The Frosty Truth

frosty tree 1

I love sparkling frosty mornings. They remind me of a fairy’s dream.

The other day, I woke up to a white wonderland in my front yard. Immediately, I went out and took pictures. It was breathtaking. But as I was snapping away, a question came to me, and the more I thought about it, a truth was revealed.

 

 

What causes the frost?

 

Frosty tree 3Hoarfrosts come after a dark night that’s filled with heavy fog. Everything is cold and silent. Everything gets encased in a frozen layer of unyielding ice. It’s cold. It’s quiet. It’s lonely. It is a time of silent despair…

Then the morning comes. Sparkling sunshine reflects off the frozen, captured fog. It’s so beautiful. It takes your breath. The very thing that seemed so horrible in the dark is now an object of beauty. A trophy of sorts.

 

What are hoarfrosts?

 

Frosty tree 4They’re nature’s evidence that beauty always comes when a dark, foggy, icy night is faced and overcome. Hoarfrosts are God’s way of letting us know that everything is going to be okay.

If you’re facing a dark, cold night. If the fog is so thick that you feel confused. If your heart feels like it’s encased in ice… Then take a deep breath. Smile. And know that your glorious morning is on its way, and when it arrives—it’s going to be SPECTACULAR!!

 

You’re going to make it. Not only that—you’re going to SHINE!!

hoarfrost3

 

“God heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3

 

 

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Index of Interviews and Reviews–Organized by Date

2017’s Interviews & Reviews:

9/18/2017 Susan Karsten–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-AG

9/14/2017 Gay N. Lewis #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-CY

2016’s Fall/Winter Interviews & Reviews:

12/19/16 Penelope Marzec #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wR

12/12/16 Lisa Lickel #3–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wL

12/5/16 Jan Elder #3–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wI

11/21/16 Deborah Piccurelli #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wC

11/7/16 Sharon McGregor #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wa

9/26/16 Jan Elder #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-us

2016’s Summer Interviews & Reviews:

8/29/16 Susan Baganz #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-rH

8/15/16 Judith Rolfs–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-sD

7/18/16 Carlene Havel #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-pS

7/11/16 Renee Blare #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-pM

6/27/16 Gail Pallotta #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-nl

6/13 16 Mary Ball #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ne

2016’s Spring Interviews & Reviews:

5/30/16 Brooke Williams #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-mv

5/16/16 Tracy Wainwright–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-lM

5/2/16 Paula Mowery #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-kC

4/25/16 Gail Pallotta–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-j9

4/11/16 Gay N. Lewis–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-jt

March 2016’s Interviews & Reviews:

3/28/16 Lisa Lickel #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-iM

3/21/16 Emily Paige Skeen–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ie

3/14/16 Cheri Swalwell–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-hI

3/7/16 Marcy G. Dyer–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-hk

February 2016’s Interviews & Reviews:

2/29/16 Nancy Shew Bolton–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-gU

2/22/16 Kimberly B. Jackson–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-gp

2/15/16 Paula Mowery–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-g6

2/8/16 Anita Klumpers #2–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-fq

2/1/16 Carlene Havel–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-9G

January 2016’s Interviews & Reviews:

1/25/16 Sharon McGregor–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-7g

1/18/16 Gil and William—Character Interview http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-d6

1/11/16 Danele Rotharmel–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bX

1/4/16 Susan M. Baganz–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bn

December 2015’s Interviews & Reviews:

12/28/15 Renee Blare–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-7j

12/21/15 DiAne Gates–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-8x

12/14/15 Anita Klumpers & Winter Watch–Review http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-2N

12/7/15 Jan Elder–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-8o

November 2015’s Interviews & Reviews:

11/30/15 Linda Shew Wolf–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-87

11/23/15 Lisa J. Lickel–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-5l

11/16/15 Deborah Piccurelli–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-5b

11/9/15 Jacqueline Hopper–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-7u

11/2/15 Brooke Williams–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-4Y

October 2015’s Interviews & Reviews:

10/26/15 Angela Shaffer–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-4w

10/19/15 Penelope Marzec–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-4g

10/12/15 Mary L. Ball–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-3r

10/5/15 Jewell Tweedt–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-1E

September 2015’s Interviews & Reviews:

9/28/15 Anita Klumpers–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-2t

9/21/15 Brushing Fire: Soul Poetry–Book Review http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-1u

9/14/15 Victoria Pitts Caine–Christian Author http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-1c

 

Index of Time Counselor Articles–Organized by Date

2017

1/12/17–3/20/17 Time Search! Book Launch & 20-Stop Blog Tour!  http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-yl

2016

6/17/16 The Wait is Finally Over!!! Time Trap Releases Today!!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ok

6/8/16 Time Trap is Available for Pre-order!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-oM

5/23/16 Book Cover Reveal for Time Trap http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-mD

1/18/16 Gil and William—Character Interview http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-d6

1/15/16 Happy Time Tsunami Day! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-dn

1/11/16 Danele Rotharmel–Author Interview http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bX

2015

12/30/15 My interview on the Diamond Mine http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bI

12/19/15 Time Tsunami-Available for Preorder http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-aI

8/31/15 My Books https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/2015/08/31/my-books/

Index of Articles–Organized by Date

2017’s Articles:

9/21/17 Asking Again: Is God Really Real? http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-D9

4/14/17 Love Expressed Spider-Style http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-C7

4/6/17 Directionally Challenged http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-BO

3/23/17 Amoebas and Big Boots http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-Bg

1/12/17–3/20/17 Time Search! Book Launch & 20-Stop Blog Tour!     http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-yl

1/5/17 Spring is Coming! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-z9

December 2016’s Articles:

12/29/16 The Stained Glass Catastrophe–Revisited http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ya

12/22/16 The Presence of God http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-xM

12/15/16 Locket Greedy http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-xm

12/8/16 Yanking a Dog’s Ears http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-x9

12/1/16 Spinning Snowflakes http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wV

November 2016’s Articles:

11/24/16 An Encouraging Word http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-wy

11/17/16 Like A Calf Let Out To Pasture http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ws

11/10/16 Stuttering and Speaking http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-vQ

11/3/16 Watch out for the Trophy Case of Death http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-tt

October 2016’s Articles:

10/27/16 Fairy Wings and Forgiveness http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-va

10/20/16 Pest Control and Problems http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-vz

10/13/16 Dancing in the Dark http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-uW

10/6/16 “Snow Days” and Still Waters http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-uJ

September 2016’s Articles:

9/29/16 Lost in a Cornfield http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-uA

9/22/16 Popcorn and a Truly Inspired Invention! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-u0

9/15/16 The Murky Ditch and FEAR!!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-tN

9/8/16 Destroyed by Friendly Fire http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-t2

9/1/16 Hailstorms and Humiliation http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-sj

August 2016’s Articles:

8/25/16 Misunderstood—The Nutty Truth http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-s3

8/18/16 Quiet Times http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-rR

8/11/16 A Cow Named Horse http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ro

8/4/16 Slip ‘N Slide and Matters of Faith http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-qU

July 2016’s Articles:

7/28/16 Things Aren’t Always What They Seem http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-qH

7/21/16 Rats!! My Bulb Burned Out Again! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-qt

7/14/16 Roses and Thorns http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-qa

7/7/16 Mountains, Molehills & Everything Between http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-pC

June 2016’s Articles:

6/30/16 A Settled Mind http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-nU

6/23/16 Finding Balance http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-nE

6/17/16 The Wait is Finally Over!!! Time Trap Releases Today!!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ok

6/9/16 The Dragonfly http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-nx

6/8/16 Time Trap is Available for Pre-order!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-oM

6/2/16 Good Grief!!! There’s a Snake beneath my Desk!!!      http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-mV

May 2016’s Articles:

5/26/16 Please Don’t Make Me Dance Like a Chicken!!!         http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-mh

5/23/16 Book Cover Reveal for Time Trap!!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-mD

5/19/16 Cinnamon Spaghetti and a Reason to Gag! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-lu

5/12/16 The Cranky Bathtub http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-lc

5/5/16 The Devil Made Me Do It! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-kH

April 2016’s Articles:

4/28/16 When Dreams Delay http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-jR

4/21/16 Love is a Slice of Buttered Toast http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-jK

4/14/16 I Hate Mint!!! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-kg

4/7/16 Glorious Spring and Great News! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-jB

March 2016’s Articles:

3/31/16 Seeing Clearly http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-j2

3/24/16 The Temptation Train http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-iu

3/17/16 Easily Offended—Who, Me??? http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-hX

3/10/16 Love Remains http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-hy

3/3/16 Learning to be Content http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-h0

February 2016’s Articles:

2/25/16 Dancing Sunshine http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-gv

2/18/16 YIKES!!! Is that a hole in your skirt??? http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-fR

2/11/16 Splat!!! http://wp.me/s6E7Mo-splat

2/4/16 Clutter and True Peace http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-eW

January 2016’s Articles: 

1/28/16 The Frosty Truth http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-ek

1/21/16 The Uncharted Road http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-cT

1/15/16 Happy Time Tsunami Days! http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-dn

1/14/16 Crocus in the Snow http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-cB

1/7/16 Monster Hunting http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bs

December 2015’s Articles: 

12/31/15 Milkweed Time—The Harvest Fairy Lives http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-7W

12/30/15 My Interview on the Diamond Mine http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-bI

12/24/15 I Don’t Care If It’s Christmas Eve—I’m Not Eating Boogers!  http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-9q

12/19/15 Time Tsunami-Available for Preorder http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-aI

12/17/15 Lost But Not Lost http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-a4

12/10/15 The Hurricane’s Eye http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-8c

12/3/15 A Klutz, a Slide, and a Matter of Trust http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-9e

November 2015’s Articles:

11/26/15 Holiday Misery http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-7A

11/19/15 My Rotten Temper http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-6Y

11/12/15 The Kind Word http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-6T

11/5/15 Stuck in the Mud…Again http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-5W

October 2015’s Articles:

10/30/15 Stars and Yard Lights http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-5K

10/22/15 Does Jesus Really Matter? http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-5z

10/15/15 Embrace the Chaos http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-3S

10/8/15 Is God Really Real? http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-3k

10/1/15 The Stained Glass Catastrophe http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-2W

September 2015’s Articles:

9/24/15 Ancient Ruins and a New Outlook http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-2b

9/17/15 The Shower Curtain Spider http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-1q

9/10/15 I’m Out of the Boat, but I’m Sinking Fast http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-15

9/7/15 A Tooth and an Unexpected Trip http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-10 

9/5/15 A Frog Named Fred http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-V

9/4/15 Impatience http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-Q

9/3/15 Avoiding Eggs http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-H

9/2/15 Like Calves Let Out to Pasture http://wp.me/p6E7Mo-w

9/1/15 Turning Winter into Spring  https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/2015/09/01/turning-winter-into-spring/

August 2015’s Articles:

8/31/15 My Books https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/2015/08/31/my-books/

8/26/15 Welcome to dragonflydanele!  https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/2015/08/26/welcome-to-dragonflydanele/

Sharon McGregor–Author Interview

Sharon McGregor

Dear Friends,

It’s my great honor to introduce you to the wonderful woman in this photograph–Sharon McGregor. Sharon is a terrific author, and she’s also one of the first friends I made when I joined Prism Book Group. She welcomed me with open arms and made me feel right at home. I’ve really enjoyed chatting with her and her cat Zoey—and yes–I have to include her cat. You see, several times when Sharon and I have been talking, Zoey has strolled across Sharon’s keyboard and interjected a line of her own. It’s usually something like “skdjfldksjflksj,” and it always cracks me up. I’m convinced that not only is Sharon one of the nicest people on the planet, but that her cat, Zoey, is definitely trying to communicate! It’s with a big smile that I welcome Sharon to my blog.

Danele: Hello, Sharon! It’s wonderful to be able to talk with you today.

Sharon: Hi, Danele. Thanks so much for having me over. Zoey says “hi” too. She’s sitting beside me, trying to take back control of the keyboard.

Danele: Oh! You just made me laugh! You’re so much fun! I can’t wait to learn more about you. Do you have a favorite Bible verse?

Sharon: Yes, but my favorite verse isn’t a single verse–it’s a whole chapter. If I tell you it’s a Psalm, you’ll probably guess that it’s Psalm 23.

Danele: I love Psalm 23! It’s so beautiful!

Sharon: In times of stress, or decision-making, or grief, there is no passage anywhere with the ability to comfort as much as the 23rd Psalm.

Danele: That’s so true!

Sharon: I don’t know what your preference is, but I always like to read scripture in the King James Version rather than the more modern ones. It seems to add an extra majesty and grace to the words, especially if you read them out loud.

Danele: I’ll agree with that! When I was in Bible Quiz as a teenager, we studied the New Testament in the King James. For me, the poetical slant of the language made it easier to memorize. Now days, I read the New Testament in the King James and the Old Testament in the Living Bible. It was hard using two different versions during my devotions, so I got creative and glued an Old Testament Living Bible to a New Testament King James Bible. Never underestimate the craftiness of a determined woman holding a bottle of glue! But let’s get back to what you were saying. Why do you like the 23rd Psalm?

Sharon: Reading Psalm 23 brings a blanket of comfort that settles over your shoulders. It is filled with the promise of peace and understanding.

Danele: That’s so true. There’s such comfort in the fact that we don’t have to be afraid when we walk through the valley of the shadow of death. Is there another verse that you enjoy?

Sharon: Yes, there is. Another verse I like–but for different reasons–is Luke 6:37, “Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.” I sometimes think that in our modern world–especially with the help of social media–we have become judges of other people’s behavior. It’s so easy to read Facebook posts, and Twitter feeds, and jump to conclusions based on little or wrong information.  Who knows what damage can be done to someone by making quick accusations about something that is none of our business? Documented news stories–yes, it’s important to have an opinion–but judging a person’s actions without having proof–no.

Danele: That’s true. It’s easy to get caught up in gossip–and it’s easy to judge–but the practice is extremely harmful. Proverbs 25:18 says that telling lies about a person is as harmful as hitting them with an ax. When I first became ill, some of my acquaintances had never heard of Multiple Chemical Sensitivity. Since they didn’t understand it, a few of them began spreading rumors that I was an agoraphobic hypochondriac. The rumors really hurt, but there was nothing I could do about them. Through my experience, I’ve become very aware of how hurtful a little “harmless” gossip can be. 1 Peter 4:15 mentions being a busybody in a list of sins to be avoided. The list also includes being a murderer, a thief, and an evildoer.

Sharon: Any time I feel myself reading a social media post and becoming full of righteous (or unrighteous) indignation about a person, I think about Luke 6:37. It’s a reminder to me that I shouldn’t judge what I don’t have the right to judge. It reminds me to keep my nose where it belongs.

Danele: Gossip is definitely something to be avoided. Something that shouldn’t be avoided, however, is the presence of God. Can you describe a time when you’ve dramatically felt it?

Sharon: Yes. After 14 years I’m still struggling to make sense of the horrific disaster of 9/11. It left so many of us questioning life, humanity, and even God.

Danele: That’s so true. I’ll never forget the sickening horror of watching the towers fall. I was in my kitchen, and I couldn’t believe I was seeing so many lives being taken all at once. It made me feel physically ill.

Sharon: In 2002, some of the steel beams from the towers were taken to places around the world that had lost citizens in the disaster. One of these places was the International Peace Gardens between Manitoba (where I was living at the time) and North Dakota. We made a visit there, and I remember leaning over to touch one of the beams. It was almost as though an electric current passed through me. I could instantly feel the horror and fear of the stricken souls, and tears jumped into my eyes. But almost immediately after, I could feel a calming Presence assuring me that everything had an ending and a reason, and I was to take comfort in God’s love. It taught me that no matter how horrible events may become in this world, there is an answer to be found in another.

Danele: Oh, Sharon, that’s so beautiful! What a comforting experience! God speaks to us in such amazing ways.

Sharon: Yes, He does.

Danele: Now, here’s a fun question for you. What’s the first thing you want to do when you get to heaven?

Sharon: I suppose the natural answer would be to gaze around in wonder and awe. But then would come the most easily understood answer–and I’m sure one that is shared by everyone–to meet my friends and family who have gone on before. What a reunion that will be! Then maybe I’ll do a quick check to see if there really is a rainbow bridge for all the loved pets that have died. After that, I might just ask St. Peter if he could arrange a gentle nudge in the direction of the Stanley Cup for my Montreal Canadians.

Danele: Oh! You just made me laugh again! You’re such a delight! Now, Sharon, I’d love for you to tell us about your new book.

Sharon: All’s Fair in Love and Arson was released on November 20th. It’s one of those stories that combine my three favorite things–mystery, romance, and humor.

Danele: I really enjoyed All’s Fair in Love and Arson when I read it! I love a book that makes me smile. Can you tell us more about it?

Sharon: Sure! In my story, Bella has returned to St. Christopher, her childhood home. When her mother took a fall in the Nuisance Grounds (garbage dump) and broke her leg, Bella came back to help her and run her shop, Izzie’s. Soon Bella discovers she’s also been handed Izzie’s role in the town’s Christmas theatre production, a musical version of a well-known mystery that threatens to become more bizarre each day. A serial arsonist is frightening the townspeople, a family feud threatens young romance, and intrigue and rumors are the order of the day. On top of everything, Bella’s high school sweetheart Jake, who dumped her for a cheerleader, is now Chief of Police. Poor Bella! Christmas in St. Christopher’s is not what it used to be. As Christmas approaches, she is overwhelmed by the glitz and glitter that seems to have taken over. Somehow the real meaning of Christmas seems to be lost.

Danele: Can you share a link where we can find it?

Sharon: All’s Fair in Love and Arson can be found on Amazon. http://goo.gl/3CkLq2

Danele: Now, before I let you go, can you give us a list of the books you’ve written for Prism Book Group?

Sharon: Autumn Dreams, Acres of Dreams, and Fiona’s Knight of Dreams.

Danele: I really love Fiona–her story is so much fun! Sharon, thank you so much for being on my blog today! I’ve had a wonderful time talking with you! Please give Zoey a scratch behind the ear for me.

Sharon: Thanks, Danele. Zoey and I both had a terrific time visiting with you.

 

Friends, Sharon McGregor is such a delightful person. She has a heart of gold and a wonderful sense of humor. She’s one of my favorite people! If you would like to learn more about her or her books, please follow the links below. I hope you have a wonderful day!

Sharon’s web page and blog: www.sharonmcgregor.com

Sharon’s Amazon author page: http://goo.gl/0toXu0

Sharon’s Facebook Author Page: https://goo.gl/hUSNUp

Sharon’s Twitter: @sharonmcgr

 

The Uncharted Road

winding road 1

When I was in college, I had my whole life mapped out. I knew exactly what I wanted. I was going to graduate with a teaching degree, teach high school English, eventually marry some wonderful man, have children, serve my local church, and go on mission trips. My life was going to proceed at a calm, sedate pace that ended in a troop of great-grandchildren surrounding my deathbed as I took my final breath. I had it ALL planned out. Then carbon monoxide poisoning from a faulty furnace blew my nice, orderly plans to bits. I almost died. The furnace was replaced, but rather than getting better, my health went into a tailspin. The poison had triggered Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, and I became horribly ill when exposed to perfumes, detergents, and other chemicals. Eventually, things became so bad that I was quarantined in my home.

Quarantine.

winding road 2Just saying that word gives me the shivers. I thought my removal from society would only last a few months, but it lasted for seven years. Those years gave me a lot of time to think. A lot of time to question. I felt completely destroyed. I felt as if there was nothing left of my former life—nothing left of the “Danele” I had once been. I couldn’t understand why God didn’t just heal me. I didn’t know why He didn’t give me a smooth, easy road. The one thing I did know was that God knew EXACTLY what was going on. I knew that although He didn’t poison me, He ALLOWED it to happen.

I struggled with that knowledge. Why would a loving God allow me to be hurt? Why didn’t He take the pain away before it came? For years, I struggled with questions and sought answers, and I finally decided that it all boils down to one thing: Eternity.

2 Corinthians 4:17-18 says that our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. It says that we should fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

As horrible as my illness was, and as soul-crushing as quarantine proved to be, it was temporary. Seven years is a long time, but it’s only a speck of dust on the scales of eternity.

curvy road 2I’ve come to learn a few things during my illness, and perhaps one of the biggest lessons I learned is to view things from an eternal perspective rather than a temporal one. Life hurts. Pain happens. But pain ALWAYS gives way to joy as time passes. Nothing ever stays bad forever. There were times when I was writhing in bed with my body full pain, and I would breathe deeply and remind myself that no matter how bad today felt, tomorrow would be better. And if tomorrow wasn’t better, then next week or next year would be better. Nothing remains bad forever. Nothing. That knowledge gave me hope.

curvy roadNow, was God being mean when He let my life unfold the way that it did? I considered that question too. In fact, for quite a while I kept God at a distance, convinced that if I let Him get too close, He would hurt me. But again, an eternal perspective changed things. What I didn’t realize at the beginning of my illness was that God was using what I was going through to unfold a new type of life for me. I planned on being a teacher, and a mother, and a mission’s worker. God planned for me to be an author. Would I have ever found the time to write my books if I hadn’t been in quarantine? I’m not sure. And even if I had written my books, they wouldn’t be the same books that I wrote after experiencing soul-crushing pain, loneliness, and heartache. They would probably have been sugary, sweet books where nice little Christians did nice little things and never questioned God or got into trouble. In other words, they wouldn’t have done anyone a lick of good—least of all me.

roadMy second year of quarantine, I would have given anything just to have my old life back. Now, I shudder to think about it. I’m not the same person that I was before my illness. I used to be naive, a touch impatient, and a bit of a goodie-goodie. I was a nice person, but in a lot of ways, I was superficial. I thought I had God all figured out, and I thought I had lots of spiritual wisdom. In reality, I was pretty stupid. I know now that I don’t know ANYTHING. I also know that without God, I truly am nothing.  There is a peace that comes when you hit rock bottom and don’t break. In a way, I think it is a gift. Pain always produces beauty in the end if you allow the beauty to unfold without getting bitter.

Time TsunamiMy life hasn’t turned out how I envisioned it at all, but I’ve written six books. The first of which, Time Tsunami, was just released. I put a lot of myself in my books, and underneath all of the wrappings and bows, there is the silent cry of a woman who went through something unbelievably painful and survived. There is the knowledge that after all of the questions are asked, a truth is revealed—God is faithful in spite of heartache.

God took me down an uncharted road. It wasn’t a road I was even aware existed, and it wasn’t a road I felt prepared to face. But as I walked it, I learned more about God’s love and faithfulness than if I had walked the straight, smooth road I planned to take.

seaEach of us is on a journey, and occasionally, an uncharted road crops up in our lives. If that is happening to you today, I want to speak to your heart and let you know that you don’t need to be afraid. God will be with you every step of the way. Embrace the uncharted road, remembering that unexpected roads are the ones that are the most profitable, the most beneficial, and the most beautiful. After all, the Israelites didn’t expect to walk through the Red Sea—but their uncharted road eventually led to the Promise Land. Joseph didn’t plan on being sold into slavery or thrown in prison–but his uncharted road helped him save countless lives. And I didn’t expect to be quarantined, but my uncharted road led to the publication of my books. Uncharted roads are scary, but in the end, they are the best. They lead you to your destiny.

 

winding sign“Your road led by a pathway THROUGH the sea—a path no one knew was there!” Psalm 77:19

 

 

 

 

 

Blogs where I am being featured this week:

Website & Host: Victoria Pitts-Caine http://victoriapitts-caine.blogspot.com/2016/01/time-tsunami-danele-j-rotharmel.html

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Website: Living Our Faith Out Loud — Host: Lisa Lickel  http://livingourfaithoutloud.blogspot.com/2016/01/danele-rotharmel-debut-fantasy-sci-fi.html

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Website: Musings About the Writing Life — Host: Linda Carroll Bradd   http://blog.lindacarroll-bradd.com/interview/guest-interview-danele-rotharmel/

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Website: Books and Babies — Host: Emily Paige Skeen, Christian Author  http://emilypaige-author.blogspot.com/2016/01/interview-with-danele-rotharmel-author.html?spref=fb

Gillyflower and William–Character Interviews

 

blue eye

Dear Friends,

Today, I’m going to do something different and interview Gil and William, characters from my new novel, Time Tsunami. Time Tsunami was released Friday, January 15th in a very successful book launch. I’m very grateful to all of my family and friends for their efforts in promoting my book! I really appreciate you all!

* * *

Danele: Hello, Gil and William! It’s so nice to have you with us today. Did you enjoy your flight from Washington D.C.?

Gil: (Laughing) We didn’t fly, we used a Wave Trapper portal. You see, I was running late, and Doc decided that—

blue electricWilliam: Gil! You know the rules! You aren’t supposed to discuss Wave Trappers with unauthorized personnel.

Gil: (Snorting) Unauthorized? Danele thought the trappers up. She knows all about them! Quit going all professorish on me! There’s nothing wrong with talking about—

William: I’m not worried about her, but other people are reading this interview. You shouldn’t—

Gil: (Rolling her eyes) Stop being so stuffy. You sound just like Dr. Moosly.

Danele: I’m sorry to cut in, but I do have a schedule to keep. You brought up Dr. Moosly. What did he have to say when you told him you were being interviewed?

Gil: (Groaning) What didn’t he say? For Pete’s sake, he practically blew his top. He was still quoting passages from the Fifth Edition of TEMCO’s Code of Conduct when we went through the portal. I thought he was gonna have a stroke. He’s threatening to report us when we get back. Doc will be lucky to have a job if ol’ Moosly has anything to say about it.

Danele: I’m sorry I created trouble for you. Should we cut things short?

William: I don’t see why. I can handle Dr. Moosly.

Danele: In that case, why don’t you two introduce yourselves. Tell my readers who you are and what part you play in the Temporal Counseling Program.

Gil: (Leaning forward in her chair) Shall I go first? I’d like to go first.

William: Could I stop you if I tried?

Gil: (Eyes twinkling) You’d have to try pretty hard, and I still don’t think you could do it.

William: (Chuckling) I don’t think I could either. Go right ahead—ladies first.

blue spiral waveGil: (Waving) Hi, everyone! I’m Gil Montgomery, and—

William: Shouldn’t you tell them your full name?

Gil: (Huffing and flipping her hair over her shoulder) I don’t see why! Just because my parents saddled me with a silly name doesn’t mean I have to share it! Danele’s readers don’t need to know it! No one does!

William: (Laughing) Gil’s full name is—

Gil: Hush! I mean it, you cheeseball! It’s no one’s business what—

Danele: (Loudly clearing her throat) Gil, can you explain what the TEMCO program does?

Gil: (Shifting in her chair and glaring at William) I can try, but only if the doc will stop interrupting me! I’ve never met a more infuriating man!

Danele: I’ll make him behave. Go on, Gil. Tell everyone who you are and what you do.

Gil: I’m a graduate student earning my master’s degree through NSU’s Temporal Counseling Program. TEMCO exists to train time-traveling cadets. Our job is to intervene in the lives of troubled individuals before they embark on a career of crime.

Danele: So basically, you go back through time and counsel people before they become criminals?

floating clocksGil: (Nodding) It’s super-exciting! We go back and straighten people out when they’re young—you know—before they embark on a wicked road. Through our efforts, crime rates are down all across the nation. You see, if you go back and help a bad person become good—that act ripples through time creating tons of good side effects. Victims aren’t victimized, crimes never happen, death-row inmates transform overnight into scientists, pastors, teachers—you name it. Society is better all the way around because of our efforts. I love the TEMCO program! I can’t wait to be put on staff…at least…I hope to be put on staff. (Gulping) I have to pass another test first.

Danele: You’re talking about the field exam, right?

Gil: (Nodding and grimacing) I’m so excited—and a bit freaked out. You see, I’m a senior cadet, and I have to do well on the final field exam in order to earn my Time-Counselor License. If I don’t earn it, I haven’t a chance of being put on TEMCO’s staff.

Danele: Do you think the field exam will be hard?

Gil: Hard? It’s gonna be murder! But it will also be incredibly fulfilling.

Danele: Can you explain what the field exam entails?

Gil: I’m going to be traveling twenty-four years into the past to counsel ten-year-old Danny Winston. Danny is a wonderful kid, but he’s about to make a dreadful mistake—a mistake that will launch his career of crime and lead to his eventual execution on death row. If I can get through to him, I’ll be able to help him change his future. I just hope I can do it! I’m a little nervous.

William: Gil, you’re going to do a great job with Danny!

Gil: (Chewing her lip) I sure hope so!

Danele: Now, William, can you explain your role in all this? What part do you play at TEMCO?

UniversityWilliam: I’m a college professor. I teach several classes on campus.

Gil: (Snorting) Classes? They’re more like hours of enforced torture. Your last final nearly fried my brains.

William: (Smiling) Watch it!

Danele: How do you and Gil know each other?

William: I’m her advisor, and she’s my teacher’s assistant. We’ve been working together for a long time. Actually, we’ve known each other for years. We’ve become good friends.

Gil: (Raising an eyebrow) Friends?

William: (Averting his eyes) Friends.

Gil: (Snorting) You know, Doc, you could ask me out. Its not against the rules, and I don’t think a Time Tsunami would occur if we ate a slice of pizza together.

William: This isn’t the time or the place for that discussion.

Danele: (Clearing her throat) I’ve heard that some assignments can be dangerous. Is your counseling assignment going to be dangerous, Gil?

Dark clockGil: (Shrugging) I don’t see why. Danny is only a ten-year-old kid. I can’t see what type of trouble I can get into, but if trouble crops up, I’m prepared to see things through.

Danele: Even if it means putting yourself in harm’s way?

Gil: Even then. I knew the risks when I signed up for the TEMCO program. I want to make a difference in this world. I’m not a quitter.

Danele: So, when will you be taking your field exam?

Gil: (Laughing) That depends entirely on the person reading this interview. My field exam will begin as soon as they reach the 6th chapter of Time Tsunami. I hope they decide to read the book soon—anticipation is practically killing me! The butterflies in my stomach are going crazy!! I can’t wait to see if I earn my Time-Counselor’s License!

Danele: (Smiling) Both you and William are Christians. Is there anything you’d like to tell my readers about God?

Gil: I’d tell them that God is able to give you the courage you lack. He can make you strong when you feel weak. He can lift you up when you fall down. And He can give you wisdom when you need it.

Danele: What about you, William? What would you like to say about God?

William: (Hesitating) God is faithful. I’m counting on the fact that He answers prayer.

Danele: (Nodding) Those are all good points. Well, I suppose I’d better let you two get back to NSU. I’m so glad you stopped by to talk with us.

Gil: (Laughing) I’m glad you invited us. In fact, I’m awfully glad you created us! I’m having a blast living out my adventures!

William: (Smiling) That goes for me too—although I might have put it in less “gushy” terms.

Gil: (Huffing) I don’t gush! I explain vigorously. There’s a difference!

William: (Laughing) If you say so. Come on, Gil, let’s head back to campus.

* * *

If you would like to ask Gil or William a question, simply leave a comment, and they will get back to you! 

* * *

Time TsunamiFriends, I had so much fun “interviewing” my characters today. I hope you come to love Gil and William just as much as I have! If you would like to read about their adventures, pick up a copy of Time Tsunami today. I hope you have a wonderful week! And thanks again for all of your prayers and support.

Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Time-Tsunami-Danele-J-Rotharmel-ebook/dp/B019JBEI1C/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1452639364&sr=8-1&keywords=Time+Tsunami

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/time-tsunami-danele-j-rotharmel/1123153640?ean=2940152530919