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3:16AM

Sunday, January 14, 2018

❤️ New Contest! ❤️

Scroll Down to Enter for 10 Books or $50 Gift Card,

Character Named After You or Loved One

in my Next Book and Signed Copy!


Jesus said to him, “If you can believe,

all things are possible to him who believes.”

Immediately the father of the child cried out

and said with tears,“Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

— Mark 23-24


One thing I have learned about God in my almost 45 years as a Christian is He does everything on purpose, both in our lives and in His Word. For instance, nothing in the Bible is by accident — not repetition, not the order in which certain Scriptures appear, not imagery — nothing! It's all there for a purpose, be it for emphasis, symbolism, prophecy, whatever.

So the fact that God included the Scripture story above in the Bible means He wants us to know that yes, faith is critical to the Christian walk. But it's not always easy nor always a given, especially when it involves something close to our heart. 

A troubled marriage.

A wayward child.

A critically ill loved one.

Because we are mere flesh and blood whose faith falters as much as we do, but God already knows that. So He gave us a fail-proof way to shore up that frail and fractured faith:

“Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

Yep, you guessed it — prayer! Now, I've always been a HUGE proponent of prayer, someone who believes in stopping and praying on the spot for whatever and whomever. I can't tell you how many times I've prayed in hallways, stairwells, parking lots with people who, admittedly, many times looked like deer in headlights when I asked, "do you mind if we pray about it?"

Of course, I never waited for their answer (thus the deer look). Nope, I just forged right ahead, staring them in the eye and praying out loud like we were doing no more than chatting about our weekends or what project we were working on.

But I can tell you right now that with all the thousands of people I've prayed with (and yes, I've been doing this a long time with people on the spot, at prayer luncheons with my sisters, and over six prayer partners through a course of 44 years), never once did I have someone say no. Okay, one person — one — did ask me to pray about it on my own (a dear friend and you know who you are! 😘). But other than that, all I ever saw and heard were gratitude and tears. Oh yeah, and answers to prayer — lots and LOTS of answers to prayer.

But never have I believed prayer is more critical than in today's world — a virtual lifeline from God! And never have I believed in the power of prayer more than I do now because I have seen God's intervention too many times.

But prayer's not easy for everybody. Sometimes anger or forgiveness won't allow someone to pray for the person God wants them to. Or their faith is just not up to believing that God will answer their prayers. Well, if that's you — you're in luck! Because no matter where we are in our hearts regarding prayer, there is a FIRST STEP we can ALWAYS take to get where we need to be. A critical step that Mitch Dennehy, my hero from A Passion Redeemed, learned the hard way:

His eyes blurred as he stared in the mirror. He blinked once, and everything shifted into focus. He released a draining breath. “All right, God, I’m done. Done keeping you at arm’s length. Done doing it on my own. I’m ready to give you everything—my life, my hopes, my desires. Help me. Guide me. Show me what to do.”

Forgive.

His jaw tightened and then released. Slowly, he expelled a weighted breath, like fingers being pried away and letting go. “Okay, I’ll try. But not on my own. Help me.”

Pray for him.

The concept was clear, but the application was as foreign as the Greek in which the apostle Matthew had penned it: love your enemies … bless those who curse you … pray for those who persecute you.

Mitch closed his eyes, unable to imagine ever uttering a prayer for Rigan. “I can’t.”

Pray.

His fists balled on the edge of the sink. Faith had once told him when you can’t pray, pray that you can. He opened his eyes to glare upward. “All right … help me to want to pray.”

His fists relaxed. The tension eased from his face. Hope overtook him like a flash flood. Mitch exhaled, aware that his hands were trembling. He looked up at the ceiling. “Dear God in Heaven, where have you been all my life?”

Where? He's been right there with us all along, hoping we will utilize the greatest tool He has ever given us — prayer.

So if your faith is a wee bit shaky on a given prayer request that's a little too close to your heart (and whose isn't at times??), then simply pray for God to help you to pray OR at least to want to pray. Then pray for Him to bolster your faith as well just like the guy in our Scripture quote above, growing that tiny mustard seed into an imposing oak that can withstand any storm the enemy sends your way.

Because as we all know, our God is not only in the business of calming storms ... He also causes the sun (Son) to bring its (His) warmth and light when He calms our raging seas.

A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat,

so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion.

The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!”

Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

— Mark 37-39

Hugs and Happy sailing!

Julie

❤️ Fun New Contest!

CHRISTIAN ROMANCE NEEDS YOU! Are you grateful for Christian romance? I sure am! Well, this is our chance to let our voices be heard.

Family Fiction magazine is taking a poll in which you can vote for five of your favorite authors plus your favorite type of romance story in their CHRISTIAN ROMANCE READERS POLL, which ends January 29, 2018. Results will be announced in Family Fiction's 2018 Christian Romance Special Edition, which will be available for FREE in February.

PLEASE VOTE because it's easy, it's fun, AND it's how to enter my contest below, so here's the link:

Christian Romance Readers Poll!

Once you have voted, just come back here to enter my CHRISTIAN ROMANCE ROCKS Contest in the Rafflecopter box at the bottom of this page, and you will have three chances to win. I will announce the winners in a Journal Jot blog after January 29th, so GOOD LUCK! PLEASE NOTE: You do NOT have to vote for me in Family Fiction's contest to enter my contest!


Grand Prize:

  —Choice of Ten Top CBA Books* or $50 Amazon Gift Card

—Character Named for You/Loved One in Upcoming Release, Love's Silver Lining

—Signed paperback copy of Love's Silver Lining

*10 new or almost new books by top CBA authors such as Rachel Hauck,

Denise Hunter, Becky Wade, Beth Vogt, and more!


Two Runners-Up:

   —Character Named for You/Loved One in Upcoming Release, Love's Silver Lining

—Signed paperback copy of Love's Silver Lining

 

❤️ My Next FB Live Save the Date!

What's the most romantic thing my husband has ever done for me? How did he propose? How did we meet? Well, I plan to give you the whole scoop in my February Valentine's Issue Facebook Live on my FB Author Page, so come on by!

It will be a celebration of Christian romance because I also want to know your most romantic stories as well, be they about your spouse, your parents, another relative, or just a good friend. Or just tell me your favorite romantic movie!

I will pick five winners out of the comments POSTED DURING my FB LIVE on THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 15 at NOON CST, who will win their choice of my indie e-books INCLUDING my most recent release, For Love of Liberty, or my upcoming release, Love's Silver Lining, or even Romance-ology 101 PLUS an e-copy of my Alternate Ending to Gone With the Wind, When The Fog Clears, so come on by!

CAN'T MAKE IT DURING THE ACTUAL FB LIVE? No worries! Just leave a comment whenever you can, and I will pick one winner to receive the prize listed above!

So mark your calendars and here's the link:

JULIE'S FB LIVE ON THURSDAY, FEB. 15, NOON CST

 

❤️ Rare Blog Giveaway!

Join me on MontanaMade Tell Tale Reviews Blog on FEBRUARY 14, 2018 when I talk about KISSES and you'll be entered to win your choice of my indie e-books INCLUDING my most recent release, For Love of Liberty, or my upcoming release, Love's Silver Lining, or even Romance-ology 101.

So mark your calendar, and hope to see you there!

 

 

❤️ Rave Reviews for Liberty!

"JULIE LESSMAN + WESTERN ROMANCE = GOLD RUSH!"

--Meez Carrie from the Reading Is My SuperPower blog

MEGA HUGS to Carrie Booth Schmidt for a fabulous review on For Love of Liberty! Carrie said: "I think Julie Lessman was created to write westerns. I have loved her historicals, and I have loved her contemporaries, but I’m telling you … Passion, romance, and faith are skillfully woven together in a story that keeps readers engaged from beginning to end." Check out the full review HERE!

If you have posted a review for For Love of Liberty, THANK YOU SOOO MUCH! And if you haven't read my latest novel, For Love of Liberty yet, why not? Liberty is a 5-star novel on Amazon for only $3.99, so do check it out HERE!

 

 

 

 

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