Sunday, 30 March 2014

When you or your loved one is told they don't have long to live

This important book will bring comfort and practical advice to those experiencing the difficult time between fatal diagnosis and departure of a loved one. While we believe for miracles and healing, sometimes the healing is in Eternity. Pastor Lani Larrua draws on her own experience with the untimely demise of her mother at age 42.
Find it on Amazon here

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Shadow Stalker by Barbara Ann Derkson

Evil pursues Christine. This is the second book of the Finders Keepers series by Barbara Ann Derksen. On one hand Christine is an investigator looking for a missing child. on the other she is being hunter by the murderer of her parents because she had witnessed the crime as a small child.

You can buy this book at Amazon here
Also enter the Book launch competition for a chance to win prizes here

Barbara Ann Derksen

 Read Excerpt: Prologue and Chapter One.

 Her vision seeped through the louvers on the utility room door. The images seemed broken as in a jigsaw puzzle until she leaned forward and placed her forehead against the wood. Her insides tightened. Everyone was shouting. She willed her body to stop trembling but it seemed to have a will of its own. The gun that the stranger held, just like on TV but different, was pointed at her father. This was real. Daddy had hid her ... told me to stay where I am until ... She couldn't remember.
Daddy’s voice sounded like it did when he talked on the phone sometimes. “What do you want with us? You have no business being here. We said no contact."
She watched his face get redder than she'd ever seen it, even when he'd been out in the sun too long. Mommy was shaking her fist. She never did that. The stranger smiled, totally silent, not intimidated, it seemed to the five year old. A shiver walked its way up her spine. She’d seen guns like that in the cartoons she watched. This one was a little longer though. Only business, the man said. What business, she wondered.
The man straightened his arm, the one holding the gun. Her vision blurred for a second, horror filling the empty spaces in her brain. The explosion echoed in the foyer. The bullet seemed to travel in slow motion. Just like the cartoons, she thought. Her daddy’s body slammed into the banister of the staircase heading up to the bedroom area and the maid’s quarters. The railing shook. Her father’s body flopped forward. His head smacked the floor. He lay still then.
Blood covered the wall behind where her father had stood. Her mother screamed and then was silent. Before her father's body hit the tiled foyer, she watched the side of her mother’s head explode. Specks of blood and other gooey stuff splattered all over the walls, mixing with the blood from her father. Her stomach lurched. She wrapped a hand tightly across her mouth. A silent scream rattled around in her head seeking an escape. Get up, it said. Daddy. Mommy. Get up. Please. The scream evaporated, as if it had never been. They weren’t moving. In the cartoons, they always got back up. Why don’t they get up?
Tears filled her eyes, blurring her vision again. Daddy just lay there. Mommy lay beside him, covered in the blood that flowed from her body. Her sightless eye stared toward the girl, hidden. The girl felt as if she was going to throw up but she swallowed instead. She swiped at the tears that silently trickled down her pudgy cheeks. Her mother told her she had cute dimples, whatever that was. Her mother liked to touch her cheeks. Now...
She watched as the man, the monster, moved toward the entrance. Then he stopped. He looked up the stairs, then down the hall. He looked toward her hiding place, his eyes cold, calculating, wondering. Her stomach lurched, the fright almost real enough to touch. Could he see her? Her daddy had told her to hide here. He knew they were in danger. Why? Who was this man? How did daddy know him? Maybe it was mommy the man hated. Why? Footsteps interrupted her questions. The man was moving down the hall straight toward her.
She crept backwards, crawling on all fours as if she were a spider. Her gymnastics teacher had taught her that. I need to get out of here. He will kill me, too. She remembered her discovery when she’d hidden in here last week. Her cousins had come for a visit. They loved to play hide and seek in the large, multistoried mansion that was her home. She'd found a door leading to the garage where her daddy’s cars were kept under the chauffeur’s apartment. She’d sneak out that way.
Several hanging tools brushed her shoulders as she crept under them toward safety. They swung to and fro. It was as if they whispered, “She’s in here.” She twisted her head behind. She couldn't see through the slats in the door anymore but the heavy tread of footsteps grew louder, closer. She reached the hidden door. It creaked as she slipped through.
“Wait.” His voice echoed through the tiny room, resonating off the walls of the small space, the sound carried over the creak of the door as he pulled it open. The menace in his voice was gone, replaced by enticement.
She scurried into the large garage. Ignoring the man, she skirted the three cars stored there. Her heart pumped so loudly in her ears, the sound blocked out the rustle of the man's clothes as he squeezed through the same opening. She turned slightly and saw his shadow. Her short legs pumped toward the door leading to the stone walled courtyard and the gated entrance to the back yard. The wrought iron gate was open. Good.
Her feet flew over the paved driveway toward the gate. She turned once to see if the chauffeur was nearby. Benson played with her sometimes. He was nowhere to be seen. Then she remembered. Benson had asked for the day off to take Maria, the maid, to the beach. There’s no one to help. She streaked through the wrought iron gate.
The yard was tree filled, almost like a park. She ran like the wind, as if the devil himself was after her. He is. She reached the second gate in the high wrought iron fence that surrounded her parent's property. It was slightly ajar. Her parent's always kept this one locked but now... She almost forgot to breathe as she raced through it and into the street. The sidewalk led to town. Her legs pounded the pavement hard. “Wait.” The shout came from behind her. The man was following.
The sound of his footsteps bounced off cement walls and rock enclosures, the attempt of homeowners to protect what was theirs. Trees, thick for privacy, lined the street, hiding nearby houses from view. Traffic was non-existent along this street at this time of day. She ran. Her instincts told her that life, her life, depended on it. She rounded a corner but then peeked back. He was still coming, walking briskly in her direction. I need to hide.
She crawled under a nearby bush, its dense foliage the perfect cover, she thought. The picture of her mother’s head scattering debris all over the walls played like a ticker tape through her brain. Her stomach roiled again and she gagged. Mommy. Daddy. Please help me. Footsteps rounded the corner. The sound grew louder. He’ll find me. I have to leave.
She stood. He reached for her with one hand while the other, the one that had held the gun, was in his pocket. She ducked just out of his reach. She raced like the wind, staying off the sidewalk this time. She flew through the trees as if someone carried her, her feet barely touching the ground long enough to make an indent in the leaves. Her body slammed into low branches that scratched and tore at her clothing. She was shorter than the man so movement for her was easier here, she reasoned. The heavier footsteps had slowed, proving her right. She heard a twig snap. He was still coming. Maybe a policeman…
The girl ran. Her legs hurt. Muscles contracted painfully. Trickles of blood from scratches marred her perfect skin, skin that her mother would caress from time to time. Mommy. The thought hurt so much. Her daddy liked to swing her over his head. She almost smiled at the thought but then tears flowed again when she remembered. He’s back there. Lying on the floor. Blood oozed from his forehead. He never got back up.
The race continued. She rounded another corner. Her body slammed into legs encased in dark blue pants. Strong hands steadied her but she wriggled to be free. She looked over her shoulder, twisting this way and that. “Hey there. What’s the hurry?” The voice sounded kind, different than the one she ran from. She looked up.
“Melissa?” The man’s smile turned quickly to a frown, concern written all over his face. “What’s wrong?”
She pointed in the direction she’d come from. Her breaths were mere gasps, words impossible. Tears fell unhindered. She slipped behind the legs. Would the man shoot this person too? She pointed again as the man rounded the corner. She saw him stop before the policeman could look in the direction she pointed. The man ducked his head as his foot stepped backward. She watched him, silently and as quickly as he’d come, step behind the nearest tree, out of sight. Her heart felt as if it would leap out of her chest. Then she was sick. All over the shiny black shoes of the policeman she’d collided into.
“I don’t see what you’re trying to tell me, Melissa. Calm down. Just take a deep breath.” He saw her looking at the mess at his feet. “Don’t worry about that. I can clean them. But what’s got you in such a tizzy”
She swallowed, tears streaked down her cheeks as if they’d never stop. “He-he," She hiccoughed. She pointed in the direction she'd come from. "He shot mommy and daddy.” She gasped for another breath. Her finger shook as she continued to point toward the corner where the monster had disappeared. “He shot them.”

Chapter One
Christine sat up in bed, her back straight. She swiped at the streaks of perspiration on her face only to discover they were tears. Images of her parents disappeared like wisps of fog. She shuddered. The dream always felt so real, just like it happened yesterday. The face of that monster never fades. One day ... She swung her legs to the floor and hung her head. The loneliness was always overpowering after the dream left. She rose from the bed and looked at the twisted sheets. She sighed. Nights like this are never restful.
She stepped into her tiny bathroom, turned on the pewter coated hot water tap, and splashed her face. Images swam before her eyes. She shuddered. I hate that dream. She grabbed the lace edged towel that hung near her right hand and covered her face, escaping into its folds. A cold nose brushed her bare leg. “Chief.” She looked down at her large German shepherd. The dog wagged his tail in response and then cocked his head as if to ask if she was okay.
She patted his head. “I’ll bet you wanna go for a run, don’t you?” She ran her fingers behind his ears. Then she looked at the clock on her night stand. “Man, its only 7 a.m.” Christine groaned and then slipped through the door on her way back to bed. Chief blocked her progress. “Aw, come on. It’s too early.” He whined and then wagged his tail harder.
“Oh, all right. I guess an early start will do us both good.” She stepped toward the hook behind her bedroom door where she kept her running clothes.
She tossed the shorts and t-shirt she wore at night on her bed. Chief barked. "Sh-h-h. You'll wake the neighbors." She grinned at her pet/partner of three years and then pulled the sweatshirt she used for her early morning excursions over her head. She stepped into the matching pants. The gray fabric warmed the cold spots on her leg. I like wearing shorts to bed but some nights they’re slightly inadequate, she decided. Maybe it’s time for flannels. She turned toward the door to the hallway. Oh, right. Running. She slipped her sweatshirt off again and retrieved her sports bra from the chair beside her closet. I hate these things.
Finally ready, if a little groggy still, she looked at her patient animal. “Okay Chief. Let’s go.” Christine walked briskly down the hall, past the other two rooms that would one day be an office and another bedroom, and through the living room of her modest home. She opened the drawer in the coffee table and located her taser. With one hand, she pocketed her weapon and with the other, turned off her home alarm system. The front door was double bolted so she turned the bolts and then took the industrial strength chain off before stepping into the early morning air. The sun isn't even up yet. She groaned. Oh, well. “We won’t have any traffic to contend with at least.” She looked down at her companion and then locked the door behind her.
Christine had chosen this area to live in because dogs didn’t require leashes in the nearby park. She wanted Chief to be able to run free. She looked at her pet as he lifted his leg at the closest oak tree. Her heart filled with love. Even if he does push me out of the house before sunrise. Her stride increased as soon as Chief was able to keep up. They moved toward the walking path the city had devised for just this purpose through the park.
Christine made a point to never do things the same way or at the same time each day but she’d go for a run when she had the time. She felt it kept her agile. She chuckled. It also cut down on how stringent she needed to be with her diet. Can’t leave the junk food alone.
The morning air felt like an early fall was descending. She noticed the beginning of some red hues appearing within the green leafy trees that were in abundance along her street and into the park. She inhaled the crisp air, coughed as the cold air hit her lungs and then inhaled again enjoying the smell of smoke from nearby chimneys. I love that smell. But not the thought of winter coming.  She smiled. The cobwebs of the dream were finally dissipating.
A bird, hidden among the leaves of a nearby tree, chirped it's greeting at them, as they made their way along the path. Christine kept a steady pace, running defensively, looking for shadows that moved. She kept her pace slow enough that she could enjoy the beauty around her, what she could see of it at this early hour.  If it weren’t for Chief … The dog had no trouble keeping up. His muscles rippled beneath his sleek fur and his breathe gave off wisps of cloudy emissions. His training kept him alert.
Christine turned her head toward the east. The yellow gold rays of the sun could be seen through the branches of the trees in the distant landscape. As the duo made their way down the path that wound around the circumference of the park, more birds could be heard as the sky lightened. Christine began to relax a little, her vigilance not as worrisome. Then the sun slipped up over the horizon illuminating everything in its path.
Christine led the way past the walking bridge that led to a favorite ice cream stop for area residents. I love living on the edge of the park. It gives me a place to get away from the search. She grinned as she picked up the pace a little. I won't need to work out at the gym today, I think.
Large open areas of well-kept lawns filled the left side of the path, places where people often enjoyed picnics after a long day at the office. Now the area was empty.  Christine enjoyed the serenity that surrounded her. Dew twinkled on the blades of grass as she sped quickly by. Instead of cavorting across the wet grass as dogs loved to do, Chief matched her pace right beside her.
Thirty minutes had passed, she guessed, when Chief whined and then stopped just off the path. She stopped as well but continued to pump her legs up and down to maintain her heart rate. She reached into her pocket, pulled an empty bag out of her pocket and turned it inside out. She slipped her hand inside and when Chief was finished, she bent forward to clean up after him. The nearest trash receptacle gained a deposit.
"Come on, Chief. Time to get home. I have a busy day today and so do you." She reversed direction and began the trek home. Chief fell into step beside her and then stretched out when she expended an added burst of energy. The run cleared her mind as it always did, and gave Chief his early morning exercise as well.
By the time she reached the yard of her little bungalow, Christine was panting almost as much as Chief. She bent forward resting her hands on her knees and then stretched her legs, one at a time, to cool down. Chief rolled around on the grass giving his back an extra work out on the prickly twigs hidden in the thatch. Christine laughed. "I guess that's your way to cool down, huh Chief?" She reached over to scratch him behind his ears when he walked beside her to their back door.
I feel so lucky to have this house, she thought, not for the first time. Once I get my agency up and running, I’ll be able to cover the costs from my salary but for now … Christine took long strides toward her back door, continuing to stretch her tired muscles. "Mr. Goodman did a good job finding this house for us, didn't he Chief?" The dog panted in response. If I can't have parents to advise me, then a lawyer is the next best thing, I guess. And it doesn't hurt to have a trust fund.
Christine unlocked her door, stepped inside and allowed her vision to sweep the premises for anything that might be out of place. She relocked the door as soon as Chief slipped through behind her. Her habits had been ingrained in her since childhood. She'd been taught to always be aware of her surroundings and to make sure her house was secure ... just in case.
Her thoughts heightened her insecurities, as always. She jumped when the phone rang as soon as she was inside the kitchen. She reached toward it. Wonder who could be calling so early. She popped it open. "Hello."
The voice on the other end was from a new friend at the local police detachment. "Oh. Hi, Charlie. What's up?" She listened as the man on the phone gave her some disappointing news. "But, can't you tell me anything else? I mean ... they're my parents." She listened as Charlie reiterated his reasons. "Yeah ... well ... I'm going to find him. I'll just ... Yeah, fine." She slammed the phone closed.
Christine banged her fist on the counter. "Darn regulations. Just because I’m family. They say I’m too close to the situation. Phewy." She scowled toward her dog whose ears were folded back on his head. Then she marched toward her bedroom. She punched the doorframe as an added inflection over her unsatisfactory phone call. "I'll just have to find another way, won't I boy?"
She straightened the crumpled sheets on her bed, threw the duvet over the cover and then straightened the pillows and the shams. I'll never be free if I don't get some answers. She grabbed a pair of jeans from the closet. Christine inspected the shirt she’d worn once before to make sure it was still suitable and deposited it on her bed post to keep it free of wrinkles. Now for a quick shower.
Before he finds me. The thought traveled across her brain as quickly as any she'd had that morning. She looked at her reflection in the mirror. The frown lines were back. She slipped out of her running clothes and tossed them in the hamper under the vanity. She reached past the shower curtain and twisted the knob in her shower stall. Hot water erupted from the rain shower head. She folded the plastic lined floral fabric back and then stepped inside.
That's why I cultivated my friendship with an officer of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. They're federal. I thought ... but it seems not. She soaped her hair and massaged her scalp. Her hair was a lot shorter than when she'd grown up but it still got greasy if she didn't wash it every day. As she ran fingers through her curls, she assessed her situation again. "I'll just have to get a little friendlier with Charlie. Get him on my side." She grinned.
The hot, gentle spray worked its magic on her senses, helping her relax for the first time all morning. She stood still, letting the overhead shower head pour water over her as if she were standing in a rain forest during the afternoon deluge. Her mind returned to the conversation with Charlie.
He said they never let family members know the details of an on-going investigation. They've had twenty years. She leaned her head back allowing the spray to rinse her hair really well.  And they’re no closer to knowing the truth about my parents’ killer than they were the day it happened. Their regulations are ridiculous. Who else has a better right to know? I guess I'll just have to find out what I need to know a different way. Maybe the lawyer ...
Christine stepped out of the shower, grabbed a nearby towel, and began drying her slender body. Her muscles rippled. Maintaining a high degree of fitness was always of personal interest to her. She looked toward Chief. His body seemed relaxed as his head lay over his large paws but she knew he was watching her every move. "You ready for a busy day, boy?" The dog lifted his head and then opened his mouth, his tongue hanging out one side of his mouth, His intelligent eyes spoke volumes as if to say, "I'm ready. Let's go."
She chuckled. "You like the added training, don't you? One day, you'll be the one to solve one of those missing kid cases." She hoped so. Then it would all be worth it … the six months spent training hard every day in order to open her agency for finding missing children.
She and Chief had been trained to work as a team. The training was for finding any missing person, but she hoped it would help them specialize in children. That’s where her heart was. Since her move to this location, she’d found a private instructor. They could hone their skills and keep sharp. It did keep her out of her office part of the time. "And that's the problem, Chief. I can't find out what I need in my parents’ case if I'm not there."
Christine walked past her dog, dodging his sharp claws with her bare feet, and removed clean lingerie from her dresser drawer. While she dressed, she thought about her life until now. Born Melissa Ramport, she'd been raised by a distant cousin of her dad's after her parents were murdered. They had changed her name to Christine Finder ... to protect her, they said. I'm glad I kept my adopted name, though.
But the Finders had given her a good life. She thrived as a small town girl in Texas. She'd learned to shoot, ride a horse, and herd cattle right along with her guardian's ranch hands. She'd become a legal permanent resident of the United States as soon as she was old enough to understand but she'd retained her Canadian citizenship. The nightmare had ended ... almost ... a long time ago but the details of that night were as clear as if it had happened yesterday. Now that she was living near the city where it all began, the dreams had surfaced again.
"Chief, after we've spent some time at the office, we need to go see Mr. Goodman." She watched the dog's ears perk up as if he understood all she was saying. She buttoned the top button on her shirt, and then reached with her right hand to scratch the dog between his ears. "Maybe he will answer some of my questions since he's been looking after mom and dad's estate all these years. Surely he wants to see their killer caught just like I do." A tingle walked up her spine from her tailbone. She'd been warned, hadn't she?
Christine pulled on her comfortable shoes, grabbed her handbag from the dresser, and then walked briskly through the door of her bedroom, with Chief right on her heels. She wobbled in her haste and struck one of the photographs she'd mounted on the wall with her shoulder. It was the one of her mother and father on their last anniversary. They seemed so happy. She straightened it and then shook her head. Can't think about that now. Gotta get to work. "Come on, Chief. Let's get some breakfast and then hit the road."
 To read more you can buy this book at Amazon here
Also enter the Book launch competition for a chance to win prizes here

Thursday, 23 January 2014

"The Last Detail" by Lisa Lickel

"The Last Detail" by Lisa Lickel is much more than a romance. The lessons learned in this book will help make your own romance last. If you like a thoughtful romance with realistic challenges, you'll appreciate this well written book.
Visit Lisa's blog here
Purchase"The Last Detail" at Amazon here!

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

A must read for parents! Spiralling Out of Control

Adult themes. Author's Recommended Reader Age: 17+
Even though this is offered as a young adult novel, it is a valuable read for all parents.

Stephanie's parents tell her things will get better at her new school and to change her attitude! Decent, typically middle class, busy parents; did not see the warning signals as their daughter became introverted and depressed.
Bullied by girls and harassed by boys at her new school; she was primed, as so many are, to respond to comfort from wrong influences. The story has hope, though it is painfully realistic.
Remember, the word "Parent" is a verb as well as a noun. Check out my video review the go to Amazon and buy the book. You won't be able to put it down.
Currently at Amazon for less than a dollar!
Find it here

Michelle Dennis Evans lives on the Gold Coast in Australia. She believes you can find healing and hope when you read someone else's story, whether it's fact or fiction! 
Michelle is married and has four children. She is a young adult and children's author as well as poet. Both her poetry collection and her debut novel, "Spiralling out of Control" reached #1 in their Amazon subcategories in their first week of release.
You can visit Michelle's blog at

Until December 16th you could win an Amazon gift card valued at $200. Go to and enter the Rafflecopter at the bottom of the page. Hosted by the John 3:16 Marketing Network.

Monday, 9 December 2013

The Redemption of Caralynne Hayman

How far would you go to avenge your daughter's death? This fascinating book is about one woman breaking free from a cult and its abuse. I confess I wanted the main character to exact more revenge than she did... however the skillful evolution of her character and that of the pastor who wrestled with the truth, made the story more satisfying than gratuitous revenge.
This is a real page-turner filled with unexpected twists.
Currently on special for just 99 cents
Pick it up from Amazon here

Extract: The Redemption of Caralynne Hayman
Carole Brown
Chapter One

Twenty years earlier
The shadow creatures on the wall shook their wings and legs. Heads with horns nodded. Scary, dark faces watched.
The little girl clasped her floppy-eared rabbit against her chest and stared into the dark.
“Mmm …” Mommy’s murmur reached to her through the walls, and the giggles from her mother tiptoed in, shooing the fear away.
Whoosh. She blew out a breath and squeezed her rabbit tighter. “Mommy has a friend with her, Ramsey. She loves me just like I love you and will give me hugs in the morning after the man leaves.”
Ramsey said nothing. She ran her fingers over his face and could feel his black button eyes staring at her, trusting her to protect him.
“And she’ll read to us and I’ll sit on her lap and we’ll snuggle—all of us together.” She nodded and tugged on Ramsey’s left ear then rolled over.
Real live whispers and laughter floated into the room.
Opening her mouth in a wide yawn, she patted Ramsey’s tummy and whispered again, “Don’t be afraid. I’m right here.”
“Please. That hurts.”
“Mommy?” The little girl frowned but her eyes wouldn’t open. Just like they did when she and mommy put cucumbers slices on their eyes. 
“Stop it—”
             Rubbing at her eyes the little girl sat up. Mommy had never sounded like this before, and neither had any of the men—the men who brought flowers and candy and money. 

About the author: Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. She loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Thriller based in China "Brother Half-Angel"

I really enjoyed this book. Please watch my video review. I'm pleased it's one of a series because I'd like to read more of Brother Half-Angel's adventures as he fights evil and rescues those being persecuted.
 99 cents only until December 16th!!!
Buy it now on Amazon here

Got 10 minutes? Listen to a fascinating interview with Martin Roth here as he discusses how his books deal with the largely unreported persecution of Christians in Egypt, West Africa and Asia.

Go to a special landing page ( to learn more about the promotion and have the chance to win prizes. You can learn more about Martin Roth at his website (

Excerpt: Chapter 13

 Fulang, China 

“Can we come to your room for a chat?” Daniel asked Ling as they finished dinner.
“Yes, of course,” said the old man, who seemed relaxed and amenable. Nevertheless, Daniel was wary. The old man’s reaction to Brother Shuei’s murder confirmed that he possessed a side to his character that was volatile and unpredictable.
“I’ll tidy up,” said Brother Yoon kindly. “You go off now.”
Ling led them down the passageway to his own room, right next to his office. He offered them chairs. Again, Daniel marveled at the spartan lifestyle of the man. A bed, a table, a cupboard and the two chairs comprised the only furniture in the small room. Much of the spare space on the concrete floor was occupied with cardboard cartons. The crumbling and stained walls were bare, and Daniel could not see a solitary item of decoration anywhere.
Ling switched on an electric kettle. “One of our students gave me some very fine tea today,” he said. “Let’s try it.” He opened the unmarked packet and poured some tea into a pot. Before the water in the kettle came to a boil he emptied it into the pot, waited a couple of minutes and then poured three cups.
Daniel took a sip. It was rich and fragrant, slightly sweet, with the hint of a pineapple taste. “This is excellent,” he remarked.
“Dragon well tea,” said the director. “From down south. It’s supposed to help contemplation.” He looked at the pair. “It is not comfortable when someone dies.” Daniel translated for Jenny. “It makes us all uncomfortable. So we must persevere as best we can. But I had forgotten that you are Americans. And American Christians are used to a comfortable life.”
“That’s not quite true,” said Jenny after her husband had translated. “We chose to come here. We accept this style of life.” She waved her arm around the decrepit room.
 “You aren’t used to being in a country where Christians face persecution,” continued Ling, as if she had not spoken. “Where Christians face death on a daily basis. I had forgotten that. So I may have been a little abrupt in my behavior. Perhaps it seemed as if I were insensitive. Or that I was not honoring the dead.”
“No, it’s not that,” said Daniel.
“It is that, Danny,” said Jenny, after he had repeated his words in English. “It is that.”
“I have seen many deaths,” said Ling, again as if they had not spoken. “I was working in a town in Sichuan province when a gang of hoodlums, inspired by the authorities, came and set fire to the building where we held secret worship services. Eight people burned to death. Four of them were children. A few years after that I was in Hunan province when the police attacked a group of underground worshippers with electric batons. Do you know what those do to you?”
Daniel shook his head.
“It’s like being lashed with strips of barbed wire. Just one touch of the baton is enough. The pain is intense. Then after attacking the worshippers the police took away dozens of them. Several never returned alive. When I was in prison the guards used to take the Christians and place us in coffins, or make us stand naked in unnatural positions for hours and hours, trying to make us recant our faith. I never did. But not everyone was able to resist. And I know that many of the brothers in prison with me never got out alive. So I am used to death.”
“What did you mean when you said it was your fault?” asked Jenny. “That you are being punished?”
“God commanded me to establish this seminary and he placed these students in my protection. I have failed. One of our students has been martyred.”
“You say martyred. So you feel that somehow he was killed because of his faith? It wasn’t just some gang trying to rob him?”
“It doesn’t matter who might have done it. He is dead, a martyr. He is in his Home, with God. That is all that matters.”
“But we might all be under threat. Shouldn’t we be doing something to protect ourselves?”
“We place ourselves in God’s hands. What bigger protection is there?”
“That other house church. The one you told us about. Over on the other side of town. Are they being attacked too?”
Ling stared at Jenny. “That is a house of evil. They are a cult. You are not to have anything to do with them.”
“But maybe they are also being attacked,” persisted Jenny. “Maybe they have some information about what is going on. Maybe…”
“They do not teach the true word of God,” shouted Ling, not even waiting for Daniel to finish translating. “They are a cult.”
“But if they…”
“You are not to have anything to do with them,” interrupted Ling, shouting even louder, his face red. “Do you understand? You are not to have anything to do with them?”
An awful silence now descended on the room. Jenny looked at her husband, clearly wishing to leave. But Daniel did not want to walk out right after such an outburst.
“How are Brother Shuei’s family taking his death?” he asked, sipping some tea as casually as possible.
“Government policy says Chinese parents can have only child.” Already Ling’s voice was calm and relaxed. Daniel was amazed at the rapid transformation. “So when that child dies it is quite devastating. Especially if you are poor - and many, many Chinese are poor - because you expected that child, especially a son, to help take care of you in old age. His parents are believers, and their pastor is helping them understand that their son has died a glorious martyr. They do understand that. But they will suffer. I am sure your church can send them some money. And Brother Yoon’s church.”
“We feel we have been sending you a lot of money,” said Jenny.
“A lot of money?” He swept an arm around the room, as Jenny had done earlier. “A lot of money? How many American Christians live like this? Tell me. How many?”
“He’s trying to make us feel guilty,” said Jenny to Daniel, after he had translated.
“But he’s not wrong. He’s got a point…”
“Danny, for goodness sake. Our church has been extremely generous. We’ve sent money. We’ve sent supplies. Our church has sent us. You and me. What more does he expect? And we both know that Brother Yoon’s church has sent even more. So ask him where it’s all gone, given that we’re living in a dump like this.” Now it was her turn to sweep her arm again around the room.
Once again Ling’s face was distorted. “Americans live in luxury and then send some crumbs to their poor, suffering little brothers and sisters in China. And then they complain when we don’t grovel and kiss your feet.”
“No, that’s not entirely fair,” said Daniel. He turned to Jenny. “I think we should go back to our room. Everyone’s pretty tired.” He gave an exaggerated yawn, then looked at the director. “Maybe we can talk some more in the morning…”

“Yes, get out,” said Ling, rage in his face, though his voice remained calm. “Get out now.”

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Thursday, 5 September 2013

"Four Given" launching September 1-16 - Would you like to Win a 7 inch Kindle Fire?!

It's my pleasure to host Malo Bel and help her launch her book "Four Given".

Just 99 cents from September 1-16 check it out here. There is a chance to win a Kindle Fire!

Malo's message to you:
Thank you for taking the time to look at my book and helping me share it’s message. My book Four Given has been a journey for me (see Interview with Malo Bel below) and filled with miracles (see Something Different below) and I pray it will touch many other people’s lives.

It is a journey, a pathway encoded in the very name of God that I was stunned to see. It begins with a single and smallest Hebrew letter Yod, which means the open hand. Anyone wanting to begin this journey must begin by opening their hand - by giving. It’s what Jesus did in the greatest way possible, by giving his life for us.

And so to be true to this divine journey I will be giving away 50% of all my book sales during the launch to a charity (Community Outreach Programme Trust) that works in Africa. They work with disadvantaged people and especially the disabled, children and orphans. I thank you for your help to help me help them.

Read an excerpt from "Four Given" here. Then visit visit  here and enter your details for the chance to win a 7 inch Kindle Fire!

About Malo:
Full On Life – I suppose those would be the three words that define me and the life I like to live. Words taken from Jesus’ offer – “I have come that you may have life and have it abundantly (full on)”  - John 10:10. And so in everything I seek, in Jesus’ power, to live a life of abundance. So whether physical – such as having run many 56 mile marathons, or mental – such as completing a PhD – whether at home with my awesome wife and children or in front of a thousand people, I give my all, through him who gave me all. Yet all of this is so unimportant compared to whom I am related. My dad wrote the world’s best selling book. He also made the originals that everyone from DaVinci to Michael Angelo copied. And in case that is not enough, he breathed and the stars came into being. He. “…merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed, and all the stars were born.” (Psalm 33:6). I am a child of God.

Malo, Thank you for joining us and all the best with your launch! The place to visit now for the chance to win a Kindle Fire is here! Then purchase from Amazon and return to log in and enter the competition!

Connect with Malo
Website –
Blog – - Would love you to subscribe 
YouTube – - See my book trailers and the micro message ministry