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2013 The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

The Premier Magazine for‌ Lovers of the Written Word! ~ Est. Oct. 2011~

Pamela S Thibodeaux CEO/Editor/Ad Sales Director http://thewordsmithjournalmagazine.com


April 2013 Welcome to the April 2013 issue of The Wordsmith Journal Magazine! Hope your Easter weekend was Blessed and your month is full of safe fun, and a reasonable amount of harmless foolishness as we welcome spring and celebrate new beginnings! This month we welcome Brandon Western with his column On the Other Side of Freedom to our family. Kevin Zimmerman (our Sponsor) provided our Guest Editorial. Authors & Publishers, feel free to check out our Advertising special of the month. Oh! Be sure to check out and vote in our 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Award contest on our For Readers page! In This Month's Issue Columns & Blogs: The Proactive Author by W. Terry Whalin You Are Not Alone by Dawn Kidd Behind the Mystery by Ellen Kennedy Michele's Musings by Michele Abshire Faith & Fitness by Kellye Davis The Power of Positive Faith by LaSharnda Beckwith Consider This by Rita Schulte Pamela's Ponderings by Pamela S Thibodeaux To Your Health by Dr. David Biebel On the Other Side of Freedom by Brandon Western YA Perspective with Sarah Heath: A Walk Down Nostalgia Road SR Perspective ... Just Saying by Barb Shelton:

1 The Judge by Jean Thornberry The Walk by Sherry Rossman Book Store Featured Books Featured Trailers Featured Publisher Revell Books Healthy Life Press RMS1437 Publishing Author Pages Mary Manners Kathi Macias Michelle Sutton Shawna K Williams Delia Latham Tracy Krauss Beth Trissel Author Interviews: Amelia Glynn Cara Lynn James Dawn Kidd Matt Patterson Special Group Ads Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers RMS1437 Authors Sword of the Spirit Authors Book Reviews: Minotaur Revisited by David Gelber Never Ending Night by Tanya Stowe ~~~~~~~ Want to purchase a title you see advertised here in TWJM? Simply click on the cover image, ISBN# or Title (if highlighted)! ~~~~~~~

Short Stories From Sidewalk to Shingles by Kristine Lowder The Good Season by Maggie Adams

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2 In this novel, Quinton the Minotaur Man has lived for thousands of years, much to his sorrow. He experiences the best and worst of human nature down through the years, but never quite finds a way to fit in, and is very lonely. The one time he does, finally finding true happiness, his heart is soon ripped apart as never before. Minotaur Revisited David Gelber

A Remarkable Life Legend states that the Minotaur was confined to the Labyrinth, slain by Theseus and then laid to rest by thousands of years of Greek mythology. But, the truth is far different. Read the Minotaur’s own words as he recounts his full life as god, king, warrior, matchmaker, midwife, monk, sage, father, mother, husband and, most of all, witness. The fierce Minotaur lived to see and be a part of the best and worst of humanity during a life spanning thousands of years. Part bull, part human, the Minotaur struggled to find his place in this world and, in the end, left his unique mark on history. Minotaur Revisited is available directly from thepublisher and through Amazon in Print and on Kindle! Review of Minotaur Revisited by Deborah Piccurelli To be honest, I procrastinated reading this book, since I am not interested in Greek mythology. But when the time came that I absolutely had to, I began reading with trepidation. Not for long, though. I was instantly and completely drawn in! I had no idea what this story would be about, but it was a delight. Author, David Gelber finds a unique way to showcase history and humanity through the ages in great detail. He really did his homework. This author has several other books out, for those interested. After reading this one, you just might be.

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If I write anything else, I’ll be giving away secrets, and I want readers to discover these wonders on their own. So suffice it to say, anyone who likes fantasy, inspirational, mythology, or just a darn good story, at any age, will enjoy this book.

Deborah M. Piccurelli is an advocate for sanctity of life, and tackles such issues in her novels, weaving them into compelling stories. She has been an avid reader for most of her life, and now loves writing reviews for the works of her fellow authors. Deborah lives in New Jersey with her husband, and their two sons. To learn more about Deborah and her book visit her website, connect with her on Face Book or Twitter @DebPiccurelli ~~~~~~~

Never Ending Night By Tanya Stowe

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April 2013 On the eve of the Battle of Shiloh, Union soldier Tyler Sheridan has a premonition he is going to die. That night, he writes an epic anti-war poem called “Never-ending Night.” The next day, a cannonball explodes in front of him, but rather than walking through the gates of Heaven, Tyler steps into a modernday Civil War reenactment. Confused by a world he can’t comprehend, Tyler has no choice but to rely on a beautiful and fascinating photojournalist for help. As Stacy Sutton watches Tyler emerge from the rising smoke of faux cannon fire, she’s amazed by the authenticity of his uniform and demeanor—and then he claims to be from the nineteenth century, a mere delusion according to doctors. But Stacy’s not convinced Tyler is delusional and sees helping him as her second chance—an opportunity to atone for the death of her partner...and her past. As the mystery surrounding Tyler’s appearance deepens, it threatens any hope they have of a future together, and Stacy finds she must discover whether the man she loves is a traveler through time or a mad man lost in his own delusions. Coming April 5th from White Rose Publishing! Review of Never Ending Night by Kim Ford

3 battle, wounded and shell-shocked, Stacy reacts with an urgent sense of purpose. Stacy is reacting in response to the trauma of her present and her past and risks everything to save the life of this wounded soldier. Whether or not Tyler is indeed a soldier from the Civil War or whether he is a modern day hero is the puzzle facing the reader from the very first pages of this story. Indeed, it is a puzzle that grows ever more complicated with each successive chapter. Stacy and Tyler must face their worst fears and learn how to let go of their circumstances and trust God to do the healing work only He can do in each of their lives. They are indeed in need of healing in every area of their lives. As the truth comes to light, the risk of survival becomes very great and all too real. War is a terror that ravages both the body and soul. Stowe has written a very clever tale! I felt that the resolution came a bit abruptly, and would have enjoyed a more leisurely transition between the perceived reality and the solid truth that lies beneath. It felt a bit rushed at that point in the story. However, the resolution was believable and powerful and I was left satisfied. I am happy to recommend this book to other readers, and hope that I will see more from Tanya Stowe in the future.

Why would God use someone like me, with so little faith, to do His work?” (Tyler to Stacy) Tanya Stowe has written a very unique story from a very unusual perspective to tell a truth that is relevant and life-changing no matter the time period. The story opens on a reenactment battlefield as Stacy Sutton records the brutality of the Civil War at the Battle of Shiloh. She is on site to write a news article and never imagines that she will have the opportunity to make a lasting difference the life of a soldier. When Tyler Sheridan stumbles out of the smoke of the

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Kim Ford has been a resident of Alabama for more than ten years. Originally from Georgia, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Brenau Women’s College. She has spent the past 11 years in sales and marketing and has been an avid reader ~All Rights Reserved


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of Christian Fiction for more than 20 years. A mother of two teen sons, both nearing the end of high school, Kim’s life is full and blessed. She enjoys singing, writing and spending time with her family. Keep up with Kim on her Window to My World blog! ~~~~~~~ From Sidewalk to Shingles By Kristine Lowder ©April 2013 She was a female Rock of Gibraltar. Born in the Netherlands, my maternal grandma was as Dutch as they get. Nononsense. Frugal. Snap-to precise. From sidewalk to shingles, her house could pass a white glove test with white to spare. So could she. It was 1967. My family flew to Michigan to spend the summer with Grandpa George and Grandma Alice. Maybe we only stayed two weeks. It seems longer when you’re seven. Summer in Detroit meant long walks beneath leafy canopies of hundred year-old Dutch elms, backyard Monopoly, watermelon, hand-cranked ice cream and running through sprinklers on hot, steamy days – which is every summer day in Detroit. Grandma ruled two domains at 12055 Nashville: kitchen and garden. No guest went hungry in Grandma’s house, especially seven year-olds. “Are you hungry, mijn schat (my dear)?” she’d ask, gently propelling me into the kitchen. Most of the food Grandma served was new to me, but I learned to give it a try. I developed an affinity for Rode Kool Met Appeltjes (red cabbage and apples), Erwtensoep (split pea soup) and melt-inyour mouth Boterkoek (butter biscuits). (I never got the hang of rutabagas. Nobody’s perfect.)

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If garden-growing was an Olympic sport, Grandma Alice would’ve brought home the gold. Sovereign monarch of all things green and growing, her special pride were the Renoir splashes of color that were her tulip beds. Egged on by my evil elder brother, I once spent an afternoon “pulling brodies” in Grandma’s garden. (Jeff has since repented.) This stroke of genius involves charging from one end of the yard to the other like a runaway train, then digging your heels into the lawn at the last minute so you don’t careen into the next century. The result is a divot the size of Rhode Island, and a garden that resembles confetti on January 2. Surveying her shredded tulip beds later, Grandma marched over to where I stood quaking like an aspen in autumn. Hands on hips, she wordlessly stared at me with eyes that could’ve melted the Polar Ice Caps. Jeff and I spent the rest of the summer engaged in “indentured servitude,” working off the debt incurred by our dastardly deed, which was somewhere between the entire contents of Fort Knox and all the tea in China. We replaced divots, reseeded, weeded, watered, mowed and tended Grandma’s garden like we were training for the next Iron Man Triathlon. I learned how to say “I’m sorry” in the process and mean it, and why I should. I also learned to detect the full fragrance of “mijn schat.” Grandpa George and Grandma Alice drove us to the airport at summer's end. Shortly before we boarded, Grandma swept me into her strong, sturdy arms and hugged me for about a year. She pressed a bag into my hands. The delicious aroma of Boterkoek tickled my nose as she whispered, “I may not always like everything you do, but I’ll always love you, mijn schat.” Grandma Alice outlived my grandfather by some twenty years. As her Detroit neighborhood deteriorated and both cooking and gardening required more

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energy than she could muster, she reluctantly moved east to join her sisters in Massachusetts. I never made it back to Detroit. The years tumbled into decades. Grandma and I lost touch. She passed away in 1998. I think of her whenever I catch the mouth-watering aroma of Dutch butter biscuits, spoon out a bowl of Erwtensoep or watch a spring sun coax a tulip into bloom. If I close my eyes, I can still hear soft echoes of “mijn schat” from sidewalk to shingles. ~~~~~~~ Meet our New Columnist Brandon Western!

My name is Brandon Western. I am a recovered drug addict with a heart for helping others who are stuck in the bondage of addiction. I love to write, play guitar, and share the Gospel with those in need. I am currently employed with Teen Challenge Georgia International, which is a Christian discipleship program that is designed to help people get free and stay free from lifecontrolling issues including: drugs and alcohol. I have a deep love for the word of God, and have spent many hours studying His truths. Biblical counseling, speaking, and evangelism are my strong suits, and I plan on staying in the ministry field permanently. My faith in the transforming power of meeting Jesus Christ is what I hope to portray in all areas of my life, because now I know what it is like to be on the other side of freedom. Find out more by visiting Teen Challenge Georgia International on

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the Web, FaceBook or email me at: brandonrwestern85@gmail.com ~~~~~~~ Introductory Post By Brandon Western ©April 2013 My name is Brandon Western, and I was born on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi near Biloxi. However, I grew up in north Georgia so I really consider myself a Georgia native!! I am 27 years old, and have seen many different walks of life. I currently work for a non-profit ministry called Teen Challenge Georgia International just east of Atlanta, and I love what I do! As a recovered drug addict and product of the Teen Challenge ministry myself, I am so grateful for the opportunity that God has blessed me with to be a part of helping others reach their full potential in the body of Christ. I have had the privilege to give my testimony many times all over the state of Georgia and beyond in order to share the life-changing power of Jesus Christ. Coming from where I came from, I know there is nothing too big for my God. Even through all of the hard and hopeless times in my life, I can look back and see the fingerprints of God moving me to my current position. I believe He allowed me to go through these things because He knew He was going to pull me out on the other side to freedom; so I may be an inspiration to others who suffer similarly as I did. I do not claim to have all of the answers to life's continual heartaches, but I do know the One who does. That is Jesus! The Author and Finisher of my faith. The One who gave Himself for humanity, and who paid my debt with His own life to save me from the “wages of sin.” Through all of the things I have experienced over the years one thing has become very clear to me. Life is but a vapor, and it can

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be snuffed out in an instant. Life will not wait for me to achieve success before it decides to leave its mark on my existence. In contrast, it is steadily ticking away until that unknown moment where I leave this chapter to go onto the next. This makes me challenge myself everyday to live in the fulness of His love by accepting the task which He has laid before me; to edify the body of Christ, to love and serve, and to do all things as though I were doing them unto the Lord.

Interview With Matt Patterson By Mary Nichelson ©April 2013

A commitment to this degree does not come without sacrifice. It was only when I came to the end of myself that God was able to open up the eyes of my understanding and set me free from the bondage that had held me captive for so many years. He was able to replace my arbitrary existence, and give me purpose and meaning. Everyday has its own twists and turns; falls and failures, but it is in these times that I learn and grow the most.

Ask any parent-in-waiting what they are feeling and you are likely to hear something similar to author Matt Patterson’s reaction. “Nearly 25 years ago I became a father for the first time. It was a pretty big deal. Bubble gum cigars were ready to be handed out. Was it going to be a boy or a girl? Like I said - a pretty big deal. The birth of any couple's first child is one of those moments that stay with us for the rest of our lives.”

For me life is about building the God kind of character. Not to bring glory to myself, but to show the world what He can do when one remains obedient and connected to Him.

And that is where Patterson’s similarities with other new fathers end. With the birth of their daughter came anything but an average, normal life. By the time the Patterson family mastered life with a child diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome, they learn she has leukemia. “At that very moment, I actually began to think I was going to watch my daughter die before my eyes.” Their fight would include a long hospital stay, the goal of remission through aggressive chemo treatments and getting Emily back home. After a second attempt to eradicate her cancer, the Patterson family celebrated her final homecoming.

Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” ~~~~~~~

This is a story about a father and his all-tooreal and human emotions experienced while watching his innocent daughter suffer the unimaginable. It is raw and redefines the state of being normal and perfect. This is Matt Patterson’s story. ~~~~~~~

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MN-First of all, my condolences on the passing of your daughter, Emily. It sounds

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April 2013 like she was an amazing little girl. Tell me a little about her. MP-Boy, where do I begin? Emily - or em&em's as we call her - was an absolute ball of daily sunshine and love with beautiful blue eyes, a never-ending smile with hugs and kisses for everyone. She was just an amazing spirit to be around. By spending a few minutes with her, you could actually walk away feeling better about your day, yourself and your life. MN- Some people refer to mental or physical challenges as a substandard quality of life, but you mentioned some of the positives related to Emily’s Down Syndrome - one of them being her smile. What were some other attributes she brought to your family that made a lasting impression? MP-The one attribute that quickly comes to mind is trust. Now, I realize this answer may not seem so unique to the person sitting at their computer or mobile device and reading this. Allow me to explain. We were young when we were blessed with Emily. We were in our early 20s when she was born. I have to say that, for me, I had a difficult time in trusting not only others at first, but God as well. As young (and immature) as I was at that time in my life, I couldn't for the life of me understand why God would "put all of this" on us. Our first child born with special needs. Then, just two years later, a diagnosis of leukemia. We had to trust God - and for me at that time, it was difficult. We had to trust our oncologist, as well as the many nurses and physicians who were caring for Emily. Faith lays the foundation for trust. After a ride on an emotional rollercoaster, from watching our daughter suffer through chemotherapy not just once, but twice. To see her in such pain and eventually to be holding and rocking her as she took her last breath, it was very traumatic. As I share in the book, I was mad at God and I let him know it. I didn't trust him - not one bit.

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7 With a heart full of hurt and anger, I tried to move forward after her passing. It was difficult at first, as I would bump into people and after they would ask how Emily was doing. From there, I would have to share that Emily was no longer with us. As gut-wrenching as it was, as I shared my love for my little girl and my gratitude for everything that had been done for us, I came to the realization that these moments were opportunities to open my heart to others. While I was slandering him - he was helping me heal. Trust was then restored. MN-So you begin to navigate life with a toddler who has Down’s Syndrome and then you get another piece of news that is truly devastating; Emily was diagnosed with leukemia when she was two. During this time, when you were feverishly calling out to God, you made a discovery. You wrote that, “I came to the realization that I didn’t know how to pray.” Can you elaborate? MP-Absolutely! At that time in my life - I considered us to be quite the "praying family." In addition to my own personal prayers, we prayed together as a couple and as a family. We prayed, and we prayed, and oh, did we pray. But in actuality, what were we doing? We weren't praying - at least I wasn't at the time. I ran through the routine "thank you" (family, job, etc.) and "we want and need" lists (more money, bigger home, nicer car). I look back on that with disappointment. Isn't it amazing that our hearts and our prayers change when we encounter moments of crisis or peril? It wasn't until Emily's diagnosis of leukemia came when my prayers suddenly became true, humble petitions to God. Why do we - or why did I wait until such a moment to become more specific in prayer? My prayers have never been the same because of it. I just ask people to take a few moments and look at your daily communication with God. Take the time to truly think about what you want to say to God beforehand and not just pray

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April 2013 for the sake of checking it off of your to-do list, but look at it as a time to open and pour out your heart to your Savior. MN-During the treatment process for Emily’s leukemia, you wrote that you took it “personal”. Do you think this is a common reaction for a parent to have, or do you believe your competitive nature instigated this “personal” battle? MP-Great question! I think - and now, this is just Matt speaking here - I think it's a more combative approach, as compared to competitive. As fathers, we are the providers AND the protectors. And in many cases, mothers are also playing the role of the father in many families. At the end of the day, a parent will do anything and everything to fight to save their child. MN-It is evident by the way you write that you are a sensitive husband and father. Have you always been tender-hearted or is this in response to Emily’s life? MP-I'm not ashamed to say I have been quite sensitive for most of my life. First, and foremost, I was brought up by two amazing parents. My father was my coach in all of my athletic endeavors growing up and was pretty tough on me. I'm grateful for that. I was sensitive, but I could also lay a lick on you on the football field. Now, my mother, on the other hand, was the spiritual and sensitive influence in my life. Was I a mama's boy? I don't think so, but she laid a foundation for me to be sensitive to the needs of others and it has carried over throughout my life. MN-Any advice for couples that currently may be in the middle of a crisis related to one of their children and are feeling emotionally and spiritually overwhelmed? MP-As simple as it may sound - it truly isn't so simple. My advice is to reach out and ask for help! Seek out assistance! It's available. Take that first step and ask!

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8 MN-You write so vividly, I hope My Emily won’t be a stand alone writing project for you. Do you have anything else in the works? MP-You're so very kind, Mary. Thank you. I actually have couple of projects in the works. In addition to writing, I have recently began speaking to churches, corporations and organizations. Anyone who knows me, knows how I love to meet people and share my message of hope. On the writing side of the house, I have a few irons in the fire. The first is aimed at men and grief, while two separate projects include having families share their amazing stories and legacies to help reach out and touch others. MN-Complete this sentence. “If I could go back and do it all again.... MP- ....this time I wouldn't have waited 20plus years to share Emily's story with the world.” Author bio-A native of Baltimore, Maryland, Matt Patterson is an inspirational speaker, as well as an awardwinning writer, editor and communications professional. His first published work - My Emily - has received recognition in 2012 as an award winner and finalist in the Readers Favorite Book Reviews & Awards Contest, the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, as well as the National Indie Excellence Book Awards. Matt's background includes 20-plus years in marketing communications, public and media relations, as well as print and broadcast journalism. In addition to speaking and writing, he volunteers his time to helping organizations and charities dedicated to assisting families with children who have special needs or those battling pediatric cancers. You can visit author Matt Patterson’s website (http://mattpatterson.me/) or connect with him on facebook

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(https://www.facebook.com/pages/MattPatterson-Author/198828496863753) or Twitter @myemily_thebook ~~~~~~~ Featured Sponser: John Poche’ Arts

John Poche' is a Christian businessman, an author and a pen, ink and watercolor artist. ~~~~~~~ THE GOOD SEASON by Maggie Adams ©April 2013 It was on the first day of the season that she discovered it. Jude’s team had gotten all the way to the finals of the statewide varsity basketball tournament the previous year but had lost by only a few points. This year he was supposed to lead their small-town high school team to redeem itself. She felt it again. It was hard, but just a little lump that kind of rolled around beneath her finger. It could easily be nothing important—and certainly nothing worth clouding the mood of the new season and dashing Jude’s bright hopes for the months ahead, Mara decided. He knocked on their bathroom door. “You about ready, babe?”

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“Be there in a minute,” she promised, throwing on the layers of clothes she’d need to stay warm on this chilly morning. As Mara went through her day—a teacher in the same school where Jude coached—she occasionally thought of her discovery that morning. At one point, she reflected on what a blessing it was to have the positive distraction of the students she enjoyed introducing to “the adventures of history,” as she called it—and even those who challenged her to capture their interest. At another point, she caught herself looking down and feeling relief that she was covered in enough layers that her form resembled nothing like what she’d found that morning. The roars of enthusiasm during that afternoon’s pep rally were the best distraction of all. Watching Jude and his kids getting applauded and cheered set loose a lightness in her heart, and for the first time all day she had no concerns. ~~~ So easy—it was so easy to pretend that morning had been a dream . . . or a brief nightmare. She wasn’t scheduled for her next self-exam until the following month. In the meantime, there was so much to do and to enjoy. And if a twinge of “what if” interrupted her conscience from time to time . . . well then, she dismissed it with one of a whole series of excuses: She needed to learn how to better “let go and let God”; if anything had been there, it was likely tiny and slow-growing; fear was a tool of the devil, faith and hope signs of God. “‘For everything there is a season,’” she read the Scripture with the Bible-study group she led. Once she finished, she slid her gaze around the circle of a dozen women. “How much do we think about seasons in this Biblical sense?” she asked. “Yes, we think of fall, winter, spring, and summer. We think of church seasons—Advent, Christmas, Lent, Easter. . . . We even think of other important seasons—football season, basketball season. . . .”

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April 2013 The ladies around her chuckled. “Especially basketball season,” agreed one. “Congratulations to Jude and his guys on their latest win!” “Thank you.” Mara felt herself flushing with pleasure and pride. “But, now, getting back to this passage from Ecclesiastes . . .” “You mean, like, could being a mom be a season in our lives?” offered another woman. “Or maybe we could be in a season of joblessness, or career change, or injury or illness,” suggested yet another. For one brief moment, Mara recalled the lump she’d perhaps felt those weeks before— but then, caught up in directing the discussion, she quickly dismissed the thought. ~~~ “What’s this?” Jude halted in his sweet seduction of her and Mara stiffened. Mara gasped when he touched the tender spot. She hadn’t realized it had grown as sensitive as it now was. Granted, she’d been so busy lately that she’d forgotten to do her last self-exam. . . . “Are you okay? Do you need to see a doctor?” Jude persisted. “Probably,” she admitted. This was what she’d been hoping to avoid—the kind of complication that could derail Jude’s hopes for a good season with his varsity guys. “Call the doctor’s office today—okay?” ~~~ Her doctor sighed when she told him. “I wish so many women wouldn’t wait to check something like this out. It’s not as though avoiding it can make it go away.” He sighed again. “I’m calling in this appointment with the radiologist, myself—I want him to understand time is of the

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10 essence.” When she began to protest, he interrupted. “This is your health we’re talking about here, Mara. It has to take precedence over your other commitments— even your job. I’ll have my office call with the day and time of the appointment, and I’ll expect you to keep that appointment, no matter when it is.” By Jude’s team’s seventh victory of the season, Mara had seen the radiologist. By their eighth victory, she’d received the results. “I want you to see a specialist for a biopsy,” her ob-gyn told her. By the team’s ninth victory, Mara had had that biopsy. Shortly after the tenth win, she learned that she needed an exploratory procedure. “I’ll take the day off tomorrow too, and drive you to the hospital,” Jude offered. “Then we both sacrifice a day of pay.” Their contracts stipulated that every school day they were out of the classroom they’d get docked three-quarters of a day’s pay; that money paid for their substitute. Mara shook her head. “No way—our budget can’t take the cut.” “So we’ll eat more beans and rice this week.” He wagged a finger at her. “You’ve got your priorities mixed up, babe. God’s got some plans for you right now other than what you think is best—you have no choice, now, but to sit back and let Him do His thing. And to let me take care of you.” He flashed a wolfish smile at her, and her stomach turned flip-flops—attracted to him as she still was, after all their years of marriage. ~~~ It seemed as if every win for Jude’s boys came with a corresponding development in Mara’s health. It became enough of a pattern she began to think that if she were superstitious she might believe her progression through her cancer was an odd, disturbing sort of good-luck charm for the

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April 2013 team. Mara was a woman of faith, though—at least, she felt herself fighting to hold on to it. She knew she believed in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit; believing in His existence and even His presence in her life was no difficulty. What did challenge her, however, was acknowledging that the power to determine and direct her life was in His hands alone. He had “plans for your welfare and not for harm”? What was cancer, then? If He had such great plans for her, why were some of those “seasons” in life of which Ecclesiastes spoke so blasted emotionally battering? She still believed in God, yes; she just wasn’t sure she trusted Him anymore. “Come with me tonight—please?” Jude begged. It was the day of the state semifinals, and theirs was the second of the two games; after them, the four teams would be reduced to the two that played in the finals—and if theirs was one of those, then they’d be right back where they’d been the previous year . . . with an opportunity for redemption. “I don’t know. I’m not sure I’d be good company.” She was awaiting test results that would tell her whether the lumpectomy and follow-up treatment had worked. “You can take your cell phone with you. If the doctor’s office calls, you can talk to them there as easily as you can here.” Maybe not quite as easily, she thought but didn’t say. There’d be the cheers and jeers of a very large, very high-spirited crowd. But she didn’t have the heart to protest. Jude had always stood by her. Now, she decided, it’s my turn to support him. “Okay, sure,” she said. “I’ll go.” When she felt her cell phone vibrate during the second half of the game, when Jude’s kids were down by a dozen points, Mara

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11 wished she didn’t have to answer. If it was more bad news . . . “Hello?” After the game, Mara wasn’t quite sure how to approach Jude. She held out her arms to him as they approached each other on the court. “I’m sorry.” Tears sprang into her eyes. “The doctor’s office?” he asked. She nodded. Suddenly she didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Jude’s team had lost, and for the second year in a row they’d come so close and yet so far. And yet . . . “I’m clear,” she told him. “It’s gone—no more cancer.” Jude let out a whoop and spun her around in his arms. “Hallelujah! Now this is what I call a victory season!” Unable to find words, Mara simply nodded again, tightened her grip on Jude and hung on to him for dear life. Author Bio: Maggie Adams believes she was born to be a writer (see Psalm 139:16)— but it took awhile for her to figure that out. She grew up in North Carolina, then went “up north” to college (to Virginia, then to New York). Unable to decide what interested her most, she majored in Spanish, anthropology, and English, and studied voice. It wasn’t until she married and her husband entered graduate school that Maggie figured out what she wanted to do with her own life. She’s been widely published in short fiction, short nonfiction, and poetry since 1986; she has also spent over a decade freelancing for multiple publishers as a manuscript reader, proofreader, and copy editor. ~~~~~~~ Want to purchase a title you see advertised here in TWJM? Simply click on the cover image, ISBN# or Title (if highlighted)!

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12 ~~~~~~~ Featured Sponsor: Kevin Zimmerman!

Kevin Zimmerman is an author & radio show host! ~~~~~~~

Interview with Cara Lynn James By Mary Nichelson ©April 2013 Cara Lynn James knew from early on that she was destined to write. She remembers that as a second grader she was filled “with a love of books and a passion to write one of my own.” James recounts that her first masterpiece was comprised of red construction paper for covers and was bound with yarn. In third grade, she continued to write due to the inspirational praise from her teacher. It wasn’t long before life-as in eight years as a Naval officer and then raising a family-placed her writing dreams on hold. When she did return to her typewriter, she made little progress. She didn’t think her writing would amount to anything more than a hobby.

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

In June, 2010, that hobby produced her first published novel, Love on a Dime. Over the last two and a half years, James has released two more novels, all much anticipated by historical fiction readers. ‘Never give up’ has become her motto and message to other aspiring authors. “Dreams really do come true. So hold on to them, pray for guidance in your writing career, and get back to your computer and start working.” MN- You write with such ease when it comes to the 19th and 20th century, is this due to heavy research or have you always had a sweet spot for that time period? CLJ- The Gilded Age has always been my favorite historical time period and it’s the era I’m most familiar with. As a child I often toured the Newport, Rhode Island mansions built as summer homes by east coast multi-millionaires. The size and opulence of the so-called cottages and the pampered life style of the owners fascinated me. It still does. Since my mother came from Newport I spent vacations there and really absorbed the ‘local color.’ My first three books, Love on a Dime, Love on Assignment and Love by the Book were all set in Newport. My grandmother’s cousin from Ireland worked as a housekeeper for one of the rich families during this time period so I heard a lot of stories about the lives of the ultra elite. I started collecting non-fiction books about the Gilded Age when I was a teenager. Now, with the resources on the internet, it’s much easier to research topics such as fashion, food, customs etc. than it used to be. I had to do quite a bit of research for A Path toward Love because I wasn’t too familiar with the Adirondack Mountains

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April 2013

of New York. We lived in Vermont for twenty years so I’d been through the mountains several times, but I had to research the great camps and their history. For me digging into the past is one of the most enjoyable parts of writing historical novels. MN- Congratulations on your newest release, A Path Toward Love. Do you remember the exact moment the idea for the novel came to you? CLJ- No, not really. The plot came easily, but finding the right setting was more difficult. I looked for a summer resort location popular with New York City multi-millionaires that was different from Newport. The Adirondack Mountains seemed to be the best choice since the people were the same, but the rural, mountainous atmosphere was so unlike the more formal, seacoast towns. MN- The lead character, Katherine, is not your typical socialite. She is feisty and very independent. I interpreted it as characteristics born from her hard life and the struggles she had to overcome. Was it your intent to show that we really can come out stronger when faced with adversity? CLJ- Yes. If she followed society’s conventions of the era she would’ve married the man chosen by her parents and led a sheltered, pampered life. An easy life. Due to her own headstrong and independent nature she picked the wrong man to marry which led to a lot of unhappiness. But instead of scurrying back to the comfortable and privileged life she left behind, she made the best of her situation as a widow and carved out a new life for herself. She learned to be strong and her own person. MN- Katherine's parents were controlling and domineering but she never

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disrespected them as one may in our lifetime but respect for elders in the previous century was highly esteemed and required. Do you think parental respect died with chivalry, or is there hope yet for future generations? CLJ- This is just my opinion – I think yesterday’s parents were respected by their children because of their position. People believed God gave authority to parents to raise their children properly. Children were taught respect for their elders by all segments of society -- church, school and home. Honor thy father and thy mother seemed to be taken more seriously then. Parental authority wasn’t challenged by media etc. I think these days parents have to earn the respect of their children. Parents are often undermined by the culture and their beliefs are seldom reinforced by the society their kids come in contact with every day. Kids might not be mature enough to understand how easily they can be manipulated by people and popular philosophies that have different values than their parents or their church. But when children grow up they usually realize their parents have done their best and they come to respect them. I appreciated my own parents much more when I became a parent myself! MN- Many readers will relate immediately with Katherine in that they feel God has let them down at some point in their lives. How can one return to any form of conviction when the trust factor seems to be breached with God? CLJ- The problem is we don’t really understand God’s ways as well as we’d like to. They’re often mysterious and don’t make sense to us. But that’s part of the human condition we have to live with and accept even though it can create tension within us. In the end we have to believe

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and trust that God’s will is more important than our own. It’s not really all about us, although we usually live like it is. It’s letting go of our own will and ego and allowing God to take over. When God seems to let us down we have to turn to him in prayer. These are the times we’re most susceptible to bitterness and loss of faith. We also have to remember it’s usually other people who’ve let us down. It’s not God. But he seems to get blamed for everything that goes wrong. MN- You have said that you believe faith should be part of every Christian's life and it should be present not just on Sunday morning. What are some ways that you live a life of faith Monday through Saturday? CLJ- Praying and reading the Bible are individual things that immediately come to mind. But the life of faith also involves how we treat others. Do we put ourselves first or others first? Are we kind or mean, selfish, self-centered, self-serving or selfless, critical or compassionate? We’ll fall short in both the big things and the little things, but I think we always have to try. Of course, Jesus is our example. MN- Any new projects we can be looking for in the near future? CLJ- I’m continuing to write stories set during the Gilded Age. I’d like to explore different locations such as St. Augustine, Florida and New Hampshire. It’s fun to write about the super rich of that era, but I’d also like to explore how the servants lived. Author Bio- Cara Lynn James lives in northwest Florida with her husband, grown daughter, four year old grandson and a Papillon named Sparky. Originally from Connecticut, she's lived in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Texas,

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California, Virginia, Vermont and now Florida. Her hobbies include reading everything in sight, traveling and camping, but not in a tent. Fascinated by the excess of the Gilded Age, she writes inspirational historical romance. Visit author Cara Lynn James’ website or The Seekers Blog where she is a contributing writer. ~~~~~~~ Featured Books!

~~~~~~~ The Judge By Jean Thornberry (c) April 2013 “All Rise!” All of Heaven rose in rapt attention. “The Honorable Lord God Almighty will be presiding.” All eyes fixed on me as the Judge approached His throne, my guilt painfully obvious to all in attendance. Sheer terror gripped my pounding heart as I stood before the great assembly. Sweat poured down my face as I awaited my fate. The Spirit of God had a laundry list of charges against me. These charges included high treason, blasphemy, and deceit. Each was punishable by death. My body shook violently when I caught sight ~All Rights Reserved


April 2013 of the Judge. His very presence struck fear into my soul. What an awesome and terrifying sight! A blinding white light en-robed Him. His eyes blazed with fire as He looked upon me. My conscience seared by his penetrating gaze. Every shameful secret lay bare before Him. Stroking His cascading white beard, he read the charges. All of Heaven shook at His thunderous voice. “How do you plead?”

15 A shiver crawled up my spine. It was the Judge! “NO!” I screamed as I ran for cover. “If only there was a dark cave I could hide in, then I would be safe!” Instantly, I found myself inside the deepest, darkest cave! The entrance was sealed with a huge boulder. I breathed a sigh of relief. Safe at last! Right on cue, those terrifying arms came right through the boulder! Goosebumps pimpled my arms as I frantically searched for a way out. I was trapped!

“Guilty.”

“If only I could be on the floor of the deepest ocean, then I would be safe!”

“I see.” He said. “You realize the penalty?” There was a hint of sadness in His voice.

In a flash, I found myself on the ocean floor. The deep will surely hide me from His presence!

Choking back tears, I nodded my head.

Suddenly, five ferocious sharks pursued me. Just when I was about to become fish food, the Judge appeared! The sharks quickly dispersed. He reached for me. Once again, I fled from His arms.

“Let me conference your case for a few minutes. I’ll withhold judgment till then.” He retreated to His chambers, leaving me in bone chilling suspense. After just a few minutes, He emerged grasping a manila scroll tied with a crimson ribbon. He smiled at me as He raised His gavel. “You have been found guilty. Therefore, in accordance with statute 777, I…..” Before He could finish, I fled through the huge golden doors and escaped to Earth. The Judge just shook His head and let out an exasperated sigh. No sooner had I reached Earth when an ominous, black silhouette appeared behind me! It grew bigger and bigger the closer it approached. Two massive arms were held wide open, ready to consume me.

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Water filled my lungs as I attempted to reach the surface. Panic engulfed me as I struggled to breathe. Everything went dark as I lost consciousness. The shadow of the Judge hovered over me as I awoke on the shore. At that moment, Jeremiah 23:24 came to mind: “Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?” declares the Lord. He used the cave and ocean floor to show me He is everywhere! Realizing there was no escape, I turned toward Him. I winced, expecting to be crushed by His mighty right hand. A warm, loving embrace greeted me. My jaw dropped. All this time I had been running from a hug! My eyes watered as I looked into His face. He gently wiped my tears away.

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April 2013 “Please don’t run from Me,” He said softly. “But You were about to...” “Pardon you!” He beamed. “You see, statute 777 states that I can free you if a guiltless person takes your place. Remember when I conferred your case?” I nodded. With tears in His eyes, He said “I didn’t want you to die, so I asked my Son to take your place. He agreed. All you have to do is accept His payment on your behalf.” He handed me that manila scroll with the crimson ribbon. My hands trembled as I unwrapped it. Every word was written in blood! I bawled as I read it: PARDON I admit my guilt. I acknowledge that Christ has died in my place. Under statute 777, I accept His payment on my behalf. His blood absolves me of all guilt. Signed: ________________________ Tears of joy flowed from my eyes as I signed it. Author Bio: Jean Thornberry has a strong passion for sharing the love of God found in Christ with all the Lord puts in her path. She desires to glorify God in all she does, especially by writing what He puts on her heart to share with the world. God has richly blessed her with the most loving, caring, Christ loving husband. He is everything she ever asked the Lord for in a husband! They enjoy serving the Lord together and seek to draw people to Christ by word and deed. God has abundantly blessed them with one son – a Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Alf! Alf brings great joy to their lives and each day is filled with bonding and interacting with him.Jean enjoys living the simple life with her husband and loves to metal detect with him,

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16 go for scenic walks and rides with him, reading, writing, baking, and softball. It is her desire that all who read her work be blessed and experience God’s love and mercy in a special way. She enjoys being a blessing to others in Jesus’ name together with her husband and Alf. ~~~~~~~ Feature Publisher Healthy Life Press

Healthy Life Press was founded in May 2008 with a primary goal of helping previously unpublished authors to get their works to market, and to re-issue worthy, previously published works that were no longer available in the marketplace. At Healthy Life Press, we see health as a verb, and achieving optimal health as a process - a crucial process for followers of Christ if we are to love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, AND strength, and our neighbors as ourselves - for as long as He leaves us here. Healthy Life Press’s Featured Title: You Deserved a Better Father by Robb Brandt, MD

This book is about parenting by intention, and other lessons the author learned through the loss of his firstborn son. It is especially for parents who believe that bits and pieces of leftover time will be enough for their own children.

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April 2013 Dr. Brandt’s reason for writing this book is to help "fast-lane" parents understand that God's clock and their children's needs are not necessarily running in the same time sequence. You're either there, with them, or you're not. Despite what you may think about your indispensability to your work, your clients, or even, in Dr. Brandt's case, your patients, your children need and deserve you ... NOW. Surely you don't want to find yourself in the following situation, a book excerpt from which the book's title comes, as Dr. Brandt has his last words with his eight-year-old son, lying before him in a casket: "I'm so sorry, Robbie," I said. "My heart's breaking Robb, buddy. You know how much I love you and how incredibly I'm going to miss you."

17 “A compelling case for intentional fatherhood and an encouragement for parents to seize the moments with their kids. I recommend it.” –Rick Santorum, Former United States Senator "This book is a 'must read' for anyone who has children and a demanding vocation," says Dr. Gary Chapman. "It will bring laughter, tears, and hope. I highly recommend it." Order the printed book, with free shipping today directly from the publisher! Can also be ordered through our distributor, STL Distribution Also Available in eBook! ~~~~~~~

I wanted to bend down and wrap my arms around him. I touched his arm. Cold and stiff. I wanted to remember him as warm, lively, and seldom still. "We've had a lot of good times, buddy. Great times," I continued. "Building tree houses, playing whiffle ball, fishing at Pine Lake, and our great camping trips. "But I'm sorry about all those times my jammed and unpredictable schedule stole a ball game or a camping trip from you. You always looked so disappointed and hurt. I should have known I needed to plan our family times better. And, how I regret all those 'Quickly, I have to go, let's have fun quickly' times." My fallen pal lay silent and still, as pangs of guilt shivered through me. "You deserved better, Robb. A better father," I said. And those were my last words to my first-born son. ----------Endorsements:

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Interview with Amelia Glynn By Mary Nichelson ©April 2013 When one writes a novel based on the Shroud of Turin, it will evoke one of two emotions; controversy or curiosity. Yet, most fiction readers understand that an author is allowed certain artistic freedoms when writing on a somewhat controversial subject, without having to answer for absolutes. This is especially true with Deceptions of Angels. Author Amelia Glynn’s writing style has been compared to Frank Peretti’s, and her storyline runs parallel with the Left Behind Series, yet for literal, traditional readers, the mention of Christ’s DNA may make them squeamish.

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April 2013 Glynn means no disrespect, and in fact, admits that at the very heart of her novel is the desire to prompt the reader to think. “Religion and how people perceive God have intrigued me for years. Especially how people can know when God is communicating with them. I've been blessed to have studied at several religious universities and continue in my quest for discernment.” Part of what drives her is a self awareness and assurance that comes from her intense study of religion. “Like most people, I have many layers. I am the person I want others to see but beneath that I am an intricate mixture of all the amazing and exciting possibilities God has allowed me to experience.” As we settled into our interview, it was her compassion for others-not a propensity to cause controversy-that became obvious. “God has given me a servant’s heart and I am happiest when I am serving others.” MN- Writing about Bible prophecy and the end times is not an easy subject to tackle and yet I was very impressed with the realistic, yet entertaining manner in which you managed it. Would it embarrass you if I compared Deceptions of Angels to The Left Behind series? AG- Embarrassed? No! What a compliment! – Thank you so much for even thinking of the comparison. MN- Deceptions of Angels is the first in a trilogy. Tell our readers about the trilogy. AG- At this point there really isn’t much to tell as the story is just beginning to unfold. It is already taking a turn that I had not expected when I started. These crazy characters have a mind of their own and don’t always cooperate with me and the story I want to tell. They have their own version of how it is and I just have to follow

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18 them. Basically though we are in “real” time now - Deceptions of Angels happened in the recent past and Deceptions book two brings us up to the present time. Deceptions book three will take us into the future. Of course by the time Deceptions book three comes out it may be in present time. Prophecy is being fulfilled every day and as I write I’m seeing my words become the current news story of the day. It’s really a little scary…If I wasn’t so sure of who is really in control of things I would be very worried. MN- I read another interview that you did and loved your explanation of how Deceptions of Angels developed into a book. You are a short story writer-not a novelist-and yet as you contemplated questions regarding the whole cloning issue, the possibilities kept growing. Can you share that story with our readers? AG-You’re referring to the interview with Pertinent Promotions, “It was unanswered questions that I kept hearing in my head. When I heard on the radio news about the successful cloning of Dolly the Sheep in Scotland I began to ask myself questions about cloning. Questions like, "If they cloned a sheep I wonder if they can clone a human?" and "If they can clone a human do they need blood?" and "If the Shroud of Turin is really the burial cloth of Christ does it have His blood on it?" and "If it has His blood on it could it be used to clone Christ?" When I would get one question answered another would pop up until I had a good base to build a story on. I did not plan to write a novel. I had always considered myself a short story writer. I had no interest in writing a novel but it would not let go of me. It was a story that had to be written. I never experienced "writer's block" but I did experience fatigue. Remember, I was a short story writer and I grew weary of the work writing is hard work! However, this story did not want to end...so I continue to write...” MN- You also write about spiritual warfare in your novel. Do you believe that we are

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April 2013 routinely influenced by spirits without realizing it? AG- I do believe that there are many things happening around us spiritually… covert things of which we are usually unaware. We occasionally experience a moment of heightened awareness and pass it off as paranoia or deja’ vu. I believe in that “veil of misunderstanding” the Bible speaks of that, at times, hides from our consciousness the consequences of our actions. I also believe that we can be in complete control of those things - we just don’t always exercise that control. That goes back to being unaware. We are encouraged to be vigilant to combat assaults from evil. MN- Let’s talk about your “other” job for a moment. You explain it as being “an education consultant who is an active advocate for the rights of people with disabilities.” What exactly do you do to protect the vulnerable in society? AG- I was an educator for many years working with infants and children with special needs. I had moved into an administrative position and felt that I had lost touch with children and families. I began to pray for something more meaningful. I was offered an opportunity to do consulting for a Federal Court Monitor who is involved in protecting the rights of individuals with disabilities. In this capacity I review the care and treatment provided to individuals with disabilities and help determine if it is meaningful and appropriate to provide the highest quality of life in the least restrictive environment. MN- Not surprisingly, I understand you are very artistic. Tell me about your photography and some of the awards you’re credited with earning. AG- Photography is just fun for me. I don’t know how to work half the buttons on my camera - I just point and shoot. My photograph of “Mr. Johnson” earned Best of Show in the Arts in McNairy Photography

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19 Contest and then went on to give me the highest honor I’ve earned in photography at the Delta Fair in Memphis, TN. where I was named Photographer of the Year and “Mr. Johnson” took Best of Show there as well. I also had other photos that year that placed in every category entered. Since then I’ve not had much time for entering contests but I have some lovely photographs of the Gulf Coast that I have hanging in my home. MN- Writers are encouraged to focus on their platform (central truth) when promoting their work. What would be your life’s platform; do you have a favorite Bible verse or spiritual concept that sums up your life to date? AG- Isaiah 40:32 – They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength: they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. Author Bio- Amelia Glynn is a pseudonym. She is an education consultant who is an active advocate for the rights of people with disabilities. Amelia spends her time between the Mississippi Gulf Coast and in the foot hills of the Appalachians in rural West Tennessee. She has been married forty-seven years, has three children and seven grandchildren. She is also an award winning photographer and glass artist. "Deceptions of Angels" is Amelia’s first novel. You can visit Amelia’s website or connect with her on Facebook. ~~~~~~~ Want to purchase a title you see advertised here in TWJM? Simply click on the cover image, ISBN# or Title (if highlighted)! ~~~~~~~

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20 Featured Trailers

~~~~~~~ The Walk By Sherry Rossman ©April 2013 The chains were heavy around my ankles, but I managed to shuffle outside and buckle my two blessings into the little red wagon. My blue eyed princess tugged at my sleeve. "Let's go all the way down the street, Mommy!" and I gave her a weary smile because I wanted to please her but was reminded of my unkempt hair and the baby food stains on my pants. I must do this. Gripping the chilled handle, I pulled the wagon onto the street and breathed in all the fresh air I could muster. My legs were overburdened with the heavy metal slowing them down. Step after painful step, despite my fatigue and the unending thoughts that kept my stomach in knots, I was driven by the desire to give those smiling faces all I had to give. I glanced back at my children and saw the two dusty boxes sitting between them. One was marked "loss" and the other "worry." They were unwelcome companions, heavy like the chains. My lungs strained for fresh air for the dust on the boxes was polluting every breath I took. As I fought to bring joy to my children, tears invaded my eyes and streamed down my face. I don't know if I can do this. Where are you? We passed an old man in a faded lawn chair. He looked into my children's faces with eyes that held both sorrow and loneliness.

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Pressed around wilted shoulders were ironblack chains that led down to a cannonball, sitting on the dry ground. On the cannonball were five large letters: “regret.” My son gave him a dimpled smile and his eyes were transformed by the gesture. He lifted a weathered hand and I could see the corners of his mouth move ever so slightly. I wonder if my two remind him of his own little blessings… mine won’t even remember their own Papa. How do I grieve and give them my strength in the same breath? As I continued walking, one of the chains broke and fell from my ankle. It clambered several feet down the street before it disintegrated into a pile of ash. A soft breeze caressed my free leg for a moment. My relief was joined by the scent of pumpkin spice wafting out of a little blue house, reminding me of the small joys and blessings that I still have. I looked at my wedding ring, then back at my two and was grateful. Thank you. After a few more steps the remaining chain released its grip from my ankle and found the same fate as the other. You're here, aren't you? I continued walking and noticed the ease in which I pulled both my blessings and my burdens. The imprisonment of those chains caused a great deal of hardship, but resulted in a strength I never knew before. Thank you, thank you...such relief. I want to run. Picking up my pace brought delightful sounds from my two. "Faster, faster, Mommy!" My legs started to pump while my lungs strained to catch up. The dust was still flowing all around me and despite my new-found freedom, I longed to breathe fresh air again. Dust and pumpkin spice were fighting each other to be noticed. I thought of one of the two boxes and my chest felt heavy with sorrow. You give and You take away. I don't understand, but I trust you. Immediately a strong wind engulfed us and lifted one of the boxes out of the wagon. It was "loss." In a whirlwind of dust, it was taken to places unseen. The pressure on my chest immediately lifted.

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Thank you. How do I release this last one? It's seems so... impossible.

down, gently took the box and whispered, "I will carry this for you from now on."

Compelled to move forward, I headed toward the trees. I didn't know where I was going but I knew I was being led by Him.

He took it into his cabin and we followed. There were no light bulbs, candles, or even a fireplace. The light was coming from Him.

I had such a desire to discover what He had to show me that I ran faster than I ever had. I ran with lungs bursting, sides aching and kids laughing. I ran all the way down the long street and continued running even after I left the neighborhood, and not until my feet found the soft, green grass did I realize that I was running on holy ground. I kicked off my shoes and ran like I had wings. I wish I could see your face. "Mommy, look! The trees are glowing!" Before my eyes were a group of trees lit by a warm glow. What is this? With the handle gripped in my hand I slowed down and brought us around a bend where we stopped in front of a cabin. Although it was humble in appearance, there was something about it that was so divine. A fragrance of cedar filled my nostrils as I stared at the golden light radiating within. Responding to an unspoken invitation, I pulled open the latch to the narrow gate and stepped inside the yard. Love. An overwhelming, wondrous, tangible love surrounded us. The air was so thick with love that I looked all around expecting to see a visible form, but His presence was felt so strongly that I didn’t need to see Him. My son reached out his little hands to the invisible One while my daughter gathered her brother into a hug. I unloaded my two from the wagon and reached for the carved door handle. It was flung open before I could touch it, and He smiled at us for a moment before swooping all three of us into His arms. Perfect love. After He let us down I grabbed my box from the wagon and laid it at His feet. With tears in my eyes I sat down and waited. He knelt

ŠApril 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

A table piled with an abundance of food waited for us, and we stopped and stared in wonder. He held out his hands and smiled. "Sit down and enjoy what I have prepared for you." Fruit, cheese, bread, pies, and potatoes of all kinds made their way onto our plates, and we ate, laughed, and drank in the joy. After we finished, we gathered around Him and He laughed as my two climbed onto His lap to request horsy rides. They were especially delighted when He stretched His feet out in front of Him to reveal bear slippers. "I wore them just for you!" and He beamed at their delight. Finally exhausted, my children collapsed into a large chair and slept. He sat next to me and held my hand. "The father you lost is not really lost. He is finished with his work here and has gone to live in My paradise. He is home." I felt a wave of peace flooding my heart. He then brought me a brown bag and laid the contents out in front of me. My name was carved into the handles of exquisitely handmade tools. "You are ready for these now. Use them as I have taught you. Teach your children my ways for I have great plans for them. But most of all, love." As I put my two back in the wagon, He put the remaining food in the space between them and hugged us once again. "I am with you always." After we left the yard and started towards home I looked back one more time and saw that His gate was left open.

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Walking back around the bend, I felt strong and newly made.

have guessed that another tragedy awaited the Kidd family less than two years later.

Nearing home, we pulled to a stop in front of the old man and invited him to go with us. He walked beside me, cannonball dragging behind. As my children met their Daddy at the door to share our adventure with him, the old man listened. He joined us for a meal made in heaven and smiled. At evening’s end, we sent him on his way to find his freedom in the cabin in the woods.

In the summer of 2008, Dawn found out she was pregnant. “I was excited. I just knew this time, this baby, was my redemption.”

Author Bio: Sherry Rossman has enjoyed the art of storytelling since she was a little girl. Growing up with acres of land and open skies has inspired her to weave the beauty of creation into her work. She has written two children's books, The Miracle of Rain, and The Guardians. Currently at work on her first novel, she resides in central Arizona with her husband, two children and two cats. For more information, you can visit,http://www.sherryrossman.wordpress. com ~~~~~~~

Interview With Dawn Kidd By Mary Nichelson ©April 2013 In April 2007, when many moms were preoccupied with their child’s baseball practice or gymnastics, mom-to-be Dawn Kidd was enjoying the movement of life growing in her swelling belly. By the end of that month, she would be forced to prematurely deliver and say goodbye to baby Nathan. As surreal as the experience was in finding out that her babies heart had stopped beating, and that she would give birth to a stillborn baby boy, no one could ©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

When the pregnancy progressed into full term, the Kidd family was optimistic that things were going to be ok. Yet, shortly after Haylee’s birth, something happened. “My mind is confused. I just delivered a baby, she is in my arms, but she is dead. How does one reconcile that in their mind?” During the grieving and healing process, Dawn learned not to reconcile what had happened, but how to trust God with what had happened. “I still think of Nathan and Haylee often...but I am careful not to allow my emotions to pull me back down. I accept God’s will. Anything less than that would be sabotaging His great love for me and my great faith and hope in Him.” In my recent interview with Dawn, she reveals what it was like to write her biography, You Are Not Alone, and why it is important to tell her story and help others that may have experienced similar losses. Her focus in not on her tragedy, but instead, on how to turn that tragedy into triumph. MN- Congratulations on the release of your book, You Are Not Alone. You clearly state in your introduction that you are not an aspiring author, although you do have two columns you write for. Why was it important to you to share your story? DK- My background does not include an education in journalism or writing. I know, however, that God does not require us to have credentials in a particular field as a requirement to be used by him. Thank goodness!

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April 2013 Having lost two children, my healing involved a renewal of my relationship with God. During the grieving process, he instilled a need to help others who were experiencing the same incomprehensible emotions I, myself, was crawling through. It definitely has not been a direction I would have chosen, but when God calls, he already has the road map laid out. He provides the way, the means and the courage to fulfill his desire in our lives. I know the devastating impact of grief and the peaceful resolve I found. As a result, I desire to share this with others hoping to inspire and encourage. MN- Was it difficult to revisit the emotions of that season in your life during the writing of your book? DK- When I initially penned the outline and details of the book, I almost felt it was part of my healing. It was as though I was able to release emotions I had buried. However, during the editing stages a year later, many times I felt pulled back into those emotions that I could literally touch. I grieved and that culminated into many hours spent in prayer. During this part of the writing process, I knew this book needed to reach others whose lives were affected by loss, just as I had been. Although painful at times, it was also a time of confirmation for me. MN- You write that it is your desire through your book that family members and friends will realize through the telling of your story that loss isn’t “just a miscarriage” or a “simple stillbirth.” Were those words said to you, or are you just passionate for others to understand that it is ok to grieve no matter what the extent of their loss is? DK- As I have met other families who have lost a baby during pregnancy, I noticed a common thread they all held. Friends and family unintentionally minimized their losses, especially if it was in the very early stages of pregnancy. The actions of well meaning family and friends led these families to feel invalidated during their time of grief. In some ways, they felt they were

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23 forced to grieve in private. This fueled my passion for others to know that they are not alone in their loss. My hope is to bring a sense of normalcy and resolution to their grief ~ during ANY loss. MN- You were mindful of how the losses in your family affected your children, and in spite of your feelings, you helped them through the grieving process. What are some things parents can do to help a sibling going through something similar? DK- To become the parent of a grieving child was all new to me. It was definitely a learning process and one that was different with each loss. I learned to let them grieve on their own terms. Be honest when they ask questions, making sure to provide answers that are age appropriate. Let them also see your heart grieve. Don't ever dismiss the power of a grieving parent who can once again laugh. It will happen, trust me! Give your child security, your love and a sense of normalcy. Their lives have changed, not just yours. Most of all, take care of you. You cannot help others if you do not realize the importance of helping yourself, first. MN- I even think we can go a step further and as parents, understand the depth of grief a child feels whenever a pet passes. Do you think parents need to be more vigilant of emotions their children experience instead of just patronizing them? DK- Absolutely! Children are not immune to grief. As adults, when we don't see an immediate response from our children during loss, we assume they are not feeling the loss. This couldn't be farther from the truth. Children draw inward, whereas adults express out grief outwardly. In many ways, adults grieve easier because we are able to grasp details and meaning. Children are left with little detail and the empty space a dead pet or deceased family member has left. We should never under estimate a child's ability to grieve or depth of grief. MN- Looking back on the last six years, you say that your only regret was not living in

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April 2013 God’s will. You said it wouldn’t have changed things, but you “would have had more joy, more peace and more faith during my storms. No one took that from me, but me.” What would you have done differently? DK- Had I possessed the relationship with God six years ago that I have now, I would have trusted more. My faith would have been completely in God whether the outcome had changed or not. My joy would have been prominent and my anxiety would have been dismissed from my heart. I would have enjoyed the pregnancy with my babies and felt at peace. I prevented that because I chose to try to control the things that only God can control. My path would have been the same, but instead of walking on broken glass, I could have walked on marble. I will never allow the distance again between me and God. MN- How is the family doing now? DK- We are all doing quite well. Our children will be entering High School and Jr High School next year, which to me seems near impossible. Time has passed far too quickly for me. I desperately hang on to the moments I am given each day, but now, through the faith and trust I have in God. As our children attend school and my husband works, I actively seek out families who have experienced a loss in their lives. My passion did not end with the completion of this book. In many ways, I feel it has just begun.

24 business cards. For God is my strength and refuge. For in him will I trust. If only I had learned this years ago. Author Bio- Dawn Kidd is the author of You Are Not Alone that chronicles the loss of her two infant children. Along with her daily column at The Wordsmith Journal Magazine, she is a weekend columnist for The Paragould Daily Press and a contributing writer for Jonesboro Area Home Educators. As a result of her painful journey, she actively seeks out families that have experienced a loss in their life to let them know their pain is normal and they are not alone. Her passion and compassion for hurting people is contagious, and readers will immediately connect with her through challenges in their lives. Dawn resides in Paragould, Arkansas with her husband and two children. When she is not writing, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking and reading. You can read Dawn’s column at The Wordsmith Journal Magazine or connect with her on the You Are Not Alone Facebook group page or on twitter @authordawnkidd. ~~~~~~~

MN- If you could choose one piece of advice that helped the most during your hardships, what would it have been? DK- I once had a conversation with a very dear friend. During one of my most miserable and grief filled moments, she gave me the greatest gift she could have ever shared. She told me to read Psalms 91. The entire chapter is devoted to a praise of God and his love and protection for us. I have since learned to stand on this chapter as my foundation when I am weak or tired. I have relied on it so much so, it is now on my

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Guest Editorial: A Time For Some Cool Beans Coffee Campaign By Kevin Zimmerman I would like to thank all the people who work at The Wordsmith Journal Magazine. They do a remarkable job creating a platform that allows us to showcase our various gifts and talents that

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April 2013 the Lord has graced us with. I am grateful to TWJM for seeing my experience as one that glorifies God, and one that will hopefully inspire and encourage others to continue their efforts to promote their work. This story is not about sales, but rather about how God has done extraordinary things through a book about an ordinary person. A Time For Everything, The Kevin Zimmerman Story was written by Michael L. White. The first edition was released in May 2008. The second edition was released in January 2012. The book chronicles my life from childhood up to two miraculous events that took place while serving as a US Army flight medic and a part of the Implementation Force (IFOR). IFOR was a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) lead multinational peacekeeping force in Bosnia-Herzegovina. While in Bosnia, the Lord guided my footsteps through two heavily infested landmine fields to save the lives of other non US Soldiers. Those missions resulted in the humbling honor of receiving two Soldiers Medals, one for each mine mission. The Soldiers Medal is the highest award given by congress for an act of bravery when our nation is not declared at war. I state the requirements of The Soldiers Medal solely for clarification. The sacrifices made by many brave men and woman far outweigh my actions and accomplishments and their awards are far more superior. I am forever grateful for every individual who has ever served this great nation so that we all may enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. A Time For Everything, The Kevin Zimmerman Story was written to inspire the reader to evaluate the many miracles that the Lord has done in his or her own life. Moreover, I pray that it serves as one of the many ways He draws people to Himself. It also provides an ability to give back to our military community, both the US Service members and their families. A portion of the proceeds received from the book are given to Soldier Support Organizations nationwide.

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25 Since the book’s publication I have thoroughly enjoyed the vast opportunities I have experienced promoting it. I can honestly say that I promote the book with passion and I have fun doing so. I could not have imagined the things that the Lord has done with the book. My first surprise came in June, 2012, when the book was accepted into the archives of the US Army Medical Department Museum, becoming a permanent part of US Military History. 1 Corinthians, 2: 9, tells us that “the eye have not seen, nor the ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for them that love Him.” I can attest to the facts of that passage of scripture. I was extremely taken by such an honor and grateful for what the Lord had done. Remarkably, I soon discovered that the Lord was not done. On 3 January, 2013, I was notified that the book had been accepted into the library and the archives of the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, becoming a permanent part of American History. Stunned is the only word I can think to use to describe my reaction upon receiving that notification. As a matter of fact, I contacted the Smithsonian immediately to verify if they intended to send that email to me or did I receive it mistakenly. To this day, that accomplishment has not set in. I am not certain that it ever will. Curious as to how it all came about It was brought to my attention that very few people, especially Black Americans, have received multiple Soldiers Medals. That significance, along with the book’s recordings of some of America’s efforts during the Bosnian conflict yielded such an honor. To my amazement, I have discovered the Lord is still at work. An excerpt from A Time For Everything; The Kevin Zimmerman Story, will be published in the US Army Medical Department (AMEDD) Historian in April, 2013. The AMEDD Historian is a worldwide quarterly publication distributed by the US Army Medical Department Museum. The museum was directed by the Commander and Surgeon General of the US

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April 2013 Army Medical Command to distribute the publication in acknowledgement of the US Army Medical Departments roll in the Armed Forces efforts made throughout the world. I will never understand why the Lord has given me so much favor and I will forever be at awe of what He has done. Moreover, I encourage everyone to pursue their dream with passion. God’s love will generate tremendous joy and fulfillment while doing so. He did it for me. I am confident that He will continue to do it for so many others as well. Although we all would love huge sales, but do not overlook the many great things the Lord is doing through our efforts. Those things will bring about an irreplaceable fulfillment. Have fun and continue your efforts regarding your books. Last but not least, please support the “A Time For Some Cool Beans Coffee Campaign.” This campaign brings our deployed Service Members a uniquely designed taste from home, a piece of history, and a personal touch from a hand written letter by various grade school children from San Antonio, TX. I, and Cool Beans Coffee, have partnered to help show appreciation of our Service Members deployed abroad. We are all aware that our US Service Members will be returning from Afghanistan. This process will be lengthily and will take several months. Although Afghanistan receives the majority of the media attention, we have thousands of US Service Members deployed to various locations around the world. We do not wish to overlook the value of their commitment and the commitment of their families as well. In order to support the campaign, you can email me at atfekz@gmail.com for instructions. Put the word Campaign in the subject line. Or you can reach me on facebook at “The Kevin Zimmerman Show.” If you desire to pay on-line, feel free to go to www.artistfirst.com/Zimmerman.htm. Make sure you are on “The Kevin Zimmerman Show” page. On that page,

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26 under the words “The Kevin Zimmerman Show” is a “Donate” button. Feel free to use that option. You may also contact Cool Beans on facebook at Cool Beans Pica Pica. Be sure to acknowledge you are supporting the Campaign. One $10.00 purchase creates a care package equipped with a jar of Cool Beans uniquely blended, Soldiers Blend Coffee, an autographed copy of A Time for Everything; The Kevin Zimmerman Story and a personalized letter from a local grade school child. The service member will be selected from the Soldiers Angel’s, Adopt a Solder website. If you have a specific service member you would like to receive the package, please note their name and APO address. We will be sure they are sent a package and you will be notified when the package was sent. Having been deployed, I cannot begin to express what this will mean to our Service Members. Along with supporting the campaign, please spread the word. To all in the literary world, all the best. ~~~~~~~

A Time for Everything The Kevin Zimmerman Story By Michael L White ASIN: B00902O0O6 A real time depiction of biblical promises. The question "Does God still work miracles today like He did in biblical times?" compelled Kevin to commission the writing of the book. Dedicate to our military service members but applicable to all, A Time For Everything tells of the miraculous navigation of not just one, but two heavily infested mine fields while

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serving in the US Army. Author Michael White continues to preach the gospel through this inspirational tale of miracles and God's hand in our lives. A Time for everything is a spiritual and much recommended pick for Christian readers and all who seek inspiration. You can purchase the book at a 20% discount rate by logging onto www.ATFEKZ.com. The book can be purchased at all major online book distributors; such as Amazon.com, Kindle Edition, Barnesandnoble.com and Booksam illion.com ~~~~~~~

~~~~~~~ To Your Health: Life-Saving Questions By: David B. Biebel, D.Min. ©April 2013 [Note: This is a follow-up article to last month’s column on the Myths of Depression] When people are depressed, they can slide into despair and suicidal ideation without giving many clues until it is too late. By learning to ask the right questions, and then following up any clues a depressed person provides in response, you may be able to engage that person in a life-saving conversation about the effect that his or her depression is having—emotionally, physically, cognitively, and even spiritually.

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Here are some sample questions, and suggestions about how to follow up: About Depressed Mood (this is the primary issue; hence, the volume of questions): “You sound kind of down. How are you?” “You seem discouraged. Are things OK?” “Lately, have you been especially worried about something? “Do you find yourself more easily upset these days than usual?” Listen for—Gloomy or pessimistic remarks, such as: “What difference does it make?” “I just don’t care anymore.” Respond further—for example: “Well, it makes a difference to me as your friend. But I wonder, have you been feeling this way long?” “Sometimes people who feel this way don’t even care if they hurt themselves; for example, they drive recklessly or abuse alcohol or drugs. Do you think you could do such things?” Remember that—depression can be masked by physical ailments With this in mind, you might ask— “Have you been feeling well?” Expecting to hear—a litany of recently developed symptoms, such as: headache, backache, stomachache, constipation, chronic pain. Take care—not to invalidate this pain, since it is real to the depressed person, but you might ask, “Do you think this might be a bad disease? What does your doctor say?” One overarching thing to keep in mind is that depressed people, given a listening ear, will complain at length about a personal problem, loss, or sense of failure. If you wish

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April 2013 to help, be prepared to hear this litany of distress over and over again. They are, most likely, either unaware of this repetition or testing the level of your “love,” or both, so it will not help to try to shut this off, as many do, with comments like: “You shouldn’t feel that way.” A better response might be—“I’m sorry you’re having these troubles. If I were having them, I might feel pretty confused (angry/upset/down/worried, etc.). How do these things make you feel inside? OR “I’m sorry you’re having these troubles, and if I had the power I would make them go away. Can we think of a way that I can help you with them?” About Loss of Pleasure and Interest in Things Previously Enjoyed If the person’s interest was a creative hobby: “Have you been doing any woodworking (knitting, photography, etc.) lately?” If the answer indicates the person has lost interest in the hobby you might say: “You know, you have a real talent for (__________). I really enjoy your work.” (If applicable: “Your creations occupy places of honor in my home. When do you think you’ll have the energy to take ________ up again?” If the person followed sports: ”Still keeping up with the Broncos?” (or any other sports team) If he/she enjoyed recreation: “How’s your golf game?” (or whatever) If cooking or gardening, perhaps you might bring along a new cookbook or gardening book or catalog to see if you can engage the person in conversation about such things. If it seems that the person has become withdrawn or feels isolated, you might ask:

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28 “Have you been to church lately?” or “Seen your old friend, Jim, lately?” or “Been out to see any movies lately?” OR, IF YOU THINK THIS MAY HELP, YOU MIGHT OFFER: “__________ and I are going out to dinner and a movie Saturday. We’d love for you to come along as our guest.” About Feelings of Worthlessness and Excessive Guilt These feelings are often expressed in selfdeprecating remarks or endless apologies for even the most insignificant of perceived wrongs. An appeal to the mind—as in: “That’s really not so bad; everybody does that”—likely will not help much as this is primarily a matter of the heart. Instead, you might say something like: “It’s clear that you feel guilty about/or responsible for (whatever it is). And it’s also clear that nothing anyone says can change the way you feel, because we’ve all tried, and the feelings are still there. So instead of trying to talk you out of feeling guilty, I’d like to say something else. I love you (care very much about you). Maybe you did do (whatever—or did not do whatever), and something really bad happened, for which you feel responsible. So, just for the moment, let’s agree—you are guilty. You’re guilty of being a human being, of not knowing everything, etc. Even so, I still love you. What’s more, I forgive you, my friend. As far as I’m concerned, you are forgiven.” Keep in mind that: feelings or worthlessness can also lie behind such symptoms as personal sloppiness (in a person who was previously well-dressed or well-groomed). Poor self-care or housekeeping may be evident. Be aware that your effort to help— as in swooping in with a crew of helpers to clean up the house without prior permission—may hurt rather than help a depressed person. Ahead of time, you might say: “I understand that sometimes when a person’s really discouraged, things like the laundry (or dishes or general housework)

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April 2013 can just get left undone. I’m sure that you’ll get better, but I’m wondering if you’d mind if I helped with (whatever it is).” About Sluggishness or Agitation “You seem to be moving (or speaking) more slowly than usual. Is that the way you feel, as if everything’s in slow motion?” OR, IF IT APPLIES, “You seem nervous or restless today. Is that the way you’ve been feeling?” About Fatigue, Loss of Energy “Have you been feeling really tired lately?” or “Having trouble getting going in the morning?” If the answer is yes, then you might inquire if he or she has been working hard on something. (Note: The depressed mind works non-stop on one’s problems— whether real or perceived makes little difference—which is one reason why many depressed people are perpetually exhausted.) About Trouble Thinking, Concentrating, Deciding “Sometimes when I feel stressed, I have trouble keeping my mind on what I’m doing, from reading the paper to watching TV to driving. Can you identify with that?” “Sometimes when I feel pressured, I have a really hard time making decisions. Do you know what I mean?” “When I’m really worried, I can hardly think straight. Ever felt that way?” About Change in Weight If you can see that the person has lost or gained a significant amount of weight within a relatively short amount of time, it may be tricky to bring it up, but you might say something like, “You know, every day I get spammed by e-mails advertising weight-loss programs. And I don’t usually pay attention, but I was thinking of investigating the XYZ program. Have you heard of that?” About Change in Sleep Patterns

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29 “Lately, I’ve been having trouble getting to sleep at night. Maybe it’s too much caffeine, or maybe too much on my mind. Have you ever had a problem like that?” OR “I’ve been waking up really early lately, and then I just lie there waiting for the alarm to go off. Do you know of any methods for overcoming this sort of thing?” About Recurrent Thoughts of Death and/or Suicide This can be a very difficult subject, but it’s one of a few subjects that you may not be able to return to later should you put if off now. One way to broach the subject indirectly is to note something on the news that relates to suicide, as when a famous person takes his own life, or a terminally ill person chooses physician-assisted suicide, you might ask, “Did you hear about XYZ (singer, actor, etc.) who jumped off a bridge (or whatever) the other day? I wonder how a person with so much to live for could choose to end it like that?” or “Did you hear about that man/woman in Michigan who asked the doctor to help her die because she couldn’t face living with Alzheimer’s?” Or, you could say something like, “The other day I was reading the story of Job, in the Old Testament. Did you know that he got so low that he cursed the day of his birth, as if he wished he’d never been born? And God didn’t even strike him with lightning for talking that way!” If the person interacts with this, follow their lead, but be sure to find out if they have also been feeling this same way. If the person is already speaking about death, dying, or suicide you might take a more direct route, as in, “You sound discouraged enough to hurt yourself. Would you please tell me what you mean?” If the person admits to self-destructive or suicidal ideas, you cannot just walk away. For one thing, the person is taking a risk of letting you inside their heart. So you need to communicate at least the following: “I want

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April 2013 you to know that I consider it a privilege that you’ve given me this glimpse into your heart. Thank you for trusting me that much. And because I want to honor that trust, I need to know how serious you are, because I, for one, would really miss you if something like this happened. I mean, it’s one thing to think about or be tempted to do something. It’s another to actually do it. For example, do you have a plan of how you would do this?” If the answer is yes, and the plans are specific, and the person is determined, then you have no choice but to ensure that he or she cannot follow through. Your best choice is to call to 911. Though your hospitalized friend may dislike you for a while, he or she will most likely thank you later. Note: This material is adapted from New Light on Depression. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO REPLACE MEDICAL ADVICE AND/OR EVALUATION THAT IS BEST PROVIDED BY A TRAINED PROFESSIONAL, BUT ONLY TO ALERT READERS TO THE IMPORTANCE OF KEEPING COMMUNICATION OPEN WITH THOSE WHO ARE DEPRESSED, AND THE IMPORTANCE OF INTERVENING SHOULD A DEPRESSED PERSON ACKNOWLEDGE HE OR SHE IS CONSIDERING SUICIDE.

Dr. Biebel has authored or co-authored nineteen books. He founded Healthy Life Press, in 2008 to help previously unpublished Christian authors get their works into print, and to keep worthy out-ofprint Christian books available. He and his ©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

30 wife established Health-Wise Worldwide in 2005, as one means of educating the public in relation to achieving and maintaining optimal health, with an emphasis on the importance of whole food nutrition in biological health. ~~~~~~~ Feature Publisher Revell Books

Revell began over 125 years ago when D. L. Moody and his brother-in-law Fleming H. Revell saw the need for practical books that would help bring the Christian faith to everyday life. From there, Fleming H. Revell Publishing developed consistently solid lists which have enjoyed the presence of many notable Christian writers over the years. This same vision for books that are both inspirational and practical continues to motivate the Revell publishing group today. Whether publishing fiction, Christian living, self-help, marriage, family, or youth books, each Revell publication reflects relevance, integrity, and excellence. Revell’s Featured Author: Julie Lessman

Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose tagline of "Passion with a Purpose"underscores her intense passion for both God and romance. Winner of the 2009 ACFW Debut Author of the Year and

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Holt Medallion Awards of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational, Julie is also the recipient of 14 Romance Writers of America awards and was voted by readers as "Borders Best of 2009 So Far: Your Favorite Fiction." Chosen as the #1 Romance Fiction Author of the Year in the Family Fiction magazine 2011 Readers' Choice Awards, Julie was also awarded #1 Series of the Year in that same poll and #3 Author of the Year, #5 Novel of the Year, and #4 Historical Fiction Author of the year. She resides in Missouri with her family and is the author of The Daughters of Boston series and the Winds of Change series whose first book, A Hope Undaunted, ranked #5 on Booklist's Top 10 Inspirational Fiction for 2010. Her latest release, Love at any Cost is the first in her The Heart of San Francisco series. You can contact Julie through her website.

~~~~~~~ The Proactive Author: The Merit of Consistency By W. Terry Whalin ©April 2013 While it's not often recognized, there is great merit to consistently working at the craft of your writing. Which part of that craft you select to work on will vary for each of us. For some people, they need to develop the basic skill of writing a magazine article. It's a good place to start whether you are writing for a large magazine or a small newsletter. You need to learn how to craft a

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single story with an engaging opening paragraph, a solid section in the middle, then wrap it up with a take-away or single point for the reader. If you learn this skill, then you can apply it to other area of storytelling and writing--whether you are putting together a newsletter or a single letter or a chapter of a forthcoming book. For the last few years, I've been putting together the Right Writing News. Now the back issues have built up to over 700 pages of how-to-write information. It is free but to access this information, you have to subscribe to the publication. I'm constantly looking for additional material that I can use in future issues of this publication. There is a wealth of material in these back issues. It didn't suddenly appear but came one issue at a time. I continue to regularly write about the publishing business at The Writing Life. To date, I’ve written almost 1,200 entries which amount to a large volume of searchable information. If you scroll down in the righthand column, you will find the search tool and you can find older articles using a key word. This body of work didn’t appear instantly but was built through consistent action. This week another issue of The Foster Letter, Religious Market Update arrived in my mailbox. Gary Foster compiles a rich publication every two weeks and it comes like clockwork. If you want to know more, I'd encourage you to look at some of the excerpts from his archived issues. You can find a lot of valuable information here. Recently I was interviewed during a teleseminar about Book Proposals That Sell and was asked about when my first book was published. The common misconception is that it was many decades ago. It was 1992 and now over 60 books later they wonder how such a body of work was created. It's not difficult to understand when you consider the merits of consistency. I'm constantly working to

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develop new projects and now in particular for Morgan James. I write my work like everyone else--one page at a time then one chapter at a time and one book at a time. Over a period of time, it ends up being something substantial. It’s not magic but consistency counts. The proactive author understands the value and merit of consistent action.

and the people who journeyed here from far beyond her borders are at the heart of Beth's inspiration. In addition to American settings, she also writes historical and time travel romances set in the British Isles. Find out more about Beth by visiting her Website and Blogor connecting with her on Face Book or Twitter! ~~~~~~~ The Power of Positive Faith:

Be Grateful & Thankful Always…

Author Bio: W. Terry Whalin, a writer and acquisitions editor lives in Irvine, California. A former magazine editor and former literary agent, Terry has written more than 60 nonfiction books including Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams. To help writers, he has created 12lesson online course called: Write a Book Proposal His website is located at: www.terrywhalin.com. ~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Beth Trissel

Married to her high school sweetheart, Beth lives on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia surrounded by children, grandbabies, and assorted animals. An avid gardener, her love of herbs and heirloom plants figures into her work. The rich history of Virginia, the Native Americans

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By Dr. LaSharnda Beckwith ©April 2013 There are days that I struggle and fight and struggle some more to get closer to my personal goals. I wonder when I am going to see a break through. I go back and look at them and I refine them. I put on my positive CDs so that I can listen to positive thought leaders. I read everything positive that I can find; anything encouraging. At times I feel desperation setting in and my blood pressure rising because it seems that I am not making inroads at all. I go talk to God again and ask when will I see a break through? I ask Him to show me that I am on the right track and I “think” I wait for an answer, yet no answer comes. Here’s the thing, He may be showing me and I am not seeing it. He may be saying to me, to just wait a little longer. He may be telling me that what I want has to be a miracle because if it happened easily I would think that it was me that did it. There are a lot of “maybes” in there that only causes me more anxiety because I can’t figure it out. Are you anything like me? Do you have those days that you just feel like giving up because you can’t seem to break-through? Do you feel anxious and defeated at times? Do you say to God that you thought you were guided by Him because you got to where you are because of Him? Do you know that He is listening to you? Well He is. You might think that your prayers and ~All Rights Reserved


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cries are falling on deaf ears, but they are not. He is taking in every moan, every groan, and every cry. He hears you and cares for you. In all things, give thanks. That is something I say to myself and remind myself of regularly. In all things, give thanks. In all things, be grateful. Having positive faith means to stay positive even when you don’t see things happening. You might say that faith is positive. I would argue that if it is, why do we get so mad at God when we think He isn’t doing something that we want Him to do? Why do we give up so easily? Faith is to believe that He will do it when we can’t see how it will be done! Positive faith is to hold on and claim His promises in spite of what is going on in our lives. Positive faith is to stand up, walk and claim victory when we want to sit quietly and sulk. In the book, Jesus Calling, one section read: I do my greatest works through people with grateful, trusting hearts. Rather than planning and evaluating, practice trusting and thanking Me continually. This is a paradigm shift that will revolutionize you life. (2004)

Author Bio: Dr. LaSharnda Beckwith, PhD, MBAA, MA, BPS, is an Empowerment Advocate, personal life coach, motivational speaker & leadership expert. She is a retired executive of more than 26 years with the Army & Air Force Exchange Service/Eastern Operations. She is currently a Professor in the School of Management at Texas Woman’s University. She is an author and talk show host. Her new book, When You're Happy With You focuses on helping others find value, build self confidence, self-esteem and confront issues that may be holding them back. Her radio talk show “Living Happy Every Day with Dr. LaSharnda” can be heard on www.LATalkradio.com, Channel 1. ~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Delia Latham!

When I read this I could not help but to snap back into a mindset that depicts gratefulness, thanksgiving and positive faith. Psalm 9:10 says “Those of us who know His name will trust Him; for He is Lord and He will never forsake those of us who seek Him.” Are you a seeker? If you are, don’t worry about your goals; He knows that they are important to you. He just wants you and me to think of Him first and trust that those other things will happen (Matt.6:33).

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Delia Latham is a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend—but above all, she treasures her role as child of the King and heir to the throne of God. When she’s not writing, she loves to play piano and sing, read, enjoy nature’s beauty, and design marketing products for authors. A former newspaper Staff Writer and frequent contributor to her hometown’s regional publication, Bakersfield Magazine, she has

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also freelanced projects to a public relations firm and various magazines; has compiled, edited, and designed cover art for various Kindness Incorporated projects; and sold greeting card verse. Many of her short stories, articles, and devotions can be found online. Find out more about this author on her website or visit her blog.

to say or do to provide you with comfort. Some cliché’s may carry a measure of truth, but others couldn’t be farther from the truth. While they’re supposed to help us find strength in the difficult situations of life, cliché’s can often leave us feeling empty, frustrated and guilty.

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Here are a few you should use with caution:

Featured Author: Mary Manners!

Time heals all sorrows I know this one isn’t true because time hasn’t healed mine. Sure, our pain may not be as intense, but no amount of time can heal a heart devastated by the loss of something or someone precious. What time does do is provide an opportunity for growth and healing. Once we get there we can begin thinking about how to re-invest our hearts into life again.

Mary Manners is an award-winning romance writer who lives in the beautiful foothills of East Tennessee with her husband Tim and the cherished cats they've rescued from local animal shelters...Lucky and Gus. She writes romances of all lengths, from short stories to novels—something for everyone.Learn more about Mary Manners at her website and at her author pages at Pelican Book Group and Amazon.

You have to be strong No you don’t. This one carries with it a belief that many of us have learned from our family of origin. If you were told it wasn’t ok to express emotion, or if you grew up in a home where you were ridiculed for showing weakness, it’s easy to see how you could buy into this cliché. News flash: it’s ok to be a hot mess when you’ve experienced loss. It’s normal.

~~~~~~~ Consider This: The top 4 cliché’s you should never use when someone is hurting By Rita A Schulte, LPC ©April 2013 Have you ever experienced a devastating loss, been hurt beyond words, or been in deep emotional or physical pain, and some well meaning person comes along and gives you a one liner like “All things work together for good” or “It could be worse.” You probably felt you were punched in the stomach---again. Cliché’s are many people’s go to when they don’t really know what else

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Your loved one wouldn’t want you to be sad That may be true, but the normal response to loss is sadness---end of story. All things work together for good This is a wonderful Biblical truth, but please be careful when you throw it out there. When someone’s heart is hemorrhaging, that’s probably not what he or she needs to hear on the front end of things. Most people want to be of comfort when someone is hurting, they may just not know how. Instead of using a cliché, consider this:

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April 2013 Just listen When someone has experienced a loss, there really isn’t much another person can do to relieve their pain. What the wounded person needs is to express their pain to someone who cares. By being an attuned compassionate presence, you can help a person process their grief by simply being there. Touch When people are hurting, a gentle caring touch can mean the world. Don’t be afraid to give a hug, hold a hand or even cry with someone. Show empathy Empathy means putting yourself in another person’s shoes. It’s feeling their pain. Don’t tell someone you know exactly how they feel--- you don’t. You may have good intentions, but their pain is unique to their situation. Prayer Let people who are hurting know you’re praying for them. Tell them often. Don’t be too quick to throw out Bible verses that will make them feel worse about where they are in the grief process. Give others the space to recover in their own time. Action When we see someone who is hurting we want to help. That’s why we throw out the cliché’s in the first place. Instead, ask if there is any tangible way we can help. Bring meals, run errands, babysit, or do laundry. Find the need and fill it. We will all come in contact with people who are hurting and need our love and support. Remember, the key to helping isn’t to fix things; it’s to be an attuned compassionate presence.

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Author Bio: Rita A. Schulte is a licensed professional counselor in the Northern Virginia/DC area. She is the host of Heartline Podcast. Her show airs on several radio stations as well as the Internet. They can be downloaded from her website or on iTunes at Heartline Podcast. Rita writes for numerous publications and blogs. Her articles have appeared in Counseling Today Magazine, Thriving Family, and Christianity Today, Kyria. Her book on moving through the losses of life will be released in Fall 2013 by Leafwood Publishers. Rita loves feedback so please follow her website, on FaceBook and twitter @heartlinepod. ~~~~~~~ Special Group Ad: Sword of the Spirit Publishing

Sword of the Spirit Publishing was established in 2008 by Donald James Parker to provide an alternative to the traditional publishing houses, which are based on the business model of making a maximum profit. SOS will publish books that contain a well written message which strengthens God's kingdom on Earth. The fact that they may appeal to only a small niche market will not prevent God's word from going forth.

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36 women who once sparkled, loved their lives, pursued their passions, and in doing so changed lives only to fall victim to the stress and fatigue that all too often come along with giving so much of oneself. As clients have shared their stories and their lives with me, I have witnessed this happen in the lives of too many women. Also as a personal trainer I want to avoid this happening in my own life! Burnout is a cunning thief that robs the world of its best and its brightest by feeding on their energy, enthusiasm, and passion, transforming these positive qualities into exhaustion, frustration, and disillusionment. But the good news is that burnout is not a terminal condition. Although it certainly requires a change in lifestyle, once burnout is recognized and attended to, it can become a positive force in your life, a chance to rediscover yourself and shine brightly once again. If you've become a victim of burnout, here are a few steps you can take to reignite your flame and shine brightly once more.

~~~~~~~ Faith & Fitness: How High Achieving Women Can Avoid/Overcome Burnout By Kellye Davis Williams ŠApril 2013 As a personal trainer, some of the saddest moments I have witnessed in my career have been watching bright lights grow dimmer and dimmer until they eventually burn out. I'm referring to high octane ŠApril 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Take an inventory. Make a list of all the situations that cause you to feel stressed, anxious, worried, frustrated, and helpless. Don't rush through it. It's not a race; it's a process. In fact, you should consider it a work in process, adding to it as things enter your mind. Next to each item on the inventory, write down at least one way to modify that situation to reduce its stress, and then begin implementing them into your routine. Don't get frustrated if you don't see immediate changes or feel immediate results. Burnout doesn't happen overnight, so it's unrealistic to expect it to go away overnight. Consistent implementation of positive changes into your routine is the best way to see improvement. Just say "no." While you're "recovering," avoid taking on any new commitments or responsibilities. I know you have to live in the real world and there will be some things

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April 2013 that you just can't get out of doing. But high octane women have a bad habit of saying "yes" when they can say "no." Resist that urge. Delegate as many things as possible, even if the person you're delegating to may not do them as quickly or as well as you would. Take breaks between big projects. Burnout puts your mind and body in a weakened state, so avoid jumping from one stressful, time-consuming project to the next in order to give your mind and body a chance to recover. Control your devices. Gadgets, such as iPads, computers, and smart phones, can consume large amounts of your time and energy. Turn them off as much as possible. Socialize outside your professional group. This can provide fresh perspectives, stimulate new ideas, and help you discover previously undiscovered resources. Spending time with friends is always a way to be refreshed and just have fun. Resist the urge to take work home. Yes, I realize you have a job to do and at some point the work has to get done. But if you're like most high octane women, you like to be a superstar, racing around, showing how fast you can get to the finish line. You have to slow down a notch until you can safely get back up to that speed. Reinforce effort, not outcome. Not even the best players hit home runs every time they get up to bat. Remember to reinforce yourself for trying rather than only for the end result. Consider a support group. Although a support group may be a therapeutic group, it doesn't have to be. It can be a professional organization that provides support or mentoring, or a group of casual friends getting together to vent and share ideas. Whichever you choose, a support group serves two purposes: 1) sharing feelings

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37 often reduces stress, and 2) getting together with others reduces isolation, a common consequence of burnout. Spend time with God. Spend time in prayer, reading, or just listening to worship music. Spending time with God is the best way to renew your heart, mind, and spirit. Every high-achieving woman I have ever known had one thing in common--a passion. If you're like most victims of burnout, that passion has probably lost its meaning, leaving you feeling physically exhausted and emotionally depleted. But rediscovering it (or finding a new one) with a new self-awareness that it doesn't have to be all-consuming can be the spark you need to reignite your flame. This may mean you have to redefine your roles at work, home, or both. It may mean that you have to find a way to redistribute the load you're carrying. These are all answers you must discover for yourself, but there is one thing I am sure of-if you tackle burnout as you've tackled all the other challenges in your life, you'll succeed. It's not in your nature to do anything else!

Author Bio: Kellye Davis Williams is a personal trainer who focuses on the health and well being of her clients as well as coaching them to make positive changes that will impact the rest of their lives. She helps them to achieve their health and fitness goals as well as encourages them to strive for and achieve their " life" goals with her message of hope. As a model, Kellye exemplifies the essence of artistic beauty while proving the power of a woman is more than superficial refinement. She is the co

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host of Thrive Radio Talk Show on Revmedia network. Kellye resides in east Atlanta with her family. When she is not working out or training her clients, she teaches spiritual concepts to an adult class at her church as well as ministers in her role as Women's Ministry Director. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her daughters, shopping, traveling, and simply enjoying coffee with friends. ~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Kathi Macias!

Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored more than 30 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences, and won the 2008 Member of the Year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association). Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband, Al. Kathi is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of The Steve Laube Agency Find out more about Kathi by visiting her website. ~~~~~~~

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

~~~~~~~ Michele’s Musings: Spring is in the Air! By Michele Abshire ©April 2013 Greetings & Blessings, Have you noticed that spring is in the air and everything is abloom with beauty? You have spring in your step and joy in your heart seeing everything come to life again after the winter? Does the air feel crisp and clean and you just want to be out and about in the beauty of the landscape set before you? I noticed something recently that I had never really paid attention to before. I often go to Checkers for lunch and wait in the drive-through line. In that line there is a hedge of very tall bushes and most of the time the hedges are a beautiful green. However, I noticed that during spring new growth begins to come out turning the bushes to a bright flaming red color. Then I began to notice other plants and saw that when there was new growth it was also red in color. A coincidence? I think not. To me there is an amazing truth in this fact of nature that coincides with new life through our Lord. Jesus Christ died on the cross and shed His blood that we might have newness of life. When speaking in the spiritual sense newness of life does not come through any means except through the shed blood of Jesus. Spring is a picture of life coming forth from a time of dying and dormancy. Spring coincides with the time that we celebrate the death and the Resurrection of Jesus; Easter or the Passover season. What a beautiful picture! I believe there is a story in all of nature if we take the time to open our eyes and hearts and really see. I believe that there are no accidents in life and God had this planned a very, very, long time ago. When we receive this new life through Christ it is as if He gives us a spring in our step and joy fills our hearts to

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April 2013 overflowing. The great debt He paid for us, if we will but accept it, floods our souls with forgiveness and peace and sets us free from the bondage of sin. This new life then begins to set our feet upon a new walk and a new more abundant path of life. May your life be blessed during this beautiful season as we celebrate the Resurrection of Our Lord, Jesus Christ. Let us be thankful during this season for His great gift. Remember that it is He and He alone that can give us newness of life. He so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. Love in Christ, Michele Copyright April 2009 ~ Michele LeDoux Abshire

39 ~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Michelle Sutton!

Michelle Sutton has written well over a dozen Christian novels. She is also a book reviewer, an avid blogger, the mother of two college students, a wife of over two decades, a social worker by trade, and follower of Jesus Christ. Michelle is the founder of Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers -- A group of readers and writers who enjoy edgy fiction, and in particular edgy Christian fiction. ~~~~~~~ Special Group Ad: Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers

Author Bio: Michele Abshire is a housewife, mother, grandmother, and full time legal assistant. She has been published in Lake Charles, Louisiana publications, Christian Star Newspaper and Gumbeaux Magazine. Michele began writing notes of encouragement to people God put on her heart which led her in the direction of writing short encouraging stories, letters, essays and analogies. This quickly became a ministry for her.

Founded by Michelle Sutton, Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers is a group of over 1200 members consisting of readers and writers who enjoy edgy fiction, and in particular edgy Christian fiction. Join Today! http://edgychristianfictionlovers.ning.com/

Michele's vision is to reach people with encouraging messages that will lift their heart and bring joy for sorrow and hope for discouragement. Michele enjoys your feedback so leave a comment in the form at the bottom of the page or email her at micheles.musings@gmail.com

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40 If our only instruction from the Lord was to LOVE, to forgive and to judge not – why is it that most attempts outside of traditional Christian thought and doctrine is judged and condemned as heretical? You may wonder where I’m going with this…just bear with me. ~~~~~~~

Pamela’s Ponderings: Narrow Way or Narrow Mind? By Pamela S Thibodeaux ©April 2013 In Matthew 7:14, Jesus said, “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” I wonder what He meant by this statement? Ask most preachers or Christians and they’ll probably tell you that if you don’t follow the letter of the law, you’re missing the mark and sinning and just might end up in the place of “wailing and gnashing of teeth!” I’m not sure that is what He meant though. Jesus came to fulfill the law and in doing so, left us with only two commandments…. Well three…. #1: Love the Lord God with all of your heart, mind, soul and strength (Mark 12:29 &30) #2: Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:31) #3: “That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (John 13:34 & 15:12) He also exhorted us in Luke 6:37, “Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.”

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I have some very dear friends who are stout believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. So stout they will not entertain any concept beyond that taught by their pastor and his/her (or even their own) interpretation of scripture. They won't listen to anyone else, read books by anyone else and heaven forbid anything that is not 100% word-for-word in the bible! This they discount or shun and then judge people who dare to question or search! Is this an example of the narrow way or a narrow mind? I have other friends who love God and Jesus with all of their heart, soul, mind, body and strength, but have never set foot in a church and have not read the bible! Are they wrong in their interpretation of God and who He is? Are they less a “Christian” because they are more open to the SPIRIT of God than the doctrines of men? Scripture was given to us for among other things, instruction (see 2 Timothy 3:16). Ask thirty preachers to read the same scripture and I promise, you’ll get at least twenty different answers. How then, are we to know the right one? Why is it that we are so sure ours is not only the right way but the only way to God? To Jesus? Now I believe whole-heartedly in the Lord Jesus Christ. HE is my Lord, my Savior, my Redeemer, the lover of my soul and I respect His sacrifice as ransom for my life, and never, in all of my reading and searching do I deny HIM as such. But I believe God is so much more than any book (including the

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April 2013 bible) can explain, clarify, illuminate, describe or express! As I mentioned in my initial column, The Quest, I have been on a spiritual journey since I recommitted my life to Christ in 1989. I read voraciously and I commune with Him daily through prayer and meditation, not only speaking to Him but listening for His voice and instruction. Do I always get it right?

41 published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.” Find out more about Pam by visiting her website and connecting with her on Facebook & Twitter @psthib.

Not at all! But He and He alone knows my heart and how very much I love and adore Him. In John 17:11 & 22, Jesus prayed that we would be one as He and the Father are one. How can we accomplish this? One way might be by opening our hearts and minds to a fresh anointing and interpretation of Scripture, by seeking above all things LOVE, peace, and joy; by sharing those things with our brothers and sisters and by allowing people to seek HIM in their own way.

~~~~~~~ Featured Publisher: RMS1437

After all, in the words of Mother Theresa… "It's not between you and them anyway, it's between you and God." I might add, "It's between them and God, too."

Author Bio: Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Groupin Lake Charles, Louisiana and the Owner/CEO of The Wordsmith Journal Magazine. Multi-

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Welcome to RMS1437 Publishing LLC - a full service traditional publishing and printing house! If you are looking for a traditional - royalty based publishing house who agrees with your desire to produce family-friendly works that entertain and/or inspire readers, you have come to the right place. We are committed to prayer and serving our Lord by providing our current and potential authors with the highest level of integrity and experience to bring to life the story or message God has placed in his or her heart. We desire, and will continuously work to promote, a family environment amongst our

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April 2013 authors so that they will support one another through prayer or words of encouragement. From mystery to humor, Bible studies to devotionals, poetry to biographies, and stories of healing, we are dedicated to providing personalized service to each of our authors from the initial submission to the professionally polished work ready for distribution. Our goal is to build a wellestablished relationship that will lead to additional projects. We know these will be used in a mighty way to bless, encourage, and challenge readers near and far.

42 2013. Marijo adores cats and has many pet tales in store for her readers! Her book, Morning Whispers from the Heart of God is available in Print, on Kindle & Nook ~ Visit RMS1437 Website to purchase. ~~~~~~~ SR Review: Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing Book 1 by Paula Rose Michaelson

Answer the call! Visit RMS1437 Website for complete details. RMS1437 Featured Author: Marijo Phelps!

"In 1974, Jesus saved me by His grace from 9 years of professing atheism, and brought me into His loving arms. I am excited and blessed to spread the good good news of His redemptive plan for our lives through written media. I was an RN for 23+ years, a missionary with YWAM, and a statistical analyst for Every Home for Christ for 9 years. My first poem was published when I was four years old. (My mom had much to do with that!) I have been writing ever since." Currently available is Morning Whispers from the Heart of God, a first in a three part "Whispers" series. Due to release this spring is, Afternoon Whispers by the Heart of God, followed by Evening Whispers late

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Fifteen-year-old Naomi wants to practice her faith in public, find her uncle, and help him raise enough money to bring their family to America. To accomplish this she agrees to companion a blind, old woman whose family plans to tour Europe and settle in the United States. Her plans are thwarted when the woman passes away aboard ship, and Naomi is handed over to immigration. While she awaits her interview, an old Tía comes to Naomi’s rescue and offers to take her in. With nowhere to go and no one to turn to, Naomi agrees and unwittingly enters the country illegally. This is Naomi’s journey from adolescence to womanhood, from frightened isolation and captivity to the noble status of heiress with a mission and responsibility many would shirk placed upon her shoulders. Along the way, she contends with piercing memories, hurtful loss, jealous opponents, a devious lawyer, and a curious priest. Through each

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step of this journey, she guards two secrets she dare not share with anyone, not even Chaz, the man she has married. Will she keep his love when he discovers who she really is? Find out in the first book of Paula Rose Michelson’s saga, The House of Blessing. Casa de Naomi can be purchased in paperback and ebook from the Publisher, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and is available inaudio! Just Sayin…. By Barb Shelton Paula Rose Michelson wrote with brilliance her story of Naomi. To better understand the Spanish mind-set toward those of Jewish birth and faith, I recommend emphatically the reader peruse the Preface regarding Sephardic Voices as well as Historical Notes. This stunning historical information revealed intense research and study on Ms Michelson’s part that distinguish her talent and story above some others. Naomi, being forced to live a lie by omission of who she really is, we meet as a young teenage girl beginning a peculiar lonely life in a strange new world. Her former world in Spain created about her grievous conditions for all of Jewish heritage and faith. This cruel and fearful prejudice against their religion forcing them to join the Catholic Church or face persecution, possibly death was a historical fact unknown to me in my naiveté that I find despicable, however vital to Naomi’s story all inclusive in Spanish Harlem. Coming to the United States on a free passage with plans to companion the elderly lady she accompanied soon went awry when death takes the lady and Naomi is abandoned at Ellis Island. Facing deportment and trembling in terror at the unknown, God intercedes and sends old Tia, a compassionate woman that offers to give her residence in exchange for her services without wages. Seeing no other choice, ©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Naomi accepts without the knowledge of now being an illegal immigrant. Paula Rose Michelson weaves intriguing stories within stories about the residents of Spanish Harlem and their respectful adoration toward the mistress of the Villa, Tia’s friends and those employed by her to run businesses in the community knew little about Naomi. They believed her to be just another of Tia’s “ninas” sheltered from deportation in the Villa. Little did neither they nor Naomi know what Tia has in the offing for them all. Eventually, mystery, suspense and intrigue grow intense when the old Tia (named Madre Vida) nears death and wills the Villa and all its responsibilities to Naomi. Madre Vida whispered many secrets of the Villa to Naomi, and revealed to her where she could find all the instructions she would need to run the Villa as Tia did at immigration saving the little ninas as Naomi was saved. Overwhelmed and frightened by all the turn of events, Naomi learns Tia had been planning Naomi as her replacement all along. With her fate sealed, Naomi considers this is the mission God equipped her for and stands strong, her fear of being discovered as a Jew in Spain still a haunting cloud. She determined with her inheritance of wealth and good reputation that no one would dare question her heritage. She began to feel freedom. Alas, Padre Paul the Catholic priest and Madre Vida’s attorney Ralph Martinez become skeptical over Tia’s choice of Naomi as her successor and schemed to assure she would not be led astray. They agreed that Tia’s work must continue and decided to “marry Naomi off” to the right man with wealth and security. They set about finding the right potential husband for Naomi. Thus begins the sweet love story between Chaz and Naomi. Not that this union was without complications. Evil lurks within the Villa with the arrival of Lola – a teenage girl rescued by Naomi at

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April 2013 the most inopportune time. Lola intended to seduce Chaz and win him away from Naomi. Trampish and deceitful, Lola sets about snooping to find what would discredit Naomi. During my time spent reading this script, I argued aloud at the characters, trying to change their actions and reactions until I became hoarse and even woke my husband at night with my vocal cheering and recriminations. The depth of Paula Rose Michelson’s imagination mingled with her knowledge of complicated truth in history made for one of the most interesting novels I’ve yet read. The conclusion of this story is one big hook of bait the size of an anchor – and you’ll be hooked!! You need to get Casa de Naomi, Book Two to find out what happens, or hang around until May when I’ll be reviewing Book Two! To Paula Rose Michelson, I say WHEW, What a story! Praise God for blessing you with compassion for such a situation.

Author Bio: Barb is married to Jack Shelton, a retired military officer and lives in Arlington, Texas. Having been married for thirty seven years, Barb and Jack share eight children between them, (His, Mine, Ours); 19 grandchildren and 11 greatgrandchildren. Barb was born and raised in Enterprise, Kansas. She is musically inclined and is a retired church music director. A former Weight Watcher lecturer, she has had many interesting and unusual jobs, including working for a private detective, defense attorney, office manager for a video production company and administrative assistant to two different pastors. She is involved in volunteer and church activities, and describes herself as creative, friendly and can talk with anyone. "I am a Christian and love to spread ©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

44 God's love and enjoy making others smile and lift up their day." Barb is a Certified Lay Leader and Lay Leader of her congregation at the United Methodist Church of the Covenant in Arlington, TX where she has been a choir member/director for over 30 yrs! Barb also occasionally fills in for the pastors when they are absent from the pulpit. She wishes to write a book one day. "I've been through several soap operas in my lifetime and lived to tell about them." Barb is the writer of two blogs, Passing it Forward and Blessed by Grace, both of which she invites you to drop by to visit one day. ~~~~~~~ From a YA POV…. A Walk Down Nostalgia Road By Sarah Heath ©April 2013 Today, I'm going to take a walk down nostalgia road and reminisce about the very first novels that introduced me to the world of young adult Christian fiction. I was around 12 or 13 when my mom bought me a book by Robin Jones Gunn. While reading Suprise Endings, I suddenly discovered a friend in Christy Miller. She was just a normal girl, just like me, trying to find her way. Robin Jones Gunn's Christy Miller Series opened the doors to a whole new world. I remember talking to a friend about her books and realizing that we both loved them. She let me borrow the rest in the series, which I quickly devoured and then proceeded to buy copies of my own. When Gunn announced that she was writing Christy and Todd's college years, and a series based on Christy's best friend, Katie, I was elated beyond words. I felt so connected to these characters, they had become my friends, I knew their heartaches and their joy. Throughout the years my friend and I would have sleepovers and sit next to each other

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April 2013 and read one book after another. We would constantly borrow books from each other. Eventually, it was no longer enough to only borrow a few at a time. At that point, baskets of books would be exchanged between us. Even 8 years later we still obsess over books. Just this past week we were out at dinner together and the majority of our conversations were spent analyzing the hidden meanings of the novels we had recently read. I let my younger sister read my copies when she finally became old enough to read the Christy Miller series. She quickly joined us in our love for Christy, Todd, Katie, and the rest of the gang. As the years have gone by, I've read and enjoyed so many great young adult novels, but none hold the special place in my heart. The Christy Miller books were the ones that started it all. You can find out more about these and Robin Jones Gunn's other books by visiting her website!

Author Bio: Sarah Heath is a 20 year old college student from Dallas, Texas. She is currently obsessed with planning her perfect, dream wedding via pinterest (even without a groom a girl's gotta start planning sometime!), driving her convertible around town, and hanging out with her girlfriends. She enjoys drinking a tall glass of sweet tea while sitting down to read a good book or writing about her life on her blog. She has written reviews for publishers such as, Navpress, Thomas Nelson, and Bethany House. She is a member of FIRST Wild Card book review Bloggers. Her reviews can be found at Reviews by Sarah Katie.

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45 ~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Shawna K Williams

Having never considered becoming a writer, Shawna K. Williams' path changed in a single night all because of a dream. Her early writings were a mere attempt to fill in gaps within the dream and satisfy her curiosity, but later became the inspiration for her first two novels. She is an editor for Desert Breeze Publishing and Solstice Publishing, speaker and teacher on writing techniques, homeschooling mom and multipublished author of historical fiction. Shawna enjoys books in almost any genre as long as they contain strong characters tackling real-life grit -- even if the book is sci-fi/fantasy. She also has a thing for dogs and pygmy goats, and believes the world would be a better place if people aspired to be the person their pet believes them to be. Find out more about Shawna by visiting her website or blog and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter! ~~~~~~~ Introductory Post: On the Other Side of Freedom By: Brandon Western ŠApril 2013 My name is Brandon Western, and I was born on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi near Biloxi. However, I grew up in north Georgia so I really consider myself a Georgia native!! I am 27 years old, and have seen many different walks of life. I currently work for a non-profit ministry called Teen Challenge Georgia International just east of ~All Rights Reserved


April 2013 Atlanta, and I love what I do! As a recovered drug addict and product of the Teen Challenge ministry myself, I am so grateful for the opportunity that God has blessed me with to be a part of helping others reach their full potential in the body of Christ. I have had the privilege to give my testimony many times all over the state of Georgia and beyond in order to share the life-changing power of Jesus Christ. Coming from where I came from, I know there is nothing too big for my God. Even through all of the hard and hopeless times in my life, I can look back and see the fingerprints of God moving me to my current position. I believe He allowed me to go through these things because He knew He was going to pull me out on the other side to freedom; so I may be an inspiration to others who suffer similarly as I did. I do not claim to have all of the answers to life's continual heartaches, but I do know the One who does. That is Jesus! The Author and Finisher of my faith. The One who gave Himself for humanity, and who paid my debt with His own life to save me from the “wages of sin.”

46 open up the eyes of my understanding and set me free from the bondage that had held me captive for so many years. He was able to replace my arbitrary existence, and give me purpose and meaning. Everyday has its own twists and turns; falls and failures, but it is in these times that I learn and grow the most. For me life is about building the God kind of character. Not to bring glory to myself, but to show the world what He can do when one remains obedient and connected to Him. Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” ~~~~~~~ Special Group Ad: RMS1437 Authors

Through all of the things I have experienced over the years one thing has become very clear to me. Life is but a vapor, and it can be snuffed out in an instant. Life will not wait for me to achieve success before it decides to leave its mark on my existence. In contrast, it is steadily ticking away until that unknown moment where I leave this chapter to go onto the next. This makes me challenge myself everyday to live in the fulness of His love by accepting the task which He has laid before me; to edify the body of Christ, to love and serve, and to do all things as though I were doing them unto the Lord. A commitment to this degree does not come without sacrifice. It was only when I came to the end of myself that God was able to

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April 2013

47 They are reminders of little plot “aha” moments that he doesn’t want to forget. Don’t be surprised if a writer has to borrow lunch money from you. Don’t be surprised if receipt of a slender envelope causes a negative, emotional response: anger, or even tears. Don’t be surprised if a writer has to borrow money for postage from you. Don’t be surprised if a writer stares into space for hours on end, usually while sitting at a computer keyboard. ~~~~~~~

Behind the Mystery: Don’t be Surprised By EE Kennedy ©April 2013

Don’t be surprised if the ice cream in your freezer keeps disappearing overnight. Don’t be surprised if a writer keeps late hours, even staying up all night.

If you know a writer...

Don’t be surprised if a writer spends at least a half-hour in the stationery section of your local superstore, choosing pens.

Don’t be surprised if you see a writer reading. For hours. He’s not necessarily being lazy. He’s probably reloading his brain; refreshing, if you will, his muse.

Don’t be surprised to find sheets of paper covered in the writer’s signature.

Don’t be surprised if you spot a writer crawling under a car. Chances are, he’s seeing for himself whether someone could attach a bomb to it without being observed. (The answer is no.) Don’t be surprised if a writer stays in his pajamas for several days at a time. He’s probably on a deadline. Don’t be surprised if a writer’s computer is full of odd, random files: “Viking foods,” “The WitSec Program,” “The origins of Nursery Rhymes,” etc. It’s research.

Don’t be surprised when UPS delivers a huge, heavy carton and you find the writer doing the Gangnam dance around it. Don’t be surprised at receiving a copy of the writer’s book, lovingly endorsed. ______________________________ *(A generation ago, this disclaimer wouldn’t have been necessary, but here goes: when I say, “he,” I mean humankind, that is to say “he or she.”)

Don’t be surprised if you find little notes all over the house with terse messages: “C-4,” “Gunny Sack,” “To get to the other side,” etc.

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April 2013

48 town, Tracy received her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Sask. with majors in Art, and minors in History and English. She teaches High School English, Drama and Art. Apart from her many personal creative pursuits, she also directs an amateur theatre group and leads worship at her local church.

Author Bio: E E Kennedy, author of IRREGARDLESS OF MURDER and its sequel, DEATH DANGLES A PARTICIPLE (August '13) grew up in far northern New York State, where these mysteries are set. As an advertising copywriter, she wrote interview articles for art magazines and produced radio/TV commercials and print ads. She is a graduate of Huntingdon College and studied counseling and guidance at the University of Alabama. She and her husband live in North Carolina, are born-again Christians, and the happy, blessed grandparents of five little answers to prayer. Her mystery website is: MissPrenticeCozyMystery.com There you'll find fun info, previews and an exciting free novella! JoinEllen on Facebook! (as Ellen Edwards Kennedy)

She and her husband, an ordained minister with the PAOC, have lived in many remote and unique places in Canada's north, including Churchill Manitoba - the 'polar bear capital of the world', the Yukon, and the NWT. They raised four children and were active advocates of the homeschooling movement for many years. They currently reside in beautiful Tumbler Ridge, BC, known for its waterfalls. Find out more about Tracy by visiting her website or blog. Connect with her on FaceBook and Twitter! ~~~~~~~ TWJM Journalist: Mary Nichelson!

~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Tracy Krauss!

Tracy Krauss is a best-selling author, playwright, artist and teacher. She is a member of 'American Christian Fiction Writers', 'Inscribe Christian Writers Fellowship', and ‘The Word Guild’ as well as several writing related social networking groups. Originally from a small prairie

©April 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Mary is an avid reader, writer, editor and self-proclaimed advocate for the authors that make Christian publishing the great industry it is. She supports publishers by interviewing authors and promoting their new releases, as well as upholding a standard of ethics that defines the word “Christian”. Her passion is to see the publishing business excel by promoting literature that speaks to our generation without compromise. Mary is the host of Marysworld Internet radio talk show, maintains a website affiliated with several publishers, and is a member of the Evangelical Press Association (EPA) Mary's World Website & Blog Friend Mary on FB

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49 ~~~~~~~

You are not Alone: I Could Never By Dawn Kidd ŠApril 2013 "For with God nothing shall be impossible" Luke 1:37

I have recently been approached by many people concerning my story of loss. One common thread to all of their comments is the words, "I could never...." I find irony in this because the further into conversation we go, I am the one that is always baffled at their struggles. On more than one occasion, I walk away from our talk with the feeling of, "I could never...." Sometimes, I think we all forget our own difficulties because we have adjusted our lives into a new normal. My pain during our time of loss certainly is different from the pain that I feel now. The losses are not resolved, but my faith in God resolves that which my heart cannot. I know my moments of grief were hard, but compared to others, I feel God gave me grace. Abundant grace. I have a cousin who is the mother to a child with HLH. This disease has robbed her daughter of a normal childhood. My brother deals with multiple medical issues, yet he finds such gratitude in the simplest things. My oldest sister returned to college at middle age and graduated! She is now in graduate school and is pursuing her call to ŠApril 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

the ministry. My other sister has waved goodbye to her oldest son as he has left to serve our country. At home, she teaches her eleven year old and five year old each day. She edits manuscripts, has a radio broadcast show, and writes reviews and columns for numerous publications. A dear friend of mine was injured in a car accident, leaving his legs immobile. Did it stop him? No. He recently completed a Spartan race and crawled on his hands and knees up the side of Stone Mountain in Georgia. With my human eyes and heart, I could never do what any of them have done. In my spirit, though, I know that if God called me to endure their pain, he would give me the strength to accomplish it. My cousin once said, "God gives us more than we can handle. I believe he does this so we learn to depend on him more." I agree. The next time you think to yourself when looking at another person's tragedy, "I could never.....", just remember, if God calls you to, you will. With faith and trust in God, you can do anything! For with God, nothing shall be impossible!

Author Bio: Dawn Kidd is the author of "You Are Not Alone" that chronicles the loss of her two infant children. Along with her daily column at The Wordsmith Journal Magazine, she is a weekend columnist for The Paragould Daily Press. Dawn enjoys her position on the board of TCF of Northeast Arkansas. (The Compassionate Friends is an International

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Organization that assists families with grief, who have lost a child, at any age). ~~~~~~~

~~~~~~~ Interested in Advertising YOUR book in The Wordsmith Journal Magazine? Look at what these authors had to say!

We sincerely hope you enjoyed this edition of The Wordsmith Journal Magazine! Be sure and subscribe at our website so you can stay informed of all the great things happening @ TWJ as we strive to....

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Publish His glorious deeds among nations. Tell everyone about the amazing things He does. ~Psalms 96:3 ~~~~~~~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine is owned & operated by Pamela S. Thibodeaux, Enterprises, LLC http://pamelathibodeaux.com

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~~~~~~~ Disclaimer Our goal at The Wordsmith Journal is to introduce readers to authors of books with a strong moral message. Primarily Christian based, we do not adhere to any particular denomination, nor do we question the integrity or worship of our readers, interview candidates, columnists, sponsors, reviewers, or authors who advertise with us. We understand reading is subjective and what one person deems sweet, clean, cozy or inspirational, another will not. Please know we do not read nor endorse every book advertised in our magazine but trust that the author understands our goal and his or her work fits the desires of our readers.

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The Wordsmith Journal Magazine; April 2013 Issue