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I remember the first time I saw Kerry Shook teaching. I was flipping through the channels and he was preaching on his TV program. It was interesting as he was talking about the recipe of life as he was making and cooking a pizza on stage. It wasn’t overly deep or new in content but it was interesting, different, and good if you were looking at the topic for the first time.

From that, I bought his book “One Month to Live” and wanted to do a sermon series based off the concept. Again, I didn’t find it to deep or new information but creatively done and a good concept for something more basic for someone on a surface level.

 

This book falls into the same flow. It is well done but nothing all that new. If you and your spouse are looking for something to dig into together, to spur on some conversation, and to remind yourself were your commitment levels may be struggling, this is a good book. If you are one who has been doing deeper study on the topic, this is not the deeper book you are looking for as much as a compilation of you might find to be common sense in the mix of your study.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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OK, I admit that I’m a tad behind (well, maybe more than a tad behind) in my book reviews so I’m going to try to catch up tonight and get back on track =)

Conversations with God is an interesting book that asks some basics questions such as “What is Heaven like?”, “If God loves us, why is there suffering?” and the like. Good basic questions that most everyone wonders at one point or another in their Christian walk. The answers are done in the form of being answered in a conversational form by God and others in heaven.

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There has been a lot of buzz on the topic of Hell ever since Rob Bell came out the book “Love Wins”. Many (including myself) were concerned with some of his writings on the topic. While he brought up several good points about life, it ended up being what I call a “rubber band” book. A “rubber band” book tries to make a needed point but goes so far that it ends up snapping back on them. Bell finds it important to remind the church to worry more about hell on earth. However, it is lost in his careless yet poetic way of talking about the true hell to come.

As Chan puts it “But just because some have swung the pendulum so far in the direction of wrath and judgment, let’s not swing it back too far the other direction and do away with what the Scripture emphasizes. God is compassionate and just, loving and holy, wrathful and forgiving. We can’t sideline His more difficult attributes to make room for the palatable ones.” page 101

(Hence the balance of Truth and Love. You can’t have one and not the other…..)

Then enter several response sermons, talks, and books. This could fall under that heading but at the same time, it addresses more than Rob Bell’s teachings. Hell has been around a lot longer than this debate and there is much to be learned on the topic that impacts real souls.

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OK, I am doing two book reviews today. The last one wasn’t very flattering so I am pleased to stay this one has a very different tone! I loved it!

Now to be honest, I did thumb through the book “Radical” and it didn’t grab me. I liked the principles of it but something about the writing style just didn’t grab me. However, when I saw this book was coming out, I nabbed it. Why? Because I love talking about Christian community! I love everything about it! The highs and the lows….. the good and the bad…… when we are talking about true, Biblical Christian community, I always love being in the conversation.

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Um, how to start this review. Well, um, “Finding our way again” is the wrong way. How’s that to cover the jist of it?

I admit, I am not a Brian Mclaren fan but I have some people I respect that like him so I wanted to give him another look. Also, I have tried a couple of the books in the “The Ancient Practices” series and have found them to be…. well….um…. lacking. However, why not give it another look? This book was my answer to this question.

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Overall, I thought this book was a decent read. The research was in depth and the deductions were of interest. There were several quotables throughout the text that made me stop and think and others that I shared to spark conversations with others.

I don’t know if I share all of the authors views of the deductions he landed at but it did stretch me to look at some new ways of thinking. I agree that the landscape (not the content) of the church is changing…. I would say this book does a good job of pondering those changes but isn’t dead on on the definition of the new landscape all the way around.

Read it…. see what you think. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

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I have to make a confession up front, I love the concept of devotionals but generaly find them lacking. Why must I admit this? It will effect my review of this book.

For instance, as a book in and of itself, I don’t know if I would recommend it. However, compared to other devotionals, this is one of the better ones.

Divided into different subjects, the author stays on target of the scope of the title by presenting Biblical based thoughts from God. I do not always agree with some of the presummed angles he takes of the characters in the writings but over all it’s well done.

If you are looking for a new devotional and just getting started, this one wouldn’t be bad. However, if you want something a little deeper, maybe look to the classics like “God Calling”.

I got a copy of this book for free from www.booksneeze.com in exchange for an honest review.

 

 

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