Thursday, February 27, 2014

Turning your life over to God...

If you want your life to explode in your face and become unimaginably difficult, tell God you're turning your life over to Him.

There's a reason He repeatedly counsels us to be not afraid. He knows us.

We play it safe, even when we think we're daring. We push our limits but calculate the risks as we go along. It's common sense. It's wise.

God knows we underestimate ourselves, all the time. God has promised all things are possible with Him. He meant it. The problem comes when we attempt to do all things and don't invite Him along.

This year, I determined to turn my life over to God.

My life, as I knew it, blew up in my face. I survived. I always do.

God shakes up my world and requires I rethink, reconsider, and reconstruct. Each time, He hopes I'll weave Him more deeply into my soul. I pray I do.

He never abandons His children even when we can't see Him. He's there.

The difficult part for me is to shut off the logic, the wisdom, the common sense, the need to be in control, the myriad emotions, and close my eyes and not search for God with my eyes but with my heart and allow Him to do what I think is illogical, insane, and impractical. When I allow God control, peace and clarity grab hold, even when it's mixed with my own confusion because I don't understand the pattern. Gradually, the pattern reveals itself, and it's always better than anything I could create alone.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Live in fear or live in faith...

Being an abuse survivor means I learned to live in fear. Fear of attracting attention. Fear of being wrong. Fear of being right at the wrong time. Fear of failing. Fear of succeeding. Fear of not being enough. Fear of being found out. Fear of never being what God intended. Fear of... well, everything.

Every day, I deal with C-PTSD. That's Complex as opposed to Combat PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Most abuse survivors suffer from PTSD in one way or another. For some, it is managed quickly. For others, like me, it is a life-long sentence compliments of my abusers. Yes, sometimes I'm bitter about it, but I know the only one it hurts is me. So, I endeavor to manage my life with kindness and patience.

February is my most difficult month of the year. I've survived the holidays and all the triggers. I start to relax, and all the triggers slam into me. It's taken me years to figure out this happens. In fact, this year is the first time I've been completely honest about it. Then add a few extra surprises, and I'm dished a recipe for disaster.

My thinking is disjointed. Flashbacks... I hate flashbacks. Sleep is iffy. Eating deteriorates to junk food. Exercise is hit and miss. Accomplishing much of anything is a major "atta girl."

The good news: I'm aware. I know I'm not crazy. When I'm able to return to healthy eating, exercising, and sleeping habits, I know I'm through the worst. It's the 24th of February, and I'm on the healthy path again.

Other things are happening in the world over which I have no control and add to the anxiety I live with every day. Increased stress does not help PTSD.

My constant prayer is "God, help my unbelief."

Sometimes, all I need is the reminder "Child, you're not alone."

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Attitude of Gratitude...

I confess, February, in my book, is the longest month of the year. I've survived the stress of the holidays but spring is still a month away. Clouds blow in and out. The changing barometric pressure isn't my favorite thing.

Several FB pages I'm following have reminded me of the importance of being grateful for all my blessings, even the little things that don't look like blessings.

Flowers are blooming. Beautiful.

My writing is slow but not at a standstill. A very good thing.

 I've enjoyed a few good books. Inspiring.

My friends and working team are supportive, encouraging, and helpful. Blessings, everyone of them.

The days are growing longer. Light is good.

One of my very unprofessional pictures of the bouquet Kim Padilla created for Valentine Delivery.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Christian author I enjoy...

Dee Henderson is not new on the writing stage. She is new to me. I recently discovered her O'Malley Clan, and I'm thoroughly enjoying it. This is a Christian Suspense Contemporary series.

For me, part of what I enjoy is the spiritual journey her characters undergo. I've read the first two books in the series and both have given me insights into my own spiritual journey.

This is the kind of writing I want to do: Offer a good story, with an enjoyable romance, and something uplifting... something that helps me become a little bit better person. I don't think I'll ever write suspense or mystery for that matter.

I enjoy writing Regency. I have Endless Possibilities books planned for the next few years, though they'll be taking a slight turn after the release of Grace's Possibilities this June.

I've enjoyed writing my Vintage series, The Silver Locket Sisterhood, but there are only two more books in the series, and I'm not sure I'm going to take it any further.

I'm enjoying writing Contemporary Novellas. I love Holiday, USA, and I'm discovering more and more interesting characters.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Valentine Delivery is live...

Time for the third novella in the series...

Welcome back to Holiday, USA, small town America, where nothing happens, except holidays... and maybe a little romance, if the hero and heroine trust God.

Lance Nelson delivers flowers every Valentine's Day. This year, he decides to show the woman he's secretly loved all his life exactly how he feels, creating a unique bouquet especially for her.

This Valentine's Day, Sharon Kelly decides to stop waiting for someone to send her what she wants and orders a bouquet of flowers for herself. She might as well arrange for her secret crush to deliver them.

God works in mysterious ways to provide the way to Happily Ever After, even when His children stand in their own way...

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day...

A holiday both anticipated and dreaded.

I confess, I dread this holiday. I'm not married or in a relationship. I'm reminded of what I always wanted most: A happy, healthy marriage. When I realized I carried too much baggage to ask anyone to share I let go of the dream. The frustrating part is how hard I've worked to release the baggage. I've been remarkably successful. The problem is that there really is that much. There are things I cannot change. I accept it.

God gave me the gift of storytelling.

I'm working to give Lance and Sharon a Happy Valentine's Day in Valentine Delivery. I'd planned to publish the novella last week.

Life happened.

Lance and Sharon will not be abandoned. I hope to publish in the next day or two.

In the meantime, I'll share the cover:

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Links to share...

I've wondered about playlists on a blog. Writers In The Storm addressed it:

WITS also shared hints on submitting nonfiction:

Beth Trissel shared an early book on herbal remedies, and I've added it to my wish list:

God bless.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Learning to be grateful...

Lately, I’ve read a number of blogs about living abundantly and enjoying life.

They invariably mention their concern about wasting time or resources.

What interests me more is that they fail to recognize their own contradiction.

They talk about how happy they are and then lament how they may not be living up to their full potential. Am I the only one who sees a problem with their thinking?

January was insane for me with finishing a novel for my publisher and a novella I published myself.

I was worried. Who wouldn’t be?

However, the following thought process popped into my head:

Did I true believe I wouldn’t succeed? I kept saying that I trusted God to help me. Did I believe what I was saying or didn’t I?

Then a more insidious question niggled into my brain:

Do I believe that if I worry then I am somehow being virtuous? Have I elevated worry to the level of proof I take my responsibilities and concerns seriously?

Which brought me back to the beginning.

So many of us talk about the importance of being happy and living life to the fullest, etc, etc, etc, but when we do we manage to find something wrong with how we are going about it or look for the potential of something being wrong. Isn’t it hypocritical to tout the importance of living life full out and at the same time sanctimoniously (whether we recognize it or not) decrying living too abundantly?

Either you choose abundance or you don’t. Playing like you’re choosing abundance but still decrying the evils of living too happily must surely be one of the biggest lies ever uttered because you’re not only lying to those you’re preaching your message but you’re lying to yourself and to God.

How’s that you ask?

You thank God for all your blessings even as you question their worth.

Many years ago, a friend grew tired of my inability to accept a compliment. She finally demanded, “Say thank you and shut up.” Now, I’m going to learn how to “Enjoy and shut up.”

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A New Like on FB...

Thanks for the Like! Sneak peek into "Valentine Delivery" the third novella in the Holiday, USA series. Out later this month.

Lance Nelson drummed his fingers on the desk, the phone pressed to his ear. He really needed to update the system, after he updated the delivery truck, the coolers, and, and, and... The ringing on the other end switched to voicemail. He hung up and punched speed dial again.

Please, God, I need her to pick up.


"Hey! Mom, you have to come in."

"Good morning to you, too, Lance."

"Good morning, Mom. You need to come in. Please." He inspected the bouquet on the worktable, the last of the extras prepared for the day's inevitable walk-ins. Did people really think Valentine's Day wouldn't show up on time?