Thursday, March 15, 2018

Enjoy, by Trillia J. Newbell

I have to say, I definitely enjoyed this book (pun intended). The author makes a compelling argument for the goodness of God displayed through His gifts to us and, just as importantly, His desire for those gifts to be received and enjoyed by us. We spend so much effort trying to focus on our busy work and chiding ourselves or feeling guilty for taking time out for unnecessary delights, but the author insists that simple pleasures found in the midst of the mundane are just as monumental as the tasks we set out to accomplish. It is not about how much we get done, but how well we relate with God while we're doing it; and so often He uses what delights us as a means to connect with us. Reveling in and sparing time for little joys is not neglectful; it is worshipful.

Blogging for Books provided this book to me for free in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The Ragamuffin Gospel, by Brennan Manning

This is easily one of the most influential books I have read in the past year. It defines the gospel as a message of grace and forgiveness independent from our own successes or failures. Several quotes within the book, both from the author and form other sources, reiterate the necessity of trust in God's overwhelming love and mercy toward us and the futility of relying on our own strength to get God's approval. It points out the numerous times in the Bible when Jesus went not to the tidy and obedient but to the rebellious, dirty, wandering ones who needed the Savior most. I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a reminded of how we are viewed by God, and what the gospel of Jesus really means.

Blogging for Books provided this book to me for free in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Things I've Said to My Children by Nathan Ripperger

This book is a fun and delightfully illustrated read highlighting the ridiculous nature of the advice parents sometimes have to dole out to their little ones. Although I am not a parent myself, having worked with children for multiple years I can easily relate to the humor of having to give kids such sage advice as "Don't lick my arm!" and "Stop eating cake out of the garbage." Whether you have children, know children, or were once a child yourself, this book will amuse and bemuse you.

Blogging for Books provided this book to me for free in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Dad Is Fat by Jim Gaffigan

This book was filled with the humor I have come to expect from Jim Gaffigan's stand up routines; good, clean stories with a tip of the hat to the satiric experience of living everyday life. This book particularly centered around the trials and triumphs of parenthood. While I don't think the book ever made me laugh out loud, I did enjoy the humorous accounts of Gaffigan's struggles in being a father. I am certain this book would be more amusing to people with children of their own, though it makes for a light and pleasant read for the unencumbered as well.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Unstoppable by Nick Vujicic

    I think my favorite thing about this book was the utter honesty provided by the author. Having been a huge fan of Nick Vujicic for a very long time, and inspired by his successes, it was both humbling and encouraging to read his stories of the various trials and failures that God used to bring him to the place where he is today. Nick urges the reader to never lose sight of the power that God provides His followers, especially when we believe not only in Him but also in who He has made us to be. 

    Blogging for Books provided this book to me for free in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, January 6, 2014

I Am Not But I Know I Am by Louie Giglio

Despite the confounding title, I found this book to be a very simple, easy read, yet packed with imperative truth. The main purpose of the book is to bring the reader to a full comprehension of God's completeness, His omniscience/omnipotence/omnipresence, while simultaneously highlighting the finite incompleteness of our own selves. However, the author also impresses upon the reader the necessary realization that though we are insignificant, the great I Am loves us and cares about us more than we could ever imagine!

Although it was not a particularly main point in the book, the part that I loved the most pointed out that "I Am" is a form of the verb "Be". Therefore, in the English, certain passages in the Bible gain more significance with this knowledge - "The Word, Be, came flesh", "And we, Be held", "and her who was not Be loved, I will call Be loved".

In conclusion, this book highlighted obvious truth in a new way to allow the reader a new depth of understanding and appreciation for our place in this world and our relationship with the Creator. There was little profound discovery or new information, but the reminder of these important facts was definitely worth the read! Four and a half stars.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Get Lost, by Dannah Gresh

The title of this book is based in part on the popular quote, "A girl should be so lost in God that a man needs to seek Him to find her." The content is an invitation to begin that journey of losing oneself in God and His love, complete with a ten-day challenge (called the "Love Feast") that assists the reader in taking the first few steps. It begins with the story of the author's own young romance and her realization that all was not as it should be in her relationship with God, discusses what it looks like to be truly consumed by the Creator, then moves into the "Love Feast" challenge. Each day of the feast explores a different aspect of being surrendered to the love of Christ, beginning with a simple acknowledgement of and basking in His presence and ending with complete and total submission to His desires and plans. The challenge is followed by a deeper discussion of what it looks like when a girl - and a guy - are lost in God, and how they can work together for His glory as a representation of the relationship between Christ and the Church.

What I loved most about this book was that it never claimed to have "ten simple steps to making your life perfect", and the author made a point of stating that following the advice she gave would not necessarily lead you to ending up with the perfect man. Rather, she explains that the entire purpose is to get lost in God, regardless of where He leads you and when (or even if) He decides to bring a relationship into your life. Because it did not raise my expectations or present me with unrealistic promises, I found myself free to read the book with an acceptance of what I received from it rather than a desire for what I wanted to get, which could lead to disappointment.

While it did start out a bit slowly, this is the first book I have ever read that caused as much revolutionary change and emotional reconciliation as a full week at a Christian camp. So often I love going to camp for that "mountaintop experience" which quickly wears off when I come back to the struggles and responsibilities of "real life". However, reading this book has been like a mountaintop experience in the midst of real life... I still lived out my normal routine every day after reading my allotted chapter for the morning, but it changed the way that I experienced God throughout and within my day. Through this book I have come to an unprecedented fullness of relationship with Jesus in my everyday life that I treasure above all else. Receiving this book was an incredible blessing, and I would definitely recommend it to any girl who seeks a closer communion with Jesus.