Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Greg's Recommended Reading: Summer 2008

Jesus for President: Politics for Ordinary Radicals
Shane Claibourne
Zondervan, March 2008

Amid all the buzz of politics and elections, Jesus for President is a radical manifesto to awaken the Christian political imagination, reminding us that our ultimate hope lies not in partisan political options, but in Jesus and the incarnation of the peculiar politic of the church as a people "set apart" from this world. This book offers a perspective on politics for ordinary radicals who want to love the world into the kingdom of God.

Hope Lives: A Journey of Restoration
Amber Van Schooneveld
Group, March 2008

Compassion changes everything: how you view your world... yourself... even Jesus. This five-week exploration of compassion is aimed at both head and heart, inspiring a new way to interact with the world. These 25 daily readings address poverty of the heart, what the Bible says about poverty, prayer, discovering the causes of poverty, and becoming part of the solution to local and global poverty. Powerful--and life-changing.

The Beautiful Fight
Gary Thomas
Zondervan, November 2007

Gary Thomas, author of the bestseller Sacred Marriage, based the title for this book on the way Orthodox Christian fathers translated Paul's words in 2 Timothy 4:7: I have fought the Beautiful Fight. In his latest work, Thomas issues a passionate manifesto of faith fully alive. The Beautiful Fight calls us beyond mere sin-avoidance to a robust holiness that radiates Christ through every aspect of our being. To see with Christ’s eyes, feel with Christ’s heart, and serve with Christ’s hands—this is what Christianity is truly about.

The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations
Ori Brafman and Rod A. Beckstrom
Portfolio, October 2006

If you cut off a spider’s leg, it’s crippled; if you cut off its head, it dies. But if you cut off a starfish’s leg it grows a new one, and the old leg can grow into an entirely new starfish. The Starfish and the Spider argues that organizations fall into two categories: traditional “spiders,” which have a rigid hierarchy and top-down leadership, and revolutionary “starfish,” which rely on the power of peer relationships. The Starfish and the Spider explores what happens when starfish take on spiders (such as the music industry vs. Napster, Kazaa, and the P2P services that followed). It reveals how established companies and institutions, from IBM to Intuit to the US government, are also learning how to incorporate starfish principles to achieve success.

The Multiplying Church: The New Math for Starting New Churches
Bob Roberts, Jr.
Zondervan, March 2008

This is a must-read for pastors and lay leaders involved in, or wanting to learn about, the church multiplication groundswell in North America. It shows how multiplying churches should be a natural, regular function in the DNA of every church. Learn the principles from master multiplier Bob Roberts. Here is powerful hope for the church in America. Bob was a speaker at the 2008 Londen Institute held at RiverTree this summer.

Beyond Consequences, Logic, and Control: A Love-Based Approach to Helping Attachment-Challenged Children With Severe Behaviors
Heather T. Forbes, LCSW and B. Bryan Post, Ph. D, LCSW
Beyond Consequences Institute, February 2006

Beyond Consequences, Logic, and Control details the effects of trauma on the body-mind and how trauma alters children’s behavioral responses. While scientifically based in research, it is written in an easy-to-understand format for anyone working with or parenting children with severe behaviors such as lying, stealing, hoarding and gorging, aggression and defiance. Especially helpful are the testimonials from parents who have been able to make significant changes in their homes with the love-based model of parenting described in the book.

New Releases: August 27, 2008

More Than Just The Catch
David Tyree
Excel Books, September 2008

Just in time for the new NFL season, New York Giants wide receiver David Tyree gives readers an inside look at the life and faith of players in the NFL. Best known for for his impressive catch on the Giants' final drive of Super Bowl XLII that helped his team to a 17-14 victory over the New England Patriots, Tyree also shares the physical program that got him where he is today and offers a behind-the-scenes account of The Catch. Foreword by Eli Manning.

Rebecca St. James
Faith Words, August 2008

Rebecca St. James's messages of abstinence and modesty reflect her passionate love for Jesus and her commitment to living for Him. In this daily devotional, she offers young women the encouragement they need to join her in living a life of all-out purity. It's not just about sex. It's about mind, body, and spirit.This 90-day devotional proves that purity is anything but old-fashioned and boring. It's edgy and relevant. Rebecca lives it--and readers can live it too. It starts with Day 1 . . . and ends with everyday radical living.

God and Politics
Roy Herron
Tyndale, August 2008

God is not a Democrat or a Republican. Still, he is interested in politics, as he is in every area of life. Roy Herron explains how Christians can participate in politics without compromising their core convictions. Herron draws on his experience as a pastor, lawyer, and state senator to describe what faithful politics looks like.

Start Your New Life Today
Joyce Meyer
Faith Words, August 2008

Do you find yourself asking, "Isn't there more to life than what I'm living?" Do you sometimes wish you could start over, find a new way of doing things? The good news is God is wiating and ready to give you just that. In her latest book, Joyce Meyer explains the life-changing impact that comes from knowing God in the most personal way possible, walking readers through what makes each of us unique creations as tripart beings--with spirit, soul, and body--and how God releates to us in all three areas.

Experiencing God Around the Kitchen Table
Marilynn Blackaby with Carrie Blackaby Webb
Tyndale, August 2008

Women today have very multi faceted lives. They balance husbands, children, ministry, and often careers! The biblical example of older women mentoring the younger generation is often missing today. Through Marilynn's life and testimony, this book will walk through many of the major issues confronting women in today's society and help them see God's faithfulness and plan for their lives.

Six Prayers God Always Answers (*Results May Vary)
Mark Herringshaw & Jennifer Schuchmann
Tyndale, April 2008

In Six Prayers God Always Answers, Mark Herringshaw and Jennifer Schuchmann point out that the most authentic prayers may not look, feel, or smell like the ones we were taught in Sunday school. Using illustrations from the Bible, history, and pop culture, they demonstrate that prayer isn’t about a specific posture or a recitation of words, but rather the foundation of a relationship—a relationship where some unexpected results can occur. If you’re frustrated because it seems your prayers often go unanswered, Six Prayers won’t show you how to pray better, but it will show you how to discover the answers you may have overlooked, and how relationship matters more than the words.

Love: The Most Excellent Way
Chuck Smith
The Word for Today, May 2008

Ever since the first human pair craned their necks skyward to bask in a silvery full moon, men and women have rhapsodized about love. We say (and sing!) that "love makes the world go 'round," that "love is the answer," that "all you need is love." You might even say we glory in "the power of love." But what is love, really? And if it's so popular, then why dose it seem so hard to find?

Wrestling with God
James Denison
SaltRiver, August 2008

Most people, even devout Christians, struggle with issues about God. We sit in the pew every Sunday and affirm the essentials of Christianity in theory, but when it comes to trusting God with our daily lives, we share a secret, painful fear that God isn't really looking out for us. In Wrestling with God, James Denison acknowledges the often unspoken doubts and questions that both believers and nonbelievers share--and invites us to join him in wrestling with God and Scripture for the answers.

Being Christian: Exploring Where You, God, and Life Connect
Stephen Arterburn and John Shore
Bethany House, August 2008

Being Christian. What does that mean? And how do you do it?
Wherever you happen to be along the faith continuum, this book is for you. Steve Arterburn and John Shore tackle some simple, but also complex, questions that just about everyone has about being Christian. For some, it will be an introduction to Christian beliefs and practices. For others, it will be an in-depth review. The authors say, "We asked a lot of people, and did a lot of thinking and praying, in order to come up with the questions about Christianity and its attending issues that we feel even the most experienced Christians sometimes want answered."

A Promise to Believe In: A Novel
Tracie Peterson
Bethany House, August 2008

After years spent following their father and his wanderlust, the three Gallatin sisters begin to fashion a life for themselves in the Montana wilds, operating a roadhouse at the crossroads of two stage lines. When their father is accidently killed, however, the oldest sister, Gwen, reasons that she's cursed. Death seems to haunt her every step. As the sisters work to maintain the roadhouse, an unexpected visitor arrives, sending Gwen into turmoil. Is he whom he claims to be? And can she dare to hope that love might again be hers? Book 1 in the new Brides of Gallatin County series.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

New Releases: August 20, 2008

The Power of Praying Through the Bible
Stormie Omartian
Harvest House, August 2008

Among the many topics the Bible covers, prayer is one of the most important, for speaking to God and hearing from Him has the power to change your life. Stormie Omartian, the bestselling author of the Power of a Praying series, has inspired millions of men, women, and families with her prayers and reflective writing. Now she invites readers to journey with her, from Genesis to Revelation, to see how prayer in every situation makes room from God to touch their lives.

Looking Up When Life is Looking Down
Beth Moore
Thomas Nelson, August 2008

Life can be hard…sometimes to the point of feeling as though your struggles will never end and God isn't anywhere near. In Looking Up When Life is Looking Down, Beth Moore shares a prosaic message of hope and deliverance taken from Psalm 40, helping readers discover they indeed are not alone and that God's gracious provision of love and faithfulness is at work in their circumstances.

Surviving the Storms of Life
H. Norman Wright, Matt Woodley & Julie Woodly
Revell, July 2008

Nearly everyone will experience some sort of trauma during life. Whether they have weathered a large-scale event like hurricane Katrina, 9/11, or the shootings at Columbine or Virginia Tech, or they are dealing with their own personal Ground Zero, trauma victims need a special kind of understanding and help in order to heal and move on in life. With positive stories and expert advice, bestselling author H. Norman Wright teams with pastor Matt Woodly and certified trauma counselor Julie Woodley to show readers that there is hope for recovery no matter what they have been through.

The Bravehearted Gospel: The Truth is Worth Fighting For
Eric Ludy
Harvest House, August 2008

Eric Ludy calls believers to put a stop to an alarming trend in today’s church. Contemporary culture has accused Christians of being politically incorrect, unloving, and narrow–minded in their devotion to God and His Word. And the church has unwittingly played right along. How serious is the problem, and what are the solutions? What does a bravehearted kind of Christianity look like? Eric presents the Christianity of the Bible as the most explosive, most vibrant, most extraordinary force on Earth—a force meant to bring glory to God and turn people’s hearts in His direction.

Spaghetti for the Soul: A Feast of Faith, Hope, and Love
Kathy Troccoli and Elli Lofaro
WaterBrook Press, August 2008

Kathy Troccoli and Ellie Lofaro invite readers to a fabulous feast for the spirit. Drawing upon their shared Italian roots in Brooklyn and a friendship rooted in faith, they compare life to a heaping plate of spaghetti. With wit, warmhearted humor, irresistible grace, and keen insights, Kathy and Ellie urge you to take a generous helping of the richly flavored abundant life that only God can give.

Donita K. Paul
WaterBrook Press, July 2008

The fantastic land of Amara is recovering from years of war inflicted on its citizens by outside forces–as well as from the spiritual apathy corroding the Amarans’ hearts. With Kale and her father serving as dragon keepers for Paladin, the dragon populace has exploded. It’s a peaceful, exciting time of rebuilding. And yet, an insidious, unseen evil lurks just beneath the surface of the idyllic countryside. Truth has never been more important, nor so difficult to discern. Dragonlight is the conclusion to Donita K. Paul’s popular DragonKeeper Chronicles fantasy series.

God Gave Us Heaven
Lisa Dawn Bergren
WaterBrook Press, July 2008

As the sun rises on her snow-covered world, Little Cub wonders aloud…“What is heaven like?” With tender words, her Papa describes a wonderful place, free of sadness and tears, where God warmly welcomes his loved ones after their life on earth is over. This gentle story provides satisfying answers for a young child’s most difficult questions about what happens after this life, inviting “little cubs” to find comfort in knowing that God Gave Us Heaven. For children ages 4-8.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

New Releases: August 6, 2008

Atheism Remix: A Christian Confronts the New Atheists
R. Albert Mohler Jr.
Crossway, August 2008

Wanting to both inform and equip serious-minded Christians regarding the cultural shift toward atheism, R. Albert Mohler Jr. explores the environment that has bred the “new atheism” while also introducing readers to the movement’s four leading thinkers and the contours of their arguments. Mohler—deemed “the reigning intellectual of the evangelical movement in the US” by Time magazine—then uses this foundation to pinpoint eight major distinctives that make the new atheism new, and to discuss the future of Christianity in relationship to it.

You Were Made For More
Jim Cymbala
Zondervan, August 2008

Whether you feel restless or satisfied right now, Jim Cymbala believes that God has more for you. In this new book, he helps readers find out how to access the more God intends--more peace, real joy, and a deeper sense of purpose. As you open yourself up to the more of God, you will also discover your unique work assignment--the one thing God is calling you--and no one else--to accomplish for the sake of his work in the world.

Overcoming Your Shadow Mission
John Ortberg
Zondervan, July 2008

With characteristic humor and insight, author and pastor John Ortberg invites us to follow the biblical story of Esther and her example to courageously choose to embrace the mission God gives. Like Esther, we can lead without fear--even in threatening circumstances--because we know God is always at work in unseen, unknown, and unlikely ways. Part of the Leadership Library.