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Thoughts on the Christian life in a fallen world

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Impact for Living Men's Devotional - Scott Whitaker

Daily coaching for a life of significance. This book is part of the One Year series, There are several other books in this series, One year Bibles and other devotionals. Each one is Do-able, start at any day, Daily, and create a habit for each day's devotions. Each one is long enough to be substantial, yet short enough to be read on a busy schedule. There is a verse at the beginning of each day, and an impact application at the end. The author is cofounder and preseident of Impact for Living, and has been a teacher, basketball coach, attorney, and pastor. The book states- "All of us have been created to impact-a unique impact in this world."
Some devotions have a call to action involved. such as February 28 - "So what is it that God has laid on your heart and is calling you to do? Sing? Write? Start a ministry? Mentor a child? Be a better husband?"
I liked the physical size of this book, a factor I am sure that draws some people to pick up a book in the first place. A lot of devotional books are full of fluff and non-inspiring stories, but this is not one of them. Each day there is something to learn from the time spent.
I would recommend this book to any man who wants to draw closer to God every day.
Published by Tyndale publishing.
I have received a complimentary book in exchange for this review.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

The Romance of Redemption - Warren Austin Gage

Your story as the bride of Christ. This book is a well researched perspective of the church as the bride of Christ. The author is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary with a unique background as a trial attorney and was a professor at Knox Theological Seminary and is now as assistant pastor at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
This book is the story of 16 brides in the Bible and how their stories "pre-figure the Gospel destiny." The author states, "An authentic Gospel minister must be both a minister and a servant."
The beginning of each chapter is the author's narrative of the story, and then goes on to state how the brides of the Bible are types of the Bride of the Lamb.
Included are chapters on Rebekah, Rachel, Eve, Ruth, Marty, Tamar, Rahab, Gomer, Esther, and others. They are separated into categories such as Brides Best Known for their Purity and the opposite Brides stained with Whoredom. Mary Magdalene gets her own Epilogue separate from the rest. If you want to read how the church is the bride of Christ, Mr. Gage pulls together examples from the Old and New Testaments to explain God's redemptive story.
Published by St. Andrews House, LLC. Website available as www.saintandrewshouse.com.
I have been provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a review.

Monday, December 26, 2016

A Minute of Vision for Men - Roger Patterson

365 motivational moments to kick start your day. This book is a daily devotional, short stories to be read one a day for men. Each day's devotional is "drawn from sports headlines, moments with wife and kids, and from scripture."
There is also a verse for each day. The avid reader will probably wind up reading 2 or 3 each day, just because each page is so short.
One small complaint is the small physical size of the book. The print size is very small and may be hard to read for those of us with poor eyesight. Some people that are not that much into sports stories may be hard to relate to some of the examples. But, it is good to have a book that reminds us of following God, and if it accomplishes that, then it is good. Described on the back cover as "short, sweet and to the point" and "A strong tool to lead any man into spiritual growth in just one minute a day." Hopefully, we will all spend more than just one minute a day for spiritual growth.
The author states in the last pages," My hope is that after spending a minute a day this book over the past year, you would discover that the Lord. through His Word, is able to give you an inheritance that does not fade."
I can recommend this book for men that would like a daily reminder of God working in their lives.
Published by Tyndale Publishing.

Finding God in the Waves - Mike McHargue

How I lost my faith and found it again through science. I really wanted to like this book, and had high hopes for it. I tried to get past the introduction by Rob Bell, someone who I disagree with on so many levels. Mike is known as science Mike and the Liturgist podcasts and writes for Relevant magazine. Also has a website findinggodinthewaves.com. The author describes a conference with Rob Bell and it seems that he had a part in Mike's conversion. Also through his parent's divorce and friend's conversation he came back to the faith that he had as a youth. The problem that I have is this is what liberal Christianity has come to in America today.
He denies the inerrancy of scripture and believes that stories like the flood of Noah's time was not a literal flood. 
On page 233 he describes "When I let go of the Bible as an inerrant document and embraced it as a multi-party discussion about God, all of a sudden, I began to see a book I could appreciate on it's own terms."
This is a dangerous statement to make and sounds like a watered down Christianity.
He described his church as "multiracial, multicultural, and affirming of people of every race, gender, and sexual orientation."
He describes his church as "the pastor and most of the staff were women."
It is hard for me to understand how someone can place their trust in a document that a person does not accept as inerrant and unchangeable. 
Many will accept this book as a good example of someone coming to faith, but it is hard for me to understand what the author calls Christianity.
Overall, I can not recommend this book because of my disagreements with the author. 
I have been provided with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for this review.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Tune In - Mark Lewisohn

The Beatles : All these years. Tune In takes the Beatles from before their childhoods right up to 1962.
Includes extensive family history of each of the four, At over 900 pages, the book covers a lot of ground, and this is labeled Volume 1. Section for each year from 1958-1962. Even the most die hard Beatles fan will probably learn something from reading this book. A lot of quotes from each of the four are included, which adds credibility and authenticity. The years are divided into monthly and even weekly sections. There are 80 pages of notes, quoting each source from author's interviews to published sources. Unique to most books, there is an appeal from Mark Lewisohn stating,"If you were a firsthand witness to any part of the Beatles years-up to say, 1980-or know someone who was, I'd like to hear about it." Great vintage photographs, I'm sure some have never been seen before by most fans, are worth the price. Seeing and reading about how the Beatles started out is an interesting read to anyone wanting to know how it all started. There have been many books written about the Beatles, but I do think that this one has set the bar pretty high for including many details.
I have been provided a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for a review.