Book Review: 4-in-1 New Years Special

To all those slow-readers (or those that have not always enjoyed reading) out there like myself:  I have found something that has revolutionized my reading.  Here a couple changes I have made recently that have increased my reading output tremendously:

  1. Read several books at a time.  Instead of laboring through just one book, read several and you will find you will read more because you can choose something based on your mood or time frame.  It’s like you are at a smorgasbord each time you read – now doesn’t that make reading more appetizing.
  2. Second, discipline yourself to read 20 minutes a day (suggestion from my Sr. Pastor).  You will be amazed at what that will do to your reading.

You Lost Me – By David KinnamanYou-Lost-Me

The Good:  Looking for detail research and ideas as to how to reduce the “graduating from church” movement that we are seeing.  It does a great job at deciphering the differences of reasons why young people are leaving the church.  The fear with these types of books is when there is end all solution to the problem.  But what makes this book unique is taking the individual characteristics and beliefs of each young person that leaves the church.  It addresses science vs. the church, addressing doubts, and other factors in the dropout rate of young people.

The Bad:  My fear is always with numbers and statistics, that the business model will overshadow God’s model.  While I don’t think this book has this problem, one may need that caution before reading.

The Grade:  B.  Was not as engaging as I expected to be, but the information is invaluable.  Anyone in ministry or those that work with young adults, it is strongly suggested.  Church planters, senior pastors, youth workers, parents of teens…pick this up.  Also, this would a valuable tool for young youth pastors developing their philosophy of ministry.

Rescuing Ambition – By Dave Harvey

rescuing ambitionThe Good:  Talk about a motivating book.  Enjoyed the humor throughout, and the spiritual value is off the charts.  Chapters 8-10 alone are worth the price of admission, powerful stuff.

The Bad:  Felt like it was like a locomotive, it took a little while to gain some steam, but when you get to the last chapters, you don’t want to get off this train.

The Grade:  A-.  Just because of the slow start.  Great read.

Just Do Something – Kevin DeYoungjust-do-something

The Good:  Love the honesty of this book.  A perfect read for young adults, especially those that well, you know, need to JUST DO SOMETHING in their life.  An honest look at pursuing the will of God and a willingness to think outside the box of what we were taught in youth group about knowing the will of God.  Written in a humorous, understanding, and straight-to-the-point kind of way.  My kind of book!

The Bad:  The use of some absolute language in his findings on the will of God worried me a little.  I don’t know if I would have been so dogmatic, but does well to drive the point home.

The Grade:  A.  Why an A?  Because I think EVERY young person from 16-29 should read this book.  I’m serious.

Prayer (Does it Make any Difference?) – By Philip Yancey

prayer_does_it_make_any_differenceThe Good:  This book is willing to dive into some deep, difficult questions.  Prayer is somewhat of an anomaly in the peculiar sense.  It is hard to describe, measure, or understand fully.  The author takes an honest look at where most people struggle with prayer, but don’t always voice their difficulty.  Had a bunch of “never thought of that” moments throughout the book.

The Bad:  Lengthy (sorry, had to say it).  Also, not what I would call a motivator to pray, but more an encouragement to love prayer more.

The Grade:  B+.  Felt like it could be condensed, but would not have traded my time with this book with another.

 

Currently Reading:  Love Does (Goff), Disciplines of a Godly Young Man (Hughes), Don’t Waste Your Life (Piper)

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