day’s devotion offers the following:
·        Ticklers: A humorous quote or “thought for the day” to tickle your funny bone.
·        Tidbits: A “Did You Know?” area offering tidbits of information from multiple sources.
·        Traps: Common misconceptions and/or food “traps” we often fall into
·        Tricks: “Tricks of the trade” to help you stick with your plan
·        Treats: Clever snack and food ideas for the healthy eater
·        Testimonies: Personal testimonies of others who’ve faced the weight loss challenge and won (including some prominent personalities)
·        Treasures: Daily scripture reference
·        Tips: Devotional for the day, based on the daily scripture above
·        Turning Your Focus:             A variety of ways you can reach out to others
·        Today’s Food Choices: A reminder to write down your daily food choices
·        Thoughts on Paper: Encouragement to keep a daily journal entry

Why did you choose the humorous approach?
Being overweight is nothing to laugh at, but most people who want to lose weight are tired of the serious, "Thou shalt not" approach. Many are ready for a lighthearted look at weight loss--"a practical devotional approach that offers scriptural advice in a way that encourages and never condemns. I decided to share light-hearted ways that dieters could lose weight and still keep their humor intact. This way I could keep my funny bone intact while losing weight.

Who contributed to the book?
I MUST DECREASE contains tips and testimonies from several well-known (and much-loved) Christian authors, including Mary Connealy, Lena Nelson Dooley, Martha Rogers, Kristin Billerbeck, Laurie Alice Eakes, Carrie Turansky, Marcia Gruver, Deb Ulrich, Gina Bishop, Pam Hillman and Lynette Sowell. I adore these ladies and am so grateful for their input.

Who can benefit from this book?
I would say that anyone concerned with his or her weight (or the weight of a loved one) could benefit from reading. Whether you want to drop five pounds or 150 pounds, this is the book to help you achieve that goal.

Can you tell us about the special feature?
This e-book version of my devotional contains a few of my favorite low-cal recipes. Bon Appetite!

What sort of feedback have you gotten from readers so far?
Here’s what one Amazon reader had to say: “This Book Works! I loved this book. As soon as I started reading I was not only motivated to lose weight, but inspired that I actually could this time. I lost 39 lbs and feel free from the bondage that food can put you in. This is a lite-hearted book with biblical principals as well as helpful hints to rid yourself of unwanted pounds without "Dieting" or "Dieing" to eat. The journal pages have been so instrumental to my progress, do not read the book without using the journal section daily!” May 26, 2011 (by megamomma)

Why did you decide to offer the book for free for the first five days?
I love the kindle select program and thought it would be fun to jump-start the process by giving away the book from February 22nd – February 26th. Readers can download the book for free by following this link to I MUST DECREASE.

Can you tell us about your I MUST DECREASE Facebook group?
I would love to! More than a year ago I started a private group on Facebook for a handful of ladies (like myself) who wanted to have the camaraderie of fellow Christian dieters. The group has since grown! Men and women are welcome to join us, but if you do, be prepared to share recipes, fun and tidbits from your personal journey. What happens in I MUST DECREASE stays in I MUST DECREASE! That’s why the group will always remain private. To apply to the group, follow this link to I MUST DECREASE.

What happens when the “freebie” days end?
The book will still be available for purchase on Amazon (and eventually on Barnes and Noble).

Any advice for the road?
Sure! Make sure you write down what you eat every day. This simple process forces you to look at the calories/carbs you’re consuming. It also makes you very aware of the slip-ups! I use a great site called, which I highly recommend!

Award-winning author Janice Thompson also writes under the pseudonym Janice Hanna. She has published nearly eighty books for the Christian market, crossing genre lines to write cozy mysteries, historicals, romances, nonfiction books, devotionals, children’s books and more. She particularly enjoys writing light-hearted, comedic tales because she enjoys making readers laugh. In addition, she enjoys public speaking and mentoring young writers. Janice is passionate about her faith and does all she can to share the joy of the Lord with others, which is why she particularly enjoys writing. Her tagline, “Love, Laughter, and Happily Ever Afters!” sums up her take on life.
Connect with Janice!
Twitter: booksbyjanice
I Must Decrease Facebook page

Book cover:

Author photo:

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A few thoughts on love...

Happy Valentine's Day!

Even though the John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life," believers tend to wonder if God really loves them or not.

We pluck the petals off of a proverbial daisy, vacillating almost daily about our standing with our heavenly Father.Why is that?

Could it be that we view God's love for us based on our circumstances, our feelings, and/or our sin? We get in a tough situation financially or otherwise and we think God must not love us. Our heart gets broken over something and we think God doesn't love us. We feel guilt over our failures and shortcomings and think surely God can't love us because of our sin.

God cannot not love us. Because He is love. (1 John 4:8) We sit on a chair, and know it will hold us up because it is a chair, that's what it does. We fill our lungs and trust that air will sustain us because it is air. God loves us because he is love.

There is much to be said about our circumstances, our feelings, and our sin. But there is one thing that we can bank on. God loves us.

Do you have problems believing that God loves you?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

 Give me your eyes for just one second...

Completely undone. I work with the public, which can be a challenge as many of you know, but I try to be cheerful, helpful and professional. 

This morning I've been accused of being rude. Always rude, as a matter of fact. So instead of crying on my keyboard, I'm going to analyze this. 

Smile? Check. Helpful? Check, went out of my way in fact. So what the heck? This individual's rant bordered on irate. I am totally confused. My boss and coworkers know it's not so but nevertheless, I'm bothered.

Taking a deep breath and whispering a prayer, I'm determined to look at this through love-colored glasses. I've prayed for the Father to give me his eyes in dealing with people, but maybe I need His eyes to look at myself honestly. I purpose to do that with each transaction from now on. 

I know that people come in this place with a world of hurt and troubles that I know nothing about. I never want to contribute to that. If anything, I'd like to make it better. That's the goal anyway, I don't always feel that way inside. Sometimes, I am downright rude in my thinking and perhaps it shows on the outside.  The consensus around here is that I was not rude, but the very next time I see that individual, I am going to apologize.

Do you have problems and/or solutions for working with the public?