Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Year's Resolutions?

Not me, I make'm and break'm all year. PBPGIFWMY!*

But if you want to make some resolutions, such as try to eat better, work faster and accomplish more goals, I recommend Marla Cilley's wonderful routines that teach how to work smarter, not harder, whether you're a complete slob or just want to spend less time to have a lovely home.

For instance, the most important routine of the day is the Bedtime Routine:

1. Lay out your clothes for tomorrow
2. Take a few minutes for yourself
3. Check your Calendar for Tomorrow's Events
4. Spend 2 minutes clearing off your Hot Spots
5. Shine your sink
6. Wash your face, moisturize, brush your teeth and floss
7. Go to bed at a decent hour

She also divides the house into five zones, one for each week of the month, and advocates fifteen minutes a day cleaning them. No Spring Cleaning necessary, it's all done.... And her service is free. God bless Flylady.

My character, Maggie, was pretty organized until the untimely death of her Navy pilot husband. This followed the death of a cab driver who had been kind to them on their honeymoon. Putting two and two together, she blames herself for both deaths and searches in the wrong places for the powers she needs to restore peace to her life. In spite of a spirit-lifting trip to Paris, her fun-loving self disappears in a dark place, and a man who loves her gives up and makes aliyah--moves to Israel where he learns some atonishing things....

Her name is similar to mine, not as an ego trip, and not because of any similarities with the novel, but because what she and I both learned about the name's original meaning, and the effect it had on our lives. This startling information will be available when an editor picks up my book!

There's a good resolution for some savvy editor!

Happy New Year!

*Please Be Patient, God Isn't Finished With Me Yet!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Fight for our Christmas--Pass it on

Merchants want our Christmas dollars but not our Christmas doctrine. They take our money and trash our beliefs.

Charlie Sheen just blatantly dissed Christmas and Christian with vulgarities on tv. Please click here. The networks would cry political correctness and never allow any other group to be so horribly disrespected.

So, we can make nice and sit home and pray, or we can put feet, or at least, fingers, on our prayers and send in *courteous* complaints to those in charge.

But if we don't speak up, it will be open season on Christians.

And we can pass on this poem I received in email this a.m. It says one thing that isn't true: "Not a Christian is praying or taking a stand." Many are doing just that. Will you?

"The worst evil happens when good men do nothing." Edmund Burke

The Fight Before Christmas

T'was the months before Christmas
When all through our land
Not a Christian was praying or taking a stand
Why the P.C. Police had taken away
The reason for Christmas - no one could say
Children were told by their schools not to sing
About Shepherds, or Wise Men, or Angels and things
It might hurt some feelings, the teachers would say
December 25th is just a "Holiday"
Yet shoppers were ready with cash and with credit
Pushing folks down to the floor just to get it:
Madonna CD's, an X BOX, an I-pod
Something was changing, something quite odd--
Retailers promoting Ramadan, Kwanzaa
In hopes to sell books by Franken & Fonda
As Target was hanging their trees upside down
At Lowe's the word Christmas - nowhere was found
At K-Mart and Staples, at Penny's and Sears
You won't hear about Christmas; it won't touch your ears
"Inclusive," "sensitive," "diversity"
Are words that they use to intimidate me
Now Daschle, Now Dean, Now Sharpton, Wolf Blitzer
On Boxer, On Clinton, on Kerry, On Rather
To the top of the Senate, there arose such a clatter
To eliminate Jesus, from all public matter
And we spoke not a word, as they dissed to our face,
We're forbidden to speak of salvation and grace
The true Gift of Christmas was exchanged and discarded
The reason for the season was stopped where it started
So, celebrate "Winter Break" beneath your "Dream Tree,"
But while sippin' Starbucks, just listen to me ...
Choose your words wisely, choose what you should say
It's MERRY CHRISTMAS to all ... not Happy Holiday!


Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Spiritual (lack of?) Disciplines

I've been thinking about this, and I guess the answer changes over time as I or my needs change. Coming from a mainline denomination, I loved three-hymns-and-an-anthem-type services. And I still love the hymns so much. But I now love the praise and worship I find in some other churches, the freedom to stand up with arms upraised in praise and *affection* to my Creator, Lord and Savior.

In dh's mainline church the other night, I heard the most beautiful new Christmas songs about worshiping. It was very hard for me to sit there and not participate as above. I wouldn't say they weren't worshiping as they sat there, listening, participating with full hearts. But my favorite form of worship is different, now.

(One dictionary gives "affection" as a definition of "reverence." And it's not to get attention, but is based on the scripture, "Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and bless (make happy) the Lord." Or the last of the Psalms, which even call for dance. Why not?)

Now that we're retired, I love my newest ritual--pour a cup of coffee and get back under the kivvers with coffee and Bible. I go over previous sermon notes, or just freely look through the Word to see what stands out that day. Moreover, I find if I'm in an organized Bible study with daily homework, Beth Moore being a favorite, I see God's hand in my life more than when I'm not. I love to sit there with pen in hand and underline and make notes in the margin. This morning, I learned that Herod was an Edomite. Edom is where the descendants of Esau went. That figures, huh? I visited the capital of Edom--Petra. Fascinating place, featured in my wip.

I find this topic a most interesting study, possibly coming true as we speak: Click here.

Then there's one I'm not very good at, fasting. Derek Prince once wrote that we speak about prayer, we ask for prayer, we rejoice in answers to prayer, we discuss prayer. But we've almost lost a great spiritual weapon, fasting, because we don't talk about doing it. The few times I've been successful at it, I can't even say I've seen direct answers to the prayers I prayed. They were huge, long-range prayers and I haven't seen the answer yet, unless it's "Wait." Or sometimes, fasting and praying for someone's healing, and they were not healed. But I didn't feel ignored for it. And God has His reasons.

"I believe, therefore, I speak." I'm seeing if praying aloud is more effective in my relationship with the Lord than is praying silently. I love the discipline and the lack of "discipline" in prayer, a running conversation with my constant Companion.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Cute counterfeit of a cute counterfeit

One of the most gorgeous smiles God ever made appeared on the face of Elvis Presley. (Please indulge me, LOL! )

I had a blast recently at an outstanding Elvis impersonator's concert.

The "young Elvis" gave away a teddy bear and a hound dog and "How Great Thou Art" had us on our feet twice, applauding.

The "Las Vegas Elvis" opened with "2001 a Space Odyssey" and "CC Rider" and gave away dozens of scarves. He gave me one, along with a smile. I waved the scarf and draped it around my neck as I returned to my seat laughing.

(With the real Elvis, I would have been cool and aloof, don't you know, LOL)

This counterfeit King of Rock and Roll was cute and sweet as he signed autographs. We all just laughed and loved the game. And Elvis did not like being called The King, one of his buddies reported, saying that Elvis said the only King is Jesus.

Counterfeits live all around us in the world and it is no game. Some appear on our doorsteps, unaware they are totally lost, offering us their own eternal trap.

The apostle Paul warned us in Galatians 1:9 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.

There are no new revelations, no new ways to be saved, no new saviors for a new time or place. Only one way:

Jude 3 warns us, Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once and for all time delivered to the saints.

My heroine Maggie turned to a counterfeit. Her heart had broken twice and she felt betrayed by God. She turned to the occult for answers. The answers were not what she expected, from this counterfeit.

A good counterfeit only points out the value of the original.

As we worship, as we love, as we write, let us be true to the real thing--the standard God gives us.

Let us not forsake our first love, as did the first church listed in Revelation, or we may evolve to be like the seventh and last church, poor, wretched, miserable, blind and too blind to know it.

(As I look here at world politics and alliances and events I suspect we are already in the seventh church age. We must hold fast to our crowns.)

Elvis, himself a counterfeit of sorts, was called a king, worshiped by some, but how much wiser to worship the King of Kings who gave His life so that we could have eternal life.

And while we dance to the music of the King of Rock and Roll, and cheer and clap for our favorite football team, why not also consider the words of King David, "a man after God's own heart:" "for the Lord takes delight in His people"--

"Praise Him in dance!"

Friday, October 06, 2006

Wishing on Dandelions

I just finished Mary DeMuth's _Wishing on Dandelions_ and I am overwhelmed. The book is fabulous!

In spite of the darkness of this young heroine's experience, the story sparkles. Although her perceptions are colored by her horrible past experience, Maranatha presses on.

I confess, I was a little timid about reading such a heavy theme. I like my entertainment light and cheerful. But the abuse from _Watching the Tree Limbs_, which I also loved, is alluded to, not graphic, and while I hurt with Mara, I also laughed, rejoiced, and cheered her on, because there is much more to both books than the experience itself.

With courage, irony, humor, hope and often faltering faith, she triumphs with the help of some friends, her own strong spirit, and Jesus. And the faith message is woven through naturally. I imagine I will sometimes call upon Maranatha's example of doing the right thing when it was very, very hard.

Sometimes I laughed out loud, sometimes I wiped away tears. I loved both books.

Scroll down to read the author's thoughts. Leave a comment there or right here to enter a drawing for a free copy of this delightful book. I draw a name tomorrow, Saturday afternoon.

AND YOU'LL BE SAD as a scalded dog
If you don't leave a comment on my blog
For I give this book away tomorrow

And it's one you'll never let another borrow!

(With apologies to Camilla.)

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Mary DeMuth's discusses her _Wishing on Dandelions_--leave a comment for a chance to win it!


Mary DeMuth's four-class track, Inside Out Fiction: How Cultivating an Inner Life with Jesus Deepens our Stories was my own emphasis at the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference in Dallas this month.

Mary, many excellent classes are offered on the craft of writing, but this is the first track I can recall with the emphasis on the influence of our writing life and Jesus Christ, the Author and Finisher of our Faith (whose own work has been a best-seller for centuries, as we know.) It was wonderful.

Thanks for coming by to tell us about the sequel to Watching the Tree Limbs, your latest novel, Wishing on Dandelions.

This book deals with difficult subject matter: childhood sexual abuse and its residual affects. How did this book emerge?

My passion is to write about redemption through the avenue of story. I started the first book, Watching the Tree Limbs, in a flurry. In my mind I saw the streets of Burl and a girl who didn’t know where she came from. Because my personal story involves different instances of sexual abuse, I wanted to write a story that showed the reader how God could intersect an abuse-victim’s life and make a difference.

So, are you Maranatha?

In some ways yes, some no. Like Maranatha, I felt like God had transformed my life in such a radical way (like her name change from Mara—bitter—to Maranatha). Like Maranatha, I endured sexual abuse, but I was much younger when it happened. Like Maranatha, I wondered if I had been marked, that every sexual predator could “tell” I was a ready victim. I wrestled through relationships in my teens with Maranatha’s twin feelings of revulsion and attraction. But, she is not me in many other ways. She is more independent. She has no parents. She lives in an entirely different culture. She is less ambitious. She has the privilege of many wiser people to mentor her through life.

What made you decide to write a love story?

The book didn’t start out in my mind as a love story, but it evolved into it as I continued writing. Characters have that uncanny way of taking your prose and running in all sorts of directions with it. Charlie just kept being faithful. In a sense, I fell in love with him!

What made you choose East Texas as the setting for both novels?

The South fascinates me. I grew up in the Northwest. When my last child was born, my husband was transferred to East Texas to start a department in a hospital. Because I was a stay-at-home mom and home schooling, I didn’t have much else to do there except to observe small town southern culture. Because I didn’t grow up in that culture, my senses were heightened and I eventually began to really appreciate the differences.

Childhood sexual abuse is not talked about very often, and seldom covered in novels. What made you decide to write about it?

For that very reason. The more victims are quiet, the less healing they will receive. The more we talk about it, bringing heinous acts to the light, the better able we are to know we are not alone. I wrote this book so other abuse victims would feel validated and heard. And to offer hope.

Why do you end your books with hope?

Because hope is essential to Jesus’ Gospel. Even when things are bleak, there is always hope—if not in this life, then in the next. I’m not interested, however, in presenting hope in a superfluous way. I don’t want to tie up every story thread neatly. The truth is, life is tragic and difficult and bewildering, but God intersects that life and brings hope.

Have you always wanted to write?

Yes. Since my second grade teacher told my mother that she thought I was a creative writer, I’ve wanted to write. I kept a diary since the sixth grade. Though I was an English major, I didn’t start writing seriously until my first daughter was born. I wrote for ten years in obscurity before my writing career took a turn for the better.

Who are your literary heroes?

I love Harper Lee. I only wish she’d written more. Leif Enger, who wrote Peace Like a River, greatly inspired me to write visually and artistically. I love Sue Monk Kidd’s Secret Life of Bees, how you could almost taste her characters. I’m fascinated and intimidated by J.R.R. Tolkein—how he managed to create an entire world with several languages is way beyond my literary prowess.

What do you want your reader to take away from Wishing on Dandelions?

That redemption of a broken life takes time. We’re all on a journey of healing. Sometimes it’s slow going, but if we can endure through the dark times, God will bring us to new places of growth. I want the images and characters to stay with a reader for a long time.

And I'm sure they will. They're well-drawn and have depth--or shallowness, as the case may be, LOL. I've just seen your wedding with a rather trying bride. She is so well-drawn. loved the first book and am halfway into the second. I love the characters, mood, the strong sense of place, and being in that young girl's head with her young thoughts, her pain and her undaunted optimism. The stories are charming and deal with important themes.

Now, recently, you told me you saw differences between the Northwest and Texas. That you found the people in the NW more likely to invite you to their homes, and in Texas, you saw people more open with their Christianity, or words to that effect. I love how you describe one of your Southern characters, who shall remain unnamed, after he or she dies as now jitterbugging with Jesus. (I enjoy a lively church, too. :) Did you base Maranatha's wonderful church friends on real people in Texas?

Actually, those friends existed in my head, although I’m sure that they’re all a composite of folks I’ve met along the road of faith.

How would you sum up the point of your class, Inside Out Fiction?

What’s inside us is what spills out on the page. How can we write about turnarounds or redemption if we haven’t dared embraced either? How can we pen words about healing if we’re unwilling to go there ourselves? Our words flow from our hearts. To deepen our words, we must ask God to continually change our hearts.

I surely do. Merci beaucoup for the visit, Mary. Au revoir, come back soon. We'll miss you beaucoup.

All, leave a comment to be eligible to have your name drawn to win a free copy of Wishing on Dandelions. I'll announce the winner on Saturday, October 7th.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


American Christian Fiction
Writers Conference

New Beginnings

Dallas, Texas

September 21 - 24, 2006

Isaiah 43:19"Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert." KJV

What fun! Like church camp! No counselors! Just agents and editors! LOL! Seeing familiar faces, connecting not-so-familiar faces with familiar names; singing, praise and worship, and learning enough to make your blessed brain bubble! Thanks to all who worked behind the scenes and visibly--including the chef and the rest of the staff--to bless us all sooo much!

"Your name is a strong and mighty tower, Your name..."

Friday, September 08, 2006

I HATE the word, "incredible"!

Of course, we mean "awesome," "wonderful." But technically, it means "not believable." And over and over, I hear it used of God! I hear good Christians say "God did the most ( not believable) thing--"

Hey! Are we believers or not?

Is God believable or not?

Does the "not believable" part sink down into our spirits and hinder our faith? I suspect, quite likely, it does.

I love Beth Moore's 5-point pledge:

God is who He says He is (hold up index finger)
God can do what He says He can do (next finger, etc.)
I am who God says I am
I can do all things through Christ
God's Word is alive and active in me! (thumb)

I'm (point thumb at self) believin' (point to head--your head!) God! (point upwards--or to your heart--that'll work! See below: )

Earlier, I mentioned today's political alliances, wars and rumors of war, weather, diseases, and the fact that Israel has been a nation again since 1948--the fig tree budding, Matthew 28--probably place us in the very Last Days.

If so, that could place us as the last of the churches through the ages--the Laodicean Church of (click on:)
Revelation 3.

This is not a good thing. Jesus had not one good thing to say about this arrogant church!

He called it "poor, wretched, miserable, blind and naked." Blind to our own blindness?

Not believing, not obeying, not receiving all He has for us--"The gifts of God are irrevocable." "Come behind in no gift waiting for the revelation of Jesus Christ."--not walking in all His gifts, not having even an idea of all the blessings we're missing.

That would surely be me.

That would surely be my heroine, who looks for answers in sex, drugs and--voodoo. She pays a terrible price. But she's sweet, kind, a good mother and so wounded, and God is good and never lets go.

Of her or me. Thank God.

I just want to say, Please, God, show us if we're being Laodicean in our acts, our attitudes, our lack of faith, our writing. You say You stand at the door of the Laodicean church and the door of our hearts as well, and knock, wanting to come in.

Come in, Lord Jesus, into our hearts and into our churches.

Come in quickly and make us more like You in ways we can't imagine. Amen.

Friday, September 01, 2006

This is funny. Are you the guy in the backseat?

This is funny! Click on this little 30-second clip. Too cool!

If you're the guy in the backseat, scroll down now to July 27. Whoa!

Leave a comment, if you like.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Welcome published author Robin Shope of political fiction, _The Replacement_ and _The Chase_

Welcome, Robin Shope, new ACFW member and author of
The Chase and The Replacement.
We always welcome published authors. We benefit from
your experience when you have the time and leading to share.

What made you decide to join just now?

Hello Everyone...thanks for the interview, Margo. It's an honor for me to do this. Actually, I should have joined years ago but ___. I was raising two children and I also teach 8th grade English In education, there’s no such thing- as 40 hour weeks---...more like 50 or 60. I wrote when I had a moment...late at night, early in the morning, etc. Now that my leetle kids are adults, and with the conference in Dallas this year, I decided to step out and meet people. And here you all are welcoming me. Thank you!

How did you get a comment from Dom Deluise on the jacket of The Chase?

: ) Wasn't that cool? Actually I wrote three books with a co-author and he is a friend of hers. So score that one for Susan.

What first inspired you to write, and to write political intrigue?

My 5th grade teacher! She hated all my compositions. Each week she'd read her favorites and none of mine were ever good enough, or so she thought. My papers all came back marked up in red. Instead of giving up, I was challenged. By 7th grade I improved because my English teacher gave me a 0. Now my writing was too good for someone my age. I had to have copied! LOL. And as for politics, don't we all have an opinion on it? I think it was an area I could write and have a voice. Politics lead to such good consumption. It seems to lend itself to corruption and greed at the highest levels.

Of your books, do you have a favorite?

My favorite book hasn't been picked up by a publisher yet -although it came really, really close a few months ago. Its a multi-cultural children's chapter book RUBY RED AND THE COLOR OF HOME, co-authored by former Dallas Cowboy Kalen Thornton. But of the three books of the trilogy (2 of them are out), my favorite comes out summer 2007. I just heard from the publisher that the name they chose is THE CANDIDATE. It combines politics and folklore, which can be synonymous these days... LOL. I am constantly reading and writing and researching the market.

Where do you get your ideas? The Chase,
my first published book, is set in my hometown of
Delavan, Wisconsin. I needed a setting that was a
safe place for me and that seemed to be it! But of
course, no place is ever really safe. Jill Lewis,
my heroine, sure found that to be true. She came
home to hide from problems in Washington and landed
in even bigger trouble! And I recently discovered a
pattern in my books. My heroine's father is either
dead or a character with some major flaw. I think
that is a result from my own family background. Everything I write has some minor link to a real story or personal experience. Then I embellish on it.

How long did it take to sell your first book, The Chase? A couple of years. Hang in there everyone!

How did you react when you received that call? Shocked. Scared. Excited.

What are a few of your favorite books by others?
I love thrillers by James Patterson and Patricia Cornwell. I love cozy mysteries by Agatha Christy and Mary Higgins Clark. I love childrens books and chapter books, especially by Cynthia Rylant. My tastes are varied. I cannot be stuck on one genre because its all wonderful!

What is your typical day like?
Way too busy, like everyone else's! My day starts at 5:30 or 6...and I try to get an hour of writing in before I get ready for school (I have it down to under 10 minutes so you know I'm not a fashion plate). (‘m at school from 7:30 until 4:30 to 6:30. Now that I don't have little ones to deal with, I still have my puppy Cooper and my husband Rick who both want attention. But I do try to get another hour of writing in before bed. Weekends I live on the computer...and summers are heaven for me!

How do you deal with hearth and home when you're writing? I do get irritated when my attention is needed while working that all important sentence or scene. But remind myself these people are my loved ones and they come first. If it weren't for them then nothing else would matter. They try to be considerate of my writing time. And as far as hearth goes...sometimes when I see dust I think to myself someone really needs to do something about that. When I was in college and wrote a lot, my mom always told me I needed to marry someone who would be happy with take out so I could write. And that is Rick!

Do you have a pet peeve having to do with this business? Yes. Enough said. :)

Give us your most important Do and Don't for a career as a writer. Do not ever give up! I have given up about sixty three times....and when I get a rejection I tell myself what a terrible writer I am...and then after feeling sufficiently sorry for myself, I go back to writing again more determined than ever to improve. Remember my 5th grade teacher? I do not give up. I started writing and getting published in Sunday school weeklies. Don't over look that opportunity. They are so hungry for real life shorts from Christians. And it gets your name out there. I also write short stories for Chicken Soup and as a result became great friends with the President of the company through the years. If you type my name in on the net lots of my leetle stories pop up! Its fun to see that. I have taken John Boy's advice...write what you know for those...

What keeps you going after a rejection? My 5th grade teacher. :) I try to reinvent my stories until one of them works. Okay, we all know how personal writing is...and when a rejection comes, it hurts us to the core. Let it hurt, and then allow it to create within you a better writer. I recently received a rejection from a publisher and for once she was specific. I was upset for all of 2 seconds and then read what I sent her and she was right! I spent 2 days rewriting the first chapter and when I was done I loved it! It was so much better! So I sent the publisher just the first page and apologized for doing so. And my computer mistakenly sent her 3 copies of the same email! Talk about embarrassing. She emailed back laughing and said it got her attention (I wouldn't recommend doing this). She said she'd be back with me. A week later she said 'This is much, much better. Send me more.' So I sent her the first 3 chapters (rewritten of course) and am still waiting back to see if she wants to see even more. It's all in the Lord's hands.

Do you have a favorite Bible verse? They are all good verses in there, but all the gifts and promises begin with John 3:16.

Robin Shope, thank you for sharing your wisdom and sense of humor with us. I love politics—root word referring to people and policy—and look forward to reading The Chase,The Replacement and The Candidate, and someday, Ruby Red and the Color of Home.

You can check out Robin's blog to learn more about her and her stories.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Pre-conference Photos

Preparaing for the conference, our Board and Sydney Zech, Conference Coordinator, went to Dallas to check out the hotel. One evening, the local chapter, DFW Ready Writers, had the pleasure of dining with the Board at Cafe' Lux at the Galleria.

These photos uploaded in reverse order and I'm not going to attempt captions.

On the blue side of the table, for some surreal reason: Lena Nelson Dooley; Tracey Bateman, then President; Pam Meyers, Secretary; Peg Phifer, Treasurer; Linda Mae Baldwin, Volunteer Officer at the far end.

On the red side, Mary Griffith, Vice President in hot pink, JJ Overpeck, Pamela Griffin to her left. To her right, Georgeanne Falstrom and Diane Kalas.

Linda Baldwin, Volunteer Officer in brown. (Linda scuba dives! How cool is that!)

Lisa Tuttle, Publicity Officer and Sydney Zech in red.

Salvadore Dali and me in black and white. ( He joined us from a wonderful gallery upstairs, and didn't eat much.)

More Conference Photos

Right, booksigning in bookstore in Nashville.

Irene Brand, Joan Shoup, Gail Gaymer Martin,
Kathryn Mackel, Randy Ingermanson, Terry Burns, Cyndy Salzman

Left, Sunni Jeffers and Robin Lee Hatcher

Above, Choir directed by Cynthia Ruchti who also arranged the wonderful music.

Left, Michelle Hutchison probably composing a review of the iced tea. : )

Right, Denver, 2004, when we were still ACRW.
Sunni Jeffers, Linda Windsor, Beth Goddard, and me, half asleep. ( And that wasn't even the year of the 3 a.m. fire alarm~) (Don't forget to schedule SLEEP!)

Lovely lady on the left must contact me with her name because I can't make her out and will probably be mortified....

More to come ....

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Meet your favorite Christian authors, learn to write...

Wow, I can hardly wait for the American Christian Fiction Writers Conference in Dallas, Texas, my birthday weekend September 21-24.

What a birthday present, seeing once again all these fun and talented people,

...Brandilyn Collins, Randy Ingermanson, Terry Burns,

fans who lost their heads over sweet and suspenseful Kathryn Mackel ...

listening to great teaching, buying more books--well, maybe just a few more books--getting them autographed.

Part of the schedule includes a free to the public booksigning with a huge room full of the following authors ready to sell and autograph their books for you on Saturday afternoon, September 23rd at 4:45 p.m.

Just walk into the Marriott Forums. You do not have to be a guest or attend the conference to come in:

Clark, Dorothy J.
Clopton, Debra
Collins, Brandilyn
Cox, Carol
Daley, Margaret
Davis, Bryan
Davis, Mary
Davis, Susan Page
DeMuth, Mary
Dobson, Melanie
Dooley, Lena Nelson
Dyson, Wanda
Eakes, Laurie Alice
Gibson, Rhonda
Gist, Deeanne
Griffith, Marilynn
Gutteridge, Rene
Hauck, Rachel
Higgs, Liz Curtis--also Keynote Speaker
Higman, Anita
Hunt, Diann
Jenkins, Nancy Jo
Johnson, Jennifer
Kinnard, Deborah
Martin, Gail
McDonough, Vicki
Meissner, Susan
Nelson, Jill Elizabeth
Paul, Donita K.
Paul, Kathleen
Perry, Trish
Peterson, Tracie
Pleiter, Allie
Raney, Deborah
Sattler, Gail
Sawyer, Kim
Springer, Kathryn
Taylor, Donn
Thompson, Terri
Turansky, Carrie
Warren, Barbara
Warren, Susan
White, Elizabeth
Whren, Merrillee
Wise, Timothy
Woodsmall, Cindy
Worth, Lenora

If you want to write good commercial Christian fiction, this is the place.

And the market is booming.

Agents, and publishers of evangelical Christian publishing houses will be present to lecture and teach.

And they schedule appointments to meet writers and hear pitches of our books.

If you don't have a book ready to sell but would like to learn, then come, mingle and meet the people who can help you. Go to the website above for more information.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

"WHAT WAS THAT CRASH?" and I take off...

...after dh as he hobbles down the hall toward destruction. Not really. Well, sometimes.

He just got a new cast two weeks after that foot surgery. We get home, he struggles out of my car and I spot a remarkably large Wolf spider just inside the garage. "Oh, look!"

Then, "Noooo!" as dh brings his crutch down on the hapless beast.

I'm bending down, making sure the spider is dead, ready to put it out of any arachnid agony, when I hear a swish, THUMP. The house we bought has a slick, finished garage floor, a la the previous owners, and dh had put his gutsy--and I mean that literally--crutch down, slid across the garage and crashed against his car.

I take his arm and laugh as my heart settles back down into my chest. "See, God don' like ugly!" Well, he wasn't really being ugly. He was rescuing us.

But my heroine learns God don' like ugly. When her mother-in-law confesses a deed from her past, Maggie's reaction to the secret is less than sweet. Maggie has secrets of her own, and right now, they are making her mean.

You frown. You know what it's like. : )

Monday, July 31, 2006

Lightening up! : )

Wow, after posting some heavy thoughts the last few days, I feel like lightening up a little.

Mark Twain said that the difference between the right word and an almost right word is like the difference between lightning and a lightning bug. Well and good, but I love lightning bugs.

Ever catch some and put them in a jar? I used to as a little girl in Virginia. They're so remarkable. I'd study them awhile then let them go.

As an adult living in Virginia again, I drove with my husband and some neighbors to see the West Point Light. It seems this train man lost his head along the tracks and occasionally went looking for it. LOL All I saw were the most enormous fireflies in the woods along the train track.

But then there were the Marfa Lights way down in Marfa, Texas, where they filmed "Giant." On vacation, after eating at Chuy's, the only restaurant for miles, back then, we sat beside the highway with our kids one night and stared across the prairies. There were farm lights out in the fields, and quite a few planes landing, blinking as they passed behind the trees in the distance, as we waited to see the Marfa lights.

After about half a boring hour, one of the prairie lights suddenly jumped toward the other and back, and the other light did the same. Startled, we realized there were also no big trees out there, it was desert, and those were not blinkin' airplanes.

We had been watching the Marfa Lights.

Anyone else out there ever seen them?

Those occasions were fun, but the best memories were in our front yard as kids with a few little bugs in a jar.

Click here to enjoy some Lightning Bugs! Thank you, Tom.

Comment about your own lights and lightning bug memories if you like.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Mel Gibson's beautiful feet--of clay

No one is more dismayed than I that handsome, blue-eyed Mel Gibson was arrested for speeding and driving drunk, and in his stupor, used the f-word, claimed he owned Malibu, and that he would get back at the officers, or f-words to that effect. : /

But what is even more tragic is that the one who brought us The Passion of the Christ spouted a crude anti-Semitic tirade.

Not to downplay that, but, well, it's also tragic that Moses struck the rock and after 40 years of putting up with the kvetching and tsouris and frustrations of the people he led, he was not allowed to enter the Promised Land.

And it's tragic that Noah obeyed God in blind faith all those years and then, after finally leaving the ark, he planted a vineyard and got very drunk. His kids were no prizes in that, either.

But God knew these people He used would have these failings. And He used them anyway.

He may use me, yet!

He may use a properly contrite Mel Gibson again. I really hope so.

He and the rest have clay feet, but they are beautiful feet.

Because in their own ways those people brought aspects of the Gospel to the world.

Isaiah 52:7
How beautiful upon the mountains
Are the feet of him who brings good news,

Who proclaims peace,
Who brings glad tidings of good things,
Who proclaims salvation,
Who says to Zion,
"Your God reigns!"

But, that anti-Semitic tirade was not beautiful.

Gibson apologized for the drinking, for the humiliating display, and said he has fought alcoholism all his life and that he has disgraced himself. He humbled himself beautifully and I believe, sincerely.

He said that he said things he didn't really believe in.

But where did it come from?

I pray Mel Gibson, who obviously loves the Lord, will read the passage above and Romans 11 which defends the Jewish people, before he receives the discipline of a loving but just Father:

"Whom the Lord loves, He chastens."

And He made a unilateral unconditional promise:

Genesis 12:3 I will bless those who bless you,
And I will curse him who curses you;
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.

Blessed by the Jewish Messiah, star of Passion of the Christ, Mel!

I did like a comment I read on a forum:

Pray for Mel ... there probably are few mortal men whom Satan hates more. His pilgrimage is not an easy one. Neither is yours nor mine.

God chose one man, Abraham, whose people He would use to reach the world. And He made a unilateral unconditional covenant with Abraham that included a parcel of land. Forever.

As prophesied, that promise, that land and that--star--have much of the world standing against Israel.

We would all be wise to heed that promise.

My book's secondary hero, David, is spurned by the heroine. He goes to Israel to explore his Jewish roots. My heroine's mother-in-law (who has "beautiful feet") has challenged him to discover the Messiah for himself. David's discoveries, loves and losses teach him more than he ever dreamed.

He returns to New Orleans a different man, stunned, thrilled. And no longer interested in the heroine.

But he now has "beautiful feet." (Maybe I should change the book's title~) How does the heroine react to this new David? She had discovered some feet of clay....

Author Bodie Thoene just left a Comment here. See her blog on my list to the right, for her impassioned thoughts today.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Fox News's looong list of labor pains would be funny--

...if it weren't so serious.

Jesus said it would be like labor pains increasing toward the end, before He returns.

Check this list!

Today, in just one day, mind you, Fox had a whole section devoted to natural disasters. Click on the links:

Special Sections > Natural Disaster



Another Scorcher of a Day in California

California Heat Wave Causes Livestock Carcass Pileup

At Least 56 Deaths Probed as California Heat Wave Hits Day 10

Florida Lake Swallowed by Sinkhole Reappearing

Nearly 250,000 Homes, Businesses Still Without Power in St. Louis After Storms

New York Blackout Problem Enters Fifth Day; Thousands Without Power

St. Louis Gets Cooler as National Guard Evacuates People Without Power


6 Firefighters Burned While Fighting Nevada Blazes

Firefighters Hope Cooler Temps Will Help Battle Fires in California, Other States

Manpower, Equipment Short as Firefighters Continue to Battle California Blazes

California Firefighting Crews Need More Manpower, Equipment

Firefighters Battle Blaze in Boundary Waters Region of Minnesota

California Firefighters Battle Fires Amid Scorching Heat

Wildfire Scorches 1,200 Acres on California Island; Blazes Continue Inland

Firefighters Set Backfire to Contain California Forest Blaze Caused by Lightning

Cooler Temps Helps Firefighters Battle California Wildfires

Firefighters Contain California Forest Blazes; Experts Warn of Mudslides

California Firefighters Make Progress, Blazes Burn in Other States

California Residents Turn to Goats to Prevent Wildfires

Thunderstorms May Spark New California Wildfires

Thunderstorms May Fuel California Fires

Heat, Winds Challenge California Firefighters


Red Cross: More Than 100 Dead or Missing in North Korean Floods

Rains Cause Midwest Flooding, Tornado Hits New York

Mother Dies Rescuing Daughter From Ohio Floodwaters

Tornado Touches Down in Colorado, Flash Flood Warnings

Heavy Rains Flood Colorado, Washing Out Bridges

Northeast Still Struggling After Floods

Northeast Floodwaters Recede, Residents Begin Cleanup


Mayon Volcano Erupts in the Philippines

Indonesia's Mount Merapi Continues to Pose Threat

Philippine Officials Evacuate Villagers From Volcano

Two Men Found Dead in Mount Merapi Bunker

Indonesians Trapped in Underground Volcano Shelter

Indonesian Volcano Mt. Merapi Spews Gas, Debris

Volcano Erupts in Southern Japan

Mount Merapi Rumble Forces Evacuation of 3,000 More

11,000 Evacuated as Indonesian Volcano Spews Lava, Gas

Fears of Eruption Rise After Volcano Spews Lava in Indonesia

EARTHQUAKES (Where are all the 2s we used to see?)

6.1 Magnitude Quake Hits Indonesia's Sulawesi Island

Tsunami Kills More Than 300 in Indonesia

7.2 Magnitude Earthquake Prompts Tsunami Warning in Indonesia

Earthquake Rattles Southeastern California

Strong 6.2 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Indonesia

Study: Massive Southern California Earthquake Could Come Any Moment

Moderate Quake Shakes Tokyo

Two Earthquakes Shake Japan

Earthquake Rattles Indonesia's Sumatra Island

Study: Earthquakes Can Trigger Far-Off Aftershocks

One Killed, Two Wounded in South Iran Earthquake

U.S. Tests Earthquake Warning Systems

Death Toll for Indonesia Quake Rises to Over 3,500

6.1 Magnitude Quake Hits Indonesia's Sulawesi Island

Death Toll From Indonesian Tsunami Hits 547, 323 Still Missing

Tsunami Kills More Than 300 in Indonesia

BBC, HBO Tsunami Miniseries Sparks Debate

Disasters Help Boost American Charitable Giving to Near All-Time High

Earthquakes Rattle Tsunami-Warning Drill

First Test of Tsunami-Warning System Conducted Since 2004

Tsunami Warning System Failed After Tonga Quake

White House Issues Tsunami Plan

China's Tropical Storm Bilis Death Toll Reaches 530

Louisiana Doctors Outraged at Murder Accusation

Tropical Storm Lands on Massachusetts Coast

Tropical Storm Watch Issued for Massachusetts as Beryl Moves North

Future Hurricane Victims Won't Get Spending Cards

China Says 115 Killed, Hundreds Injured by Tropical Storm Bilis

Report on Rebuilding Louisiana Leaves Out Specific Hurricane Protection

Ten Months After Hurricane Katrina, 49 Victims Unidentified

Former Presidents Bush, Clinton to Share Liberty Medal

FEMA Checks Eligibility of Hurricane Victims Living in Gov't-Issued Trailers

Disasters Help Boost American Charitable Giving to Near All-Time High

DHS: New York, D.C., New Orleans Still Not Prepared for Disasters

Rains Cause Midwest Flooding, Tornado Hits New York

Tornado Touches Down in Colorado, Flash Flood Warnings

Tornado Uproots Trees, Rips Roofs Off Buildings in Wis.

Tornadoes Touch Down in Central Oklahoma

Iowa Tornados Leave Devastation, Death in Wake

Tornadoes Spread Havoc Through Iowa, Killing One

Tennessee Picks up Pieces After Tornadoes Kill 12

Tornadoes Touch Down in Tennessee

Severe Storms Kill 28 in South, Midwest

Amazing! It goes on forever! It would be funny if it weren't so serious!

He also said it would be like in the days of Noah, people having a great ol' time, oblivious to the signs. If we are seeing the signs, I'm taking another clue from Noah--he believed God and he was lifted above the destruction.

I'm of the school of thought that the Rapture--in the Latin Vulgate version of the Bible, "rapare", to be lifted away--will happen before the wrath of God is poured out.

I believe Revelation 4, shows the church, the born-again called-out ones who believe Jesus is the Savior of the world, will be lifted to heaven above the Tribulation.

That those left behind, as we read on through Revelation, the rest who "repented not" of lists of awful things, are not the Church on earth.

A news article this week told that an Irish farmer unearthed an ancient book, Psalm 86, dropped in an Irish bog a thousand or so years ago.
The National Museum of Ireland said, " this Irish equivalent to the Dead Sea Scrolls is being hailed by the museum's experts as the greatest find ever from a European bog."

It talked about enemies of Israel:

Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God. For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head. They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones. They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. (Psalm 83:1-4)

Many people say this is eerie. That this is no coincidence.

Yes, evidently, God is paying attention.

But, whether or not we're in the very Last Days, only He knows. This could all pass. But if it's a labor pain, the respite will be brief.

Meanwhile, we need to be about our Father's business--including telling others about Christ--with the evidence of prophecy unfolding before our eyes.

If this is indeed the labor pains, Revelation 3, the seventh and last church age before the Second Coming, could apply to us. The Laodicean Church. Jesus has no good thing to say about it. This church is arrogant, thinking it's so rich, when in reality, it's poor, wretched, miserable, blind, naked.

Because of its lukewarmness, Jesus is ready to spit it out of his mouth.

The good thing is, if that is so, then it's also time for a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit's love and power--for those who will turn their lives around and reach out for Him again.

I'm ready for that, aren't you?

Meanwhile, here's a great website: Rapture Ready.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

My husband is hopping (yes, hopping) for a healing....

And maybe cruisin' for a bruisin'!

He just had major foot surgery, and I'm waiting on him hand and--you got it--so that he won't have to move around too much on those crutches and put his weight down on that foot-- {{{shudder!}}}

Do you remember when you were a kid and you got sick and started feeling better--maybe got a little rambunctious and Mom said, "You're going to school tomorrow"?

Yesterday I entered the kitchen to find dh leaving it, both crutches in one hand, his full coffee mug in the other, enroute to his comfy nest in the family room--hopping.

Please pray for both of us~

PS, whoops, he says he was not carrying a coffee mug. Okay. He turned from the coffee pot and hopped off into the sunset. I mean family room. So I just assumed. My bad. But today, he walked with his crutches across some base-ball-size rocks in the garden. If he had turned one rock and--*sigh* See what I mean? I just don't want him to lose his balance and hurt himself.

LOL, wish *I* could go to school tomorrow! ( Full exclamation point warranted.) Lord, send us an angel. : )

Monday, July 17, 2006

Yep. ( See yesterday's question.)

Just scanning today's headlines is so interesting. God bless all these situations and these poor people.

Gingrich: We need to recognize that America is in World War III....

Thousands of Foreigners Evacuate Lebanon...


1,000 left-wing activists rally; protest 'Israel's aggressions'...

Mideast crisis drives Bush to colorful language; Bush Caught Using 'S' Word...

(LOL, good photo, though~)

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice backs Israel's military operation in Lebanon; US government says it has agreed to supply Israel with jet fuel to feed its warplanes

Palestinian caught with bomb in Jerusalem...

Blair, Annan call for int'l force...

Putin says Russia will consider contributing troops...
(Gog from the land of Magog? Ezekiel 38--see yesterday)

7.2 Maq Quake...

Quake Triggers Indonesian Tsunami; 5 Dead...

FLASHBACK: Clinton says he would have died for Israel...

And how many times did he invite Arafat to Washington? Hmm.

Well, meanwhile, we need to be about our Father's business for us.

And trust in Him and His angels. God bless.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Did the Prophet Ezekiel write the morning news?

My friends don't have to agree with me, of course.

But I'm of the school of thought that with the political and military alliances in the news today, Ezekiel 38 is unfolding before our eyes.

Eze 38:1
And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Eze 38:2
Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,
Eze 38:3
And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I [am] against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal:
Eze 38:4
And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts [of armour, even] a great company [with] bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:
Eze 38:5
Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:
Eze 38:6
Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: [and] many people with thee.

Gog meaning Russia. Persia being Iran!

In other words, it looks like we are the generation for whom all the signs are falling into place.

And we will see the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

I'm not setting a date. But a generation will see the signs and recognize them. Consider these:

Rev 3:3 Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.

Mat 16:3 And in the morning, [It will be] foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O [ye] hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not [discern] the signs of the times?

(He was angry at those who didn't know their prophecy enough to recognize Him as the promised Messiah. One writer said He fulfilled 33 prophecies in one day.)

(That tells me He wants us watching for the signs, though!)

Some are called to write light uplifting stories, others may be called to write heavier themes. One way or another, we are all called to present the Gospel. How we work it out and whether or not it's in our books is as the Lord leads.

Here's a powerful word from God to Ezekiel 33, something that may be applied to some of us in our writing, others, not:

Eze 33:1 Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Eze 33:2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman:

Eze 33:3 If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people;

Eze 33:4 Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head.

Eze 33:5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul.

Eze 33:6 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take [any] person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand.

Eze 33:7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.

The important thing, of course, is to do what God has called each of us to do in our writing.

Here is one of my favorite sources. See what you think.

I think we should type fast! : )

Friday, June 16, 2006

New punctuation mark needed--the frisson ~

In my writers' critique group last night, they read where my heroine Maggie saw the murder and jumped into another cab. They liked the tension of the story and the funny second cab driver, but they also stressed that I use too many punctuation marks!

Well, the woman is overwrought, having just seen a murder! No, just a body, actually~

And this morning, I decided we need another punctuation mark~ And that's it. You just saw it. The "tilde" in Spanish, the "similar to" in math.

Because, doesn't it even just look like a little "whoo~"

Not quite a shout, (or the mental equivalent thereof, Browne & King in Self-Editing for Fiction Writers ) but more emotion than a period indicates, just a little frisson of enthusiasm~

And that's it~ I'm adopting the tilde and calling it the frisson! That is, the frisson~

A lot of us live relatively quiet lives and don't often see bodies in cemeteries, but I have a feeling that in some of these life-or-death situations we write about, if we were facing them in real life and someone quoted us, they would find a period inadequate. I suspect they would use exclamation points in our quotes more than we do in our fiction.

There are cases when a period is too blah and an exclamation point too strong. And without the right kind of punctuation, a sentence's words could be misconstrued and understated.

Words are not always enough. Context is not always enough. That's why we have punctuation. Even so, who hasn't had their email or note misunderstood in some way?

So, here's to a new punctuation mark, the frisson~

Works for me~ : ) What do you think?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Are Christians losing sense...

...of hearing?

My heroine, Maggie, often turned a deaf ear to the counsel of others . When her husband told her, "Get into a playpen with serpents, sooner or later, you get bitten," she did and she did. She dabbled in the occult and paid a terrible price before she was restored to her fun-loving self, to love, and to God.

But she chose not to hear.

I'm talking about going to church and not even knowing our hearing is damaged until it's too late.

"Just 15 minutes of exposure to high-decibel music can cause permanent hearing loss. That's right. Permanent. Research indicates that 30% of rock musicians have a measurable hearing loss. Classical musicians fare even worse - with up to 52% experiencing hearing impairment. That means that members of your praise band, your harpist, your worshippers and your sound crew are all at risk. The good news? Hearing loss can be prevented. "

I love exuberant praise and worship as much as anybody, and have for years. But the volume of the music in churches is causing hearing loss and people do not even realize it!

65 decibels is the level of normal conversation.

85 decibels is the level of permanent damage to the fine, tiny "hair cells" by which we hear!

100-120 db is a typical concert and some church services and rallies.

Too many churches have that one glaring--or should I say blaring fault.

I suggest that (half-deaf!?) sound engineers and leadership not depend on the meters entirely, but also walk around the service and listen. If it's so loud you must shout over the music, painfully loud or causing ears to ring, it's causing permanent damage. It's certainly not fellowship, either.

Plus, when you're invited forward for prayer for your needs and you can barely share your needs or hear the prayers over the music, that is not music. That is ridiculous!

I would urge anyone with influence in church to beg pastors to keep the decibels below the permanent damage level of 85!!!

Click here and read some of these articles if you doubt this is a major problem.

"Make a joyful noise," the Lord said. He didn't say to make a harmful one. Who wants to go to church to worship the Lord and unaware, go out with damage to one of the five senses with which He blessed us!

Do ya hear what I'm saying? : )

Has your church's music ever hurt your ears? Have you ever wished they'd just turn it down? Comments?

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Combatting The Da Vinci Code

The followers of Jesus were imprisoned, tortured and murdered because they claimed they saw Jesus alive after the cross, after the resurrection, and saw him rise to heaven.

But Dan Brown, Ron (Opie Taylor, Richie Cunningham) Howard, Tom Hanks and Audrey Tatou have no sensitivity about how much this belief means to their many long-time fans.

And according to a Barna poll, two MILLION of these fans--believers and non, many of them who do not know art history or church history, much less the Bible, have changed their religious beliefs because of Brown's allegedly fictitious claims.

Yes, he says it's fiction, but he told an interviewer that if he were writing this as non-fiction, he would change--nothing. He can't have it both ways. And eternal destinies are at stake.

Page 309: "The early Jewish tradition involved ritualistic sex. In the temple, no less." This is blasphemy.

“The Bible is a product of man, my dear. Not of God” (page 231). But the earliest followers of Christ were committed, self-sacrificing persons, both men and women, who were willing to die because they believed in Christ’s divinity and in His role as Savior. And we will again, if we don't start defending our truth now.

A detailed rebuttal is the book, Breaking the DaVinci Code by Darrel Bock of Dallas Theological Seminary. Speaking in church, recently, Dr. Bock stated that most Christians know very little about early church history or the writings, so they just accept Dan Brown's earnest and erroneous claims that Jesus Christ fathered children and the conservative Catholic group Opus Dei is a murderous sect.

Dr. Bock cited the very liberal Christian scholar Dominic Crossan, often seen on PBS shows "debunking" evangelical Christianity. Crossan said, "If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it must be a camel." Even a liberal scholar agrees that with all the evidence to the contrary, Dan Brown chose to advance this erroneous theory that Jesus Christ married Mary Magdalene.

Dr. Bock said since Jesus is all man and all God, that even if Jesus had married, it wouldn't change the power of his salvation. But the truth is, we, the Church, are the Bride of Christ.

Another excellent source is from Josh McDowell who wrote the excellent Evidence that Demands a Verdict and many other great books, and now offers booklets called The Da Vinci Quest for giving away. A carton of 36 is $58 which covers shipping.

He says if we just answer "It's fiction," people will think we're uninformed and in denial or something. It provides answers re art history and early church history, specifics from the novel to impress the skeptic and refute Brown.

The council of Nicea did not determine that Jesus was divine. The church believed that from the very beginning eyewitness reports.

Also, during the Renaissance, when Leonardo painted, it was typical to depict young men students as clean-shaven with long hair, which he did with John the Beloved Disciple seated next to Jesus. Leonardo--and that's his name, Da Vinci is his address--depicted wilderness man John the Baptist the same way. If Leonardo did paint Mary Magdalene next to Jesus instead of John, because Jesus and Mary were allegedly married, then where is the "beloved disciple"? Under the table?

Leonardo never referred to the Mona Lisa by that name. She was called "Lisa...(wife of ) Giocondo," or "La Giaconda" until Leonardo's biographer called her Mona Lisa. It has nothing to do with the masculine and so-called sacred feminine.

The Gospels were not proven wrong by the Dead Sea Scrolls! The DSS did not even refer to the New Testament!

Other so-called gospels were written by the Gnostics who had a pov of their own to promote. The apostle Paul addresses those who were bothered by those presenting "another Gospel," "another Jesus."

When DVC first came out, I read it and returned it for a refund, stating I could not support anyone who said Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married.

It bothered me enough that I bought Breaking the Da Vinci Code.

Later, two summers ago, I had the opportunity to travel with Clan Carmichael in Scotland. We visited Rosslyn Chapel outside of Edinburgh, which happens to be where TDC ends. There is no Star of David on the floor. But in the bookstore of this church, I was appalled to see they sold The Da Vinci Code. That chapel is selling a book that states that the church has lied for 2000 years!

Knowing we would visit Rosslyn, I carried Breaking the Da Vinci Code with me on the trip. When I saw TDC in the bookstore, I went back to the bus to retrieve Bock's book. I wanted to show it to the bookstore manager and ask him to at least sell this one too. But we were on a schedule and the bus had to leave.

"Email them," I was told. Well, that's not the same, but I did so, and heard back--nothing.

In Revelation 3, the Holy Spirit speaks of the Laodicean church which is poor, wretched, miserable, blind and naked--and too blind to know it. Powerless. Vulnerable.

Some teach that Revelation 3 represents not only local congregations, but time periods, and the lukewarm Laodicean church is the last church period before the Second Coming of Christ. Today's church.

(Bill Bright also lamented this poor state of the U.S. church compared to the growing church in the Third World in his book co-authored with Ted Dekker, Blessed Child. )

Dr. Bock urged the church to do what Jesus told Mary Magdalene to do. She was the first person He commissioned to spread the Gospel--a woman, mind you! Like her, we are called to go forth and tell everyone the truth. Whose God May We Mock? Josh McDowell

Southern Baptists reply:


Catholic Church comments, Tom Hanks defends movie.... Da Vinci and Jesus

Josh McDowell's podcast:

More sources:

Peter Marshall British tax rules to provide Sony with 100 million pounds because it was partially shot in the United Kingdom. Teabing says in the novel, “The Bible is a product of man, my dear. Not of God” (page 231). But the earliest followers of Christ were committed, self-sacrificing persons, both men and women, who were willing to die because they believed in Christ’s divinity and in His role as Savior.