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You are a Salty Bunch


You are a Salty Bunch

“You are the salt of the earth…” (Matthew 5:13) 

You are a Salty BunchHello friends! Annie here! I am beyond humbled and ecstatic to be here chatting with y’all. Let me introduce myself a bit for those that don’t know me. I’m Annie and I love to read. Surprising, isn’t it?! Yes, I also have a tinge of dry sarcasm that doesn’t always translate well. Nevertheless, I love to share my thoughts, especially when it comes to books. I have two very adorable (and mischievous) puppies, Gabby and Reagan. They haven’t understood the meaning of quality reading time for mommy yet. We’re getting there.   Many of you will know me as Just Commonly, which is the name of my blog, and along with fellow Seeker, Carrie and avid reader, Bonnie Roof, we are also the founders for Christian Fiction Readers Retreat (CFRR). The ultimate question: why do I love Christian Fiction so much?  Now begins the story. . .

Many people will have at least one year they can't let go, an unforgettable year, and a year that changed something in them.  That year for me was 2013.

When the double pink line appeared, a smile crossed my face. Our first pregnancy. Elation soon turned to worry as my Darcy was told to keep an eye on me.  Nevertheless, we continued on our days and doctor visits. On our ride to every visit, Plumb's Need You Now played on the radio, despite different days and times of the day. A song that to this day comforts me. Then one day, excruciating pain incapacitated me. I woke up to my front door kicked open by my Darcy trying to get to me, and a trip to the hospital. No one told me anything for what seemed like forever, and finally a familiar face, my doctor, came and told us the news. I had what they called an ectopic pregnancy, a pregnancy outside the uterus in layman terms. At 12 weeks, I was in serious danger, and my "baby" would not survive.  On May 13, 2013, I was no longer pregnant. I was in a daze for weeks to come, yet on every follow-up visit to the doctor's office, another song played on the radio. Blessings by Laura Story. Nothing is a coincidence. Those songs prepared me and reminded me even when I didn't notice at first, that our God is our Father, and He's comforting me. Some may have already heard this story in one of my earlier posts, "God of Coincidenceson my blog. And you may ask, "What does this have to do with Christian fiction?" Well, you see, the songs prepared me and comforted me at a crucial moment of emotional and physical pain. Yet, it was Christian fiction that healed me. Or at least it was what God used.

You are a Salty BunchJust as God inspired and used musicians like Plumb and Laura Story in their music and lyrics, God also inspired and gifted authors the words to their stories. It was these stories that mended the brokenness I felt since. My first encounter with Christian fiction was in that very year, and that's because I used books to escape. Unbeknownst to me, the books with the pretty covers and the historical settings gave me more than a story.  What I thought was an escape, had become the soothing balm to my soul. Physical pain may have dissipated, but the emotional trauma wasn't so easy to forget. I thought hiding behind history and make-believe would never remind me of the loss and inadequacy I felt. God had other plans. He used stories that had nothing to do with me to connect with me. 

You are a Salty Bunch
God called us to be "salt of the earth" and "light of the world." I've heard many say that it applies only to missionaries, but aren't we all missionaries in our own ways?  My author friends, your stories give readers flavors, widespread and essential. When you follow God's heed in your writing, each word, each story, and each novel are granules of salt, scattered, waiting to be tasted.  Now it's up to readers to taste and experience. And don't worry about the negative reviews. The message doesn't always hit us at the same time, and even when it's already tasted, it may not be fully understood until the time is right. You've salted and now it's up to God on when and to whom He plans on letting the flavor of that granule of salt explode. As always, God's timing is perfect.

Personally, I think Christian fiction kind of sneaks up on you.  Just like a kind word, you'll never know when someone will need it. Its many flavors rival the flavors of the world, and there’s always one or more that fills your hunger just at the right moment. As authors, your flavors have the potential to reach masses, so be "the salt of the earth" and continue to implode flavors on us readers, either openly or stealthily.

I guess in short, I love Christian fiction because it's personal, and the experience may not be the same for another. To end, I want to thank every one of you - authors, for your stories and readers, for your support and sharing of these stories. 

Giveaway

I'm gifting an author (from published or on non-published island) their choice of either ebook or print of one of the Writer's Guide Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi (open internationally as long as Amazon or Book Depository will send it your way). And 1 reader will win a surprise pack of books that I hope will flavor your life (US mailing addresses only).  Just leave a comment to enter for a chance to win (and let us know if you want to win the author or reader giveaway). 

 Thanks for reading my ramblings!

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153 Comments on Seekerville: The Journey Continues: You are a Salty Bunch

  • Anonymous
    on October 20, 2021 | 23:59 Anonymoussaid :
    "This comment has been removed by a blog administrator."
  • Paula Shreckhise
    on March 16, 2018 | 16:37 Paula Shreckhisesaid :
    "Just yesterday I was thinking about seeing my lost babies when I get to heaven! "
  • ASC Book Reviews
    on March 15, 2018 | 20:13 ASC Book Reviewssaid :
    "LOVE THE top image! It is also one of those verses I've always LOVED! :)

    READER PLEASE! :)

    Hugs, Amada (pronounced: a.m.a.th.a)
    amada_chavezATyahooDOTcom"
  • Gretchen
    on March 12, 2018 | 15:05 Gretchensaid :
    "Thank you for the reminder that God often uses our words. Many books have shaped and influenced my life. Thank you for the generous give-aways! As a writer, I'd love the Writer's Guide Thesaurus, but as a Pastor's wife, I'll share the books in our church library. "
  • Dana McNeely
    on March 12, 2018 | 11:20 Dana McNeelysaid :
    "I'm reading this a couple days late but it's just as much a blessing. I love the part about "Sometimes I think Christian Fiction just grows on you" and I agree. I've read CF where I had little or no emotional reaction and picked it up later to be hit between the eyes or comforted like being wrapped in a warm shawl. Thank you for your work writing this post."
  • Janet W. Ferguson
    on March 11, 2018 | 11:01 Janet W. Fergusonsaid :
    "Hugs! :)"
  • caseygarvey62
    on March 11, 2018 | 01:03 caseygarvey62said :
    "Wow, What an amazing post and giveaway to boot! I would love to win the surprise books to read! Always need some extra inspiration and guidance! "
  • Winnie
    on March 10, 2018 | 19:26 Winniesaid :
    "Thanks, Annie, for your heartfelt and inspirational post. I appreciate you sharing with us. Hugs, sweet friend! Please enter me in the reader giveaway."
  • arletta
    on March 10, 2018 | 14:54 arlettasaid :
    "What a powerful testimony. It's tough to go through difficult circumstances but you have come through on the other side with a hope that will help heal others. I love how songs on the radio can be just what you need to hear and how Christian fiction can totally speak to you in that moment. I will often write down quotes from CF that speaks to me. I'd love to win the reader giveaway."
  • Anne Rightler
    on March 10, 2018 | 08:30 Anne Rightlersaid :
    "I enjoy Christian fiction and yes, I believe it can be used to salt the readers' lives. I am often encouraged by a scripture or Godly truth that I read in a CF book. Thank you for sharing."
  • Susan P
    on March 10, 2018 | 07:22 Susan Psaid :
    "Beautiful post. I agree that the authors are touching lives and “salting” the earth with their gift. I have had many an ancoragement and much needed conviction from these stories. Thanks for the reader giveaway chance!"
  • Jubileewriter
    on March 10, 2018 | 06:17 Jubileewritersaid :
    "You inspire and remind me why I write Christian Fiction. Thank you for sharing. Put me in the writer's drawing."
  • MJSH
    on March 10, 2018 | 05:41 MJSHsaid :
    "Thank you for your words of wisdom. Christian fiction becomes personal, perhaps because the writers are just like us (the readers) and we can become like their characters, learning and being molded through the book. I’m a reader and would love the chance at the reader’s giveaway. "
  • Carolyn Miller
    on March 10, 2018 | 04:30 Carolyn Millersaid :
    "Thank you for sharing your testimony. I’m so grateful that God uses stories to speak truth to us. God bless you Annie xx"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:57 justcommonlysaid :
    "❤❤ thank you, Janet. Anyone who've read your stories will say the same to you. Thank YOU!!!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:55 justcommonlysaid :
    "O, Jackie! Thank you for your kind words. Your stories matter as Carrie would say. So thank you for writing!!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:54 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Dianna. "
  • Janet W. Ferguson
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:53 Janet W. Fergusonsaid :
    "You are such a treasure. Thank you for your testimony and how God is working in your life for good. Much love :)"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:53 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you Missy! *hugs"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 23:52 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Pam! It truly is!"
  • Jackie Layton
    on March 09, 2018 | 22:30 Jackie Laytonsaid :
    "Annie, thanks for sharing your story. I've not had a novel published, yet, but my desire is always to honor God with my stories. You are truly inspiring and you challenge me to write even better stories. Thanks!"
  • Dianna
    on March 09, 2018 | 21:04 Diannasaid :
    "This is such a meaningful message. Thank you for sharing it! I tweeted and pinned. Other people need to read it, too.

    Would like to win the reader package, please."
  • Missy Tippens
    on March 09, 2018 | 20:50 Missy Tippenssaid :
    "Annie, I'm sorry I'm late to stop by. What a beautiful post, and so encouraging for writers. Thank you for sharing your heart and your life with us."
  • Pam Hillman
    on March 09, 2018 | 20:43 Pam Hillmansaid :
    "Oh, Leslie, this is so exciting! We've finally pulled you over into the dark side! lol"
  • Pam Hillman
    on March 09, 2018 | 20:42 Pam Hillmansaid :
    "I love this, Annie. All of it. :)

    And this: I love Christian fiction because its personal

    Yes! :)"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 19:57 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Carrie! I'm so blessed to have met you in person and to have enjoyed your stories. Thank you!!"
  • Carrie Turansky
    on March 09, 2018 | 19:37 Carrie Turanskysaid :
    "Thank you for sharing from your heart, Annie! I am so thankful the Lord comforted you through Christian fiction and music. I appreciate all you do to support authors and spread the word about our books! Blessings to you!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 19:21 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Leslie. Of course you can! Congrats! I didn't realize you're writing (I mean as an author.) Thank you for making that step into writing. "
  • Leslie
    on March 09, 2018 | 18:57 Lesliesaid :
    "Thanks so much for sharing your story, Annie. Christian fiction and music have had a huge impact on my life, as well.

    I'm a newbie author. Could I be entered in that giveaway? (If not, please throw my name in the hat for readers, as I'm one of those, too.)"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 18:34 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you Melanie! Have a great weekend!"
  • Melanie Dickerson
    on March 09, 2018 | 18:10 Melanie Dickersonsaid :
    "What a great testimony, Annie! God bless you for being salt and light yourself! I so appreciate your support of us authors. Love and hugs to you always."
  • Beth Jamison
    on March 09, 2018 | 17:54 Beth Jamisonsaid :
    "That is so sweet, Annie, and sounds perfect!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 17:01 justcommonlysaid :
    "LOL! Thank you Phyllis! Happy weekend!"
  • Phyllis Wheeler
    on March 09, 2018 | 16:55 Phyllis Wheelersaid :
    "Great post, Annie! You are a salty one :-)

    Please enter me in the reader's drawing and thank you!

    May God bless you and all of Seekerville!"
  • MeezCarrie
    on March 09, 2018 | 16:41 MeezCarriesaid :
    "Pass the chocolate please! ;) "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 16:18 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Jan. I love that - the anticipation of what to behold from our TBR pile! I think that is one reason I don't read the back cover synopsis, because I want to be surprised - fully surprised. =P "
  • Jan Drexler
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:47 Jan Drexlersaid :
    "That is a touching story, Annie. I've also lost unborn children, and I know that devastating empty pain.

    You are so right about Christian fiction and Christian music, and it is no coincidence that heard and read what you needed at that time.

    Last fall we learned that we have a twelve-year-old granddaughter (yes, a real-life secret baby!). The wide range of emotions connected with this news took me by surprise...but I know they didn't take God by surprise. Unknown to me, my TBR pile held two secret baby stories that I've read in the last few weeks. If I had read those last fall, it would have been too soon. The emotions were too fresh. But through the perfect timing of reading these books, God allowed me to draw out the emotions and deal with them one by one.

    Now I'm wondering what other surprises my TBR pile holds!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:32 justcommonlysaid :
    "LOVE you back, my friend. God is GOOD. Thank you!! "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:20 justcommonlysaid :
    "Linda, I'm so sorry for your loss. Losing anyone is hard, and a parent? It's inconceivable. Praying for you - Pray that you feel God alongside you, comforting you and letting you know you are not alone. I pray that you'll find peace and treasure the good memories bring you joy.

    Thank you for sharing. God bless you always."
  • Beth Erin
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:20 Beth Erinsaid :
    "Annie, my heart hurts for you and your Darcy yet I also rejoice with you! God is so good to us! Thank you for sharing your story and what an encouragement for our author friends! Love you, dear one! "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:14 justcommonlysaid :
    "Enjoy Julia! I got my afternoon coffee and some chocolate. Chips and salsa, and maybe some guacamole too! *wink wink"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:14 justcommonlysaid :
    "AMEN. Thank you Erica. Our God is a loving God, and also a funny one. His sense of humor sure gets us going and keep us on our toes too! LOL. *hugs and kisses"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:12 justcommonlysaid :
    "So true, Patty! Thanks for stopping in!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:12 justcommonlysaid :
    "AMEN Tiffany. EVERYTHING you said. Yes. Christian fiction does all that. Thank you for your support of Christian authors! "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:08 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Nicki!!"
  • Linda R
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:08 Linda Rsaid :
    "I'm so sorry for your loss. I know that must have been devastating. Christian Fiction has been and continues to be a wonderful outlet for me right now dealing with the loss of my dad to cancer. He was my last family and I miss him terribly. Until I can be with him again, I can get lost in the wonderful stories y'all provide. Reader - rayorr@bellsouth.net"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:07 justcommonlysaid :
    "Yes yes yes! And my dream, hope and prayer - that these wholesome and inspiring reads reach the masses in more ways than our little minds can fathom."
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:06 justcommonlysaid :
    "Julia! O, I love your testimony here. Thank you for sharing. It's beautiful and O so perfect in showing God's shower of "blessings" in His way that is also perfect in reaching us in our own ways. Thank you. "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:03 justcommonlysaid :
    "Hahahahaha!!!! YAY!! We're a tough bunch, aren't we?!!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 15:02 justcommonlysaid :
    "THANK YOU, JULIE, my friend. You are amazing, and Darcy said thank you too.

    It's amazing how God bless you to bless others, but also yourselves. It's nice to hear authors' stories taught them something along the way as well.

    And adding The Shape of Mercy & Promise Me This to my TBR too!! Thanks!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:59 justcommonlysaid :
    "THANK YOU, CARYL. =) "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:59 justcommonlysaid :
    "O Kim, I am so sorry, for you and for your niece. Sometimes it doesn't make sense or you just don't understand why. I've done a lot of doubting, wondering, but then, you realize our God IS GOOD. The little things around us that helped along the way in our grieving, it gives us comfort. I still grieve and have moments where the pain hits you so hard you can't breathe, but God's grace is sufficient. He knows the perfect ways to soothe me and give me the peace I need. God bless you."
  • Anonymous
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:52 Anonymoussaid :
    "Oooh, chips and salsa, please!
    "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:52 justcommonlysaid :
    "LOVE you back, Denise! Need another hug when we meet again! (Picture too!) Yep! Readers don't always get the same reaction, and especially not when you reread something. However, I remember reading something and DID NOT like it, yet there were some parts that stayed with me until it made sense months later. Sometimes our heart or even our mind was there yet, but God left that seed there for it to sprout at the right moment. "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:49 justcommonlysaid :
    "So true Danielle. And I think I was like that when I stumbled into Christian fiction! It was very shocking when I told people I haven't read anything by Francine Rivers or Jannette Oke - now remedied. I didn't know about this genre, and I've been a reader my whole life!!!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:46 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you, Chanel - for your support and kind words. It's such a pleasure meeting like-minded people - booklovers especially through this blogging community. And seeing your name in the comments have always brought a smile to my face. Thank you!!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:45 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you Paula. The pain really never leave us, but God's grace does comfort us in the most perfect timing, even in ways we never thought.

    And I LOVE quotes. I have notebooks of quotes, but they're usually mixed in with whatever I was writing at that time. - more like sketching. LOL. Now I do little page tabs to remind me of the spots, but I need to start writing them down again. Doesn't always stick until I write it down. "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:42 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you Sandy for stopping by, but also for being a writer! Your words have purpose. Thank you!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:41 justcommonlysaid :
    "Hi Vicky! Thank you for stopping by! Readers appreciate authors so much, and vice versa. Authors are readers too! =) "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:40 justcommonlysaid :
    "AMEN, Jeanne. Thank you. And so right. One of the best things we can definitely do to support authors are to pray for them. "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:39 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you Beth! And I'd like to picture Joseph as the big bother holding the little ones' hand and smiling at us. They're playing ball, and when I meet them, I'll play along and watch the Yankees!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:37 justcommonlysaid :
    "LOL. Love those comfort food. And nothing says comfort than "Southern" food.

    Thank you, Mindy."
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:35 justcommonlysaid :
    "A beautiful picture. One day, we'll see them and meet again in heaven. "
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:34 justcommonlysaid :
    "Amen."
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:34 justcommonlysaid :
    "And thank you, Ruthy for following God's nudges to create these stories on real life issues. We NEED them."
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:33 justcommonlysaid :
    "Thank you my friends. *hugs and kisses!"
  • justcommonly
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:32 justcommonlysaid :
    "OK. The eagle has landed! All right, more like I am BACK. Those appointments took way longer than expected, so thank you to my fellow Seekers for chatting and bringing the goodies! How about some afternoon snack? Dove Promises chocolate and some chips and salsa? "
  • Erica Vetsch
    on March 09, 2018 | 14:30 Erica Vetschsaid :
    "Ah, Annie, your story is so heartbreaking and beautiful. It is so like our loving God to turn our ashes to beauty, to give us what we need when we need it. Blessings, sweet lady!

    "
  • MeezCarrie
    on March 09, 2018 | 13:59 MeezCarriesaid :
    "i agree, Patty!"
  • Patty
    on March 09, 2018 | 13:32 Pattysaid :
    "Words can be very powerful! I love that christian fiction authors can cover difficult topics and often help and inspire people.

    pattymh2000(at)yahoo(dot)com

    Please enter me for the reader pack"
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