Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wordless Wednesday, September 20 {with link up}

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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Mercy Triumphs, by Jana Kelley {a book review}

About the book

Three women. Three impossible circumstances. One merciful God.

Mia, an American Christian, has lived in Sudan so long that persecution, harassment, and danger have become commonplace for her. Her tough outer shell threatens to harden her heart while her newly Christian friends, Halimah and Rania, former Muslims, are forced to live in exile outside Sudan. All three quickly discover that escaping danger in one place only means facing even greater challenges elsewhere. As God’s mercy becomes evident in their lives, they must choose whether or not to offer mercy to those who don’t deserve it.

Third in a trilogy, Mercy Triumphs opens the reader’s eyes to modern-day persecution and the life of Muslims in Sudan. Based on real-life events, Mercy Triumphs reveals some of the struggles Christians face when living under Islamic law. The reader will be inspired to pray for new believers, those who are persecuted for their faith, and even for the salvation of the persecutors.

What I thought about the book

I enjoyed this book as much as the first two. It's well written, captivating, and draws you in. I recommend this one as much as I do the other two. Be sure to check it out.

About the author

Author of the captivating novel Side by Side, Jana Kelley is a Texan who hardly ever lives in Texas. Raised in Southeast Asia, Jana developed a love for cross-cultural living early in life. Her love for writing came soon after. Jana returned to Texas to attend East Texas Baptist University. She and her husband married a month after she graduated, and by their second anniversary, they were living in a remote African town. After 13 years living in Africa and the Middle East, Jana, her husband, and their three boys moved to Southeast Asia where they currently live.

My other reviews for this trilogy:
Side by Side
Door to Freedom

Learn more and purchase a copy.


Disclosure: I received a free review copy of this book from Litfuse Publicity in order to give you my honest opinion.

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Saturday, September 16, 2017

God’s Law a Wall of Protection {a devotional}

Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Psalm 119:1.

God, the great governor of the universe, has put everything under law. The tiny flower and the towering oak, the grain of sand and the mighty ocean, sunshine and shower, wind and rain, all obey nature’s laws. But man has been placed under a higher law. He has been given an intellect to see, and a conscience to feel, the powerful claims of God’s great moral law, the expression of what He desires His children to be.

God has made known His will so plainly that none need err. He desires all to have a correct understanding of His law, to feel the power of its principles; for their eternal interests are here involved. He who has an understanding of the far-reaching claims of God’s law can understand something of the heinousness of sin. And the more exalted his ideas of God’s requirements, the greater will be his gratitude for the pardon granted him....

In his own strength the sinner cannot meet the demands of God. He must go for help to the One who paid the ransom for him....

Christ is our hope. Those who trust in Him are cleansed. The grace of Christ and the government of God walk together in perfect harmony. When Jesus became man’s substitute, mercy and truth met together, and righteousness and peace kissed each other. The cross of Calvary bears witness to the high claims of God’s law.

The law of ten commandments is not to be looked upon as much from the prohibitory side, as from the mercy side. Its prohibitions are the sure guarantee of happiness in obedience. As received in Christ, it works in us the purity of character that will bring joy to us through eternal ages. To the obedient it is a wall of protection. We behold in it the goodness of God, who by revealing to men the immutable principles of righteousness, seeks to shield them from the evils that result from transgression. ~Our High Calling
, by E.G. White

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Friday, September 15, 2017

Chara Games' Unauthorized {Homeschool Review Crew}

Does your family have a regularly scheduled game night? Are you looking for a new game to add to your collection? Let me tell you about Unauthorized, by Chara Games.
Unauthorized will give you a glimpse of what it might be to live where the church is underground. If you choose to serve God, you could end up in prison! This is a strategy game of influence and deduction, for 6-12 players, ages 12 and up.

Included in the box are:
A rule book
Role cards
One dealer card
Two reference cards
Experience cards

Believe me, the dealer card and reference cards are important, and very useful! Especially during the learning process, we used the reference cards frequently, to help keep us straight throughout the game.
The cards themselves are sturdy, stiff (which makes it challenging to shuffle at first, until they are more "broken in"), and slippery!

The game itself takes only about 30 minutes, total, so it's not hard to play several games at one sitting. Or if you only have a few minutes to play a quick game, that's very possible.

The object of the game is for the state to stamp out the church. It's a great test of loyalty. Will you be loyal to the church? or to the state?

When setting up the game, each player is given a role card. If you are playing with a group of 6-9 players, only one pastor card is used; 10-12 players, both pastor cards are used. For groups of 6-7 players, one police card is used; groups of 8-12, both police cards are used. Then each of the other players has one role card.
The experience cards are used to determine each player's loyalty, whether for the state or for the church. If your hand has more red than green cards, your loyalty lies with the state; if more green, than with the church. The wild cards can be used for either side.

While setting up the game, the person who is the police receives only red cards, while the person who is pastor receives only green cards. Everyone else is dealt from a thoroughly shuffled deck.
The dealer card shows what the game actions are for each round (you only play four rounds! Easy!).

The first step of each round, is everyone simultaneously does the card action on the dealer card. For example, first round everyone places two cards from their hand face up in front of themselves. Round two, each player passes a card to the left, then places one card face up in front of themselves. Round three, each player passes a card to the right, then places a card face up in front of themselves. Round four, each player passes a card to the player of his/her choice, then places a card face up in front of themselves.

After that first step, then each person takes a turn, using the reference card. Either you do what your role card says to do, or you can "speak to a neighbor" (that player shows you their hand), seek parole (if you're in prison), or conduct a public execution (which only the police can perform). 
Notice, there are only four rounds! It's a quick game! Honestly! 
At the end of the game, to determine whether the state won or the church won, each player counts up their red versus green cards. If a majority of the players have red, the state won; if green, then the church won, if at least one player is not in jail.

The first time we played it, it was my four offspring, my oldest son's girlfriend, and myself, ages 15 through I'm-not-telling-my-age. It took us a little bit to get the hang of it, and a couple of the offspring (who will remain unidentified) were a bit grumpy. But some of us really did enjoy it, once we got the hang of it.

Earlier this week, we played a game with our best friends while we were over there getting showers (since they had electricity and we didn't, thanks to Hurricane Irma).

This time it was a group of 7, ages 14 and up. My friend's 7 year old grandson just watched. Maybe next time we'll have him play, too. He might do well, with some coaching.

Everyone seemed to enjoy it. Our friends may end up with a game of their own.

I had intended to have our teen Sabbath school class, which I lead a couple weeks a month, play, but the one week I remembered to take it with me, my 15 year old son was the only teen there! Perhaps I will remember to take it the next time it's my turn to lead out.

Connect with Chara Games on social media:

To read how others enjoyed their time playing Unauthorized, click the banner below.
Unauthorized {Chara Games Reviews}

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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Carole P. Roman books {Homeschool Review Crew}

Like every homeschooling family I know, books are a huge part of our lives. I have read to my children since before they were born! So, I'm always on the look out for quality books for our family. We've been enjoying a few books by Carole P. Roman over the past few weeks.

I specifically requested a couple If You Were Me And Lived In...Historical Series books, which are aimed at children ages 8-15. I requested If You Were Me and Lived in...The Middle Ages, and If You Were Me and Live in...Elizabethan England, since these are around the time periods SJ is learning about this year in school.
We also received a couple author's picks, If You Were Me and Lived in Ancient China, and Can a Princess Be a Firefighter?, which is from the Bedtime Stories series.

The If You Were Me and Lived in... books are lovely picture books, with informative text, giving you a glimpse of life in that time period. I like that some of the words which may be unfamiliar to your child have the pronunciation in parentheses following the word. There is a glossary at the back of each book, as well.
Books by Carole P Roman
If You Were Me and Lived in...the Middle Ages explains that the Medieval period is from about the late 400s AD until the early 1400s. The book is around 100 pages long. You would be an almost-thirteen year old girl, who's father was awarded land in France for helping William the Conqueror (who became King William I of England) when he invaded England. You father built a castle, and life in that castle is described thoroughly.

Described also are the five classes of people of that time: the king and queen; nobles; important landholders; the clergy; and peasants. Detailed description is presented of daily life of the nobles, and the peasants; the clothes they wore, and the food they ate. Also is described the medicine of that day.

There is also a list of famous people of that time period near the end of the book.
SJ likes it, because it's easy to understand. The illustrations are colorful and attractive. He really likes the pronunciations for the more unfamiliar words (he is still a struggling reader, so this helps a lot).
Books by Carole P Roman
If You Were Me and Lived in...Elizabethan England is shorter, about 40 pages, and the print is larger. The Elizabethan Age took place while Elizabeth I was queen, from 1588-1603. It was the golden age for art and literature in England.

You would be the daughter of a baker, in London, which was crowded and bustling, with dark, narrow, dirty streets.

You would live above the bakery, and share a bed with your sisters. Your type of diet would be between what the wealthy eat, and what the poor eat, so you would at least have enough food to eat: meat, parsnips and turnips, and a lot of bread. And your mother would be able to make meat pies in the bakery's ovens.

Again there is a list of famous people of that time period listed at the back of the book, such as Queen Elizabeth 1, Sir Francis Drake, Sir Walter Raleigh, and William Shakespeare.
Books by Carole P Roman
If You Were Me and Lived in...Ancient China discusses life during the Han Dynasty, from about 206 BC to 220 AD. It was one of the longest dynasties, and is often called the Golden Age of Ancient China. Paper and porcelain were invented during this time. This would be a great addition to any study on Ancient China.
Books by Carole P Roman
The Bedtime Story, Can a Princess Be a Firefighter? is perfect for that little princess in your life. This a discussion between a parent and daughter/s. "You can be anything you want to be, anywhere, place, or time." "Whatever you pick, whatever you choose to be, know that in my true heart, you will always be a princess to me." 

When I saw this book, I knew exactly for whom it would be suited: my best friend's granddaughter, who is turning four this month. (I'll add a photo of her receiving the book for her birthday...I hope.)

About the Author:

Carole P. Roman began writing as a dare from one of her sons. Her first book, Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate's Life, began the Captain No Beard series, and became an award-winning book. Others of her books have also won awards.

Connect with Carole P. Roman on social media:
Carole P Roman
The Crew received books from each of the series Mrs. Roman has written, so you will want to be sure to read their reviews as well. Simply click the banner below to find those reviews.
Oh Susannah, Bedtime Stories, Captain No Beard, If you were Me ... {Carole P. Roman Reviews}

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