Archive | book review RSS feed for this section

What I’m Reading – When Jesus Wept

12 Apr
My Thoughts
 
I have read quite a few books on the story of Martha and Mary, but When Jesus Wept is the first book I have read told from the perspective of Lazarus. His story begins a year after he had lost his wife and baby in childbirth. He is just emerging from his time of mourning and has yet to meet Jesus. When Jesus Wept is about Lazarus’ friendship with Jesus and the many lessons he learns about faith and forgiveness along the way.

One of my favorite parts of the story is when Lazarus first sits down with Jesus after seeing Him baptized by John and hearing Him teach from a distance. Jesus begins the time together by asking Lazarus about his vineyards and listening to him. He then uses what Lazarus knows to share about being connected to the vine. I also really loved seeing Jesus teach and heal others through Lazarus’ eyes. The moment he witnesses between Jesus and his sister, Mary, was beautiful.

When Jesus Wept is a captivating read and I adored it. I couldn’t put 
it down and it is one of those books that I will read over and over again.
 
You can purchase the book here:
 


Enter Today - 4/2 - 4/23!
When  Jesus Wept Thoene iPad Giveaawy

About the Book
Lazarus occupies a surprising position in the Gospel accounts. Widely known as the man Jesus raised from the dead, his story is actually much broader and richer than that. Living as he did at Bethany, near Jerusalem, Lazarus was uniquely placed to witness the swirl of events around Jesus. When Jesus Wept, the first novel in The Jerusalem Chronicles series by bestselling authors Bodie and Brock Thoene, unfolds the turbulent times in Judea during Jesus’ ministry, centering on the friendship between Jesus and Lazarus. With rich insights from vineyard owners and vine dressers, the Thoenes explore the metaphor of Jesus as the True Vine, harvesting the ancient secrets found in the Old Testament. Weaving the life of Lazarus, who owned a vineyard, into the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ will help you understand it is the hand of Love Divine that holds the knife, that cuts and breaks with such tender and loving touch, and that we who have born some fruit, after the pruning, can bear much more.
About the Authors

Bodie and Brock Thoene (pronounced Tay-nee) are bestselling authors of over sixty-five works of historical fiction. Their timeless classics have sold more than thirty-five million copies and won eight ECPA Gold Medallion Awards. The Thoenes have four grown children and eight grandchildren. They divide their time between Hawaii, London, and Nevada.
Find out more about Bodie and Brock at http://www.thoenebooks.com/


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
Advertisements

What I’m Reading – Tales of the Defended Ones

10 Apr
My Thoughts

Tales of the Defended Ones is the second book in Beth Guckenberger’s Storyweaver series. I loved the first book in the series – Tales of the Not Forgotten and couldn’t wait to read this one. Beth has written this collection of stories for children 8 years old and up with each story pointing to God and how we can see Him in the stories, even the hard ones to read. The children’s stories shared are heartbreaking, yet filled with hope.

I love that Beth includes pictures, facts about the places where the children live, and insight into the culture where their stories begin. She also shares something to remember at the end of each story and a space to write down thoughts as well as snippets from her own journal.

Beth shares these stories of children to let others know that our stories are all interwoven and God is our Storyweaver. She invites us to hear how God is working in people’s lives and to get involved. Not only are both books in the Storyweaver series great reading for individuals, but are fantastic to read together as a family.

You can purchase this book here:


Enter Today - 4/3 - 4/21!
Tales of  the Defended Ones Beth Guckenberger iPad Giveaway


About the Book

Ben and Joseph lose their mothers, but find a family looking just for them. Antonio is rescued from what seems like a hopeless situation. Caitlyn dares to trust that truth will set her free. Jorani is delivered from slavery into the arms of grace.

Follow these real-life stories as they take you on a journey to foreign places and extreme struggles. Travel through their challenges and see the hand of the great Storyweaver – our Defender God shielding and defending the defenseless in the amazing ways only he can. These are the tales of the ones left wounded and weak-ones made whole and strong.

About the Author

Beth Guckenberger and her husband, Todd, are the founders of Back2Back Ministries which communicates a lifestyle of service by sharing the love of Christ and serving God through service to others. Guckenberger travels and speaks regularly at women’s and missions conferences, as well as youth gatherings and church services. In addition to her children’s releases in the Storyweaver series, Guckenberger has written two mission-minded books. She has also partnered with Standard Publishing on the mission content in its 2013 VBS program. The Guckenberger family lives and serves in Monterrey, Mexico.
Find out more about Beth at http://www.bethguckenberger.com/.  


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

What I’m Reading – Bread & Wine

6 Apr
My Thoughts

Many of the most sacred moments in my life, the ones in which I feel God’s presence most profoundly, when I feel the goodness of the world most arrestingly, take place around the table. Something extraordinary happens when we slow down, open our homes, look into one another’s faces, and listen to one another’s stories around the table.

Bread & Wine is an invitation to join Shauna at the table. To this place where people come to eat, but holds so much more than just a meal. Delightfully written, she combines wonderful storytelling with some of her favorite recipes.

I can’t imagine life without a table between us.

I so loved reading about the group of women she gathers around the table with – The Cooking Club. What began as a group coming together over a meal became a community of families doing life together.

I want my kids to taste and smell and experience the biggest possible world, because every bite of it, every taste and texture and flavor, is delicious.

I also loved reading about her adventures in traveling with her father which she is now experiencing with her own children. How she challenges them to learn and love differences along the way. How she encourages them to grab hold of life in every way possible.

Bread & Wine is a beautiful book that encouraged me to be a little braver in cooking and fed my soul with stories of the sacred space around the table.
I loved it and I know you will too.


You can purchase this book here:

About the Book

Bread & Wine is a collection of stories about life around the table–about family, friendships, and the meals that bring us together. It’s about Bacon-Wrapped Dates and Mango Chicken Curry and Blueberry Crisp. It’s about the ways God teaches and nourishes us as we nourish the people around us. It’s about recipes, entertaining ideas, and meals to share with friends and family, made by hand and with love.

About the Author

Shauna Niequist is the author of Cold Tangerines, Bittersweet, and Bread & Wine. Shauna grew up in Barrington, Illinois, and then studied English and French Literature at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. She is married to Aaron Niequist, who is a pianist and songwriter. Aaron is a worship leader at Willow Creek Community Church and is recording a project called A New Liturgy. Aaron & Shauna live outside Chicago with their sons, Henry and Mac. Shauna writes about the beautiful and broken moments of everyday life–friendship, family, faith, food, marriage, love, babies, books, celebration, heartache, and all the other things that shape us, delight us, and reveal to us the heart of God. 
You can find out more about Shauna and read her blog at www.shaunaniequist.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

What I’m Reading – Lead Your Family Like Jesus

30 Mar
My Thoughts

What I love about Lead Your Family Like Jesus is that it isn’t another “how to” book that you can use to check things off of a list to be a better parent. Instead it is a book that invites you to learn more about Jesus and implement those lessons in your home with a servant heart like His. Each author writes from their experience as parents and all they have learned along the way.


I especially loved the chapter in which Tricia Goyer shared about her experience of getting overwhelmed by her every day schedule. She and her husband sat down to look at everything she was doing and came up with a plan. She assigned each activity with a number from 1 to 4. 1 being those things that she had to do. 2 being things that she should do. 3 being things that she enjoyed doing and helped her. 4 being things she was afraid to say no to or things she did to look good to others. She ended up cutting out all the 4s and even some of the 3s. Doing so enabled her to refocus and evaluate her heart in all she was doing.

I also loved that Tricia shared how she prays for her children. 
She prays for their:

Head – that they will always lift their heads to look to the Lord and that they will allow God to life their heads when they are hurt or discouraged,
Shoulders – so they will learn to let God carry their burdens,
Knees – that they will get on their knees before God regularly, and
Toes – that a community of believers will surround them and keep them on their toes.

Love these messages from Tricia Goyer!




Enter Today - 3/25- 4/16!
LEAD YOUR FAMILY LIKE JESUS BY KEN BLANCHARD, PHIL HODGES & TRICIA  GOYER IPAD GIVEAWAY

About the Book

Does your family need a five-star general at the helm? A psychologist? A referee? Ken Blanchard, best-selling co-author of The One Minute Manager and Lead Like Jesus, points to a better role model: the Son of God. Joined by veteran parents and authors Phil Hodges and Tricia Goyer, renowned business mentor Blanchard shows how every family member benefits when parents take the reins as servant-leaders. Moms and dads will see themselves in a whole new light—as life-changers who get their example, strength, and joy from following Jesus at home. This user-friendly book’s practical principles and personal stories mark the path to a truly Christ-centered family, where integrity, love, grace, self-sacrifice, and forgiveness make all the difference.

You can purchase this book here:

About the Author

Tricia Goyer is the award winning author of over thirty books including Beside Still Waters, Remembering You, and the mommy memoir, Blue Like Play Dough. Tricia is a regular speaker at conventions and conferences and is the host of Living Inspired. She and her family make their home in Little Rock, Arkansas where they are part of the ministry of FamilyLife. 
Learn more about Tricia at her website: http://triciagoyer.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

The Action Bible – Review & Giveaway

27 Mar
I don’t know who was more excited when I was asked to review The Action Bible – me or my guys. You would’ve thought that there was gold in the box when it arrived in the mail. I was surrounded by eager boys waiting to take a look at it.

The Story of David & Goliath

The Action Bible is a collection of over 200 stories from the Bible
done in graphic novel form in chronological order.

The Crucifixion of Jesus

What I love about this Bible is that it is specifically geared towards my sons. They are visual learners and it speaks to them through colorful and engaging pictures. I also love that it can be used in our family devotion time as a conversation starter.
The Action Bible is a huge hit in our house.


Here is what my guys had to say about it:

A Bible especially for me! How’d they know I love comic books Mom?
Coolest thing ever!
– Zachary (age 10)

I really like the pictures. They are so colorful. I like that the Bible stories
show what I have been reading in my Bible.
– Conner (age 15)

I like that it puts a face to the story which gets you more into it. 
I think it will help those who think reading their Bibles is boring.
– AJ (age 16)

These books are fantastic companions to The Action Bible and we loved them.

My friends at David C. Cook have graciously offered to give away
a copy of The Action Bible to one blessed Saved Sister reader.
You can enter to win below.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

What I’m Reading – Jesus: Pure & Simple

23 Mar
My Thoughts

It’s time to get back to Jesus.
– Wayne Cordeiro

Ever have a book read you instead of you reading it? That is what Jesus: Pure and Simple did to me. It was a book that I needed to read at exactly the time I needed to read it. There is just so much wisdom within the pages that I wore out my highlighter. Not only in the book itself, but in my Bible as I was constantly marking scripture referred to in the book.

One of my favorite chapters in the book is One Thing. Wayne shares the story of Martha and Mary as a reminder that only one thing is necessary (Luke 10:41-42). 
Later in that same chapter he suggests four important principles 
for growing closer to God through scripture:

Read the Bible daily.
Regularly take time for solitude.
Immerse yourself in gratefulness.
Regularly take time for reflection.

I loved this book and would recommend it highly.

You can purchase this book here:

About the Book

Here’s something refreshing: a pure and simple devotion to Christ. 
Sounds wonderfully inviting, doesn’t it?

And the good news is that it’s not about doing more or doing less. Because God created you in His image, the more you become like Jesus, the more you become the person you were created to be. It is in Him that you actually find fulfillment, not in religious activities (as good as they may be) or in serene settings that give you a needed respite from your harried workplace. He is not the rest from our labors. He is the rest in our labors.

“A promise remains of entering His rest” (Hebrews 4:1). It’s the rest of a child close to his mother. It’s the rest that comes when we are near the one we love. It’s the rest we find when we are walking through unfamiliar surroundings with a guide who knows the way.

The closer you get to Jesus, the more at home you will feel in this journey. 

God designed it that way.

About the Author

Wayne Cordeiro is senior pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Honolulu, Hawaii, one of the most beloved churches. Pioneered by Wayne Cordeiro in 1995, it has grown to over 12,000 in weekend attendance with over 80% of the attendees being first-time Christians. New Hope has recently planted 24 satellite churches in Honolulu. Wayne is an author, songwriter, and highly sought after conference speaker. His books include Doing Church as a Team, Attitudes that Attract Success, Dream Releasers, Seven Rules of Success, Rising Above, Leading on Empty, Divine Mentor, Irresistible Church, Sifted, and Jesus-Pure and Simple. His speaking takes him around the world. He is a church planter and leadership trainer at heart and has planted over 134 churches in the Pacific Rim and around the world. Wayne is also the author of the Life Journal used by thousands of churches. He is the chancellor of New Hope Christian College with campuses in Honolulu, Oregon, Tokyo and Myanmar. He and his wife, Anna, have three children and six grandchildren. They live in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

What I’m Reading – Love In A Broken Vessel

16 Mar
My Thoughts

Love in a Broken Vessel is a heartbreaking yet beautiful love story. Mesu Andrews shares the fictionalized story of Bible characters Hosea and Gomer and I absolutely loved it. From the first page to the last one I was drawn into their lives.

Hosea is a prophet who God tells to marry a prostitute. He had no idea that prostitute would be his childhood friend, Gomer. God wanted him to marry her to be a reflection of His love for Israel. Gomer marries him reluctantly, but rejects and runs from Hosea’s love over and over again. It is only when Hosea takes her out to a place and leaves her alone that she not only learns to trust in his love, but  she also learns to trust in God’s love. 

This is a beautiful story of heartbreak and redemption. It is the reflection of God’s love for us. His unconditional love that assures us that He is always with us and will never leave us. 

You can purchase this book here:

About the Book

Hosea has been charged by God with a difficult task–marry a prostitute in order to show God’s people the nature and depth of his love for Israel. When Hosea goes to Israel to proclaim God’s message, the prostitute God tells him to marry turns out to be his childhood friend Gomer. He finds her broken and abused, unwilling to trust Hosea or his God. But when marrying Hosea becomes her only choice, Gomer does what she’s good at–she survives. Can Hosea’s love for God and God’s love for Israel heal Gomer’s broken spirit?

About the Author

Mesu Andrews is the author of Love Amid the Ashes and Love’s Sacred Song. She is an active speaker who has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture. Harnessing her deep understanding and love for God’s Word, Andrews brings the biblical world vividly alive for her readers. She lives in Washington. 
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.