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We're delighted that in September 90 Minutes in Heaven once again made the New York Times best-seller list. It ranked #13 on the print paperback list and #19 on the combined print & e-book list. The ranking reflected sales for the week ending September 12. 
What fun that the two books Cec wrote for Dr. Ben Carson years ago--Gifted Hands and Think Big--are getting such great exposure in the media because of Ben's presidential campaign!
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
This beautifully illustrated gift book uniquely combines spirit-lifting thoughts, comforting prayers, and practical helps for caregivers and loved ones of someone who has cancer.  
"You're a raging hypocrite!" J.B. Perkins shouted at Don Piper as reported in the book and in the film version of 90 Minutes in Heaven. Don was still a hospital patient when J.B. asked, "Can I get something for you?"
No matter what J.B. suggested, Don said no.
That's when he said, "You're a raging hypocrite!" He pointed out that Don had been helpful to others; now they had a chance to do something for him and he wouldn't let them.
Don needed to hear those words. They're also words I need to hear, even though I long ignored them. It's a struggle to say, "I need . . ." or "I'd like . . ." when people want to help.
Part of the reason comes from growing up doing for others and denying my own needs. As a child, I absorbed the message, "Don't ask and you won't be disappointed. You can do it yourself."
The other part troubles me more: I like to assume I'm self-sufficient. If you asked me, I'd deny that; the truth, however, is that I want to see myself as self-reliant and independent.  
At our church, pastor Owen Stepp occasionally asks us to get into groups of three or four with these instructions. "Tell them one thing for which you're thankful and one thing for which you need prayer." The first is easy; the second makes me uncomfortable. I dislike it when he does that, but I also know I need to be forced to express a need and ask for others' prayers.
Just like everybody else, I need to rely on others. That's the single, biggest lesson I'm learning this year.
I am needy. I admit my neediness by asking for and receiving help. (Pinterest)
Personal News
  • October 4, I'll teach an adult Sunday school class and preach at St. Paul UMC, Dahlonega, GA.

  • I'll teach my last conference for 2015, at East Texas Baptist University, Marshall, TX, October 28–31. I'll also speak at various places such as the Rotary Club and the Evangelical Presbyterian Church.

  • December 3–14, I'm giving myself a vacation cruise to Cuba.

  • Looking ahead:  January 3–10, 2016, I'll be a speaker on a cruise to the Eastern Caribbean, called the Book Writing Boot Camp at Sea.
Cec and Twila at AACC
The Twila Zone--Words from My Assistant, Twila Belk
Cec and I were recently in Nashville to have an exhibitor booth at the American Association of Christian Counselors World Conference. While there we connected with a lot of people, made new friends, and saw some old friends.
Katariina Rosenblatt surprised us by flying in just in time for the book signing of Stolen: The True Story of a Sex Trafficking SurvivorWe ran out of books and had many requests for more.
At the AACC conference, we introduced 18 new Murphey's Maxims cards for a total of 24. They were a hit! To see the new designs and other pithy sayings of Cec's, visit the Murphey's Maxims board on my Pinterest account. 
Cec is now a monthly contributer to Book Fun Magazine. To read this month's article, "Just Say No," click on Cec's picture at the Book Fun Magazine site.
Do you live in the Raleigh/Durham/Greensboro area? Are you interested in writing? Cec will present a workshop on November 14 at the Burlington Writers Club meeting. The topic will be "Good, Better, Best: How do you become the best writer you can be?" For more info, contact me and I'll put you in touch with the person in charge. 
On a personal note: I'll speak on the topic of "Laughing at the Days to Come" for the Iron Sharpens Iron Conference for Women in Davenport, Iowa, on October 10. At the end of October, I'll teach at the East Texas Christian Writers Conference in Marshall, Texas, and November 17-18 I'll speak in Peoria and Bloomington, Illinois. And, best of all, I'm expecting my second grandchild within the next few days.
If you're thinking about Christmas and would like a nice gift idea, consider my book Raindrops from Heaven: Gentle Reminders of God's Power, Presence, and Purpose. It's a beautifully designed 366-day devotional.
Below are a few recent pictures. To see more, visit Cec's Facebook pages.
Cec at the Writer to Writer Conference in Murfreesboro, TN
Cec's booth at the AACC Conference in Nashville
Signing copies of Stolen  with Katariina Rosenblatt
With Jim Cress at the AACC Conference
With William Hill at the AACC Conference
With Martin Burks at the AACC Conference
Signing a young reader's edition of 90 Minutes in Heaven for a young reader
Sharing one of his Murphey's Maxims cards with a conferee
With Zelda Council and Johnnie Mae Williams at the AACC Conference
Gotta Tell Somebody, Inc. | 5672 Appleton Road | Bettendorf, IA 52722

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