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Friday, March 23, 2018

"Singing the Scriptures" by Julie Meyer

So many people in the Bible sang songs.  There is even a whole book of the Bible entitled Psalms.  So why don't more people sing about God?  What are the mental and spiritual impacts of singing?  How does singing help people change and grow?  So many questions and more are answered in this book.  Meyer shares some personal stories from her own life.  She speaks about singing to foreign tribes in Africa, singing to the homeless in American cities, singing to terrorists in Israel, and just singing in her car.  When discussing Bible verses, Meyer goes into ancient linguistics to explain deeper meanings of the Scriptures.  Meyer is a Christian woman, and there are Christian undertones in the book which are evident but not overdone.  After reading this book, I want to try to sing more often.  Not just listening to songs but actually singing out loud.  As God sings over me, so I shall sing to God.

"Single is Not a Curse" by Tony Gaskins Jr.

Written by one of my favorite life coaches, this book is all about the single season of life.  As the title suggests, single is not a curse--it is not a bad thing.  It is in the single season of life where one really has the time to work on oneself.  Gaskins talks about working on the three B's of brain, brand, and body, which he elaborates in his book.  In the simplest terms, one has to become the best version of oneself to attract the best out there.  There is also a section on healing from past relationships so as to not take past baggage into future relationships.  I loved the concept of how love should not be painful.  Too many people think crying and sadness is part of love.  Gaskins explains how pain should not be associated with love and gives detailed questions and plans for leaving abusive relationships.  I learned so much from this book and enjoyed it.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

"A Light on the Hill" by Connilyn Cossette

One of the most interesting yet least talked about parts of the Bible is the cities of refuge.  These were places were those accused of crimes punishable by death could flee and remain safe.  They would either get a trial proclaiming them free or be confined to the city gates.  Going outside the city when guilty meant a vigilante could legally kill them.  This is the case with Moriyah.  When she accidentally kills two young boys, she is forced to flee to a city of refuge.  Things get interesting when the man who wants her dead is chasing her, trying to prevent her from reaching the city of refuge.  Add in the fact that Moriyah's love interest is the brother of said vigilante.  As if that were not drama enough, add in Moriyah's troubled childhood where she is kidnapped and branded with the mark of a pagan harlot.  Yes, interesting indeed.  I won't give any more of the book away but will say it is quite the page-turner.  For romance, that is there but not graphic.  As for the vigilante chasing, there is action and suspense but nothing too scary.  I like how biblical fiction ties in aspects of the human condition that apply to modern day.  While readers may not be fleeing for their lives after the fall of Jericho, they may be able to relate to the concept of others judging them, running away from a bad situation, and dealing with worrisome in-laws.  I can't wait to read the next book in this series.

Monday, March 12, 2018

"Mrs. Right" by Tony A. Gaskins Jr.

As a long time fan of Life and Relationship Coach Tony A. Gaskins Jr., I decided to order his book when I heard about him mentioning it in one of his videos.  This read so quick and easy that I finished the entire book in three days.  It talked about how men perceive women, going so far as to talk about how men view different hairstyles and fashions choices.  It talked about how men respect women who make them wait for intimacy.  It talked about how a man may fool around with a woman but not marry her, as well as how a man will waste a woman's prime youth and beauty years without a ring while he's looking for who else better may come along.  There was also emphasis on healing from past relationships so baggage from yesterday does not ruin the success of tomorrow.  There was also the tough love of saying how women need to stay healthy and fashionable to keep a man's attention.  I could go on and on about this book.  I recommend any woman who is thinking of marriage one day to read it.  Be you, do you, and enjoy life so that you are ready when your future husband arrives.  Enjoy

Saturday, March 10, 2018

"Why Men Love Bitches" by Sherry Argov

The title of this book immediately caught my attention.  I laughed and then thought to myself whether or not this was true.  I was also intrigued by the words "are you too nice?" on the back cover.  This book is clear that the term bitch does not mean a nasty or angry or bitter woman.  In the context of the book, a bitch is a woman who stands up for herself and does not let a man define her self worth.  There are lots of examples in the book of how a nice girl will go out of her way for a man who is mistreating her while a bitchy woman will call the man out on his behavior and then distance herself.  A tip I loved was that men do not respond as well to words as they do to no contact.  If a guy is not giving a woman 100%, it does the woman no good to nag or whine or dress up or cook him extra food.  What the woman needs to do is go out and live her life without him.  The bitchy woman does not have a fear of being alone.  The nice woman will fear losing a second rate male and will thus exhaust herself while trying to make a relationship work.  I also liked how this book emphasized the importance of a man pursuing a woman.  A woman constantly calling a man or making plans with him will push a guy away.  Let the guy do the chasing.  There are plenty of other tips in this book, and I highly recommend it for any woman who has ever settled for second best at the expense of being "too nice".

Thursday, March 8, 2018

"Reinventing You" by Dorie Clark

Have you ever wanted to change your brand?  Get a new job role, make a change, start a nonprofit, or just challenge your own personal status quo?  This book will help you do just that.  There are plenty of concrete steps, most important of all is evaluation.  You can't get to where you want to go without first knowing where you are coming from.  Once you have decided your starting point and end destination, there is the journey in between.  Get a mentor, make a plan, job shadow, volunteer for an assignment, tweak your social media presence, and much more.  There is even advice for financial matters such as whether or not to go back to school.  At the very end of the book, there are tips for maintaining one's new image.  Creating a brand is a lifestyle, and Clark will help you with that.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

"Raising the Barre" by Lauren Kessler

The story of a woman in midlife deciding to dance the Nutcracker sounds inspiring, crazy, and almost impossible.  Wife, mother, and author Laruen Kessler decides to make her dreams become reality and dance the dance she always wanted to dance.  This is no easy feat.  It required months of practicing, exercising, and convincing not only herself but also a ballet company that she was worthy of the role.  From pilates to barre3 to a form of exercise I had never heard before--gyrotonics--Kessler stops at nothing to achieve her goal.  Trials and tribulations are shared as she recounts her body image struggles, midlife crises, and tripping onstage.  While I really enjoyed the spirit of this book, I wish it was edited to cut out some of the not so family friendly parts.  There are a few swear words and lewd references.  Were these not there, I could confidently recommend the book to younger audiences or even my women in midlife that I know.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

"Becoming Peace" by Nancy Graumlich

As part of the ElderFriends program, I was matched with a senior in my area.  Through our many visits, I got to know Nancy as a beloved friend.  During our friendship, she gave me her self-published book of poetry.  The poems were about war, peace, and mother earth.  I was surprised to learn of Nancy participation in the civil rights movement.  As I absorbed each poem, I got to see the world through Nancy's eyes.  I saw a heart for suffering, a desire for peace, and a hope for the future.  The children are the future, the earth will not heal itself, and war will not go away on its own.  It takes concentrated steps and direction from every person on earth.  We must all strive towards peace and love and unity to have true progress.  Some of the poems are sad since they do not shy away from the world's problems.  However, I finished the book feeling inspired that I can make a difference in the world, no matter how small that may be.  Thank you Nancy.  To peace.

Friday, March 2, 2018

"The Abundance Project" by Derek Rydall

How much of our life is automatic?  How much of our life is based on our actions versus our thoughts?  This book goes into all that and more.  The main concept of the abundance project is that people need to tap into their inner spirit of abundance.  People need to feel like they are winners before they can actually win.  I like how Rydall also emphasizes using practical steps.  It's not good enough to simply think one will get a great job, great relationship, etc.  Rather, one needs to do the healing work (thru journaling, meditation, therapy, etc) along with the physical work (working harder, getting out, meeting people, speaking up, etc).  Another part of the book I really enjoyed was talking about one's worth.  There are many kind hearted and spiritual people (such as myself) who find it immensely difficult to speak up and ask for what they want.  An example is an employee not asking for a raise out of fear of being selfish when they are making less than market value.  Using the abundance principle, Rydall proposes, no one is taking too much from someone else.  Rather, we are all living in abundance.  Still, if one is being mistreated, there is no need to stay.  Thinking good thoughts of abundance is no excuse for staying in a dead end job or loveless relationship.  Throughout the entire book, there is reference to the Source.  This is cited as another term for God or Love in the Universe.  While there is some Bible quoted, Rydall keeps going back to the principles of abundance and not necessarily one religion of abundance.  On a final note, the 40 day plan is not day by day.  Rather, after the principles of abundance are explained, Rydall gives tips for how one should make their own 40 day plan.  Just as a radio is always broadcasting even if you are not tuned into it, abundance is already existing in life.  You just need to tune into it.  Find out how with this book!