No Matter How You Feel… Trust God! John 11 1-45

February 26th, 2015

bigstock-Open-Bible-glowing-with-Cross-26156423

John 11 1-45

“Jesus wept.”

John 11 35

The older you grow, the more death touches your life. My first encounter with death was as a toddler when my granddad passed away from emphysema. I don’t remember much about that time, but when my grandpa died a few years later, I remember going to the funeral and dancing in the sunshine as the family gathered around the hearse, waiting for the coffin to be brought out.

As the years have rolled by, each new death has touched me in a different way from the confusion of a classmate dying in a horse-riding accident when I was 10, to the sanity crushing experience of my 13-year-old niece dying in a car wreck when I was 26, to the bittersweet understanding of my husband’s grandmother passing away peacefully in a nursing home when I was 38. In each experience, God was there even when I didn’t notice Him.

Like Mary and Martha, we often complain to God that, had He been there, this terrible tragedy wouldn’t have happened. And yet, God is in every moment of our lives. God is not here to make our lives comfortable or without hardship. God is here to bring us through the tragedy and the joy. God is here as a comforter as well as a protector.

The shortest verse in the Bible is “Jesus wept.” What more could be said about our Creator than that He feels our pain and offers us His love? Death, whether we want to accept it or not, is a part of life. We cannot separate our joys from our sorrows because without one, the other would mean nothing.

When we trust God to hold us as we travel through the darkest hours of our lives, we may find ourselves beside the hearse, dancing in the light of Heaven.

Prayer

Dearest Lord,

So often our lives take turns that are unexpected, that leave us kneeling in the dust feeling as if our entire world has collapsed around us. The pain seems unbearable and we wonder if it will be this way forever. You care for us so deeply, that when we are in pain you weep for us. Hold us in your loving embrace and be with us in our times of sorrow. Help us know that our sorrow will eventually turn to joy again as you walk with us each day.

In Jesus’ Name,

Amen

Questions and Reflections

As you read John 11:1-45, try to remember a time in your life in which you didn’t think you could trust God to be there for you. Then, take some time to work through the Questions and Reflections before engaging in the Meditation Activities.

 

 

Meditation Activites

 

Find a quiet place, preferably in nature, and take ten to 20 minutes to contemplate what the above image means to you as it relates to the reading of John 11:1-45, then choose as many of the following suggestions as you would like to express your thoughts and feelings outwardly.

  • In your journal, write a free-flow of thoughts and descriptive images as they come to you, or draw a picture regarding the picture and its relationship to trusting God no matter how you feel.
  • Make a rain stick using the directions at http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/music/rainstick/. Decorate the paper towel tube using symbols that will help you remember to trust God no matter how you feel.
  • Tell a friend, or God, about your thoughts and feelings concerning the picture and its relationship to trusting God no matter how you feel.
  • Decide on your own creative way to express your feelings and thoughts regarding the picture and its relationship to trusting God no matter how you feel.

***

New-Subscriber-thumbnailIf you haven’t already, sign up for my monthly newsletter to get sneak peeks (such as first chapters before they’re published) and special prices just for fans. Just enter your email address in the sidebar and click subscribe. Sign up today and download my thank you gift Behind the Scenes: The Malkin Stories.

 

 

 

 

Front-Cover-25-percentGod promises to be with us through everything,
encouraging us to trust him through every situation we encounter.

Individuals and groups alike will find themselves
discovering that every day is a new opportunity to see God’s touch on their lives as they journey through scripture to uncover that:

  • No Matter Who You Are…
  • No Matter How You Feel…
  • No Matter What People Do…
  • No Matter What Happens..
  • No Matter Where You Are…
  • No Matter How Little You Have…
  • No Matter What You’ve Done…
  • No Matter How Old You Are…

Trust God!
Paperback edition also available on Amazon.

Ebook version available for Kindle, InkteraNookKobo, and Scribd or…

Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

 

Vol1Cover25percent

Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

Messages include:

  • Called to Forgive Called to Serve
  • New Beginnings
  • No Fear In Love
  • The Boneyard
  • The Dirty Little Penny
  • The Hardest Commandment

Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

 

Simply Prayer ebook

When we find ourselves stymied by what we think prayer should look like, it’s time to step back and think like a child. God loves each of us and wants to hear from us.

Prayer can be as complex as we want or as simple as we need, but sometimes we need a little help getting started. In this book you’ll discover the basics of:

  • What prayer is
  • Why we pray
  • How to pray
  • How to know your prayers are answered

From repetitions to labyrinths to dancing to journals, it is all Simply Prayer.

Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or…

Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

You can purchase this book at Amazon.com or in my CreateSpace store front.

Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

 

Fear NotWhen life seems impossible to cope with, God reaches out to remind us of his promises for our lives. Journey through scripture to meet God in new and unexpected ways as you discover what it means to “Fear Not!”

Anyone can use Fear Not to meet God in new and unexpected ways.  Each of the eight sessions begins with an introduction, then moves on to a scripture reading (included), questions to ponder, a meditation picture and lastly a list of possible hands-on projects you can do.

The eight sessions are:

  • Session 1 … God is always with us
  • Session 2 … God is in control
  • Session 3 … God keeps his promises
  • Session 4 … God keeps us safe
  • Session 5 … God provides for us
  • Session 6 … God reveals himself to us
  • Session 7 … God gives us new life
  • Session 8 … God sends a Helper to us

Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or …

Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz buy the .pdf version here

Paperback edition also available on Amazon.com or in my Lulu.com store front at: Virginia’s Store Front.

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The Lenten Tradition: Prayer and Bible Studies To Help You Prepare For Easter

February 18th, 2015

Easter is quickly approaching and I believe the time leading up to that exciting Sunday is important to every Christian. Because of this, I’m offering a great deal on my ebooks and Bible studies that can help you prepare during this season of prayer. But first…

A brief history of Lent…

Lent is known as a time for prayerful preparation for the remembrance of Jesus’s death and resurrection. Christians often give up something during Lent like a bad habit, junk food or, more traditionally, red meat.

The season begins with Fat Tuesday (also commemorated by Mardi Gras) in which one consumes all the stuff one plans to get rid of over Lent.

Then on Ash Wednesday, we enter a time of repenting and prayer. Some attend church services in which they are prayed over and anointed with an ash cross on their forheads, a symbol of penitence.

The culmination of Lent is called Holy Week, which begins with Palm Sunday,  then proceeds through Maundy Thursday and Good Friday to Easter. Each of these days is important in the Christian calendar with Palm Sunday being the triumphal entry of Christ into Jerusalem, Maundy Thursday being the night of the disciples last supper with Jesus, Good Friday the day of the crucifixion and, of course, Easter is the glorious resurrection of Christ.

If you want more in-depth information on Lent and its history, you might enjoy reading this wiki.

History is great, but what can I do to prepare?

As I mentioned earlier, people often give up bad habits and junk food during Lent as a way to understand in a very limited way the sacrifice Jesus made for us. However, there’s also another trend in which you begin a new, better habit as a way to celebrate the new life His sacrifice gave us.

Two great habits you can choose from are a consistent prayer life and regular Bible study.

Limited Time offer…

To help you get started, I’ve reduced the prices on my ebooks Simply Prayer and both my ebook Bible studies, Fear Not! Discovering God’s Promises For Our Lives and Trust God! No Matter What…, to $.99 on Amazon from Feb. 18 through Feb. 23, 2015.

You can also “Pay What You Want” for the Simply Prayer audiobook and One Servant’s Heart — Vol. 1, a compilation of six inspirational messages.

Scroll down for a list of these books with links to the Amazon purchase page and the link to the audiobook purchase pages.

Front-Cover-25-percent
God promises to be with us through everything,
encouraging us to trust him through every situation we encounter.

Individuals and groups alike will find themselves
discovering that every day is a new opportunity to see God’s touch on their lives as they journey through scripture to uncover that:

    • No Matter Who You Are…
    • No Matter How You Feel…
    • No Matter What People Do…
    • No Matter What Happens..
    • No Matter Where You Are…
    • No Matter How Little You Have…
    • No Matter What You’ve Done…
    • No Matter How Old You Are…

    Trust God!

    Ebook version available for $.99 on Kindle Feb. 18 through Feb. 23, 2015.

     

    Vol1Cover25percent

    Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

    Messages include:

      • Called to Forgive Called to Serve
      • New Beginnings
      • No Fear In Love
      • The Boneyard
      • The Dirty Little Penny
      • The Hardest Commandment

      Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

      Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

       

      Simply Prayer ebook

      When we find ourselves stymied by what we think prayer should look like, it’s time to step back and think like a child. God loves each of us and wants to hear from us.

      Prayer can be as complex as we want or as simple as we need, but sometimes we need a little help getting started. In this book you’ll discover the basics of:

        • What prayer is
        • Why we pray
        • How to pray
        • How to know your prayers are answered

        From repetitions to labyrinths to dancing to journals, it is all Simply Prayer.

        Ebook version available for $.99 on Kindle Feb. 18 through Feb. 23, 2015.
        Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

        Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

         

        Fear Not
        When life seems impossible to cope with, God reaches out to remind us of his promises for our lives. Journey through scripture to meet God in new and unexpected ways as you discover what it means to “Fear Not!”

        Anyone can use Fear Not to meet God in new and unexpected ways.  Each of the eight sessions begins with an introduction, then moves on to a scripture reading (included), questions to ponder, a meditation picture and lastly a list of possible hands-on projects you can do.

        The eight sessions are:

          • Session 1 … God is always with us
          • Session 2 … God is in control
          • Session 3 … God keeps his promises
          • Session 4 … God keeps us safe
          • Session 5 … God provides for us
          • Session 6 … God reveals himself to us
          • Session 7 … God gives us new life
          • Session 8 … God sends a Helper to us

          Ebook version available for $.99 on Kindle Feb. 18 through Feb. 23,2015.

          No Matter Who You Are… Trust God! Matthew 8 5-13

          January 28th, 2015

          bigstock-Open-Bible-glowing-with-Cross-26156423

          Matthew 8 5-13

          “Jesus said to the centurion,
          “Go your way. Let it be done for you as you have believed.” His servant was healed in that hour.”

          Matthew 8:13

          I don’t know about anyone else, but sometimes I find it hard to believe God will grant me a favor, no matter how big or small it might be. It’s not that I believe God can’t do what I ask. The problem is something much more insidious. I don’t believe I deserve God’s help and, therefore, God has no obligation or desire to help me.

          The centurion didn’t believe he had the right to ask Jesus into his home, but he did have faith that, despite that shortcoming, Jesus would honor his request. Jesus was astounded by the man’s faith. He would have healed the man’s servant regardless, but the centurion’s simple belief made his story so important that Matthew made sure we would hear about it hundreds of years later.

          God’s grace is like that. We don’t deserve it, but God reaches down and lifts us up anyway. We can ask God for anything, knowing we are as undeserving as the centurion, and that God will answer us anyway, maybe not in a way we hope, but our prayers will always be answered. We can trust God no matter who we are.

          Prayer

          We know we don’t deserve your love or the gifts you have given us. We know we have no right to ask you to come to our aid, but you reach out to us anyway. Help us accept your grace, your love and your guidance in our lives. We thank you that you care so much for us and ask you to help us see others as you see us.

          In Jesus’ Name,

          Amen

          Questions and Reflections

          As you read Matthew 8:5-13, try to remember a time in your life in which you needed to ask God for help and then needed to trust God to answer your prayer. Then, take some time to work through the Questions and Reflections before engaging in the Meditation Activities.

           

           

          Meditation Activites

           

          Find a quiet place, preferably in nature, and take ten to 20 minutes to contemplate what the above image means to you as it relates to the reading of Matthew 8:5-13, then choose as many of the following suggestions as you would like to express your thoughts and feelings outwardly

          • In your journal, write a free-flow of thoughts and descriptive images as they come to you, or draw a picture regarding the photo and its relationship to trusting God will help you in your crises.
          • Create a two collages from pictures and words, one showing how you felt before and during a past crisis and one revealing how you felt after God had brought you through it.
          • Tell a friend, or God, about your thoughts and feelings concerning the picture and its relationship to trusting God will help you in your crises.
          • Decide on your own creative way to express your feelings and thoughts regarding the picture and its relationship to God being with you.

          ***

          New-Subscriber-thumbnailIf you haven’t already, sign up for my monthly newsletter to get sneak peeks (such as first chapters before they’re published) and special prices just for fans. Just enter your email address in the sidebar and click subscribe. Sign up today and download my thank you gift Behind the Scenes: The Malkin Stories.

           

           

           

           

          Front-Cover-25-percentGod promises to be with us through everything,
          encouraging us to trust him through every situation we encounter.

          Individuals and groups alike will find themselves
          discovering that every day is a new opportunity to see God’s touch on their lives as they journey through scripture to uncover that:

          • No Matter Who You Are…
          • No Matter How You Feel…
          • No Matter What People Do…
          • No Matter What Happens..
          • No Matter Where You Are…
          • No Matter How Little You Have…
          • No Matter What You’ve Done…
          • No Matter How Old You Are…

          Trust God!
          Paperback edition also available on Amazon.

          Ebook version available for Kindle, InkteraNookKobo, and Scribd or…

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

           

          Vol1Cover25percent

          Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

          Messages include:

          • Called to Forgive Called to Serve
          • New Beginnings
          • No Fear In Love
          • The Boneyard
          • The Dirty Little Penny
          • The Hardest Commandment

          Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          Simply Prayer ebook

          When we find ourselves stymied by what we think prayer should look like, it’s time to step back and think like a child. God loves each of us and wants to hear from us.

          Prayer can be as complex as we want or as simple as we need, but sometimes we need a little help getting started. In this book you’ll discover the basics of:

          • What prayer is
          • Why we pray
          • How to pray
          • How to know your prayers are answered

          From repetitions to labyrinths to dancing to journals, it is all Simply Prayer.

          Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or…

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

          You can purchase this book at Amazon.com or in my CreateSpace store front.

          Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          Fear NotWhen life seems impossible to cope with, God reaches out to remind us of his promises for our lives. Journey through scripture to meet God in new and unexpected ways as you discover what it means to “Fear Not!”

          Anyone can use Fear Not to meet God in new and unexpected ways.  Each of the eight sessions begins with an introduction, then moves on to a scripture reading (included), questions to ponder, a meditation picture and lastly a list of possible hands-on projects you can do.

          The eight sessions are:

          • Session 1 … God is always with us
          • Session 2 … God is in control
          • Session 3 … God keeps his promises
          • Session 4 … God keeps us safe
          • Session 5 … God provides for us
          • Session 6 … God reveals himself to us
          • Session 7 … God gives us new life
          • Session 8 … God sends a Helper to us

          Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or …

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz buy the .pdf version here

          Paperback edition also available on Amazon.com or in my Lulu.com store front at: Virginia’s Store Front.

          Being Strong When You’re Terrified: Joshua 1 9

          January 28th, 2015

          Joshua 1 9

          In Joshua 1 9, God commands us to have courage, but we know that’s not always easy.

          We’ve heard the stories of brave men and women of all ages who face terrifying situations and demonstrate a faith most of us can only wonder at. We hold them up as heroes, and rightly so. And yet, most of us will never face a situation like that, so we are left feeling somehow weaker, not knowing if we could ever be that brave, have that much faith. What do we know of fear and being strong in the face of terror?

          The truth is, we all face overwhelming fear at some point in our lives. In this message, learn how to quiet your heart and mind to hear how God is taking care of you.

          Scroll down to listen to the message or click on the pdf download link to read it in its entirety. As an added bonus, scroll down to enjoy the clip I mention in this month’s message from Bruce Almighty.

          You can also purchase your copy of Messages from One Servant’s Heart – Vol 1 today. Scroll down for more information.

           

           

          ***

          My One Servant’s Heart monthly messages are on iTunes and Podomatic! Add the One Servant’s Heart podcast to your iTunes player, or, if you don’t use iTunes, you can subscribe to the feed directly.

           

          Vol1Cover25percentOr Pay What You Want for the audiobook. Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

          Messages include:

          Called to Forgive Called to Serve
          New Beginnings
          No Fear In Love
          The Boneyard
          The Dirty Little Penny
          The Hardest Commandment

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          New-Subscriber-thumbnailIf you haven’t already, sign up for my monthly newsletter to get sneak peeks (such as first chapters before they’re published) and special prices just for fans. Just enter your email address in the sidebar and click subscribe. Sign up today and download my thank you gift Behind the Scenes: The Malkin Stories.

          When God’s In The Wrong Seat

          January 22nd, 2015

          driver photoBetween the birth of Lil Bit last October and our enforced exile from our bedrooms last September, life has been chaotic, to say the least.

          The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry…

          My original intent was to have a set of Bible studies posted during December for the season of Advent and at least one message uploaded for each week in Advent. As you may have noticed, that didn’t happen. I revised that schedule and decided to go back to my regular monthly Bible study and monthly message starting the first of January. As yet, I’ve only been able to write most of the message. Recording it, however, is turning out to be wishful thinking on my part. As for the Bible study, I might still be able to post it by next Wednesday — maybe.

          The same challenges have cropped up in regards to the next book in the Malkin series. I normally write the bulk of those during NaNoWriMo in November and finish drafting it in December, then start planning the novella in January. I just started the next novel in the series this month and I’m struggling to get the scenes drafted. The novella? I haven’t even begun to think about it.

          Those are just my writing challenges. On top of those we’ve had to remove all the drywall from all the bedrooms and the bathroom downstairs within a few days because there was significant mold growth on the backing. And of course, one can’t ignore the piles of dishes in the sink or Mt. Washmore by the laundry room. Nor can one turn a deaf ear to the rumbling of stomachs, unless, of course, one enjoys a good mutiny. Oh! And let’s not forget the bills accumulating in the “to pay” file.

          That’s where I was last Monday when at 5 a.m. God reached down and reminded me that I can’t do it all.

          You can’t do it all…

          I woke up to feed Lil Bit, as usual, but scooting to the end of the air mattress to get to her was painful. I noticed I was feeling a bit stiff and sore earlier in the night, but hadn’t thought much about it other than to make a note that I’d need a good, hot shower to work the kinks out in the morning. Despite the pain, I levered myself up from the floor (did I mention the air mattress has a leak I’m still trying to fix?) and took a step toward her bassinet…

          and promptly collapsed back on the mattress. The pain shot through my body like lightening, making me light-headed and nauseated. I managed to gasp out to my sleeping husband that I needed his help and, thankfully, he was able to take control from there to take care of both me and our youngest baby.

          When morning finally arrived, I took stock of what didn’t hurt. It wasn’t much. Everything from my neck to my knees screamed at even the thought of movement. The joints in my hands ached as if I had arthritis. My muscles protested like rusted cables.

          “What am I going to do?” I wondered.

          My husband needed to get to work. My mother wasn’t due to arrive for our girls’ day out until later that morning. I was going to have to disappoint my oldest daughter, Blur, and tell her Mommy couldn’t take her to get her hair cut today. And what about all the other things I had planned to do that day?

          As my husband fed Lil Bit, I broke the news to Blur. She seemed remarkably calm, offering to take care of me until I felt better. She fixed me a bowl full of saltines and a cup of hot 7up, brought me my phone to call Grandma and proceeded to check on me every few minutes. I couldn’t have asked for a better little caretaker.

          A few hours later, my husband had gone to work and my Mom had arrived to take over caring for the girls. I was feeling a little better, thanks to the Tylenol I’d taken earlier, and went ahead with my plans for a shower. As the water pounded out the rest of the stiffness, I pondered what could be behind the sudden onset. I couldn’t think of anything I’d done that would have elicited such a strong reaction by my body. One thought, though, kept running through my mind.

          This was my body’s way of telling me I needed to take a break.

          And on the heels of that, “You’ve prayed for God to take control of all these challenges. Maybe you need to hand the wheel over to Him.”

          Moving into the passenger seat…

          I decided then to just take the day one moment at a time and let God take care of the details. Since then I’ve done that each day, reminding myself when I start getting anxious that I’ve let God have the driver’s seat in my life. I won’t say my pain went away miraculously or that every day since then has been a breeze, but it’s getting better. The pain is finally gone and the anxieties are under control.

          As for the work? I’ve decided to adopt the saying “progress, not perfection.” I will continue to post Bible studies, but they may not be on a specific day every month. My monthly messages will be uploaded as .pdfs, but the podcast may be added at a later date. As long as I’m getting scenes drafted I won’t worry about when I’ll have the book finished and ready to be published.

          Progress, not perfection. Its about putting God in the right seat. So long as He’s driving, you’ll always end up exactly where you need to be.

          Journeyman Cat Audiobook Giveaway

          December 15th, 2014

          Journeyman-Cat15percent

          I have four FREE codes to offer in this awesome Journeyman Cat Audiobook Giveaway (Dec. 17-22).

          Enter as many times as you like, but do it before 11:59 p.m. CST, Dec. 22, 2014, or you’ll miss your chance to receive this wonderfully narrated audiobook.

          Listen to this sample to see just what you’ll be getting:



          a Rafflecopter giveaway

          Want to know more about this book about a talking magical cat? Here’s the description:

          Despite the war, despite that everyone else says he’s dead, Journeyman Toby continues to search for his father with the help of his human partner. When what promised to be another dead-end lead turns into something more, Toby pounces on the possibility like only a talking magical cat can. However, his questions regarding the secret goings-on of a local temple catches the attention of a mysterious cat whose sole ambition is to enslave the human race.

          His supervisor orders the young tom to leave his informal investigation alone or be dismissed from the Office of Kingdom Guardianship. Even though he yearns to find his father, Toby obeys because it would mean taking away the one thing his partner cherishes: his position in the OKG. He follows orders, that is, until someone connected with the temple kills someone he loves.

          Raves for Journeyman Cat:

          “I have read many books about cats and they are usually about fluffy kittens and gentle little furballs rubbing up against ankles or playing with cat-toys. “Journeyman Cat” is a different sort of cat-book altogether. These felines are much more likely to shoot you with a crossbow, than warm your lap. They are no less riveting though for their lack of the graces, which usually belong to the typical domestic tabby.” — Mr. C. A. Meade

          “Although I love fantasy, I seldom bother to take the time required to get familiar with a new world. To any readers who’ve enjoyed J.R.R. Tolkien, Anne McCaffery, or George R.R. Martin: You just may find this little story tasty. The setting is semi-fuedalistic with touches of scientific discovery and magic. The fact that talking cats choose to be loners or paired with humans is interesting. The fact that not all humans care for cats, and vice versa, gives depth to the story. Additionally, themes addressing the dangers of blind fanaticism and over-blown bureaucracy were balanced against gentle faith and logic.”– ShereeB

           

          Remember, you may enter the Journeyman Cat Audiobook Giveaway as many times as you like, but do it before 11:59 p.m. CST, Dec. 22, 2014, for your chance at one of four FREE codes.

          Get your copy of Journeyman Cat at Amazon, Barnes & Noble , Kobo, iTunes, and Inktera. Also available as an audiobook on Audible and iTunes.

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          October Fun Fall Favorites $300 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal Giveaway

          October 17th, 2014

          Fall is almost on us. Time to stock up on some great new reads and, while you’re at it, why not enter the $300 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal Giveaway?

           

          Thanks to Shauna of I Love to Read and Review Books, 28 authors (including yours truly) have come together to give you some
          FUN FALL FAVORITES and a $300 AMAZON GIFT CARD OR PAYPAL GIVEAWAY!

          Click on the image to read a summary of each book :)


          ~ ENTER TO WIN ~

          $300 Amazon Gift Card 

          OR PayPal Cash

          GIVEAWAY ends 11/17/14

          No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older and legally able to receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code. This giveaway is not associated with Rafflecopter, Facebook, Twitter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. Void where prohibited by law.


          a Rafflecopter giveaway

          This giveaway was organized by I Love to Read and Review Books :)

          and is sponsored by the following authors ~

          (While we can no longer ask you to “LIKE” Facebook pages as an entry~ Facebook links are below ~ as “LIKES” would be very much appreciated :)

          ***

          Continue the adventure with all the books in the Malkin series.

          Apprentice Cat CoverApprentice Cat available in paperback and for KindleNookKoboScribd and iTunes.

          Buy the .pdf now  Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

          Also available as an audiobook on AudibleAmazon and iTunes.

           

           

          Journeyman-Cat15percentJourneyman Cat available in paperback and KindleNookScribdiTunes and Kobo.

          Buy the .pdf now  Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

          Now available as an audiobook on Audible and iTunes.

           

           

          Secrets-of-the-Malkin-sidebar-newsletterSecrets of the Malkin ebook version available for KindleNookiTunes and Kobo.

          Buy the .pdf now  Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

           

           

          Huntress of the MalkinHuntress of the Malkin ebook version available for KindleNookKobo and iTunes.

          Buy the .pdf now  Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

          Related Posts

          • 48
            Love without strings. How many of us have yearned for that at one time or another? In this month's message we take a look at 1 John 4:18 to discover how perfect love casts out fear. Scroll down to listen to the message or click on the pdf download link to read it in its entirety.…
            Tags: love, itunes, selz, link="http://selz.co, malkin, background_color, text_color="#ffffff, show_logos="false, type="button, interact="modal
          • 45
            Resistance Blog Tour “Don’t you know? Animals like you have no soul.” Could God ever love a half-blood all of society looks upon with such fear and disdain? Jace once believed so, but when a tragic loss shatters the only peace he’s ever known, his faith crumbles as the nagging doubts he’s tried to put…
            Tags: review, christian, giveaway, virginia, ripple, rafflecopter
          • 40
            In our lives, we can’t just look at a calendar and realize that a new beginning is just four days away. How do we cope in the meantime? In this month's message we take a look at Isaiah 61:10-62:3 to discover what it means to be in between new beginnings and what God wants us to…
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          • 40
              I’ve been memed! The Lucky 7 Meme isn't really an award but it’s more fun than being tagged for random bits of information. Why is this better, you ask? Well…because it involves sharing seven lines of your latest work in progress, which is something I've been wanting to do for a while, but never really…
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          • 39
            In Galations 6 1-10, Paul tells us we must be mindful of our thoughts, words and actions lest we reap sour grapes rather than sweet apples. In this month's message we take a look at Galations 6 1-10 and consider how sowing seeds of love and kindness will bring the harvest of happier people and a better…
            Tags: itunes, love, link="http://selz.co, selz, show_logos="false, type="button, background_color, text_color="#ffffff, position="default, interact="modal

          Harvesting What You Sow: Galations 6 1-10

          October 3rd, 2014

          In Galations 6 1-10, Paul tells us we must be mindful of our thoughts, words and actions lest we reap sour grapes rather than sweet apples.

          In this month’s message we take a look at Galations 6 1-10 and consider how sowing seeds of love and kindness will bring the harvest of happier people and a better future.

          Scroll down to listen to the message or click on the pdf download link to read it in its entirety.

          You can also purchase your copy of Messages from One Servant’s Heart – Vol 1 today. Scroll down for more information.

           

           

          ***

          My One Servant’s Heart monthly messages are on iTunes and Podomatic! Add the One Servant’s Heart podcast to your iTunes player, or, if you don’t use iTunes, you can subscribe to the feed directly.

           

          Vol1Cover25percentOr Pay What You Want for the audiobook. Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

          Messages include:

          Called to Forgive Called to Serve
          New Beginnings
          No Fear In Love
          The Boneyard
          The Dirty Little Penny
          The Hardest Commandment

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          New-Subscriber-thumbnailIf you haven’t already, sign up for my monthly newsletter to get sneak peeks (such as first chapters before they’re published) and special prices just for fans. Just enter your email address in the sidebar and click subscribe. Sign up today and download my thank you gift Behind the Scenes: The Malkin Stories.

          God Sustains Us: Isaiah 46

          September 25th, 2014

          bigstock-Open-Bible-glowing-with-Cross-26156423

          Isaiah 46

          Even to your old age and gray hairs
              I am he, I am he who will sustain you.

          Isaiah 46 : 4

          My husband and I are used to heavy rains causing the sewers in our basement to back up. It’s never been a pleasant experience, since that’s where our bedrooms are, but we manage the best we can, staying up to the wee hours using a shop-vac to suck the filthy water up and tossing it back into the rain soaked night. However, in August and September of 2014, the floods of Noah invaded our lives and we were forced to evacuate our living quarters and call in help from our insurance company.

          With nearly six inches of foul water sloshing over our feet, we knew there would be no going back to our beds that night and probably not for quite some time afterward, so we moved everything not soaked by the deluge into our 800 square foot upstairs and turned our kitchen and living room into a combo kitchenette/living room/bedroom for ourselves and our daughter. Sleeping on an air mattress on the floor while eight months pregnant hasn’t been the most wonderful experience and bringing our newborn home to a house of chaos won’t be either.

          I could go on about the inconvenience and the heartbreak of losing some precious items to the inundation of water, but there’s more to every experience than the bad feelings we’re left with. There’s a lesson in this. It’s one of patience, yes, as we work to get our lives and our home back in some semblence of order, but there’s also the lesson of how God sustains us during all times.

          In some ways it’s been a hassle dealing with all the red tape to get the money for repairs and trying to pin down a contractor who can get started sooner than New Year 2016. In other ways it’s been a blessing. Without the help of several kind people within our insurance company and the cleaning crews, we never would have been able to get the water (or the overwhelming smell!) out of our house. Nor would we be able to make repairs at all.

          My daughter often asks why God let this happen to us. It’s a question we all ask of trying times. Our answer to her is that, even though this is a bad thing, God can always make something good come of it. In our case, we’ve wanted to renovate the rooms since we moved in nearly six years ago, but we never had the time or the money. Now we have the money and we’ll be able to hire someone to do it right, rather than try to fumble through it ourselves.

          God is answering our prayers in a very unexpected way and during this time of trial, God is sustaining us through people who know what needs to be done and those who care enough to aid us in the little things (thanks Mom for the use of your washer and dryer!).

          God sustains us each day by giving us, not necessarily what we want or expect, but what we need.

          Prayer

          Dear Lord,

          We thank you for sustaining us through our joys and our sorrows, through our victories and trials. Help us be patient as we wait for your promises to come to full fruition.

          Amen

          Questions and Reflections

          As you read Isaiah 46, think about the times God has sustained you through life’s trials. Then, download the Questions and Reflections and take some time to work through them before engaging in the Meditation Activities below.

           

           

          Meditation Activites

           

          Find a quiet place, preferably in nature, and take 10 to 20 minutes to contemplate what the above image means to you as it relates to the reading of Isaiah 46, then choose as many of the following suggestions as you would like to express your thoughts and feelings outwardly.

          • In your journal, write a free-flow of thoughts and descriptive images as they come to you regarding the picture and its relationship to God sustaining you through all the times in your life.
          • Buy or transplant a flower, vegetable or other plant and nurture it in your home. As you care for this creation of God, think on how God also nurtures you no matter what the weather may be outside.
          • Research different methods of sustainable living. Adopt one or two for 30 days or more. During this time, consider how God created everything and continues to sustain us through all the ups and downs of your life.
          • Decide on your own creative way to express your feelings and thoughts regarding the picture and its relationship to God sustaining you through all the times in your life.

          ***

          New-Subscriber-thumbnailIf you haven’t already, sign up for my monthly newsletter to get sneak peeks (such as first chapters before they’re published) and special prices just for fans. Just enter your email address in the sidebar and click subscribe. Sign up today and download my thank you gift Behind the Scenes: The Malkin Stories.

           

           

           

           

          Front-Cover-25-percentGod promises to be with us through everything,
          encouraging us to trust him through every situation we encounter.

          Individuals and groups alike will find themselves
          discovering that every day is a new opportunity to see God’s touch on their lives as they journey through scripture to uncover that:

          • No Matter Who You Are…
          • No Matter How You Feel…
          • No Matter What People Do…
          • No Matter What Happens..
          • No Matter Where You Are…
          • No Matter How Little You Have…
          • No Matter What You’ve Done…
          • No Matter How Old You Are…

          Trust God!
          Paperback edition also available on Amazon.

          Ebook version available for Kindle, InkteraNookKobo, and Scribd or…

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

           

          Vol1Cover25percent

          Get six Bible based, inspirational messages by Virginia Ripple from the blog One Servant’s Heart all in one .zip file.

          Messages include:

          • Called to Forgive Called to Serve
          • New Beginnings
          • No Fear In Love
          • The Boneyard
          • The Dirty Little Penny
          • The Hardest Commandment

          Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          Simply Prayer ebook

          When we find ourselves stymied by what we think prayer should look like, it’s time to step back and think like a child. God loves each of us and wants to hear from us.

          Prayer can be as complex as we want or as simple as we need, but sometimes we need a little help getting started. In this book you’ll discover the basics of:

          • What prayer is
          • Why we pray
          • How to pray
          • How to know your prayers are answered

          From repetitions to labyrinths to dancing to journals, it is all Simply Prayer.

          Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or…

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selzbuy the .pdf version here

          You can purchase this book at Amazon.com or in my CreateSpace store front.

          Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz

           

          Fear NotWhen life seems impossible to cope with, God reaches out to remind us of his promises for our lives. Journey through scripture to meet God in new and unexpected ways as you discover what it means to “Fear Not!”

          Anyone can use Fear Not to meet God in new and unexpected ways.  Each of the eight sessions begins with an introduction, then moves on to a scripture reading (included), questions to ponder, a meditation picture and lastly a list of possible hands-on projects you can do.

          The eight sessions are:

          • Session 1 … God is always with us
          • Session 2 … God is in control
          • Session 3 … God keeps his promises
          • Session 4 … God keeps us safe
          • Session 5 … God provides for us
          • Session 6 … God reveals himself to us
          • Session 7 … God gives us new life
          • Session 8 … God sends a Helper to us

          Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd or …

          Buy this on Selz Start selling on Selz buy the .pdf version here

          Paperback edition also available on Amazon.com or in my Lulu.com store front at: Virginia’s Store Front.

          Related Posts

          • 67
            “It shall happen… according as he has promised….” Exodus 12:25 Believing God keeps his promises is perhaps one of the most difficult things to do. We’ve often had others break their promises and been guilty of breaking them ourselves. However, God shouldn’t be measured by human standards. Whether we believe it or not, God does…
            Tags: god, meditation, virginia, ripple, study, writer, bible
          • 67
            “[God] said, ‘Certainly I will be with you.’” Exodus 3:12 Have you ever watched the latest news cast and wondered, “Where is God in all this?” Have you ever sat under the stars, feeling smaller than the smallest ant, and thought, “Is God out there somewhere?” Have you ever asked: “Does God see me?” “Does…
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          • 66
            “Yahweh shall give you meat to eat in the evening, and in the morning bread to satisfy you.” Exodus 16 8 It is quite easy to believe God will provide for you when you have your basic needs. However, not many of us can say that we trust God to provide for us in the midst…
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          • 66
            “Thus says Yaweh, ‘In this you shall know that I am Yaweh.’” Exodus 7:17 We have heard and read about the miracles God has performed both in the Bible and in modern times. Most of those miracles were obvious demonstrations of God’s power. However, the power of God comes in all shapes and sizes from…
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          • 63
            “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Matthew 16 16 Whether it is in the face of a delighted child or the crash of thunder during a storm, God reveals himself to us. Sometimes he catches our attention in a way we cannot ignore, like when he appeared to Moses in the…
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          Journeyman Cat Audiobook Now Available

          September 19th, 2014

          image

          I am so happy to announce that, after almost 5 months of delays, the Journeyman Cat audiobook is now available on Audible and iTunes. Get your copy today!

          Listen to a 5-minute demo now.