Thursday, 26 April 2018

42 Seconds by Carl Medearis


42 Seconds is a book attempting to look at the interactions of Jesus' life in order that the readers will learn how to interact with others like He did. The book is broken down into four sections, with 5 quick and easy to read chapters per section.

The heart of this book is what appealed to me. I was eager to learn how one could better represent Jesus and be like Him in everyday life. There certainly are some good points made throughout this book, but I don't think it will connect with most believers.

After reading this book, I don't agree with this book's mantra as "The Jesus Model for Everyday Interactions." Rather, I have to view this book as Carl's personal testimony and his action plan for conversations and living that was was inspired by his interpretation of Jesus. I feel like he is putting words into Jesus' mouth with this book and has not taken the whole scriptures into account. 

I still enjoyed reading parts of this book, but readers involved in social justice work would benefit from it the most.

*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. The review was my honest opinion. No compensation was received.*

About the author:
Carl Medearis is an international expert in Arab-American and Muslim-Christian relations, promoting peacemaking and cultural, political, and religious dialog for reconciliation. Carl is the author of Speaking of Jesus: The Art of Non-Evangelism, and Muslims, Christians, and Jesus: Gaining Understanding and Building Relationships, and Tea With Hezbollah: Sitting at the Enemies Table. Carl, his wife, Chris, have three kids and live in Colorado.

You can learn more about Carl at his website.



Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Ready or Not by Drew Moser and Jess Fankhauser

Ready or Not takes a look at what living faithfully in our twenties looks like. The book explores an intriguing definition of vocation; and has chapters focusing on personal spiritual growth, work, church, family, and community.

This is a good book that chronicles a lot of truths into one place. As an individual currently in my twenties; I really connected with this book and enjoyed reading it.

It's possible you could read this book and know what you want to do with your life, but even if there isn't an epiphany moment; it's a well written book that can be a conversation starter and jumping off point for living in your twenties. The authors don't claim to have all of the answers, but they do a good job in their presentation.

I definitely recommend this to fellow twenty-somethings. I'll be sure to go read it again.

Authors:
Drew Moser is the codirector of the Vocation in College Project. Drew is dean of experiential learning and associate professor of higher education at Taylor University. He co-leads the Fathom Experience, a one-day interactive exploration of calling for twenty-somethings offered all over the United States.

Jess Fankhauser is the codirector of the Vocation in College Project. Jess has spent her entire professional career teaching, researching, and working with college students and twenty somethings. The former director of vocation formation at Taylor, she currently serves as the university's assistant athletic director. She co-leads the Fathom Experience, a one-day interactive exploration of calling for twenty-somethings offered all over the United States.

*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. The review was my honest opinion. No compensation was received.*

Monday, 26 February 2018

Branwen's Quest by Kaetlyn Buxton

Young Branwen, filled with guilt from her past and dreading her future, is summoned by the royal herald for a Tournament of Warriors. A talented archer; she wins her discipline and is sent on a dangerous quest with 3 other champions. The implications of the success of their journey affect the welfare of the kingdom!

I really enjoyed this book. The characters were relatable and I connected with them early on. There was tension and conflict and twists along their quest that drove the plot and character development along.

Kids will love this book. This will be an epic journey for them. I find kids want to dream and be part of a larger story. They want to go on a quest. And this story will connect with kids like that.

I think 10 years old would be a good starter age to read this book. I also think it’d be a great book for parents to read aloud to their children.

As a twenty-something guy; I enjoyed sitting down and reading this book. Kids will enjoy it even more.

* The author offered a free download of this book. This is my honest review. No compensation was received. *

About the author:
Born, raised, and homeschooled in Oregon, Katelyn Buxton has always been a storyteller, picking up writing during her early teen years. When she graduated high school, her love of the craft finally culminated in the publishing of her first eBook, a standalone adventure, Tè Nan Lezar. Since then she has published seven more books belonging to the Warriors of Aralan series, with many more on the way. Katelyn is a Christian, and her passion is to write stories that are not just enjoyable to read, but lead people to Jesus. 

You can learn more about Kaetlyn by visiting the following links:
Amazon


Tuesday, 28 November 2017

I’d Like You More If You Were More Like Me by John Ortberg

I’d Like You More If You Were More Like Me, written by author and Pastor John Ortberg, is a book that takes a look at having greater intimacy with God and with other people.

This is the first book written by John Ortberg that I have read, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. He is very personal and humorous in his writing, and makes his points very clearly.

This book takes an honest and practical look at intimacy. So many good points were made, that I wish he had a chart at the end of the book summing up his main points, calls to action, etc.

If you have any questions about getting closer to God and to other people, I’d certainly recommend this book to you.

*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. The review was my honest opinion. No compensation was received.*

About the author:
John Ortberg is the senior pastor at Menlo Church. John’s teaching centers around how faith in Christ can impact our everyday lives with God. He has written books on spiritual formation including, The Life You’ve Always Wanted, Who is This Man?, The Me I Want To Be, Soul Keeping, All The Places To Go, and most recently I’d Like You More If You Were More Like Me. John teaches around the world at conferences and churches.

If you'd like; feel free to learn more about John on his website: http://www.johnortberg.com/

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

The Genius of One by Greg Holder

The Genius of One, written by author and Pastor Greg Holder, is a book that looks at the biblical design of community, while offering leadership and guidance on how this community can be a reality for each of us.

I had never heard of Greg Holder before reading this book, but immediately enjoyed his writing style. He teaches clearly using interesting illustrations that connect with the reader, he’s personal and humorous, and the book flows well and makes sense.

The book is balanced. He doesn’t suggest community is following strict guidelines or that it has to look a specific way. He realizes we are all gifted and wired uniquely. Everybody that reads this book will come away with applications unique and personal to them.

I would recommend this book to anybody that wants to see greater unity and intimacy in the church, among Christians, and in the world as a whole.

It’s a great book that really does apply to everybody. Even if you don’t agree with every single thing he says, it’s a great conversation starter that offers hope that healing, reconciliation, and community are all possible. I’m thankful I had the opportunity to read it.


*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. The review was my honest opinion. No compensation was received.*

About the author:
Greg is passionate about the local church and how God designed us to thrive in healthy community.  His leadership and influence has taken him around the globe, helping communities, churches, pastors and leaders work towards spiritual, relational, and physical health.

Feel free to learn more about Greg on his website

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Quest for Celestia by Steven James

Quest for Celestia is a fascinating and highly motivating book. The book is a re-imagining of The Pilgrims’ Progress by John Bunyan, and thus an allegory of the Christian life.

The story is a compelling one taking place in a unique setting with plenty of surprises along the way. It’s a journey filled with high stakes action, humor, healthy romance, and lessons for all ages.

Though the story stands on its own, it’s a million times deeper with the allegory.

The first time I read the book, I will admit that I made the mistake of focusing too much on the allegory. I was so focused on trying to find the meaning of every scene, that I actually missed who the the allegorical representation of Christ was. I see how other readers could make the same mistake I made, and that’s why I included my experience in the review.

My advice on how to read this book is the advice of Leland Ryken. To quote him; “We will fare just fine with Bunyan’s allegorical story if we read it as a travel story and adventure story first, and then allow the theological and moral level to emerge as an extra source of enjoyment and edification.”

Despite my mix-up, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book my first time through, and much more on my second time. It was deeper and more clear the second time for me.

This is a book I will continue to read in the years to come. There are truths and principles in this book to review and come back to.

I would definitely recommend this book to fans of young adult fiction, fantasy, and to Christians of any age.

About the author:
Steven James is a national bestselling novelist whose award-winning, pulse-pounding thrillers continue to gain wide critical acclaim and a growing fan base.

Suspense Magazine, who named Steven’s book THE BISHOP their Book of the Year, says that he “sets the new standard in suspense writing.” Publishers Weekly calls him a “master storyteller at the peak of his game.” And RT Book Reviews promises, “the nail-biting suspense will rivet you.”

Equipped with a unique Master’s Degree in Storytelling, Steven has taught writing and storytelling on four continents over the past two decades, speaking more than two thousand times at events spanning the globe.

If you want to learn more about Steven, feel free to check out his website: http://www.stevenjames.net/







Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Little Bunny's Own Storybook by Margaret Welwood

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Little Rabbit enjoys going to the library with his mom and dad daily, where he picks out an exciting new book to read. But what is he to do when the library is closed? Be ready to be encouraged to create your own storybook!

Little Bunny’s Own Storybook is a fun children’s book with lessons for the whole family. The drawings are charming and delightful, and the story is very cute and encouraging. All who read will be inspired to get their creative juices flowing.

It’s a lively and entertaining book that young kids will enjoy reading over and over. They will be motivated to use their imagination, have fun, and create something they’re proud of.

I enjoyed this book, and am sure many others also will.

*I was provided with a complimentary copy of this book for my honest review. No compensation was received.*

About the author:
An avid reader as a child, Margaret began her writing career by writing and editing adult non-fiction. Now, inspired by her imaginative grandchildren, she is writing picture books for children.

You can learn more about Margaret by visiting the following links:
Personal website
Twitter
Goodreads
Amazon