Thursday, August 31, 2017

Called and Courageous Girls Live Webcast

 

Join the movement to inspire the next generation of godly women! 

Meet God’s Called and Courageous Girls, Bible heroes who inspire your child’s faith in God. Harvest House's new series just launched with the release of the first book! To celebrate the release of A Brave Big Sister, you're invited to join authors Rachel Spier Weaver and Anna Haggard for a live webcast on September 7 at 2 PM EDT (1 PM CDT/12 PM MDT/11 AM PDT).

Join top Christian speakers and the creators of the Called and Courageous Girls series for this live one-hour event to equip and encourage parents how to teach their kids about the women of the Bible. Explore how God is calling women to serve him today in exciting ways. There will be plenty of prizes to win, too, so stop by on your lunch break and join in the conversation.

Guest speakers and topics will include:
  • Peter Greer on framing our biblical and faith narrative in a way that invites girls to join God’s story.
  • Katelyn Beaty on how mainstream and church cultures impact girls’ understanding of their role in God’s plan for the world.
  • Chris Horst on the Christian narrative and the significance of women in scripture.
  • Carolyn Custis James, Kate Wallace Nunneley, with Rachel Spier Weaver and Anna Haggard, the authors and creators of the Called and Courageous Girls series of children’s books.
Don't miss this chance to learn how to shine the spotlight on the heroic women of the Bible for your daughters, granddaughters, nieces, sisters, and Sunday school classes! Click here to learn more and to register for the webcast by inputting your email address for a reminder using the pink "Register" button!

Also, check out the special preorder offer on A Brave Big Sister: A Bible Story About Miriam. Learn more here.


{MORE ABOUT A BRAVE BIG SISTER}


A Brave Big Sister: A Bible Story About Miriam (Called and Courageous Girls)
(Harvest House, October 2017)
It’s time to be brave!
Growing up as a slave girl, Miriam learned how to be brave—and smart. When her baby brother, Moses, was in grave danger, Miriam and her mom saved his life.
As Miriam matured, she became a gifted musician and discovered other God-given talents. And when God called Miriam—along with her siblings—to guide the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt, she was ready to lead.
With God’s help, you can be just like Miriam—called and courageous!
***
Called and Courageous Girls – Bible Heroes That Inspire Your Child’s Faith in God
Called and courageous girls are disciples, political and spiritual leaders, philanthropists, moms, businesspeople, evangelists, prophets, and so much more. Called and courageous women of the Bible face overwhelming odds, finding strength, faith, and courage to join God’s Story.
Through examples of steadfast faith and—ultimately—God’s direction, the Called and Courageous Girls series invites your children to answer God’s calling to discover and use their talents, passions, and gifts to journey with Him on a lifelong adventure.
God is calling every courageous hero—including your child— to arise, trust in Him, and join the Greatest Story.
Rachel and Anna


{MORE ABOUT RACHEL AND ANNA}


Rachel Spier Weaver is a recruiter at HOPE International and has worked as a career counselor at the University of Florida and Dickinson College. Her passion is sharing stories of women of God who led in extraordinary ways. She lives with her husband, Shane, and their two children, Norah and Jack. 
Anna Haggard is coauthor of The Spiritual Danger of Doing Good and Mission Drift, a 2015 Christianity Today Book Award winner. A writer and editor for the Brethren in Christ U.S., Anna previously was a staff writer for HOPE International. She is delighted to write for children (her favorite people).
Find out more about at http://calledandcourageousgirls.com.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Hayley DiMarco helps women trade in stress and worry for grace and love

Part 1 of an interview with Hayley DiMarco,
Author of A Woman Overwhelmed



Women are often overwhelmed by the demands and circumstances of life, resulting in stress, fear, worry, impatience, fatigue, frustration and even depression. The emotional tolls are great but result in physical symptoms, such as weight gain, insomnia, headaches, and anxiety. In A Woman Overwhelmed: Finding God in the Messes of Life (Abingdon Press), best-selling author Hayley DiMarco shows readers what would happen if they could see the insanity in their pace and turn to embrace an overwhelming God.

DiMarco shares biblical insights and personal stories to show we were created to be overwhelmed, not by life, but by God. She offers a glimpse at the comedy of an overwhelmed life while encouraging readers to discover the depths and heights of God’s love and power.

Q: What are the things that overwhelm women most? 

Women have a list of things to be overwhelmed with, but most women become overwhelmed with their schedules, which include working, nurturing, loving, exercising, cleaning, cooking and more. However, that’s not all a woman can become overwhelmed with. We also use comparison as a way of determining our value and our success and as the grounds for too much to do and no way to do it all. With all that has to be done, it would be much easier if everyone would do what we want them to do, but alas, our lack of being able to control others ends up overwhelming us as well.

Q: Are you saying only women are overwhelmed? Aren’t men just as overwhelmed by life?

I think men find themselves overwhelmed by life as much as women, but they are overwhelmed by different things and tend manage it differently. Men struggle more with provision and protection and at the end of the day tend to react in one of two ways: by becoming workaholics or becoming paralyzed into complete inaction. They tend to struggle with anger and addiction as they attempt to deal with their stress while women often react differently to the stressors in their lives. God made men and women different, but He made us both to be overwhelmed.

Q: What are some of the resulting emotions and reactions to the sense of being overwhelmed? 

There are so many emotions and reactions when it comes to living life overwhelmed; some include stress, worry, self-doubt, impatience, inaction, frustration, anger, regret, desire for control, lack of self-control, depression, fighting, bossiness, condemnation, busyness and more. The list could go on and on because each of us deals with the stresses of life differently, but when we have any of the opposites of the fruit of the Spirit in our lives, it is a good indication we are living life overwhelmed by the wrong thing. The fruit of the Spirit is abundant in a life overwhelmed by God: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. If you find yourself with any of the opposites, such as selfishness, unthankfulness, impatience, harshness, immorality, unfaithfulness or a lack of self-control, then you have allowed yourself to become overwhelmed by the flesh rather than by the Spirit. The good news is the Spirit is willing and able to give you His fruit as you turn your eyes away from the cares of this world and onto the Father.

Q: Christian women feel a pressure and responsibility to live up to the description of the Proverbs 31 woman. How do women often misunderstand that passage of scripture?

First of all, we misunderstand Proverbs 31 when we think we should do as much as she is seen doing. This passage is most likely exemplifying six different women, not one super woman. For women who try to compare themselves to the perfect woman to see if they are doing everything right, looking at Proverbs 31 as representation of how to plan your day and to-do list is a disaster. When we do this, we can quickly forget it isn’t by works we are saved, but by His grace.

In fact, when Jesus came, He introduced to us His to-do-through-you list, and it is significantly shorter than Proverbs 31; it is simply to love, to love God and to love your neighbor. That is the summary of all God wants us to do. This means if your to-do list can’t be done in love, then your to-do list needs some changing because God’s command to love should color every aspect of our lives, like an Instagram filter covers your favorite photo.

Q: Tell us about a time where you became so stressed you simply shut down. What lessons have you learned about moderation? 

I naturally shy away from moderation. I find it lukewarm. I prefer to give everything 110%, which means I give more than I have, the very definition of overwhelmedness. Moderation seems to me like I’m not doing my best, so I’ve had to practice telling myself that moderation, while it doesn’t promise to do it all, will allow me to do more in the end than I could if I was going to extremes.

The most obvious place where I stress myself into inaction is in housekeeping. I have what professional organizers call “nowhere to put anything.” I move my stuff from surface to surface in an attempt to rearrange my mess, but it all just gets me down until I say, “I just don’t know what to do.” I’m paralyzed by the fact there is just too much stuff and nowhere to put it.



Q: What are some of the physical symptoms of stress women may shrug off, but should pay attention to?

Everyone experiences differing symptoms, but most of the time any of these things might signal you have become overwhelmed by life:
  • Emotional eating
  • Insomnia
  • Digestive problems
  • Ulcers
  • Anxiety
  • Tension headaches
  • Weight gain
  • Irritability 
Q: Can you tell us more about the companion Bible study? What tools do you provide for readers?

The companion Bible study takes a look at the life of Mary, the mother of Jesus, and shows readers how overwhelmed with God she remained in the midst of incredible trials. This six-week study has a DVD that helps participants get the most out of their time together, as well as a workbook that walks them through the overwhelming things in their own lives, in light of the Word of God.

Learn more about A Woman Overwhelmed and Hayley DiMarco at www.HayleyDiMarco.com. Readers can also follow her Facebook (hayley.dimarco) and Twitter (@hayleydimarco).

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

In God’s eyes, we are of equal and priceless value


Lori Benton's Many Sparrows reminds readers
of God’s power and perfect timing

Understanding why some things happen the way they do is impossible, but as Christians, we must remember God is in control and His timing is perfect. His purposes are deeper and broader than we can imagine. These are lessons Clare Inglesby must learn in award-winning author Lori Benton’s latest historical novel, Many Sparrows (WaterBrook/August 29, 2017).

Set in 1774 and based on historical facts, Many Sparrows depicts the harrowing account of a young mother who will stop at nothing to find and reclaim her son after he is taken by a native tribe. Clare Inglesby, a settler of the Ohio-Kentucky frontier, finds herself in a perilous situation when an accident forces her husband to leave her alone on a remote mountain trail with their four-year-old son, Jacob. Her precarious circumstances only intensify when Jacob is taken by the Shawnee under the cover of darkness. Clare awakens the next morning to find herself utterly alone and in labor.

Clare will face the greatest fight of her life as she struggles to reclaim her son from the Shawnee Indians now holding him captive. However, with the battle lines sharply drawn following a conflict between the Shawnee and new settlers, Jacob’s life might not be the only one at stake.

Frontiersman and adopted Shawnee Jeremiah Ring comes to Clare’s aid and promises to help her recover her son. However, his deep familial connection to the Shawnee makes his promise more complicated and the consequences more painful than either party could anticipate. Can Jeremiah convince Clare that recovering her son will require the very thing her anguished heart is unwilling to do — be still, wait and let God fight this battle for them?

Benton deftly handles the moral complexity of the two ways of life that clashed against each other as colonists encroached upon Native American territories on the Ohio-Kentucky border. “I was inspired to write it by my research into the 18th century and also by what God’s been doing in my own heart in recent years,” Benton shares. “I hope to convey [in Many Sparrows] a picture of what it means not to rely on our own understanding and strength, but wait on the Lord to work on our behalf.”

According to Benton, the title of Many Sparrows has several meanings. “It’s taken from Matthew 10:29–31, ‘Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? And not one of them shall fall on the ground without your Father. . . . Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows,’” she explains. “The title speaks to the theme of God’s vigilance in our lives and His constant care for us, as well as the fact we are linked to one another. In God’s eyes we are of equal and priceless value — far more than many sparrows, each and every one.”

For more on Many Sparrows, visit www.waterbrookmultnomah.com.



Advance Praise

“Stunning. Many Sparrows is everything I want in a book: settings that spring to life, characters I love, rich historical context, heart-wrenching drama, timeless spiritual insights and prose that reads like poetry. Lori Benton handles the conflicted 18th century with sensitivity in this tender tale of hope and fear, faith and doubt, loss and new life. Truly, this is an inspired masterpiece sure to stir the soul.”
~ Jocelyn Green, award-winning author of The Mark of the King

“Intense. Enlightening. Lustrous. Many Sparrows is a lesson in early American history wrapped up in a beautiful romance, one not only of the human heart but of God’s heart for His creation. I cherished Clare and Jeremiah’s quietly blossoming love and deeply felt their struggle to trust and reach that painful yet unburdening place of surrender. Many sighs. And many thanks to the author.”
~ Tamara Leigh, USA Today best-selling author of The Vexing and Lady Betrayed


About the Author

Lori Benton was raised east of the Appalachian Mountains, surrounded by early American history going back 300 years. Her novels transport readers to the 18th century, where she brings the Colonial and early Federal periods of American history to life.

She is the author of Burning Sky (recipient of three Christy Awards), The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn, The Wood’s Edge (a Christy nominee) and A Flight of Arrows. Her latest release is Many Sparrows.

When Benton isn’t writing, reading or researching, she enjoys exploring the Oregon wilderness with her husband.



Monday, August 28, 2017

Be a pineapple


Instead of blogging about Bachelor in Paradise which is beyond stupid and pointless, especially this season, I spent time out in my studio working on one of my pineapple canvases. After a Monday that seemed less than productive -- at least less productive than I wanted it to be -- I needed to be creative.



Sunday, August 27, 2017

The Color Song

The Crayon Box Song

Written by William V. Mason


When I was just a little child
No higher than your knee,
My mother bought a box of crayons,
Just for me.
I picked them up and I opened them up
And I looked way down inside,
And the colors there reminded me
Of Jesus when He died.

O… Red is the color of the blood that He shed,
Brown is for the crown of thorns they laid upon His head.
Blue is for royalty! In Heaven He does dwell;
And yellow is for the Christian who's afraid to tell.

I colored and I colored
'Til the crayons were all gone,
And though I am much older now,
The mem'ry lingers on.
And when I see a little child
With crayon box in hand,
I tell them what they mean to me
And hope they'll understand.

O… Red is the color of the blood that He shed,
Brown is for the crown of thorns they laid upon His head.
Blue is for royalty! In Heaven He does dwell;
And yellow is for the Christian who's afraid to tell.

Afraid to tell of a Savior
Who died on Calvary,
He died for lowly sinners
Just like you and me;
And someday soon He's coming back
To be our King,
And the colors of the crayon box
We will sing!

O… Red is the color of the blood that He shed,
Brown is for the crown of thorns they laid upon His head.
Blue is for royalty! In Heaven He does dwell;
And yellow is for the Christian who's afraid to tell.

So, don't you be a Christian, who's afraid to tell!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Pineapples

If you have followed me for long, you know I have a thing about pineapples. Today was pineapple day in the studio. I have two canvases to put quotes on, but for now this is the only one I have ready to show.

I thought I had it rotated!


Friday, August 25, 2017

Fall craft show schedule - part 2

I told you it would be a busy fall! Last night, I posted where The Crafty Dad and Daughter will be in September and October. Here's the November - December line-up.

Click on the school name for more information on the event. Click on the address for Google Maps.

November 4 ~ 9:30 AM - 4 PM




November 11 ~ 9 AM - 4 PM


December 2 ~ 9 AM - 3 PM

(2017 flyer coming soon)

December 9 ~ 9 AM - 4 PM





Thursday, August 24, 2017

Fall craft show schedule - part 1

I think we have our fall craft show schedule set. There are a couple of weekends we could add in, IF the opportunity were right. We're going to be busy regardless.

Here is where we will be in September - October. I'll post our November - December schedule tomorrow.

Click on the school name for more information on the event. Click on the address for Google Maps.

September 30 ~ 9 AM - 5 PM



October 7 ~ 9 AM - 5 PM
October 8 ~ 11 AM - 5 PM


October 14 ~ 9 AM - 4 PM


October 21 ~ 9 AM - 4 PM






Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Thank goodness they are all gone!


By the time I had gotten through with work on Tuesday, it had already been a long week. Heck, I took a long lunch with Angie two hours after I started work on Tuesday. I had gotten started to work late because Outlook wasn't functioning right on one computer, and I couldn't even get new batteries to make the keyboard on my other to work.

Because I have had boxes of computers stacked on my kitchen table for what seems like an eternity, but actually only 2 1/2 weeks, I sat in the floor and started working on going through the latest batch. I'd had enough though. Tuesday night and Wednesday morning posts on Facebook begged for someone local who wanted to buy a bunch and work on them. I'm just over it. Forget trying to get more together for a classroom to use for someone else to tweak later.

It was only a matter of time before Mom started complaining about the stacks in the garage that needed to go.

About 3:45 PM,  I posted on Facebook in the marketplace and cross-posted on Buy/Sale/Trade groups. Within 15 minutes I started getting people asking. The second person that asked wanted to come 30 miles down the highway to look at them. I had to load the boxes upon boxes that I had in the car and get them over to Mom and Dads. By 5:30 PM, they were claimed, and we were getting them loaded up to head off to someone else's garage. The guy said he would have something to work on for the next 6 months. I ended up making some money, and he thinks he'll make his money back.

I did end up saving a little laptop out of the deal for me. I'm sitting here typing on one that looks like it got caught in a garbage disposal. It works, but it has some pieces missing out of the case and looks like someone try to pry the front edge of the keyboard with a can opener. However, I will be able to use it to connect to the internet out in my craft studio to do quote searches on Pinterest and look up pictures on my website to try to copy something.

One thing is for sure, I am glad to be out of the laptop business!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

My one picture of the eclipse.. and it's just a tease.

Thanks to a friend, I did have glasses so I got to see Monday's eclipse. If I hadn't stopped by Angie's house on Sunday night, I would have been out of luck.

We just got a partial down here in Texas though. In April 2024 though, we're right close to the center line! Isn't it amazing that they can figure that out in advance? Actually, if you go to GreatAmericanEclipse.com, You can see the paths of eclipses for the rest of the 21st century.

It seems odd for all this talk about the last time it happened over the US, then so many seem to be happening in the coming years. I know there had to be one when I was in elementary school because I remember no one could go outside except the one kid with his box projector. I guess it was just a partial.



I went out and looked a few times, and every time I just knew I was going blind. Mom said she wished I had told her that before she took her turn with the glasses. Anyone else get a headache? I had one that lasted most of the day, and I found someone posting on Facebook about the same problem.

Anyway, my one picture, taken with my phone. If you look at the little green shape, it's the upside down reflection of what was actually going on.


Monday, August 21, 2017

The Child Safeguarding Policy Guide

Does your church or ministry need help developing a policy to keep children safe? The GRACE team with multi-disciplinary knowledge, headed by Boz Tchividjian, a lawyer and former child abuse prosecutor, want to help you create a plan with their new book and resource, The Child Safeguarding Policy for Churches and Ministries. Creating a policy can seem too overwhelming, and it feels like an impossible task to plan for every contingency. This handbook is designed for use by a group that will be formulating policies and procedures to protect children and deal with possible child abuse in their ministry, school, and/or church. Working through this book will assist churches and ministries to assess their current child abuse polices and then guide them through each step they need to take to address the safety of children under their care.

{MORE ABOUT THE CHILD SAFEGUARDING POLICY FOR CHURCHES AND MINISTRIES}


(New Growth Press, August 2017)
Churches have always sought to be a safe haven for children and families, but many today are dealing with the tragic reality of child sexual abuse.
This handbook, authored and edited by a multidisciplinary team of child abuse experts, is designed for use by a group that will be formulating policies and procedures to protect children and deal with possible child abuse in their ministry, school, and/or church. Working through this book will assist churches and ministries to assess their current child abuse polices and then guide them through each step they need to take to address the safety of children under their care. It will cover vitally important topics including:
—Protecting the children in a Christian environment from child abuse
—The warning signs of child abuse
—Crafting and implement a child protection policy
—Responding to abuse allegations
—Caring for victims of child abuse
—The legal implications and requirements for churches and Christian ministries
Written by a GRACE team with multi-disciplinary knowledge, headed by Boz Tchividjian, a lawyer and former child abuse prosecutor, this handbook will be an invaluable resource to Christians who are seeking to educate themselves and others about child abuse and how to best protect the little ones under their care.
GRACE

{MORE ABOUT GRACE }


(Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment) is a nonprofit organization made up of highly trained, experienced multidisciplinary professionals who seek to educate and empower the Christian community to identify, confront, and respond to the sin of child abuse.
Find out more about GRACE at http://www.netgrace.org.
Follow the blog tour reviews at: http://litfusegroup.com/campaigns/child-safeguarding-policy-churches-ministries-grace. 

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Thank You Lord for Loving Me

I got two videos on one Wednesday night! Finally!

 

Thank You, Lord
By Gary L. Mabry

Thank you, Lord for loving me and
Thank you, Lord for blessing me.
Thank you, Lord for making me whole
and saving my soul.

Chorus:
(I want to) thank you, Lord, for loving me.
Thank you, Lord, for saving my soul.

Let us all with one accord,
Sing praises to Christ the Lord.
Let us all unite and in song to praise Him
all day long.

Chorus

Please reveal your will for me,
So I can serve you for eternity.
Use my life in every way,
Take hold of it today.

Chorus


Saturday, August 19, 2017

Worse than the first

I got another box of glasses to try out. I hate all of these. For now, I am stuck with the same old ones which is what everyone liked best anyway.






Friday, August 18, 2017

What makes us who we are?


Cindy Woodsmall releases the powerful conclusion 
to the Amish of Summer Grove series

How different would your belief system be if you grew up in a different culture? Would your faith in God be the same if you were raised in a different family? New York Times best-selling author Cindy Woodsmall poses these questions in the powerful conclusion to the CBA and ECPA bestselling Amish of Summer Grove series in Gathering the Threads (WaterBrook/August 15, 2017).

Woodsmall’s latest series introduces readers to two young women, one Englisch and one Amish, who were switched at birth and follows them as they discover what their lives would have been like had the switch never taken place. In Gathering the Threads, Woodsmall deftly weaves complex issues of identity into the story. What makes us who we are? Are we simply a result of our genetic ancestry? Does our family determine our future . . . or is there something more to identity? The book also deals with the prejudice many Christians feel toward other denominations and belief systems.

The series began with Ties That Bind (September 8, 2015) when Woodsmall introduced readers to Ariana Brenneman, a young Amish woman deeply invested in the beliefs of her family and Amish community, and Skylar Nash, an Englisch college student struggling with a life of addiction, neglect and failure to meet expectations. Their worlds are turned upside down when they learn the families they have been a part of for 20 years are not biologically theirs.

Fraying at the Edge (August 16, 2016) found both women introduced to communities very different from the ones they grew up knowing. They both reeled with the nature of their true identities as Ariana fought to hold on to her convictions in a secular world and Skylar adjusted to life without modern technology.

In the third and final book of the series, Woodsmall brings the story full circle as each woman must decide where her future will be. Ariana’s initial excitement to return home is mixed with doubts about the Amish way of life. Her time with her analytical, atheist father has opened her perspective and makes communicating with her Amish family a struggle. Her arrival also challenges Skylar’s hard-won sobriety as Skylar struggles to see her place in a family restored. Both women find themselves doubting what love, relationships and family will look like in their futures.

Woodsmall hopes readers will glean the importance of reading, studying and thinking for themselves. “Don’t let anyone in authority or any authoritative group, church or otherwise trick you into following them,” Woodsmall warns. “Faith needs to go deeper than our understanding of the Word, just like love goes deeper than our understanding of the Word. I’m hoping readers feel encouraged that it is good for grace to outweigh their personal convictions that may or may not line up with God’s Word as well as they thought.” 

Gathering the Threads is a perfect book for fans of Amish fiction that doesn’t shy away from discussing difficult issues.

For more on Gathering the Threads and the Amish of Summer Grove series, visit www.waterbookmultnomah.com.

Advance Praise

“Woodsmall ends The Amish of Summer Grove series phenomenally. Gathering the Threads is the best of the three novels, bringing it all together in a meaningful and realistic way. Her storytelling skills are impeccable, drawing readers in and providing a sense of familiarity and friendship with the characters. The character development and progression are realistic and engaging. This series has a wide appeal, and readers should be very satisfied with the lovely ending.”
            ~ RT Book Reviews (4 ½ star Top Pick)


About the Author

Cindy Woodsmall is an award-winning New York Times and CBA best-selling author who has written 20 works of fiction, including her most recent series, Amish of Summer Grove. Her connection with the Amish community has been widely featured in national media outlets, including ABC’s Nightline. The Wall Street Journal listed Woodsmall as one of the top three most popular authors of Amish fiction.

RT Book Reviews recently presented her with a Career Achievement Award and gave her latest release, Gathering the Threads, a Top Pick review.

Woodsmall and her husband reside near the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains.


Learn more about Woodsmall and her books at www.cindywoodsmall.com. She is also active on Facebook (@authorcindywoodsmall). 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Donna Gaines challenges women to pursue Biblical literacy


Choose Wisely, Live Fully points to
Proverbs 1–9 for wisdom and truth

Fortune, fame and power mean nothing without Godly wisdom. King Solomon learned this in his day, and it is a truth that stands today. Author Donna Gaines’ new book, Choose Wisely, Live Fully: Lessons from Wisdom & Folly, the Two Women of Proverbs (Abingdon Press/August 15, 2017), draws from the timeless wisdom of Proverbs 1–9 to help women apply the same principles in practical ways to the issues they face today.

Gaines harnesses her two passions, discipleship and literacy, to challenge women of all ages to become biblically literate. “God has not changed,” Gaines writes. “So why do we keep repeating the same behaviors even though we can see no one has been able to sidestep God’s laws or the consequences of breaking them? I am convinced the answer to that question is this: Most of us honestly don’t know what God has said in the first place. . . . Biblical illiteracy is rampant.”

The statistics support Gaines’ position. According to Lifeway Research findings, 20% of churchgoers reveal they never read the Bible (and the same percentage claim to read it daily), which leaves 80% who have, at best, a marginal understanding of its teachings. That deficiency makes us vulnerable to propaganda, political slant and other influences that do not represent biblical truth. 

Choose Wisely, Live Fully responds to this need for biblical literacy by looking intently at the lives of Wisdom and Folly, the two women described in Proverbs 1–9, and their contrasting worldviews. By unpacking the topics covered in these early chapters of Proverbs — truth, wisdom, folly, courage and beauty, to name a few — Gaines seeks to awaken a perpetual hunger for firsthand biblical truth instead of relying on someone else’s interpretation of it.

Most importantly, Choose Wisely, Live Fully helps readers quickly identify that only God’s Word is the food that satisfies this hunger for truth and reminds us a daily portion is required to be nourished and equipped with a biblical worldview. Written with a built-in study guide, the book includes thought-provoking questions and exercises that may be used for personal study, small-group study or mentoring study.

Gaines examines the blessings and curses associated with the choices made by the two women in Proverbs and equips readers to:
  • discern the voice of God and follow His clear path between Wisdom and Folly.
  • experience the joy of wholehearted obedience.
  • let God help them mentor the lives of those around them in remarkable ways.
  • understand what it means to be a godly woman, wife and mother.
  • view mistakes as opportunities for growth.


A free downloadable resource on how to offer a mentoring program to help other women in their walk of faith is available at www.abingdonpress.com/donnagaines.  



About the author

Donna Gaines is a speaker and author of Choose Wisely, Live Fully, Seated: Living from Our Position in Christ and Leaving Ordinary: Encounter God Through Extraordinary Prayer.

Gaines is the founder of Arise2Read, a nonprofit organization that recruits churches to adopt and provide tutors for inner-city elementary schools. She also teaches Bible study at her home church, Memphis-area Bellevue Baptist Church, in which her husband, Steve Gaines, Southern Baptist Convention President, pastors.

She is the mother of four and “Nonna” to ten grandchildren.


Learn more at www.donnagaines.org and follow her on Twitter (@donnadgaines)