Please VOTE for Grandparenting Through Obstacles!

If you haven’t VOTED for our book yet, the deadline is approaching fast and Renee and I would sure appreciate your vote!
 
Grandparenting Through Obstacles been nominated for a “Book of the Year” at Christian Small Publishers Association! Renee and I need your vote if our book is going to win.Would you please click through right now and cast your vote for Grandparenting Through Obstacles? You can VOTE here: http://www.christianpublishers.net/13votes/ 

You’ll find our book in the “Family / Relationships” category which is the second category down. The book is on the right (third row of books down) with the blue cover.
If you want to check out the book further, read the reviews on Amazon or check out some pages on Amazon’s “Look Inside the Book” feature.After you vote you can snag a print or an e-copy of the book from Amazon for Kindle or BarnesandNoble.com for Nook.

You have the opportunity to vote for your favorite books in several categories. A Familiar Shore, in the fiction category, is published by the same publisher and I know Jennifer would appreciate your vote too.

It would help us out so much if you’d ask your friends to vote also. To vote, send them to: http://www.christianpublishers.net/13votes/  Let’s see how many votes we can gather up and see if we can’t blow the competition away!

Thank you so much for voting for our book and for all your support. As I’m sure you can imagine, winning “Book of the Year” is great publicity, lets readers know we’ve created a fine book, and would help get the word out about Grandparenting Through Obstacles: Overcoming Family Challenges to Reach Your Grandchildren for Christ so people who need it will hear about it. 

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Co-Author of Grandparenting Through Obstacles wins “Books of Hope” contest

Co-author of Grandparenting Through Obstacles, Dianne E. Butts, has won the non-fiction category in Pix-N-Pens Publishing’s “Books of Hope” contest.

In 2012, Pix-N-Pens Publishing, the same company that published Grandparenting Through Obstacles, held a contest to search for manuscripts to publish. Early on, publisher Tracy Ruckman said that she had noted something disturbing in the faces of people she saw everywhere: hopelessness. She wondered what she could do. So she sponsored the contest to look for books on hope to publish in order to take hope in Jesus Christ to the hopeless.

The contest was announced in May. Pix-N-Pens and its sister publisher, Write Integrity Press, wanted entries in both fiction and nonfiction. They also wanted stand-alone books and books in series of three.

“I was inspired by the contest,” Dianne says, “but I wasn’t sure what to enter. I didn’t have anything that fit the ‘hope’ theme in the works.” So what did Dianne do? “I went to my concordance and started looking at how many times the word ‘hope’ was used in the Bible. I found about fifty uses of the word in the New Testament, 31 in the Psalms, 18 in Job, and interestingly only 12 elsewhere in the Old Testament.

“I thought I could write a brief chapter or devotional-style entry on each occurrence and so that’s the idea I pitched to the contest in the 3-book series nonfiction category.”  The first book in Dianne’s “Days of Hope” series will be 50 Days of Hope from the New Testament.

Finalists were announced in June. “Lucky for me,” Dianne says, “there were far more entries for fiction that for nonfiction books. Everyone wants to write fiction, but nonfiction is purchased far more often. When people need help, they reach for nonfiction.”

The winners of the contest were announced on January 23, 2013. You can read the official announcement here: “2012 Books of Hope Nonfiction Winner” Announced. Scroll down for the winners of the fiction categories.

When will Dianne’s books release? “That has yet to be determined,” Dianne says. “Right now Pix-N-Pens has me very busy with two other series I’m writing for them.” The second book in her “Prophecies Fulfilled” series, titled Prophecies Fulfilled in the Death & Resurrection of Jesus, releases next month just in time for Easter. The first book in that series, Prophecies Fulfilled in the Birth of Jesus, released for Christmas 2012 and is available now. Like Grandparenting Through Obstacles, it’s a great resource for individual use or group study.

Dianne is also contracted for a 3-book series of fiction, the “Springs Eternal” series starting with Hope’s Diner, which is scheduled to release later this year.

If you enjoyed the help and inspiration you found in Grandparenting Through Obstacles, you may be interested in Dianne’s “Days of Hope” series when it’s available. In the meantime, you should check out other books published by Pix-N-Pens (PNP) and Write Integrity Press (WIP), such as their just-published book Parenting On Your Knees by Vicki Tiede. You can also find inspiring, good, clean fiction including WIP’s Valentine’s Day release, Heart Bouquets and their Christmas release, The Christmas Tree Treasure Hunt.

All of PNP’s and WIP’s books are available at Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, other online outlets, and on Kindle and Nook as well.

You can learn more about Dianne from her blog. To stay up to date with new developments with both the authors of Grandparenting Through Obstacles, visit Dianne’s Amazon page and Renee’s Amazon page.

It’s Election Day. What kind of a world will your grandchildren have?

Hi there. It’s Dianne here writing today.  I’m old enough to have voted in quite a few presidential elections now and I, like a lot of people, think this is the most heated one I’ve witnessed. Many people are saying this is the most important election in our lifetimes. I would agree with that…until the next one. Weren’t we saying that same thing in 2008?  And in 2004? And even just two years ago in 2010. Yeah, we were. And rightly so.

I don’t think 2016 will be any different. By then, (if we’re still here), that will be the most important election in our lifetimes.

You see, I don’t think the world is getting any better. And I don’t think it’s going to start getting better–no matter who wins the election today. I think that because I believe the time we have left on this earth before the events God told us would happen happen is growing shorter all the time (which only make sense). But I really do think time for us is growing short. The signs are all around us. And I think that regardless of who wins the presidential election today.

While I say words like that, I’m very conscious of how fearful that might be to parents and grandparents who want their children and grandchildren to grow up and enjoy life on this earth. We all want them to have long and happy lives. But when we’re fearful of the future, what can we do with that?

The reason I chose to bring all this up today is because last weekend my husband passed along to me a pretty awesome blog post by Erick Erickson over at RedState.com. This is a political blog, so I was pretty surprised, and very pleased, to see Mr. Erickson’s post, “50,000 Feet Looking Down,” so blatantly and openly talk about his faith in God and God’s view of this whole election. If you’ll jump over there and read his post, I think you’ll be blessed.  

To give you a taste, here’s a little of what Erick Erickson wrote:

“God is sovereign and He is in charge and He will return. That is my hope and my ever present expectation…

“When I wake up on Wednesday morning, I’m still going to have my wife. I’m still going to have my kids. I’m still going to have my family. And I’m still going to have my God. So will you.”

I would add: You are still going to have your grandkids, too.

And regardless of what happens today in this election, what you do here on this earth matters–no matter how much time we have left. Spending time with your grandchildren matters. Loving them matters. Praying for them matters. Working toward a moment to lead them to faith in Jesus Christ really matters. Training them and teaching them and helping them to know God and live for Jesus Christ matters. Regardless of how much time this earth may have left, these things will last for all eternity.

So take heart. Go read Erick Erickson’s God’s-eye view  “50,000 Feet Looking Down”  blog post. Be encouraged. Be inspired. Be blessed.

Authors featured on KRDO Radio in Colorado Springs September 2

We were privileged to have Cavin Harper, executive director of the Christian Grandparenting Network write the foreword for our book.

Cavin is also the author of Not On Our Watch!: Courageous Grandparenting in a Turbulent World, which is a call for “grandparents and parents to rise above the conventional view of grandparenting to embrace radically courageous life that stands apart from the politically correct crowd. It’s a call to intentionality—not settling for simply being good parents and grandparents, but choosing to stand in the gap and live as conduits of grace and truth for the next generations.”

Another hat Cavin wears is radio host of his own show on a mainstream over-the-air station in Colorado Springs. Cavin invited Renee and me to be his featured guests on his radio show called “Not on My Watch: A Call for Radical Grandparenting in Turbulent Times”  this week!  We will be talking with Cavin about our book, Grandparenting Through Obstacles.

Want to tune in? Here are the details:

  • KRDO News Radio
  • Tune in at 105.5 FM or 1240 AM
  • Show airs 7:30 AM Sunday morning
  • Renee and I will be on Sunday, September 2
  • The station is also live-streamed on the internet. Click Listen Live Online here.
  • If you can’t tune in, a podcast will be available a few days later.

Please tune in if you can, and invite your friends, family, and contacts to do so as well! Thanks! We’ll see you in Radio Land.

Thursday Interview: Dianne’s Journey to Grandparenting Through Obstacles

Dianne E. Butts

Dianne E. Butts, co-author of Grandparenting Through Obstacles

I remember well that phone call almost three years ago when my writing friend, Renee Gray-Wilburn, called me to talk about the idea she had for a book. She had done the research. There was precious little in the way of books and resources for Christian grandparents. Yes, there were a few books for grandparents, but not many. Especially for Christians. She wanted to write a book. And she wanted me to co-author it with her.

She had e-mailed me her ideas earlier. I was delighted that she wanted me to be her co-author, I told her. But I had a couple of concerns with the book idea. Let’s talk about it, I said. So here we were on the phone talking about it.

You realize I’m not a grandparent, right? I asked. Yes, she did. She isn’t either, she said.

Well, you realize I’m not even a parent, right? Yes, she said. She is at least that.

Okay, well as long as that’s clear. It was, she said.

I thought of the book I currently had in process at the time. That book is published now. It’s Deliver Me: Hope, Help, & Healing through True Stories of Unplanned Pregnancy. I’d put that book together even though I’ve never been pregnant. I wasn’t writing out of my own experiences for that book. I was helping others tell their stories–stories that needed to be told and shared, because they could help others.

There is great power in true stories.

How are we going to market this book? I asked. It’s not like either one of us has a great platform to reach grandparents. Nearly one-third of all adults in the United States are grandparents, Renee told me. That’s nearly 70 million.

Wow. Really?

The average age of grandparents in this country is 48. No kidding? 43% became grandparents in their fifties, 37% in their forties. (Gransparents.com)

Wow again. Okay.

Many of our friends and peers are already grandparents, and many of them are Christians who want to reach their grandchildren with the good news of faith in Jesus Christ. Renee and I decided we could reach them if we had a resource that could help them.

Renee had a friend who was facing great obstacles to reach her grandchildren for Jesus. They were living in another country. They weren’t getting the Christian influence in their lives that her friend longed for them to have. The idea was sparked. We would gather true stories of real grandparents who were facing obstacles in influencing their own grandchildren for Jesus Christ, but who were trying and were seeing fruit from those efforts. We would help them share their stories. We could add resources, ideas, Bible stories, and…perhaps most importantly, prayer. Renee insisted this book be full of prayer.

Yeah! We could do this. I knew it. Renee knew it. And so we put the word out to our writer friends, and word spread. We started gathering stories, and we were on our way.

We had publishers show interest in late 2010. We wrote the manuscript in 2011. The opportunities with those first publishers didn’t pan out, but we then had a complete manuscript and it wasn’t long before we found Pix-N-Pens Publishing. We were thrilled when editor Tracy Ruckman called. She was very interested in our project. She offered a contract, we signed, and now the book is due out this month!

And we couldn’t be more exited! Here is what some people are already saying about Grandparenting Through Obstacles:

For Renee and me, our prayer is that this  book will help you, Christian grandparents, overcome any obstacles you face to reach your grandchildren (and children, if need be) to see them come to faith in Jesus Christ. Through that, we pray this book will bear eternal fruit for the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, and that therefore His Kingdom will be filled to capacity, because together, we made a difference here.

The book releases August 17th, only a few weeks away! You can find it on Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, and most online outlets. Your local bookstore can order it for you if you request it. We hope you’ll get it, enjoy it, and perhaps get an extra copy for your favorite grandparenting friend.

May God richly bless you as you bear the burden to reach your grandchildren for Jesus Christ.

Thursday Interview with Grandparenting Through Obstacles book contributor Elaine Burbridge

Elaine Burbridge is a writer in Richardson, Texas. She faces both parenting and grandparenting challenges in that her daughter is not currently walking with God. But Elaine is playing “A Divine Role in God’s Theater,” which is the title of her story in Grandparenting Through Obstacles: Overcoming Family Challenges to Reach Your Grandchildren for Christ.

Unfortunately, Elaine’s story in not unique. Many grandparents face similar challenges. But Elaine has made an impact on her grandchildren, even through those challenges by being intentional about her grandparenting. Here she shares some insights.

GTO:   Hello Elaine. Thanks for stopping by today! Tell us, what are you hoping our readers will gain or learn from your story?

Elaine:   Never give up asking the Holy Spirit to minister to loved ones. He does answer in a mighty way.

GTO:   Well that sounds like you’ve experienced some answered prayer! Please give us an update on any developments with your grandchildren since writing your story.

 Elaine:  I witnessed my grandchildren’s baptism. Yeah!

 GTO:   Oh my! That is terrific. And actually, that is the very fruit we are hoping to see. That fruit, the spiritual fruit of seeing grandchildren come to know Jesus Christ as their personal Savior (of which baptism is a sign), is what it’s all about. So thank you so much for sharing such good news.

          Surely you had something to do with your grandchildren’s decisions. In what ways do you believe God has used you in affecting your grandkids and influencing them toward Him?

 Elaine:  By showing His love – hugging, kissing and caring for them. Also, in testifying that Jesus is my Savior and He died for all of our sins. And of course encouraging them to live for Him too.

GTO:   Elaine, what do you think is the greatest challenge faced by children today, and how can grandparents help them with this challenge?

Elaine:   There are too many worldly turn-on’s which consistently grab their attention. Here are some ways to intentionally counteract the world:

  1. Take them to church (and lunch for fellowship) as well as Christian-based activities (camp, choral groups, etc.).
  2. Introduce the real Bible text into their daily lives, even via Internet connections.
  3. Take a specific time to pray with them (kneeling is important), considering their needs and desires.

GTO:   You shared some very significant challenges you faced in your story in the book. How have you grown in the Lord through the challenges you’ve faced in trying to reach your grandchildren?

Elaine:   I’m better at studying His Word and praying. I’ve learned to depend more on His promises. I’m reaching out to others more – no longer afraid to witness.

 GTO:   That is awesome, Elaine. Not being afraid to witness for Him is an area God has been working on in me, too. Let me ask you what advice can you give our readers to help them become more intentional about imparting spiritual truths and values to their     grandchildren?

Elaine:   Take time to converse and read with them. Young minds are so open to absorbing what grandparents have to say. They will listen and ask questions – be prepared to answer.

GTO:   What do you hope your grandkids will most remember about you when you’re gone?

Elaine:   That with all of my heart, I loved them and Jesus. And, I loved to take them catfishing too!

GTO:   Awesome answer! A catfishing grandma! I’ve been trout fishing, but not catfishing. I really must try that.

Thanks Elaine so much for spending time with us today. We’re also grateful you shared your story in our Grandparenting Through Obstacles book.

The pre-publication special price is still running, but time is running out because the publication date, August 17th, is approaching quickly. How exciting is that! Get the Pre-Publication price today!