Inner Beauty Forever

just my thoughts on books and stuff :)

‘Made To Crave For Young Women’ Book Review January 29, 2013

thTitle: Made To Crave For Young Women: Satisfying Deepest Desires With God

Authors: Lysa TerKeurst and Shaunti Felhahn

Date I Finished Reading: January 28,2013

My Rating: 5/5

Chocolate. Caffeine. Boys. Friends. Shoes. Stuff. Diets.  We all have cravings, and we all attempt to fill those cravings with different things or people. But the satisfaction is only temporary, or perhaps non-existent. Why is it that we can never find satisfaction?

In  this book, Lysa and Shaunti speak to young women on cravings and desires. They discuss emotional, physical, and material cravings, and the wrong things we tend to look to in order to fulfill them. This ranges from food to shoes to shopping sprees and all the in-between. They discuss the error in our turning to these things for satisfaction, joy, and contentment, and also encourage you to take active steps towards abstaining from these tendencies and longings, instead turning toward God and his love for fulfillment.

There were several aspects of this book I liked. Lysa and Shaunti do a great job at connecting with areas that affect each and every one of us, relating well to young women. They are also honest and open about the difficulties of turning away from cravings and idols in our lives, not attempting to give you a false view of this journey. They use personal accounts, real-life stories, and great illustrations to relate to the reader as  well as to keep your attention.

Overall I would say that this is a wonderful book for teens and young women. It is filled with truths that can and do greatly benefit the reader. I would recommend this to any and all young women!!

Note: I received a copy of this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, but my opinions are my own.

You can find a copy of this book here: http://www.amazon.com/Made-Crave-Young-Women-Satisfying/dp/031072998X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1359492901&sr=8-1&keywords=made+to+crave+for+young+women

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‘The Wild Goose Chase’ Book Review January 20, 2013

imageTitle: The Wild Goose Chase: Reclaim the Adventure of Pursuing God
Author: Mark Batterson
Date I Finished Reading: January 19,2013
My Rating: 5/5

When you think of pursuing God, what comes to your mind? Duty? Struggle? How about adventure? Do you ever view your walk with God as an exciting, adventurous thing? In this book, Mark Batterson discusses spiritual barriers that can prevent us from growing closer to God, or finding satisfaction in him. He explores the barriers of:
~responsibility
~routine
~assumptions
~guilt
~failure
~fear
He discusses how each of these things can, at times hinder us from growth, and the signs of them in our lives.
One thing I liked about this book would be Batterson’s writing style. He writes with honest humor that makes the book an easy, enjoyable read. I also liked how applicable this book is. The issues addressed and the actions recommended are practical and applicable to our personal and daily lives.
I really had no complaints about this book, besides the fact that Batterson becomes a bit repetitive at times. Other than that, I have none!
I would highly recommend this book to you, especially if you are struggling with spiritual growth and desire a resource to help you identify what barrier may be hindering you from pursuing and growing closer to God.

Note: I received a copy of this book free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. However, my opinions are my own.

You can find a copy of this book here: http://www.amazon.com/Wild-Goose-Chase-Adventure-Pursuing/dp/1590527194/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1358641942&sr=8-1&keywords=wild+goose+chase

 

Instagram!! January 19, 2013

Filed under: Just My Thoughts — Godrox1997 @ 12:05 am
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Hey everybody! I just made a secondary Instagram account that posts christian quotes and Bible verses at least once a day! Follow me :)! It is: @christianteendaily
Thanks so much ! 🙂

 

Why Should Young Adults Spend Time With Elders? January 17, 2013

I am homeschooled, and this is my junior year of high school. I have had the privilege of participating in a public speaking class, and have my first competition this weekend. I have researched, edited and practiced my speech for several months now, and am very excited for my upcoming opportunities to share it with others. As I thought through what my topic should be, I was instructed to choose a topic that I was passionate about. What you are about to read is views and beliefs on the importance of young adults seeking to spend time with the elders in their lives and how we can benefit from doing so.

I remember when I was little how excited I would become when Mom told my big brother and I that we could go and visit with Mr. Bob and Ms. Mona. We were all smiles as we hopped on our bikes and pedaled as fast as we could down the cracked sidewalk in anticipation of what was to come. It was only a minute or two before we were seated around the dining room table in the cozy white home on Casey Street, visiting and laughing with the Coats. Even at that young age I loved spending time with elders; and as I have grown older, nothing has changed… I still do. The elders that I have grown to love in my life have helped to shape me into the person that I am today, and their relationships have benefitted me in innumerable ways. Today I would like to present to you three reasons why I believe we, as young adults benefit from intergenerational relationships. I will explain to you how this teaches us selflessness, how these people have valuable wisdom that benefits our present and future lives, and, last but not least, how these people provide us with mentors and role models. The goal is to help you realize the benefits of multi-generational connections, and to encourage you to seek out such relationships for yourselves.
The first reason that I would like to present in encouraging you to spend time with elders is that it teaches us selflessness. Think with me for a moment, on how you spend your extra time. Now ask yourself this question: what motivates this use of my time? If I am honest with myself, the majority of free time I have is spent in selfish ways. I enjoy sitting alone quietly in my room curled up with a good book, or I’ll be on the computer wasting time. It’s not that these pass-times are wrong… it is simply that my motivations are. I am doing what I am doing because it makes me happy. I decide to spend my time doing whatever I feel in the mood to do. I believe this is probably true for many young adults in our generations. However, if we were to take some time from our lives, and spend it with our elders we can learn selflessness. How so? We are not only learning to sacrifice something we want, but we are also learning to invest, TRULY invest, that time in the life of someone else. We are getting to know these people. We are learning what they like, what they disdain, how they enjoy spending their time, where they come from, what their stories are… We simply learn who they are and what their lives are like. We take a break from constantly thinking of ourselves, and focus on someone else. This is investing in someone’s life, and this teaches us selflessness. One thing that I have come to realize is that elders love it when we take time for them. They love the company, and they love to tell their stories to young people. This brings them joy, and we learn to delight in bringing them joy. This teaches us selflessness and humility, which can be two very difficult, yet essential lessons to learn.
Another reason that I would urge you to spend time with your elders is that they have lived their lives and have valuable wisdom to share with us. An example of such wisdom would be this: our elders have lived through difficult economic times such as wars and depressions. They have learned to be resourceful and good stewards with the goods that they have, and they teach us to do the same. Bessie’s Hope is a foundation dedicated to uniting elders and young adults in their community. According to a 2010 article from their studies have proven that strong intergenerational relationships result in multiple benefits, including economic benefits. I have personally experienced this through my grandparents.
My grandma and grandpa have raised 11 children on their own without ever relying on anyone else for help. As you can imagine, money did become tight. However, Dad and his siblings were always well provided for. How did my grandparents accomplish this? They wisely used what they had been blessed with. Grandpa had a very substantial-sized garden put out every year that he used to grow much of the food that they ate. Grandma used her skills and resources effectively to make the clothes and other necessities that her family needed. They didn’t have everything they wanted, but they had everything they needed. I am extremely grateful that my grandparents have taken the time to pass these lessons on to me. Every year for as far back as my memory goes Grandpa has taken my brothers and I into his back yard and planted a garden with us. He taught us year after year to grow plants and to tend to them so that they would yield as much as possible. Grandma has also taken time to teach me her wisdom. When I was 6 years old she began to teach me how to sew. She wanted, and still does want me to be able to make my own clothes with little resources so that I will be capable of clothing myself and my family on a budget. I appreciate these lessons that my Grandparents have taught me because they have already benefitted me in my life and I know that they will continue to.
Another wise lesson that our elders can teach us is that of remaining joyful, content, and faithful despite what trials or struggles we come across in life. One person in particular has beautifully illustrated this to me. Her name is Cathy Coats. Cathy is one of the most amazing people that I know. She has a beautiful heart that is joyful, loving, caring, content and compassionate. She spends her time on the computer buying gifts for others and writing stories from her vast imagination. However, Cathy has experienced her share of trials. At age twelve, she was diagnosed with Friedreich’s Ataxia. This is a genetically inherited disease which causes loss of muscle coordination and speech impairments. At age 16, this disease resulted in Cathy being confined to a wheelchair. On top of that, David, her younger brother, who also had Friedreich’s Ataxia, was driving a wheelchair-accessible car when he died in a fatal crash. Cathy is now one of the most loving, joyful, content, God-loving ladies I know… but if you were to ask her, she would admit that she struggled to get there, due to various things that had happened in her life. Her story has had a huge impact on me, it has taught me that it truly is possible to remain joyful despite what comes. It is one thing to have head knowledge of this fact, but it becomes so much more real when you see it in the life of someone that you know and love. This is the perfect example of the importance of spending time with elders.
The final reason that it is imperative for young adults to develop meaningful relationships with elders is that they can, and do provide the strong role models and mentors we definitely need in our lives. In their 2004 Intergenerational Service project profile, the Partnership for After School Education says : “ By providing comforting guidance, seniors can be mentors, friends, confidants, and better neighbors”. This is something that both we and our elders benefit from. We all need a role model. We all need that person that we can look to and say “That is who I want to be like. That is whose footsteps I want to follow in. Some of us may have a tendency to look towards the wrong places for these examples, such as Hollywood, Broadway, the music industry and so on. However, when we look towards the elders in our lives we see real, down-to-earth, godly men and women whom we can not only model, but also go to for guidance and mentorship. Titus 2 speaks of this mentorship, instructing older woman to mentor the younger woman in godliness and their husbands and children, and older men to instruct the younger men in godly conduct and character. One such person whom God has placed in my life is Ms. Mona.
Ms. Mona is one of the godliest ladies I know. If you were to ask me who I looked up to for an example, this is it. She loves the Lord with all of her heart and loves everyone more than herself. When I look at her I see someone who remains strong throughout difficulty. She has lost her youngest son to a car wreck, has lost her husband to cancer, and now spends her time caring for her daughter Cathy, the lady I just spoke about. But through everything she is content, she is joyful, she is loving. She will take time from what she is doing to fellowship with you, and when she asks “ How are you?” you know that the question is backed with genuine care and concern. This is who I want to be. This is my Titus 2 lady.
Although in our culture, the current generation tends to be looked down upon and disregard our elders throughout God’s word he admonishes us to have reverence for them and listen to their counsel. This is exactly the path I am urging you to embark on. I have spoken on how this teaches us selflessness. I have given some examples on the wisdom that they have to teach us. Lastly, I have spoken on how our elders are amazing mentors and role models for our lives. I hope that this has encouraged and inspired you to seek the blessings that I have found in these beautiful relationships that are waiting to be made.

 

‘The Air We Breathe’ Book Review January 9, 2013

thTitle: The Air We Breathe
Author: Christa Parrish
Date I Finished Reading:January 8,2013
My Rating: 5/5

Eleven-year-old Hanna is excited about her day in town with her Dad. Every Saturday is their day. They walk into the bank completely oblivious to what they were about to experience. Next thing she knows, Hanna has witnessed a bank robbery, her father’s murder, and been kidnapped. Weeks later, by God’s grace, Hanna escapes and is reunited with her mother. But she is never the same. She doesn’t even talk…until she meets Claire. Claire, who is also hurting from past loss, strikes an unlikely friendship with Hanna, and soon finds that this little girl is helping her to heal from the pain. But then Hanna and her mother vanish Claire, has no idea where they are or what happened. Several years later, Claire encounters Molly Fisk. Can Claire help Molly heal from her past in the same way that Hanna helped her to?
I cannot explain how much I loved this book! The storyline, characters and non-stop questions left me hungry for more. My mind constantly drifted back to the story, curious of what would happen next. These are the signs of a good book! One of the aspects of the books I liked would be Parrish’s writing style. She switches back and forth between Claire, Hanna, and Molly to give you more insight and details of the story. I also liked the fact that Parrish doesn’t drag things out until they get boring, or use clichés frequently.
Overall, I loved this book and would highly recommend it. The plot is original, the writing is interesting, and the story is one of love, healing, and trust in God’s sovereign plan.

Note: I received  a copy of this free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review, however, my opinions are my own.

You can find a copy of this book here: http://www.amazon.com/Air-We-Breathe-Christa-Parrish/dp/0764205552/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1357751836&sr=1-1&keywords=the+air+we+breathe+christa+parrish

 

‘The Cross Centered Life’ Book Review

CrossCentered-01Title: The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Gospel the Main Thing

Author: C.J. Mahaney

Date I Finished Reading: January 8,2013

My Rating: 5/5

How often do you preach the gospel to yourself? At first this may come across as a weird question, but really. The cross is the center of our Christian faith. Yet we somehow tend to live our lives with the gospel absent from our thinking. Why? In this book, C.J. Mahaney discusses why and how we are to live our lives centered around the gospel. He discusses why forgetting about the cross leads to frustration, irritation and disappointment, as well as how living a cross-centered life requires us to move past legalism and condemnation in our minds and hearts. He explains that we must keep the gospel in our mind and hearts, that we are to not move on from the cross, but deeper into it. Finally, he gives practical applications and steps you can take to center your life around the cross and the gospel.
When I read this book I really only had one complaint…it was so short! But at the same time this is a huge positive, since Mahaney is great at addressing the problem, explaining the mindset we should acquire and recommending solutions in a very efficient way. He doesn’t over-explain or go on and on, yet at the same time he does a great job of not being to vague or leave unanswered questions.
I would definitely recommend this book to you! It is great food for thought and opened my eyes to an area of the gospel that I tend to forget, or not even consider.
You can find a copy of this book here: http://www.amazon.com/The-Cross-Centered-Life-Keeping/dp/1590520459/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1357748787&sr=8-1&keywords=cross+centered+life

 

My Goal! January 8, 2013

Filed under: Just My Thoughts — Godrox1997 @ 4:00 am
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Hey! It is so hard to believe that it is already 2013! And believe it or not I actually kept one of my resolutions for 2012. *gasp*
My resolution was that I would read 50 books cover-to-cover in 2012. And I did! (I actually read exactly 50!)
So with that being said, what about this year? Good question! I hope to read 75 books this year! I know that is a lot, maybe impossible, but I am gonna try!
I hope that you keep up-to-date and in-the-loop with the books I read! Maybe even recommend some books 🙂 ! Happy 2013, everybody!