02 February 2014

Pam Hillman Interviewed by Carrie Fancett Pagels

Author Pam Hillman

Pam Hillman is the author of CLAIMING MARIAH and STEALING JAKE. Awards include RWA Golden Heart, ACFW Genesis, and EPIC eBook Awards.

Pam, welcome to Overcoming With God.  We appreciate your willingness to share your testimony of overcoming with our readers. 

Would you tell us about the most difficult thing in your life you have had to overcome, with God’s help? (transparency appreciated!)
What an interesting question. One of most difficult things I’ve had to overcome has been to peel myself off the wall and be sociable. Someone told me recently that I am approachable, so I take that as a good sign that I’m overcoming my natural bent towards not engaging with others overmuch.
Many years ago, I went to a writer’s conference with a group of authors and at the opening reception, the group of eight or so authors huddled together. My natural inclination was to stay in the huddle, but I felt an overwhelming urge to reach out to other “wallflowers”, so I left the group and cruised the room, speaking to those standing alone or in other small groups. It was really hard, but I did it.

I wrote a post titled Wallflower Writer to the Rescue. To this day, I make it a point to rescue other wallflowers at events. Others say they see me as outgoing and approachable. I can definitely say that was not the case twenty years ago. Thanks God!

Disability friendliness: Is this latest release available in audio format?
I would love for my books to be available as audio books and large print, but alas they are not. However, my ebooks do have audio capability enabled, and are easily read in large print. Ereaders are amazing inventions!
Claiming Mariah by Pam Hillman

In this latest work, do you have any topics useful for bibliotherapy, or therapeutic influence through reading about a disorder or situation?  
Claiming Mariah is all about forgiveness. Slade Donovan has harbored a grudge against the Malone family his entire life. Some might say that Slade doesn’t come across as very heroic to begin with, but he has good reasons for his demands, not to mention he has the law on his side. He eventually softens toward the heroine and her family and lets go of his bitterness.

There is a wonderful review on Amazon that I’d love to share because it so perfectly sums this up, but it’s my understanding that I can’t share Amazon reviews, and I don’t think this one has been posted anywhere else. But it was posted on January 31, 2014 by Shannah under the heading “Such a Good Book”.

She mentions that if we don’t forgive, we can become bitter and blame others and God for everything that happens to us. By choosing to forgive, we open our hearts and lives to joy and happiness and a better relationship with God.

Sometimes we have much to forgive (like Slade did), and sometimes a tiny little thing can take root, spring up, and grow into a mountain of bitterness that chokes the very life and joy out of us. It is my hope that readers can learn to let go of bitterness (whether large or small) and offer forgiveness toward someone who has wronged them. I also pray that someone who has committed a wrong would have the courage to ask for forgiveness.

Thank you Pam for agreeing to answer these questions.  Have a blessed day and keep on writing!!

Pam Hillman’s Social Media:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/PamHillman or @PamHillman

Note: Pam reports that Tyndale is doing a giveaway on Goodreads for 5 copies of Claiming Mariah. 
LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/78464-claiming-mariah

OUR Giveaway: OWG will be giving away a copy of either of Pam's books (winner's choice) and Pam is offering a signed paperback of her new-to-print Claiming Mariah (thank you, Pam!)  

Answer this question--Have you ever become bitter from unforgiveness?  What did you do to get past it?  "Like" Pam's FB Author Page (and tell us!)  and answer the question to enter! Leave your email address if we don't "know" you well here at OWG.


46 comments:

  1. CARRIE and PAM thank you this great interview. PAM welcome to OWG it's so good to have you with us this week.

    About 11 years ago my husband and I were hurt terribly by the pastor of the church we had attended for years. I thank GOD we were able to overcome that hurt, what satan tried to use to stop our ministry GOD used for our good. Holding on to unforgiveness only hurts yourself, most times the person/persons that hurt you go on with their lives never realizing what they have done. We as Christians should already know this because of Jesus' example but I guess some people have a harder time than others and that's a sad thing.

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    1. I'm so excited to be here on OWG! Thanks to Carrie and all the OWG gals for having me. Teresa, isn't it amazing that we can be so hurt about something and the other person never even knows that they caused an offense. I am so glad you were able to shake off that hurt and move on, praising God irregardless of what happened.

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  2. I've had a hard time forgiving a cousin of mine who did something to hurt my sister. What's interesting is that she forgave him pretty quickly, but as someone who wasn't involved, I felt hurt for her and held a grudge far longer. I think sometimes it's harder to find resolution when holding on to anger in behalf of a loved one, since we're not actually involved in the healing process between the two parties. I just have to keep reminding myself that she and God have forgiven, and so must I.

    Thanks for the great interview and book giveaway!
    colorvibrant at gmail dot com

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    1. Heidi, you are spot on! That's part of the reason Slade had such a hard time forgiving Mariah's father. The hurt was to his father, not to him. And it affected the whole family, especially Slade's mother. Yes, he really let satan do a number on him.

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  3. Thank your so much for the wonderful interview, Pam and Carrie!!

    I've heard it said, numerous times, that writers are an insecure group of people, and many of them are reclusive. I'm not a writer, and don't know if that is true or not, Pam - but, it was certainly true for me when I was younger. I was painfully shy, and reclusive as a child, hated school and meeting new people, and often walked with my head down - to avoid people. Something most people who know me now - would have a problem believing, as I often tend to be a "Chatty Cathy"!!

    I've also encountered unforgiveness - I allowed what I felt was being unloved by someone, to affect major decisions I made for years - causing life-changing situations. It was when I finally submitted control of my life to Christ - that I was able to forgive, move on, and become happy in the life plans He had for me. I became more outgoing then, also!! And I realized that the person I felt had hurt me, was hurting,also, and was ALSO in need of love!!

    We, often, don't know the whole story, or perhaps, hurt TOO much to realize that the pain, or misunderstanding inflicted on us- was due to the transgressors pain. It's not easy to do, but I feel God expects us, as Christians, to go the extra mile towards forgiveness!! And yes - Teresa, I agree that there are transgressors that DON'T realize just how much they have hurt another person, and that person is the one who suffers, even more, by becoming bitter, and unforgiving.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy of "Claiming Mariah" - I love the storyline!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com
    OWG

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    1. Liked Pam's Facebook page!

      bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com
      OWG

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    2. Bonnie, I love Joyce Meyer's series that she did on not easily taking offense. On the other hand, there are many toxic people out there in this world that we live in. Forgiving is good but being a doormat is not--sometimes people need that accountability where they've offended. One of our pastors recently gave an excellent sermon on this topic. How we can sometimes be more loving by helping the offender see what they have done, so they will change. Takes courage to do that, though.

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    3. I received a short devotional text yesterday that said every experience in life can make you bitter or better. The choice is ours and it all depends on whether we're standing inside or outside God's will. An interesting take on it.

      And, Carrie, I agree with you there. It's one thing to not let others actions make us bitter, but quite another to be a doormat to toxic people. By offering forgiveness, we give the offender a chance to see that they've done/said something that hurt us. If they choose to take the stance that they've done nothing wrong, then wipe the dust off and move on.

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  4. PAM, thanks for your interview and for "visiting" with us this week on OWG blog! Welcome!!!

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  5. I liked your fb page
    I want to thank you for the interview on unforgiveness
    Im working right now on forgiving somebody who has pushed my buttons for years
    And its hard You must do your first action of asking forgiveness, but every time their actions push your buttons you must get close to God again because u cant do it without Gods strength....
    God bless u
    Chris Granville

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    1. So true, Chris. I'll be praying for your fortitude in this situation. It takes a strong backbone to forgive time and again when it's someone you face on a regular basis. Pray for them, and that will soften your heart toward them as well. They might not ever change their ways, but with God on your side, you can endure and persevere ... and find peace in the situation.

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  6. Thank you for being with us on OWG, PAM! I'm looking forward to talking about your books this week...I have heard a lot of good things about them!

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    1. Thanks Diana! I'm excited to be here, and looking forward to hanging out with you guys. :)

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  7. Must run to church, but I'll visit again soon! :) Stay warm and toasty, folks.

    And dry. It's raining to beat sixty here and I don't wanna get out in it. But, duty and the Lord calls.

    Where's my snorkel?

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  8. Have you ever become bitter from unforgiveness? Yes, I have. Although, I think it was more of a feeling of hurt rather than bitterness.
    What did you do to get past it? It took a LOT of prayer and time to get past it.

    cindialtman(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Cindi, your choice to pray and forgive before bitterness took root is a great example for all of us. Thank you for sharing!

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  9. PAM, it's so wonderful to finally have you here on OWG visiting us!! I LOVED both Claiming Mariah and Stealing Jake, and look forward to sharing the review of SJ with everyone this week. You sound a bit like me Pam. :) I think it's cool that people can use what they've been and what they have gone through, to reach out and help and encourage others!

    To answer Carrie's question, yes, I had become bitter from unforgiveness some years ago. For a while there, it stole much of my life, my peace, my health, and my joy. Eventually I decided to distance myself from those who were causing me so much pain every time I allowed them back into my life. And I know that I have never been happier since I made that decision! I wouldn't recommend that to everyone though, it's better to restore relationships and experience full forgiveness. In my case however, I had tried going back numerous times, but the same toxic problem kept reappearing in them even after counselling. I praise God though, for the joy and comfort and friendship He has brought me since! :) Blessings, Pam!

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    1. Noela, so glad you read my books and enjoyed them! Yay!!! :)

      And it also sounds like you did everything in your power to heal the relationship. Sometimes that's all you can do.

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  10. Pam great interview. and congratulations on your new book. To answer your question, yes I have had the problem with unforgiveness. But, with hard work, God's help, guidance, and prayer I am finding my way through that darkness. Which I am truly grateful for, it was a very heavy burden on my heart. Thank you for the chance to win a great book. B

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    1. Thank you, Babbi! I'm so excited to see this book in print. And didn't they do a fantastic job on the cover??? Gorgeous! :)

      What a blessing to have that burden lifted, Babbi. Praise the Lord!

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  11. Great interview. I just liked Pam Hillman's facebook page. I struggled with bitterness several years ago. It took a long time to get over. I had to keep going through the process of forgiving and asking the Lord to help with this whole process. During this time I was given a book that was tremendous help. This book was written by Jay Adams and the title was From Forgiven to Forgiving. I would highly recommend that book for anyone struggling with this problem. The Lord is so good and He is the one who gives victory.

    wwchildren at gmail dot com

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    1. Thanks, Wilani, for sharing. Thanks for liking Pam's FB page, too! Amen to what you said!

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    2. Wilani, thanks for sharing that book. I haven't read it, but the title From Forgiven to Forgiving says it all, doesn't it? When we think about how much we've been forgiven, how can we do less?

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  12. I have already liked her page. I have come pretty close to bitterness with a work issue and since I still work there, it is taking a lot of prayer and encouragement to work through it. centraleast2 at gmail dot come

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    1. CentralEast, I'll be praying for this situation. I imagine several of us here know where you're coming from. Maybe this will help..one time a family member had a job on an oil rig where the stress was pretty bad. He was gone from home for 3 weeks at a time. I told him to find a bolt or a nut and every time he felt frustrated with a supervisor or situation, to reach in his pocket and wrap his fingers around that bolt, and pray for the situation and the person who'd caused it. He did and he said that entire 3 week period went so much better than before. Oh, and when he sent a picture of what he'd found, it was a 4" long bolt and nut! lol I was thinking something tiny, but maybe a BIG one got the job done! ha

      I personally have a small rock with a tiny red heart and cross painted on it. One of my co-workers sons painted three more crosses on the back. :) I received it during a devotional, and boy, did it help remind me not to let bitterness take root over situations and toxic people. More than once, I reached for my little rock and held on.

      Pray...and hold on to the rock of your salvation!

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  13. I have also already 'liked' Pam's facebook page!

    As a new pastor's wife, I was not acquainted with ill will in a church. Someone who was NOT leading a Godly life attacked my husband's character and my heart hurt so much, wondering how this could happen in a church. The truth eventually came out but it took me awhile to even want to ask God for forgiveness of my bitterness. I felt I deserved to feel this way, but it wasn't His way.

    missionwife AT hotmail DOT com

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    1. Melody, I'm so sorry you and your husband had to go through that. Do you feel that experience made you more open to others who've faced unwarranted attacks?

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  14. Good Evening Ladies !
    As Usual Carrie, awesome interview , I love getting to know all authors. Pam I have to admit that I guess I have become bitter about something I was not truely forgiving about with a close family memeber. Not a good thing. Trying to let go daily for the hurt caused me. Can't wait to read our books. I liked your FB, followed on Twitter and added you to my pinterest board tonight. Carrie , your there too...
    Hugs
    Linda Finn
    faithfulacresbooks@gmail.com

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    1. Linda, thanks for connecting on twitter, fb, and pinterest. I need to hop on pinterest. Completely forgot it...Uh..you realize that if I go there, you might have to come find me and bring me back. I could spend HOURS there! lol

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  15. lol, Oh I have you pinned Pam...You have your own board on my wall there. You and Carrie. Do you know I have so wanted your book since seeing the cover ! It has to be the artist in me , but I was so drawn to it....smile So my hearts up here Yelling to Carrie, Pick Me Pick Me !!!! I so cannot wait to read it... I know what you mean though, I try to stick to working on my Faithful Acres Books things when on pinterest. I signed in on faithfulacresbk and perhaps now it will post everything to that board ... less distracting then the personal board of faithfulacres7, but mind you that one is full of awesomeness too...take a peek !
    Blessings
    Linda
    PS: Sure Jules, share a link but your not here yet....smile
    lol

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    1. I'm not so good with Pinterest, Linda, but I did figure out how to pin some of those you sent to me! Woah, I got my own board? Wowee!!! Blessings!!!

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  16. PAMMY!!! Sooooo fun to see you on one of my FAVORITE blogs with some of my FAVORITE people ... including YOU!!

    You said, "My natural inclination was to stay in the huddle, but I felt an overwhelming urge to reach out to other “wallflowers”, so I left the group and cruised the room, speaking to those standing alone or in other small groups. It was really hard, but I did it."

    WOW. I already knew I liked you A LOT, Pam, but that statement just UPPED the respect and appreciation factor, my friend, because if more people would do that, God would smile a whole lot more!! And the fact that it's so hard for you to do in the first place means the smile you put on His face is just that MUCH bigger!! :)

    LOVED Mariah and LOVE you, my friend, and it goes without saying I LOVE any interview Dr. Pagels does too!!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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    1. You are too funny, Julie! How about if I interviewed an astrophysicist? I agree with you about that being such a ministry of hospitality for Pam to reach out to wallflowers like me. My brother said that when I was a kid I "was the wall" so maybe I wasn't just a wallflower lol!

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  17. I've got OWG pulled up on my fancy-dancy new Mac because my poor old Dell is so slow. But don't knock her. She's been a good'un for many years. But my little Macbook Pro is so cute...Mac'y keeps going to sleep (just like a new baby) and I forget about her. Have to wake her up.

    Sorry, rabbit trail...

    JULIE, you don't know the half of it. I was a tall, gangly teenager and up until I got out of college, I barely spoke to anybody. Hard to believe I was so shy and backward. Just unbelievable, really. It was a sheer act of will to change that. Well, and my day job answering phones, dealing with customers and then salesmen slowly but surely brought me out of that shyness. What a blessing in disguise.

    Lord, girl, I'll talk to anybody these days. Much to my husband and grown son's horror. lol

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    1. My MacBook Pro does the same thing n it drives me crazy! And it kicks me off the WiFi

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  18. BREAKING NEWS...(well, it broke over the weekend, but too late to add to the OWG post...) Tyndale is giving away 5 copies of Claiming Mariah on Goodreads! How cool is that??? Let's see... attempting to imbed the link.

    I know how to do this.

    Trust me.

    Mary Connealy taught me, so if it doesn't work, blame Mary! ha

    Click here for to enter the Claiming Mariah Goodreads Giveaway!

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  19. Not bitter but definitely hurt. It took much prayer, wise counsel, and immersing myself in Scripture to be able to truly forgive and move on.

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    1. Anne, I hear you. There have been times that I've been hurt by something so completely out of left field that I couldn't help but be hurt. So glad you were able to forgive. You made the right choice. :)

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    2. Anne, you are so lovable I hate to think of somebody hurting you! XOXOXO

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  20. Yes, and unforgiveness just eats at you doesn't it? I think it hurts us more than the other person. I have seen others hold that forgiveness and not give it and seen the results, so I try to grant it more. Knowing how much it hurts to hold on to it and knowing that Jesus died for our forgiveness helps. But, we are human and sometimes it takes a lot longer for us to reach a point to get there doesn't it!
    I already liked your Facebook page. I read Claiming Mariah a while back. And I really loved it! Great job writing the book. I am anxious to read Stealing Jake! Congratulations on the Paper version!
    Nancycooks4u at gmail dot com

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    1. Thank you Nancy! So glad you enjoyed Claiming Mariah. :)

      You are so right. We'd like to think that we could forgive very quickly, but some trespasses are so deep and hurtful that it's not easy to forgive. But if we start with a willing heart, with God's help, we are able.

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  21. Got bitter today when I found out that our flight out from NY got canceled and we have to spend an extra day in the cold. But then I remembered that we get to spend more time with my only Grandma who is 91. So I am very thankful for the time we have had with my grandma.
    oh.hello.hiya@gmail.com

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    1. Sorry that your flight got cancelled, Danie. But you're right to look on the bright side. :)

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  22. Hello Carrie and Pam. Somehow looks like I missed this one and might be too late. Hope not. I have had to forgive several times in my family, but is hard when they act like they've done nothing wrong. But with GOD's help I did. But, the forgetting is hard. I don't let it mess up our loving each other tho. I would love to win one of Pam's books. Thanks for the chance. Gd bless. Love OWG. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

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    1. Hi, Maxie! We always love to see you here! We have to forgive. He doesn't say we have to forgive or hang out with people who have done us wrong , though!

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