"Sometimes while I'm talking to God, He'll show me something about myself in such a way that I have to laugh at my own humanity and how funny I must look to Him." - Donna

Donna...just found your blog...I absolutely love it! And I love your singing! I'm at work right now and it was just exactly what I needed to hear to help me make it through tonight! Thanks for your ministry here!
- Robert

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

The Secret Place

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” - Psalm 91:1

The other night I watched the classic movie, The Secret Garden, made in 1949 and based on the children’s book by Frances Hodgson Burnett, about a sad and troubled girl who finds peace while solving the mystery of a secret garden. Although I don’t remember ever reading that book, the idea of a place to get away has always been my dream. As a child growing up in a tumultuous and stressful home, I imagined a tranquil and beautiful retreat.

In the movie, the filmmakers used Technicolor in key scenes. It was almost breathtaking to go from the dark and brooding atmosphere of black and white film to the shocking array of vibrant colors. I thought of how this compares with the times I really commune with God. I escape from a gray world to talk without interruption to the Master, the Creator of all things lovely and good. Everything becomes more colorful, clearer, authentic. The outside world falls away from view, and I’m left in a place of holiness and peace. I find rest for my weary mind, and the strength to go on. How I long to linger there, resting in the shadow of the Almighty!

Even now, I could use a garden in which to hide. I spend little time alone. My house buzzes with activity with people stopping by, phones jangling, and dogs barking. Most of the time, I enjoy the clamor, but sometimes I could really use a secret place to recharge, talk to God, and be quiet and still long enough to listen when He talks to me.

Will you find a secret place today for prayer and worship? I pray you do, and that you and I both emerge refreshed, anointed, victorious, ready to minister in the way our Master has designed for each of us.

My son recently moved out, and I’m thinking of transforming his room into a place of worship, somewhere in my house I can escape, where no television blares, no radio booms, and no computer hums – my own prayer closet. My own Secret Garden. I know God will meet me there.

Prayer: God, I look forward to our time of Communion. Thank you for the assurance that You are always with me. I praise You! In Jesus Name, I pray. Amen.

Donna J. Shepherd - http://www.donnajshepherd.com/

Friday, June 20, 2008

No More Gunk! Picture Book for Ages 4-8

No More Gunk! is a Double Doozie - two books in one! This book is the first for a new imprint of Guardian Angel Publishing. The Health & Hygiene line features books teaching children about taking care of their bodies.

In No More Gunk! by Donna J. Shepherd, short, playful rhymes and Kevin Scott Collier's humorous illustrations help children learn in a fun way the importance of proper dental hygiene. Tooth Tips encourage children to take care of their teeth.

In the bonus book, Ouch! Sunburn!, Donna J. Shepherd's snappy rhymes, along with the 15 colorful and fun illustrations by Kevin Scott Collier, help children see the need to protect their skin in the sun. Sun Safety Tips in the back of the book reinforce the book's theme.

Click HERE to order directly from Guardian Angel Publishing.

For LIBRARIES, SCHOOLS and INDEPENDENT BOOKSTORES requesting wholesale print books contact: directorders_libraries_schools@guardianangelpublishing.com

BY: Gayle Jacobson-Huset, Assistant Editor
Stories for Children Magazine

"This is a fun "book" to review since it is actually two books in one! Guardian Angel Publishing has come out with their Double Doozie line of books and now has a Health & Hygiene Line.

In NO MORE GUNK, author Donna Shepherd has written a very humorous yet factual storyline on taking good care of your teeth and how to do so, in rhyming prose. Combined with the awesome and very funny artwork of Kevin Scott Collier, this book is quite the attention-getter for your child and will help you to teach him/her good health habits in a really fun way.

I particularly enjoyed the "No More Gunk Tooth Tips" at the end of the story – even the tips rhymed! Good job, Donna! My favorite tip: "They're your teeth, so be the boss. Always take the time to floss."

This was like reading a terrific poem full of FUNNY illustrations that your child will want you to read to them over and over and over! This is a keeper and gets a high five, especially when coupled with a SECOND free book!

OUCH! SUNBURN is also a terrific learning experience for your child, and one that hit home hard to me personally. Back in the age of the dinosaur, aka - when I was a small child, we didn't know much about the dangers of the sun and how it damages your skin, and nobody knew what sunscreen was. I grew up by the ocean, so I was either always at the beach, or at our local pool where I swam competitively. I am blonde and fair-skinned, and I had some whopper sunburns as I grew up. I've been "out of the sun" for 40 years now, but it doesn't matter – I still ended up getting skin cancer from those early exposures as a child.

So, I can tell you firsthand, that everything Donna says in this book is absolutely positively the truth, and I hope its message really hits home to young readers. The charming rhyming prose Donna uses along with Kevin's fun, colorful illustrations, make this book lots of fun for children to learn how to protect their skin from sunburns.

At the end, Donna again gives Ouch! Sunburn Extra Tips, of course, in rhyme. My favorite: "When you're out from ten to two. Play in Shade. Smart Kids do." WHERE WAS THIS BOOK WHEN I WAS GROWING UP? This is a must-have to teach your child safety in the sun at an early age."

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