Thursday, July 26, 2012

Bookmarks for July 2012

*Bookmarks is an online book club hosted at Creative2xmom. Here we discuss the books we've read in the past month as well as the suggested reading. Our suggested reading for July was Crazy Love by Francis Chan.

These are the books I read this month:

Loving our Kids on Purpose by Danny Silk--This is a local author and I've been waiting to get my hands on this one for awhile.  As my kids grow and hit the next phase of childhood, I realize that what I've been doing just isn't working.  So when our Sunday School director handed me this book, I immediately dove into it.  Silk outlines a very different way of parenting, one that values respect for the child as much as respect for the adult.  We know that we have 18 years to get our kids ready, but how exactly do we get there?  The author gives us great insight for raising resilient kids that take responsibility for their actions and their relationships.  This is a solution that empowers kids to solve their own problems within the safety of their parents home.  While I still find myself learning every day, the changes that we have emplimented have done wonders in our home.  This book is shooting right to the top of my favorite parenting books with Shepherding a Child's Heart.

The Tangible Kingdom by Hugh Halter and Matt Smay--I hadn't heard anything about this book before picking it up.  Halter and Smay coach their audience in how to reach out to a postmodern culture.  Why has Christianity become irrelevant to our greater culture?  How are churches reaching out or withdrawing?  How can we change that?  This is the meat of The Tangible Kingdom.  Coming from the church background that I do, much of the theory of this book was already established in my own life.  While there was some useful examples at the end of the book, the beginning of the book holds a very cynical tone toward the church.  And while I don't believe the church is very effective right now, attacking it with a cynical tone is not at all appropriate.  Halter talks about creating an attractional church, which I'm all about, but have to wonder if there isn't a time for using words as well.  If you're just starting your journey in reaching out to a postmodern culture, this is a good place to start.  If you're looking for something deeper, this one falls to the bottom of the pile.

Our suggested reading for this month was Crazy Love by Francis Chan--This is a book that's been out there for awhile, but again haven't been able to get my hands on one.  And I have to admit that I'm really torn on this one.  The book starts talking about how God is ultimately and completely in love with us.  It is an "Overwhelming" love.  However, the book quickly takes a turn toward our outworking of that love.  If God loves us with an "overwhelming, relentless" love, how are we living out that love?  As I said, I'm torn about Chan's message.  Many of us that have been in the church for awhile know that our actions are an outworking of God's love for us.  Or should ben an outworking of that love.  However, we often slip into a works mentality.  In our postmodern culture, I think it's more important that we focus on the love of the Lord at this point.  Maybe it's just where I'm at personally, but it seems like works is too easy and we loose sight of love.  There were two points that I loved about this book.  1) There's tons of bonus material on Youtube that coincides with the chapters.  2) The author comes from a place of truly loving the church.  The tone of this book was decided different from The Tangible Kingdom.

So what are your bookmarks this month?

Tell us in the comments about the books you're chewing on. Or link up a review from your own blog. Let's share the books we're finding, good and bad. And give us your thoughts on Crazy Love by Francis Chan.

And come back Friday August 31st as we discuss Handmade Home by Amanda Blake Soule and other books you're reading.  Where you able to get the ebook for free a few months ago?

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