Book Review: Before The Throne

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(I was given this book by Moody Publishers in return for a review of the book. All thoughts are my own).

Don’t we all long to be better pray-ers? I know I do. But for whatever reason – doing more praying seems to be on the back burned of my spiritual to-do list. I’m too busy reading the Bible, teaching the Bible, parenting my kids, cleaning my house and playing my games on my ipad (yes, that is supposed to be a little funny).

Crickett Keeth wrote Before the Throne (an 8 week Bible study) to help us with that desire to learn to pray more. She can’t make us sit down and pray – but she can show us people in the Bible who prayed – bold prayers, persistent prayers, long prayers, short prayers, desperate prayers. These are the prayers we need to pray.

Here are some things I like about this book:

  1. Thoughtful questions – not just fill in the blank. She is seeking your heart and your head in this book.
  2. The Leader guide in the back. Helpful for anyone wanting to pick this up and teach to a small group.
  3. She goes from beginning to end selecting prayers in the Bible and introduces us to them. The Bible is our guidebook

Lavish Hospitality 4: Lilias Trotter

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Today I started a series on the podcast where I will introduce you to women who have changed their world and we get to read about it. Women who have impacted the lives around them and we know about because their lives were written down.

Lilias Trotter was a missionary, artist, friend, daughter, sister. She lived to be in her mid-70s. Her life was filled with art and truth and life-giving moments with women around here. It was also filled with pain.

Book Review: 7 Feasts

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Most people are afraid of the Old Testament. Believe me, I was there at one point. But, for me there are a lot of hard parts of the Old Testament, but so much beauty as well. And as I’ve been studying it these last 5 or so years more in depth, I realize how much more I need to learn and see.

When you study the OT rightly, you see so much beauty, order, truth, love, history, and the kingdom of Christ.

Erin David, author of Beyond Bath Time (for all you mamas of littles out there), has written an 8 week study on the 7 Feasts in the Old Testament. In studying these, while looking in depth into not only the Old Testament, but seeing how it connects to Christ, the Gospel and the New Testament, it really all comes alive.

Feasts, celebrations and the good news of the gospel can all be found in this study. In our modern Christian culture today, we don’t study a lot of the Old Testament and the feasts. But, I trust that you will pick this up, learn more about it, and see how this study will enable your Bible study and your knowledge will help your understanding of the entire Bible come together.

You can pick it up from Moody publishers, study it solo or in groups. Thanks to Moody for my copy of this. I look forward to diving in even more.

Bible Workbook Review

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This morning I was listening to a podcast with two of my favorite theologians: Russell Moore and Ligon Duncan. They were talking about how many smart people don’t know much about the Bible – even if they’ve been in church their entire lives.

Jen Wilkin talks about the same thing: improving Bible literacy among the women in our churches. I grew up in a Christian school, majored in Philosophy and Religion in college, got a Masters in Christian Education and I couldn’t tell you without looking what was going on (specifically) in the minor prophets. And I’ve led a study on the minor prophets. But, that was 15 years ago and I just didn’t retain the specifics.

Maybe you are like me and need a refresher course on Bible specifics (and generalities) or maybe you are a new believer and need the basics for the first time. Or maybe you are discipling a younger woman and want a good resource to teach with.

And, my friends at SideDoor Communications is giving a set away! Just for you. Respond to me and let me know how you would use this set!

Catherine Walker has put together two workbooks, one on the OT and one on the NT. Yes workbooks – you get to fill in the blank, answer questions, search out the answers for yourself. She designed it for high school students. And is allowing you to do the work. And that’s for me how I learn the most. In the OT the workbook goes chronologically which would be great if you are doing a read-through-the-Bible in this same way. In the NT workbook she gives a brief study of each book.

What a great resource for teachers or students for an overview of the whole Bible!

Moody Publishers sent me these workbooks and all opinions are my own.

Pink Pencil Sharpener – Yes please

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I use Instagram to put up fun videos of my boys, post delicious recipes, and encourage others in their walk with Jesus. I love this social platform.

Recently, I saw a pencil sharpener. You may not think much of it. But, a pink pencil sharpener! With two littles boys who love to draw and are learning to write – we need a pencil sharpener. We don’t homeschool, but all year we use a pencil sharpener. Whether its for homework or just fun drawing or coloring book time, or writing in their quiet time journals, a way to sharpen pencils is quite handy!

This pencil sharpener definitely comes in more colors than pink. But, pink is the one I choose! With two boys, I have to get in girl colors where I can!

What I love most about this sharpener? The lever up at the top where you insert the pencil that holds the pencil in place! It is easy for my young boys (K and 1st) to use on their own.

I was given this pencil sharpener in exchange for a post, and I’ve taken forever to do it – but I’m thankful for this company and this sharpener! Get yours today! For your home or classroom – and you can help them give back too!

January Podcast Roundup

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I’m over here cranking out some handpainted wedding invitations and teaching on the book of Job and trying to get our home settled and running well, that I’ve slacked in getting the January Podcast round up on the blog.

I hope you enjoy these! And as always, tell me what podcasts you are listening to!

Nancy Guthrie with Joe Novenson – one of my favorite ever

Front Porch with Knox McCoy

These three from the Next Podcast: Acknowledge Your Soul, The one about your crown, and the one about endings

Read Aloud meets What Should I Read Next

Sarah and Merica talking about the year

The Happy Hour and Margaret Feinberg – the book I’m most looking forward to reading


God Made Me and You

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You know those books that you can’t find because your child likes to read it all over the house – and so it is constantly migrating with said child.

So, today, when the child walked in from the bus, I had to ask him where the book with the school bus on the cover that talks about all the children God made.  He went right to it.

This is definitely one of our favorite books of 2018.  So thankful for New Growth press in putting it together.  It shows the truths of God’s creative world in creating human being who look so different from each other but who each have value and significance just because they are made in God’s image.

When so many of our churches are still segregated its hard to see this principle and truth played out at church.  But, I’m so thankful for our boys going to schools where sometimes they are in the minority.  And they don’t notice.  They just play.

I would hope that as our children grow, if we can bury the truth of God’s creative generosity in their hearts, they might have a chance to see the beauty of the gospel displayed in peace for ethnic diversity.

Thank you to New Growth press for the book. All thoughts are my own.  Click on this affiliate link to order directly from New Growth.  Its a perfect addition to your school, home, or church library!

Good News for Little Hearts

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We love reading time in our family, and I love finding books for my littles that will encourage them in truth and also that they will love.

The Good News for Little Hearts series was given to me to review, all thoughts are my own. I was excited about these because of the editors Powlison and Welch. The three I’m talking about in this review are: Zoe’s Hiding Place (about Anxiety), Buster’s Ears Trip Him Up (about failure), and Jax’s Tail Twitches (about Anger).  I love what they stand for, what they’ve written, etc.  So, I figured it was a no brainer.

And for the most part, these books are great.  What they teach are spot-on. I love the extra teaching material in the back of the book.

I just think they are a little much for 5-6 year olds.  Maybe they would be fine for 8-10 year olds, but then the illustrations might be a little childish.

So, here’s what I would say: they would probably make good books for families with a variety of ages.  Because the truths would keep the attention and make more sense to the olders while the illustrations and some of the story lines would keep the attention of the youngers.  Definitely use the helps at the end of each book to strengthen your teaching with your children.

This blog contains affiliate links, so go support New Growth Press!

December Podcast Favorites

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I know this is seriously late, but Ive been still enjoying some down time and doing only the urgent things.  This may not be urgent, but it is fun.  So, today, I bring you the podcasts that I loved listening to in December.

Nancy Guthrie on Teaching Children: David and Sally Michaels are wonderful. I got to know them when they were with DGM and I wrote for Providence.

Next Right Thing Quiet Space.  Perfect to listen to at the end of the year or beginning of the next.

Sarah Bragg with Kimberly Stuart: about the story of fiction.  I read a lot of fiction in 2018 and I love the ability of empathy and escape

TGC with Don Carson on why we need the OT – so good especially with some popular preachers and writers saying we don’t need the OT.

GCM with Tripp.  Because he is always so gracious and full of truth and humility.

The Bookshelf Number 200.  Love how they answer questions and love their banter

Mike Rowe: episodes with In Laws and Cowards


Best of 2018

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This is a compilation list of some of my favorite things.  Not comprehensive by any means, but I hope you will get inspiration and enjoyment out of this list.

God has been good to us in 2018 as a family.  He has grown my business.  He has made my husband successful in his.  He has grown my children in their education.

2018 hasn’t been without its trials though.  I would love to leave those behind.  But, God has always been and will continue to be faithful to us.

Books: My goal was to read 60 books this year.  That didn’t happen.  I only read 52.  But, that’s ok.  You know.  I watched some Netflix, hung out with my family, painted, prepared Bible studies, exercised outside (and I don’t like audible books).

Best Fiction 2018: I decidedly read more fiction this year than non-fiction, probably just because I can read fiction faster.  I re-read the Narnia series this year again, which I love to do.  I read it every other year and listen to it every other year (so I switch back and forth).

  1.  The Saturday Night Supper Club.
  2. Five Days in Skye
  3. Voyage of The Dawn Treader (re-read)
  4. Gone to Green series
  5. Goodnight June

Best Non-Fiction

  1.  Even Better Than Eden
  2. The Advent of the Lamb of God
  3. Footprints of a Pilgrim
  4. Roots and Sky
  5. Women of the Word

Best New Recipes – I cook new recipes all the time.  I seldom cook the same thing twice.  But, these two have already been made several times and are winners every time

  1.  Cranberry Brie Tarts
  2. This cake

Best Kids Books

  1.  Goldfish on Vacation
  2.  The Cow Said Neigh
  3. God Made Me and You

Favorite Podcasts – these are the ones that I listen to almost every episode.  There are definitely some popular podcasts that I just can’t listen to – the hosts or the depth of conversation just fall flat for me.  I listen to so many each month. These are the ones that stand out for today.

  1.  Signposts
  2. From the Front Porch – so much so that I want to go visit Thomasville, something I’ve not done since I was a teenager
  3. Cultivated

Favorite Creatives:

  1.  Love-Lettered
  2. Ivey Gibb
  3. Cathy Nugent (we have a new barn door)

Favorite Local Things: (Local to Augusta GA)

  1.  Rooted Coffeehouse
  2. Takosushi
  3. Columbia County Library
  4. Charleston Street
  5. Diablos

What were some of your favorites from 2018?

Photo from my favorite styled shoot that I got to be a part of: Linda Threadgill Photo