Announcing Prayers for New Brides!

Prayers for New Brides 3DsmAs the release of Prayers for New Brides has approached, I have found my excitement growing and growing.  Today, it is my pleasure, on behalf of Jennifer O. White and New Leaf Press to be hosting this launch party.  I hope you are having a blast. I have to thank Jennifer for her tireless efforts and presence.  As many of you are aware, over the last few weeks, Jennifer hosted a New Brides study group utilizing the first 15 chapters of the book.  I have had the pleasure to be a part of the group and see the stories of hope and change thanks to this God-inspired book.

I’d also like to take a moment to thank tonight’s sponsors who have generously donated for the event.

ValMarie Paper – His & Hers Marriage Field Journals
Willow Lane Prints – Special Dates Printable
Shabby Abbys Attic - Perfect Marriage and Be Still Inspirational, Distressed-Wood Signs
Erika Dawson – Kindle ebook, Pray Truth:Praying God’s Word for my Husband’s Heart
New Leaf Press – Prayers for New Brides, $20 Amazon Gift Cards, $20 iTunes Gift Cards, and a 3-day, 2-night stay at Chateau on the Lake in Branson, Missouri!

 

Please check out these free Printable Prayers for the Wedding from our amazing author! To keep up with Jennifer and all of the great work she’s doing, subscribe to her blog and get your free chapter of Prayers for New Brides today!

In the meantime, scroll down to get your raffle entries in and then head back over to the party so you don’t miss out on the fun and random giveaways!
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A Call to Battle
You didn’t dog-ear a page in the bride magazine featuring a warrior bride holding a shield in one hand with a sword in the other, did you? Admit it, the only armor you considered buying for your big day contained spandex, padding, and under-wire. 
 Why would you need to wear armor now?
 The fight to become someone’s bride is finally over. It’s all romantic date nights and magnificent dreams come true from here on out — right? And what is so attractive about wearing armor “over” the wedding dress? Nobody you know is pinning that picture on Pinterest!
 Maybe you do have marriage all figured out. You’ve counted the cost of serving one man for the rest of your life and said, “I’m a great giver. I will always want to put him first and submit to him in the scariest of days. That helpmate thing . . . I’ve got that. On his worst day, he will be the one I will want to stand next to.” You know there will be tough times, but they could NEVER compare to how much you want to be with him every single day! And he loves you unconditionally . . . right?
I don’t want to bust your happily-ever-after bubble. But, here’s the truth. Your earthly marriage will NEVER be perfect. There will always be two imperfect humans in your holy union. Say it with me, “I am not perfect and I do not have what it takes to be a perfect wife.” And this guy you married — guaranteed to miss the mark as well. You said “I do” as two sinful (sin-filled) individuals who are on a quest to work out the oneness of marriage. As hard as you both try to love each other completely, you will struggle a bit.
Why? Because until death parts the two of you, the battle between good and evil will follow your relationship. There is a war, and you, my friend, are in it. 
The Bible promises that God’s goodness and mercy will follow you all the days of your life (Psalm 23:6). You are never without the benefit of God’s wild pursuit to guard, guide, and protect you. He is an experienced, victorious warrior and He is fighting for you.
He warns us that Satan is prowling the earth looking for opportunities to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10). Don’t kid yourself. Satan is very aware of you and your marriage. Marriage is one of his favorite targets. The divorce rate is evidence of that. Take two minutes and count the divorces in your family, your neighborhood, and in your church community. Those couples all said “I DO” with intentions to live happily ever after — just like you.
You have to fight to stay married. And I don’t mean fight each other. You are suiting up to fight your own selfish thoughts, expectations, and every social norm that does not honor God and His ways. Discouragement will certainly be knocking at your door. The temptation to give up when things are really hard will knock, and well-meaning people will be there to help you open that door. 
This fight is God’s fight. He is able to successfully defend you, your husband, and your marriage. But he won’t force you to let Him lead the way. It’s your choice to surrender to God’s authority in your marriage.
Thick, invisible walls in my heart kept me from embracing a life and marriage surrendered to God. Layers of fear, doubt, and self-protection kept me running my own life and taking advice from people who had not experienced God’s love and protective nature. All the while, He was standing there waiting for me to see Him loving me, ready to help me, if I would only ask.
My first marriage ended. I pulled the plug because I had not seen God. I had heard about Him my entire life. I talked about Him, taught lessons in Sunday school, lead the Fellowship of Christian Students, and joyfully served Him as a preacher’s wife. But I had not experienced the reality of Him. I did not know God could save my sacred union to Michael. I did not know Jesus as the Savior of marriages.
Within a few years of my second marriage, I found myself crying out to God with a 911 plea for help. And God came to my rescue. Through Bible study and prayer, He revealed Himself to me, nurtured my wounded heart, and helped me to see more of my life from His point of view. Over time, He has convinced me of His faithful love and given me the desire to stay under His leadership. The “help me, Jesus” cries of my heart resulted in extraordinary miracles in my life and greatly affected my now-thriving marriage to David.
I’m a bit of a mother hen. I want to protect you. I want you to be prepared for the war against your marriage. I want you to begin your marriage knowing that God is your “go-to” guru for enjoying your long life together. I want you to see how marriage relates to the gospel of Jesus. I want to encourage you to let Jesus be your model for loving your husband.
This book is what I would share with you if we could sit together for a few hours and talk about marriage. I’ve packed it with how I’ve learned to let God lead me as David’s wife. There are prayer prompts
to guide you in surrendering your way for His ways. And I’m giving you tactical missions, A Wife’s Call to Action, to help you fortify and act on your faith in God.
Your marriage journey can be a light to the world, a city on a hill where people see God. I would love to hear from you and learn from your experiences too. Join me at PrayersforNewBrides.com. But the Lord is faithful. He will establish you and guard you against the evil one (2 Thessalonians 3:3).

Written by April

April

April Keown is a Marketing Coordinator and Social Media Manager for New Leaf Publishing Group. She earned her bachelor’s degree at College of the Ozarks and is in the process of pursuing an MBA through Capella University. Despite being a working mother, she is a huge proponent of home-education and is proud to be affiliated with the NLPG’s mission to spread God’s truth through their Master Books and New Leaf Press imprints. April considers herself to be a walking testimony to the fact that God never stops pursuing His children and that no matter what you walk through, He will bring you out on the other side with a new-found testimony to share!

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About April

April Keown is a Marketing Coordinator and Social Media Manager for New Leaf Publishing Group. She earned her bachelor’s degree at College of the Ozarks and is in the process of pursuing an MBA through Capella University. Despite being a working mother, she is a huge proponent of home-education and is proud to be affiliated with the NLPG’s mission to spread God’s truth through their Master Books and New Leaf Press imprints. April considers herself to be a walking testimony to the fact that God never stops pursuing His children and that no matter what you walk through, He will bring you out on the other side with a new-found testimony to share!