Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Book Review: Dinner with a Perfect Stranger

What an incredible book!  The book is centered around a dinner between a man and Jesus.  The man goes to dinner thinking that it is just another prank that his friends have played on him.  He doubts that the other man is really Jesus, but takes advantage of the opportunity to have some philisophical discussions.

Jesus brings up some great points and thoughts on so many Christian issues.  He also proves how other major religions cannot be true.  This book was filled with so many great ways to discuss religion.  I will definitely be re-reading it so that I might also be better able to defend my points. 

I found out that there is a movie that is very similar, but with a woman as the main character.  I cannot wait to watch the movie.  You should definitely read the book.  It is a such an easy and very enjoyable read!!!

I joined Waterbrook Multnomah so I could get free books!!  Yay for free!!  And double yay for new, quality books for free!!  I do not get any other compensation besides the book and agree to give my completely honest review.

Monday, July 25, 2011

One Man's Stand for Justice

One Man's Stand For Justice! Don't miss this amazing story on PBS 7/26.

I'll be blogging about the book Mugabe and the White African  later this month, but I wanted to let you know that Point of View will air the documentary Mugabe and the White African.

The film tells the story of Mike Campbell and his family of three generations of Zimbabwean farmers as they attempt to keep their farm under Mugabe's "land reform." Watch the trailer for the documentary below and visit the PBS Point of View website for your local listing. http://www.pbs.org/pov/tvschedule/

The book Mugabe and the White African  (Lion Books, distributed by Kregel Publications, July 15, 2011, ISBN: 978-0-7459-5546-9, $14.95) written by Mike Campbell's son-in-law Ben Freeth provides more detail regarding the family's struggles and court battles.The book chronicles the deeply moving and life-threatening struggle of a Christian family from Zimbabwe to protect their legally owned farmland, to protect the lives and livelihoods of all those working on the farm, and to live to see justice.
Freeth lays bare a beautiful but lawless land fouled by fear. A 'Clockwork Orange' state where racism, greed, and violence are ultimately humbled by almost unimaginable courage. Richly described, bravely chronicled, and utterly compelling. 
-Mike Thomson, Radio Foreign Affairs Correspondent, BBC

Ben Freeth has an extraordinary story to tell. Like that of many white farmers, his family's land was "reclaimed" for redistribution by Mugabe's government. But Ben's family fought back. Appealing to international law, they instigated a suit against Mugabe's government in the SADC, the Southern African equivalent of NATO. The case was deferred time and again while Mugabe's men pulled strings. But after Freeth and his parents-in-law were abducted and beaten within inches of death in 2008, the SADC deemed any further delay to be an obstruction of justice. The case was heard, and was successful on all counts.

But the story doesn't end there. In 2009 the family farm was burned to the ground. The fight for justice in Zimbabwe is far from over--this book is for anyone who wants to see into the heart of one of today's hardest places and how human dignity flourishes even in the most adverse circumstances. 

Read an Excerpt (PDF)

Read the Press Release

Sunday, July 17, 2011

So Hard To Say Goodbye

It is so hard to say goodbye.  Mike's mom and nephew came to visit for a week and we all parted ways today, which means....

everyone is sad.

Kassidy cried... and cried... and cried... and cried. 

Mike said how much he missed his mom. 

I miss her also.

I also am reminded that my heart will break in a few weeks after my sisters come to visit and then also have to leave.  There will be many more tears then.

Our hearts break because we are not all together.  I think we have holes in our hearts that our loved ones are supposed to be filling.  Of course, we remain close and we treasure our relationships but when you can't get up and see them whenever you want the hole never can be totally filled. 

Maybe one day we can all live close to eachother.  Texas would be the smartest place since it's right in the middle of everyone else!!!  ;)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Book Review: Surviving Your Serengeti

I actually was disappointed in this book.  I read about all of the books I pick out before I decide on them.  I was very excited about this book after the reviews I read.

 It is kind of a personality book that is actually very well written in story form touching on each of the 7 "business and life" personalities.  It is very uniquely written and if you are interested in learning just a little bit about several different personalities then you will probably enjoy this book.  I was looking for more details, tips, ideas, insights, etc.  There is very little of that. 

You can visit the site for the book and take the personality test to see what you are.  Basically what you find out from that is all that is written in the book.  My results from the test were definitely spot on with my personality. 

I joined Book Sneeze so I could get free books!!  Yay for free!!  And double yay for new, quality books for free!!  I do not get any other compensation besides the book and agree to give my completely honest review.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Galveston Trip #1

Kassidy and I went with my dad, stepmom and little sister to Galveston to meet my grandparents at their time share.  We had a blast and to help keep some memories and share our adventures I will post some pics.  There are quite a few so there will be several posts on our trip!!

The many faces of Kassidy. 

Do you think she buried herself with that little shovel??

Sand, Sand, Sand

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Let's Plllayyy Bbballll!!!!!

We went to the baseball game a couple weeks ago thanks to some of our awesome friends, who couldn't go.  These were the best seats we have ever had.  It was awesome!  And the tickets came with free parking which just sweetened the deal!

K was not in the mood for pics unlike her daddy, who was more than willing :)

My Texas Rangers!!!

We are baseball lovers and our players are incredible.  Many are such strong, faith-full, encouraging, positive examples and many are very quick to give God the glory for all of their accomplishments.

PS.  I do not know if you have seen the news lately, but Josh Hamilton, who is an amazing player and an even more amazing Christian man, threw a foul ball to a fan the other night at the game and the fan fell trying to catch it.  He later died at the hospital.  He was a 39 year old fire fighter who was at the game with his 6 year old son.  His name was Shannon.  If you would keep both Josh, his family and Shannon's family in your prayers that would be great. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Yes, Again!


This post really says how I feel about adoption.  Here are some great facts about adoption, orphans and children in the foster care system. 

I kind of feel like I am being redundant when I continue to stress how ridiculous this serious issue is.  I feel like people are just not catching on.  I know so many people who have come out and said that they are thinking about adopting.  Thinking about it.  Yes, we "thought about it" for a long time also.  We really are just now where we actually could adopt.  Not too long ago we would not have qualified financially, etc.  But now we are and are waiting any day now to hear that we are officially certified! 

I just URGE you.  I wish you could hear me say that.... how serious of a tone I say that in.  I really urge you to stop "thinking about it" and do it.  Step out and try it.  Start the classes you need to adopt from foster care.  You will learn sooo much and I believe you will really find out if this journey is for you or if it's not during those classes.   We were only going to adopt.  There was no option to foster for us before the classes and now we are fostering to adopt. 

Just do something!  Please!  I do understand that it is a calling to live that life.  I do.  I get it.  But I also get that we are being called to do things constantly that we never act on because we are just not listening, we do not want to or we are just afraid to. 

I also know that we are all told:
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
James 1:27

Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.
Isaiah 1:17

And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me.
Matthew 18:5

So if you are feeling at all interested or at all shaken by the idea of adopting, please, PLEASE, PLEASE just check it out!  It's no big deal to find out more!  Stop talking, thinking about it and just do it!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Book Review: PrayerWalk

I was very excited about this book and it did not disappoint.  Janet McHenry walks M-F for at least an hour prayerwalking, meaning she prays while she walks... pretty self-explanatory. 

McHenry discusses why she walks, tips for starting and maintaining her walks, and what prayerwalking has done for her and for others.  She has great suggestions, ideas and motivators throughout the book.  She views prayerwalking as her ministry and I definitely think that she is doing a great job at it. 

I needed some motivation to start a daily exercise routine and this book has definitely helped.  I am a multi-tasker and prayerwalking will be a nice way to do a couple very necessary things at one time! 

I joined Waterbrook Multnomah so I could get free books!!  Yay for free!!  And double yay for new, quality books for free!!  I do not get any other compensation besides the book and agree to give my completely honest review.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Really Soaking In It

My husband likes the show Border Wars.  Have you seen it?  Some of it is pretty cool... the tracking they do, the crazy ways people smuggle or try to smuggle in drugs and it is awesome to see the drugs being caught before they make it over to America. 

He was watching this morning when I got up and I watched for a while with him, but like always that show makes me sad. 

The people who risk so much, who give up so much and who often lose so much just trying to make it to America make me sad and they make me really think.  Our America where we live so ungratefully.  I don't mean we are selfish or greedy... oh we ARE, but I mean we live here without very much thought of how truly blessed we are to be here.  Truly.  Truly.  Blessed.

And why?  Why us?  There is no difference between me and the woman who wore all black, paid $6,000 (for the second time) and lay curled up in a ball as far up under the dashboard on the floor of a smuggler's car so that she could get back to America to be with her 5 year old son, who is an American citizen.  We are the same.  We are all sinners, who make bad decisions and fall short every single day (and sometimes every single minute). 

I'm not here to talk about people crossing the borders and all those political border issues... that's not the point.  The point is that we are such undeserving, ungrateful, entitled, self-centered people here in America.  Wow!  Harsh.  I know!  I am totally there, too, and maybe you aren't!  If you're not, I hope to be more like you! 

It makes me sick.  It makes me want to cry.  It makes me want to do something.  What?  I don't know.  The first thing I will do is be more grateful and try to teach my daughter how undeservingly blessed we are with so many things (tangible and not), but many of those things come because we live here.  In America.  Is America perfect?  Not by a longgggg shot, but we are pretty great ;) 

Have you ever noticed that we, people from families that have been born in America for generations, lose sight that we are living the American dream.  Right now.  Us.  We get to live it without any effort at all (minus the amazing men and women who serve our country).  Who do we hear talking about the American dream?  People who are working, suffering and fighting to get here to be able to live it.  We have it, but we rarely give it any thought. 

We rarely stop and feel the blessings.  I mean really soak it all in.    

So on this 4th of July will you stop, soak all of it in and thank God for all of our blessings, for our country and for the people who are serving our country and working to make it a better place for us to live?  (And yes, I will be praying for the men and women who patrol our borders also!  America would not be anything without them.)