Book Reviews: Summer ’21 Edition

As some of you may know, I am in the process of trying to get a book published. Obviously a big part of that process was actually sitting down to write my book. I worked with a writing coach and was told early on that I needed to be reading as much as I am writing. This was an adjustment as I normally only averaged 1-2 books per year. I’m proud to say I’ve gotten much better and am able to read a book every couple months or so. Even with that progress, I have to admit I was a little nervous when I found myself signed up for not one, not two, but three book clubs over the Summer!

My sweet friend Alice invited me to read “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah. I was all in and ordered the book off Amazon. When it was delivered two days later, the package was so big I thought it was a pair of shoes! I was mortified when I saw how big the book was and nervous I wasn’t going to be able to keep up.

Around the same time, my Libertarian friend Allison asked me to read “Economics In One Lesson” by Henry Hazlitt with her. They were giving them away at the state convention we had just attended and I was also all in on this book as I have not read many Libertarian books yet.

The third book I took on this Summer was actually a bible study called “Forgiving What You Can’t Forget” by Lysa Terkeurst. I had heard Lysa speak on this topic at this year’s If:Gathering, so I was really excited to read it.

But could I do it? Could I read three books simultaneously and not let the other girls down who I was reading them with?

I’ll be honest, I actually didn’t make it. But I was so close!

My friend Allison got too excited about economics and read way far ahead of me. Also, I had to miss the last week or so of bible study, so I didn’t finish that one with the group either. I did however get the biggest book, “The Nightingale,” done in time – yay!

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My Thoughts On Social Media & The Bible

SM & The Bible Blog Cover

Listen to Podcast Episode here!

I have to admit that one of my least favorite sermon topics is when the speaker talks about how inherently evil social media is. Reasons typically cited are how much social media distracts us from “real life,” or the amount of negativity typically being posted. While those things can be true, I simply don’t believe social media to be as evil as it is portrayed. I have been on Facebook since 2006 and have worked in social media since 2013. Since that time, I have seen just as many positive stories and outcomes because of social media as negative. I believe that social media is simply a communication tool that can be used for good or bad, depending on the user. I’ve seen social media work wonders as far as giving people a sense of community and connection. But I’ve also seen social media lend it’s hand to making people feel divided and isolated. It’s all in how you are using it. What are your posts cultivating?

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Bible Study Review: Finding God Faithful by Kelly Minter


Photo Credit: Sean Hayse

Every Wednesday for the past 8 weeks or so, a group of ladies from my church has been gathering to go through “Finding God Faithful: A Study On The Life Of Joseph” by Kelly Minter. I have to admit that when this study was first picked, I was not super excited to focus in on Joseph; a patriarch whose story I thought I was already very familiar with. However, I quickly learned there were so many subtle lessons packed away in Joseph’s life that I had previously missed. These lessons I’ve found are not only extremely helpful in my daily life, but more importantly have brought me closer to Jesus. I was absolutely overwhelmed at all the parallels between Joseph’s life and Jesus’ life. I had simply never noticed it before. My poor women’s group is probably so sick of hearing me nerd out about it, so I decided to write an extra blog post this month to share my notes with you!

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The Enneagram 6ness Of Me!

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I keep a running list of possible blog topics on my phone. When it’s time to pick there is typically one shouting out at me. This month however I could not decide between a handful of topics. I decided to ask my social media followers to vote on a topic. It came down to a close race between family budgeting tips and the enneagram. I am not quite ready to give budgeting advice so I am going to share with you my enneagram journey so far.

You may be wondering, the enna-what-now? Simply put, the enneagram is a personality test. But in truth, it is so much more than that!

I know what you are thinking. I thought the same thing when I first heard about the enneagram. I was a communications major and I spent time working in corporate America, the last thing I needed or wanted was another personality test. I had already taken them all (the letters, the animals, the colors) and this test wasn’t going to tell me anything new.

But, I was wrong.

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Navigating Adult Friendships

Guys, making new friends as an adult is hard. Making new friends as a wife and mother is even harder. I have stayed in toxic friendships for years because it honestly felt easier than cultivating new friendships. In the past, my husband and I struggled to find even just one couple we could both connect with and that was in the same life stage as us. And what about once you’ve made a new friend? Once the “honeymoon stage” has worn off and you’re dealing with real life issues, how do you navigate the complexities of keeping a friendship? It should be easy, but the truth of the matter is that a lot of times – it is messy. I have found that nothing kills a friendship faster than insecurity and a competition mentality. If you choose to be friends with someone, you have to make a conscious effort to love and trust them. No friendship can thrive under paranoia and constant criticism. This week I asked my social media followers for the best friendship advice they’ve been given and the first one I got went like this: “celebrate their wins even when you feel like you’re not winning! It is not a competition but a relationship.” Amen, Brooke!

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Journey of an Anxious Christian


Do you know those parts in the bible when they say: be anxious for nothing; let your heart not be troubled; trust in the Lord; and fear not for I am with you? I had always thought those words to be meant to comfort me in times in times of struggle. However, when I found myself with a full blown anxiety disorder, I looked to the church for guidance and was surprised at the response. In short, I was told that being anxious was a sin because it meant that I was not trusting in the Lord.

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Bible Studies: Where To Start and How To Keep Going

I’ve been on somewhat of a spiritual journey over the past year or so. It all started with a personal challenge during Lent of 2015. I was raised Catholic and my husband Methodist. At the time, neither one of us were really connecting with our current denominations. I was determined to find a new church home for my family. I posted on Facebook asking for church suggestions and told my husband, “if we have to visit a different church every Sunday then that’s what we’re going to do.” As luck would have it, we visited River City Vineyard Community Church one time and never really looked back.

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