Tag Archives: Dave Harvey

What Happens When Sinners Say “I Do”?

Did you know that your spouse is a sinner?  Yes, it’s true.  You married a sinner…and so did your spouse!  Sorry to lay that one on ya, but it’s true.  We are not perfect and when you get married, you marry an imperfect person with flaws, baggage, annoying habits, struggles, and a constant fight to please themselves over you.

So now that I dropped that bombshell on you, I thought it might be good to help you with this new revelation.  How about I suggest a book to you…41k0ystnbxl-_sx331_bo1204203200_

Book Review:  When Sinners Say I Do by Dave Harvey

The Good:

That’s Deep.  It’s like the author reaches into your soul in order pull out a good spouse.  There is incredible spiritual depth.  As Marty McFly would say…it’s heavy.  But, be patient, the book starts off pretty heavy but sets a very good foundation for the practical steps in the chapters that follow.  Topics that flow in the next few chapters include confrontation, forgiveness, communication, and sex.

Is “Teaching Illustrations” a spiritual gift?  Man, this dude can give illustrations.  I mean anything from riding a bike to opening gifts a Christmas…he is able to bring everyday life examples to drive home valuable lessons.  I mean, the author even snuck in Frodo and Luke Skywalker in there.  As a visual learner, this was very helpful in absorbing the material.

Beautiful End.  This was quite the twist.  I did not expect an ending that was so emotional and poetic.  Nearly brought to tears reading stories of marriages enduring through tragedy, I found it to be a perfect ending.  Although speaking of “till death do us part” as the final thoughts would not have been my first choice in writing the ending of a marriage book.  But you know what?  It worked.  Actually, it was masterful.  By far my favorite part of the book, and it left a sweet transition into putting the book’s lessons into practice in my own marriage.

The Bad:

What Just Happened?  There were times where I asked myself, “Self, where is he going with this?”.  On rare occasion, the transition from one point to another needed a little more.  We started merging on the freeway at 75 miles an hour and I needed time to put on my blinker.  You get me?

The Grade:  A-.  Based on the title, it might not be a good idea to buy it for your spouse.  How about buying it for yourself first?  Yeah, that’s a good idea.  This book allows reality to set in on marriage.  Fairytales do not exist.  Sure, falling in love is magical.  Your spouse is a gift that fills a part of your heart that was reserved only for them.  But…Life happens.  There are car problems, job losses, sick kids, sleepless nights…it’s not always unicorn rides over rainbows.  So when that happens, when tension rises along with your blood pressure…how will you work through marriage as a flawed, sinful, and mistake-filled person with someone else who is all those things too.  You’ll have to read this book (which points to the real answers found in God’s Word) to find out.


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Book Review: Am I Called?

Book Review: Am I Called? by Dave Harveyamicalled_header

The Good:

You Talking to Me. What an easy read. Seriously, it is like having a conversation with the author. I’m a big fan of books that are written in a laid-back conversational style. If I read a book about pastoral calling, I would hope it would speak to me. Well, the author’s style does just that – it is like you are being counseled in the chair across from him, and he speaks right to you and your heart.

Dry as a bone. For those that know me, I enjoy dry humor. And this book caused me to laugh out loud at times with the witty jabs that you almost miss, but add life to the book. These little comments and stories provide great flavor to a very meaty subject.

Paging all church search committees. This isn’t just a book for those seeking confirmation of the call, but can be highly useful for pastoral search committees and church boards establishing their philosophy of ministry. What a lesson on the requirements of a pastor, in behavior, practice, and lifestyle. Before writing a job description, you might want to read this book.

The Bad:

Better Sooner than Later. Seriously, this may sound sappy, but the only bad thing about this book is that I did not read it sooner. It satisfied the reader’s longing to understand and confirm the calling. It answers the question “Am I Called” to completion, with great detail, confidence, and sound doctrine.

The Grade: A. Got someone interested in ministry? Put this book in their hands. Think about it. We are talking about the calling to lead the body of Christ…the bride of the Savior of the world. Before any seminary applications, job interviews, internships…read this book. Start here. Seriously, it puts the pastoral call to the test.   Better to test your calling with a hot chocolate, bedroom slippers, and this book…than when you are knee-deep in ministry! Buy the book, and make your calling sure.

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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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