Footsteps in the DarkFootsteps in the Dark by Georgette Heyer
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Picked this up as the Free Friday offering on the Nook a few weeks back. The story line of a haunting, secret chambers, and a gang of counterfeiters reminded me of the plot to a Scooby Doo episode.

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Book Review: One Heartbeat Away by Mark Cahill

One Heartbeat Away: Your Journey into EternityOne Heartbeat Away: Your Journey into Eternity by Mark Cahill
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you died tonight, are you 100% sure you’d go to heaven? That’s the general premise of the book. The author does a good job in the beginning of presenting a clear apologetic for the existence of God and the truth of the Bible. He outlines the Ten Commandments and leads the reader toward a personal decision to follow Jesus Christ who satisfied the commandments and paid the price for our sins. The latter portion of the book challenges the reader to share their new found faith in God – other’s eternal lives are literally depending on it.

While the book is a good overview of the Christian message, I stumbled through it. The book is filled with facts, personal stories, illustrations and Scriptures which sometimes seemed loosely related and/or inserted at random. As a matter of personal preference, the Scripture references were all in King James Version which was a disappointment given the number of new and fresh translations available. There is plenty of good information there, I just think a re-organization might help the flow.

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The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America by Gabe Lyons

Gabe Lyons admits that the face of Christianity is changing. He begins by outlining the fading reality of Christianity in America today. He identifies three groups of Christians and their level of interaction with the current culture. Lyons then focuses on the group he calls the Restorers who seek to redeem and restore all of creation to way things “ought to be”.
Lyons then explores six common characteristics that the Restorers have in common. They are: provoked, not offended; creators, not critics; called, not employed; grounded, not distracted; in community, not alone; and countercultural, not “relevant”. Using personal stories and examples of other Restorers at work, he gives real world, working examples of these characteristics.
Lyons final challenge is to recover the Gospel and let the first things be first in our lives. People aren’t necessarily seeking out a faith but will inquire and question when they see a faith that is real, in-action, and transformational.
This is a book that the current church needs to hear. There is much in here for denominational churches to explore, plus plenty for “relevant” churches to reflect upon. It’s an encouraging look at where Christianity has been and where is can be headed.

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It is not the critic who counts

“It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” ~Theodore Roosevelt

Great quote I read on Scott Williams’ blog this morning. Check out the rest of the post at http://www.bigisthenewsmall.com/

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They are NOT the future of the church

“The youth group is the future of the church” – That’s a phrase that bugs me and to be honest, a phrase that I disagree with to an extent. After watching our youth group lead worship yesterday, in my opinion, they are the church right here and right now. They have a passion and a creativity towards worship that is fresh and enlightening. They are willing to study and wrestle with tough questions or even doubts. They are willing to serve others both locally and on out-of-town missions. They want their belief in Jesus as Savior to both mean something and make a difference in their lives as well as the lives of others. Organizational structures aside, they are the church right here and right now. Perhaps their greatest challenge will be shaping and maintaining the church as a viable entity within today’s culture for the next generations.

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Hootsuite test…

Hootsuite test…

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Primitive Imagination and Early Christianity

“Primal religions generally conceive of religion as a system of power and of living religiously as being in touch with the source and channels of power in the universe; Christian theology in the West seems on the whole, to understand the Christian Gospel as a system of ideas.  And yet, when the apostle Paul described the gospel, that is what he wrote: ‘I have complete confidence in the Gospel; it is the power of God to save all who believe…’ Surely, this calls for a new idiom.”

via Primitive Imagination and Early Christianity | Thriving Among the Lilies.

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