Awaken: 90 Days With The God Who Speaks by Priscilla Shirer | Daily Devotional Review

Awaken: 90 Days With The God Who Speaks by Priscilla Shirer

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Nonfiction / Daily Devotional / Christian Living

The choice of a devotional book is more personal than most. This kind of reading is not merely for the purpose of leisure and enjoyment. No, with this kind of resource you’re expecting and praying for something more. You want to hear from God, receive His direction, and be refreshed in the depths of your soul. Only God’s Word can do that.

So you need to choose wisely.

With her first devotional book, Priscilla Shirer makes your choice easy. For even though she’s written multiple best-selling books and Bible studies, including the 2016 ECPA “Christian Book of the Year” (Fervent), even though she regularly speaks to thousands at conference venues and churches around the world, even though she was the lead actress in a #1 box-office feature film (War Room) . . . It all starts for Priscilla where it all starts for you.

Alone with God. Alone with His Word. Eager to hear His voice. Prepared to humbly and obediently respond. She hopes, more than anything else, that the daily insights you receive in these pages will challenge, encourage, and strengthen you in every way.

These ninety devotions from the heart of a mom, wife, encourager, and friend will Awaken you each day with fresh insights gleaned from the Spirit of God. Ready to help you mine the treasures of Scripture and fortify you for the day ahead.
This devotional is . . . a good choice.

My Thoughts

I tend to like in depth Bible study so I don't do many daily devotional type of books. But I have done several of Priscilla's Bible studies and decided that I'd give this one a try. So glad that I did. I know it's cliche to say that I was hooked from the beginning, but I was. The very first daily devotion is still resonating with me weeks later.

The set-up of the book is simple. There are ninety different devotions that start with a small portion of scripture and then follow with thoughts by Priscilla. Then there are questions to contemplate and and area to journal your thoughts if you desire. 

As I said earlier I'm not usually drawn to this type of reading but I liked Priscilla's style in this. She presented each day's reading in a way that made you contemplate what it means in your life. The stories are hers but the situations are common to women so it was very easy to relate to the readings.

I thought that this would be a great morning and evening reading. It would also make a great gift to a friend. I thought it would be especially nice for that young mother that doesn't have gobs of time to do in depth Bible study but desires to stay in the Word amid the chaos of raising young children. Whether you decide to give it as a gift or use it yourself, I'm pretty sure that you won't be disappointed.

"Unforgiveness keeps us relegated to the artificial boundaries created by yesterday's disappointments."

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Priscilla Shirer

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A Name Unknown (Shadows Over England #1) by Roseanna M. White | Historical Fiction Review

A Name Unknown (Shadows Over England #1) by Roseanna M. White

Book review disclosure.

Shadows Over England #1
Historical Fiction

She's Out to Steal His Name. 
Will He Steal Her Heart Instead?

Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins who helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they are no longer pickpockets--instead they focus on high value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. Rosemary is beginning to question whether she can continue in this life when she's offered the challenge of a lifetime--determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany. After all how does one steal a family's history, their very name?

As Europe moves ever closer to World War I, rumors swirl around Peter Holstein. Awkward and solitary, but with access to the king, many fear his influence. But Peter can't help his German last name and wants to prove his loyalty to the Crown--so he can go back to anonymously writing a series of popular adventure novels. When Rosemary arrives on his doorstep pretending to be a well-credentialed historian, Peter believes she's the right person to help him dig through his family's past.

When danger and suspicion continue to mount, both realize they're in a race against time to discover the truth--about Peter's past and about the undeniable attraction kindling between them.

Read an excerpt.

My Thoughts

The beginning of a new series is always exciting, especially if it is from a favorite author. A Name Unknown is the first book in the Shadows Over England series from Rosanna M. White. It's an historical fiction series that is set during the World War I era.

The overriding theme is that of redemption. The heroine is a thief and feels as if there is no other recourse for herself and those she cares for. The hero also leads a secret life but much more upright than that of the heroine. They both need freedom from the trappings that have ensnared them. But freedom can only come if they are willing to risk telling the truth.

I enjoyed this fictional journey with these new characters. The setting is fascinating and the details kept me quickly turning the pages just to see how it was all going to turn out. I'm eagerly awaiting the next installment even though I know that war is brewing. This is a complete story but I look forward to seeing where it goes from here. Will the rest of the family be redeemed? I certainly hope so!

If you like a book that builds as it goes then this book is for you. As the story unfolds you find out more and more about the characters and the background that lead up to the characters being where they are and what shaped them. The backdrop of impending war leads to the need to quickly solve the mystery. It was a quick read that left me wanting more . . . in a good way!

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The Beginner's Bible Daniel and the Hungry Lions | Children's Book Review

The Beginner's Bible Daniel and the Hungry Lions

Book review disclosure.

Juvenile Nonfiction

The Beginner’s Bible® has been a favorite with young children and their parents since its release in 1989 with over 25 million products sold.

Daniel is in trouble! He’s disobeyed the king and is facing down a cave of hungry lions. But Daniel knows God is on his side, and he is not afraid. This retelling of the story of Daniel and the lions will show little ones how trusting in God will keep them safe and sound. Featuring brand-new art from the beloved The Beginner’s Bible, a die-cut format, and a beautiful foiled cover, parents will love sharing this board book with their children.

Daniel in the lion's den.

My Thoughts

The stories of Daniel are among my favorites in the Bible. Daniel was a man of conviction throughout his life. He maintained his belief in God under very trying circumstances. The Beginner's Bible Daniel and the Hungry Lions focuses on one of those events.

This event comes later in Daniel's life and it teaches us some important lessons. We see that God is faithful and can be trusted no matter what. It would have been easy for Daniel to not pray where people would notice but he didn't. It also teaches us that we need to be careful and thoughtful about our actions and who we trust. The king was very fond of Daniel but his decree put Daniel's life at risk.

We learn that God can take a seemingly impossible situation, hungry lions, and turn it to His outcome. Daniel came out of that den without even a scratch. One of the biggest lessons of this story is that if we remain faithful to God He will use us to reveal Himself to those around us.

This cute little board book would be a wonderful addition to your child's library. The text comes from The Beginner's Bible so it is familiar to those who use that resource. The book itself is sturdy and designed to hold up to little hands turning the pages over and over. I highly recommend it!

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The Bedtime Book by Mary Engelbreit | Children's Book Review

The Bedtime Book by Mary Engelbreit

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Mary Engelbreit
Children's Storybook

Mama comes to tuck you in,
Pulls the covers to your chin,
Squeezes fingers, squeezes toes,
Lays a kiss upon your nose.

New York Times bestselling author Mary Engelbreit presents The Bedtime Book, a beautifully-illustrated picture book that pairs sleepy time text with Mary’s beloved, timeless art. From endearing poems and snuggly stories to sweet blessings and precious prayers, each page of The Bedtime Book features ways for you to read your little one to sleep. The Bedtime Book has a beautiful cover decorated with embossing and spot gloss.

Tucked in tight.

My Thoughts

I've long been a fan on Mary Engelbreit's whimsical art style. Her color palette and darling characters draw the viewer in. The Bedtime Book combines Mary's artistic talent with beautiful verses to make a charming book for children.

The theme is bedtime and that's when we tried it out. Honestly, I'm not sure who enjoyed it more . . . granny or grands! It was nice to snuggle in and read through the book. The little rhyming verses were easy to say and the pictures provide so much discovery. I feel like I see something new in the details each time we read it.

The Bedtime Book is a hardback so it would make a lovely gift for a new baby or a special little one. It's one of those beautiful books that you won't tire of reading over and over.

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The Beginner's Bible My First Book of Prayers | Children's Book Review

The Beginner's Bible My First Book of Prayers

Book review disclosure.


The Beginner’s Bible® has been a favorite with young children and their parents since its release in 1989 with over 25 million products sold.
The Beginner's Bible My First Book of Prayers helps young children discover that they can talk to God about anything from the beauty of creation to their friendships and emotions. Thankfulness, praise, and requests for God's help are all included.

Sixteen sweet prayers, written with the child's daily experiences in mind, focus on important character traits such as caring and forgiveness. For each prayer, charming illustrations from The Beginner's Biblehighlight a different Bible character or scene that illustrates the truth found in the prayer. Ideal gift for a new parent or young child, and a great addition to church or daycare library.

God Created All Things

My Thoughts

If your family enjoys The Beginner's Bible then you need to add this companion piece to your library. The characters and verses will be familiar to your children and will help them connect with what is being taught. The focus of My First Book of Prayers is of course prayer. There are sixteen different selections that will highlight different events in the Bible and the corresponding prayer that the people would have likely prayed.

For example the first selection is from Genesis and involves Adam and Eve in the garden. The prayer focuses on gratitude. That's an easy thing to imagine if you think about the beauty and provision that they were surrounded by. It's also a great way to begin to teach your children to look around and see the beauty and provision that God has provided for them right here.

The rest of the sections contain similar examples like a prayer for courage such as one David would have prayed when he was up against Goliath. Or a prayer of kindness like the good Samaritan must have prayed over the poor wounded man he rescued.

Each example points to the many different ways that we can have a conversation with God all day long in every situation we find ourselves in. 

The book itself is a padded board book that makes it easy for little hands to use over and over again. It would make a wonderful addition to your morning or evening storytime routine.

Disclosure of materials.

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