I am so excited to share that I have another short book available for Valentine's Day, based on the blog posts I wrote while I was on the book team for Pulling Back the Shades and when I created one of the first spoken words on YouTube "Pulling Back the Shades of Grey". Curious on what the book is about? Here's the summary:
Does our culture's celebration of Valentine's Day really honor Saint Valentine? Would Saint Valentine disapprove of the Fifty Shades series and his name being used to promote it?
In our world today, love is defined in many ways that are vague. The love that Saint Valentine believed in was anything but grey - it was black and white, and sacrificial in its nature. In this short book, we explore the life of Saint Valentine, what his life and martyrdom can teach us today, and use this information to evaluate how he would most likely feel about the Fifty Shades being promoted in his name when the films were released. Even if you know very little about the series, this book will help equip you with a perspective from a biblical worldview.
Includes a bonus article "Refuting Fifty Shades of Arguments", addressing 5 common arguments made by fans in favor of the Fifty Shades series, exploring the fault in their logic, and teaching how you can engage in conversations with them in a God-honoring way.
Get your copy today! (Commission earned from any purchase made through the link below)
Ever since I met Bob Goff and read his first book, I could wait for another book by him. I was all the more excited when I was able to get onto the launch team for this book. Unfortunately, circumstances in my life prevented me from reading and reviewing the book until now. But in the end, I was glad that I waited. So many of the themes of this book came just at the time I needed to hear it. The recent circumstances in my life have made certain people more difficult to love than others. But Bob’s storytelling has an incredible ability to help you see past yourself in order to help you live your live the way that Jesus would. It was exactly the challenge I needed at the time I needed it. Bob’s first book is in many ways about loving God, which is the summary of the greatest commandment. This second book is about loving people, which is the second greatest commandment. Both books can stand alone, but they are all the more powerful together. I cannot recommend this book or Love Does enough ~ Bethel
There are many people we encounter in our lives that are not easy to love. The reasons for our struggles with loving them is just a numerous. But at the end of the day, our greatest struggle is loving difficult people is learning to see past ourselves. The things that we need to do in order to show them love require us to step out of our comfort zone and take action. That is usually easier said than done. And unfortunately, most people don’t. We tend to push away those that need love most. This is the pattern set by the people around. It makes us ask the question: is there a way to love difficult people in our world today?
In his book, Everybody Always, Bob Goff uses his popular storytelling style to share personal stories that can help us learn to love those that seem impossible to love. Bob shares stories of many people in his life that taught him and challenged him, most of whom were difficult to love. Either by personality or by the circumstances, Bob found ways to show love to everyone. From a neighbor dying of cancer, to his limo driver, to a witch doctor, the variety of people Bob encounters is both entertaining and inspiring. He never really preaches, but shares truth from God’s Word as it is portrayed in the stories from his life. This in turn challenges and inspires us to not be hindered by the patterns of love based on restrictions or contracts. This gives hope for us to show love to everybody always. This book is great read that will inspire and challenge anyone that is willing to take its message to heart. If you liked Love Does, you definitely want to check out Everybody Always. Get your copy today!
Note: A huge thank you to my launch team friend Bailey for paying for my copy of this book. She offered to help me get the book when I was unable to afford it at the time it came out. This act of kindness was very much a demonstration of the message this book is about. Thank you for loving a person you’ve never met Bailey. I will always be grateful for you when I think about this book.
When I first heard that sisters Kristen and Bethany were releasing another book, I was so excited. Since I was on the launch team for their first book, Girl Defined, I knew that this was a book I did not want to miss. I was excited to be accepted onto the launch team for this book as well. Although recent circumstances in my life prevented me from being prepared for the book’s launch day on May 1, I was so compelled when I finally got around to listening to the audiobook version. I basically listened to it straight through. When it comes to explaining the ins and out of singleness, marriage, and everything that comes in between, these sisters have you covered. I once again enjoyed the balanced perspectives of Kristen, who’s married, and Bethany, who was single at the time of writing the book. They are very understandable and relatable in their writing style and in their desire to help women everywhere to pursue God’s plan for finding lasting love. This is a book I would highly recommend ~ Bethel
The methods that our culture tries to present us for finding and maintaining lasting relationships are not working. Everything from infatuation disguised as love to sex before marriage to everything magically working itself out in marriage, Hollywood has tried to convince us this is the recipe for success and societal acceptance. But when you look carefully at the lives of those pursuing those methods, their lives are less than perfect. In fact, the statistics for divorce, abortion, and STDs are higher than ever before, but society won’t admit it because their methods are working. They continues to deceive us into a vicious cycle of infatuation and feelings that always results in our hearts getting broken, but we always go back to the same method. It leads many women to ask the question: How can I pursue God honoring relationships with guy, regardless of what season of life I’m in?
In their book Love Defined, sisters Kristen Clark and Bethany Baird of Girl Defined Ministries help us discover the ways that we can pursue God-honoring relationships that led to God-honoring marriages, all while giving hope that God has a plan and purpose for those of us that are single. They help us identify our culture’s “fairytale façade” and “Merry-Go-Round” method for satisfying relationships. They lead you to see that following these methods will result in disappointment and brokenness if we continue to rely on them. Instead, they offer a perspective on love, sex, and romance that is radically fresh and truly fulfilling when compared to our culture’s methods. To counter our culture’s methods, they offer a method to approach relationships that puts God in the center and won’t leave you broken, even if it doesn’t work out. Bethany also takes time to watch through the struggles of singleness, but offer advice on how to live your single years well while learning to be satisfied in Jesus. Kristen also walks through her relationship with her husband, and how they involved God in the process of their relationship. Together they address big questions like how to be just friends with guys, if you should date a non-Christian, or warning signs that its time to end a relationship. They conclude with a challenge to live our love defined by God, regardless of what phrase of life you are in. These sisters are a dynamic pair as teachers and writers, and they will inspire you to redefine what you know about romance from God’s perspective. Get your copy today!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review, as part of my involvement in the book’s launch team
To read my review of their first book, Girl Defined, click here
To read my last post (which explains the recent circumstances in my life), click here
When I first heard that Levi Lusko was writing another book, I was so excited. I preordered it before its release in February 2017, but I must admit that it took me over a year to read it. But once I did, I didn’t regret it. Although I was initially confused by the book’s title, the power of the premise within its pages cannot be denied. This book is definitely not your typical book when it comes to topics like singleness, dating, marriage, and sex. I appreciate Levi’s ability to see the circumstances of life from a slightly different angle than most Christian authors, but explaining it in a way that is still completely biblically grounded. Especially if you liked Levi’s first book, Through the Eyes of a Lion, then this book is one you definitely need to check out ~ Bethel
Our culture’s view of sex and romance is totally messed up, but most of us don’t realize it. We come into relationships (or lack thereof) primarily concerned about our rights and our needs. We are more concerned about being “in love” than we are about pursuing those feelings in a God-honoring way. We get caught up the conveniences of this digital day and age, even when it comes to relationships. Apps like Tinder make it possible to you to start a relationship with someone you only seen in the app with a simple swipe left of your finger. It makes it hard for us to understand and pursue a biblical understanding of sex and romance when the culture around us pretends to have the answers. It makes us ask the question: How can I prepare for the relationship I want tomorrow?
In Levi Lusko’s book, Swipe Right, he brings a fresh biblically grounded perspective on sex and romance that can help anyone prepare for the relationships they want tomorrow, regardless of what stage of life you are currently in. With the premise of desiring to help prepare you for the relationship you are not yet in, Levi walks through many profound truths about God’s design for sexuality and how we can navigate in a society that treats sex as something digital or disposable. With relevant stories from his own life and marriage, he shares about how God’s desire to us to wait for marriage and keep sex within marriage is about wait for God best for us. He shares many familiar stories from Scripture and presents them in a modern light that is engaging and enlightening. So much truth is packed in bits and pieces throughout this book, in a style that is somewhat similar to that of author Bob Goff (author of the bestseller, Love Does).
As a single young woman, I found this book to be extremely valuable to me, and I personally believe that this book could be of great value to anyone that is single, dating, or married. I recommend this to teens about 15 or older, as well as parents that want to find ways to explain sexuality to their children in a way that honors the Lord and helps them avoid the pitfalls of our culture. I also recommend it for anyone that read and was moved by Levi’s first book, Through the Eyes of a Lion. Although this book was written on a different topic, I believe that is an excellent companion. Get your copy today!
From the moment I heard what this book was about, I was intrigued. Loving the LGBT community has been both a serious struggle and topic of significant controversy among Christians for decades. This struggle has been one that I have personally wrestled with every time I’ve heard of a friend or a family member that has chosen to identify with that lifestyle. So when I heard there was a book written by an Ozark Christian College graduate that has gay parents and found a way to love them without compromising conviction, I knew it was a book I wanted to read. But it took recently learning about another close friend making that lifestyle choice for me to determine that this was a book that I needed to buy. When I did finally read it, I was not disappointed. This pastor has a heart for this difficult-to-reach community that is rare, because he was raised in that community. I now have a perspective to help me still uphold the truth of God’s word, but to also love these people as never before, thanks to this book. This is now my first recommendation on the topic of homosexuality for Christians, hands down. ~ Bethel
Giving grace is really hard. We have all received it, but Christians struggle to give to those that need it the most. This seems to be especially true when it comes to a Christian’s response to the LGBT community. When it comes to responding to this people group, they often choose to push on the truth in a condescending way, or they choose to order too much grace, to the point that they ignore what God has to say on the subject. Neither one on its own fully pleases God, but we struggle to find a way to find a balance between grace and truth. Especially they put the label of “hater” on us just as quickly as some will put the label of “sinner” on them. In the end, we are left unsure of how to even begin to approach the subject in a Christ-honoring way. It makes us ask the question: Is there a way to love those in LGBT community in a Christ-honoring way? Can we love them without compromising our convictions?
In Caleb Kaltenbach’s book, Messy Grace, he shares his personal journey of having two gay parents, finding his way to the Lord as a teenager, and eventually learning how to love those in the LGBT community without compromising his conviction about homosexuality. You follow Caleb as he describes how he was partly raised by his mom and her partner, and how he even participated in gay pride parades. He was taught that Christian hate gay people. When he was teenager, he started going to church, and he eventually became a Christian and was baptized. His parents were less than supportive, even his dad who was still in the closet at the time. He eventually went to Christian college (my alma mater, Ozark Christian College) and became a pastor, and has learned about how to minister to the LGBT community. He walks us through what it means for us as Christians to live in the tension between grace and truth, demonstrating that it is possible as he displays in his own personal journey. He shares what this can look like in the context of a church, and helps us to see that in order to love as Jesus loved those who struggle, we have to be willing to get a little messy.
You will be inspired and challenged by Caleb’s testimony and biblically grounded insight, if you choose to take these truths to heart. This is a book that every Christian about 13 or older needs to read, especially if you have loved one that identifies as LGBT. This book is available pretty everywhere Christian books are sold, so get your copy today!