Thursday, January 11, 2018

The Air I Breathe - Louie Giglio - Book Review

Worship has to be so much more than singing songs at Church. This is something that I've thought for a long time, but I've never been able to put my finger on what exactly worship was. This book was the perfect read to answer a lot of questions that I had. It is very simple and easy to read, yet packed with a lot of profound and encouraging words.

I was really excited to get this book. I had very high hopes for it and I was not disappointed. It was practical, encouraging and contained stories of personal experience. The author clearly laid out the definition of worship and then continued to explain it throughout the book in a practical and easy to understand way. He makes the case that worship is something that you do every moment of every day whether you realize it or not. I love when a book challenges me to stop and think and examine myself - and this book definitely did that!

The author talked about the importance of quiet times, but that all throughout the day we need to be aware of who our Lord is: "Even more important than your time alone with him is that you walk away from that time fully aware that He is with you, wanting to be a part of everything you do. Don't make the mistake of spending fifteen minutes alone with God only to forget about Him for the other twenty-three hours and forty-five minutes of the day. In very little step you take throughout the day, keep Him in view. Talk to Him all day long, including Him in everything you do."

I really appreciated this book and how it challenged me to ask myself: "What am I worshiping today?" I definitely recommend this to anyone who is wanting to deepen their relationship with God.

If you are interested in more information about this book, head over here:

For more information on the author:

Monday, December 25, 2017

Isaiah's Daughter - A Novel of Prophets and Kings - Mesu Andrews

God put a King on the throne whose desire was to turn the straying people of Judah back to Himself. But a big part of God's plan included an orphaned girl named Hepzibah whose heart was wounded and life was in ruins. The story of King Hezekiah is one of the most incredible stories in the Old Testament. It is the story of a man who decided to trust God even though all the odds were stacked against him. His enemies were breathing down his neck ready to destroy him, but he chose to cling to the Lord.

This story delves into the relationship of Isaiah the prophet and his messages to King Hezekiah and how they influenced the nation. The author was not afraid to dive into the complicated relationships of the King, his wife, along with that of the King's counsel and the prophets of Yahweh.  This is definitely an intriguing read and I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in reading historical and/or biblical fiction.

Growing up reading the Bible, sometimes it's hard to picture the people of this book as being real people with real problems, real emotions, and real dilemmas. One thing I appreciated about Isaiah's Daughter is that it portrayed well known Bible characters but really made them come alive. It made you realize that these people were real and had to have real faith. They had things that made them afraid - just like we all do. And they had to learn to trust God even as we do. It's easy to look at people in the Bible and think that they just had everything work out for them and that faith wasn't necessary. But these people didn't see the whole picture - they had to trust God every step of the way.

This book encouraged me and made me realize that trusting God is the same for everyone. We all have to trust God even when we cannot see. The people of the Bible had to trust God just as we do.

As far as the writing style goes, it was very well done. This is a large and challenging story to take on and I think the author did a good job tackling character development and plot development. There

were a few times when Hezekiah and Hepzibah's relationship seemed a bit cliche to me, but it was good other than that.

If you are interested in reading the first chapter of this book, here is the link:

Here is more information on the book:

And here is more information on the author:

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. All opinions are entirely my own.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Daring to Hope - Katie Davis Majors - Book Review

This book blessed my soul so much. It is the story of a young missionary to Uganda and her adopted children. Katie does a wonderful job of weaving together her story along with the things that the Lord taught her through that. This book really encapsulated her heart and her relationship with God. She candidly shared the things that she thought and felt while ministering to the hurting and the hungry. I was very blessed by the parts of this book where she talked about her quiet times with God and the things that God spoke to her through the Word.

One thing that struck me about this book is how God formed and shaped her through tragedy - and how she gained a heavenly perspective. God wants to give all of us His perspective in life, but only if we allow Him to. Katie allowed God to use the difficult things in her life to grow her - and she honestly shares about that in this book.

I also appreciated how she talked about her grappling with God. She asked God all the hard questions about why bad things happen, the purpose of miracles, etc. and I so appreciated how she didn't try to avoid or side step the big issues, but she addressed them head on.

Few books have blessed me more than this book. I felt nourished and encouraged every time I picked it up and I would definitely recommend it!

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. The opinion and content are entirely my own.

Monday, August 14, 2017

He Calls You Beautiful - Dee Brestin - Book Review

We quickly forget the intensity of God's love for us. He Calls You Beautiful was an incredible reminder to me that I am loved and desired. God jealously desires me - and that is incredible.

When I first started this book, I desperately hoped that this would not be a cheesy or cliche book. Some things written about Song of Songs are just cringey and shallow to read. But as I read this book, I continued to be encouraged and refreshed. It was such an encouraging book to read!

Brestin masterfully weaves together her own personal encounters with God along with the testimonies of others. They add a lot of depth and beauty to this book - showing us that God is an intensely personal and relational God. She shared several stories from her experience with prion ministry - and those were especially touching. AND our relationship with God. I thought that was a very neat perspective. It basically applies to all of our relationships.
She also talked about how the Song is relevant to our human relationships

This book really encouraged me with where I was at when I read it. It really made me want to throw everything aside and just go spend time with God - and more books should be like that!

It also helped break the mindset that the Song is about romance, or designed for married people. The Song can be encouraging for anyone - no matter where they are. Because we are all caught up in the Divine Romance. And that's a wonderful place to be.

Here are some links for those interested:

More information:

Author Bio:

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. The opinion and content are entirely my own.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Break Open the Sky - Saving our faith from a culture of fear - Book Review

I wasn't sure what to expect when I first got this book. The cover was very gripping. I also wondered how it was possible to write a whole book on the subject of fear and faith. I was very eager to find dive in! This book is a very easy read and I read it in a couple of days.

Going into this book, I very much hoped that it would be practical and not merely a pep talk about getting over fear. I was very pleased to find that he presented very heavy hitting and solid truth! He talked about how the Western World is more afraid as a whole than lots of different poor nations are - and he analyzed why. He also went through different things that we are afraid of such as suffering and taking risks. Stephan Bauman has seen a lot of hard and difficult things through his years of relief work in other countries - and yet I was intrigued by his perspective on suffering. That was probably one of the things that I enjoyed most about this book. He didn't shy away from difficult subjects - and suffering is included in that. As one who works to alleviate the sufferings of others, he had an intriguing perspective. He talked about how suffering is not something that we need to avoid and push away, but suffering is something that we can embrace without fear because God uses to draw us closer to Him than we could imagine.

I really appreciated the experience that he has. He was able to share many stories about believers and people in other countries and their stories. That added a lot of depth to this book!

Overall, this book was great and I'm glad I read it! Definitely something that left me impacted. We are really good at ignoring our fear and sometimes we need to face it head on with the truth - and that is what Bauman did in this book.

Here are a few links for those interested:

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. The opinion and content are entirely my own.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

The Chamberlain Key - Timothy P. Smith - Book Review

Codes in the Bible? I would have to say I was pretty skeptical coming into this book. I had heard a little bit about this concept before, but I didn't really know much about it and I definitely was hesitant to believe something like that!

Reading this book was incredibly informative and enlightening. Timothy Smith shared his personal story along with sharing the things that he discovered. I appreciated his honesty and authenticity. Another thing that I really appreciated was how thoroughly he researched everything that was put in this book - he didn't just throw out theories or random things. He thoroughly searched everything out and had experts confirm his findings. That was one thing that really helped me out while reading this!

Smith shares his life story and steps of the journey that took him to this amazing discovery. It was an incredibly intriguing and compelling read!

I'm still not completely sure what I think about the concept of messages being encrypted into the original Hebrew documents, but this book really challenged me to start thinking about this. And I began to realize that the biggest reason I doubt is because I don't really think that God could communicate like that - and that's because I have put God in a box. But this book challenged me to think about the fact that God could quite conceivably communicate to us in this fashion! God is not restricted by our understanding! I think that this is the biggest takeaway I have from this book - that God is not restricted!

Here are a few links for those interested:

Chamberlain Key Debate & Discussion Group on Facebook:
More information:
Author bio:

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. The opinion and content are entirely my own.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Everything You Always Wanted to Know about God by Eric Metaxas - Book Review

I was very excited to get this book! I had heard the name Eric Metaxas and seen several of his books but hadn't had the chance to read any until I got this book. I've read lots of different Christian apologetics books over the years and they can have a reputation for being dry and somewhat boring, but that was not the case with this book. The question and answer format of this book made it interesting and personable. It was like a dialogue between two interesting people who both have their different opinions and views but are trying to understand the other side. It made it more like a dialogue than a sermon – which helps keep your attention!

I appreciated how Metaxas delved right into the controversial questions with boldness but not rudeness. That is something that I always look for when a Christian is addressing touchy subjects. It is important to have a listening and an understanding attitude – and Metaxas exemplifies that in this book. His answers are very respectful and yet incredibly sincere. You can tell that he is speaking from the heart and from his life experience and not just preaching a sermon. The best sermons are the ones that are lived out and not spoken!

There was only one thing that disappointed me a little bit in this book. All throughout the book, Metaxas emphasizes how Christianity is not merely a religion, but an incredible opportunity to have a deep, intimate relationship with God. He does a great job of focusing on this point and I really appreciated that because a lot of apologetics books don't talk about things like that. But then at the end of the book, when he had a perfect opportunity to explain how to have a relationship with God, he mostly talked about going to church and the importance of fellowship with other believers. While fellowship with others is important, the point of the whole book is fellowship with God. This book would be a great book to give unbelievers or people who are seeking to follow God and for that reason, I believe it could have done a better job of practically explaining what that looks like – and how you seek God. It's not hard to see that Metaxas has a relationship with God – and so because of that, he has the authority and the experience and the insight to explain what relationship with God looks like practically.

Other than that point – which is merely my opinion – I thought the book was excellently written. It was engaging and easy to read. It is a great book to read if you have questions about God and how He works. I would definitely read other books written by this author. 

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. But the opinion is completely and entirely my own.

More information:

About the Author: