Three of My Favorite Scripture Verses

I was tagged by Elizabeth at Startling the Day in a meme which starts with the question: “What are your three favorite Scripture verses?” I have listed three, but I could probably list 20 or more. These, however, are three of my favorites:


“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil 4:13

I have this Scripture verse taped to the bottom of my computer monitor. Often, I feel overwhelmed with the day-to-day activities of being a wife and mother, as well as the duties of my (three) part-time jobs at home. Sometimes it seems like there could be 48 hours in a day, and I still wouldn’t be able to accomplish everything on my “to do” list. When I’m feeling overwhelmed, I know I can look down at that simple little piece of paper with the short verse and feel less stressed.


This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you….It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.” John 15: 12-17

This particular passage was the Gospel at our wedding mass 29 years ago. Both James and I not only felt called to marriage, but also called to be open to life. We saw that one of the “fruits” of our marriage would be the children God would create through us. Never did we realize that in our openness to life, we would be called not only to create life, but also to face the loss of seven precious babies through miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy, as well as the near loss of my life with one of the pregnancies.


That is why a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife, and the two of them become one body .” Genesis 2: 24

This has always been one of my favorite verses because it describes the origins of marriage.

Dana, Elizabeth and Sue, I’d love to know what your three favorite Scripture verses are! So I am tagging you in this blog post. When you post your “Three Favorite Scripture Verses,” tag three other bloggers and include the link back to this post!

Dana from Catholic Working Mom

Elizabeth from Will You Be My Voice

Sue from Sue Elvis Writes

Copyright 2011 Ellen Gable Hrkach

Fiction Friday – Forget Me Not by Elizabeth Schmeidler

My thanks to Elizabeth Schmeidler for allowing me to post an excerpt from her historical romance, “Forget Me Not,” which is available via Lulu and on Amazon Kindle:

England, 1882
Chapter 1
Ambria Therese Burke looked out her window and sighed. “Just another boring day, leading to yet another boring night,” she muttered. Ambria had spent more days looking out over her father’s land dreaming than she could count, and her patience had worn thin. Not even the blooming spring flowers that came in every color of the rainbow or the beautiful budding pink and white trees could alter her mood.

She restlessly began drumming her fingers on her window sill and muttered, “When…when is my father ever going to realize that I am a woman? How old will I have to be before he notices that I no longer wear pigtails and ribbons in my hair? For Heaven’s sake, I am nearly eighteen years old. Doesn’t he realize?”

Her mutterings had grown a bit louder as Genny quietly approached. “What are you mumbling about, my little princess?”

“Please…do not call me your little princess!” Ambria exclaimed. “Doesn’t anyone around here understand that I’ve grown up? I’m not a child anymore, and I’ve grown quite weary of being treated like one!”

Ambria’s mood took Genny by surprise. “Don’t get your temper riled at me, young lady! I meant no harm—it’s only a nickname after all!” she answered defensively.

Ambria felt instant guilt for her sharp tongue as she glanced at the woman who had been with her since the day she was born.Genny was the nickname Ambria had given Genevieve. She had been told that it was one of the very first words she had spoken as a baby—second only to “Papa”. Genny was more like a mother than a nanny to Ambria and she loved her with all her heart.

Wonderful childhood memories of Genny began to surface— Genny, with her curly red hair, chubby dimpled cheeks, and plump arms reaching out to hold Ambria. Genny, with her laughing warm-brown eyes, teaching her childish games, to read, dance, sew, and laugh. The reminiscences made Ambria’s mood even more melancholy, and the dreaminess returned to her eyes as she stared out the window.

Genny was undeterred by Ambria’s silence. “Quit your dreaming, girl, and answer me proper this time. What has got your feathers ruffled today?”

“Oh Genny, I’m sorry. Please forgive me. It’s just that…well…oh Genny… I am so tired of being Papa’s little girl!”

Ambria’s voice was strained and Genny knew her well enough to know that she was on the brink of spilling a bucket full of tears. Determined to waylay those tears, she sharpened the tone of her voice and said, “Now I’ll be hearing none of this self-pity, Ambria! You know how much your papa loves you, and how much he has done to teach and protect ya! Why, without him ya wouldn’t even ‘ave a pillow fer yer head and clothes on yer back! You’ve got a home fit fer a princess and strong faith ta guide and give ya peace…all because yer papa understands what love really is!”

Genny then wagged a finger at Ambria and said, “Now look what you’ve done, girl. You’ve got me fergettin’ me proper speakin’!”

Guilt washed over Ambria as she realized that she had only been thinking of herself. Genny was obviously upset—though she took great pride in the English skills she had learned and had taught to Ambria, her native Irish brogue always surfaced when she was riled or distressed.

Ambria softened her expression to soothe her dear friend, and said softly, “I know he loves me, Genny…and I love him with all my heart. He’s the best father I could ever hope to have…but I long to grow up. I long to experience what other girls my age have been experiencing for years already! I long to meet new friends, go to parties and socials, and…Oh, you wouldn’t understand.”

Ambria’s shoulders gave way to her mood and she slumped forward in sadness. In barely more than a whisper she pleaded, “I just want my freedom.”

Forget Me Not is available via Lulu, as well as on Amazon Kindle.

Elizabeth has kindly agreed to give away a free e-copy of her book to one lucky reader! Leave a comment below for a chance to win this delightful romance novel!

Copyright 2011 Elizabeth Schmeidler

Whispers of My Heart

Yesterday, I wrote about the wonderful new friendship I’ve made with fellow Catholic writer, Elizabeth Schmeidler. Today, with her permission, I am sharing this beautifully moving poem she wrote after she experienced a miscarriage.

Whispers of My Heart

Oh, baby of mine,
born of my heart,
My little one, who has ceased to be…
I can hear your laughter on the playground at school.
Tell me, can you hear me?

Oh, dream left undone, oh, hope left unseen,
Whose angelic face
I long to see…
I feel your soft skin in the touch of a rose.
Tell me, can you feel me?

Oh life’s joy of mine, loved from the start,
Whose powder fresh scent I awaited…
I’ll draw a breath from the ocean to inhale your sweet fragrance,
Yet somehow still not be sated.

Oh, baby of wonder, whose life breath is gone,
Whose smile my heart longs to see…
I imagine its brightness is much like the sunshine.
Tell me, can you see me?

Oh, baby of love, sweet soul of the Lord,
Whose name is forever written,
In God’s ledger of love, life’s book of creation,
With whom my pierced heart is smitten.

Oh, baby of mine, I shall trust in the Lord,
I will seek Him for comfort and peace.
For your sweet soul He cradles in His arms of compassion.
Someday my longing will cease.

Oh, sweet child of mine, I humbly await,
The day when your eyes shall meet mine.
I will hold you and rock you, while I whisper, “I love you.”
Amid the love of the Power Divine.

Elizabeth J. Schmeidler ©2000

God himself will always be with them. He will wipe
every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no
more death or mourning or pain.

(Revelation 21:3,4)

Special thanks to Elizabeth Schmeidler for sharing her poem with us! And…if you leave a comment below before Monday, January 17th at noon, you will be entered in a draw to win Elizabeth’s CD entitled “Hope”

Here is the link to one of Elizabeth’s youtube videos:

and her website:

“Whispers of My Heart” copyright Elizabeth Schmeidler

21st Century Friendships

Back in the late 1970’s, I had an unusual hobby, one which led to me being introduced to the man I would eventually marry (and that story served as the basis for my first novel, Emily’s Hope). The hobby? Writing to pen-pals from all over the world.

So it’s not surprising that one of the things I appreciate most about the 21st century is how simple it is to make new friendships with those far away. Communication by Skype, email, chatting, texting and free long distance makes it easier than ever to communicate with those geographically distant. I have had the pleasure of making many new and lasting friendships through different online writers’ groups, Catholic websites and other virtual venues.

This happened recently when I “met” fellow writer, Elizabeth Schmeidler, through an online Catholic writers’ group and we began emailing back and forth. It became evident that we had much in common, so it wasn’t long before we were chatting on the phone. She soon ordered both of my books on Kindle.

After she read my first book, Emily’s Hope (which deals with pregnancy loss), she sent me a beautifully moving poem/song she wrote after her own miscarriage entitled “Whispers of My Heart.”

Tomorrow, with her permission, I will be sharing this poem with my readers, along with a chance to win Elizabeth’s CD entitled “Hope.”

Text and photo copyright 2011 Ellen Gable Hrkach