The Atonement of God by J. D. Myers book cover

THE ATONEMENT OF GOD: BUILDING YOUR THEOLOGY ON A CRUCIVISION OF GOD by J. D. Myers

Publisher: RedeemingPress.com

Date published: March 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-939992-42-0

Spiritual, religious, theology

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=j.+d.+myers+the+atonement+of+god

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating: 5

THE ATONEMENT OF GOD: BUILDING YOUR THEOLOGY ON A CRUCIVISION OF GOD by J. D. Myers is an exceptional read. Well-written, it will challenge you to reconsider what you already believe about God to be true. In fact, it will give you an entirely new perspective on the God we thought we knew from the Old Testament and the one we know at the cross.

Myers gives clear distinctions between the violent atonement of God and the non-violent one which will help open the reader’s eyes and accept what clearly may be the absolute truth on the atonement in ways we had not considered before.

Myers gives clear examples on the different beliefs on atonement which will sharpen your understanding on how much our God truly loves us. Of how much His wrath is only a form of His love for us when we disobey His directives and commandments and not laid against us as punishment but only a consequence of our own sin.

So much of what Myers shares in THE ATONEMENT OF GOD: BUILDING YOUR THEOLOGY ON A CRUCIVISION OF GOD makes complete sense so that you will wonder why you didn’t figure it all out for yourself.

Myers’ thought-provoking and insightful teaching will make every believer take notice and shout for joy. Understanding the truth of how much our Creator loves us will blow your mind when you come to understand how much we have misunderstood and been misled by what we have been taught to believe.

At first glance, I thought THE ATONEMENT OF GOD: BUILDING YOUR THEOLOGY ON A CRUCIVISION OF GOD was going to be another boring book on theology, but I was completely wrong and found myself drawn in from page one. This book is outstanding and an exemplary read that no believer in Christ should miss. Myers explains things that were never made plain to us before, and it will bring joy to the heart of any believer who reads it. It is outstanding and highly recommended for anyone interested in learning the truth about God. From the beginning.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. 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.

————————-

Rewilding the Way book cover

REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward

Publisher: Herald Press

Date published: September 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-8361-9948-2

Religion/Christian Life/Social Issues

Paperback

http://www.amazon.com/Rewilding-Way-Break-Follow-Untamed/dp/0836199480

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating: 5

REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward is a blend of reality, together with stories of various communities and other people who are “rewilding” the way things are done.

To pull themselves away from the bondage of corporate-controlled America, several groups of people, intent on serving Jesus in a different Way, away from the world so to be speak, these inspired souls have taken the first steps, experimenting in a new way of life that should inspire others to follow suit, especially in the Christian church communities. The question Wynward asks is, “Can we break free to become the joyful and prophetic people God calls us to be?”

REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward is a timely, thought-provoking book that may inspire the reader to take a different look at the world around him or her and how we care to live in it.

We have been locked into our known lifestyles for so long that perhaps none of us have ever considered that there mighty be a better way to live, one more in keeping with what God intended. A life of freedom, peace, self-sustainment to a degree, and basically, a form of Heaven on earth.

REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward is a great read, with much to offer. Wynward, a Mennonite now, is forging a new path for us to follow, to learn by. I so much enjoyed this book that I wanted to leave everything behind and start anew, moving to Taos, New Mexico or some other place, well off the grid, so to speak, to see if I could survive in the wilderness awhile by myself, just trusting God to provide for me, sustain me, guide, and help me, and using whatever knowledge, wisdom, or education I have to survive and, hopefully, live life as it was meant to be lived and enjoyed.

I strongly urge anyone not happy with what is happening in our world to read REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward. It is indeed very well written and inspiring. As a wilderness guide, a hopeful God-seeker, and change-maker, Wynward gives the reader a thorough argument for his reasons in semi-leaving the ‘real’ world and the despair about life’s current situation on this planet. Wynward shares how the early prophets and disciples “gleaned from wilderness testing”…and lived the Jesus Way.

REWILDING THE WAY: BREAK FREE TO FOLLOW AN UNTAMED GOD by Todd Wynward lays out a challenge to the reader, to step out into the wild and live counter to our dominant culture. It is well worth some thought, and the possibilities are endless.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. 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.

——————–

FATHER DARK cover
 

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case

Publisher:  Apocryphile Press

Date published:  May 1, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-937002-84-8

Fiction/Urban Fantasy

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne.

http://www.amazon.com/Father-Dark-Steven-L-Case/dp/1937002845

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating:  5

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case is the intriguing story of Father Michael Dark, assigned from heaven to be the new associate priest at St. Marjorie’s Church in Philadelphia.  But Father Dark has a secret he shares with no one.

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case is an entertaining romp through the dark streets of Philly, where corruption, prostitution, and drug dealers prevail.

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case is an incredibly fun and witty read.  Filled with many laugh out loud moments of humor intermixed with mystery, angels, troubled youth, church ladies, not to mention drug dealers and other bad guys, this book will have you flipping through pages as fast as you can just to see what happens next.

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case is a breath of fresh air that I highly recommend to anyone interested.  Mixed with religion is an array of characters that are sure to delight, together with angels in ways you have never seen them before.

Case’s characters are realistic and likeable, and he shares the right amount of tragedy, humor, and paranormal mayhem to keep the reader rooted until the very end.

I thoroughly love Case’s writing style.  His dialogue is realistic and befitting the array of characters introduced in this fictional treat.  What I really enjoyed is Case’s sense of humor.  Father Dark is a wonderful character that the reader will wish was an actual person.

FATHER DARK by Steven L. Case is entertaining and ultimately fun.  I hated for it to end, it is that good.

Thumbs up, Mr. Case!  You are a jewel of talent in this dark world, and I would love to see more of Father Dark and his friends.  I absolutely loved this book and would love to see a sequel to continue this awesome story.

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

——————–

FARAWAY

FARAWAY:  A Suburban Boy’s Story as a Victim of Sex Trafficking by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer

Publisher:  Two Harbors Press

Date published:  May 5, 2015

ISBN:  978-1-63413-207-7

Nonfiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.itascabooks.com/faraway.html

http://www.amazon.com/Faraway-Suburban-Story-Victim-Trafficking/dp/1634132076/ref=tmm_pap_title_0

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating:  5

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is the true, life changing story of a fourteen-year-old gay male, Kevin, who suddenly finds himself caught up in the sex trafficking trade, yet all the while living at home with his loving family.

During the summer of 1975, Kevin, sexually curious as most teens are, finds himself duped by a man he believes is a friend, only to discover otherwise.  Yet along this horrific journey Kevin finds himself befriended by two other boys, Squirrel and Stevie, who accept him for who he is and go out of their way to protect him and help him feel secure.  Despite being used by self-serving adults, Kevin feels a deep bond of love and friendship for these boys he has never felt before.  Nor has he ever found it again.

Through the beauty of this relationship is harsh reality as Kevin learns the danger of the sex trafficking industry.  When tragedy strikes, disrupting everything Kevin holds dear, only then does Kevin break away from the horrors of this lifestyle.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is a rare, thought-provoking look at a side of sex trafficking that few people ever hear about.  The sex trafficking of young boys.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is raw and brutally honest in its telling, well written, and a page turner.  It kept me riveted and horrified, all at the same time.  That such things go on middle class America, right under our noses, shocks me to the core.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer gives an insightful glimpse into the pain and suffering of the gay population as these boys, made in the image of God, struggle to find their place in society.  Were parents more accepting of their children, as they are, perhaps there would be no reason for them to be forced into a lifestyle that none of them want or would even choose for themselves.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is heartbreaking in its scope.  Kevin’s story is so vivid in its telling, with nothing held back, that one can not help but feel his pain and grief at his eventual loss of those he loves.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is a story of broken dreams.  Dreams that many who are caught up in sex trafficking ever get to achieve.  Boys are raped, innocence stolen, and dreams all but annihilated.  That Kevin managed to free himself and move on with his life shows the intensity of his resolve to share his story with the world and live out whatever dreams he has left.  What happened to him that summer of 1975 has affected him forever, yet it is a testimony to the love of Jesus Christ in his life, through it all.

FARAWAY by R. K. Kline and Daniel D. Maurer is not to be missed.  It is a story that all parents should read and be aware of.

I applaud you, Kevin, for having the courage to share this.  This is a wonderful book, and one I recommend to anyone else interested.

 (Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

————————-

book-cover sobriety

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (Author) and Spencer Amundson (Illustrator)

Publisher:  Hazelden

Date published:  November 4, 2014

ISBN:  978-1-61649-557-2

Graphic Novel

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Sobriety-Graphic-Daniel-D-Maurer/dp/161649557X

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating:  5

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) is an excellent book that can be a great asset to those considering or actually going into recovery from alcoholism or chemical addiction.

The author, Daniel D. Maurer, is a former Lutheran ministry who is openly in recovery, so SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL is clearly based on first-hand experience.

The talented illustrator of SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL, Spencer Amundson, is a freelance graphic artist with several graphic novels under his belt.  His illustrations are clear, detailed, and expressive.

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) is an intimate look at the challenges faced by those in recovery from alcoholism or chemical addiction.  The perspectives are from a group of five Twelve Step members, Larry, an “old timer” in recovery circles, Alex, a Londoner of African descent, gay and an atheist, Debby, a single mother who is on her third round of treatment, nineteen-year-old Matt, what some call a “tough case”, and Hannah, who was adopted as a baby and grew to be a smart high achiever.  Their approaches to recovery are as diverse as their backgrounds.

These five people each have a unique set of addictions, philosophies, struggles, and successes as they work through the Twelve Steps of the recovery program.  All of them are seeking help for their addiction, which is what binds these members together as a small community.  As they progress through the Steps, they discover the power of helping one another find strength together as they strive to reach for a clean-and-sober lifestyle.

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) is well-written and beautifully illustrated and may serve as a catalyst to recovery for many trapped in this chronic, problematic lifestyle.  It tastefully includes the necessity of God – a Higher Power, if you will – in the Twelve Step program, regardless of opposition to or disbelief in His existence.

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator)  maintains the importance of community and sponsorship within the Twelve Step program and helps the afflicted understand his or her need for support in their addictions.

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) is an easy, fast read for anyone interested and is a good stepping-stone in aiding someone into recovery.  It may also help others recognize their own need for help with their addiction problems and bring them to that place where they finally admit they have a problem and need help to overcome it.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) and liked that the illustrations were relevant to the overall book.  This is the first graphic novel I have read and greatly enjoyed it.  Perhaps, in future, the publisher might want to enhance the graphic experience by colorizing the illustrations.  Just a thought.

I enjoyed reading SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) from the perspectives of the five different people.  It helps the reader understand more easily how people fall into their problematic addictions or lifestyles.  It gives insight into what they have experienced in their lives, what they were thinking and feeling, and even how they were justifying their drinking or drug use.  This graphic novel gives a clear picture of how far the addiction will take a person before he or she hits rock bottom.

SOBRIETY:  A GRAPHIC NOVEL by Daniel D. Maurer (author) and Spencer Amundson (illustrator) is unique and powerful in its scope of reality.  The street language, lifestyle situations, and human frailties that lead a person into alcoholism and addiction is right on.  It is a valuable resource that many can easily relate to on a personal level.  As a degreed alcoholism and chemical addiction counselor, I highly endorse this book for counselors operating in this realm, especially for AA groups, ASAT prison programs, and all Twelve Step programs.

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

——————–They Call Me Dad cover

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron

Publisher:   HigherLife Publishing and Marketing

Date published:  April 1, 2014

ISBN:  978-1-939183-21-7

Biography & Autobiography/Personal Memoirs

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/They-Call-Me-Dad-Discarded/dp/1939183219

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating:  5

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron is an extremely powerful, eye-opening book that brings to light the plight of the Romanian orphans in Moldova.  It is a moving, heart-breaking encounter with children forgotten by much of the world.  Except for those seeking to exploit them through sex trafficking.

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron is the true story of Philip Cameron, a humble, unlikely, ordinary man and his father, Simon, who greatly loved God and the forgotten, overlooked children of the world.  It is the true story of how God used them to save the discarded and forgotten.

Despite his continual refusal to go to Romania at his father’s request, to help the children there, Philip finally gives in.  Despite his frailty, Simon chooses to make the trip to Romania with him.  Because babies are dying, and God wanted them to help them.  But what Philip discovered upon arriving in Moldova shocked him to the core of his being.  Once he saw the conditions the children of Moldova were living in, he took it upon himself, through God’s direction, to get involved in their plight and to never look back.

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron shares of the unbelievable poverty and filth that these unfortunates are forced to live in.  Communism gives these children little to nothing.  There is no food, broken windows, leaking roofs, no clothing, frigid conditions.  Barely anything at all.  At age 16, the orphans are completely discarded, actually kicked out of the the orphanages, the only home many have ever known, and told to return home.  With a measly $30 in their pockets, they return to their birth roots, where they have nothing and no one.  Fully aware of this, men from various corners of the world lie in wait, often kidnapping these orphans, who have no skills, no money, no place to live, no family who cares, and force them into sex trafficking.  Moldova, it seems, is the major European country that fuels the entire sex trafficking industry.

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron tells the story of the ministry Philip started, Stella’s Voice.  Philip took it upon himself to build a home for the children who were coming of age and needed a place to go, a place of security that would give them a hope and a future.  To rescue them from being forced into sex trafficking.

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron is a gripping, well written book you will not want to put down.  Philip Cameron has become a father to these unfortunates who have been discarded and forced to live in horrendous conditions.  The love and care he has shown these children has changed their lives.  The children have come to realize that God loves them and died on the cross for them.  They learned that God cares for them, despite what others labeled them and told them.

The most wonderful part of Philip’s ministry is that these beautiful children are now on fire for the Lord and leading many other discarded children to Him.

THEY CALL ME DAD:  How God Uses The Unlikely To Save The Discarded by Philip Cameron is a book that will stir your hearts to true compassion.  It is so beautiful in its scope and heart breaking in so many ways, I pray that it will touch you deeply so you will want to get involved in some way.

“Why?” you may ask, when so many other children are suffering.

“Why?”

“Because children are dying.”

http://vimeo.com/31929615

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

—————–

9781939183453_p0_v1_s260x420

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN by Alisa Jordheim 

Publisher:  Higher Life Publishing & Marketing, Inc.

Date published:   September 1, 2014

ISBN:  978-1-939183-40-8

Nonfiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://justicesociety.org/

http://www.amazon.com/Made-U-S-A-Trafficking-Americas-Children/dp/1939183405

Obtained via Speakeasy

Rating:  5

 

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN by Alisa Jordheim of the Justice Society is a powerful, thought-provoking book that battles head-on one of America’s most well kept secrets.  The sex trafficking of America’s own children.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN shares five incredible, true stories of real victims who became survivors and is a book that will stay with you long after you have finished reading it.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN is a disturbing book that may actually keep you up at night, especially if you have found yourself in similar situations or are a parent or know of someone who found themselves unwillingly caught up in this horrific world of sex, drugs, and abuse.  These stories can be every parent’s worst nightmare.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN will draw you right in and help the reader understand how children become part of the sex trafficking prevalent not just in America but throughout many corners of the world.  This book will help you see this nightmare lifestyle from the victims’ perspectives and will share how they eventually got out of it, freeing themselves to begin piecing their lives back into some normalcy.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN by Alisa Jordheim is a well written expose of a lifestyle that no one, especially an innocent young child, should have to be caught up in.  I literally devoured this book and found my anger flaring up at the injustices being done to our children, who seemingly have no way out of this horrible industry.  It brought out a feeling of helplessness and a strong desire to become involved in helping to free our children from this wicked bondage.

Jordheim is the Founder and Executive Director of Justice Society, which is a nonprofit organization that connects people and devises strategies to advance justice for these unfortunate victims.  Jordheim aims also to provide sustainable jobs, places of safety for these children, if they are fortunate enough to escape or be rescued, and to educate the overlooked and exploited.

Jordheim shares that solutions to America’s dirty little secret is not out of reach but that it will take all of us working together to achieve a positive end for these poor innocents who so desperately need help to escape their horrible, sometimes tragic situations, and reclaim their lives that were so viciously stolen from them, usually because of someone they trusted among their own peers or family members.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN is a book that will and should wake us up, to become involved in some way, to help become a part of the solution to save America’s children and to put those responsible for these reprehensible crimes where they belong.  Behind bars.

MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN shares a lot of information, resources, and websites that will help direct the reader should they feel as strongly as I do against these injustices and want to help in some way.  This wonderful book increased my interest and gave me a hunger to learn more about this subject and of ways to help.

Any one of us could have been targeted and caught up against our will into this lifestyle of which no child should have a part.  You see, when I was twelve, I could have easily been snatched away one afternoon, while walking to the grocery store to help my mother out with her shopping.  This was in the late ‘60s or early ‘70s, when these sorts of things weren’t commonly mentioned or discussed.

I was walking across the parking lot of the store plaza when a car with two black men pulled up beside me.  It was broad daylight, early afternoon, and these two men started talking to me, asking me personal questions, trying to feel me out on whether I had a boy friend, and telling me things that any young girl would want to hear at that age.  An attempt to entice me, I think they were going to try and get me into the car.  But fortunately, I had the good sense to just keep walking.  I remained polite but did not stop to chit chat.

Perhaps it was the fact that I kept walking to where I knew my mother was that saved me.  When the men realized I wasn’t going to stop or be tricked into getting into their car, they finally drove away, perhaps to look for another victim.  Regardless, that could have been the end of my idyllic life, had the men kidnapped me.  Because it was daylight and I was in a crowded parking life, that also could have been what stopped them from forcing me into the car.

I strongly urge anyone interested to read MADE IN THE USA:  THE SEX TRAFFICKING OF AMERICA’S CHILDREN by Alisa Jordheim of Justice Society.  This is a gripping book, fast-paced, raw, and down-to-earth that I feel everyone should read.  It may upset you, when you learn the truth of what really goes on in this underground, sleazy, evil world of sex trafficking, but at least you will be made aware.  And hopefully, you, too, will want to become part of the solution and learn all you can in order to recognize the signs of those being chained to this horrendous slavery, all for men’s greed and satisfaction.

 Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance withthe Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

————————–

THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH:  LET’S TAKE THIS WALK TOGETHER…  by Ronald R. Cooke

Publisher:   Ronald R. Cooke

Date published:  May 17, 2010

ISBN:  978-0-615-36779-8

Spiritual/New Age/Inspirational Fiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Angels-Footpath-Lets-together/dp/0615367798

Obtained via author through Speakeasy.

Rating: 4

THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH by Ronald R. Cooke begins with the story of Josue and Mari Vasquez who have tried many times to have a child.  Finally, after many prayers, they are blessed with a son, Ricardo Juan Sanchez Vasquez.

Eventually, the lives of little Ricardo and his parents becomes intertwined with George and Abigail Mitchell, who have three children of their own:  Neema, Josephine, and Phillip.  Mari Vasquez is hired by the Mitchells to help care for their children.  Since Mari is able to take Ricardo to work with her, he soon becomes a playmate to the Mitchell children.  He is especially favored by Neema, who gives him the nickname of Rick.  Since George and Abigail soon take a special interest in Rick, he quickly becomes part of the Mitchell family.

In high school, Rick becomes involved with a young woman, Rosalinda Santiago Munoz, whom he eventually marries.  After college, Rick supports himself as a computer programmer and soon becomes a father of three.  Life is good for Rick and his family.  But soon, things begin to change around them that does not bode well for American citizens.

The Department of Homeland Security is replaced by the Department of Personal and Private Security, an agency given sweeping powers over all other federal and law enforcement agencies.  New rules are put into place, of evidence, surveillance, and detention.  Federal Law now prevails over all state and local codes as well.  These changes will eventually cause major problems for companies such as those that Rick works for, especially when a new division of the Department of Personal and Private Security is formed, the National Security Service (NSS).

As the NSS begins spreading fear throughout the nation, Rick soon becomes aware that he has a special prophetic gift which soon leads him into sharing a new theology, a new message to those willing to listen.  As new doors of opportunity open for him to share this new theology, so does the threat against him, his family, and his friends.

THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH by Ronald R. Cooke is a well-written, fascinating, enjoyable book.  It has a good story and plot line, with a lot of twists and turns.  But it wasn’t until I got halfway through the story that I started to get angry.  It wasn’t anger based on the fact that this book contains a fictional account of what may lie in America’s future.  I already know all of that.  What made me angry are the falsehoods shared about God.

THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH shares heretical beliefs.  It shares that Jesus Christ is not God and that the Christian God and the Muslim God are one and the same.  Not true at all.  Also, this story repeatedly states that the Holy Trinity is God the Father, God the Mother, and God the Holy Spirit.  This is true heresy.

God, the Mighty I AM, may, in fact, have placed female attributes in women, but He is Himself, male.  Jesus Christ did not lay aside his glory to come to Earth in the flesh as a woman.  He came as He truly is.  A man.

Also, the Holy Trinity of God is, in actuality, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.  To deny Jesus Christ as the Son of God is outrageous.  And comparing Him to a false deity even more so.

It is true that the New World Order is attempting to create a new theology, a One World Religion.  These powers that be are trying to make is appear as if Jesus is not Who he claims to be.  The new theology is attempting to especially discredit Christianity and the Bible and for the simple reason that Jesus Christ really is God.

The new theology – referred to in THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH – as the Christian Renaissance, is not of God, despite what Cooke believes.  It is a deceitful effort to transform the world to a new way of thinking.  The powers that be want to make Islam the one true religion, with all others merged into it and beneath it.  They do not want Jesus in any part of it.  Anyone who does not accept these false teachings will be exterminated like vermin.  Granted, this book is fiction, but it appears to me to be an effort to pass off these twisted things as truth within this story.  Just another form of brainwashing.  Perhaps Cooke doesn’t know all of this, but I do.  I would never share a lie about God in a fiction book or otherwise.

THE ANGEL’S FOOTPATH shares many things about America’s future that may indeed happen.  Even though this book is fiction, the AntiChrist is the power behind some of the truths it contains and is behind the new theology that the New World Order is trying to ram down our throats.

Cooke shares that his father, grandfather, and great grandfather are/were all ministers.  Well, I am not sure what they believed as regards Christianity, but it cannot possibly be what is contained in THE ANGEL’S FOOTPATH as truth.  Yes, it shares about love, peace, and other fruits of the Spirit, of Christianity, but when Jesus Christ is not given the glory that is His due, then this can be nothing but heresy.

However, I do want you to know that THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH by Ronald R. Cooke is  an enjoyable book, if you just want to get a glimpse of what might happen in America very soon.  Since it is slowly being transformed into a Communist country, much of what is in this story can be a foretaste of what could happen to the America that most of us grew up in, know, and love.

THE ANGELS’ FOOTPATH by Ronald R. Cooke is also very well written, is fast-paced, and is a heartwarming story on many levels, and I truly cared about Rick, his family, friends, and supporters.  So, if you just want to read a fictional account, on many levels, then I would certainly recommend this book.  I would, however, just warn you that some of what this book contains is New Age and spirituality stuff that twists the truth about God Himself, Jesus Christ, and other aspects of religion.  It is all interwoven quite skillfully.  But, if you know your Bible, for those of you who are Jesus followers, you may quickly be made aware that something is definitely wrong with the theology discussed in it.  Had this book contained the Truth, I might have given it five stars.  As it is, I cannot.

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.

————————

HisDesiresm book cover

HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE by Bob Emery

Publisher:  Deep River Books

Date published:  September 1, 2011

ISBN:  978-1-935265-77-1

Inspirational; Motivation; Devotional

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/His-Desire-Is-Bob-Emery/dp/1935265776/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1396904186&sr=1-1

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5+

 

Without a doubt, HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE by Bob Emery is one of the most beautiful, inspiring books I have ever read regarding The Song of Solomon, found in the Holy Bible.  Prayerfully, skillfully written, this book is exceptional in its scope and presentation.  I absolutely loved it and fully intend to read it again and again as I feel led.  It is that good.

HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE is a blend of fiction, commentary, and is also a 30-day devotional.  Truly, the God of all Heaven and Earth gave Emery true understanding of this timeless story and the symbolic mysteries is contains.

HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE, although partly fiction, is a story sharing not just Solomon’s love for a woman, but the love our Creator has for us.  It is heartwarming and brings to our understanding a love so powerful that few of us, with our finite minds, can ever truly comprehend.

HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE is a tale that holds the answers to many of the questions we sometimes ask.  This book shares the depths of the Creator’s heart towards us and allows us to see from a perspective we need to experience in order to understand.  It helps to satisfy our deepest yearnings for God as Emery shares how our Heavenly King woos us to Himself, wins us over, and ultimately draws us completely to Himself.

HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE is a wonderful love story, one that anyone, especially God’s people, will appreciate.  I cannot say enough about how much one will fall in love with God all over again, just by finally coming to understand His great love for us and of how much He desires us for His own.

If I could give HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE more than a five star rating, I would.  This gem of a book has been on the market for far too long and needs to be read by anyone interested in the secret treasures hidden in the depths of The Song of Solomon.  I devoured this book.  Its contents are priceless.

As we move deeper into these last days, I firmly believe that the time to read HIS DESIRE IS FOR ME:  THE STORY OF SOLOMON AND THE SHULAMMITE is now.  To understand how much God truly loves us may be the deciding factor in whether we choose to follow Him in the end…or the AntiChrist.

Well done, Mr. Emery.

 

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

 ——————

 

 

 

 

the story lives book cover 3

THE STORY LIVES:  LEADING A MISSIONAL REVOLUTION by Henriët Schapelhouman

Publisher:  Tendril Press

Date published:   September 12, 2012

ISBN:  978-0-9858933-0-9

Religion/Christian Life/Personal Growth

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Story-Lives-Missional-Revolution/dp/0985893303

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

THE STORY LIVES:  LEADING A MISSIONAL REVOLUTION by Henriët Schapelhouman is a call to the churches to expand their ministries into the communities.

Many ministers and pastors are taught to help draw people into the churches.  In these last days, it is becoming more imperative for preachers to go out into the communities, to meet people right where they are at, as Jesus did during his ministry, since attendance in the churches today is decreasing instead of increasing.  So, in order to share the love of Jesus Christ with our neighbors, it is necessary for change to occur.  One cannot hold on to what was taught us in the past.  We must move forward in order to further God’s Kingdom.  We must learn to minister to people as Jesus did.  He didn’t sit around waiting for people to come to Him.  He went out to the people.  One example of this is when he sat at the well, waiting for the woman from Samaria.  It was at the well where he shared the Living Water.  He didn’t stay home and wait for her to come by.

Schapelhouman shares various ways to “missionalize” our ministries and service to others.  She shares that people need to understand their own wiring so they will know how they can contribute to their communities, by using their special God-given talents and gifts to help further the Kingdom of God.

Schapelhouman’s THE STORY LIVES:  LEADING A MISSIONAL REVOLUTION is a well-written, fast read for anyone interested in learning how to revitalize their churches, their ministries.  We must learn to give of ourselves to others, through volunteer work or other avenues, that will help us guide others to Jesus.  If we know our unique gifts, then we can find where we fit in best, in order to help and minister to others, not just through the churches.

THE STORY LIVES:  LEADING A MISSIONAL REVOLUTION is a book worthy of anyone interested in contributing to their churches and their communities, in order to meet people’s needs, as God intends for us to do, whether it be just through prayer or something else.  Nothing we ever do for God is ever wasted, so responding “missionally” to others, in whatever capacity we are able, with actions that demonstrate God’s love, is how the churches now need to help people and tell their stories.  Beyond the box.

 

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

———————–

PTS_200_hi

PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH (Home Edition) 

www.livingthequestions.com

Date:  (c)  2013

ISBN:  978-0-9845683-4-5

Science/Spirituality/Evolution

DVD

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.livingthequestions.com/xcart/home.php?cat=485

Rating:  4

 

 

“When I have a terrible need of – dare I say, religion – then I go outside and paint the stars.”  Vincent Van Gogh

 

 

PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH is a single DVD, comprised of seven sessions that run about 20 minutes each, and is licensed for home viewing.

These sessions feature over a dozen leading theologians and progressive thinkers, which include:  Philip Clayton, Michael Dowd, Rachel Held Evans, Matthew Fox, Catherine Keller, Megan McKenna, Michael Morwood, Jan Phillips, Barbara Rossing, Bruce Sanguin, Bernard Brandon Scott, John Shelby Spong, and Gretta Vosper.

PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH celebrates the communion of science and faith and explores the promise of evolutionary Christian spirituality.  This DVD is well-made, thought provoking, and visually appealing.  It gives insight into how many believe the world should be in the future, as compared to what it once was and how it came to be as it is today.

Each session of PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH makes the viewer think about the world as we see it and how it connects to our own faith.  It also makes continuous references to the word ‘evolution’ and how Christianity should ‘evolve’ with the times or face extinction.

The first session, “Toward Healing The Rift”, shares how all species are interconnected and that the universe is still expanding.  But because of over consumption of our resources, we are on the verge of catastrophic extinction.

The second session, “A Renaissance of Wonder”, shares that we are the universe becoming conscious of itself.  It shares that we, as human beings, are not separate from the universe or from nature.

The third session, “Getting Genesis Wrong”, blames Christians, especially American Christians, for the destruction of the world.  It is said that Christians, who have been called to care for our planet, have ignored this directive and have, therefore, become the most destructive people on Earth.  Christians are termed “anti-environment”.

A man named Thomas Berry, a supposed master of many religions, states herein that  humans are created in the image of God, yet Christians have misinterpreted the word ‘dominion’ to mean ‘domination’.  He says that gave Christians the right to do whatever they want to God’s creation, and they don’t have to worry about the repercussions.

The fourth session, “An Evolving Faith”, shares that the Church nowadays is monolithic, that it needs to evolve or it will not survive, particularly in the 21st century.  It is said that Christians need to step outside of the spiritual practice of following Jesus and into a new form of Church.  Christians are called to learn from other religions, such as Judaism, Buddhism, etc.

The fifth session, “Evolutionary Christianity”, shares that the Church must learn to evolve, change, and adapt, or it will die off.  We have inherited doctrines from our past that are no longer interesting, and the term “Christian” is now considered an albatross.  Also, it is shared that we should take Jesus and Paul with us, only as conversation partners but not as authorities.  It is shared that even they don’t know where to go in the future.

The sixth session, “Imagining a Future”, shares how Jesus Christ has evolved over the centuries, from a youth to an emperor.  Christianity should, over the next hundred years, simplify itself since it has been carrying around a lot of baggage from the past.  In future, Christianity is seen as a blending of the best elements of Christianity, with mysticism, Buddhism, Judaism, etc.  A coming together as a spiritually evolutionary global village.  A global tribe.

The seventh session, “An Evolving Spirituality:  Mysticism”, shares, basically, that human beings don’t know much about anything, once viewing the universe through a huge telescope.  Because it has been discovered that nearly 98 percent of the universe is invisible.  The same applies to God.  What do we really know about Him? is the age-old question.

PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH is an interesting DVD that many may enjoy learning from.  It refers more to Christianity than anything, of how the Church must evolve or cease to exist.

I do agree with some aspects of PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH.  Some of the best aspects of Christianity do indeed deal with loving our neighbor and not judging because of their different cultures of beliefs.  Christians are taught kindness and consideration of others as well.  Tolerance is something else altogether.  True believers are bold to speak God’s Truth and are on fire for the Lord.  Lukewarm believers will remain quiet, being too afraid to speak the Truth.  They will tolerate those who follow false beliefs and concepts.  Not true Christians.  It is also evident that those supposedly ‘progressive Christians’ featured on PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH are not Spirit-filled believers.  No true Christian would agree with much of what is shared on this DVD.

And yes, there are problems with today’s churches.  Many hold fast to man-made doctrines, not God’s laws, ways, precepts, and statutes.

I do not agree that Christians are the ones guilty of destroying our planet.  All of mankind is guilty of this.  The fact that Christians are being blamed for the destruction of Earth is a complete lie from Satan that apparently PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH is trying to ram down everyone’s throats.  To me, this DVD, although a well-made, interesting bit of wisdom, reveals to me, as a true believer in Jesus Christ, that this was put out there by the New World Order that is intent on carrying out its evil agenda, to create a One World religion, by integrating all the religions of the world.

PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH, in my opinion, is blasphemous when it refers to humans as having lizard brains.  True Christians have the mind of Christ, not brains linked to these Luciferian-related creatures.

When referring to evolutionary spirituality, it is clear that humans are to lay aside their individuality and become one with the masses, regardless of their beliefs.  That is the whole point of Communism, and it is known that the New World Order also wants a One Communist World.  So, no, I do not agree that human beings should give up their individuality.

As I mentioned, for anyone interested in the concepts of evolution, spirituality, and religion, PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH is something many people may enjoy watching and learning from.

As for this Spirit-filled believer who has experienced the power of God in many ways, on many levels, I do not endorse PAINTING THE STARS:  SCIENCE, RELIGION AND AN EVOLVING FAITH in any way, shape, or form.  I believe it is a brainwashing effort by the New World Order to make people blame Christianity and Christians for what the enemy has done and continues to do to our world and our lives.

 

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this DVD free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

 

_____________

book-cover-for-upload_Revolutionary_Freedom

REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM by Joey LeTourneau

Publisher:  Destiny Image

Date published:  August 16, 2011

ISBN:  13:  978-0-7684-3891-8

Prophetic/Charismatic Interest

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Revolutionary-Freedom-Anointed-Captives-Declaration/dp/0768438918

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

Joey LeTourneau works with Heavenly Hope Ministries and lives with his wife and four children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  He grew up in full-time ministry and continues in the M. A. R. K. 10:14 movement which is focused on gathering the poor, broken, and empty children of Ethiopia and beyond into the arms of God.

LeTourneau shares that many people are being held captive, particularly believers, and are being held back from fulfilling their purposes and calling from God.  He shares that, when we judge others, we are wrapping them in chains, preventing them from moving forward.

REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM by Joey LeTourneau is a prophetic journey of this unseen captivity that believers everywhere should be made more aware of and learn to start overcoming.

REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM shares vivid, true bondages that prevent believers from living in complete freedom.  Believers will be shocked to learn that they themselves are imprisoning not just others, but themselves, through judgment.  Satan is using his evil tactics and deceptions to hold back all of God’s children from fulfilling their ordained destinies.

In these last days, when evil is on the rise, I guarantee that this is one of the most powerful, profound books you will ever read.  All Christians, all true believers should read REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM and begin to act on its truths.

God wants us to release the captives by blessing them, by not letting one of them go unloved.  Judgment only brings death.  Blessing them brings life to them, because when looking at others through God’s eyes, we gain new perspective and learn to believe in these people, that God made them for a purpose, that He has a calling for each one of them.  That they are indeed special to God and that He cares for them.

Within REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM, believers will learn how to see themselves and others from God’s perspective, through His eyes.  They will learn how to avoid the lies and traps of the enemy and how to live outside of the bondages that hold them captive.  Believers will learn to free themselves and move forward with God, breaking the cycles that have held themselves and others captive for so long.  Most importantly, believers will learn how to live and walk as Jesus did, setting the captives free once and for all.  They can leave behind the chains of judgment, the bars of unbelief, and the walls of their pasts to join with Jesus Christ, to hear God’s voice, and enjoy a new closeness with Him than they have ever experienced before.

Well-written, thoughtful, informative, REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM shares much to interest the reader, to challenge him to search his own conscience.  LeTourneau shares much of himself and his experiences in Ethiopia in REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM.  He will teach the reader how to free not only himself, but others he may have judged, that chained them as well.

I cannot say enough about REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM by Joey LeTourneau.  If ever the time has come to set the captives free, now is definitely the time.  Putting into practice all this treasure house contains is well worth the investments of time and money.

REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM is a truly life-changing book, filled with wisdom and insight into the prophetic and into the true heart of God.

Never has there been a more important time in history than now for The Bride to begin preparing and cleansing itself, to remove its spots, for the second coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

“…This is the way, walk ye in it…”  Isaiah 30:21

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

—————————-

RNS-SOIL-SACRAMENT

SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A Spiritual Memoir of Food and Faith by Fred Bahnson

Publisher:  Simon and Schuster

Date published:  August 6, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-4516-6330-3

Spirituality

Hardcover

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Soil-Sacrament-Spiritual-Memoir-Faith/dp/1451663307

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started reading SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A SPIRITUAL MEMOIR OF FOOD AND FAITH by Fred Bahnson.  The book started slow, so I thought it might be a boring book overall.  But I was dead wrong.

SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A  SPIRITUAL MEMOIR OF FOOD AND FAITH is a beautiful book of faith, of how one man pursued the calling God placed on his life, to feed the hungry.

I felt an overall peace while reading this book.  Truly, there is an anointing here that few may not even recognize.

Bahnson takes the reader on a wonderful journey, beginning first in Chiapas, Mexico as he first tries to seek peace in his life, following his graduation from divinity school.  Later, he spends time with monks at Mepkin Abbey in South Carolina, then moves to a special garden,The Lord’s Acre, in North Carolina.  From there, he ventures to a place called Africa, then to a ministry called Tierra Nueva, in Washington’s lush Skagit Valley.  Finally, Banhson finds his way to the Anathoth garden, a ministry of Cedar Grove UMC, where he helps build a community garden.  Bahnson says that “Anathoth was not just a hunger relief ministry but a whole new way to be a church.” (p. 7)

Bahnson has experienced a life that many can only dream of pursuing.  He believes that faith is expressed in working with our hands, our minds and hearts, in caring for the needs of a hungry world, and that this is tantamount to his calling, to feed people.

Bahnson took all the time needed, leaving his wife and sons behind and traveling to various places, to learn all he could about soil and growing things, whether it was about vegetables, fruits, or fungi (mushrooms).  He says “there is an entire ecosystem in a handful of soil:  bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes, earthworms.”  He says that “soil is a living organism, a collection of living things that must be fed.”  Bahnson believes “soil is indeed a portal to another world.”  (p. 3)  He states that “Our ecological problems are a result of having forgotten who we are – soil people, inspired by the breath of God.” (p. 8)

The reader will be brought through Bahnson’s learning process.  Not only to learn about the soil and how to grow things, but about the importance of people and relationships.  Overall, it is his quest on how to serve God and love His creation, His people, as believers are commanded to do, regardless of their faults and idiosyncrasies.

SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A  SPIRITUAL MEMOIR OF FOOD AND FAITH is an extremely well-written book that I quickly fell in love with.  By the end, I found myself wanting to read more, to learn more, and to put into practice what Bahnson is already doing.  Every community should have a garden of its own, and this book can surely lead the way, especially in these last days when so many are going hungry.

Bahnson says we should give people more than we take, tending not just the soil, but the soil people. (p. 193)  I wholeheartedly agree.

There are some humorous aspects to SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A  SPIRITUAL MEMOIR OF FOOD AND FAITH, which helps keep things down to earth, so to speak.  And the wonderful friends Bahnson has made along the way to preparing his community  garden at Anathoth makes one almost envious of the journey he has taken.

Overall, SOIL AND SACRAMENT:  A  SPIRITUAL MEMOIR OF FOOD AND FAITH is almost like a form of pray itself.  It offers much to the reader, including a fruitful glimpse into Jewish traditions.  I absolutely loved it and recommend it to anyone interested.

 

(Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.)

——————–

cominginterspiritualagelrg

THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE by Kurt Johnson & David Robert Ord

Publisher:  Namaste Publishing

Date published:  January 8, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-897238-74-5

Spirituality/Religious Pluralism

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/The-Coming-Interspiritual-Kurt-Johnson/dp/1897238746

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE by Kurt Johnson and David Robert Ord is a unique, thought-provoking, intelligent book written from an exceptional level of understanding and research.  It draws the reader into many avenues of spiritualism and religion, among other things.

Johnson and Ord take the reader on a fascinating, informative journey through the history of consciousness, spirituality, and various social structures, science, and religions that delve into the roles they now play in the ongoing movement toward globalization and multiculturalism.  Through what they perceive will be an interspiritual age.

In 1999, a Roman Catholic lay monk and pioneer interfaith leader, Brother Wayne Teasdale, coined the term ‘interspirituality” which was nonexistent until then.  Teasdale, in his book, The Mystic Heart:  Discovering a Universal Spirituality in the World’s Religions”, predicted that this would become “the global spiritual view for our era.”  He claimed that “Mystical spirituality is the origin of all the world religions and that interspirituality – the sharing of ultimate experiences across traditions – is the religion of the third millenium.” (THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE, p. 7)

I am not so sure this will be the way of things, considering what the Holy Bible has to say about our future.  With so much mention of various views and beliefs, coming from especially eastern concepts, THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE does make it seem as if a combination of New Age beliefs and other religions weaved together are our world’s future.  With violent forms of Islam headed our way, I do not see how an interspiritual age will develop through all of this.  The aim is indeed for a One World Religion, but it may well be the political system of Islam that overcomes all other religions and beliefs in the world.  With one caliph at the forefront, a one world dictator, possibly AntiChrist, who will demand the world bow down to and worship him.  This would throw all other beliefs right out the window.

Overall, THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE is a fascinating account, well-researched and written, sharing intriguing aspects of consciousness and religious pluralisms that few know much about, and of how they interact and thread together in the world today, as well as how they came to be since the beginning of time.  I find it fascinating and informative, and I learned many things I never knew before.  According to Johnson and Ord, love is the key that binds us all together.

I would recommend this book to anyone interested.  But I warn you that you will be venturing into avenues of thought, religion, science, and consciousness you may never have encountered before and which may very well go against what you already believe, especially if you are a Jesus follower.  If you read THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE, then I warn believers to read with an open mind and a prayerful attitude.  I did find things in this book regarding Christianity that I do not agree with or believe were factual, based on my study of Scripture.  The concept of merging Jesus’ teachings with all other world traditions and beliefs would be adding truth with fiction or all out lies, in my opinion.  Evolution itself is still a very controversial subject but is included herein as the foundation for all other beliefs or religions, something I am not convinced of.  I actually find the term “monkey brain” as used in this book to be highly offensive because, as a Jesus follower, I have the mind of Christ, not of a monkey.

Personally, I find THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE profound in its scope of reasoning, deeply intellectual, and stimulating to your thought processes.  I guarantee that the reader will discover much about our supposed evolutionary journey, through time and experience, amid the throes of urgency facing our destiny as a planet in dire need of global unity and peace. Johnson and Ord have established themselves as experts in the field of spiritualism and “interspirituality” they are well-deserving of.  It is just that, as a Christian, I have a problem with some of what they are teaching here.

THE COMING INTERSPIRITUAL AGE is a book of great value and importance that may interest many people, from all walks of life, if they’ve a mind to read it.  But again, I caution those who believe the truth of the Holy Bible to read this with an open mind and heart.  It is well worth a read, however, if you are at all interested in the topic of consciousness, religion, evolution, science, and spirituality.  Overall though, I do not agree that this “Interspiritual  Age” will come to pass, and I suggest that believers in Jesus Christ be cautious about reading this book, as well as anything involving New Age concepts or eastern religions.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.

 

————————

 

The Evangelicals You Don't Know coverTHE EVANGELICALS YOU DON’T KNOW:  INTRODUCING THE NEXT GENERATION OF CHRISTIANS  by Tom Krattenmaker

Publisher:  Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

Date published:  April 25, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-4422-1544-3

Religion/Evangelicalism/U. S. Church History/21st Century

Hardcover

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/The-Evangelicals-You-Dont-Know/dp/1442215445

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

 

Too many today are judging true believers – Jesus followers – on the actions, behaviors, and beliefs of other Christians.  Too often I have heard evangelicals called fanatics or hypocrites because of the way they act.  Albeit it may be due to ignorance, based on what they have learned while growing up in the church; othertimes, it may have more to do with a preconceived notion of what others believe about them.  Whatever the truth in the matter, someone has finally tackled the problem and writes an excellent, thought-provoking book on the issue of evangelicals and how ideas and beliefs are changing as our society and our world is changing.

THE EVANGELICALS YOU DON’T KNOW:  INTRODUCING THE NEXT GENERATION OF CHRISTIANS by Tom Krattenmaker, a frequent USA Today contributor (Onward Christian Athletes), is a well-written, thoughtful, and informative book that shares issues from the past and present, as well as regards future generations of Christians.  Evangelicals, if you will.

Tom Krattenmaker is referred to as “one of the liberals we evangelicals need to know.”   As one of America’s leading journalists on religion, Krattenmaker delves deeply into mistakes evangelicals have made in the past, regarding many different issues, from abortion to homosexuality, sharing how mind-sets are changing.  Skillfully sharing the myriads of research and interviews he experienced, Tom does a wonderful job in opening the eyes of the reader to a better understanding of what many are now doing to bring people back to the true love of the Savior, to the world around us.

Krattenmaker is fair in his assessment of the divisions and political intricacies affecting the church both past and present and how the younger generation of evangelicals are moving away from traditional beliefs toward a more open-minded point of view, particularly with regard to the various evangelicals and religious sects present in America today.  With politics ever evolving with regard to issues such as abortion and same sex marriages, the new generation of evangelicals is now willing to address these issues in a more positive light, as Jesus would do.  Krattenmaker makes it clear that we need to move beyond partisan politics and the religious fervor that currently divide American society. The new generation of Christians, realizing that what used to work to draw people to God was either wrong or pointless, and they are considering alternatives that are fundamentally rooted in the overall truths of Scripture.

Krattenmaker’s book is an eye-opener on many issues for he not only demonstrates the need for change among evangelicals to help further the Kingdom of God, but he hits the nail on the head when helping the reader recognize the problems American Christianity is struggling to overcome as we move forward in these last days.

THE EVANGELICALS YOU DON’T KNOW:  INTRODUCING THE NEXT GENERATION OF CHRISTIANS by Tom Krattenmaker is a must-read for anyone interested or concerned in helping bring about humane changes in our society.  Full of wisdom, interesting facets of evangelical Christianity and other tidbits, this excellent book is written with a journalistic flare few possess.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book from from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.

 

———————

9780310318873

COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS:  Making the Most of Spiritual Small Talk by Dale Fincher and Jonalyn Fincher

Publisher:  Zondervan

Date published:  April 27, 2010

ISBN:  978-0-310-31887-3

Religion/Christian Ministry/Evangelism

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Coffee-Shop-Conversations-Spiritual-ebook/dp/B003MVZP04

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

 

Often times, believers have difficulty sharing their faith in Jesus Christ because they aren’t quite sure how to bring up the topic, usually for fear of offending someone.  When conversations turn to religion, sometimes one of those involved throws out a question, a comment, or a detail that will try and trap the believer into showing ignorance of the Holy Bible or saying something to avoid the topic altogether.  Many times, the believer may be left floundering for the right words to bring the discussion back on track, feeling helpless, ignorant, or foolish overall.

In COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS, authors Dale and Jonalyn Fincher expertly share how they have managed to ward off or deflect blows from the enemy, through personal experience, without losing their friends in the process.  They share tips and techniques that can help other believers share their faith, their relationship with Jesus Christ, without rocking the boat, upsetting anyone, or destroying relationships.

Dale and Jonalyn Fincher, are a husband-wife team who speak nationally through Soulation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping others “be appropriately human”.  Although I am not sure just how much we, as believers, should tolerate other religions, COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS is still a gentle tool that will help people be respectful of others and their beliefs, invite others to share, cultivate what they consider an appropriate attitude of tolerance, and avoid ‘buzzwords’ that will stop a conversation cold.  Above all, Finchers share ways of talking about Jesus Christ as a unique spiritual leader.

Learning what Finchers have to say of how to genuinely engage people in meaningful spiritual conversations, as Jesus did, is an excellent and rewarding way to educate ourselves on how to do this, since many believers have all had these sorts of conversations at one time or another.

Finchers share much of their experience and learning over the years, which may be greatly beneficial to all believers, or to just anyone interested in how to be “appropriately human”.  However, my own experiences with witnessing have more to do with people watching what I do, how I behave, or with me just sharing what I know about God and of what He has done in my life.  I praise God publicly, talk about Him in my everyday life, knowing that another person’s curiosity may open a door for me to share Jesus with him or her.  Boldness is sometimes the key to sharing about Him, not necessarily tolerance or gentleness, in my opinion.  Jesus meets people right where they are at, and His Spirit guides and leads us in meeting them as well.  He guides us in our conversations, too.  I don’t necessarily worry about a person’s religion or beliefs.  I am just myself, sharing the light of Jesus to those around me.

COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS, however, is a gracious book relevant for today’s world, especially with the mixed pot of various religions and cultures out there, and I highly recommend it.  Regardless of how believers share their faith and love for Jesus Christ, there are many avenues we can use.  Finchers’ experiences work well for them, I’m assuming, which is why I recommend this book.  Any information we can learn, to adapt to our own walk with God, is always of benefit.

COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS shares ways to read the Bible, too, if one is struggling with that and needs some direction.

For any believer who seeks to learn how to witness with more effectiveness and understanding, then COFFEE SHOP CONVERSATIONS is well worth a read.  I found it enjoyable, interesting, and full of refreshing insights and wisdom.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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 Commissions’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

—————————–9780781405904_3D

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH by Frank Viola

Publisher:  David C. Cook

Date published:  May 1, 2013

ISBN:  978-0-7814-0590-4

Inspirational/Christian/Fiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Favorite-Place-Earth-Frank-Viola/dp/0781405904

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

 

While on Earth, Jesus Christ was rejected by those He came to save.  A man with no place to lay even His head until…Bethany.  The one place he felt welcomed, accepted, and loved.

While in Bethany, Jesus and his talmidim came to love the family of Simon the Leper, which included Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, whose lives He touched in a unique, memorable, and awe-inspiring way.

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH by Frank Viola is told by Lazarus, after he is raised from the dead.  It is the story all believers have speculated about for centuries.  What was it like, many have often wondered, to know a man who was dead for four days and was then miraculously resurrected back to life by the most rejected man on Earth?

Viola shares in GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH the incredible, heartwarming story of this great miracle.  A miracle that still lives on in the Word of God, that proves Jesus Christ is indeed the Resurrection and the Life, as He professes to be.

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH gives insight into what may have happened after this great miracle took place.  The problems and unexpected fame Lazarus faced.

Deeply moving and well written, GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH is an extraordinary book that will touch your heartstrings and brings this story to life in such a way as to make one marvel at not just the writer’s unique skills, but at God Himself.

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH also brings understanding to the reader of challenges that many believers often face, including doubt, discouragement, fear, guilt, rejection, materialism, and spiritual apathy.  Viola skillfully weaves a wondrous tale that will captivate one’s heart and will help the reader discover how to live as a ‘Bethany’ even in today’s world.

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH is magnificently told and hard to put down.  I read it in one day, I was so intrigued by the story and touching message it contains.

GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH is full of depth, charm, incredible wisdom, beauty, and great spiritual insight.  I am certain that anyone reading GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH will be drawn more closely to Jesus Christ and embrace Him as never before.

Clearly God’s anointing was on Viola as he wrote GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH.  It is one of the most exquisite, memorable books I have read in a long time.  By the time I was done reading it, I felt more love for my Savior than ever before.  It is with new eyes I look at Him and marvel at His works.

I recommend GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH for anyone interested, not just believers.  GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE ON EARTH is an experience that few will want to miss.  It is a crowning achievement for Viola that I know many will enjoy.

 

God’sFavoritePlace.com

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.

——————————-

Help Me Be - Praying in Poems

HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS by Dale C. Fredrickson

Publisher:  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Date published:  January 19, 2013

ISBN:  978-1481870450

Christian Poetry/Prose

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Help-Me-Be-Praying-Poems/dp/1481870459

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

Dale C. Fredrickson, a teaching pastor at St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, offers us a fresh, heartwarming testimony to his love for God in this wonderfully beautiful book of poetry, HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS.  As King David did with his psalms, Dale shares his praise, his struggles, and deep, heart-felt longing for answers from the God he serves with such conviction.

As I do with all poetry, I read HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS by Dale C. Fredrickson out loud.  Fredrickson’s are prayers of honesty and truth as he looks to God for answers or seeks to know Him more intimately, or just tries to understand why people have to suffer as they do.  Since truth comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God, it seems that reading these poems aloud is the best way to enjoy them.  This helps strengthen our faith as we seek God more in our daily walk with Him, in our daily struggles.  Such truth can manifest best if spoken aloud so it will seep into our hearts and spirits.  So I urge the reader to read HELP ME BE out loud.  To me, it seems like the only way to fully grasp the meaningful, remarkable content of each of Dale’s poems, which are written from his unique perspective, artistry with the written word, and his talent for communication.

Fredrickson has a way with words that will delight the reader and impress upon him how small his own faith in God may be.  And yet these poems will be an inspiration that will help the reader perhaps venture along the same path of self-discovery in his relationship with God, through HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS.  It will help the reader grow more in his own intimacy with God.

Fredrickson is a unique talent, expressing himself through his poems, in prayer-like form.  It is amazing the wonder he invoked in me as I read his words of praise to God, his love and devotion, his child-like faith at times as he speaks to God in HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS.

This is indeed a book of poetry I will again take the time to read, to refresh and inspire me to continue seeking God myself more ardently, more sincerely, and more lovingly than before.  Fredrickson is a true inspiration, a talented Christian writer who deserves sincere recognition and encouragement to continue on the road to which God is leading him through his prayers of poetry.

HELP ME BE:  PRAYING IN POEMS by Dale C. Fredrickson is indeed a book to be cherished as the treasure that it is.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the SpeakEasy blogging book review network.  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.

* * * * * * *

Shortly, I will be receiving a review copy of God’s Favorite Place on Earth by Frank Viola. The book released May 1st and stayed in the top # 50 on Amazon.com for 8 straight days. There’s a lot of buzz about this book on the Web, and I plan to write a review after I read it.
Here are a few interesting nuggets about the book:
  • It’s been recommended by 47 Christian authors, including John Ortberg, Jack Hayford, Leonard Sweet, Tricia Goyer, Mary DeMuth, Greg Boyd, Todd Hunter, Jon Acuff, Phil Cooke, and many others.
  • Here’s a book trailer introducing it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RG_9TeE-BO8
  • The book tells the story of Jesus in the little village of Bethany and the amazing things that happened there through the eyes of Lazarus. It combines biblical narrative, dramatization, theological insights, and nonfiction devotional teaching. It argues that “Bethany” was God’s favorite place on earth and explains how every Christian and every heart, home, village and church can be “Bethanys” today for God.
  • The book addresses 18 specific struggles that Christians face today and offers hope, challenge, and fresh insight.
You can check all of this out at http://GodsFavoritePlace.com and get the book on discount.

VIEW THE TRAILER FOR GOD’S FAVORITE PLACE:

 

What Others Are Saying:

“Out of the rubble of the crumbling religion of Christendom is arising a new tribe of kingdom revolutionaries who are captivated by a vision of a God and a kingdom that is anchored in the humble, enemy-loving, self-sacrificial love manifested on the cross. And one of the boldest, most insightful and certainly most creative leaders of this rising movement is Frank Viola. Combining masterful storytelling, historical knowledge, biblical insight and practical wisdom, Frank artfully uses the Gospels’ depiction of Lazarus and the small town of Bethany to lay out a beautiful and compelling vision of a God who longs to make every human heart and every church ‘His favorite place.’ In the process, Frank prophetically exposes the subtle but all-important difference between hearts that embrace Jesus and hearts that merely appear to do so. It is the difference between the unimpressive town of Bethany, where Jesus was welcomed and worshiped, and the much more impressive Jerusalem, which crucified Him. This is a beautifully written, timely, prophetic work all would benefit from reading!”
– Greg Boyd, pastor and author of Benefit of the DoubtPresent Perfect, and The Myth of a Christian Nation

“When he wasn’t teaching, healing, and sowing the seeds of God’s New Creation ecology, where on earth did Jesus go to just be himself? He went to Bethany, an unassuming village containing remarkable relationships – a space where Jesus could simply be. With the pen of a seasoned storyteller, Frank Viola brings Lazarus back to life again to tell us the story of God’s Favorite Place on Earth – a ‘Bethany’ that’s not only a historical place in time, but a hospitable haven for the living Christ that can be born in every heart, home, church, and village today. This is a must-read that nourishes heart and mind – you’ll want to get extras to give to friends!”
– Mike Morrell, journalist and blogger, mikemorrell.org

“A lot of people write books, Frank writes stories and in this one we once again see why he’s such a master. Honored to call him a friend, excited to call him an author I love to read.”
– Jon Acuff, Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Start,Quitter, and Stuff Christians Like

“God’s Favorite Place on Earth realigned my heart toward Jesus and His mysterious, confounding, surprising, beautiful ways. It’s not often I learn something new when reading a book, but Frank Viola’s sharp storytelling and insightful interpretation made me hunger for more of the real Jesus. Pick up this book if you need a reversal in your Christian life; it will not disappoint.”
– Mary DeMuth, author of Everything: What You Give and What You Gain To Become Like Jesus

“As masterly as a Cezanne canvas or a Stravinsky score, Frank Viola surpasses himself in his best book yet—a work of serene, soaring magnificence. Part novel, part biography, part theology, part Bible study, Frank’s imaginative touch and command of prose haiku leaves the reader resolved more than ever to be a Bethany—God’s favorite place on earth.”
– Leonard Sweet, Drew University, George Fox University; author,NudgeOut of the Question…and Into the Mystery

“More than a devotional, better than an academic study, God’s Favorite Place on Earth is a deeply moving pastoral book that will build your faith. Turn its pages slowly, pause between chapters and allow yourself to be immersed into the world of the New Testament. Prepare yourself for an encounter with Jesus the Galilean yet the very Son of God.”
– David Fitch, B R Lindner Chair of Evangelical Theology, Northern Seminary, author of Prodigal Christianity

“Frank Viola has a rare gift for helping us all to understand the intimate union we share with the Father through Jesus Christ. God’s Favorite Place on Earth will stir your emotions and empower you to open yourself to be a ‘Bethany’ where Jesus feels right at home. This is one of those books you’ll read twice and then share with a friend.”
– Steve McVey, author of Grace Walk

Link-Love for Your Review: 

Frank’s Blog
God’s Favorite Place on Amazon: http://amzn.to/12pdxzd

Please tag your posts for this book as #SpeakeasyGodsFavoritePlaceAbout Frank:
Frank Viola is the author of numerous books designed to encourage, inspire, and bless people with a fresh look at Jesus Christ. He’s the author of From Eternity to Here and Reimagining Church. His blog,FrankViola.org, is rated as one of the most popular in Christian circles today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

——————————-

 

 

 

JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE by Daisy Rain Martin

Publisher:  Christopher Matthews Publishing

Date published:  June 1, 2012

ISBN:  978-0-9852431-2-8

Nonfiction – Christian/Inspirational Autobiography

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Juxtaposed-Sanctuary-Daisy-Rain-Martin/dp/0985243120

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

 

Daisy Rain Martin was raised in a show business family, in the bright lights of Las Vegas.  But her childhood was far from glitzy.  Instead, she had to navigate through a life of sexual and mental abuse in an ultra-conservative, religious home.

Daisy struggled to overcome her adversity, sharing confessions in JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE that may shock or appall you.  Yet her struggle to find peace and health and love in a broken world, while trying to get in touch with her spiritual side and embark on a path with God, is what may appeal to readers who have sought to free themselves from their own dysfunctional pasts, who have had similar issues while growing up.

Daisy shares her strength in overcoming obstacles that took her on a pilgrimage that ultimately changed her life, through hope and having God meet her right where she was at, as she sought to find her faith in Him outside of structured religion.

JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE by Daisy Rain Martin is an incredible journey into the life of an extraordinary woman.  A woman who fought against all odds to free herself from a disturbing past.  This book is so well-written and fascinating that it will quickly draw you in to Daisy’s world and keep you turning pages until the very end.  Even then, you won’t want it to end.

I absolutely loved this book.  Not just because of what it contained, but because of the woman behind it.  Daisy Rain Martin is a talented writer, a gifted teacher, who led an extremely interesting, painful life that brought her full circle into a relationship with a wonderful God who kept His hand on her and guided her through the mire.

Daisy’s talent is unquestionable.  As you read this memoir, there is no way you can willingly put this book down until you’ve finished it.  Daisy’s personality shines through every page of JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE, and you will find yourself laughing out loud in so many parts of this story or wanting to step in and help her yourself during the rough parts of her life.  After reading JUXTAPOSED, I found myself wanting to meet Daisy in person and experience her outstanding personality for myself.

Daisy writes with a freshness and open style that will delight, intrigue, and inspire you.  She shares her pain and secret shame, her regrets and joys, her happy places, and her amazing sense of humor that will keep you riveted to JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE.  What she shares is indeed raw and poignant, but it will inspire many to put their pasts behind them and move forward.  Daisy reveals how she broke free and never looked back.  She makes it clear that happiness is indeed a choice.

Finding God’s love in all the heartache is what makes this such a wonderful read.  It is Daisy’s juxtaposition from a show business life as she flounders through her family’s dysfunction to the life of a single parent and later to a happy, fulfilled wife, writer, and motivational speaker which gives JUXTAPOSED:  FINDING SANCTUARY ON THE OUTSIDE the spark that will keep you reading.

I give it five stars.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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.

——————-

PASTORS’ WIVES BY Lisa Takeuchi Cullen

Publisher:  Plume, a member of Penguin Group

Date published:  April 30, 2013

ISBN:  978-0-452-29882-8

Inspirational Fiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Pastors-Wives-Lisa-Takeuchi-Cullen/dp/0452298822

Obtained via Litfuse Publicity Group

Rating:  5

 

PASTORS’ WIVES by Lisa Takeuchi Cullen is an exceptional first novel that delves deeply into the private lives of three complex, fictional pastors’ wives who are involved with a mega-church, Greenleaf, in Magnolia, a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia.

Aaron and Candace Green, of Greenleaf Church, popular authors and leaders of this popular church, in need of a financial wizard, soon hire Jeremiah Matters, a financier straight from Wall Street, who holds masters degrees in both business and theology.  He and his wife, Ruthie, quickly relocate to Georgia, where Jerry soon becomes Aaron Green’s right-hand man and where Ruthie suddenly finds herself thrust into the role of publicist.  Ruthie, a non-practicing Catholic, isn’t exactly sure where she will fit in with this super church, but is willing to support her husband’s efforts to follow his calling.

As publicist for Greenleaf, Ruthie soon finds herself assisting a reporter, Juan Diaz, who is anxious to learn all he can about Greenleaf Church and, above all, Pastor Aaron.  With her husband being so involved with the Church, Ruthie finds herself lonely and becomes tempted to involve herself with Juan, creating even more problems than she needs just then.

The Greens have three children:  Anthony, Sophie, and Timothy, who have problems of their own.  Timothy’s wife, Ginger, has a sordid past which she and Tim have kept well hidden, even from the family.  When the truth comes out during an atypical background check, it is then Ginger escapes to her old stomping ground, to sort things out regarding her marriage, motherhood, and her own calling.  With Candace as a mother-in-law, she is certain the woman will never accept her, no matter what.  Timothy, involved with his own ministry, Faith Corps, is involved with a branch of Greenleaf, Newleaf Church, which usurps most of his time, adding to Ginger’s frustrations.

Candace seems to hover in the background as secret CEO of Greenleaf, having fully supported and stood by her husband, Aaron, for over twenty-five years.  Yet she has her own problems and continually asks herself what her purpose really is.  In Ruthie’s opinion, Candace is “a NASA-level genius who discreetly runs Greenleaf from behind her velvet smile,” and labels her, “The Wizard of Oz.”  (p.145)

As time goes on, it is clear there are problems with the mega-church, as is to be expected, since Greenleaf often seems more like a business than a church.  The PASTORS’ WIVES easily find their lives intertwined and involved with circumstances that will test their loyalties to their husbands, their families, and their church.  When the idea for divorce comes into play, since two of the PASTORS’ WIVES believe they are overly neglected by their spouses, who they feel are more married to God than to them, it is then they step back and take a good look at themselves, their lives, and their beliefs, neither of them really wanting to divorce the men they are so in love with.

I find PASTOR’S WIVES a highly entertaining read.  Cullen is such a gifted writer, it is almost with envy that I write this.  Cullen, with her background at TIME Magazine, clearly has the makings of a great fiction writer and makes one want to aspire to be like her.  I love her style.

PASTORS’ WIVES is fiction, of course, so one must keep a perspective when reading it.  In reality, it would seem that when hiring someone to a position involving money, especially in the millions of dollars, a background check and an interview should be done, to check out the wife, before hiring her husband to such a position as was given to Jerry Matters.  Although I have never attended a mega-church, it would just seem to be an important part of the hiring process.  Corruption, even in the Church, is rampant, sorry to say.

Regardless of these facts, PASTORS’ WIVES is a realistic book that kept me turning pages.  The reader, once deeper into the story, will become concerned and actually care for the characters.  Candace is a truly unique woman, strong and competent, based on her usual comment, “Let me take care of it.”  Her confidence stands out in many different areas of PASTORS’ WIVES.

Ruthie is a bit shaky in her beliefs, and I am surprised that Jerry chose someone like her to marry.  Yet he clearly loves her, which is what makes PASTORS’ WIVES such an interesting read.  The fact that Cullen threw in a supposedly Christian woman to tempt him to cheat on his wife was a unique conflict I wasn’t so sure would materialize.  Which has to make believers aware that there are a lot of false Christians out there, and the enemy is always out there looking to bring down truly committed believers in some way, shape, or form.

I love Ginger.  She is very down-to-earth and has many of the same fears and uncertainties many people face when involved with churches.  She is so afraid people will judge her because of her past, which is also common in the churches, were the truth to be told.

I also love the husbands in PASTORS’ WIVES.  Their strength and unique capabilities, as fathers, husbands, and believers faithful to their calling makes one want to meet them in real life.  Cullen does a great job characterizing all of these men and helps the reader understand just why Ruthie, Ginger, and Candace had fallen for them to begin with.

PASTORS’ WIVES has a good array of minor characters that adds a lot of dimension to this story.  They are original and most are quite likable.  They add a lot of conflict which keeps the reader anxiously reading, to see how things work out.  Learning what PASTOR’S WIVES go through when being married to a pastor, it an eye-opener that many may not have considered before.  PASTORS’ WIVES gives one a new perspective in this arena.

PASTORS’ WIVES is realistic in so many ways, it is easy to relate to not just the wonderful characters in it, but also the great dynamics of this story.  There is plenty of conflict, happy moments, humor, and emotion to keep one turning pages.  If one wants to experience a behind-the-scenes look into the workings of a mega-church such as Greenleaf, then PASTORS’ WIVES is a good place to start.

PASTORS’ WIVES is well written, well-plotted, and a pleasure to read.  Great dialogue is prevalent throughout and adds a lot of humor along the way.  If one is looking for a great summer read, one that offers a lot of intrigue, hope, and heart-warming moments, then this one should see you through a hot and lazy afternoon on the beach.

Kudos to Ms. Cullen on her wonderful debut novel, PASTORS’ WIVES.

 

—————————

God's Gay Agenda image

GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE by Sandra Turnbull

Publisher:  Glory Publishing

Date published:  October 1, 2012

ISBN:  978-0-9883863-0-3

Nonfiction/Inspirational

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Gods-Gay-Agenda-ebook/dp/B009KUREQE

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE by Sandra Turnbull is an incredible, eye-opening book that every believer should read.

Turnbull has had personal experience with the issue of gays and lesbians and enough religious training to make true believers in Christ take a more in-depth look into this taboo subject.  This book is phenomenal in its scope, covering areas of this persecuted, often condemned ‘nation’ of people I have never heard before.  Extremely well researched and well written, GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE has given this believer an entirely knew perspective on the matter.  Although I cannot say I am totally convinced, I have certainly come away with new eyes and fully intend to learn more, through seeking God further on the matter and doing my own research.

GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE does an excellent job in discussing the three types of eunuchs from Jesus’ perspective and also the role they are to play in the future of the Church.  Having looked up the Scriptures and Hebrew/Greek meanings of the terminology Turnbull discusses, it is clear she is right on the money.  By looking at the clobber verses she mentions, that most believers are aware of in Scripture, it is easy to take the meaning of them at face value.  But, as Turnbull discusses them more in depth, referring to history and the true meanings of certain words as shared in Greek and Hebrew, it gives the reader cause to consider that, perhaps, all we have been taught is indeed a lie or a misinterpretation of the truth.

I cannot say enough good things about Turnbull’s courage in writing what may very well be the truth on this subject, and I strongly urge every believer to read GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE, to ignore the critics and naysayers, and form your own opinion about these unique individuals who are so special to God.  The time is indeed short, considering all that is happening in our world, and it is interesting to note that, perhaps, this particular ‘nation’ of people, as Turnbull refers to them, are indeed some of the people that God may use to help bring about the final harvest of believers throughout the world.

I must again make it clear that I am not completely convinced on this matter, particularly regarding marriage among same-sex individuals, but I am going to do my utmost to learn the Truth for myself.

I urge anyone interested to read GOD’S GAY AGENDA:  GAYS AND LESBIANS IN THE BIBLE, CHURCH AND MARRIAGE, to consider the truth for yourself.  Because if we have been wrongfully ignoring, hating, persecuting, judging gays and lesbians all these years, then major changes must take place in our own hearts and, more importantly, in the Church before Jesus Christ returns.  Because He wants His Bride spotless, and it never will be if those He loves are continually rejected by other believers.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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 Fedeal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

—————————————–

 

ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH by Carl McColman

Publisher:  Hampton Roads Publishing Company

Date published:  February 1, 2013

ISBN:  978-1-57174-677-1

Nonfiction/Inspirational

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Answering-Contemplative-Call-First-Mystical/dp/1571746773

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  5

 

One must begin the journey through Carl McColman’s ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH as one would any secular or Christian book, keeping an open mind.  Not all readers may agree with what is revealed in the pages of this book.  Many references are made to ancient mystics, Catholic, Zen, Taoist, or Buddhist practices, and what has been experienced by spiritual mystics or contemplatives.  So with this in mind, let me say that I found this a profoundly thought-provoking read, inspirational in fact.  ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH will surely help anyone aspiring to draw closer to God in a way perhaps never considered before.

McColman has done excellent research and provides many invaluable resources for further information on the topic of contemplation and mysticism.  I found some free on the Internet that are easily downloaded, to peruse at leisure.

Mysticism is not a subject one hears a lot about these days.  Regardless, McColman is a skilled writer who has pieced together many interesting facts that broadened my knowledge on this fascinating topic.  Again, I had to keep an open mind because I tend to consider and view things from that of a non-denominational believer.  As I warn many people when reading secular or even Christian books, one must be careful when reading books such as these since truths may be twisted and Scripture changed to suit one’s needs.  Misinterpretations can be readily inherent as well.  I do believe, however, that McColman, through his extensive spiritual training has portrayed his knowledge in ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH in an enlightening, informative way that is as true as he believes it to be.  As I read this book, nothing untoward, negative, or vastly disturbing leaped out at me.  I kept everything in perspective and tried to relate much of McColman’s teachings to my own life experiences and to the Truth of God as I know it.

McColman makes one grasp the concepts of contemplation quite easily in ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH.  As an intellectual, I discovered things in the pages of this wonderful book that made me want to delve more deeply into the subject matter by reviewing many of the resources mentioned therein.  His references to many spiritual giants such as Thomas Aquinas, Theresa of Avila, Walter Hilton, Ignatius of Loyola, and Julian of Norwich, to name a few, piqued my interest regarding the lives of these people.  Which made me want to read what some of them experienced in their own spiritual lives and eventually wrote about.  To learn these things, one must, of course, continue moving along the pathway, far beyond the first steps.

The jewels of great price shared in ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH indeed share the way of drawing closer to God.  God wants us to seek Him, and prayer, meditation – contemplation, if you will, and waiting on God by remaining silent before Him, are first steps in finding Him.  In order to do these things, we must lay aside all aspects of self and focus completely on God.  According to McColman, “when we empty ourselves completely, creating space for God within us, it is then His love will pour into us. For love, you see, is what will fill us and transform our lives.”  (paraphrased, p. 140)

ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH is a great read for anyone interested in drawing closer to God.  Since we are instructed by God to pray and be holy, McColman’s book shares that our simple participation in the Christian prayer life and growing in holiness is a step in the right direction.  In fact, McColman states that “…when God’s longing for us connects with our longing for God, [it is then] we enter the mystical life.”  (p.15)

If you are at that point in your life when you are striving to know God more intimately, then ANSWERING THE CONTEMPLATIVE CALL:  FIRST STEPS ON THE MYSTICAL PATH is a book that may help guide you in the right direction for your life.

It is an interesting, fairly fast-paced read and is well worth the time to read and apply to your own life experiences.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network.  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 Commisions’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

 

———————–

 

ALONE WITH A JIHADIST:  A BIBLICAL RESPONSE TO HOLY WAR by Aaron D. Taylor

Publisher:  Foghorn Publishers

Date published:  October 13, 2009

ISBN:  978-1934466131

Nonfiction

E-Book

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Alone-Jihadist-Biblical-Response-Holy/dp/1934466131

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

For seven hours, Aaron Taylor found himself face-to-face with a radical Muslim.  Khalid is actually an Irish convert who grew up Catholic.  In this interview with Khalid, Taylor learned how Muslims view the United States of America and Christianity.  Khalid gave no apologies when sharing that every single Christian that ever lived is going to hell, in his opinion.  He believes that Christianity and western civilization are evil and that freedom and democracy are just manifestations of man-made law.

Other things Taylor learned during this encounter was enough to challenge any Christian on their beliefs.  From this stepping stone, Taylor launches into revelations of the way Christians support wars and unnecessary bloodshed instead of the peace that Jesus Christ inspires us to practice.

As Taylor considers Khalid’s arguments for Islam, he reveals that Jesus did not leave this world with a comprehensive social system, economic, or political system, or any other kind of religious system to regulate society.  Khalid said that at least Muhammed attempted to solve the world’s problems.  And as Taylor later pours over Scripture, seeking the Truth, he comes to realize that, indeed, the Holy Bible cannot be implemented from a government perspective.

If there is one book believers in Christ should aspire to read, I believe it is ALONE WITH A JIHADIST:  A BIBLICAL RESPONSE TO HOLY WAR.  What Taylor uncovers during his interview and further research into his discoveries over the challenge put before him will give believers an entirely new perspective on Islam and regarding the Truth of what Jesus actually teaches in the Holy Bible about violence and non-violence.

ALONE WITH A JIHADIST:  A BIBLICAL RESPONSE TO HOLY WAR is an eye-opening, extremely thought-provoking book that the reader will want to read again and again and share with their Christian friends and family members.  It is well-written, and Taylor backs up his truths with Scriptures and several of the books he has read in order to gain further perspective and understanding in this highly controversial matter.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through SpeakEasy blogging book review network.  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.

 

——————

 

HOMETOWN PROPHET by Jeff Fulmer

Publisher:  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

HometownProphet

Date published:  March 25, 2012

ISBN:  978-1463632311

Christian Fiction

Paperback

Reviewed by Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/Hometown-Prophet-Jeff-Fulmer/dp/1463632312

Obtained via publisher

Rating:  4.5

 

Peter Quill is just an ordinary guy.  Forced to move back home with his mother, he is struggling just to make a life for himself and substitute teaches at a local Nashville, TN school.  Until one day when he has a dream that ultimately changes his life in ways he never expects.

Peter hasn’t been much of a churchgoer but feels the need to share the dream with his local pastor, Dan, since it pertains to his health.  Although a bit skeptical, Dan decides to see a doctor and is amazed to find himself with a heart blockage that immediately puts him in the hospital.  Later, Peter begins having more dreams, which Dan believes are prophetic.

As time goes on, Peter finds each of his dreams coming true, and he quickly becomes a sort of celebrity, with news teams and other T. V. personnel wanting to interview him.  As they hound him and begin prying into his personal life, Peter soon learns that being a modern-day prophet has a negative side, as he finds himself being slandered and betrayed by people he hardly knows.

It isn’t until his prophetic dreams take a new direction, which challenges the beliefs and biases of many in his community, that Peter discovers what it means to truly be a prophet of God.

HOMETOWN PROPHET by Jeff Fulmer is a terrific read.  I thoroughly enjoyed this story and find it well-written and fast paced.  The story snags you right from the start and keeps you turning pages until the very end.

Fulmer does a great job with his characters.  You truly empathize with the main character, Peter, who has this wonderful gift and feels led to follow his heart.  You grow to like him quickly as HOMETOWN PROPHET progresses.  You even find yourself wondering how you would react if you suddenly found yourself having prophetic dreams.  Would you share them with others and just wait to see what might happen, or would you hide them under a rock and pretend they never occurred?  Would you take a chance at feeling guilty if something came to pass, something bad, that perhaps you could have prevented had you shared a particular dream?  HOMETOWN PROPHET gives the reader a lot to think about, especially if he suddenly find himself with such a gift, too.

Also, I really liked Pastor Dan who was a staunch supporter of Peter and a loyalist to the end.

I enjoyed the variety of events that took place because of Peter’s dreams.  Incorporating instances with the Muslim community, celebrities, and even immigrants was an interesting part of HOMETOWN PROPHET that I am sure many readers will like.

HOMETOWN PROPHET also has enough twists and turns in its plot to keep you riveted.  Numerous conflicts add to the suspense and make the reader eager to see what happens next.

HOMETOWN PROPHET is a light, easy read that won’t bog the reader down with too many details.  It flows quickly and is a great book to help pass the time.  I highly recommend it and look forward to more of Fulmer’s work.  Kudos to Mr. Fulmer for this timely story.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through SpeakEasy blogging book review network.  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.

 

—————————-

 

 

WHITE FLOUR by David LaMotte (author) and Jenn Hales (illustrator)

Published by:  Lower Dryad Music

Date published:  May 1, 2012

ISBN:  978-0-9772893-2-5

Children’s Nonfiction

Hardcover

Reviewed by:  Lynne

http://www.amazon.com/White-Flour-David-LaMotte/dp/097728932X

Obtained via publisher.

Rating:  5

 

WHITE FLOUR by David LaMotte is a well-written, whimsical story, based on true events that took place in Knoxville, Tennessee in May of 2007.  LaMotte has done a brilliant job in getting his point across, and the lovely illustrations by Hales adds a positive, fun, and feel-good light to this story.

The Ku Klux Klan are holding a racist rally in Knoxville when they suddenly come up against the Coup Clutz Clowns, who deter their aggression in a way that effectively deflates the cruelty and negativity brewing.

As the clowns use their own creative talents, humor, and non-violence to nullify and defuse the brewing hatred of the Klan as they attempt to stir people to violence, it isn’t long before their tactics work in a positive way.

WHITE FLOUR is an extremely charming, imaginative story that is sure to delight children of all ages.  A wonderful way to help them learn a different, yet effective method of how to deter bigotry and hatred, through love and humor, as the Coup Clutz Clowns demonstrate.

WHITE FLOUR is a must-read in today’s society, and I would recommend it to adults as well as children, as a learning tool for all ages.  The fact that WHITE FLOUR is based on actual events proves the truth and effectiveness of love and humor in this and other similar situations.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. 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.