Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

Litfuse Publicity: A Friend in Me by Pam Lau

About the Book:

Young women long for relational connection with women further ahead of them on the journey. Yet, without realizing it, many of us tend to distance ourselves from those in younger generations.

Can we really have close relationships with women who have different thoughts on church, different experiences with family, and different ways of talking about God? Where do we start?

In A Friend in Me, Pam Lau shows you how to be a safe place for the younger women in your life. She offers five patterns women need to internalize and practice for initiating relationships and talking about issues such as faith, forgiveness, sexuality, and vocation. Most significantly, she reminds you that there doesn’t need to be a divide between generations of women. Together, we can have a global impact—and experience a deeper faith than we’ve ever known.

If you’d like to purchase your own copy please visit Pam Lau.

About the Author:

Pam Lau is the author of Soul Strength and numerous articles for such publications as Christian Scholar’s Review and Christianity Today. She has taught writing at George Fox University and speaks around the country at conferences and retreats. A graduate of Liberty University and Colorado State University, Lau lives near Portland, Oregon, with her husband and three daughters.

You can find Pam online at her website and on Twitter.

My Opinion:

“Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” Titus 2:3-5 ESV

As I begin this review, I want us to keep in mind that the older women are to teach or train those younger than us how to be godly women.  In a Friend in Me, Pam takes a look at what us women can do for each other – it seems there is a chasm in the church today between the older women and the younger, we don’t mingle or if we do it’s merely superficial. How are the younger ladies to learn if we don’t do more than scratch the surface? Pam gives readers ideas of how to really learn from one another, in some ways I’m the older woman, I can teach the younger ones how to have a godly marriage and refrain from making the mistakes I did but on the other hand I’m the younger woman too, navigating the roads of widowhood with young children. We need to come alongside each other and listen and teach and help.

There is a whole section on talking about sexuality with women, and honestly that isn’t something I’m comfortable talking about with a woman or I don’t know well – especially when things today are fraught with confusing messages that women can be men, men can be women, being homosexual isn’t a sin and so on. I also wouldn’t want another woman discussing these issues with my daughters, and that is why I leave lines of communication open at home so I can be the older woman teaching the younger. Overall though I really enjoyed this book and I think it would be great to lead a study on it for those in my church, there is much more that needs to be done for women in the church – especially when our society has become so adept at blurring those lines and A Friend in Me makes me want to be more available to the women in my church.

If you’d like to see what others thought, please visit the Litfuse Landing Page.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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Litfuse Publicity: Fatal Trauma by Richard L. Mabry, M.D.

About the Book:

Hang on to your seats! Richard Mabry’s latest medical thriler , Fatal Trauma, will have you reading long into the night!

A gunman who has nothing to lose faces a doctor who could lose it all to prove his innocence.

When Dr. Mark Baker and Nurse Kelly Atkinson are held at the mercy of a dangerous gunman, the lives of every emergency room patient are at stake. At the end of the evening three men are dead. One of them is a police officer who couldn’t be saved despite Mark’s best efforts. The other two are members of the feared Zeta drug cartel.

Though the standoff is over, the killing is not, because when the drug cartel loses its members, revenge is not far behind. Facing an adversary whose desires are dark and efforts are ruthless, Mark finds himself under suspicion as a killer, yet still a potential victim. When he turns to his high school sweetheart, attorney Gwen Woodruff, for help, Kelly helplessly looks on, as she hides her own feelings for the good doctor.

At the height of the conflict, three questions remain: Who is the shooter? Who will the next victim be? And can Mark prove his innocence before the gun turns on him?

You can purchase a copy of the book at Abingdon Press.


About the Author:

A retired physician, Dr. Richard Mabry is the author of seven critically acclaimed novels of medical suspense. His previous works have been finalists for the Carol Award and Romantic Times Reader’s Choice Award, and have won the Selah Award. He is a past Vice-President of American Christian Fiction Writers and a member of the International Thriller Writers. He and his wife live in North Texas.

Richard’s website.


My Opinion:

If you enjoy edge of your seat suspense, who-dun-it plots and Christian fiction then get ready for Richard Mabry’s newest book Fatal Trauma. I enjoy all the above and I’ve enjoyed Mr. Mabry’s other titles as well, and so when this one came up for review I knew I had to get this one in my hands, and I was not disappointed. As soon as I began the book I knew I’d have a hard time putting it down. From the beginning I was grabbed up into the story and probably would have finished it sooner if I didn’t have other things and children calling my attention. There were times when some of the medical jargon was a bit too much, but seeing as how Mr. Mabry is a retired doctor, it’s normal for him to write, think and act that way so it wasn’t hard to get through that – just sort of made it a bit more slow moving at times.

Since it is Christian suspense you’ll not find bad language or adult scenes, although the initial criminal act in the book is full of heart racing action some may find it to be hard to read but having read secular suspense and crime books this one is a walk through the park. Mr. Mabry makes his characters come alive, through the actions of both the ‘good’ one and the ‘bad’ ones the characters are fully developed and it seems like you are really looking into their lives as they live it, heart pounding by heart pounding beat. I think too that is why the medical jargon doesn’t throw me as much as it would some because his characters are just that well rounded and seem so real so it’d be normal to hear a doctor or nurse speak as they do in the book. I do recommend this book or any of his others if you’d like something to keep you awake at night, or if you’re already awake to keep you company.

To see what others thought please visit the Litfuse Landing Page.


(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

Can Mark find out who the shooter is before he becomes the next victim? You won’t want to miss the suspense in Richard Mabry’s new book, Fatal Trauma. Facing an adversary whose desires are dark and efforts are ruthless, Mark finds himself under suspicion as a killer, yet still a potential victim. When he turns to his high school sweetheart, attorney Gwen Woodruff, for help, Kelly helplessly looks on, as she hides her own feelings for the good doctor.

Richard is celebrating the release of Fatal Trauma by giving away The Perfect Prescription Prize Pack!

fatal trauma - 400

One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on June 20th. The winner will be announced June 22nd on Richard’s blog.

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Kregel Tour: Bible Dominoes

About the Book:

This domino game helps children to learn about the Bible and Jesus while playing! It also encourages communication, sharing, counting, and matching skills. The pieces are large and colorful, so they’re easy to pick up, and the pictures are clear. The set includes 28 dominoes with a mixture of Bible story characters, numbers, and animals to match, as well as instructions and a story booklet explaining the stories featured on the cards. A useful resource for home, school, or Sunday school.

You can purchase a set at Kregel.

My Opinion:

My children are honestly too old for these Bible dominoes but I thought they would be fun to play with and I was right – bright, colorful and big these dominoes are fun. Made of thick, durable cardboard I can see these tolerate a lot of rough handling by young children, the recommended age is 3 years and up, and maybe even some mouthing. The storage box is also handy, making them easy to store and keep them all together and even easy enough to toss in a bag for traveling, put them on a baking sheet and they could even be used in the car (haven’t figured out how to solve the sliding issue). There are 28 dominoes and a Bible storybook is also included – however there was no Bible storybook in mine so I cannot attest to the contents of the story book or how it’s made.

There are instructions on the back of the box on how to play a game with the dominoes and how to determine the winner. I wish the story book had come with my set as that may have had more ideas on games to play with them but even without it they were still fun to play with. It’s easy enough to think of other ways to play with them, especially if you have very imaginative children. I’d like to get a set for the nursery at our church as I think it’d be fun for them to have a fun Bible game to play that will help them in learning to count, matching skills as well as learning about the Bible. I highly recommend these for a family with young children and need a heavy duty game that they can play.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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Litfuse Publicity: As Waters Gone By by Cynthia Ruchti

About the Book:

How can a marriage survive when separated by hundreds of miles and impenetrable prison walls?

Emmalyn and Max Ross may have to endure the fight of their lives to mend the tattered fabric of their marriage. His actions ensured she could never be a mother and put him in prison, giving their relationship a court-mandated five-year time-out. On a self-imposed exile to beautiful but remote Madeline Island, one of the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior, Emmalyn has just a few months left to figure out if and how they can ever be a couple again.

Nudged along by the exuberant owner of the Wild Iris Inn and Café, a circle of misfit people in their small town, and a young girl who desperately needs someone to love her, Emmalyn restores an island cottage that could become a home and begins to restore her heart by learning what it means to love unconditionally. Yet even as hope begins to find a place within the cottage walls, Emmalyn still wonders if she’s ready for Max’s release. She may be able to rebuild a cottage, but can she rebuild a marriage?

You can learn more and purchase your copy here.

About the Author:

Speaker and award-winning author, Cynthia Ruchti draws from 33 years experience writing and producing a daily radio broadcast to tell stories hemmed in Hope through her novels, novellas, devotions, and nonfiction. She serves as the professional relations liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers. Cynthia and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin.

You can find Cynthia online at her website, Facebook and Twitter.

My Opinion:

I read Cynthia Ruchti’s first book, They Almost Always Come Home, back in 2010 and I really did enjoy it (my review of it sort of gave me goose bumps). As soon as I began reading As Waters Gone By I knew I’d have a hard time putting it down before I was done with it – I was right, putting it down was hard. Cynthia’s books are real, and this one is no different – it’s real, it’s raw and honest – which is how I’m trying to live my life now, real, raw and honest so I see this book differently than I saw her first. Emmalyn is a woman who has been hurt, by the women in her life (mom and sisters) and also by her husband who is in prison – she’s lost their house, her job and is feeling hopeless when she arrives on Madeline Island. Then she meets Boozie (AKA Bougie, no need to get angry about the alcohol reference!). She begins to rehab the cottage she and her husband bought, meets a young man on probation and in the process begins the work of reviving a marriage she thought was dead or at least dying.

At times I was laughing out loud and at others I was crying – my emotions ran the gamut with this book – and I think I needed that. In a way I can empathize with Emmalyn, her husband is no longer living at her side and so all the fears of what to do come to the surface. Of course the similarities end there, longing for children Emmalyn is unable to have them, her husband is still alive even if he isn’t there physically and then there is his child from a previous relationship. Through the book, Emmalyn shares her heart and as she walks through the rocky road of forgiveness I saw her change, she embraced who she was and quit wallowing in self pity and when she forgave herself she could then begin to forgive others and not focus on their flaws. I’d have to say this is one of the more inspiring books I’ve read in a long time and I would definitely recommend for those who want a truly inspiring read, one that reads fast and will leave you wanting more forgiveness and grace in life.

If you’d like to see what others thought of this book, please visit the Litfuse Landing Page.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

Can a marriage survive when separated by hundreds of miles and impenetrable prison walls? Find out in Cynthia Ruchti’s new book, As Waters Gone By. Emmalyn and Max Ross may have to endure the fight of their lives to mend the tattered fabric of their marriage. His actions ensured she could never be a mother and put him in prison, giving their relationship a court-mandated five-year time-out.

Cynthia is celebrating the release of As Waters Gone By by giving away a summer of fun to one lucky reader!

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One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A $100 cash card to put toward your trip to Madeline Island (discover the beauty of the setting of As Waters Gone By) or your summer vacation destination
  • A book-club set (10 copies of As Waters Gone By and a downloadable starter kit) so you can start your own summer book club

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on June 10th. The winner will be announced June 11th on Cynthia’s blog.

as waters go by-enterbanner

Plus, now through mid-July, sign up for Cynthia’s mailing list for a five-day virtual tour around Madeline Island for the chance to win a Hemmed in Hope prize pack. Each day begins with an email from Cynthia that introduces where you’ll be “visiting” that day (all key places from As Waters Gone By) with various interactive elements, including“I wish you were here” postcards, trivia quizzes, and an ongoing Island scavenger hunt. The person who interacts the most will win a Hemmed in Hope prize pack (valued at more than $200). That includes:

  • The letterpress block Hope sign from DaySpring
  • A set of 6 Hemmed in Hope notecards showing a hope-themed Bible verse
  • A leather “I can’t unravel, I’m hemmed in hope” journal
  • Signed copies of each of Cynthia’s books, fiction and non-fiction
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Family Christian: Holy Ghost DVD (review and giveaway)

This DVD piqued my interest as I long to know more about the Holy Spirit, I grew up in the church and the church we were in – one didn’t raise their hands, speak in tongues or believe that the Lord could still perform miracles. As I’ve come more into my own faith over the years, I recognized that the Holy Spirit is still at work in our world today, there was no cessation of the miracles – the Lord still gives miraculous healing and people can and do still speak in tongues, among other gifts. I don’t believe though that if you don’t speak in tongues that one is not saved. So when I had the chance to receive this DVD to watch through the Family Christian blogger program I was excited, I want to see what the film had to say.

At first I was very much engaged with this documentary and agreed with a lot that was said by some of the people interviewed such as theologians, a missionary to Mozambique and others, like Lenny Kravitz and Brian Welch from Korn. However, as it went on, I lost the interest as some of the things were just somewhat unbelievable – like mass conversions outside a Korn concert with some of the people still throwing up the sign for Satan and flipping off the camera. I know the Holy Spirit can move in mysterious ways and yes there are some who can be saved at a Korn concert but 100’s? One can’t be saved by someone laying on of hands, and being healed – they need to accept Christ and only then will the Holy Spirit enter their lives. In Holy Ghost, I felt that a lot of the praying and laying on of hands to those who were atheists, agnostics or Mormons or Hindus led some to believe that they had to do nothing else for their Salvation.

Overall, I enjoyed the idea that yes the Holy Spirit is still at work in our world and He can enter our lives and that is how our works yield fruit that is representative of our faith. As nice as it is to think that a Hindu high priest who invites a singer into the Shiva temple and is getting saved, unless he repents, no matter the words he sings to a song he cannot be saved. I only pray that those who were touched by the visit do open their heart and minds to the true, living, saving God – and accept His gift. The documentary was thought provoking but ended up being quite long in the end and at that point I was as ready for it to end as I was at the beginning to watch it.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws


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Family Christian: The Good, The Bad and the Grace of God by Jep and Jessica Robertson (review and giveaway)

 photo good_zpsfrap80ox.jpgBefore I begin this review I want to be honest, I’ve only ever watched a couple of Duck Dynasty episodes – we don’t subscribe to cable and I don’t usually have time to watch shows. The ones I have watched my children and I really enjoy so when I had the chance from Family Christian bloggers to read and review this book I jumped at the offer. The Good, The Bad, and the Grace of God: What Honesty and Pain Taught Us about Faith, Family and Forgiveness is an awesome book on how two people that were broken, begin to heal with God’s help and become a stronger family because of it. I was pulled in from the first chapter – each chapter is either told from Jep’s or Jessica’s point of view and you’ll know before starting a new chapter whose view you’ll be reading.

It was a relatively short and quick read – sometimes humorous, sometimes I had tears in my eyes – especially during the story of Jep’s medical crisis when the family didn’t know whether he’d leave the hospital alive. I’ve been there – sitting beside my husband as we wait word about what is going on, and then later being that widow. I could feel Jessica’s worry, her fears and ultimately peace when she leaves it in God’s hands. The book is honest, more honest than I think I ever could be in regards to my past and my skeletons – because we live in a world who wants to see us as horrible, unchanged, unrepentant sinners. However, Jep and Jessica, seem to truly not care – their story isn’t for perfect people – it’s for those who have been hurt, who have pain and who want to heal like they’ve been healed – their story is told, not to recount every horrible detail or to ruminate on it all the time, but so that there story can help someone else.

Whether or not one watched Duck Dynasty, whether or not one agrees or disagrees with their Christian worldview – if you’ve been hurt, if you’re still in pain and you want a story that shows how two people, one couple, keeps on going, then read this book! I appreciated how they didn’t dwell on facts, the story was there but it wasn’t written in a woe-is-me fashion or in a way that some continue to dwell on it while making the reader think they’ve been healed – it’s real, it’s raw and it’s all God. It’s great to read about their love for each other, for their children and for the Lord, even if it makes me miss my husband – I feel even more inspired to pass on our faith to our children so I can pass on our legacy. The questions and answers segment at the end is a great way to end the book and it makes them seem even more real than watching them on T.V.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws


All entries will be verified. You will have 24 hours to respond to the email if you win, failure to respond will mean I pick a new winner. Void where prohibited.

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Litfuse Publicity: The Proposal at Siesta Key (Amish Brides of Pinecraft Book 2) by Shelley Shepard Gray

About the Book:

A young Amish woman, yearning for freedom, crosses paths with a handsome Mennonite celebrity in a deeply moving tale of friendship and self-discovery—the second installment in the unforgettable New York Times bestselling author’s new Amish Brides of Pinecraft series.

Penny Troyer rarely disobeys her parents. In the years since her sister’s tragic death, they’ve wanted nothing more than to keep her safe…even if it means never leaving the house.

But tonight, she’s bending the rules because Michael Knoxx, the most famous member of The Knoxx Family Singers, a traveling Mennonite Evangelical family —is scheduled to speak. Penny has heard of Michael—how he lost part of his leg in a terrible accident and uses the experience to inspire others—and knows she must meet him. So, for the first time ever, Penny stands up to her parents and goes out on her own.

Though he speaks about living life to the fullest, Michael knows he needs to take his own advice. Life on the road is grueling and Michael wants to slow down, to rest…to perhaps meet someone who sees him as a man, not just a celebrity. So when a twist of fate allows him the chance to stay a little longer in Pinecraft, Michael knows God is showing him a new path, especially when he discovers how much he and Penny Troyer have in common.

But new friendships can’t stop time. Soon, Michael’s time in Pinecraft will be over and he’ll be back on the road. Her time with Michael has brought her happiness, but will she be able to follow her heart? Or will she be faced with the one thing she’s sure she’ll never have the courage to do?

Learn more and purchase a copy.

About the Author:

Shelley Shepard Gray is a two-time New York Times bestseller, a two-time USA Today bestseller, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time Holt Medallion winner. She lives in Southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town’s bike trail.

You can find out more about Shelley at her website.

My Opinion:

Sit back. Relax. Then begin enjoying the newest book from Shelley Shepard Gray, the second in her Amish Brides of Pinecraft, The Proposal at Siesta Key. I had to grab the first book from the library as I’m the type who just can’t stand to read book 2 without reading book 1 and I read them both in a matter of days – I got wrapped up in Penny and Michael’s story from the get go of The Proposal at Siesta Key, Penny who is trying to do both her duty and what would be her sister’s, if she were still here and then Michael who is doing what he thinks the world wants. Neither of them listening to the One who matters, God, until their lives change and they open their hearts to Him. I don’t want to give any spoilers because I genuinely believe if you enjoy Amish fiction then you’ll be enjoying this book soon enough – but it introduces us to another Amish settlement, in sunny, touristy Florida.

I’ve been finding that I don’t enjoy romance books much anymore – I think that comes from losing my husband and no longer having my own romance – but this book, for some reason, was different and had me feeling much more than the romance that was brewing between Penny and Michael. I now would love to take a trip with my children to Florida, in the fall or winter, and visit Pinecraft – I want to walk the quaint streets that Penny does and feel inspired to live life, the life the Lord wants us all to lead. While firstly being an Amish romance book it was even more so than that – it was truly inspirational, and for one who does not like tropical climates, to have me feeling the sand between my toes, smelling the ocean and feeling the sun on my face – this book has won me over to embracing the life that the Lord wants me to live.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

Proposal Siesta Key Shelley Shepard Gray

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Join Odyssey Adventure Club for a Summer Challenge and Movie Ticket Giveaway

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Summer . . . a time that kids pine for during the school year and parents may anticipate with something akin to dread. Fearing refrains of “I’m bored” or hours spent on the couch playing video games can make moms and dads nervous about the long, hot months stretching before their family. Focus on the Family’s Odyssey Adventure Club offers an answer, encouraging parents and kids to embrace faith and fun with the Take the Plunge Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse magazine’s Summer Challenge.

Take the Plunge

The Take the Plunge challenge features:

  • Master Mind Monday — commit God’s Word to memory
  • Ways to Play Wednesday — spend active time with your family
  • Faith Sharing Friday — share God’s love with others

The Take the Plunge challenge helps families memorize at least five verses, engage in five activities together and share their faith with five people before the school doors swing open again. Those who sign up will receive an 11-week plan with suggested verses to memorize, activity ideas (such as visiting a war memorial) and ways to witness (such as passing out popsicles at the park with an invitation to your church), making this challenge the perfect tool for parents who want summer to be a time of spiritual and social stimulation for their kids.

“Research tells us that the more senses we involve when teaching children a principle, the more likely it is to stick,” Plugged In editor and Adventures in Odyssey podcast host Bob Smithouser says. “Bible memorization by itself is great, but it becomes even more powerful when put into action. Know it. Share it. Live it.”

Families who sign up to take part in the challenge at will have access to weekly verses to memorize, ideas for family fun and suggestions for service projects that allow a family to share their faith. Additionally, anyone who signs up to participate in the Take the Plunge challenge will receive a free scene from the latest Adventures in Odyssey album, as well as a free story from the book Strange Journey Back.

A Bonus Contest

From June 1–5, tell us in 30 words or less how you are going to take the plunge to deepen your faith this summer for a chance to win a family four-pack of tickets to the theatrical release of Beyond The Mask June 5th weekend and free access to the Odyssey Adventure Club all summer long (June, July, August—total $85 prize value)!

Send your entry to Two winners will be chosen to win each day June 1-5 and announced on the Adventures in Odyssey Facebook Page.

Entries will be chosen based on creativity and writing skill. Rules are available at

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Shopping for cemetery markers

It’s one thing I never thought I’d have to do – but then one ugly day it became a reality – picking out the marker that will mark my husband’s and I final resting place. I could have made monthly payments but it would then take 2 years for my husband to have something to mark his place now.  I knew he wouldn’t want something fancy or too expensive – but I picked out something that would meet my needs now for remembering him and then later for when the children have to remember us both.

I’ve waited since March to get this rendering and as soon as the cemetery worker called I called to the children get ready we’ve got to go! Knowing if I didn’t go on Friday it would be another two weeks.  It could be 6 weeks before it’s actually made, here and installed or it could be shorter – no one really knows.  I was hoping to have it installed in time for Father’s Day (nice Father’s Day present huh?) but that isn’t going to happen.

I will admit – this is sort of the finality – it marks that everything will be completed and all is done. Even though I’ve had about 5 months for it all to sink in – seeing my husband’s name on a cemetery marker makes it feel all very fresh and real again – sort of like that whole scab thing :( Another issue was seeing my name on the marker – in a way I know it’s good, it’s one thing my children won’t have to worry about later – the cemetery will add my other day and it’s already paid for – but seeing it? It’s very disconcerting – my oldest didn’t even want to look at it, I understand. I sent a picture to my dad and I knew when I sent it it would be weird for him, and it was.

The rendering is already blurry so my picture doesn’t help it any but a quick run down is that under my hubby’s name it says: his dates, then Loving Husband and Son, then his life verse of Philippians 4:13. We chose a drum set as he loved playing the drums, even after he sold his set to pay bills one year, he never gave up the dream of owning another set. Under my name are/will be my dates, Loving Wife and Daughter, then my life verse of Jeremiah 29:11. My picture is a Bible and Cross. In the middle, the circle represents where our vase is, then the banner says Together Forever married 1-1-2001 and under that is Loving Parents of …… then our family name. As hard as it was to design this and buy it I’m glad we’ve done it although it is still weird to see my name on there.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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Litfuse Publicity: Hutterite Diaries by Linda Maendel

About the Book:

What would it be like to share all your possessions and live in Christian community? In Hutterite Diaries, Linda Maendel offers a rare glimpse into the daily routines and communal faith of her people, the Hutterian Brethren. From stories of working together to bring in the fall potato harvest to laugh-out-loud tales of sisterly love laced with revenge, Maendel invites readers into her Bruderhof, or colony, nestled on the prairie of western Canada. Here children and adults work, play, eat, and worship together, crafting a community of goods and living out an alternative to the individualism and consumerism of mainstream society.
Few outsiders know anything about the Hutterites, a Plain Christian group related to the Amish and Mennonites. Maendel’s story invites readers into deeper understanding of this community of faith, calling us to take seriously the example of Jesus and the early church in our daily living.

Hear straight from plain Christians as they write about their daily lives and deeply rooted faith in the Plainspoken series from Herald Press. Each book in the series includes “A Day in the Life of the Author” and the author’s answers to FAQs.

You can purchase a copy here.

 About the Author:

Linda Maendel is a Hutterite author, blogger, and educator who lives in Elm River Colony outside of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

You can visit her on her website and Twitter.

My Opinion:

I’ve been fascinated by the Hutterite culture and religious beliefs since I saw a movie that was about Hutterites and a Levite marriage and read the book, I Am Hutterite. When this book, Hutterite Diaries by Linda Maendel came up to review I knew I had to read it – this reads more like a fire side chat than a book, and I liked that cozy feeling. Hearing about the devastating loss of her brothers in a fire to how the whole community pulls together to help one another makes me long for that life – the way the original Christians lived, in community, sharing what each had and sharing back. They have their Anabaptist roots like the Amish, Mennonites, and Old German Baptists however their dresses are more colorful and they don’t wear the capes that the other groups are known for. The women’s head coverings are black with polka dots and tied under the chin and they can wear elbow length sleeves.

Linda’s story is real, it comes with the joys and the issues that whether you live in a communal life or not that we all go through – her writing is very real and as I said it’s almost as if you’re sharing a drink and chatting with her at her fireplace (I assume she has a fireplace, maybe I’m romanticizing a bit). As with all things there will be aspects I don’t agree with – such as placing young children in the care of others for many hours a day, I understand they do this so the children learn from an early age how their community works.  I also know that my children learn about our community, the world at large and also about our faith every day even though they are homeschooled. I’m looking forward to following Linda’s blog and her Twitter feeds and maybe one day I’ll get to visit a Hutterite colony, which would be a neat way to really experience that world.

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(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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