Archives For Monthly Giveaway

Breaking News: Winner of the $10 Amazon Email Gift Card is LeAnn. Congrats, LeAnn! Email me!

Periodically, I’ve been trying something new on the blog: a blog hop, which I’m calling Come to the Table.

When I started this blog link up, I was hoping to create a place where blogs would receive more visibility. I encouraged you to visit your link up neighbors and make new friends. But visiting around to your neighbors takes time.

So I’m now trying a ONCE A MONTH hop. I’ll post the hop at the end of the month, and we can all link up our favorite posts. (I will try this at the end of November. If no one is interested, I’ll move on to something else!)


Why call it Come to the Table? Because one of my favorite things is to gather around a cozy kitchen table with a group of friends–with a mug of coffee in hand, of course–and share whatever is on our hearts.

What is a blog hop? An event where bloggers link up their posts and share with readers whatever is on their hearts.

Giveaway Prize: I’m giving away a $10 Amazon Email Gift Card to one participant. You are entered when you link up and each time you comment on a post! Giveaway ends next Friday, December 7th.

What kind of posts will bloggers link here? I invite bloggers to link their favorite post (or posts) from the last month . . .

  • Thoughts on how God has been working in your life
  • A post about your family
  • A review of a great book you’ve read
  • A giveaway we’d be interested in
  • A word about something wonderful that just happened to you
  • A post about a disappointment or heartache
  • Thoughts on Scripture
  • A list of some of your favorite things

So with all those choices, readers will find a little bit of everything at this blog hop. Bloggers, link what you will—as long as it is Inspirational or Family Friendly.

UPDATE: This giveaway has ended, but there will be another one soon!  (June 7th)

I’m glad you stopped by because this week we’re celebrating Spring with a great Spring Fling Blog Hop! All week long you can hop around from blog to blog and scoop up some great book-related prizes without leaving the comfort of your own home. This exciting event was organized by Inspired Kathy of the I Am A Reader, Not A Writer Blog.

The hop will run from Monday Night, April 30th, to Monday, May 7th, at 11:59 pm. Do you remember how it works? You can enter my giveaway and then hop to any blog on the linky list (at the end of this post) to see what they’re offering. Who knows what wonderful prizes are out there!?

The Doorkeeper Prize: I’m giving away TWO $10 Amazon Email Gift Cards. That means two winners! Just to show my appreciation for those of you who follow and visit my blog! I will email the winners on May 8th and post their names after they respond.

Steps to enter . . .

1. For your mandatory entry, leave a comment on this post. 2. In that one comment, you can list any bonus entries you’ve completed. You don’t need to leave separate comments. (Since I do have to moderate some comments—especially if you’re new to the blog—don’t worry if your your comment doesn’t show up right away.)

**Also, I believe you have to enter your email address in order to comment. Though you can’t see your email address here, I can view it from my blog dashboard. So don’t feel you need to write your email address again in your comment.

Bonus Entries:

Now are you ready to hop somewhere else? Remember—these blogs aren’t necessarily inspirational but are family friendly. And all prizes are book related. Continue Reading…

UPDATE: A winner has been emailed!

You don’t have to be online for long to run across articles on marketing yourself, making money online, building a platform for your business, and finding or creating a community for support and encouragement. The folks I’m writing about today have mastered all of these areas, and we can learn a lot from them.

They are Christian wives and mothers, business women, writing mentors, talented authors, and bloggers at one of the most popular sites in the writing world. Several years ago, these women banded together to promote their books and services and encourage fellow Christians who might be interested in venturing out on a similar journey. They’re the ladies of SeekervilleMary Connealy, Janet Dean, Debby Guisti, Audra Harders, Pam Hillman, Cara Lynn James, Myra Johnson, Glynna Kaye, SandraLeesmith, Julie Lessman, Ruth Logan Herne, Tina Radcliffe, and Missy Tippens.

What will you find at the Seekerville site?

  • A wonderful example of online community. (If you leave a comment, one of the Seekers is sure to respond.)
  • News about the latest in Christian fiction.
  • Writing tips, how-to’s, contest updates, and encouragement.
  • Free stuff—lots of opportunities to win free books.
  • Favorite recipes.(Follow this link to the Yankee-Belle Cafe.)

What more could you want?

The Seekers are some of the most generous authors in the American Christian Fiction Writers. They and their guest bloggers shared information which spurred me on in my writing journey. But even if you’re not interested in books and/or writing, you can learn much about how to present yourself online from Seekerville. So head on over and visit the ladies today!

Now for a GIVEAWAY! The ladies of Seekerville write wonderful stories. However, because of time constraints and promises to the companies that offer free books in exchange for blog reviews, I have not reviewed many of their books on my site. I’d like to encourage you to check out their novels. So I’m offering a $10 Amazon email gift card to one lucky commenter.

Steps to enter the giveaway: (1) Visit the Seekerville site and view the “Our Books” slideshow in the sidebar. (2) Leave a comment telling me which books you’re most interested in reading. The contest will run until Saturday, March 3rd. Enjoy!

At the 2011 American Christian Fiction Writers Conference, I was fortunate enough to meet several of the Seekerville authors . . .

Author Julie Lessman, ACFW 2011

Author Debby Giusti, ACFW 2011


For centuries, people happily ensconced in the world system have scoffed at Christian beliefs. They give no credence to talk of life after death, miracles, the reality of Christ’s indwelling spirit, and the power of prayer. Yet no one has ever experienced a life on earth with no Christian presence to stem the tide of unrighteousness set in motion by Adam and Eve.

In the Left Behind Series, Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins add their imaginations to Bible prophecy to create a tale of what those future days might be like. From the moment I opened the first book in the series, I knew I was embarking on an adventure that would change me.

The story begins with a man on a plane. Even though he’s a commercial pilot with a panoramic view of the world from 30, 000 feet, he sees no further than his own dissatisfaction and selfish desires. What’s that saying . . . ? “A man wrapped up in himself makes a very small package.” That’s Rayford Steele.


Also on the plane is award-winning journalist Cameron “Buck” Williams. Buck is fresh from a trip to Israel, where he witnessed the miraculous defeat of the Russian forces who attempted to destroy that country. After which, his Christian friends encouraged him even more strongly to believe in Christ. But Buck is not quite ready for that.

Who’s not on the plane? Dozens of passengers who suddenly vanish into thin air, leaving behind their clothes, socks, shoes, and companions.

Pretty intriguing, right? And that’s just the first nineteen pages.

What follows is an action-packed thriller that follows the political developments on earth as well as the spiritual journeys of Rayford and Buck.  Book one covers the Rapture of Christians and the start of the seven-year Tribulation, as well as introduces several key players—Rayford’s daughter Chloe, Hattie Durham, Dr. Chaim Rosenzweig, Nicolae Carpathia—and ends with a fascinating cliff hanger inside the UN.

I first read Left Behind fifteen years ago, when this book was the hot new read in Christian circles. I marveled at the way the authors portrayed a future I considered distant.

Recently, I was drawn to re-read the series because of events and changes occurring in the world around me—things I never thought I’d see in my lifetime.

That distant future may be closer than I’d imagined.

If you’d like to gain a biblical understanding of end times prophecy and be entertained while you’re learning, I encourage you to check out this series. You can purchase a copy of book one at this link.

As part of the Tyndale Summer Reading Program, I’m reviewing five books from the Left Behind Series, which I recently re-read. This is my first review.

***July Giveaway Fun: This is a giveaway post.  A comment on any giveaway post during the month of July can include you in the drawing for the $10 Amazon Gift Card. Or you can leave a comment just to be friendly!


I have favorite books for every mood or season of life I’ve experienced. When I rate them on a scale of 1 to 5 (on Good Reads or Amazon), I give 4’s to the novels that are well-written, suspenseful, and engaging. I save the 5’s for those books that mean something more to me.

A 5 is for a novel that has helped me grow as a person, comforted me, filled up a crack or two in my heart, or bolstered my faith in God. I think Martha by Diana Wallis Taylor earned a 5 because it did all of these things. This lovely story brought to life a woman I’ve long admired. Martha was specifically mentioned in Scripture as a friend of Jesus. He felt at home in her house, visited frequently, and trusted her to make his followers comfortable as well. I loved how the author depicted Jesus speaking to Martha’s heart and making Himself a part of her life, as in this excerpt . . .

“The disciples, enjoying a respite after long hours on the road, were in a mood to celebrate. Thomas pulled a kinnor, a small harp, from his sash and began to plunk its strings, sending a simple melody through the courtyard. Mary picked up her lyre and joined in the music. Jesus seemed to be thoroughly enjoying himself, his eyes dancing with the music. Martha suddenly felt like celebrating with them.

As the hour grew late, Jesus rose from the table and his disciples, ever aware of his movements, rose with him. Martha hated to see them leave. ‘Master, you are welcome to sleep here.’

Jesus at Martha’s hous

‘You are kind, Martha, and a generous hostess, but we will retire to the Mount of Olives for the night.’

‘Will you come again?’

He smiled and she was lost in the depths of his eyes. ‘I must travel a long way, but whenever we are in this area again, we will come.’

Jesus glanced to where Thomas and Mary were talking quietly. ‘I believe at least one of my disciples has good reason to return also.’ His eyes danced and Martha was filled with love for him—not the love she’d known with Thaddeus, but a holy love, deep and abiding. It didn’t matter what others said about him. She knew who he was.”

The author created a beautiful inner voice for Martha. I found myself hurting with her as she bids farewell to loved ones, struggles to release cherished dreams, and prepares to embrace a solitary life. The peace that Jesus gives Martha felt real to me. Both those who have experienced that peace—as well as those who are seeking it—will enjoy this novel.

Also, I thoroughly enjoyed the happy ending Diana Wallis Taylor imagined for her sweet main character. Did it happen that way for Martha in real life? Someday I’ll ask her!

***Available June 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Thanks to Revell for providing my review copy of this book. Don’t miss this uplifting story! Follow this link to purchase your copy.

July Giveaway Contest: At the end of July, I’ll be giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card to one fortunate commenter. All you need to do to be entered is comment on any eligible post up until July 31st. (I will label the contest posts.) I will then submit all names to the Random Number Generator to determine a winner. I will submit your name as many times as you comment, but you also have a great chance of winning by commenting on just one post! Today’s post is the First Contest Post.

***So feel free to comment and also tell me if you’d like to be included in the drawing. Or you could just leave a comment to say hello. (We bloggers love that!)

Journey to the Well: You can order Diana’s first book from at this link.

About the author: Diana Wallis Taylor lives with her husband Frank in San Diego, California. Between them they have six grown children and ten grandchildren. She serves on the board of the San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild and is active in Christian Women’s Fellowship. Follow this link to visit Diana’s website.