Wednesday, March 25, 2015

23013719     By

* I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley to review.

How do I start? My goodness this book was a mind twister and I don't mean in a bad way but in a good way! I am a Christian who feels reluctant to declare to be one because of the bum rap that we Christians have been dealt with. I don't blame the world of non-believers because basically I understand the reaction and feelings. Anymore I cringe and shake my head equally of what I see in the world  <i>and</i> within the ranks of my Christian brothers and sisters.
This book is about judgment and how we, as Christians have failed royally and shamefully in that area. We are called to first love God and then love our neighbor which I feel means <i>everybody</i> regardless of color, beliefs or sexual orientation. This book outlines in detail that call to love and not to judge. We as Christians have taken on such a judgmental stance so much so that most people hate us and want nothing to do with the "love" that we are suppose to show and hand out.

This book will do a number on how you view your fellow man and woman and unearth hidden and not so hidden attitudes and judgments. The author starts out with a scenario of his judgment in a given day. I related to that immediately. To be human is to be judgmental and I feel that it is an innate trait within us. The author explores this tendency to judge. Be prepared to have you look sincerely and honestly with yourself and a "religiosity" that is often solidly intact in all of us. He hit upon so many points that I think the Christian community needs to hear and to think about. If you are a rigid, severely conservative, self righteous Christian, be prepared to have a few of your hard earned ideals thrown out of joint!
Here is a quote from the book that resounded within me:
<i>"let us live as a true aroma of Christ instead of a stench or fume of brimstone. If it is Christ in us, if God is making His appeal through us, then why do we keep trying to protect our image and our values? We should instead be image bearers and let people be with us so they can pick up on our values. May wisdom be proved right! May the church come alive! And may you live with Jesus." </i>

Sunday, March 22, 2015

15826316         by
 by WriteLife

* I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley to review.

I really didn't know what to expect from this book and I had an open mind. A few of the short stories or rather essays were interesting and there were a few good ideas. I learned of an event under the Wilson Administration termed the United States Occupation of Veracruz which occurred in 1914. I never had a clue about this part of our history and I enjoyed reading the back story leading up to the 7 month occupation. The essays afterward seem to proclaim a general view that Christianity is false and the attitude about religion is negative. The book ultimately ended up to be in my opinion "anti-Christian". This fact pushed back my enjoyment and the rating for this book.    

Saturday, March 21, 2015

19075518     by
 Published by Discovery House Publishers          

*I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley to review.

I wasn't sure what to expect with this book as sometimes I can be quite hard on books especially ones that lean towards the self-help genre. Though being a Christian book the term self-help seems a bit ludicrous because we are ultimately not relying on the self but leaning upon the Bible and the Lord. I think there should be a sub category all of it's own in regards to books of this nature. Esther Lovejoy brings to our attention in a new way of looking at suffering. Actually she uses scriptural references and personal experiences. I really appreciated the personal insight and her being transparent in bringing to light how her own personal suffering can often bring a certain spiritual sweetness to a person's life.
She quotes and refers to many authors and the spiritual greats of the past to illustrate the depth and potential "sweetness" to suffering. I liked how she laid out her chapters and her exploring  the subject of suffering. We are all born to suffering because of the original sin. It is a human inclination to veer away from suffering and pain. She illustrates through her own personal story and understanding that we all suffer and not only do we suffer pain and disappointments but Christ suffered as well. What we think is something that only we humans have understanding and experience of, Christ did as well, we are not alone and are not victims of suffering. Suffering can be a tool, a sweetness to the whole human experience. Our suffering is where we can be ultimately in the vulnerable place of reaching out to our Heavenly Father and being comforted.
I appreciated her emphasizes and time spent in exploring the depth of pain and the fact that we can lean on the Lord and expect to be heard and comforted. I am looking forward to more books by this author, I was pleasantly surprised by the wisdom in this book. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Shot Down

 23171636       by

Howard Snyder, brought not just another story to light. The author gave an honest and a very interesting and different perspective into what it was like to be a pilot of a B-17, dubbed the Flying Fortress. The set-up of the narrative, the openness and the details of the time was quite fresh and new to me. The details about the planes and military life never bored me and I never lost my interest, in fact I become more interested in WW2. It helped me to understand the era and I felt like I could easily place myself alongside a typical American pilot experiencing a not so typical war.

I especially appreciated that the author wrote his book in a revealing way without being vulgar, coarse or full of gore. I like to hear about what happened "over there" but I can become quite squeamish with an author's mishandling of the topic. I found Steve Snyder handled all the afore mentioned items with much delicacy.

The end and the acknowledgements were just the right touch and feel that I like in a book. Not often do I read acknowledgements in a book, I wanted more insight into the journey of this author and the legacy that was left to him by his father. Certainly well worth the read.

<a href="">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>