{review} Many Sparrows

My last fiction review for the summer is a great one! This is definitely one of the best books I’ve read in the last few years. Here’s more about it:

 

Either she and her children would emerge from that wilderness together, or none of them would. . . .
In 1774, the Ohio-Kentucky frontier pulses with rising tension and brutal conflicts as Colonists push westward and encroach upon Native American territories. The young Inglesby family is making the perilous journey west when an accident sends Philip back to Redstone Fort for help, forcing him to leave his pregnant wife Clare and their four-year old son Jacob on a remote mountain trail.

 

When Philip does not return and Jacob disappears from the wagon under the cover of darkness, Clare awakens the next morning to find herself utterly alone, in labor and wondering how she can to recover her son . . . especially when her second child is moments away from being born.

 

Clare will face the greatest fight of her life, as she struggles to reclaim her son from the Shawnee Indians now holding him captive. But with the battle lines sharply drawn, Jacob’s life might not be the only one at stake. When frontiersman Jeremiah Ring comes to her aid, can the stranger convince Clare that recovering her son will require the very thing her anguished heart is unwilling to do-be still, wait and let God fight this battle for them?

 

The author, Lori Benton, succeeded in grabbing my interest and pulling me into Claire’s world – what would I do in such a situation? How would I handle the relationships and tensions that she must face? I don’t know! The heartache and difficulty that Claire and her family experienced was common to so many in that time period. I loved the way this book described how tenuous things were for white settlers in the Ohio-Kentucky frontier at that time. It’s a fascinating and sad part of our history that I want to learn more about.

Obviously, I would highly recommend this book but with a caution. If you enjoy historical fiction and tend to lose yourself in books – save this one for a free weekend. Because you will get lost in it!

{I received this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and no guarantees were made.}

Why I’m Going Back to the Real Thing

I really like my cell phone. It’s small, convenient and I can do everything I have to do on it. But something I’ve recently been convicted about is using my phone for reading the Bible. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with using a cell phone to read the Bible. There are some great apps out there, with preloaded reading plans and devotionals. I love them. But there are a couple of reasons that I’m trying to go back to the real thing and using my Bible.

bible* My Bible holds memories. Underlined verses. Scribbled thoughts in the margins. Folded notes hidden in the pages. Not only does a Bible turn into a memoir of my Christian walk, but it’s something my daughters can pick up and learn from as well. They can see what verses were important to me and how I took sermon notes. It’s worn and comfortable. Sitting in prayer meetings or with a small group, I can turn through the pages and see those verses or notes. Once and awhile, God will speak to the situation at hand through those notes or highlights. You can’t flip through an app with the same familiarity and comfort.

* My Bible doesn’t have apps or internet or notifications. As a mom, I have plenty of distractions. Kids arguing, dog barking, appointments, bills, school to teach or kids to get to school – I don’t need my short amount of quiet time with the Lord interrupted by my own lack of self control or a text message. I’ve already deleted the Facebook app off my phone because the notifications were too much of a distraction for me. While I do check social media accounts on Safari, that’s my choice. Notifications have always fetl like an intrusion to me. So reading a real Bible = less distractions.

* My Bible is unmistakeable. When I’m reading my Bible on my phone, my daughters may not know what I’m doing. Not that I owe them an explanation for my every move, but I do want to be a good example of a Christian that was always trying to get closer to God. Not just a mom, but a person that had her own relationship with Jesus. Seeing me on my phone doesn’t really communicate that to them. But seeing me with that very special book on my lap? Totally clear.

So I’m putting aside my phone in the morning and grabbing my Bible. IMG_2207No flashy graphics or detailed reading plans. Just the Word of God. The Vine’s Expository Reference Bible I bought for myself not long after I became a Christian now has blue paint smears on the cover and worn edges. But it is comfort and peace and a collection of benchmark moments in my Christian walk. When I hold it in my hand, I’m reminded of days past when I had all the time in the world to study and read the Bible. Even if I just get a slim window of quiet in the morning, I feel like I hear God so much more clearly from these pages even though an endless supply of Bible apps say all the same words.There is just something about reading from the thin pages of a worn Bible and I’m so thankful for the gentle nudging of the Holy Spirit that brought me back to it.

Anyone want to join me in committing to reading from a Bible instead of an app?

{review} Adventure Bible I Can Read series

As I said when One Redeemed Mom was launched, my focus with reviews would be children’s books, curriculum and Bibles. This one fits two out of the three! I received from Zondervan two books last month and would love to tell you more about them.

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Both books are a part of the Adventure Bible I Can Read series, which is perfect for my second grader. We own quite a few of the I Can Read series books but only a few that are published by a Christian company. What a great resource for young readers!

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First is A Father’s Love. It is an age appropriate retelling of the story of the Prodigal Son. The illustrations are colorful and appealing. The retelling of the story is accurate and clearly conveys the message Jesus told in this parable. At the beginning and the end of the book, Luke 15:32 is written to reinforce that these are not just nice stories but messages from the Bible.

 

 

We also received Miracles of Jesus, another retelling of New Testament Bible stories. cover2This book tells three different stories; the story of Jairus’ daughter, the woman that reached out to touch Jesus, and the feeding of the 5,000. There is also an informative page at the back of the book listing more of the miracles Jesus performed through the Bible. The same illustrator did this book, so the images are equally as colorful and engaging. The stories of Jairus and the woman are told in one “chapter” which is a nice break as this book is a bit longer than A Father’s Love.

Both A Father’s Love and Miracles Of Jesus are wonderful books for young readers. If the whole Bible is a little intimidating for your new reader, take a look at these books from Zonderkidz. They are great stepping stones.

{I received these books as a part of the Z Blog Squad. No guarantees were made and all opinions are my own.}