Tag Archives: Non-fiction

#BookReview: Control Girl | Prize Pack #Giveaway

9 Feb

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Shannon Popkin candidly shares her own struggles with control and what she has discovered from studying seven Control Girls of the Bible. From Eve to Miriam, each of the woman and their stories offer examples and lessons to learn from. Designed to work for individual and group study, this book contains Bible passages, personal stories, and meditations. I enjoyed the biblical aspects of each lesson, as well as the thought-provoking reflections and applications that were included. Control Girl is a great study guide and resource, offering practical advice and instruction for learning to lean on God.

“We have a natural posture of holding on to control rather than releasing it to God. In order to reverse our natural bent, we have to cultivate a new demeanor toward God: surrender.”

 

Learn how to give up control to God and become a Jesus girl! Enter to win a prize pack that will help you give up your Control Girl tendencies.

One grand prize winner will receive:

 

About the book:

Tension, anger, fear, anxiety-it all begins with a heart that craves control.

Little fights with your husband and kids. Unhappiness when things don’t match your version of perfect. When your perspective of how life should go replaces God’s, you doom your quest for security, peace, and joy before it even starts.

Thankfully, there is a better way.

Join Shannon as she shares what she has discovered about her own control struggles and
about God from studying seven Control Girls in the Bible. Whether it was Eve’s desire to know instead of trust, Sarah’s inability to wait for God to move, or Rebekah’s controlling hand on her family’s future, each of these women’s stories contain warnings and lessons for us today.

Learn how you too can lay down this burden of trying to control everything and find rest in surrendering to the One who truly is in control.

Learn more and purchase a copy.

Visit the author.

Read what other bloggers are saying about Control Girl.



Enter today by clicking the icon below!  The giveaway ends on February 21, and the winner will be announced February 22 on Shannon’s blog.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. No review was required, and all thoughts expressed are my own.

#BookReview: Pray A to Z | Prayer Prize Pack #Giveaway

8 Dec

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Pray A to Z by Amelia Rhodes

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2guYoyl

Change the world one prayer at a time.

How would our community change if instead of absently saying, “I’ll pray for you,” we actually did pray—deeply, intensely, and purposefully?

Pray A to Z: A Practical Guide to Praying for Your Community will help you topically organize your prayer requests and lay the burdens of your community at the feet of our Heavenly Father.

With compassion and encouragement, Amelia Rhodes offers Bible verses and prayer prompts, organized topically for every letter of the alphabet. There are five topics per letter—three prayers of petition asking God to work in a certain area of need, and two more prayers of praise to reflect gratitude for God’s presence in the daily issues and relationships of life. Through petition and praise, your specific, focused communion with God will lighten your heart as you place the heaviness of those prayer requests where they belong—on His strong shoulders.

Whether you are praying for a friend’s adoption journey, a neighbor’s bankruptcy, or a family member’s cancer, this book will give you Bible verses, prayer prompts, and prayer starts to guide you through praying for even the most difficult issues that affect the people you know and love. Perfect for either individual or group prayer, Pray A to Z will help you experience the peace that comes from communicating with God.

 

My thoughts:

Pray A to Z is a wonderful prayer guide! Organized alphabetically by topic, this little book is sure to make a big impact on its readers. Rhodes brings attention to a myriad of issues and struggles that many in our community are facing and calls us to be more mindful and intentional in our petitions and praise. I really appreciated the thoroughness and thoughtfulness of the suggested prayers, as well the pertinent scriptures that begin each section. Simple, yet effective, Pray A to Z is a great tool to use in your individual prayer life, as well as in a group setting.

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Learn more about Pray A to Z and how to pray for your community, and enter to win Amelia’s Guide to Prayer Prize Pack to get you started.

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One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 20. The winner will be announced December 21 on Amelia’s blog.

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amelia-rhodes
Amelia Rhodes is a speaker and author of Isn’t It Time for a Coffee Break: Doing Life Together in an All-About-Me Kind of World. Amelia’s writing has also been featured in four Chicken Soup for the Soul titles, devotionals for the OneHope blog Undeterred and the international devotional Upper Room. Amelia has a growing speaking ministry and speaks regularly to women’s groups on topics of spiritual growth, friendship, and community, offering practical tools for living our faith in the everyday. She lives in Lowell, Michigan.

 

 

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I received a complimentary copy of this book. No review was required, and all thoughts expressed are my own.  Click here to read what other bloggers are saying about Pray A to Z.

#BookReview: Choosing Real by Bekah Jane Pogue

29 Nov

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Choosing Real by Bekah Jane Pogue

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2gCxCR8

Are you ready to release your control of needing to be everything for everyone? . . . The invitation is yours. In Choosing REAL, author Bekah Pogue walks with you into life’s unplanned circumstances–specifically frantic schedules, pain and transition, feelings of unworthiness, loneliness, and tension. . . And she’ll remind you that it is in these very moments that God invites you to notice, respond, and even celebrate how He shows up in every little detail.

 

My thoughts:

Reading Choosing Real is like experiencing a heartfelt conversation with a friend. Author Bekah Pogue openly and honestly shares her own feelings and struggles, letting readers know they are not alone in their circumstances. “You matter, and how you respond to what goes on in your day-to-day life matters. And celebrating your trust in God, regardless of how large or small your plans are, matters.” Uplifting and encouraging, Choosing Real is a great reminder to embrace and celebrate life’s moments, both planned and unplanned.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. No review was required, and all thoughts expressed are my own.

#BookReview: Hungry is a Mighty Fine Sauce by Shellie Rushing Tomlinson

21 Nov

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Hungry is a Mighty Fine Sauce by Shellie Rushing Tomlinson

Purchase a copy: http://amzn.to/2eOj0Nu

Shellie Rushing Tomlinson, the Belle of All Things Southern, is serving up down-home southern dishes with a healthy side of laugh-out-loud entertainment in Hungry Is a Mighty Fine Sauce. Featuring dozens of tried-and-true recipes complemented by entertaining stories, your hunger–and your craving for humor–are sure to be satisfied! Uncomplicated, delicious recipes including Bodacious Black Bean Salad and Spicy Sausage and Crawfish Spread (125 recipes, to be exact!) fall into categories including Feeding the Funny Farm, Carnivores Are Us, Holidays in Dixie, and Watching the Curves. Eye-catching photos, guaranteed to make your mouth water, are included throughout. . .sure to be a much-appreciated gift or centerpiece on your very own kitchen countertop.

 

My thoughts:

I love cookbooks, and Hungry is a Mighty Fine Sauce is one I’ll be reaching for and recommending again and again! Dubbed as “Recipes and Ramblings from The Belle of All Things Southern”, this spiral-bound storytelling cookbook is brimming with sumptuous southern fare, laugh-out-loud stories, and beautiful photographs.

Believing “the best meals come with a story”, Shellie Rushing Tomlinson has compiled a wonderful collection of recipes and served them up with heaping helpings of humor and heart. My family and I have certainly enjoyed adding some of these delicious dishes to our menu and are eager to try more. They are tried and true and plate licking good, but you’ll have to grab a copy of the book to find out more about that!  😉

 

A wonderful recipe card from the publisher!

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#BookReview: 40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood by Sarah Humphrey

18 Oct

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40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood by Sarah Humphrey

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2dPEdIC

Wouldn’t it be marvelous if mothering came with a concrete set of instructions—an easy recipe we could follow? Instead, motherhood challenges women to find their faith, their true selves, and their family through daily doses of trial and error. It is a brilliant and healing time of life that is full of joy, pain, and beauty with a small side of crisis (and humor). What mothers do not know, they learn. And through this lifelong process of learning, they nurture and care for the most precious gifts on earth: children. In a modern society where moms often have a full and busy plate, these 10 minute daily devotions focus on six key topics of motherhood:

-Self-acceptance
-Self-care
-Reconciling with grief, hope and expectations
-Generosity
-Presence
-Forgiveness

In addition to the devotions, these beautiful pages are adorned with handmade illustrations to help you refresh from long days or even occasional sleepless nights. So, grab your colors and a little quiet time for yourself while doodling at the kitchen table. You will be grateful you did!

 

My thoughts:

In 40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood, Sarah Humphrey has created a great source of refreshment and encouragement for mothers. These daily devotions focus on six topics of motherhood, and each day begins with a scripture and is followed by a short devotion and simple prayer. In addition to the devotions, handmade illustrations are included for journaling, doodling, and coloring.

One of my favorite quotes from the book is found in Day 12’s devotion. “Motherhood is hard work. Although there are books about it, there is not a manual for each of your particular children. You have been chosen to be their mother, and in the mistakes and in the joys, you are the best woman for the job.” I thoroughly enjoyed the insight and inspiration this book provided, as well as the joy it cultivated. 40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood is a lovely book and a wonderful gift to give yourself and others!

 

sarah-humphrey

Often considered a dreamer and silly heart, Sarah Humphrey uses inspiration from her most beloved career, motherhood, to fuel her passion for writing, creative movement and teaching. She has and is authoring several books and children’s books. Sarah currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and three beautiful, bouncy kids.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

 

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I received a complimentary copy of this book. No review was required, and all thoughts expressed are my own.  Click here to read what other bloggers are saying about 40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood.

#BookReview: From Depths We Rise by Sarah Rodriguez

11 Oct

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From Depths We Rise by Sarah Rodriguez

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2d8Kc8H

Sarah Rodriguez experienced more loss and heartache in a short period of time than most people will endure in a lifetime. Infertility. Miscarriage. Her husband Joel’s cancer diagnosis (not once, but twice). Her husband’s death. Her two-week-old baby girl in a fight for her life. . . And still, Sarah clung to her faith. From Depths We Rise is a miraculous story of hope and overcoming. Sarah’s is a journey of beauty from ashes, of marching toward purpose out of the pain. Her awe-inspiring story will encourage you to grasp tightly to your faith and to rise above even the most daunting of circumstances.

 

My thoughts:

From Depths We Rise is an extraordinary story! Sarah Rodriguez has experienced unfathomable suffering and loss, and her journey through this heartache and pain is one of “beauty from ashes”. “What I have to share will hopefully make you laugh-it might even make you cry-but I pray it leaves you filled with hope, because even as the story ends it is really just beginning.” Sarah’s faith is inspiring and her candid story is sure to touch all who read it. Heartrending and hope-filled, From Depths We Rise is a book not soon to be forgotten!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing.  All thoughts expressed are my own.

#BookReview: Total Family Makeover | Family Fun Night #Giveaway

3 Oct

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Total Family Makeover by Melissa Spoelstra

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2d5hLtG

God calls us as parents to be key disciple-makers in our children’s lives, but if we’re honest, some days it’s a battle just to get them dressed and ready for school on time. How can you mold their hearts when sometimes you can’t even find their shoes?

In Total Family Makeover, author Melissa Spoelstra gives parents a way—a sort of spiritual track to run on—when it comes to building family discipleship. She focuses on eight key habits of growth:

-Spending Time in Prayer
-Reading God’s Word
-Growing Through a Mentoring Relationship
-Finding Community in the Church
-Serving Others
-Taking Time to Rest
-Giving Back to God
-Sharing Your Faith

Disciples are made, not born. Whether your children are babes in arms or teenagers getting ready to leave the nest, making disciples at home starts with you! Give your family a makeover with this practical approach to helping your children learn what it means to be a follower of Jesus.

 

My thoughts:

Total Family Makeover is a helpful and insightful guide to training your children to be better disciples! Melissa Spoelstra shares her own personal experiences and couples them with recommendations based on Biblical principles, giving parents “a sort of spiritual track to run on–when it comes to building family discipleship.” I enjoyed delving into the eight key habits Spoelstra highlights and found encouragement and inspiration within each one. Whether you are just starting a family or are in the later stages of child rearing, Total Family Makeover offers a practical approach for spiritual growth.

 

Plan an evening of fun, pizza, devotionals, and games with your family! Melissa is giving away a Family Fun Night Prize Pack.

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One grand prize winner will receive:

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melissa-spoelstra
Melissa Spoelstra is a popular women’s conference speaker, Bible teacher, and writer who is madly in love with Jesus and passionate about helping women of all ages to seek Christ and know Him more intimately through serious Bible study. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Bible Theology and enjoys teaching God’s Word to diverse groups and churches within the body of Christ. She is the author of the First Corinthians: Living Love When We Disagree, Joseph: The Journey to Forgiveness, and Jeremiah: Daring to Hope in an Unstable World Bible studies and Total Family Makeover: 8 Steps to Making Disciples at Home book. She lives in Dublin, Ohio, with her pastor husband and four kids.

 

 

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on October 7. The winner will be announced October 10 on Melissa’s blog.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. All thoughts expressed are my own.  Click here to read what other bloggers are saying about Total Family Makeover.

#BookReview: A Different Beautiful by Courtney Westlake

1 Aug

A Different Beautiful

A Different Beautiful by Courtney Westlake

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/2aqSv1w

When Courtney Westlake’s family was given the shocking news that their daughter, Brenna, was born in 2011 with a severe, life-threatening skin disorder, they began to discover a new and different beautiful in their lives–one that values extraordinary differences and appreciates the wonderful sameness found in humanity. In A Different Beautiful, Courtney explores what her family has discovered in raising a child with physical differences and what she has learned about true beauty. Through her personal insights and experiences, Courtney shares how you, too, can learn to find and celebrate God’s version of beautiful in your life, especially within our differences and struggles.

 

My thoughts:

Courtney Westlake opens her heart and candidly shares her family’s story in A Different Beautiful. Through their experiences with their daughter Brenna, the Westlakes discovered “what it truly means to celebrate beauty in life.” “Sometimes we may need to step back to see things for the beautiful that they are and could be. Sometimes beauty in our lives looks so different than what we expected that we can’t even see it at first.”

In the pages of this book, Courtney details ways to discover, appreciate, and celebrate beauty. I was moved by Courtney’s powerful words and inspired by the wisdom she shared. “When we can see the beautiful in the unexpected, we learn to find joy and celebration in what is, instead of mourning what isn’t.” A Different Beautiful is sure to touch the hearts of all who read it!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. All thoughts expressed are my own.

#BookReview: More Than Rivals by Ken Abraham

20 Jun

More Than Rivals

More Than Rivals by Ken Abraham

Purchase a copy: http://amzn.to/28PaLSN

In 1970, one small southern town was a powder keg ready to erupt.
But it was also on the verge of something incredible.

Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon grew up on opposite sides of the tracks in Gallatin, Tennessee. They knew the barriers that divided them–some physical landmarks and some hidden in the heart–but those barriers melted away when the boys were on the basketball court. After years of playing wherever they could find a hoop, Eddie and Bill rose as leaders of their respective high school teams. And at the end of the 1970 season, all-white Gallatin High and all-black Union High faced each other in a once-in-a-lifetime championship game. What happened that night would challenge Eddie and Bill–and transform their town.

 

My thoughts:

“To me, it’s just basketball. The sport is the common denominator that brings us all together. Colored or white, it doesn’t matter. It’s just a game.”

More Than Rivals is a poignant story! Ken Abraham brings the time period to life as he shares the story of an unlikely pairing and a championship game that transformed a Tennessee community. I was immediately drawn into the lives of Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon, and I enjoyed their amazing journey.

Based on a true story, More Than Rivals is an informative glimpse of history, as well as a touching tale of friendship!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. All thoughts expressed are my own.

#BookReview: Hunting Hope | $200 Getaway #Giveaway

12 May

Hunting Hope

Hunting Hope by Nika Maples

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1WbwJ4P

Hope hunters know how to excavate hope from hardship. There is dirt underneath their fingernails and sweat on their shirts. They rake through the rubble of an unwanted situation, digging into difficult circumstances because they have come to expect that adversity will produce good. They believe that light always triumphs over darkness. They have learned to walk through winter with their eyes on spring.

Nika Maples became a hope hunter after suffering a massive brainstem stroke that left her quadriplegic in her twenties. Doctors warned that she had as little as 48 hours to live, and—if she lived at all—she would never walk or talk again. There was no hope on the horizon. So Nika started to hunt for it. Today, she not only walks, but she speaks to audiences everywhere about the power of hunting hope when a situation appears hopeless. She says hope remains camouflaged in the daily mundane. If we are not looking for it, we will miss it, though it is right before our eyes.

Whether you or someone you know is going through a situation that feels hopeless, you will find encouragement in Hunting Hope. Whether you are experiencing a medical trauma, a financial hardship, or a relational crisis, you will find empowerment in Hunting Hope. As you read, you will cling to 20 truths about God’s character and practice 5 daily disciplines that will develop your own character in crisis.

 

My thoughts:

“Hope is not an accident. Sometimes it has to be hunted, and hunting it takes courage.”

Hunting Hope is a tremendous source of encouragement! Using scriptural references and her own experiences, Nika Maples instructs and inspires readers to “dig through the darkness to find the light”. Filled with wisdom and insight, this heartfelt book offers emotional and spiritual comfort and guides readers on their journey to becoming a hope hunter. I loved the inspiring message found in Hunting Hope!

“Navigating our dark seasons is never easy. By showing us how to hunt for hope, Nika Maples encourages us to grow into the people Gold has designed us to be even while we are experiencing difficulty; to allow God to use all the seasons to bring about good.”

 

At twenty, Nika Maples learned that when hope was all she had, she claimed it boldly while defying all odds to recover from a devastating stroke. The lessons from that struggle are powerful and universal, and she shares those lessons in her new book, Hunting Hope. Doctors warned that she had as little as 48 hours to live, and—if she lived at all—she would never walk or talk again. There was no hope on the horizon. So Nika started to hunt for it. Today, she not only walks, but she speaks to audiences everywhere about the power of hunting hope when a situation appears hopeless. She says hope remains camouflaged in the daily mundane. If we are not looking for it, we will miss it, though it is right before our eyes.

Celebrate the release of Hunting Hope with a $200 Getaway Giveaway (details below) and a live webcast with Nika on May 26!

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One grand prize winner will receive:

  • One copy of Hunting Hope
  • A $200 Hilton gift card to give a hope hunter the chance to rest

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on 5/24. The winner will be announced at the Hunting Hope live author webcast on 5/26. RSVP for a chance to connect with Nika and other hope hunters, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

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RSVP today and spread the word—tell your friends about the giveaway via FACEBOOK, TWITTER, or PINTEREST and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 26th!

 

Nika Maples
Nika Maples is the author of Twelve Clean Pages, the memoir of her survival of lupus and a stroke that left her quadriplegic at age 20. After learning to walk and talk again, she became a public school teacher, winning 2007 Texas Secondary Teacher of the Year. She holds an MA in English Education from Columbia University and currently is pursuing an MDIV from The King’s University. When she is not traveling to speak, she lives, writes, and laughs as much as possible in Fort Worth, Texas.

 

Hunting Hope
 I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. All thoughts expressed are my own.  Click here to read what other bloggers are saying about Hunting Hope