CrossReads Book Spotlight: God Made

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

God Made

Nature Poems For Little Children

by Annette Kinglock-Murray

God Made

Nature and creation are interestingly beautiful. It is important for us to teach our children ,to appreciate nature and the God of nature. These little poems does that, they are short, easy to read and fun.

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CrossReads Short Takes: A New Heart & Just in Time for Christmas

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CrossReads Short Takes

A New Heart

(Georgia Peaches Book 5)

by Lisa Prysock

A New Heart

When Ms. Pepper Anne Barrington isn’t driving her convertible Aston Martin or writing her bestselling mysteries, she’s busy solving real-life dilemmas happening to her three grown children or the guests visiting her Atlanta bed and breakfast, Edgewater Coventry B & B. It seems to Miss Pepper, there’s always an air of romance, mystery, and perhaps a little adventure and mayhem at the restored 19th century plantation.

When her writer friend, Jade Burton, needs a place of refuge from a murder committed at the World War II house museum she inherited, Pepper offers her Brook Cottage as a temporary respite, no questions asked. After all, it’s nearly time to celebrate the holidays with Thanksgiving and Christmas upon them, and it’s what friends do for each other. However, Jade arrives at the B & B deeply disturbed, skittish, unusually quiet, and fairly certain she’s being followed at every turn.

Agent Ethan Hughes has a stellar track record with the FBI. He’s brought every criminal to the halls of justice on each case he’s been assigned, except this one. He’s determined to find and capture the killer who has managed to evade everyone—until coming face to face with Miss Burton. He finally has a witness and isn’t about to let anything happen to her, but he can’t seem to stop what’s happening inside his heart when it comes to this southern belle. She is unlike anyone he’s ever met before.

There’s plenty of suspense, tension, sleuthing, cozy mystery, sweet romance, and adventure building in “A New Heart.” Get your copy today and begin enjoying this exciting addition to ‘Georgia Peaches,’ a Christian and inspirational series aimed at keeping readers entertained with faith inspired stories.

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Just in Time for Christmas

A High-Country Christmas Novella

inspirational historical Christmas romance

(Series: High-Country Christmas)

by Davalynn Spencer

Just in Time for Christmas

She’s seventeen with a ranch to run, a fear of heights, and a cowboy intent on stealing her heart.

Abigale Millerton leaves a Denver women’s school and returns to her grandparents’ high-country ranch to find the boy she’d grown up with not a boy any longer—and butting in on her challenge with local timber thieves. If he’d stop telling her what to do, they might get along.

Seth Holt has loved Abigale since before he knew better. And now that she’s back in the high country, she’s still as bull-headed as ever. But Seth can match her, and he’s determined to keep her out of harm’s way and in his line of sight. Trouble is, he’d rather keep her in his arms.

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From Career Woman to Housewife

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by Parker J. Cole

The day I quit my 9 to 5 job, I’d have enough of office politics, backstabbing, managerial incompetence, and favoritism. I had worked in Corporate America for a long time. I knew the ends and outs of that realm. I no longer wanted a part of it. I sent my resignation in that Friday afternoon. When Monday came around, as I went to work out my two weeks, I was told not to bother coming in. My years at the company were shoved out the door and tossed aside like garbage.  

Thank you, Corporate America! It’s been real. 

The next morning, I woke with something of an identity crisis. After all, for years, I’d been in someone’s company, making that company richer, more productive, building their business relationships, and more. (Although there was a period where I was a horrible employee and it wasn’t until I literally slammed my head into the passenger window in a car accident I realized these people pay me to work there, not screw around.) 

I didn’t have to punch in a clock. Didn’t have to deal with clients (although except for one or two people, I preferred my clients over my co-workers). I could sleep in as long as I wanted to. For the first week or so, although I basked in my newfound freedoms, I still wafted around unsure of what to do. Corporate America does have a structure. It does have roles, boundaries, dos and don’ts. What did I do with my life from here on out? 

It was a no brainer that I would focus on my broadcasting and writing. But I’m not a woman prone to structure. I did what I had to do in Corporate America because they paid me, not because I enjoyed it. I enjoyed building relationships with my clients. Answering the phone, mitigating complaints, talking to folks, bring it on! Filling in that Excel spreadsheet? Someone please! Poke my eyes out. 

Note to anyone out there looking to see what their purpose is: what would you do for free? Not much and that’s how you can begin narrowing down what it is you’re meant to do in this world. The Lord knows what He gifted you with and you’re the only one who can do it. 

The COVID happened and changed a crud load of things. I won’t go into all of it because, why?  

I remember thinking, while I worked in Corporate America, that I would be a good housewife. I’d stay at home, take care of the house, wash the clothes, and then do my writing and broadcasting. Being a housewife would be easy, I’d think as I sat at my computer. A breeze! 

Now that I am one, I was blown away by the whole shift of understanding. I need to preface this by adding that before I became a housewife, I was horrible housekeeper. After I became a housewife, I’m still a horrible housekeeper. 

See, I thought that being a housewife wasn’t a career. I thought it was just staying at home, doing the dishes, and making food. I thought it was doing the laundry and putting it away. I thought it was just sweeping up the floors, vacuuming the carpet, making the beds, and then sitting down and relaxing for the rest of the day. 

I never quite understood that managing your own house was managing a company. See, in Corporate America, I’d been in an administrative capacity for many years. But that was the only thing I had to do. As housewife your role expands. Unlike some jobs, I have to put on many hats. Accounting is not my strong suit, but I have to balance and pay the bills. As production manager, I have to make sure operations keep going. As the maintenance department, the majority of it falls on me to make sure the house is kept up to standard. As head of Food and Agriculture, I have to make sure we have good quality food come into the house, that our health has some sort of standard and that we keep contamination down. 

As the reality of the shift in careers changed, I realized something – there is no difference between a career woman and a housewife. They’re the same.  

Here’s the thing: when God created Eve, He created her to be a helpmeet. She had his back and he had hers. That responsibility pours over into every part of a woman’s life, married or not, mothers or not. It’s the same thing. I honestly thought it was different. 

Whenever you read Proverbs 31 about the ‘Virtuous Woman’, this incredible lady was a career woman. She handled her home and her business with enviable expertise.  

Is it any wonder why women are such good administrators? It’s not about ‘girl power’ or ‘women are better than men’. If anything, it’s recognizing our strengths to manage life in whatever capacity we’re placed in. Whether as a single woman, a married woman, a single woman with kids, a married woman with kids – your career is your life and how well you manage it. 

I’ll send with this: every few years, I have a recurring dream about this house. I love this house. It’s gorgeous – large, ornate, with dozens and dozens of rooms. There are stairs and doors. Some doors are locked, others aren’t. The stairs lead up to different levels. I meet people there. Other times, I hear them as if they’re far away.  I told this dream on one of my shows and Sharon Tooson, who interprets dreams, made me realized that this house was my life. 

So, that brings me to my closing. I know other people have different opinions and experiences. But this my experience I wanted to share.  

I submit this: your house, woman of God, is your life. Whether your primary focus is on career building or homemaking or a mix in between, then remember you make of it what you make of it.  

If your house is your life, whatever you decide to do with it, then remember this verse in Proverbs 14: 

Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands. 

Be blessed!

About the Author:

Parker J. ColeParker J. Cole is a writer and radio show host who spends most of her time reading, knitting, writing, cooking, and concocting new ideas for stories. Her first novel, Dark Cherub, won Best of Spring Reading 2013 from eMediaCampaigns. She lives in Michigan with her husband and beloved dog Sarah.

Visit her site at http://www.ParkerJCole.com

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CrossReads Weekly Devotional: Coming Soon 7/27/2020

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by Ruth O’Neil

“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come” (Matthew 24:42 NIV).      

It seems there’s been a lot of talk about the end of the world as we know it and the second coming of Christ. We certainly are living in a crazy time. Although it’s not the first of its kind. People have been expecting Christ to come soon even in the New Testament shortly after the crucifixion. If anything, it should light a fire under us as believers to make sure we witness to all with whom we come in contact. People are searching more than ever these days. They have no hope because they have no Savior or the promise of eternal life. 

As a child, I imagined that rays of sunlight reaching down to earth from the clouds was what it will look like when Christ returns. Now as an adult, I wonder if this is one of God’s ways of reminding us to keep looking up. God wants us to be watching for His return as in the parable of the oil lamps. 

“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.  Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 25:1-13 KJV). 

We need to be working and trying to reach others for Christ with every moment we have left. 

When the rapture happens it will only last a moment, and in that instanwe will neither have time to make lastminute decisions or be able to enjoy the moment. The Bible uses the words “flash” and “twinkling of an eye” (1 Corinthians 15:52). Before we know it has begun, it will be over. Because of all that, we need to be busy working for the kingdom now.  

Don’t let the negativity we see every day keep your focus on this world; instead, turn your face and your heart upward, working tirelessly until the day He comes in the clouds.  

Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen (Revelation 1:7 KJV).

About the Author:

Ruth OneilRuth O’Neil has been writing for over 20 years. She has published hundreds of articles in numerous publications. She loves to touch the emotions when she writes. “If I can make one person laugh or cry, I’ll consider myself successful.” Her first novel “Come Eat at My Table” has just come out in ebook form and can be purchased on her website. She homeschools her three children (well, one now, as two have graduated). She and her husband have been married for 20-plus years. In her spare time she enjoys quilting, crafting, and reading. You can visit her on her blog at ruths-real-life (dot)blogspot.com or her website at ruthoneil (dot)weebly.com

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The Point is … Come Hell or High Water 7/24/2020

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by James Collins

There are many devices in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand. Proverbs 19:21

Several years ago, a severe rainstorm turned a peaceful town into a flooded disaster area. The local newspaper editor set out in a rowboat to cover the story in detail. As she paddled down a stream that had been one of the town’s residential streets, she noticed a woman sitting on the roof of a house. 

The newspaper editor paddled to the edge of the roof, tied up her boat, climbed out, and sat down next to the woman. She thought that a woman sitting alone on her roof would make a great story. So, she took out a pen and paper. Before she could ask the woman a question, she saw a hat floating downstream with the current. When the hat reached the far side of the house, it made a complete u-turn and floated upstream to the other end of the house. Then the hat made another u-turn and floated downstream again until it reached the far side of the house where it turned again and floated upstream to the other end of the house. The hat did this time after time. 

The reporter was bewildered. She turned to the woman and asked, “Do you have any idea what that hat is doing out there in front of your house?” She said, “Yes. That hat is on my husband’s head. He said that ‘come hell or high water’ he was going to mow the lawn today.” 

The point is: Sometimes we stubbornly cling to our plans instead of letting go and letting God have control. We often ignore things that are important and continue to focus on the trivial. The flood rises to the rooftop, but we go on mowing the lawn. 

You probably started 2020 with big plans. You had dreams of a year that had nothing to do with a global pandemic. Then March came and you had to change your plans. 

Personally, I am very discouraged as we pass the year’s halfway mark. It seems nothing has gone right. Government bureaucrats, who can’t even fix the streets and sidewalks, have suddenly become health experts. They tell us it is healthy to gather in mass to protest, but it is unhealthy to gather in mass for church. They tell us that it is a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion, but I have no choice but to wear a mask. They let prisoners out of jail for fear of them catching COVID-19, but threaten to put Christians in jail if they sing in church. What is right is wrong and what is wrong is right. Nothing makes sense. It seems as if the world is spinning out of control. 

But God is in control. The Bible says that there are many devices (or plans) in a man’s heart, but God’s purposes prevail (Proverbs 19:21). What are God’s purposes in this global havoc? Perhaps God wants us to forget about ourselves and focus on things that truly matter.  

How long has it been since you… Took the time to go see someone who lives alone? Wrote an email to someone who crossed your mind? Spent more time in God’s book than on Facebook? Shared your faith? Offered forgiveness? Told someone that you loved them? 

I suppose that I could stubbornly continue to be discouraged about the world situation. But instead, I think, I am going to let go and let God. Even in all this madness, I am going to look for ways to serve Him. 

Come hell or high water. 

Fort Scott's First Southern Baptist ChurchThe Point Is ...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, writer, and columnist. Find out more about his ministry at www.thepointis.net. 

 

 

 

 

 

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CrossReads Book Spotlight: The Trouble In Willow Falls

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

The Trouble In Willow Falls

(Willow Falls Series Book 2)

by Pat Nichols

The Trouble In Willow Falls

Heart-warming emotionally charged saga of a small southern town’s struggle for survival and two women’s challenge to balance family and career

Rachel Streetman is one audition away from landing the lead in a play written by a respected director and jump-starting her lackluster acting career. An unexpected incident sends her fleeing back to Willow Falls, Georgia and Charlie Bricker’s arms. After collaborating with her sister to revive the town’s theater, an invitation to audition for a play in Atlanta’s premiere theater forces her to choose between loyalty and her life-long dream.

Months after submitting her first novel to publishers, Emily Hayes receives one response—a rejection. When famous artist Naomi Jasper offers her much-needed cash to finish writing, then cast and direct a play about Willow Falls’ colorful history, Emily faces a difficult decision—postpone rewriting her novel or accept the offer. Aware the project has a high probability of failure she recruits the one person who has the experience she needs.

When a scathing blogger review and a negative Atlanta television newscast threaten Willow Falls’ premiere as a North Georgia tourist destination, the quirky, opinionated, lovable residents dig deep to invest their time and limited resources to boost the town’s appeal. As they prepare for Redding Arms’ grand opening, five newcomers with troubled pasts and one British tourist test the locals’ capacity for tolerance and grace.

“Small towns can be the scene of big dreams, high drama, and unforgettable romance. This is certainly the case in Willow Falls. Filled with colorful characters and unexpected turns, The Trouble in Willow Falls is a story you won’t want to miss.” Ann Tatlock, author of A Room of My Own

“Pat Nichols weaves a story with characters who dig deep into your soul. The Trouble in Willow Falls catches on the wind and brushes through your heart.” Cindy K. Sproles, author of Mercy’s Rain and Liar’s Winter

“The Trouble in Willow Falls is filled with your favorite characters from the first book as the saga continues. I love this small town.” Ane Mulligan, award-winning author of the bestselling Chapel Springs series.

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CrossReads Short Takes: Forewarned & Prayer Journal

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CrossReads Short Takes

Forewarned

by Debra Ullrick

Forewarned

A Contemporary Christian Suspense Romance Novel

He loves her… but can he save her from her own mistakes?
After a near fatal accident in the Colorado wilderness, the pain Jasmine Moore lives with has made her a recluse. To fill the void the harsh Steamboat Springs winter brings, she goes online seeking companionship. Her loneliness overrides all caution, bringing with it a deadly peril.
Jackson Warren has loved Jasmine for years. When he discovers she’s talking to strangers on the Internet, his internal alarms blare. Especially after strange and suspicious incidents occur close to home. Can he convince her to heed his concerns before it’s too late?

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Prayer Journal

Guide to Prayer, Reflection, Gratitude and Praise

by Kristina Ducklow

Prayer Journal

This book wants to make you happy. Get ready to smile!Does your prayer life need a makeover? Come on, take my hand and let me help!

If you are anything like me, I find the demands of life distract me from creating a consistent, satisfying, and fruitful prayer life. It’s super easy to get caught up in work, children, chores, bills, friendships, the list goes on and on… At the end of the day, I am embarrassed and disappointment with myself for not taking the time to put Christ first. Surely I could have made time for the God of all the universe! The guilt, condemnation and shame creep in and I’m left feeling even further disconnected.

If, by chance, I do finally make the time for prayer, I often feel lost, aimless and overwhelmed with how to enter into His presence. I feel inadequate when I don’t follow through every day and panic when weekly gaps appear in my journaling. Despite my inconsistencies, I recognize the value of spending time alone with God. But how? And why do I seem to be more interested in browsing the Internet or watching Netflix than spending intimate time with Him? Can you relate?

This cycle of guilt, condemnation, aimlessness and uncertainty is what inspired me to create this 3 month easy-to-use prayer journal. I figured other women were having a hard time too; and if I was honest and vulnerable enough, I could help ease the pressure and show them a different way. Let me take you by the hand and help lead you closer to His heart.

My prayer journal was prayerfully and intentionally designed to guide you through a process and into a vibrant connection with Jesus. Each day provides enough structure to get you started and enough space to give you the freedom to express what’s on your mind. The daily prayer suggestions, questions and prompts are purposefully intended to usher you into God’s presence and stimulate your joy and happiness.

Going beyond prayer, I have deliberately added specific questions to arouse gratitude and inspire service. In order to ensure the Word of God is written upon your heart, hand drawn weekly coloring pages encourage creativity and facilitate meditation. Furthermore, you will be challenged weekly to take action steps in serving and loving a hurting world. As we draw closer to Jesus, we will naturally want to overflow into the lives of others.

This journal is an expression of me – from my heart to yours. I’ve added several personal touches from sharing my testimony to drawing the graphics by hand. I have chosen to be bravely vulnerable so that you too can share in the journey of setting your mind on things above.

There is nothing like being in the presence of God! Let my journal light a lamp for your feet and show you the way. Your life will be dramatically transformed as you are filled with His peace, joy and grace!

Benefits and Features:

Daily structured questions to guide you through prayer
2 weeks of prayer pages to try before buying the paperback
Complete instruction on how to use the journal
An honest, vulnerable, real, authentic, and genuine introduction
Blank space for dates so you never fall behind
Beautiful hand drawn coloring pages with Biblical verses to meditate on
Free space for thoughts, reflections or sermon notes
Questions to provoke joy, happiness, gratitude, and service
Daily prayer suggestions
A list of Bible verses on prayer

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13

10% of sales will be tithed to my local church and world missions. Thanks!

Note: This digital version is designed to use a separate journal to record your thoughts, prayers and responses. I have pared down the book in order to reduce the price, delivery costs and downloading time. The paperback version is available on Amazon.

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Why Backstory is Essential and How to Use it Correctly 7/21/2020

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by Carmen Peone

Backstory is the backbone of every character, even usIt’s Godgiven and shapes us into the men and women we are created to be. A character’s backstory is essential for stories that rely on empathy because compassion focuses on what the why of what happens means to the character 

Backstory is vital for tension and conflict. Without them, readers tend to close the book and move on. There are three levels of conflict: inner struggles, interpersonal clashes, and external challenges. Without a clear knowledge of your character’s past, they won’t effectively reach their goals. Weaving the three levels of conflict together is pertinent for resolutions to work in harmony. 

You have to answer why the point-of-view or POV character needs so desperately to reach her goals and why. Backstory will offer those answers.  

The most exciting element of story building for me is writing the character’s biography. I love to find out who she is, what she wants, what’s stopping her from getting it, why she needs it, her age, likes, dislikes, family dynamics, career, friends and enemies, and love interests 

The key to using backstory wisely from the first word to the final scene is showing how inner conflict and external actions are inseparable. In other words, a person’s desire drives the need to reach the story goal. Does it not for you?  

Everything a character does and says reveals his or her values, fears, hopes, and desires. When creating backstory for each of your main characters, discover their shame, pride, guilt, forgiveness, fear, bravery, loss, and love. All of these human foundations lend your characters to what they know is possible or not and are the engines that drive behavior.  

Ask yourself what drives you, and then ask it of your characters. I bet you’ll get similar answers.  

You can drop a hint of backstory in the first line and pepper pieces of it throughout the manuscript by showing behavior and not simply telling readers about your POV character. This alone feeds tension and an element of mystery. Do this and readers will keep turning pages late into the night.    

Backstory will also show the tools necessary to press through conflict. What skills does the POV character have that will help them through the tough times? What in their life has taught them to endure and keep climbing their mountains? What will cause them to dig deep in the peak of their crisis, when all seems lost, and keep fighting for what they believe in? 

Find a way to use inner conflict to reveal backstory. Conflict in dialog, an argument per se, is a wonderful tool to use to force a character to address her past and thus expose her inner conflict. This helps both characters identify a problem and come up with a solution.  

The best uses of backstory help shape attitudes, values, and behaviors which help your characters negotiate life and help determine the next move. Knowing where your character is emotionally in each event and what the desired scene goal is, will help you determine what slice of backstory goes where.  

Take a scene from your book. Does it tell too much backstory or is it layered in? Are you showing it in bits and pieces? Can you see backstory’s reflection in your characters?  

carmenpeone.com 

About the Author:

Carmen PeoneCarmen Peone has lived in Northeast Washington and on the Colville Confederated Indian Reservation since 1988. She had worked with a Tribal Elder, Marguerite Ensminger, for three years learning the Arrow Lakes Language and various cultural traditions. She owns and trains her horses and competes in local Extreme Challenge and Mountain Trail competitions. With a degree in psychology, the thought of writing never entered her mind, until she married her husband and they moved to the reservation after college. With the love of history and western woman lifestyle, she brings stories of hope, family, relationships, and faith to her novels.

These books were a labor of love, especially the second edition of the True to Heart Trilogy. Thank you to my cover model, Shayna Palmanteer of the Colville Confederated Tribes, for your willingness to be a part of this adventure. Visit my website for information on the workbooks that go along with my young adult books at https://carmenpeone.com/books/.
http://carmenpeone.com

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Weekly Devotional: Gems From Pastor Jim 7/20/2020

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by Jim Hughes

crossEzek. 13:1-3 Then this message came to me from the LORD: “Son of man, speak against the false prophets of Israel who are inventing their own prophecies. Tell them to listen to the word of the LORD. This is what the Sovereign LORD says. ‘Destruction is certain for the false prophets who are following their own imaginations and have seen nothing at all!’”

Ezekiel was told to speak out against those false prophets of Israel who were inventing their own prophecies. We need to do the same thing today. We need to speak out against those who are preaching and teaching another Gospel. I am not speaking about the non-essential differences of doctrine in the church today, but those who blatantly promote other ways to heaven. There are many who pervert the Gospel message to promote their own agendas and ideas. There are those who endeavor to justify sin by declaring that what they do is not sin. There are many who pick apart the Bible and declare it outdated and no longer relevant to our lives. There are those who take things out of the context in which they are written in order to make it say what they want it to say.

We have a mandate to speak out against these false prophets and stand clearly on what God declares is truth. We must preach and teach only the Word of God. We must not cater to those who do not accept Biblical truth as being truth. We are to not listen to their rhetoric or have fellowship with them. It is our mandate to speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth of God’s Word. We must protect our pulpits and never let false prophets have access to them.

Destruction is certain for all who would promote another Gospel message or who would distort it. We must warn them of what is to come for them if they don’t repent. We must as well guard our hearts and minds so that we don’t get caught up into their untruth. We must diligently study God’s Word so that we will know the truth. The eternal destiny of our souls is at stake.

Before and After the Honeymoon

About the Author:

Jim Hughes

Spending his formative years in Ft. Wayne, IN, Jim followed the love of his life to southeast Iowa where they married and have spent the majority of their lives. Jim has pastored several churches throughout his life and has worked many years in local factories to help support his family. The father of two married adult children and one son still at home, Jim is a first-time author.

C Through Marriage came into being through many years of pastoral and life experiences. The book first took on a life of its own over 20 years ago when I sought to address the much publicized moral failures of prominent leaders in the church. In the chapter on Chasity, I include the guideliness that I developed then to protect one’s self from such failures.

I am a firm believer in order to make sense out of life you have to use much common sense. We need to get back to the basics of what has worked for many, many generations. If is isn’t broke, why try to fix it? I strive to return to the basics of what really works in all my writings.

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Ask the Author Podcast conducts candid and insightful interviews with Christian Independent Authors. Ever wanted to know what your favorite authors favorite food is? Want to know what your favorite author does in his/her spare time? You’ll find the answer here each week https://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard
========================================
This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.
========================================
FREE eBook Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version This is the ideal and easy way to share the gospel using your Kindle http://bit.ly/2xvdXNY #free
========================================

 

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The Point is … Reasons to Leave Your Church 7/17/2020

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by James Collins

And upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18b

“Why didn’t you wear a tie to church today, you pinheaded nitwit?” Lois asked me with a frown on her face. Lois Steam (not her real name) is a woman in our church who complains about everything. Two weeks ago, Lois stomped up to me after church and I could tell she was upset. She continued, “I absolutely hated that song we sang today. What’s with all the handclapping? This is a church, not a disco.” This is a worship service, not a funeral, I thought. 

As Lois continued her verbal assaultI never said a word. But I thought things that weren’t very pastor-like. Pray for me.  

“Why don’t we go back to singing more from the red hymnals? If Jesus sang from the red hymnal, why can’t we?” 

I think you’re wrong. Everybody knows that Jesus sang from the blue hymnal.  

“Why didn’t you come check on me after my surgery last week?”  

I’m not sure if having an ingrown toenail removed is a surgery worthy of a pastoral visit.  

“You need to change your voice. I can’t stand your accent.” 

Yes ma’am. I will try to have that done by next Sunday. 

“This church isn’t meeting my needs. I might just move my membership.” 

Don’t let the door hit you where the Good Lord split you. 

At some point, you have probably felt like Lois. You feel unhappy at your church and think that you should leave. As a public service, I have put together a list of reasons to leave your church. 

  1. Your gifts and talents are not celebrated. If you are asked to help in the nursery when you clearly belong on stage, then you need to leave. 
  1. Your pet issues are not being addressed from the pulpit. If your pastor isn’t constantly addressing an issue that you saw on Facebook and got all worked up over, then you need to leave. 
  1. You are annoyed with the people. Overly friendly greeters. Young hipsters. Crotchety seniors. Confused Millennials. Noisy children. Lost sinners. People who want…help. Surely God wouldn’t want you to stick it out with people like that. If you have those kinds of people, your church is probably beyond hope. Time to move on. Your next church, I’m sure will be perfect…   

Of course, I am speaking with my tongue in my cheek. Church is not about you. It’s all about Jesus and sharing His message and love. A great church is built on these four things. 

The Book – the inspired, infallible, inerrant Word of God. 

The Blood – the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

The Birth – the new birth. 

The Blessed Hope – the coming again of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

The point is: If you are looking for a church, find out what stand they take on the Book, the Blood, the Birth, and the Blessed Hope. Or if they take any stand at all. If they don’t believe in these four foundations, saturate that place with your absence. Then find a church that does. 

Remember, it’s not about you. It’s all about Jesus.  

He will build His church, with all kinds of people.  

People like you.  

People like me.  

Even people like Lois. 

Fort Scott's First Southern Baptist ChurchThe Point Is ...

James Collins

James Collins

James Collins is pastor, writer, and columnist. Find out more about his ministry at www.thepointis.net. 

 

 

 

 

 

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