Showing posts from October, 2017

Review: The Isis Crisis

`The Isis Crisis: What You Really Need To Know` is a short 138-page book written by Charles Dyer and Mark Tobey. I was interested in this book because I wanted to learn more about (1) Where did Isis come from, (2) How is Isis distinguished from other terrorist groups, and (3) What impact could these events have in the United States?

        I think the authors were motivated to write this book because it affects so many people, including Christians. The book points out the beginning of Isis, how the Sunni's and Shiites fit into all of this and ask where is God. Although Isis affects Christians we are encouraged to look to Jesus, The Prince of Peace; instead of dwelling on what may, or may not, happen.

        The authors explain the rise of Al-Qaeda and how they snuck in America's back door while we weren't looking. I learned how Al-Qaeda functions beginning with Osama bin Laden. They are continually gaining new members which make it harder to end. The authors als…

Review: God's Wisdom for Women

`God's Wisdom for Women' is an inspirational, spiral bound book for women by authors Patricia Miller and Rachel Gorman. There are several different topics within this book, under each topic are subtitles which pertain to that topic. For example, under the topic `Knowing God` are The Good News, Who Is God?, How to Know God, Why the Bible?, What to do with Doubt, and Sin and God's Forgiveness. Other topics include Encouragement, Daily Struggles, Difficult Challenges, and more. Scripture quotations are from any one of the following Bibles: English Standard Version, Good News Translation, The Message, New American Standard, NET, NIV, NKJV, or NLT.

        The cover is very feminine looking which I love. Each subtitle is organized into several Bible verses, quotations, practical living tips, and recommended reading. This would make a great gift for a new Christian or any woman needing encouragement. One of my favorite subtitles is Social Media. Almost everyone has acce…

Review: Fierce-Hearted

Fierce-Hearted is a women's issues book by author Holley Gerth. I wanted to read this book because I have read other books by Holley and they were very helpful. I think the author was motivated to write this book because so many women need the freedom to embrace life, love, and faith to the fullest, as the back cover says. She also wants to be more open about her life. Holley is someone I would enjoy knowing as I grow in my faith.

        I found the quote on page 18 to be interesting, I would like to know more about the concept. "Conflict is the way two become one." Each chapter begins with a quote and one opening quote that stood out to me is, " Brave is a whisper some days and others it's a battle cry." (Lisa-Jo Baker)

        My heartstrings went out to Holley and her husband who adopted a 20-year-old. They didn't feel led to adopt a young child, but an older one who aged out of an orphanage. Lovelle, their adopted daughter, grew up in an o…


 Annual Christmas Tour Kicks Off November 11

On Nov. 11, Michael will embark on his annual Christmas Tour with Amy Grant, Jordan Smith and a full symphony orchestra. (See tour dates listed below.)
A Million Lights (available February 16, 2018) was fueled by the divisive national sentiment of 2017 and the mean-spirited banter on social media. “About half the album was written in response to where we are as a nation,” says Michael. “In the age of social media, people have forgotten how to talk with one another, to be civil.”
Eager to experiment with new sounds, Michael enlisted multi-platinum producer and songwriter Brian Todd (Miley Cyrus and Rascal Flatts) and songsmith Kyle Lee to help flesh out his vision for the new songs. “I called a bunch of people I’d never written with because I wanted to push myself and experiment.” The result is a beautiful collection of sweeping, epic new songs that sees Michael exploring new ground with music created to enlighten, mesmerize and touch the soul …

Review: I'll Push You

"I`ll Push You" is an inspirational memoir by authors Patrick Gray and Justin Skeesuck. I wanted to read this book for the challenge set by the authors as they took a 500-mile pilgrimage, one walking the other in a wheelchair. There is a map that charts their journey, and a few pictures posted throughout the book.

        Justin has multifocal acquired motor axonopathy (MAMA). He acquired MAMA during his high school years and it progressively became worse. Beginning with his left foot and over time to where he needed a wheelchair. He is handling this better than most people would.

        Their trek is from St. Jean Pied de Port to Santiago de Compostela, Spain. I think the authors were motivated to share their story to show that no matter the circumstances we can always rise above them. You never know how long you have to live so make the most of each day.

        The funniest part of this book was when their cab driver was fitting Justin and his wheelchair into hi…

Review: Bibleman Bible Storybook

Bibleman Bible Storybook is written by author Mike Nappa and illustrated by Dennis Edwards. The cover of this book is cushioned hardback and the book is perfect for 6-10-year-olds; both boys and girls. There is a cast of characters that lead the child through the book. Bibleman's goal is to lead children to Christ and his weapon of choice is the Word of God. Biblegirl's tactics are to develop Bible lessons and oppose villains. Cypher's goal is to help kids live for Christ and his favorite slush-ez flavor is cantaloupe-bubblegum. Lastly, Melody's favorite scripture is Colossians 3: 23-25.

        What I liked most about the book are the colorful drawings, the BibleTeam Challenges, and the scripture verses placed throughout the book. What I didn't like about the book is that the drawings for Adam and Eve partially show their nakedness while living in Eden.

        The text of this book uses simple, short paragraphs. This organization is sufficient for the st…

Review: Spiritual Wisdom for a Happier Life

AboutSpiritual guidance for a happier, more fulfilled lifeHave you been hurt by someone and want to learn to trust again? Do you need help with your sadness or anger? Are you looking for relief from shame, anxiety, or fear? Do you desire the true happiness and love that come with emotional healing? Christian psychologist and bestselling author Dr. Mark Baker shows how to handle eight basic human emotions in order to heal from emotional pain--and discover the bright future God has in store for you. Spiritual Wisdom for a Happier Life is the same compassionate advice he shares with his clients, allowing you to reap the benefits of expert counseling from the comfort of your own home. Spiritual Wisdom for a Happier Life is a Christian Living book by author Mark W. Baker, PHD. Dr. Mark explains how your 8 key emotions can work for you. Each chapter begins with a Bible verse that fits that chapter. The 8 key emotions people feel every day: * Hurt and Suffering * Guilt and Shame * Anger * An…

Review: KJV Know The Word Study Bible

Diving deeper into God’s Word can be easy and rewarding if you break it down book by book, verse by verse, or topic by topic with the new KJV Know The Word Study Bible by Thomas Nelson. The book-by-book series of notes lead you through the main points of each book of the Bible. The verse-by-verse notes help you to dig deeper into God’s Word. The topic-by-topic articles, which cover 21 theological topics, guide you through a series of insightful notes and give you a thoroughly biblical understanding of each topic. With the beautiful and timeless text of the KJV translation, the KJV Know the Word Study Bible offers you choices of how to study Scripture and grow in your relationship with Christ.

Features include: —King James Version Bible text
—Three easy approaches to study the Bible: 1. Book by Book; 2. Verse by Verse; 3. Topic by Topic
—Insightful introductions for each book of Scripture
—Words of Jesus in red
—Beautiful two-color interior page design
—Comprehensive list of theologica…

Review: BIG & Little Coloring Devotional

`BIG and Little Coloring Devotional book is designed for both adults and children. It is written by author Rachel C. Swanson and illustrated by Jacy Corral. The pages are made so the child can color on one page while the adult colors on the opposite one. The child's devotional page is a quote taken directly from the Bible and the adults devotional is a simple paragraph, or two, focusing on what verse the child learned.

        The illustration on the front cover shows the coloring of an adult and that of a child as a reminder that this devotional is for both adult and child, parent and child. This is a great way to have quality time even if it takes more than one session to complete the picture. The primary medium used in the illustrations is drawings.

        I recommend this coloring devotional to both adults and children.

Disclaimer: "I was provided a free copy of this coloring book by the publisher. All opinions are my own."

I'm linking up with Literacy Mu…

Review: The Pretender

`The Pretender - A Blackguard in Disguise` is a mystery/suspense novel by author Ta`Mara Hanscom. This is book one in the Caselli family series. The year is 1975, really not that long ago. The state is South Dakota; eighteen-year-olds could drink alcohol and the Vietnam War was over.

        This book was exhilarating from the beginning, however, it is a big book with over 300 pages and fine print. This is one book that was hard to put down, I would fall asleep while reading it. Not because I was bored with the book, but because I wanted to keep reading even though I was tired.

        I learned that the story of Mount Rushmore is known as follows: A man by the name of Charles Rushmore was an attorney from New York who had come to visit some mining interest in the Black Hills. He asked the name of the mountain, the guide asked his name, he said Rushmore, and the guide said the name of the mountain is Rushmore.

        What I liked most was the suspense. Sicilian authorities have pursu…

Review: Cancer, Faith and Unexpected Joy

`Cancer, Faith, and Unexpected Joy is a spiritual growth book on death, grief, and bereavement by author Becky Baudouin.

        Somehow people tend to think is we can understand how to live we will live forever, without going through a death process. Unfortunately, not many people have whisked away and by-passed death, or the act of dying altogether.

        In this book, Becky is invited to walk alongside her mom as she goes through the process of inoperable cancer and dying. The reader walks beside Becky as she writes. Becky teaches us about living and dying as she sees it in her mom. I think the author was motivated to write about this because it's what her mom taught her.

        The chapters are short and each one begins with either a piece of scripture or a quote from a well-known person. There are also personal reflection questions at the back of the book for each chapter. You read the chapter, then answer the corresponding questions. This is for individual or gro…

Review: Sing!

Sing! is a spiritual growth book by Keith and Kristyn Getty. I think the authors wrote this book because of the churches much diversity in music. They want us to remember to worship God through music whether individually or corporately. While each generation brings in new music we must also remember the music of generations past.

        This is a small hardcover book that has been endorsed by many people, several of which are well known. It is a book intended to be helpful for individual use and community discussion. There are questions at the end of each chapter to reflect on. Bible verses teach us to make music with instruments as well as our voices (see Psalm 98:4-9)

        The first 3 chapters tell us of people in the Bible who sang to God. Chapters 4-7 tell us ways to incorporate singing. At the close of the book, there are Bonus Tracks written especially for different leaders in the church. Examples are musicians, pastors, and songwriters.

        I wanted to read this book be…

Review: If We Make It Home

`If We Make It Home` is a Christian fiction novel by Christina Suzann Nelson. This is Christina's first novel although she has written essays for the Cup of Comfort series. In this novel, she introduces three women who haven't seen each other since college, twenty-five years ago.

        Ireland Jayne is writing an article about changes in the environmental movement while she sits on an exercise ball to strengthen her core. She cut her dreadlocks off years ago, opting for a headful of short curls.

        Jenna Savage loves cinnamon rolls and reruns of the Andy Griffith show. She has three children in college and misses all three. She likes to check on her Facebook friends.

        Victoria Cambridge has a ministry of teaching women how to keep a beautiful home, have successful children, and a happy husband until she happens upon a note written by her husband that sounds like he is having an affair. But she is determined to keep her marriage together.

        These th…

Headlines: Porter's Gate Worship Project

The Porter’s Gate, a creative movement aimed at reimagining and recreating worship that welcomes, reflects and impacts both community and the Church, announces the release of its first collection of all new modern hymns, The Porter’s Gate Volume 1: Work Songs. Set for digital release globally Oct. 6 with The Fuel Music distribution, the live worship album features over a dozen artists, including Audrey Assad, Josh Garrels, David Gungor, Liz Vice and Urban Doxology. Recorded in part during the live, 3-day Porter’s Gate Conference held in New York City at St. Bartholomew’s Church and Church of Sweden in June of 2017, The Porter’s Gate Volume 1: Work Songs was produced by Isaac Wardell and includes 13 modern hymns centered on affirming vocation as an integral part of a life of worship. The joy, energy, and reverence of this project is also captured on video by Mason Jar Music, known for their work with Bela Fleck, Feist, YoYo Ma and others.

"Music provides an opportunity to extend h…