Bella Maura REVIEWED

Tuesday, December 21, 2010





Book Description: When novelist Sienna Emory receives a desperate call from an old college friend, she feels compelled to try and help her. The Cheney she remembers was a free-spirited song writer with an amazing ability to translate all of life's pain and joy into her work, but drugs and alcohol have made her a shell of her former self.

When Sienna arrives at Cheney's house, she finds Cheney passed out in the driveway; what she doesn't expect to find is Jonathan Driscoll, a handsome single father living nearby, who has obviously been there before.

Never able to have children of her own, Sienna is delighted to get to know Jonathan and his daughter Bella. However, Bella is not a typical five-year-old girl. She tells stories that she couldn't possibly know, and when she prays, she seems to communicate on a direct line to God.

As Sienna and Jonathan's love grows, while dealing with their friend Cheney's issues, Sienna discovers more about God's plans for them. Will their faith be strong enough to protect them against evil?

In her second novel, author Dawn Dyson seamlessly weaves together a touching love story with weighty spiritual topics such as overcoming abuse, trusting God, and stepping into your spiritual gifts.

As Sienna and Jonathan search for answers regarding Bella's gifts, they must draw on a strength of character and trust in God they aren't sure they possess. Their search leads them to Jonathan's hometown in Ireland and a family secret.

My Thoughts:
First I need to apologize to Dawn. I have been so busy I neglected to post this review. I was drawn into this story from the first page. It is a heart wrenching tale that grips you and won't let go. The story is taken straight from every day life and Dawn does a great job of weaving the spiritual truth into it without being preachy. This is a great book, one that I would highly recommend! I know Christmas is just 4 days away you can get a special deal on Dawn's web site for this book
http://dawndyson.com/ I know you won't be sorry!

Good News


Welcome to the 12 Pearls of Christmas! Enjoy these Christmas "Pearls of Wisdom"! Please follow along through Christmas day as each post shares heartfelt stories of how God has touched a life during this most wonderful time of the year. AND BEST OF ALL ... there's also a giveaway!!!! Fill out the quick form at the link located at the bottom of this post to be entered to win a PEARL NECKLACE, BRACELET AND EARRINGS!  Pearls - a tangible reminder of God's grace to us all.


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Good News!
by Deb Kalmbach


The first Christmas card of the season arrived in my mailbox way back in August. How could anyone be that organized? Then I noticed my friend, Nita, had sent me a card I had written to her more than 20 years ago!
  
Memories rushed back as I read the words penned in my familiar handwriting. It was Christmas, 1991, and my world had unraveled. I could almost pretend everything was all right at this most wonderful time of the year—but not that year.
  
My husband Randy’s drinking problem had escalated to the point where his job and career were on the line. He had already been through two alcohol treatment programs and managed to stay sober for short periods of time. Then he slipped back into old, familiar patterns. His ongoing relapses were a crushing disappointment for our family.
  
I had looked forward to Christmas Eve and our family traditions; making homemade lasagna, singing carols around the piano, attending the candlelight service at church, and then coming home to open one token Christmas Eve present.     
  
“Randy, are you ready to crank out the pasta?” I called to him over the Christmas music I was playing to lift my spirits.
  
I peered into the living room to see what was keeping him. My heart froze. Randy sat on the couch, trance-like, watching a basketball game while sipping a drink.
  
No, not on Christmas Eve, I screamed inwardly. I felt like I was suffocating. Usually Randy pulled himself together but it didn’t happen that night. He drank vodka all evening while I finished holiday preparations on autopilot. None of us felt like eating lasagna or celebrating.
  
Only a few days earlier, I had written these words on the Christmas card to my friend, Nita. I don’t know God’s plans, his timing or his ways in accomplishing his purposes, but I am learning to trust him. He is faithful!
  
I suspect Nita kept my card all those years because she saw a small seed of faith and it encouraged her heart. I didn’t know it at the time, but it would be eight more Christmas seasons before Randy experienced the miraculous breakthrough of finding freedom from alcoholism.
  
As I read the card I had written so long ago, I felt awed by God’s faithfulness to us—even when our situation looked completely hopeless.
  
You may be facing great difficulty as the holidays approach. The last thing you feel like is celebrating. And that’s O.K. The Good News of Christmas isn’t about picture perfect holidays where our homes are decorated a la Martha Stewart and tables are laden with holiday delicacies. Your days may not be merry and bright. You may be grieving the loss of a loved one or the loss of a relationship through divorce or estrangement. Your world has unraveled.

That’s exactly why the message of Christmas is Good News. The Savior is born! The One who came to set you free, to give you peace and hope and help beyond anything you could ever imagine is as near as your next breath. Today you might not be able to see how God’s purposes are unfolding for your future, but you can be assured that He is working all things for good in your life. A twenty year-old Christmas card came on a summer day as an unexpected gift and gentle reminder of God’s presence—especially in the worst of times.



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About Deb: Deb Kalmbach is the coauthor of Because I Said Forever: Embracing Hope in a Not-So- Perfect Marriage and the author of a book for children, Corey’s Dad Drinks Too Much. She has contributed to The New Women’s Devotional Bible, Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace, and other anthologies. She is a vibrant and engaging speaker who gives hope and practical solutions to those who struggle with difficult relationships. Deb and her husband, Randy, live in a tiny town in Eastern Washington. Visit Deb at: www.debkalmbach.com, or on Facebook and Twitter.


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A PEARL NECKLACE, BRACELET AND EARRINGS will be given away on New Year's Day. All you need to do to have a chance of winning is {FILL OUT THIS QUICK ENTRY FORM}. The winner will be announced on the Pearl Girls Blog (http://margaretmcsweeney.blogspot.com) on New Years Day!


12 Pearls of Christmas Series and contest sponsored by Pearl Girls®. For more information, please visit www.pearlgirls.info
 
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