Fearless

Fearless is a true story about an American hero.  Author Eric Blehm paints a vivid story about the life of Navy SEAL Hero Adam Brown. For all readers, particularly those part of an U.S. military family, I can wrap up this review in 2 words: Read It. Fearless will touch your life.

As a military wife & mother, Adam’s story made me proud of our warriors and the country with which they serve. Adam gave his heart to Jesus while as an adult. Adam’s and his family’s strength is truly God ordained.

To learn more about Adam and America’s Navy SEALS, visit Military Movies & News.

Fearless: The Undaunted Courage and Ultimate Sacrifice of Navy SEAL Team SIX Operator Adam Brown.

Author Eric Blehm

May 21, 2013

WaterBrook Press

The Beautiful Wife

442209: The Beautiful Wife: Focused on Christ, Fulfilled in Marriage The Beautiful Wife: Focused on Christ, Fulfilled in Marriage
By Sandy Ralya / Kregel Publications

Title of Book: The Beautiful Wife

Author: Sandy Ralya

ISBN: 978-0-8254-4220-9

Title of Book: The Beautiful Wife, Prayer Journal

Author: Sandy Ralya

ISBN: 978-0-8254-4222-3

Title of Book: The Beautiful Wife, Mentor’s Guide

Author: Sandy Ralya

ISBN: 978-0-8254-4221-6

Publisher: Kregel Publications

Publication Date: 2012

Reviewer: Dell Smith Klein

ABOUT THE BOOK:

When Sandy Ralya’s marriage was in trouble, she was desperate for help but didn’t know how to ask for it. Everyone else’s marriage seemed so perfect. How could she admit hers was not?

Sandy eventually sought guidance from godly mentors and Christian counselors. What she learned transformed her life…and then her marriage. Now, she wants to provide other wives with the same nurturing and mentoring that saved her relationship.

Whether your marital struggles are few or many, The Beautiful Wife offers biblical principles, practical tips, and inspiring stories to guide and encourage you as you look for God’s best in your marriage. Use this book along with The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal or use The Beautiful Wife Mentor’s Guide to lead other women through a study of the book. Visit www.beautifulwomanhood.com to find all the tools you need to streghten your marriage as you build godly, and supportive relationships with other wives.

“When women share with each other the details of their journeys with God as wives,” writes Sandy, “It’s a beautiful thing indeed.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Sandy Rayla, the founder and director of Beautiful Womanhood, a marriage mentoring ministry, is a sought-after speaker. She presents Beautiful Womanhood Seminar to hundreds of women each year. She and her husband Tom have been married since 1980. You can find out more about her from www.beautifulwomanhood.com.

REVIEWER’S COMMENTS:

Three books showed up at my door the other day The Beautiful Wife, The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal and The Beautiful Wife Mentor’s Guide. I’ve reviewed these three books for you.

The Beautiful Wife, by Sandy Rayla will make a fabulous topic-study for a group of young married women, or for women who have been married for a while.

The Table of Contents:

1. Equipping for the Journey

2. Attending to Self-Care

3. Living as the Genuine Article

4. Cultivating Mystique

5. Inviting Romance

6. Thinking Differently About Sex

7. Opening Lines of Communication

8. Speaking Truth in Love

9. Managing Money

10. Creating a Culture of Beauty

11. Professionalizing the Roles of Wife and Mother

12. Choosing God’s Best

Each chapter is followed by a “Reflection” where the reader can ponder the points of the chapter and by “First Steps” where the reader can take steps to identify and change certain behaviors, when necessary. For example: following Chapter 5 “Inviting Romance,” the reader is asked, “What self-doubt has your husband voiced? How can you express your confidence in him and boost his confidence in himself?” Another example from Chapter 9 “Managing Money,” the reader is told to, “Track your spending for a week (every cent!) and then examine your list.”

As I read through the book, I didn’t take time to do other than read the Reflection and First Steps, but I can see how beneficial they can be. And to be able to discuss some of these with women whom I trust would make a difference, too.

Here’s an example that connected with me from Chapter 7, “Opening Lines of Communication.” Scenario: Sandy’s husband had purchased a convertible. It could be described as his dream car. Riding in the vehicle caused Sandy pain in her back, neck and hips. She threw out subtle hints, but her husband Tom didn’t catch a single one. Here’s what she suggests on page 128.

“Ask for what you want.

Let us be clear on this one: Suble hints do not work! Strong hints do not work! Obvious hints do not work! Just say it!”

The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal, is a place to journal all you learn as you work through The Beautiful Wife. I’m looking forward to working through chapter by chapter of The Beautiful Wife, and have the opportunity to work through this prayer journal. Just reading through the comments, suggestions and ideas that Sandy Ralya gives is helpful.

The Beautiful Wife Mentor’s Guide is about 80 pages, filled to the brim with instructions, help and good ways to use The Beautiful Wife. Anyone who plans to lead a workshop or topic study using Sandy Ralya’s The Beautiful Wife, will also want a copy of this Mentor’s Guide.

I recommend The Beautiful Wife, as a book to work through alone, or with a group of friends. Also, I recommend The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal and The Beautiful Wife Mentor’s Guide. This trio of books will find a place on your library shelf and in your hands for years to come.

Cravings: desiring God in the midst of motherhood

ITEM: Cravings, The Daily Devotional in a Cupcake

Author: Carey C. Bailey

Publication Date: 2012

Reviewer: Dell Smith Klein

ABOUT THE ITEM:

Cravings, The Daily Devotional in a Cupcake is not a book in paper or digital form. It is simply a daily devotional in a cupcake.

The Press Release from Litfuse Publicity I read stated: 1/8/12 – Seattle: “Our daily Bread” scripture cards in the old plastic loaf of bread took family devotional by storm in the 1970’s. Now it’s the 21st Century, and life is even more hectic. Many of today’s moms are overwhelmed with “mommying” and feel like God has unintentionally taken a back seat in their schedules. Carey Bailey was one of those moms, but armed with empathy for others, she developed Cravings, The Daily Devotional in a Cupcake, as the daily bread for moms in the 21st Century.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Carey C. Bailey, who created and wrote Cravings, The Daily Devotional in a Cupcake, is a wife and a mom. She’s also the Family Life Director her church in Arizona. Of the rest of her life she says she “loves party planning, crafting, and pursuing her dream of writing.” You can find out more about this author, and her wonderful devotional in a cupcake by visiting her website — www.cravingsonline.net.

REVIEWER’S COMMENTS:

When this box showed up at my house, I couldn’t wait to open it. Inside was a stack of 4-1/4 in. X 4 in. flashcards neatly fitted into a 4 in. tall pink cupcake. Each card has a Scripture from Psalms, a brief devotion and what Bailey calls a “thoughtlet” that challenges the reader.

With the box, Bailey sent a letter sharing how she developed Cravings. She said that before she became a mother, she had no problem finding quality time each day for prayer, Bible reading and journaling. That changed when her son was born. She said she began “having cravings, just like cravings that come with pregnancy.” She realized that she was craving time with the Lord. Out of her cravings, Baily has provided a simple way for moms to spend time with God – even while performing a myriad of mom-duties.

You’ll want to check out Carey C. Bailey and Cravings at her website, www.cravingsonline.net.

More Beauty, Less Beast

263478: More Beauty, Less Beast: Transforming Your Inner Ogre More Beauty, Less Beast: Transforming Your Inner Ogre
By Debora Coty / Barbour Publishing

Title of Book: More Beauty Less Beast

Author: Debora M. Copy

ISBN 978-1-61626-347-8

Publisher: Barbour Publishing

Publication Date: March 1, 2012

Reviewer: Dell Smith Klein

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Is your self-esteem “soul”-ed out? Are you tempted by the Dark side? (Talkin’ chocolate here, girlfriend!) Maybe it’s time for a healthy dose of truth gift-wrapped in humor.

When her own brand of off-beat wit and near-wisdom, inspirational humorist Debora Coty addresses heart needs of women struggling to tame that out-of-control inner ogre that threatens to destroy the beautiful princess hidden within. Whether jaded by emotional wounds, unrealistic standards, or lack of confidence, these laugh-out-loud, girlfriend-to-girlfriend tips will help women transform their destructive inner beast into the exquisite beauty that were always mean to be.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Debora M. Coty, author of More Beauty Less Beast, has been described as “a humorist, columnist, speaker, writing workshop instructor and award winning author of over 100 internationally published articles and ten inspirational books.” She’s also a piano teacher, tennis enthusiast and occupational therapist. Does her day have more than 24 hours? Debora and her husband live in Florida. For more information about Debora and her writing, visit www.DeboraCoty.com.

REVIEWER’S COMMENTS:

How have I lived so many years and somehow missed hearing about Debora M. Coty, speaker, columnist, freelance writer and author of a great little book, More Beauty Less Beast? How? Obviously, we didn’t run in the same circles, but I can certainly relate to Chapter 1 “Beauty is Such a Crock.” My inner-ogre was working overtime the morning I picked up More Beauty Less Beast, and read that first chapter. As I read, I realized that I’d been worshipping false beauty gods. The questions at the end of that chapter hit a chord in my piano-shaped heart and for the first time I genuinely saw my beautiful self, loved and valued by “Papa God.”

As the tea in my favorite cup grew cold, I read on. Every chapter spoke to me. Some chapters made me laugh out loud. Other chapters brought tears to my eyes as I recognized my own sin highlighted on the page.

Do I recommend More Beauty Less Beast? You betcha! I’ve read it cover to cover and now it sits on my breakfast table, so I’ll be working through it chapter by chapter over the next few weeks. I may even invite a couple of neighbors over to read with me over a cup of coffee. No, I don’t know how I missed her before, but I’m glad that today, Debora M. Coty has been added my favorite author’s list. More Beauty Less Beast hit book store shelves on March 1. But she has other award-winning books that will make you smile while helping you transform your life. You might like Too Blessed to be Stressed, Mom NEEEDs Chocolate, or The Distant Shore.

Loving Well

936768: Loving Well: Even If You Haven"t Been Loving Well: Even If You Haven’t Been
By William P. Smith / New Growth Press

Title of Book: Loving Well

Author: William P. Smith

ISBN -13: 978-1-936768-29-5

Publisher: New Growth Press

Publication Date: 2012

Reviewer:Dell Smith Klein

ABOUT THE BOOK:

From back of book:

Distance. Resentment.  Avoidance.  You want to love your family, neighbors, and co-workers.  But all too often something goes wrong, and you find yourself tearing down the relationships you wanted to build.  Are you doomed to keep repeating the same relationship mistakes?  William P. Smith explains that destructive relationship patterns no longer need to control you.  Experiencing God’s love will change you, so you can trade your bad relationship habits for real love.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

William P. Smith, M.Div., Ph.D., is the pastor and director of the community counseling center at a Baptist church.    Dr.Smith also responds to invitations to speak or lead weekend retreats.   He is the author of Caught Off Guard:Encounters with the Unexpected God, and Loving Well. He lives in Dresher, Pennsylvania with his wife and three children.

REVIEWER’S COMMENTS:   

From time to time a book comes into our hands and we know we will read it again and again. Loving Well by Dr.William P. Smith is that type of book. The Introduction to the book is “Escaping an Empty Way of Life.”  From there, Dr. Smith divides Loving Well into three parts:

Part I: Love That Responds to a Broken World

Part II:  Love that Reaches Out to Build Other Up

Part III:  Love That Enjoys Heaven on Earth

Each part is made up of five chapters followed by questions that help the reader evaluate needs in his/her own life, and in the lives of others.

The author uses Scripture throughout as he talks about 15 characteristics of love such as: Comforting Love, Sympathetic Love, Struggling Love, Forgiving Love, and  Longsuffering Love, from Part I.

Throughout the book, there are little sidebars that highlight important information, like this quote from page138: “It’s not always the size of your service that communicates love, but simply noticing what needs to be done and stepping in to do it.”  Or this one from page 44:  “Our mutual calling is to live out our faith together, not simply provide solutions to one another.”

Thought provoking aren’t they?

I found the book challenging, convicting and encouraging.  Often, I read a book and pass it on to a friend or donate it to the public library in my town.  Not so with Loving Well.  Instead, Loving Well has found aplace on my book shelf to be pulled out, read and re-read.  I recommend Loving Well by Dr.William P. Smith.