Sunday Thoughts: Who is God?

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George Washington Carver once said, “Our creator is the same and never changes despite the names given Him by people here and in all parts of the world. Even if we gave Him no name at all, He would still be there.”

I have never understood why people argue about who God is. It does not matter what religion you subscribe to or what name you pin on God. The creator and the universal greater power is the same, God is still God.

When Christians try to put God in a nice neat box and say this God, our God is the only God, they are limiting the very God they claim to be all powerful, all knowing, and omnipresent.

How can an omnipresent God who speaks to each soul in a unique way for that soul go by one name or a name at all? He has no need for a name. God just is.

We Christians say, “God has a plan for your life in His perfect will.” He loves us as individuals. It only stands to reason that each of us will have a personal connection to that power of God and communicate with God in the only way our imperfect minds know how. Naming God is a human construct.

God just is. He exists. Even God himself  said to Moses, “I am” when Moses asked what His name is. The power of creation, spirit and love that is in the universe, in nature, in us is the One True God. What you call this God is insignificant to the fact that you believe in God and embrace love. The fact God exists and that we find a connection through love and we share that love with our fellow living creatures, that is what is important.

I choose Christianity to serve God. It is arrogant of me to assume that my God will not reveal Himself to a person who chooses a different way to connect with Him through their spirit. All connections to God are sacred. I will go as far to say that all other religions that worship one God are worshiping the same true God. The great Spirit, Allah, Yahweh, the Goddess, and others are different connections to God, however, there is still only one God.

I have reconciled this truth with to the part of my faith that says “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know  my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” (John 14: 6-7)  Want proof? The Quran mentions Jesus more often that Mohammad. It doesn’t stop there, I see in other religions that there are other stories of the Messiah. These facts and others appear to make the connections between one God and all religions as a simple truth, there is one God.

I believe that we Christians are making a big mistake by undermining the scope of who God is by saying God isn’t in the other religions and by the way, here is God’s name. We shall call him this. We are molding Him to our image of God, when we should be encouraging others to connect to God in whatever way the spirit is calling them as individuals.

I will continue to search for a closer relationship with God and I encourage you to do the same. Search for God with love and a sincere thirst for truth. The power of God’s Love will find you right where you are, no matter what you call Him.

~Lori O’Gara

Foundation of Belief

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This past week I explained my foundation of belief so what does this have to do with my writing and my novels? I use this foundation, my life foundation, for all my stories and characters. I think all creative people use their values as a starting point for making art. The most authentic art comes from being true to oneself.

I write from love, humanity, respect, peace,and home with an under current of Christianity. I tackle the things that some Christian authors avoid. I address the gritty and ugly that comes with being a human. Then I show how these things in the light of love, respect, peace, and dignity. I have characters who live in such a way that the reader can see the person’s values.

The reason my novels are not classified as Christian Fiction despite the fact that I have Christian themes and strong characters is that I don’t force Christianity out through the words. I let it evolve in the lives of my characters just as it does in the lives of real people. The Perdido Key novels are full of people who learn and grow as they move through life’s chaos and deal with very real situations. My writings have something for everyone and are enjoyed by Christians and non Christians regardless of their beliefs. 

Let me know what you think.

~Lori O’Gara

Believe Home

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I believe in home as a place of peace.

Home. It is a place of contentment and security. Everyone deserves this place. It may be your house, where you grew up or some other place you call home. However, home as a place of peace may not be a place at all, it may be a person. When with your person, you feel the words “I’m home” in your soul. There’s a sense of peace and belonging. This is your place in the world.

~Lori O’Gara

 

 

Believe Respect

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I believe in respect for others and respect for the dignity of every human being.

I believe that every person is precious, that people are more important than things and that everyone deserves respect. I do not have to agree with your values to respect you. I do not have to even like you to respect you. I don’t look at your social statues, your job, your gender or your race. The fact is you are a living soul and I respect you.

~Lori O’Gara

Believe Love

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I believe in love, pure unconditional love.

Unconditional love that is always giving. It is a total commitment to seek your highest best no matter how anyone may respond. This form of love is totally selfless and does not change whether the love given is returned or not. This is the true form of love.

This is not romantic love. It is life saving love. This love feeds the hungry, shelters the cold, loves the unlovable, and concurs hate.  Love every soul on earth with this love.

~Lori O’Gara

Believe Unapologetically

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First statement of belief: As for me, I am unapologetically a Christian.

There is a trend these days of watering down your belief system to be politically correct, to appease society or as not to offend another person. I have never been one to diminish my beliefs to make someone else feel comfortable. I’m a Christian and I will not compromise on the core facts of Christianity.  Those were set by the example of Christ and they are: Love everyone. Serve those who need it most and deserve it least. Forgive. Seek peace. Do not judge. It is really that simple.

As a Christian, I do not write traditional Christian Fiction. I do not sugar coat or skirt around the ugly parts of reality.  I write fiction grounded in real life that quietly reflects the example of Christ. Read my novels, you’ll see what I mean.

~Lori O’Gara

 

Believe

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For those of you who are new here, I am so glad you have found me. I have been asked by a couple of you why is the word Believe on my cover photo. I realize that I have not clarified the reason. Believe is my platform because I believe if you do not take hold of a belief someone will attempt to force one on you. If you take that power from them and stand for what you believe as truth, you are in control of your heart.

For the next few days I will take each one of my statements of belief and expand on them. I will explain my life philosophy. I do not expect you, dear reader, to agree with all of them. I would be honored if you did, however, I realize my way of thinking is not typical Christianity. It is radically different.

As always, thank you for joining me on this revolutionary journey.

~Lori O’Gara

 

Coming November 1st

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What’s the deal with William Porter and that hat? Will he ever find his happy ending? Want to know more about Perdido Key? Just how does that mind trick thing work? Believe in what?

Get answers to these questions and more!  Sign up for Lori’s monthly Newsletter.

You will receive exclusive content including:

  • Sneak peaks and excerpts from future books
  • Indepth character bios and insights
  • Event invitations for members only
  • Publication announcements (before anyone else!)
  • Q & A with the author and special guests

First issue November 1st 2017.

Sign up today and be in the O’Gara Inner Circle!

 

Almost There

The Creative Life

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We are a family of writers, artists and dreamers. As a result, from time to time, other members of the O’Gara Clan will share their creations here with us. My other half Brendan has written an amazing adventure cookbook. This is the first of many stories about a band of travelers. This first book gives us a glimpse in to the personalities of the band of adventures and the places they are exploring. It is a collection of stories and recipes. Think Princess Bride meets the every day gourmet. We will let you know when the release date has been decided.

Gadlin O’Hale’s Fantastic Recipes

BookCoverPreview

Control

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FullSizeRender[700]Life is simple really. It is just a matter of moments and decisions that get you from one moment to the next. Simple. No mystery about it. Just one moment then another and another. You decide what to do in the next moment. You can get brave and plan future moments, most of us do. Then there are the moments that are planned for us one after another after another. Work, school, responsibilities and obligations are just preplanned moments.

Who or what is in control for your moments and thus your life is entirely up to you.

What about God? Will you let God control your next moment?

Each life is nothing but a series of moments that come and go. We live one moment at a time. How we choose to live the next moment is in our control.

What? You don’t believe that? What about obligations when you must do things you do not want to do? Yes, that is in your control too. You choose to participate in what is expected of you or not. You choose what happens. Don’t give me that, you are not in control, life makes you do certain things whether you want to or not.

Wrong!

Did you get up this morning? Yes? You could have stayed in bed. You control what you do, always.

So, stop with the he made you mad and the you have to do this or that. Don’t let me hear you say your boss, parent, spouse, friend made you do……..No, you are in control of every moment of everything in your life.

The only two things you are not in control of are other people’s actions and acts of God. Your reaction to those two things are still in your control.

Say it with me, “I control my reactions to the actions of others and I am in charge of moments in my life one moment at a time.”

Yes you will have to contend with the consequences of your actions; however you choose the action. Rolling the D20 is optional.

Believe in living your life your way.

~Lori O’Gara

You’re Positively Crazy

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71d1362479451069f4721930eda8e144--quotes-about-good-men-great-quotesToday I want to tell you that positive thoughts attract positive things.

I know some of you out there that are saying, “Oh great, here we go with some hokey positive thinking theory….yea yea we’ve heard it all before.” Hang with me a second, you are talking to a fellow skeptic here.

There has been a time or two in my life when I was desperate. Desperate for money.  My checking account looked like old mother Hubbard’s cupboard , it was bare. I don’t mean down to a couple hundred more like less than twenty.  One day in particular I had less that ten bucks to my name, a quarter of a tank of gas and no outlook for improvement.

A friend said, “Think positive. Thank God for what you need and live as if you already have it. Then thank God for what you already have. I promise you positive thinking will improve your situation. Trust me.” After I resisted the urge to call the men in the white coats to take my friend away ha ha…..I decided what do I have to lose?

Me being the skeptic rebel that I am, I prayed and thanked God for an exact amount of money, $40, (didn’t want to be greedy) and a half a tank of gas. Then I went to bed laughing at myself. I know as a Christian God doesn’t work that way. God is not some fairy or genie who grants wishes.

I filled my next day with positive thought.  When something started to go wrong I would not allow myself to think negative about it, I shifted my thinking. All in all it was a good day. No it was an amazing day. I was happy. I didn’t feel the stress that I normally feel when I am in a bad situation. I did not hyper focus on the bad things that could happen. I left the What If monkey in his box.

What made this day amazing? I was broke. I had no money, no gas to get home on from my job. I should have been devastated. I decided to look at what I did have, a job, a family and I was alive. Then I thanked God for it. Did my account amazingly fill with zeros? Nope. Did some magic happen to fix my situation? Well, sort of.

Long story short, I sold three books out of my car in a parking lot, like some literary drug dealer. I took the money and put some gas in the tank. That’s right you guessed it, I had a half a tank of gas and $40 dollars in my pocket at the end of the day.

I was not much better off, but I was better. What did happen is my belief in positive thought and prayer increased that day.  It happened in a way that all the talking my friend did the day before, could not. I learned from experience.

I can’t make you believe that positive thinking works. You have to discover it on your own, living through it. It will get better.  Trust me.

Believe in the power of positive thought.

~Lori O’Gara

 

 

No Ants

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One thing you will hear me talk about monkey chatter. That endless, not always helpful monologue in my brain. We all have monkey chatter and the monkeys have friends. I have struggled for the past year with ANTs, Automatic Negative Thoughts. (I wish I had thought of that acronym. Not sure where it started.) These ANTS are mean little buggers that corrupt happiness with great efficiency. They cause worry and strife where none exist. I had to realize that the ANTs caused problems to appear that were not really there. The more time I spent obsessing over the ANTs the worse I felt.

There had to be a deliberate and purposeful shift in my brain. I took time to examine the ANTs. I dissected them to see what they were made of and it was not pretty. They were made of self-doubt, fear and anxiety. They said things like, “I am not good enough”, “What if…” and “I just know this isn’t going to work out.”

Once I knew what they were and how they operated, I shifted my brain to actively combat the negative thoughts. I would like to say that I did this all on my own; however, I did not. Being loved and being shown that I am beautiful, I am enough, pushed my mind to shift away from the negative thoughts.  It is not easy. It is a constant battle between me and the army of ANTs. I must stop them as soon as I see the first wiggle of a feeler antenna on its head. I splat them dead right then and do not give it a chance to advance. It takes a conscience effort to squash the ANTs and keep them away.

I know that I am loved, wanted and cherished. I also know I am no fool. The ANTs can return any second. I am at peace and I am ready for them. I will not allow the ANTS to infest me again.

Believe in the power of positive thought.

(Coming soon, more on positive thoughts next post.)

~Lori O’Gara

Photo Credit: BuzzFeed.com

Power of One

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As of 10 p.m. tonight, I have written three complete novels. One is published and two have release dates. It is a miracle that I accomplished in less than two years what I was unable to accomplish for many years before. There is one difference. I have the mental support that everyone tells you that you should have but you think you can do it on your own.  Well let me tell you I am proof that with the right person in your corner you can do amazing things.

All it really takes is that one person to have your back. That one person to make sure you eat and get enough rest. That one person to let you cry when the words won’t come. That one person to slap you (figuratively) back into your right mind when you feel sorry for yourself.  That one person who will tolerate your tantrums. That one person to celebrate with you when you reach your goals. That one person to be the strength when you are weak. That one person to be your voice when you have none. That one person to keep the faith. That one person to be proud of you and who lets the world know it. That one person to love you through it all.

Believe in the power of one.

~Lori O’Gara

 

Inspiration

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8c62fdfb94b70ed519b2ac5eaa01a446When I was in my teens and twenties my generation got our inspiration from bumper stickers, t shirts, and posters. The same Hang In There kitten hanging from a tree type quotes are now all over social media. Personally I think they are wonderful. Now, if people reading them would try to implement the positive ones into their lives and ignore the negative ones that would be better.  Inspiration can come from any where. There always seems to be the right words right there at the right time when you need it. If you scroll and you can’t find what you speaks to your inner peace, keep looking it will pop up in a second.

The problem with inspiration is it can be very persuasive and not always in a positive way. For instance, if you find out that your significant other is cheating, you may be inspired by one if the many artistic quotes to give him a Bobbit make over or the groovy Stella silent treatment. Have a little fire scarecrow. (For you whipper snappers, google….it is your friend.) None of those inspirations are very positive and may get you 5-20 in the state’s best accommodations. My advice, leave the vengeance to God and keep scrolling.

Seek inspiration that is positive. Save the quotes that inspire you to be a better person. If you read one and think, wow that is so very true and I can (choose one be/do/aspire to)  that then it is a keeper. If you read one and think, Damn sister I wouldn’t have shared that….then move along Sally.  Either way, use what the good Lord gave you for common sense and be selective. Share the positive…..oh c’mon…..just do it.

Believe in positive inspiration.

Peace out.

~Lori O’Gara

 

 

 

 

 

 

Connections

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The invention of Facebook and other networking sites are a marvelous thing. I think about why people are drawn to such places to begin with. Is it the ambiguous nature about them? We can, if we choose,  hide behind fake names and locations. At first I thought that must be it, the ability to hide from the real world who we are and change to what we want the world to believe we are. Fantasy and smoke screens. The more I observed what was going on with social media and looked at who was using it, it seems that staying anonymous is not why we flock to them.

More and more people are being true to their identities on these sites. Posting real pictures and real parts of their life for all to see. There is a shift from hiding to openness, but controlling who sees the inside of our lives. If someone hurts our feelings we simply delete them from our friend list. If someone is nice to us we add them. We share what we want them to know and keep our secrets to ourselves. I have 300 plus friends on Facebook and know about that many more. I feel emotionally connected to about 1/4 of them and the other 3/4 of them I feel happy to know. I use a real picture of me, but screen what I share very carefully. If  we can still make up things and control what we share, but the big question is why? Why do we find it easy to post who we are, what we really think and feel on a screen?

For me as a Christian and a writer, I love the concept of captive audience. I can share my words and maybe reach someone who I couldn’t actually speak to in real life. That is one reasons I keep a Facebook account. The other reason is the connection to family out-of-town. It’s good for that too.

Let’s not forget that Facebook is public. What we post on there is just as if we said it in a crowded room. If you won’t say it out loud in a room full of 300 people don’t post it…..really, think about it.  It is easy to think that somehow the screen shields us when in reality your friends are more apt to read what you post than to listen to what you say. So remember, if you wouldn’t say it to a person’s face don’t write it on a wall in cyber space where the world can read it.

Believe in connection.

~Lori O’Gara

Write, Write, and Write

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“Writing is easy. All you do is stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” – Gene Fowler

Like many writers I have pieces and parts of stories,  novels, and  poetry. I have scraps of characters, plots and settings all over the place. They are written on scraps of paper and in notes on my computer and in my phone.  Most of which are complete ideas but not completely written. As I work through actually completing a novel I have learned just as much if not more about myself as I am about writing. For instance, did you know that you can procrastinate for several minutes just by staring inside the refrigerator even when you aren’t hungry? Or that If you snuggle your loved one taking a nap is easier than forming sentences?

I have discovered that I am an expert at not writing . I can find other things to do very easily. Not that writing is hard, it isn’t. Writing is the easy part. Writing and still living a normal life is not so easy. You still have to eat, sleep, spend time with family, and work (unless you’re independently wealthy). I like to eat and play. I am not wealthy so I have a job that I love. When I sit down to write writing happens. I manage to consume wine and get words down. The hardest part is getting the time to sit down in the first place.

I found that just making myself sit and write when I have time will get words out and stories will come to fruition. Even if I don’t want to write,  the sitting and writing something, even nonsense, is the best way to start. Once I start writing the stopping is not as difficult.

Believe to do something productive, even if you don’t fee like it.

~Lori O’Gara

Now at Hawsey’s Book Index

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We Will Get There is available at the historic Hawsey’s Book Index located  in Pensacola Florida.  If you find yourself on Navy Blvd headed to Perdido Key on vacation or just to the beach for a day of fun. Stop in to see Dinah and the girls.

If you are looking for a book you can’t seem to find anywhere, Hawsey’s is the place to check. They have new and used, best sellers and classics and everything in between.

Check them out, click here!

 

~Lori O’Gara

 

Love

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What is marriage? Is it a wedding ceremony and a license? Is it a commitment to love honor and obey?

Marriage existed before any government was organized. For thousands of years, people were getting married without a marriage license. Even today, there are some countries that have no governmental recognition of marriage and no legal requirements for marriage. Government endorsement is usually necessary for certain benefits, however. In American history, up to around the 1920’s, there was no such thing as a marriage license. The states invented them as a way to dictate who could and could not get married. Primarily as a way to stop white people from marrying black people. Still no mention of love.

Love is a promise to cherish the other person. You choose to love or not. There are couples who are more devoted to each other without a marriage license than others who have been married for years. It is society that has conditioned us to believe that those who are in committed relationships but are not legally married are somehow not valid partnerships.

Marriage as ordained by God is a spiritual connection that is grounded in faith not government. Faith in God, faith in each other and faith in your choice to be together.  It is not based on the human’s faulty idea of marriage that is a contract and dictated by social norms. It is the choice and promise of commitment to that one other person is what is important. Love and devotion do not require a piece of paper or even a ceremony. Ultimately, that is between the couple and God. Only God knows our true heart (1 John 3:20).

A marriage license is just a piece of paper. If there is no love, no respect, there is no point.

Believe in love.

~Lori O’Gara

 

Love = Inspiration

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I was asked recently what inspires me to write? The first thing that popped in to my head is that people inspire me.  People in all their crazy mixed up emotions. Then after I thought about it, love and compassion inspire me. Not just the existence or demonstration of love but the lack of it. I write about love that is pure without an agenda and I write about pseudo love that has an agenda, mission of greed or need for control in the name of love.

17424734_1464385983580101_3797682253470795205_nLove is actually quite easy, that is if we remove the conditions. You cant make people really love you‚ all you can do is love them with no expectations and no conditions. The strange thing is, what you give comes back. It often isn’t how you thought it would be however it does come back. If you can live with what it really is you will not feel so alone or incomplete.

If I can shine a light on the fact that the giving of pure unconditional love is the answer to most of our  problems, deepest hurts and relationship issues in life, then I will continue to write.

Believe in the radical power of love and here’s a thought, love everyone unconditionaly. Period.

~Lori O’Gara

Home

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One predominant theme in my first novel, We Will Get There, is the idea of Home. It is the concept that home is not just a place but a sense of being safe and loved. How you see home depends on what connects you to happiness and peace.

If home is a place in your life then no other place will do. Home is home, and everywhere else is not-home. Home can be where you keep your stuff, where you sleep or where you grew up. For some people, as they travel  through life, they find their home multiple times in multiple places. For others, home is that place that you leave when you become an adult. It is as unchanging fixed place in time and space.

I want you to think about another place home can be, well not a place but a person. For children home is often the security of their parents. For some adults home is a significant other, spouse or partner. Home is where your heart is happiest, where you feel safe and where you can be your true self. Often that is not a fixed place but the person who makes you feel safe when you are with them.

For Krystal Sabine, home was tied to a place that reminded her of a person. No matter how far she got from that place, she was pulled back.

What is home for you? Is it that place where you sleep at night? Is it the place where you grew up? Or is home that person who knows your heart better than any other?

If you discover that your true home is not a place but the connection you have with the person you love most, you will not be homesick for a place. Where that person is will be home for you. It will bring joy to you when you are with them and longing when you are not.

As we make our way through this life, it is comforting to know that a cozy bed, warm meal, and  loving arms are waiting for us at home. Life is sweetest when you are home no matter if that home is a person or a place or for the lucky ones, both.

Believe in the power of home.

~Lori O’Gara

 

Light

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Create what sets your heart on fire, and it will illuminate the path ahead.~Unknown

Light is what allows us to understand the world we live in. The detection of light is powerful tool for probing the universe. It is through the study of light that we can understand the composition stars light years away or the living cells in us. It is no accident that humans can ‘see’ light. Our language reflects our fascination with light. Isn’t it said in scripture somewhere that after groping in the dark, we see the light and understanding dawns.

To me light is almost a living thing. It embraces us on the outside with visible light and on the inside with knowledge. God is the source of all light. He put the sun and stars in the universe. He gave man the knowledge to create light. He gave us fire and later man harnessed electricity. I know scientists can explain to me that light is a form of radiation. God made the radiation. We can trace all light to Him.

Create what sets your heart on fire. Create your light. Make a difference in this world of shadows. Even when we see shadows in our lives we should be encouraged. Shadows can not exist without light.

Believe in the light of good.

~Lori O’Gara

Listen to Your Heart

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Recently I gave a thirteen-year-old girl the some of best advice I had received. I did not know at the time when I got the advice that I would one day pass it along to someone else, but I did. She needed to hear it. It was perfect timing for what is going on in her life at the exact moment that she needed it. Just as it was perfect advice that I received at the very moment that I needed it. It is the kind of advice that once you hear it is seems so simple you wonder why you didn’t think of it for yourself.

I want to believe that it is a biblical truth and that it is from God. He sent this truth to someone and that someone sent it to me. Now I have passed it on like a mantel of truth to the next generation. I will pass it on again and again as it is needed, because it will be needed again. That is how this advice of truth works.

Here is the catch. Just because someone hears this truth does not mean that they will receive it and will use it. It must be followed exactly for it to work. Like an exact recipe. If you deviate from the truth it will not turn out right. It will fall like a cake with not enough flour in the mix. This truth will fix a multitude of problems. It isn’t a miracle cure. It is not easy to do sometimes, often not. Often it is where the rubber meets the road and the difficult decisions must be made. It is the difference between moving forward and standing still in your pain. It is healing or not.

It sometimes requires you to break before you can bend. If you follow this advice and trust it, it will work out right. It is the cross roads of survival. It is where things happen, good or bad.

What is the truth? What is this advice that will be there when you need it? If I tell you will you promise to use it correctly and share it when the moment presents itself again?
If you said yes, if you agree keep reading if you said no, you do not want that kind of responsibility, stop reading now.

Here it is, here is the advice.

“Listen to your heart. Trust your heart. Your mind will lie to you but your heart will always tell you the truth. It will always tell you what you need. Your heart is always right.”

Easy yet not. Simple yet complicated. Predictable however unfathomable.
Listen to your heart. Always.

Believe what your heart tells you. It will never  steer you wrong.

~ Lori O’Gara

 

 

Would you read it?

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Publishers and readers alike have difficulty placing Lori O’Gara’s novels in one genre. She is a Christian writer who writes about subjects that other Christian writers often avoid. She has no problem tackling drug addiction, sex or other subjects that are often thought of as taboo for Christian writers. “The thing is sex and addiction are real life things that even Christians have to deal with.” she says “Why should we Christian writers be scared to write about it?”

Lori continues by explaining that even though the subjects are often avoided by Christians she will continue to write about real life issues. “We shouldn’t go through life with blinders on. We should face life and deal with it.”

In her first novel, We Will Get There, she writes about alcoholism and pre-marital sex. She does so in such a way that is tasteful, but realistic. She offers two sides of both issues in the way different characters deal with them.

What do you think? Should Christian authors avoid writing about certain sinful subjects?

Let us know by leaving a reply or sending a message through the contact page, link above.

 

Monkey Chatter

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We all have monkey chatter in our brains. It is the constant mental monologue that happens when we are trying to live our lives. Monkey chatter can be and often is negative. We have heard all the self help guru terms, negative self talk, automatic negative thoughts, inner critic and others. It’s enough to make you depressed.  Pour me another cup of that happy juice why don’t ya?

William Porter, from the Perdido Key Novels,  is an exception. He has no monkey chatter. The cowboy from Tennessee has a control over his thoughts. It isn’t something that comes easy to him. He has to work on it.  He shifted his focus to God. As long as he keeps God in his brain and prayer in his fore thought, the monkeys stay in the shadows. Brianna Dario on the other hand is over run with monkeys. She can’t hear God’s still small voice for all the noise. She listens to the monkeys and as a result runs from love.

Controlling the monkey chatter is not easy. I have found that prayer works. Also, having a love in your life that reminds you what is important and what is simply not a priority helps kill the monkeys. Don’t waste your time on things that are not real.

Believe in what is important, keep your focus on what is real and trust love.

~Lori O’Gara

 

 

Trust & Love

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Love is handing another person the weapon that will destroy you and trusting them not to use it. Love and trust go hand in hand. I have learned that even if you know that you will get hurt or suspect that you may get hurt, it is always worth the risk to love.

To trust is a choice. Once someone has broken trust is hard if not impossible to get it back. There are some of us who can’t trust even when there is no reason for the doubt. Trust does not come natural to those people. They will doubt you while loving you. They will keep you at a distance.  It is human nature to protect one’s self. We must keep life in perspective. Remember people are not perfect. You are not perfect. The one you choose to love is not perfect. Trust them anyway. 

Believe in love and choose to trust those who mean the most to you.

~ Lori O’Gara

Believe is a Verb

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To believe is to act. It is not a passive thing to just believe in something. You have to act on that belief.  Before you can act on your beliefs you must have something substantial to believe in and make a commitment to it.

The Latin term notitia means “believing in the data” or the information. It’s an intellectual awareness. You can’t believe in nothing; there has to be content to the belief. Once you have decided what exactly you are going to believe in, you then have to put your trust in that belief. Once you trust something as truth you can act on the truth.

Fiducia refers to the fiduciary commitment. You can’t believe without commitment to your beliefs. Our cowboy, William Porter, who we meet in We Will Get There,  is the embodiment of commitment to a belief in God. He made a promise to God and he honors it because of his loyalty to his chosen belief. The very act of dedicating one’s self to a belief is the first action in believing.

Don’t be one of those people who say, “I believe in…” this or that and then show no devotion to that belief. This type of person’s beliefs are faltering and ever changing. No one trusts a person like that. They are the people who follow the latest trend but never stand for anything real. They are gullible and believe anything that their friends are believing. They are wishy washy and flighty. They bring stress to those around them. They them self’s find it difficult to be at peace.

Decided what it is you will believe in, make a commitment to it and then act in the best interest of that commitment.  Wrap your soul and your life around your beliefs. If it is right your institution will tell you so. If it is wrong you will know that too. Believe in goodness and in what is right.  Be a trust worthy believer.  Believe in what makes your heart happy. Listen to your soul.  Then take that belief and act on it in truth and compassion. Bring peace to your life and to those you love through your commitment of belief.

Believe in commitment to the truth.

~Lori O’Gara

Escape

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How many times have you wanted to escape your life? We hear stories all the time about people who have dropped everything, quit their job and hopped on a train going anywhere. Running for whatever reason to get to something they think is better than what they leave behind. Greener grass on the other side of the fence thing. Sometimes they run to avoid facing a truth that is staring them in the face. In reality unless you are independently wealthy, running isn’t an option for you. I know it isn’t for me.

Other people use things to virtually escape. Drugs, sex and alcohol are the obvious things they use. Now there are video games, social media and other things that serve as perfect escapes. Others use the ostrich method, one of my old favorites. Ignore it and it will go away. Escape, running, hiding all to avoid problems.

The Perdido Key novels are full of people running. Krystal Sabine hides behind OCD and Bloody Marys. Brianna uses sex and runs away on the first flight out of town. Later we will meet other characters who run, medicate and use other ways to escape. (Spoilers!) In the end they learn a similar lesson, among other things, you can’t hide or run from the truth. Ignoring it, running from it, or hiding from truth will not make it go away. It only makes the bad stuff worse. Truth will not leave until it is dealt with or faced in one way or another. 

What are you running from? Maybe it is time to stop running.

Believe that you are strong enough to face whatever truth you are running from, hiding from or ignoring.

Believe in your strength.

~Lori O’Gara

In the Pursuit of Happiness

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In Amlost There the main character Brianna Sabine Dario has the belief that she is not worthy of happiness. Throughout her story we see her pursue it and when she gets close to attaining joyful peace she bolts away.

How many of us can relate to the feeling of not being worthy? We sometimes wallow in the difficult situations in our life because we feel we do not deserve better. We laminate over the sadness and accept it as just how life is meant to be.

This is a device of evil. We can and should embrace the happiness no matter what is happening to us. Even if the world is crashing down on us if we grab that one thing, that one blessing that makes us smile, we will come through the storm succeeding.

Believe that you are worthy and deserve happiness. Fervently pursue it and do not settle for less.

~ Lori O’Gara

In the Weeds

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Now that the first of the Perdido Key Novels is released in to the wild I am pecking away in the weeds at number three, There and Back. In this installment we will see that Mr. William Porter is put to the task to save yet another damsel from an evil force. Mr. Porter doesn’t see himself as a hero, but everyone who knows him would disagree with that.  He is trying to do what is right. Oh my, and that hat. I should give it a name!

The second book is finished and in the hands of my editor J.B. Garner.  OK, I say finished, it is in a decent third draft state, but not finished. Garner and I are about to begin the dissecting surgery of the editing process. In Almost There we jump several years in to the time line and meet a very adult Briana Dario with some interesting drama in her life. You will get a snipet in the epilogue of We Will Get There (WWGT, as I have affectionately started calling it.) So let me know what your impression is of her. I think she is amazing.

As always, I welcome your comments and emails. I respond to them all.

Happy Reading!

Lori O’Gara

 

Look Out For That Hole

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I found this quote on social media. When I read it I shouted, “yes that is it.” That is why I can’t fit my novels and words in a nice neat genre box. It is a struggle that myself and other writers have to contend with every time we sit at the keys to write. We all have stories and words spinning in our souls that we must release in to the world. Often those stories do not line up perfectly with convention. Add to the mix the Christian or other moral values of the writer and the societal narrative can get thread bare and distorted. We, as writers and readers should not allow society to mandate how we reflect the world in writing or in how we choose what we read.

My hope is that with my writing I create a framework to flip reality on it’s head and force ideas that question conventional thought. Yes I am a Christian. My thinking is simple. Jesus was a radical and I believe I can be one too.

Lori O’Gara

We Will Get There has an ISBN

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Publication for Lori’s first novel is getting closer every day. The book titled, We Will Get There has been assigned an ISBN number. The next step is getting a photographer hired for a book cover photo. She is looking for something that reflects the feel of Perdido Key and will stray true to the story.  Though Lori really likes the mocked cover, the photo is not print quality.

What do you think will make for a good cover for We Will Get There? Let us know in the comments.