Tuesday, June 10, 2014

New Spirit-Filled Bible - review

My addiction to books also includes Bibles. I keep wanting different ones wondering what secrets might be in this new one or what new ideas might be hiding inside this new version.

I was inerested in what 20 denominations and fellowships would come together to teach. There is so much packed into the NIV Bible that can help you understand some of the themes better.

Kingdom Dynamics are themes that run through the Bible. They are like mini study guides placed in the Bible verses to help lead you through the whole Bible learning certain themes. In the beginning of the Bible they give you a run down about the 9 themes that they have included in the Bible: spiritual foundations, prayer power, personal growth, spiritual empowerment, spiritual unity, spiritual leadership, spiritual stewardship, supernatural ministry, global outreach.

Word Wealth helps you understand key words of the Bible. They reference Strong's Concordance as a guide.

Truth-In -Action comes at the end of each book of the Bible. It helps show you ways to apply the truths of the Bible to be found in that book. They offer specific steps you can take to let God guide your life.

The commentary through the Bible seemed very complete and I found very engaging. The articles in the back of the Binle where definitely interesting. I didn't completely agree with all of the ideas included in them but I thought that they might apply well to people of other faiths leading them closer to Jesus.

I found the actual print of the Bible easy to read. Jesus's words are highlighted in red. The additional studies in the book are placed well. The study notes are well designed. The charts and maps are of a high quality.

The chapter introductions are wonderful. They tell you about the author of the book. They tell you about when they believe the book was written. They give you a short snapsis of the content of the book- They share how you can personaly apply the book to your life. Theyshare how Chirst is reveled in the book because all the books are designed to lead you to Christ. They share how the Holy Spirit is at work in the book. And an outline of what you will findin the book.

I enjoyed the extras included in the book. It is not my favorite Bible I own and I feel good about letting my kids use this Bible. The heart of the Bible is still all there and ready for anyone to dig in and grow closer to God. Enjoy.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. 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 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Dream Big

I just listened to a cd on which the speaker asked, "If you had to spend a quarter of a million dollars by the end of the month, would you be able to do it?"

Would you?

I spent the morning making a nice long list to share with my hubby and wondered what your thoughts on the idea are.

I started shopping for land and some buildings to put on it and some fancy dresses for the girls and airline tickets for a trip with the family. I think that would just about cover it.

What are your dreams?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

All In - book review

Mark Batterson is an amazing author. He has a way of turning a complex idea into something tangible. All In (students edition) is only my second book read of his. Both of them have encouraged and inspired me to take action on some of the great ideas that float around my head.

I know that I can not share what being All In means as well as he did. I do want to share how a few of his words affected me though. For instance, "Honestly, I didn't play God very well....I quit trying to "find myself" and decided to seek the Lord first." I know I have hit that wall a few times already in life. I just never thought of it all connected together like he put it. It made me realize that trying to figure out who I am won't solve anything until I know who I am in Christ and then He will show me who I am.

"I knew I needed to quit going with the course of everyday life, push all my chips to the middle of the table, and go all in with God." This reminded me of one of my favorite verses that I carried around with me at school yesterday: Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. - Romans 12:2

Mark Batterson touched on a topic that my husband and I go round about all the time, saying the same thing in different words. "But you can't just pray like it depends on God. You also have to work like it depends on you."

"If you aren't hungry for God, you are full of yourself." You can see that in the people around you. Our world has become self-absorbed. Makes me think of Wall-E. I've been connecting alot of kids movies to some philosophies that are starting to slip away from us. People are hungry for more and more things because they are never full. It's like putting in the big rocks first. If you fill yourself up with God first, then the rest will fill in the cracks and you won't need so much.

"We have Americanized the gospel and spiritualized the American Dream." There are so many different version of the Bible out there trying to reach all the different people (good thing) but some of them are truly Americanizing it. The ideas and philosophies of the gospel seem unattainable like America once was. The American Dream seems like the end all of our existence; do it no matter what the cost. Where the gospel "costs nothing, but demands everything."

"God intended for the church to be a verb - an action verb." Made me realize that we don't use it that way. We use it as a building or a group of people. It's not what we do or how we act; it's not how we treat each other anymore. Some places have even turned it into a bad a word and a place they wouldn't want to go. That's because they're looking for what they can get out of it instead of what they can give.

"What do you find your identity in? That's your Isaac. God will test you to make sure your identity is in Jesus Christ and nothing else." This one made me think about how we interact with people. You categorize them by who they're related to, what they do, where they live. You create their identity instead of seeing them as a child of God. Then to flip it on yourself and how you introduce yourself. Who have you created yourself to be?

"It only took one night to get Israel out of Egypt, but it took 40 years to get Egypt out of Israel." Love the simplicity of how to get through any habit or problem. You can change anything but until you put time into yourself, you're just bringing the same old self into this bright new situation.

He quoted We Bought A Zoo, "Twenty seconds of insane courage". That's all it takes to accomplish anything.

"Who wants to be normal." Makes me think of The Incredibles.

Mark Batterson includes some amazing stories about Bach, bioacoustics, and Jonathan Edwards that you should definitely read. My two favorite thoughts that I am taking away from this book are:

1. "We need to put ourselves in a situation that activates a spiritual gift we've never exercised before. And we need to go after a dream that'll fail without divine intervention." We need to get out of the box that we've put ourselves in. We need to see what else is out there that we didn't know we were good at. We need to see who we can help with something we thought was a burden or a fault.

2. "Dunamis is the power to do things beyond our natural ability. Exousia is the willpower to not do things we have the ability to do." I think that should be the new mantra of today: Dunamis Exousia. Just because you are free to do something doesn't make it free. There are consequences to every action. We need to go beyond ourselves to do something great in this world, even if it's only in the eyes of another person.

I would recommend this book to anyone 16 and over definitely. Some of the topics may be a little large for someone younger. It is an amazing book and makes you think about how you think about yourself and your place in the world. It makes the idea of being All In a little less intimidating and scary. Go get yourself a copy and share one with a friend.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. 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 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”