Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bedtime Prayers that end with a Hug by Stephen Elkins

Since I am always on the lookout for great new books for my kids I am so excited to say that I have found one more to add to my library.  Bedtime Prayers that end with a Hug, hardcover book, by Stephen Elkins is a wonderful way to end the day with your kiddos.  Plus, it helps making prayer time a little more like a quick devotional time if you are short on time.

From the same author that wrote Bible Stories that end with a Hug, comes a cute book that helps you devote your prayer time, with your little one, to a certain subject or thought right before bed.  It can help direct your time that might actually turn into a small teaching time.

Each prayer is devoted to a certain topic that is relevant to your child’s walk with God. Such topics are: self-control, seeking the Lord, health and strength, obeying parents, and more.  It’s nice know that if my child is having a rough day or might have a question, I can use these prayers to help address that issue in a way they will be able to understand easily.

If you are familiar with Bible Stories that end in a Hug, then you know there is a format for these books that works really well.  The prayers are broken down into different sections.  The sections are:

  • A Bible Verse related to the prayer
  • A Snuggle time that has a short story going along the theme of that prayer.
  • Bedtime Bible Thought that helps reenforce everything you have been reading to that point
  • My hug-a-bye Prayer which is the prayer that ends the entire time.

My kids loved this book, especially my 4 year old, since the illustrations caught her eye and the prayers were short enough that they held her attention without being overwhelming.  It's a great book for the preschool age group, but probably a little boring for the older kids. 

{Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale Blog Network for an honest review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.}

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Everything Christmas: Celebrating the Joy of the Advent Season with the Best of Christmas Past & Present

Everything Christmas is a compilation of stories, poems, recipes, traditions from around the world, and just about anything Christmas you can think of.  Since Christmas is my absolutely favorite time of year, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book and I wasn’t disappointed.

This book is set up so that you can use it as a daily devotional for the Advent season to keep you heart focused where it should be, but you don’t have to use it that way.  You can read through the book and use what parts of it that you want.  I think next Advent season I will be using this book as a devotion for my family.

One of my favorite things from the book was the traditions from around the world, that I can share with my kids next year.  I would love for them to see how other children celebrate Christmas along with making some recipes for foods they might eat that are included in this book. 

Did you forget some of the lyrics to your favorite Christmas songs?  Well, there is a good chance they are in this book.  Looking for a new decoration…you might find an interesting idea.  What to know where some of your favorite parts of Christmas come from?  There is a lot of history included. 

Overall, I just loved this book.  It is going to make a great addition to our holiday library and I can’t wait to try all the things in the book and create a few new traditions for my family.

{Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.  All thoughts are my own.}

Thursday, December 26, 2013

God's Beloved Daughters by Merrilynn Grodecki

Summary of this book:

Both a daily devotional and an in-depth Bible study, God’s Beloved Daughters is a tool “to strengthen and establish and to exhort and comfort and encourage you in your faith” (I Thessalonians 3:2). Throughout her years serving in the ministry of Christian education, and as friend, mother, and mentor, Merrilynn Grodecki has championed her passion for seeing God’s daughters step into that grace-enhanced, mountain-moving, peace-filled life that is theirs in Him. Now, after decades of studying God’s ways of doing and being right concerning all of life’s issues, she has written this devotional to help each beautiful daughter of God walk in the fullness of life in Christ and discover the eternal truth of God’s promises. Wife, mother, student, teacher, lawyer, doctor, businesswoman, pastor—despite all of these titles, there is one role that takes priority over all others—daughter! Our heavenly identity not only defines and characterizes every other relationship we take part in, it prioritizes our daily motivation. God’s daughters; His ambassadors to the neighborhood, the workplace and the world. Do you see yourself that way? Do you open your door in the morning to step out into the day with that kind of vision? Do your heavenly credentials, your Kingdom citizenship, define for you your determined purpose? Each day offers an opportunity to practice our ambassadorship and extend God’s love. We awake each morning to love God, to serve Him and continue to be loved and known by Him… Walk out in that carefree graciousness that will compel the world to take a closer look at what makes you different. “I don’t know what she’s got,” they will say, “‘but I want it.”

Above is the publishers summary of this book.  I am including this because I really didn’t get anything from this book.  I have read far better devotionals.  Yes, it was nice to see a devotional and Bible study together, but I feel there are better ones out there.  This was easy to read, but I just never felt like it was a study/devotional for me.  Devotionals should have a connection with a person.  They should help you with your personal relationship with God and this one just didn't help me along my path.  It wasn't meant for me. 

I have to say that I would not recommend this book to others since I have read far better devotionals and studies that are made for women.  It was boring and just never attracted my interest. 

{I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via the Booksneeze program in exchange for this review.}

Blessings for the Evening by Susie Larson

Blessings for the Evening by Susie Larson is a book for the quiet times of the day where you just want to unwind.  I like this book because is offers a time of reprieve from all the daily tasks that I must take care of. 

When your day is done, sit down with this book and be reminded, through scripture and prayer, that you are loved.  God loves you no matter what you are going through or how great your day was, or wasn’t.

In hardcover format, Blessings for the Evening, is filled from cover to cover with amazingly beautiful images that will bring your life to a calm regardless of everything around you.  There are different blessings for times of the year such as Christmas or the Sabbath and there are a plethora of subjects that each blessing corresponds to.  If you are having a wonderful day and just want to read about how much God loves you there is a blessing for that.  If you are having a rough day and you need to find comfort there are blessings for that also.  There is a blessing, with scripture, for every type of day you may be having.

This is a great way to finish your day and spend some time with God. 

{I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for the purpose of this review.}

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Seasons of A Woman's Life Devotional Journal by Lois Evans

Are you working your way through the different seasons of your life?  Do times seem tough and never ending? The new journal called Seasons Of A Woman’s Life Devotional Journal by Lois Evans can help you find understanding in each of the different times of your life. 

This journal is beautiful.  The words that Lois shares with you on the pages are there to encourage you to write down all your difficulties, joys, and praise.  She also has engaging questions throughout that will get you thinking about the season you are in, which way you are heading, and how you are addressing all of what life has to offer, whether it be good or bad. 

The design of this journal is wonderful.  Each one of the pages has beautiful flowers on them.  When you open this journal it feels like your open a door to spring. So, no matter how cold or hot it is outside you can enjoy Spring indoors all the time, which is great since Spring is associated with new beginnings and this book is there to help you get through all of the different parts of your life to make it to your new beginning.  With lined pages, it’s easy for you to write out your deepest prayers to God, scripture, and even answer the questions that Lois asks.  

I think this would make a great gift, especially for Christmas or Mother’s Day.  If you have a loved one that is going through a hard time, you could give them this journal to help them write down their thoughts and work through to find that it will eventually end. 

{I received a complimentary copy of this book from Harvest House for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.}