Sometimes, I have trouble keeping my attention on things. My mind often is traveling around a million miles an hour, flitting on one thing and then another. And that doesn’t even begin to address the busyness of life and all the things I seem to always need to be doing!
Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
I’ve actually found that it helps me to focus if I take notes, even when they aren’t necessary. I take advantage of this knowledge at church, mostly, to keep me focused on the message. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t write down every word that the pastor says, but I do normally fill at least a page and a half with notes, often two pages.
Would it be bad, or even wrong, if something my pastor said triggered my thoughts to ponder more closely the scriptures? Absolutely not! Yet in case my busy mind is desiring to chase rabbit trails that are much less profitable, I scribble away and listen.
Do you have anything in particular you do to help you to focus?
Under the Midnight Sun
by Tracie Peterson, Kimberley Woodhouse
Series: The Heart of Alaska #3
Published by Bethany House Publishers
Publication Date January 1, 2019
Genres: Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction, Clean Romance
Setting: Alaska Roaring Twenties - US - 1920-1929
Main Character Ages: 18-24
Written for: Adults
Tayler Hale is ahead of her time as one of the first women naturalists. She has always loved adventure and the great outdoors, and her remote job location also helps keep her away from the clutches of the man to whom she once made a foolish promise. It seems she must keep running, however, and in secret, her boss from Yellowstone arranges for a new job . . . in Alaska.
The popular Curry Hotel continues to thrive in 1929 as more visitors come to Alaska and venture into the massive national park surrounding Denali. Recent graduate Thomas Smith has returned to the hotel and the people he considers family. But when a woman naturalist comes to fill the open position and he must work with her, everything becomes complicated.
The summer brings unexpected guests and trouble to Curry. With his reputation at stake, will Thomas be able to protect Tayler from the danger that follows?
I would like to thank Bethany House Publishers, Netgalley for giving me this copy of the book. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.
Alaska in 1929 is an unusual setting for a historical novel, which made this one all the more interesting. I would love to be able to spend time there in person – not just in the stories I read about it!
Tayler had a heart for God, and yet she struggled with the changes that had come over her life since her father had died. Changes that eventually led her to flee to Alaska without telling anyone where she had gone. I really appreciated her sensitivity towards God and thought it was sweet when, during a sermon, she was so taken by the truth being shared that she began to pray and focus on what she heard so that she missed hearing the rest of the message that was shared!
Thomas is apparently a returning and beloved character from earlier books in the series. There are enough details about his backstory here (presented in an appropriate manner without being an info dump) to make me feel like I wasn’t missing anything as I read this. Though he was slightly awkward around Tayler, he was quite charming. I loved the way he cared so much about her and her reputation that he made a point of never allowing the two of them to be alone together.
A strong spiritual thread ran through the story emphasizing the need to make God the focus of our lives, seeking Him more than anything else. This was handled quite well and in a way that didn’t seem forced or preachy.
The story was told from the viewpoints of quite a few different characters, not just Tayler’s and Thomas’. Most of them were necessary as this was not just about the two of them – there were actually three romances in the making. This was done well, without making me lose track of who was who despite the fact that I didn’t have the opportunity read the story straight through.
There were a couple of situations in the story that seemed a little far-fetched, and the ending was slightly overdone, but these things didn’t detract from the story enough to earn more than an eye-roll from me. The story was enjoyable and just what I needed.