Genesis 5020

My Story for His Glory

Finishing Week Nine of Healthy Living September 22, 2017

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:55 am
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It’s been a few weeks since I have blogged about Faithful Workouts. Life has been a crazy whirlwind of back to work and running kids where they need to be.

Things are still going well. This week I wasn’t as “faithful” with my workouts. I had a bad cold so I slept in one morning and today I overslept a bit so I had to cut my workout short.  But eating is going well.

The key, I have found, is planning ahead. For example, if I know I am going to be somewhere during a time I will get hungry I pack something healthy to eat. Tuesday my daughter had a volleyball game almost an hour away. This ran right into dinner. I toyed with the idea of stopping at McDonald’s but ended up packing some pecans to eat on the way home so I could then eat supper later. Thinking ahead has saved me a lot of cheating. However, I totally did get McDonald’s a couple of weeks ago after a different volleyball game. But I believe as long as this isn’t a regular occurrence it is totally fine.

What do I think of Faithful Workouts still?

I like it. But I have found a lot of repeats of the menu and my family would not be okay with that. I was disappointed in the September menu as it was pretty much the same at the July and there are many repeated meals in the same month. I like variety. Thankfully, I have learned the “rules” to better eating and have been finding my own recipes on Pinterest and started some boards so I can plan out my menus using that as well.

Overall, the plan is working for me.  I am still losing weight but I bit more slowly. I won’t know about my cholesterol for a year but I have to think that is getting better as well.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

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Sweetbriar Cottage by Denise Hunter September 21, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:22 pm
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About:

When Noah and Josephine Mitchell discover their divorce was never actually finalized, their lives are turned upside down.

Following his divorce, Noah gave up his dream job, settling at a remote horse ranch in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Georgia, putting much-needed distance between himself and the former love of his life. But then Noah gets a letter from the IRS claiming he and Josephine are still married. When he confronts Josephine for the first time in months, they discover that she missed the final step in filing the paperwork and they are, in fact, still married.

Josephine is no happier about the news than Noah. Maybe the failed marriage—and okay, the botched divorce—was her fault, but her heart was shattered right alongside his, more than he would ever believe. The sooner they put this marriage behind them, the better for both of their sakes.

But when Josephine delivers the final paperwork to his ranch, the two become stranded in his cottage during the worst spring snowstorm in a decade. Being trapped with Josephine is a test of Noah’s endurance. He wrestles with resentment and an unmistakable pull to his wife—still beautiful, still brave, and still more intriguing than any woman he’s ever known.

As they find themselves confronted with each other and their shared past, old wounds surface and tempers flare. But when they are forced out into the storm, they must rely on each other in a way they never have before. Josephine finally opens up about her tragic past, and Noah realizes she’s never been loved unconditionally by anyone—including him. Will Noah accept the challenge to pursue Josephine’s heart? And can she finally find the courage to trust Noah?

My thoughts:

Denise Hunter writes such real and captivating books. This one holds true to that.

This book was heartbreaking in parts that made it difficult to read. But I had to understand what happened. What drove these two people apart and how could they reconcile all that went wrong.

Honestly, both the main characters had characteristics that bothered me at first. They weren’t overly lovable, a bit rough around the edges but I still liked them.

Overall, a wonderful read that kept me turning the pages to see what would happen next and drew me to the characters and their flaws.

Visit Denise here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

Convicted by Jameel McGee and Andrew Collins September 20, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 6:57 pm
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Jameel McGee: “For the next three years not a day went by that I didn’t think about my son who I had never seen and the cop who had kept me from him. And for most of those three years I promised myself that if I ever saw this cop again, I was going to kill him. I intended to keep that promise.” 

Andrew Collins: “I watched this angry man march through a crowd, a little boy and another man struggling to keep up with him….The man walked straight up to me, stopped, and stuck out his hand. I took it. “Remember me?” he asked in a tone that sounded more like a threat than a question. 
Somehow, a name came to me. ‘Jameel McGee,’ I replied.”

It reads like a gripping crime novel…except this story really happened.

Racial tensions had long simmered in Benton Harbor, a small city on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, before the day a white narcotics officer–more focused on arrests than justice—set his sights on an innocent black man. But when officer Andrew Collins framed Jameel McGee for possession of crack cocaine, the surprising result was not a race riot but a transformative journey for both men.

Falsely convicted, McGee spent four years in federal prison. Collins also went to prison a few years later for falsifying police reports. While behind bars, the faith of both men deepened. But the story took its most unexpected turn once they were released–when their lives collided again in a moment brimming with mistrust and anger. The two were on a collision course—not to violence—but forgiveness.

As current as today’s headlines, this explosive, true story reveals how these radically conflicted men chose to let go of fear and a thirst for revenge to pursue reconciliation for themselves, their community, and our racially divided nation.

My thoughts:

What a powerful story and it’s true which makes it even more powerful.

So much I can say about this book. First, it takes place in Michigan. I have driven by Benton Harbor once on my way to St. Joseph. Milan, MI is mentioned in this book and that isn’t far from me. Crazy to think about these places I have heard about and read about them in a book.

This is such an encouraging story of forgiveness and Genesis 5020 all over it. God using something that could have destroyed these men but they are using it for good and to share God’s word.

This truly does read like a novel but it’s not. It really is a book you don’t want to put down and you want to keep reading. I highly recommend this one.

Visit Jameel and Andrew here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

The Two of Us by Victoria Bylin September 19, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 6:04 pm
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After two broken engagements, Mia Robinson is done with dating. From now on, she’s focusing on God and her goal to join an international aid organization as a nurse practitioner. But when her 18-year-old sister, Lucy, calls with an invitation to her Vegas wedding, it throws a wrench into Mia’s plans.

Jake Tanner has recovered from the injuries he sustained as a police officer–on the outside. Inside, he’s yet to heal from losing his partner in the tragedy, but finds some solace in keeping an eye on her young adult son, Sam, who’s asked him to be best man at his wedding.

Mia expects a mess when she arrives to sort out the situation with Lucy, but she wasn’t expecting Jake, who views the marriage a little differently. As Jake’s and Mia’s lives slowly become more intertwined, could his courage and her caring heart be enough to bring them a lifetime of healing?

My thoughts:

This is a wonderful story with a great romance. It also show real Christians struggling with real issues and sometimes failing.

Mia is a strong character. She knows what she wants and goes for it. She thinks nothing can get in her way.

Jake has his own scars and baggage he is carrying. He has such a kind heart toward others.

I even enjoyed getting to know Mia’s sister and her husband. Their story is one that will touch your heart as well.

Overall, a wonderfully crafted book with a very engaging story and characters.

Visit Victoria here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

12 Days at Bleakly Manor by Michelle Griep September 18, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews,Monday Musings — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:26 pm
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A mysterious invitation to spend Christmas at an English manor home may bring danger…and love?

England, 1851: When Clara Chapman receives an intriguing invitation to spend Christmas at an English manor home, she is hesitant yet feels compelled to attend—for if she remains the duration of the twelve-day celebration, she is promised a sum of one thousand pounds.

But is she walking into danger? It appears so, especially when she comes face to face with one of the other guests—her former fiancé, Benjamin Lane.

Imprisoned unjustly, Ben wants revenge on whoever stole his honor. When he’s given the chance to gain his freedom, he jumps at it—and is faced with the anger of the woman he stood up at the altar. Brought together under mysterious circumstances, Clara and Ben discover that what they’ve been striving for isn’t what ultimately matters.

What matters most is what Christmas is all about . . . love.

Pour a cup of tea and settle in for Book 1 of the Once Upon a Dickens Christmas series–a page-turning Victorian-era holiday tale–by Michelle Griep, a reader and critic favorite.

My thoughts:

What an intriguing book. I love the premise and it did deliver.

Clara and Ben have some major misunderstandings to work through but once the truth is revealed all will be good, right?

The cast of characters are rich in personality. Michelle did a wonderful job of giving everyone their own voice.

This will begin to get you in the Christmas frame of mine a bit early, but it’s never too early for Christmas is it?

Visit Michelle here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: The Promise of Breeze Hill by Pam Hillman September 14, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:29 pm
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About:

Natchez, MS; 1791
Anxious for his brothers to join him on the rugged frontier along the Mississippi River, Connor O’Shea has no choice but to indenture himself as a carpenter in exchange for their passage from Ireland. But when he’s sold to Isabella Bartholomew of Breeze Hill Plantation, Connor fears he’ll repeat past mistakes and vows not to be tempted by the lovely lady.

The responsibilities of running Breeze Hill have fallen on Isabella’s shoulders after her brother was found dead in the swamps along the Natchez Trace and a suspicious fire devastated their crops, almost destroyed their home, and left her father seriously injured. Even with Connor’s help, Isabella fears she’ll lose her family’s plantation. Despite her growing feelings for the handsome Irish carpenter, she seriously considers accepting her wealthy and influential neighbor’s proposal of marriage.

Soon, though, Connor realizes someone is out to eliminate the Bartholomew family. Can he set aside his own feelings to keep Isabella safe?

My thoughts:

From the first page you are thrown into the life of these characters and you will want to keep reading to see what will happen next.

Isabella tries to stay strong for her father and her family but she needs a place, or a person, to rest on.

Enter Connor. He is a perfectly imperfect hero. How could these two be drawn together? Can they overcome all that lies between them?

And what is really going on at Breeze Hill? Who can be trusted? All of these questions will keep you reading and wanting more.

Visit Pam here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

Leave a comment by October 2nd for your chance to win a copy. One winner will be chosen by random.org. (U.S. addresses only. I am no responsible for books lost or damaged in the mail.)

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: Egypt’s Sister by Angela Hunt September 12, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 6:22 pm
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About:

You Don’t Know Her Name. The World Remembers Only Her Greatest Friend: Cleopatra.

Raised together in the Alexandrian palace, Chava, the Hebrew daughter of the royal tutor, and Urbi, an Egyptian princess, become as close as sisters–and rivals with their dreams of greatness. When Urbi unexpectedly ascends the throne as Queen Cleopatra, Chava believes their bond is strong enough to survive. But absolute power has a way of changing everything.

The ultimate betrayal rips Chava from everything she’s ever known and sends her to the lowest rung of Roman society where she must choose between love and honor, between her own desires and God’s will for her life, if she hopes to rise again.

My thoughts and giveaway:

Oh my. Angela Hunt knows how to write a powerful and compelling book.

I found it so interesting because I wondered what could ever happen to keep these two friends apart? They had such a special bond. But I had to keep reading to find out and then find out how it would be resolved.

I love the fact that Angela took this from “the silent years” between the old and new testament. So interesting what she came up with and how she incorporated history into it.

If you like Biblical fiction (although this technically isn’t) this is a must read.

Visit Angela here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

Leave a comment by September 26th for your chance to win a copy of this book. One winner will be chosen by random.org. (U.S. addresses only.  I will not replace book lost or damaged in the mail.)

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own.