Spring is here,
New life abounds.
Sprinkles of seeds
Growing gardens of flowers.
Sprinkles of kindness
Growing gardens of love.
A child’s touching example of love and kindness:
Before I go into what’s new, I’d like to point out an article that really draws awareness to sexual abuse within faith communities. Believe it or not, many feel they are “safe” within these communities, but sexual abuse happens everywhere, often much more from adults children have come to trust or have been told they need to obey without question. I have recently read accounts from those who were sexually trafficked and abused as children by ministers and elders and still have no support at all from a faith community. I am aware of and am grateful that some faith communities are not only aware, but vigilant and active in keeping children safe. But the truth is: If there is even one faith community that is not, it is too many. Even one child sexually trafficked and/or abused is too many.
Sex offenders, faith communities, and four common exploitations
You may have noticed my link is no longer a wordpress.com link, though it will still take you to my new one – freedtofly.me. I’ve also gotten rid of ads, so if you still see them, please let me know.
- Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul to Rest by Bonnie Gray
This book is just coming out, but I know it will be hope-packed, just like Bonnie’s Faith Barista blog is. I hope to write a book review on it in the near future, but here is the trailer:
- Donkeys Still Talk: Hearing God’s Voice When You’re Not Listening by Virelle Kidder
“Is God trying to tell me something? God uses the oddest things to grab our full attention. Just ask the Old Testament prophet Balaam–God used a donkey to speak to him! The donkeys in our own lives can be difficult people, overwhelming odds, or interrupted plans. The problem is, we can easily miss these personal messages. How can we make sure we are really hearing God’s voice? With a healthy dose of humorous anecdotes and biblical truth, author Virelle Kidder tells us how she learned to listen to the donkeys in her life.” (Amazon Review)
Special quotes from this book:
- “Our donkeys remind us to listen for God’s voice, to focus on Jesus, and to trust Him to give us everything we need for the journey.”
- “Donkeys are intended to carry us to places where God’s power can be displayed”.
- “Without our spiritual eyes opened, we seldom recognize that God is involved in every detail of this journey called life.”
- I’m Still Here: A Breakthrough Approach to Understanding Someone Living with Alzheimer’s by John Ziesel
“The unfortunate popular perception is that when someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia, they are immediately lost to themselves, to those who love them and to those they love. In I’M STILL HERE, John Zeisel shows how you can connect with someone through the fog of dementia and build a relationship with the person within. This groundbreaking book focuses on connecting with Alzheimer’s sufferers through the abilities that don’t diminish over the course of the disease, such as understanding music, art, facial expressions and touch. By harnessing these capacities, and by using other approaches to treatment, this book demonstrates how it is possible to offer sufferers a quality of life with a connection to others and to the world around them.” (Amazon Review)
- Faith Barista – A safe harbor where Bonnie Gray encourages us to be “real,” to be inspired, to breathe.
“I believe life is a journey and our stories are the greatest gifts we can live out and offer to each other – especially when they go off script.
This is a quiet space. Where your soul can breathe and unplug from the sea of distractions. To step into the inner life where Jesus has made His home in you and me.
The writing featured here is handcrafted. Just for you.”
- Coffee for Your Heart – Holley Gerth provides a refreshing brook of love, understanding, and encouragement for weary, thirsty travelers on this journey of life.
“I see this place as a bit like an online coffee shop. A spot to share our hearts, explore our dreams, laugh, encourage each other and celebrate what God is doing.”
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by NAMI – A comprehensive booklet including: What Is Trauma?, The Neurobiology of PTSD, Diagnosing PTSD, PTSD and Co-Occurring Disorders, Family Impact of PTSD, Recovery and Coping, and Informational Resources.
“Some people, in order to discover God, read books. But there is a great book: the very appearance of created things. Look above you! Look below you! Read it. God, whom you want to discover, never wrote that book with ink. Instead He set before your eyes the things that He had made. Can you ask for a louder voice than that?” – St. Augustine
- Did You Bring Your Camera – Refreshing, awesome snapshots of God’s marvelous creation in various categories from Anita Johnson
- Twisted Sifter: Animals – Amazing photos of animals – mostly wildlife but a few pet photos sprinkled in
- Twisted Sifter: Nature/Space – Phenomenal photos of nature and space
- “Love one another and help others to rise to the higher levels, simply by pouring out love. Love is infectious and the greatest healing energy.” – Sai Baba
- “When we tell our stories, the truth about our lives – the broken parts, the secret parts, the beautiful parts – then the gospel comes to life, an actual story about redemption.” – Shauna Niequist
- “When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” – Harriet Beecher Stowe