Category Archives: Books

Good read: Parables

I have to admit, it took me awhile to get through this book – life has been crazy. But one of the things I’ve loved about reading Parables is that it is really enjoyable in small segments. I’m not usually one to read a book over a long stretch of time and take breaks to read other things, but this is definitely perfect if that’s you’re reading style. I’d compare it best to being like a devotional. And seriously, how great is this cover?! It makes for great reference material whether you are a scholar of the Bible, or just wanting to start a deeper dive into Jesus’ teachings. There is something for everyone in this book. The way MacArthur explains the intentions behind Jesus’ use of parables was so eye-opening. He doesn’t shy away from addressing the controversy about why and how Jesus taught through parables. As MacArthur says, “A parable is an ingeniously simple word picture illuminating a profound spiritual lesson.” A parable always makes a comparison between something commonplace and some truth in the spiritual realm. Jesus did not invent the form, though certainly he mastered it like no one else before or since.

If you find time to read this book, I hope you find it as informative and illuminating as I did!

 

Another great read: For The Love by Jen Hatmaker 

For The Love was such a fun read! Especially when you know that a bunch of your girlfriends are all reading it at the same time. No matter your phase of life, Jen’s honesty and wit connect all of the dots for a picture of actionable ways to live out the love of Jesus, particularly as a woman in America where our good fortune frequently blinds us and the snares of things like social media often turn us into the worst versions of ourselves. As Jen eloquently states “We are not good gods over one another; we are better humans beside each other.” Even though it’s geared toward women, I think men would really enjoy this book as well. In a time where it seems that everything seeks to divide us, it is refreshing to see voices like Jen’s ring out and encourage us to find unity in our messiness. Jen quotes John 1:4-5 which says of Jesus “in him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” I highly recommend this book, and suggest you send a copy to your best girlfriend too! After all, there are some amazing looking recipes in here too!





Another great read: The Colson Way by Owen Strachan

After reading this book and discovering what a bold life Chuck Colson lived for God in this country and throughout the world, I am ashamed to say I didn’t really know anything about him. But I think that is exactly the intent of this timely and very passionately-written book. Strachan gives the perfect blend of a biography of this dynamic man’s life and actionable guidance about how we (particularly Millennials) can and should carry on his legacy. The book takes the reader through Colson’s incredible life – his childhood, education, the rise and fall of his career, serving his prison sentence, when he came to faith, and the fearless way he lived on mission in the public arena until his final day. Realizing all of the ways in which Chuck Colson’s legacy is still a part of our Christian lives today is such a testament to how far-reaching his voice was. He sought to speak the Gospel in every opportunity – to boldly and courageously spread truth and justice. He knew it was a message for everyone on earth. By striving to bring others along with him whenever possible, we can be thankful that there are many people able to carry the torch he passed along, and this book invites us to take hold as well.

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A great read: Unoffendable by Brant Hansen

I. Loved. This. Book! Seriously, I needed to hear the convicting message of this book so badly. I am often aware how anger is one of the most prevalent emotions in my daily consciousness. Whether it’s something that seems big and important in its injustice or some small and trivial moment of feeling wronged, anger is such a precious and natural part of our lives. We hold onto it like it’s a prized possession. Without realizing it, we use anger to justify a myriad of actions and feelings all day long. We feel like it’s our right to have it, to deal it out, to share it, to keep it as long as we want. Here’s the thing: we aren’t justified to it at all. Anger will always deceive us. It will always make us feel like we’re the victim, that we were wronged, that we deserve something. Our default posture is our strengths and justifying our decisions, our behaviors, and our intentions. We think we need to be right so that others realize they’re wrong. What if instead of being right, we just decided to be love? If we are not capable of judging our own intentions, what makes us think we can judge the intentions of others? In this book, Brant ties these concepts to scripture in such a wonderful, humorous, and truly convicting way. We don’t need anger to seek justice and love mercy. I went into reading this book preparing myself to not be convinced – if anger could be a sport, I would be a star player. Except everyone is a loser in the game. It’s time to stop playing. I’m throwing out my jersey. I hope you check this book out and share it with friends. You will not be sorry!

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

An interesting read: The Mother & Child Project

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I am very passionate about the effects of extreme poverty on mothers and children so when I had a chance to review this book I jumped at the chance. The book left me with a lot of mixed emotions. It is comprised of essays from artists, actors, policy makers, medical professionals, and pastors that were then compiled by Hope Through Healing Hands — a non-profit dedicated to helping women have healthy children. 300,000 die every year in developing countries from complications related to pregnancy and 80% of those deaths are preventable with resources that we are blessed with.

The words that rang truth to me were about how supporting mothers in third world countries was the foundation for creating healthy families that could rise out of poverty. The struggle I have is with the conflicting solutions. And from the moment I opened this book I felt an uncomfortable tension between the words on the pages and the underlying message. I would be careful if you choose to read this and be mindful that the contributors to the book may have beliefs that are not founded in biblical truth. Bottom line: read at your own risk and maybe seek out other sources to get additional info.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

My favorite part of the book was this

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Another great read: God’s Story in 66 Verses by Stan Guthrie

It took me a few weeks to read this next book because I was enjoying reading each chapter along with my daily Bible reading. I started a reading plan though my Bible app at the beginning of January and this has really cleared up a little of the fog for me.

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God’s Story in 66 Verses by Stan Guthrie takes a careful and creative approach to breaking down the books of the Bible. The verse chosen for each book isn’t meant to be the most important or the best, but instead is a key verse that summarizes or lays the foundation for the book. I really enjoyed the additional commentary on each book and how the key verse ties the various elements together. This book would make a great companion to anyone whether they have many years of familiarity with the Bible, or are just starting a routine of reading.

Additionally, all of the key verses are listed again in a handy consolidated list at the back of the book. For anyone taking on a verse memory challenge, this would be an excellent resource for memorizing verses that would trigger one’s memory of the summary for each book of the Bible. I am so thankful to have this book in my collection now for sharing with friends and for easy reference.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

Jamaica weekend!

Just wanted to do a quick photo recap of my trip to Jamaica a few weeks ago to attend the wedding of a dear friend! Talk about a great weekend away from the chilly winter in DC! The weather there was absolutely amazing, and one day of reading and napping poolside with great girlfriends blended right into the next. Perfection!

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Then the day we got back it was to this majestic winter weather 🙂 but with a day off from work to relax post-trip I made the best of the cold by taking my first ever Solidcore class! Talk about sweating! Oh man. It was so challenging and I loved it. Definitely go try them out if you haven’t yet!

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