Book Review · Books

The Most Beautiful Disaster

I can’t deny that the berry color on the cover of The Most Beautiful Disaster drew me in. What drew me in even more so, is Hope’s personal story of redemption. Airing one’s dirty laundry in order to help others takes cojones and bravery.

Hope shares her life’s journey through having an affair while being a pastor’s wife and having her own ministry. She shares about the aftermath and all it took for her to gain back redemption. This memoir isn’t an easy read emotionally or spiritually. Hope gives helpful end of chapter sections called: Think About This and Scripture to Meditate On. She doesn’t merely share her very deeply raw story, but gives guidance on how we are raised helps mold how we handle future relationships.

What I love most about Hope’s memoir is how she encourages us, no matter what life has thrown at us, by our own choices aka consequences that we can lift out of our dark mire through taking it to God, asking for forgiveness and starting fresh. Life doesn’t have to be crappy. Even if it currently is we can work through it and clean it off.

I received my complimentary copy of The Most Beautiful Disaster by Hope Carpenter from Faith Words. The views are mine and my own choice. This memoir I think would make a great women’s Bible study read. I think it’s a topic that is taboo and kept hush unless the media gets wind of it, if you are a big name. None of us are ‘arrived’ and I think it would help women to see they aren’t alone.

Book Review · Books

How To Age Without Getting Old

I’m generally in the middle age era of my life and it feels like it arrived in the blink of an eye. One moment I was in grade school, next dealing with the dramas of high and next thing I know I’m feeling old. Funny thing is I don’t look my age thanks to not wearing much makeup and not being a fan of sunbathing. Needless to say reading a book about aging without getting old sounds just right for me.

In Joyce Meyer’s newest upcoming book she delves into the topic of aging and the ways in which she’s come to terms with getting older. She provides stories from her own life and offers Biblical encouragement. At the end of each chapter is a quote by an anonymous person on wisdom they want to offer.

I may be considered too young for this particular title, but actually I think I’m just right for it, or gasp a little behind on needing it. This book makes you think over your life and the choices you’ve made and are making. This book helps encourage me to want to live a long life. That’s why I love talking with elderly people. They offer wisdom from living a long full life.

I received my complimentary copy of How To Age Without Getting Old by Joyce Meyer from Faith Words. The views are my own and my choice. If you are a fan of Joyce Meyer or are just hearing about her I highly recommend this little volume.

Personal

Ambush Evangelism

I was excited to have a Bible study with a new friend. What I encountered was a tag team spiritual ambush. I explained that I was raised in the church and am a believer. I was asked to share what things, sins are blocking me from my walk with Jesus. If I just met you I’m not going to bare my soul right out of the gate. Then I was asked if I could study the next day. I explained I have plans and tried for next week. Well that didn’t go over well. There are others committed and they wouldn’t want to give up a spot if I’m not committed. I felt as though I was chatting with Jehovah Witnesses and they were nondenominational Christians.

You meant well. You saw it as an opportunity to share which scripture meant to you and why, but instead the study made me want to throw up afterwards. If you are trying to make disciples I’d wager you just may be scaring away lapsed believers. I know you don’t sugarcoat what the Bible says, but after that experience I don’t trust you to study with you again. When I think of a Bible study I think of it being an open discussion about the scripture, not an interrogation thrown at me. Also, having the new person read the verses? I’m not opposed to reading it, but to me that puts a lot of pressure on the new person.

I feel used. Faith is personal. It’s something deep. I feel brow beaten this morning. I still would love a Christian Kindred Spirit, but that incident has put a sour taste in my mouth.

Book Review · Books

Get Out Of Your Head

Do you live in your head? I sure do. I’m a dreamer, worrier and the hamster is constantly doing laps in his cage. Sometimes I have to tell my mind to, “Shut up,” because it won’t be quiet. It’s exhausting. How can I tackle this? Enter in the book Get Out Of My Head.

The author, Jennie Allen is personable and forthright about her own journey to get out of her own head, to learn how to have a choice in the thoughts you think. She provides ways we can take our thoughts captive to Jesus versus allowing them to control our lives.

What we believe shapes our thinking and how we react to our life. One thing Jennie shares that hits home is one thing: “I have a choice.” It sounds simple, but I think may be a tad more challenging to remember every time we have a thought. We have a choice in how we will choose to react to the thought, or even if we’ll accept the thought we are having.

As a believer Jennie shares how we can take our thought captive to Jesus. Satan wants to keep our mind muddled, to keep us enslaved. The more mental distractions we can have the more we have trouble battling our thoughts.

I know the idea of having silence is unheard of. We constantly are bombarded with visual and audible distractions clamoring for our attention. Sitting in full quiet is not popular because then we’ll actually hear our inner thoughts, we just might be convicted if we get quiet. We just may hear God speak within our being silent.

I received my complimentary digital copy of Get Out Of My Head by Jennie Allen from Waterbrook/Multnomah, care of NetGalley. The views are mine and of my own will. This book is helpful, convicting and educational. In a world filled with anxiety being on the rise I’d highly recommend it. Even if you aren’t a Christian there are still helpful things you can glean from reading Jennie’s book.

Book Review · Books

Awful Beautiful Life

I just finished the last page. Becky Powell’s memoir is memorizing in its crushing, Hellish storyline. Honestly I’m shocked her faith held out through her whole ordeal. That’s how faithful God is. I can’t fathom having a spouse, or family member chose suicide. Just that mere tragedy alone is mental breakdown territory, but Becky’s faith surged on day one after her husband, Mark’s passing. She started her day off reading her Bible. Heck I would be too, mixed between sobbing hard or raging to be able to sit and read the Bible. I’d most likely be mad at God. I’m sure Becky struggled with that, but she pressed on in trusting Him when the average person would be like, “Not now.”

Not only did Becky deal with the passing of her spouse and best friend, but she had to solider on to muddle through the financial scandal her husband left her with. This is a whole can of worms topic. So many marriages have the traditional role of the husband strictly handling the finances while the wife takes care of the home and children. I vote for wives to be fully aware of and involved when it comes to their team finances.

I’m still mentally and emotionally processing this memoir. It was so intense, powerful, and such a testament to how life can turn crappy, but God is still there along side you.

I received my complimentary copy of Awful Beautiful Life by Becky Powell with Katherine Reay from Faith Words. The views are mine and of my own choice. Thank you Faith Words, Hatchett Book Group for the opportunity to read such a beautiful book. It’s going to be a while before I’ll be able to come back to earth once this book hangover subsides.

Book Review · Books

Dare To See

This book cover does not do the meat of this book justice. Dare To See is a collection of vignettes from Katie’s life and how God has changed her life. Each chapter is unique and covers different subjects from fitting in at school growing up, to being single and buying your own home, to going through the journey of adoption. Katie writes in such a way you feel as though she’s your best friend sharing with you.

If you are new on your Christian walk, a seasoned believer, or wondering what it all means this is a great book to pick out. Katie shares her faith through the different life stories she shares and doesn’t dumb it down, or go over your head. I found each chapter relatable to my own life and things I have gone through. I am at an interesting place in my faith. This book wasn’t Christianese in verbiage, which could have been triggering for me, so I’d even recommend it to those burnt by the church. This book is actually spiritually comforting.

I received my complimentary copy of Dare To See by Katie Brown from Faith Words. The views are mine and of my own will. I don’t have TV (shocking!), so I have never heard of Katie Brown and her TV show, but this woman of faith is the real deal. She is not showy, fake, but genuine in her love for God and her faith story is relatable. I have read a lot of Christian Living books and this one is a new favorite of mine. I look forward to reading more books by Katie.

Book Review · Books

Girl Wash Your Face

If a book ever felt like coffee with your best friend this is that kind of book. Girl Wash Your Face sounds like it’d be a beauty book about facial cleansing products, but it’s more than reminding you to keep beautified. Rachel talks about the lies we’ve believed as women socially and within the church. She also, shares stories from her life that aren’t easy to publicly talk about. Some of the topics she tackles are: contentment, sex, motherhood, body image, and so, much more.

Rachel, to me, comes across through her book as one of those pretty, put together ladies who looks all coiffed and perfect, but I know she’s like all of us with everyday struggles. I can understand her love of Los Angeles and California in general. There’s something about Hollywood that has a dreamy, fairytale appeal. I’ve been in the audience of a kid’s show when I was in grade school. That experience ripped off my rose colored glasses on what the entertainment industry can be like. My dreams of acting got a rude wake up call. I can relate to her wanting a name brand purse because once I discovered Poshmark, watch out purse addiction. For some reason I fell in love with the brand Dagne Dover. Rachel goes beyond skin deep in what she personally shares.

I received a complimentary digital copy of Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis from Thomas Nelson via NetGalley. The views expressed are of my own accord and mine only. I enjoyed this book so much I bought myself a physical copy to keep. This book is a short read, but full of a lot of empowerment. I can’t wait to go read her novels she wrote. Keep up writing Rachel. I want to read more of your work.

Book Review · Books

Healing The Soul Of A Woman

Do you have a lot of past wounds whether they be emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual? If so, you aren’t alone. Joyce Meyer’s recent release handles this topic in depth. The cover of this book is of a beautiful rose in bloom. It’s vibrant in color and perfection. A woman is a like a flower in that she can only bloom when she feels safe, cherished and loved.

Joyce has her own stories of past abuse that she survived and this helped spur her on to want to help other women. This book is her reaching out, to give you the spiritual tools to aid in your healing. Joyce covers topics like confidence, codependency, creating healthy boundaries, liking who you are, and more. She also, covers topics about faith, God, the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and how God wants to heal wounds so we can be free.

This book may not be long, but the meat on the inside is rich with flavor. Each topic may not always be easy to stomach (conviction anyone?), but I think this book will help you start on your journey to healing.

I received a complimentary copy of Healing The Soul Of A Woman by Joyce Meyer from Faith Words. I am a fan of Joyce Meyer. She doesn’t hold back truth even if it comes across harsh. She is very frank and she has no qualms in telling it like it is. Usually this quality is a turn off for me, but Joyce does it in a firm, loving manner. If my grandma had been a preacher then she would have been a lot like Joyce.

Book Review · Books

The Sparkle Effect

Even though I’m more of a tomboy than a girlie girl the title of The Sparkle Effect captured my attention. This book has a cute name, but the contents are a spiritual powerhouse of a wake up call to your soul. This book is not a fast read. You can try to read through it quickly, but it begs to be savored and respected. Kristen writes from the heart with stories from her personal Christian walk, the struggles and triumphs she’s faced, as well as a prayer at the end of each chapter along with applicable Bible verses.

I enjoyed reading Kristen’s book. Some of it I honestly found a little schmaltzy in its Christianese language, but I also, think this book is meant to be reread multiple times. There are spiritual diamonds inside and only one reading scratches the surface.

Kristen is the epitome of gorgeous. She brings to mind a childhood friend of mine I always thought of as having it all together: beauty, brains, a perfect life. I know that’s a lie and no one has a perfect life. I like that Kristen is forthright in how her life truly is.

If you need a book that will inspire and humble you then this book will rock your world. This book is geared for women. I wonder what countless Christian young ladies lives would be like if they were gifted Kristen’s book at the start of high school or college?

I received a complimentary copy of The Sparkle Effect by Kristen Dalton Wolfe from Faith Words. The views expressed are only mine. Thank you Kristen for being an open book, to shine a light for those who need a light to help guide them on their Christian walk.

Book Review · Books

Get Weird

I’ve never considered myself normal by society’s standards. I was never part of the popular crowd growing up. I tried my best to fit in, but the popular kids were always snotty and mean. I always befriended the underdogs in my class.

I was the bookworm at school growing up. Ever since 2nd grade when reading independently took off I’ve always had a book with me. I enjoyed going to the school and local library. I was the nerd who never had the popular clothing brands.

Get Weird is about finding out what makes you weird, different, unique and owning it. It’s not easy when TV, society, social media is constantly blaring hype on what we supposedly need in our life. This book gives examples of those who have paved the way for letting their weirdness shine.

I received a complimentary copy of Get Weird by CJ Casciotta from Faith Words. Opinions expressed in this review are strictly my own. This review is sponsored by Faith Words. If you think outside the box, consider yourself weird, unique and quirky you will love this book.