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The Truth Hurts


Tough news hit me right before a wonderful family vacation last week. It came in the form of an email.

Have you ever received unsettling news that way? No voice. No eye contact. It didn’t help that there wasn’t a thing I could do about it at the time…except focus on packing my bags and loading the car for the beach.

We went to St. George Island. It was great weather, warm water. Still the news lingered in the back of my brain. Stinging at times, when I wasn’t enjoying the sun. It was that email. Rereading it over and over again in my head. It came from the CEO of Booktrope, Ken Shear. He regretted to inform writers of the company’s upcoming immediate closure. He wrote:

We are deeply saddened to share the news that Booktrope will be ceasing business effective May 31, 2016. This decision was not reached lightly and we will share as much as we can with the community over the next few weeks…. What you need to know now: Booktrope will remove all published books from sale as of May 31, 2016

May 31st.

Thoughts of What the heck? and How will my book survive this? hit me again and again.

Then, I remembered that WHEELMAN and other titles at Booktrope existed before publication, and they would survive this as well. God is doing great things through the books in the Booktrope imprint, Vox Dei. These stories will continue being told – just in different mediums.

I appreciated the response from Shear and the timely update. It gave me enough foresight to mull this topic over, and I know I need to pray about WHEELMAN (and other books’ futures) as well.

The company’s closing date will mean the removal of WHEELMAN from their roster and printing will cease, as well as the Vox Dei logo going away. However, I am in the process of learning how to get the story back out there in a different way.

As always, I appreciate your faith and prayers in this current situation. Thank you for reading, and if you haven’t picked up a copy yet, this will be the last chance to order for a while. (I believe if WHEELMAN is ordered before 5/31, it will be printed via Vox Dei. Let me know if you have any problems with this.)

May God continue to bless the stories being told. Fellow writer, Niki Krauss does a much better job of describing the process for her thus far and getting her story re-printed.

All told: the beach is still there, the sun is still there, and God still holds it all together. Amen.

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Burning Bright


Here’s a question posed by our pastor, Mark Love, recently:
Why do we work so much? What are we trying to achieve/ensure?

He led off with this and went on to describe the importance of trust. As I sat there, I asked myself what (or who) do I trust in …

  • technology (?) sometimes…maybe when it works
  • friends / family (Am I genuinely there for others? Sometimes I don’t feel like I am.)
  • God – When I want something? Or, it’s convenient?
  • government (?) – hardly, even though our currency says “we” trust in a higher being

Proverbs 3:5 (ESV) says –
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.

That’s a tough one. Maybe the hardest in the entire Bible, if we really look at it and think about the word “all” as it relates to our hearts. The tiniest specks of pride devoutly holding onto our hardened hearts as they collectively scream “We know better than anyone else!”

Mark said that instead of trusting God, we “kill ourselves trying to figure it out ourselves,” and he then asked, “Are we burning bright?”
See, if we honestly asked ourselves this question in solitude we would admit we want this, but we burn out instead.

How will 2016 look for you? Me? Us?

Burnout is often fueled by fear, guilt, or greed.
Fear that I must do more to keep what I have (American Dream). Guilt that I am not enough so I need to prove myself by doing more (status). Greed that I still don’t have enough and need MORE (consumerism).


Are we trading God’s divine plan for our own short-sighted goals?

Oswald Chambers wrote “we must “pitch our tents” where we will always have quiet times with Him, however noisy our times with the world may be. There are not three levels of spiritual life— worship, waiting, and work. Yet some of us seem to jump like spiritual frogs from worship to waiting, and from waiting to work. God’s idea is that the three should go together as one. They were always together in the life of our Lord and in perfect harmony. It is a discipline that must be developed; it will not happen overnight.”