Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Courageous Confession

But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect,

so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written

in the Law and in the Prophets (Acts 24:14, NKJV).

I just read a story about a 14-year-old evangelist in Vietnam. Though threatened several times by the police, she continued to teach and preach and worship the one true God every chance she got. Then one day the police followed through on their threat and arrested her. Though held in prison for more than a month, during which she was beaten and tortured beyond her worst fears, she now praises God for allowing that time to test her and allow her faith to go stronger.

“Don’t be afraid,” she tells others. “Believe in the Lord, then you will receive peace.”

This courageous young evangelist was not only able to trust God to bring her through such an ordeal, but she was also able—much like the Apostle Paul—to deny all false accusations against her while never denying her faith. Paul openly confessed his faith and declared that if he stood accused of worshipping God “according to the Way,” then he was guilty as charged. He didn’t look for a way to couch his confession in subtle words that might ease his punishment; the Vietnamese girl didn’t either. Though unable to stand under extreme suffering in their own strength, they relied on the One who had already suffered unimaginable horrors and yet risen in triumph from the grave. With that glorious reminder as our focus, may we all give a courageous and uncompromising confession of our faith, regardless of the circumstances or possible repercussions.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

In honor of women's history month...

I just learned that March is National Women's History Month, so in honor of the many women around the world who have been martyred in the name of "honor killings," I'm offering copies of my April 5 release, People of the Book, FREE for randomly chosen names of those of you who become followers of my blog, leave a comment, and make sure to leave CLEAR contact information.

Monday, March 14, 2011

A Fairy Tale for Grownups!

Fairy tales teach surface lessons like don’t talk to strangers that look like wolves,
remember Pinocchio when tempted to lie and true love can really happen. But, like fairy-tale greats C.S.
Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, up-and-coming novelist C.S. Lakin takes things beyond the surface by weaving
a fantastical tale with spiritual meaning.
Lakin continues her “Gates of Heaven” series with a new tale set in the kingdom of Sherbourne. The Map
across Time (Living Ink Books, March 2011, 978-0-89957889-7, $14.99) follows the prince and princess of
Sherbourne on their quest to free Sherbourne from a curse destined to destroy the kingdom.
“Fairy tales have long taught us concepts like right and wrong, good and evil,” says Lakin, author of 11
novels, including Someone to Blame (Zondervan, October 2010), which won Zondervan’s First Novel
contest. “But I want to explore a bit deeper, search out the darker corners of our hearts. Let God reveal
himself through the use of fiction.”
Similar to Lewis’s work, “The Gates of Heaven” series is an allegory of God’s unconditional and
everlasting love. The Map across Time reveals how those who seem insignificant and unworthy have value
and purpose. Lakin provides a back-of-the-book study guide for readers to dig deeper into the book’s
themes, as well as scriptural references to many of the sayings quoted by characters.
Each book in “The Gates of Heaven” series tells a unique story with different characters that overlap from
book to book. Every installment features a different locale, where a sacred site – a gate of heaven – had
been established eons earlier to prevent evil from gaining a stronghold in the world of men, but has now
succumbed to desecration and destruction.
The Map across Time is also receiving early praise from industry insiders like Publishers Weekly.
“The novel is fast-paced and tightly plotted, which means that the reader will quickly be drawn into the
complex twists and turns of the story and, in fairy-tale tradition, led toward a surprising yet satisfying
conclusion,” says Marcia Nelson, of Publishers Weekly.
C.S. Lakin is working on the remaining books in “The Gates of Heaven” series. Her contemporary
mystery, Someone to Blame, released to much acclaim in October, and her thriller, Innocent Little Crimes,
was a semifinalist for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Upcoming installments of “The Gates of
Heaven” series are set to release every six months. She is a copyeditor, writing mentor and a member of
numerous writers and editing groups, including Christian Authors Network, Christian Proofreaders and
Editors Network, and American Christian Fiction Writers. Lakin lives in Boulder Creek, Calif., with her
husband of 27 years. For more information about C.S. Lakin and her writing, please visit

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Christmas book is coming!

I have completed the writing of A Christmas Journey Home, and here is the cover. What do you think? Leave a comment and CLEAR contact info (and become a follower if you aren't already) for a chance to win a free copy.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Which Jesus Are We Talking About?

And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many (Matt. 24:4-5).

It seems that lately I’ve been running into people of various faiths and religions who claim they believe in Jesus. After a few moments of talking with them, however, it’s obvious that they aren’t talking about the same Jesus I know and love and serve.
Though Jesus in Matthew 24 was speaking specifically to the Jewish people, His warning to “take heed” that we not be deceived by Christ impersonators carries over to all cultures and eras, particularly today when “tolerance” of nearly anything and everything has become the most esteemed virtue, and absolute truth a disdained and rejected concept.
Whether a writer or speaker, a pastor or Sunday school teacher, a truck driver or bookkeeper, if we have been born again and know the true Jesus through relationship with His Holy Spirit who lives within us, we are called to the ministry of reconciliation—devoting our lives to proclaiming the Gospel and leading people back into relationship with God, as well as restored relationships with others. But we must beware of seeking unity of earthly relationships at any cost. Human effort and a false Jesus can never accomplish true or lasting unity. In the name of tolerance we are asked to accept and even celebrate lifestyles, beliefs, and false religions that the Scriptures condemn. Many who promote this dangerous thinking also claim to believe in Jesus. But to what Jesus are they referring? Do they believe He is the one and only Son of God, the one and only way to the Father, the One who died on the cross for all their sins? Or do they believe He was simply a good man or a prophet or maybe even an angel? This is a crucial test, for belief in the wrong Jesus diminishes the work He did on the cross—and puts the onus back on us to somehow earn our own salvation.
As we go about the ministry of reconciliation to which all believers have been called, let’s be careful that even as we offer unconditional love to a lost and dying world, we don’t portray a Jesus who is anything less than who He is—truly God and truly Man, come to earth to die for our sins—all of them—once and for all.
In all that we do or say this day, may we proclaim that great truth with boldness and love. For when it comes to that truth—as ultimately it always does—there can be no compromise, not even for the sake of unity or tolerance.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Cover for the first book in my next series

Here it is, the cover for book one in the new Freedom Series! Deliver Me From Evil releases this Fall. Leave a comment about what you think, along with clear contact info, and win a free copy when it releases!

God's Magnificent Promise!

But when the time of the promise drew near which God had sworn to Abraham,

the people grew and multiplied in Egypt till another king arose

who did not know Joseph. This man dealt treacherously

with our people, and oppressed our forefathers (Acts 7:17-19, NKJV).

We live in exciting times, with the magnificent promise of God drawing near when Jesus will return and the world as we know it will end. What a glorious time that will be, but as it was in the days of Moses, life for God’s people may become increasingly more difficult in the interim.

It is easy to dwell on the part of the above passage of scripture that stresses the oppression and suffering of God’s people; in so doing, we often miss the words that declare “the people [of God] grew and multiplied” as “the time of the promise drew near.” Most of us have at least some friends and loved ones who have yet to give their hearts and lives to Christ; as a result, we spend much time in prayer for them. How encouraging to realize that as the time of God’s promise draws near, though suffering and trials may increase, the people of God will grow and multiply, sweeping many into the Kingdom during those last days.

We see it happening in countries all around the world, where persecution of Christians is already rampant. The more the oppressors turn up the heat, the more the Church grows, both in number and in level of commitment. Jesus explained it this way: “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33, NKJV).

Just as God’s promise came to pass in the days of Moses, so it will happen in the very near future. So “be of good cheer,” for the One who has overcome the world is coming again, and despite the heightened level of problems that may come our way, the people of God will continue to grow and multiply until that great and awesome Day of the Lord!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New Hope Launching New Web Venture

Innovative Web Venture to Launch This Spring from New Hope Publishers

(Birmingham, Ala.)—March 9, 2011—As book publishing rapidly enters an exciting new era of connectivity, New Hope Publishers is pleased to announce the upcoming launch of this April. is an innovative Web venture, providing readers and retailers with fresh content from top authors in multiple digital formats. will feature regularly updated magazine-style content—articles, columns, feature stories, podcasts, videos—from New Hope authors and other contributors. In addition to featuring the latest book releases, each month the site will have a specific theme, such as orphan care, human exploitation, the persecuted church, and missional living.

“New Hope authors are making an impact for Christ, and through New Hope Digital, readers and retailers will be able to read, listen, watch, and interact with them regarding relevant, contemporary issues all in one place,” says publisher Andrea Mullins. “We are praying that our unique approach will be transformational in the lives of believers and will be a tool that retailers can use to connect their customers to the books that will be most helpful in their spiritual journeys.”

The New Hope fold of authors has been very receptive to the concept. “ will provide me an opportunity to go deeper and connect with readers and retailers in an exciting new venue,” says top-selling New Hope author Jennifer Kennedy Dean, best known for her Live a Praying Life resources. “Since most of us live a cyberlife, fits right into the flow of information that I value and look forward to.”

New Hope author Mark Russell (The Missional Entrepreneur) says, “The church needs a place to explore complex human issues, discover the comprehensive vision of God’s mission, and how these two realities can come together. I’m excited about New Hope Digital because it gives us a conversation space to learn from one another in our God-given mandate to love him and our global neighbor.”

To find out more and to sign up for a free monthly e-newsletter and receive a free download of iFaith by Daniel Darling on the Nook platform, please visit the promotional site at today.

About New Hope Publishers

Representing more than 50 authors and more than 100 individual works, the mission of New Hope Publishers is to provide books that challenge readers to understand and be radically involved in the mission of God. New Hope Publishers is the general trade publishing imprint for WMU, a missions auxiliary to the Southern Baptist Convention. New Hope Publishers is a member of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA).

Jonathan P. Howe

Sales and Marketing Manager

New Hope Publishers

(205) 408-5513

Gospel-centered. Missions-driven.

Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

New Hope Publishers is a division of WMU.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Need to Know God

Author Cec Murphey understands that we're busy; he also understands that we NEED to know God--intimately. As a result he has put together a deep but simple daily guide to developing and maintaining a close and ongoing relationship with our Creator. In daily "sound bites" that we can all squeeze in to our crowded days, we find personal insights from a man who has spent many years cultivating that personal relationship with God, and we are challenged to do the same. Highly recommended!

To order this book and/or to learn more about this prolific author and popular speaker, please go to

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Best Book of 2011--The Rhythm of Secrets!

So you think it's too early in the year to pick the best book of 2011? Get a copy of The Rhythm of Secrets by Patti Lacy and read it--then tell me what you think! I'm an avid reader and have lots of favorite books and authors, but Patti Lacy has zoomed to the top of my list. I, for one, will stand in line to buy anything she writes--and I hope you'll do the same! Any other book I read this year will have to be beyond amazing to knock The Rhythm of Secrets from the hilltop. Check it out at!

Sheila Franklin has played the part of perfect pastor’s wife. Unbeknownst to her husband, she’s played other parts as well: the precocious daughter of jazz musicians in colorful 1940s New Orleans, a teen desperate for love and acceptance, and an unwed mother sent North with her shame.

After marrying Edward, Sheila has artfully masked her secrets as easily as she once put on a Mardi Gras disguise, allowing Edward to gain prominence as a conservative pastor. When one phone call from a disillusioned Vietnam veteran destroys her cover, Sheila faces an impossible choice: save her son (that soldier!) and his beloved…or imperil Edward’s ambitions.

Inspired by a true story, The Rhythm of Secrets intermingles jazz, classical, and sacred music in a symphony trumpeting God’s grace.