Friday, September 19, 2008

Book Review: Quiet Strength by Tony Dungy

Quiet Strength: The Principles, Practices, & Priorities of a Winning Life
by Tony Dungy with Nathan Whitaker
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2007

Reviewed by Diane Busch

Loved the book and I don't even watch or follow football. It was so inspiring to read about Coach Dungy's opportunities where he used his faith in God and his spiritual experiences to mentor and teach others, on and off the field. On his way to the top (being a winning Superbowl coach) he had his share of disappointments, struggles, and challenges (including the death of his college-age son). But he always kept his faith in God at the top of his priorities, leading him in his decisions.

From page 261 of this book: Why do bad things happen? I don't know. But I do know that God has the answers, I know He loves me, and I know He has a plan--whether it makes sense to me or not. Rather than asking why, I'm asking what. What can I learn from this? What can I do for God's glory and to help others?

Book Review: The Grand Weaver by Ravi Zacharias

The Grand Weaver
by Ravi Zacharias
Zondervan, 2007

reviewed by Diane Busch

A really good book for newer or questioning Christians, but also applicable and relevant to mature Christians. Good stories; good insights; amazing reminders!

Ravi talks about our calling; our purpose. He puts lots of things into proper perspective.

"If we see God as the Grand Weaver, we can embrace every event of our lives."

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Summer Reading Olympics Final Results

A big CONGRATULATIONS to our 43 Summer Reading 2008 Olympians!

We had lots of busy readers this summer, representing all age categories. Here are the final results:

AGES 0-6
Total Participants: 32
Gold = 24
Silver = 4
Bronze = 4

AGES 7-12
Total Participants: 10
Gold = 5
Silver = 0
Bronze = 5

AGES 13 and up
Total Participants: 1
Bronze = 1

We look forward to reading with you again next summer!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New Releases: September 10, 2008

Wild Goose Chase
Mark Batterson
Multnomah, August 2008

Celtic Christians had a name for the Holy Spirit–An Geadh-Glas, or ‘the Wild Goose.’ The name hints at mystery. Much like a wild goose, the Spirit of God cannot be tracked or tamed. An element of danger, an air of unpredictability surround Him. And while the name may sound a little sacrilegious, author Mark Batterson cannot think of a better description of what it’s like to follow the Spirit through life. He adds, "Circumstantial uncertainty also goes by another name: Adventure.”

Essential Church?
Thom S. Rainer and Sam S. Rainer III
Broadman & Holman, September 2008

Why are so many 18- to 22-year-old Christians leaving the church---and what will it take to reverse the trend? In this important follow-up to the bestseller Simple Church, the Rainers share surprising insights from their survey of 1,000 "dropouts." Find out why young adults stopped attending---and discover four concrete strategies for bringing them back!

John: 40 Days with the Beloved Disciple
Beth Moore
Broadman & Holman, September 2008

Gifted Bible teacher Moore offers an in-depth examination of the Gospel writer who followed Jesus throughout all of his ministry. Thoughtful discussion questions make this devotional edition of her enduring favorite The Beloved Disciple ideal for individual or group use. Features journaling space, a comfortable lay-flat binding, deckled page edges, and a ribbon marker.

The Love Dare
Stephen Kendrick & Alex Kendrick
Broadman & Holman, September 2008

Unconditional love is eagerly promised at weddings, but rarely practiced in real life. As a result, romantic hopes are often replaced with disappointment in the home. But it doesn’t have to stay that way. The Love Dare, as featured in the popular new movie Fireproof (from the makers of Facing the Giants), is a 40-day challenge for husbands and wives to understand and practice unconditional love. Whether your marriage is hanging by a thread or healthy and strong, The Love Dare is a journey you need to take. It’s time to learn the keys to finding true intimacy and developing a dynamic marriage. Take the dare!

The Family You've Always Wanted
Gary Chapman
Northfield, September 2008

Many feel bombarded by images and experiences of broken families. This is not how God intended families to be! So often we examine the traits of unhealthy families, but Gary Chapman paints a biblical portrait of what a loving, stable family looks like. Chapman details five timeless characteristics that create a healthy family environment. This book is not just to be read, but experienced.

NLT Study Bible

Tyndale, September 2008

The product of over forty Bible scholars and seven years' work, the NLT Study Bible is the most comprehensive study Bible ever created. Ten section introductions provide an overview of the literature and history of each section of the Bible, showing how the books are related to each other and to the rest of Scripture. Theme articles and person profiles (406 total) highlight recurring ideas and describe the lives of those who inhabit the pages of scripture. Also includes 100 Greek and 100 Hebrew word studies, 100 quotations from modern and ancient writers, and words of Christ in red. Features include 25,900 study notes (over 820,000 words), maps, charts, illustrations, a word-study system, and much more.

The Dopple Ganger Chronicles: The First Escape
G.P. Taylor
SaltRiver, August 2008

From the best-selling author of Shadowmancer comes an enthralling new series of illustra-novellas. The First Escape is the first book in the Dopple Ganger Chronicles, a six-book series following three children--Sadie and Saskia Dopple and Erik Morrissey Ganger. Sadie and Saskia are mischievous identical twins living at an orphanage, where Erik is their only friend. They are separated when Saskia is adopted by Muzz Elliott, a wealthy woman searching for her long-lost family treasure. While Saskia stumbles into the center of a crime only she can stop, Sadie and Erik embark on a quest to find her. This book is in an exciting new format called an "illustra-novella," in which the story is told alternately in graphic novel format and plain text with occasional illustrations.

When God Created My Toes
Dandi Daley Mackall
WaterBrook Press, August 2008

This charming picture book allows your child to imagine what it was like when God created them. From the top of their heads to the tips of their toes they will explore and understand God’s delight in creating them. Through rhyming lines and vivid illustrations children will gain confidence and self-esteem when they begin to fully realize how perfectly, intricately, and uniquely God created them. Ages 4-8.

Hello Love
Chris Tomlin
SixSteps, September 2008

Following his 2006 RIAA Gold-certified record, See the Morning, Chris Tomlin's fifth studio release, Hello Love, communicates what he describes as the "need to introduce ourselves to love again." Produced by Ed Cash (Steven Curtis Chapman, Amy Grant, Bebo Norman), the record endeavors to give voice to the Church to worship their Creator. Includes "Jesus Messiah."

Bebo Norman
Bebo Norman
BEC Recordings, September 2008

Bebo Norman was an independent artist before that tag was even cool- playing coffeehouse shows and selling CDs out of his trunk. Still rooted in the tuneful sensibilities of artists like James Taylor and John Mayer, he confidently stretches the musical arrangements to his often worshipful melodies. Thematically, Bebo comments "There are several people around me in dark throes and desperately clinging to Christ in the midst of it…And they all love the Lord. It's a reminder that real life happens to believers and unbelievers alike. Rain falls on the just and the unjust." His seventh studio release includes "Britney."

Make Some Noise
Krystal Meyers
Essential Records, September 2008

As an artist who has recorded three albums before her 20th birthday, it's obvious Krystal Meyers has a lot to say, but Make Some Noise reveals a young woman whose faith has grown exponentially over the past couple of years. Her third album takes that bold faith and no-nonsense attitude to a strong selection of synth-heavy pop rock jams, including "Shine," "Make Some Noise," "S.O.S.," and more.