Tuesday, July 25, 2017

All in All Journaling Devotional by Sophie Hudson

book cover
All in All Journaling Devotional
by Sophie Hudson


ISBN-13: 9781462743407
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: B&H Kids
Released: Aug. 1, 2017

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description from Goodreads:
Wherever you are, let Jesus be your all. Written by popular author and blogger Sophie Hudson, this beautiful devotional journal for teens and young women reminds you that Jesus is your All in All—over all, through all, and in all that you do.

As you dig in to Sophie's words and wit, you'll better understand the wholeness and freedom that come from a life filled with Jesus. Each of the 100 devotions is followed by journaling prompts that will get you writing, keep you thinking, and help you grab all the goodness He has waiting for you.


My Review:
All in All Journaling Devotional is a 100-day devotional for teenage girls. Each devotion takes about 5 minutes--it depends on how much time you spend answering the journaling questions. The author covered a wide range of issues, from sexual temptation to handling drama or stress. She had good advice which she delivered with humor and a lot of grace. She doesn't make the reader feel bad about not being perfect. I felt encouraged, loved, and accepted.

The author described events that happened in her life and used them as parables to illustrate a spiritual truth or showed how the situation helped her understand a spiritual truth. She sometimes quoted that day's Scripture verse but usually had you look it up. She also gave four questions to help you think through what she just said, and there were blank lines in the book where you can write your answers.

The author points the reader to Christ and encourages you to spend time getting to know Him better. She showed how you can find peace, love, and grace in Jesus. Overall, I'd highly recommend this devotional for teenagers, and I think tweens and even young adults would also enjoy it.


If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.


Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Wisdom of God by A. W. Tozer

book cover
The Wisdom of God
by A. W. Tozer


ISBN-13: 9780764218088
Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: Bethany House
Released: June 20, 2017

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description, Modified from NetGalley:
The Wisdom of God captures Tozer's teaching on this topic as a way to understand the well-lived Christian life. God's wisdom is a part of his character, inseparable from his love and grace, and knowing this wisdom means drawing closer to him. It will change your decisions, attitudes, and relationships, setting you on the path to becoming all God wants you to be.


My Review:
The Wisdom of God is hard to describe. Tozer kind of wandered from topic to topic, but each chapter related to wisdom in some way. He sometimes quoted the same verses or made the same points in different chapters, so I'm curious if this is basically a compilation of his sermons relating to wisdom. However, his overall point is that human wisdom can't save you, only God's wisdom (a.k.a. Jesus).

He started by talking about how the logos in John 1:1-3 reflects the ancient Hebrew understanding of the word and of wisdom, not the Greek philosophy involving logos. He then talked about why we need wisdom and where we find it (Christ!).

He then started preaching against modern (at that time) trends, like people using "precipitation" instead of crediting God for the rain. His underlying point was against placing your confidence in man's wisdom, but the way he stated this came across as anti-science, anti-logic (don't try to prove God), etc. Again, while his underlying point seems to be that true Christians have to repent, see a life change, and shouldn't compromise God's teachings to avoid conflict, he came across as saying that true Christians should have a profound conversion experience, be deeply committed to God, and make enemies out of everyone as they stand up for God's truth.

As I didn't have a conversion experience involving profound remorse and have managed to stand up for the truth without making enemies of everyone, I felt like he went looking to the extreme to make his points. Or maybe I'm just misunderstanding him. I've enjoyed Tozer's books in the past, but this one left me feeling unsure about what he meant in some parts.


If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.


Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Insights on Hebrews by Charles R. Swindoll

book cover
Insights on Hebrews
by Charles R. Swindoll


ISBN-13: 9781414393773
Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Released: May 9, 2017

Source: Bought on Amazon.

Book Description from Goodreads:
The 15-volume Swindoll's Living Insights New Testament Commentary series draws on Gold Medallion Award-winner Chuck Swindoll's 50 years of experience with studying and preaching God's Word. Each volume combines verse-by-verse commentary, charts, maps, photos, key terms, and background articles with practical application. The newly updated volumes now include parallel presentations of the NLT and NASB before each section. This series is a must-have for pastors, teachers, and anyone else who is seeking a deeply practical resource for exploring God's Word.

My Review:
Insights on Hebrews is a Bible commentary. The author explained the meaning of various key Greek words and provided information on the cultural and historical background. The author gave a paragraph or two of Scripture and then studied through that verse-by-verse. At the end of each section, he discussed how we can apply the writer's message to our own lives. He also included occasional "journal" pages were he talked about how those verses had been applied or worked out in his life.

Though you can look up information on just a single verse, this is more a Bible study book where it's assumed you'll read the whole book. Most of the text focused on clarifying what the verses mean so the reader can better understand them. Some parts were more of a sermon, where he tells the reader what to understand from it.

This book was easy to follow and understand. I was surprised that the book was relatively small as I'd expected him to have a lot to say about Hebrews. He did cover the main points of the text, but he didn't dig as deep as he could. I'm reading another commentary on Hebrews that made many of the same points (and more), but it also required more focus to follow the text. So, overall, I'd recommend this book.


If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.


Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Hope. . .the Best of Things by Joni Eareckson Tada

book cover
Hope. . .the Best of Things
by Joni Eareckson Tada


ISBN-13: 978-1433502194
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Crossway Books
Released: June 15, 2008

Source: ebook bought through Christianbook.com.

Book Description from Goodreads:
If hope is scarce in your life, this special booklet will draw you-toward a fresh perspective on suffering, true scriptural encouragement, and this beloved author's hard-won insights about the goodness of God.

In her life's journey Joni has learned to meet suffering on God's terms. She has learned that joy is for real. And most of all, she has learned that hope is the best of things when we give it a chance. This book powerfully communicates all these truths from someone who has lived them, so that you can live them too, no matter what you're going through.


My Review:
Hope. . .the Best of Things "Hope...the Best of Things" is a short booklet aimed at people who feel hopeless, especially those with disabilities. The title comes from the movie "The Shawshank Redemption." The scenes involving the quote are described in the book along with the lesson that we need to get busy living or get busy dying. We also learn a bit about Joni's story and how she leans on God each day to get through the day.

She talked about how God allows bad things to happen so that we will learn to more fully depend upon Him (and that He is strong) and about sharing with others the hope we have through Jesus. She also talked about the coming joy we have to look forward to when we gain glorified bodies and are with Jesus forever. Much of this is explained through stories from her own life or of people she knows.


If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.


Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.