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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


March 2013 Welcome to the March 2013 issue of The Wordsmith Journal Magazine! Well Spring is on its way and I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but March is definitely coming in like a lion here and the winds are blowing! Many folks love the wind. Me, I can do without the howling chill. But then again, I’m very much a Summer person LOL! The Winner of our Valentine's Day contest is Maxie Anderson! This month we welcome a new Promo Partner, Christian e-Books Today be sure and visit their website and our Guest Editorial is by Kathy (AKA: Kae Ellie) Wheeler. In honor of St. Patrick’s Day here is a short prayer for you…. (Borrowed from Irish Quotations) May St. Patrick guard you wherever you go, and guide you in whatever you do--and may his loving protection be a blessing to you always! 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

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1 Pamela's Ponderings by Pamela S Thibodeaux To Your Health by Dr. David Biebel YA Perspective with Sarah Heath: SR Perspective ... Just Saying by Barb Shelton: Winners of the 2012 Short Story of the Year Contest Revisited! 1st - The Checkout Lane by Lynn Mosher 2nd - Matters of the Heart by Linda Robinson 3rd - The Passenger by Rebecca Sather Editor's Pick - A Small Sacrifice by Michael Lynch *Although we are featuring our winners in this issue – let’s not forget our Honorable Mentions…. Roll Back the Clouds by Liz Flaherty & Thunderbolt by Joan Leotta 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: Dr. David Gelber

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Michael Milton Richie Norton Heather James Special Group Ads Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers RMS1437 Authors Sword of the Spirit Authors Book Reviews: Longing for Eden by Mike & Anne Rizzo Catherine’s Pursuit by Lena Nelson Dooley Views of the Cross and the Tomb by Martha Black ~~~~~~~

Catherine’s Pursuit Lena Nelson Dooley The search for her sisters will become a spiritual journey for the entire family. Raised by her father, Catherine McKenna has never lacked for anything, surrounded by people to take care of her every need. On her eighteenth birthday she discovers that not only did her mother die when she was born, but she has two identical sisters. Although her father vowed not to look for his daughters, Catherine made no such promise. Setting out on her own with one clue and her maid in tow, she's determined to find her sisters. Collin Elliott has seen better days. After losing his ship to a violent and unexpected storm, he is trying to recover--physically and emotionally. When Angus McKenna sends him to find, follow, and protect his daughter, he wants nothing more than to finish his task and return home. Can he help her find her sisters?

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And will the discoveries they make along the way teach them both what's most important in life? Catherine's Pursuit is available at Amazon.com, ChristainBook.com & Barn esandNoble.com Review of Catherine’s Pursuit by Linda Attaway Catherine McKenna learns a shocking truth on her eighteenth birthday. While she had always known that her mother died while giving birth to her on a wagon train, she is stunned to learn that she is one of tripletsand that her overwhelmed father gave her two sisters to be adopted by two other families on the journey west, and he has no idea of their whereabouts. Catherine quietly determines to find her sisters and recapture the lost years. Angus McKenna hired Collin Elliott to groom him to one day take over his shipping business. When Catherine takes off on her quest to find her sisters with only her lady's maid for a companion, Angus sends Collin after them to follow and protect them. Collin has dubbed pampered Catherine the Ice Princess but reluctantly takes on the assignment. Their first encounter when he locates Catherine in a seedy section of town convinces both of them of Catherine's for protection, and they form an uneasy alliance. Neither is prepared for the truths they discover about themselves and each other and the lessons to be learned along the way. Lena Nelson Dooley brings her McKenna's Daughter's series to a satisfying conclusion with Catherine's Pursuit. Dooley has once again crafted characters that touch the heart. While the first two books told the stories of the daughters who had been adopted, this novel not only focuses on Catherine but allows the reader to reconnect with Angus McKenna eighteen years after he buried his wife and made the heart-

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wrenching decision to allow two of his newborn daughters to be adopted; the pain of his grief and regret is palpable. Collin and Catherine's personal struggles, as well as their tenuous friendship, are masterfully portrayed as well. Grace, forgiveness, and faith are vital aspects of this heartwarming novel. While this can be read as a stand-alone, it will have deeper meaning for those who have read Maggie's Journey and Mary's Blessing. For those who have not, it will endear them to this family and make them want to catch up on the first two books. Whatever the order, Catherine's Pursuit is highly recommended!

Linda Attaway has been an avid reader for as long as she can remember and is passionate about promoting Christian books and authors. She posts author interviews and reviews for a variety of publishers and organizations at her blog, Mocha with Linda, and on her Facebook page. She is a member of ACFW and has had articles published inChristian Fiction Online Magazine. A self-described word enthusiast and grammar geek, she also enjoys proofreading and editing. Linda lives in Texas with her husband and two teenagers and finds joy in serving as her church’s Care Minister. ~~~~~~~ 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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Views of the Cross and the Tomb By Martha Black What if you were the soldier whose job it was to nail Jesus to the Cross? Or the Apostle John, Peter, or Mary Magdalene? With the biblical truths surrounding the events of that fateful week, you will be introduced to several key people in a fictionalized manner, which will cause you to ponder the "what if I were there?" question. We invite you to join Black on this journey back in time. May your view of the Cross be forever changed. Views of the Cross and the Tomb is available in Print & Ebook and can be purchased directly from the publisher! Review of Views of the Cross and the Tomb by Deena Peterson Having a variety of viewpoints is generally helpful, adding depth to understanding and fleshing out details that might have been overlooked or forgotten. In the world of literature, stories told from varying vantage points are rare and, at times, difficult to construct. Martha Black has crafted a multiple view novella that adds a richness to a familiar Bible account that will change the way you view the crucifixion of Christ. Views of the Cross and the Tomb tells the true story of Jesus and his arrest, trial, crucifixion and resurrection as witnessed by a variety of people. The narrative is based on Scripture found in the four gospel accounts, but enhanced with emotion and with supposition that fits with the truth of ~All Rights Reserved


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the Bible. Martha begins with the story from Jesus' personal viewpoint (most likely, the most controversial chapter of the novella). She continues in each subsequent chapter with a new character: John, Peter, Mary Magdalene, Mary (mother of Jesus) and more. Each telling is familiar and yet fresh, shining a light on facts, details and thoughts that bring the story we've grown comfortable with to new life. Peter's vantage point had me in tears, watching him agonize over his betrayal. Mary's was emotional too...it had me thinking of my own son and watching him suffer as Jesus did. The book is brief, but powerful. I doubt I'll ever read the Biblical account of Jesus sacrifice the same way, and will most likely make Views of the Cross and the Tomb a frequent companion to the Bible. My two issues with the book are simple: some of Jesus' story doesn't fit what I believe happened, and I don't care for the title. Other than that, Martha Black has earned high marks from me.

Longing for Eden Mike & Anne Rizzo Longing for Eden: Embracing God's vision in your marriage, is a newly released inspirational book that will challenge couples and inspire singles, to more clearly see God's intent for marriage. The authors write from thirty years of pastoral experience, much of which has been in the realm of marital and pre-marital counseling. Their passion is to see husbands and wives dwell together as "married disciples." Available Now from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million & the Publisher, Parson Place Press Review of Longing for Eden by Deena Peterson If you are searching for a book that will help you 'fix' your marriage, then this isn't the book for you. However, if you long to have a marital relationship that glorifies God and illustrates the relationship between Jesus and His church, I encourage you to take a peek at Longing For Eden.

Bio: Deena Peterson has been devouring books since she first learned to read. Her preferred genre is mystery/suspense, but she tends to read a little of everything. She's a pastor's wife and a mother to eight (nearly all grown, which leaves her more time to read). In her free time she's trying out new recipes and bugging her husband for new books. Check out her blog at A Peek At My Bookshelf

I could definitely tell that Mike Rizzo has a background in pastoral ministry. There were moments when I felt as if I was reading from one of his sermons to the church. Some of the language used is very spiritual which, for some, can translate into 'hard to understand'. I did find myself skipping over sections because of the word choices used, but also found some nuggets of wisdom that will stick with me for quite some time.

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March 2013 Mike Rizzo sees marriage as far more than just companionship for this life. And I've noticed many well-known Christian authors and theologians, such as John Piper and Timothy Keller, are crafting books that take a higher view of the purpose of marriage. With the definition of marriage changing and the structure of the home shifting far away from tradition, I believe a higher view of marriage is desperately needed in our present culture. The recommended reading list contains excellent resources, and many are quoted in the book. Those are what I call "highlight" moments, sections that need to be marked and remembered. Also, the chapters are short and can be read again and again in order to get the full meaning of what Mike Rizzo is sharing with readers. In all honestly, I think I got the most from Chapter Two. He outlined the four anchor points on marriage and the purpose for marriage. My biggest concern is the language of the book and the purpose of the book. If it is written for the regular person looking for ways to improve relationships, then the goal is not met with Rizzo's book. But if the audience is a couple longing to demonstrate a full picture of Christ and His bride through their marriage, then I'd say go ahead and try Longing For Eden.

5 books. Check out her blog at A Peek At My Bookshelf ~~~~~~~ 1st Place Winner in our 2012 Short Story of the Year Contest! The Checkout Lane By Lynn Mosher With the parking lot full, finding a space was almost impossible. Shopper after shopper filed in the store’s front door, list in hand, and most lacking the Christmas spirit. The lines at the checkout lanes stretched halfway through the store. As angers were on the verge of erupting, loneliness carved a swath through the throng of shoppers, fighting for a place in each line. “Why don’t they have more checkout lanes open?” complained one shopper. “I don’t know. This is so depressing,” grumbled another nearby. Each lane had its share of Grinches and lonely hearts, each moaning over all the congestion. In one lane stood a mother with three small children in tow, all whining and wanting everything in sight. In the next lane stood another mother with her three little ones, all in a joyous mood. Six year-old Olivia asked her mother, “Mommy, why is everyone so grumpy?”

Bio: Deena Peterson has been devouring books since she first learned to read. Her preferred genre is mystery/suspense, but she tends to read a little of everything. She's a pastor's wife and a mother to eight (nearly all grown, which leaves her more time to read). In her free time she's trying out new recipes and bugging her husband for new

Lowering her voice so others wouldn’t hear their conversation, Olivia’s mother whispered, “I’m not sure, dear. I think everyone is in a hurry and they don’t know the meaning of Christmas.” “Don’t they know it’s Jesus’ birthday?” Trying to shush Olivia, she lowered her voice again, “I guess not. Some people just don’t know.” “Well, why don’t we tell them?”

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“I don’t think this is a very good time, dear.”

And heav’n, and heav’n and nature sing.”

“Why not, Mommy? Didn’t you say it’s always time for Jesus?”

Just as a place was made for baby Jesus to be born so many years ago, a place was made for Him in the checkout lanes. Smiles erupted across the stone-cold faces of the Grinches. Peace swept across the store, carving a swath through the crowd of shoppers and banishing loneliness and the Grinch from the checkout lanes.

“Well, yes, I did, but…” “Well, let’s tell them.” Overhearing their conversation, those standing near this family began shifting their weight from one foot to another, uncomfortable as to what they might hear next. The mother began to silently pray, “Oh, Lord, if You desire others to know it is Your birthday that they’re supposed to be celebrating, then please resolve this situation.” Olivia bowed her head and thought for a moment. Then, a very soft, little voice began to sweetly sing… “Away in the manger, no crib for a bed, The little Lord Jesus laid down His sweet head; The stars in the sky looked down where He lay The little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.” Silence fell on the checkout lanes. All that could be heard was the whirring of the cash registers. No one said a word.

As you weave your way in and out of the stores this Christmas season, remember the Reason for the Season…it’s the celebration of Jesus’ birth! May the blessings of the manger find a place your heart. Christmas blessings, Lynn Author Bio: At a time of physical upheaval in 2000, Lynn felt led of the Lord to take up her pen and write. With this new passion, she has embraced her mission to reach others through Christ-honoring literature, encouraging them in their walk and offering comfort through the written word. Lynn lives with her hubby of 46 years in their Kentucky nest, emptied of three chicklets, and expanded by three giggly grandchicklets, and an inherited dog. You can find out more about Lynn by visiting her website. ~~~~~~~ Featured Sponsor: Christian Book Marketing

Then, that sweet little voice began to sing again… “Joy to the world! The Lord is come; Let earth receive her King; Let ev’ry heart prepare Him room, And heav’n and nature sing, And heav’n and nature sing,

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Working Together for HIM!

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Interview with Dr. David Gelber By Mary Nichelson ©March 2013

A quick study of Greek Mythology reveals that its literature is based on the Gods and Goddesses, creatures, figures and places related to the Ancient Greek lifestyle. Of course, there are a few myths thrown in for good measure as they relate to these fictional characters. What would happen, though, if an author took artistic freedom with one of these figures and created something close to non-fiction in regards to the thoughts and feelings of said character? You would then have a novel such as Minotaur Revisited. Written from the narrative viewpoint of the famous bull, readers get swept up in his civilized-even vulnerable-personality. Even more of a surprise is that this novel, which has been embraced by both history buffs and casual readers, faith based and nonreligious bookworms, was written by a practicing Surgeon. Meet author and Surgeon, Dr. David Gelber. Although highly successful in the medical field, he proves that being an advocate for treating others with mutual respect and dignity can carry over into multiple areas in your life; one of which is reconstructing an ancient tale about the Minotaur. MN-How does a surgeon become interested in writing about mythology instead of, say, writing medical fiction? DG-I began my writing career with a religious science fiction story, Future Hope: ©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

ITP Book One. I had an idea for a book which contrasts the imperfect, secular world we live in with the perfect Garden of Eden, before the Fall. After I wrote this book my wife suggested I write about something I really knew about which led to my two books about surgery, Behind the Mask, The mystique of Surgery and the Surgeons Who Perform Them and Under the Drapes: More Mystique of Surgery. I’ve thought about writing medical fiction, but haven’t quite found the time to pursue this genre. The current book, Minotaur Revisited, started as a satirical retelling of the Minotaur myth, but grew into a short novel. MN-What exactly is the minotaur myth? DG-The Minotaur of Greek mythology was the offspring of Pasiphae, who was married to Minos, the king of Crete, and a magnificent bull, which was supposedly a gift form the gods. He had the head of a bull and the body of a man and was depicted as a vicious monster. Minos locked the Minotaur away in the Labyrinth a maze that kept the monster away from the people of the ancient world. Every year (or seven or nine) a tribute of maids and youths was sent from Athens to Crete. They were sent into the Labyrinth and devoured by the fierce Minotaur. Theseus, a hero of ancient Greece, according to myth, hid a sword beneath his tunic and was given an enchanted ball of thread which would help him find his way out the Labyrinth. He supposedly vanquished the Minotaur while the monster was sleeping. My book presents a far different account of these events. MN-You chose to make the Minotaur emotional and very human with a sense of humor that makes this character unexpected. Did you want to surprise your readers? DG-What I tried to do was present a story that was unexpected. I suppose it’s the cynic in me who sees conspiracy behind most things political. And, the Minotaur was a political prisoner. He was locked away and

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March 2013 used by King Minos to maintain his hold on the ancient world. The result is very surprising: a sensitive and soulful Minotaur who has more humanity than most of the humans he encounters over his long life. MN-Your dedication is very touching. "Minotaur Revisited is dedicated to everyone who has ever felt they were different, who did not fit in, or who believed that they didn’t matter. I hope that The Minotaur’s amazing life will make you realize that even the most unusual individual is important and can make a difference in this crazy world." What is it about the misfits in society that causes you to be moved with such empathy? DG-My day job is doing surgery. I’ve seen some of the worst of society, but I always believe that every individual has the capacity to make a difference in this world. The most unexpected person is often the hero. The Minotaur has a monstrous appearance, but he makes a lasting impression and is able to perform good and noble deeds throughout his life, leaving his unique mark on history. MN-Let's take this a step further. I am a former medical assistant and one of the problems that we often see in care givingwhether long term or short term-is that patients are often referred to by their illness instead of name, and their multidimensional facets (mental, emotional, spiritual) are often ignored during treatment. What would you say to those working in the health care field regarding the importance of respecting the dignity of their patients? DG-Every patient is an individual. I frequently remind my staff that “the gallbladder” in room 2 is a real person and needs to be treated with respect and compassion. I do my best to see every one of my patients as a whole person. MN-I'm sure as a surgeon you are presented with many situations where doing

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8 the right thing is challenged. How do you stay strong when confronted with ethical and moral decisions? DG-When conflicts arise I often stop and say to myself ‘What’s the right thing to do in this situation?” For instance, Christmas morning this year I was called at 1:30 am about a very sick patient in one of the local Emergency Rooms. The surgeon on call was not available and attempts to find another surgeon had not been successful. Even though I was supposed to be off, I went and took care of her and she managed to survive a very complicated, life threatening illness. MN-I read where you have some 24 birds of various species as well as four dogs. Do you connect with God through nature? DG-I do. I wrote a blog article about this, called Backyard Nature. It can be read at http://www.heardintheor.blogspot.com/ 2010/08/backyard-nature.html MN-Another interested fact from your bio states you are interested in mechanical Swiss watches. I have to ask, how did that come about and how many do you actually own? DG-I discovered Swiss watches while shopping with my wife one day. I had always thought that the best watches were Rolex. However, we talked with a salesman that day who infected me with his enthusiasm for these mechanical watches. I learned that Rolex is sort of middle of the road among Swiss watches and that such watches can cost up to two million dollars. I don’t any which are that expensive. I’ve learned a great deal about these marvels of human ingenuity. I think there is some appeal for men, because it is jewelry which men can where without raising and eyebrows. I own seven Swiss watches. I get a new one every year or two. MN-One accomplishment that you are working towards this year would be.....

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March 2013 DG-Finishing the third installment of my ITP Science Fiction series. Also, I will try to survive the transition to Obamacare. Author bio- Born in 1958 in upstate New York, the seventh of nine boys, Dr. Gelber attended college at Johns Hopkins University and medical school at the University of Rochester School of Medicine, graduating in 1984. He started his training in general and vascular surgery at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas and finished in 1989 at Nassau County Medical Center on Long Island in New York. As a partner in Coastal Surgical Group he has practiced in the Southeast Houston area for more than 20 years. He served as Chairman of the Department of Surgery and as President of the Medical Staff at Bayshore Medical Center in Pasadena Texas and was named one of America’s Top Docs for 2008 by physician rating service Castle Connolly. Dr. Gelber is the author of two science fiction novels, Future Hope, ITP Book One and Joshua and Aaron, ITP Book Two. He lives in Houston, Texas with Laura, his wife of 25 years, three teenaged children, four dogs and 24 birds. You can connect with author David Gelber through his website or by visiting his blog.

9 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 the publisher and through Amazon in Print and on Kindle! ~~~~~~~ Featured Sponser: John Poche’ Arts

John Poche' is a Christian businessman, an author and a pen, ink and watercolor artist. ~~~~~~~ 2nd Place Winner in our 2012 Short Story of the Year Contest! Matters of the Heart By Linda Robinson

Minotaur Revisited By David Gelber ISBN#: 978-0982076378 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

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In the north Orlando suburbs, the skies were a cobalt-blue backdrop for the tufts of cotton candy hanging overhead, drifting in no distinct direction. It was a typical hot, sunny Florida day—Lily Shaw’s kind of day—one that calms the spirit and evokes the feeling of well-being, of contentment. Lily and her husband, Stuart, were on their way to their favorite pizza restaurant for a late lunch. ~All Rights Reserved


March 2013 “Look, Stu…that cloud up there is a poodle. See his long ears and nose, and short, fluffy tail?” Lily pointed straight upwards. “Yeah. I see him. He’s standing on his back feet and his front ones are in the begging position.” “He is! Oh, look over there—at about 5 o’clock—it’s a dragon!” Lily loved using her imagination to conjure up images in the clouds. “Wait a second. Remember I’m driving, too.” A few seconds later, he added, “I see. It does resemble a dragon.” Suddenly, like a playful kitten, one dark cloud seemed to pounce out of nowhere to chase the sun away, and the world around them faded into shadow as though some unseen force turned a dimmer. A few claps of thunder rumbled, and the skies opened to release pelting droplets of cool, refreshing rain. The never-leave-home-without-yourumbrella rule in Florida was established for good reason. Those five-minute-visits from surprise thunder clouds happened often. She thought of them as heavenly moisture moments. Minutes later, the cloud moved on, and they arrived at the restaurant. They selected a cozy booth by one of the windows facing the parking lot where they people-watched and discussed their day while they waited for their order. Several times during their conversation, Lila noticed an older gentleman, who was apparently waiting for his order to go. He kept making hurried trips—as fast as his obviously arthritic limbs were capable—to a spot near their booth to glance out at an older model, black Cadillac parked just outside their window. Lily noticed that inside the car, a small, fluffy white cloud with a black nose and black eyes bounced from the driver’s side to the passenger window and back again. It stopped at intervals to turn its nose upward and pucker its mouth. She could imagine it

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10 was howling to the heavens, displeased that it had been left alone. When the man came back to look outside toward the car again, Lily studied him closer. In addition to his obvious anxiety, she thought he looked deeply downcast. She felt drawn to engage him in a little conversation. “That must be your puppy. It looks like a Maltese breed.” “Yeah, it is. It was my wife’s dog. She just passed away, and Sassy is lost without her.” His voice cracked at the end, and when he glanced up, his faded blue eyes were floating in fluid, emphasizing his already sad countenance. Abruptly, he turned away and walked back to wait by the take out window, and Lily didn’t have a chance to offer her condolences. Lily felt sure he was embarrassed for her to see him cry. She couldn’t help thinking Sassy wasn’t the only one…the sad man also looked lost without his wife, as evidenced by his quick tears. He reminded her of a wrecked sailboat with a twisted mast and tattered sail, and it was obvious that he was quite concerned about the pet. It’s probably a good thing he has Sassy as a companion to help him through his grief. Stuart and Lily ate their lunch and returned home, but Lily couldn’t get Sad Man and Sassy off her mind. “Stu, why didn’t I ask the man his name, maybe invite him to come visit or to eat Sunday dinner? I’m worried about him. He must need someone to talk to. He probably doesn’t have any family left, and we should have befriended him.” “Lily, I’ve often thought the same thing, but, regretfully, it’s too late. We can’t do anything about it now.” Still, Lily couldn’t stop thinking about him, and she vowed she wouldn’t make that mistake twice, if she ever met anyone like that again. She would at least ask their

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March 2013 name. Two weeks later, they went to the same restaurant for dinner, sat in their usual booth, and watched the patrons who came and went. Unbidden, the image of the old man with teary blue eyes entered Lily’s head. Like the infamous giant Florida mosquito waiting for bare skin, it came back to bite her—to nibble her conscience. Would she ever be able to erase the imprint—the rueful reminder of her failure to reach out to someone she felt needed a friend? Small knots of people and a few singles kept entering from the parking lot, some going to tables and others to the bar area. A tall, too thin young lady with long, black hair hurried in behind a family of four. In tight jeans, a tube top, and four inch heels—all of which accentuated her thinness—she headed to the take out window. “Now, that’s Twiggy-type skinny,” Lily remarked to Stuart. “Are you talking about the walking cue stick wearing a wig?” Lily laughed. “One and the same, Stu.” After the waitress took their order and left, Stuart asked Lily if she’d ever heard from their good friends, Ted and Jeanie, since they’d returned from their cruise. Lily had commented several times that she was concerned about them, and it wasn’t like Jeanie not to answer her emails. “Yes. I got so worried, I resorted to calling her. They are fine, and they had a wonderful cruise to Alaska. Jeanie said she did send me a long email, and she even checked her “Sent” folder and told me the date. She resent it, and I got it just fine the second time.” “But you never got the first one, huh?” “No, isn’t that odd? But I don’t understand all this cyberspace business anyway—the bits, bytes, and bauds jargon—or how an

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11 email can just float around like debris up there in outer space and get lost!” “Hah! Yeah…I can see it now. There’s an endless assembly line of cyber-gremlins, or maybe it could be ewoks. They’re busy slinging emails like frisbees from hand to hand almost faster than the eye can see, sending them on to their destination. Quick as a lightning strike, one creature drops an email and it floats off, bounces around from planet to planet like a rubber ball until it finally hits a moon rock and goes up in smoke—never to be seen again!” “Oh, Stu, stop it!” Lily said, chuckling. When she needed a good laugh, she could always depend on Stuart’s southern-fried humor, which was often marinated in sarcasm. While they waited for their food, a fiesta-red Pontiac Firebird in a black bra with a bass booming radio drove much too fast into the parking space in front of their window. For a second it startled Lily because she thought it was going to hit the curb, become a flying saucer, and catapult right through the glass. Her mind shrieked, stop, stop! Whew! It braked. The car door opened, the music stopped, and a young man jumped out. Lily noticed there wasn’t a spot on the lanky lad’s arms where another bizarre work of questionable art etched in ink could possibly fit. She and Stuart both stared at the walking tattoo in a Mohawk and earrings be-bopping and strutting toward the door, as though the music still reverberated in his head—a good possibility since the woofer was still echoing in her own ears. Stuart rolled his eyes and shook his head. “Hmm…speaking of outer space! The only thing he doesn’t have yet is a ring in his nose! What’s the world coming to? I hope none of our kids and grandkids ever become a loser like—” “Hey, Grandpappy, I’m sorry I’m late!” The ’tooed teen said to a table several feet away.

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March 2013 Lily looked back in that direction to see who was there. Lo and behold, Sad Man was sitting at a table behind the longer one next to hers and Stuart’s booth, which was filled with people who had blocked her view of the old man when they’d arrived. “Hello, Teddy. I was beginning to think you had forgotten your old greatgrandfather…thought you forgot we had a date,” Sad Man replied. “I tried to call you on your cell phone to tell you I was running a few minutes late. Is your phone on?” “Heck, I don’t know, Teddy. I tried to tell your mother when she bought it that I didn’t want to own anything smarter than I am,” he said, laughing. He reached into his pocket and handed the gadget to the teenager. “Oh, it’s really easy, Grandpappy. I’ll teach you how to use it.” Lily looked at Stuart for his reaction. Owleyed, his mouth stood open like a gaping gator and displayed a piece of pizza he’d stopped chewing. He raised his eyebrows, but he was speechless—for once. They finished their meal without much conversation, each deep in his own thoughts. As they stood to leave, they both took one last look at the strange scene—the stooped, world-weary warrior with the lifeweathered face and the alien from outer space huddled together, laughing and talking, oblivious to the attention they garnered. The long table had since become vacant, affording Lily and Stuart privy to the conversation at the odd pair’s table. “Grandpappy, Mom told me to remind you she’ll pick you up at five-thirty tomorrow evening for your weekend with us. She said to tell you to be sure you don’t forget Sassy’s leash this time.” “I didn’t forget. I’m packed already, and I

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12 didn’t forget Sassy’s favorite toy this time, either.” “Oh, and one more thing…don’t forget that Saturday morning I have to work, but when I get home in the afternoon, I’m taking you to the lake fishing again. I’ve got to catch more than you this time. You won last time….” “Son, did I ever tell you about the time your Great-granny and I went out west to Jackson Hole fishing and your granny…” The last thing Stuart and Lily heard as they went out the door was the old man’s jovial laughter. Lily could only imagine the numerous lessons he’d learned traveling the mountains and valleys of his long life— lessons he could relate to his greatgrandson. Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to witness this scene. Lily felt greatly humbled. When they settled into their car, Lily noticed Stuart sat in deep thought for a moment before he spoke. “I suppose that was God’s way of telling me to be less critical. To see that hip teenager take the time to spend with his greatgrandfather was heartwarming, and I doubt if there are many kids today who would sacrifice their time to do that. I’m sorry I judged the young man without even knowing him.” “Yes, we are all guilty of quick opinions and criticism at times. We have to remind ourselves that it’s not the outward appearance that matters. It’s the heart that speaks of a person’s worth, isn’t it Stu?” “Yes, indeed. It’s a lesson well-learned— judge not, lest we be judged ourselves.” Author Bio: Linda Robinson is the author of two novels: When Love Abounds, published 18 months ago, and Rails of Freedom, which should be available in August, 2012. Her Fiction/Family/Christian

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novels depict the people, lifestyles, and music of the 1940's, 50's and 60's in the deep south with an underlying message of "that little word that makes the world go 'round--love." Linda's hobbies include reading, writing, and flower gardening. She resides in Alabama with her husband and spoiled Maltese baby, Joy. She is a member of the local Writers' Forum and ACFW and is currently writing her third manuscript, in addition to writing fiction and non-fiction humorous short stories for magazines and contests. Find out more about Linda by visiting her website.

his book Silent No More, Michael Milton writes from the perspective of one who has paid attention to the political, spiritual and social trends and realizes what they mean for believers. His understanding is in-depth, on the same scale as one who would seek public office, yet the objective in writing this book is for his readers to discern the truth regarding current events and chart a course for confronting opposing forces that threaten the voice of the church. Where does activism on any level begin? According to Milton, with a broken heart, prayer, and the family.

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MN- At what point did you realize Silent No More needed to be written?

Featured Sponsor: Kevin Zimmerman!

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

Interview with Michael Milton By Mary Nichelson © March 2013

One basic piece of advice many aspiring authors hear is “Write what you know.” In

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

MM- Silent No More is both a compilation of essays and commentaries that I've written in recent months as a pastor and as the Chancellor of Reformed Theological Seminary, as well as fresh, intentional focus on a Biblical ground for pastors and all believers to risk it all and speak out to the culture and state. A vision for anything usually begins with a burden for something. For me, it was a letter from another minister who criticized me for speaking about anything other than the exposition of Scripture. This greatly concerned me because I do not see this demonstrated in the life of the preaching of our Lord or His Disciples or the Old Testament prophets. It is important for us to remember that the Old Testament prophets spoke not only to Israel but, as in the case of Jonah, spoke to foreign, even oppressive governments, to warn them of the wrath of God against all unrighteousness. I believe it was at the point when I realized that some of my own colleagues were being seduced by the siren song of secular humanism which would hijack the preaching of the Gospel and have our voices relegated to the pulpit and one hour on one day only. There's too much at stake. There are too many people who are being hurt by evil masquerading under the apocryphal and beastly powers of state and culture.

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The book was thus conceived out of a burden for those who have no voice. MN- Although I realize that Silent No More is written both theologically and academically for ministers, I believe that any faith-believing citizen could benefit from the moral dissertation you present. Is this a fair assessment? MM- Well, I certainly hope that you are right! This book is not written for pastors only. It is written for all believers. In fact, I would urge those who are in the Jewish faith and other faiths to also read it. For it is a demonstrable fact: that when the Christian Church is silenced, all voices are silenced. This is my great overarching concern for our time. MN- Let's talk about some of the specifics mentioned in your book. One statement in particular immediately resonated as truth: “Christianity is widely announced as on life support in America.” This is a common perception, but you explain how it is a misconception. Can you briefly explain for our readers why you do not believe Christianity is dying in our country? MM-The history of our nation has oscillated between spiritual revival and spiritual decline. No one would argue about our current state. But I do grow weary of hearing those who believe there can be no way forward. The power of the Gospel always leads one to optimism. Even though there may be suffering, hardship, difficulty, and other tribulations, yet because of the ruling motif of the cross, the very things that seek to destroy us become in the hands of a sovereign God the things that advance us. The cross always becomes the crown. This is the story told throughout the Bible and is the very scarlet thread of redemption in Jesus Christ that binds the 66 stories of the Bible together into a singular story. Because of the ruling motif of the Cross, I am optimistic even against the backdrop in the context of hardship which we are enduring

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14 today and which could get worse. MN- You write about the fallacy of “statism” as it relates to governmentmandated healthcare (aka Obamacare), the morning after pill, and being politically correct as easily as you write of Biblical passages and events. Do you have political aspirations or are you just passionate about America’s spiritual pulse? MM- Let me answer that good question this way: first, I am concerned about the singular issues you mentioned as in the others which are covered in the book because they are threats to the human soul. Statism is a philosophy that tells us that freedom is mediated by a ruling class who know better than the people what the people need. Statism was responsible for the Holocaust in Nazi Germany and the murdering of millions of Christians in the Soviet Union and Communist China. As a shepherd of the flock, and as an ambassador of God to seek reconciliation between God and man through Jesus Christ, I am concerned about anything that would hurt the human soul. Second, building on that first statement, my aspirations are pastoral and not political. This is not a book about standing against a specific administration but standing against a specific evil power that can hide under many sorts of presenting powers— be it ungodly, soul-killing "entertainment" coming out of Hollywood or unbiblical policies coming out of Washington. So, no, my aspirations are pastoral and prophetic not political as "political" is usually understood. Why stoop to be a king when you are called to preach? MN- You speak about holy dissatisfaction and how that leads to action. For those that want to take their opinions and beliefs from behind their dinner table to the social arena to make a difference, what would be their first step of action? MM- I believe the first step of action must be prayer. It is not enough for believers to

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March 2013 complain about the onslaught of antiChristian bigotry and the prevalence of secular humanism. We must pray about it. We must pray for the president and for all of those who are in civil leadership. We should be praying for the government. This is the call from Paul in First Timothy 2 (And Peter also enjoins us to love the brethren and pray for the rulers). The second step should be to listen. In fact, the last chapter in Silent No More is a chapter about listening. We have no right to speak until we have listened to God. It is only then, in the context of reading God's Word and praying and encouraging each other in the assembly of saints, and speaking, not as political activists, but as compassionate human beings, that we have the right to bring our voices to the public square. We do not come as political activists but as broken hearted people who desire to oppose forces that can hurt other human beings. So whatever we do and however we do it, our activism, if you prefer to call it that, must arise out of our broken heartedness. As to tactical approaches to speaking, I have always believed in the organic ministry of the Holy Spirit who brings open doors and divine appointments. We should be ready to speak a good word for the Lord and for righteousness' sake at all times. It is the sovereign Lord who brings those open doors and divine appointments. And that leads us back to the ministry of prayer and silence and waiting on God. There are those, of course, who would've been given pulpits and newspaper columns and all of us have the opportunity to speak to our families and to ground our voices in the love of God. The greatest force for good remains the family. Mothers and fathers teaching their children to discern between the worldview of Scripture as in the worldview that opposes scripture is critical. A Christian worldview is very simple: creation – fall– redemption. Identify the competing world-

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15 views and their take on those three components of a Bible Worldview and you'll be able to "teach your children well." Indeed, they will be able to take the message of God and to discern between right and wrong. That is an activism, if you will, that each and every family must be concerned about and doing. MN- I read another interview you did and was impressed with an answer you gave regarding the threat of religious freedoms. You said, “Christians (and all other conservatives) should remember that genuine faith is more than going to church and quoting Scripture.” There are some Christians that believe passivity is Christlike and the only way to achieving world peace. How can we awaken the inner activist when the church has been taught for so long to live in peace at all costs? MM- I would certainly respect those who differ with me based on their own convictions about the Word of God. I am also sensitive to speaking to issues of State and Culture without pointing to Christ as the answer. But to those who prefer a "quietist" approach to evil, I would only say that I am thankful that the prophets of old were not silent. John the Baptist was not silent. The early Church was not silent. Bonhoeffer was not silent. Solzhenitsyn was not silent. Martin Luther King Jr. was not silent. Anglican Archbishop Henry Luke Orombi was not silent before the vicious rule of Idi Amin. And there are those Christians in the global South in the global East today, who are preaching the word of God, and calling sin a sin, and who are not silent. Passivity in the Christian life is important if it means relying on the strength and power of God. Yet we must also remember Ephesians 6, which tells us that we are in spiritual warfare. Our enemy is spiritual and we must always remember that. For the very people who cursed Christ today, like Saul of Tarsus, may be the people who preach Christ tomorrow. We are called to be salt and light. We are called to speak for Christ. We are called to defend the weak.

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March 2013 So our mandate to preach the Gospel, to call out the dark powers that bring pain and death to people cannot be ignored. Yet, again, we can only speak when we have heard. Then we will speak, not out of the interests of a party or movement, but out of an encounter with the living God and a burden for our fellow man. We also are to employ spiritual weaponry. Thus, if there were a soundtrack to the book Silent No More, it might be the great hymn of Charles Wesley, "Soldiers of Christ Arise." Soldiers of Christ, arise, and put your armor on, strong in the strength which God supplies through his eternal Son; Strong in the Lord of hosts, and in his mighty power: who in the strength of Jesus trusts is more than conqueror. Stand then in his great might, with all his strength endured, and take, to arm you for the fight, the panoply of God. From strength to strength go on, wrestle and fight and pray: tread all the powers of darkness down, and win the well-fought day. Author Bio- Michael Milton, Ph.D. Is a Presbyterian (PCA) minister and Chancellor/CEO of Reformed Theological Seminary. He is also the James M. Baird Jr. Professor of Pastoral Theology. A US Army Reserve chaplain, singer/songwriter, author, and frequent preacher at churches and conferences around the world, Milton resides with wife and son in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he and his family enjoy classic movies, gardening, and nice country walks in the beautiful Carolina landscape. You can visit Michael Milton’s website to learn more about his book Silent No More.

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16 ~~~~~~~ Featured Books!

~~~~~~~ 3rd Place Winner in our 2012 Short Story of the Year Contest! The Passenger By Rebecca Sather Danny hated when his parents fought. Arguments between his parents did not happen often but when they did Danny’s heart became awfully sad. It was hard being seven years old. Danny was slowly becoming a big kid but not big enough to understand his parents harsh words. All he understood was the tone in their voice when they were not happy with each other and whatever was going on between the two people he loved the most in the world right now made his mom cry. “I’m not saying it was your fault I just need you to understand how I feel about the whole situation.” Mom wiped away the tears forming in her eyes before they could trickle down her cheek. “Whenever we get into this subject I always feel you blame me. Don’t you think I blame myself every day? I go to bed at night thinking about it and wake up thinking about how I could have prevented it from happening. There is going to have to be a day when you support me and not blame me. Our marriage can’t survive another blow. I love you with all my heart. I always have but I can’t keep doing this. I can’t keep

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March 2013 trying to forgive you while trying to forgive myself.” Dad turned his head to look at Mom—Danny saw the gleam of a tear in the corner of his father’s eye. Why adults had to make each other cry Danny hoped to never know. He knew he wanted to be the kind of grown-up that said good things to people and helped others whenever he could. Like him and his friend Jessica. They played together all the time and never made each other cry. Danny even always did his best to make Jessica smile because her eyes had a sparkly thing about them when she did. Danny liked when her eyes sparkled. Didn’t Daddy like it when Mommy’s eyes sparkled? He was sure that Dad did because, until recently Dad did make Mom smile most the time. Though Danny understood that his adult self would most likely have disagreements with other adults because even he and Jessica didn’t always agree on what cartoon to watch, he saw absolutely no need to make the other person cry. If only they could see each other as he saw them— good, caring, devoted, strong, and a friend. Then maybe they wouldn’t make each other cry. Maybe they would just love one another just as they are at that very moment every moment of every day. “Are you saying that I have to get over this tragedy in your time and not mine? Are you going to divorce me because I can’t heal my heart in six months?” Mom’s voice rose to a scary level. “MAYBE OUR MARRIAGE IS NOT WORTH SAVING THEN!” Danny cringed in his seat, he never heard his mother take this tone with anyone. “Fine maybe we are done. I guess there is no hope for us. You don’t want to fight for me and I’m tired of trying for the two of us.” Danny may be only seven but understood where this was going. He had a friend whose mom and dad lived in different towns and his friend only saw his dad every other weekend. Danny never understood how a

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17 mom and a dad could live in different towns. He didn’t get why the dad only wanted to see him a couple days a month. Marshal even had to be the one to call his dad to talk to him. His mom had him more often but she didn’t really pay attention to him. She kind of pretended to pay attention to him. Danny remembered one time being at the park and Marshal was there too. He and Marshal went into the woods chasing this really pretty butterfly that had purple and white in its wings. They didn’t mean to go so far into the woods. By the time Mom found him she was upset and crying. Marshal’s mom was on her phone to someone and didn’t even notice they were gone for so long. Even when they got back Marshal’s mom did not hang up her phone. Didn’t they love Marshal? Marshal loved them no matter what they did and it seemed that they just didn’t love him as much. And now Danny’s parents were acting like they didn’t love each other anymore either. Maybe this meant that they wouldn’t love him also. Or even worse yet they would be like his friend Marshal’s parents. See him when they wanted to see him. Talk to him when they wanted to talk to him. Pretend to care about him but really just care about everything else in the world. Danny wept. It would be okay though. Danny knew it. He would just love his mom and dad more than they loved themselves. He would be the well spring of love they needed to love each other and him. He could do it. He would do it. They meant too much to him to give up or quit on them. His love would be enough. Danny reached over the front seat and touched both of his parent’s shoulders. “I love the both of you even though you don’t think you love each other and maybe someday you might not love me but it will be okay. It will always be okay.”

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Both Steven and Jackie’s bodies went stiff. A sense of well being and love washed over them. The argument that was so heated just seconds before left the vehicle in a haze. Jackie looked at her husband of 12 years with new found tears. How had they gotten here? Her love for Steve should have kept them from this but it hadn’t. Grief and the major trial they just faced led them astray. She knew it. How was she ever going to atone for what she had done? “I’m so sorry Steve…I know Danny’s death wasn’t your fault, please forgive me.” Jackie began to sob. Steve pulled the car to the side of the road and embraced his wife. “Jackie I love you. I forgive you. I even can forgive me. We will get through this—together. We will not allow Danny’s death to come between us any longer. Danny loved so much. As his parents it is our responsibility to make sure that love survives and is passed on”

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 Author: Lisa Barthuly

Steve grabbed Jackie’s hand and didn’t let go. Author Bio: Rebecca is a bookkeeper by day and an aspiring writer by night. After a short story she wrote in 6th grade was picked to send her to a Young Writers Conference a love for writing came to life. Practicing her writing skills are an off again on again event with a very busy family life that consists of a husband, three kids, teaching Sunday School and volunteering in her community. When she does find time for herself she very much enjoys weight lifting and Jazzercise. Check out Rebecca’s blog! ~~~~~~~ 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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Lisa Barthuly is the author of A Simply Homemade Clean (Orlando, FL: Healthy Life Press, 2012). She lives in the mountains of the American Redoubt with her family. She is a follower of Yeshua, Torah lover, helpmeet, and mama! She enjoys a simple, home-centered life, built on God’s foundations; studying Scripture, homeschooling, scratch baking and cooking, canning, candle making, gardening organically, raising dairy goats and chickens, she’s the family herbalist, enjoys goat milk mochas, reading, and loves a round of competitive target practice! Visit her at her ‘homestead on the web’ at: www.HomesteadOriginals.com/blog. ~All Rights Reserved


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This is her first book in a series of homesteading books with Healthy Life Press. Visit: www.healthylifepress.com for updates and information on new publications. ~~~~~~~ Interview with Richie Norton By Mary Nichelson © March 2013

William Shakespeare was credited with saying, “Instead of weeping when a tragedy occurs in a songbird’s life, it sings away its grief”. That is exactly what the Norton family did when, at the age of 10 weeks old, their newborn baby boy died of Pertussis. “I wasn’t going to sit around and wait to see what the next weeks and months would bring. After our son’s death, we dropped everything and took a few months to travel and heal together. ..just me, my wife, the kids, the open road and nature. Amazing.” Through death, he learned to live and desires to bring that passion to those struggling to live life to their full potential. “I don’t want to regret a day in my life. I don’t want anyone to regret a day in their life. To that end, I’ve created a business designed to help people live. Live in a way that helps them lean into their fears, make a difference and live without regret.” In his newest release, The Power of Starting Something Stupid, he becomes coach, friend, and mentor to those who have fears to face and dreams yet to fulfill. “Life’s too short to sit around and wait for stuff to happen.” In fact, to wait would be the classic ©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

definition of stupid, while seizing the moment is the new stupid. Norton explains the difference in my interview with him. MN- The Power of Starting Something Stupid is not a warning against doing something stupid, but in fact, an invitation to do so. Explain the context in which you use the word “stupid” for our readers. RN- I like to say that "stupid" is the New Smart. Stupid as the New Smart infers that while an idea may appear to be inherently faulty, the idea is, in reality, sound and in your best interest to pursue. The traditional idea of stupidity is as old as time. Pick up any dictionary, and it will offer some derivative of the definition, “lacking intelligence and common sense.” This type of stupidity is what I call unhealthy stupid. It is dangerous, and clearly not the kind of stupid you want to embrace. Unhealthy stupid indicates that a thing or idea is inherently faulty, meaning that the stupidity is a permanently ingrained and inseparable element. Stupid as the New Smart, on the other hand, is healthy and should be sought after and embraced. Stupid as the New Smart is that pressing thought that just won’t go away. That nagging hunch, that golden idea, that lofty dream, that if it weren’t so seemingly “stupid,” might actually have the chance to become something truly significant— in your own life, and quite possibly, in the world at large. MN- You know a little about projects and what makes one successful. Among other awards, you were named one of Hawaii’s Top Forty Under 40 “best and brightest young businesspersons” when you were twenty-nine. Do you attribute your success to academic training, passion, or intuition? RN- Great question. I actually attribute the success to something I call START. START is an acronym that I created that stands for Serve, Thank, Ask, Receive and Trust. When

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March 2013 I've had a "stupid idea" I start with service and doors begin to open. Through the principles of START we all can help bridge the gap between where we currently stand, and where we ultimately want to be. When authentically embraced, these principles help us to identify and perform the right kind of work—the work that makes our specific goals possible—as soon as possible. I like to say that our goals should be to get as close to our dreams as possible, as soon as possible. START (both the acronym and the verb) is a great way to make dreams happen. MN- A pivotal turning point in your life came when Stephen Covey said in conversation “Experience is overrated.” Explain what he meant by that statement. RN- In 2007, I received an unexpected call from Stephen M. R. Covey, former CEO of Franklin Covey and author of the bestselling book, The Speed of Trust. He asked to meet with me. We sat down in his conference room, and Covey told me that after hearing me speak at a recent event he hoped I might consider coming to work for him presenting Speed of Trust trainings. As soon as I scooped my jaw off the floor, I told him that, although I was incredibly flattered, I felt I was too young and inexperienced even to entertain the idea. “What would the gray hairs think?” Then, Covey taught me a priceless principle that would forever change my outlook on the nature of education and experience. He said, “Richie, experience is overrated. Some people say they have twenty years’ experience, when, in reality, they only have one year’s experience, repeated twenty times.” That statement blew my mind and opened windows of opportunity all around me. In an instant, I felt free from the self-inflicted mental bondage I had created for myself about my age and my feelings of experiencebased inadequacy. I suddenly realized that if something was important enough to me, if I

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20 was truly committed to achieving success, I could learn what I needed to know along the way! Nothing could have felt more empowering. It’s very important to note that Covey wasn’t implying that experience isn’t important. Covey taught me that authentic experience is gained not by simply strapping yourself in and doing the time, but through constantly (and sincerely) seeking learning and improvement along the road to success. MN- Ask anyone what they perceive to be the number one social issue today and they will say we live in a world of entitlements. I loved the way you confronted this mindset by reminding readers to take responsibility for their lives. Easy, but not simple. What would be a good starting point for readers wanting to transition from the blame game to total accountability? RN- The feeling of entitlement originates from a space of pride. Obviously we’re not talking about the kind of pride a mother feels for her child, or the pride you feel for your country, or the pride you experience when your team wins a big game. We’re discussing the kind of pride that keeps people blinded, stuck, and isolated. The kind of pride that prevents them from experiencing lasting success. To overcome this type of pride, one must understand that vulnerability is a good thing. It inspires us to seek continual learning, and, most important, it grants us the courage to change. Instead of being prideful, in order to take responsibility for oneself, we should employ what I call "The Humber Power Alternative." Here are four ways to employ the Humble Power Alternative: 1. Instead of being too prideful to risk appearing stupid, courageously lean into the New Smart. 2. Instead of insisting that what you’ve already done is enough, do more. 3. Instead of blaming others for your lack of success, take ownership.

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March 2013 4. Instead of hoping others will fail, encourage their success. Practice the Humble Power Alternative and achieve greater satisfaction and success in all aspects of business and life. MN- You give three truths that you trust readers will learn and they are.... Your life matters Your life has purpose You are meant to be happy As basic as that sounds, we need to be reminded that there is a reason for our existence. At what point did you become convinced of these three truths? RN- The ideas that each life matters, each life has distinct purpose and that happiness is available to all are self-evident. Unfortunately, as we work to navigate the complexities of every day life, many of us lose sight of these principles—we lose sight of the fact that they are not only true for others, but for all. To be honest, these beliefs have been the core of who I am for as long as I can remember. I've always operated from the foundation of these principles. However, if I had to pinpoint a specific time when I really became convinced of their absolute validity, I would definitely say that it was shortly after my son died in early 2010. The adage, "life is short," was no longer popular cliché. It was gospel. Life IS short. And I want to live my life without regret. The more I remind myself that I matter, the more I seek for purposeful engagement, the more I strive to find happiness and to live a life free of regret, the more the truthfulness of these principles is driven home for me—because I see the beautiful fruits of these beliefs and the actions they inspire! MN- As the father of four sons, what are you teaching them about setting goals and achieving success in life, or are your actions mentor enough?

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RN- Our family has a lot of fun. We spend a lot of time in nature and traveling. My wife and I have a goal to help our children learn as much as they can through actually doing—aside from simply discussing. I think it's vitally important to set a good example. It's also important to provide opportunities for the boys to come up with ideas, set goals and work toward things that matter to them. That said, Natalie and I do everything we can to cultivate an environment where these kinds of actions are not only encouraged, but embraced and supported enthusiastically. Ultimately, my deepest desire is to teach my children both through example and through word the very things we discussed earlier— that they matter, their life has purpose and they are meant to be happy. I hope they're learning that they have the power to influence the world for good. MN- For those that say the economy is too much of a hindrance to even try to embark on their personal business adventure or dream, what would you advise? RN- How many hugely successful companies started in a down economy? We could list dozens of companies that started during the Great Depression, succeeded, and our still around and thriving today. But would that really get you going? No. The trick is to make the idea of starting dreams personal. Start by asking the question, "Will you regret it when you're 80?" In The Power of Starting Something Stupid, I tell the story of Jeff Bezos, and how he started Amazon. In essence, he made the courageous decision to leave his job on Wall Street after asking himself this very question and realizing that yes, he would in fact regret not pursuing this passion. The lesson here is that there will always be

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March 2013 some measure of imperfection in our lives that has the potential to impede our progress— maybe it's the state of the economy, or not having enough time, or not having enough education, or not having enough experience, or not having enough money to start working towards a dream. Like it or not, ultimately, these are all excuses. If you have an idea that is pressing on your mind, remember, life is short. If your passion for the project is big enough that someday, you would regret not at least giving it a shot, put your fears aside and get moving.

22 development industries. Richie has shared the stage with bestselling authors such as Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen M.R. Covey, author of The Speed of Trust and Kevin Rollins, former CEO of Dell Computers. You can learn more about Richie Norton by visiting his website or connecting with him on Facebook and Twitter. ~~~~~~~ Featured Trailers

Here's my advice: Start small. Experiment. Build from your small successes and learn from your small failures. Your idea will grow incrementally— it doesn't have to be an all or nothing endeavor, right out of the starting gate. Whatever you do, don't let yourself life your life wondering, "what if?" Instead, get out there and start something stupid. Author Bio- Richie was named one of Hawaii’s Top Forty Under 40 “best and brightest young businesspersons” by Pacific Business News at age 29. He is a ChangeAid award winner for outstanding accomplishment in international development, international relations, humanitarian aid and academic achievement. He is also a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. Richie is the CEO of Global Consulting Circle, a boutique international business development consultancy. He is the author of the upcoming book, The Power of Starting Something Stupid (Shadow Mountain Publishing), as well as the popular eBook and audio book, Resumes Are Dead and What to Do About It (Shadow Mountain Publishing). He is a sought after speaker and consultant for the corporate growth and personal

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~~~~~~~ Editor’s Pick in our 2012 Short Story of the Year Contest! A Small Sacrifice By Michael Lynch A flash of light discharged in the sky, followed by multiple explosions so strong, every window within a twenty-block radius of McEnery Park lay shattered. Errant bolts of electricity darted out columns of smoke as they rose above patches of lawn now covered by a thin layer of black. A soft breeze carried the ashen plumes away, leaving a lone figure—Kelsic 5—standing before a grove of box elder trees. “Systems check,” he said into his headset display, his weapon at the ready. “Working at optimal preset limits,” came the reply. ~All Rights Reserved


March 2013 He looked down at his arm and checked the energy gauge affixed to his sleeve. Seventyone terra-quads of power left. Less than expected, but just enough to defeat his foe, and still leave him with a sufficient amount of energy for a successful jump off the planet. The contrails from an airliner drew his attention upward. A blue sky set before a solitary moon. It had been a long time since he landed on a planet with a blue sky. “Blue sky,” he repeated. “What planet am I on?” A series of clicks and beeps preceded the comset’s response. “Accessing. Earth—third planet in the Sol System. Presently inhabited by an indigenous species known as humans. Their population now stands at—” “Cease report.” Humans. A survey study made of them some time back came to mind. Kelsic 5 made a three hundred and sixty-degree sweep of the area. Arboreal class life forms, terrestrial access ways, dwelling units. A most primitive and inferior species, he concluded. Not worthy of restrictive engagement protocols. The air around him suddenly became still. Subtly at first, but it grew in intensity, to the point where his poly-phasic suit compensated for the pressure differential. His senses heightened. An ion blast shot through the air, detonating a short distance away. Kelsic 5 dove behind a stand of trees and returned fire. Multiple explosions from his pulse cannon lit up the sky, and then faded. Despite a modicum of protection offered by the thick foliage, he still felt exposed. He bolted for one of the human transportation devices and crouched down behind it. “Full directional scan,” he said into his headset. “Locate enemy combatant.” As the comset implemented the directive given it,

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23 the distinct sounds of people’s screams came at him from multiple directions. Committed to his mission above all else, he ignored the distraction. “Unable to locate combatant,” the comset replied. “Zero energy signature readings detected within operational range.” Kelsic 5 slammed his fist into the side of the transportation device, causing a significant dent. “That Simeran must be using a reflective holo-field.” He checked his energy readings. “Tricky to track, but not impossible.” “Non-sequitur. Please repeat command.” “Disregard.” He lifted his head just enough to view the open area. Where had his opponent hidden himself? Better the Simeran was invisible, he mused. They were the ugliest species in the galaxy anyway. The air became still, like before. Kelsic 5 held his place and listened. Another ion blast came out of nowhere and slammed into his poly-phasic suit, hurtling him into an adjacent transportation device. He brought up his weapon and fired blind. Several discharges struck a dwelling unit across from him, causing it to erupt in flames. He watched as a number of humans stumbled out of the smoke-filled entrance. Not much he could do for those creatures. He jumped to his feet and took cover behind another vehicle. Kelsic 5 flicked a glance at his energy gauge. Sixty-one terra quads. If he didn’t terminate his opponent soon, he wouldn’t have enough energy to make a successful jump off this wretched planet. Kelsic 5 made a quick scan of the area, his attention drawn towards the plume of smoke as it drifted away. A physiological principle came to mind. An object, even an invisible one, became visible when it passed through the particulate matter. Only one problem. How to get his opponent to pass through it?

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March 2013

He looked down at his pulse cannon and studied it a moment. Perhaps with the right kind of bait. A quiet whimper sounded behind him. Kelsic 5 spun around and pointed his weapon at the source, a human cowering on the ground. Dressed in strange clothes, wavy shoulder-length hair partially covered the creature’s face. The female of their species, he concluded. Though she didn’t move a muscle, he sensed she was terrified beyond description. As he studied her more closely, he noticed a smaller human clutched in her arms. “Please, don’t hurt us,” the female pleaded. He lowered his weapon until it rested against her temple. All at once her eyes hardened, and she rose to her feet. “If you harm my child, so help me…” She pushed the nuzzle of his pulse cannon off to one side and slowly backed away. Curious, Kelsic 5 thought. He had the ability to disintegrate them both without a second thought, yet a protective need to save its offspring superceded her fears, even at the cost of her own life. When another blast struck the dwelling unit behind him, the ensuing shock wave knocked him back a step. He cursed himself. His momentary lapse had almost gotten him killed. Kelsic 5 brushed past the creature and headed back towards the open area, to the spot where he had first been fired upon. Black smoke continued billowing into the sky, just as he had hoped. He ducked down behind several large boulders not far from where he planned to lure in his prey. As he looked about, Kelsic 5 observed other humans carrying little ones away from the battlefield, using their own bodies to protect them.

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He hadn’t expected this. In his experiences as a soldier, he had never once witnessed a semi-advanced species willingly sacrifice itself for one of their own. Such nobility only existed within his own kind, or so he thought. Kelsic 5 accessed the informational database. “Amend assessment of human class life forms.” “Proceed when ready.” “Abort sanctioned elimination of planet. Contamination to culture is reversible.” Several clicks and bleeps sounded before the comset responded. “Amended assessment has been recorded.” “Good.” He peered past the boulder. A problem still remained, however. How to get the Simeran where he wanted him. Kelsic 5 brought up his weapon and studied it a moment before checking his energy gauge. Fifty-two terra quads remaining. If power levels dipped below fifty, he could be marooned on this planet for a very long time. Worse yet, the mission would be deemed a failure, and his superiors would almost certainly invalidate his recommendation. From what little he’d already seen in this species, he couldn’t let that happen. Kelsic 5 had to make a choice. If he jumped now, the Simeran would still be out there, committed to more destruction. If he didn’t make the jump, his superiors would destroy the planet without hesitation. Either way, it didn’t bode well for Earth. When the power cell at the base of his pulse cannon caught his eye, a solution presented itself. Not the one he anticipated before his arrival, but it was the only outcome that made sense. “A small sacrifice,” he whispered, and then jumped to his feet and headed straight for the plumes of smoke.

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March 2013 Ion fire erupted all around him, nipping at his feet after every step. He took note of the direction each one came from until an arcing trajectory formed in his head. Kelsic 5 counted to three, and then let off a volley of plasma bursts just to the right of the nearest smoke column. His shot hit dead center, and the Simeran’s mirror technology faltered, exposing him to the light of day. Enraged he had been discovered, the gangly creature twice Kelsic 5’s size came charging at him. The Simeran attempted to fire his weapon, but it must have been damaged by the explosion. Kelsic 5 brought up his pulse cannon to finish him off, but he waited too long. The hulking creature tackled him, and the two soldiers became entangled in a fight for their lives. They rolled back and forth, grunting and hammering against each other. When he finally managed to pin his opponent with a full body lock, Kelsic 5 saw his energy gauge amidst the Simeran’s tentacles flailing about. It read forty-nine terra quads. Too late. But it wasn’t too late. Kelsic 5 looked his enemy in his bulbous eyes and smiled. “This ends here and now.” He flipped a switch on his weapon and set the power cells on overload. A high-pitched whistle filled the air. It grew in intensity, until a flash of light discharged in the park, and the two were gone. Author Bio: Mike Lynch's first book, Dublin, came out in 2007, followed by When the Sky Fell, American Midnight, The Crystal Portal, and After the Cross. His next novel, Love’s Second Chance, is scheduled to be released by Ellechor Publishing in 2013. He has also published numerous short stories and articles in various magazines. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and two children.

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

25 ~~~~~~~ Interview with Heather James By Mary Nichelson ©March 2013

The data regarding sex offenders and child molestation would keep any loving parent awake at night. According to the CNN special, Thieves of Childhood, between 1% and 5% of our population molest children. BJS survey of state prison inmates reveals 2/3 of all prisoners convicted of rape or sexual assault had committed their crime against a child. Profiles from the FBI Academy and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reports 3/4 of sexual predators are younger than 35. About 80% are of normal intelligence or above. Those are the stats parents want to avoid thinking about, though. In light of distressing information like this, why would the average reader want to pick up a novel based on the horror of child molestation when the subject matter is so difficult to comprehend? Heather James, author of Unholy Hunger explains. “Ultimately, I chose a difficult subject matter (to write about) to make other parents more aware about watching their kids.” Readers will also grasp a deeper revelation massaged between the lines of fear, revenge and horror; that being the guarantee of hope in the midst of foreboding events. Unholy Hunger communicates that God is interwoven into humanity, even our dark side. This is an author capable of taking a sensitive issue and presenting the gritty details tactfully and truthfully, ending with undeniable redemption. James scores big in her novel

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March 2013 debut. MN- I’m stunned that Unholy Hunger is your first published book. To say that you know how to write an edge-of-the-seat legal thriller is an understatement. How did you nail such an interesting read on your first try? HJ- A huge thank you for the compliment! While this is my first published work, it is my fourth attempt at writing a book. If I'm being honest, I was lost during the first three attempts because each try represented the writer I thought I should be rather than the writer I was. After the third attempt, when I got close but ultimately still floundered, I told myself it was a long, tough road to dedicate myself (and my family, by default) to an entire novel that doesn't knock my own socks off while writing it. Then came my fourth try, Unholy Hunger. The only goal was to write for myself, and to do so with a style that kept me entertained the entire time. In terms of the actual plot of the book, it was originally based on a nightmare I had had when my oldest child was three years old. It was a dream that shook me to my core, and I haven’t been the same since. It made me hyper-vigilante about watching my kids, and after the nightmare came back to me a few times, I decided to write it down.

26 in the same building. I also have a few friends on the dark side--criminal law--who answer any questions I have for them. One of the things in the book that I’d say is most influenced by my constant presence at the courthouse is Evelyn’s ability to “sense” pedophiles. If someone is at the courthouse as much as I am, they start keeping mental tabs of the types of people who press the 4th floor button on the elevator, on their way to probation. Trust me, after a few years of that, you start getting a sixth sense of the people you’d like to keep your kids away from. MN- For those that are new to your book, what exactly is the ‘unholy hunger’ described in the book? HJ- In the book, unholy hunger is what a pedophile feels for children. It gives me the creeps just thinking about it again. I know it's a taboo subject, but again--based on my observations over the years in the courthouse--I'm abundantly aware that 'unholy hunger' happens right under our noses. Many people choose to keep the subject taboo, rather than bringing it out in the open and teaching parents and other adults some of the behaviors, triggers, and avenues that pedophiles exhibit to quench the hunger. I wanted to expose the depths of ‘unholy hunger,’ and that’s why I wrote about it. At the end of the day, I really just want parents to keep a better eye on their kids and stop being so trusting of others.

MN- Did your experience as an attorney contribute to the writing of Unholy Hunger? The manner in which you describe crime details and the ebb and flow of the legal system and how it affected Evelyn is just too real to be total fiction.

MN- You deal with the art of revenge pretty tactfully within the story line. Is revenge always sweet? Don’t you think many that seek it and follow through end up regretting it?

HJ- A little bit, but keep in mind that I'm a civil attorney rather than a criminal one. Civil law is basically everything that isn't criminal, juvenile, or family law. While I don't have personal work experience in criminal law, I have been paying attention to criminal matters over the years since both civil law and felony crime matters are heard

HJ- Personally, I'm the type who only fantasizes about revenge, and would be too scared to ever act on it. I'm even talking about being too timid to exact small-fry revenge like sticking your tongue out at someone, so yes, I think most people would regret it if they did something more severe. I had my protagonist suffer the way she did

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March 2013 because she did seek out her own revenge. In its basest form, I believe exacted revenge only serves to prove you weren't as hurt or offended as you originally claimed to be. After all, if being struck was such a colossal wrongdoing, then why would you want to belittle the hurt by dishing it on someone else, even if it’s to your offender? In order for the pain to mean something, in order for the hurt to be valid, the offense has to stop where it landed; it has to be so vile that you wouldn’t even think about passing it on to another person. MN- What has motherhood been like for you so far? HJ- Ah, I love this question. I can't answer it without simultaneously smiling and shaking my head. Just to give a foundation, I do write a column for a paper here in California, where about 90% of my space is dedicated to the crazy things--just real wacky stuff--my two sons conjure up on a daily basis. But, they keep me on my toes, keep me laughing, and keep my constantly lowering the bar on my personal expectations for a clean a house and personal quiet time. I think my biggest culture shock in being a mother stems from the fact that I entered the arena with the assumption that willpower, perseverance, and a steady head could conquer all circumstance. Ha. Ha. Ha. There’s absolutely nothing you can completely control in motherhood. Nothing. Yet in a way, I’ve come to love the uncertainty. Not only does it provide lots of writing material, it’s wiped the act of being judgmental clear out of my mindset. Boy children will certainly do that for anyone. MN- Unholy Hunger is the first in the Lure of the Serpent series. Tell us about the series and when we can expect to see book two available. HJ- Originally, Unholy Hunger was meant to be a stand-alone book, but my publisher liked my protagonist so much, Evelyn Barrett, that they asked me to do a three

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

27 book series. Readers can expect Unholy Hunger to wrap everything up in and of itself, but then can keep on reading with books two and three, discovering different chapters in Evelyn's life. I can't go into too much detail about the next two books because it would contain spoilers for the first book. I will say, though, that readers will find Evelyn in a stage where she’s trying to move past the grief of losing her daughter. In that, they'll see different sides of her personality, or similar sides that I was able to expand upon, now that she's not bent on revenge. In the next books, Evelyn will still have her sharp and often sarcastic wit, but she'll also be softer and a bit more relaxed, exploring more of her fun and jovial side. Of course, the books will stay in the same crime/suspense genre, and I’m definitely not done with exposing the underbelly of evil, showing readers how quietly and quickly the Lure of the Serpent comes upon us. The second book will come out in January of 2014, and the third in January of 2015. MN- What books are in your ‘to be read’ pile? HJ- Pretty much whatever my book club decides upon each month, but once I burn through those selections, the books I'll always reach for first can be found on the NYT Bestseller fiction list. I consider this research. Quite frankly, if I want to get there myself, I need to understand how others did it before me. Right now, I’m reading through Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Far too many bad words for my tastes, but whoa, the plot! I guess you could say that the goal in both my writing and style is to provide something like that, sans the unsavory language and references. My desire is to imprint readers with a great story, yet still not stain them through its delivery. MN- Many say life begins at 30. Or for some, 40. When did life begin for you? HJ- That's funny you asked that because I was just thinking about this last night when

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I was making dinner. I was pondering it because my twenty-year high school reunion is approaching and I was looking back at the last two decades of my life. I'll give you the same answer I quietly tucked inside my brain last night: my life began on the first day I attended college. Technically, I was 17. Without going into detail, the years prior to that moment weren't good ones. But when I stood there, just outside the Administration building and about to go to my very first class, I remember thinking that this was my brand new day, my new start where I no longer had to be defined by my past. I was about to walk into my future, where I instinctively knew I had a do-over because no one knew a thing about me except what I'd have the opportunity to show them from there on out. That was a good day. A rebirth, if you will. The best years of my life followed: marriage, children, and my career. And, when all that stuff was settled, I felt I finally had the wing span to give my dream of writing a go. I'm 37 now, the year I was first published. If I go by my "re-birth" date, that means I'm only twenty years into my maturity, and it’s a comfortable time to push for the writing goals because I feel confident for whatever lies ahead. Author bio - Heather James is the author of the Lure of the Serpent Series, suspense novels that pack quick wit into the high heels of attorney turned vigilante, Evelyn Barrett. In addition, Heather is a practicing lawyer in California and a columnist with The Bakersfield Californian. Her columns focus on the humorous aspects of marriage and parenthood. Heather is married and works at home, raising two young sons. To learn more about author Heather James you can visit her website or her Amazon page and connect with her through Facebook. ~~~~~~~

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

The Unholy Hunger By Heather James ISBN#: 978-0825442919 Evelyn Barrett wants to die. As long as her daughter’s murderer dies with her, she is ready to go. Why did this man—this stranger—destroy her family? Why has he not been brought to justice? Why is she forced to live a life of anger and grief? Amid a million questions she cannot answer, Evelyn knows one thing for sure: this murderer must be punished for his crime. Before it all, she was a successful attorney who won all the hard cases. Now that the case is personal, Evelyn will stop at nothing to seek her own version of justice. When another girl goes missing, Evelyn plows forward, ignoring the warnings from police detectives, the pleas of her grief-stricken husband, and the strange, almost supernatural tingles that tug at her. But as she follows the stench of evil, Evelyn learns that the hardest thing she will have to face may not be the death of her child after all. Perhaps the harder lesson is this: the ultimate truth—of crime and verdict, of life and death—cannot be swayed by a mother’s revenge. In this first book of a new, page-turning series, a woman will be brought to her limits before she finally recognizes the movement of the Holy Spirit and reconnects with the source of true peace. ~~~~~~~ Guest Editorial: Kathy (AKA: Kae Ellie) Wheeler

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29 an “inspirational theme,” show a human interest side in which things are not always what they seem. The story, to me, represents sisters.

Growing up, my all time favorite show was the Rodgers and Hammerstein 1965 version of Cinderella when Lesley Ann Warren made her debut at seventeen. You remember the one—Ginger Rogers was in it. My sisters, both younger, and I would get the box of Kleenex plop down on the floor on our stomachs and watch every year! I dabbled in some writing throughout elementary and junior high (just before boys), but I seemed never able to finish the story. So one day I was browsing through a google writing prompt and happened upon one that read “What if Cinderella’s shoe fit one of her evil stepsisters?” Well! I thought. I love Cinderella. I can do that. So I did. That was seven years ago. I knew nothing of POV, or using too many adverbs, etc. But I wrote the story and finished it. Thirteen thousand words. Not that big. Then one day I pitched the story as a practice pitch to an editor at Harlequin, who wrote back later telling me that she loved the twist. Alas, it was not along the lines of anything they published, so later, I pitched to an agent, who also loved the idea and said “get it to fifty-thousand and send it to me!” I did. While it still didn’t fly, I had learned quite a bit in five years. Not only that—the stories for the other two sisters worked themselves out. Along with a fourth that was picked up by Wild Rose Press. The stories are a bit tongue in cheek, and took a twist I didn’t quite expect. But the message, while not necessarily considered

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I learned a lot writing this series. It was fun and quirky, and feel I have finally found my calling, though I still have lots to learn. I have other books out too. Written more along the traditional lines of romance. Because a happy ending fills my heart. Author Bio- Kathy (aka: Kae Elle) Wheeler is a romance author, selfpublished and published with The Wild Rose Press. She is an active member of the Oklahoma Romance Writers of America and member of the national organization Romance Writers of America. Her books have an element of suspense and are threaded with humor. By day she is a computer programmer, but her nights are her own. She is an avid NBA and NFL sports fan, and an acquiring editor for BuzzbooksUSA.com’s new romance line. Find out more by visiting her websites http://klwheeler.com or http://kathylwheeler.com and connecting with her on Twitter @kathylwheeler ~~~~~~~

The Wronged Princess Kae Elle Wheeler ASIN: B007MF3NK0 When Prince Charming’s mysterious princess disappears from the ball with nary a trace, well, except for a glass slipper she left behind in her haste to escape, he has the

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ideal plan to find her. In theory, his plan is brilliant--Whomever the shoe fits must be his mysterious princess. Unfortunately, there is more than one dainty foot in Chalmers Kingdom—including Cinderella’s own stepsister. Available now @ Amazon in Print & on Kindle! ~~~~~~~

~~~~~~~ Yes, Virginia, even real Christians Struggle with Depression By: David B. Biebel, D.Min. © March 2013 Late winter is a period when many people feel depressed (i.e. pressed down by life) to some degree. Within the Christian community, many myths surround the mystery of depression. Here are ten of them: 1. You’re depressed because you want to be depressed. We can only imagine what Charles Spurgeon, undoubtedly the best-known English preacher of his day, whose collected sermons fill sixty-three volumes—the largest set of books by a single author in the history of Christianity—might have said to the suggestion that he was depressed because he wanted to be. This great man of God, who struggled with depression for years once wrote, “There are dungeons beneath the castle of despair.”1 In other words, Spurgeon’s view was that he had suffered with depths of depression even deeper than those described by John Bunyan ©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

in Pilgrim’s Progress. 2. You can beat depression with willpower. This myth could be considered the flip side of the first one. But it is a common strategy. You are determined to find your own way out of the emotional wilderness. You figure that you can do it entirely on your own through sheer self-mastery. You try to “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps.” It doesn’t work; it never does, because it can’t. We were created to live in relationship, which includes receiving input and guidance from others, since no one person has complete knowledge from all perspectives on a situation. When we choose to align ourselves with God’s will, he gives us both the will and the ability to work for his good pleasure, 2 which is that ultimately all things in heaven and earth will be brought under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. 3 How our lives witness to his power, including his power over depression, is part of that process. We cannot will ourselves well; we can only willfully entrust ourselves and our needs to the One who understands us best, asking him to enable and empower us to live with our depression in a way that will honor him. 3. You’re depressed because of unconfessed sins in your life. Christian psychiatrist, Dr. Dwight Carlson, wrote in his preface to Why Do Christians Shoot Their Wounded? “In my experience, Christians are intolerant, if not prejudiced, against individuals with emotional difficulties. Most view all such problems as due to personal sin. Some well-known Christian authors have fueled the fires of stigma and judgment toward those suffering with emotional illness.” 4 To continue the military analogy for a moment, we think that the church should function more like a “MASH” unit, patching up the wounded so they can get back to the front lines to engage the enemy, perhaps even more effectively than before due to the

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March 2013 insights and wisdom they’ve gained into the enemy’s strategies and methods. 4. If you’re depressed, you’re just feeling sorry for yourself. People without depression often glibly tell those who are depressed to stop feeling sorry for themselves, and to “snap out of it.” These “advisors” don’t want to be burdened by or with the struggles of others. They might be burdened by the struggles of others should those struggles remind them that sometimes life isn’t one long “climb, climb, up sunshine mountain; faces all aglow,” and that God’s primary involvement with his children is not handing out smiley face stickers day by day. Thoughts like these threaten a core belief of many—that because they are “good people” they deserve a worry-free, pain free life. Both parts of the assumption are wrong, of course. Job’s friends learned this the hard way. Their entire system of religion was threatened by the fact that Job, an upright man, had experienced such horrendous things. Their thinking went like this: If such bad things could happen to Job, as virtuous as he is, then worse things surely could happen to us. Job had this fear in view when he said to them, “A despairing man should have the devotion of his friends, even though he forsakes the fear of the Almighty [which Job had not done]. But my brothers are as undependable as intermittent streams…. Now you too have proved to be of no help; you see something dreadful and are afraid.” 5 5. Depressed believers have weak faith. People who haven’t experienced depression can’t imagine how this disorder makes it difficult to concentrate, sucks away energy and motivation, draws people into themselves, and paralyzes action. For these reasons, it should not be surprising that depressed Christians have difficulty praying, having devotions, or going to church. In his excellent book, The Masks of

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31 Melancholy, Christian psychiatrist John White says that, based on his experience, mere devotional reading should actually be discouraged for depressed people, because it might degenerate into something spiritually unhealthy and unhelpful. He is referring to the tendency of depressed believers to perceive all manner of exhortations often found in devotional books as “messages from God,” or in some way having special application to their own situation. When such admonishments have to do with what is perceived by many as “the normal Christian life” 6 of being filled with the Spirit and exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit, rising above one’s problems and so forth, the depressed Christian feels indicted, not inspired toward greater Christ-likeness. By contrast, White says that solid, inductive Bible study should be encouraged (if the person is actually able to concentrate), with oversight by a pastor or pastoral counselor. “Years ago, when I was seriously depressed,” he explains, “the thing that saved my own sanity was a dry-as-dust grappling with Hosea’s prophecy. I spent weeks, morning by morning, making meticulous notes, checking historical allusions in the text. Slowly I began to sense the ground under my feet growing steadily firmer. I knew without any doubt that healing was constantly springing from my struggle to grasp the meaning of the prophecy.” 7 6. It’s easy to tell when you are depressed. Depression is not easy to identify, especially for the person who is depressed. One of the hallmark symptoms of severe depression is that people lose the ability to recognize that they have an illness that needs treatment. They believe they are dealing with reality, for which there is no possible change or cure. This sense of helplessness and hopelessness is a lie that the vulnerable depressed person easily accepts. Many people also have difficulty differentiating depression from normal grief

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March 2013 or normal mood swings. It is very difficult for most of us to tell when our depression has crossed over from normal discouragement related to failure, loss, or disappointment to a dysfunctional depression. Furthermore, the negative stigma associated with depression makes us feel embarrassed over having this condition, so we deny it to ourselves, claiming that there is nothing seriously wrong, and that the sadness will pass with time. 7. Depression is just another word for grief. Normal grief occurs when someone loses a close friend or family member (or even a favorite pet). In such circumstances it is normal to feel sad, down, and to cry when one thinks about the departed loved one. Most people must work through certain stages of grieving in order to fully resolve their sense of loss, or most likely they will become depressed later…perhaps much later. Such a delayed reaction often occurs in social contexts that reward “saying the right things and doing the right things” when a person is grieving, expecting that person to pretend that the loss does not really hurt. Months, or possibly years, later when loneliness and sadness over the loss envelop this person and the natural process of grieving actually begins, he or she may be criticized by those who could (we would say “should”) have been encouraging and supportive through the entire process— encouraging the person to tell the truth and supporting him or her through the pain of facing that truth head-on. 8. Your pastor and Christian friends will be understanding and supportive. “If somebody comes into my church,” the very famous preacher boasted, “and they look like they got up on the wrong side of the bed….” He paused for emphasis and momentarily affected the face and posture of a chronically depressed person. “Then I just want to go on down there and tell them to go back home and get up on the right side

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32 of the bed!” A similar perspective is common in the evangelical church today, where depression may be a cardinal sin because it violates one of the church’s primary tenets—that Jesus wants us happy. Or to say it another way, depressed Christians are like lepers in a congregation convinced that Jesus wants us well. What Jesus really wants is for us to know true joy (versus happiness, which comes and goes with happenings). And he wants us whole. Often the depressed of our day are nearly as marginalized, ostracized, and stigmatized as the lepers of Jesus’ day. It is high time that the stigma attached by many in the church to their brothers and sisters with depression be exchanged for the attitude the Lord had toward first century lepers, which was to reach out and touch them I n loving kindness when no one else would even go near them. 9. Depression is a waste of time. One popular Christian book actually says that depression is a waste of time, but when you take a God’s-eye view—remembering that he is not in a hurry, you see something else. For the Scriptures are clear that God is going somewhere in our lives—remaking us into the image of Christ. How long this process takes, or the methods required are secondary to achieving the goal. Anything that is being remade experiences some degree of distress, but the craftsman works with the end in mind. A woodcarver once said, when asked how he made an Indian out of a log, “I just chip away everything that doesn’t look like an Indian.” Depression is one tool (though not the only one) that God, the master craftsman, employs to make us into people he can use. God has a purpose in all that he causes or allows. In other words, he is going somewhere in our lives. The question is: Are we willing to go there, too? On his terms, not ours? Whatever it takes, even depression, and no matter how long it takes? Surely, the mere consideration of

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March 2013 these questions is not a waste of time. Their resolution is, for many, the pathway to purpose and fulfillment, even joy. 10. Depression arises from repressed anger. Some popular Christian therapeutic approaches embrace Freud’s theory of depression as “frozen rage,” though they are far more directive about dealing with one’s repressed resentments than Freudian therapists would be. Christian therapists using this model of depression can be expected to probe a patient’s memories for grudges, from which the patient must repent, since holding grudges even temporarily is thought to be sinful. They quote, “‘In your anger do not sin’: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry…” (Ephesians 4:26-27) as if the apostle Paul actually meant it to say anything at all about depression. We believe that when anger is a part of a clinically depressed Christian’s constellation of unhealthful emotions, the Christian therapist should help that person to forgive the sources of his or her anger—whether living or dead; self or other—as a part of adopting a more constructive, mature Christian approach to living as an interdependent part of the body of Christ. However, anger, in our view, is only one of many destructive attitudes (to self and others) that a depressed follower of Christ may need to put off. Focusing on the resolution of anger (repressed or otherwise) while ignoring a depressed person’s uniquely unhealthy habits of thought or action will not facilitate true healing, and may produce, in the patient and others, unnecessary psychic and spiritual pain. How much more constructive it is when the therapist tailors his or her part of the patient’s care to the patient’s actual concerns, and does so as part of an interdisciplinary team of experts in this field to provide the support the person needs until he or she is well.

33 on Depression, by David B. Biebel, DMin and Harold G. Koenig, MD (Zondervan, 2004). Copyright David B. Biebel and Harold G. Koenig; all rights reserved. Footnotes: #1: Arnold A. Dallimore, Spurgeon: A New Biography (Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Banner of Truth, 1987), 186. #2: Philippians 2:12-13 #3: Ephesians 1:3-10 #4: Dwight Carlson, Why Do Christians Shoot Their Wounded? (Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1994), 9 #5: Job 6: 14-15, 21 #6: See our final chapter for more on this theme #7: John White, The Masks of Melancholy (Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1982), 202-203

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 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

**This material is adapted from New Light

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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: Mesu Andrews

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The Proactive Author: Follow Your Ideas for Submission By W. Terry Whalin © March 2013

The idea pops into your head. “Send this article to this editor.” Or as you are reading a magazine, you think, “I could send this editor an article about this personal experience or this how-to idea.” Or you are reminded about a connection you made months earlier at a conference and you haven't followed up with the agent or editor. In each of these cases, how do you handle it? Some people shrug it and the “nudge” disappears. Others will take action and get their idea into the marketplace for consideration. Without action, nothing happens.

Mesu Andrews is the author of Love Amid the Ashes and Love’s Sacred Song. Winner of the 2012 ECPA award for Best New Author, she is an active speaker who has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture. Harnessing her deep understanding and love for God’s Word, Andrews brings the biblical world vividly alive for her readers. She lives in Washington. Her latest release Love in a Broken Vessel is available now!

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From my years in publishing, I've learned the importance of taking action on a thought or idea. For example, I will call or email an author about their book proposal or manuscript, it will happen just on a day when they need some encouragement or direction. Or my entry about The Writing Life will land in someone's mailbox on exactly the day they need the encouragement to move forward. Some people would call these accidents but to me, these actions from the still small voice of the Holy Spirit. As a Christian I believe God is guiding my daily actions and steps. Certainly I fail to follow that guidance but I've discovered remarkable things happen when I take action on those ideas.

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For example, I've been wanting to attend a large conference in a couple of months yet I wondered how to budget for the conference fee. One morning I got an idea that maybe I could do something else at that conference to help out such as volunteer to work registration or some other task. To follow through on my idea, I called a leader in the organization which sponsored the conference and pitched my idea of working the registration in a voice mail message. The exact day of my call, this leader got a message that the person who was going to teach the publishing workshop was not going to be able to attend the conference. My voice mail message and this cancellation arrived on exactly the same day. Was it coincidence? I don't believe so. I was asked to lead the publishing workshop at this conference. As a workshop leader, my fee for the conference is waived and I have a much larger opportunity than I could even have imagined. Notice what happened in this story: I had an idea and I took action and made a phone call. What ideas and possible actions are whirling in your writing life? Are you writing them down then crossing them off as you execute each one? I appreciate the necessity of having dreams and ambitions for our writing—yet at the same time we must be taking consistent action for those dreams to turn into reality.

35 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 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: Do You Want to be Successful? By Dr. LaSharnda Beckwith ©March 2013 Do You Want to be Successful?

Author Bio: W. Terry Whalin, a writer and acquisitions editor lives in Irvine, California. A former magazine editor and

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

Everyone wants success; I sure do! We may not be willing to admit that we want it, but we want it. However, I do not believe that we all are willing to do what it takes to succeed. I know you probably think that I

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March 2013 am crazy to ask you if you really want it, but I am going to ask anyway. The reason I ask is because some say that they want success, but they do very little to achieve it. It’s almost as if they think that it will just fall out of the sky! But to be successful in anything, life, marriage, relationships, career, you have to believe that you are worthy of succeeding. So I ask again, do you really want to be successful? You see, I believe we can succeed but we either make excuses for not succeeding or we sabotage ourselves in the process. Here’s what I mean, as much as we hear or read about the impact of positive words, positive people and positive mindsets, many still do not understand the concept of positive speech, positive actions or positive state of mind. Many still can’t see that when they have a negative mindset, their speech and behaviors will follow. Many still can’t see the benefit in shedding off those things that weigh them down; that includes friends and family members that may make them question their abilities. In fact, I am always baffled to see how others cannot see the impact negativity has on their lives. Oftentimes we don’t even recognize our own negatives voices that circles around in our heads that continue to tell us that we can’t. Other than negative voices & people there are things we have to consider if we really want to be successful. We have to take some responsibility for our own actions or inactions. Success does not and has never come easy! You’ve heard the phrase “only the strong survive?” Well think about it like this, being successful requires one to be strong in their pursuits; staying positive, disciplined & focused. Those who have had successful marriages will be the first to tell you that they did not have it easy every single day of their many years together. Those who have climbed the corporate ladder will most likely tell you that every day was not roses and those who have built successful businesses will tell you all of the above. So if you want to be successfully

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36 married, successful at work or have a strong friendship or relationship you must first realize that all of these take patience, time, work & lots of effort. Success is something we can all achieve but we first have to look at our lives and deal with all of the negative junk. Then and only then will we be truly ready to move closer to our destiny. On a final note, I am convinced that what we need to succeed is inside of us. We most often look to others to help us but I have learned the hard way that isn't a good strategy. We must learn to rely on God and ourselves; even the most supportive people in your circle will let you down. God will not. You want success in any area of your life? Stay the course, dig your heels in & don’t give up so easily. Tell yourself “if it were easy, everyone would be doing it” and then ask God for His help. You say that this is your dream; so prove it and work for it. Most often the things we have achieved in life did not just happen overnight and success will not just fall into our laps. Have I ever experienced miracles? You bet I have, but in most cases I prayed a lot before I saw my miracle happen.

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 ~All Rights Reserved


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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!

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 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. ~~~~~~~ Want to purchase a title you see advertised here in TWJM? Simply click on the cover image, ISBN# or Title (if highlighted)! Interested in Advertising YOUR book in The Wordsmith Journal Magazine? Visit our Advertising Info Page or Email: twjadsales@gmail.com

~~~~~~~ Consider This: Match dot COM--- the perks and pitfalls of online dating By Rita A Schulte, LPC ©March 2013 You can’t wait to hear from that special person again. Your heart flutters. You feel all tingly inside. You feel like a sixteen year old in a 50 year old hormone-deprived body. You know something is happening when you look into the eyes of that special someone and fireworks start. There’s only one problem. You’re staring at your computer screen. That’s right, you’ve entered into a new era called online dating, where the only thing staring back at you is what someone typed. Is that a reason to give the idea of online dating the boot? Not necessarily. Online dating is great for a lot of reasons. But it also has its pitfalls. Before you jump in, do your homework and be prepared for a different kind of ride. Here are a few things to consider before you take the plunge and fill out that profile: Be ready for rejection Starting and developing an online relationship is like being in High School and wanting to date the captain of the football team when your still in braces with pimples. You have to be ready for rejection. People can click through profiles like they’ve taken an overdose of amphetamines to see who looks the hottest or who sounds the most interesting. You have to have tough skin and not take it personally. You may even go out with someone, have a great time, and never hear from them again. Heartbreak is as inevitable online as in the real world, it just moves a little faster. If you aren’t the right fit for someone on the front end, you’re gone with the click of a mouse. If that’s ok with you, click away. Be ready for a different normal

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March 2013 This is a new game and the rules are different. Online dating may seem easy, you fill out a profile, they hook you up with Mr./Ms. compatible, and presto, instant romance. It doesn’t usually happen that way. The first big difference with dot com dating is that the Internet allows people to project themselves in the perfect light before they meet you. Surveys have shown that most people lie, so learn to ask the right questions and use a reputable site. If you find someone you’re interested in, meet up with the person in a public place so you can talk face to face Communication Because most of our communication is nonverbal (body language, eye contact, and tone of voice) it’s hard to read someone’s heart online. You can’t see that tender look in the eyes, or that come hither glance. Today’s mode of communication (texting, emailing and IM) is standard for initiating a conversation. It’s also an easy way to blow someone off if you need to. You’re also taking a chance that because someone can write sappy emails they’re great communicators---not necessarily. Fantasy versus reality Online relationships can take on a fantasy feel very quickly. If we’re lonely, we can easily fall prey to scammers. We can fall into seeing someone whom we know little about as our knight in shining armor without any evidence supporting that belief. Care must be taken not to move too quickly and not to idealize someone you hardly know. People can put forth all kinds of masks online. They can portray themselves as something they are not, or appear to have qualities they don’t have. A study done by BeatutifulPeople.com said that fifty-three percent of people surveyed said they lied about their online profiles A different kind of intimacy Online dating begins with a different kind of intimacy. You don’t really know the intentions of your potential match, so you have to be clear with them about your

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38 intentions. Because you will probably spend some time talking over email, you’ll want to learn what to look for that may indicate problems with your potential match. Be aware that some people communicate online for years before they meet. Requires caution As a counselor, I’ve seen many people be scammed and hurt from online dating. That’s not to say I think all online dating is bad. But be cautious; don’t arrange to meet someone for the first time unless it’s in a public place. Tell a trusted friend where you’re going. Be on the alert for someone who asks for too much personal information or money. Make sure you look closely at their profile picture too. People have been known to use fake photos. Technology is changing the face of how we do relationships--- we have to decide if we want to take the chance to change with it. Dot Com dating can be a great way for busy people to meet. It has plenty of advantages. By exercising a little caution and doing your homework on the front end of things, you can have fun and maybe even find the special someone. At the end of the day, the best thing you can do with dot com dating is bring it into the real world as soon as possible. Back at you: Have you had any experience with online dating? If so, what advice can you give?

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

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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.

~~~~~~~ Faith & Fitness: No More Excuses! By Kellye Davis Williams ŠMarch 2013 Owning my own gym, I hear a lot reasons why people stop exercising. Some are very legitimate reasons while others sound like excuses more than anything else. I've made a list of the top 10 reasons why people stop exercising and included some remedies that might work for you. 1. No motivation- Feeling unmotivated will make it hard to start or complete anything, let alone a physical fitness regime. Lack of motivation can not only stop you from your overall, long-term training routine, it can even stop you from finishing

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March 2013 a training session. Remedy: Set goals for yourself. Setting goals will give you something to work towards. For example, you could set a goal for the amount of chin-ups you want to be able to do in the next 3 to 4 weeks. Visualize yourself doing it, especially when you don’t feel like training or finishing your session. 2. Setting Unrealistic Goals- If you set goals that can’t be achieved, you’re pretty much setting yourself up for failure. You can get really get discouraged and stop your training altogether. Remedy: If your goal was to increase the amount of chin-ups you can do, an unrealistic goal would be going from an ability to do five chin-ups to setting goal of fifteen chin-ups in 10 days. A more realistic goal would be increasing from five up to, say, eight to ten chin ups in 2 to 3 weeks. The goal you set should be tough enough to make you have to work for it so that you feel a sense of accomplishment, but realistic enough that you can see yourself improving. 3. Not having a clear plan- This is a huge reason why people stop exercising. Deciding to become physically fit without a plan is like trying to build a house without blueprints. Sure, it can be done, but it’s a lot easier with the plans. Remedy: Figure out what your goals are and find the best way to achieve them. Learn about the 5 Components of Physical Fitness and how they relate to the goals that you set for yourself, or find a professional who can help you. Then sit down and work out some training ideas and take some body measurements so you can chart your changes. This will help on the motivation front as well. 4. Doing too much too soon- You’ve set your goals, done your homework, and you started your first week of training by working out 6 days in a row, an hour and a half each day, without a day off. This is a

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40 great way to get injured and wind up in the category of "why people stop exercising." Sure, you have good intentions but all of the good intentions in the world won’t amount to a hill of beans if you can’t train. Remedy: Start slowly, make sure you rest and take days off. Rome wasn’t built in a day and there’s good reason why. In the beginning less is better. 5. Pain- It’s important to recognize the different kinds of pain that you can encounter. Pain from injury or a known condition is something you should have a professional look at before you continue training. On the other hand, if the pain you’re experiencing is because you haven’t trained in a while or are trying out a different training routine then that’s completely normal and it really shouldn't be a reason to stop exercising. Remedy: Assuming it’s not an injury take a day off and then get back at it. 6. Not seeing any results- This can be disheartening and it's a major reason why people stop exercising. If you’re looking for results in the first couple of weeks it’s too early. I tell my clients in 6 to 8 weeks you can start to see changes, though for some people it will happen sooner. You should also be honest and ask yourself if you’re doing everything that you should be doing in terms of exercise and your eating habits. Remedy: If you’ve been at it for at least 3 months and you’re training 2 or 3 times a week without results, and there are no underlying health problems, then you need to re-evaluate your diet and double-check your training regiment. Your diet may have hidden (or not-so-hidden) calorie bombs in it, and you may need to put a little more elbow-grease into your training. 7. Not having any fun- Another major reason why people stop exercising; if it’s not fun, why do it? Especially when it makes you sweaty and sore.

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Remedy: If you find your training boring the easy answer is to change it up. It could be as simple as changing your environment: train outside once in a while or change up your exercises all together. At my gym I combine several training techniques in addition to conventional strength training so that my clients don’t get bored. 8. No time- This is one of the biggest reasons why people stop exercising, “I have no time.” Thirty-five to forty minutes is all you need, and if you don’t have that how about ten to fifteen minutes of high intensity training? If you can’t spare 15 fifteen minutes then you’re not ready to commit to training. All I can say is, “get back to me when you’re serious.” Remedy: Prioritize. On a scale of 1 to 10 how important is your health? If it’s 7 or higher but you’re not exercising you’re pretty much lying to yourself. Fifteen minutes in the morning or evening is a great place to start. 9. Can’t afford the gym- This is one of the rare, legitimate reasons why people stop exercising. Economic downturns and companies downsizing or closing all together means certain things have to be put on the back burner. Remedy: Who says you need a gym membership to stay fit? There’s hundreds of websites that can help you stay fit, no gym membership required. Just because your bank account is getting slimmer doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be. On the other hand, you can find other areas to cut back on so that you can afford training in the gym. You can't put a price tag on your health! There are many of my clients who have cut back in other areas of spending to be able to come to the gym! 10. You’re embarrassed to train in front of people- You break into a sweat imagining the bodybuilders laughing and snickering at the gym. You think everyone

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41 will stare at you in horror. Remedy: Get over it. It’s normal to feel self-conscious when doing something new. But just remember: spandex and tank tops are NOT fitness center regulation. Besides, most people are too busy with their own workouts and fitness to notice you anyway. So wear what makes you feel comfortable. If you’re really not up for it then start training at home. Try my beginner’s routine, go for a walk, just re-introduce yourself to your body and when you see a change or simply feel more comfortable step it up a notch and join a fitness group or start a physical activity that interests you. There are a lot of reasons why people stop what they're doing, but I've found that these are the top 10 reasons people stop exercising. I've also found that knowing that these things happen and being ready for them, if and when they do occur, is a big part in getting over it and on with it. There are many reasons why people stop exercising! So, do everything you can to make sure that you’re one of the ‘lucky to be physically fit’ people walking around out there! Don't look for excuses! Look for reasons to start and to continue!

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

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while proving the power of a woman is more than superficial refinement. She is the co 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!

~~~~~~~ Featured Author: Mary Manners!

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. ~~~~~~~

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.

Michele’s Musings: Pursuit of the Free Burrito By Michele Abshire ©March 2013 My dear friend, Ms. Bernice, received a coupon for a free burrito at church recently. Ms. Bernice decided to use the coupon on her way home that very day. She stopped in the first store but they did not carry this particular burrito brand. So she traveled on and stopped at the next store and again they did not carry this type of burrito either. A bit discouraged but still hopeful, on she went, stopping at the third store and again she received the same news, they did not carry that particular burrito. By now she was close to home, hungry and still no burrito but a determination arose in her heart, she was going to find the elusive burrito. Ms. Bernice decided to veer a little out of the way to a larger store. Before going in, she also decided that she would be friendly to everyone she met, give them a smile and a nice word. She may as well bless others as

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March 2013 she was on the search for the burrito. She went down the frozen food aisles perusing the freezers for the burrito with no luck. As people passed, she would smile, speak a kind word and show them her coupon asking if they knew where she could find the item. She had gone down the aisles at least three times greeting everyone who passed. Ms. Bernice was actually having a great time greeting people in her pursuit of the burrito but was just about ready to give up the quest. That is when she saw a man putting up bananas. He didn’t know if the store carried the burrito but directed her to someone he said ‘knew everything.’ The woman knew exactly where these burritos were and guided Ms. Bernice directly to the free burritos. Once there, Ms. Bernice had her pick of several different choices. With excitement she made her choice, went home and ate the burrito which was well worth the pursuit. Ms. Bernice’s determination to find the free burrito reminded me of two different women in the Bible. The first was the woman with the issue of blood who was looking for healing (Matthew 9:20-22; Mark 5:25-34 and Luke 8:43-47) and the second was the woman who kept going to the judge for justice (Luke 18:1-8). Though the three women were seeking different ends, persistence is at the heart of each. In all three, each woman received what they sought because of sheer determination. They would not give up in the pursuit of their cause. Had any one of them given up they would not have obtained their goal. In Luke 18: 1b Jesus said, “men ought to pray and not lose heart” and Luke 18:7 “shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them?” Ms. Bernice displayed a perfect example of what we should do in prayer and our walk with God even when we don’t see immediate results. God does answer prayer, we needn’t lose heart. Though our prayers are not always answered on our time table, we can be

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43 assured that God does answer. He answers in His perfect timing as we faithfully pursue Him. He not only answers but He changes us to be more like Jesus in the process as we allow Him and trust Him to work in our lives. He constantly refines our faith and works toward making us into what we ought to be. He often uses the tough and difficult times in our lives to do this work. “So that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:7 Ms. Bernice was diligent in doing everything she could to obtain her objective; she did not lose heart. Though there seemed to be roadblocks and obstacles to her objective she pressed through and kept stepping forward. She also decided to bless others though her objective had not yet been met and the right answer did not seem to be on the horizon. In the end, because of her diligence and determination, she found her answer and was rewarded with the prize that she had sought. In the end, the prize was well worth the journey. Some scriptures come to mind concerning Ms. Bernice’s day. The first being, 1 Thessalonians 5:13, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” Ms. Bernice’s determination to stay joyful and bless those she met with a smile and a kind word was like giving thanks despite not being able to find the elusive burrito. She did not let the disappointing circumstances keep her from displaying God’s love and joy to others. She was a light for Christ. She did all this while pressing toward her ultimate goal. In Philippians 3:14 Paul spoke and said, “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call in Christ Jesus.” Paul certainly pressed toward the goal he had set his heart upon and he accomplished things as a Christian most of us only dream of. Paul’s life as a Christian was all about determination and not giving up. He

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March 2013 suffered shipwrecks, beatings, imprisonment and many other things yet he never once gave up and in the end he was able to say “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7 Ms. Bernice pressed toward the goal, gave thanks, fought a good fight and finished her course finding the item she sought and in the end her hunger was satisfied. We need to do the same in our lives. In serving Christ, there is a goal to press toward; a fight to fight and a race to run. It takes faithfulness, persistence, diligence and determination but we can win the prize. We can win the upward call in Christ Jesus and become more like Him, accomplishing His will for our lives. Let us be as determined to pursue God and His free gift of salvation as Ms. Bernice was to find that free burrito May the hunger in our hearts for a relationship with God be filled and satisfied with the Life of Christ and His Holy Spirit. May we be all that 1 Peter 1:9 declares that we are, “a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” Love in Christ, Michele Copyright December 2012 ~ Michele LeDoux Abshire

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

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44 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. 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 ~~~~~~~ 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

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45 What does that mean? Is it possible for us to have or experience heaven on earth? Will we only experience heaven when our mortal body dies and our spirit returns from which it came? Or possibly when Jesus returns?

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/

As I mentioned in my first pondering, I’ve been on a spiritual quest for most of my life. I read voraciously books by spiritual leaders of our time…. Max Lucado (Just like Jesus), Marianne Williamson (A Return to Love), Dr. Wayne Dyer (A Spiritual Solution to Every Problem), Neale Donald Walsch (Conversations with God)… and all of them offer hope that yes, we can experience heaven on earth! Romans 14:17 tells us that the kingdom of God (heaven) is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Luke 17:21 tells us in the Amplified Bible that the kingdom of God (heaven) is within and around us!

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So how do we experience heaven on earth? Simple – by choosing LOVE.

Pamela’s Ponderings: Heaven on Earth By Pamela S Thibodeaux ©March 2013

1st John 4:16 tells us that God is love and he who dwells in love, dwells in God and God in him.

We all want it, dream of the perfect world, imagine what heaven on earth would look like, would feel like…BE. In his famous song, Imagine, John Lennon tried to capture heaven on earth as “all people living in peace, sharing the world and the world living as one.” Skeptics and pessimists tell us it’ll never happen! Theologians tell us heaven is some place “out there” from which we originated and one day will return. Even Jesus said, “In this world you’ll have trials and tribulations.” HE also taught us to pray that God’s will be done “on earth as it is in heaven.”

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

The Bible exhorts us to “seek and pursue peace.” (Psalm 34:14). In the gospel of John, chapter 15, Jesus tells us over and over to remain in LOVE. If Jesus the risen Christ dwells in us, if the Holy Spirit of God dwells in us, if God who is love abides in us—why then can’t we simply, think, do and be love? Is it possible to do this and if so, HOW? How do we go from where we are (spiritually and emotionally) and what we’ve been taught (fear, hatred, prejudice), to feeling, experiencing and being pure, unconditional love? By remembering that love is a choice, a decision and at any time and in any given

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March 2013 circumstance you can choose a loving response. But…but…but…HOW? How do we manifest so much love in our hearts, minds and souls that it becomes our first response instead of an afterthought? How do we feel so much love in ourselves so that it overflows into the lives of others? By basking in the love of God for you and sharing that love with others, you become a vessel of Love.

46 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. Multipublished 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.

You become a vessel for God. And you become more like Jesus. Every time we choose love over hate, peace and joy over stress and strife, gratitude over greed, blessing over cursing, forgiveness and grace in lieu of revenge and retribution, we experience a little more of heaven on earth. Easier said than done you think? Depends on how bad you want it.

~~~~~~~ Featured Publisher: RMS1437

Something to think about! Meditation Challenge: Take a moment several times today, close your eyes, breath deep and simply repeat (out loud if possible) the words… “I love you.” Allow those words to rise within you, stir up your emotions, and embrace the wonder of how that feels. Then go about your day with those feelings pushing you. When challenging circumstances arise, take a love break and repeat this process. I promise you’ll have a better day all around!

©March 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

If you are looking for a publisher who agrees with your belief that, above all else, sharing God's love and His word in written form is first and foremost a ministry, you have come to the right place. We are committed to prayer and serving our Lord and our authors with the highest level of integrity and experience to bring to life the message God has placed in their heart. We desire, and will continuously work to encourage, a "family" environment amongst our authors so that they will pray for and encourage one another.

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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. Answer the call! Visit RMS1437 Website for complete details. RMS1437 Featured Author: DV Adams!

~~~~~~~ SR Review:

Healing a Broken Marriage By Deborah Ross Through her own personal struggles author Deborah Ross shares with readers a message of hope and emotionally identifies with the suffering of a broken marriage. This biblical teaching challenges the hurting to believe God against all odds and seeing salvation of the Lord come to pass in their spouse. The underlying message Ross emphasizes is 1 Corinthians 13 and the promise that God never fails to offer His love. Available @ Amazon in Print & on Kindle!

D.V. Adams - Pastor, teacher, counselor, husband, father, grandfather, and servant. He holds a PhD in Theology. Together with his wife, Theresa, they founded TA-DA Ministry. In addition to serving in ministry, he enjoys writing mystery and intrigue sprinkled with humor. For more information on Adams and his upcoming projects, visit his website. His book [Run!] is available in Print, on Kindle & Nook ~ Visit RMS1437 Website to purchase. ~~~~~~~ Interested in Advertising YOUR book in The Wordsmith Journal Magazine? Visit our Advertising Info Page or Email: twjadsales@gmail.com

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Just Sayin…. By Barb Shelton Several references in the Holy Bible pertain to “ears to hear” and the words “eyes to see.” The scripture that best describes this story is Ezekiel 12:2. “Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house.” This is Deborah’s story. Deborah Ross has written a valuable book of compassionate Christian advice for failing marriages. She experienced numerous hardships and challenges in her personal life and bravely revealed brutal truths that her empty marriage brought her to a near mental breakdown, severe stress and temptations that might have lured her away from her strong intimacy with God and consequently – divorce.

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Ms Ross remained prayerfully strategic and strong in her battle to bring her husband to his knees before the Lord. She proved that standing and believing God’s Word without doubt for her husband’s salvation and “If God brings you to it, He’ll see you through it” – my favorite true quotation works. Her faith and relationship with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit was essential to bring about the changes and miracles she prayed for.

an open mind and follow the journey to salvation. Undoubtedly, reading this book as a believer will enhance your personal relationship with the Lord and add wisdom to your soul. At the end of the book is a lovely prayer for marriage, as well as a prayer for salvation. Perhaps her advice isn’t for everyone, or some parts of her story won’t initially be understood, which in my estimation would depend on where you are in your journey with the Lord.

Deborah’s heartbreaking story was at times very awkward to read because of personally relating too much of what she went through. This story is not about me – but I saw myself throughout the sad and emotional conflicts she experienced. Her story is very disturbing to my own emotions and has given me hope for such a grace of God to fall on my own prayers.

Overall, Deborah writes from the compassionate heart of a mature Christian, and it would be an honor to meet her personally. She knows from where she speaks.

“Have you ever wondered if you married the wrong guy?” The first sentence of her story struck me as bold….however a question that every wife might have wondered, I admit I have. Deborah then further questions …“Did you think once you became born-again, that your husband would quickly see the difference Christ has made in your life and repent, only to be let down by his indifference to the need for this great salvation?” How did Deborah know my own thoughts and questions? Her questions don’t stop there and she is preparing the reader for victory. “If you have answered "yes" to any of these questions, this book was written with heartfelt wisdom, biblical knowledge, and experience just for you!” She lays out eight action instructions to follow and beautiful scriptures throughout the book to meditate on God’s word in applying her principles to our own situations. Deborah Ross is clearly an organized individual, extremely talented, self admitted type-A personality with a discerning and wise soul. If an unbeliever picks up this book, I pray that person will read Deborah’s writing with

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Using Deborah’s own words for a final thought and my compliance – she says, "It is my prayer that the Lord will use my testimony to give you hope in what may seem to be a hopeless situation.” This book is not another fluffy Bible study of "how to" but rather a lay-it-on-the-line transparent testimony and radical challenge for you to consider in being God's chosen woman for such a time as this (Esther 4:14)! Amen

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, ~All Rights Reserved


March 2013 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 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…. By Sarah Heath What is a reader to do? In today's Christian Fiction market, there seems to be a neverending stream of books geared specifically towards the young adult audience. With a near endless supply of novels, how can the reader discern what constitutes a “good” Christian Novel? Should the Christian themes be overt, or should the novel just include some underlying sense of morality? Should sexual tension even exist in these novels? The good news is that the selection isn't limited by any means. But that in order to narrow the selection down the reader must know his or her personal preferences before choosing a novel. There is a novel out there for every taste in literature imaginable, comparable to secular fiction, without all

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49 the “junk.” Whether you're in the mood for a novel of far-away pirates and princesses or a story about New York socialites, there's plenty of options. Within Christian fiction, there are some novels that are considered on the “cutting edge” because of their subject matter. Though these novels are not raunchy, as most general fiction out there is, they may still be too much for some readers who enjoy a more lighthearted read. Others novels deal with heavy topics presented with the underlying hope of Christ, like the cutting and alcohol abuse present in Melody Carlson's True Colors series. Still others can be in a “grey area,” they may be full of moral lessons, but neglect to mention anything of Christianity. Though there are some boundaries that remain constant in Christian fiction, like the lack of foul language or explicit sexual content, I do believe that is up to the reader to understand their own standards. What most clearly marks the difference between secular and Christian fiction to me is the message of the novel, the very reason why the author wrote the book. If there's no true redemption or changing of the characters, and the novel is just full of fluff, coarse language, and sex, it just isn't the right book for me.

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. ~All Rights Reserved


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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.

~~~~~~~ Special Group Ad: RMS1437 Authors

~~~~~~~ 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! ~~~~~~~

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Want to purchase a title you see advertised here in TWJM? Simply click on the cover image, ISBN# or Title (if highlighted)!

ŠMarch 2013 ~ The Wordsmith Journal Magazine

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51 ~~~~~~~

Behind the Mystery: The Elephant Test By EE Kennedy ©March 2013 There’s an old morality tale, I believe it comes from India, about four blind men who inspect an elephant. One grabs the animal’s trunk. “It’s a snake,” he says. Another finds himself reaching about the large, round leg. “It’s a column.” The third finds its tail. “No, it’s a rope,” he says. The fourth feels along the side. “You’re wrong, it’s a massive wall!” Nobody has it right, because they’re not getting the whole picture. Life can be like that. In a way, we’re just feeling our way along in the dark, and our impressions of what we feel may not always be right. I remember, many years ago, being secretly bitter about the move we were required to make for my husband’s work. My parents lived in Birmingham; our friends and church were there. We had a house and good neighbors. Why did we have to move to a microscopically small town in Texas? If you see a photo of me on our last day there, I have a very sad look on my face. I definitely wasn’t seeing the big picture. I did one thing right, however. I prayed and asked God to help me learn to appreciate our new home. The funny thing was, He was already working to answer prayers I’d murmured in the dark hours of the night. The public school our children were assigned to in Birmingham wasn’t safe. There had been a child abducted from just a block away, there was some alarming behavior on the playground and the staff and faculty were distant to the parents and their concerns. We had put our girls in Christian private school, but it was very expensive and only went as far as the sixth grade. “Please, Lord, help us find a good, safe school.”

town where we found ourselves. However, it was the county seat and the public school turned out to be just the sort of place I’d prayed for. The classes were small, the teachers and principal were friendly and I was welcome in the school building any time. (The PTO meetings led with prayer, which is why I’m not giving you the name of the town.) Eventually, these teachers became good friends and I was invited to substitute teach in the junior high. Our girls were afforded far more freedom than we’d have been willing to give them in the big city and they had their chance to shine in extracurricular competitions, including art, drama and music. Most of their friends were Christian, or professed to be, and they had a happy, safe childhood. Our eldest daughter met the young man who was to be her husband in Texas. When the time came for us to move to another state, years later, I felt really sad again. Texas was home. I loved Texas now. But the Lord had taught me a lesson. I’d learned that He had the big picture, I didn’t. North Carolina may have been unfamiliar at first, but knowing that the Lord had this in His Hands made all the difference. This time, it was our younger daughter who happened to meet her future husband in North Carolina. He’d never been anywhere near Texas! And there was another prayer answered: “Lord, please let our girls find fine, Christian husbands.” “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3;5-6

There were no private schools in the tiny

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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)

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 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. She and her husband, an ordained minister

©March 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 ~~~~~~~ You are not Alone: Stronger By Dawn Kidd © March 2013 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil. Proverbs 1:33

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I have been doing the exciting and yet exhausting job of editing my book. I have been preparing it to go to publishing. Sounds easy enough, right? Most people think that once the words are on paper, the hard part is done. Not so. For me, it has been emotionally intense. As I have read the words I wrote nearly a year ago, I could not help but feel tears in my eyes. At times, I felt as though I was reliving each moment. Each word brought me back to the emotions that I felt at that point in my life. I definitely know that when my book is released, I have not held anything back. As difficult as the process has been, I know that I would not be here without God's grace. I am stronger. I am more trusting. I have more faith. I have more compassion. I have a new understanding. I have a new direction. I am definitely a different version of myself. Even in those darkest and most difficult times, I knew God was there. It might not have been evident at the time, but I can see it with a new clarity now. I think we mistake pain as an absence of God's presence. When we cry out and God does not relieve us of our pain, we think he has left us. I have learned that those are the times he is making us stronger by standing beside us, silently. Perhaps, while crying with us. I have heard this amazing song and was reminded of it again this morning. I want to share it with you. You may not have experienced a child's death, but we have all experienced a difficult time. I think it is important to remember that what we view as the impossible is a moment that we, with God, can make accomplishable.

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53 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 Organization that assists families with grief, who have lost a child, at any age). ~~~~~~~ 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.... 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 http://pamelathibodeaux.com ~~~~~~~ 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; March 2013 Issue