What I’m Reading: November 2012

I am 11 months in to my commitment to read at least one book each month in addition to my Bible. As you will be able to tell from my list below, I didn’t read a single book during the month of October.

I was just too busy.

Nevertheless, I am satisfied with my progress and hope you’ve been inspired to read more this year.

What I’m Reading In November

2012 Reading List

JanuaryWhat Women Fear (It took me a second to get used to reading again so I didn’t finish this)

FebruaryWhat Women Fear

MarchThe Resolution for Women

AprilThe Circle Maker

MayGrace Based Parenting, Don’t Make Me Come Up There!: Quiet Moments for Busy Moms, and How To Know God’s Will

JuneA Confident Heart: How to Stop Doubting Yourself and Live in the Security of God’s Promises and In the Presence of my Enemies

JulyGrace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life

AugustNo Longer a Slum-Dog (FREE) and One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are

October

NovemberPraying Circles Around Your Children and UNconditional

 

I will try to share as many personal book reviews as I can, but if I don’t get around to it just know that I highly recommend all of the books listed above.

What I’m Reading: September 2012 and August Review

It’s a September and I am nine months in to my commitment to read at least one book each month in addition to my Bible.

In fact, I’ve done better than I anticipated because starting out I felt like I didn’t have time to read.

I think part of the success of this challenge was due to the following:

  • I made an intentional decision to read more.
  • I became more aware of pockets of time available now that I am actively seeking time to read.
  • Setting weekly reading goals by dividing my reading into quarters. This helped me start each week with a minimum reading goal.

August’s Reading Recap

During August I read No Longer a Slumdog and One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are.

No Longer a Slumdog – I loved this book!!

No Longer a Slumdog intensified the passion I already had for the hurting and the lost. It was just what I needed to read just as I was on the precipice of taking (the next step in my call to the mission field).

God spoke to my heart through this book and gave me insight on how badly the body of believers are needed to help the lost.

No Longer a Slumdog is absolutely free so if you wanted to begin reading one book a month with no financial burden I suggest starting with this one. You can also check out my ongoing list of FREE Christian books as well.

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are – I love Ann Voskamp!

Ann is a blogger, author, Christian, wife, mother and public speaker with a passion for God. In One Thousand Gifts, Ann shares her journey to become thankful despite life’s tragedies. She finds that God has surrounded us with gifts if we’d only open our eyes to see them.

What I’m Reading In September

2012 Reading List

JanuaryWhat Women Fear (It took me a second to get used to reading again so I didn’t finish this)

FebruaryWhat Women Fear

MarchThe Resolution for Women

AprilThe Circle Maker

MayGrace Based Parenting, Don’t Make Me Come Up There!: Quiet Moments for Busy Moms, and How To Know God’s Will

JuneA Confident Heart: How to Stop Doubting Yourself and Live in the Security of God’s Promises and In the Presence of my Enemies

JulyGrace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life

AugustNo Longer a Slum-Dog (FREE) and One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are

 

I will try to share as many personal book reviews as I can, but if I don’t get around to it just know that I highly recommend all of the books listed above.

March Reading: The Resolution for Women

I just finished reading Priscilla Shirer’s, The Resolution For Women, based on the movie Courageous. This is the second of 12 books I plan to read this year. As you can see, I’ve already fallen behind on my goal but for good reason. Some books I am able to just read through but a book like The Resolution For Women is one that I wanted to take my time and take notes.

Most of what was shared in the book was not new information, much of it was more of reiterating many principles I already apply to my life.

What I Loved About It:

  • It’s broken down into small easy to apply resolutions that address the primary areas of a woman’s life including marriage, faith, parenting and much more.
  • The tone of the book reads like a wise woman mentoring a younger woman. I love that it follows the pretense of Titus 2.
  • Each chapter is short and full of meaty wisdom and experiences to substantiate to content.
  • The agreements at the end of each resolution where you can sign your name as you decide to implement each resolution in your life.

I really enjoyed reading this book and wish I had it years ago as a young wife and mother. With all of the responsibilities of being a wife and mom, I didn’t have as much time to study my Bible as I did once my children started to get older.

The Resolution For Woman takes many of the Biblical principles pertaining to women and dissects them which is great if you are in a busy season of life and don’t have a lot of free time to devote to bible study.

Unto The Hills

I recently received Unto The Hills: A Daily Devotional by Billy Graham courtesy BookSneeze.com and as a condition of receiving free books, I provide my review in exchange.

In conjunction with my reading, I’ve began working on my reading goals for this year. So far I have been reading Unto the Hills: A Daily Devotional by Billy Graham and The Ministry of Intercession – A Plea For More Prayer, which is the first book of this years virtual book club.

I’ve been reading Unto The Hills since December and have found it to be just what I expected. Each day includes a Bible verse, inspirational story and a prayer. It’s a good companion…not a substitution, for daily Bible reading.

Each devotion is short and to the point and includes a verse reference. One thing that I would have liked to see in this devotional was more scripture references to accompany the text, but overall it is a good resource. If you are trying to get more time in God’s word, try keeping a devotional on your night stand to read before bed or to connect with God first thing in the morning.

Do you have a favorite personal or family devotions book?

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Book Review: Lucille O’Neal: Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go

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If you are planning on buying this book…….don’t!

I just finished reading Walk Like You Have Somewhere To Go written by Lucille Oneal, the acclaimed NBA superstar Shaquille O Neal’s mother. When I accepted this book to review I did it thinking it would be what it claimed…an inspirational and encouraging journey from mental welfare to mental health. What I found is a women who still has a way to go in becoming a healthy role model to young women, wives and moms.

I hate to be harsh and I struggled with writing this review. This is the first negative review I’ve written that due in part because I try to accept only products that I can endorse and I thought this book would be one….unfortunately it’s not.

I realized soon after reading the first few chapters that Lucille was not writing to inspire but to share her 225 page justification for her past and present behavior. She describes her grandparents, who raised as being harsh and unloving disciplinarians who forced her to go to church. She later describes the scene when her grandmother discovers that she has become pregnant out of wedlock while still in high school. Here is what she says of her grandmothers reaction;

The criticisms and negative comments that came my way via her and my father’s family were disheartening, degrading, and demoralizing, to say the least. I was made to feel like I had committed the worst crime known to man.

I’m sure this contributed to her decision to lovingly accept and not chastise her own daughter when she’d become pregnant while still in high school.

Here’s how Mrs. O’Neal responded to her own daughters pregnancy.

When you’ve always had babies in the house, you miss the laughter and joy they bring. I’d actually thought about adopting, since all of my children were in high school and beyond. Phil (her husband and the man who raised Shaquille since the age of two) completely ignored that suggestion-as did most of my kids, who thought I had to be kidding. But I felt that we had so much to share now, and there were so many children out there in need.

The part that really left me speechless was when Mrs. O’Neal went on to say that, “God was listening, and now I wouldn’t have to look outside our family for a new baby to love…..um……what!?

I’m sorry Mrs. O”Neal, but just so you know, God doesn’t answer prayers in contradiction to His word. To say that God blessed your daughter with a child as an answer to your need to fill an a void within you is absurd and it sends the wrong message to say the least.

I disliked this book on so many levels. Nothing in it made me aspire to be like Mrs. O”Neal. I have actually been better off not having read the book. Before I started reading it my husband was telling me the story of how Phill had raised Shaquille as his own since the age of two. He talked about how Shaquille’s biological father appeared on a talk show to plead for a relationship with Shaquille. He told me of how Shaquille and Phil the man he called “dad”, had appeared in commercials together supporting father son relationships. This is why my husband and I were shocked when we read that Mrs. O”Neal had filed for a divorce from her husband of twenty-eight years of marriage and justified it by saying it was finally time for me to do what was right for her.

Never did she say that she was abused or mistreated by her husband. Not once did she say that he did not provide for her and their children. Mrs. O”Neal (formerly Mrs. Phil Harris) explains that she divorced her husband because she was not happy and wanted to be FREE to become the women she was meant to be.

I came away from reading this book with the opinion that Mrs. O’Neal had not gone from mental welfare to mental health…at least not by biblical standards. It’s going to take more than a regurgitation of her life story coupled by a quote from the bible at the beginning of each chapter to convince me. There were many times during the reading of Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go, that I wanted to put this book down and walk away from it, because I did have somewhere to go…and that was anywhere but sitting there finishing Lucille’s  book. However for the sake of giving an honest review, I read the book from cover to cover.

If you are looking for some juicy gossip and a great hard luck story, then by all means head over HERE and order a copy. But is you are looking for inspiration head over HERE and get it completely FREE of charge.

Now it’s your turn to chime in. Have you read this book? Were you intending to buy it? I’d love to hear your views. Leave a comment below.

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Thomas Nelson has provided me with a complimentary copy of this advanced DVD copy. I have provided this disclosure in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission: Click for details. If you have any questions or are unclear about the Booksneeze guidelines you can reach us them at: help@booksneeze.com.

Bibleman:Combating the Commandment of Confusion

Video Summary

A dastardly villain plots to steal the armor of God.

The Commandant of Confusion and his side kick, Chaos, interrupt the Bible Adventure Training Academy and steal the Bible Team’s secret weapon, which helps them put on the full armor of God “anytime, anyplace.” There is a warning label on the secret weapon that reads in part, “this device contains the most powerful weapon known to man, follow instructions closely to prevent severe harm.” Will the Commandant heed the warning? Will the Bible Adventure Team recover it?

Scripture lesson: “God is not a God of confusion but a God of peace.” 1 Corinthians 14:33 (ICB)

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Here’s another honest review from me ‘The Proverbs Wife’.  I received my FREE copy of  Bible Man: Combating The Commandant of Confusion from Book Sneeze and Thomas Nelson earlier this week  for review.

I had already had experience with the Bibleman television series and was  excited to offer my children the chance to be entertained while reinforcing biblical principles.

We initially fast forwarded through the first five minutes of the video because we didn’t realize that this was not the television edition but an actual live adventure show that has been recorded.

Once the kids realized this they were instantly engaged and interacting with the characters. Throughout the video Bibleman and his comrades are giving the kids tasks to do like quoting scripture and alerting him whenever the characters Chaos or  The Commandant of Confusion came around starting trouble.

In addition to the adventure there are previews of other available videos. The children spent the second day watching the previews just so they could listen to the great songs.

The Bibleman series really brings the Bible home for children. It allows them to visualize how beneficial scripture memorization is to fighting against sin. The video is that it is priced at $9.99 Amazon.com which is very moderately priced. Most of us have paid twice  that for non-biblical videos which don’t do anything but entertain. This video will entertain your children and reinforce the principles being taught in the bible, thus making them stronger in their faith.

Thomas Nelson has provided me with a complimentary copy of this advanced DVD copy. I have provided this disclosure in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission: Click for details. If you have any questions or are unclear about the Booksneeze guidelines you can reach us them at: help@booksneeze.com.

In The Land Of Odds

Auto-B-Good is a five time Emmy Award winning series that can be seen on public television and all around the world.  The series is based on the adventures of 9 vehicles, each with their own unique personality, who live in the City of Auto. Each episode is centered around a different Character Development Trait, such as honesty, respect, caring, fairness and many more.

There are currently six DVD’s available (Seasons one and two).  Each DVD has four episodes on it.

Ages: 3-10

Price: $7.99

Put out by: Rising Star Studios

Additional Links for Auto-B-Good include the following:

Youtube Video

Auto-B-Good Site

Purchase In the Land of Odds

Become a fan on Facebook or follow on Twitter

A few weeks ago I watched In The Land of Odds with my children, after they had already watched it twice by themselves. By the time we watched it together they’d already memorized some of the funniest scenes from the video.

I was shocked at how funny In The Land Of Odds was. By looking at the graphics on the cover, the video looks like an old School House Rock VHS case, but the expression, “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” really held true for this video.

There are 3 mini video adventures on the entire DVD that focus on building good character traits. I used the video for a school lesson where my 6, 7 and 9 year were to watch one mini video and compose a written narration of  what they learned. After watching the first video they pleaded with me to let them watch the rest of the DVD.

In The Land Of Odds season one – vol 3 begins with Johnny who is challenging the value of  “dependability”. Johnny thinks being dependable is boring. And no matter how much his friends try and reason with him, he refuses to see the value in being dependable. It’s not until Johnny gets to experience the consequences of  not being dependable that he quickly changes his opinion.

This video is appropriate for ages 4-10 and is a great tool to use for a home school or family values lesson. There are sixty-three character traits covered so far in the Auto B-Good video series. Rising Star Studios exceeded my expectation in providing a beneficial video to help parents reinforce good character in their children.

I was provided with a FREE copy of Auto B-Good, In The Land Of Odds video for the purpose of this MamaBuzz review. Also included were a mini pack of gummy candy and some popcorn, but these sweets in NO WAY influenced the opinion of my review. No… but seriously, I enjoyed the videos and truly thank MamaBuzz and Rising Star Studios for the opportunity to review a great product.

See my full disclosure HERE.