Wednesday, November 14, 2018

REVIEW: Ellie Claire Art Journals

Do you enjoy writing in a journal? Do you enjoy creative coloring? Are you looking for a journal that is different than just a bunch of blank lines? Look no further. I was given 3 journals to look through, with the Ellie Claire imprint, and they are unlike any other journals I have seen or used.  You might find what you are looking for with one of these options.

The Illustrated Word, from the Museum of the Bible, is an Illuminated Bible Coloring Journal that includes intricate coloring pages as well as lined pages. There are 40 color illustrations in the journal, inspired by the Museum's collection of illuminated manuscripts (early Bible and book manuscripts that were intricately illustrated to make the Biblical text come alive). These 40 illustrations have been recreated as line drawings for the purpose of coloring and creating your own treasured keepsake.

Illuminate Your Story is also from the Museum of the Bible. It is a bit smaller in size than the first journal I mentioned but it is easy to hold and includes some extra features such as:  an attached cloth bookmark, an elastic strap to hold the book shut, a pocket on the inside of the back cover to hold keepsakes, and an elastic band on the spine to hold a pen or pencil. This journal is unique in the way it provides a step-by-step guide for drawing illuminated letters (like the S on the journal cover). In the introduction, you can also learn about the history and significance of biblical illuminations. So, this smaller journal is BIG in many ways. It provides opportunities for learning about biblical illuminations, for developing a skill, for writing your stories on the lined pages, and for being creative.
Faith & Lettering, is the final journal I was able to review. It is not from Museum of the Bible, but from hand-lettering artist and graphic designer Krystal Whitten. This one is probably my favorite out of the three. It has pretty colors inside and out, and provides practice room for learning how to hand-create different lettering styles and embellishments. It also includes pages for Bible journaling, as well as lined pages for writing down your thoughts.

It really depends on your "style" and what you are looking for in a journal keepsake; but I think I will start out with the Faith & Lettering Journal. It fits my style the best out of the three. But, all of them look great and give new meaning to the phrase "creative journaling."

If you are looking for a unique gift to give to your creative family members, consider one of these journals, or head over to WORTHY PUBLISHING GROUP to see loads of other Ellie Claire journals that are available.


    Sunday, November 11, 2018

    TRUST #40: Trusting There is a Reason for Delays

    My husband, David, has not had much chance to sit down and write a "Trust Post" for me. But, he recently told me about something that happened to him on his way home from work, and said I could share it.

    While getting into his car, he somehow dropped his cell phone and it bounced underneath of his car. He had to bend down and reach under the car to retrieve it, which took maybe a total of 5 seconds of his time. He could have easily grumbled about the delay, even though it was a short one. But, instead, he wondered if maybe there was a reason for it.

    It was getting dark out because David had stayed later that evening. So, it was harder to see things out in the fields. As he was driving through the country, a deer jumped out in front of his car and he just missed hitting it. He figured, if he had met that deer just 5 seconds sooner, he would have definitely hit it. Remember ~ It had taken him 5 seconds to retrieve his phone from under his car.

    So, the next time you are frustrated about a delay, take a deep breath and TRUST in the fact that God is in control. He may be causing your delay in order to spare you from an accident or a tragedy that is about to happen.

    Wednesday, November 7, 2018

    Hillsong Kids DVD "Can You Believe It?" (Review & Giveaway)

    Hillsong has a new DVD for kids that could be a great resource for parents and church leaders to use. It's called, "Can You Believe It!? - Songs of Truth."

    This DVD includes a 25-minute "radio show" called Funny Man Dan. In this show, there is humor, fun, interviews, and music videos featuring kids in action. The 4 music videos are:
    • I Give You My Halleluiah
    • My Best Friend
    • What a Beautiful Name
    • We Came to Meet with You
    In the show, the hosts mention how they chose 6 topics for what they believe about God and put them into the songs. Those topics are: (1) The Bible, (2) God, (3) Separation & a Savior, (4) Living for God, (5) God's House/The Church, and (6) The Best is Yet to Come.

    The DVD also includes a section of 14 lyric videos to sing along with; and these same songs can also be watched in a "Live from the Studio" section.

    Hillsong's desire is that this collection of fun and faith-filled songs will help children around the world declare God's love and grace for them. After watching this DVD, I can see how it could be a useful tool for instilling God's love into the hearts of children. In my opinion, it would probably work best in a group setting, but it could be used successfully in a variety of different ways, including in the home, church, Sunday School, youth group, and more.



    If you are already signed up to receive my posts in your e-mail, then you are already entered into this giveaway. If you are not on the e-mail list, then you can use the FEEDBURNER form located near the top of this blog. (NOTE: You may need to be viewing the web version of this blog in order to see the Feedburner form.) If you don't want to join the e-mail list, feel free to enter the giveaway by leaving a comment under this post. Entries will be accepted through Saturday, November 10, 2018 at 8:00 p.m. Central Time. A random drawing will be held at that time and the winner will be notified. Open to United States only.

    11-10-18 WINNER:  Melissa B


    Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. 

    Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win. Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

    Sunday, November 4, 2018

    TRUST #39: A Good Report on EL's 6th MRI

    On Wednesday, we took a trip to St. Louis for EL's 6th sedated MRI, and then a checkup with her Neuro-Oncologist. These brain scans have been necessary for monitoring the potential growth of a [currently] non-active tumor in her pituitary gland, and also a cyst in her pineal gland. Her last MRI was 2 years ago.

    These visits are never easy, but this one was probably the easiest one we have had so far. EL was in a fairly good mood and knew what to expect, which was helpful; but there was one thing they did differently that made a world of difference. Instead of using Versed to relax her during the IV needle stick, they used a mask with Nitrous Oxide (the stuff used in a Dentist office). 

    Versed was previously administered as a spray in her nose, which she hated; and it gave side effects that always made her wake up grumpy and angry. The Nitrous, however, was easy to use, smelled good (like cherries), helped her to relax during the needle stick, and she did not wake up with a nasty Versed "hangover." Woo Hoo!

    After she woke up, we gave her some apple juice to drink and waited until she could walk without falling over before leaving to get lunch. Then, after lunch, we met with her Neuro-Oncologist to go over the results.

    In the picture below, the left side gives us a look at the scan from Wednesday. The right side is a scan from 2 years ago. On the left, I circled and labeled the two spots of concern. The pituitary tumor is a small solid mass at the lower portion of the pituitary gland. The pineal cyst is harder to see because it is fluid-filled; but it can be seen inside of the pineal gland.

    I am pleased to report her MRI results showed no changes from the previous scan! The tumor and the cyst have not grown in size, and are not causing any problems with vision or with hormone levels. This is great news, of course; and we won't need to have another scan until 2 years from now, unless she begins exhibiting symptoms. Another Woo Hoo!

    We are thankful, grateful, and blessed, and will continue TRUSTING in the Lord - not just because of our good results, but because He is our God, He cares about us, and He is worthy of our praise.

    Friday, October 26, 2018

    REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Chris Tomlin “Holy Roar” CD

    What does it mean to praise God? Chris Tomlin and Darren Whitehead say:  "In the ancient world something extraordinary happened when God’s people gathered to worship him. It was more than just singing; it was a declaration, a proclamation, a time to fully embody praise to God for who he is, and what he has done. In fact, in the Psalms, there are seven Hebrew words that are translated into the English word “praise,” each of which represents a different aspect of what it means to truly praise God."

    You can read more about this in their new book:

    And, if you enjoy listening to worship music, Chris Tomlin's newly released companion CD will not disappoint you. I am listening to it as I write this, and its great. The words and the music are an uplifting reminder that God is good, He loves me unlike any other, and He is worthy of my praise.

    HOLY ROAR: the freedom, the experience, the wonder of worship. It is seeing the church come together, hands lifted to God, pouring out our praise with an eternal song in our hearts. It’s every voice together, changing the way we worship.  

    There are so many great songs on this CD. Here's a sample of just one:

    LYRICS:  Nobody Loves Me Like You
    Morning, I see You in the sunrise every morning
    It’s like a picture that You’ve painted for me
    A love letter in the sky

    Story, I could’ve had a really different story
    But You came down from Heaven to restore me
    Forever saved my life

    Nobody loves me like You love me Jesus
    I stand in awe of Your amazing ways
    I worship You as long as I am breathing
    God, You are faithful and true
    Nobody loves me like You

    Mountains, You’re breaking down the weight of all my mountains
    Even when it feels like I’m surrounded
    You never leave my side


    Oh, what a song to sing  (x3)
    Jesus, You love me 
    And I love You, God

    © 2018 Rivermusic Holdings, LP, 
    under exclusive license to Capitol Christian Music Group, Inc. 


    I am able to give away a copy of this CD to one of my blog readers! If you are interested, please leave a comment on this blog post, or leave a comment (or a "like") under the post on our Facebook page:  HE HOLDS MY RIGHT HAND MINISTRIES. Entries will be accepted until Sunday, October 28, 2018 at 8:00 p.m. Central Time. Open to United States only.

    10-28-18 WINNER:  Rhonda J.


    Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

    Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.


    Sunday, October 21, 2018

    TRUST #37: Selah "Lord I Trust You"

    Todd Smith is one of the vocalists in the Christian group, Selah. He says, "This song was inspired by believers in persecution who are standing for the name of Jesus even when it costs them their lives." However, it is a great song for all of us to be reminded that our God is God, through the good times and the hard times. TRUSTING in Him is a choice we need to make, regardless of joy or loss.

    Co-written by Todd Smith and Travis Ryan

    Verse1:  It may not seem I have what it will take
    I fear that in the face of trial I'll break
    Any trouble's just a day away

    Verse 2:  The best to worst of days are yet to come
    Be glorified regardless of the cost
    Be magnified whether joy or loss
    Lord, I trust You

    Lord, You are life inside the fire
    Lord, You are the grace that rises higher
    Oh, there will never be
    A day that You are not with me
    Oh Lord, I trust You

    Verse 3:  I believe but help my unbelief
    Help me go wherever You will lead
    Do with me whatever You would please
    Lord, I trust You


    Bridge:  I can't find the strength to pray
    All seems lost and it's too late, oh-ohh
    I cannot fear what comes my way
    Find me faithful in the day, oh-ohh
    'Cause the only hope I have is You will be enough


    Oh Lord, I trust, You

    Sunday, October 14, 2018

    TRUST #36: David Nevue and Psalm 5

    David Nevue is one of my favorite piano players. I love listening to his relaxing inspirational music each night as I fall asleep.

    One of my favorites of his is Psalm 5. It is so calming and peaceful and . . . oh, the words . . . they are a beautiful picture of what it means to really TRUST in God.

    You can't audibly hear the words in Mr. Nevue's piano music but, if you know what they are, you can hear them in your mind while he is playing. Many years ago in the 70's and 80's, I remember listening to this song being sung by the Maranatha singers, so I do know the words. I encourage you to learn them as well, as the words are taken directly from Scripture - Psalm 5:1-3 - 

    Give ear to my words, O Lord, consider my meditation. Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

    Using the Lexicon on Bible Hub, I came up with the following paraphrase that might give you a little better understanding of this passage:

    Give ear to my words, O Lord 
    Listen to me, Oh Lord (Yahweh - Hebrew name for eternal God)
    consider my meditation 
    understand my groanings, musings, whisperings
    Hearken unto the voice of my cry 
    Give attention to my cries for help
    my king, and my God 
    my king, and my God (Elohim - Hebrew name for strong and powerful God)
    for unto thee will I pray 
    I ask You to intervene
    My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord
    You will hear me in the morning, Yahweh
    in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, 
    in the morning I will lay my requests before you,
    and will look up 
    and will keep watch, or wait expectantly.

    Sunday, October 7, 2018

    TRUST #35: Choose to Cease Striving

    Charles Swindoll, a well-known Bible-teaching pastor and the Founder of INSIGHT FOR LIVING, has a quote based around the verse above. He says:

    "We must cease striving and TRUST God to provide what He thinks is best and in whatever time He chooses to make it available. But this kind of trusting doesn't come naturally. It's a spiritual crisis of the will in which we must choose to exercise faith." - Charles R. Swindoll

    If we wish to strengthen our TRUST, we must choose to exercise our FAITH.

    How do we do that?  We cease striving.

    In other words, BE STILL! Exodus 14:14 - "The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." Stop fighting and struggling to win a war YOU cannot win! Be at rest as you pray and acknowledge that God is in control of your circumstances. BELIEVE He will not fail you. Have FAITH in Him.

    I've heard it said that FAITH is "believing without seeing." In fact, Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." (NIV)

    Having faith means:

    • Believing God is real, and good, and is always watching over us, even when we can't physically see Him.
    • Choosing to "see" God through the actions of other Believers, and in the beauty surrounding us.
    • Believing God's Word is true, and that He will always keep His promises.
    • Trusting that ALL things will work out for the good of those who love Him. 
    • Having hope that better things are on the way.

    Cease striving (be still) and know that HE IS GOD.
    It is a choice.


    Sunday, September 30, 2018

    TRUST #34: Do Not Worry About Tomorrow

    My niece, Carolyn, and I have occasionally been corresponding the "old fashioned" way - via physical letters sent through the post office. She is a 3rd year student at Moody Bible Institute this year, and she wrote to me shortly before returning to classes this Fall. I asked her if I could share a portion of her letter, and she agreed.

    In this portion of her letter, Carolyn shares one of the ways the Lord has taught her to let go of her worries and TRUST in Him: 
    It has been an amazing and growing experience being at Moody! I've loved it so much! One thing God really emphasized during last year at Moody was TRUSTING Him, and processing my emotions. He taught me how to breathe, name off everything that was worrying me or weighing me down, literally count them on my hands, then let go of them, exhale, and say "I give 'such and such' to You. I TRUST You." That has been amazing!