Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Spring Is Just Ahead by Laura V. Hilton

Laura V. Hilton

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” Ephesians 1:3

Where I live, spring is struggling to make an appearance. Jonquils, the very first lovely flowers of spring are blooming. The trees are still brown and leafless, the grass is still dead, leaves still cover the ground in the woods, but the beautiful jonquils brighten the dull, dark landscape with the promise of new life.

Spring is coming! The birds are even singing this message as they return to our woods and build nests for their babies The bright red cardinals, the beautiful black and white chickadees, the bluebirds all come to sit on our deck and eat the birdseed that we put out for them.

I just finished writing a story (releasing in the fall of 2016) that started out rather dark. Much darker than most of my books. Both the hero and heroine had gone through some major issues and were struggling as a result. Was there any hope? Would the darkness go on forever? Would the sun ever shine? But then toward the middle of the book, tiny glimmers of hope began to break through. Yes, spring is just ahead! The darkness is just for a season! Come to the light…

The theme of the book is Romans 8:38-39: “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” The characters of the story went through it all, but ultimately discover that truly, nothing is able to separate us from the love of God.

We are in the middle of the Lent season, for those who observe that. The church I attend doesn’t give it much attention, but Lent focuses on the days leading up to the crucifixion, death, burial, and ultimately the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus went through a literal hell as He prepared the way for our sins to be forgiven and for us to spend eternity with Him, someday. The dark days of Lent are still tempered with the glimmer of light, of hope, that the Lord will triumph over the darkness.

There’s a song the youth group used to sing when I was a teen. I don’t know the name of it. But the lyrics went something like: “It’s cold outside, rain coming down; trouble it seems is all around… Summer its seems was long ago, the sunny days have turned to snow, but don’t dismay, on this winter day, because you know spring is just ahead, things come alive that once were dead, and that’s the way it is with the spiritual man. You can come alive in the way of the Lord…”

He will see you through, too, no matter how grim your situation looks. Keep your eyes on Him and see the blessings He is pouring out. The Redeemer lives, my friend, no matter how out-of-control your life may be. Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.

Thank you, Lord, that You offer a glimmer of light in the darkness. A promise that spring – and Your kingdom – are just ahead if we persevere.

About the Author
The Bird House
by Laura V. Hilton
Award winning author, Laura Hilton, her husband, Steve, and three of their children make their home in Arkansas. She is a pastor’s wife, a stay-at-home mom and home-schools. Laura is also a breast cancer survivor. Laura also has two adult children.

Her publishing credits include three books in the Amish of Seymour series from Whitaker House: Patchwork Dreams, A Harvest of Hearts (winner of the 2012 Clash of the Titles Award in two categories), and Promised to Another. The Amish of Webster County series, Healing Love (finalist for the 2013 Christian Retail Awards). Surrendered Love and Awakened Love followed by her first Christmas novel, A White Christmas in Webster County, as well as a three book Amish series with Whitaker House, The Amish of Jamesport series, The Snow Globe, The Postcard, and The Bird House in September 2015. Other credits include Swept Away from Abingdon Press. Laura is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and a professional book reviewer.

Connect with Laura
visit her blogs: http://lighthouse-academy.blogspot.com/ & http://lauravhilton.blogspot.com/
Twitter: @Laura_V_Hilton
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Laura-V-Hilton/161478847242512
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/vernetlh/

The Bird House
Twenty–year–old Greta Miller's daed has been injured in a farming accident during the summer. The supportive Amish community tries to help out, but Greta and her sister must work outside the home to make ends meet, and so Greta rents a booth at the farmers' market. Because Greta is still in her rumspringa and free to explore the world, her family selects her to sell her homemade jams, jellies, and preserves to Englischers. Josh Yoder wants to court Greta, but years ago, he made the mistake of rejecting her during a seemingly innocent game; which resulted in him leaving the Amish. Three years later, he's back, but Greta wants nothing to do with him. Josh struggles to fit in and rebuild relationships he destroyed. Knowing Greta's family needs help, he steps in, hoping to win her back. When Greta admires one of his birdhouses, he gives it to her, hoping that it will open the door to more. But as their friendship begins to grow, a series of unfortunate events pull Greta away from the Amish, leaving her rejected by those she loves. Will Greta get beyond her family's distrust and return home? Will she prove her innocence? Or will she remain outside her Amish community?