by Nan Jones   @NanJonesAuthor

Guest blogger, Carol Heilman   @CarolHeilman

It’s a joy to share Carol Heilman with you again. We’ve never met in person, but I just love this woman. She offers much wisdom through her sense of humor, making the lessons digestable – if you know what I mean. She is a treasure in the Body of Christ. Carol and I pray that the words of her heart will encourage you and give you strength for the journey.

Welcome Carol!

you ever been lost and not know which way to turn? Since I was not blessed with
a sense of direction, I have been lost many times—especially before cell phones
and GPS. I can get turned around inside a building; I have learned to make a
mental note of the shopping-mall door I enter, so that when I exit, I can find
my car.
a recent trip to Kentucky, my husband and I thought we were following road
construction detour signs correctly, but two hours later we were almost back to
where we started from: near our home in North Carolina. Talk about confused!
didn’t want to get in the same traffic jam again, so we created our own plan,
which included traveling narrow, curvy back roads toward Hot Springs, NC. It
was further than we thought, but in several more hours we arrived in this tiny
town. We were desperate for a restroom, and choices were limited. When we
spotted a restaurant, we rushed inside. The ladies room was for one, and had a
line, which I quickly joined. A very pregnant lady zipped in behind me. When I
asked her if  she wanted to move ahead of
me, she smiled and shook her head. I could have hugged her.
the road again, our plan was to follow Highway 25, a two-lane road, into eastern
Kentucky where we would pick up the Interstate again. All went well until we
reached Middlesboro, where we stopped for a mid-afternoon hamburger. Our
waitress said we could go no further because the road we needed to travel was
totally blocked by an overturned tractor-trailer. The road was closed, and
probably would be for hours. She gave us directions, and we thanked her
thought we followed her instructions, but we ended up in Tennessee, on a
mountain road, literally in the middle of nowhere, that had to be the worst
road ever. Finally, we pulled over, engaged our GPS, and arrived in Jellico—where
we found the Interstate. By this time, we were low on gas and crept though a
heavy rainstorm to find a station.
arrived in Midway, Kentucky nine hours after leaving home. Our trip normally
takes five. We were thankful to be there.
different times in my life, I have not known which way to turn, or which path I
should choose. Sometimes I use my own logic and reasoning and run down one or
the other. Other times I don’t even think about what I should do, but take the
path that looks the easiest or the most attractive. I don’t always consult the
Lord or pray for Him to guide me. 
I’m left to my own devices, I can make some terrible choices, and end up
traveling in the wrong direction.
day you and I face a myriad of decisions that will ultimately determine the
paths we take in our lives.
Brown, a pastor in Charleston, South Carolina, once said, “Spend time with me
(the Lord) and I will restore your sense of direction.”
time is not a quick-fix. It’s reading His Word, praying, abiding in His
Presence, giving Him honor, and thanking Him for always being beside you. Our
Lord is better than any GPS ever invented, and His way is always the best one.
favorite Scripture: Proverbs 3:5 & 6 (English Standard Version)

in the Lord with all your heart,

do not lean on your own understanding.

all your ways acknowledge Him,

He will make your paths straight.
A Tweetable to Encourage Others
Meet Carol:

Carol Heilman, a coal-miner s daughter, married a farmer s son,
her high school sweetheart, over fifty years ago. She and her husband
live in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Their children and
grandchildren live near the east and west coasts where they often visit.
Carol enjoys traveling, reading, writing, hiking, and cooking for
friends. She is a recipient of two Carrie McCray Awards for writing
excellence. To find out more about Carol, visit:

Agnes Hopper Shakes Up Sweetbriar 
by Carol Heilman
Summer’s steamy haze coats North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, but
feisty Agnes Marie Hopper discovers the heat isn’t the only thing
causing her blood to boil. After a kitchen fire destroys her home, Agnes
moves in with her daughter, Betty Jo. Three months later they come to
an understanding: neither can tolerate living with the other. So on a
sultry August morning, Betty Jo drives Agnes and her few belongings to
Sweetbrier Manor, a local retirement home and former house of ill
And this sets the stage for a hysterical, yet tender, story that will delight you on every level.
Agnes Hopper Shakes Up Sweetbriar is available on Amazon