Saturday, August 24, 2013

Book Review: 52 Ways to Grow Your Faith by Gregg Peter Farah

No matter how long you have been a follower of Christ, it's always a good idea to ponder this question: "Is my faith growing?" Our desire should be to know Him more and to make Him known. Do you feel stuck spiritually or feel suffocated by this busy, noisy world we live in? Gregg Peter Farah offers 52 ways to help readers grow their faith...to connect with God. This book reminds me a lot of The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence. Perhaps comparably its modern counterpart?

Each chapter is short and concise (not intimidating). Each chapter includes a spiritual growth idea and explanation, a key Bible verse, a devotion (life's connection), an insightful key quote, tips for application, a real story of someone who has tried the idea out, and a prayer plus an empty space for readers to write their own prayers down. The author groups the ideas into different categories such as To Grow on Your Own, To Grow with a Friend, To Grow with a Group, To Grow on the Go, To Grow Methodically, To Grow Courageously, and To Grow Artistically.

He makes spiritual growth exciting, engaging, fun, and doable. For example, did you know that you can grow your faith by hosting a movie night :)? Don't underestimate small stuff (like an index card, a map, a notebook, or a pair of shoes) that can help you connect with God throughout the day. The key is to live, look (observe God's power and beauty and be aware of God's presence), reach out intentionally and pray continually. From music, mission, and meeting, to calendar, conference, and confession...there are plenty of opportunities to know, love, and serve God more. This book is a useful and practical resource for both new believers and long-time believers who need some refreshing ideas to spend time with God! It's great for either individual study or small group study. At the end of the book, you will find ideas on how to use this book with groups or in a class, including sample studies and a lesson template. Check the book out and discover simple yet creative and effective ways God uses to strengthen your faith in Him! Anyone can grow spiritually anywhere!


~I received a free copy of this book via The Book Club Network Inc. in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Alone Yet Not Alone

I'm excited and curious about this new movie coming out next month (9-27-2013). It looks really interesting. Check out its trailer below. You can purchase tickets at http://seatzy.com/ayna/.

The movie is based on the book with the same title, Alone Yet Not Alone by Tracy Leininger Craven. The book was based on a true story that took place in the author's own family. It's about steadfast faith in God that sustained 2 sisters who were captured and separated by the Indians during the French and Indian War. I have never read the book but I really like the following poem (which someone quoted from the book).

"Alone, yet not alone am I
Though in this solitude so drear
I feel my Saviour always nigh;
He comes the weary hours to cheer
I am with Him and He with me
It therefore cannot lonely be
."

Friday, August 9, 2013

Movie Review: Planes

DISNEY’S PLANES (In 3D)
Like Planes on Facebook: facebook.com/DisneyPlanes 
Follow Planes on Twitter: twitter.com/DisneyPictures
 
Genre:                                      Animation/Adventure
Rating:                                      PG
Release Date:                           August 9, 2013
 
Voice Cast:                               Dane Cook, Stacy Keach, Brad Garrett, Teri Hatcher, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Priyanka Chopra, John Cleese, Cedric the Entertainer, Carlos Alazraqui, Roger Craig Smith, Anthony Edwards, Val Kilmer, Sinbad, Gabriel Iglesias, Brent Musburger, Colin Cowherd, Danny Mann, Oliver Kalkofe, John Ratzenberger
Director:                                   Klay Hall          
Producer:                                 Traci Balthazor-Flynn
 
My Review:
We are fans of Cars and Cars 2 so we were excited to be invited to an advance screening of Planes 3D. We really enjoyed it. Ten thumbs up from five of us! Planes is like "Top Gun" for kids :). The main character, Dusty (a cropdusting plane), dreams of competing in an international aerial race. But he's afraid of heights...go figure! With the help of his mentor, Skipper (a reclusive old naval aviator), and several friends (old and new), Dusty soars with courage to fulfill his dream. Challenge. Obstacles. Kindness. Integrity. Friendship. Adventure around the world. Determination. Cheating. Lies. Pride. Overcoming fear. Romantic pursuit. Fantastic computer animation. Interesting characters. For example, Sinbad is the voice of Roper, a hot-tempered race official full of sly remarks. 
Planes is filled with nonstop action, great music, and plenty of humor. And it's so cool to watch it in 3D; I felt like I was flying in the sky with those planes. Lots of fun!

Check out some of the fun stuff on Disney.com’s FlewTube  http://disney.com/FlewTubenIncluding:
  • Planes Trailers & Clips
  • Paper Airplane Tutorials
  • Features on Remote Controlled Flyer enthusiasts
  • Introductions to parts of a plane
  • Flight-related Disney legacy content
In addition, there are 2 games available online for kids:
Download Coloring & Connect the Dots
~Special thanks to Allied-THA Marketing for the opportunity to attend an advance screening of Disney's Planes for free in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.