Category Archives: young adult

The Scent Of Her Soul Film

So my husband, Jonathan, and I desire to create a short-film about the sex-trafficking industry. The story is an adaptation of a powerful novel written by Christian author, Bryan Davis. The plot: A vigilante father uses a unique gift to find and rescue sex-trafficking victims. 

Mike, the father, knows first-hand what it’s like to have a child kidnapped and dragged into the human-trafficking industry. After suffering an injury that renders him helpless to rescue his daughter from a kidnapper, Mike awakens with a special gift: he is able to detect the scent of a girl’s soul. 

Armed with this gift, he sets out on quest after quest to rescue missing girls across the country, hoping to gain clues about his own daughter along the way.

We really believe in this inspirational and beautiful story, and know it will impact audiences and can put a dent in the dark world of human-trafficking. We desire to enter the film in the Miami Film Festival’s short-film category. 

God has been opening doors. A very talented cinematographer and brother in Christ has offered his services and the provision of equipment free of charge. We will even be filming one of the scene’s in his home. Also, a film teacher at Calvary Chapel Academy and Palm Beach Atlantic University has also offered to help us with this project.

The script is finished, the shooting schedule set, and actors are submitting to our project, a few of which have already been cast. None of the actors or crew is getting paid, however, we need funds to provide lunch and coffee as well as funds for props, wardrobe, and the film festival submission fee. It will only take under $1,000 to make this film happen! 

If you desire to help be a voice for the voiceless, then please donate! All who donate $50 or more will have their name in the credits! And those who contribute $100 or more will be invited to attend the premier party!

You can donate at our Go Fund Me Page.

Thank you so much for your time and support.


Don’t Give Up On What You Know God Has Called You To Do

My writing ministry had me growing weary. I’ve been working on this YA fantasy novel for around four years now, and I just want it to be published already.

I was planning on self-publishing via eBook and raising the funds through Indie Gogo. However, after a sister in Christ challenged me—”Did God tell you to self-publish at this exact time”—I prayed. I sought more counsel and realized I should keep trying to get traditionally published.

At first I was discouraged. I cried, just wanting this book off my hands already, but then I prayed and began to worship. Within no more than ten minutes, God had encouraged me, and I was fine. Mind you, when I worshiped, I wasn’t, “feeling it.” I was still hurt, but I denied myself, denied my emotions, and chose to praise and thank God despite; out of obedience to His Word which commands us to give thanks in all circumstances.

When you repent—change your mind and agree with God—despite your circumstances and feelings, the Holy Spirit does a work in you and causes you to walk like His Son. I didn’t change my attitude, God through the Holy Spirit did, for the Word tells us, “It is God who works in you both to will and do for His good pleasure.”

When we choose to give God thanks, even when we don’t feel like it, our focus shifts from our problems to our problem solver, and He changes us by His grace.

This morning, I happened to read this:

For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. (‭Hebrews‬ ‭6‬:‭10-12‬ NKJV)

Yet again, our great Savior encouraged me. I won’t give up on this book. I’ve dedicated it to Him for His glory and purposes. I believe He will use it.

Don’t give up either. Whatever you commit to the Lord for His good usage is not a labor of vanity. As long as you work diligently and as excellently as you can, knowing you’re serving the Lord, He will bless and use your efforts far beyond what you can ask, think, or imagine.

Keep fighting on. Our battle isn’t against flesh and blood, and in Christ we are more than conquerors.

Grace to you,

Natasha


We The Millennials, Pledge Allegiance To Master Internet

The “net is takin” over all right—taking over millenials.

The older folks, those from the era before computers, typically don’t care much for the A.I. Mother Ship.

Sure, there’s some baby boomers, Generation Y-ers utilizing social media for business and marketing purposes, but the ones who are becoming consumed by the world-wide web, are us millenials.

Those of us being born/raised in the age of technology or “knowledge” aren’t just using the internet for business; many of us are using it to connect, to be noticed, to feel accepted.

We cling to our iPhones like parasites. Though our intellect tells us texting and driving = extreme danger, we just have to get our social-media fix.

Did they like my default pic? Who commented on my post? How many views do I have?

The internet has a way of temporarily satiating our deep need to feel loved.

The more followers and friends we have, the more loved we feel. And O, if we could only get famous for something we toss into the web, then we’ll really feel loved and fulfilled.

As a fellow human being, I’ve been there. I’ve checked blog stats and glanced at twitter numbers. I’ve taken time to tweak my photos to ensure I look the best I possibly can.

Honestly, if I did not know how insanely loved I was by God, as displayed through the death of His only Son on that rugged cross, the internet surely would have taken me over.

But because I know who I am—a dearly loved daughter of the Creator of the Universe, who has plans for me that are good and pleasing and perfect—the internet doesn’t consume me.

I don’t need a hundred likes, or even one for that matter, to feel loved or accepted. Jesus took me at my worst and His love has consumed me.

So whether I become a best-selling author or not, if the internet melts down and there’s no more blogging or Twitter, I’ll be fine.

My prayer is that my fellow millennials will come to that place of freedom, freedom from stats and likes, friends and followers, and allow True Love to take them over. That they would come to know it doesn’t matter how famous they are online, but what matters is their soul. That if and when the internet no longer exists, their world won’t be over. That Jesus is the one and only person that consumes them.

I’ve thrown in the towel on letting myself use the internet to fulfill what it utterly can’t, and hopefully you do as well.


Everyone Needs To Know This, Or They’ll Die

How tragic that so many pastors stand before thousands and do not tell them the need for grace, but only tell them about grace.

My generation needs salvation, not a pep talk.

We need someone to be real with us.

Tell us no, God hates sin. He hates premarital sex. He hates lying. He hates stealing. He hates homosexuality. He hates it so much He sent His only perfect Son to be brutally beaten and crucified for sin so we who give up those things and turn to God can be cleansed and forgiven by the precious blood of Jesus.

That is the grace of God! He sees our evil, our dirtiness, and He deals with it. He sacrifices Himself upon a rugged cross and says, “Follow me, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light. I will heal you. I will give you power over satan and the sin that has enslaved you. I will wash you and make you my child.”

Praise God He paid the price for our wickedness. Praise God He gives those who repent His Holy Spirit so they can be made whole and live a joy-filled, God-honoring life.

This is the gospel. This is grace. This is true, unfailing love.

Do you have it? Do you know Jesus?

If you want to be made new, if you want to start over, and if you want to be saved from hell, all you need is Christ and His Spirit. If you confess that Jesus is Lord, and trust in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved from both sin and death, and receive eternal life. God’s Holy Spirit will come into your heart and make it clean. He will empower you and give you everything you’ve ever needed and more. How do I know this? Because He did it for me, He did it for my husband, my sister, and so many others I know. None of us are who we used to be. We’ve been made new. We know God loves us and has empowered us to defeat sin and eventually be with Him in heaven for ever. I pray you also embrace Christ and all He died to give you.


Mind-blown At The Fact That God Is Truly My Co-Writer

I’m currently working on the second book in a fantasy trilogy. Last night, while at a brother’s home, we discussed the false teaching of the Rapture. After much dialogue, this morning I was compelled to research the origin of this belief. I wasn’t shocked by its late start-up (the 18th century, when Joseph Smith was likewise receiving contrary-to-Scripture “visions”). But as I got into prayer, just thanking God for His unfailing Truth, it hit me: there’s parallels in my trilogy to The Great Tribulation.

It’s fascinating to me that before endeavoring to write this trilogy, all I knew was what the seven main characters were going to represent. I also knew there would be a character who represented God the Father and Creator and then shortly after starting that there would be a book that represents the Bible. However, it wasn’t until after I’d finished writing book one that a slew of biblical parallels began to shine forth.

I pray every single time I’m about to write. I invite God into the process, asking Him to bless and anoint me and to lead the story. I’m mind-blown at just how much He’s honored those prayers.

I don’t want to give any spoilers, but from what I currently know, there’s parallels of the Holy Spirit, of the pre-tribulation “birth pangs” Jesus speaks of in Matthew 24, anti-christ and the false prophet, the Great Tribulation, and the New Jerusalem. Again, none of this was planned. I didn’t premeditate any of these parallels, only the few I mentioned earlier.

So my encouragement to every Christian fiction writer is to really pray and offer your work to God. Trust Him to give you the story and really commit it to Him. It’s amazing to have the God of the universe as your co-writer. Are not our gifts meant to build up the Church and glorify God? I pray all of you use your gifts for the above purposes, whatever those gifts may be. Let’s sew into eternity with what we’ve been given today.

Much love,

Natasha


Want A Cinematic Book Trailer For Your Novel?

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Any writers out there desiring a cinematic book trailer for their novel? My husband and I will love to help. We will work out a budget you are comfortable with, read your novel to really capture your vision for your story, and involve you in the creative process if you wish.

Feel free to email me for more information: NatashaSapienza(at)gmail(dot)com and check out this book trailer we did for author Bryan Davis on a very small budget.

Blessings,

Natasha


I Don’t Dig Devotionals Much

The following is from an email I sent to some of my younger siblings in Christ whom I dearly love.

A powerful reminder to us who are in Christ:

“His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. By these He has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world because of evil desires. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with goodness, goodness with knowledge, knowledge with self-control, self-control with endurance, endurance with godliness, godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they will keep you from being useless or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 1:3-8 HCSB)

Family I beg you, do not neglect the Word of God. I’m going to boldly say if your “quiet time” only consists of a devotional, you’re becoming religious rather than relational.

I’m not saying devotionals are evil, but I am saying they are very limiting and potentially dangerous for the believer who replaces the Word with a devotional.

Many devotionals give you a snippet of Scripture and a thought and/or prayer to consider. There’s three problems with this set-up:

1.) A snippet of Scripture is baby food.

This may be okay for a lunch break at work or school, but for your quality time with God?

2.) The author is interpreting Scripture for you, but what if their take is wrong, or rather shallow?

There may be much more layers to that passage (there usually are), but now you’re only getting a taste of the revelation they were shown by the Holy Spirit. But what if you prayed and studied the passages on your own, asking the Holy Spirit to teach you and speak to you? Don’t you think you might get more out of this time than the devotional?

3.) They are giving you a prayer to recite so now your prayer is a quick two sentences that isn’t being personally led by the Holy Spirit, or at least quenches the Spirit, because you say it and then move on with your day

Prayer is intimate. Prayer is insanely powerful. When we base our times in prayer on whatever our devotional tells us to pray, we are totally missing out, and God is missing us.

Imagine every time you spoke to your best friend, it was a two minute (if that) conversation. Basically, these devotional prayers are like the quick, unintentional, chit-chat conversations we have with people we don’t know very well.

When we go deeper in prayer, it’s like the long, intense conversations we have with our close friends that give us revelation and deeper insight into who both of us are, and there’s usually something accomplished in those longer, intentional conversations; whether it be a greater understanding about a personal issue, guidance as to what we should do, a greater love and compassion for each other, getting help with math homework, or a acquiring a new beta reader, something is accomplished in those deeper conversations, things are revealed.

This is what happens in intentional prayer where you make time for God and ask the Holy Spirit to give you the words.

Jesus didn’t talk about the persistent widow who kept pestering the unjust judge for justice for no reason. The bible doesn’t mention Christ spending hours in prayer for no reason. It doesn’t say the “fervent” prayer of the righteous accomplishes much for no reason.

So, my beloved siblings in Christ, my challenge for you is to go deeper in your Bible time and prayer time. Draw near to God, and then He will draw near to you.

Love you guys! Praying for you.

Natasha


Reapers Book Trailer Hubby And I Made

So hubby and I offered to make a book trailer for the awesome, Bryan Davis, or as I like to call him, Obi-Wan Brynobi.

He just came out with a new novel entitled Reapers. Devoured this fascinating story in less than a week. Don’t let the name fool you, these Reapers aren’t anything you’d expect, but I’ll let the trailer speaker for itself. My hubby, aka Sir Jonathan not only directed this, but he also played the main character. It was a pleasure to both serve our brother in Christ, and team up for the advancement of God’s kingdom! Enjoy! Reapers Book Trailer

What are your thoughts? Is this a book you’d be interested in reading? Feel free to let me know in a comment.


Is My Calling Distracting Me From The Call?

*When I speak of our “calling” in this post, I’m speaking about our career or artistic talents.*

Could it be that we’re so concerned with our “calling” that we’re actually distracted from doing God’s will? Isn’t our “callings” just a part of God’s will, but in no way the whole? Isn’t God’s will made plain in the Scriptures? If we abide in and obey His Word, won’t He direct our paths?
Aren’t we commanded not to worry, but instead to pray? Aren’t we taught not to fret, but to simply trust God?
I think sometimes we overthink being a disciple of Christ. Instead of just loving Him and others, enjoying Him and enjoying the fellowship of our brothers in the Light, we get in control-mode and stress over what our calling is. But we shouldn’t let our calling distract us from doing God’s will.

May we be at peace with the fact that in Christ we are significant, that it isn’t our calling that makes us significant. Nor let us think that in order to accomplish God’s will and advance the kingdom we must be walking in our calling. Sometimes it takes years—decades—to begin to walk in your calling. Are you going to just wait for that season and neglect all those God has placed around you to love and disciple?

What matters to God is the fruit we produce. We can work extra hard on perfecting our gifts that tie into our calling, and saving money or studying and planning ahead for that calling, but that doesn’t produce much fruit in the meantime does it?

Me sitting alone at my computer for hours typing my book will produce fruit later, but it very well may get published five years from now, and all the hours I invested in it everyday could have been cut considerably so I can instead love, encourage, and pray for my husband and those around me, or invest in calling a sister and building up her faith. All of our work will be tested by fire in the end, and if what we’ve built turns to ashes, God’s not going to be very pleased.

I want to make sure my husband and those I disciple enter the new city’s pearly gates and receive imperishable crowns.

I’m not saying you become lazy and don’t work on cultivating the spirit of excellence, but I think time is scarce so we must be as shrewd as serpents with what little of it we have.

I don’t want God to play back the reel of my life and then I see thousands of times I was working diligently on my books, but my husband or mother or sister was enduring spiritual attacks alone and greatly needing backup. That will be humiliating and disheartening and I’m certain I’ve already done this plenty of times before.

May we be alert in prayer as the Scriptures command, rather than too busy crafting our gifts.

This I know, we’re all called to make disciples, and we don’t need to write books, lead worship, make films, or be rich to do it. We just need to love those around us.

Agreed?


I’m A Parent Who Encourages My 13-Year-Old To Have Sex

Parents are naive, or in denial.

To allow your thirteen-year-old to listen to sexually promiscuous music, have a boyfriend or girlfriend, permit them to go to their house, video chat with he or she in the bedroom with the door closed, and have a lock on their iPhone is in my opinion, highly encouraging sexual activity.

How can you expect your child to abstain from sex if you don’t do your job as a parent by teaching and protecting them?

Is responding to the issue with, “They’re going to do whatever they want,” really good parenting? Are not children to obey? And if they don’t, could it be possible that you have trained them to get what they want by not disciplining them thoroughly and setting boundaries?

I’m not a parent, but I have taught, taken care of, babysat, and mentored young people for a total of eight years. Though I have yet to have children, I listen to father and doctor, Bob Barnes of Sheridan House ministries on Parenting Today weekdays at 2:45pm to 3pm via ReachFm, and more parenting talks on Family Life Today and other Christian programs, and have observed the parenting of those with highly obedient and well-behaved children. I only share with you what I’ve learned from them and what I know to be true about many teens since I was there and still mentor them today.

I get emails from tempted fourteen-year-old girls. When they’re that young and in a relationship, I always encourage them to stay single and focus on their relationship with Jesus. I tell them not to consider dating (I actually teach on courting), until they’re of age or maturity to begin considering marriage. To be in a relationship before this time is to tempt oneself into sexual immorality. Hormones are blazing and it only takes some affection from your child’s crush to release the flood waters.

So I write this out of love and concern. I hear the tragedies of teen pregnancy and abortion. I know of the STD epidemic. I’m sure you parents do as well.

Please set up boundaries and restrictions for your child until they’re out of your house and on their own. The culture we live in is saturated with sex. Practically every song on secular radio is about dating and having sex. Nearly every PG-13 and R-rated movie have sexually suggestive material, and the magazines your child is confronted with in the grocery checkout isle shout for your daughter to be a sex-guru. Have you read some of the titles? I flip over those magazines and others that have half-naked women on them. But this is the day your child lives in. Sex-messages are everywhere, and that is why you have to be all the more diligent in protecting them.

Do you really want media teaching your children what sex is and when it should be experienced? Public schools are actually having a field-day teaching your children about all the ways they can be sexually active and then passing out condoms like candies.

Please guard over your precious children. They just want someone to look up to, but if you’re too busy or too tired from work to invest time in teaching your children, they will reap what you’ve sown.