Book Review: The Tears of Gethsemane by Deborah Faulks

The Tears of Gethsemane by Deborah Faulks

The Tears of Gethsemane by Deborah Faulks was a difficult book for me to read and review.  It is very different from most books regarding Christianity.

When I first started reading this book, it was difficult for me to concentrate on it.  I started it over several times because I just wasn’t getting it.

I started to just set it aside for later, but then a prompting told me I really needed to get into this book.  I said multiple prayers and then dug into it.

Once I was able to quiet my mind, I was able to really understand what the author is trying to say.

Suzanne and I are from a charismatic, fundamentalist background.  This being said, we a have a few fundamental theological differences, but the overall feel and message of the book is completely in keeping with our beliefs.

This is not the kind of book one should just plow right through,  It is the kind of book that one should read with a lot of prayer and reflection.  One should keep their favorite translation of the Holy Bible handy and probably another translation to help when one has questions.

The Tears of Gethsemane would make a great small group Bible study. This would probably be the best way to approach it.

Perhaps a group of Christians should take one chapter at a time and spend a week reading and re-reading it as well as prayerfully considering it.  Then, they could come together and discuss it in more detail.

If you miss this book, you have probably missed a blessing.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

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Book Review: Together With Christ: A Dating Couples Devotional: 52 Devotions and Bible Studies to Nurture Your Relationship by Chelsea Damon

Together With Christ: A Dating Couples Devotional: 52 Devotions and Bible Studies to Nurture Your Relationship by Chelsea Damon

Christians are instructed in the Bible not to be unequally yoked. In the Old Testament, the Israelites are instructed not to marry people from the occupied lands. The reason for this is that we are often enticed to follow the gods of the other people.

In today’s modern world, this translates into Christians not being in a relationship with non-Christians for the same reason.  After a while, we tend to gravitate towards the non-Christian lifestyle of the other.

This is where Together With Christ: A Dating Couples Devotional: 52 Devotions and Bible Studies to Nurture Your Relationship by Chelsea Damon can help dating couples.  It can even help newlyweds and not-so-newlyweds, as well.

This book presents 52 weekly devotions designed for couples to read and discuss together.  The subjects covered are very important to couples who are striving to have a Christian relationship and a successful marriage.

If a couple will sit down together and truly discuss each weekly devotion, they stand a much better chance at a successful marriage than they would if they did not.

Together With Christ also makes a great text for a small group Bible study.  Your church should strongly consider this.

If your families are from different Christian denominations, it would be well to sit down with both sides of the new family separately, and maybe even together, to work through this book.

Remember, one must put God in charge of your married life.  Therefore, if marriage is a good thing right now, it will be a good thing a year from now.  Don’t rush it; grow together and give your marriage the best chance at success that you can. Together With Christ will help you to do that.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: God Finds Us: A Book about Being Found by Kristen McCurry Illustrated by Jennifer Hilton

God Finds Us: A Book about Being Found by Kristen McCurry Illustrated by Jennifer Hilton

If you are a grandparent, by now you have read and seen just about every kids book there is.  Isn’t it great when you find a book that is age appropriate for a very young child that teaches about God while teaching the child other things, too?

You don’t have to have a degree in child psychology to know that peekaboo is fun for the child AND the adult.  But, it teaches the child about object permanence.

God Finds Us helps children to learn that just because they can’t see something doesn’t mean it isn’t there.  Once you have taught the child that, good luck on convincing them that one of those blue guys from the movie isn’t hiding in his closet.

Once the child learns that just because they cannot see something that minute doesn’t mean it no longer exists, the child can more easily understand that God is there even when we don’t see Him.

God Finds Us will make a great gift for your child, grandchild, or other child.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie!  is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar by Zig Ziglar and Dwight “Ike” Reighard

The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar by Zig Ziglar and Dwight “Ike” Reighard

For some time now, The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar by Zig Ziglar and Dwight “Ike” Reighard has been a part of our lives here at McClendon Villa.  We would love to tell you that we read it every day, but that would not be the case; we do slip up from time to time.

We love the way this devotion has a different devotion for every day of the year, except February 29.  On leap day, we just have to read the devotion for a different day twice that year. That also makes it a good day to catch up on any that got missed due to life’s challenges.

We believe this devotion written, in part, by the inspirational Zig Ziglar, makes a great source for daily devotions to be read together by the whole family, including pets.

And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mark 16:15 KJV

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

Mark 16:15 NIV

These devotions, like most others, are short and to the point.  This makes it good for reading to the family since those young ones with short attention spans aren’t apt to lose focus during the reading.

We have been big fans of the late Zig Ziglar for many years and are glad that he put his time, along with that of Dwight “Ike” Reighard, into creating this book for us.

The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar would make a lovely gift for anyone, especially in the imitation leather binding.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: Bigger Than Business: Real-World Stories of Business Owners Living Their Purpose by Jeff Holler

Bigger Than Business: Real-World Stories of Business Owners Living Their Purpose by Jeff Holler

I, David, love to read case stories of businesses.  I especially love to read the stories of failing businesses that were able to pull off a “Hail Mary” and turn around to greatness.

Both Suzanne and I love to read inspirational stories about Christians beating all the odds and growing in their faith.

Bigger Than Business Real-World Stories of Business Owners Living Their Purpose by Jeff Holler has all those elements and more.

Nowhere in the Bible will you find that God instructs anyone to go into debt for any reason. Just try to find that in the Bible.

In several stories in Bigger than Business you find where not having debt meant that the business was able to take advantage of opportunities because the economic climate favored those with cash.  Several of these stories told of companies working to pay off their debt.

Most of these stories told of how they gave their tithe and then gave above and beyond that as the business grew. 10% of EBITDA* is given to the church, not other charities. The tithe goes to the storehouse.

These stories are wonderful and inspiring.  The stories are well-written and give a good bit of detail on the business before it got into trouble or before it even got started.

Many of these stories tell of a leap of faith, or in some cases, constant leaps of faith.  Some of these stories show that when you are faced with the impossible in your business or other parts of your life, you have to Let go and Let God.

Bigger than Business will make a wonderful gift for any Christian, whether they are in business or not.  It would also make a great gift to someone who isn’t a Christian who needs a little help in coming to Christ.

If your business needs a faith lift, this book is for you.

*Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: The Gifted Journey: Five Transformative Steps to Uncovering Your Unique Path by Stephanie Moore

The Gifted Journey: Five Transformative Steps to Uncovering Your Unique Path by Stephanie Moore

If you are struggling with who you are and wondering who you are meant to be, The Gifted Journey: Five Transformative Steps to Uncovering Your Unique Path by Stephanie Moore may help you find the answers.

This book is designed to help you through different steps to finding what you intend to be in each part of you life.

Are you meant to be a singer?  Are you meant to be the next great poet?  Regardless of where your passion in life lies, the book will help you realize that your entire life has been spent pursuing this goal, you just didn’t know it.

We highly recommend The Gifted Journey to help you find your balance or, as we say at How to Manage Your Monkey, your life recipe.  This book is well-written and well-thought out. We think you should give this to everyone on your gift giving list.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book.  We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: The Chicken Runs at Midnight: A Daughter’s Message from Heaven That Changed a Father’s Heart and Won a World Series by Tom Friend with a Forward by Tim Kurkjian

The Chicken Runs at Midnight: A Daughter’s Message from Heaven That Changed a Father’s Heart and Won a World Series by Tom Friend with a Forward by Tim Kurkjian

“The Chicken Runs at Midnight”, it kind of sounds like one of those nonsensical codes we used to hear about in spy thriller spoofs.

Instead, this was really a miraculous message from a teenage girl who had gone to be with our Lord, to her family.

The book The Chicken Runs at Midnight: A Daughter’s Message from Heaven That Changed a Father’s Heart and Won a World Series by Tom Friend with a Foreword by Tim Kurkjian shows readers that it is also a message to all families. This would make a good Focus on The Family book.

There are multiple Christian and other messages in this book. One of the most important ones is that we, as parents, may not realize how every word we say to a child changes the child’s life, whether it be for good or for bad.

Speaking as one who has been in a coma, I (David) know that the advice given by the nurse was exactly right. People in comas do hear and understand everything that is going on around them. The family did the right thing.

We give The Chicken Runs at Midnight all five stars and five boxes of facial tissue to wipe away the tears. Happy tears and sad tears. This book is extremely well written. In this day of books being published at a super fast rate, they often miss wrong spellings of words, bad grammar, and editing problems. I found none in this book. A rare case indeed.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: Chasing the Merry-Go-Round: A True Story by Kelly Bargabos

Chasing the Merry-Go-Round: A True Story by Kelly Bargabos

Chasing the Merry-Go-Round by Kelly Bargabos is a touching story of the devotion of a sister for her little brother. He was adopted into her family after a traumatic start in life. From the moment she saw him, she felt led to be there always for him, to take care of him, to love him.

Over the years, it became evident that something was holding him back, slowing him down in relation to the rest of the world. Ms. Bargabos fought the system to find out what that “something” was and to get her brother Bobby the help that he needed and deserved.

As Ms. Bargabos was fighting for her brother, she also had heartbreak on an even more personal level. Her marriage was falling apart. We learn more about the effects of substance abuse on her early childhood and how it has affected her relationships along the way.

This book deals with the effects of abuse, physical and substance, on children and those around them. Not all scars are evident at first.

Ultimately, it is a story of love, devotion, and faith.

If you enjoy learning more about the lives of others, then Chasing the Merry-Go-Round is the story for you.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Book Review: How to Win a Soul to Christ and Make It a Lifestyle: Making Soul Winning Easy by Linda D. Casraiss

How to Win a Soul to Christ and Make It a Lifestyle: Making Soul Winning Easy by Linda D. Casraiss

The title How to Win a Soul to Christ and Make It a Lifestyle: Making Soul Winning Easy by Linda D. Casraiss sets a lofty goal for the author and the reader. Does it accomplish what it promises?

Actually, it doesn’t. After reading this book, Christians are still going to have questions and doubts. However, Casraiss does give her readers some great insights and many scripture references to help one learn a little more about leading a non-believer to Christ.

Many people out there are praying for their loved ones to be saved. Often, that loved one is not interested in hearing the Word again from the one who is praying for them. But, they are interested in hearing a fresh perspective from someone else. You could be that someone.

By reading this book and dedicating yourself to a lot of prayer and reflection, you just might feel a little more like you are able to win someone to Christ.

We give How to Win a Soul to Christ and Make It a Lifestyle all five stars. We think that it is an excellent resource and that it could be very helpful.

This would make an absolutely wonderful text for your small group Bible study. A group could get together in the church and support and encourage one another. We think your church would greatly benefit from such a plan.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

PS Annie! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Press Release: 88,000+ Campers Become ‘Strong’ in Christ at 771 Fellowship of Christian Athletes Camps This Summer

88,000+ Campers Become ‘Strong’ in Christ at 771 Fellowship of Christian Athletes Camps This Summer

Eternal Impact for Christ Made, as 88,317 Coaches and Athletes Attend Hundreds of FCA Camps in 43 States and 50 Countries

KANSAS CITY, Mo.—There is strength in numbers.

That’s certainly true of Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ (FCA, www.fca.org) popular and life-changing 2018 Camps program.

For the successful 2018 season, FCA welcomed 88,317 coaches and athletes who attended 771 Camps in 43 states across the country and 50 nations around the world.

This summer’s FCA Camps season impacted and transformed lives through outstanding competition and spiritual growth, with the 2018 Camps theme of “Strong,” based on the Bible verse 2 Timothy 4:7: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.”

2-Timothy-4-7_8320_500

“We are so thankful to God for the life-changing impact experienced at hundreds of FCA Camps this summer,” said FCA President and CEO Shane Williamson. “Transforming the world for Christ through the influence of coaches and athletes has been a central focus of FCA since 1954. Now, more than six decades later, we are still humbled to hear from those whose lives were changed through FCA Camps, and we pray this amazing Camps experience will continue for many years to come so even more can make a difference for Jesus through the sports they love.”

This summer, in addition to those who deepened their faith at FCA Camps, 5,097 campers also made first-time commitments to Christ, and 9,819 recommitted their lives to the Lord.

For the immensely successful and popular Camps ministry, FCA takes the best attributes of both athletic- and spiritual-focused camp events and combines them into an athletic/spiritual experience like none other. Camps also remove athletes and coaches from the routine of their sport, friends, co-workers and community, and place them into an exciting, healthy, athletic environment allowing them to pursue their passion for sport and clearly see and hear Christ’s passion for them.

Competitors who wanted to reach their potential through comprehensive athletic, spiritual and leadership training attended a variety of camps, which include Sports Camps, Leadership Camps, Coaches Camps, Power Camps, Team Camps and Partnership Camps. Learn more through FCA’s 2018 digital Camps impact report.

FCA is also gearing up for its 15th annual student-led and student-driven Fields of Faith events on Oct. 10, where student-athletes, coaches, parents and community members will worship together, hear from inspiring speakers, pray and commit to Bible reading at upwards of 500 gatherings on athletic fields in the U.S. and globally.

Last fall, thousands of lives were changed eternally on 521 fields across the country, as the 2017 event set a new record with 198,000 in attendance. Even more important, 6,213 made first-time faith commitments, 5,015 recommitted their lives to Christ, and 6,494 committed to reading their Bible.

Those interested in bringing Fields of Faith to their area may visit www.fieldsoffaith.com for more information on how to host a field event, sign up to attend a field or register a field. For details on how to become involved with FCA on campus, or to start an FCA presence at school, visit www.fca.org/get-involved.

Read more about FCA here. For more information about the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, visit FCA’s web site at www.fca.org, its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/fcafans or its Twitter feed @fcanews.