January 15, 2019

Simple Discipleship by Dana Allin

Discipleship can sound like a big complicated task - yet another item on your to-do list for spiritual growth. Rev Dr Dana Allin addresses this in Simple Discipleship, with the premise that discipleship does not have to be complicated, but standardized programs do not work for everyone.

I didn't think I would like this book. As soon as he mentioned “eight qualities and 21 supporting characteristics of a disciple”, I was concerned the book would overwhelm the reader, making general discipleship programs look very appealing compared to his customized one. However, covering different qualities and characteristics does show the big picture of discipleship and helps readers recognize where they may be lacking. 

The first two-thirds of the book are about the character, knowledge, mission and ministry and what that means for a disciple. The last third is related to the optional assessment and is helpful for those in church leadership who might need assistance in how to develop disciples in their church. (Note: I chose not to take the assessment because of the required information to do so). 

The majority of the book is useful for people who choose not to take the assessment. Readers will benefit from the description of principles they may want to practice in their lives. For example, one principle is that discipleship is about more than just taking in information. People need to apply what they learn rather than just learn about different qualities of a disciple. Regardless of one’s score on the assessment for this area, people can recognize if that statement applies to them, meaning they learn things but they don't actually do anything with what is learned. 

I enjoyed the book because Allin offer guidance that is practical and biblical. Readers who use the book for themselves can skip the last section for church leadership. Those in church leadership position might appreciate the guidance for working with church members and the assessment that gives them something to work with. 

 Disclaimer: Tyndale House Publishers provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

December 5, 2018

You Are Not A Rock Book by Mark Freeman

Book Review: You Are Not A RockNo one wants to feel sad, angry, lonely, or anxious, but by avoiding those feelings, we may only make things worse. In You Are Not A Rock: A Step-By-Step Guide to Better Mental Health (For Humans), Mark Freeman encourages readers to feel feelings because we are not rocks. We do feel things and he provides steps to do this without becoming overwhelmed by our emotions. Freeman shares his personal experiences with compulsion and how he engaged in OCD behaviors to avoid unpleasant emotions. And he admits that his attempts at dealing with his feelings were a problem. 

To read my full review, please visit PsychCentral.com.

November 26, 2018

The Stress Management Handbook Book by Eva Selhub

Book Review: The Stress Management Handbook

Sometimes people don’t realize how stressed they are until a minor thing triggers a bout of anger that does not match the circumstance. In The Stress Management Handbook: A Practical Guide to Staying Calm, Keeping Cool, and Avoiding Blow-Ups, Eva Selhub talks about how people can stay calm in tough situations. 

Read my full review, visit PsychCentral.com