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Historical Romance Author

The Last Thing You Want to See in Your Hotel Room

Posted by on May 1, 2018 in Family, Missions | 15 comments

Last month my husband Coy and I went to Belize to work with a ministry that a friend had started there. We’d never been to Belize before, but we’ve done our share of traveling and thought we’d seen everything. We were wrong. After a long day of flights and getting our bearings in the town, we were pleased to see how nice and clean our hotel was. It was beautiful with French doors to a balcony and many windows, but a quick inspection showed that the balcony was one continuous platform with only a very low wall separating it from the other four rooms on that side of the hotel. Not only that, the lock on the French doors popped open when wiggled and the window in the bathroom (which also opened out to the balcony) didn’t have a...

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Who is Our Audience?

Posted by on Sep 6, 2012 in Christian Life, Missions | 2 comments

This week I sat in on a meeting that could’ve been held in any church. Our ministry team met to discuss the winter calendar, the service projects, and Christmas programs…and some of the comments got me to thinking. In evaluating the effectiveness of our Christmas celebration, a few seemed to consider the key criteria to be how many non-Christians attended the event. True, this group was meeting primarily to discuss evangelism and mission projects. In another venue, the conversation could’ve pivoted on a different point. And I agree that we desperately want seekers to brave a visit to our church, especially at Christmas. Every effort should be made to welcome new visitors to any event. But is the value of every church activity judged by the attendance of non-believers? Is this our principal concern when planning our celebration of...

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Once when I was in jail in Mexico…

Posted by on May 31, 2012 in Mexico, Missions | 3 comments

“Would you like to hold a service for the prison church?” This was one of those moments when you wonder…when you hope…that something is lost in translation. “I’m sorry. In English the word prison means jail, a place where criminals go. There’s some mistake.” The translator consults Jesús and continues, “No mistake. He leads a church inside the prison. They have forty believers and meet on Saturday.” Now before you get distracted when you see the name Jesús – he’s a church planter in Mexico, not Nazareth. I’ve never laid claim to maturity so I’ll admit I giggle when I get an email telling me that Jesús’ phone is out of minutes so no one has been able to talk to him for a few days. Still, we trusted that we’d be all right as long as Jesús was with us, so we...

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Hero Tales

Posted by on Mar 8, 2012 in Christian Life, Missions | 3 comments

I love hearing stories of heroism—of people who take ordinary opportunities and turn them into spiritual victories. Yesterday while talking to a childhood friend of mine I heard such a tale. A Fortunate Affliction? Sunday evening Mary’s 7-year-old son developed an earache. They tried eardrops and ibuprofen, but nothing worked. About 8:30 p.m. she took him to a tiny 24-hour clinic, trying to get him some relief for the night. While she sat in the empty waiting room and filled out paperwork, a teenage couple entered. Mary couldn’t help but overhear their discussion with the nurse. The girl wanted a pregnancy test. The nurse told her that she couldn’t give her one because she was underage, but she could give her Planned Parenthood’s phone number. It was at this point that Mary got involved. “Did you know there’s a...

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An Unexpected Request – Publication Story, Part 6

Posted by on Aug 20, 2011 in Africa, Missions, Publication Story | 3 comments

“Are there bathrooms where we’re going?” we asked our African host. “In Africa, there are bathrooms everywhere.” He motioned out the window of the jeep. Sure enough. I’d have to be careful where I looked. And stepped. Although my mind was still whirling from the ACFW conference, I was excited about this trip. My husband and I, along with three friends, were scouting out a ministry for a possible church partnership. Bathrooms might be plentiful, but bedrooms were hard to come by. Exhausted from our flights, we were discouraged that the rooms we’d leased were unsanitary, even by mission trip standards. They had had running water at one time because there was a toilet, but the water was cut off and the toilet was full. After a few more attempts at accommodations the decision was made that we would...

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