It's been a loooong time since I've posted a book review, but I want to get going with this again. I pulled out a review I should have posted a while ago to get me back on track:
If you feel as if you are just spinning your wheels...not living, but only surviving, then you may have lost your "chazown". The book title was enough to intrigue me, but the substance was enough to keep me interested from cover to cover. Finding your vision sounds a lot like psychological fluff, but Craig Groeschel grounds his writing in scripture and sincere pursuit of God's design. We are often guilty of just hoping that God will just plop His plans and direction in our lap, and sometimes it is that obvious. But, more often than not, it requires intentional steps on our part to pursue God before His direction is clear. This book is very practical in its approach and an easy read. The application is more challenging, but a very worthy pursuit...for "where there is no vision, the people perish". (Proverbs 29:18)
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
I just finished a new book that comes at the perfect time for preparing my heart for the true meaning of Christmas. There is so much craziness in our lives year-round that when the Christmas season rolls around, it seems here and gone before I ever even know what hit us. But the perfect example for us is Mary, who took what the angel said and "pondered these things in her heart." What steps are you taking to ponder the greatest gift ever given this season?
So this book is a beautifully illustrated guide to all things Christmas...discussing questions such as Why December? Why a Christmas tree? Should we call it Xmas? Where was Jesus really born? When did the wise men really come? It thoroughly examines what evidence exists to answer these questions and many more. I appreciate that it is exhaustive in the search for answers, but also leaves some room for more questions.
The book is put out by Answers in Genesis, a Christian apologetics organization which defends the truth of the Bible. They are best known for there defense of the Biblical account of creation and the Creation Museum. I am a big fan of theirs, and frequently use their website and published materials as we wade through the secularization of public education with our children. That being said, my main criticism of the book is that it comes across as a defensive point of view, and that is something that makes me uneasy. It is so difficult for Christians to find that balance of "speaking the truth in love", that we often err on one side or the other, but we must not neglect one or the other. When it comes to seeking His righteousness, I think we sometimes lose our way and become more concerned with seeking "right-ness", which is a very different thing. There is no mistaking that the book does what it sets out to do: it defends the truths of Christmas; after all, the subtitle is "Battles in Faith, Tradition, and Religious Expression". And I would recommend it to anyone curious about the details of the Christmas narrative, but because of the tone, it might not be the first book I would recommend to someone who does not already believe in the authority of the Bible.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Saturday, May 19, 2012
Monday, April 2, 2012
OK, I gotta be honest. I didn't finish this book yet. I plan to...I just haven't yet. I am a pretty big George W. Bush fan, and I respect him and many of the decisions that he made while in office, but there were also decisions that I didn't agree with or understand at the time. Not very often do we get the chance to read about the background information on the major (and minor) events in a president's life, so he is to be commended for making himself vulnerable in that way. He admits in the book that not every decision he made was good, and he might choose differently given more information at the time. We also get some of his life story...what made him into the man who became President. His childhood and his relationship with his parents, his struggle with alcohol abuse, and his relationship with his wife and daughters were particularly interesting. His writing style seems random...a story here, then off on a tangent, then back to the main sequence of events, but I didn't find that too distracting. I'm now to the point of 9/11, and for many of us, that will be most interesting we all had our eyes on the President as he led our nation through that most difficult time. So I read on...I am confident that it is time well spent.