Writers Boot Camp Margaret Feinberg and Jonathan Merritt

Do you have a story that's burning inside you? A message that you need to share? A publishing career you're ready to finally launch?

For years, I've listened to countless people talk about writing a book. Dream about writing book. Imagine themselves on The View sharing about their book.

And. Never. Write. The. Book.

Worse, I've listened to those who finally published the book and then allowed discouragement to prevent them from writing another because they didn't have the tools and techniques to succeed.

It's time for that to change. It's time for your God-given dream to come true.

That's why, alongside Jonathan MerrittI'm hosting Writers Boot Camp at my home in Morrison, Colorado, October 27-29, 2014.

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Let me introduce you to my friend, Holley. Holley Gerth is the best-selling author of several books, including You’re Going to Be Okay. She's a God-sized dreamer, the wife of Mark, and a friend to YOU. Hang out with her on Twitter or Facebook.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I've invited friends from all over the blog-o-sphere to share their words in this space as we explore the mysteries of prayer during the Summer Bible Study.

When You Need to Know You’re Going to Be Okay

by Holley Gerth

She says it and means well, “It’s going to be okay.”

And I think, “No, it’s not…but I am.”

It’s the paradox I’m learning to live with these days as my dear Grandpa Hollie faces illness and is getting ready for heaven at age 93. It doesn’t matter that I’ve written a book about being okay—it still hurts. And that’s the whole point. Continue Reading...

5 Ways to Jumpstart Your Prayer Life This Week

There isn’t a cookie cutter formula when it comes to prayer. Some sit or kneel, and others stand or walk. Many speak out loud, while others whisper quietly. Some pray with friends, while others choose to pray by themselves.

No matter how we choose to pray, prayer is essential for a follower of Jesus.

Just as a relationship with your best friend would soon turn sour if you stopped speaking, so too will our relationship with God. Prayer invites us into constant communication with God so our relationship with him can flourish.

But, if we’re honest, there are times in our relationships with God where prayer can feel flat, rote, or downright lifeless.

Here are 5 ways to jumpstart your prayer life this week:

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Feeling Discouraged by Prayer or Disappointed by God? Read This:

As a nine year old, Leo Tolstoy believed with all his heart that God had told him to fly. He was so confident that one day he jumped headfirst out of a third-story window. In one crashing moment, Tolstoy was introduced to his first big disappointment with God. Many years later, Tolstoy laughed at his youthful test of faith.

Tolstoy survived the fall and so did his belief in God, but not everyone walks away from a leap of faith. Continue Reading...

Let me introduce you to my friend, Emily. Emily T. Wierenga is an award-winning journalist, blogger, commissioned artist and columnist, as well as the author of five books including Atlas Girl: Finding Home in the Last Place I Thought to Look (Baker Books). She lives in Alberta, Canada with her husband and two sons. Follow Emily on Twitter or Facebook.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I've invited friends to share their words in this space as we explore the mysteries of prayer during the Summer Bible Study.

Emily and Solange

by Emily T. Wierenga

I didn’t know I was praying.

All I knew was I was hungry. Sobbing into my pillow with my skin pulled tight across my rib cage begging the cotton, which smelled like the wind—because Mum hung our sheets on the clothes line strung across the skies of northern Ontario—to be normal.

No, I thought prayer was what I did at the very end of the night, in those final moments before falling into a sleep bloated with dreams of chocolate and sandwiches and cakes.

The long rote of a thing this preacher’s kid did which begged God not to send her relatives and friends to hell. It was a detailed list of names, and if I missed one it felt as though they were damned. And I put it off until the very end because this nine-year-old didn’t know God was love. She just knew life was as hard as the wooden church pews she sat on each Sunday morning.

But when the nurses told me at thirteen that I was a miracle; when they looked at this hypothermic girl whose braces showed through her teeth, whose hair was falling out in clumps, when they said Someone out there loved me, I knew then those nights of begging had been some kind of letter-writing to the sky. Continue Reading...