The books in this post have been provided to me from the publisher for the purpose of giving an honest review. While the books were provided to me free of charge, the thoughts and opinions on these books are my own.
The Bible is a really big, God sized, story of redemption from creation to revelation. Among the pages are books, chapters, and verses that reveal this big story through small stories made up of Biblical heroes and tales of miracles. We see free will, judgement, grace, and forgiveness unfold throughout the pages. Our eyes are opened to The Gospel and hearts are pressed forward into The Great Commission. As many times as we can slide our hand across the pages, and our eyes soak in every Word, there is a beautiful opportunity to learn from others who are in this same faith journey. We go to services on the weekend, participate in small group Bible studies, attend conferences, and even watch sermons and speakers online.
We do this because we desire to understand more, learn more. I was thrilled by The Good Book by Deron Spoo because it is a resource that I can put into my personal study library and revisit often. Between the covers, Deron Spoo has explored forty major themes found in the Bible. Spoo doesn’t just set us down to tell us what he thinks, but begins each theme on the foundations of the Scriptures in full content, not just a random verse or two. Then he expounds upon the theme from the scripture and encourages personal reflection at the end of the chapter. This isn’t just a book for reading, but a book for study, sharing, and for future reference.
I’d recommend this book for new believers who are trying to grapple with the entirety of the Bible; as well as seasoned believers who may enjoy a fresh perspective.
I have had my hands on this book for a little bit, I wanted to do this book justice and held onto it until after the kids were out of school. Rest is incredibly important, for our body and for our mind. Also, for our soul.
As I have mentioned in the past on the blog, I have an autoimmune disease. It can leave me feeling beat down and fatigued… even after a full night of sleep. Part of getting a hold on my health was making decisions about what I would eat, how I would spend my energy, and the products I use on my body. I needed to detox my body of all the bad things that could be getting in the way of my health. This was an important step in healing my body so that I could do all that I wanted to with my life, my time, my energy.
Just like our bodies can be burdened by what we eat and drink, our heart and soul can be burdened by the sin of the world. There are our own personal sins of days past that may haunt us, the sins of others which create anger and resentment; even the daily news can break our hearts for what is happening all around us. If I want to improve my physical health, I must be mindful of what I eat and drink, put onto my body, and what I do with my body. So much I take tender care with my heart and soul. We can’t take care of the outside of the temple, and let the inside rot away or cave in under the burdens of the world.
Whispers of Rest by Bonnie Gray walk us through 40 days of detoxing our soul through devotions that remind us of how God sees us (as beloved) and what that means in our choices, our daily lives, our future dreams, and healing from the inside out. Each day explores the theme for that day, The Word, coupled with prayers and reflections, and calls to action to reclaim our mental, spiritual, and physical selves.
Remarkable Faith by Shauna Letellier is a fantastic book, truly. Letellier explores those incidences in Biblical history where the faith of others caused Jesus to take pause. These were people that remained unnamed and yet we talk about them to day. We call her the “woman with the blood disorder”, and we call him the Roman Centurion. There are others too, whom we know just by their affliction, pain, tragedy… and their display of remarkable faith.
I can’t recall reading a book from this perspective, where the focus was on the nameless people who had a faith that was stronger than their affliction; and that is so relevant today. These are the true stories of people whom we could (and probably do) encounter in our churches every day, on the streets as we pass by, and even in the dynamics of our own families. I think this would be a fantastic book for a small group, or even potentially a starting point for a sermon series.
I think of so many women, in particular, who feel unseen. These nine people remind us that even those who names may be lost to history were far from unseen. They were known by God who created them, known by the Savior who marveled at their faith