Book Review for “Valens Rise”

I was given a copy of this book by the author, Sherrel Lee, in exchange for an honest review. I liked the basis of this story, an alternate human race, shape shifting and mad scientists. To me it moved a little slow and took a long time to get to the meatier parts of the story. I had a hard time getting real attached to the characters. Over all it was a good read, if a bit long. I think this book would appeal to a younger audience, I would consider the sexual content to be for age 17 and up, not that it was explicit, just mature. I give this book 3 stars.

Book Review for “Eden” (Now re-released as “Bane”)

I just finished reading “Eden” which has been re-released as “Bane” by Keary Taylor. I am not sure how much is changed between the first and the second publication, but I loved this Dystopian story. The characters suck you into their world, especially Eve. This is a new twist for me and Dystopia, a cyborg- infection has just about wiped out mankind and the few survivors are trying to stay alive. I am definitely reading the rest of the trilogy. Book two is available and not sure when book three is coming out. This one is clean enough for even pre-teens. No flesh eating zombies here, but a tough female character and some great secondary characters as well. I give this book 5 stars.

What Do We Do With Rejection

Rejection…we’ve all experienced it at one time or another. Sometimes it was intentional, other times we may have only perceived rejection when that wasn’t the intent. But it all feels the same. As a writer, I have had some of my work rejected, criticized and sneered at. I have to admit it hurt much more than the ‘in crowd’s’ rejection in my school days. Even in the fleeting moments when I was part of that crowd, there always seemed to be something lacking in me that others would point out (my curly hair when straight was in, my love for books, my bushy eyebrows, etc). What do we do with that rejection? I used to tuck it away, sometimes daydreaming about ‘being someone’ great and showing them all how wrong they were about me. Sometimes it would creep back out in the dark hours of night and haunt me, it’s amazing how even at thirty or forty, some cruel words or actions from your childhood can keep you up at night.
Now I give any rejection I feel to God. My strategy wasn’t working, obviously. He knows rejection…”He was rejected by men”; I even rejected Him for a season. One of my favorite scriptures is Ephesians 1:6 “To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the beloved.” His work made us acceptable and accepted. If God accepts us, does it really matter what anyone else thinks? I have noticed that the more I know Him, and accept His love, the more confident I become, and the more confident I become the less rejection I feel. Oh, sure, it is probably still there at times, but I don’t feel it. It doesn’t affect me. I’ve also come to realize that everyone isn’t going to like me, or my art, or writing, etc. (I know, big surprise!), just like I don’t enjoy every book, piece of art, pair of shoes, etc. For those that are just being mean, well…first of all I tend to think ‘they’ll reap what they sow’, and more frequently I pray for them. The rest are probably had no intention of making anyone feel rejected.
As a writer and crafts-person/artist, I have to be especially careful when someone is trying to give constructive criticism. My stories and creations are like my children and sometimes I feel like that mother bear protecting her cubs. But if I ignore all healthy criticism, I will be the only one enjoying my work. We also have to be careful about how we feel about God’s ‘corrective criticism’ I hesitate to even use that word in association with God. He truly never criticizes. But don’t be fooled, He does correct and chastise. Aren’t we His work of art? He wants others to enjoy us as well.

God’s Comfort

(Written previously)
Can I be honest? We all have our moments, those days when we wonder why we even got out of bed. When all the news seem bad, at worst, and less than what we hoped for, at best. What do we do with those moments? Usually I have a good cry (I said I was being honest). My day was like that today. Not the whole day, but enough to get the tears flowing. Then when I got home and walked into my kitchen, there was a big piece of paper on my fridge that said:
” But, beloved, we are confident of better things concerning you, yes, things that accompany salvation, though we speak in this manner. For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises Hebrew 6:9-12.”
A message right from the Comforter! Sure, I am the one who printed it off and stuck it on my fridge, but I had originally printed it off for a friend who is facing a challenge this year, but decided “what the heck” and printed an extra copy for myself. God knew I would need it today.
Then my Spurgeon Devotional said, “”Trust in Him at all times.”Psalm 62:8 Faith is as much the rule of temporal as of spiritual life; we ought to have faith in God for our earthly affairs as well as for our heavenly business. It is only as we learn to trust in God for the supply of all our daily need that we shall live above the world. We are not to be idle, that would show we did not trust in God, who worketh hitherto, but in the devil, who is the father of idleness. We are not to be imprudent or rash; that were to trust chance, and not the living God, who is a God of economy and order. Acting in all prudence and uprightness, we are to rely simply and entirely upon the Lord at all times. Let me commend to you a life of trust in God in temporal things. Trusting in God, you will not be compelled to mourn because you have used sinful means to grow rich. Serve God with integrity, and if you achieve no success, at least no sin will lie upon your conscience. Trusting God, you will not be guilty of self-contradiction. He who trusts in craft, sails this way to-day, and that way the next, like a vessel tossed about by the fickle wind; but he that trusteth in the Lord is like a vessel propelled by steam, she cuts through the waves, defies the wind, and makes one bright silvery straightforward track to her destined haven. Be you a man with living principles within; never bow to the varying customs of worldly wisdom. Walk in your path of integrity with steadfast steps, and show that you are invincibly strong in the strength which confidence in God alone can confer. Thus you will be delivered from carking care, you will not be troubled with evil tidings, your heart will be fixed, trusting in the Lord. How pleasant to float along the stream of providence! There is no more blessed way of living than a life of dependence upon a covenant-keeping God. We have no care, for He careth for us; we have no troubles, because we cast our burdens upon the Lord.”
We can’t change some things. Period. But we can change how we react, and how we see things. I’ve had my cry, a short one this time, now I am choosing to see things through the eyes of my loving Father. I choose to accept the comfort of the Holy Spirit, who does His job well. I choose to “rely simply and entirely upon the Lord at all times”, especially those moments that are hard. Amen