At Traces of Faith, we have a lot to celebrate. In the last month, the social media pages have hit milestone numbers!
Here they are in case there's somewhere new you'd like to follow along:
Can I be honest here and tell you, it's weird to promote the blog, essentially market myself, as a faith writer? I don't want you to follow me in any way, really, save as an example of a person totally committed to giving God the glory. I have a passion for telling you what I'm learning from other Christian traditions, how they show me more of Jesus. I enjoy sharing your stories, about how you have found relationship with Jesus. With all my heart, I want us as a church to come to Jesus together.
The more eyes I have reading my blog, the more we have the opportunity to do all these things together. For his glory. These next two weeks, as the church slowly turns her eyes to Advent, I want to celebrate the good we're doing here. The milestones. The new look you're seeing on the social media pages, and will see soon on the blog. The books I hope to publish.
So here's what we're going to do.
With the help of some friends, I have some great prizes to give away. Starting with Advent, this giveaway has a special item for each major season of the church calendar. The package retails at $85! Check it out:
ADVENT - This amazing book, All Creation Waits: The Advent Mystery of New Beginnings, written by Gayle Boss, illustrated by David G. Klein. We used this book for Advent last year, reading one of the essays each morning before school, and I was wowed by what I learned, how it spoke to the waiting season of Advent, and the beauty of the drawings. I'm anxious to start it again December 2nd, the first day of Advent.
An excerpt: Chickadee "Like the saint wed to Lady Poverty, every winter day the equation of their existence is open: Will there be enough of what they need to take them through the dark night, into tomorrow? Beyond reason, like the saint, they act as if the question is truly an opening, a freedom, a joy."
Thanks to the publisher, Paraclete Press, for a giveaway copy of this book.
CHRISTMAS - A lovely gift, no strings attached. I love the simplicity of this aluminum bracelet from blogger Jennifer Kish at Sprinkles In My Closet. What a great daily reminder; BE STILL AND KNOW. Here's a closeup photo.
Thanks to Jennifer for the bracelet. You can visit her Etsy shop for other gift ideas.
LENT - This activity invites the whole family to participate. My friends, Don and Jennifer Love, write about faith-based family traditions at intentionaltraditions.com. This set of Christian Passover Easter Jesse Tree Ornaments and Devotional is gorgeous and insightful, exploring how Christ is our Passover Lamb. Here's a closeup photo of the eight ornaments.
Here's an excerpt from the accompanying devotional: "A Prophet Like Moses. In a similar was that God enables Moses to part the Red Sea and showed His authority, God enabled Jesus to walk on water and calm the seas.
Thanks to the Love family for the ornament set. They do have an Advent set on sale now too, if you want to check it out on their Etsy page.
EASTER - When my friend, Sara at CaSa Designs, offered to make a wooden sign for my giveaway, we decided on one for Easter. Most of us remember the beloved hymn, Because He Lives. May you hum this tune every time you walk by this sign. If you don't know it for some reason, look it up! It's sure to become a favorite.
Thanks to Sara for the sign! Along with her Mom, they sell their signs and other crafty items at local shows and stores. They also take orders for customized signs in a range of sizes over at Etsy.
ORDINARY TIME - Those 33 or 34 weeks each year when believers observe an everyday faith apart from the holiday seasons. I wanted something for this liturgical season that helped the individual commune with God on a daily basis. I use this prayer book, The Divine Hours: Pocket Edition by Phyllis Tickle, as one of a handful of books to remind myself to pray, along with the other saints, at established times throughout the day. Broken down into days of the week, and various hymn lyrics, prayers, and psalms, there's an established rhythm that's just right.
Here's an excerpt: "The Greeting: Glory be to the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, it is now, And ever shall be, world without end. Amen. The Request for Presence: O Lord, let my prayer be set forth in your sight as incense, the lifting p of my hands as the evening sacrifice. (Psalm 114:2, adapted)
Contest starts 11/11/2018 at 3:30pm EST and concludes 11/19/2018 at Noon. Only USA entrants please.