The Rescue by Jim Cymbala – Review

I was a part of the launch team to read and review The Rescue by Jim Cymbala. I am embarrassed to admit that I had not heard of him or read his books before, especially when so many people mentioned to me that they read his previous books and really enjoyed them.

That being said, I had high expectations when I read The Rescue, and I was not disappointed. This is a book that contains seven stories from ordinary men and women who have literally hit rock bottom. They have sunk so low they feel no one cares about them or truly loves them–they have no HOPE. Some have contemplated suicide or have settled for a life of despair. Until they each found hope in JESUS.

When I started this book I found myself with my foot in “that place” a bit, questioning– does God hear me? Does He see me? Love me? Does He even know I’m here?? This book answered my questions with a loud YES!! Yes, he sees me and YOU. He loves us and cares about us. He has a plan and purpose for each of us, and He wants us living life to the fullest. If we allow Him to do HIS thing; allow His spirit to speak to us, we can see change, we can have hope when there seems to be none.

I am the mom of a very busy two-year old boy, and I work full-time and also take college classes, so my time is very limited. This book is perfect for busy lifestyles as it’s a small book, a very quick read, but it packs a powerful message of love, hope and encouragement.

If you are feeling like you have hit such a low that you can’t bounce back, or if you feel like God does not see you, please pick up a copy of this book. It is proof-positive that God is still moving and working. He does see you and he does care about YOU!!

I will definitely be checking out Pastor Cymbala’s previous books, as he has made a new fan out of me! Check out this link to learn more about Pastor Cymbala and The Rescue.

Let me know your thoughts about this book in the comments 🙂 Enjoy!




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Bible Journaling With Creative Retreat

Bible Journaling
Journaling in Isaiah 1:18 using the December Faith Art Box from Creative Retreat.


Hello friends! I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and New Year! I am sharing this page that I created using the December Faith Art Box from Creative Retreat.

This page was very simple, fun and it turned out beautiful. To start, I simply tore a piece of copier paper in half to create a jagged edge to use as a mask to mask off the bottom of the page that I wanted to keep white. Then I used Distress Ink in Faded Jeans and Black Soot to create a night sky effect. I found the adorable snowflakes at the Dollar Tree. They are foam stickers and worked perfectly with this project. I adhered them to the top of the page, and then I used my December Faith Art Box from Creative Retreat to create the stamped words and added some of the heart stickers that come in the kit.

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New Illustrated Faith December Kit – ADVENT

Hello everyone! I just caught an unboxing of Illustrated Faith’s newest kit for December being released tomorrow, Friday November 17. And it is adorable. Everything about it–the washi tape, the devotional cards, the clear stickers — all a must-see. The kit is called Advent and includes 8 devotional cards to get you immersed in God’s Word this Christmas season.

This kit is normally $20, but also starting tomorrow you can Take 30% off everything in DaySpring’s Black Friday Sitewide Sale. Use code FRIDAY17. This code is good November 17 – November 26.

If you are beginner in Bible journaling this kit is a great way to get your feet wet. Also, this makes a beautiful Christmas gift for someone who is either a beginner or a veteran at Bible journaling.

Creatively in Christ,



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How to Use Bubble Wrap to Lay Color in Your Bible

Hello everyone! I hope you are all enjoying your fall season and getting in a lot of fun activities with family and friends! I wanted to share with you a (new-to-me) Bible journaling technique. Maybe this is new to you, too, and you can have a little fun trying it out. It is super-easy! It’s painting using bubble wrap! Seriously!

Finished Product using a bubble wrap technique
Finished page using bubble wrap and Print & Pray Shop items from Illustrated Faith.

I noticed more and more people using  this technique online, so I thought I would give it a go. The best part was that I actually had bubble wrap on hand, as we had just moved to a new home. I rarely have the supplies needed on hand, so this was a bonus.

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Dumping Debt

Dumping Debt

Debt is a drag! Debt is stressful! Debt even has the ability to ruin relationships. Debt is bad, and fortunately, debt is avoidable. But, what if you already have a mountain or two of debt? Those mountains are big suckers, too.

A year or so ago, my husband and I started following Dave Ramsey and purchased his Financial Peace course. Now, I wish I had some amazing story to tell you about how we now have no debt and we’ve paid off massive loans. I don’t, BUT, we have paid off a lot of debt in the last year. We are one credit card away from being free of credit card debt and then we are on to paying off our vehicles.

We started following Dave’s 7 Baby Steps to Financial Peace and have a nice emergency fund in place to avoid the credit card trap should an unexpected repair or something of that nature happen (and it will happen)! We’ve started making smarter financial decisions (not perfect, yet!) but, we are getting there!

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Book Review of Lynn Austin’s “Where We Belong”

Where We Belong - A novel by Lynn Austin

Hello everyone! As you know I have been reading Lynn Austin’s new novel, “Where We Belong”. I just finished and wanted to post my review because this book was really good. I highly recommend this (and really any of Lynn’s novels) book for your reading list. It will be time well spent 🙂

Here is my review:

I have been a fan of Lynn Austin’s books for several years. I had the opportunity to join a launch team to receive a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. So, here goes my very honest review.

Lynn has managed, yet again, to bring historical fiction to life in a fun (and educational) way!
This time her book follows sisters Rebecca and Flora Hawes on, not one, but many adventures. The book begins in the Sinai Desert in 1890, as the sisters are on a quest to find ancient and original documents verifying the Gospels of the Bible. They are joined on their quest by their butler and lady’s maid. Each of the individuals has the opportunity to reflect back on moments from their lives, which takes us back to Chicago in the 1860’s.

We get to experience many historical moments in time including the Civil War and the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

Now, I was a bit leery of the description of the book because, while I love the Bible, I can lose interest very quickly when reading about ancient copies and where they were found. But, Lynn has a God-given talent to make even those historical moments that I can’t quite grasp, engaging and interesting.

The characters in this book are feisty, fun, and I quickly came to love them! Lynn has a knack of intertwining Jesus and the Bible into her books without being pushy or preachy, and I think a lot of people appreciate that in an author.

There were a couple of tear-jerker moments, at least for me, so I believe this book has everything a good Christian novel should.

Oh, and I should mention that this book is inspired by the true story of Agnes and Margaret Smith, twin sisters born in Scotland in 1843. I found that to be a bonus to this book.

I highly recommend that you add this to your reading list, and be sure to check out Lynn Austin’s other novels, as well.

Happy Reading!


If you would like to read this book for yourself, please check out my affiliate link on Amazon I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did. And, please leave me a comment with your own reviews!


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Napkin Technique

Hi Friends,

Today I did some fall-inspired journaling using the napkin technique. I found this beautiful napkin while at Hobby Lobby and wanted to use it to illustrate Psalm 100:4- Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. (NIV)

Napkin Technique for Bible Journaling
Napkin Technique Supplies
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A Build-A-Bear Moment

What do Build-A-Bear Workshops and Heaven have in common?

I really love the Build-A-Bear store, so much more than, I think, even my kids! You know, Build-A-Bear, where you pick out a “shell” of a bear and wait in line for 10-15 minutes to have your bear stuffed. The wait is not so fun, but once you get to the stuffer machine, it’s pure magic.

Build-A-Bear Workshop
Build-A-Bear Workshop

You know how it works, you hand your shell-of-a-bear to the attendant and they make a big deal out of your bear. You get a tiny heart to place inside your bear, but before the heart goes in the bear it’s rubbed on your head, on your tummy, etc. The heart becomes almost a part of YOU before it gets placed in the bear. Such a big deal is made out of this bear becoming yours. Then the bear gets stuffed, and hopefully you make it out of the store before the bear has a nicer wardrobe than your child (or YOU)!

When I was just about to turn eight-years old my family relocated from Ohio to Florida. This move was such a shock to my little self! Up until then I was a typical kid with no worries or anxieties. That all changed when we moved. I had a terrible time adjusting to a new school, new kids and a totally new environment. Around that time I started having this strange feeling that I came to know as a “homesick” feeling. I don’t know how to explain it, but it started around that time.

Once I got older we ended up moving back to Ohio, and I eventually got married with my own family, but I would still, on occasion, experience that “homesick” feeling. Still to this day, 35 years later, I still experience that “homesick” feeling at times.

One day, it dawned on me that that homesick feeling was because I’m not truly home. I would imagine before we were born there was kind of a Build-A-Bear ceremony with God where our little hearts were prayed over, and we were told how special and unique we are. There was a part of God placed in our hearts that we carry around, and until we see Him again, we aren’t truly home. So, that “homesick” feeling will remain until that glorious day!

Psalm 139:13 – For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. (New International Version)

I hope you tuck that verse away in your heart, and remember that you are fearfully and wonderfully made by God. He fussed over you and is waiting for a wonderful reunion one day.




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Interview With Lynn Austin

Lynn Austin
Lynn Austin, Author

Hi Friends!

If you have seen my “bookshelf” page, you are aware of a new novel being released on October 3. The novel is by one of my favorite authors, Lynn Austin, titled Where We Belong. I’ve had the privilege to read the first three chapters of this book, and let me tell you, I can’t wait to get the whole book in my hands.

I thought this would be a good opportunity for you to learn more about Lynn, so here you will find an interview where she answers questions posed by her launch team. I hope you enjoy the interview, and be sure to grab a copy of her new book here and share your thoughts!


1. Do the sisters represent anyone in your life?
No, but since I grew up with two sisters who are my best friends, I love to write stories about the close relationships between sisters. Like the Hawes sisters, my own sisters and I are very different, but we’ve enjoyed some great adventures together.

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National Day of Encouragement #EncouragementDare

Take the #encouragementdare

Hello friends!

I wanted to take a minute to let you know that September 12 is National Day of Encouragement! In recognition of that, DaySpring is daring people everywhere to take action in the #EncouragementDare from September 10-15th. I love this idea of actively seeking opportunities to encourage those around us!

Every day I see so many people tearing each other down on social media, on television, and even in person. It is very ugly!! As followers of Christ, we should be building each other up and celebrating with each other when we reach new heights! Having the encouragement of others could be the difference someone needs to make tremendous breakthroughs in business, marriages, relationships with children, friendships, or even bringing someone to Jesus!

Just a few kind words could turn a day (or life) around.

A few ideas to start the dare:

  • Tell someone how they inspire you.
  • Point out the progress your co-worker is making.
  • Leave a sweet note for your spouse.
  • Put an encouraging note in your child’s lunchbox.
  • Respond with kindness on social media.
  • If you have a favorite blogger, let him or her know they are doing a good job.

Join me in taking this dare and encouraging someone today. Click here for more ideas and resources to get you started in brightening someone’s day!

Make sure to leave a comment on how you encouraged someone (comment link is below the title of this blog).



P.S. You really are a blessing!!

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