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Posts Tagged ‘Reviews’

One Extraordinary Day by Harold Myra

One Extraordinary Day

One Extraordinary Day is written by Harold Myra and is published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Christian fiction is not a section of the bookstore I frequent regularly, if at all. I am not a fan of the genre because quality Christian fiction is such a rarity. William P. Young’s The Shack is a rare and contemporary exception to this general rule, obviously. The Shack is Christian fiction at it’s very, very best; Harold Myra’s One Extraordinary Day (Tyndale House 2008), however, is not. One Extraordinary Day unfortunately is an example of the worst of cliched Christian fiction.

My rating: 1.5 stars
*1/2

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Reimagining Church

Frank Viola sent me a copy of his new book - the sequel to Pagan Christianity - titled Reimagining Church: Pursuing the Dream of Organic Christianity. I’m reading it now and will publish a review soon. I’ll also finally get around to publishing my complete thoughts re: Pagan Christianity.

If God Disappears by David Sanford

If God Disappears: 9 Faith Wreckers & What To Do About Them

If God Disappears is written by David Sanford and is published by SaltRiver, a division of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Today, many people are succumbing to waves of negative circumstances and the accompanying and crushing hopelessness that follows. Sometimes it may seem as if God has totally checked out. Has God disappeared? What if God disappears? Can God disappear? Those are very big questions. They are the questions that loom large on the horizons of many people’s skies in this atmosphere of harsh individualism. “Is God gone?” is a very serious question being asked by many, many sincere people today. It’s a question that can find a catalyst in a million different real-time life scenarios; it can be asked in a number of different ways; it can take on hundreds of different forms. The question, regardless of the manner asked or the form taken, often results in a crippled or totally discarded faith. That’s unfortunate, if not straight up counterproductive. Where else will we look for answers or meaning to life’s most potent circumstances or events?

My rating: 2.5 stars
**1/2

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These Cold And Rusted Lungs by Amy Courts

Amy Courts

These Cold And Rusted Lungs

These Cold And Rusted Lungs is the debut full-length record release by artist and musician Amy Courts

Amy Courts is preparing to release the follow up to her successful self-titled EP. These Cold And Rusted Lungs is scheduled for a July 29th release. Honestly, I didn’t know who Amy Courts was one week ago, and I never before listened to any of her music. But after a few listens of an advanced copy of the disc (sent for review on Tribe), I became an instant fan. Music connoisseurs rejoice! These Cold And Rusted Lungs is not only radio friendly, but also artistically poignant and rich! That’s a rare feat for any contemporary artist, but especially so for one whose career is built upon an independently released EP.

My rating: 5.0 stars
*****

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Interview with Curriculum Author Michael Kelley

Tough Sayings of Jesus

Scribe members were recently offered a wonderful opportunity to receive and review a DVD-based small group curriculum published by Threads/LifeWay called The Tough Sayings of Jesus II (Leader Kit). Part of this opportunity included a series of interviews, hosted by individual Scribe members, with Michael Kelley, the creator/author of the curriculum. I personally love The Tough Sayings of Jesus I and II, and could not wait to ask Michael Kelley a few questions about it! You can read the interview with Kelley after the jump …

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Rising from the Ashes by Becky Garrison

Rising from the Ashes: Rethinking Church

Rising from the Ashes is a book (paperback) written by Becky Garrison

This book would make a great library addition for those who are thinking hard about church and change, especially if you are engaging it from a mainline perspective. The book includes more than a few priceless nuggets of wisdom (see N.T. Wright, for example), but it also includes some of what could be easily called fool’s gold too. Not everything tagged with the words “Emerging” or “Emergent” is helpful as far as long-term solutions for ecclesial health, communal evolution, and practical change are concerned. Some of the content is, in fact, just reactionary and silly. Again, the reader must decide and discern the difference between the two. This is a good book, in spite of its need for sensible discernment. I recommend it to anyone involved in church thinking and/or leadership.

My rating: 3.0 stars
***

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Restoration by Nathan Horst

Restoration by Nathan Horst

Restoration is a brand new album written and recorded by Nathan Horst.

Restoration is personable and raw and spiritually accessible. In other words, I can push play and actually worship along with the artist because his musical craft is his own personal offering to God, first and foremost; he just happens to be benevolently sharing the experience with the rest of us. Incidentally, there is a huge difference between shared craft and musical formulas built upon premeditated aims at commercial success. The former is an experience; the later is predictable pop. Restoration is a soulful and artistic compilation of an obvious and shared musical craft born deep within the artist’s personal spiritual pilgrimage. It is musical expression that spans the gamut of all that is passionate, celebratory, praiseful, melodic, melancholic, moody, electronic and artful. Restoration is always artful. Nathan Horst is a quality song writer and musician.

My rating: 4.0 stars
****

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A Review of The End of Religion by Bruxy Cavey

The End of Religion

The End of Religion: Encountering the Subversive Spirituality of Jesus is a book written by Bruxy Cavey

The End of Religion is a great book. It’s fantastic! It’s challenging but dedicatedly Biblical. Put this one on your shelf and read it through a few times!

My rating: 4.0 stars
****

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A Review of Life After Church by Brian Sanders

Life After Church

Life After Church: God’s Call to Disillusioned Christians is a book written by Brian Sanders.

We don’t need one more book screaming about all that is wrong with the church. We all already know that much. Those folk need to find some new material, and soon. Until they do figure out how to maturely assess contemporary ecclesiology and reflect this newfound maturity in their writing, check out Brian Sanders’ Life after Church. It offers readers a mature summarization of current trends - good and bad - in ecclesiology and challenges readers to decide for themselves if they should stay or leave by asking themselves which action would be better for the kingdom of God. This is a great little book.

My rating: 4.0 stars
****

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A Review of Speaking of Faith by Krista Tippett

Speaking of Faith: Why Religion Matters and How to Talk about It

Speaking of Faith is paperback book written by public radio host Krista Tippett.

If you are interested in brushing up on a postmodern, pluralistic, North American Religious Liberalism, then grab Tippett’s Speaking of Faith. You will walk away from this book feeling as though you read a lot, but have little to actually apply to real life and living. It’s an exercise in religious intellectualism, at best. If your desire is to dive deep into authentic Interfaith conversation, keep checking the shelves. This book will not do it for you.

My rating: 2.0 stars
**

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