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Welcome to the December issue of hopenotes, the online magazine of Rest Ministries, Inc and hopekeepers Magazine. If you know someone who would be encouraged by our message please click here to tell a friend. God bless you.

Rest Ministries Director  

Are fonts too small on your screen? If you have Internet Explorere go to "view"-"text size"-"largest" or see Ability Net for more details.

Please note the "office" of RM will be closed Dec 19-Jan 8th, but the web site is fully functional
and calls will be returned as soon as possible. All orders will be shippe Jan 8th or 9th and anyone
who orders over the holidays will receive a free gift!
In this issue
Sponsor HIGHLIGHTS @ REST MINISTRIES - hopekeepers

Devotionals now available via a blog!

We now have our daily devotional available via RSS feeds. If you're familiar with RSS you will be able to sign up easily. If you are not, you can still view the devotionals at: and sign up to receive an email notification each day when it's posted by sending a blank email to:

Why are we doing this?

  1. At the devotional blog you will be able to comment on the devotionals and also post feedback for the authors.
  2. It will help us be able to grow in the search engines and reach more people.
  3. People who use RSS have been asking for it for awhile and we've finally responded!
  4. You can easily sign up to have the RSS feed on your website! Just link to us at

Still have some last minute shopping to do? Here are some ways you can shop and help out Rest Ministries! Be sure to bookmark these pages :

Sign up to receive the weekly sales from Shop for Charity
and Igive to get the best prices on items or see what new
stores have been added.

Have you read Lisa's blog lately?

She recently got a laptop and is trying to blog more frequently while sitting in bed about midnight. So. . . it could be interesting to see where her head is! Recent blogs include How to Talk to Your Kids About a Ill Wiggle (If you have a toddler, you know who the Wiggles are); her review of The Nativity Story book and more.

Sign up to be notified whenever a new blog is posted!

Sale of the Week

Audio Music CDs

We still have plenty of these great worship CDs from Women of Faith conferences. If you've not been able spend $ this holiday season, consider sticking this in an envelope for a comforting Valentine's gift. Before you know it the next holiday will be here (scary thought) and a Valentine to one who is lonely is a great time to share God's goodness and hope! Regularly about $16 ea.

We've got them for just $4.50 ea.

Recent Prize Winner

Sadly, no one invited anyone to receive our newsletter so there was no one to choose to give the Bible too. Maybe next time?


Prize of the Week Christmas Articles

The One Year Book of HOPE
By Nancy Guthrie
Regularly $14.00

Enter by invititing 3 friends to Rest Ministries web site!

Yes, there is a Santa Claus

Storybooks say that he and Mrs. Claus live somewhere in the North Pole, but a rumor has spread that they actually live in a little town outside of Atlanta, Georgia and they go by the off-season name of Ed and Anna Butchart. Known around the world as "Wheelchair Santa" Ed gives more than just simple promises of dolls and trucks; he and his wife give the love of the Lord to both adults and kids that live with physical disabilities. Read more

The Story Behind Rudolph

On a December night in Chicago, a little girl climbed onto her father's lap and asked a question. It was a simple question, asked in childlike curiosity, yet it had a heart-rending effect on Robert May. "Daddy," four-year old Barbara asked, "Why isn't my Mommy just like everybody else's mommy?" Read more

A Mustard Seed Christmas

Last year our first Christmas decoration was a mustard seed: A lowly mustard seed, taped on a sheet of white paper to the center of our mantelpiece. It was a sign and a symbol of the fragile and tiny hope I had of celebrating Christmas. The hope was fragile and it was tiny because I did not "feel" like Christmas last year. How could I sing the Lord's song in the strange land of grief? Read more

Feeling Grinchy?
One of our favorite poems each year!

The Grinch dreaded Christmas!
The whole Christmas season!
So much to do, so little energy,
there were all kinds of reasons.
It could be said that the medicines
were making her mind feel like putty,
She went shopping at last,
and forgot why she had gone---how nutty. Read more



"Make me laugh" ARTICLE

Send us something
to make us laugh!
A photo, a story, a quote, we want to hear what tickles you!

We have entered the time-span known as "The Holidays" with all the expectations that go with the phrase. When we're in pain, these next 20+ days are going to be especially difficult as we try to join in the traveling, planning, shopping, caroling, cooking, decorating, and relating to people we may or may not like.

The gritting of teeth, the pulling out of hair, and the grin-and-bear-it strategies could work. The key, however, is to not over-do it--which is good advice and hard to do. Jesus said, "Therefore don't worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." (Matt. 6:34 HCSB) Living through the holidays with peace of mind is an attainable goal if we can keep our eyes fixed on the real "reason for the season."

So we can make our lists and check them twice, then give God all our "shoulds." Watch as the Lord sorts out each day. We'll be able to check off some list items every day, get more done using less energy, and maybe even experience the miracle of the season: "...Don't be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David." (Luke 2:10-11 HCSB) And, that very same babe arose on Easter Sunday so that we would "...have life and have it in abundance." (John 10:10 HCSB) May we look back contentedly at these coming days and see the abundance of blessings rather than focusing on the disappointments. Our tomorrows will reflect God's presence in today.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year all in one breath,
Jonnie Wright, author of The Silver Bullet: God's Rx to Chronic Pain

Special Thanks

To all of our volunteers who gave so much time and energies to Rest Ministries in 2006, to those of you who helped Rest Ministries quietly, in so many ways. And to all of you who have been able to help financially support us so we can keep on keeping on!

Overheard. . .

I read your blog the other day too and it just blew me away. I could have written it myself... word for word. Thank you for your love and dedication to the Lord. It really is reaching others."
--Deb S.

1 Way to Share RM NEWS TO KNOW
Write a review on one of our books at It helps TREMENDOUSLY in ranking the books higher so people can find us. Go to and search "Lisa Copen" and write a review for any you have read. Thank you!!
  • 10 Tips for Stress Free Online Holiday Shopping Taken from "Savannah Now"
    A Division of Savannah Morning News
    (no author given) This article discusses the various concerns when shopping online. Many people are now doing a fair amount of shopping via the internet. The author gives helpful information on auctions, shipping, warranties, web site security, confirmations, and appropriate costs.
  • 10 Secrets to Hosting a Special But Stress Free Holiday Party, By Emily Lapkin
    Entertaining this holiday season? That can certainly be stressful. HGTV wants to help you remain stress free and enjoy your holidays. The author gives great tips for keeping you merry and bright. From making your list to creating a comfortable environment this author covers it all. She has helpful hints for stocking up, sounds, décor, food, and even gift giving made simple
  • Have Yourself a Merry Stress Free Christmas
    By Janet Bailey
    This year, don't just survive the holidays, savor them. Here, smart, surprising ways to do less and enjoy more! Simplify, focus, plan, and keep your sanity and your energy.

  • The Hallmark Channel's program on December 28, 2006 will be focused on "The Problem of Pain." One of the segments features author of Peace in the Storm by Maureen Pratt, discussing the work she's been doing on prayer, faith and living with chronic pain and illness. The show airs at 7 a.m. Eastern/Pacific, and 6 a.m. Central After it airs, the segment will be posted on:
We like this link!

Are you tired of typing emails? Mail Amp can help!

Though it only works with Windows 2000 and XP (you must have Outlook 2000 or Outlook XP) they are working on a version for Outlook Express. You can create voice email messages in Outlook using MP3 technology. It's faster and more personal than text messages and uses standard MP3 format that can be sent to any email user.

Unlike most voice programs, the recipient does not need MailAmp, since MailAmp uses a standard MP3 compression. The audio email is highly compressed to maintain a small file size. MailAmp's trial version is free and does not expire. To buy it for all th features it's just $24.95. Read more.



So few books on living with chronic illness are published in the Christian industry that when I saw this book I immediately grabbed it up to read. You won't be disappointed. Written by a man who is an ordained minister and served in a church, his interests eventually led him to degrees in public health and epidemiology from Yale. He currently serves on the board of Journal of Religion and Health.

His research into what makes people able to live joyfully despite chronic illness are shared in this book through 20 strategies-- Some may seem a bit familiar as you've likely tried them already, but others will leave you with fresh ideas, or at least a renewed sense of humor that you aren't alone in trying to pinpoint the joy in the midst of your health challenges. I highly recommend it! -- Lisa Copen

Read more or buy it here - on sale! Just $10.99 (not $14.99)


Hi, friends, Lisa here. . .

Deb is still our official "editor" but between her family being sick with a bug and then my family getting the same bug and the holidays, well, we're glad to have something to send you at all. It's 3:30 a.m. as I write this and I leave to drive 1000 miles tonight with my husband and son to go visit my family. Know how much you are appreciated and prayed for by myself as well as so many others.

I know I've not met all the expectations you've had in 2006. The magazine has just had 1 issue, some of your emails were lost. Sometimes it just took me forever to respond. Please know that when I began this in 1997 I didn't have a clue what I was doing, only that God had a plan and I would follow it obediently. 10 years later, I still have moments when I wonder if He's ever going to send that lottery winner our way, or at least fight off Satan's attempts to discourage me and others a little more boldy. We are all vulnerable to fear, disappointment. . . and downright, keep-you-up-all-night, can't-get-no-relif, exhausting physical PAIN! (Yuck) And yet, without the pain, I wouldn't have you to call my friends.

Thank you for your continued prayers for the ministry, and by that I also mean the lives of each individual it touches. Someone wrote me this week that after being in touch with our ministry she did a 360- going from suicidal to stopping taking narcotics and getting her life back- and her faith. When I read those emails, nothing else matters.

On a "biz note" we've been upgrading our email/net access so I can soon email more of you with less restrictions from my DSL company, I'm learning more about podcastng and hope to have some of those soon, and am writing an e-book on "how to market your book" with the information I'm learning. Mosaic Moments, our devotional book, went from being around 40th place to first place when someone enters "illness devotional" because of a little research I learned this week. I continue to find dozens of ways to reach more people (on our tiny budget) but it all takes time. Please continue to pray that everything keeps falling into place.

I'm wiped out and have to get to bed before the sun comes up. A full day of packing and running errands is ahead of me in a few hours. Know how much you are loved.

PS: I do our annual family newsletter for Christmas cards like a newspaper, I've cut a couple articles out to share with you in case you need a giggle.

Visit us again soon at .

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Tidbits. . .

You are reading a page of hopenotes, the online supplement to hopekeepers Magazine. Go to the home page of hopenotes or Rest Ministries web site. Copyright 2006, Lisa Copen