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Aug 09 Inside this month

A full listing of features in our current issue

Contents August 2009

Cover stories

“I fell in love with food” Author of The Vicar’s Wife’s Cookbook, Elisa Beynon talks about her faith and new-found fame

From Buddhism to Christ One woman’s search for truth

Age is no barrier to starting something new Meet the 80-year-old street  pastor and 77-year-old publisher

“We wanted a family adventure” The Marshall family talks about their six month mission to Fiji with YWAM

Learn to manage stress Here’s 20 ways to calm and serenity


“What a wonderful wedding” And it didn’t cost a fortune! One couple share their dream day and offer ideas for a perfect wedding on a budget

Thank you for the music! Why worship needs to be culturally relevant

Do we need independent Christian schools? Yes, says a school director and a parent, who share their own experiences

The wisdom of God Our Bible study explores the apostle Paul’s proclamation of Christ

Are you trapped by obligation? What the world of film teaches us about responding to God’s call

Comfort, relaxation and fun at Activate’s weekend conference for women

Sort your finances Advice for married women concerned about the future

What is a friend? Veronica Zundel ponders the nature of true friendship

How well do you hear God’s voice? Asks our Man Alive columnist Stuart Dearsley


Your letters on carers, God’s provision, good money habits and cover photos

August diary Events to look out for this month

Bookclub Your views on The Almost True Story of Ryan Fisher

Reading room Our pick of good reading this month

For You To Win

Three copies of The Vicar’s Wife’s Cookbook

Six copies of I Once Was A Buddhist Nun

Italian skincare products when you solve this month’s Picture Perspective

Ten copies of Tender Grace (a novel) when you join our Bookclub discussion

Joining us this month

Susan Rybarchyk asks: Are you a Stepford Christian?

“I was given a doll on my birthday and immediately cut off her hair.  ‘A doll's hair doesn't grow back like yours,’ mother said.  Thereafter, my parents bought me ice-skates, bicycles, books . . . and lots of pencils and paper. I have been writing ever since.  Unlike the Stepford wives, I have spent half a century trying to use the gifts and passions God has bestowed on me to communicate the boundless joys that come with being a follower of Jesus Christ.  How wonderful to have Woman Alive available for all of us, to share our many blessings with each other.”

Ali Hull reports on a weekend conference for busy women

“I combines commissioning and editing for one of the UK's leading Christian publishers with freelance writing, running writers' courses (, and working with local churches to improve their use of the media. I also have one husband, four offspring and a messy house to take care of, so the prospect of a weekend away was inviting and did not disappoint!” Ali has also co-authored a book on bereavement, with Pablo Martinez, called Tracing the rainbow, published by Spring Harvest/Authentic and now translated into Spanish, Dutch and Slovakian. Pablo and Ali are now working on their next book, which will look at depression, and they have plans for more.

Mary Southerland advises on stress management

Mary describes herself as “the stress-buster, helping women manage stress and experience joy in their daily lives”. She also serves as a women's ministry motivator, working "in the trenches" with pastors' wives and ministry leaders.  An author, speaker and frequent TV and radio guest, Mary is also a member and co-founder of Girlfriends in God ( She juggles all these things alongside being a pastor’s wife and women’s ministry director at Westside Family Church in Lenexa, Kansas, where her husband is the lead teaching pastor.  You can hear more from Mary at this year’s  Blah blah

Also writing for us this month are freelance writers and contributors Sharonn barnard, Ali Herbert, Caroline Masom, Lisa Philips and Amanda Pilz.

Prayer of the month

Teach me to laugh, by Michele Morrison

Oh Lord God, break through the crust of broken dreams and revive in me the heart of a child. Restore my instinct for fun; give me an irrepressible smile and an infectious laugh.
May I shrug off the pressures which flatten the joy that longs to bubble up from deep within. May I detour into the lay-bys of life, taking time to enjoy you and your creation, taking time to delight in my friends and family, taking time to participate in activities which cleanse the mind and inspire the heart.
Give me eyes to discern divine delight, ears to catch a godly guffaw, and a mouth to express merriment. Help me to enjoy you and revel in your creation. May I never take myself too seriously. Secure in your love and care, may I be set free to frolic in the shadow of your wings. Tease out the threads of laughter which, with age and anxiety, have become knotted and shredded within. Restore unto me the joy of my salvation. Your blessings are the light of my life, oh Lord. Thank you, Jesus. Amen.

Coming next month in September’s Woman Alive       

* Why simplicity is the medicine for today and the key to a healthy life
* How to tackle teenagers –tough questions for the author of a new parenting book
* What is it really like to live on an island? Residents from Jersey, Shetland and the Isle of Mann give an inside view


* Lisa Potts talks about her continuing work to help children both here and overseas
* Three inspiring women discuss the events that changed the course of their lives


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