Friday, December 30, 2016


"Therefore, if anyone
is in Christ, the new
creation has come.

The old has gone, the
new is here!"
(2 Corinthians 5:17)


Well, you've weathered the busyness of the holidays. Now it's time for New Year'sresolutions. I'm not talking about the losing weight, more exercise sort. I'm referring to renewing your heart. What can you do this year to become more Christ-like? Who can you bless?

Consider for a moment your weak spots. Come, now. We all have them. One of mine, for instance, is patience...or lack of, I should say. I find I lose patience when things don't happen on my time schedule, or the way I hope. Often I grow frustrated and tire of waiting.

Writing requires huge chunks of time--time I often don't have. Life just seems to get in the way. It's then I have to remind myself the Lord is in control. It's His time schedule I need to be concerned with. He wants the best for us. We can trust Him to work things for our good.

This year it is my prayer that, instead of growing impatience when obstacles come, I'll take my frustrations to the Lord and allow Him to show me how to spend my time His way. It's all His time anyway, isn't it? It's all in our perspective.

When our plans get interrupted, we need to see it as an opportunity. How can I use this interruption as an opportunity to serve the Lord? Instead of fuming over interruptions to your plans, look for ways to make a difference in someone's life.

~Pray for those who cross your path.

~Consider your time God's time.

~Be committed to making each day count for matter what He sends your way.

Blessings to you in the New Year!

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Saturday, December 24, 2016



"But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

(Luke 2:10-12)




Friday, December 16, 2016


"And whatever you do,
whether in word or deed,
do it all in the name
of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks
to God the Father
through him.

(Colossians 3:17)

Last summer, Tree Swallows attempted to take over our Bluebird house, so my husband put a bucket over the house in hopes of them leaving. Instead, they patiently sat atop it, waiting, I suppose, for it to reappear. They never tired of waiting!

We all face disappointments in life. Whether it be an unkind word from someone we love, a job loss, dashed hopes, or a severed relationship. Jesus made it clear that in this world we will have trouble. But that we should "take heart" because He has overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

For writers, disappointment often comes in the form of rejection slips, delayed responses, unfulfilled dreams, or unexpected rewrites/edits. Yet it's these rough spots in our journey that can mold us into the people and fine-tuned writers we hope to become. The ones God designed us to be.

Growth happens when we use these setbacks to shift our focus onto what matters most--our usefulness to God. Following are 4 specific ways to bolster not only one's writing technique, but our journey through life.

PRAY FOR WISDOM: If you've read many of my blogs, you'll note that I often make mention of prayer. This isn't because I've run out of ideas or options, rather it's because prayer needs to be a part of all we do. Asking for the Lord's blessing and wisdom is a vital part of life, and should be a part of our writing journey as well. If you're facing disappointment, seek the Lord's perspective. He can take the sourest of situations and turn them for our good.

REASSESS: When we're discouraged, everything seems a bit grim. Instead of letting the situation get the better of you, take a step back and reassess where you're headed. Ask yourself, Is this the direction God wants me to go, or is He leading me another way? Be willing to prayerfully try various avenues and see what doors the Lord opens or shuts. Remember, when God closes a door, He's sure to open a window.

SEEK ENCOURAGERS: I'm blessed to have some faithful writer friends who regularly speak encouragement into my life. Not through flattering words, but words which spur me to reach into the recesses of my heart and mind and draw out my best. Friends who speak the truth in love, yet whose goal is to build and uplift. Do you have friends like that? If not, I encourage you to pray for the Lord to send some your way. They can prove invaluable assets during life's rough spots!

NEVER GIVE UP: Among my keepsakes, is a picture of a willowy stork attempting to stuff a large frog down his throat. At the same time, the half-eaten frog's hands are clutching the stork's neck, keeping him from being eaten. At the bottom are the words: NEVER GIVE UP! I keep this picture close at hand to remind me to keep trying, even in the bleakest of situations. When things look grim, don't let go of hope. When the rejections keep coming, seek out new possibilities. As someone once said, "The only loser is the one who ceases to try."

Who/what encourages you? I'd love to hear your story. 

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Thursday, December 8, 2016


On this 75th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor Day, I had the privilege of interviewing Inspirational WWII author Gail Kittleson this week. I hope you are blessed by her writing journey.

It's great to have you, Gail. How long have you been writing? 

I’ve been writing since adolescence, when poetry was my favorite genre.

What/who inspired you to write?

I’d have to say my middle school and high school teachers. Mrs. Morford, a dyed-in-the-wool grammarian, even inspired me to love diagramming sentences. Goes to show how much influence one instructor can wield. I even used this teacher in my novel.

How neat! You write Historical Christian fiction set during World War II. What interests you about this particular time period? 

Everything about World War II interests me, even the atrocities that can really depress a person. Just last night, I was re-reading about Operation Jedburgh, which sent Americans trained by the OSS into France before D-Day. Some of them suffered terribly in the effort to aid the Resistance.

But their accomplishments changed the course of the war. They blew railroads, blocked roads, destroyed Nazi truck tires, and performed myriad other acts of sabotage to hinder the movement of the Waffen SS and Das Reich (Hitler’s ferocious tank battalions) from their winter refitting in the south to Normandy.

It’s no fun pondering the agony of having one’s eyes gouged out by the Gestapo, but the German atrocities only highlight the bravery of those who willingly took the risk.

Can you give us an overview of your new release, In Times Like These?

This story, starring a young Iowa farm wife, Addie Bledsoe, came out in April. Addie faces her own battles with her volatile husband Harold, who longs to join the Army, but cannot due to his father’s stroke. As the Pearl harbor attack ignites war sentiment across the nation, Harold takes out his fury on Addie. Oh, he's too tuned in to others' opinions to hit her physically, but sends emotional and mental blows from every direction.

Who is your favorite character? Why?

 Aside from Addie, whose make-do attitude and irrepressible positivity win my respect, I think Jane, Addie’s down-the-road neighbor, is my favorite. Her brand of practical philosophy, honed through a lifetime of hard knocks, rings true to Addie far more deeply than any platitudes or pat answers others might pose. And her flower garden sends a message to everyone who passes her simple farmstead--in fact, that's what attracts Addie to stop by for their first conversation.

Jane is as tried and true as George, the rural mailman who displays loyalty in the midst of dire times. Perhaps surviving World War I has something to do with Jane and George’s indefatigable resilience and humor. Can you imagine enduring not just one, but two World Wars?

No I can't. What is the main message/theme you hope to relay to readers?

Sometimes finding one’s voice takes time. Childhood trauma, broken promises, and false teachings about faith can sidetrack a person in this vital pursuit. Often, we may not even realize we haven’t found our voice—perhaps we’ve allowed others’ voices to fill that void.

But slow as it may seem, this path to discovery is worth all the effort required. When the truth begins to dawn on us, we hear the first faint sounds of our voice rising from the depths of our soul. We face a frightening choice, then. Will we allow our voices to be heard, no matter how what we have to say might upset the status quo?  

Throughout this process, our faith grows, for our voice is a part of being made in our Creator’s image. The many ups and downs of Addie’s story and the encouragement she receives from her best friend in London, Jane, George, and even her mother-in-law have encouraged my readers. One of them has earmarked the novel, and says it’s helping her through a thorny relationship.  

 That's wonderful! Do you have any advice or tips for aspiring authors?

Pay attention to the voice within you. Many times we seek guidance from outside, but I’ve learned that often, our true polar star has been with us all along, and awaits discovery.

Thanks, Gail! It's been great.

Thanks so much, Cynthia, for having me visit. 

Friday, December 2, 2016


"For to you is born
this day
in the city of David
a Savior,
who is Christ the Lord."
(Luke 2:11)

One of the best parts of Christmas is the spirit of hope and expectancy it holds. Children eagerly await the gifts and filled stockings of Christmas morn. Excitement fills their bright-eyed faces as they rise early to see if the coveted gifts they've hoped for are there beneath the tree.

But for those of us who are Christians, the true hope of Christmas came in the form of a tiny baby born in a stable. Jesus' humble birth changed everything. His coming gave us the hope of Heaven, a priceless gift that only He had the power to give.

This Christmas, I pray you'll join me in celebrating not only Christ's birth, but in giving thanks to God for His perfect plan of redemption and grace. Without Jesus, there can be no Christmas. Without His sacrifice for our sins, there can be no hope of Heaven.

Now, we wait in hope of Christ's second coming which will usher us home. Like children at Christmastime, may we live each day in expectancy, watching for His appearance, with hearts that are ready to meet the Savior.

May you have joy and hope this Christmas season as you celebrate with family and friends.
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