Friday, December 30, 2011

My Favorite Bible: The Best Loved Stories of the Bible

Rondi DeBoer and Christine Tangvald
Illustrated by Ariel Pang
Price: $16.99
ISBN: 978-0-8007-1956-2
ISBN-10: 0-8007-1956-5
Dimensions: 6 x 7.5
Number of pages: 384
Carton Quantity: 24
Publication Date: Aug. 11
Formats: Hardcover

This beautifully illustrated version of Bible stories is written as a guide for parents of young children to introduce the truths of scripture to children at an early age. As the subtitle suggests, the book is a compilation of various stories from the Old and New Testament. Along with a “Faith Foundation”, a “Key Verse” and “Family Fun” suggestions; this delightful book would appeal to children from ages 3 – 8. Early readers will enjoy reading the words in the larger font, while a parent or older sibling could read the rest of the story. One example of the writing style used in this book can be found on pages 234 and 235. In the story called “Lazarus Lives”; a simple picture of Jesus looking up into a mauve and white sky with tears streaming down his face with the words “Jesus wept.” in a large font, followed by “His tears fell like raindrops in a dark storm.” in a smaller font. Ariel Pang illustrates the stories in simple, colorful and appealing ways.
The Family Talk section following this story depicts the concept of “Jesus has power over Death” as the Faith Foundation, and gives John 11:25-26 as the Key Verse. (Scripture is taken from GOD’S WORD®, © 1995 God’s Word to the Nations.) This version of the Bible is simple and readable; appropriate for younger readers. The authors, mother and daughter team; Randi DeBoer and Christine Tangvald suggest in the Note to Adults, that parents consider making a Bible Story Binder to go along with the reading of this book as a place to save artwork that the child creates as they progress through the book. Another example of how children can be engaged in the reading of this book is the Seek and Find Fun; there are 77 butterflies illustrated throughout the book for children to discover as they look at the illustrations.
Finally, the authors encourage not only the reading of this book with children, but they point to the importance of praying with them. I look forward to sharing this book with my grandchildren and a valuable resource for the children I teach in Children’s Church.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of NepalLittle Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal by Conor Grennan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

In the book "Little Princes", Conor Grennan, shares his journey from volunteering at an orphanage in Nepal for three months to returning after a year to spend more time with the children and eventually take huge personal risks to return them to their home villages and reuniting many with families that didn't even know that their family members were still alive. This book was personally interesting to me as my daughter and her husband have also volunteered with a children's home in Nepal and have returned to start another home for children in Nepal. I found the book to be a great read; sometimes very funny, other times very sad and above all written from a humble and unpretentious point of view.

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Monday, August 15, 2011

Book Review of “Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door” By Josh McDowell and Bob Hostetler

Josh McDowell, a well known Christian author and apologist and Bob Hostetler, also an author, editor and pastor have partnered together to examine 42 popular myths regarding God, Jesus, the Bible, the resurrection, religion, Christianity, life and happiness. The authors have co-authored 11 books altogether. McDowell, originally an agnostic who set out “to refute Christianity and prove it to be a joke”, could not do that based on the evidences that he discovered.
Each brief chapter is followed by a study guide called “Brain Food” to give the reader an opportunity to do their own study of scriptures relating to the myth just exposed. While written for a wide age and reading range; “Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door” is clearly geared for youth ages 12 and up. Adults will also find much food for thought even if they consider themselves to be well grounded in their beliefs about Christianity. Reading this book has challenged me to reexamine what my beliefs are, why I started believing in Jesus in my early childhood and what I believe now after approximately 40 years of following Christ.
While “Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door” is well researched and the various myths are exposed for their misconceptions, the aspect I appreciated most was the author’s ability to communicate truth. As the Bible says “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free”, anyone reading this book will learn that there is more to the Christian life than do’s and don’ts; that adhering to a belief in the Bible and accepting what is written is not a sign of a weak person who is gullible and brainwashed.
As a result of reading this book I am more concerned about growing in my knowledge of God and in my daily walk as a believer. I truly desire to “be still and know” the God I serve. My spiritual growth continues to be challenged by the trials of life, but instead of diminishing my beliefs, I have been strengthened by the faith that has sustained me through the storms of life. I received this complementary book from BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program and was not required to post a positive review. I would recommend this book to anyone who is searching for more information or evidence regarding the Christian faith.