A Warrior’s Faith Book Review and Giveaway

Disclosure: I was given an advance reader’s copy of this book to review by Family Christian.  All opinions are my own.wpid-2015-03-25-16.34.39.jpg.jpeg

Who kept the faith and fought the fight; The glory theirs, the duty ours. – Wallace Bruce

It was with great interest I read “A Warrior’s Faith,” written by Robert Vera, who tells the story of Navy SEAL, Ryan Job.

Ryan was not your typical Navy SEAL. He was physically bigger than most, and put through the ringer from his trainers and teammates. Each rigorous test he encountered and passed was a credit to the true spirit he had deep inside – the desire to succeed and the desire to serve his country. In June of 2005, he completed his Naval Special Warfare Training, and was assigned to SEAL Team 3.

The author, Robert Vera, met Ryan through a mutual friend in June of 2008.

“A Warrior’s Faith” takes readers on the incredible journey of Ryan’s life. A few months before Ryan deployed to Iraq in April of 2006, he met his future wife, Amy. Not only would she become his spouse, but also his key caregiver. Vera’s detailed timeline helps put all the pieces in place, setting up the story to learn how this warrior handled what would forever change him – being shot in the face by enemy sniper fire, leaving him blind.

Ryan was on the same team as Navy SEAL Chris Kyle (American Sniper), and it was Chris that risked being shot to stay by Ryan’s side, alerting the team and radioing for help, “Man down!”

In 2006, Vera had started an endurance training company. After meeting and hitting if off with Ryan, the two of them began training together. Though blind, Ryan had many goals in his life, and didn’t let anything get in his way. The two of them trained, and, a little over a year later, Ryan climbed to the summit of Mt. Rainier, with a group that helps veterans fulfill wishes. That wasn’t the only major physical challenge this highly decorated Navy SEAL accomplished. He went on an elk hunt, continued his education and secured a career. And with each step of the way, Ryan was growing in his faith.

Vera points out the irony of Ryan Job’s name – Vera doesn’t believe in coincidences – and compares some of the struggles in Ryan’s life to Job of the Bible. Not only does Vera detail the obvious physical challenges, but also the personal relationships that Ryan struggled with, and ultimately, over came through his faith in Christ.

As a Christian with family members in service to this nation, I really enjoyed reading “A Warrior’s Faith.” It is very inspirational, and it gives us some insight as to what service members go through to train and defend our nation. The book also shows how faith can change and inspire others. This book is a very fast read – I really couldn’t put it down.

Family Christian is sponsoring a giveaway, so enter below (Rafflecopter link) if you’d like a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to purchase a copy of this book. Or, if you want the book in your hands right away, order a copy by clicking here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

© Lynne Cobb – 2015

Posted in Book Review, Inspiration, Military, My Take on the Subject | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

It must be true. I read it online.

It must be true. I read it online.

It must be true. I read it online.

 “Knowledge is good.” Emil Faber – Faber College – Animal House

This morning, as I was drinking my lemon water (I read online that this is good for you), I started reading all kinds of neat new tricks for every ailment and flaw under the sun. As the last shot of lemon water sent a sour shiver down my spine, I reached for the coffee, and then started my routine of quenching my thirst for knowledge. Continue reading

Posted in DIY, humor, Mid-Life, My Take on the Subject, Stuff I've taught myself | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

From This Day Forward – A Book Review

wpid-2015-02-18-21.25.08.jpg.jpeg

“As God by creation made two of one, so again by marriage He made one of two.”

 Thomas Adams

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this book to review by Family Christian.  All opinions are my own.

About a month ago, a newly-engaged young lady asked my husband and me, “What is the secret to your marriage?”

I was a little taken aback, as we have never been directly asked that before. We’ll celebrate our 32nd anniversary this August, so I guess we may look like “experts in the field.” Continue reading

Posted in Book Review, Faith and Prayer, Family, Marriage, Product Review | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Before Amen – A book review

before amen“If attention deficit disorder applies to prayer, I am afflicted.” Max Lucado – Before Amen

What an honor to review Before Amen, a book by one of my favorite authors, Max Lucado.

One of the reasons I have always enjoyed Max Lucado’s books and devotionals is because he has a talent for writing the most profound messages in such an easy-to-comprehend way. He begins this book by announcing that he is a recovering prayer wimp, and admits that has dozed off while praying. He also admits that his thoughts zig, then zag, then zig again.

Though describing himself, he is also describing me. Continue reading

Posted in Faith and Prayer, IMHO, Inspiration, My Take on the Subject, Product Review | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Does pizza delivery guy deserve $30,000?

walletLast night, I shared this video showing a pizza delivery guy in Massachusetts, who was made to go back to a customer and return $7. There was a misunderstanding as to whether the extra money he collected was his tip, and the treatment he received was beyond rude. To add insult to injury, someone from the dealership posted the exchange online, taking the incident to a personal and humiliating level. Degrading someone for a few laughs on the Internet is, in my opinion, reprehensible. Continue reading

Posted in IMHO, My Take on the Subject | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Why It Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas

Christmas tree

The decorations are up. The baking is done. Candy dishes are filled. Presents are wrapped. It is the eve of the holiday, and yet, all I hear is, “It doesn’t feel like Christmas.”

In our area of the country, there is no snow. Yet. We have a 50-50 chance that we may have a white Christmas if this depressing rain turns to snow. Is that why it doesn’t feel like Christmas? I have lived in places that it never snows, so I don’t think the icy white stuff has anything to do with the feeling.

Our almost 20-year-old son was running out the door yesterday to start his holiday shopping. “It doesn’t feel like Christmas, Mom.”

“I hear you. But, you are not a five-year-old anymore,” I replied.

“Maybe that’s it. See you later.”

Throughout the day, I kept hearing the same sentiment – verbally and over social media. Like it’s an epidemic.

It doesn’t feel like Christmas. And I wondered why.

People change. Life will change. Traditions change.

I thought back to when it felt like Christmas for me. Immediately I was transported to my childhood. Church, Santa, presents under the tree and a magical time in the air. A bit of snow on the ground, my favorite cookies and relatives – that is what Christmas felt like.

As a child, I didn’t have the worries I have today. Christmas just happened. Grown-ups feel things like financial duress, job stress, deployments of loved ones, distance by the miles, divisions with friends and family, the death of dear loved ones – and on and on it goes; not to mention it seems each year the Christmas buying season gets shoved further down our throats. Holiday displays before Halloween, obnoxious, cutesy commercials and pressures of perfect holidays with non-dysfunctional families fill the airwaves. Headlines scream about Black Friday parking lot fights and skipping Thanksgiving dinner in order to shop – no wonder a good portion of adults are jaded.

As a little one, I don’t remember the Vietnam War, the passing of relatives, financial issues, racial tension or family strife. But I know all of that happened. My childhood memories are of endless summers, bike rides, a child-like freedom that I no longer feel as a grown woman. Now an adult, I read daily about wars, death, theft and violence. It’s hard to get excited about a holiday when so many people are in pain – physically, emotionally and spiritually. It’s hard to be excited when people are rude on the road, rude to your face, rude online; just rude in general. On the occasion good news is shared, it doesn’t last long in the headlines or the person doing the good deed is questioned for their motives.

It would be so nice to have one day in the year to truly enjoy peace on Earth, and good will to others. In a world that sees division, death, distance and discord, it would be so refreshing to be five years-old again, and not be burdened by the world. To just be.

Maybe that’s the sentiment. Change is constant – good or bad. We reflect on a time when things seemed to be a bit more simple and happy; when Christmas meant hope, joy, peace and love.

I don’t think it was coincidence that Christ came to earth as a baby. New life means hope. If there is anything this world could use right now, it is hope. And love. And faith.  All things the Babe in the manger represented. Ironically, three things that a child possesses and generously shares.

And I am betting if us grown-ups behaved more like kids and shared a little hope with others, loved a bit more and had a little faith, it would restore those feelings.

May the hope, peace, love and joy of the Christ child let you feel like it’s Christmas again.

© Lynne Cobb – 2014

Posted in Boomers, Faith and Prayer, Family, Military Family | Tagged , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Caring for caregivers

140-book-juggling.imgcache.rev1375741594591.web“I’m pleased to partner with Midlife Boulevard to bring you this important public service information about National Family Caregivers Month.”

As my father’s Alzheimer’s disease progressed, I, along with my siblings and our spouses, began to be more involved with Dad’s caregiving in an effort to help our mom. Dad was prone to wandering and wasn’t sleeping through the night, leaving our mother exhausted. We would take turns watching him so she could get a break or go to her own medical appointments. Additionally, I accompanied my parents to Dad’s doctor appointments, because the input and moral support was a benefit to my mother.

I found the role-reversal of this disease emotionally challenging. The day my dad needed me to help him tie his shoes, I quietly wept while fiddling with the laces. I felt like he was bothered, too, by the fact he couldn’t care for himself. It was if the look on his face said, “I used to do this for you,” similar to the feelings expressed in this video.

It was a very stressful time for me, as I was also caring for my teenage son who had sustained a concussion while playing high school football. In addition to helping my mother and running my son to specialists, I was also working. The stress and time away from work began to take its toll, and I left my job as I was spreading myself too thin.

My circumstances were not unique. According to the AARP’s research, 42 million people in the U.S. are caring for an older relative or friend.

Recognizing the role reversal of children caring for parents, the AARP and the Ad Council have launched new public service advertisements that illustrate how the changing roles of parents and children can really impact one’s life. And since most caregivers are also working and managing their own families at the same time, this highly stressful time can put caregivers at risk for depression and anxiety, illness, premature aging, among other things, plus it can cause financial problems. Throw in the upcoming holiday season, and the combination can be extremely overwhelming. Caring for caregivers is necessary.

AARP offers support and information on their Website, where one can find articles such 10 Tips for Caregivers During the Holidays, the free eBook,  Juggling Work and Caregiving, and much more.

It is no secret that caregivers need support. Even though I wasn’t caring for my dad 24/7, it still was nice to catch a breather and talk to friends who had been there or were currently in the same position. Just having a network of people where I could vent or cry was immensely helpful.

If you are currently caring for a parent or friend, know that you are not alone. Whether you find encouragement online, over the phone or in person over a cup of coffee, it is imperative to find that support. Self-care is vital when caring for loved ones, no matter the circumstance. From one who has been there, I send you the warmest of wishes. Even though it is a difficult time, my prayer is that you will find joy in the fact that you are making a difference in the life of someone you love.

Have you been a caregiver to a parent? How did you handle the role reversal? Feel free to share in the comment section.

© Lynne Cobb – 2014

Posted in Alzheimer's and the family, Boomers, Mid-Life | 4 Comments