Archives For Review

Today Daniel Bashta’s new CD “the sounds of daniel bashta” came out. I first heard daniel a while back with his previous independent album and then later heard a lackluster cover from the crowder band of “Like a Lion”

I had the privilege of getting an advanced copy of this CD from my great friends at Integrity Music. Because this CD has been threatening to come out for a while now I think I have had it since Feb.

This is one of those CD’s that I think we can call a turning point in “corporate worship”. People like Misty Edwards and Jason Upton, who I love, have been around for a while now, but most of their music is not accessible for all many churches. Integrity has been launching amazing artists that are not only accessible, but are also out of the box and skilled with their craft. They are not just trying to churn out hits. They are trying to create a new sound of worship and I love that.

Bashta just reeks of the prophetic and grips the soul with lyrics like “I am the sound I am the voice…I am Jesus to this city!” It is not a CD with bubble gum lyrics. His words inspire and convict and most of all lift up Jesus.

I like to describe this CD as Jason Upton with ritalin or Red bull for the soul. There is such passion that rips through the songs that I am pretty sure they had to clean off the mic with a towel during recording.

I love a guy who sings with unbridled passion and conviction and Daniel does just that.

Because I have had this CD for a while now I have been able to incorporate some of the music. I have used “with everything”, “freedom is calling” and of course “Like a Lion”.

There is something so pure about “like a lion”. Something so breathtaking about its simplicity “My God’s not dead… He’s roaring like a lion”. The bridge is my favorite part because it says “let heaven roar” and just connects the revival with the church with the outpouring of the heavens.

“freedom is calling” is amazing and once again a call for the church to RISE. Then there is the song “the sound” with lyrics

“Hell can you hear me
Can you hear me
Are you listening

Darkness do you fear me
Do you fear me
Are you trembling”

WOW…seriously. not much needed to write about that one.

There is so much I can say about this CD and it’s lyrics. I am a huge Ihop fan and the prophetic movement, but it seems that that style of worship has not permeated the church as a whole. I think this CD and more coming out of integrity like John Mark McMillan, Brothers McClurg, and All sons and Daughters are breaking the mold and introducing the church to things we have lost. Depth, artistry, mystery, revival, warfare, and true passion.

Bravo Daniel for making one of the best CD so far this year! (a close second would be Owl City). Thank you for fueling the fire and giving the church sustainable red bull for the soul.

THIS ONE GETS 5 STARS!!!

GO BUY IT NOW!!

Disclosure of Material Connection: We received this CD free from the publisher to listen and post a review on our site. We were not required to write a positive review. The opinions we  have expressed are our own. We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> > “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

The Vertical Self How Biblical Faith Can Help Us Discover Who We Are in An Age of Self Obsession

By Mark Sayers

I recently had the privileged of receiving this book in the mail via Thomas Nelson Publishing.

I was really excited to get this book because it looked very interesting. It talks about returning to a life of Holiness. It is a book about being less self absorbed or “horizontal” and having our eyes fixed on Christ “vertical”.

I personally love books that deal with our identity because I believe it is one of the biggest struggles we as Christians have. Who do we get our identity from? Are our eyes pointed upward or do we continue to look to our environment and peers as our barometer for how we should act and ultimately be.

While the insights are butt kicking and inspiring I felt the actual writing of this book made it a bit monotonous to read. Make no mistake, the content of this book is much needed in the church today and it has some fantastic points. It is a must read, but I just was not a fan of the writing style. It did not keep my interest and therefore it became a bit of work to get through it.

Bravo to Mark for tackling a subject that we as the church seem to forget about and that is Jesus calls us to be like Him and He always looked to the father. Hopefully this book will inspire more to start looking vertically.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

I had the honor and privilege to receive a pre-release copy of “Sex, Lies & Religion” by Randy Elrod and I was able to read it in one day. The question you may ask yourself is “1 day?…must have been short”. It is not a long book at 166 pages, but it is a riveting book. I was not able to put it down.

A year ago I was able to meet Randy in person and talk with him. What I encountered was a man of integrity and transparency. A Godly man with a great marriage. This alone made me want to read whatever he put out.

This is a book that tries to debunk the old church rules about sex and nudity. It talks about the history of our creation and what we were created for. It delves into the connection between sexuality and spirituality starting first with nudity and sex onto our longing for God.

I am an artist and have drawn nudes and been around that culture a long time, but I am also aware of how much the nude body terrifies the main stream church. Randy talks about the lies that are out there and delves into teaching the reader how to achieve freedom from the way we have always been taught. There is a difference between “beauty” and Pornography” and Randy gives us a pretty great check list to determine that.

There is so much in this book to go over and re-read. I will be reading it for a second time next week and will probably need to blog again about it to really dig deeper.

A great quote from the book which really stood out to me was:

“Simply gather a handful of the succulent fruit described in this chapter and your mate will be literally eating out of your hand while racing you to the bedroom for an endless time of wild and abandoned lovemaking.”

Randy goes on to talk about the Fruit of the spirit and making that the most important Foreplay in a marriage. Something I am sure we all need a reminder of daily.

Last but not least it talks about communion and the sacraments. For the sake of a long post I won’t get into it, but let me tell you the connection he makes to the above is amazing.

Folks, this is a must read and maybe the top book I recommend this year. It’s not very often you will hear me say I need to read it again.

Do yourself a favor and order this book, but order it with an open mind because it will challenge you.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from cre:ate 2.0 Publishing to read and post a review on my site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> >  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

 

I received another book from the Thomas Nelson Booksneeze program. This one is called “This is Your Brain In Love” by Dr. Earl Henslin.

I have been married for over 12 years now so anything I can read about how to keep passion going, how to fix communication or how to realize how many issues are my fault (I hate that part) I will read.

This book is about identifying your “love style” and talks about scientific research into brain scans. Now I know what you are thinking now that you just read that line. BORING! Amazingly enough I read this book in about an hour and it kept my attention just fine.

I really liked his take on the sacrament of Sex and how sex is typically tacked on almost as an addendum to marriage or a perk. Dr. Earl tries to make you realize that sex and spirituality go hand in hand in creating a healthy marriage.

After that he discusses the issues in our brains and how to have healthy brains so we can eliminate issues.

He identifies the five types of lovers, with ground-breaking insights and effective solutions for the challenges presented by each:

* Scattered Lover
* Over-focused Lover
* Blue Mood Lover
* Agitated Lover
* Anxious Lover

There are 5 tests in the book and it teaches you to analyze the results. They are simple 3 minute tests. I learned a lot by them, but I also ranked broderline on every test. I don’t know if that means I’m am only slightly screwed up or if it means that I have every one of the issues he discusses.

Either way this was a great read with valuable insight. I am passing it along to my wife this week so we can talk some of the topics through. I would recommend this book to anybody who is married even if you are “issue free”.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Thanks to the generosity of the folks at Thomas Nelson publishing and their Book Sneeze program I was able to review:
The gospel according to LOST by Chris Seay

I was so excited to get this book in the mail and it was all I could talk about. I am a huge LOST fan. I would almost say I am obsessed with the show. It has intricate plots, amazing character development, and brilliant suspense. There has always been a Pseudo spiritual undercurrent with the show and the book tries to take that one step further by dissecting it for us with the spiritual side as the emphasis.

The chapters are broken up quite brilliantly comparing characters to their flaws or strengths and using it as a model for people around us or our own lives.

It does a ton of recapping of the show in the book. I understand why this was done because many who read this may have never seen the show, but to me it became a flash back episode. It was that episode where you go “oh man I thought it was NEW tonight” and then you turn it off. Sadly 1/2 of this book was just that for me.

Most of the insights into the characters and enlightenment he gives us about the spiritual struggles were really eye opening while others just too obvious.

The artist who painted the icons in the book for each chapter really did a great job and I love the whole atmosphere of the book because of it.

Sadly though this book was a flop for me because 50% of it was recap of a show that I am all too familiar with.
If you have seen the show..its a good read. If you are obsessed with the show probably not. If you have never seen the show. See it and read this book.

I give this one 2 out of 5 stars

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”