Saturday, November 21, 2015

Attitude of Gratitude

First of all, I hope Thanksgiving reminds us of all the things we have to be thankful for, especially God's love.

Okay, so many stores have started "Black Friday" deals early this year.  I am going to do my own thing!  Here's the plan for getting free Kindle downloads of my newest books:

"Black" Friday, 11/27 - "When the World Grows Cold"
Small Business Saturday, 11/28 - "Beyond the World"
Cyber Monday, 11/30 - "Where All Worlds End"

With all the 'birth pangs" the world is having (See Matthew 24), I felt the need to look into my own 'what if's' about the End Times.

Remember the Lord's main instructions to us were to "watch" and "be ready".

Friday, November 20, 2015

Hot Deals for a Cold Day

Today's the day-a hot deal for a cold day. Free KINDLE download of the first book in my new trilogy, which I have titled "Beyond the Peaks". This book is an updated version of what used to be "Book Four" The book's title is "When the World Grows Cold"--sure fits our current weather. If you don't have a kindle, there are free apps of it for smartphones, pc's. and even for other ereaders.
I hope you will check it out. It's also available in paperback! Either from Amazon or directly from the author--me!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Everything We Need

This was written by the husband of my Aqua Motion instructor, Carol.  His name is Dan Kinneburgh.  With his permission I am putting this wonderful expression of God's love for us on my blog.  He really expresses the verse, "My God shall meet all your needs in Christ Jesus, our Lord." Phil 4:19

"I like green olives and chocolate chip cookies, but not at the same time. I see God in many different forms and yet He is perfect in each one. When I am hurting physically I see Him as a perfect Comforter and Healer. When I don't know which way to turn, I see Him as a perfect Counselor. When I enjoy the beauty that surrounds me I see him as the perfect Creator. When I am looking for the answers to life, I see Him as the perfect Teacher. When I need protection I see Him as the perfect Defender. When I need deliverance from the effect of sin, I see Him as the perfect Defense Attorney. When I desire to have a perfect government I realize that it won't happen until we have God as our Lord of Lords and King of Kings. He is everything I need when I need it and He is Perfect."

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Watch my Facebook Pages for Special News

Free Kindle downloads are just around the corner for my newest books!
"Where All Worlds End" on Nov. 1
"Beyond the World" on Nov. 14
"When the World Grows Cold" on Nov. 20
And there are more to come!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Ordinary People in Exttraordinary Times

People sometimes get the wrong Idea when I say my stories are part-sci-fi and fantasy.  They don't tell about aliens and great galactic battles in the sense of Star Wars.  Maybe a bit more like Star Trek, but even more 'down to earth' than that.  I think today's blog title best expresses it.  I write about Ordinary People in Extraordinary Times--like what we may see as the End Times approach--and who hasn't wondered about that recently, with all the stuff in the news?

Just this week, my newest books have all been updated and are available on Amazon, either as E-books or as paperback. Check them out by searching my author name - M.F.Erler--or by the titles:
"When the World Grows Cold", "Beyond the World", and "Where All Worlds End". You don't need to read my first trilogy of books to read these! There will be free-download days in the Kindle store soon. I'll announce them here.

 Or you can contact me directly.  If the news is making you nervous, I hope my thoughts expressed in a fictional way may shed some light and hope.  That's my prayer.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Looking at Things in a New Way

In one of my book Forwards I say:  I hope that others who are searching and struggling (like I was) will pick up the ‘Rock called Christianity’, turn it over and see something unexpected—beyond the world’s assumptions of the Christian faith—and that they will think:  “What a surprise!  I’ve never looked at it that way before!”

God is the only one who can truly speak to hearts and change people.  So I just pray that He may perhaps be able to use my stories (humble attempts) to help someone else, too.  They have been a help to me, and that in itself is a good thing.  This has been especially true of the sixth book of the Peaks Saga, "Where All Worlds End"--it comes out this summer.  Writing this book has been a journey for me as well as for my characters.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Turning the Corner

Looking back over the past couple of years I am thankful to many people who have helped and supported me.  The Lord has used many ways to draw me back to Him.
Now that I don’t always see myself as ‘inadequate’ I can stop being defensive:
1   1)  It’s easier to apologize for mistakes.
   2)   I can forgive others more quickly, knowing they’re just human, too--and say things in the heat of the moment that they don’t really mean—like I do!
   3)   I can see the good things in my past, especially family relationships, that are no longer colored with the negative.
   4)  It’s a bit easier to keep saying the ‘long good-bye’ to my mother who has Alzheimer’s.
   5)And most important – I can see that the Lord doesn’t send bad things (or even migraines) to punish me.  I used to always ask myself, “What did I do wrong now?”  Instead I see now that the bad comes from the Prince of this World (Satan).  But the Lord can even turn these bad things around for good.  (Like when Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery.  In the end, he could tell them: ‘You meant this for evil, but God meant it for good—to save many people.’)

These are all things I’m trying to communicate in my writing, and two things have happened: One is that I have learned these things for myself so the writing has been therapeutic.  The other thing is I hope and pray that I can be a help to others as they read my stories.

I don’t want to ‘give advice’ or ‘fix-it cures’ –but hopefully just by sharing my own journey I can help others who may be struggling.  I have not physically experienced all the things my characters have, but the emotional impacts of things in my life I’ve translated into fictional physical actions.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Easter Greetings!

I know I'm way behind on blogging.  I even missed the Spring Equinox!  Although I have to admit I like the Solstices better, especially the winter one, when days start to get longer.  We're still in that day-lengthening stage.  
Today, however, something else was on my mind:
Taking a moment to remember how blessed we are to be the recipients of God's amazing grace--truly One Way Love! While we were still sinners, he died for us!
Wishing you all a Happy Easter & blessed Passover, for that is the time that God showed how he would set us free from the bondage of sin and death. A sacrificial lamb protected the Hebrews from the Angel of Death, and our Passover Lamb of God has done the same thing for us.

Did you know that the date of Easter depends on when the first full moon of Spring falls?  That's why its date varies so much from year to year!  Why is this how it's dated? you ask.  I'm not sure, but I think it has something to do with when Passover falls, and the Jewish calendar is a lunar one, unlike the Julian Calendar we follow now.

Anyway, hope the sun shines warmly wherever you are.

Monday, February 2, 2015

More Enlightening About Candlemas

Here are more notes of Groundhog Day--thanks to some Facebook friends!

From Tyler, a priest in the Catholic Church:  Candlemass is also known as the "Presentation of the Lord in the Temple". It is a feast day commemorating Luke 2:22-40 when the baby Jesus was presented in the temple by Mary and Joseph in accordance with Jewish practice, dedicating the first born son in remembrance of the Passover 40 days after birth. Today is the 40th day after Christmas. In the Gospel passage, the prophet SImeon prophesies that Jesus would be a Lumen Gentium-Light to the nations. So it became the custom to bless all the candles that would be used in the church for the coming year. The candle tradition was more than likely also a pagan tradition having to do with the halfway point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.Also in Rome today is the traditional day to take down the Christmas tree and put away the Nativity scene. Sort of the official end to the Christmas time for the beginning of Lent.

From my friend Teddy:

this ones for you. found it on the history channel web site: Teddy Butler Groundhog Day has its roots in the ancient Christian tradition of Candlemas Day, when clergy would bless and distribute candles needed for winter. The candles represented how long and cold the winter would be. Germans expanded on this concept by selecting an animal--the hedgehog--as a means of predicting weather. Once they came to America, German settlers in Pennsylvania continued the tradition, although they switched from hedgehogs to groundhogs, which were plentiful in the Keystone State

Where in the Heck Did Groundhog Day Come From?

Have you ever wondered how Ground Hog Day got started?  Me too!  I'm still not sure of the current holiday's true origins, but I do know that Feb. 2 is roughly half-way between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox.  So we're already half way to Spring!  (Except that in these northers climes Spring does't actually arrive until sometime in May, if we're lucky.)  No matter.

In doing a bit of reading I've learned that there is a holiday or festal observance in all four of the seasons.  Feb. 2 is the one between midwinter and spring's "arrival".  In the Medieval Church is was called Candlemas.  And since the Medieval Church tended to make Holy Days ('Hoildays') out of pagan observances, I think this is probably the case.  I need to do more research on Candlemas...

The next midpoint is half-way between the Spring Equinox and the Summer Solstice.  It is May 1!  Sound familiar?  It's long been celebrated as May Day.  And there are probably a lot of pagan fertility rites in its dark past.  Bu the way I've run across one of its ancient names--Beltane.  The Church took care of it by calling it May Crowning, when the Virgin Mary is crowned the Queen of the May--whatever that means.

No one will be surprised to learn that the midpoint between the Fall Equinox and Winter Solstice is Oct. 31 or Nov. 1.  This is the one that seems to have the most overtones and observance in our modern day.  Halloween with all its ghostly trapping is obvious.  In ancient times is was called Samhain--and was the night of the dead.  The Church took over and named Nov. 1 All Saints Day, so we can remember those who have gone before us.  I have a feeling that's what the ancients did on Samhain, too.  Martina Luther added some weight to All Saints Day (for Protestants, at least) by nailing his 'Theses' or objections to the Catholic Church on the church door where he was pastor. (Wittenburg--now in Germany).

'Wait!' you say.  What about the midpoint between Summer Solstice and the Fall Equinox?  Well, all I've been able to find on this so far is that the Medieval Church called it Lammas, but I don't know what that means.  It falls on August 1.  When I lived in Colorado it was a holiday celebrating the statehood of that state.  Haven't heard of any other holidays on Aug. 1--but maybe it's because we're just too busy enjoying the fleeting days of Summer.  Perhaps in this age, we just celebrate Lammas from Midsummer all the way to Autumn.

Anyway, Spring is Coming--eventually!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

I've Seen the Light!

January 6 -- The 12 Days of Christmas officially ended yesterday.  Now, most of us in this century have left Christmas behind long ago (or so it seems),  around the 26th or 27th of December.  So what's with these 12 days?  Well, in the Medieval Church calendar (back when there was only one church in most of Europe--the Roman Catholic Church--and by the way "catholic" merely means "universal")  the Christmas Season began on Dec. 25 and extended through Jan.5.

In fact, Shakespeare's play "Twelfth Night" was written for a celebration of the last day of Christmas.  In our modern world, we can't take 12 full days for Christmas (usually).  Another story I've heard is that as long as the Yule Log burned, the masters had to serve their servants, in observance of Christmas (the way Jesus came to be a servant, right?).  No wonder they went out and got the hugest log they could find!  The longer it burned, the longer the celebration--and service from the master!

So now what?  Well, Jan.6 marks the beginning of The Feast of the Epiphany.  What does that big word mean, you ask?  Well, it's like an enlightenment or a revelation.  Remember the old cartoons of a person with a light bulb over their head, showing they had a idea?  That's an epiphany.  And so, this feast on Jan. 6 marks when the Magi came to worship the Christ Child.  They had "seen the light" of His star in the east!  (By the way, in some countries, like Spain, children had to wait until Jan 6, The Feast of the Epiphany, to open their presents!)

Throughout the 6 weeks of the Epiphany Season (which ends at Ash Wednesday, by the way--more to come on that later...), the Bible lessons traditionally focus on ways we "see the light" of the promised Messiah in Jesus.  For example, when he turned water into wine at a wedding in Cana, Galilee; or when his true glory was revealed on the Mount of Transfiguration; or when he was baptized in the Jordan River, and the Holy Spirit came down on him from heaven, in the form of a dove.

Actually Epiphany has become one of my favorite seasons of the traditional church year.  It is a good way to focus on how special Christ is, and how much he can change our lives, when we let him.  It also helps me get over the Post-Holiday Blahs!

So there you are: why I've been such a 'bean counter' these past couple of months.  It's one way to make winter seem more pleasant, I think.  What better way to get through the long, dark nights of winter!  Have YOU seen the light?

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Still Counting--and I'm not really a Bean Counter!

Okay, it's almost Midnight here, so I can go ahead and put in my plug for the Eleventh Day of Christmas, which is (according to my favorite version) eleven Pipers Piping. Now I think that could be musicians OR plumbers, don't you think? The first would be more melodious than the second, unless the musicians were fourth graders just learning to play recorders! I think 12+ years of that are what has given me Tinnitis, constant ringing in my ears. Oh well, some of them actually learned to play the things! I prefer to think of all the lives I touched with music. It was worth it!