Saturday, April 29, 2017

When Saying Yes Can Stand in the Way of Following God

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I mistakenly thought I could say yes to
everything that came my way
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13

This was one of the first Bible verses I ever memorized. It’s a heady verse for someone like me. Someone who loves to say yes for two reason— the sheer joy of being involved and the fear others wouldn’t like me if I couldn’t perform. It was a dangerous combination. But I truly believed this verse gave me the ability to say yes to everything, and God would provide a way.

Fast forward several years, and the price of saying yes began to take it’s toll on my mind and body. I no longer lived a life of joy and victory. Instead I was a slave of over-commitment. And I finally broke. It wasn’t pretty. Diagnosed with severe depression and several other mental health challenges it took me months to recover.

Friday, April 28, 2017

A Little-known Trick for Growing Your Facebook Page

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

Grow your Facebook page with this trick!
Do you have an author, business, or community Facebook page? Are you disappointed that it isn’t growing as quickly as you’d like? Do you wish you could do more to increase the number of LIKES on your page so your message can reach more people?

In last month’s article, Personal Profile or Author Page, Which Is Best?, I compared the two types of Facebook accounts. This month I want to share a little-known secret that has helped me triple the number of LIKES on my page in less than a year. (Keep in mind that this little trick only works on business/ministry/author pages, not on your personal profile.)

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Truth Through Story

by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas


Did you ever wonder why Jesus used parables so often to convey the basic truths he had come to teach? Stories like the faithful servant and the farmer sowing in different kinds of soil.

Have you ever read a novel where the author’s agenda was so blatant the story suffered?

Christian fiction is notorious is some circles for beating the reader over the head with a salvation message. The characters and the plot are mere tools for the writer to drive their nail of a message with a sledgehammer.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Challenges of a Writer Who’s ADHD (Always Diving Heavily into Detail)

by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

A 12-step program for writers who struggle with
ADHD (Always Diving Heavily into Detail).
Are you an ADHD writer?

Are you Always Diving Heavily into Detail and seldom adding word count to a manuscript?

Has research has become a priority instead of the goal of powerful written communication?

Extra research is a necessity for accurate content, but continuous fact-finding doesn’t get a manuscript into submission form. While the writer is opening one more research book and one more website, the project awaits a distinct voice, technique, and treatment. Our readers are forced to wait for just the right piece to entertain, inspire, and encourage them.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tips to Turn Off Your Internal Editor


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


Don't let your internal editor derail your first draft!
I’ve spoken with a lot of writers who have trouble disconnecting their INTERNAL EDITOR when they're working on an early draft of a manuscript. 

This overly helpful person lives inside most of us and comes in handy when we’re putting the finishing touches on our manuscript. But when we’re in the midst of a creative surge, that same person can short circuit our progress.

Today's post will give you the tips you need to turn off your internal editor.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Intro to Instagram, Part 2

by Bethany Jett @BetJett

Intro to Instagram, Part 2
Last month we opened our social media talk with an Introduction to Instagram. We covered usernames, how to create a stellar bio, privacy settings, how to pick a color scheme, tips on filters and so much more. 

Phew! We don’t mess around! Be sure to check out that article here, because today we’re jumping into content: what to post, how to post it, and why the Stories feature is actually a beautiful time investment instead of a time-waster.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Talking Circles Around Knowledge

by Rhonda Rhea @RhondaRhea

Talking Circles Around Knowledge
I’ve tried some of those idiot-proof tech products and you know what I’ve found? I’ve found that sometimes they grossly underestimate the power of a true tech-idiot. You have to be near genius level to even read the instructions on your average electronic device these days. And I’m talking about the instructions for the on/off switch. For a calculator. I’lm pretty sure I heard somewhere that genius in all areas is 99% perspiration and 62% wishing you had listened in math class. And I would add a pithy phrase about a circumference here—if I had a little more math knowledge.

Still, while I may not have listened all that well in math class, anytime I’m talking about the maths and sciences that I know nothing about, I’ve started using lots more “air quotes.” That way even if I’m saying something “stupid,” I still look incredibly “clever.”

Clever is as clever does (she said with flourishing finger quotes).

Doesn’t it seem that our culture presents new, bizarre ideas every day about what it means to be clever and what it is to be knowledgeable? People say “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.” But I was watching TV the other day and it seems to me that a whole lot of foolishness is yet more dangerous. A knowledgeable person, one who is knowledgeable in the things that really count, is a rare and wonderful find. Proverbs 20:15 backs me up there: “There is gold and a multitude of jewels, but knowledgeable lips are a rare treasure,” (HCSB).

So how do we find that rare treasure? Proverbs 2:1-6 says, “My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, listening closely to wisdom and directing your heart to understanding; furthermore, if you call out to insight and lift your voice to understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it like hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and discover the knowledge of God. For the LORD gives wisdom; and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding,” (HCSB). Wisdom, knowledge, understanding—they’re all from the Lord.

It’s not, however, a passive pursuit. Our instructions in that Proverbs passage are especially verb-heavy. We’re told to accept words, store commands, listen and direct our hearts. Then we’re instructed to call out to insight and understanding, to seek and search for that kind of knowledge as we would passionately hunt for treasure. There’s a hefty percentage of perspiration there. Accepting, storing, listening, directing, calling, seeking and searching leads to knowing Him more.

Paul told the Christians in Colossae that he prayed this for them: “that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, so that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him, bearing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God,” (Colossians 1:9-10, HCSB).

The knowledge of His will results in walking worthy, pleasing Him, doing good works. More verbs! And these actions lead us to be—are you ready for this?—“growing in the knowledge of God.” Full circle! It’s like the most blessed circumference of knowledge. And it begins and ends with our powerful God.

Knowledge IS power! But only His knowledge. And all by His power. This I know in the most idiot-proof way. So this part is completely free of finger quotes. 

TWEETABLE
Talking circles around knowledge - @RhondaRhea on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Rhonda Rhea is a humor columnist for lots of great magazines, including HomeLife, Leading Hearts, The Pathway and more. She is the author of 10 nonfiction books, including How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change a Person? and coauthors fiction with her daughter, Kaley Faith Rhea. She and her daughters host the TV show, That’s My Mom, for Christian Television Network’s KNLJ. Rhonda enjoys traveling the country speaking at all kinds of conferences and events. She and her pastor/hubs have five grown children and live in the St. Louis area.