About Me

My photo
Thoughts on the Christian life in a fallen world

Saturday, October 30, 2010

I Lift Up My Soul - Charles Stanley

Devotions to start your day with God. This book is a collection of daily devotions with a Bible verse, a key verse and a message by Charles Stanley. The author is pastor at the First Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, and is well known by his radio and television ministry. Scripture quotations are from the New King James Version.

Each message is based on the Bible verse of the day, and each one is short enough to be read in the morning, or evening, (or both), even with a busy schedule. The messages are taken from some of the author's other books, with some slight editing. A unique feature in this book is that it includes a few lined blank pages in the back for personal notes. This book could easily be released in a journal format, with lined pages directly across from the printed content to record your own thoughts on each subject.
Even if you are not familiar with many of the author's other books, this is a good introduction to his work. The one page readings are based on personal observations and history.  I am looking forward to using this book in personal devotions and recommend it to others.
Published by Thomas Nelson Publishing 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I Quit! - Geri Scazzero

Subtitle - Stop pretending everything is fine and change your life. According to the introduction, this book is about following Jesus and summoning the courage to quit those things in your life that are self-defeating. A lot of the book is about boundries in your life, what you are willing to do, or not do, for yourself and others. There are chapters on quitting the following, lying, denying emotions, blaming, overfunctioning, faulty thinking, and being afraid of what others think. The author uses personal stories of how she  overcame all of these behaviors.

Some people will be drawn by the title and cover alone. It shows the title in capitals, with and exclamation point, on what appears to be the outside door of a home. Many will be able to relate to wanting to quit at times in their lives, but it is really about quitting behaviors that are not the best way to live.
I was a bit confused by the statement that the author had quit the church where her husband was the senior pastor, but states on the back cover that she is Director of Marriage Ministry at the same church. It was not made clear how she went back or never really left. I, as a reader, would liked to have known how it was resolved. It probably should have been the last chapter, it would have made a good wrap-up.
I would recommend this book to anyone who feels they are not setting enough boundries in their life for what ever reason.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Halftime - Bob Buford

Moving from success to significance. Originally published in 1994, this is a updated and expanded version that was published in 2008, and includes study questions, a interview with the author and FAQs.
This book is about one man's journey through the first half of his life, through halftime, then on the second half.
It describes how he used asking himself questions, evaluation and reflection to find how he could use his God-given talents in the second half of his life. One of his goals is to help others in the same way to find a life of significance. He is using his websites www.activeenergy.net and halftime.org as a big part of that. Both websites contain a wealth of information and resources.
This is a challenging book that I can personally relate to, just turning 50 myself. I would recommend this book especially to men 30-50 years old.

The author relates his personal and honest journey through building a successful cable tv business, the death of his son, and what he calls a "success crisis" where he began to ask "Is this all there is to life?" He encourages what he calls seismic testing and low-cost probes to find out how to use your talents.
This is not just another how to get through a mid-life crisis book, but a challenge to truly use our God given talents even more in our second half of life.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Treasure of God's Word Celebrating 400 Years of the King James Bible

This book is a celebration of the most popular translation of the Bible for the last 400 years, complied by Jack Countryman.  It is in a leather-like cover with gold edges, and could be presented as a gift book with a presentation page in the front. There are articles on origins, apocrypha, the translation process, revisions and influence of the KJV. Most of the book is made up of verses from the version broken down into catagories. I was a little concerned that two of the articles had been adapted from wikipedia. Although the facts seem to be correct, I would have like to have seen a more reliable source for research.

I can remember the King James Version being the one that I grew up with in church, hearing it read and memorizing verses. It was the most popular version, and still is in many circles. I realize now that many people did not have that kind of exposure to it, having so many other versions to choose from now. This book could be a nice gift to many of them. Many others who are familiar with the version, but not familiar with the history behind it would also enjoy it.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Outlive Your Life - Max Lucado

Outlive Your Life is the latest book from author Max Lucado.This year marks his 25th year of publishing. The main message of this book is the encouragement to do things that have eternal consequences, that will outlive your time here on earth, things that will truly make a difference. The subtitles if You Were Made to Make a Difference.   This book encourages us to leave a legacy with our lives that will reach into eternity, based on the book of Acts. It has short, readable chapters with personal life stories of people helping others like the early church did .There is a verse from Acts at the start of each chapter, and a prayer at the end of each chapter. There are also discussion questions that can be used in a group or individual study.

100% of the author's royalties will be will benefit children and families through World Vision and other ministries.You can follow World Vision's use of the funds on MaxLucado.com.                
The book of Acts covers a lot of early church history, pentecost, beginnings of the early church, healings by Peter and John, and in this book, a modern version of the story of Annias and Sephira. The author describes how it may have happened today. I found the concept of the clam shell  interesting. Max describes how we tend to isolate ourselves from needs that we see around us everyday, but do nothing to help.
This book will inspire you to step out and make a difference in your life and in doing so, make a difference in the lives of others.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com  book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255