Archive for the ‘Book Reviews’ Category

Book Review:The Fourth Fisherman

If you were commissioned to write part of your story for a book, what part would it be? Would it be a traumatic time in you life, a life changing event, or your journey with Lupus etc.? Would you be able to be so transparent that you open yourself up to criticism from people that do not even know you? This is what Joe Kissack has done in writing his book The Fourth Fisherman

In reading other reviews about the book, I found several people that had a difficult time with Joe’s behavior after he had his life changing experience. I did not agree with some of his actions either, but did not find them very unusual. Joe Kissack carried a lot of pain around with him for years. He dealt with his pain in dysfunctional, addictive ways. Becoming a Christian did not change who he was as a person overnight. He now had the long, tedious journey of maturing into the person he should be without all the baggage.

The Fourth Fisherman is a true story that not only gives us a glimpse into the life of a lost soul but into corporate Hollywood, and the international media. We read first hand how expendable people and the truth are, for the story and the mighty dollar.

For me however, faithfulness resonated from the pages of this book. There was a praying grandmother, a long-suffering wife, a coworker at sea, a stranger miles away, a friend willing to disciple, and most of all, a faithful God,  not one, gave up on the person they cared about. They remained steady in their allegiance, loyal, and constant. Each one played a pivotal role in the outcome of this true life drama about three Mexican fisherman lost at sea for almost 300 days and a man lost in life for years.

Even though this was a quick read, it had several layers with deep truths, reminding me of my own shaky time in life and the ones that did not give up on me for good. We all have a story. I commend  Joe for being brave and vulnerable,  and sharing  his.  I recommend this inspirational book.

If you enjoy reading this blog, click here to  Subscribe by Email. You will  receive it directly in your inbox and  not miss a post. May God strengthen and encourage you.

Until next time, many blessings….Leslie Rose K

leslie@dominateyourdiagnosis.com

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Book Review:The Circle Maker

Do you have big dreams for your family, your future, your health?  Do you know what to do with those dreams?  Or have your dreams fizzled down to nothing for lack of  direction and inspiration?

Mark Batterson dreams big.  In his most recent book The Circle Maker we read about many of those dreams and how they were fulfilled.  He walks the reader through the logistics of dreaming big, praying hard, and thinking long. One of my favorite sections was on goal setting. It was interesting to read his perspective and to get some tips on the subject.

Mark works hard to inspire the reader to be consistent in prayer and not give up. He offers many good arguments for strong, concise, faith-filled praying. By the same token, I found that while Mark always likes to use catchy phrases and clichés, this book went a little too far for me in that area.

Phrases like, “God isn’t offended by big dreams; He’s offended by anything less.” ( p.55) and “I promise you this: God is ready and waiting. So while I have no idea what circumstances you find yourself in, I’m confident that you are only one prayer away from a dream fulfilled, a promise kept, or a miracle performed” (p. 13),  did not sit well with me.  I like to keep things biblical, especially when I am speaking for God. On the other hand, he says we must come to terms with the fact that God is for us. There is nothing cliché about that. God IS for us.

This book will build your faith, though some of the author’s writing is definitely a little over the top.  I like Mark. He is definitely a trend setter; a visionary with big goals and big dreams. I think you would enjoy reading all about it, and be inspired in the process.

I received this book from Mark, for free, for the purpose of reading and blogging about it.     If you enjoy reading this blog, click here to  Subscribe by Email. You will  receive it directly in your inbox and  not miss a post.

Many Blessings to you and those you love, Leslie Rose K

The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude. -William James

leslie@dominateyourdiagnosis.com

Book Review:In a Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day

Cover of "In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy...

Cover via Amazon

When my 18-year-old daughter crooned with envy over the book selection I made to blog about, my immediate reaction was one of self-doubt.  When the book arrived, I scrutinized  the cover,  and was still not reassured that I had made the right choice.  Who even names a book In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day?

Several days passed until I got up the where-with-all to start the book.  171 pages later, I can tell you this young, bold, Washington DC pastor, hit his mark across the generations.  If you are in a challenging situation, have had dreams knocking around inside your soul, or are at a crossroads in your life, 20,  50, or 70 years old, this book has good solid inspiration for you.

Mark Batterson does not mince words.  He deals with the common excuses we all  make for ourselves, head on.  His straight forward writing style is full of simple, yet powerful truths.   This book is not just about taking risks and making dreams come true, it is about embracing difficult situations and turning them into opportunities.

The story of Benaiah in 2 Samuel 23 is the inspiration for this book. Benaiah, when faced with a lion, did not turn, and run away.  Instead, he ran after the lion, chased it into a pit, and killed it.  His gutsy move made the way for him to later become in charge of David’s bodyguard.  Who wouldn’t want someone with enough guts to chase down and kill a lion, in charge of their well-being?

Many of us will never come face to face with an actual  lion but often face lion-sized circumstances.  His chapter titled “The Art of Re-framing” deals with strategies on shifting  the focus from what  is wrong with your situation, to what is right with God. Following are some excerpts from the chapter.

  • Opportunities often look like insurmountable obstacles.
  • Stop asking God to get us out of difficult circumstances and start asking God what he wants us to get out of those circumstances.
  • God is in the business of recycling our pain for someone else’s gain. The more problems you have the more potential you have to help people.

There is another chapter on “Unlearning Your Fears”where the author explores the thought that half of learning is learning and the other half  of learning is unlearning.  He feels unlearning fears, etc. is twice as hard as learning.

It is easy with each passing year  of life to become more at rest or complacent.  We don’t want to meet new challenges head on, let alone chase them. In the chapter “Playing it Safe is Risky”, he challenges the reader to step out into the deep waters of change, thus eliminating the possibility of regret  later in  life for the things you did not do.

If you are at a crossroads, or have had a dream floating around inside, or have a lion sized situation you frequently deal with, this book should inspire you, give you concrete strategies, and point you to God.  I rate this book 5 stars.

Waterbrook Multnomah Publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.     Blogging for Books

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Be blessed…..Leslie Rose K        Dominate Your Diagnosis

Book Review: Life Without Limits

Have you ever attempted something that did not turn out the way you expected?  Perhaps you tried a couple more times with the same lackluster results.  As a result of the disappointment, something negative was embedded in your spirit that now limits you.  It has  made you squelch your dream.  Perhaps you have a chronic illness such as SLE, or a disability that limits you. You think your dream can never come true.  In the book, Life Without Limits, Nick Vujicic  addresses these very issues.

This is a motivational/inspirational book in the purest sense of the word.  You will follow a boy without limbs,  into manhood.  You will read about him overcoming challenge after challenge.   He shares  how he overcame   destructive thought processes that almost took his life.   Nick’s perseverance and drive helped him graduate from university with a double major and then propelled him into becoming a worldwide speaker and evangelist.  You can even see him on You  Tube doing extraordinary feats such as surfing.

In Life Without Limits, Nick  is gracious enough to let us into his world, his mind, and his heart so that we too may learn to overcome what hinders us.  In his conversational writing style, He brings us along step by step from accepting and loving  ourselves, to having the correct attitude to overcome our fears.  He teaches lessons on losing, change and trust.  There are tips on how to select the right dream, how to laugh at yourself, have fun in life and of course, how to make your dream come true.

Do you have a dream you long to see come true? I do. I have tried to make it happen several times in my life without great success.  Nick encourages me, to rise above the  things that would hold me back and persevere until it happens, or else find another dream. Nick had a dream.  You can read all about it in the book and you can see it  in the  short film The Butterfly Circus.

I must say, I initially  did not want to read this book. I thought it would be too heartbreaking for me.  Instead I found it extremely inspirational.  As I was nearing the end, I felt like I needed to start over again,  so that the lessons he was teaching could really sink in and take hold.

Nick is transparent and honest, courageously sharing with the world his life, with the hope of helping someone else live their own life more fully.  I give this book  5 stars.

Waterbrook Multnomah Publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.

Please take a moment to rank this review. Click on green box. Thanks.

Leslie Rose K    Dominate Your Diagnosis 

If you would like to contact me apart from leaving a comment please email me at the following address

leslie@dominateyourdiagnosis.com

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Book Review: If God is Good

Several months ago,   Multnomah Publisher approached me and invited me to blog for books.  The concept is simple.  I would  choose a complimentary book of interest to me, off a specific list of books,  and then have 30 to 90 days to read it and write my review.

I thought this would be a great way to read contemporary books that could in turn help me to write this blog, facilitate the Hanover Area Lupus Support Group, and assist me on this journey called  life.

After I write my book review  I will post it on my blog and on two other sites such as Amazon.  I hope you will find these reviews interesting and insightful.  I am excited to be a part of this and look forward to the books I will have the opportunity to read, review, and share with you.

With that said, because I am close to the deadline, I am going to interrupt our Blog Writer Bio series and insert my first review on the weighty issue of faith in the midst of suffering and evil.

Help for the Suffering

Have you ever felt like an outsider in your church, circle of Christian associates or friends because of your convictions on suffering or evil? I dare say many of us have, especially if we are one of the ones that suffers physically on a daily basis.

I found Randy Alcorn‘s book If God is Good Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil a confirmation of my beliefs, a comfort for my soul and an asset to help me minister to others. This book presents a theologically sound and extremely thorough exposition on suffering and evil. The author helps us understand the problem of suffering and evil, and the role it plays in Christ’s redemptive work. He discusses why God allows it, whether it took Him by surprise, and solutions to the problem.  He includes perspectives from those who do not acknowledge God, offers purposes for suffering and evil and strategies on how to live a meaningful life in spite of suffering and evil.

While this is a great book for anyone working in a ministerial capacity, it would also be very informative and comforting for those who struggle with suffering or want to help someone else who is. Alcorn leaves no stone unturned. If you have a question, the answer is probably somewhere in this book. There are theological words and concepts that may challenge some readers and there is some repetition that may discourage others but at 494 pages I strongly encourage faithfulness until the end.

This is a reference book worth having at your fingertips. It is a well researched apologetic book that will most likely win your heart with its many testimonies of God’s goodness and faithfulness, in spite of suffering and evil. You will be encouraged by the assurance that nothing takes our sovereign God by surprise and that He is powerful enough to bring good out of the worst possible situations.

Personally, I learned a great deal from this expository book. Alcorn covers angles I have never even considered. He gives many pertinent and moving examples from life that reinforce his points. For example his discussion on how life loses meaning without suffering was excellent. His conclusions go beyond the common declaration that many people turn to God or grow closer to Him, because of their suffering.

So, if your convictions regarding suffering have made you feel like an outsider, I believe you will be fortified by reading this book. It will give you tools to cope with suffering and evil and tools to help you help others. I highly recommend this book and give it 4 ½ stars.

Waterbrook Multnomah Publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.

Please take a moment to rank this review. Click on green box. Thanks.

Leslie Rose K    Dominate Your Diagnosis  

If you would like to contact me apart from leaving a comment please email me at the following address

leslie@dominateyourdiagnosis.com

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