Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Thanks for the things you have allowed me to go through
They have brought me Savior much closer to You
Thanks for the heartache, thanks for the pain
Thanks for the sunshine after the rain

Poverty, blindness, alcoholic parents, being orphaned, a child with a birth defect, widowed young, an alcoholic son, cancer, spinal cord injury. These are just the things I know about. Mom wrote this song in 1981 when she went deaf. She didn't know it wouldn't be permanent. Her faith challenges me.

Thanks for choosing one such as I
Thanks for being willing to die
Thanks for going to Calvary
Just so I could be happy and free

Happy? Really, with all she went through? Yes, I believe she was.

Thanks for Your love and thanks for Your care
Thanks for always being right there
Thanks for being my companion and guide
Thanks for always being by my side

She KNEW He was right there. I struggle to feel Him near. Her faith challenges me.

Thanks for things I don't understand
Thank for lending a helping hand
Thanks for strength each days tasks to do
But most of all Lord, thanks for You.

So many things we don't understand. Yet First Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to give thanks in ALL things, not just the things we understand, or the pleasant things. If I still had Mom's Braille Bible I would no doubt see her fingerprints on this verse. It may even be worn down a bit. She certainly lived it out. Her faith challenges me. 

She sang this song just 2 weeks before her passing. The previous 7 months she had suffered the spinal cord injury that would make her bed bound with pain as her constant companion. Yet she sang. She couldn't read her Bible, her source of strength, anymore. Yet she sang and meant it. 

Her faith challenged me.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Coin Purses

      So I decided to make some beaded Christmas ornaments to try and make a few extra bucks. I needed to display them. The problem was I wasn't sure if I had kept the miniature tree Mom used to display her crafts. So I went looking which sounds a lot easier than it actually was. The container with her things is in the storage bin in the garage--UP in the storage bin.
      I had to move my daughter's car and pull the old doll house off the top of the bin. I opened the lid and saw the teddy bear she made. I gave it a hug and set it down. There were other little mementos and her music and and the little piano music box. I wound it up and listened as I looked. Because of the position of the bin I was looking more with my hands than my eyes.
      Most everything I felt was soft with a few hard surfaces here and there but nothing prickly. No tree. I found a tote bag I'd given her years ago and decided to use it. In it and among the soft things in the bin were coin purses. She had quite a few. A couple were snap top but most had zippers and were bought as a set of cosmetic bags. Why so many. Organization? Maybe. She would use one for cash, one for various cards she needed, one for her lipstick and one for change. So why were there 8, twice as many as she needed?
     Mom didn't buy things she didn't need and she used things until they wore out. So why 8 when she only used 4? Who knows? Maybe I'm not supposed to know. Maybe it's just supposed to make me think about what I'm holding onto that I no longer need.
     Something tells me there's a spiritual/emotional application here but I just can't place my finger on it. What I can do is encourage you to examine yourself. Are you holding onto things that serve no purpose?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Spiritual Vegetarians

     I was listening to a Keith Green CD in my car the other day and To Obey is Better Than Sacrifice came on. (Click post title to listen) When Keith sang about thriving on milk but rejecting meat the term spiritual vegetarians came to mind. Before we go any further I am not knocking vegetarians--it's just a term that came to mind. I'm not sure what Keith or even Paul in his letter to the Corinthian Church exactly means by milk and meat. I think it is this: milk is the easy stuff of the gospel to digest. Salvation, peace, Heaven waiting. Meat is a bit hard to digest if you will: denying self, discipline, obedience.
    We are called baby Christians when we come to the faith and it is fine to thrive on milk but we are also expected to grow. Just as a human can not grow by only giving its body milk, spiritually we can not grow if we do not chew on the issues and get into the Word. But we are content to go to church on Sunday, crack open our Bibles (which we leave in the car during the week) and rely on the book index tabs to find the scripture because we don't know our Bible. The Bible is God's Autobiography. How are we to know Him if we don't read and study and scratch our heads in wonder once in a while?
     As good and as educated as they may be we cannot expect our pastors to be our sole source of nourishment. You wouldn't eat once a week. You wouldn't call your spouse once a week and not give him or her a second thought the rest of the time. We are called the bride of Christ but are we acting like it? The traditional wedding vow is to love, honor and obey and that is to be our vow to Christ. We can't obey if we don't know what He expects of us and that my friend is the meat of our relationship. It isn't always easy but it will be worth it.
     When it comes to my faith I want a well balanced meal: meat, potatoes and vegetables washed down with a cool glass of promises (milk).

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Interview with Kathi Macias

Hope you watched the trailer. If you didn't please click the link above.

How did you come up with the idea for A Christmas Journey Home?

I knew I wanted to do a Christmas book—the first of what would become an annual event that my publisher and I were discussing—and I also knew that despite the lighter tone required in a Christmas book (as opposed to the darker themes of the persecuted Church and human trafficking, which I’ve been writing about), I had to stick to my “brand” as closely as possible: hence, an “issues-related” Christmas novel, dealing with the issues related to illegal immigration.

What was your favorite scene to write in A Christmas Journey Home?

I loved writing this entire book, and the characters are delightful (except the villains, of course!), so I loved almost all the scenes. But I think I liked the scenes with Isabella’s old abuelo best, as the grandfather reminded me of my own grandpa and even my dad, both of whom I loved dearly. I love incorporating at least one elderly saint in each of my books, and in this one I decided on a man since most of the other books have had women as the elderly, praying characters. I also brought in a little boy because children can add such a delightful element to any story, and six-year-old Davey certainly does that in A Christmas Journey Home.

What was the most difficult scene, and why?

The toughest scene had to be when Francisco and Isabella thought they were finally on the verge of being able to get away from the migrant camp and find a small home of their own, where their baby could be born in relative comfort and safety. If you’ve read the book, you know that isn’t at all what happens. But this heartbreaking scene had to take place to bring the story to its miraculous conclusion.

What is there about you, apart from writing, that many people don’t know?

First, my “road name” is “Easy Writer” because my husband and I were Harley riders for many years. (We’ve traded the bike in on a 2005 Corvette, so I’m still “Easy Writer” but in comfort now!) Also, I served on staff at a large Southern California church for several years, training small group leaders and doing biblical counseling, among other things.

Who are some of your favorite writers, and are you an avid reader?

Absolutely I’m an avid reader! I have always loved books/reading/words and been fascinated by them. When I ran out of books as I child, I started writing my own. (Voila! Look what came of that!) As for favorite writers, that’s tough, but here are just a few: Brock and Bodie Thoene, Francine Rivers, Patti Lacy, Athol Dickson, Jim Rubart, and Alan Paton, who wrote my favorite all-time fiction book, Cry the Beloved Country. That book changed my life and inspired my novel set in South Africa in 1989, No Greater Love. I also enjoy reading Brennan Manning, Jennifer Kennedy Dean, Oswald Chambers, and Max Lucado for nonfiction.

What’s on the horizon for you now, so far as future book projects?

I am currently finishing up the final book of the three-installment Freedom series (Deliver Me From EvilSpecial Delivery, and The Deliverer). Then I will jump into my Christmas 2012 novel (working title is A Home For Christmas) and a novel called Last Chance for Justice, which is part of the multi-author Bloomfield Series with another publisher. After that I hope to get going on a new fiction series, which is still in the discussion/planning stages with my publisher and agent. So life is busy, but most contracts coming my way seem to be fiction right now. I am also keeping busy with very occasional editing projects and some speaking/teaching around the country.

Where can we find out more about you, The Freedom Series, and keep up with your to-be-released books?

Please feel free to visit my website at

I was given a complimentary copy of this book from the author in exchange for posting the author’s interview on my blog. This blog tour is managed by Christian Speakers Services ( 
I will give my copy to the first person who can tell me what I said in yesterday's post about the abuelo

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Christmas Journey Home

     The picture on the cover is lovely and genteel. The subtitle, Miracle In The Manger, suggests something wonderful is going to happen. But this is not a sweet and sappy Christmas story. The only thing predictable is that it will take place at Christmastime.
     "Two worlds separated by fear and anger collide at a most unlikely time and place." The quote on the back cover and the heart of the author, Kathi Macias let me know I was in for more than just good story telling. The plot took a detour I wasn't expecting.
     Isabella, one of the main characters will find out that the road to wonderful is full of twists and turns and potholes that jar body and soul. Miriam, a widow who isn't looking for wonderful, just a way to survive will realize something important too. Isabella's road to wonderful can not exist without the pavement of forgiveness Miriam must lay. 
      There is nothing to forgive Isabella of personally. The two women are strangers until they meet Christmas Eve. Isabella has come a long way and escaped dangers we would like to believe don't exist. Miriam is just trying to keep body and soul together on the ranch she must now run alone.
      I can't help but wonder if there is a spiritual application in all of this. Isabella has an abuelo, a grandfather who faithfully prays for her and has even encouraged her to go on this journey. Our spiritual journey is not always easy and it would do us all good to know we are being prayed for. But the abuelo represents something else to me. He represents someone older and wiser, like a mentor which we also can benefit from having. Mentors can help us navigate these twist and turns and heal from damage done by the potholes on our journey Home.
     I suggest you read this book. I've been careful not to give anything away. But I will give away this: my copy of the book for the cost of a comment when you tune in tomorrow and for the interview with the author.