Thursday, June 13, 2019

Book Review - Hearts Set Free by Jess Lederman

I had no idea what I was undertaking when I said yes to reviewing this book.

Hearts Set Free is complicated, epic, messy, and disjointed, just like real life. It is semi-autobiographical spanning a timeframe of 80 years or more that starts in native Alaska and ends in Las Vegas. It's a lot to keep track of - characters, connections, and timeframes with a little bit of spiritual warfare - devils, demons, and visions.

The story eventually becomes engaging, but it takes a while to get there. Luke is one of the main characters, and we learn about his background, which initially starts in Native Alaska. His father abandons his family - Luke and his mother, which starts them on the quest to finding him. They eventually do find him, many years later in Vegas where he died as he was working on a dam. In the interim, we also meet David Gold, who became a preacher in the Vegas desert. David is Luke's stepfather. There are other characters - Tim Faber and Joan Reed who connect with Daniel Gold - Luke's


Monday, June 3, 2019

Ezra Bible Study - Who Was Ezra?

Before we jump into the events written by Ezra, let's discover some fundamentals about Ezra.

This book bears his name while showing how God used Ezra and others to fulfill his plan for the Jews. The book of Ezra is considered a historical book and begins where 2 Chronicles ends. In the chronological order of the Bible, Ezra and Nehemiah are considered the end of the old testament. Ezra details the rebuilding of the second temple which was ultimately destroyed in 70 AD by the Romans.

Knowledge of the Law was lost during the seventy-year Babylonian exile. The Babylonian


Monday, May 20, 2019

Ezra Bible Study - Introduction

In this space, I try to encourage you in a way that points you back to God's Word. In my life, I have seen the value of reading the Bible and I want you to reap a similar benefit. I love to read the entire Bible, but I have a particular fondness for the Old Testament.

The Old Testament highlights the time before Christ; before the realization of the Messiah. With this void, we can see men and women of faith, fallen men, and a favored nation - the Israelites.  We see unfavorable actions, the bad side of human nature and through it all God's grace, power, and sovereignty. Man is nothing without God.

When I studied the book of Judges, it had a profound impact on my life. (Type The Book of Judges in the search bar on the blog.)



Monday, May 6, 2019

Book Review - Prayer, Does It Make Any Difference by Philip Yancey

The titles of Philip Yancey's books captivate me because he's asking the questions that are in my head. While in the library, I saw PRAYER in big, bold print on the spine of this book which immediately grabbed my attention; when I saw that it was by Philip Yancey (one of my favorite Christian authors), I knew I would be borrowing it.

If we're honest, I think many Christians struggle with prayer. We pray because it's how we communicate with God, but we know it goes deeper than this yet many of us don't grasp the more profound meaning. We struggle with why, how, where, what. Why are we praying? How do we pray? Where do we pray? What do we say? We wonder, are my prayers heard? Is my prayer making a difference?

What I appreciate about this book is the author's honesty. Despite his pedigree, he too struggles. Writing as a fellow pilgrim about that mysterious intersection where God and humanity meet and relate, Philip Yancey pushes beyond conventional treatments to