God is on the Move!

God is on the move!

He’s inspired some new lesson ideas for children’s church, which we are now calling Kingdom Kids Arise. It’s a morning “talk show” where we will discuss Bible truths. Some weeks will we will have object lesson demonstrations, some weeks we will interview “people from the Bible.” There will be skits and memory verses and tickets to earn prizes, as well as fun activities and crafts that tie in with the Bible lesson. Some ideas came from other sources, but the dialogue and lessons come from Scripture and from the heart. Sometimes I just have to look at a picture or read a couple of sentences, and I am inspired to write.

I wish that I were writing some fiction but right now that isn’t coming to me. And maybe it is not God’s timing for fiction right now.

A couple of weeks ago I felt like I was losing my purpose. Then I’m not sure how it transpired, but God gave me a spurt of inspiration that has progressed into an exciting new lesson series. The Woods Church is generously allowing me to use their children’s program as an outlet for putting the lessons into practice and I can see if there are any glitches or things that need to be changed. Eventually I would like to publish some of the curriculum I’ve written. But again, that will be in God’s timing.

On a sad note, I am giving notice to my day job today. Although the physical therapy helped me overcome the back and hip pain, the work that I do as a homemaker aide is hard on my back and I’m not able to do it. That means I will be looking for a job closer to home that I can do physically.

In the meantime, I’m praising God that my mind is vibrant and functioning well. I haven’t always been in a good place mentally or emotionally but am in a good season right now. I think the six or seven weeks that I was home, the first few weeks pretty much confined to my recliner, gave me the time I needed to grown in God’s grace, to slow down from life and listen for His calling.

God is good, all the time. Even through the hard times.

Welcome to 2023!

Every New Year’s Eve as a teenager/young adult found me alone, usually babysitting. And with a journal or fresh notebook and pen in hand.

I would set goals for myself.

And they would quickly be forgotten as the New Year swept in.

Just yesterday, I resurrected the habit of writing down my goals.

I came up with one.

No Kindle purchases.

I would use a free library app and Kindle Unlimited and do all of my reading that way.

Last night I got swept up in a series.

This morning I paid for and downloaded a Kindle book.


It seems I can’t keep up with the simplest goal.

No self control?

Too high of expectations?



Maybe all of the above?

I love to read.

I don’t own a television.Or use a streaming service. By choice. There are so very few things I like to watch. And my attention span doesn’t hold for a two-hour movie.

So I read.

On my phone. On my Kindle app.

And read.

Oh, and for entertainment?

I read.

God has blessed this world with wonderful authors. Authors of inspirational romance and secular romance. Sometimes the same authors write both.

I like a variety of genres, but my favorite is also the genre I write in.

I write mostly Christian fiction, but I have also written a couple of sweet romances also.

Once upon a time, I had 70 story ideas in my head.

I have written 13 complete novels.

And two novellas.

I still have many stories and characters inside my head.

In 2022, I didn’t write any fiction. Instead, I decided to dedicate 2022 to what God wanted me to write.

That seemed to be focused on children’s church curriculum.

It was an amazing year. So many blessings and good things came of those efforts.

Now that 2023 has begun, I want to return to my fiction-writing roots.

Like my goal of not purchasing Kindle books, I am not sure how much fiction writing I will get done.

But I’d like to think I will stick with it more than 4 hours, which is how long after midnight that I waited before purchasing a Kindle book, thereby breaking my one and only New Year’s Resolution.

As this new day, new week and new year begin, I’m not making any promises

to myself, or to my readers, or even to God.

Instead, I will meditate on God’s promises to me.

The word “Promise” is recorded over 200 times in the Bible. That makes it pretty clear that promises are important to God.

God kept his promises to Abraham, to Isaac and Jacob, to Joseph, Moses and all of the Israelites. They settled in the land of Canaan, the Promised Land.

God promised the Israelites that He would never leave them nor forsake them.

What are some other promises God has made to us?

Let’s look at Jesus’ words in the New Testament:

The promise of God’s presence through the Holy Spirit in our hearts:

“If you love me, obey me; and I will ask the Father and he will give you another Comforter, and he will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, the Spirit who leads into all truth.” John 14:15-16

The promise of heaven:

“There are many homes up in heaven where my Father lives, and I am going to prepare them for your coming. When everything is ready, then I will come and get you, so that you can always be with me where I am.” John 14:2-3

The promise of peace:

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart! And the peace I give isn’t fragile like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27 

The promise that Jesus will return to earth one day:

“Remember what I told you—I am going away, but I will come back to you again.” John 14:28

How do we receive these promises?

“Believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.” Acts 16:31

Author Interview: Lisa Dunn

My guest today is Lisa Dunn, author of the YA Fantasy series, The Chasmaria Chronicles.

Lisa, thank you for joining me today. Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I was born in Michigan, raised in Florida, reside in South Carolina, and dream of settling down in a remote cottage on a wild, windswept shore where I can soak up vast beauty and pour it into stories that move readers’ souls. A great-aunt referred to my grandmother as “a rare mix of mystic and common sense,” and I may have inherited more than my fair share of that. Even I can’t predict whether I’ll meet a tragic situation with tears, philosophy, or bizarre humor. Truthfully, it’s usually a socially awkward combination of all three.

What is your series about?

THE CHASMARIA CHRONICLES is a trilogy that follows Grit of Berth and Stone from a village that puts self above all to a kingdom where truth, goodness, and beauty reign. In the sequel to the series, HEARKEN THE SONG OF KILCARRAIG, readers journey into a monster-infested land with two of the trilogy’s supporting characters taking the lead. HEARKEN is all about holding onto hope despite our failures and devastating circumstances.

What is the inspiration behind your books?

THE CHASMARIA CHRONICLES sought to answer the questions of what a world without love would look like and what would happen if love crashed into it.

HEARKEN THE SONG OF KILCARRAIG addresses deserts of faith—the fears, regrets, guilts, and sorrows we bury deep in our hearts and that stand in the way of hope. The bulk of the book was written during the isolation and uncertainty of the early phase of the pandemic, and I think that helped me get a little deeper into the mindset of Clan Crowley, as well as to understand Slate’s frustration with them and Bard’s love for them—in short, to grasp the reality that most of us, even if we disagree, are just doing the best we can with where we are and what we have.

Now for some questions that readers want to know the answers to:

What was the catalyst for your interest in writing?

I grew up surrounded by books. My father tucked my sisters and me into bed with impromptu tales peopled with characters from C.S. Lewis and George MacDonald and characters of his own imagining. I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t playing with stories in my head. It shouldn’t have been a surprise when one actually made it onto paper, but it was a big, wonderful surprise when one, two, three, and now four made it into the hands of readers I’ve never even met.

Were there any surprises that came up as you wrote your story? 

Always. I tend to have a relatively decent idea of where a story is headed before I start, but I never fail to discover something I hadn’t anticipated in a character, whether it be a motivation, a fear, or a facet of their background or nature that changes everything. For example, when I first conceived the plot for HEARKEN, I imagined Slate as an upbeat, ambitious young man, but when I started writing in earnest, the events of the trilogy hit hard, and I realized that Slate had a lot of baggage to deal with. The same applies to Bard. I thought he was a sweet, lighthearted poet, but the boy has some serious issues. Getting to the truth of who each of these characters is was a challenge, but one I hope paid off in the end.

How did you come up with the names of your hero and/or heroine?

I get this question a lot, probably because I was very intentional in naming the characters in the trilogy. You’ll have to read the books to find out the significance of individual names, but I’ll say this much: Grit’s community waits until a baby’s first birthday to bestow a name, which the dame (mother) bases upon characteristics she’s observed in the infant. The names aren’t necessarily complimentary. In fact, some of them are downright rude. But each name winds up having a deeper meaning that offers a sense of  hope and redemption to the one carrying the name.

What does your family think of your writing?

It’s a mixed bag, actually, but I’m okay with that. I don’t expect everyone I know to read my work, and some of them haven’t. Nor do I expect everyone to enjoy my work. Most, but not all, have enjoyed my books, but I don’t take it personally if they don’t, knowing we all have our own preferences. My daughter, for example, wasn’t a fan of my Fantasy, but she is THE BIGGEST FAN of an unpublished Contemporary Young Adult story for which I’m currently seeking publication. The important thing is that every single one of my family members—husband, children, siblings, mother, in-laws, and beyond—have been supportive in different ways, granting me time to write, listening to me untangle plot and character development knots and challenging me in the process, buying books, recommending them to others, and gushing, gushing, gushing.

Who was the first person you allowed to read your completed book?

My sister has been the first reader of most of my books, chapter by chapter in the beginning. She has a knack for pointing out weaknesses and nudging me deeper into the heart of whatever story I’m writing. After having her at my side all the way through the Chasmaria trilogy, it was actually kind of terrifying to send HEARKEN into the world without  her feedback. I was enormously relieved when she remarked that it was the best book yet.

Do you have a favorite author or book?

That award is going to have to go to A SEPARATE PEACE. John Knowles has a gift for writing deep, complex, incredibly human characters, characters who tell us so much about the human condition, and each time I’ve read A SEPARATE PEACE, Knowles digs deeper into my heart.

Thank you for joining us today, Lisa.

What’s next for you as an author?

I am currently seeking a literary agent to represent the Contemporary YA novel that turned my daughter into a fan.  After that, I have a completed epistolary YA novel that deals with who we are and how we and others perceive ourselves. Finally, I’m working on a coming of age, twisted fairy tale that fans of ONCE UPON A TIME and INTO THE WOODS will love.

Before we go, where can readers find you online? 


Christmas Novella Spotlight

Author’s Inspiration:

            After my first book was published and family and friends read Christmas Confusion, they wanted the other sisters’ stories. So, I hurried, wrote Sweet Summer, and submitted it to the publisher. The publisher liked the book, but they didn’t have room on the schedule to release a full novel that year. I didn’t want to wait two years for my next book, so I looked around and visited my sister’s vacation home on Hatteras Island. We visited the December after Hurricane Dorian devastated Ocracoke Island. We took the ferry and drove around the island. I wanted to write a story that highlighted the island and its people and all their needs—and courage. Christmas on Ocracoke resulted.

About the Book:

Reeling from the upheaval of a failed marriage, Annie Hanahan is desperate for a new start—and when she inherits a cottage on Ocracoke Island, she may finally get it. Without a second thought, she packs up and leaves everything behind: her first name, her job, and her ex-husband, because more than anything, she wants to get her son away from his father’s partying and neglectful ways. But when she arrives in the Outer Banks, she finds the island—and her promised refuge—ravaged by Hurricane Dorian.

When their parents died in a tragic car accident, Trey Kingsley dropped out of college to raise his sister. Now that she’s grown and moved away, it’s his turn to find a life of his own. As a contractor who has given so much of his time to helping Ocracoke recover from the devastation of Hurricane Dorian, it surprises no one when he offers to help the beautiful newcomer, but something is holding her back. Life keeps throwing them together, though, or perhaps God’s hand is giving them a nudge. Will a little bit of divine intervention be enough for a Merry Christmas on Ocracoke?


What a way to make a fresh start.

Annie Hanahan glanced back via the rearview mirror and said a quick prayer of gratitude that her baby boy was too young to know what was going on right now. She’d die in shame, or eternal pre-teenaged mockery if he was, say, a decade older. Instead, her two-year old son waved his hands in the air and grabbed a toy Brontosaurus from the diaper bag propped open next to his car seat. 

The police officer drew even, and she lowered the driver’s side window. Up till now, she’d gone her whole life without a ticket.

“Good morning, ma’am. I’d ask if you knew how fast you were driving, but I’m guessing you figured that out by now.”

Annie concentrated on her breathing and not crying. “Yes, sir. I was going 80 in a 65.” So was every good ole’ boy along this stretch of the road, but if she’d been the low hanging fruit, so be it. “I’m sorry.”

The state trooper started to smile but must have remembered who he was and squashed any close-to-human expression from his face. “Well, ma’am, sorry is a good thing. Can I see your license and registration?”

This morning’s almond milk soured in her gut. “I can give you my license, but I bought this car yesterday and only have a temporary registration. My proof of insurance is for the old car.”

“Just give me what you have, and we’ll go from there.” Cars raced past them, behind his back, undoubtedly confident in their own speed now that one of their own had been sacrificed for the cause. 

She located her license and handed the card to the officer. 

“Annie Hanahan?” Officer–she squinted against the morning sun–Parker, looked from the license to her. “Any kin to Coach Hanahan?”

            Annie grimaced. Switching names was difficult, but leaving behind her well-known family might be impossible.

About the Author:

A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Christina Sinisi writes stories about families, both the broken and blessed. Her works include a semi-finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest and the American Title IV Contest where she appeared in the top ten in the Romantic Times magazine. Her published books include Christmas Confusion, Sweet Summer, Christmas on Ocracoke, and Why They Call It Falling. By day, she is a psychology professor and lives in the LowCountry of South Carolina with her husband, two children and her crazy cat Chessie Mae.

Author media links:

Website/Blog: https://www.christinasinisi.com/ 

Social Networking Sites:

Twitter: @ChristinaSinisi

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Christina-Sinisi-Author

Instagram: @csinisi123

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/csinisi/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/101218889-christina-sinisi

Bookbub:  https://www.bookbub.com/profile/christina-sinisi

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/They-Call-Falling-Christina-Sinisi-ebook

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