Together we can make a difference. It’s not just about reading, but showing the love of Christ and living out our faith.
I’ve felt a burden to be able to share the blessings through this site with those less fortunate. Recently God pressed on my heart what we as a community can do together.
With that in mind, 10% of your purchases made through CBF Amazon affiliate links will help to support a new charity each month.
Below are the organizations we as a community are contributing to:
October 2018 Reload Love.
November 2018 Drake Rayden Foundation.
December 2018 Bible League International
For 2019, we have decided to donate to the Drake Rayden Foundation to make a larger impact (given quarterly). We will reevaluate our giving at the end of the year again.
I’m excited about these new opportunities. Thank you for being a part of Christian Book Finds.
I thought I knew a lot about faith. I’ve leaned on God over the years more often than any human should have to, which as it turns out is a common theme for most Christians.
It’s been 19 years since that night, the one that when I think about still makes my heart skip and my breathing become shallow. The night someone came in our home when my husband was at work and assaulted and tried to suffocate me, leaving with threats of harm to me and my children.
The day after, I shared the local news headlines with John Kennedy, Jr … his plane had gone down off Cape Cod that same night.
So while the world mourned him, my life had been forever changed. I’ve tried not to dwell there. God knows the struggles and even how I walked away from him for a year.
So it is with this blind faith, I went into being home alone with my three youngest children recently, my husband away on business. I’m normally okay, but fear had been dogging my steps for over two weeks. It clutched at my heart with every loud noise, making me shake my head and wonder why it was back.
The AC out and with 100 degree days, our windows were stuffed with fans, the noise a constant drone over the top of all things familial. Then it was night. And I couldn’t hear the creaks and groans of the house over the whirring. I lay in bed with an ax of my husbands underneath it “just in case”.
It is in these moments I learned a few things about blind faith.
Our minds can create something out of nothing. Rationale does not always work. Feeding the imagination with what-ifs and analyzing every noise only produces more worries and fear. Trusting in God’s care, even in the face of death, it comes down to faith.
Is it real or imagined?
Do I trust God for my ULTIMATE care, even unto death? Do I believe He’s asleep or I’m not worth the effort? Whatever our experience with man is, if we know God’s Word and stay close to Him through it and prayer, we know His CHARACTER. The bible says He is faithful. He does not faint or grow weary. He is love. There is no darkness in Him. He is a shield for those who take refuge in Him.
Taking our eyes from God to look at circumstances and fearful things in the natural is human, but continual correction to look UP to Him for our provision and care is necessary for survival. Yes, necessary. If I am in the lion’s den or about to be cast into the fiery furnace, I will trust God with my life because He loves me and is trustworthy.
So here I am at 2:30 in the morning. I woke up by nothing in particular. But sounds are masked. In my mind, I can conjure up men inside breaking into the house. But I rebuke those thoughts and instead of feeding into them, I pray and trust God. Could I get up and go look? Sure I could and if I heard a REAL noise, I would decide what was wiser. I would pray for wisdom. Say it was a person. What would I do?
Similarly (and I don’t use this word lightly), what if it were bills mounting, a job lost, a sick spouse with a dim prognosis? What would I do?
A man’s heart plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.
There are many plans in a man’s heart,
Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.
Later in Psalm 3 it says:
Then you will walk safely in your way,
And your foot will not stumble.
When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
Yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet.
Do not be afraid of sudden terror,
Nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes;
For the Lord will be your confidence,
And will keep your foot from being caught.
What does the THEN reference? God’s wisdom. How can we walk in it when we entertain fear, dabble in it, wrap it around every notion of tomorrow or ten minutes from now that cripples us?
We must be confident, as we come to know God’s character by staying close to Him, that He will prevail. His plans will not be thwarted. Do you trust Him? If not, turn your eyes and heart back. Run to His side. Spend some time with Him in His word and prayer. Most of us won’t find our answers on Facebook, Twitter, or even in another’s opinions. Try asking God. Even satan must ask God for permission to hinder and sift us.
When our faulty choices lead us down the wrong path, we can trust God to gently correct us and if we don’t get a clue, to correct us further.
BLIND FAITH is trusting in God because of His character and our relationship with Him.
A Call to Christ
If you know Jesus Christ, and love Him … if you receive His free gift of salvation, and repent of your sins, you will find the hope that seems so elusive. You will even find joy in the midst of all the grieving, loss, and fearful circumstances that many are already suffering. But most importantly, you will secure your future. Your eternal future. Stay close to Jesus, keep your eyes on Him, and you will be alright. Even if you die, you will live.
credit: Mikayla Kayne for the last paragraph in this article
Launching Christian Book Find’s new site wouldn’t be right without thanking the wonderful people behind it.
First and foremost is Tattie Maggard, who started the site back in 2011. In 2013, she asked, and I accepted to join forces and become her partner. I have to say, we had THE BEST time running CBF together for four years!
Last year, Tattie decided to sleep in (haha, just kidding) … focus more on the homeschooling of her daughter and on writing her own books (Amish fiction).
I miss her all the time, but you, the readers, have filled the places in my heart that get lonely without her.
So, thank you, Tattie. What an amazing idea that has blossomed.
Secondly, thank you, awesome readers!
CBF ran a GoFundMe to help create this new site, and all of you showed up! We were able to raise half the money! I received a bonus at work shortly after and put it towards this wonderful upgrade.
Thank you to my best friends, my husband and Suzanne D. Williams, who keep me sane and put up with my over-caffeinated rambling about books, html, marketing, and all the things my brain tries to work out on a non-stop basis.
My friend’s beautiful-inside-and-out daughter, Ashley, puts together the images and sayings I find into amazing pictures that grace us during the week. My #TwitterMaster (as I fondly call him), Russell Sherrard, chats with me each morning as I finish and is always, always reliable, faithful, and on time. I LOVE the support and really couldn’t do all this without you. Thank you!
Thanks to my second eldest son, Benjamin, who is in his last year of college for Computer Science. He’s helped me so much over the years with coding, questions, and trying to understand why things work the way they do with machines. Love you!
Lastly, Autumn Lane Paperie, who created our new digs. They have put up with a lot of emails from me, and despite it taking about four months, we’ve created something great together. I’m so proud of your work and how you involved me in all of it.
CBF is a passion, a ministry, and a business.
We, each of us, support the craft of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, who spread God’s love and light of the Gospel through stories. They strengthen us for the journey, whether a wholesome escape, through laughter or tears, or being part of fictional families who we feel close to just by a turn of an author’s words.
This is our love for Christian books, and this site is a home for us all.
Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, But to your name give glory.
Rivers of ivory eyeshadow cast a shimmery glow down her pale cheeks. She was alone in a sea of women. A retreat suggested by her pastor’s wife. Just two short weeks before, at 20 weeks pregnant, she had lost her baby.
Because of Your mercy, Because of Your truth, Why should the Gentiles say, “So where is their God?”
She was sharing a room with 3 women from church. One of them, the key speaker. Her eyes were red-rimmed from crying. Bloodshot. Her nose continually running. A yearning inside her cried out for the touch of a consoling hand, a sympathetic word. None was given.
But our God is in heaven; He does whatever He pleases. Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men’s hand. They have mouths, but they do not speak. Eyes they have, but they do not see, They have ears, but they do not hear; Noses they have; but they do not smell; They have hands, but they do not handle; Feet they have, but they do not walk; Nor do they mutter through their own throat. Those who make them are like them; So is everyone who trusts in them.
She wondered what all these women thought. This twenty-something woman of God…..was she trying to find her way? In tears she would break down at dinner or walk out during the prepared speeches, quietly unable to hold it together any longer.
O Israel, trust in the Lord; He is their help and their shield. O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord; He is their help and their shield. You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord; He is their help and their shield.
Where was the sympathy, O Lord? The woman among the 100’s to become your hands and your mouth? Are our hearts so hardened to another’s pain, our focus more on ourselves that to care for another and extend ourselves, is too much to ask?
The Lord has been mindful of us; He will bless us; He will bless the house of Israel; He will bless the house of Aaron. He will bless those who fear the Lord, Both small and great.
The rivers had flowed. Tears, the like of which had never been shed in her lifetime. Her heart mourned, bereft. Broken and still like the heart of her lifeless baby.
May the Lord give you increase more and more. You and your children. May you be blessed by the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
God took her heart and has been putting it back together piece-by-piece. Unrecognizable as her own, it has been fashioned after Another, the likeness of who she will ever strive to achieve.
The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord’s; But the earth He has given to the children of men. The dead do not praise the Lord, nor any who go down into silence. But we will bless the Lord from this time forth and forevermore.
Open our mouths, O Lord. Open our hearts and ears. May we see and hear those who mourn. May we become your shoulders, to offer them up to be wept upon. May we become your mouth, to speak and let someone know they are not alone.
Praise the Lord!
Their weight sinks into the carpet then the floorboards beneath, permeating slowly into the concrete and the earth.
Footprints of time and memory.
My head turns quickly to catch the shadow of a moment, a laugh, a sigh.
In the softness of home, the memories rock me.
Gently floating across my mind and falling in waves that ripple like a rock skidding across a mirrored pond’s surface.
The air holds promises kept and broken.
Words spoken long ago or tongues stilled out of respect and wisdom.
Home has been privy to solitude, closed doors, deep thoughts, and heart’s cries.
When nowhere else would shelter, when no one else would hear,
When memories were once today’s and tomorrow was still promised.
Home was and is something fleeting, yet always steadfast.
Home is where your head lolls and you fall asleep on the couch after a meal of Thanksgiving.
It’s often Mom or Dad. Or scattered across miles and held tight in a brief visit.
It’s childhood memories, the laughter and the tears.
It’s rainy mornings and a steamy cup of coffee.
It’s snowy afternoons when hands cold from fort-making wrap around a hot mug of cocoa.
Home is said to be where your heart is, but it’s also where you’re given your heart.
Then as we grow, it’s scattered across the country, inside different people.
The pieces you’ve given away. Willingly and unwillingly.
Wrested over time or given at a glance into the warm brown eyes of a puppy.
Home is inside you and I.
It’s set across years and as we age,
And love and lose, it resides between heaven and earth.
Home is never lost, but rarely whole in one person or place.
But there are moments when the feeling of home is found in one terribly sweet piece of the present.
Grasp it loosely, examine it fully,
For the weight will sink into the carpet then the floorboards beneath, permeating slowly into the concrete and the earth.
Footprints of time and memory.
To remember who you were, who you were meant to be.
Do you remember at age 8? The dreams you had while lying in your bed at night, thinking about the long path before you and all you would accomplish?
Do you remember your whispered prayers at the tough times in your life, even as a little girl? And when you were trying to figure things out in your teens, or later … when everyone thought you knew what you were doing and things were settled. The years pass quickly.
And now you have a family and maybe a job you love … or hate. Did you deny and bury that hope deep inside of you? The world needs you. The darkness has not overcome the light. You shine brightly still.
Uncover and reveal without subterfuge.
The time is now to remember who you were, who you were meant to be.
Last night, I was the most beautiful woman in the world.
I was at a public function and spurned by every woman there. The men looked at me with lust. One in particular strayed close enough to make eye contact. My heart contracted, I loved him yet he was married. As I stood to leave, his mother rebuked me. I ducked my head, trying to walk out with dignity.
Last night, I was walking home at twilight and witnessed a crime.
The angry thief turned to me with a bag in his hand intent on putting it over my head. I stumbled and ran. He didn’t follow, but yelled obscenities and threats that he would find me.
Last night, I was a gay man with a broken heart.
I was trying to get home, but being pushed and confronted by an angry muscle of a male who wanted to pummel me because of who I was while his girlfriend screamed at him to leave me alone, that I was a ‘human being’.
And when I awoke, I was me. My heart displaced and enlarged at who I had been moments before. I was privileged to be able to relate in some small way to the heart cries of the world.
Jesus came to mind and I wanted to weep.
I don’t know if there’s anything I can tell you that would convince you He is real. That what He did by dying on the cross and taking the punishment of yours and my sins away, well…it was personal.
Just for you. He wants to heal your broken heart and gather you close. He wants to redeem your time here, for your good and God’s.
God’s holy. We’re sinners. Every last stinking one of us. Jesus is the shed blood, the passover lamb spoken of in the Old Testament, for which the Jewish people had to make sacrifices so that they were “good with God”.
While we’re still in our mess, Jesus died for it. He knew about it and covered you. Whether you’re still in it, trying to walk ahead of it, lonely, scared, rejected by the world, God still loves you. He wants you back, close to Him so He can take care of you.
At the cross, we’re all on equal footing. We’re the soldiers who hang Him, the women who weep, the accusers, and the robbers who look on Him…one mocking and the other accepting Him as the Son of God.
There is only One who is worthy of our love, adoration, every moment’s breath and thoughts.
It’s not our fancy cars, money in the bank, newest technological gadget, friends on Facebook, or messed up family that will make that little person deep down inside you, who aches and yearns to be loved, feel whole.
There is only One whose love is complete. Unlike the world’s, it will fill you up and not leave you empty a few hours later.
Last night, I was the most beautiful woman in the world. I was heartbroken, lonely, rejected, and dirty. I covered my feelings with wine, men, things, my reflection. Yet I was still me inside and I hurt.
I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them. The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep. I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.