Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Book Review: Finding Freedom

Chosen Books provided a complimentary copy of the featured book in exchange for an honest book review.
     Author and pastor, Bobby Davis, has graciously penned a book with deep conviction and passion. In Saved But Still Enslaved: Breaking Free from Strongholds Davis sets out to help every believer combat the strongholds that still strangle their lives. Even though we are no longer condemned as Christ paid the price at the Cross, we will find there are still battles to be fought.  Most readers will find valuable insight into their own lives as Davis looks at several strongholds.
     The greatest way to fight these struggles is found, of course, within Scripture. The words we hear, read and speak all impact our lives. Are we living by His truth or by the lies we hear and tell ourselves? God created by word and inadvertently, we create our lives by our words as well. As we come to understand that Jesus came to set us free we can use His power, His Word to break free from our trappings. If we are hopeless, hope can be found. If we are enslaved to religion, we can build a relationship with Christ. If we are paralyzed by fear, we can break free and live courageously, in fact, victoriously. He also delves into shame, inferiority, addiction, unforgiveness and poverty.
      The greatest aspect of Bobby Davis' writing is his transparency. He works from experience and hardship and nothing gives this book greater credibility than his story. It gives his words greater strength and power as he harnesses the power of the Spirit. I applaud his honesty and humility. It is an easy, enjoyable read, though it will pose some pointed questions that may make you squirm in your seat a bit. But, any good thought-provoking book should do that anyhow.
      Saved But Still Enslaved is a book that isn't there with a master plan. It is a guide pointing to the greatest Guide of all. Breaking free from whatever strongholds that are choking you is going to take work and commitment, a strong dedication. So, the greatest beginning question to ask yourself is: Are you Saved But Still Enslaved?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Book Review: Embracing Life

Plough Publishing House provided a complimentary copy of the feature book in exchange for an honest book review.
     Author Johann Christoph Arnold had thoughtfully penned Rich in Years: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Long Life, a book that relishes the value and wisdom that comes as one ages. In western culture aging is seen as taboo, something to be avoided at all costs and one can only pray the newest cream actually slows down the process. However, God created us beautifully and has given people purpose no matter their ever-increasing numeric status.
      This book harnesses biblical wisdom with the accounts of many elderly citizens lending credence to one's value in their latter years. The first step is to accept what is and what blessings can be gleaned from life changes. Whether you are at that point in your journey or are a caregiver Rich in Years can give you food for thought and an appreciation for this leg of the journey. There may be aspects that come with aging that aren't pleasant, however perspective is everything. One must never forget that as we age we are not closer to the end, but rather a new beginning, one that is eternal.
      I absolutely loved this book.  I am only in my fourth decade of my earthly life and found great value within Rich in Years. After watching my grandparents go through so many changes gracefully I have had a deep appreciation for the elderly. So, why would I read such a book? I want to age gracefully and know my purpose as I grow older. My parents are going to be entering those years when changes become inevitable. After reading this book I am, hopefully, more equipped to help them, to extend more empathy and value them for whatever place they find themselves in. The experience of others is a beautiful learning tool.
       I would suggest this book to anyone. This volume is all about the latter years of our human experience. Though I am not there yet, one day I will be, as will you. May we embrace all of the journey. Some feel discarded or devalued by society, but when we look through the eyes of God we can be Rich in Years and live out our God-given purpose until the end of our earthly journey.