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FIFTY YEARS LATER ~ REMEMBERING THE DEATH OF C. S. LEWIS

Posted by on Nov 20, 2013 in Blog, Commentary, History, Uncategorized | 6 comments

I was a teenager sitting in a high school English class on November 22, 1963, when we heard through the PA system of the assassination of President Kennedy. Most people over the age of sixty remember exactly where they were when they learned of this horrific event.

What has sadly been overlooked is that on that same day, a gifted man and devout Christian evangelist, with an incredible resume, and Irish roots, also passed away. The vast work of Clive Staples Lewis, better known to the world as C. S. Lewis, and to his friends and family as “Jack”, has entertained and influenced many generations. He was a renowned scholar, poet, novelist, academic, essayist, and Christian apologist. Six by Lewis

C. S. Lewis was born November 29, 1898 near Belfast, Ireland. His father was a solicitor and his mother was the daughter of a Church of Ireland (Anglican) priest.  He was brought up in the Christian church, but abandoned his faith as a teenager and became an atheist. His mother died when he was a young child and his relationship with his father was distant. Lewis was educated at boarding schools and by tutors. After serving in the British Army, he completed his university education at Oxford with a focus on literature and philosophy.

In 1925 Lewis was elected as a Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford, where he spent nearly thirty years on the staff. He left Oxford in 1954 to accept the position of chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University.

It was while he was at Oxford that he joined fellow faculty members, his brother, Warren Lewis, and a group of writers, in a guild known as the “Inklings”. His close friendship with J. R. R. Tolkien and other members of the group, as well as his interest in the works of George MacDonald, made him discard atheism, return to the Anglican Communion, and embrace a relationship with Jesus Christ. 

Three by LewisDuring World War II, he gave very popular wartime radio broadcasts on the subject of Christianity, and his talks brought many listeners into a living faith with Christ. These broadcast speeches would later make up one of his most famous works, Mere Christianity.

Lewis, a long time bachelor, struck up a relationship through correspondence with Joy Davidman Gresham, an author and American educator. She was an intellectual of Jewish background, and a former Communist, whose troubled marriage finally ended when she converted to Christianity. She and Lewis renewed their friendship when she traveled to England with her two sons. In 1956 they learned Joy’s visa could not be renewed, so to insure she could remain in Great Britain, they chose to have a civil marriage even though they continued to live apart. However when Joy was diagnosed with bone cancer, they realized the depth of their affection. Joy and Jack wanted to be married in the church, but as a divorcee that was not possible. However an Anglican priest, and close personal friend, performed the ceremony at Joy’s hospital bedside on March 21, 1957. Her cancer went into remission and they enjoyed three happy years together until she died in July of 1960. Lewis’s book, A Grief Observed, originally published under a pseudonym, describes his struggles with his faith and his intense grief after her death. C. S. Lewis developed a heart condition and passed away three years later.

His scholarly work has perhaps been overshadowed by his many Christian non-fiction and fiction books that have continued to be reprinted and enjoyed by people throughout the world. Here are just a few:

 

Fiction

The Chronicles Of Narnia

The Chronicles Of Narnia

The Pilgrim’s Regress

The Screwtape Letters

The Chronicles of Narnia

The Space Trilogy

 

Non-fiction

Surprised by Joy: The Shape of My Early Life (autobiography)

Mere Christianity

Miracles

The Problem of Pain

The Abolition of Man

A Grief Observed (1961; first published under the pseudonym N. W. Clerk)

 

On the 50th anniversary of C.S. Lewis’s death, he will be honored with a memorial in Poets’ Corner, Westminster Abbey.  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-20426778

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Brave New Century ~ Just Released ~ Inspirational Historical Romance

Posted by on Nov 14, 2013 in Blog, Books, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Brave New Century ~ Just Released ~ Inspirational Historical Romance

I’m delighted to feature a newly released anthology.

Brave New Century

ebook_BNC copy

Inspirational Historical Romance from Prism Book Group

Stories of four young women who are each braving challenges at the dawn of the 20th century in the big city. Will they overcome their hardships and find love?

Three Rings for Alice by Lisa Lickel

Love and respect in 1899 Milwaukee is as close as a phone call.

Forgiven by Paula Mowery

When Henry and Jessie meet it seems to be classic love at first sight until a shocking revelation tears them apart.

The Pocket Watch by Kathleen Rouser

Searching for the past an orphan and a young doctor find love for the future.

Flames of Hope by Teena Stewart

Love ignites in the midst of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire.

 

More about Three Rings for Alice:

Our opening story, Three Rings For Alice, shows Alice Smith’s struggles to be a modern woman at the turn of the twentieth century in America. Orphaned, she must make her own way in an age when women are just coming into the workforce. Despite a proposal of marriage from a long time friend, she

Lisa Lickel

Lisa Lickel

determines to marry for nothing less than love, even if her love is a voice over the telephone.

About the author: Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin writer who lives in a hundred and sixty-year-old house built by a Great Lakes ship captain. A muti-published, best-selling and award-winning novelist, she also writes short stories and radio-theater, is an avid book reviewer, blogger, a freelance editor, and magazine editor. Visit LisaLickel.com.

More about Forgiven:

Henry Smith has little interest in the plans his parents have for him when it comes to his career and who he will marry. His world is turned upside-down when a shoot-out ends in fatalities. 

Jessie Lee Capelle and her sister strike out from the orphanage their father mysteriously abandoned

Paula Mowery

Paula Mowery

them at to make a life for themselves. Shamed by her background, Jessie struggles with Henry’s attention. 

Just as Henry and Jessie decide on a life together a shocking revelation could force them apart unless true forgiveness can be found. 

Paula Mowery is a published author, speaker, and acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group. Her articles have appeared in Woman’s World, The Christian Online Magazine, and the multi-author devotional blog, Full Flavored Living. She reviews Christian fiction for several authors. She is a member of ACFW and on their author interview team. Paula is a pastor’s wife who lives with her husband and daughter in East Tennessee.  Find her at www.paulamowery.blogspot.com or connect with her through her author page on Facebook.

More about The Pocket Watch:

Isabel Jones, an orphan, receives a ruby ring left by the mother she never knew and wants more than ever to find her roots. When a young physician, Daniel Harper, rescues her from an oncoming automobile and she finds his pocket watch in a puddle, her circumstances take a turn. She begins to

Kathleen Rouser

Kathleen Rouser

consider what life outside the orphanage could be like. Daniel’s heart has been broken before and the attractive young lady who finds his treasured timepiece wouldn’t be deemed suitable by his social climbing parents.

When Isabel and Daniel work side by side, caring for the orphanage children during an influenza epidemic, she becomes gravely ill. Compelled to redeem the time by helping her find the past, Daniel finds a buried truth that creates an unbridgeable chasm between them. Where will they find hope in a hopeless situation?

About the author: Kathleen Rouser has loved making up stories since she was a little girl and wanted to be a writer before she could even read. The Pocket Watch is Kathleen’s debut novella. She has been published in Homeschool Digest and An Encouraging Word. She currently enjoys interviewing authors for the Novel PASTimes historical fiction blog. Her desire is to bring to life endearing characters who resonate with readers and realize the need for a transforming Savior in their everyday lives. She lives in southeast Michigan with her hero and husband of 31 years, Jack, who not only listens to her stories, but also cooks for her. Find her at: www.kathleenrouser.com, www.novelpastimes.com and https://www.facebook.com/kathleenerouser

More about Flames of Hope:

Young San Francisco police officer Gideon Light is smitten the moment he sees Lily McMinn rolling down the awnings on her father’s mercantile. Lovely, petite, and spunky, Lily had to grow up quickly

Teena Stewart

Teena Stewart

after her mother passed away. She not only oversees the welfare of two younger siblings, she also helps run her father’s business.

Gideon and Lily are immediately attracted to each other and soon become good friends. It doesn’t take long before Lily realizes her feelings for Gideon have changed to something far deeper. He secretly harbors dreams of advancing in the force to earn a substantial enough income to make Lily his wife.

Before either has a chance to pursue each other, however, an earthquake of unthinkable magnitude shatters their world. With a raging fire fast in its wake, tragedy and triumph await as Gideon, Lily, and her family flee for their lives with little more than the clothes on their backs.

Set during the time of the great 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire, this tale of great loss, incredible human courage, and sweet romance, will inspire and warm your heart.

About the author: Teena Stewart is a published author, an accomplished artist, and a ministry leader. In addition to Brave New Century, her recent published books include Mothers and Daughters: Mending a Strained Relationship and The Treasure Seeker: Finding Love and Value in the Arms of Your Loving Heavenly Father. Brave New Century represents Teena’s first fiction inclusion in a book. She and her husband Jeff are involved in “out-of-the-box” organic church ministry in Hickory, NC. For more info on Teena visit www.teenastewart.com

Available at: Amazon.com – http://www.amazon.com/Brave-New-Century-Lisa-Lickel/dp/1940099250/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1384256685&sr=1-5&keywords=brave+new+century

Smashwords – https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/376373

Barnes and Noble, Prism Book Group, All Romance eBooks, Sony Reader Stores, KOBO

 

 

 

 

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VETERAN’S DAY ~ 2013

Posted by on Nov 11, 2013 in Blog, Journal, Uncategorized | 8 comments

 

What does Veteran’s Day mean to you? Is it just a day to be off work? It is for some government workers, banks and post offices. For others it is a day to hit the stores and take advantage of all the sales.

Many towns will have parades, and some people will hang their American flags prominently. Most of us know it has something

Admiral Henry G. Taylor- USN My Grandfather

Admiral Henry G. Taylor- USN
My Grandfather

to do with honoring those who have served or are serving in the armed forces.

 America’s observance of Veteran’s Day originated with the ending of World War I, also referred to as “The Great War” or “the war to end all wars.” Sadly, we’ve been in numerous wars in the intervening 95 years.

The ending of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany took effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. The United States Congress resolved that the recurring anniversary of this date “date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations.”

 

Captain Joseph White - USN My Father

Captain Joseph White – USN
My Father

Veteran’s Day is a day of remembrance, and a day to honor and say thank you to all the men and women who have served, or are currently serving our country, often in difficult places and at great sacrifice.  It is also a time to honor the spouses and families of those serving, because “Those Who Wait also Serve”.

 

Some pictures of family members who have served in the armed forces.

I am thankful for them, and other family and friends, who have also served our country.

          

Sgt. Stephen White USAF My Brother

Sgt. Stephen White USAF
My Brother

                                                      On Monday, and every day,

remember to pray for our troops,

                                                   and give thanks for them.

 

My Sons - 2005 LCdr. Jeff Palmer - USN Capt. Jim Palmer - US Army Nat. Guard

My Sons – 2005
LCdr. Jeff Palmer – USN
Capt. Jim Palmer – US Army Nat. Guard

 

 

 

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GOD’S PROVISION IN TOUGH TIMES ~ Interview with Cynthia Howerter

Posted by on Oct 28, 2013 in Blog, Book Reviews, Uncategorized | 1 comment

I am delighted to have an opportunity to introduce Cynthia Howerter, who collaborated with La-Tan Roland Murphy to write God’s Provision in Tough Times. While this is a book that will encourage and inspire anyone going through unemployment, underemployment, or financial difficulties, the underlying principles can help one experiencing trials of any sort.
 
I know the genesis of this book, Cynthia, came from your own personal experience. Could you briefly share with us those events which lead up to your desire to write it?
 
Actually, Janet, it wasn’t a story or book that I wanted to write because my family and I went through so many painful difficulties during the time of my husband’s unemployment.  However, after speaking with Publisher Eddie Jones of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas at a writers’ conference in May, 2012, Eddie encouraged me to write about my family’s experiences as a means of conveying hope to others who are going through unemployment, underemployment, or financial difficulties.  As I prayed about writing the book, it became very clear that my family’s experiences were meant to be shared.
God's Provision Book Cover
 
How did your association with Latan begin, and how did you come up with the idea and format for this book?
 
 After God put it on my heart that the book should be an anthology of stories written by numerous writers, I asked God to give me a co-author who could share the responsibilities and La-Tan’s name immediately came to mind.  Because I’d only met La-Tan briefly at two writers’ conferences, I had no idea until I phoned her that she and her family had also been through unemployment!  Truly, God’s hand is all over this book.
 
What was the process of finding the contributors, particularly in light of the sensitive nature of the book?
 
La-Tan and I prayed and asked God which writers we should approach because neither of us were aware of other writers who had experienced these issues.  When we contacted the writers whose names came to us, we learned that not only did each person have unemployment experiences, but they were happy to share what they’d gone through in order to help others.  Everyone experiences adversity, but when you learn what problems someone else went through and the ways in which God provided for them, it helps you realize that God is willing to help you, too.
 
Were there any particular challenges you faced in compiling a work with so many different collaborators and in finding a publisher?
 
In speaking with Publisher Eddie Jones, he and I both realized that it would be best to use multiple writers who’d experienced a wide variety of adverse unemployment situations because using only my story would provide too narrow of a focus.  After La-Tan agreed to be my co-author, she and I composed a list of story topics for the anthology and asked each of the contributing writers to select a topic for their article.  Having a co-author was a huge help because neither La-Tan nor I had previous experience writing and compiling an anthology.  All in all, the entire process flowed smoothly.  La-Tan and I worked very well together even though we were virtual strangers at the beginning of the project.  Our experiences with God’s Provision in Tough Times served to grow a strong bond and lasting friendship with each other.    
 
How long have you been writing and what particular genre do you like to write?
 
 I’ve been writing since I was a little girl, but began writing seriously during my husband’s unemployment period.  I love historical fiction, in particular the Colonial Period.
 
Are you working on any projects currently?
 I just finished the research for a novel I’m about to write.  It’s set shortly before the American Revolution began.
 
Where can readers find you and your books on the internet?
 
 I’d love to have readers visit my website “Soar With Eagles” at:  http://cynthiahowerter.com   I also post articles once a month at the Colonial Quills website:  http://colonialquills.blogspot.com   God’s Provision in Tough Times is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Christianbook.com .
 
 Thank you, Cynthia.
Thank you for this wonderful opportunity, Janet.
 
 Cynthia Howerter
CYNTHIA HOWERTER is a Pennsylvania girl who now lives in Virginia. Her love for history,  especially the American Revolutionary War period, along with being a member of the DAR  (Daughters of the American Revolution) and Colonial American Christian Writers, gives Cynthia a wealth of knowledge to use in her writing. She is currently writing an historical fiction novel, writes for her website Soar With Eagles, and is a contributing writer to the Colonial Quills website. Cynthia and La-Tan Roland Murphy are co-authors of God’s Provision in Tough Times, an anthology of 25 true stories of God’s provision during unemployment and financial despair.
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PRAYER

Posted by on Oct 21, 2013 in Blog, Devotions | 2 comments

Prayer  ~ Webster’s defines it as a humble entreaty made to God. 
 
As Christians we learn from Jesus to make prayer a priority.
 
 He often withdrew to lonely places to pray. (Luke 5:16)
 He rose early in the morning and went to a solitary place to pray. (Mark 1:35)
 He reminds us that we should always pray and not give up (Luke 18:1) 
 He entreated believers to call out to Him day and night (Luke 18:7)
 He encourages us to not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present our requests to God. (Philippians 4:6)
 He assures us that He hears and answers our prayers. (Matt 7:7,8  Matt 21:22  John 16:23,24   John 15:7   1st John 5:14,15)
                                                                                       
Our response should be ~ to be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus.  (1st Thessalonians 5:16-1)
       
 
Prayer can take a variety of forms; it might be done privately or with others, silent, or with words or song. Communication is essential for a healthy relationship with people and with God. Prayer is communicating with our Creator, Sustainer, Redeemer and Savior. Some prayers come spontaneously from deep within; others may be inspired by the Holy Spirit and others may be prayers that have been passed down over the millennia. 
 
While I love to pray conversationally with God, I also appreciate the prayers of others. One of my favorites is the Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi. Francis, a thirteenth century saint who founded two religious orders; the Franciscan Order of monks and the Poor Clares, an order of nuns.   
Praying Hands -Bible, etc.
Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
 
O Divine Master, 
grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.  
AMEN
 

Michael Podesta Calligraphy

PRAYER OF ST. FRANCIS   ~    Michael Podesta Calligraphy

Do you have any favorite prayers? 
This was a post of mine on Colonial Quills earlier this year.
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COMMUNITY BIBLE STUDY ~ A Fall Tradition

Posted by on Oct 9, 2013 in Blog, Devotions, Journal | 2 comments

There are many things I love about this season of the year, but one of my favorites might surprise you. For nearly thirty years I have taken part in Community Bible Study (CBS) classes. Each autumn when the new class starts, I’m eager to begin whatever course my class is studying that year. This year our class is delving into Galatians, Hebrews, and PhilippiansCBS Course Material

Community Bible Study in an interdenominational ministry that offers in-depth Bible studies available to all. It doesn’t matter whether one has never studied the Bible before or if they’ve been studying the Scriptures for years.  It’s a place where men and women, children and teens from whatever religious tradition or denomination can gather in a friendly, accepting setting and study God’s Word. As CBS states on its website, they “concentrate on the essentials of the Christian faith, not on denominational distinctives.”

Many churches graciously host the classes even though the ministry has no ties to any specific church or denomination. There are now about 700 classes around the United States and many additional classes offered in 70 countries around the world.  There are day, evening, student, teen, after school, Inprison, and international classes. In addition, many adult classes have programs for children of all ages. The children’s ministry curriculum alone has blessed so many families. There is nothing more adorable than watching preschoolers quoting Scripture or singing songs of faith that will be remembered forever.

Community Bible Study even has material available that can be purchased and used in home or church Bible studies.

Classes typically run for thirty weeks with a few weeks off in December and another week-long break in the spring. People can join anytime, not just in the fall.

Over the years I’ve been involved in many different classes; I’ve experienced, and watched others, form life long friendships as well as casual ones. I love passing on information to people moving to another area about the CBS classes in their new locale, since it’s a great way to make friends and also to learn more about the churches in the area.

There are many wonderful Bible studies available through other para-church ministries and churches; I just appreciate all I’ve witnessed at Community Bible Study. If this sounds like some thing you might be interested in check out http://www.communitybiblestudy.org/index.aspx.


Praying Hands -Bible, etc.Once on the website, there are a variety of menu choices so you can learn more about CBS, as well as find a class near you.

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