Sunday, July 30, 2017

Summer Love: A devotional about storms, survival, and The Holy Bible


Barbara Survives Her Storm
A devotional written by Barbara M. Britton

For many years, I taught chapel at an elementary school. What a blessing it was to be able to lead worship and sing with energetic students. One of my favorites songs referred to Matthew 7:24-27, a Bible story about the wise and foolish builder. 
The kids and I would stand tall with our peaked-hand homes built on the rock and then fall to the ground when the song referred to the house built on the sand. The kids knew Jesus was the “Rock” and the best and firmest foundation to build a life upon. I knew this too. But I looked at the scripture a bit closer when I went through the storm of breast cancer.

Breast cancer rocked my world (no pun intended). Long story short, I had two surgeries to remove the cancer. Eventually, I had both my breasts removed. I live as a breast-free woman in today’s world. I discovered I carried a genetic mutation called the BRCA-1. Essentially, I have an open door in my genetic code that ushers in several cancers. When I had my breasts removed, I had my ovaries removed as well. Nothing like instant menopause. Because Jesus is my Savior, and I have an amazing family, and church family, I weathered this storm. My house stood firm on the Rock.

But, after life got back to post-surgery normal, I realized that the storm of cancer left some residual storm damage. I had to wear prosthetics which led to wardrobe issues. My body temperature was out of whack due to menopause, so I didn’t sleep at night. My energy level lagged after radiation. It was then that I looked at Matthew 7 differently. I noticed that the winds that blew and beat against the house built on sand, and leveled it, were the same winds that beat against the house on the rock. The home built on Jesus stood, but that didn’t mean it didn’t have some minor storm damage--a possible shattered window or crumpled siding.

God had saved my life, but it was never going to be the same—until Glory.

Through my cancer treatments came an awareness that people going through the traumas of life sometimes carry some storm damage with them after the strongest winds have died down. The chaos in my life came from cancer, but others deal with chronic illness, or the loss of loved ones, or mental illness, or divorce. The list carries on. We all face our unique “storm” damage.

My novel “Building Benjamin” comes from Judges 19-21 where storm damage abounds. Naomi has lost two brothers in war with the Benjamites. Eliab has lost his mother, brother, and sisters during the same war—but he’s a Benjamite. Can Naomi and Eliab overcome their anger and grief and fall in love? God must heal their hearts and repair the damage of betrayal before they can have their happily-ever-after.

Philippians 4:13 states: “I can do everything through him (Christ) who gives me strength.” 


God will give us the strength to keep on living life after a major storm, but Christians can help repair some of the damage. What can we do as the body of Christ?

Here's a short list:

~Pray for someone who is going through a storm. Send them a card or call to let them know that you are praying for them.

~Bring them a meal or take them out to lunch.

~Listen with understanding. Some storm damage may linger a long time, or may not be made whole until Heaven

~Accept someone’s new limitations. Ask how they are doing.


~Be aware of storm damage.

~Praise the Lord if you don’t have any storm damage!


I am truly grateful that God brought me through my cancer. I have had family members that were not blessed with a cure, but they have the hope of eternal life with Jesus. I thank God that he has given me His strength, and a sense of humor, to deal with my “storm damage.” With my cancer, came a renewed awareness that every day is a gift from God.

What has helped you weather the storms of life? Let’s add to my list on how we can help others with storm damage.

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Author Bio: 
Barbara M. Britton lives in Wisconsin and writes Christian Fiction for teens and adults. 

She has a nutrition degree from Baylor University but loves to dip healthy strawberries in chocolate. 

Barb brings little-known Bible characters to light in her Tribes of Israel series. 

You can find out about Barb’s books on her website, or follow her on FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

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Book blurb for Building BenjaminLove Grows Where God Grafts the Tender Shoot. 

Naomi desires to dance well enough to catch the eye of a wealthy landowner. Her father needs a substantial bride price due to the deaths of her brothers at the hands of the tribe of Benjamin. But when Benjamites raid the Ephraimite feast and capture young girls, Naomi is bound and carried from her home by Eliab, a troubled shepherd who needs a wife.

As Naomi awaits rescue, she finds Eliab has a strong faith in God and a just reason for abducting her. A reason that affects all the tribes of Israel. The future of the tribe of Benjamin hangs in the balance, but if Naomi follows her heart and stays with Eliab to rebuild his lineage, she must forfeit her family and become a traitor to her tribe.

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Buy Barbara's book on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

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Enter this book giveaway contest for your chance to WIN a copy of this book by filling out the entry form on the Rafflecopter widget below: 


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14 comments:

  1. Barbara is a new author to me, and I would love to win a copy of her book. Thanks for the chance to do so. 😊

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    1. Hi, VanG! Barbara is a pretty awesome author! :) Good luck in the book giveaway contest.

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  2. Thanks for joining us, VanG. And thanks for the encouragement Alexis. I'm happy to be here!
    Blessings.

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    1. You're welcome, Barbara! Thanks for being my guest and sharing your survival story! :) God bless you.

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  3. What a lovely testimony. I am always interested in how people overcome their storms and I am so glad to hear that Barbara is still standing! The book seems like an interesting take on building strength and building faith after the storm.

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    1. Hi PhDMama! To God be the glory. My faith and my church family supported me through some rough times. I have been cancer-free for a little over a year. Now, I truly appreciate each and every day. Thanks for joining us.

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  4. I love to read books about people overcoming with God. How do you adjust to your new normal. I also love the blurb for sharing this book.

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    1. Hi Sonnetta,
      I think I'm still adjusting to my new normal. I appreciate the blessings God gives me and I know He'll be with me through the tough times. I'm grateful for the days I have post-cancer.
      Thanks for joining us.

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  5. I know Barb personally and i see the grace of God all over her. She is truly a woman of strength and dignity. A proverbs 31 woman. Even with the storm damage she has been an encouragement to othes and has served others. Barb God bless your writing i look forward to your next writing.

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    1. Aw, thanks Sher. I feel blessed to still be alive. You and I have loved some who have lost their cancer battles. Every day is a gift!
      I'll keep writing as long as God keeps me going.

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  6. I am already following Barbara, so I have looked at her books before and they are on my list to read. I think people who write out of personal experiences, write books that have a wonderful depth to them and minister greatly to others. I definitely look forward to reading Barbara's books.

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    1. Thank you, Becky. I try to make my characters as realistic as possible. Certainly having several years of "experiences" to put into a book helps me get the feelings/internal thought right. I appreciate you stopping by.

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  7. This book sounds awesome and I love that you wrote about this story and that she's a dancer :) I'd love to read it!

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  8. Thank you, charisdancer. Judges 19-21 wasn't an easy story to write about, but I think Naomi's journey turned out pretty well. Naomi is not the best dancer, although she's a trooper. Thanks for joining us.

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