Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers

Thank you, Sharon McGregor, for nominating me for this Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.


Here are the rules:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Put the Award logo on your blog.
3. Answer 10 questions you've been sent.
4. Make up 10 new questions for your nominees to answer.

Here are the questions I was sent and my answers:

If you could go back in your life and change one decision you made, what would it be? 
I believe I would not put off my writing. I would have gotten serious about writing earlier than I did.

What is the most intriguing book you have ever read?
Being a reviewer of Christian fiction, I could make a big list here. However, even though many may say it is a cop-out answer, I would have to pick the Bible. Those 66 books have everything from romance, to battle scenes, to betrayal. In addition to that, the Bible is especially intriguing because it is living and active and supreme truth. What other book can you turn to for answers for anything you are facing? What other book comes complete with a Helper, the Holy Spirit, to interpret it just for you and your situation?

If you could pick one word to describe yourself, what would it be? 
Determined. My husband would agree with this and probably add the word impatient to it.

If you could time travel, what period of history would you choose and why?
My mother always said I was born in the wrong time because I read books and listened to music and watched movies from the past. I think I would like to visit the pioneer days as read about in the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Those women were of strong stock and steadfast faith. I think we're missing that kind of legacy these days.

Did you have a role model growing up and if so, what effect did he/she have on your life?
My parents were my role models. My mother showed me what it was like to be loyal in your work and have a good work ethic. My dad showed me that you could pursue your dream to become what you wanted to become and uphold the utmost integrity while doing it. I believe that their examples enabled me to pursue my dream of becoming a Christian author.

If you could plan a dream vacation, one that may seem out of reach, where would you go?
I have honestly always had a fascination with visiting Alaska. I would love to visit a dog sled ranch and ride on a sled. And of course, I would research so I could write about it.

If you could choose any profession to follow, what would it be?
My dream would be to write full-time and do some speaking in conjunction with that.

Pick a card, any card - greeting card that is. What is your favorite holiday?
I would have to say that Christmas is my favorite holiday. I enjoy the time off and the time with family. I love the time spent remembering times gone by with my family too.

What is your favorite pet?
Though we do not own a pet now, in the past we have had dogs, birds, and even a rabbit. My favorite is still a dog for the way they are all yours, totally devoted.

What one thing would you like to see happen in 2015?
I pray that I stay more attuned to God's leading and I touch more people with my writing.

Now for my nominees and their questions.
Susan Tuttle, Deborah Picurrelli, Gail Pallotta, Eileen Rife, Zoe McCarthy, Carol Round, Julie Arduini, Bonnie Leon, and Jennifer Hallmark

1. What is something you would count as a "success" from this past year?
2. Who has had the biggest influence on your life?
3. What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
4. If you could have a week to retreat, where would you go and what would you do?
5. Looking back on this year, what are five things you are especially thankful for?
6. What is one lesson you feel you learned this past year?
7. If there were no limits, what is one goal you would like to achieve this year?
8. What is one Bible verse that is special to you and why?
9. Do you make New Year's resolutions? Why or why not?
10. Do you set goals for yourself in your spiritual life? Give an example.

Thanks again to Sharon for nominating me.

I pray we all follow God's leading in this New Year and be blown away by what He does through us to reach a world for Christ and encourage our fellow believers.

Monday, December 22, 2014


Recently, I heard this song again. I considered its meaning.

Heirloom means something passed down from generation to generation.

When we haul out the boxes of Christmas decorations, we often remember stories about certain ornaments. And Christmas always brings up memories of past holidays spent together as family. Those discussions often lead to stories of those who have gone on to Heaven. I like to relate these stories of ancestors to the younger generation so they will understand the rich heritage they have to carry on.

Those stories and relics aren't just interesting tidbits to entertain but a legacy to maintain laid down by hard-working and sacrificing loved ones.

The same is true of the story of Jesus. It can be told and enjoyed as a good story but it is so much more. Is this all that we live for and all we are hoping to be?

Listen closely to the words of this song. I hope that the story of Jesus as well as the memories from my ancestors are more than just heirlooms.

Heirlooms by Amy Grant

Here's a special cookbook I was included in that contains not only recipes but memories of family.

Memories Cookbook

Thursday, December 11, 2014

From the Throne Room to the Common

As I listened to my hubby/pastor read Luke Two again, I was struck with the humility and love of a God who leaves perfection and comes to anything but perfection.

"So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn."

How much more common could you get? A young couple traveling from a small town, finding no place to stay, ending up in a stable. Jesus' first crib was a manger. We see pictures and our eyes have become so used to the images, we forget what we're really seeing. God in human form was born on the floor of a barn used for animals. Some scraps of cloth were fashioned into a blanket and He was laid in a wooden trough used to feed animals.

Think about this from a different perspective. Jesus had left the very throne room of Heaven. A place we can't fathom but know is glorious from John's account in Revelation. This is a place with no pain, no tears, no death, no sin. This is a place where things that we hold so precious like gold and gems are used for building and road making materials.

I believe we can't begin to fathom the love required to leave Glory and descend into a dirty world. But, that is the love God has for us.

But, then again, the intelligence behind God making Jesus a man who walked and talked among the people. We can never say that we have a Savior who doesn't understand where we're coming from. He was here. He lived it.

Even further - Jesus returned to Heaven to prepare a place for us to come to that marvelous place. Without His blood to save us, we wouldn't have entrance. But, we have the hope of Glory because He gave it up for a time.

Pause just a moment this season and consider the love God had when He came to earth. Yes, I can easily see the love Jesus showed on the cross. He wrote it in red, his blood. But, I believe He showed this extreme love even before He died for our sins. He was already showing his deep love for us when He left the splendor of Heaven and came to earth.

He left Heaven for you! That's love.

Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

If we own the gospel, we owe the gospel

Wednesday night my hubby/pastor showed this message from the new International Mission Board President, David Platt. I was brought to tears by the reality and urgency of his words. I was also reminded that so many of the things that we devote our time to will be worthless in the end. And, often the things we deem important are just preferences and mean nothing to the Kingdom of God. Please take the time to view this. If you feel moved to do so, come back here and comment.

Watch David Platt's message here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


I've been deep into the research for my latest contracted book for Prism Book Group called Love Does Not Dishonor. When I say deep into the research, I really mean it. The storyline requires that I know something about inherited diseases as well as Amish rumspringa. Now that's a mix!

As I waded through a huge database for inherited diseases, God led me to exactly what I needed. Stay with me here. With the amount of diseases that I had to read through, God had to lead me to the exact two that I needed. I could just feel His Spirit's nudging as I've discussed on this blog before.

Sunday I experienced another nudge. I felt God telling me to pray for an anointing on the words and message of this book. Now, I didn't really even know what that would mean so I looked up anoint in my Bible dictionary.

Anoint - The purpose of sacred anointing was to dedicate the thing or person to God. The oil symbolized the Holy Spirit, empowering them for a particular work in the service of God.

When I read that definition, I could see why I might want to pray for anointing on my story. That act would be one of dedicating those words to God and empowering the message to accomplish what God has planned in the reader.

Consider these verses about anointing:

2 Corinthians 1:21-22
"Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."
1 John 2:20, 27
"But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth."
"As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit - just as it has taught you, remain in him."

As a Christian I've been anointed with the Holy Spirit. That Spirit in me not only marks me as one of God's children, but it works within me to teach me.

So in accordance with this, I ask God to anoint my words that they may accomplish what is set forth for them to accomplish. My part is to remain in Christ and pay attention to the Spirit's teaching.

Do you have something that God wants to accomplish through you? Have you "anointed" it? Are you paying close attention to the Spirit's instructions?

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Trust Through Remembering

I've always heard that hindsight is 20/20. But do I apply this same principle in my spiritual life?

Deuteronomy 11:1-2 and 7
"Love the Lord your God and keep his requirements, his decrees, his laws, and his commands always. Remember today that your children were not the ones who saw and experienced the discipline of the Lord your God; his majesty, his mighty hand, his outstretched arm; the signs he performed and the things he did in the heart of Egypt, both to Pharaoh king of Egypt and to his whole county; ... But it was your own eyes that saw all these great things the Lord has done."

The passage above was the message given to the Israelites as they were preparing to cross into the promised land.

First, a quick reminder to love the Lord and follow his instructions.

Then, it is as if God is reminding them why they should follow his instructions. He tells them to recall the past they experienced with their Lord. They had seen discipline come from Him. But, they had also seen his majesty, his strength, and his help. Before their journey ever started, God proved his loyalty through the plagues inflicted on Egypt.

So, why is it that the people could trust God's leading? They need only to look back and see His track record on their behalf.

I'm afraid that I might be guilty of not letting what God has done in the past give me more trust in Him now. If He has proven faithful before, He'll be faithful again. He never changes. But, my spiritual hindsight seems to be nowhere near 20/20.

I doubt, tremble in my boots, and try to "fix" things by myself. How God must shake his head and sigh at my pitiful attempts to do what only He can.

Oh, that I would correct my vision and be encouraged to trust through remembering.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Spirit Know-How

Have you ever experienced instruction from the Spirit?

Jesus spoke to his disciples in John 14:26, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you."

Does this idea of a Spirit inside of us excite anyone else? When I think about the fact that God has put a deposit of Himself inside of each Christian, I'm just in awe. God's Spirit can urge us to confess sins so we are on the right track and come clean before God. The Spirit can give a nudge when we encounter wrong things. He can teach us through God's Word, the Bible. He can enlighten us with knowledge we could not know on our own.

First Corinthians 2:12-14 says, "We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned."

I remember a trip to the mall. My husband and I had just entered a store. Suddenly it was as if the air was cold and the hairs on the back of my neck stood at attention. My husband turned to me. "Did you feel that?" I nodded my agreement. We turned on our heels and left the store. As we were leaving, we glimpsed a couple dressed in very dark clothing and wearing satanic symbols. I'm convinced that God's Spirit in both of us warned us about the evil present in that store.

One night I awoke from a sound sleep and got the strongest urging to pray for someone in my family. Later I found out the family member was experiencing some problems at just that time. How else could I know without the Spirits's nudge?

Recently I was struggling to complete a novel I was writing that was based on a particular Biblical passage. I knew there was a scene to write but I also knew that I didn't have all I needed to construct that scene. I wandered into the living room and plopped into my husband's recliner. I noticed his New King James Bible on the table. I turned to the scripture passage and there at the end were three other verse addresses. I immediately turned to them and my eyes were opened. I couldn't get paper fast enough to write that scene.

I don't have enough space to recount the times the Spirit has interpreted a scripture specifically for my life or circumstance. I've also had the privilege of the Spirit enlightening a passage even more deeply for my understanding.

Did you catch the end of the First Corinthians verse above? People who do not contain the Spirit will not understand. It is those of us Christians who contain the Spirit that "get it."

So, to take advantage of this Spirit know-how, you need to walk in the Spirit. Study God's Word and be sensitive to the Spirit's leading.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

New Release from Rachel A. James

Rachel A. James grew fascinated with the medieval time period as a child. Dubbed a bookworm from a young age, Rachel found herself surrounded by places steeped in history and adventure. She enjoyed trips with her family to visit nearby derelict castles and Roman ruins, and that coupled with a zealous imagination and love for stories, sparked her interest in knights, fortresses and ancient kingdoms. 

Born and bred in England, Rachel writes adventure driven historical romance, she is also a pastor’s wife, and has three beautiful little princesses. She minored in creative writing at university and strives to entertain, inspire and encourage others in their own spiritual journey. She’s also captivated by romantic tales… combine it with a little history and a hot cup of tea, and she’s smitten! Find her at for more information.

A few years ago, whilst living in Yorkshire, I visited a grand stately home, Harewood House, where there was a commemorative exhibition on display to celebrate the once owner of the house, Princess Mary.  I discovered that she was known as ‘The Yorkshire Princess’. I was fascinated at the notion that Yorkshire, once had their very own princess, and inspired to write a story about it. However, I did not want to write a historical account, but rather a fictional book.

Having always been drawn to medieval times and tales of Britain when it was once divided into separate kingdoms, I wondered if I could write about a princess who lived long ago. It was then that I discovered the kingdom of Elmetia. Elmetia existed for only a few hundred years, before it was invaded by neighboring Anglo-Saxons, where the last king of Elmetia, King Ceretic, was slain in battle.

There is no historical record of Ceretic ever being married, or having children, but some historians believe that just because it wasn’t recorded, didn’t mean they did not exist. This inspired me to write about Princess Teagen, my fictionalized daughter of King Ceretic, who, because she managed to flee the invasion, was forgotten about.

The Forgotten Princess of Elmetia is essentially, a story about how a forgotten princess journeys to find her true identity, and reclaim what was stolen from her. It is an inspirational tale, demonstrating God’s amazing grace and forgiveness, and love.

This sounds like a must-read for your reading list! Thanks for sharing the background, Rachel. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

25 Years!

Tuesday, October 21st, is my and my husband's 25th wedding anniversary. It was so wonderful to celebrate with family and friends Sunday.

This guy of mine has been in my life since we sat in first grade together. He asked me to "go with" him when we were in middle school. It wasn't called "talking" then. We broke it off when I moved about an hour away. But, after two years, my family and I returned. My sweetheart and I got back together in high school.

During high school, he felt the call into ministry. My mama saw it all along!

We stayed together all through college, even though we attended different schools. We came home on the weekends to see each other and do our laundry.

On my graduation day from Maryville College, my honey proposed to me. Five months later we tied the knot!

I don't remember my life without him and don't want to. I've seen God take a very shy boy and turn him into a bold preacher of the Word and a caring pastor.

He told me when we got married that he would probably not ever be able to give me a big house or an expensive car. But, he did promise if we stuck together and followed God's guidance, we would have an adventure. He didn't lie about that!

Happy Anniversary, Babe! I love you. Let the adventure continue .........

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Godliness Without Its Power

Have you ever had a scripture passage just stick with you? I want to share just such a passage with you today. These verses have become the basis for the novel I am revising. In fact, I'm thinking God will lead me to subsequent novels with this scripture basis.

2 Timothy 3:1-9
"But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God - having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth - men of depraved minds, who, as far as faith is concerned, are rejected. But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone."

When you read that list above of the evil ways of people in the last days, do you definitely feel we are living in those last days? Yeah, me too.

Here is the scary thing to me about this passage. Look closely at the line, "having a form of godliness but denying its power," and the line, "always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth." These two statements refer to those among us. I'm talking about Christian brothers and sisters.

The Message version of the Bible says, "They'll make a show of religion ..." and that their thinking is twisted.

My first inclination is to examine myself. Am I living in true godliness or just a form of godliness of my own creation? As Christians we can slip into going through the motions or relying on what we learned in the past instead of always pursuing the holy life we are to strive for.

Read through the list of evil ways above. Aren't the opposites the very things were are to do and focus upon? Not being self-centered, not allowing money to control us, not boasting in anything but God, not allowing pride to blind us, being kind, loving, forgiving, obedient to parents, not speaking ill of others, loving the good, being loving, and loving God above all.

Here's another verse that spreads a warning vibe through my bones: 1 Timothy 4:1 "The Spirit clearly says that in the later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons."

Some brothers and sisters in Christ would read this verse and scoff, saying this is a little over the top. Really? Deceiving spirits and demons? Yes. Please allow me to warn us all that Satan would want nothing more than to pull a Christ follower away. He'll use whatever deceptive method he can.

In these last days, living a godly life isn't easy, but it is necessary. Let's make a pact, dear brothers and sisters, to pursue godliness with its inherent power. Let's live by the Spirit so we will be discerning to false teachings and practices. Pray and test everything through God's Word and by His character.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Don't Limp Through Your Day

Just a few days ago this phrase showed up in my Jesus Calling devotional. My eyes widened when I read the line. Why? I had been doing some major limping through several days. But, God didn't intend for me to just limp or just make it through a day. He planned for me to abound.

Scripture says that Jesus came to give us life more abundantly. (John 10:10)

In another area of scripture this same concept comes up.

"Finally then, brothers, we ask and encourage you in the Lord Jesus, that as you have received from us how you must walk and please God - as you are doing - do so even more." 1 Thess. 4:1

Beth Moore in her study, Children of the Day, says, "God has an affinity for lengthening cords and extending boundaries with a person willing to be stretched by Him. No matter who you are, where you've been, or what you've done, God has handpicked you to abound."

To continue to walk in the way God would want me to walk, it might take some stretching. I have to make the effort and be willing to do what He has planned for me if I want to experience the abundance He has for me.

I can settle. I can go through the motions. I can worry about tomorrow or have regrets about yesterday. But, that won't get me the abounding life that God so wants me to have. Those worries and distractions rob me of the abundant life I can have through God today. That is what causes me to limp through my day, defeated.

God wants me leave all those things that would pull me down to Him. Then, I can concentrate on seeing and doing all that He has planned for me which will lead to that abundant life.

Lord, help me to bask in Your presence more and more and never settle for just limping through a day. Help me reach for Your abundant way of living.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Stabs in the Dark

I'm currently in a Beth Moore study called Children of the Day which is a study of First and Second Thessalonians.

In First Thessalonians three, Paul finds himself in Athens, away from the people he wanted to see. He had suffered every kind of affliction and trouble. I wonder if after being forced to leave, he felt a little lost or off track.

Can you relate? When we follow the call of God on our lives, things don't suddenly become smooth sailing. We, like Paul, may have what we think are set-backs or road blocks. But, suppose that is all a part of the whole process.

Beth Moore writes this about her journey: "I now believe those decisions that felt like stabs in the dark at the time were as determined by God as ones that burned with conviction. Every turn was imperative to God's plan for me and led in the direction I needed to go. Even poor decisions that seemed like disastrous detours wound themselves around until even they became crucial to the process." She continues with this: "God can shove us with His mighty hand wherever He wants us to go, or  He can gently blow us there with an almost imperceptible breath. God is ever at the helm, patient and foreknowing."

When things don't work out the way I have imagined, I fall apart or think I've totally missed God's direction. I seem to think that if there's a bumpy way, maybe I've taken a wrong turn. Now, have I taken the wrong path before? Yes. But, there are times when my calling may lead me into a dark place I never thought I would find myself. God may allow these things as part of the whole original process or plan. I may not be able to get to that next turn without a little trouble or struggle.

I can relate to what Beth shares. In my calling I've had times when I've felt so confident of God's endorsement of my next move. At other times I've groped in the dark, easing a step by cautious step forward. I have seen God dim the way before me so I will trust Him and not what I can see up ahead.

I think that Paul would tell us today to stick to that call on our lives. Don't be deterred by trouble that arises. Paul had experienced beatings, imprisonment, and shipwreck. He could have said, "I must have gotten that call from God wrong because defeat seems imminent." Nope, he said, "We are more than conquerors through Jesus Christ our Lord." Then he moved on to another city and shared the gospel, all the while writing back to encourage those believers in the areas where he was banned.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ, keep those eyes fixed on the author and finisher of your faith!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

New Book Release from Lillian Duncan

Tell us about REDEMPTION.
It’s the third and final book in my Sisters by Choice series. Well, probably last. I do have an idea for a fourth book rattling around in my brain, but it’s only an idea at the moment. Who knows if it will actually grow into a book?
Redemption brings the series full circle and gives closure for those who’ve read all three books. Jamie is the missing twin in the first book-DECEPTION. And in REDEMPTION, we come to learn more about Jamie and her spiritual struggles. But the main story is about a missing child who Jamie is determined to find—no matter the danger to herself.

What’s the setting for REDEMPTION?
This story is all over the place. It starts in Florida, then Jamie goes to Ohio and on to Wyoming and New Mexico—and not all of her own doing!

How did you come up with the title for REDEMPTION?
The story begins with Patti not understanding why her twin, Jamie, continues to place herself in serious jeopardy time and time again. Jamie doesn’t understand either. Only that she needs to help others if and when she can no matter the danger to herself.
As the writer I know why, and I’ll share the secret with you. Jamie is ashamed of things she’s done in her past. As a result she feels God can’t love her the way she is. So she seeks redemption by putting herself in dangerous situations to help other people.
But then I checked out the definition of redemption. defines redemption as an act of atoning for a fault or a mistake; deliverance or rescue; deliverance from sin; salvation; atonement for guilt.
Wow! As I look at those definitions, I realize REDEMPTION is full of all sorts of redemption for many of the characters in the story—not just Jamie’s. No wonder that’s the title I chose.

Why did you write REDEMPTION?
We only catch a brief glimpse of Jamie in DECEPTION and BETRAYED. REDEMPTION is Jamie’s story.

What do you want readers to take away from REDEMPTION?
God loves us no matter what we’ve done in the past or what we do in the present or will do in the future. His love is the one constant we can always count on!

Does REDEMPTION have a theme?
God loves us just the way we are and He is always there waiting for us to come to him.

What’s the SISTERS BY CHOICE series about?
This series definitely has romance in it, but I also wanted to explore the strong bonds that form between women—through blood or through the choices we make. Each story focuses on a relationship between two women that becomes as important to the story as the romantic plot.

Why did you become a writer?
I always had stories in my head waiting to be told. Unfortunately for many years those stories were only being enjoyed by me. One day a light bulb went off—hey, maybe I should be writing these stories down for other people!
That was the day a writer was born, but it took many long years until I could say, “I’m a writer!” Now, I love saying that.

What is your writing process?
I am not an outliner. I wish I were—it seems easier to me. But my mind doesn’t work that way. I never know what is going to happen in my story on any given writing day. It’s as if my mind is a movie screen and I watch that day’s events and then I write it.
When I start a new story I usually have a clear picture of the main character in mind and what obstacle he/she will face, but anything goes after that. If I’m writing and start to feel bored—then I kill someone or blow something up. And that way it’s a surprise to me and to my readers.

Do you know who the bad guy is when you begin your story?
Not usually. Most of the time I have several characters who it might be. As the story comes to a conclusion, I am surprised right along with my readers. REDEMPTION was no exception. I thought I knew who the bad guy was but as usual there were a few surprises!

Most people don’t think of murder mysteries and suspense novels as Christian Fiction. What do you say to them?
I can certainly understand their point of view. And for some readers my stories might be a bit too graphic or edgy and that’s all right. I understand that. I would say my readers are those who like traditional suspense and mystery novels but are tired of all the explicit language and sex scenes that aren’t necessary to a good story.
As mysteries and suspense, there is, of course, some violence in the stories. However; I don’t promote or glorify violence. I make sure to show characters experiencing the natural consequences of bad choices and bad actions.

Then what makes your stories Christian Fiction?

My stories always have an element of faith in them. How that plays out depends on the individual plots of each specific story. My main characters are always on a spiritual journey, though some may be further along than others.
My stories show characters in crisis. I use the crisis to illustrate how real Christians react to real problems in their life. We all react in different ways when bad things happen and the same is true in my stories. I show characters having doubt but also resolving that doubt and becoming stronger in their faith as a result of the crisis.
One more word about Christian Fiction, it has changed dramatically over the past ten years. Other than erotica, readers can find their favorite genre as Christian Fiction as well as mainstream fiction. There are Christian Fiction books out there for every book lover—historical; romance; regency; science fiction; even horror novels.

If REDEMPTION becomes a movie who would you like to see play your main characters?
I’d love to have the Oslin twins play Jamie and Patti. As for Enrique—a dark, handsome actor with a bit of a Hispanic accent. Mmm, who could that be?

What are you working on now?
In July, I had a new mystery novella series released--DEADLY COMMUNICATIONS. It features a crime-fighting speech pathologist. Having been a speech pathologist for almost 35 years, this story was so much fun for me to write.
The second in the series—NOWHERE TO BELONG—will be released sometime next year and I still have some work to do on the third in the series. Along with that I have a few other projects I’m working on. Busy, busy, busy!

My website is My blog is TIARAS & TENNIS SHOES at I’m also on Twitter as @LillianDuncan and on Facebook at I also contribute to Putting On The New at

To celebrate the release of REDEMPTION, I’m giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card. But wait…there’s more! I always feel bad for the people who enter the contest but don’t win. So I’m also going to pick FIVE more lucky names to win a $5 Amazon Gift Card. Just the right amount to buy REDEMPTION! Just kidding, the winners can use it to buy whatever they wish.
So hop on over to TIARAS & TENNIS SHOES at  to enter. Leave a comment on the post REDEMPTION and you’ll be entered to win. Easy Peasy!!

Others may think Jamie Jakowski is a hero, but she knows differently.
Haunted by her past, she seeks redemption by helping others in spite of the danger to herself. However, after almost orphaning her daughter, Jamie opts to retire. When a friend needs her, Jamie agrees to one last undercover operation.
She is determined to reunite a heartbroken mother with her kidnapped son. Used to working alone, Jamie’s not happy when she’s assigned a partner. And after a failed operation and their failed romance, Enrique Rodriguez is the last person she wants to work with—ever.
To succeed, Jamie must confront her past as well as the people who want her dead.

Lillian Duncan: stories of faith mingled with murder & mayhem!
Lillian is a multi-published writer with several Amazon bestsellers, including The Christmas Stalking and Betrayed. Lillian writes the types of books she loves to read—fast-paced suspense with a touch or two of romance that demonstrates God’s love for all of us
Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives, especially God’s Word.
To learn more about Lillian and her books, visit: Tiaras & Tennis Shoes is her personal blog at

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Are We Holy?

We've come to our last post about our worth in Christ and what that really means. The last letter is H and must stand for holy.

Holy can be defined as worthy of absolute devotion; having a divine quality; devoted to the deity or the work of the deity; sacred; godlike; untouchable; devout, faithful, godly. You might also hear holy meaning set apart, other, and like God.

God says to be holy as He is holy. A lofty goal? Yes! But, as Christians we are called to be holy by God Himself.

So, let's break down the definition above and see how we are doing with this goal of becoming holy.

Worthy of absolute devotion - because God is holy, He is worthy of your absolute devotion. This means there is not a person or a thing to whom or to which you are more faithful or loyal. Is God number one on your priority list? Don't speak too soon. Look at what your schedule and finances prove about your devotion.

Having a divine quality - Christians are called to be imitators of Christ. This would mean that we would have divine or godlike qualities. This doesn't mean we become a god or take on supernatural characteristics. We behave following the example of Jesus. Do lost people notice something different about you?

Devoted to the deity or the work of the deity - Christians are to be busy about the Father's business. We should pray that God would put on our hearts what is on His heart. We should follow His guidance in the plan He has for our lives. Are you busy with your own business or God's?

Sacred - This means set apart for the service or worship of the deity. Christians have been specifically called out to be different from the world in serving and worshiping God. The world encourages serving and worshiping self. Is your service and worship focused upon God or yourself?

Godlike - See the above, having a divine quality.

Untouchable, devout, faithful - These three words suggest being serious and earnest in our goal to become holy. Do you truly want to become holy?

Godly, set apart, other, and like God - Again, these words hint at the fact that being holy means we are nothing like the world. Do you look too much like the world?

Our worth on this earth is so often measured by the money we have, the things we possess, and the status we have achieved.

Remember, worth is defined as the value of something measured by its qualities. Christians' have worth through Christ. Do you have the qualities of Jesus?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Don't just get 'em saved; Teach them!

On with our study of Titus Two using the word worth. We look at the very important letter, T. This letter stands for teach.

In the Titus Two passage, Christians are instructed to teach, specifically the older are to teach the younger. This teaching position means that the teacher or mentor must make sure he or she is in right standing and continuing to learn from God's Word first. You can't impart what you don't have, right?

We are told to teach what is good. This always makes me think of Philippians 4:8-9. "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me - put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you."

Paul clearly encourages Christians to keep their minds focused upon what is good. We are not to focus upon opinion but be grounded in the teaching from God's Word. Because Paul tried his best to follow in God's way, he says that others could take whatever they learned from him and put it into practice. He was an example of what he taught.

Can that be said of us? Have we learned and followed God's Word to the point that others could copy us? Do we make a point of teaching others about what it means to be a Christian and live for God?

I'm afraid we often fail in this area. We get 'em saved and then we leave them to flounder on their own. Jesus didn't say, "Get 'em saved." He said, "Go and make disciples." That command carries with it a responsibility to teach and mentor others.

We should prefer to teach and impart a Christian foundation as opposed to allowing someone else to teach a philosophy that doesn't measure up to God's standards. We shouldn't shirk the responsibility to teach and mentor those younger people in the faith.

I have said before and will reiterate now. If Christians don't teach their own about God and what He expects, there are those in the world that will gladly lead our loved ones astray. There are college professors out there who want nothing more than to have your precious student come into their classes so they can pull those kids from their Christian upbringing.

Let's not shirk this important responsibility of teaching and mentoring new Christians and those around us who need guidance. Study God's Word and think on those good things then don't keep it to yourself. Teach it and model it.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Do not be addicted to much wine

That title will catch your attention, right?

We're back to our Worth study and we've made it to the letter R in the word which stands for restraint. The Titus Two passage talks about not being addicted to much wine.

Now, for many people, myself included, I might quickly skip over this point because I don't indulge in any alcoholic beverage. But, when I read this statement, I tend to see it in a broader sense. To not be addicted to much wine to me means to not allow something to control you or steal your testimony.

Drinking alcohol is a touchy subject. Some people use the argument that in the time of the Bible the people drank wine. And, even this statement from Titus Two says not to be addicted to much wine. As a Christian I have personally decided to abstain. My first reason is because it is such a touchy subject. Christians have very strong and differing opinions on the matter. Thus, for fear of causing another to stumble or to think ill of me, I choose just to not drink at all. Secondly, I don't care to use a substance that could alter my control. Since I am to practice self-control as a Christian, I will refrain from consuming alcohol since it can dull reaction times and impair my abilities.

As those out in the world look at us who profess to be Christians, we must be careful how we represent Christ. We must be leery of anything that could cause us to lose control or might steal our testimony.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Blogs by Christian Women

We pause for a word from our sponsor. Just kidding. I wanted to share a post that I wrote for Blogs by Christian Women.

I'm talking about specific ways to leave an intentional Christian legacy.

Ladies, you might want to put this blog on your Favorites list.

Friday, August 1, 2014


Wow, I've been MIA! Actually, I've been bailing. Bailing water from the basement after the bad storms that blew through last Sunday evening. We've been keeping the fans on it and almost have it dried up and readied to spray for mold. So, now you know.

Now it's time to return to our Worth study. We get to move along to the R which stands for restraint - things we are warned to stay away from or not to do.

The first warning we are given in Titus 2 is not to be slanderers. Slander is a false report maliciously uttered and tending to injure the reputation of a person.

We can see this in different ways. One form of slander is gossip. People want to say that they are just telling facts and not spreading gossip, but the gossiper has some information they just must share. This information isn't about herself or himself but about someone else. Most of the time it is an interesting tidbit and the gossiper has the upper hand when getting the opportunity to share it first.

Here's a good test: Would I still share this information if the person I was speaking of was standing here beside me? If the answer is no, it might just be gossip. Because if you wouldn't share in front of the subject of your gossip then there must be some reason your news would hurt them or embarrass you. Thus, "tending to injure the reputation of a person" from our definition.

Of course, we often just boldly speak to others in rude and degrading ways. As Christians we are to use our words to build others up, not tear them down. How often in the Word are we told to love one another? Jesus Himself in John 15 gives the command: "Love each other as I have loved you."

Jesus set the example of how to love others. He said loving and encouraging words and showed love through His actions. He went as far as to give His very life out of love for us. We are to love in this same manner.

We must show restraint over the words we utter about others. I can remember growing up and hearing my mother say, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." This usually came when my brother and I were in a yelling spree. But, isn't there truth there that we could heed?

If what you're going to say isn't loving or doesn't build up the other person, just bite your tongue. We could all use a little more tongue-biting and a lot less back-biting!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Subject to their Husbands

Well, we're back to our study of worth in God's eyes. We still haven't made it past the letter O in worth, but this post is the last obey directive.

Titus Two may lose quite a few popularity points when it speaks of women being subject to their husbands. In fact, in our day and time, women roll their eyes and declare the Bible old-fashioned and out of date on this issue.

But, my dear fellow sisters in Christ, the Bible is still relevant and never does a message within it expire. Even though the words submit or subject may hit us the wrong way, we are still called to obey in this area.

Can I admit to you that I am happy and willing to submit because my husband follows the directives for the husband here? Yes, I don't mind being subject to my husband when he loves me like Christ loves the church. I trust his spiritual leadership in my home because he adheres to the very hard standards set forth in the Bible for a Christian husband.

Ephesians 5:22 also tells wives to submit but then it goes into a lengthy discussion of how that man is to deserve that submission because of the way he conducts himself.

Do not misunderstand me here. Submission does not mean become a doormat. You are God's creation endowed with unique gifts to use in His service.

I've seen this truth about the husband being the spiritual leader not work in many homes. Why? I think men have fallen down on their responsibility to teach those younger than themselves what it means to follow God and what that looks like. There are many women who have had to become the spiritual leaders of their homes, taking the children to church and leading them to Christ. The roles have become blurred.

However old-fashioned the world may find it, we must return to the teachings of the Bible on the roles God established. We wonder why things just don't work in our families. We aren't following the directives of Titus Two which includes instructing those younger than us in what it means to be a wife and a husband.

God created marriage and He knows how He created it to work.

Monday, June 30, 2014


We're taking a little break from our study of Worth to accept an invitation from Delia Latham to be included in the World Blog Tour. You can find Delia at Hearts Haven Books Blog. Delia is a fellow author at Pelican Book Group and a sweet sister in Christ I've had the pleasure of getting know.

Naturally, if you are new here, you can read my entire bio to the right below. But just a short description of me: I write Christian fiction with four books published, and I am an acquisitions editor for Prism Book Group. Recently, I've been involved in several collaborative devotional projects, which I have fully enjoyed and will be sharing with you soon.

Now, on to the questions I am to answer.

1. What am I working on?
Currently, I am finishing the writing of another Christian romance I am tentatively calling Lamp Unto Her Feet. As soon as that manuscript is complete, I will begin writing a Christian romantic suspense which has already been fully outlined. I'm also waiting to hear about two nonfiction projects that I submitted.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?  
For one, God has given me very specific messages that I am passionate about to show through my work. The theme of leaving a Godly legacy seems to always shine through as well as realizing that God has a specific plan for each person's life. I've always been told that my writing contains deep emotions that have the potential to touch the reader deeply.

3. Why do I write what I do?
Not everyone has felt called to write but I do. Through much prayer, I have realized that God has called me to write Christian literature to promote Christ as Savior and Lord and to encourage and challenge Christians to live for Christ. In our world today, Jesus and Christianity is squelched at every turn. I feel the need to urge fellow Christians to stand up and assure that their loved ones know the message of the gospel and the importance of a God-centered legacy.

4. How does my writing process work?
Many of my readers have discovered how old school I really am. I actually still write out my first drafts in a spiral notebook with a pencil. Those drafts usually come from an idea that I have doodled a few notes or a sketchy outline for. I then have a wonderful woman who takes pity on my dislike of typing by transferring those penciled words into a computer document. I print out that document and place it into a three-ring notebook where I proceed to revise and edit. I then sit down at the computer with my notebook and transfer all of the changes until I'm satisfied.

Thank you, Delia, for inviting me to share in this World Blog Tour.

To learn about some other writers and their answers to the above questions, visit these links on July 8th:

Julie Cosgrove

Rachel James

Author Rachel A. James

Suzanne Purvis


Monday, June 23, 2014


We are still on the O in Worth which stands for obey. There is an area we as Christians are supposed to obey and that is in the area of being kind.

The word kind means a sympathetic, forbearing, or pleasant nature. Its synonyms include benevolent, compassionate, good-hearted, humane, sympathetic, tender, and considerate.

How many times do we see Jesus displaying compassion? Our calling as Christians is to be like Christ. Do you realize that Jesus didn't just look on people with sympathy? Check out the gospels. Notice his interactions with lepers, blind beggars, and dying children.

Jesus didn't just speak some encouraging words and wish people the best. He got involved. He touched. He healed. He resurrected.

What does this example mean for us? We are to understand that being kind or compassionate means being sympathetic with work clothes on. Just wishing someone the best in their crisis isn't being Christ to them. We have to help. We have to get involved.

The reason we have to be reminded to be kind and compassionate is because this is a dirty business. Let's face it, sometimes it's just easier not to get involved. We can throw some money and maybe a prayer at people's needs and feel we've helped.

Join me in praying that God would help us show kindness as Christ would. Ask Him for opportunities to demonstrate compassion. Ask Him to point out people who need a kind word or action today. You never know when you will be in need of a dose of compassion from another brother or sister in Christ.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Busy At Home

Still traveling through this idea of becoming a woman of worth in God's eyes. We find ourselves still on the O in worth which stands for obey.

Our next area in which to obey is in being busy at home. Some women roll their eyes at such an old-fashioned thought. They argue that they have a career and demands. I believe it is because we might have a wrong view of this area of obedience.

When we tell someone to be busy at home, we think that means the domestic tasks such as laundry, dishes, and general house cleaning. I believe there is more implied in this statement from Titus Two than just doing our chores around the house.

Again, I think this idea goes along with an earlier command which was to love our husbands and children. As Christians, we must make our family a priority. The only other thing that takes precedence over our family is God.

We must take on a different perspective. We often see taking care of our spouse and children as responsibilities. Yes, we have a responsibility to care and love them, but we must see them as God sees them. He has blessed you with your spouse and your children. They are gifts to be cherished.

When we think about our families in this light, we will strive to make our homes safe havens, sanctuaries.

Let's face it, our homes are often battle scenes or maybe even the opposite, a silent zone. We are in conflict with each other and don't take time for one another so the home isn't a place we want to be. It becomes a place we stop in to sleep and maybe eat. Or, we are so caught up in ourselves that it is a silent place where no affirmations are heard.

We need to pray for God to lead us in establishing a home not just a house. We must pray for God to put boundaries around our homes against Satan. The enemy would like nothing better than to tear this God-ordained institution apart. We must constantly share our hearts and lives with each other. We should try to eat our meals together and spend quality time together.

Yes, our lives are busy, but we should never be too busy for our family. Take time to pray for each member and share with them that you pray for them. Pray for them in front of them. Talk about what you are studying in the Bible or about a sermon you have heard. Discuss hopes and dreams.

Be busy at home.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Obey by Remaining Pure

In our pursuit of being a person of worth, we still find ourselves in the O of worth which stands for obey. Taking our instruction from Titus Two, the next area to be obedient is in being pure.

The word pure means unmixed with any other matter or free from taint. It means to be free from moral fault or innocent, marked by chastity. Chaste means innocent of unlawful sexual intercourse or sexual purity.

In First Thessalonians 4:7 it says that God didn't call us to be impure but to live a holy life.

If a Christian is married, he or she should be completely devoted to his or her spouse. This purity means not to look too long at another man or woman. It means not to get involved with another man or woman.

Those single Christians must remain pure by saving oneself for your future spouse.

The world finds Christians extremely old-fashioned in regards to purity. But, God's Word does not condone sex outside of the married relationship. And, Christ even stated that lusting after another person who is not your spouse is committing adultery in your heart.

To single Christians this means that God expects you not to be involved physically with anyone before you are married.

This area of being pure must also involve modesty. Recently, Beth Moore expressed this idea while teaching her Bible study on Esther. She explained how inappropriate it is for women to dress seductively and then strut around other women's husbands. Beth plainly said, "Keep your breasts to yourself!"

I have to agree. The type of man that will be attracted by such a display will not treat you the way you deserve to be treated.

As the verse above states, we are to live holy lives. Holiness involves being separate from the world and its standards. Being separate means we must be pure and chaste.

Strive for purity by treasuring your spouse as the wonderful gift he or she is from God.

Strive for purity by praying for the person God would have for you to marry.

Precious metals' worth is measured by their purity, so let our purity be shown to be worth much. Not according to the world's economy but in God's. That is where a Christian should want to derive his or her worth.

Friday, May 30, 2014


Time to get back to our study on WORTH. Not worth in the world's eyes but in God's.

We have made it to the O in worth which stands for obey. Last time we used our focal passage of Titus Two to realize one way we show worth is through loving our husbands and children.

There's more to this O of obey. The next directive we should obey is to be self-controlled. This always makes me think of controlling anger or our emotions.

Let's face it, we need to exercise control over our tongues.

James 3:9-10 says: "With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be."

We are told there shouldn't be praise coming from the same mouth that spouts curses at another brother or sister.

How often have I spewed words at another person only to wish I could take them back? Just like the toothpaste illustration proves, once those words are out, they can't be taken back. This is where self-control comes in. We must work to bridle our tongues just like a horse is controlled through a bridle and a bit. Can we accomplish this on our own? No.

When we give control of our lives over to God, we must be very specific about giving Him control of our tongues. But, what does this look like in practice?

First, we think on the things of God and we look on others through God's love. This renewed perspective can help us to see people as God sees them. Who has more of a right to look on sinful people with scorn than God? And yet, He doesn't. We must pray for Him to help us see people as He sees them and to control our tongues. We should speak encouraging words, not ones that tear down.

Practicing self-control is a characteristic that God sees as worthwhile.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Blue Ridge and New Friends

The Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference was a wonderful experience I am still digesting. Very few people know what a "God thing" this was for me to even be able to attend. I have never been able to afford to attend a conference. And, even though I have tried for scholarships, I was never awarded one.

Last year, I proposed a class for the At-Home ACFW Conference and it was accepted. Not long after that I appeared on Tiffany Coulter's blog to do a little teaching series. She mentioned teaching at Blue Ridge. I wasn't feeling confident enough at first to even approach Edie Melson as Tiffany recommended, but I pushed forward. Edie suggested I send in class proposals for the conference.

When I received the invitation to be on the Blue Ridge faculty, you would have thought I had won the lottery. Not only do I love to teach, but this meant I could attend my first writing conference.

In the months leading up to the conference I prayed that whatever "divine appointments or moments" I was supposed to encounter, God would not let me miss them. Honestly, everywhere I turned while there was a God moment. The following is just a short list of all of those experiences.

Happy to meet people in person I have only had the privilege of interacting with online.
Impressed by those writers who pitched their work so passionately and expertly to me.
Thrilled to teach and hopefully impart some wisdom my attendees can use in their writing.
Inspired by the beautiful worship music of Rachel Hauk.
Encouraged and challenged by the keynote speakers as well as Alton Gansky's devotions.
Enjoyed just dining with writers from all over the country and hearing their precious stories.
Completely overwhelmed when my name was called for a Selah Award.

This is just scratching the surface. I know as I continue to let the whole "drinking from a fire hydrant" experience sink in, there will be more things that touched me.

If you are visiting here because I met you at the conference, please consider subscribing to this blog through your email. Or, should you have just stumbled across my ramblings, please consider doing the same. This is the place I try to share what God is teaching me. I also like to feature my fellow authors and let them share their God-given work.

I will close this post by simply encouraging you. If God calls or even just nudges you toward something, act upon it. He really is in the blessing business. And, He really does want to use His children to do the things he created them to do.

Please consider connecting with me on Facebook as well. Paula Mowery on Facebook

Another place I would enjoy connecting with you is through my other blog which features creative exercises just for Christian writers.

To quote a line from my first book, The Blessing Seer, "Go out on a limb for God." The view is really breathtaking up there!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

WORTH - Obey

Time to return to the discussion of worth that we began a couple of posts ago. Remember, we are using Titus Two as a guiding passage to instruct us on how to be people of worth.

The W in worth stood for worship. The O stands for obey.

Titus Two begins with a verse that says: "Teach what is in accord with sound doctrine." We as Christians are to teach and obey God's instructions. His Word isn't out of date; it is the living Word of God.

First thing mentioned in the passage that we must obey is to love our husbands and children. Why would Paul even have to say this? There must have been some reason that he felt he needed to remind us to teach women to love their husbands and children.

I believe they might have suffered from the same problems many of us do. We don't always make our husbands (or spouses) and children the priority they deserve.

We find ourselves focused upon our careers or our own interests so much that we don't show our spouse or offspring that they are loved and more important. We think it is enough to just tell them that we love them. Love is an action word.

God's kind of love is shown to us in 1 Corinthians 13: "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no records of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."

This is God's kind of love and should be the kind of love that we practice in regards to our spouses and children. Loving our spouses and children is worth much in God's eyes.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Selah Award Finalists


                                                              FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 7, 2014
Ridgecrest, NCAlton Gansky, Director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, and Eva Marie Everson, BRMCWC Contest Director, announce the finalists in the 2014 Selah Awards, awarded to published authors each year during the Blue Ridge conference.
The Selah Awards are open industry wide and internationally to authors published by traditional and nontraditional publishing houses during the previous year. The awards will be given during the awards banquet held on Wednesday evening, May 21, at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time. The 2014 Book of the Year award is chosen by the contest director from the top scores/first place recipients.
This year, finalists have been named in thirteen categories. They are (in alphabetical order according to the authors last name):

Children (Tie for Third)
Michelle Medlock AdamsGod Knows You (Candy Cane Press)
Burton W. ColeBash and the Pirate Pig (B&H Kids)
Hannah C. HallGod Bless You and Goodnight (Thomas Nelson)
Jill Roman LordIf Jesus Came to Visit Me (Candy Cane Press)

Inspiration and Gift
Debora M. CotyFear, Faith, and a Fistful of Chocolates (Barbour Publishing)
Cynthia Howerter & La-Tan Roland MurphyGods Provision in Tough Times (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Rose Chandler JohnsonGod, Me, and Sweet Iced Tea (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

Christian Life
Jo Ann ForeWhen A Woman Finds Her Voice (Leafwood Publishers)
Cynthia RuchtiRagged Hope (Abingdon Press)
Linda Evans ShepherdFinding Gods Presence (Revell)

Bible Study
Nick HawkesThe Bible on the Key Issues of Life (Wombat Books)
Beebe KauffmanIsaiah: Setting Things Right (Lighthouse Bible Studies)
Erica WiggenhornMoses: Every Life Proof of Gods Promises (Crossbooks)

Young Adult Nonfiction
Bethany JettThe Cinderella Rule (Regal)
Kelly McIntosh (Gen. Ed)God Hearts Me; Daily Devotions for a Girls Heart (Barbour Publishing)
Cyle YoungBelly Buttons & Broken Hearts (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

Young Adult Fiction
Elaine Marie CooperFields of the Fatherless (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Tessa Emily HallPurple Moon (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Eddie JonesDead Low Tide (Zonderkidz)

First Novel (Tie for Third)
Dianna T. BensonThe Hidden Son (Ellechor Publishing House)
Carole BrownThe Redemption of Caralynne Hayman (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Aaron D. GanskyThe Bargain (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Tessa Emily HallPurple Moon (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

Fiction: Novella
Paula MoweryBe the Blessing (Pelican Book Group)
Linda Wood RondeauA Christmas Prayer (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
Gina WelbornMercy Mild (Barbour Publishing)

Fiction: Speculative
Ian AchesonAngelguard (Lion Hudson)
Lisa BelcastroShenandoah Crossings (OakTara)
Lisa BelcastroShenandoah Nights (OakTara)

Fiction: Suspense
Richard L. Mabry, M.D.Stress Test (Thomas Nelson)
Linnette R. MullinFinding Beth (CrossRiver Media Group)
Jordyn RedwoodPoison (Kregel)

Fiction: Historical
Vikki KestellJoy on This Mountain (Faith-Filled Fiction)
Ann TatlockSweet Mercy (Bethany House Publishers)
Liz TolsmaSnow on the Tulips (Thomas Nelson)

Fiction: Romance
Rachel HauckOnce Upon a Prince (Zondervan)
Maureen LangAll in Good Time (Tyndale Publishers)
Davalynn SpencerThe Ranchers Second Chance (Love Inspired / Heartsong Presents)

Fiction: Contemporary Women
Normandie FischerSailing Out of Darkness (WhiteFire Publishing)
Anita HigmanWinter in Full Bloom (Moody Publishers)
Cynthia RuchtiWhen the Morning Glory Blooms (Abingdon Press)

Thanks to the generous support of Crossbooks and LifeWay/Ridgecrest, the banquet will be telecast live over the internet. To access the live stream during the awards banquet, click on:
For more information, you may email Eva Marie Everson at