I first “met” Dianne through the pages of Guideposts‘ new devotional: 2013 Mornings with Jesus: Daily Encouragement for Your Soul. Dianne and I were two of the ten writers for that devotional this year.
I’ll let her tell you more about her own new devotional Designed for Devotion in this interview:
Q: Tell us a little about your newest devotional book.
Dianne: Designed for Devotion: A 365-Day Journey from Genesis to Revelation provides an overview of the entire Bible. It explains the background and factual information for each book, including the author, theme, purpose for writing, and historical setting. The book highlights the key stories and characters in the Old Testament and gospels and explores the basic teachings of the NT writers.
In the part of the book that covers the Old Testament, I sprinkled occasional “Jesus Sightings” (in keeping with the theme of a trip or journey). These devotions focus on how Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecy. I also included devotions about the 400-year period between the Testaments, the concept of “theophany,” the distinction between the major and minor prophets, and other topics. Throughout the book each day’s devotion ends with a practical application that encourages readers to apply that day’s spiritual lesson to their own journey with God.
Q: What can readers hope to gain from reading Designed for Devotion?
Dianne: Readers will gain the factual and historical information needed to understand the context of each book and how it fits in with the rest of the Bible. At the same time, they will be able to see how each story and teaching relates to their everyday lives. Designed for Devotion will help those new to Bible study grow in their understanding of God and His Word; long-time Bible students will enjoy the review. Hopefully, anyone who reads the book will go more deeply in their relationship with God and in their devotion to Him. A trip through the Bible can be a life-changing journey!
Q: What life experience, education, or training helped you become an author?
Dianne: I have a liberal arts degree in psychology and English and a master’s in guidance and counseling. But I consider my greatest training to be growing up out in the country with three brothers and no neighbor kids close by. In the summers I learned to use my imagination to entertain myself while working in the cotton fields or while playing in the woods at the edge of our little family farm.
Q: How do you think reading the work of others helps you as a writer?
Dianne: In lots of ways! Reading exercises my brain and helps me develop my imagination, increase my vocabulary, and absorb new writing techniques. The creativity of others inspires me to use my own. And of course, it’s a great way to relax and wind down from the pressure of always carrying my work around in my head.
Dianne Neal Matthews is a freelance writer and the author of four daily devotional books. She also writes regularly for websites and blogs (such as CBN.com and FindingGodDaily.com), contributes to compilations (including Guideposts’ 2013 Mornings with Jesus), and enjoys speaking and teaching at writers’ conferences. Dianne is a 2006 CLASS graduate and a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers, Christian Authors Network, and Toastmasters International. She and her husband Richard currently live in Salt Lake City, which is too far away from their three grown children and two adorable grandchildren. You can read more about her on her website.
(Note: I received no monetary payment for this devotional book review/author interview on my website).
What helps you most in your devotional time with God?”
The devotional book giveaway has ended.