Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament

I’m becoming an advocate for combining art and faith. I am learning how the Lord has given us artistic creativity to express our praise and worship of Him. Everyone naturally accepts that of music and even of creative writing, but artistic rendering through brush and pen are sometimes neglected. I’ve been a fan of Karla Dornacher for a while and was super excited to check out this collaboration she is a part of! 

Studying how Christ has been a part of history from the beginning fascinates me. This wonderful way of looking at Scripture brings new life and insight into the Old Testament as well as helps us to understand the redemptive nature of our Lord and Savior. I have heard sermons which traced Christ through the Old Testament, but have never completed a Bible study which solely focused on this. I really liked the simple format as well as the artistic application as well. 

Each of the 12 chapters is divided into 5 daily readings. There are also artistic activities to go along with each chapter. These would be so very fun to do as a group! The projects should not be overwhelming to beginners (just like me!) and will open up lots of opportunity for discussion during creating. I love the coloring pages at the end which are great no matter your age. There are also beautiful bookmarks to correspond with the chapters as well. 

The reader is encouraged to find their own creative outlet as well. There is a spring-board list of fantastic ideas in the appendix to get you started. I found this to be helpful to think outside of my personal creative box. 

I plan to have my daughters work through this study this year. It is deep enough to challenge them, but not so academic that it will become drudgery. This would make for an interesting group study as well. I’ve been excited to read this title and look forward to working through some of the art activities as well. I think it would be fun for a high school girls study or young women too. I really see many applications for use! 

Disclaimer: I was given this title through Net Galley in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Healing Every Day: A Review of Mary DeMuth’s New Book

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It was April. I was  24-year-old newlywed (married just under 2 years) when we joyfully celebrated expecting our first little baby. Just two short months later we mourned the loss of this little one. Not only that, it was determined I had carried this baby for over a month after the miscarriage occurred without realizing it because my body did not react as expected. This was the first really devastating blow in my life. Other pain had happened, but nothing as deep as this. Since then I’ve experienced other pain and heartache and I’ve grown closer to the Lord in the process. I’ve read some books on pain and seeking the Lord, but many were difficult to digest and hard to get through for me. If you are looking for a bite-sized guide to healing through emotional pain, Mary DeMuth’s new title, Healing Every Day, is worth a read. I highly recommend everything about it.

It is worth noting that Mary speaks from experience. While many may have wise words on healing, she speak as one who has walked a broken path and yearns to share what the Lord has and still is teaching her through the process. You can read more about her story here. The pain I walked with was from a very different source, but the Source of my healing is the same as hers, Jesus Christ. Every page of this 90-day-devotional points the reader back to Jesus and reminds us of His healing and redemptive power. That is the first thing I look for when I read a book by a Christian author and Mary does not disappoint.

I appreciate her expository teaching from both the Old and New Testaments. Not once have I read verses taken out of context or meaning changed to fit the narrative. Rather, Mary seeks Scripture and teaches her readers truth directly from its pages. The devotionals are sequenced in order through the Scripture so you see the Lord as Healer throughout.

Fear is an unavoidable side effect of the painful experiences of our lives. Sometimes fear overwhelmed me, especially the next 3 times I was expecting. Each of those pregnancies went to full term, and I have 3 beautiful daughters ages 13, 11, and 9. I falsely assumed that with each pregnancy the fear of miscarriage would lessen. Instead it became worse. I think is because while I accepted God’s sovereignty, I didn’t realize I still had deep emotional wounds I had not worked through yet. A daily journey with the Lord such as this one would have been an incredible help for me and even now as I read through it I am experiencing emotional healing from more recent difficulties.

Whether you have experienced loss, abuse, a chronic diagnosis, abandonment, or so much more the words in these pages will help you find healing. You will not learn how to push through the pain. You will not learn to be strong. You will not find a to-do checklist that promises a magical way forward. No, you will rather find something so much better: Healing through intimacy with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of Healing Every Day as a part of the launch team for this title. All opinions are my own. I was not required to write a positive review. 

No Easy Jesus: A Tyndlae Blog Network Review

 I have a guest post review today! My husband was very excited to read and review No Easy Jesus by Jason Mitchell for Tyndale Blog Network. Here are his thoughts about this book.

As a pastor I am always looking for ways to help people in their walk with the Lord. I love to read books that will teach me something and encourage me in my pursuit of godliness. That is why I was excited about No Easy Jesus: How the Toughest Choices Lead to the Greatest Life.
Too often we are taught that when we begin a relationship with Jesus that our life will be better and that is true to some degree. But if by better we mean easy, then we are greatly mistaken. Life is full of tough choices and being a Christian can sometimes make those choices even harder.
Have you ever watched other Christians living fulfilled lives and think to yourself, “Why can’t I have what they have?” Sometimes we think that being fulfilled in the Christian life is only for a few elite Christians. The truth is Jesus wants you to live the greatest life possible.
One of the things I love about this book is the author’s openness and transparency. I felt I could relate to him. He talks about his struggles in life and how he has found that the secret to living the greatest life possible is a willingness to make the tough choices to follow Jesus each day. In the book, Jason Mitchell says, “It’s a clarion challenge to wake up each day and choose Jesus all over again; to make the tough, gritty choices that align your way with His and lead to true fullness of life. Because when you decided to follow Jesus, you didn’t sign up for what was easiest―you signed up for what was best.”
No Easy Jesus will challenge you to make the tough choices so that you can experience the best life possible. If you desire a deeper walk with Jesus than this book is a must read for you.
Disclaimer: I received this title in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way. I was not required to write a positive review. 

Drive Thru History – The Gospels: A TOS Review Crew Review

Drive Thru HistoryOur family adores learning about history. Whenever we go on vacation we look for historical sites and museums to visit. If you ask the girls what their favorite part of school is they will all tell you that history is at the top of the list. My husband and I enjoy watching history documentaries. Unfortunately much of what is readily available has a world-view slanted away from Scripture. I could not wait to watch the new series from Drive Thru History®, Drive Thru History® – “The Gospels”. We had only watched one episode from this company previously in preparation for our trip to Washington DC a couple of years ago, so having the opportunity to watch an entire series was exciting!  

Drive Thru History The Gospels
This was an excellent series to watch leading up to Easter. We watched this as a family in the evenings during our regular devotional time. We watched at least one episode each night, although we often watched more than one because the girls would beg for another! 

Drive Thru History The Gospels

The series is simply captivating. My husband commented several times on just how well done each episode was. I also overheard him telling others how great these were and recommending them to families we know. This is a huge endorsement! My husband is in full support of our homeschooling and quite active in the learning process, but he rarely gets this excited about our curriculum. 
I loved that the episodes took you to actual sites in the Holy Land. We will not be able to travel there and tour with our children, so seeing the traditional locations for many of the historical biblical events was fascinating. Our girls were excited every time we watched another episode and disappointed on the evenings we couldn’t because we were out late for church.
Drive Thru History The Gospels
I also appreciated that the episodes were always pointing us back to Scripture and the historical accuracy with which it was written. We even learned about some of the seemingly contradicting passages some try to use to say the Bible isn’t true. It was like allowing my girls to read a good commentary on the Gospels, but presented in a way they could understand and engage with fully. 
This DVD set comes with a book with even more information! After each of the shows I would use the study guide to ask the girls questions. This was a great way to review. If I ever forgot to do this the girls were very quick to remind me to get them. 
The only episode which was difficult to watch was the crucifixion. I appreciated that it was honest and accurate with what actually happened to Jesus leading up to and during the crucifixion, but it was a little too intense for my younger two. I told them they could skip this one episode. For my oldest, who is 11, it was a great way for her to see the reality of what crucifixion was like in an age appropriate way. My younger daughters left the room for the actual crucifixion description, but came back to learn about the burial of Christ.

 Take a minute to watch this trailer  and you will get a taste of just how good this series is!

Our entire family recommends this 18-episode series for anyone looking for a way to spice up their Bible lessons or just to have a new perspective and way to learn about the life of Christ. I am thrilled that the last episode clearly presents the gospel and how to find salvation through Jesus. It also acknowledges that not everyone will believe and this is a personal choice we must each make. After watching the full life of Christ this is a powerful ending to an incredible series. Each of our immediate family members have already professed belief in Christ and accepted the gift of salvation. This series was an incredible reminder of our need for a Savior and just how miraculous salvation is.

We also are looking forward to exploring even more series from Drive Thru History soon!

Don’t forget to see what my Crewmates have to say!

The Gospels {Drive Thru History® Reviews} Crew Disclaimer