Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Being Open to the Spirit

In his newest book, Scot McKnight takes a look at the Holy Spirit.  His books is entitled Open to the Spirit: God in Us, God with Us, God Transforming Us.  McKnight seeks to answer some of the basic questions even Christ followers have regarding the Holy Spirit, such as Who is the Holy Spirit?  What is the purpose of the Holy Spirit?  Should we pray to the Holy Spirit?  How do we relate to the Holy Spirit?  And more questions are answered in this book.

Most people are confused about the role of the Spirit, especially as it relates to the Trinity and McKnight attempts to help the reader gain a better understanding.

This book is well written, filled with a number of examples and illustrations which will help the reader better understand the mysterious Holy Spirit.  This is not a deep theological book.  But it is one that seeks to take someone who already has a basic knowledge and help them to go deeper in their understanding of the Holy Spirit.

The call is for the Christian to be open to the Holy Spirit so they could better grow in their relationship with Christ, and with the Spirit.  I sense that McKnight's goal was to help the reader gain a better understanding of the Holy Spirit, thus the reason this is not as theological or academic.  I appreciated this approach.

Overall, I would recommend this book to those wanting to gain wisdom and understanding of the Holy Spirit.

I received this book from bloggingforbooks in exchange for an honest review.

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Tuesday, January 09, 2018

A Life Beyond Amazing!

In his newest book, A Life Beyond Amazing: 9 Decisions That Will Transform Your Life Today, Dr. David Jeremiah, has written an outstanding book about how to live life according to the Fruits of the Spirit.

This book has the potential to be life changing.  As Jeremiah correctly points out early in the book, living life according to these 9 Fruits of the Spirit is a decision which we make.  They are difficult decisions to live according to each fruit of the spirit, but the potential when we do is a "life beyond amazing."

The chapters are ~ 
A life of Love
A life of Peace
A life of Joy
A life of Endurance
A life of Compassion
A life of Generosity
A life of Integrity
A life of Humility
A life of Self-Discipline

While I look at some of the headers for the fruits of the Spirit differently than Jeremiah, he is still touching on the same topics, just using different words.  For example, generosity is also goodness; endurance is patience . . . and so on.

Dr. Jeremiah gives a number of practical examples and illustrations to help the reader better understand and then apply these fruits into their lives.

Overall, this is an excellent book and one which should be read and discussed!!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

The Treasure Principle

In the Revised and Updated The Treasure Principle, Randy Alcorn helps us see Jesus spent more time talking about money and possessions than about heaven and hell combined.  But too often we do not want to hear what Jesus said about money and possessions. As a result, we miss out on the many blessings God has in store for us, because we seek our blessings from those material things.

Jesus offers us the opportunity to embrace the abundant life.  It’s a life filled with hope, grace, mercy and power and love, but it does not come through the temporary things, it comes through the spiritual life, devoted to following Jesus.

This is the premise out of which Alcorn writes.  He uses a number of scripture references to make his points.  This is a short and easy to read book which will speak very clearly about money and possessions.  There are a number of excellent resources and study questions in the back of the book as well.

Overall, I would recommend this book to read.

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.

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NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible!

I was looking forward to receiving the NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible, because it is not the typical Study Bible as we know.  I appreciated the fact that there were a number of articles throughout this Bible.  These articles help you to make better decisions regarding the passages you are reading. 

The print is not too small and seemed to be the right size for easy reading, which is really important.  The words of Christ are in red, which helps.  This Bible is not about giving all kinds of reference notes, there are some, but not many. 

Each book of the Bible has an overview section which helps the reader to know what the main subjects of the book are about.  There is some reference material in the back of the Bible, but that is not the purpose of this Bible. 

Overall, I thought this was a very nice Bible, very readable as there are two columns on each page to read the Bible.

I  was provided this book in exchange for an honest review from booklookbloggers.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

The Courage to Grow!

I appreciate devotionals which are real and relevant.  This devotional perfectly meets that requirement.  Annie Downs has written a powerful and beautiful devotional entitled, 100 Days to Brave: Devotions for Unlocking Your Most Courageous Self.  

The subtitle is the point of this devotional which covers 100 days.  These are short, easy to read devotions designed to help the reader find courage through God when life is a struggle.  The devotional feels personal and real.

This is an excellent devotion and one I would highly recommend, even as a Christmas gift.

I received this book from booklookbloggers in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, December 01, 2017

Interactive Devotional!

Picturing Heaven by Randy Alcorn is a fun and interactive devotional for those who love to draw and color.  The devotionals are short and simple, but the coloring is intense and really will stretch the reader to use their imagination.  I was really impressed with the quality of the pages and the designs.

The interaction by the reader with the book should give them a greater appreciation and longing for heaven.  You can add a journal, writing down your thoughts and feelings as you were filling in the lines with various colors. 

There are 40 different devotionals and 40 different pages to color.  Some are more intricate and involved than others.  This is not a quick color inside the lines and you are done.  Instead, this will take time, time to review and time to consider how God is calling you to the next stage of your life.

I received this book from Tyndale Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Embracing God's Grace!

Too often in the Christian world, we live according to a ‘works righteousness’ motif.  We erroneously believe that what we do is more important than who we believe in.  Jerry Bridges is trying to break down that wall.  His book Transforming Grace is all about this. 

He uses a great deal of scripture as he leads the reader from chapter 1, dispelling the myth of performing to earn grace, to a discussion of who needs grace, ultimately to a final discussion of appropriating God’s grace and what it looks like.  This is a powerful book for readers.  Bridges emphasizes the fact that Jesus’ death on the cross was all we need.  Because of the work of Christ, we are forgiven and we do not earn forgiveness.  It cannot be bought, in fact, it was bought for us by Jesus.  So, it is a gift, which we must receive.

I believe it is easy to forget about God’s grace.  We loses sight of it and Bridges book is a great reminder that we desperately need to hold onto God’s grace in our lives.

I really appreciated the Discussion Guide in the back of the book.  This is not a quick easy guide.  Each chapter has about 10 pages for discussion, thus making this a book which can easily be used for a group discussion.

Overall, this is an excellent book which I would highly recommend.

I received this book from Tyndale in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Excellent Teen NKJV Bible

I found this new NKJV Study Bible for Kids to be a really great looking and useful Bible.  While it is paperback, the colors on the cover were inviting and exciting.  The Bible is filled with so many helps, that in some ways it can be distracting, but that's not really a criticism.

The Bible has short and quick introductions, biographies, timelines, articles and more.  What I like about the Bible is that most everything contained in the helps seems to have a sense of action to it.  I think this would be enticing to younger kids, pre-teens and teens.

There is also a dictionary and concordance in the back of the Bible.  As the cover suggests, there is a lot of color contained in this Bible, which again, helps it to become more inviting.  Anything we can do like this, without changing the Word of God, to help younger folks open the Bible is a win to me.

I would recommend this Bible.  It would make a great addition to Christmas!

I received this Bible from booklookbloggers in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Advent Devotional!

The Wonder of Advent Devotional: Experiencing the Love and Glory of the Christmas Season, by Chris Tiegreen is one of many books and devotionals he has written.  This is devotional takes the reader from November 24 to the end of December.

Each reading begins with a scripture on the top of the page, followed by a short devotion which focuses on the Christmas story, then he concludes each day with a reflection question.  Sometimes there are additional readings suggested and passages from hymns.

The readings are short and can be finished in a short period of time.  This book would be appropriate to give as a Thanksgiving gift so the person has the devotional in time for November 24, which is the next day!

The book features a nice hardcover which makes it feel much more sturdy.  Overall, I would recommend this devotional.

I received a copy of this devotional from Tyndale Press in exchange for an honest review.

Killing the Spiders!

In his book, Kill the Spider: Getting Rid of What’s Really Holding You Back, Carlos Whittaker takes us on a very important and significant journey as he becomes very vulnerable and open about the issues in his life and how he tackled them head on. 

He begins by sharing a story about a brown recluse spider being in his home, namely having his wife screaming about finding a spider in their bed.  This leads the reader to grasp the main point of this book is the fact that so many of us struggle to destroy the nasty cobweb when really it's the spider that needs to be killed.  Destroying the cobweb only leads to new and different cobwebs because we never took care of the real problem, the spider.

He shares his journey and how he was an overcomer by learning to destroy the spiders, which in turn led to no more cobwebs.  He helps us to see that we have to take part in the killing of the spiders, not just sit back and complain that God isn’t doing His part.

The book is engaging and easy to read.  There are 18 chapters, each about 10-12 pages in length.  This is a book which can be easily read, but it may lead you to uncover the spiders in your life as well.  And you won’t need an exterminator!! 

I received this book from booklookbloggers in exchange for an open and honest review.

Being Open to the Spirit

In his newest book, Scot McKnight takes a look at the Holy Spirit.  His books is entitled Open to the Spirit: God in Us, God with Us, God ...