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Embracing Obscurity by Anonymous

By in Book Reviews, Favorites, Humility & Submission, Perspective | 0 comments

Embracing Obscurity: Becoming Nothing in Light of God’s Everything by Anonymous My rating: 5 of 5 stars Embracing Obscurity, by an anonymous author, tackles the dilemmas and dangers of our self-obsession. According to the author, “Embracing obscurity is not about wiping ourselves from existence but rather, voluntarily, becoming nothing in light of everything God is and has promised us. . . . It’s about making Him, not ourselves, look good.” The author is genuine and transparent in his struggle with this topic. When it first occurred to him, he thought, “Wait . . . embrace obscurity? Who in their right mind would want to do that? And what would that do to my life?” He details his own struggle with social media and the desire to have lots of friends and followers as a measure of worth and the desire to be affirmed for the witty things he posted. Service and obscurity go hand in hand,...

Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary by J.D. Greear

By in Book Reviews, Favorites, Grace | 0 comments

Gospel Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary J.D. Greear 2013 288 pages   One day I was brushing my teeth and had one of those thoughts so clear it had to come from God: There is no such thing as failure because it is covered by grace. This made me start seeking out books on grace so I could saturate my mind with the message of grace. I began reading Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary and found some truly thought-provoking ideas that will continue to have a profound impact on me spiritually. The author, J.D. Greear, begins by explaining the general misconceptions we have of the gospel: “For many evangelicals the gospel has functioned solely as the entry rite into Christianity; it is the prayer we pray to begin our relationship with Jesus; the diving board off of which we jump into the pool of Christianity. After we get into the pool,...

It Is Finished: Why you can quit religion and trust in Jesus by Blaise Foret

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It is Finished Why you can quit religion and trust in Jesus Blaise Foret 2014 170 pages   I put off reading It Is Finished for a long time. It was lost on my Kindle among a hundred other unread titles. But it turned out to be a hidden gem. This book challenged my thinking, poked at spiritually sore spots, and prompted a shift in my spiritual life. I loved his writing style. He’s easy to read and slightly irreverent, saying things like “Jesus was an interesting dude” or “Jesus threw a keg party.” I found phrases like that amusing and refreshing because that’s the kind of casual talk Jesus would have used. From cover to cover, the book was about God’s grace. It delved into many misconceptions taught by churches today and he offered explanations from scripture to show the errors in modern thinking. Occasionally, the author said things that took me back a bit, but as he unfolded the truth...

Hope Stands by Samuel Kee

By in Book Reviews, Faith & Hope, Favorites | 0 comments

Hope Stands Ten Reasons Why You Must Not Give Up Samuel Kee 2010 182 pages   Samuel Kee was preparing to speak at a youth retreat when he felt a burden to speak on suicide. He prepared his message and the day before the event, the youth pastor called to tell him one of the students in the group had just committed suicide. Understandably, his message struck a nerve. He told the kids “they are never without hope so long as one person is standing up for them.” That person is Jesus. Because Jesus is standing up for us, we are never without hope. Kee began sharing this message other places and experiencing the same results. His message, based on the resurrection as told in John 20-21, is “Hope Stands.” “When Jesus Christ stood up from the grave on the third day, he released a power to all those who would follow him. The resurrection releases us from the emotional conditions that trap us....

Right-Brained Folks Will Love This Bible

By in Art & Creativity, Book Reviews, Favorites | 0 comments

If you’ve read my book, Sweeter Than Chocolate, you’ll know I devote a whole chapter to right-brained approaches to the Bible (and a whole chapter to left-brained approaches). So I’m glad to see the Christian community embracing these differences finally. There has been a growing movement of Bible journaling in which people draw, doodle, and color in their Bible. Right-brainers have always colored, or even color-coded, their Bibles. And a little bit of color makes even left-brain study methods more interesting for right-brained folks. This week, I received my Inspire NLT Bible, which I fondly refer to as “my coloring Bible.” It’s a compact size but it contains more than 400 illustrations of Bible verses to color. And look at the beautiful page edges done in butterflies and floral designs.       Every page has a wide margin, which contains either a...