Bonhoeffer Student Edition: A NetGalley Review

There were many martyrs of the Holocaust, but few have had the theological significance as Dietrich Bonhoeffer. His life sets an example for old and young of how to live out ones convictions even in the most difficult of circumstances.

I will have my oldest daughter read this year as we study other literature written about the Holocaust. I think it is highly valuable to learn about many different perspectives when studying history, especially very difficult periods such as the Holocaust.

The book itself is geared towards the middle school reader. The historical information is provided in a clear and interesting way. Even if the reader has not been made familiar with the intricacies surrounding World War 2 prior to reading this, they will have no trouble understanding all that happened leading up to and during the war. It is especially insightful to understand how the everyday citizen felt about what Germany’s leaders were doing. 

Individuals are famous for their brief moment in history, but we cannot understand the individuals completely without first knowing what led them to those moments. This biography is an excellently written description of Bonhoeffer’s early life and how he became who he was. The clear writing will engage readers fully and hopefully help them think critically about not only World War 2, but also be more aware of all that is going on around them politically and socially.

Now I do want to make it clear that I do not agree with all of Bonhoeffer’s theological beliefs. That being said, I believe studying his life and his thoughts on Scripture are still very valuable. If you also have the opportunity to read the original book by Eric Metaxes written for adults I strongly encourage that. It is excellent and will fill in any of the gaps you may feel was missing in this title.

Disclaimer: I received this title from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Drama Free: A Net Galley Book review

 Drama…It seems like we can’t get away from it! There is drama in the news, drama in our neighborhoods, drama in our schools, drama in our churches…everywhere you turn, drama, drama, and more drama! Why is this? Why is everything around us extreme, over-the-top, and dramatic? I find social media to be a big culprit as is our me-first culture in general. I am personally annoyed by all the drama, but find I can easily succumb to the masses and dramatize my own insignificant life-situations. I don’t like it, but I do it just like everyone else.Drama Free by Cindi McMenamin is a biblical look at how to tame our own drama and how to deal with the drama around us. 
I appreciate that the author gets right to the heart of things with Scripture from the start. She also helps point the reader to an understanding that when we are feeling overwhelmed by the emotions surrounding a situation the only place to begin is by going to God and His Word. In a world where we are told to drive out the drama with any number of distractions, confronting it head on with God’s help is a novel idea. 
One of my favorite phrases came from chapter two where the author encourages us to trust God’s script for our lives. Here she says, “And that, my friend, is where peace is found: in accepting – and trusting – God’s script for our lives.” This is not advice given in most circles. Most of the time we are told it’s okay to dwell in the drama. We seek validity for our emotional upheavals without grace or peace. The reality for Christians should be very much the opposite. In the midst of the unexpected we should seek Him first, rely on His strength, and settle into His peace. We will still feel the emotions. They are not wrong to have, but they should not become the primary focus of our life and circumstance. 
I highly recommend this book for women whether you find yourself in the midst of drama now, have ever experienced struggles, or think you might sometime in the future have difficulty struggling to cope. This is also a useful tool for those who are walking along with someone who is having a hard time with overwhelming emotions. The godly council given here is excellent. 
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.