The Prayer That Turns the World Upside Down by Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr.

225_350_book-2481-coverThe Lord’s Prayer is perhaps the most famous prayer in all of Christian history. It is often heard at funerals, weddings, convocations, and many more. Some use it as a guide, some as a daily prayer, and others as a prayer when they don’t know what to pray.

Dr. Albert Mohler Jr. has written an excellent book on how the Lord’s Prayer changed the way people look at God. Prior to this prayer, most people saw God as powerful, awesome, but also non-relational. He is a magnificent being but it was believed that He did not want an intimate relationship with His people.

Christ changed all that when the Lord’s Prayer was uttered. From the very beginning, Our Father, shows that God desires to fellowship with man as a father-son type relationship. Dr. Mohler shows just how powerful of an opening these two word are.

From here, Dr. Mohler expounds on the rest of the prayer and I would like to focus on “lead us not into temptation” at this point. Notice, that it does not say, “give us strength during temptation”. Instead, Dr. Mohler points out that the one praying is asking for wisdom from God to make choices that would not lead into temptation. The one praying is not saying, “God, I am going to do____________. Be with me so that it turns out great.”

On the contrary, the entire focus is on God and the accomplishment of His desire and will. The words “lead us not…” indicate a complete abandonment to our desires as God is the one leading and directing. I missed this so many times reading this prayer that I found Dr. Mohler’s insight a powerful realization of who is calling the shots.

Dr. Mohler has done an excellent work with this book and I highly recommend it.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

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Being a Christian by Dr. Jason K. Allen

Being a Christian coverBeing a Christian.

Many people have an idea of what a Christian should be. There is a standard of what a Christian should do and not do. However, does this line up with what the Bible teaches? Also, should a Christian’s faith affect all areas of life?

In his book, Being a Christian: How Jesus Redeems All of Life, Dr. Jason K. Allen points out that Jesus came to redeem all areas of life for His glory. Areas such as family, work, church, time, money, and others. Rather than believe that Jesus came to solely give eternal life, Dr. Allen shows that Jesus came to give abundant life in all its facets.

The area that I really enjoyed was the area of the mind. Dr. Allen points out that there has been a shift towards the emotional aspects of Christianity but that the mind should not be ignored. Rather the mind should draw one closer to Christ in the heart which is an emotional response.

I really appreciated this as I often struggle to show emotion but am an avid reader and learner. I recognized the need to take it one step further and let me mind become redeemed and connect with my heart in my relationship with Jesus.

While the material in this book is not new, per se, the style of Dr. Allen has a connectivity that others may not have. Thus, this book should be a great resource for all those who use it and perhaps use it often.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

How to Think by Alan Jacobs


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When I first saw this book it piqued my interest as I enjoy philosophy and the study of logic. As I began to read this book I found that it was an enlightening read and challenged. Then the book took a turn that was unexpected for me. Rather than get into techniques of logic and reasoning, the author gave examples of what happens when people begin to think or are challenged to think contrary to their presently held viewpoints.

This forced me to examine some areas in my own life where I have been recently asked to consider a different view but struggled to do so. This book aided me by realizing that abandoning my currently held convictions is not wise. Rather, it is more prudent to contrast two ideas to see if one is superior to the other with the idea of arriving at a settled conviction. A settled conviction then gives a foundation that allows for more ideas to be adhered to and to dismiss others. How to Think is then a great resource for this endeavor.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Boundaries Updated and Expanded by Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend

225_350_book-2408-coverI remember reading Boundaries some time ago and wanted to know how much has changed in this new edition. The original was amazing and, being written 25 years ago, would still hope up in today’s word. Yet, things have changed and new mediums are being used. It is here that I want to focus and review the information presented for the digital age.

The digital age has brought about some challenges to the idea of boundaries. Prior to smartphones, the office work stayed at the office. Since the smartphone, work emails, calendars, and conversations can continue after someone leaves the office. This can create an environment where work never truly leaves someone.

In addition, technology has invaded our personal lives to the point that some feel stress and anxiety if a smartphone has been lost, even if a for a few minutes. I can even recall a time when I was stopped at a traffic light and noticed a car with four passengers looking down at their phones instead of engaging in conversation with each other.

Drs. Cloud and Townsend point out that intentional removal of these devices is needed to connect with someone in a non-digital manner. For this reason alone I recommend this book with the rest of the material being equally beneficial. Too much of time is being invaded and actions must be taken to claim a life back from the digital bog that threatens to drown a soul.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Spurgeon Journal

Spurgeon JournalThis journal is hardbound, lined journal with some good paper and size so as to be easy to keep notes, thoughts, etc. while reading a Bible or book. While the description on the website mentions quotes from Spurgeon’s sermons, it should be noted that these quotes are not on every page. Thus, this is not a devotional journal in that it does not have thoughts to spark thought, reflections, etc.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Developing the Leader Within You 2.0 By John Maxwell

225_350_book-2479-coverI am a dedicated reader of John Maxwell’s book. I try to get my hands on as much of his material as I can. So, when the opportunity to review his latest book arose, Developing the Leader Within You 2.0, I was excited. Plus, it was an update of a book that has had an impact on my life. I could not wait.

I was surprised to see how much of this book was Maxwell simply using material from other books that he has written in the last decade or so. If you have read anything from Maxwell during that time period then most of what is in this book will be a retelling of that material. While I am not disappointed, I was a bit let down as I was hoping for some new material.

That said, this book is a compiling of works Maxwell has written in the last 10 years and for those who are not familiar with Maxwell’s leadership knowledge this book is a great place to begin. For those who are familiar, it is a bit of the same old, same old.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Whisper by Mark Batterson

cover-whisperMark Batterson has written a book to help those hear the voice of God. Many want to hear God’s voice but are unsure of how God talks to us. Most would list the Bible and prayer but Batterson shows that there are more ways God speaks to His followers. Batterson gives seven ways in which God speaks:

  1. Scripture
  2. Desires
  3. Doors
  4. Dreams
  5. People
  6. Promptings
  7. Pain

As I read this book I was impressed by the level to which Batterson went to demonstrate how God uses the above method to speak to His followers. I must admit that I struggle with desires and dreams as I fear both can be easily misunderstood. Batterson however gives example of what to look for in both and it is something that I will investigate further.

Those aside, this is an interesting read and hopefully will prompt good conversation on how to hear God.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.