Sunday, April 11, 2010

Closing a Posting Site

Hey friends. As much as I like this blog site, I've decided to close it. I'm getting way too many advertisements for sex-toys, offered as comments. Somehow, this particular site doesn't offer protection from these folks.

You'll find that I've continued my adventures at this location:

I hope that you'll just navigate your way there, give me a bookmark and come visit often. I've done pretty well at blogging every Tuesday. Hopefully, that will keep us in close touch, which is the purpose of all blogs everywhere, right?

Join me, won't you?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Serious Consideration

January 21, 2010 by Bette Nordberg

I’ve avoided blogging lately. Most of you know that I have two blog sites, this one, attached to my new website, is new to me. And like most new things, it’s a little intimidating trying to get used to the format and blog tools. I promise to overcome the difficulty.

As for news. The newest book is out; you can find it on store shelves, or buy it at your favorite on-line bookseller. I’ve heard from several that it’s their favorite story yet. Amazing! You know, as a story-parent, you aren’t supposed to have favorites. But I do. And what pleases my readers always surprises me. Apparently this one is a hit. Thanks for the feedback!

If you haven’t read it yet, you can read the early reviews for GENOA BAY at:

As 2009 was ending, I decided to hang out in the New Testament for a while. My love for the OT is deep, and sometimes, I think I get caught in the heady consideration of all things OT. I wonder, does that keep me from living the simple, holy life to which I’ve been called? The NT is full of clear, no-question instructions about living the Jesus-life. Am I avoiding that life by living in my head?

Here is one of the things that struck me. I Timothy 5: 24

“Remember that some people lead sinful lives, and everyone knows they will be judged. Buy there are others whose sin will not be revealed until later. In the same way, everyone knows how much good some people do, but there are others whose good deeds won’t be known until later.”

I think this passage is the exact antithesis of the old adage, “what you see is what you get.” Folks have been faking it for years. As a population, we’re especially good at faking it. Brow lifts, laser resurfacing, breast implants, liposuction — you name it, we’ve done it. We focus on the outside. After all that’s what you see, right?

In some ways Christians are tempted to do the same thing. We focus on looking good. Speaking the language (or in my case, NOT speaking the language). Walking the walk. Talking the talk. Wearing the goods.

We’re not so good at letting the truth get in below the skin.

But the word reminds us that there will come a time when all things will be revealed. For some of us, the genuine, holy, pure life we’ve lived in private will be revealed for all to see. For others of us, all our falsehood will be exposed.

I don’t know about you, but that frightens me. There are things I’d rather you didn’t know. Ways I’ve failed. Ways I struggle. And this scripture makes me think twice about letting these things take root. Some day, it will be there for all to see.

And the opposite is also true. The good deeds done in secret are not lost.

And that, friends, is worth serious consideration.


Sunday, December 13, 2009


Well, I've been busy (Haven't we all? it IS the season, you know!).

I have a new website up, and, except for a glitch on the spry menu (front page of course, smile, ), I'm ready to promote my newest book, along with a contest for a free trip to Genoa Bay. You can view the new look at the old address:

The new book releases January 4th here in the states, (from what I hear). And you can catch a first chapter preview on the new website. Feel free to take a look and see what you think.

I've got hundreds of postcards ready for the mail. And, I'm about to mail the first round of "reader's club" books out to my faithful First Reader's Club.

If you'd like a postcard, leave a comment here. Or, if you'd like to sign up to receive a free book, in exchange for some promotion, contact me via the website. I'll need your snail mail address in order to make that work. But let me know. I have a few extra spots open.

Now for the WORD:
I only have one comment tonight, and that refers to a little phrase I found in 1 Timothy 2:19. "For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result their faith has been shipwrecked."

Remember Paul is one who knows about shipwrecks. He survived one, remember? On his way to Rome, the boat carrying him (and the Roman soldier responsible for Paul) was completely destroyed. Paul and all of the crew members survived. Now THAT's a shipwreck.

And so Paul, this very experienced sailor, gives us this one critical clue as to one way that believers can shipwreck our faith.

Paul blames it on this one decision: the deliberate violation of the conscience. The result? Shipwrecked faith.

We can't blame our shipwrecked faith on the devil. Not on an evil society. Or a bad upbringing. Not on a difficult economic time. Not on hardship, or addiction, or poor parenting.

I know something of boating. I've seen groundings. I've seen folks stuck at the end of an anchor when an outgoing tide leaves the boat high and dry. I've seen boats hit rocks. I've seen boats spring leaks, break parts, burn out engines. But I've never been aboard during a shipwreck.

That's something that every boater tries to avoid. And every believer should try to avoid the shipwreck of our faith.

And as a believer, we can avoid that kind of disaster by paying attention to this one wise admonition. Don't violate your conscience.

Your conscience is your own private GPS system. It's an alarm that tells you when you're getting into shallow water, too near the rocks, or when the weather and conditions are more than your boat can handle.

I believe it is the Holy Spirit's gift to humans (both saved and unsaved), his way of helping us to move toward God and away from disaster.

So. Remember Paul's advice the next time you feel that little tickle in the back of your awareness. When something inside tells you, "don't," then listen. Respond. Move away.

When something inside you whispers, "do," then stop, consider, move deeper into obedience.

Shipwreck avoidance. No one needs to write a book, or teach a class.

If only we could all commit to obeying our conscience!

Tonight, I'm going to commit. Can you?


Monday, November 16, 2009

Back Business

So. Today, questions for you:

Are you a reader? If so, how do you choose what you will read next?

As a reader, how do you think I (an author) could BEST entice you to read my next novel?

I'm in the middle of planning my release promotion for my next fiction, (Genoa Bay, releasing January 2010) and frankly, when I signed up for writing novels, I thought WRITING was all I'd have to do. Turns out, that is wrong. Writing is only a tiny part of the bargain.

Nope. You plan the novel. You research the novel. You write parts of the novel. You sell the novel to a publisher (With the help of your ever supportive and helpful agent). And then, you write the rest of the novel. You edit the novel. You turn the novel in. You edit again. And again. And again. And then you wait.

And then you promote it.

This, it turns out, is the hardest part for me. Promotion is so much outside of my comfort zone.

So. To promote, I speak. I teach. I try to get others to read the novel and to tell friends about it. I write about the process (here, for instance). And then I hope. I pray.

So, my friends. You read what I sometimes write here. What advice do YOU have to give your author friend?

I'm open, really!


Friday, October 30, 2009

Comforting Stuff

We had a great day at Bible Study today.

We've been talking about God's discipline, about our own childhoods, about permissive parents, overly harsh parents, about motives and effects. And in the midst of it all, I find this passage from Isaiah 28 so comforting. . .

"Listen to me; listen as I plead! Does a farmer always plow and never sow? Is he forever cultivating the soil and never planting it? Does he not finally plant his seeds for dill, cumin, wheat, barley and spelt, each in its own section of his land? The farmer knows just what to do, for God has given him understanding. He doesn't thresh all his crops the same way. a heavy sledge is never used on dill; rather it is beaten with a light stick. A threshing wheel is never rolled on cumin, instead it is beaten softly with a flail. Bread grain is easily crushed, so he doesn't keep on pounding it. He threshes it under the wheels of a cart, but he doesn't pulverize it. The LORD almighty is a wonderful teacher and he gives the farmer great wisdom."

Okay, so why does Isaiah include this passage? Is it really about farming? I don't think so. In chapter 27:8 Isaiah says, "Lord we love to obey your laws, our heart's desire is to glorify your name."

I think it's about discipline. And I find some incredible truths in this passage. Let me list them:

1. God plants different crops in different types of soil. He doesn't plan to get the same exact crop out of each of us.

2. There is a season for everything. You don't crush the seed before the plant grows. There is a planting season (sowing) a growing season, and a harvest. THEN, there is a threshing season.

3. The point of the threshing is to get the good stuff OUT -- to separate the good stuff from the waste. It isn't to punish the seed. There is a good motive behind the threshing.

4. God uses no more force than is necessary as he brings out the good from the bad. I can expect him to discern how much I can stand, and to bring the good out tenderly, without bruising or hurting me.

5. As there are different things harvested from different crops (believers) there are also different threshings for the different crops. Thus, my threshing (discipline) won't look exactly like every one else. Mine will be custom chosen.

6. My father, my Daddy God, who gives wisdom to the farmer, has an infinite supply of wisdom. He will know EXACTLY how to get the good stuff out of my life.

It comforts me to know that my Daddy God doesn't act in anger. He doesn't have any motive except to bring out the good harvest in my life. He won't over do it, won't hurt me in the process.

Daddy disciplines with wisdom, keeping the end in mind, always aware of the fragility of the crop he is working with.

What a good Daddy we serve!

Has he disciplined you lately? How? How did you respond?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

True Confessions

So, occasionally, I teach Bible Studies.

This fall, I'm teaching one that I've written, called "A Daddy You Can Trust." It's hard for me, to write a study all week (that belongs later in the quarter), and then get one day to prepare a session for my students. Takes a lot of energy. A lot of concentration, and perseverance.

Anyway, lately the Holy Spirit has been reminding me of these words, found in Ezekiel. "Son of man, let all my words sink deep into your own heart first. Listen to them carefully for yourself. Then go to your people in exile and say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign Lord Says!' Do this whether they listen or not." (Ez 3:10-11)

In the passage, the Spirit is reminding the old prophet that all teaching begins at home.

A tough lesson. A hard lesson. He's not so much demanding perfect behavior of teachers, as God is demanding that teachers take his words to heart. That we consider our own lives in light of what we know. That we stay open to God's correction and guidance.

So, last week in my teaching time, I confessed that I have a prejudice. Probably not a prejudice that anyone would be able to identify, looking at my life. But a prejudice just the same. And I realized that God doesn't like it, this preconceived notion floating around in my brain, taking root, and bringing forth bad fruit.

So. I confess to you. I need God to cleanse me, to heal me, to free me of this silly, wrong attitude of mine. I need to see all people as he does.

I can't do it without his help. But then, he's already helped. He spotted it. He called it to my attention. He helped me to repent. And now, he'll help me grow out of it. He'll help me to choose another way.

God is good, isn't he? And the next time you think of YOUR teacher, remember to pray for them, won't you? They, like Ezekiel, like me, like Beth Moore, Chuck Swindoll, Max Lucado and hundreds of thousands of other teachers all over the world need God to bring the words home first.

God help us all to let YOUR word sink deep into our hearts, so that we can listen carefully for ourselves, whether others listen, or not.

How about you? Do you find yourself ready to dish the word out before it changes your own life? What are you doing about that?


Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Last night I couldn't sleep.

You see I'm teaching a Bible Study on Friday morning, and I have to figure out how to bring the lesson to my students in a way that it matters. That's the question we should all be asking every time we look at the word.

So what?

For instance, I'm reading in Exodus. And I read these kinds of stories, one after another. God leads his people from Egypt through the wilderness to the promise land, not the easy way, not the direct route, but the long way. Then, when Egyptian enemies come chasing after them, God miraculously drowns the bad guys. But just two chapters later, when the Amalakites come after them, these poor guys find themselves on a battle field for the first time in their collective memory. They have to beat them the old fashioned way. The hard way. (though yes, God helps them)

So I find myself trying to make sense of God's work with his people. Is He a long-way God? Is he occasionally miraculous? Does he want us to work for our own victories -- sometimes? Confusing isn't it?

And here is my breathtakingly brilliant conclusion:

God is incomprehensible.

We don't understand what He is doing. His ways are beyond us. His thoughts are deeper, truer, wiser than ours.

But in the midst of our confusion, we do know one thing. God is NOT random. While WE may not always know WHY he does what he does, we know that HE DOES KNOW.

In the crazy examples above, each one comes with an explanation. They went the long way because God thought the direct way would bring them to a battle they weren't prepared to win (the Philistines). He led them through the Red Sea, because God wanted the people to fear the LORD and to put their faith in Him and his servant Moses (verse 14:31) and they fought the Amalakites because God wanted to demonstrate his opposition to those who "raise their fist against the LORD's throne."

He had his reasons.

So what? Well, it pertains to the Sunday School word we use all the time when we describe God. We call him incomprehensible. Beyond our understanding. Yes. But God understands. He has reasons. Plans. Purposes. They are beyond us, yes. But not beyond Him.

He reasons. He plans. He works. He acts. He responds. We don't always understand it. But we don't have to.

When we know God's character, we can rest in his HEART for us and trust that his reasons, plans and purposes are good. Like He is.

That's faith, isn't it?