Thursday, April 7, 2011

Be Inspired On Your Journey of Purity ~ Guest Post with Julie Lessman

When I thought of this series, this lovely lady was the first person I thought of to guest post. After reading her debut novel over a year ago A Passion Most Pure, I was so uplifted and encouraged. Not only was it a really good story, but I was inspired to continue on this journey of purity. I pray you are as uplifted in this post as I was when I read it. (Bold points are my emphases. :-)) 

It grieves me to admit it, but as a “wild child” of the 60s and 70s, purity was the very last thing I was concerned about. But … I am happy to say, the very thing God used to give me the desire of my heart—a man who would cherish me with all of his. In short, the kind of love born of … well, to coin a phrase … “a passion most pure.”

As number twelve of thirteen children in a pretty dysfunctional family, I was starved for love, so let me tell you—the “free love” era of the 60s and 70s sounded real good to me. Only guess what? It wasn’t free. Nope, it cost me a bundle in heartbreak, low self-esteem, depression and a few other things that impacted the rest of my life … and not in a good way.

But, oh, the pull of romance for a little girl who never felt loved! From the age of eight when I first sneaked downstairs to watch forbidden romantic movies while my parents were asleep, to the moment I turned the last page of Gone With the Wind at the age of twelve, I knew I wanted to be loved like that. To have a man think I was beautiful and to be loved, cherished and protected as the most important thing in his life. To be special to someone who was special to me.

It wasn’t until I was 23 years old and gave my heart to Christ that I finally understood that I was “special” to someone. Maybe not to the boyfriend who dumped me or the boys who told me they loved me to coax me into loving them, but to a God who said, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness,” —Jeremiah 31:3. And oh my, how my life changed on a dime!!

I went from being heartbroken, used and abused in my quest for love to channeling all that passion for romance into loving God, drinking in His love, submerging myself in His Word and basking in the glow of being “special to Someone who was special to me.” I finally understood that the kind of love my heart longed—and the kind of love He longed for me to have—was rooted in Him, in His Word and in application of His precepts.

You see, I like to think of God as Milton Bradley. He made the game of “Life” and wants us to win (reap His blessings), so he gave us the rules to follow (His precepts). In fact, this is the key message in A Passion Most Pure—Deuteronomy 30, choosing life or death, blessing or curse. It’s really quite simple. If you choose life (doing things God’s way), you will be blessed. If you choose death (doing things your own way), you will be cursed. God didn’t set it up like this to “lord” it over us, no pun intended, but so He could bless us with good things simply because He LOVES us!

So many young girls today equate strong sexual feelings with love, so they move in with their boyfriends for a while, may or may not get married and then wonder why the marriage or relationship doesn’t work. Because although sexual attraction is nice, it doesn’t sustain a marriage or a relationship and will eventually fade when the marriage or relationship does. Not only that, but I truly believe young women cut themselves off from God’s blessings in a relationship when they go against God’s precepts (the Deuteronomy 30 principal mentioned above).

I believe this so strongly, in fact, that I drummed it into my kid’s heads from little on. Imagine my joy and shock when my college-age son told me what he said to his roommate, a Christian young man who was sleeping with his Christian girlfriend. “But I thought you loved her?” my son told his friend, and the friend answered, “I do, which is why it’s so hard to stop.” My son’s response? “No, because if you really loved her, you’d want God’s best for her instead of cutting off His blessings by giving in to your own lust.”

Let me tell you—that was a “proud mom” moment, for sure!

Now for anyone who says, “That’s all good and fine for you, Julie, but it’s just too difficult to stay pure in today’s amoral society where everyone is doing it and morality is considered odd. As mentioned above, one of the key Scriptures in A Passion Most Pure is Deuteronomy 30, and Vs. 11 comes right out and says “it’s not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.” Why? Because Vs. 14 says “it is in your mouth and in your heart so you may obey it.” Notice it says “mouth” first, “heart” second. I believe that speaking and praying God’s Word over and over helps to put it in your heart so you can obey it.

Keith and Julie Lessman

And for those who call purity prudish? I hope you all agree there’s nothing prudish about my heroine, Faith O’Connor in A Passion Most Pure, just as there was nothing prudish or unrealistic about me as a new Christian in my twenties. We’re talking real women with real desires trusting God’s Word to lead them to His best. Easy? No. Doable? Yes, with God’s grace! Before I was a Christian, I was honest enough to know that doing things my way had never yielded me any happiness, only heartbreak. But, WOW, once I started applying God’s precepts, the blessings started to flow and heartbreak took a hike.

Believe me, I know because I’ve lived it, proved it. Whenever I went out on date, I would set moral boundaries (just like Faith did with Mitch in A Passion Most Pure). I soon discovered when guys realized I meant what I said, most of them didn’t take me out past four dates. This happened once with a guy I particularly liked and had a lot of fun with, so I actually phoned to ask him why he’d stopped calling. He basically told me that yeah, he’d had a great time, too, but that he could “find a girl who would give him a great time and sex as well.” I was stunned, but soon realized that what God’s morality was actually doing for me was keeping the wrong guys away (along with the hurt) and saving me for the right one AND the right time (my honeymoon). In fact, setting moral boundaries was such a part of my single Christian life I actually told my husband on our fourth date I really had enjoyed dating him and wished him well. “What are you talking about?” he asked, and I told him about my four-date experiences. God bless that man because he promptly asked me out for the fifth time, and the rest is beautiful history! This year I am celebrating 33 years of wedded bliss to a man who makes me feel as if I am living my own personal romance novel.

Seven years into my marriage, the realization of what God had done for me came full circle one morning when I was still half asleep and feeling down about a nightmare I had. In the dream, I’d been single and depressed about the fact that no one would ever love me. Trust me, as the only unmarried one in a family of thirteen kids until I was 28 years old, the loneliness and despair in that dream felt more than real! All of a sudden my husband moved in the bed beside me, and the following Scripture drifted in my mind as gently as a whisper from God: “God honors those who honor Him.” I remember lying there with tears in my eyes because once again, God had proven His Word true. And since He is “no respecter of persons,” what He did for me, He can do for you!

In closing, I’d like to include a scene from A Heart Revealed where Emma Malloy discusses this very subject with her young neighbor, Casey Herringshaw, named for the owner of this blog who knocked herself out in my newsletter contest to have a character named after her in my next book. I want to thank Casey, not only for inviting me to speak about purity before marriage today, but for being one of the sweetest, kindest, most encouraging human beings I have ever been privileged to meet. Thank you, Casey, for the gift of your friendship. I have no doubt whatsoever that God will “honor you for honoring Him.” Without further ado, I give you Emma and Casey in a scene from my upcoming book that will release September 1st, A Heart Revealed.

Exhaling quietly, Emma made her way to the kitchen where Casey washed dishes at the sink. Arms folded, she tried to look stern. “How many times have I told you that you’re my guest, Casey—I don’t invite you to work.”
Casey shot a grin over her shoulder, one blond curl obscuring one eye. “Just say ‘thank you,’ Emma, because we both know Mama would tan my hide if I didn’t.”
Emma sighed. “Thank you, Casey, I appreciate it, and your mother would be proud.”
The young girl paused, her smile pensive as she dried her hands. “So, why do you do it?”
“Do what?” Emma gathered the soiled tablecloth and placed it on the counter before retrieving the domino set from the bottom drawer of her cupboard.
Casey studied her, gaze narrowed in thought. “Give extra money to Mrs. Peek.”
Emma rose and turned, the wooden box clutched to her chest. “What do you mean?”
Tossing the towel over a rack, Casey ambled to her seat to and settled in, arms folded on the table and lips bent in a wry smile. “Come on, Emma, I know you give money to Mrs. Peek, just like you give money to me and heaven knows how many others. And as if that isn’t enough, you insist on fixing us dinners and lending me clothes. You keep Mama posted on my progress and you watch me like a hawk—” One side of mouth hooked up. “A ‘mother’ hawk, to be exact, hovering over me, taking care of me. I’ve seen you bake brownies for people at work, kids in the neighborhood and just yesterday, Margaret Latham told me you’ve been tutoring her in math.” She cocked her head. “So, tell me because I really want to know—why do you do it?”
Emma blinked, Casey’s question catching her off-guard. She laid the box on the table and thought about all the dinners they’d shared, all the conversations about movies or fashion or love. Sure, Emma had given advice here and there, even referring to prayer or her deep faith occasionally on their strolls to church. Her pulse quickened. But for Casey to ask such a question outright meant the door was open for more. More of Emma’s heart.
And more of God's?
She swallowed her hesitation and sat down, scooting close to the table to upend the box. Dominoes spilled across the lemon-polished wood with a clatter while Emma peered up, her heart spilling with love. “Because I have to, Casey, I can’t help it.” She cocked her head and gave her a mischievous smile. “You know how you feel when you’re with Johnny, as if you’re going to bubble over for the love he brings into your life?”
Casey nodded, a blush blooming on her face as she released a lovesick sigh.
“Well, it’s the same with me,” Emma said in a matter-of-fact tone, fingers flitting across the sea of tiles to turn each of them face down.
Ridges formed in Casey’s brow. “I don’t understand. Rory hurt you and now you’re alone.” She squinted, as if trying to comprehend. “Do you mean love for friends?”
“Yes, affection for you, Mrs. Peep and others, certainly, but that’s not the love I mean.”
“What, then?” Casey asked, the innocence in her face plucking at Emma’s heart.
Emma paused, fingers lingering on a tile. She glanced up with a tentative smile. “The kind of love that has the passion of a lover and the faithfulness of a friend, Casey—God’s love.”
Casey’s eyelids lowered as she shifted in her seat. “But we can’t see or feel God, Emma, so how can you feel his love? I need more than prayers to a God I can’t touch, see or hear—I want to hear words of love, see kind actions, feel hugs and kisses …”
“We all do, Casey, because yes, we’re human beings. But we were made in God’s image.” Drawing in a deep breath, Emma leaned back in her chair, her eyes tender. “Which means, like Father, like daughter. You want to be loved? So does he. You want to be touched? So does he. You want to feel the rush of a kiss or the warmth of a hug?” Tears pricked Emma’s eyes. “So does he, Casey. Which is why I rushed to him when Rory hurt me and my family betrayed me. And you know what? I found a God whose arms were open wide and whose heart leapt with joy when I called his name. As protective as a mother and as jealous as a lover, this was a God who wanted me for his very own. Me—Emma Malloy! To touch, to bless, to fill with his pleasure.” She swallowed hard, her gaze locked on Casey’s. “Until I overflow, spilling his love on all those around me—treasured possessions of a passionate God.”
Casey stared, wide-eyed. “But I don’t feel that way about God, Emma, and I don’t know how to change that.”
“No, but he does.” Emma squeezed her hand. “Pray, Casey, for him to be the center and source of your life, for a passion for him that’s so strong, you feel him, touch him, hear him, just like he wants you to. And when you do, the love he pours in your heart will wash over everything in your life, making it the very best it can be.” Emma smiled. “Especially romantic love with someone who weakens your knees.”
 The glow returned to Casey’s eyes. “Oh, Emma, I hope so, because I really do think Johnny may be the one.” She hugged her arms to her waist with a whimsical smile as if she were hugging Johnny himself, and then in a soft huff of another sigh, a bit of trepidation clouded the stars in her eyes. She chewed on her lip. “I just wish there was a way I could know for sure.”
With a sweep of her palm, Emma shuffled the dominoes and peered up. “There is.”
“How?” Casey asked with a kink of her brows.
Emma commenced selecting her dominoes, the smile on her lips at odds with the concern in her heart. She leaned forward, her voice tender and low. “Emotions are a powerful force, Casey. They can cloud our judgment and lead us into things that can hurt us, especially when we think we’re in love. But … not if you do it God’s way. It’s the only way to remain unscathed in a relationship.” Emma straightened and drew in a deep breath, determined to protect Casey like she wished someone had protected her. Absently brushing the scars on her face, she released a weary sigh. “Trust me, Casey—my life would be very different if I’d heeded what I’m telling you.” Emma reached to graze Casey’s hand. “Which means a good-night kiss at the door is fine, but anything more will only muddy the waters.” She drew in a deep breath and withdrew her hand, her gaze fused to Casey’s. “And never, and I repeat—never—allow Johnny into your apartment alone. It’s too dangerous.”
A hint of rose crept into the girl’s cheeks as she quickly selected her tiles. “But I don’t understand, Emma—how will that help to make sure that he’s the man for me?”
Emma picked her own tiles slowly, carefully, as if their import were as critical as what she was about to say. “Because the right man will love and respect you more for your strength of commitment, while the wrong man will only push to have his own way, all the while professing a love to sweep you away.”
Her thoughts trailed back to Rory as her voice faded to a whisper. She stared blankly at her tiles, sick with regret that it had been Rory’s “love” that had shaped her future rather than God’s. She shivered, suddenly aware of Casey’s probing stare. Drawing in a cleansing breath, she lifted her chin, never surer of the truth of her words. “Trust me, Casey, if I had followed God’s will and remained pure, I wouldn’t be bound to Rory today. Because when it comes to true love, there’s no better safety net than God’s precepts to protect you from hurt and heartbreak. Because you see, when the wrong men come face-to-face with a woman who follows God laws, they will leave. But the right one?” She smiled, her words infused with the same sense of peace and certainty she felt in God’s presence every day of her life. “Now he, my friend, will stay.”

**Reminder that all comments left this week are elligable to win any of Julie's books. I am also offering a copy of A Passion Most Pure to one winner. A total of 5 this week**


  1. thank you for this awesome post... God is so good! My parents prayed for me and my future spouse and I am so thankful to be blessed with a godly husband who loves me... young girls today NEED to be told that purity is a good thing! this was so encouraging and a good reminder to pray for and talk with my 3 girls about purity and waiting for the right man! I love how you say that the right man will stay! how true...
    keep writing Julie - thanks for sharing glimpses of the new book.. now if you just posted the last chapter...haha! Joetta

  2. Beautiful post!! Wow, Julie, thank you for sharing your heart with us. I was so blessed by your story and thank you for that encouraging, inspiring example :) Even what your son said was amazing thinking a guy college-age would feel that way about God, boldly reminding his friend of the same. Even yesterday when you talked about your daughter and her breaking up with her boyfriend because he didn’t love the Lord more than he loved her, was so beautiful to hear. Such encouragement and inspiration for me to see people around my age living and holding to Christ. You raised them right, girl :)

    And this excerpt is AWESOME!! Everything, I was blessed by absolutely everything and seeing our dear friend Casey in it was the icing on the cake! :D

    Blessings to you both!!

  3. I have not yet read anything by Julie, but A Passion Most Pure has repeatedly caught my eye and is now on my reading list. Thank you for sharing your story, Julie.

  4. JULIE!!!!!

    I love your story, girl! I hope you know that. And I can't wait for AHR! [I told you I preordered it, right? I'd take winning a copy too though =D].

    I've tried to put this in my WIPs. To emphasize the rightness of purity. And the pitfalls of not waiting. It's sommething that's important to me as well, though you're much better at putting it into words. You better believe these will be on the required reading list as my girls get older. Three of them - and a son - to guide through this. Oy. We've been praying for them and their spouses for years already.

    Love you lady! And you too Casey! Thank you again for hosting this!


  5. Did I mention I'm in for the drawings? ;)

    carol at carolmoncado dot com

  6. God has blessed me with a wonderful Godly husband. We have a son and 3 daughters, and the older they get the more challenging it appears to live pure in this world. I am depending on God to help me with this training.

    Thank you for these posts. This looks like a great book.

  7. Once you start Julie's books, you can't read just one! Only problem--they don't come out sooner! She hooks you with her intense plots. Please enter me. THANK YOU!

    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

  8. Julie, I'm inspired by your post to make sure as a parent I'm giving my kids the tools they need for a lifestyle of purity and the wisdom to call their friends on it. Love you, girl!

  9. Thank you for this post - my oldest son is a Sr. in HS & my daughter is a Jr. - what they are bombarded with on a daily basis at school is unbelievable. As parents we continually pray for them & talk to them that as Christians how important it is to stay pure. I'm going out today to buy "A Passion Most Pure" for both my daughter & I to read.

    - Elaine

  10. Oh wow, I've been waiting for this all week!! Loved it, loved it, Julie! So great what your son said! Thanks for your inspiring books, blogs, comments! Blessings~ Count me in to win a book! Thanks!

  11. Julie,
    Wow that really touched my heart!!! Thank you so much for sharing that!! Now I can see why you are so passionate about the books you write. Bless you!

  12. Thank you for the good post. You brought tears to my eyes. I am single, 41, pure and still hoping to be married. I also volunteer with the senior high kids at church and really try and drill in purity and morality with them.

  13. Julie,

    Thank you for your heart for your readers in being a Titus 2 woman and allowing the Holy Spirit to use your books to speak wisdom to all of us.

    Oh, I have to tell you a story about what your son said to his friend. My husband has a younger co-worker that's living with his fiancee and Chris has witnessed to him many times. He thought it was great what your son shared and one day talked to his co-worker about what it really means to love someone. I am so proud of him for his persistent witnessing in the workplace and I really pray for my kids to be light in an age when many kids are walking away from the faith.


  14. Oh, I love Julie's books. I have all three o f Daughters of Boston series and book one of winds of change. would love to win book two
    Heart Revealed. thanks for a chance.

    I'm a Julie fan

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

  15. JOETTA!!! Always a thrill to see you here, my sweet friend -- THANK YOU for stopping by! And, NO, you little brat, I will NOT post the last chapter!! It's bad enough you read it when you get halfway through the book as it is ... :)

    AMANDA ... YES!! It is fun seeing Case's name in there, isn't it??? I can just see her at the sink, washing dishes and smiling over her shoulder as she does in her pic. And as far as my kids, I have to admit, I am STILL in awe of how they turned out, especially given that I sure didn't do everything right. Although I was a PYSCHO mother when it came to imparting spiritual truths and monitoring all TV and friends, the bottom line is that God simply answered TONS of prayers I prayed for these two from the moment I laid them in their cribs. So, ladies, pray, pray, PRAY for your children from infancy on -- for the right friends, for a godly mate who will love God more than them AND for the teenage years. The payoff is HUGE!!

    MARGARET ... THANK YOU for putting APMP on your TBR list!! I will warn you, however, that it has a LOT of passion in it -- both romantic AND spiritual, more so than in the normal Christian romance. BUT ... if you're looking for passion for God and application of His precepts in a format to which young women can relate to in today's amoral society, then APMP might be the book for you ... Good luck in the contest!


  16. Oh, Julie, you are so sweet, and such a passionate breath of fresh air! Thanks so much for your wonderful words of wisdom. I so love your testimonies! I wish I'd had a mentor like you when I was young. God bless you!

    And thanks, Casey, for doing this blog series on purity. God bless you!

    I love Julie's books, and I would love them even if I didn't know what a special person she was! So please put me in the drawing!

    melaniedickerson at knology dot net

    Hugs from Mel

  17. CAROL!!! Yes, you did happen to mention you ordered AHR, and I am tickled pink!! Thank you SO much for your ongoing support, CM,and here's to GREAT teenage years for your girls and your son!!

    NANCY ... Wow, girl, you're SO ahead of the game with a godly husband raising those kids with you!! You're right, it is SO challenging in today's hedonistic society, but prayer, godly example and a strong and passionate marital relationship go a LONG WAY in keeping those kids on track. Good luck in the contest!

    LINDA!!! So my books are like Lay's potato chips, huh -- you can't just read one??? :) Have I ever told you, my friend, just how much I value your incredible support and friendship? MAJOR!! Good luck in the contest, Linda.


  18. Wow! I have to tell you, I sat here and cried while I read this post. Between Julie's story and then that part of the book. Like I said before, I am 26 and never been married. And sometimes it just gets so hard to wait. But this post has just helped me so much. THANK YOU JULIE!!


  19. Thanks, CARA, and I'm inspired by your post yesterday, ESPECIALLY the part about not having "to settle" for anything less than God's best. You and your hubby look like a poster couple for God's "best"! Can't wait to give you a hug at ACFW, sweetie.

    ELAINE ... "bombarded" is right, a war zone where the enemy NEVER stops. Fortunately, we are on the winning side with God, and it's imperative that we keep the casualties in our kids' lives at a minimum. We'll always have them, of course (in the world you will have tribulation), but OH, the joy of knowing that God wants and loves our kids as much as we do and has provided tools accordingly. THANK YOU for buying A Passion Most Pure. I would love to hear from you if you like it. And as I like to say, if you don't like it ... never mind! :)

    JACKIE!!! I'm telling you, sometimes I STILL can't believe my son told me that. I was stunned at the time to the point of goose bumps and tears. I mean, sure, I'd labored over these kids spiritually for years, but I never truly saw the fruit in their lives until that day, which was a major blessing! Here's to a win, my friend.


  20. And Casey, THANK YOU for having this series on your blog. It really means a lot to meet like minded young ladies.


  21. What an encouraging post and amazing excerpt! Julie, each one of these excerpts you post just makes me that much more anxious for AHR!


  22. Hi Julie,

    Thanks for sharing your inspiring story with us! I'm glad you are so blessed with such a wonderful family.

    My kids are teens and it's exhausting, truly. All you can do is pray for them - a lot!

    LOVED that scene with Emma and Casey! Isn't Casey a cutie?! Hope you gave her a wonderful man in the story!

    Thanks again for all your wonderful messages and, of course, your books!

    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

  23. Oops. Forgot I was signed in to my work account!! Shhhh!

  24. LISA ... thank you for coming by and for your kind comment. Yeah, I am pretty passionate about this subject because it is the #1 thing that almost destroyed me as a young woman. When God pulled me out the pit, I was determined to write stories that would not only reflect the temptations that young girls face today, but how to counter those temptations and find the kind of romantic love God wants us to have. In a lot of ways, A Passion Most Pure is my own personal story as the main character Faith O'Connor reflects the type of person I became after God drew me (kicking and screaming, I assure you!!) into His glorious light! :)

    WENDY!!! You go, girl!! I am putting you down on my prayer "hit list" for a godly mate because it is never too late with God!! Like I said in the post, "God honors those who honor Him," so, Lord, send Wendy the desire of her heart in a godly man who loves you even more than he will love her!! Bless you, my friend.

    Oh, JULIA!!! I had to look Titus 2 up because I couldn't remember what it said, and WOW, it brought tears to my eyes because that is JUST what I pray to be!! Here's the Scripture:

    "Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. 4 Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."

    WHOA!! To "urge the younger women to love their husbands and children" is one of the cries of my heart, especially when I see SO many lukewarm or poor marriages out there -- AMONG CHRISTIANS!!! And you know what? I was headed down that path too, until application of God's Word took me home. That is why I sow lessons I've learned into all of my stories, because I KNOW that application of God's precepts in every area of our lives -- morality, finances, marriage, parenting, etc. -- is the only way to success, joy and peace.

    Tell your hubby I'm proud of him too. He sounds like a VERY special guy, Julia, which is no surprise, I suppose because he's married to you!!


  25. Proud Momma for sure! What a great testimony.

    I'd love to read this book and sure that I'll enjoy it!

    priviesandprims at yahoo dot com

  26. Hey girlfriend!

    What a great post! Your message is so needed today. I can see how God prepared you all your life to be in the place to share it now.

    What you said about God honoring those who honor him really hit home with me. My husband just got word that he is being laid of the end of the month. That's the 4th time in 2 1/2 years. I was really encouraged by that verse, and I'm going to share it with him, because my husband truly loves and honors God.

    Bet you never thought your message would go that direction. :)

  27. ABI!!! Trust me, girl, I would LOVE for you to win AHR too, so good luck in this contest. Also, I will be having TONS of giveaways right before AHR comes out in August through Oct., so your odds are REALLY very good! "Julie fan"? Maybe, but dear "reader friend" is how I see you and I am so grateful we crossed paths.

    MEL!!! Hey, girl, SO great to see you here!! And I would have LOVED to have had a mentee like you because we are both so crazy emotional, can you just imagine those talks and prayer sessions -- Kleenex City!!! And I cannot wait to get my hands on your next book either, sweetie -- when is it out again?

    CHARITY ... you hang in there, girl, because good things don't just come to those who wait, but those who wait on the Lord!! I am blessed that my story could encourage you and just think -- someday YOUR story will encourage young women who need to hear it too! :) Good luck in the contest, my friend.


  28. HOLLY ... believe it or not, each excerpt that I post makes ME more anxious too, my friend, because I just want to get this book into your hands!! Here's to a win. :)

    SUE!!! Didn't recognize you at first, sweetie, but thanks for coming by -- TWICE!! And, yes, Casey is a cutie, but unfortunately she runs into a wee bit of trouble in AHR, so her happily ever after is not exactly completed in this story. BUT ... I am quite certain that what she learns in AHR will help to ensure it.

    DOREEN ... "Proud" and "shocked" momma, for sure!! STILL shocked, and this happened ten years ago ... :) And now my 23-year-old daughter is shocking me anew. It's a wonderful feeling, indeed! And I'd "love" for you to read my books too, so good luck in this contest!


  29. What a beautiful testimony Julie. If people today could just understand why God wants us to wait. Thank you for your post!
    I haven't read any of your books, but since finding all of you great authors on this group, I am also finding so very many great books I didn't know about! I'm not a writer, but I love, love, love reading!

  30. VICKIE!!! No, my friend, I did not think my message would go in that direction, but that just goes to show you that God uses whatever we say to His advantage, which is a major incentive to keep our hearts and mouth clean, eh???

    I am writing a sticky note RIGHT NOW for your husband's job, my friend, and for his and your strength during this time. As we both know, He never leaves us nor forsakes us, and my husband and I learned that BIG TIME two years ago when my husband was laid off from his job after 30 years!! You know what, we were shaking in our boots at the time, glazed as zombies, but like you and your hubby, we kept our eyes on God instead of the circumstances. The GHTWHH principal (God honors those who honor Him) came into play like gangbusters when my hubby then started his own business. Today, he makes almost double what he made at his old company. How's that for God "honoring"???? I'm praying the same for you and yours, Vickie, so I can't wait to see what God does.

    JOY!!! LOVE your addy -- "splashes of Joy"!!! You sound like somebody I'd like to be around all the time. :) And, YES, if you like to read, Casey's blogs are a GREAT place to learn about great books in the Christian market. The CBA has exploded with inspirational talent, and I'm excited to be a part of it. Good luck in the contest, sweetie, because I would LOVE to get my book in your hands too. :)


  31. Thank you for your wonderful post and just sharing your thoughts about purity in your books--especially in this day and age where anything goes. It's encouraging to see the struggles of your characters and how they deal with their struggles through God's strength and love. Thank you for writing these wonderful books. :)

    cynthiakchow (at) earthlink (dot) net

  32. what a wonderful scene! God certainly does redeem :) Thank you , Julie, for your beautiful testimony!!!


  33. Wow, that's something I really needed to read today.
    Julie, I love the way you describe God as a personal God who longs to be loved and touched and hugged. I pray that His love becomes more real to me.
    In this day and age, we need to be saturated in the Word of God and abiding in Him if we are to remain pure.
    Thanks for sharing the wonderful excerpt...I'm so looking forward to reading the entire book!

  34. Julie~

    Great post! I love the "four dates" story. And Keith asking you out again then and there. What a great guy! I love the picture of you two--sweet and cozy. It makes me wonder...Is he tall, or are you short? It looks about the same height difference as my husband and me. In our case, I'm short. :)

    I've still not read any of Julie's stuff. Limited book buying budget squelches my impulse to go out and buy them all at the same time. So I'd love to be entered for A Passion Most Pure.


  35. What a treat to read this post today! I must admit, I feel a little envious of young ladies who have the privilege of growing up in Godly homes. My parents had the notion that my sister and I could be put on auto-pilot where God and faith were concerned; the whole "we'll let them find their own way, and let them decide what they want to believe" approach. Unfortunately, that left me floundering for the first 34 years of my life (some of you may be familiar with my testimony that I shared here on Casey's blog last week).

    To make a long story short, I wish that I would have had had someone to teach me about purity when I was a young girl. But the truth is, we can't go back for any "do-overs." Everything that has happened in my life, God has allowed, and I believe He allows everything for a purpose. He can take our mess (our ashes), and turn it into something beautiful. Praise the Lord!

    This topic has been such a blessing to me, as I set out on the journey to teach my children the ways of purity: heart, body, mind, and soul; praying that they'll have a burning desire to follow God's precepts in their own lives.

    Thank you for sharing more of your incredible story with us, Julie! Like Melanie said, you're "such a passionate breath of fresh air!" Love you, girl!!!

    And, of course, thank you to Casey for sharing this topic and for being a light to so many. I know your parents are so proud of you, because I know I am! Keep up all you're doing for HIM! ((HUGS)))

    Sweet blessings to all!
    scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

  36. Julie, thanks for sharing that beautiful story! I think we have more in common than you know with the big family, longing for love etc. I love how your books teach about passion, along with how purity is important. I love what your son said! Recently I had a discussion with someone as they felt like it was important before the wedding night to mess around and even sleep together to make sure you are compatible. I was sort of looked at like a prude and I get made fun of for thinking we should wait for that, that if you are not compatible, you would be left with pain anyhow.
    I would love a chance to win your new book...A heart revealed!!

  37. JOETTA, having parents who stand strong with us is an incredible thing and I am blessed in that myself. They have instilled within me very high standards. Continue to do that with your children and we can have a world that will see the light of Christ shine that much brighter!

    AMANDA, what Julie’s son said is exactly what I have thought for so many years. If a man is just going to give himself away, what does that say for his character and what will that say for the future of their potential marriage? It is SO inspiring to know we aren’t just “half” in our standards, but there are others out there (young men) who believe the same! TAKE HEART!!

    MARGARET, you will want to read that book. You will be moved and inspired (and given a great story to boot :- ))

    CAROLM, we need more fiction like that! LOL, required reading, I like that. :-D My parents did and still do pray for my and my siblings spouses. There is something amazing listening to those prayers. :- )

    NANCY, He will! Bring Him into the center of your lives and live it and your kids will see it.

    LINDA, oh you just can’t can you?? INTENSE plots is so right. Thanks for coming by today. :- )

    CARA, it is always so wonderful to meet other parents who care that much for their kids and their future to instill those principles within them. Keep going!

    ELAINE, you and your daughter will be inspired by that book. I truly believe it will encourage your daughter to stay strong in her standards.

    JACKIE S., so I have I! Julie is very inspiring. :- )

    LISA, I completely agree with you. Julie is a passionate person anyway, but her passion for GOD is undeniable.

  38. Wow, What an amazing testimony Julie!
    Its wonderful how God worked in your life!
    I cant wait to read your next book. It sounds AMAZING!
    I loved the first four in the series.
    I read them in about a week.
    Thank you for sharing your story with us!

  39. Wow, that was a great post and a wonderful excerpt! I'm behind on my reading, but I'm looking forward to catching up on some of your books! I love the time period you write in.

  40. WENDY, may God BLESS YOU for your strong stand for Him. May He continue to give you grace and peace and a steadfast love that is totally fulfilled in Him. Thank you for coming by today!

    JULIA, that is really awesome about your husband and his witness in the workplace. We are given so many opportunities in our lives to show Christ to someone and HOW we live our lives and the values we hold are so important in that witness. Thanks for coming by today and sharing!!

    APPLE BLOSSOM, you are not the only one!! I think Julie has a lot of fans. :- ))

    MELANIE, oh isn’t she?? Every time I read one of her posts on these kind of topics I am just blessed beyond measure. The crown she will have in Heaven, huh? Thank you for gracing us with your sweet comment and presence this morning! :- )

    CHARITY, cling tight to Jesus dear girl! Let Him sustain you and give it over to Him. Pray and lean hard, you will not be tested beyond what you can handle, take heart in that promise! You are welcome and I am blessed to know you have been encouraged this week.

    HOLLY, I know doesn’t it?? She’s making Sept. farther and farther awaayyyy! ;- )

    SUSAN ANNE, lol! I had to wonder who was visiting my blog… ;- )Pray and pray hard, live your life for Christ in front of the them and trust!

    PRIVIESANDPRIMS, isn’t it?? I love that story the more I hear it.

    VICKIE, I am so sorry about the news of your husband, but I know God has your best interest at heart and He is looking out for you too! You and your husband will be in my prayers that He will provide for ALL your needs!

    SPLASHESOFJOY, you will be blessed in the Christian fiction market. We are constantly surrounded by wonderful and new fiction, it seems impossible to keep up, but put Julie’s books at the top of your list. You won’t ever turn back! :- )

  41. CYNTHIA, it can be SO disheartening to see so many young people fall by the way side, like you said in this day in age. But to be put in contact with so many people that are out there that are determined to stand strong, is so encouraging! We don’t often see them around us, but they ARE there. Trust God for it.

    ANNE PAYNE, God DOES redeem and it is comforting to know we serve an AWESOME God who loves us unconditionally. NO ONE is a hopeless cause. :- )

    CAROLYNN, oh then I am so glad you stopped by! We DO need to be saturated in God’s word, because THAT is where we will find the greatest strength for these challenging times- in HIM!

    ANDREA STRONG, I love that story too. And the fact that Julie just stood up and spoke it like it was. That is so perfect! :- ) I hope you get the chance to read Julie’s books soon, they are so spectacular!

    MICHELLE, on thank you, thank you for sharing that comment this morning! We don’t have do-overs, but we have the chance to make a difference and a CHANGE in our future. I am so glad it has blessed you this week, I know it has me. Thank you. :- ) <3

    MARTHA A., I find it so sad that people just won’t stick by their principles and stand STRONG in their convictions. Don’t lose yours! God has placed this within all of us, we just have to be willing to stand strong and not let the winds of the world push us overboard. How strong is your character? I hope I can stand with Julie’s daughter and know I do what the Lord wants me to in every situation.

    LEAH, Julie’s story is truly incredible! God has done AMAZING things in her life!

    JENNIFER, thank you so much for coming by today! This was a great excerpt wasn’t it? (And I’m not just saying that because my name is in it. :- ) Julie has a wonderful ability to put in those core Christian truths that speak to the heart of so many!

  42. Wow! Julie, your advice and wisdom is wonderful! I'll have to save this post in my favorites so I can hop back and read it from time to time.

    Thank you for sharing yoru story with us, Julie. And that discussion in your upcoming book with Emma and Casey was wonderful! I can't wait till the book comes out and I can read all about it. :-)

    Thank you, again, Casey, for getting together these posts! They are SUCH a blessing!

    ~ Katy

  43. Wow, what a post! Casey, I love that you've had this series of posts this week and I love that you brought Julie Lessman into the mix. I think many people can not only relate to Julie's experiences, but we can also learn from the amazing example of how she's raised her children. Love it all and I can't wait for A Heart Revealed!


  44. KATY, I am so glad you got the chance to come by today! Julie is a wonderful ministry just within herself and her books are just the icing on the cake. :) Be encouraged girl and uplifted!

    SARA, oh yes I do think that is why Julie surrounded everywhere she goes with people who just plain love her. Because so many people can relate to her. I can't wait for AHR too!! ;-D

  45. Julie,

    it is always a pleasure to read your postings...i learn a little more about you all the are such a huge blessing to me.


    thank you for having Julie on your blog. I can't wait to read 'your story' in 'A Heart Revealed.'

    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

  46. Casey, your blog is one of the biggest blessings I've found online! Thank you!
    Julie, you are a true inspiration! I really hope I get to read your 2nd book sooner rather than later! Thanks again! :D

  47. KARENK, it isn't techinally "my" story, just a character with my name. But I'm excited to read it too! :)

    TRUBBLE, oh thank you! That is sweet of you to say and all I can do in return is praise God. Only through Him do I do this. :)

  48. Hi Julie,

    Loved your interview. I have two young boys, and I found what you had to say about your son and his experience very enlightening. I'm looking forward to your new book!

  49. Thanks Casey for bring this lovely post to us! I am a huge fan of your blog, and this series in particular!

    Julie, what a great story. So excited for your book!



    CYNTHIA SAID: "It's encouraging to see the struggles of your characters and how they deal with their struggles through God's strength and love."

    Oh, girl, you don't know the half of it!! These books move me SO MUCH because so much of what they speak to relate to what happened to me in my life as a Christian and before. I've always felt just a little bit different than most Christians I met -- a little more "out there," a little more willing to reveal my failings because it's in those very failings that I found Christ and His redeeming love. So I don't like to pretend too much, and neither do my characters. They are who they are, and God loves them at the exact place they are, just like he loved me when I was at my worst. For me, the only difference is that when we do honor Him, He doesn't love us any more than before, but the pleasure we bring Him increases exponentially. WHICH is what I hope to do with these stories, pointing people to Him through the experiences of very fallible human beings. Thanks for coming by, my friend, and good luck in the contest.

    ANNE ... oh, AMEN to that!! Redemption is a gift I tend to take for granted sometimes, but I sure didn't take it for granted almost 40 years ago when God saved my sorry soul!! Sometimes I just meditate on what redemption means because for we Christ followers, it is the bottom line.

    CAROLYNN ... hey, girl!! Yeah, I know, that's how I really think of God -- not just as a spirit, but as my best friend, the lover of my soul and a REAL entity in my life that I CAN see, touch and hear. I see him in the love and patience of my husband when I drive him crazy or feel him in the squeeze of my Aunt Julie's hand when I visit her in the skilled nursing facility, and I hear Him when I'm on the treadmill balling my eyes out to worship music, and He tells me He loves me. We are made in His image, after all, so why not a passionate love affair with the God of the Universe?? For me, it's all about passion -- for Him and through Him, spilling over into every area of my life. And I can't help but believe that that's the way He wants it to be.


  51. KELLY, I love that story as well. How very encouraging to the Christian parent!

    FAYE, oh thank you! That is sweet of you to say. I appreciate your comments through this series!

    JULIE, lolol! I had to read that twice before I realized what you were saying. WHAT?!?!?! Raiding a speakeasy...sheesh. ;-)

  52. ANDREA ... I am 5'2", and my husband is 6'1", so he's quite a bit bigger than I am, which I love because he can intimidate me when he has to. The last thing I want is a guy I can push around. And believe me, like Charity, I DID try ... :) Now you know why ALL my heroes are tall ... ;)

    MICHELLE!!! Hey, sweetie, how are you?? Like you, I wish I had someone to teach me the purity message as well -- not just tell me it was wrong, like my parents and church tried to do, but tell me WHY it was wrong -- because it cuts off blessings from God!!! Had I known that I was cutting my own throat with my promiscuity, I would have thought twice, I think. And if someone had instilled a passion in me for God, I think that would have worked wonders too, which is what I try so hard to do in my books. And as far as "do-overs"? No, we can't do over our lives, but God does give us a HUGE "do-over" when He wipes the slate clean and lets us become new creatures in Christ Jesus, eh? Love you!!

    Oh, MARTHA, do I relate!! So many young women want to make sure they are sexually compatible beforehand, but I gotta tell you that I believe any couple ordained by God in marriage have the potential to be sexually compatible because I have seen God move mightily in my life and others' in this very area. So this garbage about buying the car before you buy it just doesn't fly with me because I'd rather have God in the driver's seat anyway, to drive me where I need and want to go.



  53. (ok, just an aside)


    Well, you're 7/8 of an inch taller. :-))

  54. You can add me to the 5'2" club! LOL. : )

  55. Woo-hoo Michelle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  56. Wow! (I think I'll be saying that all week). Thank you so much for posting, Mrs. Lessman! I love hearing stories of how God has worked through people (especially married folks). 33 years? God bless you and yours! I really liked the excerpt... have to find that when it comes out. : ) Thanks for getting such great guest bloggers, Casey!


    P.S. - Anyone want to start a 5'0 club? ;P

  57. Great story, Julie. Your story is inspiring. Thank you for sharing.

    belindapeterson at tds dot net

  58. LEAH!!! Three almost 500-page books in a week? Really??? Wow, I'm impressed, girl!! I guess the O'Connors kind of grow on you, don't they? I feel like they're almost blood ... but maybe that's because they are -- MY blood ... and sweat and tears (emphasis on the tears) and life experiences, personalities, you name it. I always smile at something one of my girlfriends told me. She said reading my books was like going to lunch with me. I really liked that because it's pretty true. Read my books, read me. :)

    JENNIFER!!! I always get SO tickled when respected peers and authors comment on my blogs -- having you and Vickie McDonough stop by today is an extra-special blessing, so THANK YOU!! And I totally relate about being behind on reading. It's hard enough for authors to find time to write, much less read, especially with endorsement requests, books to read for review and now books to read for The Carol Awards as a judge. Sigh ... not enough hours in the day, is there?

    KATY ... thanks, sweetie, but one of the telling things about "advice and wisdom" is that at my age you tend to have a lot of it, all correlating to things you've learned the hard way. So I guess you might say the more advice I give means the more mistakes I've made to get there so hopefully you won't have to ... :)


  59. Oh, Julie, my mother's heart ached for you as a little girl feeling that no one loved you. But I'm so thankful you met Jesus and allowed His love to change you. You write so eloquently of following God's will and remaining pure. I think "A Heart Revealed" may make a real difference in the lives of many women, either strengthening their resolve to stay pure, or showing them a better way. Thank you for sharing your passion for Christ.
    I'm really looking forward to reading "A Heart Revealed" and would be so happy to win it!


  60. Hey, SARA -- I'm glad Casey brought me into the mix too, because this subject is so near and dear to my heart. And I have to laugh at your statement that "we can also learn from the amazing example of how she's raised her children." Uh, let's hope my kids don't read this because the walls would be shaking with laughter. I'll admit, I was a STRONG spiritual force in my kids' lives, praying with them at the drop of the hat, talking to them about important things early (i.e. drugs, immorality at a very early age ... uh, I'm talking 6 and 7 ... okay, okay, maybe I went a little overboard ...), making sure they saw me have an intimate relationship with God so they would learn what it was all about, etc.

    BUT ... the accolades stop there because I had a temper, was more of a drill sergeant and always had a project going that took more of my time than it should have. No mother is perfect (something I touch on in A Heart Revealed) but we are forgiven by God and given the "do-over" every day of our lives to become better listeners, kinder, gentler influences in our children's lives and I am SOOO still learning to do so. Geez Louise, I'm long-winded tonight, aren't I???

    Hey, KAREN, it's always fun to see you pop up, my friend, and you know, my husband says the same thing, even after almost 33 years of marriage -- he's STILL learning knew things about me, which if you think about it, is rather scary ... at least for him!! :) Good luck in the contest, sweetie.


  61. TRUBBLE!!! You made it over here, girl, I'm SO excited!! Hopefully you will win the next book for your efforts. And I am THRILLED you discovered Casey's blog, which is just as fun and smart as she is, so definitely become a follower by clicking the "followers" tab on the above right of her blog. You won't regret it. Good luck, sweetie.

    KELLY ... I found boys to be a lot easier to raise as far as the whole morality thing, probably because my son was the compliant child that seemed to care what I thought, so I hit him up early with ALL kinds of spiritual lessons, and apparently some stuck. :) My daughter? Not so easy, but then like mother, like daughter, which if you think about it, is kind of like payback for God ... :)

    FAYE ... thank you for befriending me on Facebook, sweetie -- I think I accepted it but I wasn't sure if it took because I am SUCH a FB illiterate, it's not even funny. Sigh. One of my reader friends actually asked if she could start a fan page for me because I was clueless and really never thought about having one. Duh ... sounds like maybe it would be a pretty good idea for an author, don't ya think?? So we should be FB friends now, but if it didn't take, let me know, okay? Good luck in the contest.


  62. CASE!!! Really? You look like you would be 5'5" at least, seriously. That means you, Michelle, Katie O'Connor and I are all the same height, which shocks me for some reason. Of course, at my age, I'm shrinking (height only, not weight), so you guys should towering over me before long ... :)

    MICHELLE -- NO WAY. I repeat -- NO FLIPPIN' WAY!! All this time I thought you were at least 5'7" or 5'8" and when we talk in e-mails and on blogs, I feel like I'm talking up to you!! Isn't that funny??? But you're just a runt like me and Case. Good to know ... :)

    Thanks, LINDI, and I sure hope you win a book this week because we HAVE to get one into your hands, my friend, understood??? Good luck!


  63. BTW- My profile picture is of how God told me "NO" one day on my way to visit someone! The tree came down right in front of me! It had just started raining. Needless to say, I backed right back into the driveway & stayed put! XD
    -Diana O'Ryan

  64. TAHIRI, glad you could come by to read Julie’s post. 33 years is nothing to sneeze at and is such an accomplishment! Hehe, welcome to the club, girl. ;- )

    LINDI, thanks for coming by today!!

    PAM K., oh I completely agree with you. When I read A Passion Most Pure, I literally felt it speaking to my heart and moving me in my journey with Christ. I was strengthened by that book, I want the world to read it! :- )

    JULIE, snicker, snort. I wish! My mom calls me a “shrimp”. Haven’t decided if its endearment or not yet. And that better not end up in AHR. I will NEVER hear the end of it. ;- )

    TRUBBLE, wow, neat story! Good thing you listened to what God was prompting. :- )

  65. Wow, that is such a great message!
    People really need to know that they are loved uncomditionally, no matter what anyone else says.

    I would love to read anything by this author.

    Thank you. dancealert at aol dot com

  66. DIANA ... grin ... yup, that would do it for me too, girlfriend!! ;) LOVE IT!!

    Oh, CASE, you should have NEVER said that, sweetie!! You better start praying right now that my questionable memory loses that tasty bit of information before my 2nd galleys come back or you are in BIG TROUBLE!!

    BRENDA ... thanks SO much for coming by to comment!! And AMEN TO THAT, my friend. Unconditional love -- bring it on!! Rest assured that I, too, would love you "to read anything by this author"!! :) Good luck in the contest.


  67. LOLOLOL!!! You crack me up, Julie! 5'7" in my dreams, lol! We need to hook up for a "shorty" convention! :o)

    My husband even got me this neat little gadget for Christmas called the "Grip N' Grab" because I can never reach anything in the kitchen. Looks like something you and Casey might want to look into, hehehehe! :o)

  68. This gave me chills reading this. :) That is awesome what your son said to his friend!

    I almost bought one of your books today, but they didn't have the first one in the series. I was so bummed!

    leanniegehrke at hotmail dot com

  69. Julie, your hubby is ahem--what do we say at this age--well preserved. Ha!

  70. MICHELLE!!! "Shorty convention"???? LOL!! You little brat ... I'll just wear my 4" spike heels and show you ... Uh, yeah, who am I trying to kid ... I can barely walk in flats!!! A Grip N' Grab, huh? Mmm ... does it work on husbands?? :)

    LEANNE, noooooooooooooo!!!!!! They didn't have A Passion Most Pure??? I'm bummed too!! But soooooooooo proud of you for not buying this series out of order, sweetie, because if EVER there was a series that needs to be read in order, this one is it, otherwise, several big surprises are ruined. I sure hope you win a book on Casey's blog because if you do, I will send you APMP, okay?

    ANNE, you little flirt you -- THANK YOU!!! :) I happen to be pretty crazy about him, so I think he's "well preserved" too ... of course, that could be because of me, keeping him on his toes ... :)


  71. Julie, your testimony is so uplifting and well-delivered that I'm bookmarking this to share with my teen son. Blessings to you and Casey for sharing the message of purity.

  72. Aw, thanks, PATRICIA!! Knowing you, I have a feeling your son is already a pretty special kid. God bless him AND you!!


  73. BRENDA, you would love Julie’s fiction, she is incredible! And yes, what a message that needs to be spread through the world and shouted from the rooftops!

    JULIE, please dear Lord, DON’T let Julie remember that, please don’t let Julie remember that!

    MICHELLE, lolol! That is priceless, I need one of those! :- )

    LEANNE, yes, you will want to be sure and read that series in order, very important for Julie’s books! Thanks for coming by to read the post today!

    ANN LEE, oh dear, lolol!

    PATRICIAW., It is good to see you again! Thanks for coming by to read Julie’s post, it is so encouraging and inspiring, I hope your son finds it so as well! :- )

  74. I was crying reading the post - and now I'm laughing from reading the comments. I don't need to be entered for a book. I have them all - and I pre-ordered her latest.

    I wasn't a Christian until my late twenties and learned these lessons the hard way. I think it's so important to share and one of the reasons I love Julie's books so much.

    Oh and can I join the shorty club since I'm only 5 foot one? lol

  75. LEE!!! Five foot one??? You look WAY taller than that too!! Sooo glad you dropped by, my friend. Have a blessed weekend!


  76. Oh Lee, I am so glad the post moved you. Julie is wonderful both on the screen and in print and I can't wait for the day when I can say "in person." :)

    I think we need to form a 5' 1" club. LOL!


Thank you so much for stopping by, I love to hear from those who traffic my blog! Have a wonderful day. :)

FTC Rules

According to new FTC rules I must let you, the reader know, that all views shared on this blog are strictly my own. Books to review are either provided for me by the author, publisher or ones I have purchased and I am under no obligation whatsoever to present anything, but my true opinion on any product. I receive no monetary compensation for anything written on this blog. Any giveaways on this blog are provided by the author/ publisher and I am not responsible for any views they express in their work or on this site. Giveaways are void were prohibited and chances of winnng are based on the number of applicants. A random winner is draw when a book is given away.

Blog Design by Imagination Designs all images from the Country Wildflowers kit by Laurie Ann