Friday, March 27, 2015

Unique and Very Good!

To You; Love, God: A Year of Daily Guidance and Inspiration Straight from the Source, by Will Bowen, is a different type of devotional.  It is a 365 day devotional which is like many, however, the main difference is that Bowen has taken the liberty, not saying that’s bad, of writing a love letter from God to us.  So, what if we woke up to a daily love letter from God which encourages us through the difficulties of life.  That’s the premise of this book.

The book is an easy to read book.  It is written in a very poetic manner which should helps bring hope and encouragement to the reader.  The book is written in 12 themes.  Each month has a different theme.   The twelve themes are:

January - Awaken,
February - Love,
March - Release,
April - Believe,
May - Do,
June - Transform,
July - Intend,
August - Transcend,
September - Cultivate,
October - Flow,
November - Appreciate, and
December - Flourish.

The main criticisms are the fact that the subtitle suggests the inspiration is straight from the source.  The source must be God.  I can see how the book inspired the author to write this.  Yes, maybe that’s a little nit-picky, but it bothered me.  The other comment is that the devotion does not include scripture.  I think it’s a great devotion, with great thought, but to add scripture to help the reader see where the encouragement is found in the Bible would have been great.

Nonetheless, this is an excellent devotional.

I received a copy from Blogging for Books. I was not required to write a positive review. The options I have expressed are my own.

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Monday, March 16, 2015

Thought Provoking & Entertaining!

I really was not sure what to expect in this book, other than the fact that it intrigued me.  Jared Brock has written a book which has some great deep truths, and is silly and comical at the same time.  In his book, A Year of Living Prayerfully: How A Curious Traveler Met the Pope, Walked on Coals, Danced with Rabbis, and Revived His Prayer Life, Brock and his wife Michelle set out on a one year adventure of learning more about prayer in order to revitalize their prayer lives. 

This is not a how to book, rather it is an intimate portrait of two people who have set out on a very intentional journey in order to find God, to develop a closer and more impactful prayer life with God.  They set about this journey by traveling the world and looking at various religions and traditions to learn about prayer. 

This is an easy to read book, which will surprise you with some deep truths about life and prayer.  Jared and Michelle share their journey and the many learnings and surprises along the journey.  Some were silly and irreverant, such as the clothes the wore to meet the Pope, their time at a Jewish Seder meal, and more. 

Jared never lost sight of his quest, repeatedly asking the question, “What is prayer?”  I would recommend this book to all who want to draw closer to God through reading a book which is both entertaining and thought provoking.

I received a free copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, March 13, 2015

More than I Expected

I have never really been into professional wrestling.  But when I saw this book was available for review, I thought why not.  This should be fun and entertaining.  But the book, Wrestling for My Life: The Legend, The Reality and the Faith of a WWE Superstar, by Shawn Michaels is not what I expected. 

It was better than expected.  I thought I would learn more about the wrestling movement, but it was more about Shawn's life after 2002.  The book is a quick and easy read.  If there was a criticism about the book it would be that I wanted to read more.

The book focuses on Shawn's life since he became a Christian.  He wrote about his struggles and at times compromising his faith for the sake of the WWE.  I like the fact that Shawn didn't talk about how his life is now perfect and he is perfect, he continued to remind the reader that he is still a work in progress. 

Of course there are lots of stories about wrestling, Vince McMahon, the Undertaker, Triple H, Bret Hart and more.  So, if you are into wrestling and want to learn more about the life change of Shawn Michaels this would be an excellent book to read.

I received this book in exchange for an honest and impartial review.

Friday, March 06, 2015

Enjoy the Pleasure of His Company

The Pleasure of His Company: A Journey To Intimate Friendship with God by Dutch Sheets was an excellent book.  It’s really more of a devotional book, broken into 30 easy to read chapters.  Sheets writing style is engaging and relaxed, yet he helps the reader to feel that this is a personal book.

The premise of the book comes in the title and subtitle.  Sheets believes and I agree, God wants to have a personal relationship with us.  It’s not a long distance relationship but one in which we find intimacy with God, as He does with us.  We also take pleasure in knowing and relating to and with God. 

While this is an easy to read book, you should take your time and gain an understanding of how God wants to relate with you and how you can experience and know God, as well.  Hopefully this will help the reader to move deeper in their relationship with God.

I highly encourage this book to be read.

I received a Review Copy free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The options I have expressed are my own.

Excellent Short Devotional

I am sometimes skeptical of different devotionals because I am often let down.  However, I was not let down after reviewing the devotional by Kerry and Chris Shook, Be the Message: A 30 Day Adventure in Changing the World Around You.  I really appreciated this devotional for its directness. 

Each chapter is about 4 pages, filled with scripture, devotional writings and some thought provoking questions and statements which will help us move in the direction God wants us to move so that we can Be the Message to the world.

If you are looking for a short devotional for a 30 day spiritual adventure, or to use this as a 30 week devotion, focusing on each chapter for one week, then I would highly recommend this devotional.  I have not read the book which goes along with this, so I don’t know if that would be a good addition.

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

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Good, But Not Great!

I was excited to receive the new NIV Proclamation Bible.  While I am not a proponent of the new and revised NIV, I still wanted to review this Bible.  Especially because Timothy Keller, whom I respect was quoted on the cover stating, “There are many Study Bibles, but none better.” 

I must say this is not a Study Bible.  It’s not close.  That was disappointing.  I have Study Bibles and the notes are helpful.  However, this Bible reminds me of one of my first Bibles, the Thompson Chain Reference Bible.  There are cross-references and two columns per page, which I really like!  There is a one page introduction for each book of the Bible, yet, there are no notes telling me historical information, such as the date, setting, etc.

There is a nice concordance in the back, as well as about 70 pages of introductory writings in the beginning of the Bible, which most people do not read.  There was nothing overly spectacular or new which would cause me to say ‘I must have this Bible.’

I did like the fact that when I opened the Bible to Genesis 1, the Bible layed flat.  That is outstanding!  I liked the fact I didn’t need to hold the Bible open until I break it in.  There are also 2 ribbons to help mark your place while reading the Bible.  The Bible is in a nice looking blue hardcover which would look very nice on a table or bookshelf. 

I hesitate in ripping into a Bible.  It’s the Word of God, so with that in mind, if you are looking for a basic Bible in a nice hardcover book, without lots of notes, yet with thicker pages, then this is a very nice Bible to purchase.

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

Fun Kids Devotional

God Gave Us the Bible: 45 Favorite Stories for Little Ones is a very well done, hardcover introductory Bible for parents to read with thei...