Friday, June 24, 2011

17 Days in...and we're linking up!

Welcome back to my hosted link-up for the 
21 Days of Prayer for Sons Challenge!

I have enjoyed reading all of your comments as well as links when you share what this prayer journey is doing in the lives of you and your families.

Looking forward to seeing what you have to share this week!

Remember, if you do not blog you can still share your thoughts and experiences here by simply writing it as a comment to this post.  

Also, if you only come to read the links and comments, that is great as well.

Blessings to you all!  

Link up or comment below...

And today we pray for Self Control!!! 

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Patience Like a Bear

Just had to share this...

Today, in the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge, we prayed scripture prayers regarding Patience over our sons.

I decided to share my morning prayer time with my son this morning while he bathed.  As I introduced him to our prayer topic for today, I mentioned we would be praying prayers for patience for him and for all of us.

Here is how the conversation ensued:
"Son, you see, we are going to pray for patience..."

"Patience like a bear?" (We have recently been watching a nature show about bears.)

"I guess so.  Yes, I think bears have patience."

"Yes, mom, they have patience for they pray."

"Bears pray?  Oh, well, I guess you could be right.  Maybe they do pray."

"No, mom, I said they have patience while they wait for their PREY.  You know, the animals they eat are their prey.  They have patience while they wait to attack them and eat them."

"Oh, yes, then you are right.  They surely do have to have patience to find and get their prey at just the right time."
Unbelievable, the conversations you can have with a five-year-old.

And, believe it or not, I did draw some parallels with his little scenario.

We have many little enemies that come at us as a result of the bigger enemy.  Once we recognize certain enemies as being regular and familiar in our lives, we can begin to not only be on the lookout for them in order to defend ourselves from them, but we can also switch to the offensive tactic of stalking them patiently as if they are our prey.  With God's guidance, strength, wisdom, and complete assistance, we can have the patience of a bear and stalk and attack our prey so that we are no longer its prey.  Our former stalker(s) can become a footstool at our feet as opposed to us being trampled by the enemy.

The LORD says to my lord:
   “Sit at my right hand
   until I make your enemies
   a footstool for your feet.”  (Psalm 110:1)
So, I charge you today, 
in the words of my five-year-old son, 
to go out and pray to have 
the patience of a bear 
as you stalk and defeat your prey!

Friday, June 17, 2011

21 Days of Prayer for Sons Challenge - Day 10 Link-Up

Welcome to the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons Challenge Link-Up.

If you are not a blogger, feel free to click on any or all of the links below to read our challenge groups' stories of how they are doing and what they are experiencing as they pray for sons, grandsons, etc. for 21 Days.  More will be added throughout the day and even throughout the next week.

Bloggers involved in this challenge, link up your challenge-related posts...and visit others while you are at it.  If you don't get a chance to link up today, that's okay.  Come back and link-up anytime before next Friday's link-up.

Everyone, leave comments as you stop by and read posts so that the bloggers know you were there.  They greatly appreciate comments, even if it is just to say Hi!

Also, make sure to stop by Brooke's Warrior Prayers blog today for her link-up as well.  She is hosting a GIVEAWAY!!!  :o)  You can CLICK HERE to go to it.

Oh, and today, we pray for JOY!!!

I think that's about it.

Now, LINK-UP and READ! 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Okay, so now I am finally doing my 2nd ever GIVEAWAY!!!

What book is it?


Perfect time of year to win this motivational, inspirational, practical book.

Just leave a comment here 
(or on my Facebook page if we are FB friends already) 
letting me know you would like the chance to win.  
Oh, and make sure to either leave an email address in the comment 
or email me at decide2day2live (at) gmail (dot) com 
so that I have a way to contact you if you are the winner. 

That's it!

I will close this on this Friday, June 17th at midnight central standard time.   
(I won't be a stickler about that as long as you get your comment posted before I wake up on Saturday morning and run the random picker test to find my winner and announce it.)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Reshaping It ALL by Candace Cameron Bure

Yes, yes, you probably recognize the name and possibly the face...but something about her looks different.

Candace Cameron Bure is the famous pre-teen beauty from Full House and is one of Kirk Cameron's sisters.  (He was on Growing Pains, remember?)

What's missing on that beautiful face of hers, though?

Oh, yeah!  The cute, chubby cheeks.

You see, in the years since we last saw her on Full House she has done some growing up.  And I must say, it looks beautiful on her.  However, those years in between the cutesy pre-teen days and now have by no means been easy for her.

In Reshaping It ALL, Candace openly shares the story of her life growing up as an actress, battling an eating disorder, and rediscovering her faith in Jesus Christ as her Savior. 

Candace Cameron Bure candidly (no pun intended) opens up her life and shares lessons learned along the way so that we can glean wisdom and practicality from her struggles and successes.  Candace offers everything from narrative life recounting to thoughtful quotes she finds inspiring.  She presents scripture to go along with each chapter as well as some down-to-earth advice on how to succeed at reshaping your body and soul.  She even includes a favorite recipe with each chapter---several of which I have since made and enjoyed.

Though Candace's problem is/was more in the area of addiction to food, my struggles are not the same.  I do enjoy food, however I am pretty good about not overindulging and such.  My issue is exercise---or lack thereof.  Because I lack the energy, time, motivation, and stamina to begin and maintain a regular exercise program, my body is now showing the fruit of it.  I could not have gotten this book at a better time. 

Thanks to Candace's encouragement, I plan to make this INSPIRATION turn into PERSPIRATION.  

And who knows, maybe that will in turn produce some much needed REJUVENATION!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher from B&House Publishing Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, June 10, 2011

Day 3 of 21 Days...and it's a LINK-UP!

Whether or not you "blog", I hope you will enjoy today's "link-up" by clicking on any or all of the links that end up getting posted below so that you can read some of the experiences of my group members as they participate in this 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge.  (Throughout the day and even over the next several days more links will begin to appear as the writers/bloggers/parents post their own.)

Bloggers - Link up!  :o)
(21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge posts only, please)

If you have never participated in a link-up as a blogger, don't worry;  it's easy.  Just click below and follow the directions.  When it asks you for the name of the post, you can name it whatever you want...your name, the post name, your blog's name...whatever.

Also, don't forget to drop by Brooke McGlothlin's Warrior Prayers blog later and link up, too, once she has hers posted.  She may be doing giveaways and such on hers!  :o)

Oh, and in case you are
Day 3...we pray for Integrity!

Now, start reading and/or linking up below, and remember...
leave a comment when you visit each one---even if it is only a brief "Hello."

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

21 Days of Prayer For Sons Challenge begins TODAY!

Whether or not you followed my participation in the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge in April, you may have heard a little about it by now. 

Or you at least may have noticed that I now have a whole page dedicated to the introduction of it and invitation to it.

Well, that is because this time around I am leading a group of parents and grandparents of boys/men. 

Yep.  The challenge initiator, Brooke McGlothlin, decided to offer the challenge again, but this time to structure it as groups led by volunteer group leaders.  We are now up to almost 50 groups (both online and in person) with a total participation of nearly 1200 parents and grandparents.  (There is even an aunt in my group, as well as some dads!  The sons in question range from pre-birth to adults.) 

My group has over 50 participants.  All of these numbers are growing daily, but this is not about the numbers nor any kind of contest whatsoever.  However, the larger the number the more parents, grandparents, sons and grandsons will be blessed and challenged by these scripture prayers. 

TODAY we begin!!! is NOT TOO LATE if you would still like to hook up with us.  Go check out my page about it (CLICK HERE) and let me know if you are interested in joining my group!

Today we pray for obedience...

Remember when I last prayed scripture prayers for obedience for my son?!  (If not, read about it HERE.)

Keep us in your prayers as we are lifting many prayers to our Father for our sons.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Life of Andrew Jackson edited by John S. Jenkins, A.M.

Andrew Jackson.


Old Hickory.

The Battle of New Orleans.

Seventh president of the United States of America.

"Whatever may be the views in regard to his merits as a warrior, or his abilities as a statesman, his conduct in both capacities was such as must necessarily command attention.  His admirers will always be eager to discover some new object for their remembrance and regard; while those who are unwilling to approve his course, either in the camp or the cabinet, will feel impelled, from curiosity, if from no other motive, to examine the incidents of his memorable life."  John S. Jenkins, A.M. in Life of Andrew Jackson - originally published in 1850, re-published in February 2011 by Attic Books.

Jackson Square--a familiar site to me.  Did I really understand what caused the people of New Orleans to erect that famous statue so many years ago?  No.  Not until reading Life of Andrew Jackson, that is.

Though he was a controversial man, this biography is full of historical recountings of his wilderness, military and presidential battles.  This man inspired and instilled courage in anyone who joined him in battle.  He stood strong against overwhelming opposition, and his never-give-up/no-excuses attitude led troops in repeatedly defeating much larger and better supplied foes than themselves.  Because of this great man, I am now blessed to work in the beautiful, unique city of New Orleans.  Had he backed down when facing daunting odds, as most would have done, I would not have had the joy of falling in love with a city and a people the way I have with my beloved NOLA.  (New Orleans, La - get it?)

Did you know that during his time battling the Indians, he actually brought home to his wife an abandoned Indian baby boy and adopted him and they raised him as if the boy was their own?

During the days and swampy battles leading up to the Battle of New Orleans, according to John S. Jenkins,
"It was unnecessary for their general (Andrew Jackson) to encourage and allure them to deeds of valor:  his own example was sufficient to excite them.  Always in their midst, he was cool and collected.  Unmindful of danger, he continued to remind his troops that they had often said they could fight, and now was the time to prove it."
When speaking to his men after The Battle of New Orleans, the great General Jackson is quoted in this book as saying,
"Who, that never experienced your sufferings, will be able to appreciate your joys?  The man who slumbered ingloriously at home, during your painful marches, your nights of watchfulness, and your days of toil, will envy you the happiness which these recollections will afford--still more will he envy the gratitude of that country, which you have so eminently contributed to save."
Whatever your opinion of him, this book is packed full of detailed recounts of the uncountable battles Andrew Jackson faced from the time of his difficult family losses in boyhood throughout his time leading the Tennessee Volunteers and all the way through his presidency and even to his death.

Though it is a straining, difficult read at times due to the paragraph structure akin to books written in the 1800's, this historic biography is definitely worth the read.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Attic Books, an imprint of New Leaf Publishing Group. No other compensation was received. The fact that I received a complimentary product does not guarantee a favorable review.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Delightfully Intrusive

Quick thoughts here.

In my review this week of Angela Hunt's latest book, I referred to it as a "delightfully intrusive" book.  What does that make you think of?  Who does that make you think of?

It got me thinking...yikes!  I know.  :o)

Seriously though, I have several people I can think of whom I consider delightfully intrusive.
  • My husband
  • My son
  • My parents
  • My in-laws
  • My good friends who pop in on occasion and check on me (virtually and literally)
  • Even my co-workers and my boss
Do you get the idea? 

These people are in so many ways intrusive in my life and privacy and me-time (some more than others, of course).  Yet, I treasure that they are even in my life to intrude.  Therefore, their presence and intrusion into my life is a delight. 

Obviously not EVERY intrusion is welcomed with open arms and a positive attitude... BUT...the fact that I am blessed to find them in my life and in my heart should always remind me to appreciate them---intrusions and all.

One other majorly intrusive yet delightful person in my life...

Can you guess Who that is?

Is He in your life?

Is He trying to intrude as you continue to resist?

Or has He already intruded and is trying to intrude more---edging at you to draw closer and let more things go?

Though He is intrusive, as I am so very thankful He is, 
Christ is divinely delightful.

So, as He nudges at you to trust Him and let Him intrude, delight yourself in Him.  
And He will give you the desires of your heart.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Fine Art of Insincerity by Angela Hunt

Here's something new for me.

I have not yet reviewed a fiction book--until today.

And this takes place in the perfect setting for starting off my summer:  a three day holiday weekend in a beach cottage.

Here is the publisher's description of the story:

The Fine Art of Insincerity features three Southern sisters with ten marriages between them and more looming on the horizon. It takes a "girls only" weekend spent closing up Grandma's treasured beach house for the sisters to really unpack their family baggage, examine their relationship DNA, and discover the true legacy their much-marrying grandmother left behind.

And a bit about Angela Hunt, the author: 
Angela Hunt is the bestselling author of more than 100 books, including The Tale of Three Trees, Don't Bet Against Me, The Note, and The Nativity Story. Her nonfiction book Don't Bet Against Me, written with Deanna Favre, spent several weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. She and her husband make their home in Florida with their dogs. You can learn more at  

So, with the introductions out of the way, my thoughts.

Like the characters in this book, I also have two sisters.  And, I was reading this book over the long holiday weekend in a southern home very similar to the beach home they stayed in for their holiday weekend--complete with porch swing and all.  Setting and characters aside, or included, this story stirred up emotions in me which I thought were dormant or even non-existent.  It had me considering my relationship with my own sisters as well as other family relationships and friendships I hold dear.  

As the title suggests, ultimately these sisters had been insincere with each other and actually with everyone else including they themselves their whole adult lives.  Honestly, I kept mistaking the title of the book to be The Fine Art of Insecurity every time I glanced at the cover.  Truly, that mistaken title is not too far off as well.  Angela Hunt so creatively developed her theme and storyline with these sisters that the reader can sense that the one of the main reasons for each of their insincerity truly is their own insecurity.  

This book is not only a good summer read because of its setting but is also a great wake up to facing the reality of life and relationships before it is too late.  As is clearly portrayed in this book,  we never know how little time we may have left to truly show our love to those who need it most.  

Don't assume that because they are your family or lifelong friend(s) they know you love them.  How have you shown them?  Not how have you said it?  How have your actions and unspoken words proven (or disproven) your love for them?

Trust me, I am preaching right back at myself with this one.  Because of the wake-up call from this delightfully intrusive book, I pray I will make this the Summer of Love Lived Out toward my family and dear friends.