Wednesday, January 29, 2014

One God, One Plan, One Life

"One God, One Plan, One Life" is a 365 day devotional designed for teenagers. Max Lucado carefully crafted a daily reminder to young people of God's love, faithfulness, and sacrifice. This devotional is a great way for young people to get into the habit of a daily devotion, and spending that time with God every day. What I loved about this particular devotional is that Lucado knew the audience he was writing for. The readings are short, catering to the teenager's short attention span - each devotion is on page, and can literally be read through in a matter of minutes.

The messages that Lucado shared are relevant to the life of a young adult, using the teenager's environment to relate Biblical principles, events, and messages. Lucado does a wonderful job of really making the Bible relevant to the 21st century teenager. The devotions consist of a Bible verse, followed by a short explanation or further examination of that verse, and a way that it ties into your teenager's life. Simple!

I would recommend this book for teenagers, ages 13 and up. I think it's the perfect way to get young adults thinking about God on a daily basis. Wonderfully written. I love that it's an entire year of devotions! Plenty of awesome readings, verses, and thoughts.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I received this book for free from's blogger program in exchange for an honest review. I was not obligated to write a positive review.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Devotions for Women

"The One Year Devotions for Women: Becoming a Woman at Peace" by Ann Spangler is a wonderful devotional that really caters to women. This devotional offers a daily devotion for each day of the year, concisely written and relevant to the lives of women. The devotions are dated, which is the only thing I didn't particularly like - if I miss a day I feel like I am getting behind, or missing out on something, whereas in non-dated devotion, you can just pick up where you left off.

The central theme of this devotional is peace, and how to find peace, which is a topic I believe nearly anyone could benefit from. As a busy mom myself, I sometimes feel like one day the chaos of being mom and wife are going to spin out of control. Peace is something I know I could use a little more of!

Each devotion starts with a Bible verse, followed by an elaboration, explanation, or story that expounds on the verse and the topic of the day. Each devotion closes with a suggested prayer that is short and easy to say. This is an ideal devotional for busy moms because the devotions are only one page each. I am a mom to two young children, and found that the length of these devotions was perfect, and easily fit into any five minutes that I had to spare during the course of the day.

I would give this book a 5/5, and highly recommend it for moms, grandmothers, aunts, or sisters. Well written, easy to read, and focused on women. Great devotional.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I received this book for free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

The Jesus Bible, NIV

Zonderkids newest Bible is the perfect addition to your teen or tween's bookshelf. After reading through this Bible, I think that this would be appropriate for young adults from middle school up. With a plethora of tools to help them gain a deeper insight into the teachings of the Bible. This Bible focuses in on Jesus and his role in the Bible. This version is an NIV version with red-letter text.

This Bible offers so many explanations and insight into events, occurrences, and prophecy found in the Bible, especially where it relates to Jesus. The New Testament offers a small text box that lets you know when an event or occurrence fulfills Old Testament prophecy, as well as where to go to find that particular prophecy in the text.

This Bible also features a one page summary of each chapter as it begins, setting the scene for the chapter, and giving information about what is going on at the time, and who the key players are. Text boxes also feature bible verses that are important in the chapter, making it easy to see at a glance what important event or principles are featured.

This Bible also has one page devotions throughout it, featuring a key Bible verse, a short explanation, story, or antedote, as well as a short prayer. These are well thought out, and they relate well to the reading that they occur near.

The Bible also offers a concordance, maps, and table of weights and measures in the back of the book to further help you understand/study the Bible more effectively.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I received this Bible for free from's blogger program in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, January 10, 2014

NIV Essentials Study Bible

Zondervan Publishers' "NIV Essentials Study Bible" is AMAZING! This Bible is the ultimate study tool for those who want to really get an in-depth look at Biblical figures, events, and wisdom. There are several different study tools that are all packed into this Bible. The Bible itself is the NIV translation, and a traditional text.

This Bible offers a TON of footnotes. The bottom 1/4 of each page on most pages is filled with additional explanation/insight into the words of the Bible. Sometimes there are passages of the Bible that are confusing or aren't easy to understand and the extensive use of these footnotes really help make the message clear and concise.

This Bible combines many other study tools from some of the popular study Bibles that have been published. In this particular Bible, you will find tools from the NIV Study Bible, NIV quest Study Bible, NIV Archaeological Study Bible, NIV Student Bible, The Great Rescue Bible, and The Essential Bible Companion.

Some of the tools that are found in this study Bible are the "Q & A", "Dig Deep Look Close", and "Important People In Focus". The "Q & A" section of this Bible is a really neat feature that I haven't seen before in a Bible. Popular questions are placed throughout the text, inside of a small box, along with a Biblical answer to that question. I loved how these were strategically placed near text that Biblically supported the given answer. The "Dig Deep Look Close" tool gives a deeper look into the people, history, archaeology, artifacts correlating to the Biblical text. For example, in Luke 7, there is an in depth look at Jewish Burial Practices. These help to understand the times in which the Bible was written, including customs and traditions. The "Important People In Focus" tool is also very interesting, as it profiles characters in the Bible, giving the reader a much more complete picture of who they were and what significant role they played.

I love this new Bible, and am so impressed by the amazing tools packed into it. I would highly recommend this Bible to anyone who is looking for a Bible that is going to offer a more complete picture of the life and times of Biblical events and figures, as well as a traditional NIV text.

FTC DISCLOSURE: I received this book for free from, through their blogger program.