Contemporary Christian Fiction discussion

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Side-Read Discussions > A Beggars Purse/Spoilers

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message 1: by Teric (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Count me in.

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message 2: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments well, obviously...


message 3: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (lv2scpbk) | 56 comments Yes, I would like to be included. I've been wanting to read this one.


message 4: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Stephan (amandastephan) | 140 comments Yes, please :)


message 5: by Teric (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Sounds good, Trish. If you post it (official date), we will come!


message 6: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Sounds great, Trish! I'm posting the date on my calendar. :) I have a ministry meeting scheduled for noon but I will participate as my calendar allows!


message 7: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (lv2scpbk) | 56 comments Sounds like a good start date.


message 8: by Teric (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments I've been looking forward to this discussion pertaining to A Beggars Purse!

Just an initial thought: One of the things that I enjoyed about it, Toni, was your easygoing style of storytelling. The vivid pictures you painted, about staying with your grandparents and the hobos from the trains, took me back in time to walking upon the train tracks alongside the Missouri River with my Pa. I would pick up chunks of coal that fell out of the coal cars to see if they had any fool's gold on them, as they often did. It's pretty neat how word got around about your grandparents' house being "hobo-friendly"... pretty neat how they knew, after a period of time, to look for the special mark alongside their house.

Was there ever a time when one seemed unfriendly?


message 9: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Okay, I know, I know, I'm late. You don't have to beat me up, I'm really good at doing that myself...
Trish, Winter Jam sounds amazing. My youngest son has performed at the Cornerstone Christian Festival the last two years. The festival is in Bushnell, Illinois and lasts for six days!
Teric, This book was a fun write for me as it brought back many childhood experiences. When it comes to storytelling, my family never hesitates to ask me, "Is this going to be the long or short version?" Now, who would do that to their mother? lol
In regards to the mark left on the door jamb by the hobos, I have done some research and recently found out that if the hobos drew a picture of a cat on the premises, it meant that a kindhearted woman lived there. Unfortunately, I do not remember what the special mark was but I would like to believe that it was a cat.
As far as anyone being unfriendly, I was so young, I don't remember. I do remember my favorite hobo, Casey. He told me so many funny stories like the time the wind blew so hard that it blew his hair right off of his head! He even played hopscotch with me a few times. I have met my share of unfriendly homeless people, especially when they ask for money and they realize I'm willing to purchase them food but not give them money. Have you ever been approached by a homeless person? If so, how did you respond?


message 10: by Teric (last edited Jan 17, 2011 11:02AM) (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Hey Toni,

See, I enjoyed the story about Casey right there! I have been approached by a homeless person before. Sometimes, I have approached them. Usually, some stand on a street corner with a sign. I have given them food before- which is what I prefer to do. Sometimes I give them money. I know that some people may think, "Well, what if they take that money and buy liquor or drugs with it?" My response: "So what if they do?" When I am able to give, I am giving it to the Lord, not necessarily to the person. That is between them and The Almighty, if they choose to spend it unwisely. That is my opinion, anyway. But I prefer to give them food, if possible.


message 11: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments I agree with you, Kent. I rarely give the homeless money but who am I to judge what they do with it when it leaves my hands. I recently read a post that was titled something like this... God does not judge a man before he dies, so why do we? Ouch!
Today, I would like to bring up chapter 5, A Middle School Dream. I was a chubby little girl until I hit my high school years. Looking back over those years, I had many embarrassing moments. One incident that comes to mind that is not mentioned in my book was a shopping excursion with my grandma, Kathryn. We would frequent a beautiful clothing store located twelve miles north of our home town to purchase my clothes. Not because we were wealthy by any means but due to the fact that regular sized clothing would not fit my ever increasing waistline! Upon arriving to the boutique, I made a mad dash for the toy department and my grandma made a beeline run in the direction of the clothing department. Once she had located the sales rep., she did not walk over to retrieve me from the toy section but her voice echoed out in her Southern twang for everyone to hear, "Tonia Kay, come on over here and take a look at the new Chubbetts! OMG! Are you laughing?
The positive side to this shopping excursion was that my grandma would never let me select a toy from the store but I was always allowed to select a book from the "classic" bookshelf. I would have been a lonely little girl had it not been for my love of reading and my friends, the hobos. Do you recall a most embarrassing moment or have you ever felt like an outcast?


message 12: by Teric (last edited Jan 18, 2011 08:19AM) (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Have I ever felt like an outcast... LOL! I am the Dark Horse!

A really embarrassing moment: When I was in college, there was this one girl that I always kinda had a crush on. Our dorms were not co-ed, but this was visitor's day at the college, one out of about two days that the dorms were co-ed. My best friend/dorm mate and I had finished eating a supreme pizza only a few moments ago, when in walks this beautiful lady that sorta made me melt. So what did I do? I tried to play it cool. I leaned up against the wall and was trying to tap into my best bravado, all the while flashing a smile like a Cheshire cat. After conversing, she went on her way to investigate other rooms, and I strutted over to my mirror like a banty rooster, puffed up a bit, thinking all went well. I grinned at myself, and then I noticed the anomaly: there was something askew about my teeth. I edged in for a closer look at a very peculiar, dark-looking curiosity between my two front teeth. "What in the world?" I thought. Zooming in closer, I was mortified: I had a huge piece of black olive, left over from that supreme pizza, stuck smack-dab in the middle of my two front choppers... I'm sure that spunky little lady witnessed the eyesore in all of its brilliant glory! That puffed up feeling inside of my chest was deflated quickly!

Toni- I wish you'd craft another book chock full of those stories of yours. You have a wonderfully intriguing and relaxing style of storytelling!


message 13: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Stephan (amandastephan) | 140 comments Toni wrote: "I agree with you, Kent. I rarely give the homeless money but who am I to judge what they do with it when it leaves my hands. I recently read a post that was titled something like this... God does..."

Chubbetts? Too funny!


message 14: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Stephan (amandastephan) | 140 comments And, pertaining to your question about feeling like an outcast. All too often! :) Embarrassing moment - let me see. I play the piano for church, and I turned to the page the song leader had announced. Of course, no hymn is just started, but feeling that extra spurt of creativity, I played an EXTRA LONG intro....

to the wrong song.
My face turned four shades of red and I laughed like a hyena.
This is just one moment out of MANY


message 15: by Ellen (new)

Ellen Maze (ellenmaze) | 70 comments I am popping in to say that I have read A BEGGAR'S PURSE and I loved it. I have a heart for the poor and downtrodden, and I can really identify with Toni's urgent spirit in this arena. I am also a smiley person (as she admittedly is as well)...so we were made to be friends!

Now...what are ya'll yammering about up there, Kent? LOL


message 16: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (lv2scpbk) | 56 comments Trish, I'm just going to be starting it also. I've been trying not to read too much on it so I don't know what's happening.


message 17: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Since I have a tendency to pop in and out of our group discussion, I am going to jump on over to chapter 8, BELIEVE IT OR NOT. This is the chapter where I finally listen to God's voice. I could not believe what he was asking me to do. As I stood like a pillar of salt in the parking lot, I finally made a deal with God, "All right, I'll do it, but you better take care of me." Was God speaking to me or was I making all this up in my head? Once I said, "Yes" the feeling of anxiousness and fear disappeared. I would love to hear of any experiences where God has asked you to step out of your comfort zone. How did you feel? Did you strike a deal with God?


message 18: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Teric wrote: "Have I ever felt like an outcast... LOL! I am the Dark Horse!

A really embarrassing moment: When I was in college, there was this one girl that I always kinda had a crush on. Our dorms were not..."

I told my husband your "outcast story" and he laughed so hard, I thought he might fall over!


message 19: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Amanda wrote: "And, pertaining to your question about feeling like an outcast. All too often! :) Embarrassing moment - let me see. I play the piano for church, and I turned to the page the song leader had announc..."

Only you, Amanda! Only you...


message 20: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Stephan (amandastephan) | 140 comments Sheesh, you should have seen my face! I thought the hyena part added a nice touch though. hehehehehe! I dearly LOVE a good laugh! :)


message 21: by Teric (last edited Jan 24, 2011 06:41PM) (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Toni said: "I would love to hear of any experiences where God has asked you to step out of your comfort zone. How did you feel? Did you strike a deal with God?"

I've been thinking about this one, Toni. Here is what is at the forefront of my mind at the moment: I used to be in a Christian rock band called Narrow Road (if anyone looks that name up today, all they will find are a bunch of Southern Gospel bands... our band never made any videos, and our websites have all been deleted or bricked up).

Anyway, Narrow Road: We will be getting together this year and celebrating our "20th Reunion" with a single gig, as this marks the 20th year since Narrow Road had its origin, back in 1991.

Our band started out playing heavy rock... we were young back then, much of the music was cheesy by today's standards, but the funny thing was, we were unabashed in sharing The Message. We would also have altar calls at the end of our concerts.

As the years progressed, our music style began to change a bit, and morphed into a Jars of Clay type sound, or, as a secular counterpart, a Hootie and the Blowfish type sound. Our popularity increased, but as our popularity increased, and we were granted the opportunity to play in some pretty neat places that very few "Christian" bands were allowed into at the time, our message decreased. When I was playing in a church or Christian venue, it was easy for me to speak about The Lord. When I was playing in a secular place, I tended to water down the message.

I know that I failed my Father back then. I am sorry. I have repented. Instead of stepping out of my comfort zone, I stepped into it. At the time, my heart (I don't have the right to speak for the others in the band; I can only account for my heart) was not in the right place, and the Lord could no longer use me, as I was not a faithful servant. My fruit wasn't good.

I am thankful that my Father is faithful, even when I have been faithless. I was younger then; I am older and, by the grace of The Almighty, a bit wiser now. I am not ashamed of the saving message- the Good News- of The Lord, Jesus the Christ (Yeshua ha Mashiach). I will never be perfect while trapped in this mortal body, but my heart is bent toward pleasing my Father. As a result, He has and is restoring the time back to me that I once gave to the locusts.

I am pleased to say that my old bandmates and I will be having a 20th year reunion gig this year (Lord willing); it will more than likely be in a public, secular venue, and I will be sharing the Good News, under the Lordship of the Holy Spirit.

As far as deals go: I feel that, correction, I DO have a responsibility to share The Word within my written works. The genre that I predominantly write in: thriller, and a dash of horror (U-TURN KiLLuR), is typically a dark realm. Situations are dark, atmospheres are dark, and characters are dark. I try to paint an accurate picture- a believable picture- of what darkness is... and what darkness, evil, reaps. God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. My stories contain grit and bite- especially U-TURN KiLLuR- but I promised The Father that the Truth, the Life, His message would always be displayed unabashedly. The Truth would be presented... Jesus is the Way, Truth, and Life... and the Truth will set a soul free. And if the Son sets one free, they are then truly free! That is my message. I am not ashamed of the Good News- the Gospel of the Lord Jesus, the Christ. The King always wins, for after all, "IT - IS - FINISHED!"

I think that's why my posts might be a bit long winded- I remember what The Lord has delivered me from; my heart is grateful.

Amen.

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message 22: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Teric wrote: "Toni said: "I would love to hear of any experiences where God has asked you to step out of your comfort zone. How did you feel? Did you strike a deal with God?"

I've been thinking about this one,..."


I thoroughly enjoy your long winded posts, Kent. Reminds me of the scripture verse in Matthew, "But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven. Matthew 10:33. There isn't one of us who has not sinned. I too in my younger years at times avoided edifying my Savior to be cool or fit in with my peers. As we grow in Him and in wisdom, He reminds us of those times and also that all we have to do is to ask Him to forgive us. Just to come to Him as a child and know we are forgiven. It sounds so simple and yet WE are the one's who have a hard time forgiving ourselves.
Talk about restoration, I'm sure there is a reason why God is allowing you to unite with your band mates!
I hope to see a long winded post when that happens. :)


message 23: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Today, I am going to conclude our side read of "A Beggars Purse." As Christians, the majority of us do not believe in coincidences but I have received many comments regarding the last chapter of my book, GO AHEAD, CALL IT COINCIDENCE. In this last chapter, I depart for work one morning with that gut feeling that something is not quite right at home. "Did I leave the water faucet running in the bathroom? Did I leave the iron on? Did I lock the front and back doors? Did I remember to close the garage door?" Don't deny it, you have all felt the same way at some time in your life. To all of you out there in cyberspace, I am not going to write about what transpired that day, as I encourage all of you to read my memoir. The memory of that day ran from the gamut of gut wrenching, to disbelief. For me, it was a day of miracles and restoration of one's belief in mankind. Even though my book is non-fiction, I would like to thank Trish for promoting this side read and for continuing to support all the authors in the Contemporary Christian Fiction group.


message 24: by Amanda (new)

Amanda Stephan (amandastephan) | 140 comments A day of miracles, indeed! Thank you for the side-read and chat. And, thanks Trish, for all you do for us!


message 25: by Teric (new)

Teric Darken (tericdarken) | 144 comments Toni, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. You set a wonderful example by bearing much fruit. I have been blessed by reading your book. Thank you for sharing.

And by the way, I was standing in line at a store the other day and thought of you... The guy standing in front of me was wearing a baseball cap. Embroidered on the back of the cap:

As iron sharpens iron!

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message 26: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Teric wrote: "Toni, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. You set a wonderful example by bearing much fruit. I have been blessed by reading your book. Thank you for sharing.

And by the way, I was stand..."


Every time I see that now, I will think of a good and godly man. Godspeed, my friend!


message 27: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (lv2scpbk) | 56 comments I got done reading the book today. Although, I didn't know it was such a short book but it does make you think about how you judge other people. I did like the statement about hobo's are someone's father, brother, uncle. I went to Las Vegas a few years ago and you see homeless all over the peer. I would get up early to take a walk in the morning and leave them some fruit laying beside them when they were sleeping on the sidewalk or a bench.


message 28: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Barb wrote: "I got done reading the book today. Although, I didn't know it was such a short book but it does make you think about how you judge other people. I did like the statement about hobo's are someone's ..."

Thank you for the review, Barb. I spent seventeen years in Las Vegas and everyday, I met a new homeless person. Let us all remember that every homeless person has a name and a story.


message 29: by Toni (new)

Toni Nelson (goodreadscomtoninelson) | 55 comments Trish wrote: "Great discussion my friends!

Toni, your book is amazing! I have to say that it's a difficult topic for me on so many levels!

This morning I was thinking about the first time I walked passe..."

Thank you, Trish for such a heartwarming response. I started a ministry called "Sock It To Me" where I distribute of all things, socks! Unlike a jacket or coat that has been worn before or a used blanket, I distribute new packages of socks. Not only do the socks bring warmth in the winter but a smile to a face because they are receiving something "brand new." I'm sure your knitted items are received in the same manner. I recently received an email from a person in Iran who has also started a sock drive!


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