Thursday, April 12, 2007

Don't Hate Your Enemies Just Step on Them : The Art of Loving People

Title: Don't Hate Your Enemies Just Step On Them: The Art of Loving People
Author: E.E. Jenkins
Published by Milestones International Publishers, 2006
ISBN: 0-924748-70-2

How many times have you been tempted to complain about other people? How many times have you ridiculed, complained at or been hurt by another person's actions. Surely we all have dealt with these types of situations. What is the best way to handle these situations in a God pleasing manner?

E.E. Jenkins has written a book that will help you deal with some of these destructive circumstances that you find yourself in. "Don't Hate Your Enemies Just Step on Them" will have you looking at these situations differently. Is it really the person who you hate or is it their words and actions. Its not really the individuals that are treating you this poorly. There is only one to blame: Satan. Blaming certainly has been around since the time of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. God has his reasons for putting these type of people in our lives for His purpose. In Romans 8:28 it is written "and we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

It sounds like a strange idea to actually love your enemies, doesn't it? But do you realize that God tells us to do exactly that. It is written in I John 4:7-8: " Dear friends, let us practice loving each other, for love comes from God and those who are loving and kind show that they are getting to know him better. But if a person isn't loving and kind, it shows that he doesn't know God - for God is love."

"Don't Hate Your Enemies Just Step on Them" takes a look at not judging others. It talks about making checks on yourself on how you handle these things. Complaining and its destructive damage is looked at in two chapters. The power of anger is given a chapter of its own. Looking at forgiveness and how forgiving you really are and what should motivate you to forgive others, this book has many great points.

One of the most helpful parts of this book that I found is the chapter entitled "The Power of Agreement." E.E Jenkins gives the reader suggestions as to how to agree. "Disagreement is one of the key stumbling blocks that the enemy uses to perpetuate division." E.E. Jenkins shares his acronym for AGREE which is definitely something that is worth remembering when involved in a relational dispute. He also gives you a chart of different oppositions and solutions which will help you look to the Word to help you develop a God-pleasing solution to dealing with angry and complaining people.

When being faced with destructive criticism or wondering why I must endure these type of people, I will certainly remember this book. I enjoy the way that E.E. Jenkins uses approriate Scripture verses to get his point across. would have to say this is a must read for every Christian, from young to old. You too can love others rather than hating your enemies or circumstance.

reviewed for Readerview

Saturday, April 7, 2007

31 Girl

Title: 31 Girl
Author: Mary Simpson
Publisher: Whitaker House,2005
ISBN: 0-88368-808-5
Reviewed by Lori Plach for Christian Review of Books 4/07

Are you looking for a manual for a young lady that will teach all that she needs to know about being the type of girl that God has designed her to be? If so, look no further than "31 Girl" by Mary Simpson.

Mary Simpson takes each verse of Proverbs 31 and develops a chapter around it. Each chapter has a quote found in a secular book or film. She includes the scripture verse in New International Version format. She then tells a story about her personal life that relates to that scripture verse. Each chapter has a prayer which can be used for the girl's individual prayer time. There are treasure tips included in each section which deal with everything from nail care, face care, letting others know how much they mean to you, and pedicures along with alot of other helpful advice. At the end of each chapter is a story written about one of her "31 girls" with their own experiences being their guide.

There are chapters about humility, serving the Lord with gladness and true beauty coming from within ourselves. This one book that I feel is very important for every Christian girl to have. There are pictures throughout the book which show girls having fun. There are wide variety of poems and quotations that apply to every girl no matter if she is in her teens or twenties.

Mary Simpson is very knowledgable in the Scriptures and has created a real treasury. I had a difficult laying this book down until I was finished with it. However, it could be taken one chapter a day just as easily. I am hoping to use this book as part of my curriculum for my young girls group at our church this fall. The rose theme is carried out throughout this book making this is a beautiful book in its content which outweighs its physical appearance. "31 Girl" is a must read for every girl in their walk with their Lord!

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

The Horse with the Golden Mane

Title: The Horse With the Golden Mane
Author: Russell A Vassallo
Published by Krazy Duck, 2997
ISBN: 978-0-9776739-1-9

Are you looking for a book with adventure, mystery and romance all in one volume? If that is what you are looking for, your search is over. "The Horse With the Golden Mane" has it all. There are 3 short stories in this book which encompass all three of them: adventure, mystery and romance. This is a very delightful read by a great story teller. Russell A Vassallo brings his love of animals and being a gifted storyteller to life in this book. Even you don't initially favor horses, there is a dog as a major character in the first story.

The story "Eric" deals with a man who was freed from a Nazi death camp and exiled to America. He develops an unusual friendship between him and a Doberman pinscher. It is very exciting to see how this story comes to an end as there are many twists and turns throughout. I had a difficulty laying this book down while engaged in this story.

The next is the story of "Taj." Taj is a horse who hasn't lived up to his full potential as a race horse. Grant Larsen feels a connection between him and the horse and saves his life. Perhaps the real reason for Taj's existence isn't really racing but a different purpose. He chases all over looking for where this horse could have been taken. He is amazed and surprised when he sees what Taj's purpose really is. It's a heartwarming story with a tear-jerking ending.

The title story "The Horse with the Golden Mane," is a wonderful story of undying love of a man named Pierce Bernard. He frantically searches for his wife with a self-sacrificing love. Pierce develops a bond with an abused horse. The lack of trust in humans that this animal after abuse is very well brought out. Pierce finds himself talking with the horse and it becomes evident that the horse ends up being a very close friend to Pierce. In the process of getting the horse to trust him, Pierce learns very much about himself. Will Pierce ever find his wife Maya?

I would highly recommend this book to animal lovers and short story lovers. The stories are very engaging and addictive. My wish is that Russell A Vassallo writes more books like this one. "The Horse With the Golden Mane" is an awesome book that I will long remember reading.

Written for Readerview 4/07

The 365 Day Clean Joke Book

Title: The 365 Day Clean Joke Book
Compiled by Sandy Troyer
Barbour Publishing, 2006
ISBN: 978-1-59789-650-4

Are you sick of hearing jokes that aren't funny or are poking fun of a person's nationality or hair color? Are you looking for some quality clean jokes to share around the water cooler at work? You know, ones that will not embarass you or be considered unwholesome. As it is written in Ephesians 4:29, "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths." Do you find yourself having to explain punch lines to the kids? If you have a speech to write and want to start off on a humorous note, "The 365 Day Clean Joke Book" is definitely a treasury you would want for your home library.

The jokes in this book are hilarious! There is no need to be ashamed of the content of "The 365 Day Clean Joke Book." This book could easily be enjoyed by all members of the family, except those who are too young to understand jokes yet. Each page represents one day so you can get 3 good laughs every day of the year. The content varies from "Knock knocks" to short humorous stories to delighful one liners. Its been said that laughter is good for the soul. This book is great for your soul because there are tons of laughs inside its pages.

You too can show that you have a sense of humor but the laughs don't have to come from poking fun at other people, references to sex and body parts. There are riddles and jokes on a wide variety of topics from church to animals, education to family, travel and much more. I love this book since it will definitely make my mouth filled with laughter and still be honoring my Lord and Savior while still enjoying a good laugh.

Make every day special and laughter filled, by indulging in "The 365 Day Clean Joke Book" just because its funny doesn't mean it has to be dirty!

Written for Reader Views 4/07

Monday, April 2, 2007

My Heart's at Home

Title: My Heart's at Home
Author: Jill Savage
Harvest House Publishers, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-7369-1826-8

Have you ever tried to be everything to everyone? If you are a mother, you are everything from a nurse to a counselor to a tutor. As mothers, our families are of utmost importance to us. Jill Savage has written a book which would make a terrific addition to a family library. As she states in her book, "healthy relationships set us on our relationship track for the rest of their lives. The relationships we have with our parents and our siblings serve as the foundation for all future relationships in life."

Separated into individual chapters, you can learn all the different areas that a home should be. Our homes should be a safe house, rest area, trauma unit, church, pep rally, research lab, school, museum, playground, business office, hospitality house and cultural center. At the end of the book are specific questions to ask yourself or discussion questions for reading groups to share.

There are so many great tips in this book to try and briefly describe each part would definitely be an injustice. This is a such a great source book when dealing with our job in which we have the most impact, that being a mother.

Just as your home needs to be many different places all at the same time, mothers have so many different hats to wear. Each part of a family has their specific roles and responsibilities to maintain in order for the family to be the type of family that God wants us to be. When reading this book, I found myself making many notes in a notebook, so I could use them for quick reference when a specific circumstance would arise in my life.

"My Heart's At Home" is a terrific book by a very knowledgable author. Jill Savage is the founder of Hearts at Home which is an organization commited to helping moms love their life. I would definitely love to see Jill Savage write more books as useful as this one.

written for Reader Views, April 2007

Caught Off Guard

Title: Caught Off Guard Encounters With the Unexpected God
Author: William P Smith
Published by New Growth Press, 2007

Do you ever find yourself having a question about just which way to turn when a problem or find yourself in an unusual circumstance? If you wish you had a Christian counselor to talk to when this happens. Turn to "Caught Off Guard: Encounters With the Unexpected God." William P Smith is a counselor and faculty member in the School of Biblical Counseling in Glenside, PA has written a book which will help you through some of the rough times.

Each chapter starts off with a "Case study", that is a story about a particular family who is dealing with some particular trouble at the time. William P Smith uses actual Scripture exercepts to point out how a similar situation was faced in biblical times. All Scripture references are in the New International Version. The end of each chapter gives you a list of questions to make you think of yourself in the particular circumstance.

While reading this book, I found myself realizing that I'm not alone in alot of areas. Many others have experienced much of the same as I have. The stories in this book are very encouraging and at the same time are very wonderfully written and refreshing.The stories are true and show many things about our loving God which we might not have realized by simply reading or hearing the Scripture.

I would definitely like to read more books by William P Smith. He has a very easy to read and understand style of writing. This book definitely caught me off guard, as it is rare for me to find a book that brings out the attributes of our Savior and His amazing grace for everyone