Category: christian

Book Review: The Battle Belongs to the Lord

Posted November 9, 2012 by Hillary in christian, non-fiction, Uncategorized / 1 Comment

the battle

I have always loved Joyce Meyer’s books.It seems that what ever question I am seeking I can always find the beginning or even the whole answer in one of her books. They direct me to relevant quotes in the Bible for further study and reflection.

This book was no different. In this book Joyce Myers talks about how we let things worry us and burden us when we should not. She points out that the Bible says that God will give you rest and she goes on to explain how to obtain a state of mind to where you are depending upon God entirely.

As she demonstrates this is not an always easy thing for us to accomplish. First comes prayer. She shows how ones prayer life is vital to having a relationship with God and how that can help us learn to depend entirely on on him. She also shows that too many times we only go to God when we are desperate and we start begging him for help for something. This is the wrong thing to do. Instead we should worship God at all times then when we need something we should then ask for help. Asking for help is not the be all end all of prayer life. I found this section quite enlightening. Joyce Myers goes into detail of why this is so. She does it in a way that anyone can understand. Her book is easy to read.

Another section I found fascinating was that God makes us go through silent years to where we don’t seem to be making much progress in the worldly sense but that God is grooming us and refining us to be what he meant for us to be. I read this part with rapt attention because it seems to fit my circumstances at the moment.

I found this book to be a good easy fun overall read. I learned a lot from it. It can be a little on the preachy side but nothing in the extreme. She states her lessons then backs it up with scripture.

Getting Unstuck

Posted November 2, 2012 by Hillary in christian, non-fiction, Uncategorized / 1 Comment

Faith Fridays will be a new feature that I am trying out on this blog. It will cover all different sorts of books related to the Christian faith. It will be a mix of non fiction, fiction and anywhere in between.

unstuck. The first book I will review is Unstuck. I got it through LibraryThing Early reviewers program but it sat on my shelf for months. Then I went to a revival at church. I was looking for something to read and this title jumped out at me. It is amazing how just the right book can do that. I was felling stuck myself so I opened this book and learned what the authors recommended.

This book was the result of extensive research done by collecting questionnaires from a random sample of the population. It is not biased by the author’s view.

The big thing they found was that people who read the bible and engaged with scripture 4 times or more a week was the key to growing in your faith.

The book goes on about how how to do just that. They offer advice on what it really means to engage in scripture and to have an active faith. They give bible verses and thoughts to ponder as you read. At times this is not an easy book to read as they force to to confront some truths about yourself.

This is a well written book. The style is easy to read and the authors provide engaging insights into the word of God.

Pick up this book if you are looking to grow in your faith and the hard work that it requires.

They also have a website to supplement the book it is Gotandem

On Her Own

Posted June 20, 2012 by Hillary in Amish, christian, Christian Fiction / 0 Comments

on her own

From GoodReads:Barbara Zook was devastated when her husband David was killed. Will she be able to raise their four young boys and manage her beloved David’s harness store on her own? When harness maker Paul Hilty arrives in Webster County, Missouri, he finds himself agreeing to help run Barbara’s shop. Things are going fairly well until widower Bishop John Frey comes a-courting Barbara, and Paul’s jealousy takes everyone by surprise. Will Paul try to beat out the competition or end up hightailing it back to Pennsylvania? Will Barbara marry for love or be forced to enter into a marriage of convenience?

My Review: This is a romance set in the Amish Community and with a Christian bent.

I felt sorry for Barbara  when a much older bishop started trying to court her. I did not blame her for resisting his advances. I also got mad when he stated that he wanted her so she could give him more kids. The whole thing reeked of being taken advantage of. Like all things in this kind of book though things worked out. The bishop decided he liked a woman his own age better and so ended up with her. Barbra who resisted Paul (who was her own age) advances. All she wants to do is raise her kids and work in her harness shop.

She is weak from giving birth so she accepts Paul’s help. The book goes on about how he tries to win her heart and how both wrestle with their feelings for each other then finally they end up together.

I have to admit. I felt like whacking Barbara over the head and telling her to spill her guts to Paul. I mean what’s the worst that can happen? Then again I am not Amish so maybe I am missing something here. Maybe in Amish culture a woman cant be as forward with a man. While reading I did get frustrated. Other than that the book was ok. If you like romance and/or Christian books you will like this book.

The Half Stitched Amish Quilting Club

Posted May 1, 2012 by Hillary in Amish, book review, christian / 0 Comments

amish quilting club

This was from the publisher via NetGalley.


Widow Emma Yoder needs money so that she can support herself and not feel like a burden on her family, she puts up ads for a quilting class. The resulting motley crew is not what anyone expects but she believes that God brought them to her for a reason. Everyone in the class has their own problems. As the class progresses the problems come up and Emma with her faith and patience helps people to resolve them.

One thing I loved about this book was that the problems that are featured here are problems anyone could have in real life. For example a couple that comes to class has a troubled marriage and another woman feels like she does not fit in anywhere.

The plot is excellent. There are no quick fixes but rather we watch as the charecters grow and grapple with their issues. Emma uses her faith to reach out to the students in her class. It was not preachy or anything like that. It was a simple and profound faith that showed in her words and actions. This is what I like best in Christian fiction. There are some book that come off overbearing and once people find their faith all their problems are solved. That is not the case with this book. The problems are still there but with help the characters get past them.

Another thing I love about Wanda Brunstetters novels is that she portrays the Amish and the Amish faith in a positive and accurate light. There are many misconceptions that people have and it is refreshing to see someone who knows the Amish faith tell about it in her novels. I have always been fascinated by this group and Brunstetters novels help satisfy that curiosity.

Review: 21 Ways of Finding Peace and Happiness

Posted February 22, 2012 by Hillary in book review, christian / 0 Comments

21 ways of finding peace and Happiness
From GoodReads:
In today’s world, peace is hard to come by.
When personal desires are followed, serenity
is forfeited. By submitting one’s life to God, a
peace-filled life is ensured. Maintaining peace
is a choice, says Joyce Meyer, as she discusses
how to be at peace with yourself, the importance
of having peace with God, and the paradox
that peace equals power. Joyce says peace
is one of the greatest gifts God has given us,
and is the only way to true happiness. Readers
will find 21 WAYS TO FINDING PEACE &
HAPPINESS to be a guidebook for success on
their journey
My thoughts: Joyce Myers is one of my favorite authors. I feel that her books speak to me and tell me valuable life lessons to live a better life. My reading thing at the moment is reading books on how to be more happy. It seems that this year I made up my mind that I was going to be happy no matter what. So I got some books at the library on the subject. This was one of those books.
She outlines ways to be happy that follow biblical principals. The one that stood out to me was the section that you had to pursue happiness. It doesn’t just come to you. Happiness is something that you have to work on. One way to be happy that resounded with me was to pursue peace. At first I thought that I did pursue peace but as I read I realize that I do let my temper control me a lot of the times. And that robs me of peace and happiness. In it she list such things as idle talk, gossiping and other such things that can lead to loss of peace. Right now I wonder what it is safe to talk about but upon farther reflection I realize I could talk about happy things and wish people a good day and such and leave no room for drama and that in turn would bring me peace which will increase my happiness.
Like all of her books this illuminated things that I need to work on. Even if you are not a Christian I would encourage you to read this book as it has some good guidelines to follow to increase happiness.

Review: A Cousin’s Prayer

Posted November 28, 2011 by Hillary in Amish, Book Reviews, christian / 0 Comments

 a book review for a cousins prayer
From Goodreads: Kumme to Amish country, where the simple ways of life lead to hope and healing. Katie Miler is traumatized after her boyfriend is killed in a van in which she was also a passenger. How will she find her way out of the valley of her depression? Freeman Bontrager will make any excuse to be near to Katie, hoping to win her love. But how far will he go to gain her trust. . .and her heart? What will bring this girl out of the shadows of fear, and open her heart to life—and love?
My Review: This is the second book in the Indiana Cousins series. The book can be read as a stand alone. Like the previous book before it, it focuses on one character in each book so you can see how each character grows and changes over time.
Katie is still not over the tragic death of her boyfriend Timothy who was killed in a car accident. Ever since Katie has these attacks where she has a feeling of unreality and a sense of panic and like she is going to die. Her good friend Freeman is the one who tells her it is panic attacks and helps her get over them.
Over time her and Freeman draw closer and a romance starts to brew. There is one hitch, there is a woman who wants Freeman for herself. I felt that the love story in this books was authentic and relatable. You could see where each character was coming from and it was easily to become emotionally invested in the outcome. You find yourself rooting for Katie all the way.
Like the previous book this book provided insight into the Amish lifestyle which I enjoyed. It even has some Amish vocabulary words and refers to the things that the Amish would. It also does not gloss over difficulties such as a woman spreading gossip about Katie which we can all relate to.
This is a book that I would recommend to anyone wanting to get a glimpse into the Amish way of life and for those looking for a sweet inspirational and or romance.


Review: Becoming a man of Unwavering Faith

Posted November 4, 2011 by Hillary in Book Reviews, christian / 0 Comments

becoming a man of unwavering faith

From Goodreads:

During the course of his 60-year ministry, John Osteen combined an extraordinary love for people with a vision for ministry best described in his own words: “No limits.” In this hardcover volume not only includes content from John’s sermon transcripts, but also a foreword and commentary written by his son, Joel; the principles of this “no limits” faith come alive again for a new generation.
For the moments of struggle and temptation that every man faces, and the times in life when he feels surrounded and under attack, John’s message is profoundly simple-those moments are precisely the time for an unwavering faith. In this book, John schools today’s believers in seven qualities of unwavering faith:
1. It hears and sees what the world cannot see or hear.
2. It prays earnestly even though it has already heard the answer.
3. It is strong when there is no evidence of the answer.
4. It always says, “Go Again!”
5. It goes on when there’s just a little evidence.
6. It believes for the big when it sees the little.
7. It begins with nothing but ends up doing mighty things for God.
Osteen also provides principles for those times when faith doesn’t seem to be working. BECOMING A MAN OF UNWAVERING FAITH is a guidebook to stronger faith, from a man who spent a lifetime testing its limits.

My Review: If you have ever wondered what it is like to live a life of unlimted faith then this book explains how. It describes the seven things people do to get the most out of life and how to trust God for everything. People think that faith is something you have but this book also explains that faith is something that you do. It goes into depth of each of the seven steps that you do. This book was short but there is a lot of information packed in this book.


Review: A Cousins Promise

Posted September 19, 2011 by Hillary in Amish, Book Reviews, christian, Christian Fiction / 0 Comments

a cousinf promise From Goodreads:Willkumm to the Amish country, where a tragic accident and an old beau complicate the lives of two young lovers.

My Review: A friend lent me this book. I normally would not pick up Amish Fiction but I have to say I am glad I did. This book is the first book in a trilogy. It starts with a car accident and goes on to explore what happens when a normally abled bodied person become disabled.

I liked this aspect of the book. It showed a realistic grieving process while at the same time keeping with the faith and lifestyle of the Amish community.

This trilogy was given to me because all three deals with disabilities and in one book there is a Deaf person in the storyline. I haven’t gotten to that book yet but if the first book is any indication I am looking forward to the next two books. I feel it is important to portray disabilities in books as they happen. Here the man who lost his leg in the car accident did not all of a sudden come to terms with it. The grieving process was accurately shown. While I wanted to slap the main character Wayne a few times the reader comes to understand that accepting becoming handicapped takes time and even with a person of supposedly deep and unwavering faith you can still make what seems like stupid decisions. In the end though one must accept what has happened and go on to live the best life possible. This is exactly what happens.


Review: And the Angels Were Silent

Posted August 2, 2011 by Hillary in book review, christian / 0 Comments

and the angels were silient
Max Lucado is one of my favorite Christian authors. He writes so fluidly and tight it almost as if God himself were feeding him words to say. He tone is never to condemn or to be to preachy but rather to convey the message that God really loves you and you are destined for better things in life.
In this book he examines the last week of Christ while explaining how it applies to real life. I have never thought about many of the aspects that he mentions. As always I have felt refreshed after reading one of his books.
I really enjoyed this book. You can see how his writing has evolved if you have read his earlier works. It is amazing to see.

Review: Be a Better You

Posted April 14, 2011 by Hillary in Book Reviews, christian / 0 Comments

a better you

I first heard Joel Osteen on TV and when I heard he had some books out I couldn’t resist. I checked this out from the library and I was not disappointed.

If you have heard him on TV you probably know that he is a phenomenal motivational speaker. He is also the same phenomenal motivational writer.

This book outlines the seven steps that you can take to become a better you. They mostly run along the lines of be a more positive person and have passion for life. There are also other tidbits like thank people even if they do a bad service and being grateful for where you are now. He gives advice on how you can embrace where you are at right now and how you can move forward.

Let me say that I am the kind of person that distrust organized religion. I believe in Jesus and God yes but many of the followers I don’t like. Especially when we start dealing with fundamentalists. They annoy me to no end. Having said that I still liked this book so even if you not all that religious I still think this book will appeal to some of you. There are a lot of good advice in this book.