Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Unsinkable Faith by Tracie Miles - REVIEWED

About the Book:
For many people, remaining optimistic and feeling positive about themselves and their lives is a constant battle - especially when circumstances are difficult and life is hard.
For others, negativity is something that only sneaks up from time to time, yet still wreaks havoc in their hearts. Regardless of the root causes, once pessimistic thoughts permeate our minds, our feelings and emotions begin to control us instead of us controlling them. Eventually it doesn't seem possible to stay positive, happy, and full of joy, and negative thought patterns shake our faith, causing us to sink emotionally, mentally, and spiritually over time. But it doesn't have to be that way. Despite what storms roll in, hearts anchored in God don't sink. When we change the way we think, we can change the way we feel and live, even if our circumstances remain the same. Intentionally embracing the opportunity to experience a transformed heart and a renewed mind opens the door for a changed life, because a positive mind will always lead to a more positive life.
In 
Unsinkable Faith, author and Proverbs 31 Ministries speaker Tracie Miles offers hope for women who struggle with negativity. Each chapter explores Tracie's and other women's personal stories, showing how they rose above their circumstances by transforming and renewing their minds. 
Unsinkable Faith is a breath of fresh air for anyone longing for a heart full of joy, an unbreakable smile, and a new, more optimistic perspective on life. This book will equip you to:
-Replace pessimism with positive thinking by becoming the captain of your thoughts;
-Learn how true joy and happiness are based on choice, not circumstances;
-Overcome unhealthy habits of negative thinking by intentionally implementing three easy mind-renewing steps;
-Stop feeling hopeless and pitiful, and start feeling hope-filled and powerful instead; and
-Discover that when you change the way you think, you change the way feel, and in turn you can change your life completely.

My Thoughts:
Our thoughts have power, but it is always up to us what thoughts we give power to.” (p.107)

Tracie Miles has grasped a profound truth in her book, Unsinkable Faith.  That truth has set her free from her past, the lies she has believed when she has looked only at her circumstances, and the lies the enemy has whispered into her heart and mind that burden her with guilt and shame.  What is this truth? The powerful truth of God’s word! 

Tracie Miles shares stories from her own life experience as well as those of others that have intersected her life, and tells readers some of the many ways we can become trapped in our own thought life and rendered ineffective in God’s kingdom.  When we begin to identify our negative thought patterns and replace them with the truth of God’s Word, our minds become transformed and are able to rise above life’s many and sometimes difficult circumstances and become positive, encouraging testimonies of God’s love and power in our lives.

Each chapter illustrates practical things we can do to begin this process of renewing our minds.  At the end of each chapter, the author gives the reader things to reflect upon, memory verses that can be used to replace the negative thoughts, and then a personal challenge to go deeper and apply the truths you’ve learned from God’s Word to your own circumstances.  This is a process that, over time, will help anyone overcome their negative thought life!

PS…This is one in a series of books God has brought into my life that has a very similar and powerful  message about the importance of renewing my mind with God’s word.  As a very wise person told me once, when I shared the many ways God kept sending me the same message, “I think God is shouting at you!”  I am listening Lord!!  Thank you Tracie Miles for being faithful to share God’s truth!

About the Author:
Tracie Miles is a national speaker with Proverbs 31 Ministries and a bestselling author who's spent the last twelve years inspiring women to become who God called them to be. She's the author of "Your Life Still Counts" and "Stressed-Less Living," and a contributor to Proverbs 31 Ministries daily devotions.

Monday, April 24, 2017

a fragile hope by Cynthia Ruchti - REVEIWED

About the Book:
Hope grows when seeds are planted—even in the muddy middle of life.
Josiah Chamberlain’s life’s work revolves around repairing other people’s marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife’s unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she’s unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what’s left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?
My Thoughts:
That word. Vile and slightly salty.”  (p. 96)
Where would we be if we hadn’t discovered that seeds of hope can grow in mud? (p. 315)
The journey between the observation on page 96 and the one settled upon on page 315 is difficult and profound.  It is a journey of loss and self-discovery, of spiritual battles between self and submission and, ultimately learning that God can and will redeem every single circumstance if we trust entrust it completely to Him.
Cynthia Ruchti is an author who is not afraid to dive into the deep end of the pool relationally, emotionally or spiritually.  To read her work is sometimes painful, because it forces the reader to take a long hard look into the mirror and ask difficult questions.  In her latest novel, a fragile hope, she hits some very hard topics square in the face.  These are situations and issues that challenge our hearts and minds to examine the covenant of marriage at a gut-wrenching level.  Whether you are married or not, this novel will take you on an emotional roller-coaster that will leave you weeping at times, but will also redefine hope in a way you have never considered before.
This is a powerful, life-changing book that, for me at least, has helped me heal from wounds at a deeper and more personal level than I ever dreamed possible.  How I praise God for allowing Cynthia Ruchti to commit this story to paper.  What a gift!!
Learn more HERE.

About the Author:

Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in hope. She’s the award-winning author of 17 books and a frequent speaker for women’s ministry events. She serves as the Professional Relations Liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers, where she helps retailers, libraries, and book clubs connect with the authors and books they love. She lives with her husband in Central Wisconsin.
Find out more about Cynthia at http://www.cynthiaruchti.com.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Woman's Study Bible - REVIEWED


Unique Features:
  • Inspiring articles by Anne Graham Lotz, Nancy Leigh DeMoss, Roberta Hromas, Linda Dillow, Kathy Troccoli, and more
  • More than 100 character portraits of women in the Bible
  • More than 300 articles on topics for women
  • Hundreds of insightful quotes by inspiring women throughout history
  • Topical index to scriptures and special features
  • New King James Version text
  • 8-point type size

My Thoughts:
I mean it most sincerely when I say that this is a beautiful Bible!  The layout, the floral illustrations, the articles and quotes...this is truly a magnificent study tool!  For long-time believers or those new to the faith, this Bible offers a treasure trove of helpful articles, explanations, definitions and helps that will enhance your time in The Word.  I love the New King James version, and I know beyond any amount of reason that this will become my go-to Bible of choice when I want to dig deeper into a passage and learn all that I can from a particular truth.  

I do feel compelled to say that the version I reviewed is a rather hefty tome, and not one I would choose to take with me everywhere.  This will be my choice for my daily time alone with God, because I will take time to highlight, underline and personalize the passages as my own.  Truly, this is the most beautiful study Bible I've ever interacted with, and I highly recommend to to everyone!!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

A Trail of Crumbs by Susie Finkbeiner - REVIEWED


About the Book:
"I believed it would have been a sin to stay inside when God had sent us such fine weather. According to Pastor Ezra Anderson, sin was the reason we'd got in the dusty mess we were in. The way I saw it, that day was God's way of letting us know He wasn't mad at us anymore. Just maybe He'd seen fit to forgive us."

Pearl Spence has been through more in her young life than most folks could handle. But through it all, her family has been by her side. They may not be perfect, but they love her and they all love each other, come what may. That's one thing Pearl no longer questions.

But the end of her beautiful day signals the beginning of the end of her secure life.

Now her family is fleeing their Oklahoma wasteland. Pearl isn't sure she'll ever see home or happiness again. Are there any crumbs powerful enough to guide her back to the dependable life she once knew?


The strong narrative voice of Finkbeiner's young protagonist from A Cup of Dust returns in this gritty yet hopeful sequel, sure to please her many fans.

My Thoughts:
Some storms rage so loud that it’s hard to hear the sweet song of hope.  But it’s always there.” (p. 256)

I’m so thankful that Pearl has her Aunt Carrie in her life to speak hope into each circumstance she must face in her in her eleven years on this earth.  The dust bowl in Oklahoma punched a hole into Pearl’s family, and her own body bears the internal scars from her encounter with nature.

When Peal’s family leaves Oklahoma for Michigan, it appears there is no choice if they are to survive intact.  A new home, a new job for he dad and family nearby seems to be the foundation this small family needs to rebuild from the storms they faced in Oklahoma.  No one could begin to imagine the internal wars that were raging in the hearts of some members of the family.  It wouldn’t be long before they faced a very different, but more violent, storm that only their hearts would face.

This is a very well-written, beautifully raw story, told from Pearl’s very young girl point of view.  Her innocence and youthful naivety makes the reality of her situation all the more powerful!  When Aunt Carrie’s character is introduced into the story, it doesn’t take the reader long to understand that she offers the strength and hope that Pearl can’t seem to find in her nuclear family. 

Pearl has already faced the ripping of the family’s fabric before she ever leaves Oklahoma.  Her neighbor, Ray, is a constant reminder that family isn’t always related by blood, and his friendship remains a constant source of stability.  I think Pearl is constantly wrestling with her own heart and mind to make sense of the rapid sequence of change that has crashed against her family.  The author does a magnificent job of developing Pearl into an ageless source of truth and wonder that all readers will be dawn to.


This is a heart wrenching book to read at times, but it is a very satisfying, thought-provoking novel.  I look forward to what lies ahead in Pearl’s future!

About the Author:
Susie Finkbeiner is a stay-at-home mom, speaker, and author from West Michigan. Her previous books include Paint Chips (2013) and My Mother's Chamomile (2014). She has served as fiction editor and regular contributor to the Burnside Writers Guild and Unbound magazine. Finkbeiner is an avid blogger (see www.susiefinkbeiner.com), is on the planning committee of the Breathe Christian Writers Conference, and has presented or led groups of other writers at several conferences.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

To the Farthest Shore by Elizabeth Camden - REVEIEWED


About the Book:
The unpredictability of her upbringing prepared army nurse Jenny Bennett to face any challenge at the Presidio Army base, but the sudden reappearance in her life of the dashing naval officer who broke her heart six years ago is enough to rattle even her. 

Lieutenant Ryan Gallagher is one of the few men in the world qualified to carry out a daring government mission overseas--an assignment that destroyed his reputation and broke the heart of the only woman he ever loved. Honor-bound never to reveal where he was during those years, he can't tell Jenny the truth, or it will endanger an ongoing mission and put thousands of lives at risk. 

Ryan thinks he may have finally found a solution to his impossible situation, but he needs Jenny's help. While her loyalty to her country compels her to agree, she was too badly hurt to fall for Ryan again despite his determination to win her back. When an unknown threat from Ryan's past puts everything at risk--including his life--can they overcome the seemingly insurmountable odds stacked against them in time?

My Thoughts:
It was time to choose forgiveness.”  (p. 316)

Forgiveness is something we offer others, but it is also a gift we give ourselves.  Camden’s latest historical novel centers around two characters who have a difficult time with both sides of forgiveness.  They are afraid to offer it to others, because they fear being hurt, but they can’t forgive themselves for their own past choices.  This creates a perfect storm between a military nurse who falls in love with a man recruited as a spy.

Elizabeth Camden explores The Military Information Division (MID) through the eyes of one of their recruits Lieutenant Ryan Gallagher.  Ryan never fathomed the depth of his choice to accept this assignment, and, it seems as though the choices he made for his career will cost him the love of the one love of his life, Army Nurse, Jenny Bennett.  Separated for years, when these two lives cross paths again, they seem unable to offer anything that the other one wants or needs.

God uses the life of an addict as the catalyst to bring Ryan and Jenny face to face with their own shortcomings.  In reaching out to one whose need seems to exceed their own, they learn the timeless, and priceless lesson of forgiveness.  Their journey is messy, painful, and for me at least, extremely frustrating at times.  But the author weaves all of the story threads together in a remarkable and very satisfying way! 


The ending is very believable, and I think readers who enjoy historical fiction will have a hard time putting this novel down!  I know I did!!  I am happy to recommend this novel to everyone!

About the Author:


Elizabeth Camden is the author of nine historical novels and has been honored with the RITA Award, the Christy Award, and the Carol Award. With a master's in history and a master's in library science, she is a research librarian by day and scribbles away on her next novel by night. She lives with her husband in Florida. Learn more at www.elizabethcamden.com.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Family Emergency

If I owe a review, I will catch up when life settles down a bit.  Prayers appreciated for my parents during this time....and for me as I care for them.

Thanks for your understanding.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Book of Revelation Decoded by Rabbi K. A. Schneider - REVIEWED


About the Book:
Understand the connection between the Old Testament and the end times, what to expect during the last days, and how to stand firm in Christ in the face of opposition. Rabbi K. A. Schneider decodes the Book of Revelation, showing how the end-time events prophesied in the New Testament book correspond with the teachings of the Torah and the Hebrew prophets. You will discover how the Passover foreshadows the great tribulation, and what the Hebrew prophets reveal about the anti-Messiah, Armageddon, hell, the return of the Messiah, the millennial kingdom, heaven, and much more. As the world grows darker and darker, many people have a sense of impending doom. This book will teach you what to expect during the last days and how to stand firm in Christ even in the face of opposition.

My Thoughts:
The Book of Revelation is a guide for the bride of Christ so she will be ready when he comes.  That is the main purpose.”  (p. 96)

Rabbi Schneider does a masterful job explaining the many nuances of the Book of Revelation to readers. I know I’ve heard this book explained by many pastors over my lifetime, and this book is just another way of exploring a book of the Bible that many ignore all together because of its complexities.  Rabbi Schneider looks at the book, given to us by John through the Holy Spirit, through the lens of Hebrew Scripture and New Testament explanation. 

This is a careful, step by step journey through a book of the Bible that has been surrounded by controversy.  Schneider is quick to tell readers that even though he has studied this for years, he remains  a student of God’s Word and remains open to learning more and more about God’s revelation as he walks out his faith here on earth.  What I was most impressed with throughout this book was the fact that the author encourages readers time and time again to study God’s Word for themselves and ask God to reveal His truth to them as they study!


I am happy to recommend this book to readers who are hungry to know more about God’s revelation of the end of our earthly journey.  I hope everyone who comes to the pages of this book will leave both encouraged and challenged to seek God’s Word for themselves and live in a constant state of preparedness to receive Him when He returns for His bride!!  This is a fantastic teaching tool, and I know I will be returning to mine its depths again and again!

About the Author:
Rabbi K. A. Schneider is an international evangelist who serves as rabbi of Lion of Judah World Outreach Center. He is the host of the international television broadcast Discovering the Jewish Jesus (www.DiscoveringTheJewishJesus.com) and the author of Self-Deliverance, Do Not Be Afraid, and Awakening to Messiah. He and his wife, Cynthia, live in Ohio.