Review 5 star
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Come What May, He’s Always God by Gladys Goldsby Ford is a set of 40 short devotional sermons that offer an abundance of wisdom to be read during personal Bible study. It’s loaded with scriptures and knowledgeable explanations of word meanings in the original Greek and Hebrew of the Bible and packs a lot of content for such a short book. For a seasoned devotional reader who wants something really substantial, each chapter is brief, but has great depth. Analytical studies of Bible sections such as the 40-year punishment of the children of Israel and the personal growth development of the Apostle Peter are balanced by humorous one-liners, catchy snippets or phrases that are easy to carry in the memory, and anecdotes of faulty, ridiculous, wise, admirable, or eccentric real people to serve as examples of what to do—and sometimes, what not to do!
Come What May, He’s Always God is half a serious devotional package and half an entertaining and witty ride into the Christian life. The abundance of verses quoted or referenced makes it really meaty, a Sunday morning sermon made private so the reader can learn at their own pace and absorb the nuggets of wisdom. Personal time with God is constantly stressed—waiting for Him, abiding in Him, being patient as He works in others, being careful of the words you say, and making sure your interpretations of life are rooted in Him and not in your own wishes or in fear of other people—and Gladys Goldsby Ford’s book is a great resource to add to that devotional time that is so important to the Christian walk. Along with real-life church anecdotes, a gritty set of medical details on the Crucifixion, and some inspiring testimonies, this little gem also offers some great insight into little-discussed Biblical characters such as Thomas. The dangers of unbelief and hard-heartedness and the trouble you cause to yourself and others if you defy God is the great takeaway I got from this book and made it a worthy read I’d recommend.
Review 4 star
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In His Hands, I Am Healed by Laura J. Weber is a touching biographical nonfiction book about the author’s four-and-a-half year battle with cancer. Written from a devout Christian perspective, the book details the difficulty of Laura’s journey through multiple surgeries and radiation treatments for recurring cancer and her experience of God’s miraculous healing which removed a final outbreak of cancer from her body. Pinioned on the story of David and Goliath, which is a theme returned to frequently as a cornerstone of the book, and punctuated by “Laura’s Journey Lessons” sprinkled through the chapters to highlight the primary topics, it’s an inspirational and sincere journal that will help anyone needing God’s guidance to overcome a tough situation in their lives.
In His Hands, I Am Healed walks us through every step of one woman’s amazing experience so that all can share it with her and apply it to what they are going through. I found it went far beyond the subject matter of cancer by paralleling spiritual growth with each step of the medical journey in an uplifting and challenging way. Laura J. Weber is upfront about the impatience and fear that comes with big struggles in life and her good attitude and heartfelt decisions to choose faith and hope at every turn when she could have chosen bitterness or anger makes this great reading for someone in a hard time. With a helpful list of Christian books that she found encouraging, real posts made throughout her illness on her private Facebook group, and amazing encouragers like the F.R.O.G button that inspired her (Fully Rely on God), Laura has pieced together her story into one that gave me a lot to think about and blessed me tremendously.
Review 5 star
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God of the Brooks: A Story of Extreme Survival by Bruce Hamilton is a unique tale of toughing it against the wilderness, told from a Christian perspective. The first-person account, fictional but pieced together from incidents throughout the author’s life, records a gritty tale of a man’s walk with God as a plane crash strands him in the arctic winter of Alaska. In the midst of a gripping saga of nature’s harshness and human resourcefulness, he approaches God with a closeness he’s never before experienced and learns his journey across Alaska in winter is the perfect forge for God to shape him into a wise and humble servant.
Few Christian books can wring your heart and soul like this, let alone leave you filled with such an awe for God. The inspiring authenticity of Bruce Hamilton’s account has a heart-pounding pull of complete honesty as every step of the hero’s journey from bleeding on a desolate mountain cliff to building shelters and gathering food for himself is brought before the reader’s eyes to enforce God’s complexity and wisdom. When a hunting trip gone wrong, a friend’s death, and a trek home that defies Frodo and Sam’s journey to Mordor in its intensity engulf the hero and the reader, that’s just as much a part of God’s character as the loving response to human need that He also continually exhibits throughout the story. As each day presents a new physical hardship and ingenuity with only one goal—to get home at last—God shines forth as the true hero of the story. With ice, snow, grizzlies, and a lot of prayer, God of the Brooks puts a spotlight on the Creator and that’s where it should be.
This is the companion for Sarah Scheele's newsletter blog. In it I share reviews for books I'd recommend/are similar to my own.