Sunday, March 17, 2013

Book Review: The Light Between Oceans: A Novel

With an intriguing plot, M. L. Stedman begins her story as a childless couple rescues a baby from a boat that lands by their home. If you enjoy novels, this book is a page turner—right to the end. It’s hard to say more without giving it away, but it will tug at your heart, enlarge your understanding of life as a lighthouse keeper and cause you to ponder the hard places of life where people sometimes find themselves. It will also make you consider the ultimate impact of the choices you make on a daily basis. I heartily recommend this one. A little salty language here and there, as befitting for the characters, but other than that, it’s a five-star read.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

There's a Time to Redecorate

A faded living room carpet started all this. If I buy new carpeting, I certainly won’t replace it with the same mauve color, especially after the carpet man told me that shade is the most apt to fade. So I must also change the window treatments, which were so faded a friend thought they were beige instead of pink.

That’s how it started. Here’s how it’s unfolding. Since I’m redoing the living room, I need to redo the dining room, which shares the same carpet and window treatments. And the stairs too--that lead upstairs to my office, with its 35-year-old yellow carpeting. So while the carpet men are here, let’s go the whole nine yards.

This morning my wonderful husband dragged three large bookcases from my office to an attic area to get them out of the way. And his work continues as he ponders how to move a large desk, two file cabinets, a printer stand and my computer itself, the latter, fortunately, on a rolling cart. What a project! But it will be worth it all when we stand back and say “Ahhhh” a few weeks (or months) from now.

While I’m at it, maybe I should also check to see whether my life needs a remodeling job. Is my devotional time fresh and interesting or as faded as my living room carpeting? Does my Bible reading and prayer motivate me to grow deeper in my faith? How are my relationships? If I were to set aside a day to rendezvous with God, what would I want to talk about?

First of all, I would look back. Am I dragging behind me feelings of anger, guilt or resentment? Am I harboring bitterness left over from past experiences? Are there sins I need to confess? Just like my faded carpeting, such things need to go.

Then I would look around. What is my age, my stage of life? What do I like about it? What would I like to change? My eating habits? The use of my time? My devotional habits? In A Guide to Prayer For All Who Seek God William Paulsen is quoted as saying “It is unlikely that we will deepen our relationship with God in a casual or haphazard manner. There will be a need for some intentional commitment and some reorganization in our own lives.” That is so true about every aspect of life; we must become intentional and plan to exact change.

Finally, I would look ahead. What would I like to see a year from now? Five years from now? Ten years from now? What must I do to insure that will happen? Join a gym? A Bible study group? Learn a skill?

Recently I discovered a set of college courses called “The Great Courses.” I am thoroughly enjoying learning more about writing, public speaking, nutrition and how the brain works. The professors are top notch. All courses are discounted over the course of a year. So visit their website: and see if any appeal to your need for self-improvement.

Well, I’ve given myself a lot to think about. So until next month . . . enjoy the journey. And step out in faith. If you receive this by e-mail, visit to share what you’re going to do. Let’s hold each other accountable.