Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Radical by David Platt

"Radical obedience to Christ is not easy; it is dangerous.  It is not smooth sailing aboard a luxury liner; it is sacrificial duty aboard a troop carrier. It's not comfort, not health, not wealth, and not prosperity in this world.  Radical obedience to Christ risks losing all these things. But in the end, such risk finds it's reward in Christ. And He is more than enough for us."  Radical, p. 181

This is not one of those "smiley-faced, God is gonna give you everything you ever wanted if only you believe in Him" books.  Nor does it leave you feeling warm, fuzzy, and completely confident that you've got a place with your name on it in Heaven. "Radical" rips the reader out of his cushy pew and throws him, screaming, into the real world. Then, using a style quite like boot camp, challenges that person to truly be Jesus to the masses.   Don't read this book unless you're prepared to make some changes.  Are you ready to:  pray for the world, read through the Word, sacrifice your money, leave your comfort zone, and commit yourself to a community of faith?  You should be, but if you aren't, by the time you finish the book you will.

Highly recommended! 

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This book was provided to me free of charge by Waterbrook Multnomah for review purposes.

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Paradise Valley by Dale Cramer

I am not generally a lover of Amish fiction.  It seems the market is overwhelmed with them, and they all seem to have the same storyline. BUT I am a great fan of Dale Cramer, so was interested to see what he would do with HIS work of Amish fiction.  I was very pleasantly surprised.  Dale Cramer comes from an Amish family. His great-grandfather was part of the settlement of Paradise Valley, the location upon which this book is based, the first I'd ever heard of Amish in Mexico.  The author weaves a fine story, based on history.  The Amish in Ohio are forced to send their children to public school, or their parents will be imprisoned and fined.  When at first the Amish stand firm, their children are removed to the county Children's Home, dressed in "English" clothes, forced to have their hair cut, and enrolled in classes. In an effort to keep their families together, yet maintain their way of life, a few of these Amish families choose to move to Paradise Valley, Mexico, where there are no public school laws for their children.  An amazing story of the lengths a parent will go for the love of their children.   I look forward to the sequel expected out this Fall!