Posted in Bible, history, Homeschool Video Curriculum

Review of Drive Thru History® “Acts to Revelation”

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Drive Thru History®‘s Dave Stotts is our engaging and entertaining tour guide as we tour with Drive Thru History®  “Acts to Revelation”.  This series makes the perfect Homeschool Bible Curriculum.  I have to say our family really enjoys watching and learning from the videos with Dave Stotts.  He does an excellent job of providing information, insights, along with captivating scenery and pictures.  Of course, my family also enjoys seeing the vehicles Dave drives in the episodes.  We elected to watch the videos as a family – so myself, my husband, our 22-year-old son (when his work scheduled allowed him to participate), our 20-year-old son, our 18-year-old son and our 16-year-old daughter watched together.

From the Drive Thru History® website on their “About” page comes the following quote, Drive Thru History with Dave Stotts® is a fun, fast-paced, content-rich history show that speeds through ancient civilizations, the Holy Land, and the founding of America, allowing the viewer to experience the people, places, and events that shaped our world and the Christian faith. To date, ColdWater Media has successfully produced and distributed 54 episodes.”  Truly they do a remarkable job of bringing history to life.

The series contains 18 episodes which each run for about 30 minutes.  The episodes provide a tremendous amount of history, Scriptural and Biblical references along with information about the lives of the very first Christians. The series essentially uses the book of Acts as a roadmap.   As we started watching the first episode, we loved the way Dave Stotts took the time to set the stage of Jesus’ final days and how that impacted the disciples.  We are a military family, which means we have moved around some and therefore attended quite a few churches.  One of the churches we attended was a Pentecostal Church, so hearing about the day of Pentecost captured our interest.

Because our 16-year-old daughter loves to draw, the photographs and pictures used in the series mesmerized her.  I appreciated how Dave Stotts took the time to explain that some of the artwork used in the series may not completely represent the actual event but assured the viewers they try to keep it as realistic as possible.  It is apparent this Homeschool Video Curriculum really takes time to include majestic and incredible scenery, artwork and illustrations.

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Another part of the series family loved was the inclusion of live actors and actresses portraying various scenes from the Bible as seen in the picture above.  My husband is an ordained Primitive Baptist preacher and has spent a lot of time in the books of John and Paul.  So our children grew up hearing their father speak on those subjects.  So in the episode where we get to see an actor portraying Paul and speaking his words written in the Bible, they found it fascinating.  Our family also loved the inclusion of maps, actual Biblical locations and Scriptural passages that are used to convey the messages in the series.

Our family also appreciated the discussion about the book of Revelation and the message included for the 7 churches including Laodicea.  The description of them being “luke-warm” people rather than being either hot or cold caught the attention of everyone in the family.  We also were amazed at the differences between the various sites and how much restoration had been done in some while others had not even been explored yet.  Some of our children noted that the unexplored areas leave more to the imagination.

My husband appreciated the discussion where Dave Stotts showed how actual history and locations provide support for the accuracy of the Bible.  He also appreciated how Dave Stotts made it clear that the book of Jude was meant to help equip Christians for living in the end days, and has as much relevance for believers today as it did at the time it was written.  Another statement that caught the attention of my family was that Christian persecution during the early days of the church did not slow down the growth of the church.  Also, the list of disciples and other early Christians who died for their faith led to an interesting discussion of whether Christians today would be so willing to die for their beliefs.

Along with the three DVDs which come with the set, there is also a study guide.  The study guide is actually bound into the case the DVDs come with, which is great for having it all together, but makes using a bit tricky since it did not want to stay open for me.  The study guide includes general information about the series,  a list of the episodes, summaries of each episode, discussion questions, Biblical passages to read, side roads that include additional information, along with amazing photographs and illustrations. Possible ways to use the study guide would be to simply allow them to guide an oral conversation between those who have watched the episode or your family could choose to require the answers to the questions be written out.

You can find Drive Thru History® on social media using the following links:  Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.  So check out Drive Thru History®  “Acts to Revelation” for yourself.  Also, click here or on the graphic below to read more reviews of this amazing series from other members of the Home School Review Crew.

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#hsreviews #drivethruhistory #drivethruhistoryadventures #adventurelearning

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Posted in Bible, Bible Studies, Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for “Forever Loved, Eve’s Story”

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About the Book

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Title: Forever Loved, Eve’s Story

Author: Joanna May Chee

Genre: Christian Inspiration for Women

Release date: February 20, 2018

Publisher: Heartfelt Publications

Eve. First woman. First to be tempted. First to sin.

But what if there were more to her story than that?

Forever Loved: Eve’s Story is the story of Father and daughter, as told by Eve. It is a story of preciousness and beauty, of tender love and grace. Through Eve, God reveals his Father heart of love for you, his treasured daughter. He whispers to you now, and calls you closer.

Includes:

  • My Story: The author’s personal story of encountering God as Father.
  • Eve’s Story: A beautifully creative retelling of the Bible story of Eve.
  • Your Story: Encouragement and prayers to take you deeper into God’s presence.

Experience Eve’s story anew. Discover just how loved you are!

Click here to purchase your copy!

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Have you ever wondered what it must have been like to be Eve and experienced the Garden of Eden first hand?  Have you ever wondered what it must have been like to experience God’s presence in person?  Forever Loved Eve’s Story does exactly that.  Joanna May Chee does an incredible job of creating the illusion of the reader experiencing the events first hand.

Ms. Chee does a remarkable job of conveying how much a father loves a daughter and how much more so God loved Eve and all of the daughters who come after her.  She makes God come alive as a loving “Papa” rather than an angry and unforgiving God.  I have a number of friends who in their normal conversations who refer to God as “Papa”.  Truly this illustrates a more loving and approachable Creator.

The encounter between God and Eve after Eve and Adam ate from the Tree of Life was heart-breaking and uplifting all at the same time.  The details given about their life with their children provided a wealth of insight of what Eve must have gone through after Cain killed Abel.  I found the book to be inspirational and worth reading.  I encourage you to read it both as a story and as a Bible Study.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.  All thoughts contained in this review are my own.

About the Author

Joanna May Chee gets excited about God! She loves to write and is often awake in the night with a million ideas for her next book or project. Joanna blogs at JoannaMayChee.com and MumsKidsJesus.com, where it is her heart to encourage and equip women to love their families and meet with God. She is author of Forever Loved: Eve’s Story, a creative retelling of the Bible story of Eve, and a #1 Amazon UK bestseller. Joanna lives near London with her husband, 4 teens, dog and 2 cats! Facebook.com/JoannaMayChee | Facebook.com/MumsKidsJesus | Pinterest.co.uk/MumsKidsJesus

Guest Post from Joanna

True or False? Eve spent time with God before meeting Adam.

True or False? Eve wasn’t called Eve until after the Fall.

Does the Bible even say?

Until recently, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you, even though I’ve been a Christian many years, and thought I knew the Bible story of Eve really well!

It was during hot, sticky, jet-lagged nights, about four years ago, on holiday overseas, that God started giving me new and wonderful insight into Eve’s life. Words literally started pouring through my head: the story of Eve, but not as I’d heard it before!

I’d always had negative connotations of Eve – the first woman to be tempted, the first to sin. But the story God revealed to me during my sleepless nights was one of preciousness and beauty. It was the story of Father and daughter, of God’s incredible love for Eve, and His equally wondrous love for me.

As Eve’s story unfolded over several nights, I wrote it down; and God gave me a book I did not ask for (but am forever grateful for): Forever Loved: Eve’s Story.

These new insights into Eve’s story have been life-changing. God has brought me deeper into His love than I could ever have imagined. (In the introduction of ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ I share something of the deep hurt and insecurity I experienced growing up – including the time I got into BIG trouble with my teacher – my cry to know God as Father, and how God’s love has brought healing and freedom.)

It’s my prayer that ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ touches the lives of women around the world, that women may come into deeper experience of God as Father, and know just how beautiful and precious they are to Him.

So, back to the True/False questions at the beginning of this post! What do you think?

I’d love to share with you what I’ve discovered by giving you a free copy of a devotional I’ve written called ‘Treasures Hidden in the Story of Eve’.

This devotional explores some of the amazing truths God’s shown me about Eve, and the wonderful implications for us as women today (and includes extracts from ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’). Download the devotional for free here.

I pray God touches you as deeply as He has me, as you explore the Bible story of Eve afresh. May you encounter the love of Father God as never before.

Joanna xx

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, January 26

Real World Bible Study, January 27

Aryn the Libraryan, January 28

Robin is Bookish, January 28

My Devotional Thoughts, January 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 29

Margaret Kazmierczak, January 30

All-of-a-kind Mom, January 31

Mary Hake, January 31

Godly Book Reviews, February 1

Lights in a Dark World, February 1

Midnight Bookaholic, February 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 2

Bibliophile Reviews, February 3

Pause for Tales, February 4

Texas Book-aholic, February 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior PrincessFebruary 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 6

Janices book reviews, February 7

Carpe Diem, February 8

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Joanna is giving away a grand prize of a signed copy of ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ plus $25 Amazon voucher!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops below for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8d5/forever-loved-eve-s-story-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

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Posted in Bible, Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for The Lost Art of Relationship

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About the Book

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Title: The Lost Art of Relationship

Author: Dan Chrystal

Genre: Christian non-fiction, Christian living

Release date: October 15, 2018

Relationship is a journey of discovery—a lost art. In this generation, it has become challenging to deepen and grow personal relationships with each other. Our technology-flooded environment has left many with limited relational experience and a fear of face-to-face connection and meeting new people.

The church has done a decent job of helping people understand the need and importance of a relationship with God, but what about with each other? At the heart of every man, woman, and child is the need for connection—for relationships with people who love them for who they are.

In The Lost Art of Relationship, Dan Chrystal tackles the heart of relationship based on the time-honored instruction to “love your neighbor as you love yourself.” But what does that mean? How do we live out this odd instruction? Who is my neighbor, anyway? What makes relationships healthy, and what makes them fail? Through Dan’s personal stories and difficult life lessons, readers will come away encouraged, inspired, and motivated to love the people in their life more fully. If you desire deep and meaningful connections, now is the time to discover the lost art of relationship.

Click here to get your copy!

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The Lost Art of Relationship by Dan Chrystal is a must-read book if you are interested in having deeper and more meaningful relationships with those around you.  The author does an excellent job of breaking the book down into sections which cover: Foundations of Relationships, Obstacles of Relationships, and Building Blocks of Relationships.  He uses easy to read and understand language along with personal experiences and Scriptures to back up what he is saying. 

As a pastor, being able to establish meaningful relationships is a necessity.  But establishing fruitful relationships applies to everyone.  God did not create man to be alone.  He created us to have relationships with those around us and with Him as well.  This book does an excellent job of conveying both of those points without being “preachy”.  So if you are a person who desires deeper, and more meaningful relationships, check out this book for yourself.

About the Author

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Dan Chrystal has over twenty-three years of ministry and relationship experience. He serves as a pastor for Bayside Church Granite Bay, under the dynamic leadership of founding pastor, Ray Johnston. Dan is a vibrant speaker and a dedicated life, career, and couple’s coach. He holds an MBA in executive leadership from Kaplan University (now Purdue Global University) and is currently studying law at Concord Law School. His extensive ministry background has taken him all over the country, from the east coast to the west, where he has served in varying capacities, including Lead Pastor, Administrative Pastor, Associate Pastor, Worship Leader, and Youth Pastor. An avid student of relationship, Dan is passionate about helping others to love their neighbors as themselves.

“Choose a good reputation over great riches.” (Proverbs 22:1)

Guest post from Dan

For two years, I experienced what many would call a “wilderness experience.” I truly felt forgotten. I had spent twenty years in various aspects of church work having met and coached hundreds of people, and I still felt like I didn’t truly understand why I was put on this earth. I have moved nine times in my adult life. Everywhere I’ve lived, I had to start over—at work, home, schools for kids, and especially in relationship with others.

The last move was different. This time I was no longer looking to connect simply for the sake of connecting. There was a purpose for connection that was brewing inside me. That purpose became the driving force of my life and remains that way today. In fact, it consumes my thought life, relationships, ministry, and every aspect of what I do, think, and say.

Connecting with others has been a part of my life wherever I have gone. This came from watching my mom over many years meet, talk to, and befriend hundreds of people. At her funeral, I had just about that many tell me “thank you” for allowing my mom to be a part of their lives—how she encouraged them and truly got to know them for who they are.

During my two-year “wilderness” period, there was a realization that over all the moves, restarts, connections, coffee appointments, coaching, lunches, and dinners with people, I was learning the essence of what I believe we are called, or actually commanded, to do by Jesus. Such a simple sentence, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” However, it is one of the most difficult things to live out every day. Let’s face it; relationships are messy. They can be downright frustrating at times, but they are a necessary part of life, and the second most important thing to God.

I am by no means an “expert” in relationship. I am and always will be a student of it. I have watched relationships thrive, survive, and some fall away. There are so many divisions that come between us, and during those two years of struggling with my purpose, it became clear—God has designed, purposed, and prepared me to help others discover what it means to love your neighbor as yourself. I am not perfect at this. As a matter of fact, I struggle—sometimes daily. That is what sparked the writing of this book. I have found there is an art to relationship. For most, it is a lost art, one that can be rediscovered. I would love it if you would join me in discovering The Lost Art of Relationship.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, January 19

Carpe Diem, January 19

Robin is Bookish, January 20

The Becca Files, January 20

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 21

All-of-a-kind Mom, January 22

Creating Romance, January 22

Real World Bible Study, January 23

Mary Hake, January 24

Captive Dreams Window, January 25

Bigreadersite, January 25

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 26

margaret kazmierczak, January 26

Bibliophile Reviews, January 27

Texas Book-aholic, January 28

Just the Write Escape, January 29

A Baker’s Perspective, January 30

Janices book reviews, January 31

Book World ReviewsFebruary 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 1

Giveaway

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To celebrate his tour, Dan is giving away a grand prize of an Echo 2nd Generation Smart Speaker with Alexa!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8d6/the-lost-art-of-relationship-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

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Posted in Bible, Deovtionals, Homeschool Review Crew Posts

Review of “Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women” from Zondervan

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Zondervan has a beautiful new devotional to help your daughter grow in her faith:  Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women.  As the mother of one daughter who is sixteen, I am always on the lookout for devotionals and other books that will help grow my daughter’s faith.  So when I found out about the opportunity to review this devotional, I knew we needed to participate.

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Zondervan provides a variety of Bibles, books, curricula, academic resources, and digital products for more than 80 years.  The company was founded in 1931 by Pat and Bernard Zondervan. According to their website, Zondervan has remained dedicated to producing quality Christian content with integrity, which has allowed sustained growth and has established the company as a revered and reliable source for transformative and inspirational content.”  Harper Collins acquired Zondervan and helped form HarperCollins Christian Publishing.

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Our family has used resources from Zondervan for many years.  Everything we have gotten from them always delivers what we are looking for and expecting from their products, and this devotional did not let us down.  I planned on my daughter and myself doing this devotional together. With three older brothers, I attempt to find devotions for young women that we can do together.  This devotional is meant for young women ages 13-18, but I feel that girls older or younger would also enjoy and benefit from this devotional.  Daughters and mothers definitely will benefit from doing this devotional together.

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This devotional includes Scripture references from the New International Version, which is my only negative thought about this devotional.  I would have preferred them to cite the book in the Bible, Chapter, and Verse and then allowed families to use whatever Bible they prefer to use.  However, my daughter and I just read the verse and devotion in the book and then referred to our King James Version Bibles to reread the Scripture.  I feel this extra step provided our daughter the means for comparing the wording in various Bible translations.

Every devotion features an easy-to-read, timely devotion, which is paired with a Scripture passage about a Biblical girl or woman, such as Ruth, Mary, Esther, Mary or Abigail.  The pages speak about the pressures and changes young ladies face while giving them real-life applications to find and include God in their own lives.

We have found several devotions which spoke to us.  One of them addressed the Proverbs 31 Women and referenced the verse, Proverbs 31:10, which talks about the Proverbs 31 woman having a noble character.  The devotional then discusses the concept of an “ideal” woman.  The devotional does an excellent job of addressing how God has made us all individuals who are perfect in our way in His sight.

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Another one of the topics I was glad to see the devotional address was Abigail’s encounter with David after her husband had treated David with tremendous disrespect.  Day 217 addresses this topic.  The devotional shows how Abigail provided the best she had to offer and offered respect in how she approached him, spoke to him and even provided for David and his men.  The devotional makes it clear how much being respectful can go in an encounter with someone.  Days 218 through 228 continue the story of Abigail before moving to Bathsheba on Day 229.

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You can find Zondervan on social media at the following location

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So if you are looking for a devotional to help a young lady in your life grow in her faith and Biblical knowledge, check out Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women from Zondervan.  If you would like to read a review of this devotional from other members of the Home School Review Crew, click here or on the graphic below.

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Posted in Bible, family, Sundays

Sanctified Sunday – November 4, 2018

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Our family tries to set apart Sundays as a day for our family. However, we have days like today where my husband has be at the Army Reserve Center for what we used to call drill weekends but are now called Battle Assemblies. Plus, we are moving into the realm of our children moving on with their own lives (i.e. our oldest son now has a job), so today he is at work. So the rest of us are left behind. Plus, our 12-passenger van needs some work done to it (which will happen on Wednesday – thankfully). So I do not really want to drive the distance to the church we are currently attending. It is not a very happy van right now. So instead my husband has the van and I am driving our truck to take our son to and from work.

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So for the rest of us, this means a somewhat quiet weekend, well as quiet as it can be when our youngest son is practicing the alto saxophone. This particular child seems to thrive on instruments that are not necessarily quiet, including the alto saxophone and the bass clarinet. Right now, the only quiet instrument he practices is the electric keyboard because he can plug in headphones while practicing.

So I am using my time this morning to do my Bible study, work on blogging, listen to podcasts and work through some courses I am currently enrolled in to help with blogging.

What do you choose to do on Sundays?  I would love to hear from you.

Posted in Bible, Bible Studies, Book Reviews

Review of “30 Days to Understanding the Bible: Unlocking the Scriptures in 15 Minutes a Day” by Max Anders

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As a Christian and as a mother, I recognize the importance of having Bible study reference material on hand that present the Bible in a way that prompts comprehension.  For many years, one of my favorite resources has been 30 Days to Understanding the Bible:  Unlocking the Scriptures in 15 Minutes a Day.  So when I had the opporunity to participate on the launch team for the latest version of this book, I was thrilled with the opportunity.

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Dr. max Anders authored over 25 book including the bestselling 30 Days to Understanding the Bible as well served as the general editor of the 32-volume Holman Bible Commentary series.  Teaching at both the college and seminary level, he also is a veteran pastor.  He provides resoures and discipleship strategies at his website http://www.maxanders.com all to assist people in their spiritual growth.

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Regradless of what you want to learn about the Bible, you will find something to captivate your interest in this book.  Designed to take 15 minutes a day, the material is broke down into manageable size pieces.  The guide is designed to be simple and easy to use.  For over 30 years, this book has bee recommended by both Bible teachers and pastors alike.  This expanded thirtieth anniversary edition includes many features previously removed from the original edition.  It has been restored and updated for the readers of today.

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With tables, charts, fill-in-the-blanks and more, this book provides a wealth of information for those wanting to learn more about the Bible.  I love the length of the lessons and the resources provided.  One of my favorite resources is the 13-week plan  that helps teachers with an effective tool for teaching the Bible in 30 days.  Obviously this book is not meant to be a complete and comprehensive, in-depth study.  However, it does an excellent job of providing a wide scope of information.

The book includes sections on:

  • the Old Testament
  • the New Testament
  • the Great Doctrines of the Bible
  • NanoSummary of the Bible
  • How to Master the Bible So Well that the Bible Masters You
  • Teaching Plan
  • plus Bonus Chapters

The bonus chapters include:

  • A Comparison of the Four Gospels
  • The Parables of Jesus
  • Miracles of the Bible
  • Messianic Prophecies
  • Passover and the Lord’s Supper
  • The Resurrection of Jesus Christ
  • Distinctiveness of Christianity
  • Different Literary Forms in the Bible

These additional sections provide a wealth of information that is worth reading.  This book is perfect for anyone desiring to learn more about the Bible without having to devote hours a day to the process.  With the interactive nature of the book, it provides a great guide for basically people of all ages.  As a homeschooling mother, I feel this book is perfect for both individuals and families alike who want to learn more about the Bible.  So if you are looking for a wonderful resource to help with Bible study, check out this book for yourself.

 

Posted in #write31days, 31 Days of Love, Hope, Joy and Faith, Bible

31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith – Day 31

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So today is the final day of my series – 31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith.  I have enjoyed bringing you these Scriptures for the last month.  I hope you have enjoyed seeing the Scriptures.  Today’s passage is from the book of Philemon.  This passage incorporates both faith and love.

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If you would like to see all my posts in this series, click here.