Friday, December 30, 2016

Very Informative book about the 3 Mary's


I had the pleasure of reading an Advance Review Copy of The Women of Easter: Encounter the Savior with Mary of Bethany, Mary of Nazareth, and Mary Magdalene by Liz Curtis Higgs.  Admittedly, I ordered the book so I could begin Easter preparations and thought this may be an interesting way to approach Easter.

Liz Curtis Higgs helps the reader along as she sets the context for each of the Mary's.  Without doing this, the book would be less complete and feel fractured.

She discusses Mary of Bethany's annointing of Jesus for His death and burial; Mary of Nazareth, His mother's constant devotion, even in the midst of not understanding who Jesus was, she was there from start to finish; then Mary Magdalene who was delivered from 7 demons and never stopped following Jesus.

There is a nice section in the back of the book, which has a study guide and questions for review.  There are a number of footnotes, which showed the research put into the writing of this book.

Overall, this was an easy to read and informative book.  I would recommend it to those wanting to learn more in a user / reader friendly version.

I received this book from www.bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for an unbiased review of this book.

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Excellent Devotional!

I was looking forward to reading the devotional, Jesus Today: Experience Hope in His Presence, by Sarah Young, after hearing about her previous devotional, Jesus Calling.  This devotional contains 150 one page devotionals, which are supported by scripture on the second page.  There is also a scripture index in the back of the devotional.

The book was written during a difficult period in Sarah's life and you could feel the power and courage, as well as the personal feeling from her.  At times, it felt as if God's words were being written or gently spoken through her.  The book is filled with images of grace, power and hope.

This would be a great devotional book to read for people that need extra doses of encouragement and hope.  Really, this devotional would be a great present for anyone who wants to be encouraged through Scripture!

I received this devotional book from from www.booklookbloggers.com in exchange for an unbiased review.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Powerful Book about CTE

I read with interest the book, After the Cheering Stops, by Cyndy Feasel.  I love football, I coach football, and I have a son who plays high school football.  This was definitely a very powerful, at times, very scary book about the nature of football and the brutality of football.  We all know it is a violent sport, but the devastation and toll to some, is frightening.

 Cyndy wrote this book about life with her husband, Grant Feasel.  He was a former NFL football player who played center with various teams.  He had a long and successful career, but after he retired, he made many poor decisions due to an incurable, unforgiving and vicious disease, CTE - -  chronic traumatic encephalopothy.  The sad thing about this disease as it related to Grant, is that he never knew it.

This disease impacted his decision making, his mood, his activity with his family and ultimately it led to his death.  He died due to liver failure at the age of 52, which was the result of alcoholism.  Ultimately, it is believed the alcoholism and more were the results of his CTE.

This is also a book about faith and hope.  As Cyndy and Grant were / are Christians.  Overall, this is a very descriptive book about the life of Grant Feasel.  It's well written and if you appreciate football, and understand the violent nature of the game, you may enjoy this book.

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

Friday, December 02, 2016

Great Devotional for MEN

There are very few good Men's Devotionals out there.  When I saw this book, I immediately wanted to get it.  In Roger Patterson's A Minute for Vision for Men: To Kick-Start your Day, was a very good devotional especially geared toward men. 

I have found over the years, that men want to grow in faith, but have fewer resources to do this than women.  This devotional is written with the hopes that men will be drawn in and engaged; which will lead to greater Christian maturity.  This book, as Patterson states, is to kick-start your day, and not be a replacement for Bible reading.

There are 365 daily readings, each ending with a scripture passage.  Most devotionals are sports related.  Because I am a sports enthusiast, this book drew me in.  There are quotes and illustrations used by Patterson to help make his points.

The cover is nicely done and this would make a very nice Christmas present.

I received this book from www.tyndaleblognetwork.com in exchange for an honest review.

Important Book for Kids

I don’t read very much fiction, but this book just seemed to jump out at me, and I was really glad I read it.  Larger-Than-Life Lara, written by Dandi Daley Mackall was very well written.  This is a book which drew me in, it was a quick to read book at under 200 pages, but had a great, deep message as she tugged at my heart.

In short, the story is about Laney Grafton who is a 10 year old girl, who does not have a very good home life.  Then one day a new girl shows up in her class, named Lara.  Lara is larger than life in her appearance, and the fourth graders go at her and bully her.  Yet, Lara will have none of it.  She doesn’t fight back as we think of fighting back, instead, Lara smiles and smiles.  Laney was picked on before Lara arrived, and she finds this a reprieve, but learns through the way Lara handles herself.

This would be an excellent book to be read by 3rd through 5th graders in school to help them understand bullying and how to deal with it.

I received this book from www.tyndaleblognetwork.com in exchange for an honest review.

Excellent Reading!

I had not read anything from O.S. Hawkins and I have now become a fan.  The book, The Daniel Code: Living Out Truth in a Culture that is Losing its Way, was an exceptional book.  It is 25 chapters long, but each chapter is only about 8 pages.  This book would make a great Christmas present, as it has a signing page and has a great hardcover.

Hawkins chronicles the life of the Old Testament prophet Daniel to help the reader better understand and learn how to go against the culture and demonstrate our faith in Christ to the world. 

This book was easy to read, but it was very thought provoking.  I used it for my devotions, as there is a Bible verse to begin each chapter.  Even though Hawkins is talking about culture wars, the book is very encouraging and not demeaning to other groups.

Hawkins writes from a conservative Evangelical Christian worldview.  This book is also helpful to understand the way the world reacts to Christians who are willing to speak about their faith or speak on issues they support, while the world is against them.

Hawkins has written a number of other “Code” books, which I look forward to reading. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book through www.booklookbloggers.com in exchange for an honest review.

Seeking Your personal Vision!

I enjoy listening and reading books by Andy Stanley.  Having read, Make Vision Stick, I was looking forward to reading this revised and updated edition of his book, Visioneering.  This was a very good book, informative and engaging.

Stanley uses the story of Nehemiah to illustrate how a person can seek to fulfill their God-given vision.  In a sense, the main point or thesis of the book is his point that everybody ends up somewhere, but not everyone ends up somewhere on purpose. If we would seek God's presence and God's vision, we have the potential to end up in the right place with the right God given purpose. 

In order to tell the story about personal vision, Stanley uses his engaging style of telling personal stories, sharing various illustrations, using humor; all in a down to earth style which is easy to read and follow.

He asks the reader to seek, inquire, learn, discern what is it that you have always been dreaming about.  What is it that makes your heart skip a beat.  He wrote about how the Wright Brothers got started, wanting the reader to look at their own life and follow their passion and seek the dream God has placed within them.




This was a very good book, one I would recommend to someone who seeks to better understand or even discover their purpose.

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


Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Excellent, Inspiring Book!

I was not sure what to expect when I received the book, A Call to Mercy: Hearts to Love, Hands to Serve, it is by Mother Teresa, and edited by Brian Kolodiejchuk.  So many people have heard of Mother Teresa and all the wonderful works of mercy, compassion and love she demonstrated to the world.

I had not read anything written by her, and I must say I was overwhelmed with her writing.  This book CANNOT be read in one sitting, a chapter cannot be read in its entirety, you can only read this book, section by section, maybe even page by page. 

There is so much richness in this book.  This is a collection of her words, teachings, prayers, as well as comments and testimonies from people who knew her well.

This book is organized from the collection of letters, speeches and interviews she gave.  There are 14 chapters in which they are broken down according to the 7 corporal and 7 spiritual works of mercy.  Each chapter has a brief intrdouction, then Her Words, then the Testimonies of others about her, and finally there is a reflection and prayer. 

The greater impact for me were the words of Mother Teresa.  The testimonies were nice and added to the book, but I greatly appreciated her words and point of view.  


A Call to Mercy is an excellent book, which helps the reader to know Mother Teresa through her words, as well as those of others.

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


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Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Excellent Devotional

I have read many of John Maxwell's books on leadership.  So, I was happy to be able to receive this devotional, Leadership Promises for Every Day.  Each day there is about a 2 - 3 paragraph devotional, along with a scripture passage.  At the end of each day's reading is the original source of that message.
 
Maxwell's hope is that this will spur the leader to blaze the path and lead others in a manner which is more God centered and effective.  Each devotion has a nugget for us to take and incorporate into our daily lives.
 
Overall, this is a very good, easy to read devotional.  It is originally from 2003.  So, you may have this on your shelves with a different cover.  This one would make a great Christmas present.

I received this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers through the booklookbloggers.com.  I received this book in exchange for an open and honest review.
 
 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Well Worth the Read!!

I have been a Tim Tebow fan, but would like to think I can have an unbiased opinion of someone I admire.  So, I was thrilled I was selected to be part of the launch team for his new book.  I was looking forward to the release of Shaken: Discovering Your True Identity in the Midst of Life's Storms.  Let me tell you I was not disappointed.

This is an easy to read book of just over 200 pages.  Tebow starts out in the New England training camp and talks about being cut from the team.  Basically, he was the last cut, thinking he had possibly made the team.  You don't sense resentment or bitterness, just joy at being given the opportunity.

He moves on from there to talk about his journey in life.  His ups and downs.  This is part autobiography and part how to live life as you fully rely on God.  He wants to make an impact on this world, and shares in the final chapters how we can all make a difference.

Tebow does not come across as a woe is me, martyr.  Instead he is one who has walked through life with great humility, even though he has been afforded many luxuries.  His hope is that the reader would become proactive in their relationship with Christ and then go into the world and make a difference! 

Here is a link http://timtebow.com/Shaken/

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




Monday, October 24, 2016

Answering the Tough Questions

Often times we have questions about God and / or about the Bible which go unanswered.  Bruce Bickel and Stan Jantz seek to answer some of those questions in their book, Answering the Toughest Questions about God and the Bible.  The book was written, in part due to an ex-evangelical leaving the faith because of unanswered questions.

As a result, they surveyed many young Christians and asked what their questions were, and some of those questions were used as the basis for this book.  Each chapter could have been a book in itself, which in some respects is part of my frustration with this book.  I would have liked more of an answer to many of the questions.  I wanted more from the authors.

Yet, this was a good book, it was easy to read, touched on many points and had multiple sections within each chapter about points to reflect on. 

Chapters titles include ~
  1. Is God real? How can you know?
  2. Why did God create us?
  3. Why Doesn't God make Himself more Obvious?
  4. Can I trust what the Bible says about God?
  5. Why is the Bible so hard to understand?
  6. Why does God seem so violent While Jesus is so loving?
  7. Is Jesus God?
  8. Why do Christians say Jesus is the only way to God?
  9. How do God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit relate to one another?
  10. Does God really care about me and my life?
Overall, this is a good resource and a good book to hold onto for questions about God and the Bible.

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

Jesus' Bad Habits

I always look forward to books by Leonard Sweet.  He helps me to get out of my comfort zone.  In his newest book, The Bad Habits of Jesus: Showing us the way to live right in a world gone wrong, Sweet seeks to show the reader the ways Jesus went against the norm, to show us a better way to live.

For example, some chapter titles are ~
- Jesus Spit
- Jesus Appeared Wasteful
- Jesus was Constantly Disappearing
- Jesus Loved to Party
- Jesus Broke the Rules
- Jesus Hung Out with Bad People

Part of the power of Sweet's writing is that he finds the normal ordinary everyday things we take for granted and looks for that which is extraordinary, something which leads us to discover Christ in a more personal way.

At times I felt like Sweet was stretching something to make it work, but overall, he helped me to look at some different situations in the life of Christ a little differently.  He led me to think a little more about the little things in the Bible, which make the Bible more alive.  Jesus went against the everyday social norms, and Sweet captured many of those events in the life of Jesus.

In the back of the book, there are discussion questions, generally 2 or 3 for each chapter of the book.  Overall, this is an easy to read book, which may help the reader grow a little deeper in their relationship with Christ as they discover a freshness in Christ.

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

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Wonderful Christmas Devotional

This new devotional by Zondervan, Devotions for Christmas: A Celebration to Bring You Joy and Peace would be a great addition or gift.

The devotion is a no nonsense devotion, as it starts out right on December 1 and ends on December 31.  Each devotion should only take a few minutes to read.  They are insightful and thought provoking. 

In addition, the pictures on each page are great.  They are clear and crisp and add to the devotional.  There is a scripture verse for each devotional.  At times, there is additional scripture at the end of the day's reading.

Overall, this would make a great Christmas present, but be sure to give it to someone at Thanksgiving, so they can start reading on December 1!

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



A Fun, Creative Journal

I found this new book, really, it's a journal to be fun.  Extraordinary:Ordinary Moments, by Jorey Hurley is a journal like no other I have come across.  It is extremely open-ended, yet it offers suggestions, but loosely.

Each page has an idea, a thought, a comment for the reader to consider.  Then it's up to the reader / writer to begin journalling.  The prompts are simply one sentence thoughts.  For example ~
Something Unique
A Place to Hide
Something that brings you into the Moment
Something Underappreciated
Something Full of Possibilities
Something Difficult
Something Peaceful
Something that feels nice on your skin

The list goes on and on.  There are no page numbers, but Amazon tells us there are 368 pages.  The cover is fun, with an orange peel.  The only thing I didn't like was not having a table of contents.  I know that may sound strange, but I would have liked to have been able to find a page which matches what I would like to journal about. 

That notwithstanding, for the person who enjoys to journal, and is creative about it, this would be a great present.

“I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.”

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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Nice Devotional for 8-12 Year Olds!

I do not often get to review Children's Devotionals, so I thought it would be great to review this one, Jesus: A 365 Day Devotional.  This hardcover devotional is built around a quick walk through the Bible in 365 days, starting with Genesis and ending in Revelation. 

The devotional works its way through the Bible, as each devotion has a one or two verse scripture passage, followed by the devotional section and a one line prayer.  Each devotion is one page, so it does not take long to move through the devotional. 

This devotional is designed for children ages 8-12.  The only negative I had was that this devotional was not interactive and engaging for the child.  I would have liked to see more questions asked of the child to help them think through how they may have reacted if they had certain situations before them and decisions which needed to be made.

This is a good basic devotional, which if the parent / guardian works through this with the child, they can ask some questions to make this more engaging.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Brady and Manning! Excellent!

I was really looking forward to reading this book, Brady vs. Manning: The Untold Story of the Rivalry that Transformed the NFL.  I was not disappointed!  This was a fun to read and enlightening book.  Gary Myers told the story about the college days, leading to the NFL, their rivalry, as well as their off the field friendship.

There were interesting stories, interviews, game observations and behind the scene stories about the two. 

I really enjoyed reading about how even though there was a fierce battle between the two, there was a great deal of respect and friendship that developed.  Myers wrote how each player contacted on a regular basis the other one when they were injured and missed a season.  How their families have been together. 

These are two of the best quarterbacks in NFL history, who took very different paths to get to where they attained greatness.  If you are an NFL fan, especially a fan of both quarterbacks, this is a must read.

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

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Monday, October 10, 2016

Practical Help to Discipleship!

I greatly appreciated Alan Briggs book, Guardrails: Six Principles for a Multiplying Church.  Briggs reminds the reader how hard it really is to not only keep a church alive, but to help the church to thrive and grow to be the church God calls us to be.

Briggs divided this book into two sections: Foundations and Principles.  In Foundations, he does what the word describes.  He lays the groundwork for the church.  He talks about the problems and different situations which arise as a result of an organization led by people seeking, but not always knowing how to fulfill the Great Commission.

In part two, he discusses the principles needed to have a church multiply.  He lays out his points with the acronym SHARRP - - As each chapter focuses on one ~
Simple
Holistic
Adaptable
Regular
Reproducible
Positive


This section is practical and not just theoretical.  He tells stories from his journey, as well as sharing scripture to help bring home his points.  Each chapter ends with a few simple, yet profound discussion questions.  Questions like “When have you accidentally emptied the Cross of its power through complexity?”  That’s deep, but hit home with me. 

I also appreciated his section Apprentice Culture Assessment, which helps us look at how we do church in terms of discipleship.

Overall, this is a very good book, a helpful book for those wanting to find ways to multiply and help your church grow through discipleship.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher Tyndale Press, in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Very Good NKJV Bible

I am always on the lookout for new Bibles which will help me grow as a Christ-follower.  So, I was excited to see this new Bible, the NKJV Word Study Bible: 1,700 key words that will unlock the meaning of the Bible.  On virtually every page there are references to key words in the Bible which help unlock some of the deeper or somewhat hidden meanings of the Bible. 

I have a similar Bible, and found this to be a helpful Bible.  At times, you have to search in other books of the Bible to find the referenced word.  But it was not cumbersome to do this. 

One of the things I appreciated about this Bible was the font and the darker black used throughout.  It made reading through this Bible much easier on my eyes!! 

Included in this Bible is a brief introduction, along with words to watch for throughout that book.  The words of Christ are in red, there is a nice concordance, along with maps and word searches in the back of the Bible.  This is a hardcover Bible which is very nicely done if you are looking for a NKJV Bible, this would be a good choice.

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

The Power of Prayer!

I was excited to receive a copy of Dirty Glory: Go Where Your Best Prayers Take You, by Pete Greig.  This book is a sequel to his earlier excellent book, Red Moon Rising.  He wrote this to help readers, that is, Christians become more passionate about prayer and what can occur when we come together in prayer.

Greig explains he had 4 main purposes in writing this sequel ~
  1. Celebrate the INcarnation, the "Word made flesh."
  2. The Presence Paradigm.  We experience the power and presence of God, but also community.
  3. What it means to be an authentic "House of Prayer."
  4. What does it mean to have a life of prayer?
Greig includes a study guide at the end of the book with study questions and Scripture verses to review.  His writing style is conducive to draw the reader into the stories about miracle after miracle which has occurred in his life and within his ministry.  He is the author / founder of the 24 / 7 Prayer movement.

His hope was for the reader to see prayer as an integral part of their daily life.  Prayer is not just something to do because we are supposed to, but it is an event which draws us closer to God and to one another.

If you are seeking a book which is inspiring, filled with 14 different stories, then this is an excellent book to read.

I received this book from Tyndale House Publishers, Nav Press, in exchange for an open and honest review.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Chase your Dreams!

Chase the Lion: If Your Dream Doesn't Scare You, It's Too Small, by Mark Batterson is the sequel to his best selling book, In a Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day!  Batterson plays off the passage from 2 Samuel 23:20, which says, “And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada…went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen” (ESV). He uses the NLT which uses the term, chased a lion . . .

In some ways, he is retelling some of the story from In a Pit. . . but he adds to it.  This is a book of encouragement.  In some ways, you may be skeptical that this will all work.  If you don't follow your dreams, if your dreams are too small . . . There is that utopian image he portrays.  

Yet, this is a book which focuses on not settling for a less than life.  It's about not accepting mediocrity.  He tells stories about the advent of National Community Church and their coffee house and many of their ministries and the lives of others who have been changed over the years because they caught a vision of hope.  

In the end, this is a very good book, meant to give the reader a vision for something better, to give the reader a sense of purpose and hope, to dream.  

I received this book in exchange for my unbiased and honest opinion from www.bloggingforbooks.com.

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A Great 5 Minutes!

I was looking forward to this little devotional by Sheila Walsh, with Sherri Gragg.  The title is 5 Minutes with Jesus: A Fresh Infusion of Joy.  It's pretty obvious what the premise of the book is seeking to accomplish.  

It seems that we live in a world which is devoid of joy.  We have our few happy moments, but there is little joy in the heart and spirit of too many people.  Walsh and Gragg hope that this book can bring, or maybe usher in an extra jolt of joy to your day.

Each chapter is only about 1 1/2 to 2 pages, followed by a section called 5 Minutes in the Word, a listing of scripture verses to read.  

Walsh and Gragg get right to the point with each devotion and seek to remind the reader of the presence of God in their lives, through stories which are touching as well as humorous.  This book / devotion would make a great gift for someone.  She is an encouraging writer who has a great sense of God's presence within her, as she shares with the reader.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.


Friday, September 02, 2016

Engaging Book to Read!

A Month of Sundays: Striding Towards Spiritual Refreshment One Sunday at a Time by Paula Hartman is a wonderful book which was written to help the reader learn, practice and make spiritual refreshment a reality.  Hartman is a wonderful writer who shares her journey with the reader in a variety of ways, which helps the book remain fresh and engaging.

She recounts stories from her life, as a child, a wife, parent, as she moves in her spiritual journey.  She has a sense of humor which leads the reader to chuckle and identify with her through the stories she shares.  As each chapter concludes she includes a recipe which are very doable.  They are not filled with special ingredients, but everyday ingredients you find in your home. 

It’s a fun, easy to read book which engages the reader and benefits the reader.

I would recommend this book.

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

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Go is a Good Read

Go: Returning Discipleship to the Front Lines of Faith, by Preston Sprinkle is a powerful book seeking to help followers of Christ to engage in discipleship.  Sprinkle refers to a study by the Barna Group focusing on Discipleship which indicated too many Christians are biblically illiterate and not engaged in growing and serving Christ.  He quotes a number of statistics, such as, 52% of church attenders believe the leaders are doing a good job to help them grow, while leaders have a much lower belief in their effectiveness. 

Sprinkle spends a great deal of time discussing issues which are wrong, leading to ineffective methods of discipleship.  He also gives some ideas about how to overcome some of the barriers. 

Go is an easy to read 177 pages.  The book flows well, and would be a good book to read.

I received a review copy from Tyndale Publishing in exchange for an open and honest review.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Great than Gold is Excellent!

As someone who enjoys the Olympics, I thought this would be a good book, and I was not disappointed. The story of David Boudia, in Great Than Gold: From Olympic Heartbreak to Ultimate Redemption is an excellent book, recounting David's story and his journey to faith.

I kept watch on how David did in the Rio Olympics, and he achieved a bronze in individual platform diving and a silver in sychronized diving with his partner Steele Johnson.  Both are Christians who seek to win people to Christ more than win medals at the Olympics.  They seemed very sincere.  After winning the silver medal both spoke about their faith.

The book is broken into 13 chapters and just over 200 pages in length.  It's an easy to read book, as he spoke about his progression in sports to have a love for diving at age 7, leading to his gold medal in the 2012 Olympics.  He was driven to achieve the ultimate glory.  That was his focus, win, win, win.  He had a crisis after not winning a medal in 2008, he thought about suicide and ultimately found Christ and redemption.

He writes in a very honest matter about his struggles and setbacks after becoming a Christian.  He has struggled to stay focused on his faith as the most important part of his life.  His admissions and honesty and vulnerability were very refreshing and helped the book to move at a good pace.

I would highly recommend this book.


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

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Good Resource for the Holidays

Moments & Days: How Our Holy Celebrations Shape Our Faith, by Michelle Van Loon was an easy to read and informative book.  Van Loon sought to help the reader understand the holidays which occur during the calendar year.  What I really appreciated was the fact that she looked at many of the Jewish holidays which Jesus would have celebrated, as well as Christian holidays. 

She was able to bring a basic understanding of the traditions, Scripture, and cultural values of the day and how it impacted the holidays, then, and how it impacts us today.

The book is broken into two sections, again, covering Jewish and Christian holidays.  She used a great deal of Scripture to help bring out the reasons for the holidays and how we can make them applicable in our lives today.

If you are interested in an easy to read book regarding holidays and festivals, this would be a nice resource.  I would recommend Moments & Days.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review from the publisher through Tyndale House Publishers book review bloggers program.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Uplifting Book

Jesus Talked to Me Today: True Stories of Children's Encounters with Angels, Miracles and God is a compilation of stories written by James Stuart Bell.  The book contains over 40 stories about children who have had some type of an encounter or miracle with God.  These are children who believe they have experienced God's presence in their lives.

Each of the chapters are short, maybe 4-5 pages.  It is easy reading and a relaxing book.  Some stories may be heard to believe, but these are recollections of children who believe they have met God.

It was a fun book to read, despite some of the stories talking about pain and despair, the end result was one of hope and victory.  Overall, it's a nice book to read, if you are looking for something with short, easy to read chapters.

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

Powerful Book of Hope

I had never heard of Chad Veach prior to reading this book, Unreasonable Hope: Finding Faith in the God Who Brings Purpose to Your Pain, but I will be sure to follow him in the future.  This was an amazingly honest and raw book as he discussed how his daughter’s diagnosis of an incurable brain disease has reshaped his life.  His daughter, Gigi, cannot communicate, has a feeding tube, daily seizures, and a life span of about 10-12 years.

I love the title, Unreasonable Hope.  Because hope in the midst of a terrible doctor’s report is unthinkable.  It didn’t happen all at once, it was a process for Chad and his wife.  As they were supported by friends and family, slowly they found a new brand of hope.

It’s not the everyday hope we think of.  It’s not a simple hope either.  Their hope is not about how God has blessed them in the midst of trials and tribulations, yet it is about that.  However, it’s still different, Veach writes about the unknown, the mystery and mysterious God.  Their hope comes in the retelling of stories about God’s presence and their victories in past difficulties.  It’s reminiscent of an Old Testament faith.  Retelling the traditions and miracles of God.

The book is broken into 4 sections ~
The Struggle
The Remedy
The Rest
The Better

This book can make a huge difference in the lives of those who are struggling with issues of hope in the midst of life’s problems.

I would highly recommend this book.

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

Friday, July 22, 2016

In Union in Christ

In his book, Closer Than Close: Awakening to the Freedom of Your Union with Christ, Dave Hickman has written a very personal book.  I have preached on the premise of Hickman's book and wished I had it when I did my series. 

His premise is that we are not just to be in relationship with God, we are to go beyond that and be in union with God.  Hickman explained ~
To be "in" someone and have that someone "in" us isn't just close, it's closer than close --- it's to be in "union" or "Oneness" with that person.
 That's what Hickman is writing about.  It's about how we, the Christ-follower can move beyond the term and feeling of being in relationship with Christ, to being IN union with Christ.  To have Christ in me and me in Christ.

As I read he used terms I greatly appreciated.  I liked his use of the word perichoresis, which I've used many times before.  His chapter on the church was excellent, as well.

Overall, this is a challenging book.  But it was well worth the challenge.  I would recommend this book for those who want to go deeper in their "union" with Christ!

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

A Devotion with Meat

I have appreciated the writings of Lee Strobel and Mark Mittelberg, so I was looking forward to receiving this devotional book entitled, Today's Moment of Truth: Devotions to Deepen Your Faith in Christ.  I really liked the cover, it would look great on a coffee table, as it has a soft somewhat cushiony cover, with a nice picture on it.

Knowing Lee Strobel is into apologetics, I was looking forward to this because I wanted a devotional which had a little bit more meat on it.  He didn’t disappoint me.  There is a mix of theology and story which helps the theology come alive.  There were 360 devotionals, none are dated, so you can pick it up at any point and start reading. 

Each devotion is 2 pages in length and starts with a scripture and ends with a section called Truth for Today.  I would recommend this book for anyone wanting a devotion which has a little more theology in it, yet, easily understood.

I received a complimentary copy of this book though booklookbloggers.com in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, July 09, 2016

EXCELLENT DEVOTION on Grieving!!

In her book, Grieving the Loss of a Loved One, Kathe Wunnenberg has written an outstanding devotional on loss.  This book captured my attention from the beginning and she never let up.  The stories and illustrations are powerful.  They are practical, relevant and true to life.

She shares scripture and life experiences which will certainly help the person who is grieving to find comfort through his/her faith.

This is the type of book to be given to someone who is grieving the loss of a loved one.  There are 12 sections in the book, which are listed below.  Within each section are about 4-6 chapters which are all short in nature.  Overall, there are 52 chapters in the book, which totals about 225 pages.  Below are the Section Headings ~
  1. Denying
  2. Venting
  3. Questioning
  4. Bargaining
  5. Crying
  6. Surrendering
  7. Accepting
  8. Praising
  9. Being
  10. Celebrating
  11. Relating
  12. Living
I highly recommend this book to read individually, then to be passed along as a gift.

Thanks to www.booklookblogger.com for the opportunity to read this book - - - in exchange for my honest opinion. 


I review for BookLook Bloggers

Not A Must Read: Silly at Times! But . . .

I thought I would like to read a totally different type of book for a change, so I chose this book through the www.bloggingforbooks.com site.  The authors, Anna Drezen and Todd Dakotah Briscoe wrote How May We Hate You? 

They began to work as traveling concierge's in New York City.  I can only imagine the stories, well, they shared many of their stories.  Some were downright hilarious, others left me yawning.  I am certain there are so many amazing and funny stories, but the book is really all negative.  That's the point of it!  Make fun of the many people who have no respect for others. 

So, they accomplished their task, but I was left wanting a few nice stores along the way.  They came up with a few, but not enough for me to say this is a must read. 

If you like books which are filled with negative stories, crazy demands and questions from people, then this is for you.  On the plus side, it is a fast moving book.  It's easy to skim and would make for a great bathroom book.  Something where you read a short anecdote, then move on.

Overall, I'm not really recommending this to most people who read my blog!  I do appreciate the opportunity to read it, and know the hospitality industry is filled with great people who have ridiculous demands which must be met.

I received this book from www.bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for an open and honest review.

Blogging for Books - Free Books in Exchange for an Honest Review

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Good Fictional Book

Submerged was an adventurous and fun book to read.  Dani Pettrey has written a fun fictional book. It's a suspense drama with a little romance. 

As the book progressed the suspense increased and there were twists and turns and at times the unexpected. 

I felt the plot line was good and the characters were well developed.  She also did a great job in helping the reader to identify the town in which the story takes place.

Overall, I found this to be a very good fictional book.


This is a book from Bethany House Publishers.

The Courage to Grow!

I appreciate devotionals which are real and relevant.  This devotional perfectly meets that requirement.  Annie Downs has written a powerf...