Words of encouragement: Two publish new book | News | The Press and Standard
by The Press and Standard | August 20, 2017 5:00 am
Last Updated: August 16, 2017 at 12:18 pm
Two local authors write book to help deal with life’s challenges.
Shiela Keaise has published numerous books over the years, but they were all children’s books.
This all changed with the publication of her newest book with co-author Magdline Monroe. “Order in the Body: Advice for the Single and Married” is an adult book, designed to offer inspiration to those who are struggling with life’s troubles.
It all began at a Keaise family cookout. The idea “just came to my mind, Women of Order,” Keaise said. And it was like it was writing (itself in my head) … Then it got stronger. All the ideas kept coming. I thought ‘I need to call Mrs. Monroe.’ And she confirmed that what I said was what she felt she was led to do in her time as well.
“And when I say led, I mean you have to be in a place to receive good. Non-Christians don’t really understand that. You have to be in a place mentally, spiritually, physically in a place to receive good. And that could be good word, good blessings, good conversation — it encompasses everything,” she said.
So the two sat down together and began writing. The book took five years to complete, because of busy schedules, but both feel it was worth the wait.
“Shiela speaks from a single’s perspective and I, as a married woman, speak from the married perspective, Monroe said. “All throughout the book, we use scripture to support how to have order in the body. For the biggest part, the advice that I give is encouraging people how to order themselves or their relationships according to what the word of God says — as there are challenges, how you honor God’s word.” All chapters end with either a prayer or a song.
Keaise bases her perspective from her experience as a single woman. “I give examples of how I, with the help of God, brought my body under subjection as a single woman. That was the real goal of writing this book because Mrs. Monroe and I knew it takes help from God to bring one’s body in order — and it’s a struggle every day. But through prayer (and in my situation, singing), it helps us to bring things into perspective.
“That means that we want others to know that there is a right way to live in this body. We believe that our bodies are not our own — that we were created for a purpose, and that purpose was to serve and honor God. And bringing order to our body means we have to live the way He would like us to live,” Keaise said.
“The simplest form I can give you is what I tell children all the time: you need to take care of your body. You need to be careful what you say, what you watch, what you listen to, what you feed it, where you go. All those things play a part in making our bodies a better vessel to be used by God,” she said.
“We have been given these bodies and we have a free will to use them as we please,” Monroe added. “But scripture does speak directly about each of the parts. Yes, we have a free will to do with it as we will, but there are blessings for obeying and consequences to reap for disobeying.”
The premise for the book was to help people realize that there is help out there and to inspire people to reach out for that help. “Sometimes we know things, but sometimes it just helps to be reminded,” Monroe said. “We tried to pull from ordinary things that people could relate to.”
And so far, the feedback has been good. Keaise’s aunt, who read the book while flying for her job as president of the National Association of Paralegals, told Keaise “It was a good read. Very inspiring.”
Monroe’s 21-year-old son texted a part of the book that inspired him to his friends: “Do you see opposition in your life or do you see opportunity? Opposition is just an opportunity for God to perform great and mighty miracles in your life.”
The co-authors have known each other for about eight years. A Walterboro native, Keaise is children’s librarian at the Colleton County Memorial Library. Monroe moved to Colleton County about 10 years ago with her husband of now 25 years, Mark, who had accepted the pastorate at Deep Creek Baptist Church in Islandton. The couple now lives in Jacksonboro, with three of their seven children. (Their oldest child works in Aiken, two are in college and one is an intern in Columbia. The remaining three still live at home: a fourth grader, eighth grader and tenth grader.) Monroe also teaches eighth grade math at Colleton Middle School and recently started a home business as a distributor of herbal products.
The book’s mission is to help people have happier lives. “Regardless of how rough or tough things may be at any given time, we just have to keep honoring God and putting him first. If we keep singing and praising God and praying, things will be changed for us,” Monroe said.
Books are available for $9.99 from either author, on the web at www.shielamartina.com, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The authors are also available to speak at churches, meetings, etc. A book signing is planned for Sept. 30 from 2-3 p.m. at the Colleton County Memorial Library.