Thankful Hearts Giveaway: Stephenia H. McGee

November 14, 2016 Christian, giveaway, historical, Stephenia McGee, Thankful Hearts giveaway 129

 

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Welcome to Day 3 of the Thankful Hearts giveaway!  Just as a reminder – You can keep up with all the posts in the giveaway series by clicking on the Thankful Hearts giveaway graphic in the sidebar. More chances to win each day!

Today, I am pleased to bring you some encouraging words from Stephenia McGee, especially for the introverts among us 🙂

I’m an introvert. I spend my days isolated in my office pecking away at a keyboard in control of a collection of imaginary people who do everything I tell them to (well, mostly, anyway). For some reason, words seem to come out of my hands better than they come from my mouth, so I tend to interact with the world through the stories I tell and by way of the large, yet impersonal world of social media.

Then last year my “in control” world of isolated introverted imagination and impersonal interaction was turned upside down and left me instead as simply…inspired. In July of 2015 I herniated a disc in my lower back and after a month of not being able to walk, finally ended up with back surgery. In November I contracted pneumonia and the coughing caused another tear in the same disc. I managed it with therapy in order to make it through the hysterectomy (at age 32) I had to have just after Christmas before finally needing another back surgery this past April.

During all of this, I had an entire series release. I happened to be in the ER the day book two came out, and was very thankful I had set up a preorder and automated distribution. But it was hard. There were times I felt discouraged to the point of giving up. How could I possibly accomplish everything I needed to do when I couldn’t even stay on my feet? For that matter, was it even worth it?

During this time of upheaval, God began teaching me that I was neither isolated nor in control. I received notes from readers telling me they loved my books or were touched by my characters, and it inspired me to keep writing. I had people I’d never met face to face lift up prayers on my behalf and it inspired my heart and made me feel more connected. I loosened my grip on my expectations and it inspired me to lean more on my Heavenly Father and trust what He had in store.

I’m still an introvert, and I still “speak” better with my fingers than my lips. Those things will probably never change. But something more important has. I’ve been encouraged and inspired by so many people who I may never see in person, but will always share a connection with through story. I am so thankful for the readers that took time to send me words of encouragement or let me know they were praying for me. As I gear up for a new year and a new series, I’m learning to be less isolated and more connected, less independent and more dependent on God, and more inspired to let Him lead the depth and direction of my books and to guide them into the hands of such wonderful people.

the-book

One of the books included in the Thankful Hearts giveaway is the first book in Stephenia’s Liberator series, Leveraging Lincoln.

leveraging-lincoln“All we have to do is kidnap their President….”

Four years of war have reduced the South to near annihilation. Homes lay smoldering and men become desperate. Amid the shadows of fear, a clandestine group waits for an opportunity to change the course of history.

Harlot, liar, spy…
On the threshold of losing her plantation, Annabelle Ross finds a cryptic letter on a dying soldier and seizes the opportunity to get out a message of her own. She never dreamed her plan would brand her a suspected spy… or worse, an unwilling conspirator.

Deserter, traitor, accomplice…
When Matthew Daniels’s brother is taken captive, he finds himself caught up in a plot to gain leverage on the Union. The lines are drawn in blood, and the risk is there for the taking. But will his reckless gamble cost him the woman he had determined not to love?

She wants to save her home. He wants to save his brother. Together, they may just save a nation.

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the-author

stephenia-mcgeeStephenia McGee is a wife, mother of two very active little boys, author, and lover of all things historical. Stephenia currently lives in Mississippi with her husband and sons where she writes stories of faith, redemption and life steeped in southern culture.

Connect with Stephenia on her website, on Facebook and Twitter.

giveaway RIMSP

Comment on this post by answering the question below and then head over to the kickoff page to claim the new entry for today!

Question for giveaway entry: Who has inspired you lately?

Tomorrow we’ll hear from Sarah Monzon – plus another chance to win!

Carrie

129 Responses to “Thankful Hearts Giveaway: Stephenia H. McGee”

  1. Debbie Clatterbuck

    Unfortunately, no one has inspired me lately. To be honest, I don’t get out much and spend a lot of time with my nose in a book. However, I guess there was a character in a book I read a while ago that kinda inspired me. She wrote letters to God as a form of prayer. I have since started doing the same thing. It helps me vent and give thanks.

    • Janet Ferguson

      Hi Debbie!
      I just popped in to read Stephenia’s post. (We’ve become friends through writing.) I saw your comment. There are dry times in our lives. Dry like desert dry. I’ve been there. I’m glad you are writing letters to God. I love that you added give thanks to that. I know in difficult times in my family over the last years due to deaths and other disappointments, the song Blessed Be Your Name by Tree 63 came to me. The part where it said, “though I’m found in the desert place… when the darkness closes in… still I will praise Him…” I just pulled it up to listen again whil typing this. It’s so encouraging. Jesus too is called “a man of sorrows.” He understands our hurts and can carry us though. Ann Voskamp also does a study called 1000 gifts also, which goes over the power of finding God’s gifts in the midst of our heartache. Thank you for reminding me of that. My heart will choose to say “Blessed be His Name.”
      Blessings and Hugs and Prayers

  2. Jocelyn

    As I have been reading more fiction, I am finding authors who inspire me. My latest find is Becky Wade. I love how she crafts her stories and defines her characters. As a new writer, I look for authors who are able to fill my mind with the scenes they have laid out. As my taste in good writing has grown, it has become more difficult to read books that leave you hanging. I usually finish the book, but it leaves me hungry for a writer who delivers more depth and content.

    • Carrie

      there are so many authors who inspire me too, Jocelyn! Even just as a reader/blogger.

  3. Anne

    Since I gave been experiencing 4 years of ill health my grandchildren have ebeen inspiring and wonderful.

  4. Andrea Stephens

    As a reader, I’ve been inspired by authors. By their books, their blogs and their newsletters. I’ve been inspired to reach out in that internet world and interact with them and other readers. I’ve been so blessed this year.

  5. Michelle Connell

    After our interesting election last week, I’m optimistic for our country’s future and hopeful we can fix a lot of our problems. So, I guess you could say I’ve been inspired by our president-elect Trump and what he wants to do. Definitely worth giving a chance.

    And in my small world, I’ve been watching some marketing materials/webinars from Amy Collins and Daniel Hall and they’ve inspired me to work harder on my marketing stuff and start sharing about my book. As an introvert also, this will take work for sure!

  6. Rebecca Maney

    Well, reading about Stephenia’s experience was quite inspiring. I too, claim introversion and a tendency to “control”, so I could totally relate. God does seem to have a sense of humor by flipping us out of our comfort zones from time to time.

  7. Winnie Thomas

    Stephenia, I’m so sorry you’ve had such a hard time lately. I hope you’re doing much better now. I’ve read (and left reviews for) your first two books and really enjoyed them–such an interesting, though sad, period in our country’s history. I still need to get Labeling Lincoln, so I can finish the series. I’m looking forward to it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and for being part of this fun giveaway!

    • Stephenia H. McGee

      Thank you, Winnie! I’m so glad you enjoyed them, and thank you so much for leaving a review. I appreciate you taking the time to do so. I am doing much better, thank you for asking. Physical therapy has helped a great deal. While there are still quite a few things I can’t do (no lifting for me!) I have been able to resume a much more normal daily life. God is good.

    • Carrie

      i still need to read this series!! It is definitely on my list!

  8. BHriv

    actually…reviewer/bloggers like Carrie are an inspiration to me! I love reading and encouraging authors and when I read blogs & reviews by great Christian authors I’m inspired to want to try harder in my reviews and in correspondence with authors.
    I remember over this last year plus & how difficult health issues have been for you Stephenia and I’ve prayed for you…hopefully through those rough times you’ve felt His loving arms around you through each moment!

  9. Cindy Shaffer

    I have been reading Hannah Whitall Smith’s book, The God of All Comfort. It has been wonderful and encouraging.

  10. Pam Lunsford

    My mom and my husband are my inspiration. The past 12yrs. I have some bad medical situation that has taken over my life. They keep me going and love me unconditionally and hasn’t given up on me. Friends I thought would be there for me are all gone. But they are here! Plus God is the greatest friend by sending His Son.

    • Stephenia H. McGee

      Pam, it is good to have family that can stick with you and love you through the hard times. And you are right. He is our greatest friend that will never leave or forsake us.

    • Carrie

      You are rich in blessings with your mom and husband – and God <3

  11. ~JJ

    I teach a Ladies Bible Study. The current book we are studying is The Bait of Satan by John Bevere. It has been a wild ride. I’ve taught these ladies (age 30-80 something) for a few years now, and been a part of this group for nine years altogether. I’m inspired by the growth I’m seeing, especially in the last two Bible studies we’ve done. The Holy Spirit deserves all the credit, because I’m learning & growing right along w/the rest of the group.

  12. Janet Ferguson

    This is an inspiring post, Stephenia. I’m sorry you went through all that. I think you do just fine speaking from my limited time with you! Thank you for sharing your heart!

  13. carylkane

    Stephenia, I am so sorry for all that you have gone through. Thank you for being transparent. I know your post will encourage many others. May the Lord continue to pour out His Grace upon you and your family.

    I am inspired by those who trust the Lord during difficult circumstances. They encourage me to do the same.

    • Stephenia H. McGee

      Thank you, Carylkane. He has been gently nudging me to be a bit more open with others, and I believe that is the very reason. Perhaps there is someone out there who can relate, and it points them back to Him. Thank you for your kind words.

  14. Patty

    My husband inspires me! He is such a hard worker and always thinking of everybody else.

  15. Joan Arning

    My pastor. He is part of a group of younger pastors from several denominations. I’m thankful to see them united for our community.

  16. Camilla Cruz Uphaven

    The police women and men who have had self control in the face of violent, ignorant slanderers and bullies, who keep going to do their job even with the mounting risks.

  17. Pam K.

    I know a little first grader who has been living with a brain tumor since the age of two. She has had a really rough time though she is doing pretty well right now. Though the tumor has affected her learning and physical development, she still likes to do things herself. She runs around in her uneven gait, never giving up. She is really an inspiration to me.

    • Carrie

      i know some children like that too – they are indeed inspirations!

  18. Bonnie Roof

    Stephenia, I’m sorry to hear you’ve had so many health issues in the last year +, however, am happy for the inspiration you’ve received, the lessons learned, and your increased dependence on God. I enjoyed your post and pray for your complete recovery. I haven’t read any of your books – would love to become acquainted with your writing, and appreciate your giveaway opportunity. Thank you!!

    I am continually inspired by many friends – all going through such difficult situations right now. Your testimony is an inspiration also, as are the characters in so many of those wonderful Christian Fiction books I read. The prayers from so many friends and family members for my healing are a wonderful inspiration which helps me to stay positive. I am blessed!!

    Blessings to you, Stephenia!!

    • Stephenia H. McGee

      Hi Bonnie! I’m sorry I took so long to respond. I’m afraid I must have missed it somehow. Thank you for your kind words and for your prayers. They are greatly appreciated! I’m glad to be a part of this wonderful event with such great writers. Blessings to you as well!

  19. Jan Hall

    My dad has inspired me lately. He is the most positive person I know. He is legally blind and his health is failing but he is grateful he is not in pain. His faith is strong.

  20. Marilyn

    My sisters. They are always doing great things and being kind no matter the situation.
    Marilyn

  21. Annie JC

    Surprisingly, my niece and nephew. They are so genuine and so honest. Sometimes you just need to hear the words of a child to be encouraged and inspired.

  22. Janice Moore

    My husband has inspired me lately. I have had some unexpected health setbacks and been unable to function much. He has not complained with the extra load to get family life on track, in addition to all else that he does. “Two are stronger than one!”

  23. MH

    All the pastors and their wives I know and have known are inspirational.

  24. Connie Tillman

    My children To have the innocence of the child – and not care what anyone things or you is priceless. We all need to be like children again 🙂

  25. Julie Jobe

    My kiddos, especially my two oldest. My 13 year old has been inspired to go on a mission trip with a local youth group and she is working hard to make it happen. My 12 year old (who is an introvert, by the way :)) has been stepping out of her comfort zone lately to make friends and I’m so proud of her because I know it isn’t always easy for her.

  26. Donna B

    My mom and my best friends are my inspiration besides God. Stephenia is a new author to me. I can definitely relate to your health problems you have had to face. Thankfully we have God to call upon and family and friends who help us.

  27. JACKIE MCNUTT

    I am inspired by the selfless dedication of hospice workers and volunteers.
    They helped me through the illness and passing of my dad and husband in past few years. I will be forever grateful.

  28. Charissa

    My friend who is helping me walk through postpartum issues by helping me with my house!

  29. Lucy Reynolds

    My parents at 86 and 90 continue to inspire me with their Faith in these latter years of failing health.

  30. B Walters

    I don’t think I have been inspired lately. Sometimes I remember a Bible verse and hope the good promise will work for me someday.

    • Carrie

      I am praying that you will experience a fresh wave of inspiration and that the Bible will come alive for you in new ways <3

  31. Heidi Robbins

    I’m inspired by my husband and all the hard work he does for our family and our church congregation (he’s a counselor to our bishop- both unpaid positions, except by God’s blessings!)

  32. Sonnetta Jones

    I am fundraiser for a volunteer trip to Costa Rica for cancer survivors and caregivers and needed to meet my first goal. All week I was praying for money to meet it. The night I was preparing to make up the difference I had some problems so I had to back out. When I tried to make the donation I saw that someone donated what I needed. She is inspiring to me because she will do anything for a friend. She will take pick me up from the airport. She reminds me of God’s sacrificial love.

  33. Becky Smith

    Not only do my husband and kids inspire me when they acknowledge and trust God and His work in their life, but all of these wonderful authors who share a little bit of their heart with the readers. Besides the Bible, books definitely inspire me.

  34. Rachael

    She’s been gone a year and a half, but my grandma still inspires me–she experienced a lot of hardship in 96 years, but her faith only grew stronger through it.

  35. Dana Michael

    Who has inspired me lately? hmmm. I’m not feeling inspired right now. so I feel like I may be in a dessert of some sort. But, I do have close friends who are so precious and encouraging. I know that I can go to them and get inspired. So, I’m gonna say my close friends. 🙂

    • Carrie

      friends are a blessing indeed! Sometimes we do go through those dry spells, don’t we?

  36. Terrill Rosado

    I am continually inspired by my growing children. They’re in their teens now (15 and nearly 18 years) and, not by my hands, but by the Lord’s they are becoming amazingly fun, courageous, and ambitious young adults. I thank God that he is in control. If left to my own devices, I think my kids would be a mess. haha

    • Carrie

      i’m sure you had a lot to do with it too, Terrill – BECAUSE you know that God is in control and because you thank Him for how your kids are turning out 🙂

  37. Karen

    My friend shared a story with me recently about our prophet, Thomas S. Monson. (I’m a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.) When President Monson was working at his job, a gentleman was habitually late to work. They threatened to fire him if he kept arriving late. The next day, he was late again. One man wanted to fire him, but President Monson asked him, “Has anyone even ASKED him why he’s late every day?”

    Now, I’m sure that I completely butchered the retelling of the story. However, it got me thinking about how often we forget to talk to people and ask them why they do the things that they do. So many misunderstandings could be avoided if we tried to get to know people better and to truly understand them, to see them the way that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ do. So I guess you could say that I was inspired by both President Monson and Jesus? 😉

  38. Trixi

    My husband inspires me in some way everyday, to be a better wife & woman of God. He is strong in his faith which has inspired me to rely on that too as I’ve seen God move in that area of his life.

  39. Bekah

    So many people have inspired me lately- like my three sisters, mom and dad, and grandma. Also people who aren’t afraid to stand up for what they believe in, never cowering despite the malicious behaviors of others. Especially the police men and women! There’s so much darkness in this world of ours, yet through everything that’s when we recognize the good the most!

    Stephanie’s words inspired me! I’m also an introvert and tend to isolate myself. This was something I needed to read right now! Thank you!

  40. Rachael Merritt

    My brother has dystonia. He recently got very ill with Staph infection, and has been on medical leave for a long time, yet he is resting in Gods promises that he will provide as he currently has no income. He has been a great encouragement to me and a great example. We live 2,000 miles apart, but we grew up very close. His heart is always looking to help others no matter what his situation.

    • Carrie

      I didn’t realize your brother has dystonia too! Praying for him

      • Rachael Merritt

        Carrie, my sis, two brothers, and my mom all have dystonia. Of the children, I got it the earliest and the worst. My sweet brother, Joshua, got it at 30. It’s been a tough nine years for their family. My mom is the most limited except she lost 30% of her hearing instead of gaining hearing so she isn’t as much a hermit.

          • Rachael Merritt

            Thanks for the prayers. I had deep brain stimulation surgery that controls some of my symptoms. I’m set December 2nd for a battery replacement….all prayers would be appreciated.

        • Carrie

          Oh goodness. I knew your mom had it too but didn’t realize about your other siblings too! Your family is such an inspiration to me!

  41. Kirsten Rinehart

    My mom is my inspiration because she is a mother of 7 and she some how can get everything done while taking care of all 7 children

  42. Kelly Blackwell

    I am inspired by my mom. My mom taught me the importance of family. When my grandmother’s fall unleashed dementia on her, it was my mother who cared for her continually for 13 years. It was heartbreaking and beautiful all at once.

    • Janet Ferguson

      That is a long time. My parents suffered from that, but the worst part was about 4 years. I get the bitter-sweet of it.
      Hugs

    • Carrie

      I agree, Kelly. Watching my mom care for my grandmother through Alzheimer’s inspired me to be a better daughter and just a less selfish person in general

  43. Mallori

    Lately I have been inspired by a coworker of mine. She lost her husband to suicide near the end of August, and I am just in awe of how she is pushing through that and the resulting trials, including raising their two boys by herself with no family near and a huge mortgage on her house.

  44. Melissa Romine

    I’d have to say my husband. He always tells me that I can do things even when I think I can’t. He helps me as well.

  45. Nancy M

    My daughters. Both with how they handle having a chronic diagnosis. And just living their lives for Jesus. They inspire me with their smile, laughter, determination and love!

  46. Beth Erin

    My younger sister who has two littles under 3 and manages to vacuum her big ‘ol house every single day! 🙂 I bumped my sporadic vacuuming up to twice a week 😉

    Thank you for sharing part of your story, Stephania! I look forward to reading your books!

    • Carrie

      Haha! I have zero children and still only vacuum sporadically 😉