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Showing posts from April, 2017

Loveable by Kelly Flanagan

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I don't know you, but I imagine you aren't much different than I am. I know I have struggled to feel like I am enough and like I matter, or what I do matters, on many days. Dr. Kelly Flanagan helps us take our lack, look at it, and then turn it aroundinto thoughts that encourage help us see that we are indeed "loveable."

Loveable by Kelly Flanagan invites us to see our lives as a story with backstory and three acts: You are Enough, You are Not Alone and You Matter.  Dr. Flanagan weaves his own stories and stories of others he knows into this book to help the reader learn better how to grow in their own life and to apply Dr. Flanagan's wisdom to their life. I would also add that while there are some references to God and church, there aren't a lot of Bible stories in the book to refer to. In some ways this is more of a series of memoir-style essays tied together with Loveable's theme. It is also a little like going to long-distance therapy where Dr. Flana…

Bible Promises for parents of children with Special Needs by Amy E.Mason

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Parents of children with special needs have a unique set of daily challenges. As the mom of a child with special needs I often feel the struggles are mine alone. Bible Promises for parents of children with Special needs was designed to speak to this unique parenting journey and to remind parents they are not alone.

Bible Promises for Children with special needs is an alphabetically arranged book. Some of the categories included in the book are: Attitude, Change, Comfort, Encouragement, Fear, Guilt, Loneliness, Pressure, Rest, Stress, Trials, and Weary. Each topic includes verses that relate to that topic as well as a paragraph that relates those verses to special needs parenting.

I thought this  Bible promise book was so helpful and encouraging with both the Scripture verses and Mason's extra helpful words. I found it to be good to read straight through but also a good quick reference when you need help on a certain topic. It also keeps you turning back to God during those times y…

Mind Over Meds by Andrew Weil, MD

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Every day we see countless advertisements for medications. We go to the doctor and expect that we will leave with a prescription that will make us better. But do all of these drugs really make us better? Dr. Andrew Weil in Mind Over Meds helps readers make informed decisions on medication use.

Mind Over Meds goes through most of the commonly prescribed medications in the United States: antibiotics, statins, medicine for Gerd, antihistamines, cold/flu medicines, sleep aids, steroids, psych medicines for adults and children, and several other categories of popularly used medications both over-the-counter and prescribed. Dr. Weil also writes chapters on over-medication for children and over-medication for the elderly. The last chapter of the book covers medications with a pharmacist, whom Dr. Weil says is an underutilized medical person in the management of medications. All of these chapters were written with other medical personnel who specialize in these areas since Dr. Weil says he is…

Invitation by Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky

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Invitation is a compilation of four stories in the new Harbingers series. Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt and Alton Gansky each write an "episode" of the book from a different characters point of view. In Invitation, we meet Brenda, the tattoo artist who sees things in the future; The Professor, a former priest turned atheist; Andi, the professor's geeky assistant who has a gift for seeing patterns; and Tank, the football player with a big heart and a gift for healing.

Each of these four characters in Invitation share adventures where good is battling evil of some sort. The first story, The Call,  involves a weird psychic school. The second story, The Haunted, involves a creepy house that moves around. In the third story, The Sentinels, unexplainable deaths of animals are being reported all over the world. The fourth story, The Girl,  revolves around a mysterious tiny, barefoot girl.

Supernatural Suspense books aren't my usual genre of books to read. However,…

Never Enough? by Ron Blue with Karen Guess

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It is no secret that money management can be a challenge for many couples. In Never Enough?, Ron Blue and his daughter, Karen Guess, share how even though money and life are "inextricably linked" creating some challenges, you can apply the wisdom in this book to keep your finances at your best with God.

To start with, Blue/Guess offer 5 wise principles anyone can use to mange their finances in the best way. Then, using a pie diagram, they share how to basically divide your money into four categories: Live, the money I live on; Give, the money I give away; Owe, the money I pay for Debt and Taxes; and Grow, the money I save. The Never Enough? authors then break down these categories and further explain them to learn how to apply them to real life. Also, at the end of each chapter, there is a short re-cap so the reader can easily remember the most important principles. Never Enough? is down to earth in style and is written in such a way that it is easy to understand. There are…

Life After by Katie Ganshert

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What happens to the one person who survives a bombing where several others lost their life? Autumn Manning's story of survival is her story in Life After.

Life After shares a little about what happened on the day of the bombing when Autumn was riding the transit train in Chicago. However, mostly Autumn doesn't remember what happened that day. However, she does remember everything she knows about each of the victims over the past year. She has spent this past year healing physically but also trying to heal her grief and guilt. Why was she the only one to survive? What does God want her to do with her life? Why does she still feel so restless?

Paul Elliott lost his wife in the same train bombing. He and his twelve year old daughter and young son are also trying to heal from the tragedy. Except Paul doesn't want to talk about it. He just wants to get past it all and live a normal life with his family.

Paul and Autumn are brought together in Life After. Together they sift thr…

Never Unfriended by Lisa-Jo Baker

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Sitting down to read my copy of Never Unfriended by Lisa-Jo Baker was like sitting down with a friend over a hot cup of tea/coffee and sharing heart-to-heart. This book was real, honest and it made me think about how I want to do friendship.

Never Unfriended is divided into five sections: What Are We Afraid of? What Can't we Do About it? What Can We Do about it? and Where do we start? In the introduction, Baker shares that this book is your friend so you can start reading anywhere that you feel it well help you best. I started at the beginning because I just feel like I am so lost after a move I had to just go back to square one. And that was a good place for me because the first chapter starts with talking about Friendship PTSD. I am sure this mid-life woman could be a poster child for Friendship PTSD. I used to have many friends, and make friends easily, but these days it doesn't come as easy. After several moves and several friendship wounds, I have been limping along the …

Think Better Live Better Journal by Joel Osteen

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Think Better Live Better is the first Joel Osteen book that I have ever read. I found it to be quite helpful in helping me to change my thought processes to a more positive frame of mind at a time when I needed that. At the same time, I think a journal helps me to learn and remember things for a much longer time. The writing process helps me think through the writer's words, process them, and add my thoughts so I can change my thinking to work for me so I like having the journal to work through with the book. This journal was a big help to me in that way.

The Think Better Live Better Journal goes along with the main book and is divided into 10 sections: Reprogam Your Mind, Remove Negative Labels, Release the Full You, Think Yourself to Victory, Pregnant with Possibility, The Promise is in You, Ask Big, You Have What you Need, Keep Your Crown and Just Remember.  As Osteen says, "This journal companion is a practical tool that will help you train yourself to tune out the negati…

The Mediterranean Love Plan by Stephen and Misty Arterburn with BeckyJohnson

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Are you looking to spice up your love life? If you are looking for some fun ideas to keep the passion, romance and fun in your marriage The Mediterranean Love Plan could be the book for you.

Stephen and Misty Arterburn share ideas for keeping their relationship interesting. With a subtitle of Seven Secrets to Life-long Passion, The Mediterranean Love Plan reveals ways to enhance aspects of your relationship: through attunement, playfulness, savoring food, enjoying beauty, creativity, health and longevity, and blending the sacred with the sexual.

The Arterburns (along with writer Becky Johnson) share many examples from their own lives, examples from other couples they know and research from countries all over the world, with emphasis on the Mediterranean countries. Stephen and Misty share how these other cultures often include these 7 relationship aspects into their daily lives better than our American culture. The end of each chapter includes a list of practical ways to apply the con…

52 Amazing Things That Became True of You The Moment You Trusted Christ by Stephen Kuhn

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If you recently made a decision to accept Christ, you may be wondering just what it means for you. 52 Amazing Things That Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ by Stephen Kuhn explains with Scriptures verses and down-to-earth prose how to understand what that decision has meant for you.

52 Amazing Things has 52 short readings with 52 Bible verses that are unpacked to meditate on and relate to your own life so you can better understand the truths of Scripture related to your salvation. A few of the topics in this book include: You Have Been Washed Clean, You Have Been Set Free From Fear, You Became a Citizen of Heaven, and You Have a Secure Future. Kuhn stresses that our feelings may not feel that these things are true but Scripture says that they are. My word for 2017 is Delight so I especially liked the reading called, You Are Delighted in by God. It has taken me many years to understand that that is truth. While this would be a great book to give a new Christian to help …

Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal from Tyndale House

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One of the ways I best relax and diffuse stress is by spending time with God and creating. I like that Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal offers a way to do that in this beautiful little book.

Tranquility has pages designed for uplifting your spirit through prayer and meditation, coloring, journaling, and drawing. In the introduction, you are encouraged to, "take it Slow," and to use the journal in your own way to reflect and connect with God in a creative way that is meaningful for you.

I like the journaling prompts, prayers, and coloring pictures in Tranquility. I would encourage everyone to have sharp colored pencils ready for their creative work in this book as the coloring designs are on the smaller side. I also think the pages are too thin to use markers so I would stick with colored pencils. The coloring designs do have a bit of pre-printed coloring already done to them on some of the pages which means you'll want to stay within their color sche…