Featured for Spring/Summer 2015

Hey Guys and Dolls,

Just a short note to say “Look at me, look at me!”  I’m kidding.  It’s really a short note to say, “Look at Him! Look at Him!”  Please take a minute and go read, download, and support this amazing resource for teenagers and college-aged women.

DEVOTION Magazine Spring/Summer 2015 Issue:

http://devotionmagazine.com/the-mags/4584315832

[Featuring “Promiscuous Girl”, a snippet of my testimony.]

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Book Excerpt – 2

count your blessings.
Literally. Count them. Use your fingers, use your toes. Chances are, whatever you are going through right now, your blessings still outweigh your troubles. That was Bonpapa’s attitude. He lived with an attitude of gratitude that began with the Lord. If you know the Lord, if you know who he is, what his word says, and that he loves you, what else do you need? The way Bonpapa saw it, if nothing else in his life was going right, but he still had God, he was doing alright – better than many, in fact.
My husband and I went through a situation recently where I was called to put this into practice. After a long and faithful run, my husband’s car had finally gone ‘kaput’ on the side of the highway one night as he was driving home from work. Financially, we were unprepared. Practically speaking, we were down a vehicle that we needed desperately to function in our everyday lives. Spiritually, we knew what to do. We began to say ‘thank you’ to God in prayer.
We thanked him for my husband’s safety and that the ‘blow up’ happened close to our home. My husband works out of town, so the situation could have been much worse had it happened further away. We thanked God for the other blessings in our lives: Our home, our children, our friends, our health, our full bellies. There was much to be grateful for, even in this circumstance. We thanked God for the times he had brought us through challenges, reminding him and ourselves of all the times we have been rescued. Lastly, the hardest thanks to muster was appreciation for the lesson. It went something like this: “ Lord, whatever you are teaching us or whatever you will accomplish through this event, we thank you in advance for it. We praise your mighty name for allowing us to be a part of your plan, and for molding and shaping our hearts through challenges such as these.”
Thirty minutes later, a brand new car was delivered to our front door and all was right in our world once again. Ha! Not exactly. Not even close. Thankfully, though, daily scripture reading had prepared us for what we faced. In the next few days, two Bible verses played over and over again in my thoughts: Hebrews 6:19, which says we have this hope (relationship with Christ) as an anchor for our soul. Christ in our hearts keeps us steady, even as we go through life’s storms. The second verse, 2 Corinthians 4:7, says we have this treasure (relationship with God) in jars of clay, to show that power belongs to God and not to us. We humans are fragile, like delicate clay jars, and God within us is where our true strength lies. It is no coincidence that these verses both begin with “we have”. Bonpapa was right. If you know the Lord, if you know who he is, what his word says, and that he loves you, what else do you need?
One final verse, 2 Corinthians 12:9, says that the Lord’s power is made perfect in our weakness. Only when we admit we are broken, do we allow God to take over, take control, and take care of us. If we can be grateful without needing explanation, we experience spiritual growth.
Being grateful doesn’t always fix the trouble, but it does prevent us from being overcome by our troubles. Recognizing that God’s ways and purposes are higher than our own gives us something and someone to lean on when times are tough. God never guarantees the ride will be easy, but he does assure us that we are never alone – never without hope – even as we walk the highway on a dark night. For that, I will say ‘thank you’.
We have this hope as a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. Hebrews 6:19
But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 2 Corinthians 4:7
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah  Psalm 46:1-3
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

Death Has Lost And Love Has Won

Today we celebrate the most important day in our history.

Who but You, could breathe and leave a trail of galaxies and dream of me?
What kind of Love is writing my story till the end with Mercy’s pen? Only You.
What kind of king would choose to wear a crown that bleeds and scars to win my heart?
What kind of Love tells me I’m the reason He can’t stay inside the grave?
You. Is it You? Standing here before my eyes, every part of my heart cries

Alive! Alive! Look what Mercy’s overcome; Death has lost and Love has won Alive! Alive!
Hallelujah, Risen Lord, the only One I fall before I am His because He is alive.

Who could speak, and send the demons back from where they came with just one Name?
What other heart would let itself be broken every time till He healed mine?
You. Only You could turn my darkness into dawn; running right into Your arms

Alive! Alive! Look what Mercy’s overcome; Death has lost and Love has won Alive! Alive!
Hallelujah, Risen Lord, the only One I fall before I am His because He is

Emmanuel, the promised King the baby who made angels sing Son of Man who walked with us, healing, breathing in our dust
The author of all history, the answer to all mysteries The Lamb of God who rolled away, the stone in front of every grave

Alive! Alive! Look what Mercy’s overcome;
Death has lost and Love has won Alive! I am His because He is alive. Alive!

Running Away, Continued

I have contacted Runner’s World in the only way I know how.  That is, by using their online “contact us” form, and by directly tweeting the editor.  No one has responded, and while I refuse to let this ruin my day or crush my spirit, I do expect them to respond.

Right now I feel like they are the Marlowe to my Shakespeare.  Trying to take credit, but in truth the idea is mine and always was.  I don’t know why they felt the need to steal it.  I don’t know how they can sleep at night.  I am a writer AND a runner, and this was my passion project.  Sure, I didn’t have the funds, but then again, I am not a huge corporation.  I am the little guy.  It doesn’t mean I deserve to be swept aside like rubbish while someone else takes my dreams and profits from them.

Maybe they didn’t think I was a good writer.  (Isn’t that what editors are for?)  Maybe the person who stole it hadn’t had a good idea in months.  I don’t know.  I don’t care.  Nothing is a good enough excuse for what has happened.  To see my idea come alive by someone else’s (treacherous) hand is gut-wrenching.  It hurts to my core.  It is reprehensible.

What do I do now?  Well the short answer is, I don’t know.  It’s Easter weekend and I am going to try not to think about it for the next couple of days.  They have stolen everything else, I won’t let them take my joy.  I would really appreciate a response, though.  I want them to do what is right.  I want Runner’s World to admit what they did, admit it was wrong, and give me credit for the idea that I submitted to them.  That’s the right thing to do, the honorable thing.  I was naive, I guess, in telling them my idea in the first place.  Am I naive to think they will apologize?  Probably.

To Dave Willey and anyone else reading this – You hurt me.  I am only one person, sure, and a stranger to you, and I get that.  But I am a PERSON.  It was MY original idea you guys poached.  I feel like I have been stabbed.  The running (and writing) community is small, and has always felt like a good group of people.  Why did you do this?  Do you have any idea what kind of direct deposit you just made into your own karma bank?  Man.

Please contact me.  I would like to discuss what has been done and where to go from here.

Running Away With My Ideas

Intellectual Property.  An idea or invention is yours.  Copyrighted or not, you developed it.

Intellectual Property Theft.  Someone steals your idea.  They pass it off as their own idea.  They profit.  You lose.

This is happening to me right now.  I found out yesterday that a MAJOR publication has stolen my idea.

I have the kickstarter page and rockethub page from years ago when I started it.  I submitted the idea to the publication because I KNEW it was a good one.  They never responded.  I figured they thought it was lame, or just didn’t want to work with an unknown writer.  Yesterday, the magazine arrived in my mailbox and to by great surprise and distress, I see THE ARTICLE I CAME UP WITH.  My idea.  All of it.  Even down to the city I suggested when I wrote them about it.

What can I do?  I am horrified.  Violated.  Reading all that I can about laws that protect me and what is mine, while waiting for them to return numerous emails and tweets.  HOW can someone do this?

This magazine prides itself on being about the little guy.  Uniting us all.  We are all together, all the same, equal, part of this community, we help each other, blah blah blah.  Nonsense.  Lies.  I am just sitting here, really not sure what to say or who to call, because I am dumbfounded that ANYONE would blatantly steal and say nothing to me.  It’s unconscionable. It’s despicable.