God Took Me by the Hand {book reviews}


Spent more time reading than writing this summer — can you tell?  Will break this into two posts, to keep them a bit shorter.  My favorite in this group is the first, God Took Me by the Hand.

I’ve really enjoyed myself.  Hope you find some great reads to enjoy yourself.  What have you been reading?

 

God Took Me by the Hand: A Story of God's Unusual ProvidenceGod Took Me by the Hand: A Story of God’s Unusual Providence by Jerry Bridges

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m so excited to read this book! I won a copy from Goodreads First Reads!

Thank you so much to Tyndale House Publishers for giving me this copy of God Took Me by the Hand by Jerry Bridges. This review is my own honest opinion of the book. I am not being paid to endorse the book.

This little book is an account of the author’s life in light of his ministry with the Navigators. It is written from the perspective of God’s Sovereign providence (what other perspective is there?), as events throughout his life lead pointedly to his specific areas of service to God.

It is written in the author’s distinctive style, which he acknowledges and which underscores the emphasis on God’s providence. What the author cannot say, the book says clearly and consistently — the key to experiencing divine providence in life is humility. The author lives life in an attitude of humility.

I purposely read the book slowly. It could easily be read quickly, but I wanted to let each point ‘sink in’ before going on to the next one. Needless to say, the book is well organized and deliberate in its presentation. Discussion questions are included for each chapter, to be used in a group study.

The book is excellent, both in content and presentation. Particularly because one need not agree with the author’s theology in order to accept what he is saying, it being his personal testimony. The book lends itself well to the introspection of the reader, which is the author’s intent.

Personally, I was moved by this illustration of God’s providence, and moved to much introspection. I am thankful to have been ministered to through the reading of such a fine book, and trust many others will benefit from it as well. I highly recommend this book for people in all walks and stages of life.

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Jesus Among Other Gods: The Absolute Claims of the Christian MessageJesus Among Other Gods: The Absolute Claims of the Christian Message by Ravi Zacharias

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was a difficult read. I don’t think I’ve read anything before by Mr. Zacharias. I have heard him speak, so thought I’d check out his writing.

The premise of this book is a huge undertaking which the author covers in entirety. Most of the book is presenting the mindset of those who do not believe Jesus is the Son of God, and logically bringing them around to the truth of the Bible without using the BIble to get there. I assume it was written for the intellectual thinker, which is why it was a difficult read.

The book is not long, and taken in short doses is good food for thought. The part that moved me was near the end, when Mary was in the garden of Jesus’ tomb looking for Him, not recognizing Him until He called her by name. I’m not sure if this is the culmination of the book, or if the truth of Scripture is the strength, but either way it is the strong point of the book (page 185). The reality of the Son of God, of God HImself, knowing me by my name, and speaking my name, is beyond the scope of human comprehension, moving me to worship the True God, and His Son Jesus Christ.

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A Daily RateA Daily Rate by Grace Livingston Hill

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Decades since I read one of Grace Livingston Hill’s books. Read them as a teenager. Read it more for the nostalgia, and to compare what I read then with what I read now. It’s not something I would read all the time.

It’s very clean, quite old-fashioned, and full of Scripture. The faith element is strong. There is a strong element of right and wrong. The characters are believable and realistic. The book revolves around the characters’ growth with little in the way of plot. Much of it is in the main character’s thinking and understanding, or misunderstanding, of others.

I think what I’m trying to say is that I like what is there but I wish there was more to it. I will read more for nostalgia’s sake. Very good reading for teens.

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The Road UnseenThe Road Unseen by Peter Jenkins

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is my mother’s copy, and one of her favorite books. She loved to read of adventurers.

This is the first book by Jenkins that I have read.

I have mixed feelings about this book, to be honest. I also love this type of book, and I was enjoying this one until I found out that after the book had been written Barbara and Peter had divorced. Whether that just struck close to home, or because of the nature of the book, showing their walk with God on a spiritual level during and after their physical walk, I don’t know.

I finished it, and am anxious to stop thinking about it. I know divorce happens, but to happen to someone who just published a book about their walk with God seems odd. As the reader, I don’t know whether or not to trust what they wrote.

What I liked about the book. I’ve read other co-authored books which were done poorly. This one is done well. They each wrote their own chapters, letting their individual personality show through, which I like. Better than a book full of compromise and nothing comes through. I particularly like Barbara’s writing style. She used scenes from different time periods in the same chapter effectively.

The most exciting part was reading about their walking through Twin Falls, Idaho because I was living there at the time! I only lived there for nine months. Who knows, maybe I saw them and didn’t know (or don’t remember)!

At any rate, the bottom line is that God gets the glory. It is a book giving glory to God for His constant provision and care for His children. And for that I will remember this book.

I found out today that their son Jedidiah is currently finishing his bike trip from Oregon to Patagonia (southern tip of S.America), and will be writing a book. Sadly, I don’t think it will be about the glory of God.

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