Monday, December 2, 2013

Call for Submissions to a Bible Study I'm Writing

Dear Readers and Friends,

Dr. Edna Ellison and I are finishing a manuscript for a new Bible Study to give spiritual triage to grieving parents who've lost a child. But there's one testimony we don't have yet and would very much like to get. We need a parent who has about 5 years of healing from the loss of a child by self-murder.

I know this is a lot to ask since this particular loss carries more baggage than most deaths, but I really sense God wants us to include a testimony on how a parent was able to move through the first year toward healing and keeping his/her faith on course.

If you know anyone, please have them send me an email at so we can exchange phone numbers and talk together. As you know, my own daughter's 10th anniversary of entrance to heaven was this year in February. As you may have guessed, I wrote the first testimony for our book and Edna did the commentary on my testimony. We have many brave parents who've made contributions and feel awed by their courage and faith in our Lord.

Well, hope all is well with everyone this Christmas. If it's not, take it to the Lord in much prayer and learn from your trials, friends.

Keeping the Faith One More Year,
Dr. Linda B. Greer

Monday, September 30, 2013

Waiting in Deep by Sandi Denkers

The first novel Sandi has written and published is a culmination of a decade of pondering sudden death and loss of a close family member. Sandi has taken from her own experience and added lovable and unforgettable characters in a story of faith, fear, and frustration in relationships. The setting is a small town in the Upstate of South Carolina, some of her own stomping grounds. The time period is in the 70's when friction should have been fierce between the black and white populations. Somehow this is not the case in such a small town as make-believe Mt. Brayden. For two neighbors, as different as North and South, it is a whole lot of laughs, some tears, some fervent prayer, and the friendship of a young white girl from up the street that bring the story to life.

Lottie Johnson learns over the course of this novel and the growing up years of her little friend, Rebecca, that life has more to it than just a flower garden and a pesky neighbor, Dovie. Lottie evolves from a tight rosebud to full bloom through her first tentative overnight sleepover for Rebecca's birthday party to a forgiving and caring older relation for her alcoholic cousin, Edgar.

The sparring between Dovie and Lottie is reminiscent of a Laurel and Hardy slapstick. Dovie is as jovial and big-hearted as Lottie is closed and sparse in her compliments. Rebecca has the ability to befriend both women, but particularly loves Lottie for her uncanny skill in making beauty come forth from the dirt. The two make a pact early in the novel to trade talent: Rebecca tutoring Lottie in her math and English, while Lottie teaches Rebecca about all her flowers and how to coax the best from them year after year to sell at the local florist, Rebecca's mother.

One of the best parts in the book are the journaling Lottie does. My favorite quote of all is from one of these:
     "Death is awful fierce. After it cuts those living into little pieces, grief comes along to watch
      them bleed."

There's more to the novel to help Lottie move along her journey of healing, but you'll just have to read Waiting in Deep for yourself. Enjoy the quick read and see how things turn out for Lottie, Rebecca, Dovie, and Edgar. The book is available at Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format. It is also sold at Barnes and Noble.

Agape and Blessings,
Dr. Linda B. Greer

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Kathi Macias Writes Two More Great Books: The Moses Quilt and Last Chance for Justice

I have done two book readings this summer of Kathi Macias' latest novels, The Moses Quilt and Last Chance for Justice. As usual, Kathi took her stand on interracial marriage and gave it a new twist in the first novel and also wrote a combination mystery and "redefining-yourself-as-a-widow" in the second.

In The Moses Quilt there's a love story about an older African-American Christian man, Edward, and younger Caucasian woman, Mazie. The story opens with Mazie's concern for her aging grandmother, Mimi, who lives with Mazie and her mother. The three generation of women in the house are a backdrop for a wonderful history lesson about Harriet Tubman of Civil War Underground Railway renown.

Each evening, Mazie and Edward learn more about Harriet Tubman through Mimi's stories about the patches on the Moses Quilt, a family heirloom. Mazie is inspired by Harriet's courage, her faith in God's provision and her life after the Civil War to help freed slaves and also speak for women's suffrage. Edward's love of the stories about one of African-Americans' heroines only endears him more to Mazie and her family.

Despite repeated efforts to get a commitment of marriage from Mazie, Edward stays mystified until he and Mazie make a trip to a small rural town in Georgia where the quilt was made. You'll have to read the book to find out if Mazie and Edward can "take the leap" for love when the quilt's meaning is fully revealed.

Last Chance for Justice is an unsettling homecoming story for Lynn, a middle-aged grieving widow, who is beckoned back to her small town, Bloomfield, at the death of her much older brother. Myron has left her his big old home next to the town cemetery, an eerie location to be sure. But he has also left a mystery for Lynn to solve.

Lynn and her adult daughter, Rachel, search through  Myron's papers trying to find clues to rectify the reputation of an African-American boy accused of stealing the church Sunday School offering many decades ago. As their search continues, they become acclimated to the town and the home. Bloomfield grows on both of them,  especially Rachel as she begins to have two love interests at once from two young handsome men, one a youth pastor and the other a successful businessman.

You will have to read Last Chance for Justice to find out which young man wins Rachel's heart and to learn whether or not they find the lost Sunday School money. Myron's dying wish was for Lynn to clear the name of this young man, Last Chance, long since buried in the cemetery beside Lynn's inherited home. Last Chance's only surviving sister is reclusive but still believing God can work a miracle on behalf of her deceased brother.

To purchase these books go to:

Blessings and Agape,
Dr. Linda B. Greer

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day for our Armed Forces

This is a bittersweet day for many folks. Some have returned from wars to ponder their fallen friends. Some have spouses who served and died. Some have sons, daughters, or cousins who never returned alive. It is a day of contemplation and humble remembrance for the warriors of our country who put themselves in harm's way to fight the good fight.

They gave everything they could so we could be free in this country. I appreciate their sacrifices so very much having lived in a middle east nation for a year. I saw what it was like for people who did not have freedom and never tasted democracy and a republic nation.

Freedom comes in many forms. Even enslaved Americans from centuries past knew true freedom comes from an inward sense of worth given to each person by our God. Knowing Jesus, the Son of God, died to give us ultimate freedom to be his brother or sister for eternity can outweigh even the grimmest of our life's circumstances. The gospel songs of the South rooted in slavery speak to that level of freedom. "One glad morning when this life is o'er, I'll fly away..."

Today is a bittersweet day. For the ones who survived and who remained behind, let us remember those who did not. But more importantly, let us continue to fight the real enemy of Christ, the devil and all his deceptions and lies. Daily, let us put on the "full armor of God" and do what we can to protect ourselves as believers. To pray for one another and a hedge of protection from the attacks of the devil is our due diligence as we trod this sin-torn earth, awaiting the day we "fly away" home.

Blessings and Agape,

Dr. Linda B. Greer

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ding Dong

Remeber the Munchkins' beginning song for our classic version of The Wizard of Oz? I doubt the kind of merriment we all felt from it is present in the new pre-quel, The Land of Oz. Why should the retelling of traditional lore in our culture be "updated" to include confusion, terror, and woefully wicked looking creatures? Even Jack the Giant Slayer previews scare the pudding out of me.
With Easter coming in less than two weeks, our cultural tolerance for terror seems to have lessened the horror of the Cross. But I say, "Ding Dong, the devil's dead, the mean old thing, the mean old thing. Ding dong, the wickedness is dead." At least for Christ: He overcame everything the devil hurled his way. Jesus was victorious, whole, and gallant rising up on His third day from the grave. "Death where is thy sting?" Absolutely nowhere to be found in the truth of the resurrection.

As many of you who follow me know, I felt the sting of death when my young and very pregnant daughter was murdered ten years ago on Valentine's Day. God had his hand on all of the brokeness of her body parts, finally found in a large plastic trash can on Easter Monday. It was His way of telling me that her earth suit had been decimated, but her spirit, and that of her little girl, had risen in wholeness to be with Christ. God's timing is so elegant and so perfect.

There truly is power in the blood of Christ slain for all sinners. Had it not been for my faith in Him, I would not have peace in knowing I would see April and her child once again. Death has lost its sting. I thirst for this magnificently joyful reunion in heaven with them and my husband of only nine years--all in the presence of the King of kings, my strong tower and my best friend.

In honor of this year's celebration of eternal life, I have decided to sponsor one more child through the Africa Renewal Ministries in Uganda, a developing country in the heartland of Africa bordering Lake Victoria. Her name is Lilian. It reminds me of Jesus, the Lilly of the Valley, the Bright and Morning Star. She is in second grade and close to the age of my grandson, Andrew. Lilian's birthday is tomorrow, and I bless her with the hope within all who look to God for our eternal salvation and who seek gallant victory over each day on this earth. Ding dong, the wickedness is dead through Christ.

Blessings and Agape,
Linda B. Greer

Monday, March 4, 2013

Warming Up With Joy

Lately, Spartanburg has been down in the twenties in temperature for the last several days. There are times when I simply cannot feel warm in my own home despite the layers of clothing. Even my tub feels colder than normal when I'm soaking. I can't imagine what it's like for the homeless people who have no shelter at all.

As we approach the celebration of Christ's resurrection, we see there are many needs in our communities, our states, and our nation. Christ had a knack for meeting needs as he went about His father's business. We sometimes forget there are ways we can meet needs as we go about our business.

For instance, today I had interaction with people at two different stores. I intentionally wanted to be kind and cheerful because these people work very hard for very little money. Most young single people are finding the job market in today's economy extremely challenging. Any kind word I can give them is a bonus hopefully.

Recently I donated an older washer and dryer to a combined family of a mom and two pregnant daughters with no husbands. it was a joy to see these stored items put to good use even though I could've fetched a couple of hundred dollars by selling them.  I was able to meet a need just like Christ did, and I knew it was the right thing to do. The feedback I got from my neighbor, who delivered the washer and dryer, was well worth the effort. The mom and her daughters were teasing each other about getting to go first doing their laundry. The imagery of their happy faces will stay with me a long time. And when the babies arrive, there will be clean clothes and bedding for their small bodies.

I don't want to brag, but it seems to me I've turned a spiritual corner.  It's been 10 years since my pregnant daughter, April, was murdered, and I feel great promise in getting mail from my first granddaughter by April.  This little girl was adopted from birth and now we are corresponding by regular mail.  It's like having a little piece of heaven here on earth knowing  this little girl is now 12 years old and the only person on the planet with April's DNA.  My heart is so encouraged knowing someone, who looks like April, is somewhere in western North Carolina. I want to thank God by joyfully meeting needs as I go.
April at 12 years

When I think about Christ on the cross and the Scripture that says he did it "for the joy set before Him", I understand suffering has a place and a purpose in this life. Christians will all sustain joy in heaven, but it's His gracious gift to have heavenly joy here and now as part of our walk with Christ.

Search your mind and soul for something exquisitely joyful in your life today and spread the joy as you go about your business.  Christ said his followers would be recognized by the love they had for one another. I think you could substitute "joy" for "love" and still be true to His word, don't you?

Blessings and Agape,
Linda B. Greer

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Pray Without Ceasing

Have you ever prayed for someone for a very long time? Have you wondered if God is tired of the same prayer from you? Do you think He will never give you an answer? Don't ever stop believing in God's power for the answer swathed in His plan, delivered with sugar on top, and sweeter than you ever imagined.

I had a granddaughter from my daughter, April, who was adopted at birth in February 2001. It was the last time I saw Ashton's tiny face. Two years later Ashton's biological sister was about to be born when April and little Heaven were murdered by the babies' father, Jerry Stuart. I felt as if my whole life had been swept into the valley of Gehenna.

For years I prayed for the remaining adopted granddaughter and her adoptive parents. For twelve years I sent anonymous gifts and cards through the adoption agency. I hoped someday Ashton would be able to meet me. After my daughter's murder, I set my sights on a 16-year solitary journey of hope until she came of age and I could seek her out.

In my waiting, I wondered if Ashton even knew she was adopted. I wondered if her parents had considered the circumstances of her biological mother's death and chose to say nothing. If she turned 18 and chose not to see me, would I be crushed once again by circumstances outside my control?

Last weekend Ashton turned twelve years of age. I had sent her another anonymous card for Valentine's and a pair of earrings. Last Saturday I went to check my mailbox and opened a letter from the adoption agency. Inside was a red envelope with my first name printed on the outside. Inside was a Valentine from Ashton, a long note about her life now, how she was sad she wouldn't meet her birth mother in this life, and a picture of herself.

Guess what I did? Yeah, I wept. My whole world swirled into a new orbit with the opening of a red envelope with sugar on top and sweeter than I ever imagined. I have written my first letter, addressed it to the adoption agency, and christened it with my first name.

Lord you are able.

Blessings and Agape,
Dr. Linda B. Greer