Friday, August 24, 2012

A Review: "Twelve Unlikely Heroes" by John MacArthur

"Twelve Unlikely Heroes" by John MacArthur takes a detailed look at the lives of twelve different Biblical men and women that the casual reader may gloss over upon first glance. The people that MacArthur chose to examine in this book include Enoch, Joseph, Miriam, Gideon, Samson, Jonathan, Jonah, Esther, John the Baptist, James, Mark, and Onesimus.

MacArthur thoroughly dissects the stories surrounding each person, skillfully bringing together not just Scripture, but historical, archaeological, and cultural evidence as well. It is clearly evident that much research has gone into each story. I truly appreciated the historical evidence presented throughout the book as it helped to tie things together and provide a better understanding of the circumstances surrounding these fascinating people.

Each person MacArthur looks at in this book are all sinners and have all fallen short in various areas. But he highlights so beautifully the way that God worked in each person's life to bring about His greater glory. It's a wonderful reminder that God can (and does!) use flawed, sinful people to accomplish His work and His purposes. In both the prologue and epilogue, MacArthur reminds readers that each man and woman featured in this book were known for both their faith and their faithfulness. These are the people (among many of the Biblical men and women) that I want to look up to and who I want my children to look up to.

(I’ve received this complimentary book through the BookLook program in exchange for a review. A positive review was not required and the views expressed in my review are strictly my own.)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Review: "Be The Mom" by Tracey Lanter Eyster

"The Creator of the heavens and the earth fashioned you to be the mother of the children He has entrusted to you. What joy it is to embrace the role of motherhood, free ourselves from the traps that aim to devour and devalue us, and live a momlife worthy of His calling. This doesn't mean a momlife without challenges or mistakes, but a momlife increasingly dependent upon our heavenly Father" (p. 153).

Motherhood is full of blessings and challenges. And sometimes it can seem that the challenges outweigh the blessings. Eyster takes a candid look at the most common attitude traps that moms fall prey to. Using humor and real-life examples, she helps debunk these traps and points us to the one perfect parent:  God. She discusses seven traps:  Just a Mom, Me Mom, Martyr Mom, Busy Mom, Mirror Mom, Tomorrow Mom, and They Say Mom. Each chapter ends with a brief quiz to see how embedded in each trap you are, as well as though provoking questions to help pull you out of that particular trap.

Just glancing through the chapter list, it was easy to see a couple of particular traps that are catchy for me, but reading the entire book helped open my eyes to just how subtle some of these traps are. I really appreciated Eyster's candidness and the encouragement that she offered. At the end of the book, she brings it all together by providing four practical faith steps to stay in tune with God as we allow Him to equip us for the task of motherhood:  spend time daily in prayer, find a mentor, seek opportunities to serve, and study His word daily. 

I would definitely recommend this book to all moms, particularly those that are really struggling with embracing their role as mother. The set-up of the book also makes it perfect for book clubs or small groups to read together and discuss. Overall, this was a great read!

(I’ve received this complimentary book from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for a review. A positive review was not required and the views expressed in my review are strictly my own.)

A Review: "The Lifegiving Parent" by Clay and Sally Clarkson

"The Lifegiving Parent" by Clay and Sally Clarkson completes the "Lifegiving" trilogy that also includes "The Lifeg...