Book Reviews, Christian Living

Living Second: Vain

Imagine what it would be like to have access to any and everything you want. No fee is too great. No location too remote. Don’t know how to do it? You have the time and the tutors to learn it. Wonder if it is legal or moral? All restrictions are out the window and the red tape is put through the shredder.

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What would you do? Where would you go? This is much larger than your “bucket list.” It isn’t what to do before your final moments, but what to fill your living days with. Projects, travels, people, acquisitions. You have your pick of the world. What will you choose? What will you leave behind?

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Book Reviews, Christian Living

Living Second: Unify

Have you ever watched a sitcom where a couple has its first fight and they realize that just because they had an argument, they don’t have to break up? It’s like they finally realized that the fulfillment that comes out of a relationship is not based on a utopian experience. That it is okay to have good days and bad days. That one disagreement does not have to be the death certificate for all of the good in their relationship.

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It is too bad that we cannot seem to grasp this concept at church. Unfortunately, serving a perfect God does not make us perfect people. Not yet. Until the day when we take on the imperishable and incorruptible, we remain sin-prone humans that still mess up. At least, I’m pretty sure that everyone else does.

As we learn to Live Second, it seems that we just might find ourselves even lower on the totem pole than we think that means. It is obvious that we should have Christ first in our lives. But does it stop there?

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Book Reviews, Christian Living

Living Second: Confession

Do you know what it means to live second? It means that you are not the first priority of your life. There must be something or someone else greater than you that you align your thoughts and actions to. Someone else that you take your cues from, learn lessons from, and organize your life according to their word.

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When Jesus called out to men to become His disciples, He simply said, “Follow Me.” He makes the same call to us. But sometimes we have difficulty making Jesus first in our lives. It is not because we do not know Him or His word to us, but because find it so difficult to put ourselves in second place.

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Book Reviews

Book Review: “Grace” by Max Lucado

Grace_MaxLucadoHave you ever picked up what you thought was a new book by one of your favorite authors, only to be disappointed because it was just a repackage of a book you already own and love? When I had the chance to read Grace: More than We Deserve, Greater than We Imagine by Max Lucado, I was afraid it was just that. After all, “grace” comes packaged with Max Lucado’s name on it many ways.

What I was not expecting is the gut-wrenching that I had reading the book. As a pastor, I try to walk the line between grace and what comes after. It is a paradox throughout Scripture. Reading about the depths of grace only serves to convince me of its necessity, not just in communicating the Gospel, but in living every day.

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Book Reviews

Book Review: “The Power of the Prophetic Blessing”

Who doesn’t want more blessings in their lives? We all hope for more of them, even pray for more of them. Yet we find in a Scripture a powerful truth that we can be the voice of blessing, stirring God’s hand to bless.

In “The Power of the Prophetic Blessing,” Pastor John Hagee promises to reveal the power of blessings, not just from God and His promises, but from His people to others. It has “the power to revolutionize your life, and the lives of your children and grandchildren” (4). But you almost forget that the book is supposed to be about how you prophetically speak blessing into the lives of others because He spends so much time talking generically about blessings.

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Book Reviews

Book Review: “I Am Second” (Thomas Nelson)

ias-bookThe Bible is more than a bunch of stories gathered over time. It is a historical record of people from the beginning of time to the end of the first century or so. It talks about how people related with God and how He intervened in their lives. There are success stories and there are failures.

At times we pick up the Scriptures and wonder if the stories of lives that are thousands of years removed from our own will be able to speak to us. If only we could see how God relates to us in our time, with our problems. Maybe we can finally believe that He is real and that He wants to be part of our lives.

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