Author Interview with Sally Michael

For our 30th author inter­view posted on our blog, we inter­viewed Sally Michael, author of God’s Names, God’s PromiseGod’s Prov­i­denceGod’s Wis­dom, and upcom­ing titles: Jesus Is Most Spe­cial (avail­able Sep­tem­ber 22), and God’s Bat­tle (avail­able Octo­ber 27).

  • Ques­tion #1 — Tell us a lit­tle bit about your­self: where you’re from, fam­ily, job, per­sonal inter­ests, unique hob­bies, what do you do in your spare time, etc.

Answer­ing where I am from has always been a dif­fi­cult ques­tion. My father was in the US Navy so we moved quite a bit when I was young—however most of my grow­ing up years were spent in Vir­ginia, Rhode Island, and Ecuador, South America.

I met my hus­band, David, in col­lege. Our older sis­ters were room­mates and think they were respon­si­ble for our rela­tion­ship. But actu­ally, God in His prov­i­dence gets the credit for this match! After our wed­ding, we moved to Min­nesota so David could attend Bethel Sem­i­nary… and for­got to leave until 38 years later. I guess that make up for the many moves dur­ing my younger years! We recently moved to Indi­ana where my hus­band is a pas­tor (children/youth/family) at Col­lege Park Church after serv­ing at Beth­le­hem Bap­tist Church for 27 years. We have two daugh­ters, Amy, who is mar­ried to Gary and has three lovely chil­dren; and Kristi who is a nurse midwife.

I can’t say that I have “unique” hob­bies but I do enjoy handcrafts—mostly cross stitch embroi­dery, quilt­ing, and sewing. Of course, I love to read. When I was grow­ing up, a Fri­day night treat was that we could read in bed as long as we could stay awake! (Among other books, that meant I read most of the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books!) I also enjoy play­ing games—it is a great bond­ing activ­ity for fam­ily and friends.

 

  • Ques­tion #2 — Which writ­ers inspire you?

Hmmm, this will sound strange, but I am inspired by Dr. Seuss. I love the cre­ativ­ity in his books. So many children’s books tap the imag­i­na­tion, such as A House is a House for Me by Mary Ann Hober­man. I also love The Rel­a­tives Came by Cyn­thia Rylant because of the cre­ative way in which she describes ordi­nary life and fam­ily love. How could the imag­i­na­tion not be stretched by read­ing the Bor­row­ers series by Mary Nor­ton? The bor­row­ers are lit­tle peo­ple liv­ing in the walls and floor­boards of the houses of big peo­ple. They sur­vive by bor­row­ing from the “human beans.” Their “bor­row­ings” of postage stamps for pic­tures, glove fin­gers refash­ioned into pants, and match box dressers is a delight­ful use of imag­i­na­tion all clev­erly recorded through rich vocab­u­lary. These enchant­ing children’s books are a sheer delight as I find cre­ativ­ity and imag­i­na­tion an inspir­ing reflec­tion of our Cre­ator God.

 

  • Ques­tion #3 — Did you always enjoy writing?

This will sound strange, but I really don’t enjoy writ­ing. I am a teacher at heart and most specif­i­cally a Bible teacher. I have a pas­sion that chil­dren know Jesus and His Word…and writ­ing is just the medium in which I can dupli­cate my teach­ing and reach a wider audi­ence of children.

 

  • Ques­tion #4 — Do you have a favorite author? Who is it and why?

I couldn’t pos­si­bly pick a “favorite” author so I will just men­tion one author I have found very help­ful for encour­ag­ing me to see the big­ness of God and to grow as a Chris­t­ian– Jerry Bridges. Two of my favorite books of his are Trust­ing God: Even When Life Hurts and The Joy of Fear­ing God. I find his books the­o­log­i­cally sound and very prac­ti­cal. His love for God is obvi­ous and some­what contagious.

 

  • Ques­tion #5 — How do you deal with writer’s block?

This may sound obvi­ous, but I pray. I remind God that He has end­less cre­ativ­ity and never runs out of ideas and I ask Him to give me an idea. He is always faithful…though not always quick!

 

 

David Murray’s “Top 10 Books...” Lists

David Mur­ray is a pro­fes­sor of Old Tes­ta­ment and Prac­ti­cal The­ol­ogy at Puri­tan Reformed The­o­log­i­cal Sem­i­nary, the pas­tor of Grand Rapids Free Reformed Church, and author of Jesus on Every Page. Visit his blog - http://headhearthand.org/blog/. On his blog, he has 15 dif­fer­ent “Top 10 Books” lists. He says, “As I’m often asked for book rec­om­men­da­tions on var­i­ous sub­jects, I decided to put together an online list of my top ten books in var­i­ous cat­e­gories.” Check out the fol­low­ing P&R titles that he includes on his lists.

#2 – The Shep­herd Leader: Achiev­ing Effec­tive Shep­herd­ing in Your Church by Tim­o­thy Z. Witmer

 

#2 – The Enemy Within: Straight Talk About the Power and Defeat of Sin by Kris Lundgaard

 

#2 – Addic­tions: A Ban­quet in the Grave: Find­ing Hope in the Power of the Gospel by Edward T. Welch

#4 – Idols of the Heart: Learn­ing to Long for God Alone by Elyse Fitz­patrick

#7 – Motives: Why Do I Do the Things I Do by Edward T. Welch

#8 – A Fight to the Death: Tak­ing Aim at Sin Within by Wayne A. Mack and Joshua Mack

 

#5 – House­wife The­olo­gian: How the Gospel Inter­rupts the Ordi­nary by Aimee Byrd

 

#5 – The Shadow of Christ in the Law of Moses by Vern S. Poythress

#6 – The Christ of the Covenants by O. Palmer Robertson

#8 – The Unfold­ing Mys­tery (2nd edi­tion): Dis­cov­er­ing Christ in the Old Tes­ta­ment by Edmund P. Clowney

 

#6 – The Preacher and Preach­ing: Reviv­ing the Art edited by Samuel T. Logan Jr.

 

#10 – Defend­ing the Faith: J. Gre­sham Machen and the Cri­sis of Con­ser­v­a­tive Protes­tantism in Mod­ern Amer­ica by D. G. Hart

 

#10 – The Enemy Within: Straight Talk About the Power and Defeat of Sin by Kris Lundgaard

 

#10 – What Is Voca­tion? by Stephen J. Nichols

 

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Our mis­sion is to serve Christ and his church by pro­duc­ing clear, engag­ing, fresh, and insight­ful appli­ca­tions of Reformed theology.

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BOOK HIGHLIGHT — Down, But Not Out by Wayne A. Mack

Down, But Not Out: How to Get Up When Life Knocks You Down by Wayne A. Mack

256 pages | $12.99 | Paper­back | Pub­lished: 2005

Sum­mary: Do cir­cum­stances con­trol you? Do you worry about your next career move? Are you over­worked or miss­ing dead­lines? Are you unsure of the next step? Life is full of prob­lems that can bring us down. As Chris­tians, how­ever, we know that Jesus over­came the world, and by his power at work within us, we can as well. In Down, But Not Out, Wayne Mack brings bib­li­cal coun­sel to peo­ple suf­fer­ing from worry or spir­i­tual burnout—two major prob­lems that knock us down. Other chap­ters treat “down­ers” such as self-pity, dis­con­tent­ment, dis­cour­age­ment, per­plex­ity, and hopelessness.

About the Author:

Wayne Mack lives in Pre­to­ria, South Africa, where he serves as a pastor-elder with his son-in-law and teaches bib­li­cal coun­sel­ing at Strength­en­ing Min­istries Train­ing Insti­tute to pas­tors and aspir­ing pas­tors in the region. He also spends about six weeks in the USA teach­ing at var­i­ous churches. He and his wife, Carol, have four adult chil­dren and numer­ous grandchildren.

What Others Say About This Book:

This book is greatly needed and immensely help­ful. There is a super­nat­ural way to over­power trou­ble, to live in gen­uine con­tent­ment with a deep down peace and an unas­sail­able joy. Every believer can enjoy tri­umph in trou­ble. In fact, that is what God wants for us. Wayne Mack shows us how.” - John MacArthur

“Down but Not Out is writ­ten with the the­o­log­i­cal integrity and bib­li­cal prac­ti­cal­ity that you have come to expect from one of the world’s fore­most Chris­t­ian Coun­selors. This is a book that wor­ri­ers (and those who want to help them) have been wait­ing for.” - Lou Pri­olo

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Our mis­sion is to serve Christ and his church by pro­duc­ing clear, engag­ing, fresh, and insight­ful appli­ca­tions of Reformed theology.

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BOOK HIGHLIGHT — Consider the Lilies by T. M. Moore

Con­sider the Lilies: A Plea for Cre­ational The­ol­ogy by T. M. Moore

232 pages | $16.99 | Paper­back | Pub­lished: 2005

Sum­mary: How can we per­ceive and expe­ri­ence God’s grandeur in cre­ation? What does cre­ation tell us about his plans, pur­poses, truth, or ways? T. M. Moore answers these and other ques­tions in this art­ful intro­duc­tion to cre­ational the­ol­ogy, the dis­cov­ery and cel­e­bra­tion of God’s glory through what he has made. Moore helps us develop the skills and dis­ci­plines for doing the­ol­ogy as we look upon and inter­act with the world around us.

About the Author:

T. M. Moore (BA, Uni­ver­sity of Mis­souri; MDiv and MCE, Reformed The­o­log­i­cal Sem­i­nary) is pas­tor of teach­ing min­istries at Cedar Springs Church in Knoxville, Ten­nessee. He is a fel­low of the Wilber­force Forum and edi­tor of its online jour­nal, Find­ings. His col­umn, Ars Poet­ica, appears on the Break­point Web page, along with his weekly devo­tion­als. Moore is the author of Con­sider the Lilies, I Will Be Your God, and Redeem­ing Pop Cul­ture. His essays, reviews, arti­cles and poetry have appeared in numer­ous jour­nals and peri­od­i­cals. He is a fre­quent speaker at churches, con­fer­ences, and sem­i­nars. He also pur­sued addi­tional stud­ies at the Uni­ver­sity of Wales.

What Others Say About This Book:

In sparkling prose, rich with the­o­log­i­cal and prac­ti­cal insight, T. M. Moore opens our eyes to see the glory of God in the works of his hands. Con­sider the Lilies pro­motes deeper enjoy­ment of cre­ation and higher praise for the Cre­ator.” - Philip Gra­ham Ryken, Pres­i­dent of Wheaton College

Trans­forms the rou­tine notion of ‘gen­eral rev­e­la­tion’ into the invig­o­rat­ing cat­e­gory of ‘cre­ational the­ol­ogy’, and does so with bib­li­cal sub­stance, laser-like clar­ity, nd ener­giz­ing prac­ti­cal­ity. Moore’s use of the poetry of Hop­kins and Cow­per, his reflec­tions on Jonathan Edwards as the patron the­olo­gian of cre­ational the­ol­ogy, plus the book’s God-centeredness make it a delight­ful and nour­ish­ing feast.” - David Nau­gle, Author of World­view: The His­tory of a Concept

Presents the tools and skills needed to engage in ‘cre­ational theology’...orthodox, chal­leng­ing, and refresh­ing.” - David W. Jones

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Our mis­sion is to serve Christ and his church by pro­duc­ing clear, engag­ing, fresh, and insight­ful appli­ca­tions of Reformed theology.

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NEW RELEASE — Hidden in the Gospel by William P. Farley

Hid­den in the Gospel: Truths You For­get to Tell Your­self Every Day

by William P. Farley

128 Pages | $12.99 | Paper­back

Sum­mary: We live with our own thoughts 24/7. Often we are car­ried along by sin­ful think­ing instead of inten­tion­ally speak­ing truth to our­selves. How can we start chang­ing this? How can we live lives that are influ­enced by the gospel moment by moment?

William Far­ley argues that mature Chris­tians solve many spir­i­tual prob­lems in their lives by preach­ing the gospel to them­selves. The gospel is not one event but a story that began before time and stretches into eter­nity. Key moments in this story—such as Jesus’ incar­na­tion, death, res­ur­rec­tion, and ascension—teach us lessons that can be applied to life every sin­gle day. In this user-friendly book, Far­ley shows us how.

About the Author:

William P. Far­ley is the senior pas­tor of Grace Chris­t­ian Fel­low­ship, a non­de­nom­i­na­tional evan­gel­i­cal church in Spokane, Wash­ing­ton. This award-winning author’s writ­ing expe­ri­ence is exten­sive and diver­si­fied. He has pub­lished arti­cles in Dis­ci­ple­ship Jour­nal, Enrich­ment Jour­nal, and Focus on the Fam­ily Mag­a­zine. Bill and his wife, Judy, live in Spokane, Wash­ing­ton. Other books he has writ­ten include: Gospel-Powered Par­ent­ing: How the Gospel Shapes and Trans­forms Par­ent­ing, Gospel-Powered Humil­ity, and Out­ra­geous Mercy: Redis­cov­er­ing the Rad­i­cal Nature of the Cross.

What Others Say About this Book:

Pas­tors would have to engage in very lit­tle coun­sel­ing if Chris­tians would pri­or­i­tize what Bill Far­ley exhorts his read­ers to do. . . . [and this] would trans­form the lives of Chris­tians, their homes, and their churches.” —Don Whit­ney, The South­ern Bap­tist The­o­log­i­cal Sem­i­nary, Louisville, Kentucky

“This small gem of a book pro­vides a joy­ous gospel feast that begins with our elec­tion in Christ before the foun­da­tion of the world and ends with Christ’s new cre­ation. No small thoughts here! This is the recipe for big, expansive, and ever-expanding hearts.” —R. Kent Hughes, Col­lege Church, Wheaton, Illinois

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Our mis­sion is to serve Christ and his church by pro­duc­ing clear, engag­ing, fresh, and insight­ful appli­ca­tions of Reformed theology.

 

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