Monday, June 27, 2011

We hear the term radical quite often today. And most of the time radical is considered to be bad. We talk about radical Islam and radical Christianity. We are taught that if you are radical that you have gone over board and become extreme, which is not good. But it is my sincere belief that radical Muslims and radical Christians are those who understand, teach and practice what their religion teaches. Being a Christian I believe in and encourage radical Christianity because I believe this at the heart of what God wants. I do not believe in radical Islam but I believe that all Muslims who are sincere about their religion are the ones we refer to as radical. Peaceful Islam is a contradiction of what the Koran teaches.

I oppose radical Islam but not radical Christianity. I want to recommend that you seriously consider becoming a radical Christian.

Greg Laurie, best selling author and senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, one of the largest churches in America, has written a book about radical Christian living. The book is: LET GOD CHANGE YOUR LIFE-How To Know And Follow Jesus.  In this book Laurie calls all Christians back to radical New Testament living. He says, "The blueprint is simple: Get to know Jesus, follow His plan for discipleship, and share God's truth with others. He expands on these three key aspects of following Christ:
* How to know God-and how He will change your life
*Discipleship-the commitment, the cost, and the spiritual growth
*Making Him known-sharing the gospel and making disciples

In this splendid book Laurie writes: "What often is perceived as the Christian life is, in many ways, not what the Bible teaches. Are you really living the Christian life as Jesus meant for you to live it? If your Christian experience feels dull and unfulfilling, then it's time to seriously examine Jesus' teachings regarding discipleship.

If you want to know Jesus or want to know Him better, and you want Him to change your life - this book is for you.

(Thanks to B & B Media Group, Inc. for providing this book for review)


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Guest Review by Charlotte Ditmore

Understanding the Angels 
by Dr. James Hodges, Ph.D.

About the author: Dr. James Hodges began his ministry in 1978. The early part of his ministry was focused on teaching Christian development and working with young adults. In 1990, he founded Project Word, an acronym for Working on Renewed Determinations, which teaches young adults how to have a successful lifestyle and learning to overcome challenges and failures. In 2002, as a speaker for the International Fellowship of Christian Businessmen at Lake Lure, North Carolina, he taught on prayer. He has taught classes for troubled youth in the Louisiana Court System and travels extensively throughout the United States developing programs in churches.

My Review: Clif knew of my interest in angels and finding out more about them, so when this book came up for review, he asked me if I would like to read it and review it. I said "yes."  I have read several books on the subject of angels, but I now understand more about them after reading this book. For instance, I knew there were a lot of angels but using scripture to back it up, Dr. Hodges has calculated an estimated number of how prolific they really are. He has included a chapter on the fallen angels, but most of the book is dedicated to describing the "good" angels.  I was impressed with the many scriptures Dr. Hodges quoted to help explain the different categories of angels from the "Mighty Angels" to the Cherubims and Seraphims. Each category has its own special assignments. The author even includes examples of his own personal experiences of visitation by angels. Although these are his experiences and I hesitate to disagree with him I have to say that I found some of them to be a little "bizarre." But, of course, that is just my opinion and other readers will decide that for themselves. Over all, I believe if you are interested in this subject, you will be blessed by reading the book.


Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Have you ever experienced a deep sense of God's presence in your life?

In Celtic tradition the place where such a feeling is felt is called a "thin place". It is the place where the veil that separates heaven and earth is nearly transparent. It is a place where we experience a deep sense of God's presence in our every day world. A thin place is where, for a moment, the spiritual world and natural world intersect. It can be a sudden momentary awareness or profound unexplainable experience.

Pressing into Thin Places is a collection of stories, experiences, and learned truths expressed through poetry and prose. This book is one rich in the faith experience and in the assurance that God is love. It gives readers permission to be authentic and to acknowledge doubt, questions, even depression. Dr. Wills writes about the importance of prayer in strengthening faith and reminds the readers that Jesus tells us over and over again that we must have faith.

This is a book that will help you to feel closer to God after reading it, or at least it did me. As I laughed and cried my way through this little book I thought to myself, "I know many people who need to read this." I felt like I had joined with Dr. Wills in her own search for peace, hope and meaning in the midst of loss and pain. Her book encourages praise and appreciation at all times, for God's heart toward his children is unchanging. This book will encourage you celebrate in the struggle and ultimate triumph of faith founded in Jesus Christ, the beauty and diversity of creation, and the hope to be had in this life and the next through saving grace.

Dr. Margaret Harrell Wills is dedicated to the ministry of encouragement, helping people experience hope, wisdom, and faith in their spiritual journey. Dr. Wills received her doctoral degree in higher education with a teaching field of history from the University of Arkansas. She taught history at the University of Arkansas in Fort Smith, Arkansas. She is a writer and poet. She is a graduate of Chuck Colson's Centurion Program for Worldview Leadership.

I recommend this book as the kind you would want to give as a gift of encouragement to someone who is about to give up. It will bring light into darkness and renew hope.

(Thanks to The B & B Media Group for giving me this free book for review.)


Monday, June 06, 2011

Do you believe in God?

If your answer is yes or no, Vincent Bugliosi thinks he can prove you wrong.

Vincent Bugliosi, whom many view as the nation's foremost prosecutor, has successfully taken on, in court or on the pages of his books, the most notorious murderers of the last half century---Charles Manson, O.J. Simpson, and Lee Harvey Oswald.

Now, in the most controversial book of his celebrated career, he turns his incomparable prosecutorial eye on the greatest target of all: God. In making his case for agnosticism, Bugliosi have very arguably written the most powerful indictment ever of God, organized religion, theism, and atheism. Theists will be left reeling by the commanding nature of Bugliosi's extraordinary arguments against them. And, with his trademark incisive logic and devastating wit, he exposes the intellectual poverty of atheism and skewers its leading popularizes--Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris,and Richard Dawkins.

I promise you that you will learn many things when you read this challenging book. Bugliosi is a brilliant lawyer, excellent student and offers many arguments against absolute faith in the existence of God. Did he change my mind? No. No he didn't. But he did give me much to think about. And I am glad I read his book and I will recommend it to many. I will not recommend it to everybody. I do not believe this is a book that every person should read. Some will be more confused and frustrated after reading this kind of book. It's just a fact. That's the way some people are. But again, if you are a person that wants to be challenged to think--you will want this book.

Bugliosi's Divinity of Doubt joins a 2,000-year-old conversation which no one has contributed anything significant to for years and sets a new course amid the explosion of bestselling books on atheism and theism--the middle path of agnosticism. Bugliosi thinks that he demonstrates that agnosticism is the most intelligent and responsible position to take on the eternal question of God's existence. I don't agree! But I do believe that atheists, agnostics and those who believe in God, can all learn something by reading this book.

(Thanks to FSB Associates for giving me a free copy of this book for review.)


Saturday, June 04, 2011

Most, if not all of us, have been hurt when we were young.

Something happened that broke our heart and it took years if not a life time to get over it.

Dr. Margaret Harrell Wills' father had such an experience. He told her about it. Here's what he said:

"I'm going to tell you a story I've never told before. One Christmas, when I was  a little boy in Black Rock, Arkansas, I walked to the Baptist church at the top of the hill. There was a Christmas Eve service, and all the children were supposed to get a present. I didn't know that the presents has been placed under the tree secretly by the mothers of the children. You know, girls, my mother was just a child when I was born, only fifteen. Dad was eleven years older. He always loved Mother, but when she'd get mad, she would take off. That year, she was gone, taken off somewhere with my two little brothers. Well, anyway, there wasn't any present for me under the tree, and I walked home, crying all the way."

Dr. Wills said she held back her tears for fear of losing it all together. But later she wrote her elderly father a Christmas letter and sent him a gift. She told him his Father heard his sad cry and walked with him all the way home. He didn't see Him or feel Him or know that He was there. She reminded him that over the years God had given him gifts a thousand times over more valuable than any he could find under any earthly tree. She told him that his son and daughters respected and honored him and that God is still loving him and seeing him safely all the way home.

When we are hurt as children we feel that nobody cares and that we are all alone.

God cares and we are never alone.  (Romans 8:38)

(From Pressing Into Thin Places--Encouraging the Heart toward God by Margaret Harrell Wills, EdD  I will be reviewing her book on my blog in a few days.)


Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Charles Spurgeon's
classic devotional thoughts on Heaven
By Randy Alcorn

OVERVIEW: In what is sure to become an instant classic, best-selling author Randy Alcorn has compiled fifty of the most profound spiritual insights on eternity from the sermons of the world famous London preacher, Charles Spurgeon. He has arranged them into an easily accessible, highly inspiration format complete with his own comments and devotional thoughts.

AUTHORS: Randy Alcorn is the founder and director of Eternal Perspective Ministries. He is the author of more than thirty books, including Heaven, 50 Days of Heaven, and If God is Good, as well as several novels.
Charles Spurgeon  (1834-1892) was England's best-known preacher for most of the second half of the nineteenth century. he served for thirty years at the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, and it is estimated that during his lifetime he preached to more than 10 million people. His collected sermons fill sixty-three volumes and remain one of the bestselling series of writings in history.

MY REVIEW: Interested in heaven? Do you think about it often? Would you like to think about it daily? Then this book of classic devotional thoughts on heaven is the book for you. Author, Randy Alcorn said, "...Spurgeon's teachings about Heaven are some of the most poignant, moving, and biblically insightful I have ever read on the subject (and I've read over 150 books about Heaven)." This would be a great book if it only contained Spurgeon's sermons. But there is more. I believe Randy Alcorn's comments on the sermons is one of the best parts of the book. Originally he submitted a book to the publisher that was, aside from the introduction, 100 percent Spurgeon. His publisher asked him to supplement Spurgeon's meditations with some of his own thoughts about Heaven. He resisted thinking it would be presumptuous to coauthor a book with a man who was so famous and could not be reached for permission. I am so glad he finally agreed to add his comments and I know you will be too. If you are like me, you don't really need another devotional book. I have several. But this is a book you will read not just for a daily devotion but to lift your spirit, fill your heart with hope and lift your eyes toward heaven.