|Book Reviews-January 2009|
|Friday, 16 January 2009 03:19 PM EST|
The Echo Within
An acclaimed, contemplative writer, Benson gently dispenses wisdom like a modern-day Thomas Merton. In fact, Merton gets a nod in the form of a quote at the beginning of each chapter of The Echo Within: Finding Your True Calling. While Christians often struggle to decipher the will of God for their life and work, Benson offers a more relaxed perspective: Trust your instincts.
The book’s smaller trim size, which limits the number of words on each page, coupled with its one-word chapter names (listening, waking, hearing, being, looking, waiting, living, knowing, choosing and dreaming), give an ethereal feeling better suited for reflective reading instead of practical self-help. This book inspires, but doesn’t instruct.
Benson spends most his space recounting his own journey—specifically how he ended up devoting his life to the craft of writing. For that reason, The Echo Within will appeal not only to people searching for purpose, but also to fans of the written word.
Questions of Truth
For readers comfortable with the authors’ nonliteral take on the Bible, Questions offers some resolution to the apparent conflict between science and religion.
—John D. Leatherman
Left At the Altar
Likening the experience to death, Kennedy grieved the loss of her best friend and the plans she had for her life. She describes the heart-crushing rejection and the eventual heart-healing transformation she experienced through her relationship with Christ.
While most of the book deals with her own journey, she often pauses for practical application for the reader, ending with a chapter of 10 tools for healing and moving on with life. Her mantra—“Man’s rejection, God’s protection”—applies to older singles as well as to women whose husbands have been unfaithful or have filed for divorce.
A Killing Frost
Jama knows Doriann is resourceful, rebellious and brave beyond her years, but every hour she’s missing is critical.
A Killing Frost is about facing very real fears. Readers will enjoy the fast pace of the story and the underlying message of trusting in love enough to overcome those fears.
The Centurion’s Wife
Leah, who faces the fear and uncertainty of an arranged marriage, and Alban, the centurion to whom she is betrothed, evaluate the testimonies of those who follow Jesus and have witnessed His resurrection. They grapple with their own journey of coming to faith in this Jewish Messiah and the anxiety they feel while in the service of the very man that had Jesus put to death.
Sweet, mild and pleasant, the story steers clear of describing a darker, complex pre-Christian Rome. The struggle between good and evil is much tamer than it could have been and difficulties are too easily resolved, yet it makes for an enjoyable read.
—Deborah L. Delk
Of Different Minds
Of Different Minds gives a broad treatment of ADD, AD/HD, dyslexia and related disorders. It covers everything a parent needs to know, from how to identify these disorders to the mystery surrounding them; God’s purposes for them; and their impact. The book provides lists of resources, plus tips, methods and Bible studies.
The Late Great United States
The Bible doesn’t specifically mention the U.S. as having a prominent place in the end times, he asserts, which may indicate that America could fall from power in the last days. Hitchcock provides further evidence of the nation’s possible collapse with the current economic crisis, America’s reliance on foreign oil and the threat of Islamic terrorism.
While this may seem gloomy, Hitchcock says that Christians can find hope in knowing what will happen to them when they leave this Earth. He lists three things Christians should do to keep America protected and under God’s favor for as long as possible: Remain vigilant in support of the state of Israel, continue to spread the gospel, and do all they can to practice and promote righteousness.
With its personal yet realistic tone, this book is very informative and viable in a time where people want real answers.