Thursday, September 22, 2016

Unreasonable Hope By: Chad Veach




Life's circumstances can sometimes be overwhelming. They take you for surprise and leave you feeling helpless and hopeless. A death in the family, a devastating illness, financial ruin. Whatever it is, God sees you and He loves you. He gives you hope to keep pressing on in the storm. Chad Veach has written a new book called Unreasonable Hope. He tells the story of how his daughter was diagnosed with a terrible disease and how his family overcame the feeling of hopelessness.

Chad Veach is the pastor at Zoe Church in Los Angeles. He has a wife and three children. One of which this book was written about her disease. In Unreasonable Hope, Veach takes us on the journey that he and his wife began when they had their very first child. A daughter named Georgia. When she was only a few months old, Georgia was diagnosed with a disease called lissencephaly (or smooth brain). It is a neurological illness that develops between 12 and 24 weeks gestation.

The Veach's were hit hard by this news. They felt sad for their daughter and feared for her future. As they struggled to find balance between their "normal" lives and trying to tend to their special needs daughter, God gives them hope. In the midst of their storm of finding a new "normal" they find Jesus and His ever-present help.

Veach gives the reader a new way to cope with the pain life can bring. Pain can bring so much hopelessness and helplessness. But, with God and His hope, you can overcome any of life's storms. When something unimaginable happens to us, we immediately start asking why and how and what did I do to deserve this. The author shows us how his family chose to have hope and look forward to what God brings to their lives each day.

Even though they have gone through their worst nightmare, they cling to Jesus and the hope that only He can provide.

This book read more like a memoir but it was easy to read. It answers some important questions about our faith in God during trials.

*Thank you to Book Look Bloggers for providing this book to me in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Biggest Story by: Kevin DeYoung (Review)


Teaching my children the Word of God is the most important part of our homeschool. It is the biggest reason why we homeschool in the first place. Each morning we read a passage from the Bible out loud and discuss how it pertains to our own lives. Kevin DeYoung, a Pastor in Michigan and author of Christian books, has put together a beautiful Bible story called The Biggest Story. He teamed up with illustrator Don Clark (who did an amazing job!). I received a copy of the DVD (an animated short film) as well as the audio book both narrated by Kevin DeYoung himself.



In The Biggest Story DVD, Kevin DeYoung takes us back to the beginning of the Bible in Genesis. We have to start there because that is where God started. As beautiful and elaborate pictures are shown on the screen the author tells Bible stories with such enthusiasm and meaning. He gives each account from the Bible in a child-like way in order for people of all ages to understand the concepts.

He builds up the story to "The Biggest Story", the story of Jesus. He explains how every single person, story, and event in the Bible leads us to Jesus. The prophets of old were all telling of a coming Savior. The leaders of the Bible were all sinful and needed someone to come and rescue them from their wicked ways. No matter how hard each person tried, they just couldn't save themselves. God guided them and gave them many chances throughout history. But, God's ultimate gift to His people is Jesus.

My children LOVED this DVD and looked forward to it every day. I wish there were more to it. The only negative (if you can call it that) was that when you get to Jesus and the resurrection that is it. I wanted more from the New Testament. The Old Testament could have been elaborated on a little more but I felt it was enough to keep my children's attention. After each lesson we sat down together and talked about what happened in that chapter. My boys asked lots of questions and truly begged for more each day. My boys are 7, 6, and 3, by the way. So, it is great for all ages.

The Biggest Story Audio Book is exactly like the DVD except it is just audio. We have been listening to that in the car and it really comes to life after having watched the DVD. I think this would make the perfect Christmas gift for a grandchild, niece, nephew, friend, or anyone with children.

Here is a link to the animated short film:

Here is a link to the audio book:


*Many thanks to Propeller Consultling, LLC who provided me with the items in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Intercessory Prayer (By: Dutch Sheets)




Prayer is the most important form of communication because we are speaking directly to God. It is our way to connect instantly with our Savior. There are many different kinds of prayers. Prayer can change your life. Dutch Sheets book Intercessory Prayer helps guide the reader into a healthy, fresh, and motivating prayer life.

Though this book was originally written in 1996, he revamped it and republished it this year. It has previously sold over 600,000 copies and I believe it will sell just as many this time around as well.

Intercessory Prayer will challenge you to become more bold in your prayer life. To come before a Holy God and speak to him with courage and wholeheartedness. Humans have become lazy in their prayers. They make up thousands of excuses as to why they don't pray very often. But, Jesus was fearless with His prayers and His ministry.

Through Jesus' example we gain knowledge and wisdom about how we should be praying. Sheets begins this book by answering many questions about prayers and why we should have a prayer life in the first place. Having a solid foundation in God is just the beginning but the most important part of prayer.

The author goes on to give stories from his life and they bring light to some very important issues. Adding personal experiences gives the reader a better sense of how prayer can change situations and lives. Then adding the "meat" or substance to your prayer life becomes easier.

This book was an easy read and the flow was effortless. It will change the way your pray and think about prayer.

*I was given this book by Bethany House in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Taste And See (John Piper)



John Piper is an amazing teacher, author, and pastor. He has written many books and founded desiringGod.org. I have done reviews of his work before and enjoyed it. His newest book, Taste And See, is a book with 125 daily meditations. I chose to use this for my devotions each morning.

The theme of Taste And See is "Savoring the Supremacy of God in All of Life". That means trusting God no matter your circumstances and choosing to give God the credit for everything. God is sovereign and supreme. He is ruler over everything. John Piper gives us lessons on how we can appreciate God's authority and delight in His presence.

Each devotion is set up the same. There is a theme for each day and a sub-theme. The lessons are written by John Piper and are about two and a half pages long. They are easy to read and he gives scripture verses to back up his teachings. He uses the Bible to get his points across and is firm in his faith.

This book is hard bound and easy to use. The author helps to solidify your trust and faith in God who rules over everything. He asks hard questions and gives Biblical truth to back up his findings. God loves us so much and sometimes it is hard to feel that love through life's circumstances. But in Psalm 119:103 we read, "How sweet are your words to taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!" God wants us to dig deeper into our relationship with Him. This book gives you the tools and understanding to be able to do that.

*I was given this book by Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Today's Moment of Truth (Lee Strobel & Mark Mittelberg)



I have written many times about putting God first in your life each day. Having alone time with Christ and seeking out His Word is the most important thing you can do for yourself. That is why I do so many reviews for devotionals. I find them to be very helpful in getting in that time with the Lord.

Apologists Lee Strobel and Mark Mittelberg have teamed up to bring us a new devotional book called Today's Moment of Truth. It is a collection of 180 encouraging and insightful devotions that they have written themselves. Their main focus is "Why do we believe what we believe?" They use scientific facts, Biblical facts, and historical facts to strengthen your walk with Christ.

Each devotion is set up the same way. There is a main theme such as "Who Has Faith?" Each devotion also includes a scripture reading for that day that correlates with the theme. There is a short message about each theme and they end with "Truth for Today". This part includes some questions to ask yourself about that days theme.

This book is hardbound and very easy to use. There is a ribbon book mark included for your convenience and each theme is located at the front of the book in the contents section. You can easily find a theme that may relate to your life or one that you find intriguing.

No matter where you are in your walk with God, having a daily devotion to deepen your understanding and faith in Him is very important. This particular devotional book will give you more insight about why Christians believe what we believe as well as giving you a firm foundation in Christ. This is one book that the whole family can enjoy together.

*I was given this book by BookLookBloggers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Friday, July 22, 2016

All Things Bright and Beautiful (By: Cecil Frances Alexander)




All Things Bright and Beautiful by Cecil Frances Alexander and illustrated by Katy Hudson is a sweet new book. It is based on Genisis 1:1, 31A.

"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth...
And God saw every thing that he had made, and behold, it was very good."
(KJV)
 
The pictures are absolutely amazing and adorable. Katy Hudson did a tremendous job. She was raised in England and has been painting since she was a small child. She earned a degree in illustration with the encouragement of her parents. She is a freelance author and illustrator now and her studio is located in Old London library. I truly believe this is the cutest book I have ever seen.
 
Cecil Frances Alexander was an amazing and inspiring woman who wrote hymns and poems during her time. She was born in 1818 in Dublin, Ireland. Her writing began as a young girl. One of her best known hymns is "All Things Bright and Beautiful". This book was made from that hymn. She died in 1895 and is remembered because of her great kindness and generosity.
 
Throughout the book the author speaks about God and how He created all things. Through God's inspiration, the whole world and all its beauty was made. No matter what, if something is great or small, wise or wonderful, God created it all.
 
My children truly love this book. All Things Bright and Beautiful gave them a book about the things that God made. I highly recommend purchasing this book for your children, nieces and nephews, or grandchildren.
 
*I was given this book by FlyBy Promotions in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

American Woman's Bible (Review)



I absolutely love history (my favorite subject to teach and study). I also love the Bible. So, when someone decided to combine the two I jumped on the opportunity to review it. The new American Woman's Bible (edited by Dr. Richard G. Lee and forward by Penny Nance) is all about combining the Bible with the women who have been influential in the making of America as well as Biblical virtues.

This Bible is the New King James Version. I prefer this version. It is easy to read and I grew up reading this version. It was edited to add tidbits about women throughout American history who have helped to mold this country in some way or another. There are also a few color pictures throughout.

As you read through this Bible, you come across a biography on Fanny Crosby, or an article about the Women of the American Revolution, quotes by some American women, or a small piece on Dorothea Lang (a famous photographer). Every page brings a new element.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading through the pages. I was fascinated by the amount of women who assisted in forming this great country from early in history all the way to modern day. I am doing a further study into some of these women to learn more about each of them. I had not heard of a few of them and it really got me thinking about history.

In America, we hear a lot about all of the men who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. We hear of the great wars, the triumphs, the losses, the heroes, the Presidents, and leaders. We don't hear much about the women who worked behind the scenes with these great men to accomplish what we have today. In this book, you will learn of the battles that women fought to bring freedom and justice to America. You will read about women who loved and served God without wavering in their faith when the odds were stacked against them. You will read of heroines who served this great country through wars and victory.

This Bible is for the history buff. There are so many great quotes that inspired me throughout. I plan to write them down so I can remember them in hard times. We are facing many changes in the USA. Some of them are great and some are grave. No matter where this country ends up, we know that God stands still and will always be constant and never-changing. What a great reminder as we head into adjustments in this country. God is in control.

*I was given this book by BookLookBloggers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are solely my own.*