Reviews by Rev. Dave

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One Realm Beyond

One Realm Beyond

On 4/3 Rev. Dave wrote: One Realm Beyond is the first book in Donita K. Paul’s new Realm Walkers trilogy. If you’ve read any of Paul’s books before, you know to expect dragons. Dragons are present; in this case they are partnered with human real-walkers–people able to travel between the different realms of the universe ... One Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Merlin's Shadow

Merlin's Shadow

On 2/22 Rev. Dave wrote: The infant High King Arthur’s life is in grave danger. Those who killed his father and mother are after him as well as well has his rag-tag band that has sworn to protect Arthur. Merlin’s grandfather, a druid leader, and half-sister both want him dead. On top of that, Pict raiders capture the group ... An Exciting Adventure

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Merlin's Blade

Merlin's Blade

On 1/11 Rev. Dave wrote: Merlin’s Blade by Robert Treskillard is a new look at the beginnings of Aurthurian legend. In it we find Merlin, a youth, who is struggling to find his place in his village. His mother dead since he was young, Merlin is raised by his father, the village blacksmith. An attacked by wolves, Merlin was ... A fun look at Aurthurian Legend

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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The Church Builder

The Church Builder

On 11/24 Rev. Dave wrote: Don’t let the title throw you off. The Church Builder is not a inspirational story about a pastor starting a new church. Rather, it is a tale of suspense, intrigue, and mystery as Bethany Barclay, a young, small town lawyer, finds herself in the middle of a game of chess. And she is one of the pawns ... A Tale of Intruigue

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Blessed Child

Blessed Child

On 10/14 Rev. Dave wrote: A Peace Corps volunteer in Ethiopia granted his interpreter one favor: to take an orphan boy from a monastery to safety. That one action will change his life forever. As the story unfolds, Jason finds himself running from a militant coups with a Canadian Red Cross volunteer to take Caleb, a quiet orphan ... A Captivating Story of Faith

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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The Mercy Prayer

The Mercy Prayer

On 8/13 Rev. Dave wrote: Robert Gelinas gives readers a simple, but effective, prayer aid them in their faith journey. It is the most common prayer in the Bible. It is also the one, the Gelinas claims, that Jesus always answers. It is, simply, “Lord, have mercy.” Of course, there are many variations on that prayer, but in ... A Short, but Effective Read

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Bread and Wine

Bread and Wine

On 7/14 Rev. Dave wrote: At first glance I was expecting Bread & Wine to be thoughts on communion and community–gathering around the table. While that is half right–the gathering around the table in community is the essence of the book–the subtitle of the book gives the best synopsis: A Love Letter to Life around the Table ... building community through food

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Francis

Francis

On 6/19 Rev. Dave wrote: Since Jose Mario Bergoglio was elected pope earlier this year, I’ve been interested in learning more about this seemingly pious man who quietly ascended to one of the most powerful positions in the world. I’ve been impressed with his humility and acts of service. I read Mario Escobar’s latest biography ... Francis: Man of Prayer by Mario Escobar

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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Chasing Francis

Chasing Francis

On 5/20 Rev. Dave wrote: Several years a go my wife got me a statue of St. Francis. Just a little thing–two or three feet tall. I put it in my garden. That’s where Francis belongs–at least when he hangs around my house. I’ve long admired Francis and his life. Author Ian Morgan Cron writes what he describes as “wisdom ... Chasing Francis

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Altar Ego

Altar Ego

On 4/30 Rev. Dave wrote: Craig Groeschel is a fellow Covenant Church pastor, but even if he weren’t I would have checked out his newest book, Altar Ego. It maybe helps that I’m at a point in life where I’m trying to get my life more in line with God’s plan for me, but I’d like to think that what he has to say is of ... Altar Ego by Craig Groeschel

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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20,000 Days and Counting

20,000 Days and Counting

On 1/15 Rev. Dave wrote: Robert D. Smith realized at some point in his 50s that he had lived around 20,000 days. He decided to make every day count. So he took one of his birthdays and got a hotel room to sit down to write his thoughts on how to live the rest of his days to the fullest. The book is intentionally short--each ... Carpe Diem

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Soul's Gate

Soul's Gate

On 11/7 Rev. Dave wrote: I was a bit skeptical about Soul’s Gate when I read the the summary that talked about people jumping into other people’s souls. It seemed a bit out there to me, as well as being a bit over-the-top with the spiritual warfare side of things. I was pleasantly surprised. While Souls’ Gate does have ... I was a bit skeptical

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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The River

The River

On 10/13 Rev. Dave wrote: When the narrator’s flight is delayed, he begrudgingly has a conversation with a man that will change his life. He meets Gabriel Clarke, who as a young boy witnessed his father’s life taken as he saved a kayaker in The River. His life is haunted by that event as he moves to Kansas to live with his ... When the Narrator's flight is delayed

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Jackson

Jackson

On 9/10 Rev. Dave wrote: Jackson is a biography in Stephen Mansfield’s series of books on “The Generals.” Author Paul Vickery looks at the life of the man who would become the seventh President of the United States of America. He was the first president not to come from Massachusetts or Virginia, and the first to really ... A Report on Jackson's Life

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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Surfing for God

Surfing for God

On 7/23 Rev. Dave wrote: “Every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God.” – G.K. Chesterton Michael Cusick uses this quote by Chesterton as a stepping stone for his new book, Surfing for God: Discovering the Divine Desire beneath the Sexual Struggle. Most books about men’s struggles focus on controlling ... A Book for All Men

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Empty Promises

Empty Promises

On 6/10 Rev. Dave wrote: We all have idols in our lives–things we give more priority to than God. Maybe not all the time, but sometimes, at least, they exist. In Empty Promises: The Truth about You, Your Desires, and the lies You’re Believing, Pete Wilson takes an up-close look at some of the more common things we put faith ... A Good Reality Check for Us All

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Constantly Craving

Constantly Craving

On 5/8 Rev. Dave wrote: Constantly Craving explores the desires of our lives and how they point us back to God. Author Marilyn Medberg is counselor who speaks at Women of Faith conferences. As I discovered this, I wondered how an older (grey-haired) woman would speak to me. And while she does, obviously, write from a feminine ... Constantly Craving by Marilyn Medberg

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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I Am a Follower

I Am a Follower

On 1/16 Rev. Dave wrote: Leonard Sweet believes Christians (in the same vein as our society as a whole) have focused too much on leadership. We spend alot of time and money on raising up, training and developing leaders, but we seldom spend time investing in followers. Jesus calls us to be followers–even pastors and other ... Good Message, Okay Read

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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The Voice New Testament: Revised & Updated

The Voice New Testament: Revised & Updated

On 11/13 Rev. Dave wrote: The Voice is a new translation that is fresh as well as helpful in understanding the text. A variety of poets, story tellers, musicians and arts–as well as a strong list of biblical scholars–have contributed to the work to keep it honest yet poetical. Speaking sections are written as a script. A ... A Fresh Translation

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Going Deep

Going Deep

On 10/24 Rev. Dave wrote: In Going Deep Gordon MacDonald uses a fictional story about him pastoring a church to illustrate how to cultivate deep people. Through the story, MacDonald explores the necessity of cultivating deep people in his church give it a future. Deep people are ones who follow Jesus as His disciples. Through ... A Great Read for Church Leaders

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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Fyodor Dostoevsky

Fyodor Dostoevsky

On 10/4 Rev. Dave wrote: Peter Leithart ads to Thomas Nelson Publishing's "Christian Encounters" series with a look at Fyodor Dostoevsky. A biography told as a narrative story, Leithart looks at Dostoevsky's life from his influential time in exile in Siberia through the death of his first wife and marriage to his second wife ... A Nice Overview of Dostoevsky's Life

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Peace Be with You

Peace Be with You

On 9/6 Rev. Dave wrote: David Carlson’s book, Peace Be with You: Monastic Wisdom for a Terror-Filled World, is at its core a look at how to truly love our enemies. Carlson desired to see how those in monastic communities responded when the events of 9/11 unfolded. Most of us expect monks and nuns to be isolated and unaffected ... Loving Our Enemies

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver

On 8/13 Rev. Dave wrote: Most of the books in the Christian Encounters series are about people you've heard of and probably know a little about: St. Patrick, Galileo, Winston Churchill, Jane Austen. A few of their books explore lives of people you probably aren't familiar with, but these biographies will enrich your life. George ... An Amazing Life

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. Tolkien

On 7/25 Rev. Dave wrote: I admit that I read this book because J.R.R. Tolkien is one of my favorite authors and I wanted to know more about him. Mark Horne’s short biography was a good introduction to Tolkien’s life. Starting with Tolkien’s birth in South Africa and covering the death of both his parents, growing up as ... A Great Read for Tolkien Fans

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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The Blessing

The Blessing

On 6/28 Rev. Dave wrote: The Blessing is one of those books you wish every parent would read. Not just parents but anyone that works with children and youth. And not just them, but just about everyone. It's good for any relationship. A blessing instills a deep sense of self-worth and a stable sense of emotional well-being. The ... A Must Read (I don't say that often)

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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The Seraph Seal

The Seraph Seal

On 6/20 Rev. Dave wrote: The Seraph Seal by Leonard Sweet and Lori Wagner is an interesting look at a possible unfolding of the end times. The Seraph Seal looks at the trends in our society today and postulates how they might play out if events kept compounding. The story surrounds a historian named Paul Brinker who is given ... Better Than Some End-Of-the-World Christian Stories, But Not Great

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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Galileo

Galileo

On 4/29 Rev. Dave wrote: Galileo by Mitch Stokes is the first biography I had read in a while. I enjoyed getting a chance to read about the life of someone I knew of but really knew little about. Too often I simply hear of Galileo's excommunication from the church. And that wasn't really the case; there's a lot more to the story, ... A Brief, but Packed Biography

Rev. Dave's Rating:

3 Stars

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The Final Summit

The Final Summit

On 4/11 Rev. Dave wrote: This was the first book I had read by Andrews. I was expecting inspirational non-fiction, not fiction. Which wasn't a problem, because I love a good story. In the story a man named David Ponder is taken by the angel Gabriel into an assembly of many of the greatest people in history. With their help, ... A Good Story about Good Living

Rev. Dave's Rating:

5 Stars

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The Sacred Journey

The Sacred Journey

On 3/22 Rev. Dave wrote: The Sacred Journey by Charles Foster is part of The Ancient Practices series put together by Phyllis Tickle. In it Foster looks at the spiritual benefit of going on a pilgrimage (while not clearly saying what a pilgrimage needs to look like). He contends that we're meant to be wanderers--that God doesn't ... Purposeful Pilgrimage

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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The Sacred Meal

The Sacred Meal

On 1/31 Rev. Dave wrote: The Sacred Meal by Nora Gallagher is part of The Ancient Practices series put together by Phyllis Tickle. It admittedly seems like an odd inclusion to the series; most of the other books deal with practices that aren’t done commonly anymore. The Lord’s Supper seems fairly widely practiced since it ... Going to the Table

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Fasting

Fasting

On 1/12 Rev. Dave wrote: Fasting by Scot McKnight is part of The Ancient Practices series put together by Phyllis Tickle. This is the first book I've read devoted entirely to fasting; I had only read a chapter here and there on fasting in various books on spiritual disciplines. McKnight's approach is entirely different. He doesn't ... Fasting Properly

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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The Liturgical Year

The Liturgical Year

On 12/22 Rev. Dave wrote: The Liturgical Year: The Spiraling Adventure of the Spiritual Life by Joan Chittister is part of The Ancient Practices series put together by Phyllis Tickle. Chittister approaches her look at the importance of the liturgical year from a Catholic perspective from which she was raised and ministers, yet ... Living the Christian Year

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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A Year with God

A Year with God

On 12/1 Rev. Dave wrote: Ever wish God would speak to you? A Year with God by R.P. Nettlehorst is a book with daily readings featuring direct words from God from the Old Testament. Few of us spend much time in the Old Testament, but the Old Testament is full of direct quotations from God. A Year with God contains 365 readings ... Daily in God's Word

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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On This Day in Christian History

On This Day in Christian History

On 11/9 Rev. Dave wrote: I don't pick up history books enough. I should read them more. I enjoy learning about the past and how it shapes today. On This Day in Christian History reminded me of that. The book looks at the lives of martyrs, theologians, saints and other men and women who have shaped the faith and the world from ... Daily History of The Faith

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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The Gospel According to Jesus

The Gospel According to Jesus

On 10/25 Rev. Dave wrote: I just finished Chris Seay's latest book The Gospel According to Jesus: A Faith that Restores All Things. In it Seay explores ignored, distorted and misunderstood important tenets of theology in the gospels, doing so without using hard-to-grasp theological words while not talking down to the reader, ... Faith Changing

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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Outlive Your Life

Outlive Your Life

On 10/15 Rev. Dave wrote: I recently read Outlive Your Life: You Were Made to Make a Difference by Max Lucado. In Outlive Your Life Lucado looks at the early church as its story unfolds in the book of Acts and what we can learn from the first apostles in leaving a legacy that lasts beyond our life. It’s a good, challenging ... Leave a Legacy

Rev. Dave's Rating:

4 Stars

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