Monday, July 9, 2018

The Way of Abundance

The Way of Abundance
Written by: Ann Voskamp

Book Overview:

What do you do when you wake up and feel like you're not enough for your life? Or when you look out the kitchen window as dusk falls and wonder how do you live when life keeps breaking your heart?
As Ann Voskamp writes, “great grief isn't meant to fit inside your body. It's why your heart breaks.” And each of us holds enough brokenness to overflow—to be given as the greatest story of our lives.
In sixty vulnerably soulful stories, The Way of Abundance moves from self-weary brokenness to Christ-focused givenness. Drawing from the critically acclaimed, New York Times bestseller The Broken Way and Ann's online essays, this devotional dares us to embrace brokenness as a gift that moves us to givenness as a way to draw closer to the heart of God. Christ Himself broke like bread, giving Himself to us so we might have a lifelong communion with Him. Could it be that our brokenness is also a gift to the world?
This gentle but exquisitely profound book does nothing less than take you on an intimate journey of the soul.
As Ann writes, "The wound in His side proves that Jesus is always on the side of the suffering, the wounded, the busted, the broken." Discover how surrendering in unexpected ways is the first step toward receiving what you long for. Discover the good news that your beauty is not in your strength but in your fragility. Discover why your healing shines radiant through your wounds—and how only in brokenness will you ever be whole—and find the way to the abundance you were meant for.

My Thoughts:

This is a 60 day devotional, that could easily be done a few times over. I feel like you would gain something different every time you read it.  I read through the entire devotional because I was hooked.  I then went back and read it slowly, allowing myself time to more thoroughly digest the content and wisdom for each day.  Some days hit me harder than others.  I experienced joy and sorrow, tears and laughter while reading through this devotional.  Having recently read The Broken Way by Ann Voskamp, I felt that I better understood where she was coming from for some of the devotionals as I recognized parts of it seem to correlate with the other book. The questions provided great conversation starters for my husband and I. Some of the questions were harder to answer, just because they were tough questions, the kind that cause you to search your soul and really define what you believe. I would recommend this book.  The devotionals aren't too short and they aren't too long.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review through the BookLookBloggers program, but my thoughts and opinions are my own.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

UNSHAKEABLE

UNSHAKEABLE 
By: Christine Caine

Book Overview:

God is bigger than your current story. Bigger than fear or shame or that voice in your head that whispers that you are not enough, too broken, or too flawed. Join Him in a closer relationship—one rooted in truth and Unshakeable. In this daily devotional Christine Caine encourages you to find confidence to live as the person God created you to be.
Everything in our world that can be shaken will be shaken. And yet, the Bible assures us it doesn’t matter what happens politically, morally, socially, or economically in the world around us if we have Christ in us—if we have the kingdom of God within us—because His kingdom is Unshakeable.
In this daily devotional, bestselling author, speaker and activist Christine Caine will take you on a year-long journey of building your faith in our Unshakeable God. Through inspiring personal stories and powerful scriptures, she will equip you to live boldly and courageously, fully trusting our faithful God. She will inspire you how to activate living your life on mission. Unstoppable. Undaunted. Unashamed. Unshakable.
My Thoughts:

 I have really enjoyed this devotional.  I ended up reading some of the days a few times over.  This would make a great gift of encouragement to somebody going through a rough patch.  It was very encouraging and uplifting.  Some days the truth hurt a little more than other days. It was genuine and real and some days were a bit raw.  The devotions all concluded with a prayer.  The devotions provided great food for thought. I would recommend this book.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review through booklookbloggers but my opinion is my own. 

Friday, February 23, 2018

PASSION "WHOLE HEART"

PASSION "WHOLE HEART"


Album Overview: 

• “Rooted out of the Passion movement, we are committed to leading
people towards renewed intimacy with God and fresh encounters of
worship. Passion is more than music. More than events. Passion is a
generation living for His name.”
• WHOLE HEART is the new live album from Passion—captured at
Passion Conference 2018 in Atlanta, GA.
• Passion Conference 2018 was a beautiful worship experience, and the
live album captures each powerful moment, allowing those who were
not in attendance to experience it.

• Featuring Passion Artists: Kristian Stanfill, Melodie Malone, Sean
Curran, Matt Redman, Crowder.

My Thoughts:

I enjoyed listening to these songs in the evenings.  I would listen to them while I reflected on the day.  Listening to the songs helped me to relax.  There was a peace that washed over me as I put on my headphones and closed my eyes and soaked in the music.  I felt like I was right there as they were recording these songs.  I think my favorite was More Like Jesus.  It helped me to put things into perspective, it stirred something within my soul. I also liked the song Whole Heart, and the reminder that His love comes with no conditions. It so easy in the world we live in to get caught up in conditional love and lose grips on the meaning of unconditional love.  I enjoyed all the songs, each time I listened I felt like I got something different from the song depending on the day and what I was facing.  Reviewing this cd has been such a blessing. 



“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for this product. Opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post

Friday, December 8, 2017

̶3̶3̶ years...

....or is it 34 years? 
(inside joke!)

On this day 33 years ago my mom and dad got married. 
December 8, 1984

They have had their share of ups and downs. 
Endured hardships.
and times of plenty.
Silent treatments.
Date nights.
Four children.
Seven dogs.
A hamster.
A miraculous goldfish.
Bearded Dragon.
Two additions to the house.
Dad takes hammer to kitchen cabinets.
Completely remodeled kitchen is the result.
Playing in the backyard.
Working hard.
Putting us kids first.
30 some odd cars that dad has had
Family vacations.
Ocean City.
Maryland.
New York.
Wisconsin.
South Carolina.
Look out mountain.
Rolling down hills in Wisconsin.
The carnival where I won a fish.
(And it died before we made it home)
Family dinner.
Pops bypass surgery.
loss of loved ones
cancer
depression
anxiety
afib
stroke
seizures
graduations
new life 
grandchildren
Neighbors
mechanic
yard man
bank teller
bus driver
teacher
father
mother
brother
sister
son
daughter
long days
even longer nights
playing dress up and coloring
watching tball games 
cheering at softball games
dr. hahn
pain 
heartache
joy
peace
healing
home videos
times gone by
times to come
loving in the moment.
no promise of tomorrow
a love that has stood the test of time
one that has been magnified these past 2 years

I've heard my parents argue and I've seen them come back together and move forward. I've seen them get creative to make ends meet. I've felt how much they care for us kids. I know they love each other. I just never knew exactly how much until I watched them endure something tragic. I've watched my mom and dad stand beside each other through a number of trials.  

 I took dad out this afternoon to pick out a card and a single rose.  See when he was cutting yards for his elderly friends he would tell them about his anniversary and they would tell him to go cut a rose out of their garden.  Dad seemed to be about the simple, thoughtful things....at least that is what I remember. He had to settle with going and buying a single rose. I think my mom was surprised.

I'm glad that my mom and dad got married and that they have stuck together no matter what hurdles have come their way.  an everlasting love.  


(on a side note---look at the symmetry in dads smile! this picture was taken today, the one below was from December 20, 2015 almost two years ago...In the picture above, from today, he is walking....the one below he was still in a wheelchair...our God is an awesome God!)



Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Let The Little Children Come

Let The Little Children Come
Gospel Tracts and Evangelism Tools Sampler Pack


The Sampler Pack contains 10 of their most popular Gospel Tracts and Evangelism Tools. They make Evangelism fun with these awesome Gospel Tracts.  There was a John 3:16 Animated Tract. I enjoyed reading through the verse with the plastic sheet that made the verse come to life. There was a Gospel Button flip about.  This is a folded piece of heavy paper and is useful for keeping the attention of younger children. I found it a bit confusing, trying to find the right way to fold it as to continue sharing the Gospel.  I see with practice where it could be useful and handy as it is easy to slip in your pocket. There were two pop up tracts that I thought were unique and different.  One explained the house that has been prepared for us in heaven.  The other was the parable of the lost sheep.  I always thought pop up books were so much fun when I was little.  Having something pop up off the page definitely held the attention of my boys and made it memorable. There were two different bracelets.  One was silicone and one was a wordless bracelet.  Both told the story of salvation.  I liked the beaded wordless bracelet as it was tangible and something they could touch and feel as we put together. I feel it helped make it more concrete. I enjoyed going through this sampler pack with my boys.  I would recommend it as these are useful tools to help spread God's word. 

I received this sampler pack in exchange for an honest review from FlyBy Promotions, but my opinion of the product is my own!




Monday, November 13, 2017

God's Great Love For You

God's Great Love For You
Written By: Rick Warren

Book Overview:

God’s Great Love

Created the entire universe 
  And everything in it 
Including you.

God’s Great Love for You, written by #1 New York Times bestselling author and respected pastor Rick Warren, takes children on a whimsical and heartfelt journey that lets them know God’s love is with them wherever they go. With breathtaking illustrations by Chris Saunders, the simple yet poignant text comes alive as a child journeys to places far and near and discovers God’s great love is perfect, and everywhere, and will never end.

My Thoughts:

This was simply a beautiful book.  I enjoyed every aspect of this book from the words to the pictures to the soft colors. Simple and to the point yet profound and timeless message. It was great to remind my boys of the powerful message that God loves them.  I liked that it talked about things that God has done for us.  The illustrations are soft and warm and compliment the great message within the pages of this book.  I would recommend this book to somebody with young children.  It would be great for young children because they have a shorter attention span.  I must confess, I find myself picking up this book and reading through it. 

This book was given to me in exchange for an honest review from FlyBy Promotions but my opinion of the book was not hindered by that fact!

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Matt Redman Glory Song

Glory Song 
Matt Redman


Matt Redman is a singer, songwriter, worship leader and author. His songs have been a source of inspiration to me and encouragement.  This world can be a cruel place to live in. Music allows us to feel those emotions that we try to bury.  I eagerly unwrapped this CD and listened to it on my way to pick up my boys.  Each song was captivating in its own way.  This CD has 13 tracks, some featuring other artists. I think my favorite song from this CD was Gracefully Broken.  It talked about surrender and pouring out our hearts, our lives and embracing the fact that its all about His power at work in us. I would recommend purchasing this CD, it would make a perfect gift or even a simple measure of self care.  
I received this CD in exchange for an honest review from FlyBy Promotions but my opinions are my own.  


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Bless Our Gramps & Gran

The Berenstain Bears 
Bless Our Gramps & Gran

Written By Mike Berenstain


Book Overview:

In The Berenstain Bears Bless Our Gramps and Gran, the newest title in The Berenstain Bears Living Lights series, Mama, Papa, and the cubs decide it’s high time they honor Grizzly Gramps and Gran.
It’s almost Grandparents Day and the Bear family has never celebrated this special day before. So working as a team, the cubs, with a little help from Mama and Papa, come up with a fun and creative way to show Gramps and Gran just how much they are loved and appreciated.
My Thoughts:
I have many fond memories of my great grandma reading me Berenstain Bears books when I was growing up. I have always been fascinated by the stories but when I received this book to review I decided to dig a little deeper.  I read through the book and it filled my heart with happy memories. I decided to learn more about Stan and Jan Berenstain.  I was fascinated by the fact that Stan Berenstain was blind in one eye, yet created these humor filled cartoons.  By the world's standard he could not see, but yet he saw more than some people who have perfect sight. Some people can see and some people have visions. I think those with visions see some things so much clearer. This particular book is part of the Living Lights series.  I love the layout and the colors and the story, great book.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review from BookLookBloggers, but my opinion is my own!