Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas and winner of last week's Raven Saint!

Congratulations to Amber Minnehan!  who won last week's copy of The Raven Saint!

Thank you all for entering!  The answer to the question posed on last week's posting is .....
B. Oui, to line my pockets with gold.! 

Many of you got it right! I'll have to make the question harder next time.
Now, for the last week of The Raven Saint giveaway, I thought I'd post my wonderful video book trailer. Most of you have probably already seen it, but if not, enjoy.
Beneath it, you'll also find my answer to the question posed to me recently regarding what I hope readers will take away from The Raven Saint.  I hope it blesses you.
As always, leave a comment and I'll enter your name for a drawing for the last free copy of The Raven Saint. I'll announce the winner next Friday. (remember to leave your email address!)

What do you hope your readers learn from The Raven Saint, especially from both Rafe and Grace’s characters?

Grace is such a perfect example of many Christians today. She loves the Lord and she’s busy about His work. The problem is, she’s so busy doing what she thinks He wants her to do, that she’s lost sight of who He really is. In other words, she has become entangled in good works and has forsaken her first Love. Because she measures her own worthiness on her good works, she measures others on theirs, and when she finds them lacking, she judges them. My hope through Grace’s story is that people will stop and take a good long look at their own hearts and ask themselves if perhaps they have fallen into the same trap as Grace. Do they have a heart like Jesus had, that loves everyone and doesn’t judge those who come to Him with open hearts? Or do they avoid and even snub those whose sins are out in the open? Jesus was able to separate the sin from the sinner and see the root cause of it in a person’s life. We can do that too, by getting to know someone and loving them, regardless of their sin. In reality, Grace’s sin of a judgmental heart was far worse in God’s eyes than the sins of those she judged. Don’t believe me? Just read what Jesus had to say to the Pharisees of his day.

Rafe turned his back on God at an early age due to the bad example of his so-called Christian father. Rejected by the pious man as well as by a woman he loved, Rafe is filled with heartache and rage. I believe rejection is one of our culture’s biggest problems. Rejection by a parent or by a close friend or spouse wounds the heart like nothing else can. It causes insecurity and rage and sets a person on a very dangerous path. The last thing Rafe should have done is reject God based on the example of Christians. As I said above, you can’t base your faith on the actions of so called godly people. You must seek God on your own and seek Him with all your heart. By rejecting God, Rafe ran away from the only One who could truly heal his own rejection. Through Rafe’s story, I hope people who suffer from deep-seated rejection can see a bit of themselves in Rafe, and like him, go to the only One whose love can heal that painful wound.


  1. Wonderful thoughts, MaryLu! I think I asked a similar question- I am SO excited to host you on my site. :) Have a wonderful rest of the week.


  2. December 25th,
    "Merry Christmas" ... Marylu, and family !!! Here we are again, celebrating the birth of our Lord and Saviour !!! To God be the glory !!!
    I appreciated your comments - on the characteristics of both Grace, and, Rafe.
    Not only do I tend to judge others, but ... I judge myself quite harshly ... believing I am always failing to please God. How I need to concentrate and dwell on His never-ending love for us "ALL" ... an unconditional love. If God can forgive, how can we do any less !
    And as far as Rafe being disillusioned by God, and so-called 'Christian examples' ... many people are also, today.
    When we "truly" get to know God though, intimately and soundly (from His Word) ... hopefully that affects and changes our hearts, and not just our minds.
    God Bless you Marylu. And again ... thanks for this new book coming out "soon" !!! Can hardly wait !!!
    Sincerely in Him,
    Brenda Hurley,

  3. Merry Christmas, MaryLu! I loved the dramatic trailer for The Raven Saint.
    Our heart attitudes make such an impact on how we treat others or ourselves. As we draw on the Lord's mercy, we can also be merciful. In Him we are loved, we are at peace, we find our worth.

  4. I love the trailer and hope I win!!!


  5. Well... Merry Christmas to you too! I keep giving this a try in hopes of winning.

    I've watched the trailer many times already, but it IS very good!

    Like many other people, I can certainly understand and ID with those who tend to reject God on the basis of others' Christian example, especially (as you mention) if it is a parent or other person who's very close. If my relationship with God depended on what other people say or do, I am sure I would have abandoned my faith a long time ago! (On the other hand, maybe it is a good thing if nobody's watching me too closely either!) The bottom line is, only God Himself is really dependable, faithful, and worthy of our trust. If we don't seek Him, then there really IS nothing else to live for, as too many people have learned to their utter despair. If we reject the only reality--the only true love--that exists, then we are left with a cold, hard nothing. Thank God JESUS IS.

    What a good reminder of the Incarnation today!

  6. What lovely messages to take away from the book. :) Merry Christmas!

    srfbluemama at gmail dot com

  7. I love that you're sharing this message in your book and I look forward to reading it. I think we (the church) can be not only harsh on outsiders - but also pretty hateful to each other at times.

    I know young people who've struggled with their marriages and ended up divorced because they "pretended" in front of everyone else until all they had left for each other was malice and nobody knew anything was wrong until the divorce was announced. Then they gossiped maliciously. A sweet woman I knew had a talented daughter who was in a car wreck. When she told the people at church they actually told her it was a punishment from God for her bad parenting and her daughter's irresponsibility. My friend said she believed God had protected the teens because even though the car had rolled, none of them had any serious injuries, and her daughter's hands were fine (she's a talented singer and pianist). It turned out the crash happened because of a mechanical failure with the vehicle; they had been driving well within the speed limits and were cleared of any fault.

    We left that church because we homeschool and were pressured to change our minds. We did - for a while, but the principal encouraged me to homeschool my son again (that's another story). When the church found out, I was counseled and told that what we were doing was rebellion, just like the sin of witchcraft. This was a major denomination and I taught not only a Sunday School class for children, but an adult class for new believers.I cried for a week and then we prayed and discussed it. We realized the church was wrong, and we could worship God somewhere else. When we told them we were leaving and they should look for someone to take over the classes, they told us to leave then and I wasn't to come back and say goodbye to my class. I found out later that people were told we left because my husband and I were getting a divorce and I had drinking problems. Even if I wanted to, I can't drink because of my stomach disorder and my husband and I hadn't been having any problems - let alone been thinking of divorce.

    Our new church is so much better, but nobody's perfect and there have been issues there too. I'm not without guilt in this area either. I think if we're ever going to be able to reach out and make an impact on the world we need to do a better job at loving one another and extending grace.

    Sorry this is so long, but I just wanted to express how much I appreciate your message. Great trailer too. :o)

  8. What you said sounded like something i needed to here. I do judge people before i know them or if i know them a bit. Its hard but every time i want to i ask God for help. Your right MaryLu, about everyone needing to find God on their own. I am always trying to teach my sisters to do what is right and love God, but all they do is make fun of me. Its hard to not even have a sisterly support. Im young, so i take things personally and change my mind a lot because of what they say.
    Thank you for this post and the trailer looked awesome!!! Although please do not enter me. Tomorrow i will be pre-ordering it so i get it on the day it comes out. Im soooo EXCITED!!!!!

  9. I LOVED your Book trailer, I can't wait for when I can review the raven saint, and have that on my blog!!! It's just great!


    Hope you had a great Christmas!

  10. Hi! Hope You and Your family had a very Blessed Christmas!

    Am more convinced I need to read this book the more I learn about it. Liked reading the motivations of each, seeing the pits we can so easily fall into. Can not see the trailer but am sure it is wonderful!

    Thanks for the contest!


  11. Hope you had a blessed Christmas! I am so anxious to read your new book....enjoy the blogs, posts, etc. about it! Thanks for a chance to win!

  12. Looking forward to reading this book.

  13. Beautiful thoughts. I loved reading this post. Thanks.

  14. Thank you, ladies, for your in-depth and thoughtful responses to my posting. I'm glad the theme of The Raven Saint has got everyone thinking about our own walk with God. Lee, I was sad to read your story in that one church. Unfortunately, it seems to be the norm now, instead of the exception. God Bless!

  15. Hey! Now, I'm just leaving a comment, I don't want to be entered into the contest again since I already won. Thank's again MaryLu, by the way.
    This book sounds like another hit! I can't wait to read it! The chacaters really seem to touch heart with others because it seems like a lot of us really do judge others like Grace. And a lot of people don't come to Christ like Rafe because of the bad examples that we sometimes set. I hope that God will bless this book and will help change the lives of others.
    God Bless!
    Amber Minnehan

  16. Please definately enter me again - I always love how your books deal with issues that we still face today, and this one seems especially applicable.
    Thanks for the opportunity!

  17. Thanks for posting the trailer!
    Amanda Lewis

  18. Your book looks great! Love the cover art.
    estrella8888 at roadrunner dot com

  19. Awesome trailer, MaryLu! :)

    I can't believe I've missed most of your giveaways...that's what happens when the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are so hectic! LOL

    Thanks to Carman over at Christian Book Giveaways, I made it just in time to enter the last one. YAY!

    I've had the pleasure of reading most all of your books, and they are wonderful. I'm excited to find out what happens to Grace and Rafe.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
    ~ Lori

    sugarandgrits at hotmail dot com

  20. Please enter me. I am a follower of your blog,but I was visiting a new blog and came across yours. Carmen sent me.I have been waiting to get this book. Blessings.

  21. The books sounds awesome. please enter me:

  22. What a wonderful trailer! Please accept my entry into this great contest. Thanks!


  23. This sounds like a wonderful book.
    Please enter me to win.
    ~Jen Unsell

  24. Thank you! That is one of the best book trailers that I have seen! It told more in less time than most of the other trailers I've viewed. A very enjoyable little mini-movie! Grace and Rafe are now even more intriguing!

    gcwhiskas at aol dot com

  25. Great thoughts!! It makes me want to read this book more and more!!!


  26. Well, I don't know if the book is technically supposed to be out yet, but it is at my local bookstore. Looks like I'm ringing in the New Year with Grace and Rafe! I'm so excited. :)