Sunday, March 27, 2011

Me? A Traitor?

At first I felt like a traitor. Hunkered down under the covers, a soft glow illuminating my face, while my early-rising husband slumbered beside me. Noiselessly, I turned each page by tapping my finger on the edge of the screen. But the more I read on my Nook for iPhone app, the more I began to like it. I justified my traitorous actions by reminding myself that I still loved real books, and I would never cease to purchase the paper and ink tomes that lined my bookshelves. Really. Scout's honor. After all, I've been a writer and editor all of my adult life. How could I possibly abandon real books for digital ones? Of course, I couldn't. I wouldn't. Never!

Does anyone else feel pangs of guilt when reading an e-book? Maybe it's just me. Every time I swipe my finger across the screen to turn the page, I feel like I'm single-handedly contributing the demise of the printed page as we know it.

So, what's a reader/writer to do? I've finally come to terms with the fact that it's not an either/or decision. When it comes to e-books vs. real books, I can have my cake and eat it too. I love the portability and convenience of the e-book, but for me, a digital reader can never replace the tactile experience of holding a book and turning real pages. And guess what? It doesn't have to! So why limit myself to one or the other?

And for writers... the opportunities in e-book publishing are phenomenal. Just last week, I heard an informative webinar on publishing your book digitally. My eyes have been opened to this mysterious new world of e-books, and I like what I see. Do you?

For more great info on e-publishing, check out these helpful blogs: and

Monday, March 14, 2011

Facebook and Twitter and Youtube... Oh my!

Ten years ago, Facebook didn't exist, and "twitter" was the cheery, chirping sound you heard from birds on the other side of the window pane. Now, it's hard to imagine our world without these social media phenomena.

A few months ago, I attended a writer's conference where Holley Gerth of presented an amazing workshop on "10 Trends Every Writer Needs to Know." Holley played the above video clip, "Socialnomics."  The power of social media presented here will absolutely blow you away.

Our world is changing at the speed of light. Social media provides Christians with the awesome opportunity to shine the light of the gospel to a hurting world. Are we using our "small talk" on Facebook and Twitter for good? "Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:16

Saturday, March 5, 2011

God's Will... Mystery or Not?

I came across a Scripture today that I've read at least a hundred times in my life, but somehow today it leaped off the page. It was fresh, alive, and relevant... after all, it IS the Bible!

Have you ever felt like God's will was this mysterious, elusive thing that you could never quite figure out? I've had those moments more than I can count. You just can't quite get what it is that He wants you to do, what He's seeing that you're not. After reading 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, I have an amazing new perspective on God's will. And even though it's still mysterious, God's will doesn't seem quite so elusive, so unattainable now.

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is GOD'S WILL for you in Christ Jesus. (emphasis added)
Did you catch that? Three very SPECIFIC details of God's will are laid out for us very plainly in this passage. All three are ACTIONS. Rejoice. Pray. Give thanks. This plan seems so simple, but WHY is it so hard for us to truly LIVE this way?

If you're like me, I LOVE lists. I make "to do" lists at least twice a day. So I jumped on the fact that this list (Rejoice. Pray. Give thanks.) is preceded by another list that gives even more insight into God's will for our lives. I like to think of this whole passage as God's "to do" list for me. Not to gain any merit or favor with Him, but as a guide, a sort of Biblical Mapquest for doing His will. This amazing list is found in verses 14 and 15:

Encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.
Whoa! So THIS is it! This is God's will for me -- and for you. Can you even IMAGINE what would happen if we truly lived this out every day? It would completely, radically change our world and the world of those around us!

All of a sudden, God's will seems to be about much more than just "What car should I buy?" or "What job should I take?" or "Should I rent or purchase a home?" and much more about how we DO LIFE every single day.

Father, help me to not only want to KNOW your will, but to DO your will. Actively. Radically. Completely.