A Proper Handout

This is about people coming to see God’s love for them. Not me getting rich. So, it is now free. 100% free.

So, God has been dealing with me. I have been asking that He would bless the Crazy2ndEditionFrontCover Amazing Love book and touch lives with it. Then He kind of asked me, “Then why are you trying to profit from it?” Wow! That was hard to face.

He made some promises to take care of me. So, I said okay. This is about people coming to see God’s love for them. Not me getting rich. So, it is now free. 100% free. But, only if you ask for it directly from me.

I publish through Create Space. It is a great way to self publish. But it is an Amazon company and Amazon must make a profit. Which is just fine. So, if you purchase through them, you will pay the minimum price. It’s $8.49 plus shipping (Kindle $.99). Their system is so rigid I am forced to make a royalty of about $1.50. No choice there. However, if you ask for a copy from me, I will send it to you 100% free. No cost, no shipping. No strings attached either.

Contact me though here on the blog or on my Facebook page here.

I pray God will bless you through this book. To increase your understanding of His love!

I would like to add something. Very important. This is what God is leading me to do. I in no way am saying that any other author should follow suit. He leads us each as He designs. And the worker is worth his wages (1 Timothy 5:18).

As you may know, I write a number of different types of books. Those that are God’s teaching, the Crazy Amazing Love Series, will be, from now on, free as long as it is asked for from me directly. The others will be charged the going rate. Just giving you a “full disclosure.”

God provides!

Matt

P.S. You might have noticed the new cover. This is officially a “Second Edition.” The cover is done by Morgan Rex (Carpet Art – Yes, Carpet!). He is likely the most talented artist I know personally. And we have a new forward by “Doctor” Christian Cleghorn of Hope Discipleship Training Center in Jacksboro, TX.

A Day To Remember

You want to impact the world like he did, follow the One he followed.

615full-martin-luther-kingToday is Monday, January 15th, 2017. Today, you have the opportunity to make an impact on the world around you. The people you know. The work place. The neighbors. Your family. And more. The strangers in the store. The guys at the gas station. The people delivering your mail. You have the chance to make their day better. Maybe their life.

One of the greatest men to ever be called American in the last 100 years was Martin Luther King Jr. He wasn’t a politician. He wasn’t just some preacher. He was in love with Americans. Black, white, yellow, red… Purple! He was in love with freedom. He was in love with Jesus.


“I have to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”


And, appropriately, we celebrate his life today. Appropriately, it is a National Holiday. As much a holiday as Washington or Lincolns birthdays. But, I think if he were alive, he might want us to remember something.

We put men like him on a pedestal. Especially after they have died. But to truly learn from these men who have done so much, we must take their example and pass it along.


“Free at last. Free at last, thank God Almighty we are free at last!”


You don’t need to lead a country to make a difference. You don’t have to have a podium in front of the Lincoln Memorial to be gracious and loving. You don’t need the attention of millions of people or have a holiday named for you.

Mr. King was never looking for that. He was never looking to become an icon that millions would idolize. He was real. He was legitimate. He was average Joe who decided what was happening was not okay. He was you and I.


“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”


Hollywood and DC want you to think you have to be like them to make a difference in your world. The truth is, you have to be you. You have to be the person God designed you to be. I believe that more than anything about Mr. King. You want to impact the world like he did, follow the One he followed.


“I have a dream…”


ovalMesige117

Making 2018 Better

These are actions that will make it a greater year!

Good morning!

I was reading a bit from a favorite author this morning (Kris Valloton). He has insight like few people I’ve met. But it made me think about this past year. It reminded me of what a great year I had and I thought I’d share some things that made it so great.

If you had a rough 2017, this isn’t meant to compare mine to yours or anything like that. Here’s a quote from Kris:

“The truth is that even if you walk with radical faith and
outrageous courage, you sometimes go through seasons when
the mere frequency of things going wrong in your life can be
discouraging and overwhelming.

“One of the worst things that can happen in difficult seasons is
that you begin to expect things to go wrong. Expectation is the
fruit of faith. In other words, you believe things are going to go
wrong, and therefore you empower destructive outcomes.
Simply put, by faith, your life sucks!”

That last part jumped out at me because I had for many years been the expectant recipient of the proverbial “other shoe drop.” My thinking was “for every thing that went good, something bad was on the way.” I discovered in 2017 that it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s one thing to have bad things happen to good people and godly people. It’s another thing entirely to plan on them. And if you are expecting that shoe to show it’s ugly mug in your life, then you are planning for it!

Another key I discovered:

Much of what drives our happiness is what we experience and how we respond. And, now a days, do we ever respond! Thanks to social media, many of our friends and neighbors (and total strangers) are afforded the opportunity to see and read our total frustrations with life. And, if we are a Christian, that is, quite frankly, not good in any possible way.

One of the big things I gained from 2017 was to become grateful in my life. And, what a DIFFERENCE it made. I know it’s hard not to take our troubles and put them on display. Mr. Cheeseburger (the dictionary liked Cheeseburger better than Zuckerburg) wants us to do that. It drives a very high percentage of what makes social media, social media.

But, if you do this instead, you will find it to be much more satisfying to you heart, soul, and psyche:

Each night, before bed (or whenever it’s most possible – even in the afternoon if necessary) come together with you spouse, best friend, kids – whoever- and take a few minutes to be thankful. Simply find three things for that day that you are thankful to God for. I have been doing this every evening with Nancy for almost a year and a half. What an amazing difference it has made. We now look throughout the day for thankfuls.

I guarantee your relationship with that person will become wonderful. Your attitude will change about that difficulties of life. And, your relationship with God will grow exponentially. It has become a great source of joy. Which is a key ingredient to happy!

So, (1) don’t look or plan for the bad. And (2) become grateful. There are more and I might discuss them further sometime. But, for 2018, these are actions that will make it a greater year!

ovalMesige117

And Onward

Hutch Is done!

Good morning everyone!

Well, the first draft of “Hutch” is done and so I will have a little more time to write here in the blog. It is an exciting book. It’s what is termed Christian fiction. A fictional story that talks about God and how He interacts with people in life. Click here and you can read more about it. Now my focus will be to get Ketchwood edited and ready to publish.

Image may contain: house, tree, sky and outdoorI have taken a job. A fabulous job that includes a house and all my utilities. The job is to live on a farm and tend to a couple of elderly folks who simply do not want to move into an “old folks” home. And, the reality is that I do not blame them. They have owned this farm since 1961. The main house, which they live in, was built in 1865. Yes, very old and very beautiful!

Irvin and Lois are both in their 90’s and trucking on. Two of the most wonderful people you will ever meet.

I do a number of things for them. I cook three meals a day for them. Do all their shopping. Make certain they are taking whatever meds they require, and so on. One of my favorite duties is tending to the fire.

In the mornings I go over and fix their breakfast, get their pills, check blood sugar, etc. Then I make sure the fire is burning in the stove, add a little wood to it, then go fill up the wood box.

Now usually when I open the stove, the fire is down to just coals from the night before. I add a few small sticks, kindling size, it will heat up, and, soon, a roaring blaze is going. This morning as I opened it up, there were several half burnt chunks that were just smoldering. I rearranged them and stuck a couple of small limb pieces in amongst them. No real change. Except more smoke. Underneath, something was happening, but it just wouldn’t flame up.

As I stood there waiting for it to get going, I realized that it simply wasn’t gettingImage may contain: sky, outdoor and nature anywhere. Truth is I could have just closed it up and the draft would have got it going, but I like to make sure flames are present and burning before I leave. I added some wind and the results didn’t change much. Well, except the smoke now came into the room.

I lit a match and dropped it in the coals. They jumped and flames came up all over. Granted, it doesn’t always happen that way. In this case, the coals were burning hot, but needed just a little coaxing to get them going.

Sometimes we struggle with a burning for God just under the surface. Especially after a week of work and TV and chores and people. Life takes it’s toll on us as we seek to serve God. This is why church is so important. We often need that little flame to spark our fire and get us going again.

So, that’s all I got this time around. Stay in the Word. Go to church. God has big plans for 2018! For all of us!

sige117

 

 

 

 

Merry Christmas Story!

2There’s a whole lot going on in the world right now and my time gets shoved around a lot. Unfortunately, that means I don’t get as much of that time as I’d like to write here in the blog-sphere. But Christmas is such an important thing that I can’t let that pass without saying something.

I wanted to talk about something more than just the Christmas story. That said, it is the key to this magnificent day. But then, we all have a Christmas story. Something or someone that touched us and maybe left an impression during that glistening time of year.

A few days ago, my Facebook feed popped up a name I hadn’t thought of in a while. I hope he is reading this. His sister was a dear friend of mine. I tend to tear up a bit when I think of her. Her name was Pam and she was a beautiful, amazing soul that loved Christmas and kids. That’s sort of my Christmas story this year.

Pam was the cook at the school across the street from where we lived. She was witty, comical, hard working, smiled like the Joker (but in a good way), and laughed easily. She fed the kids in the cafeteria for a long time. I have no idea how long she was the cook, but she put together a LOT of meals.

She and I became friends and I am so appreciative of that fact. She was involved in many things. The community of Laytonville, California owes a great deal of gratitude to her for the years of service she performed. And not for the money, but because she loved her community. Her kids grew up there. Her grand kids are growing up there. She made an impact there.

I know it gets a little too commercial this time of year. And the crowds can be more than they should be. But whether or not you enjoy Christmas is entirely up to you. We want everyone to have a nice time and we often destroy our own Holiday in the process. Pam is not here anymore. Her dues were paid and she got that eternal home. She knew the meaning of Christmas. She really knows the meaning of Christmas now!

Some of my few regrets in life belong to a select group of people that I didn’t get to hug one more time. Pam is one. But I know there is a hug waiting for me in Heaven. The reality was that Pam saw Christmas for what it was. And is. A time to celebrate Christ’s Birth and let the world’s cares roll away for at least a few days. To enjoy it.

If you must face the traffic jams, the crowds at the department stores, the lines at Starbucks, or the awful office parties, do so knowing there is a Christmas Story in your Holidays somewhere. Find that and dwell on it. Maybe your kids. Possibly the school play. The people caroling. Who knows. Smile! You live in a country where the least of us are living in luxury compared to 80% of the rest of the world. We have more to celebrate than anyone!

So, if you are struggling for a bright spot, lift a glass of nog and join me in a toast to Pam! One of the brightest, bright spots in my Christmas story! And let me know yours. I’ll return the favor!

Merry Christmas!

sige117

 


My Book Page

Wonder – Movie Review

It is based upon a real disease that deforms the face and skull.

At first, the trailers will give you the impression this movie is all about a little boy and MV5BYjFhOWY0OTgtNDkzMC00YWJkLTk1NGEtYWUxNjhmMmQ5ZjYyXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMjMxOTE0ODA@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,648,1000_AL_the trials caused by his physical problems. That is misleading. It’s not all about a little boy. It’s about a family. Who has a little boy that has trials caused by his physical problems. It’s important that you know that.

It also seems to be based upon a true story. That is not the case either. It is based upon a real disease that deforms the face and skull. That part is never really talked about directly. But the movie is not about the disease. It is, as I said, about a family.

The Pullman family have raised their son, Auggie (August), in a rather closed environment and home schooled him due to the ongoing needs of the disease. When he is ready for 5th grade, they decide to enter him into a regular school. As usual, he is instantly ridiculed and made fun of. Bullied, much like reality (unfortunately). Despite more than one set-back, he is resilient and fights his way through it.

There are a few surprises along the way. And an ongoing need for a hankie as the tears will come, like it or not. I saw it at the PIX Theater, here in Albany. A place I highly recommend for both the environment and the cost being about half what the regular theaters charge. And while the writing was somewhat typical and the story, overall, nothing really new, it was a terrific movie with a few new spins. Fun and poignant.

Both Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson did a great job. Especially considering neither have done much in a while. But the show was definitely stolen by Jacob Tremblay, who played Auggie. He was funny and very believable.

His character underwent a change. He was already full of laughable lines and humor, but he was mostly alone. The movie brings him into friendships with others as well as a better understanding of all that his family has been through in helping him along. There are “chapters” in which the film focuses on others that are in his life and how his complications have changed and affected theirs. While he is the main character, the movie is not abut him alone.

You will enjoy this as one of the best “feel good films” of 2017. It is PG, but could easily be a G. Very family friendly. I would recommend this to anyone. Any age. There are mature themes, but they deal with bullying and every kid needs to know how awful that part of school and life is anyway.

I would give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5. The half being only because it can be a little predictable sometimes. Fun, lots of humor, some tears, and, ultimately, a very well resolved story. GO SEE IT!

sige117

Hello

Greetings friends. I know it has been a while since you heard from me via this format. More than a month in fact. I do apologize for the gap if any has been missing the blog. It’s alive and well. In fact, I have worked a little on a new page called simply “Books.” It is a link for the books I am writing. You can see and purchase and get some heads up on them. I do work a regular job and write so my time is usually filled making it difficult to have the blog on a regular basis.

However, I wanted to post a little something about Thanksgiving. So, that’s what we’ll talk about today.

I was chatting with Nancy earlier today and the thought occurred to me that the three biggest holidays of the year are in celebration of God. Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. I don’t want to go into super detail, but think about that. Everyone (mostly) celebrates each of these in some way. Regardless of their faith or belief in God, they celebrate Him.

Easter might have eggs and candy and bunnies, but the point is that Jesus rose from the grave.

Thanksgiving has ridiculous amounts of food and arguing family members, but the point here is to give thanks to God for His provision.

Christmas might be celebrated by massive spending and crazy decorations, but the point is we celebrate His birth.

And some of the other holidays are based in some fashion on the goodness of God as well.

No matter what your holiday actions are, it is indeed a wonderful time of year. And we have the gracious God of All to thank for it!

I hope your Thanksgiving was spectacular and filled with family and fun. I pray a blessed Holiday Season on you and your loved ones!

It’s time to start wishing those we encounter a Merry Christmas!

sige117

P.S. Nancy and I will be getting married April 14, 2018, at our church, Grace Point Nazarene, here in Albany, OR. You are all invited. 🙂