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Thursday Thought: God and the Art of Exhaustion

Not that long ago in a galaxy very, very near, I was having a rough day. It was nothing new and groundbreaking that was wrong, nothing fantastically large, and nothing that a thousand other people were likely dealing with that day. Everyone has those days. Somewhere around the age of eighteen, we start saying “adulting is hard!” and I’ve yet to meet a person willing to contradict that statement.
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Hard Work To Hard Copy: Five Tips for Busting Writer's Block

So you’re writing your book. Things are going well and you’re feeling like you’ve really hit your stride. Every day you smash another goal and it won’t be long before your book is finished, right?


Wrong

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Thursday Thought: Obedience in the Face of the Unknown

Throughout the Bible, we see many figures who reflect ourselves. We see ourselves in their struggles and hope for their same victories from God. In many ways, for those of us who have grown up with these stories, the names and actions of these people can become almost second nature. In that way, the story of Esther is not an unfamiliar one. The teenage girl who became a queen and used her influence to save her people. But the wider implications of the story have a much more impactful legacy of faithfulness in the face of impossible odds.
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Thursday Thought: God's Story, Our Story

It’s no surprise that I see just about everything in life through the lens of storytelling. I’m a writer. That’s kind of my job. I’m constantly looking at the story of things. When I listen to music in the car, I’m dreaming up new story ideas. When I take a walk by the lake, I dream up fantastic things that could happen to set a new tale in motion. And when I look at my past, I look at it as a story arc. Where am I in the story and where am I going?
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Thursday Thought: Independently Dependent

It’s no secret or surprise that humans are fiercely independent creatures. Most of the time, we’re applauded for being independent, and indeed there’s a lot of good that our inclination to do things ourselves can do. Independence has become a badge of success in our lives, with us congratulating people for their self-sufficiency and capability. We want to be able to do things ourselves, plain and simple, and we want the credit for having done them.
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Hard Work to Hard Copy: How to Make Time to Write

It’s nice to imagine that when we sit down to write our book we can treat it like a full-time job. For most writers, this isn’t even remotely close to being a viable option, especially for first-time authors. It takes a long time for an author to support themselves fully on writing alone. So the more common reality is a book that’s begging to be written paired with a job that pays the bills.
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Thursday Thought: Biblically Steadfast

It’s no secret that sometimes life is just plain hard. No one contests that. It’s not a matter of if our lives are going to encounter hardship, trial, and pain, but rather a matter of when. It’s not far down the road either. Talk to just about anyone for long enough and you’ll start to peel back the layers that reveal a hurting, tired heart. None of us are immune to it.
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Thursday Thought: Hosea and Hope

Anytime I’ve ever sat down to read one of the minor prophets in the Bible. I start making excuses. Lots of them. Clever little excuses until I skip back to one of the letters in the New Testament and say “Phew! That was a close one!”. This, of course, is no good. The Bible is God’s word, and all (yes all) of it is good for teaching. So trying to really drive that home for a change. I sat myself down and forced myself to work through the book of Hosea.
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Hard Work to Hard Copy: Writing Your Characters

Characters. They’re the little engines that make the whole story tick. Without them, you would just have your setting. It may be an absolutely lovely setting, but without anyone to journey through it just becomes a barren landscape with the occasional tumbleweed rolling by. Every story needs a hero. We all know this. It just making the hero that’s the tricky part...
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Thursday Thought: Prayer in Practice

As Christians, prayer ought to play a huge role in our lives. Yet, it’s all too easy to have a strained and frustrated relationship with the concept of prayer. What is it even supposed to look like in our lives? I’m not going to pretend that I’m an expert on a subject I can hardly figure out myself. Looking at Jesus’ prayer life offers some keen insights into the practice of prayer and how he carried it out. Who better to learn from how to pray to God than the Son of God himself? Here are some observable practices Jesus employed in and around his prayer life and what they can teach us. 
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Thursday Thought: Children of God

One of the first jobs I ever had was childcare and it’s been the most common job I’ve held ever since. I’ve always loved working with kids. They’re delightful and they always keep you on your toes. It’s no wonder I ended up writing books for kids. Still, every kid, no matter how sweet or well behaved, has their days when they completely fall apart.
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Hard Work to Hard Copy: Outlining Your Book

Structure.


If ever there was a word to terrify me as a writer, it’s structure. If you know me at all personally, you know that I’m not exactly the poster child for organization and planning. It’s never been something I’ve been particularly adept at and I’ve never seen much use for it personally. So you can imagine how much of a struggle it was for me as a new writer to get bombarded with advice on structure, organization, planning, and everything in between. The number one fear-inducing, planning related concept? Outlining.

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Thursday Thought: Godly Discipline

In the summer of 2015, I got a wild idea that I wanted to play rugby. I was transferring to the University of Idaho in the fall and knew they had a rugby team there so I decided now was the time to go for it. The only problem? I had no idea how to play rugby and hadn’t been in team sport condition for years. Not wanting to be deterred, I enlisted the help of my Dad. He went all out training me for my new sport. He already had an outstanding legacy in coaching, having coached my younger sisters in soccer for years by that point. His team had the reputation for being the fittest at any tournament and there was an adage amongst him and his players whenever one of them mentioned some ailment: “You know what fixes that? Running.”

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Writing a Children's Book

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”

- Thomas Mann


In writing and releasing my first children’s book, I’ve had the opportunity for some fantastic conversations with people about the writing process. I’ve met and talked with a lot of people who would love to publish a book, but like me at the start, they have no idea where to begin. Which is fair! It’s a daunting process and one that you can’t undertake without a little help! Over the next few weeks, I’m going to take you through my entire book process, from original idea to final release and marketing, in the hopes that you might learn something about what’s required and what options you have to pursue it.

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Thursday Thought: Tidying Hearts

About a month ago I turned on Netflix, saw a show titled Tidying Up With Marie Kondo, and wondered what it could be about. One thing led to another and now all my clothes are folded in tiny little stand-up bundles. Sue me.
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Thursday Thought: When Numbers Equal Worth

We live in a world that’s obsessively driven by numbers. They’re impossible to escape. Believe me, I’ve tried. We count absolutely everything. Run the numbers, check the numbers, raise the numbers, we all get very concerned with our digit friends.
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Thursday Thought: More Faith, Less Fear

There’s a lie that I’ve bought into many times and I know I’m not alone in it. It’s a seemingly little lie, but it can wreak havoc in our lives if we aren’t careful. Somewhere along the line we all get sold the notion that to be afraid is to be without faith, that these can’t exist at the time. In reality, that’s just not true.
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Thursday Thought: Pointing to Christ

You can’t ignore a neon sign. Bright and vibrant, they demand your attention whether or not you want to give it. If you’ve ever been to Las Vegas, you know this to be true on a whole other level. You can’t go anywhere in that city without a bright, flashy, multicolored light display enticing you towards whatever it has to offer. “Come over here! See what I have! Look at me!” A neon sign will grab and hold your attention.
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Thursday Thought: Detours Ahead

Once upon a time, I was freaked out and worried. Happens more than I would care to admit. In this particular instance, I was freaked out and worried about job hunting and all things being an adult. I can’t remember the particulars but it very much boiled down to thinking my wheels were spinning and I was stuck in a rut and never getting anywhere. I know I’m not alone in ever having felt that way.
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Thursday Thought: Pray Responsibly

“God, please help me be more ____.” I think it’s safe to say every Christian has prayed this at some point in the lives. If they haven’t, there might be an issue concerning lack of growth and that’s another blog post entirely. When we’re chasing God, we want to be more like him, which is a great thing! But sometimes it seems like the more we pray for growth in him, the harder our lives get. We ask to be used for the Kingdom and find ourselves bogged down in the mud. Given the world’s creed to “follow your bliss!” and “chase your dreams!” it’s hard not to feel like we must be failing somehow, but that’s genuinely not the case.
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Top Ten Children's Books

It was C.S. Lewis who said, “You can't get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me.”. What a true statement. I’m always on the hunt for new books and if you’re anything like me, you are too. So what about some recommendations? My favorite genre far and away is children’s fiction (small wonder that’s what I write) so without further ado, here are my top ten recommendations for children’s books.


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Thursday Thought: Dependable Failure

The concept of trying is plastered everywhere in our society. You don’t have to go far to find a motivational picture with some variance of the words “Keep Trying!” calling out to you. It’s inescapable. And yet, for all the pithy slogans, we still get gummed up in the sheer weight of what it means to try.
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Thursday Thought: More Than Suffering

I won’t mince my words here. Everyone suffers. If you haven’t ever felt like you were downright suffering, just wait. You’ll get your turn too. No one gets away from it. It will look different for everyone, but if you start swapping stories of suffering with your fellow humans, you will find a huge tapestry of uniquely painful experiences that have left lasting marks. We can’t hide from it.


Cheerful stuff, huh? I say all that because I don’t want to spend time today on if we’ll suffer or not and what it might look like.

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Thursday Thought: Seashell Sanctuary

Life, by the very virtue of it being life, is incredibly difficult. It’s not so much a matter of if it will be difficult, but when (and just how bad). We don’t like to admit it, but it’s true. We know our own life story and what we’ve struggled with. Whatever life has thrown at us, it’s thrown the same at those in our orbit. No one can escape it, so what are we to do?
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Captain Acorn Sneak Peek

Hello everyone! We are just two short weeks away from The Fantastic Adventures of Captain Acorn going on preorder (which I am perfectly calm about and not overly excited about at all. Nope.). I know we’ve all talked about the world of Captain Acorn, but now I want to give you a little sneak peek into the book itself so you know exactly what you’re getting into.

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