Book Review: A Week in the Life of a Slave by John Byron

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I think this is my second time to review a fictional book and this one is my first biblical historical fiction.

At first I’m abit surprise on how Paul, Philemon and Onesimus was portraited. Adding to that Demas was also in the story and had moments, knowing in the back of our mind, he will be a backslider according to the Bible.

A Week in the Life of a Slave delivers an interesting and page turning story of Onesimus and Philemon. It follows the fugitive slave to his journey to escaping his master, meeting Paul, the crisis with his presence in the prison where Paul was in, his conversion and his return to Philemon.

If you think this is just a simple and boring story about slavery in Bible times, well you’re mistaken. I was mistaken till I got that light bulb moment. It gives you the glimpse on how we as Christian are heir to Christ.

There are no boring or dragging parts in the book. You’ll find this book a delightful read every time you jump back in.  The supporting characters are interesting and had all been given a fair share of spotlight both real and fictional ones. Then every conversation are spot on. You can feel the emotions jumping over you without being over the top.

The latter chapters before the conclusion for me are the best conversations that I read from the book. The sub plot was well executed and it really helped the main plot.

If the narrative itself is good, the “information box” that accompanies the story is superb. Well written and with great images, it gives out the backstory in every twist and turn of the story. It feels like your reading book within a book. You can use it in either; read it so you’ll for the some cultural background of the story; ignore it and still the story is solid or for future reference material. But if you ask me, the information box will definitely enhance the reading of the already solid narrative.

A Week in the Life of a Slave is a must read that tackles Christian issues of equality and forgiveness that can’t be easily done in a non-fiction format. It doesn’t just fill your mind but this book wins your heart. Highly recommended!

My verdict:

5 out of 5

 

(Review copy of this book was provided by Inter Varsity Press)

Book Review: Sunny Side Up: The Breakfast Conversation That Could Change Your Life by Dan DeWitt

afdnawgI don’t usually include the sub title of a book on the title of a book review post for the reason of brevity. I think it’s enough to put the main title because it’s already striking. However in the case of Sunny Side Up, I don’t want people to get into confusion on what the book is about. You might think of it as a cookbook or those mushy generic devotionals that includes food or beverages on its title? Well it’s not. Definitely it’s about breakfast but I don’t know if they had eggs that morning. Kidding aside, what I can assure you is that Sunny Side Up is a life changer book.

The premise of Sunny Side Up is the Gospel of John, chapter 21 were Peter encountered our risen Lord. That morning talk made a difference in Peter’s life. And from that the author looks at other places in the Bible were this lowly fisherman, a denier of Christ turns into a person God want him to be. After reading this book, you’ll have a place for the apostle Peter in your heart like never before as he stumbles on issues of pride, love, following God and forgiveness that we, as believers also mess up too. Good thing God is there to pick us up.

This short book (about a short moment with Jesus and Peter) really hits every wall that hinders us to give our all to God. Truly this awkward conversation in an unusual setting shakes what we consider mundane sins to us. It’s amazing that Jesus, the Creator will have a stopover before going to heaven with a mess up fisherman named Peter. He wants also you to dine with Him. Read the book and prepare to be challenged.  If this is the breakthrough of the apostle Peter, it will also be yours.

My favorite chapter is “Cracked Eggs”. It’s the chapter about forgiveness. I know we all struggle with it and this chapter really pierced my heart and almost moved me to tears. I’m really thankful to the author for this part of the book.

Sunny Side Up is slated to be released on February 1. By then one month of 2019 is already over, but still it’s not too late to read it to start your year right. Celebrate love, humility, being a servant, following Christ and forgiveness in a fresh way from a breakfast conversation.

My verdict:

5 out of 5

Book Review: Resolving Everyday Conflict by Ken Sande and Kevin Johnson

This book reminds me of my time in graduate school. Our professor is teaching us the topic about conflict in the business setting. I learned a lot in that subject but still I find myself wanting. What was left out in the discussion is the biblical principle of conflict. This book handles the topic from the root, causes and solution and many many more. Sande is an expert on this area and few authors do take on this sticky issue.

This small book is dripping with biblical principles that it’s not just another “run of the mill” relationship book. Taking the subject of conflict opens up others issues like forgiveness, disagreement, admission and restoration. Those are sensitive issues attached to conflict. However, “Resolving Everyday Conflict” answers them head on with the gospel and God honoring intentions. Truly this is a unique book that you’ll pick up.

“Resolving Everyday Conflict” endeavors us response to conflict with a biblical perspective. After reading this you’ll gain godly insights on conflict that will lead you to see that it’s on just ending the problem but creating a unity and harmony among the people around you.

Book Review: Controlling Your Anger Before It Controls You by Gregory L. Jantz, PhD

Anger may trigger the Incredible Hulk to have his power, but the effects of it leaves everything in the rubble. We might not be the Incredible Hulk, nevertheless we know how anger has devastating effects. CLC Philippines fresh serving titled “Controlling Your Anger Before It Controls You” gets you in the heart of the matter.

The book first introduces us that anger is God-given. But due to sin like all other emotions, we allocate anger in the wrong way that brings ungodly results.

This is not a run-of-the-mill anger management book but a book that you’ll love on a subject that needs to be addressed. Anger in this book is presented not just a visible war but a battle within ourselves that as Christians needs to be put under God’s power. Using real life examples and Bible verses, this book is an eye opener in the subject of anger…and much much more. Believe me, it covered alot of grounds. Dr. Jantz knows what he is talking about at hits it straight on. If you read it without being affected, you might not be human.

It a bit comprehensive but not technical. Its not obviously a quick read but a book that needs time to be read. The contents of this helpful book justifies the heftiness.  It will challenge you to examine yourself and gives out practical things for you to apply.

After putting down “Controlling Your Anger Before It Controls You”, it will leave you thinking and analyzing yourself. Its time to put back joy and happiness in your life. Dr. Jantz wrote a book that is a life changer. Be ready to step to change by getting a copy at your nearest CLC Philippines or online http://www.clcphilippines.com

Marianito “Nitoy” Gonzales is a 30 something introvert whose passion is to proclaim the good news about God. He wears many hats but he is just an ordinary guy serving an extraordinary God. You can reach him at his FacebookTwitterTumblr and Instagram.