Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Settling in...

I realized today that it's been several weeks since I've posted. Life has been a bit...well... hectic so far this year to say the least. March and April were spent primarily helping Janelle (my aunt) pack up her home for her move back to the US.

We loaded up a container with her things, sold what was left, and finished closing up the house. Scott came at the end to help with some of the logistical things like switching over the utilities to the new owner amongst many other things.

Once we finally realized that our second vehicle wouldn't be fixed by the time we needed to go, we packed up our truck and headed home. As you can see from this photo, we had to wrap everything in plastic garbage bags because it was pouring as we left.

Thankfully, we made it home with out any problems (except for missing a turn while Scott and I were busy talking). It was clearly good to be back together again!

We are now so thankful to be back home in Mozambique, but even here things have started with a bang. Scott is already back to his teaching and preaching in the villages. We also have guests from South Africa who have been with us since last week. They feel that God is calling them into the mission field and are spending a week with us to observe our ministry.

On a quick writing note, I had a great time doing an interview about my books and The ECHO Project on Blog Talk Radio last Friday with long time friend John Gaessler. You can listen to the archived interview here if you missed it.

Be blessed this week!


The kids were also excited to finally get back to the beach for our day off yesterday. (And so was I!)

Saturday, April 09, 2011

The end of summer...

While summer is getting ready to fade into winter in my part of the world, I spent sometime outside this morning, listening to the birds and watching the bees search for nectar. It will be a while before winter is here, but in the meantime, I'm enjoying the slightly cooler weather along with the beauty of summer's end.

What beauty do you see in your world today?

"The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands." Psalm 19:1

Be blessed,


Thursday, April 07, 2011

People of the Book by Kathi Macias

Today, I'd like to introduce author Kathi Macias to you. Kathi 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, where the two of them spend their free time buzzing around in their new ride: Al’s 2005 sunburst orange Corvette.

Kathi's books caught my attention because she uses them to tackle real events through a fictional story--or as she calls it, 'fiction with a mission.' Here's an excerpt from her latest release, People of the Book.

"Eighteen-year-old Farah, who lives in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, with her family, wants nothing more than to develop a deeper, more meaningful devotion to her Muslim faith. She sees the month of Ramadan as her chance to draw nearer to Allah, and she pursues that goal throughout the holiday. All goes well until the prophet Isa—Jesus—appears to her in a dream and calls her to Himself. At the same time, her only brother, Kareem, who has never liked Farah, actively seeks an opportunity to expose her for the sham he believes she is.

"Meanwhile, Farah’s seventeen-year-old cousin, Nura, has begun to frequent an online chat room where former Muslims gather to discuss their new faith, based on their belief that Isa is much more than a Muslim prophet—He is actually the Son of God. While there, Nura becomes acquainted with an American girl of Muslim ancestry—now a devout Christian named Sara—and a friendship quickly develops. However, Sara has problems of her own due to her fifteen-year-old brother Emir’s involvement with a gang.

"The lives of Farah, Nura, and Sara ultimately dovetail until each finds herself at a place where her faith is put to the test. Will they remain faithful to the end? Will God protect and keep them safe in the midst of persecution and treachery? Or will they be required to pay the ultimate price for their faith?

To learn more about Kathi, please visit her website or her blog.

Book Trailer for People of the Book

Be blessed today,


Wednesday, April 06, 2011

God's amazing creation

Yesterday, my aunt and I spent some time up on the nearby mountain where she treated me to some time at a spa. Not only was our time extremely relaxing, but the view was incredible. Photos don't do justice to the stunning backdrop of the mountains, the green valley, and the white, shifting mist, but I had to share some of the beauty of God's creation.

Please pray for Janelle, who will return to the US tomorrow. I'll stay another week to finish some last minute details and get rid of the remaining things here, before leaving for Mozambique with my family.

Be blessed!


Saturday, April 02, 2011

It's here!

I'm always so excited to hold a new story in my hands, and Summerside did an incredible job with the cover of An Ocean Away. It's even multi-textured, something I couldn't see by just the photo.

Be blessed!


"New York's high society might prove more treacherous than the wilds of Africa"

Friday, April 01, 2011

Saying Goodbye

It's been a season of goodbyes. Almost a year ago, Allen Avery, our teammate, father, and mentor passed away. For the past month, I've been in South Africa helping Janelle close up the house in preparation for her move back to the United States. While I've been so thankful for the opportunity to be with her during this time, it's been very emotional.

There have been other goodbyes during this last year as well. We spent last October through February on furlough, and while I don't mind saying goodbye to the days of traveling, it's always hard to say goodbye to the friends and family we were blessed to connect with while we were there.

In January, we said goodbye to our teammates, Luis and Fernanda who returned to Brazil. Then this morning, I had yet another goodbye to face. Friends from SA that we've known for almost six years are immigrating to Australia and stopped by to see us.

I hate negative blogs, but face it. Goodbyes can hurt. Change can be emotional and lonely.

But there is a positive side to all of this. I'm reading through the Bible with the kids this year and I've been struck over and over of how God is with us. Every day. Every moment. Through good times and not so good times.

Here's what Moses said to Joshua. "Be strong and courageous. The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged."

If you're feeling overwhelmed today, lonely, or discouraged, turn to the One who created you. The One who longs for a relationship with you.

"See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry...But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

You can read the entire passage in Matthew 6:25-34

Be blessed today,