Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Books I have read in 2011

19. Becoming the Answer to our Prayers
The most powerful statement in the book is: “We don’t do great things, we do small things with great love!” This is a very good book.
  • Paperback: 125 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Books (September 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780830836222
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830836222
  • ASIN: 0830836225
From Publishers Weekly
This latest publication from the new monasticism movement is the third book each for the two young Christian activist-authors, and it offers fresh insight on the well-worn topic of prayer. Some themes are repeated from earlier works, but the book deftly succeeds in drawing the reader out of the weeds of daily life and into a more spacious field. The text is structured around three New Testament prayers: the Lord's Prayer, Christ's intercessory prayer in Chapter 17 of the Gospel of John and Paul's prayer in the first chapter of Ephesians. From the very first pronoun of the familiar Lord's Prayer ("our"), the authors extract a compelling sermon on the power and centrality of community in Christian life and thought. The dominant theme--that prayer invites human beings into a partnership with God in answering prayer--is enlivened with earthy tales from the authors' own lives, wrenching stories of service and redemption from the people they know and lesser-known anecdotes from Christian history and sociology. Readers will never see prayer or community in quite the same way again. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

"Not everyone will agree with every particular detail of biblical interpretation in this book by Claiborne and Wilson-Hartgrove, but no one can deny the truth of their main argument: God is calling each and all of us to be eager agents fulfilling His purposes in the world! This book compels us passionately to ask, in the power of the Holy Spirit, 'How am I "putting legs on my prayers"?' This is a tested book and a necessary one!" (Marva J. Dawn, teaching fellow in Spiritual Theology, Regent College, Vancouver, and author of Unfettered Hope, Joy in Divine Wisdom and My Soul Waits )
18. Collider: The Search for the World's Smallest Particles
Long winded, nice but what it promised.
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley (September 22, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470643919
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470643914
From Publishers Weekly
Halpern (What's Science Ever Done For Us?), professor of physics and mathematics, makes particle physics accessible in this look at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) "and the extraordinary discoveries likely to be made there." Beginning with the philosophers and scientists who shaped our understanding of the universe over centuries, Halpern explains complex topics and theories concisely, frequently drawing on deft analogies: the "fleeting nature of neutrinos is akin to a featherweight, constantly traveling politician... neutrinos never hang around long enough to make enough of an impact to serve as uniters." After tracing a path from Boyle and Newton through Mendeleev, Maxwell, Rutherford and Einstein, Halpern discusses modern discoveries and details the equipment utilized, from cloud chambers to various kinds of particle accelerators. The bulk of the text focuses on particle physics studies from the past four decades, in the U.S. at Fermilab and the costly but uncompleted Superconducting Super Collider, and in Europe at CERN in Switzerland (responsible for the LHC). Halpern makes the search for mysterious particles pertinent and exciting by explaining clearly what we don't know about the universe, and offering a hopeful outlook for future research.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
17. Adventures in Missing the Point How the Culture-Controlled Church Neutered the Gospel
Brilliant book! Two great men of God from the opposite sites of the spectrum teaches us how to disagree and embrace one another. Relevant subjects and great questions at the end of each chapter. Great book for a small group! Wonderful, insightful and will definitely evoke conversation.
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan/Youth Specialties (January 24, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310267137
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310267133
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 1 inches

Editorial Reviews

Product Description
How the Culture-Controlled Church Neutered the Gospel If you're brave enough to take an honest look at the issues facing the culture--controlled church---and the issues in your own life---read on. Do you ever look at how the Christian faith is being lived out in the new millennium and wonder if we're not doing what we're supposed to be doing? That we still haven't quite 'gotten it'? That we've missed the point regarding many important issues? It's understandable if we've relied on what we've been told to believe or what's widely accepted by the Christian community. But if we truly turned a constructive, critical eye toward our beliefs and vigorously questioned them and their origins, where would we find ourselves? Best-selling authors Brian McLaren and Tony Campolo invite you to do just that. Join them on an adventure---one that's about uncovering and naming faulty conclusions, suppositions, and assumptions about the Christian faith. In Adventures in Missing the Point, the authors take turns addressing how we've missed the point on crucial topics such as: salvation, the Bible, being postmodern, worship, homosexuality, truth, and many more.
From the Back Cover
If you’re brave enough to take an honest look at the issues facing the culture–controlled church–and the issues in your own life–read on.
Do you ever look at how the Christian faith is being lived out in the new millennium and wonder if we’re not doing what we’re supposed to be doing? That we still haven’t quite "gotten it"? That we’ve missed the point regarding many important issues?
It’s understandable if we’ve relied on what we’ve been told to believe or what’s widely accepted by the Christian community. But if we truly turned a constructive, critical eye toward our beliefs and vigorously questioned them and their origins, where would we find ourselves? Best-selling authors Brian McLaren and Tony Campolo invite you to do just that. Join them on an adventure–one that’s about uncovering and naming faulty conclusions, suppositions, and assumptions about the Christian faith. In Adventures in Missing the Point, the authors take turns addressing how we’ve missed the point on crucial topics such as:
16. Great Themes of Paul Life as Participation
Definitely the best book on Paul a ever read. Richard Rohr as Scholar, Christian and person not only inspires me, but he astonish me every time I have the privilege to read his works or listen to his recordings.
  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 10 hour(s) and 37 min.
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: St. Anthony Messenger Press (March 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003B51JNI

Editorial Reviews

Product Description
In language that Paul might use if he were preaching and writing today, Rohr presents Paul's all-embracing vision and invites us to enter into the mystery of Christ and be transformed. Rohr breaks new ground by applying up-to-date theories of our universe, integrating them with Paul's revolutionary thinking about sin, saints and spirituality.
Deep and complex, Paul may seem to be full of inconsistencies: arrogant but also humble, a fervent believer but a probing, critical thinker, a mystic but also a missionary community builder. Rohr admits the difficulties in understanding the short excerpts of Paul's letters read at Sunday Mass. He analyzes the letters and explains the great themes. He challenges our usual understandings and invites us to imitate Paul and enter into the mystery in organic solidarity with the Risen Christ. Rohr sees us as partaking in the incredible transformation of the whole cosmos that struggles with the pattern of descent and ascent that is revealed and affirmed in Jesus.
©2002 Richard Rohr, O.F.M.; (P)2002 St. Anthony Messenger Press
15. Jesus Drives Me Crazy!
Money spend on any book from Leonard Sweet is money well spent!
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan; 1 edition (June 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310232244
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310232247
Product Description
This book calls Christians to the World According to NUTS . . . where NUTS is an acronym for Never Underestimate the Spirit.
From the Back Cover
The gospel presents a life-changing NUTS wisdom that conflicts with normal ways of making sense of the world. There is the World According to Normal. There is the World According to NUTS . . . where NUTS is an acronym for Never Underestimate the Spirit. The wisdom of Jesus is a NUTS wisdom. —From the book
All people are different, but some are more different than others. Christians are meant to be the most different of all. Yet we often "normalize" God. We judge what is a successful Christian and a successful church by the world according to Normal, not the world according to NUTS, the wisdom of Jesus. In Jesus Drives Me Crazy!, Leonard Sweet reminds us of the "crazy wisdom" of Christ and how our lives and our churches can and should be different from the way "normal" people live. He says, "Jesus wants to drive you crazy . . . crazy in love with God, with life." Jesus Drives Me Crazy! challenges you to make the upside-down wisdom of God your own, inspiring you to live an extraordinary Christian life that does not conform to the world, but transforms the world. When you truly grasp the freeing truth that we do not have to conform to this world, then you can become the crazy, zany, unpredictable, but powerful force for Jesus you were intended to be. Jesus Drives Me Crazy! shows how, by losing your mind, you can find your soul.
14. Lessons from San Quentin
If you don’t have anything else to read, read this book.
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (May 24, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781414326573
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414326573
  • ASIN: 1414326572
From Publishers Weekly
The CEO of Church Communications Network wraps his story of going to prison around the core principles of life he learned there. With coauthor Barna, a researcher and cultural critic, Dallas tells stories of people he meets in San Quentin prison; the group he learns the most from are the Lifers, those sentenced to life terms in prison. One of the long-term men Dallas meets who shapes his experiences is Vy Le, a Vietnamese immigrant who conquered revenge through a relationship with Jesus that began in an isolation cell. A central feature in the book is a section in each chapter with principles that center on humility, determination and trust in God. Otherwise good stories are told with a lack of suspense and drama in favor of highlighting principles. Readers will also find a challenging series of questions to help them discover how self-absorbed they are. Those looking for riches-to-rags-to-success stories will find a passionate case for avoiding the pitfalls of the financial crime Dallas committed and living a principled life. (Feb.)
13. Reimagining Church
Good book, I am not sure “House Church” is the answer, but we need to learn to respect our people more, and to trust them more with ministry. Power systems need to be deconstructed.
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1434768759
  • ISBN-13: 978-1434768759
From Publishers Weekly
Viola (Pagan Christianity), a leader in the house church movement, believes the church as we know it today is nothing like what God intended it to be. According to Viola, the first-century church, which should be our pattern, met in homes without any official pastor. All members of the church were involved in worship, spontaneously breaking out with teaching or song as they were moved. Decisions were not made until everyone reached consensus. There were no official leaders or elders, but there were men who served and taught and helped others, thus leading by example. Viola believes that to bring the church back on track, both clergy and denominations must be completely abolished. Churches should not have buildings nor should they worry about doctrinal statements. Such radical ideas will best be received by Emergent and postmodern readers. Skeptics will cringe at Viola's strident tone and all-or-nothing approach. More concrete examples of what Viola has seen work well in his 20 years of house church work would have greatly strengthened the book. (Aug.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
12. Pagan Christianity
Very good book, but you have to read with a open mind. You need to be critical and take the good and leave the bad.
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: BarnaBooks (January 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141431485X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414314853
Product Description
Have you ever wondered why we Christians do what we do for church every Sunday morning? Why do we “dress up” for church? Why does the pastor preach a sermon each week? Why do we have pews, steeples, choirs, and seminaries? This volume reveals the startling truth: most of what Christians do in present-day churches is not rooted in the New Testament, but in pagan culture and rituals developed long after the death of the apostles. Coauthors Frank Viola and George Barna support their thesis with compelling historical evidence in the first-ever book to document the full story of modern Christian church practices.
Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (356 customer reviews)
11. A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Good, not as good as Blue Like Jazz
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (September 29, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785213066
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785213062
From Publishers Weekly
Miller, the accidental memoirist who struck gold with the likable ramble Blue Like Jazz, writes about the challenges inherent in getting unstuck creatively and spiritually. After Jazz sold more than a million copies but his other books didn't follow suit, he had a classic case of writer's block. Two movie producers contacted him about creating a film out of his life, but Miller's initial enthusiasm was dampened when they concluded that his real life needed doctoring lest it be too directionless for the screen. Real stories, he learned, require characters who suffer and overcome. In desultory fashion, Miller sets out to change his own life—to be the kind of guy who seeks out his father, chases the girl and undertakes a quest. Along the way, he comes to understand God as a master storyteller who doesn't quite control where his characters are going. An unexpected bonus of this book is Miller's insights into the writing process. Readers who loved Blue Like Jazz will find here a somewhat more mature Miller, still funny as hell but more concerned about making a difference in the world than in merely commenting on it. (Oct.)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (375 customer reviews)
10. Blue Like Jazz
Very good book. If you are connecting with modern day people, this is a must read.
  • Hardcover: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Thorndike Press (August 23, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786288434
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786288434
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
From Publishers Weekly
Miller (Prayer and the Art of Volkswagen Maintenance) is a young writer, speaker and campus ministry leader. An earnest evangelical who nearly lost his faith, he went on a spiritual journey, found some progressive politics and most importantly, discovered Jesus' relevance for everyday life. This book, in its own elliptical way, tells the tale of that journey. But the narrative is episodic rather than linear, Miller's style evocative rather than rational and his analysis personally revealing rather than profoundly insightful. As such, it offers a postmodern riff on the classic evangelical presentation of the Gospel, complete with a concluding call to commitment. Written as a series of short essays on vaguely theological topics (faith, grace, belief, confession, church), and disguised theological topics (magic, romance, shifts, money), it is at times plodding or simplistic (how to go to church and not get angry? "pray... and go to the church God shows you"), and sometimes falls into merely self-indulgent musing. But more often Miller is enjoyably clever, and his story is telling and beautiful, even poignant. (The story of the reverse confession booth is worth the price of the book.) The title is meant to be evocative, and the subtitle-"Non-Religious" thoughts about "Christian Spirituality"-indicates Miller's distrust of the institutional church and his desire to appeal to those experimenting with other flavors of spirituality.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (549 customer reviews)
9. Finding Our Way Again
Good to fair book. Hoped for more.
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 6, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0849901146
  • ISBN-13: 978-0849901140
Product Description
Shines a practical light on the spiritual disciplines that have been in use since the time of Abraham.
In a sense, every day of our lives is labor. It is questionable if you can ever be exactly the same person waking up on two consecutive days. How are spiritual sojourners to cope with the constant change? Many are beginning to explore the ancient Christian spiritual practices that have been in use for centuries, everything from fixed-hour prayer to fasting to sincere observance of the Sabbath. What is causing this hunger for deeper spirituality?
Brian McLaren guides us on this quest for an explanation of these spiritual practices, many of which go all the way back to Abraham and the establishment of Israel. In the midst of contemporary Christianity, we discover the beauty of these ancient disciplines and the transformation through Christ that each can provide.
Why have certain spiritual disciplines been in use for centuries and why is it important?
It is questionable if one can ever be exactly the same person waking up on two consecutive days. How are spiritual sojourners to cope with the constant change? Many are beginning to explore the ancient Christian spiritual practices, such as fixed-hour prayer, fasting and sincere observance of the Sabbath. What is causing this hunger for deeper spirituality?
Brian McLaren guides us on this quest for an explanation of these spiritual practices, many of which go all the way back to Abraham and the establishment of Israel. In the midst of contemporary Christianity, we discover the beauty of these disciplines and the transformation through Christ that each can provide.
8. A Short History of Nearly Everything
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    • Great book to read. Really enjoyable!
    • Paperback: 624 pages
    • Publisher: Broadway; Ill Spl Re edition (October 5, 2010)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 9780307885159
    • ISBN-13: 978-0307885159
    • ASIN: 0307885151
    • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7.9 x 1.2 inches
From Publishers Weekly
As the title suggests, bestselling author Bryson (In a Sunburned Country) sets out to put his irrepressible stamp on all things under the sun. As he states at the outset, this is a book about life, the universe and everything, from the Big Bang to the ascendancy of Homo sapiens. "This is a book about how it happened," the author writes. "In particular how we went from there being nothing at all to there being something, and then how a little of that something turned into us, and also what happened in between and since." What follows is a brick of a volume summarizing moments both great and curious in the history of science, covering already well-trod territory in the fields of cosmology, astronomy, paleontology, geology, chemistry, physics and so on. Bryson relies on some of the best material in the history of science to have come out in recent years. This is great for Bryson fans, who can encounter this material in its barest essence with the bonus of having it served up in Bryson's distinctive voice. But readers in the field will already have studied this information more in-depth in the originals and may find themselves questioning the point of a breakneck tour of the sciences that contributes nothing novel. Nevertheless, to read Bryson is to travel with a memoirist gifted with wry observation and keen insight that shed new light on things we mistake for commonplace. To accompany the author as he travels with the likes of Charles Darwin on the Beagle, Albert Einstein or Isaac Newton is a trip worth taking for most readers.
Average Customer Review
4.5 out of 5 stars (858 customer reviews)
7. Deep Church

Deep Church: A Third Way Beyond Emerging and Traditional

    This is a very level headed book. A must read for everyone who wonders about the future of the church. It talks about the Emerging church as well as the main stream church in a very fair and objective way. I have enjoyed it immensely.  - Paul
  • Paperback: 233 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Books (August 7, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830837167
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830837168
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
From Publishers Weekly
Passionately, articulately and with sometimes winsome self-confidence, Belcher seeks to chart a third way between the often divided factions within the traditional and emerging wings of American evangelicalism. The author, founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach, Calif., asserts that it is possible to forge a new ecumenism and unity based in creedal orthodoxy, while also respecting the particularities of denominations and faith communities. After defining what impels the emerging church movement, he analyzes the seven protests leveled by the movement against traditional churches within the evangelical movement, from being too caught up in the rationalism of the Enlightenment, to overemphasizing doctrinal purity and an unwillingness to engage modern culture. Following that, he responds to each critique with an alternative solution that blends both reform and tradition to create a new body of Christian gospel–centered believers. A caveat: readers who think that mainline Protestantism has anything to contribute to this dialogue will not find any encouragement. Focused on the internal struggle within the American Christian evangelical wing, Belcher barely mentions this other flank of Christianity. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
"Smart, passionate, thoughtful, hopeful and Jesus-centered--this is the Jim Belcher I used to hang out with in the early nineties (like it was so long ago!) at the Huntington--and this is the Jim Belcher in this book. Lots of people are going to find this book very helpful." ----Rob Bell, pastor, Mars Hill Bible Church, Grand Rapids, Michigan, author, Velvet Elvis
"Jim Belcher shows that we don't have to choose between orthodox evangelical doctrine on the one hand, and cultural engagement, creativity and commitment to social justice on the other. This is an important book." --Tim Keller, Redeemer Presbyterian Church, New York City

6. The Color of Magic: A Discworld Novel

I have read the whole Discworld series, and have enjoyed every one. This year I have decided to read one a month just for the enjoyment. To my surprise I have enjoyed it more than the first time years ago. Terry Pratchett is one of the most brilliant Authors I have ever read.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Paperbacks (September 13, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060855924
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060855925

Editorial Reviews Review
The Colour of Magic is Terry Pratchett's maiden voyage through the bizarre land of Discworld. His entertaining and witty series has grown to more than 20 books, and this is where it all starts--with the tourist Twoflower and his hapless wizard guide, Rincewind ("All wizards get like that ... it's the quicksilver fumes. Rots their brains. Mushrooms, too."). Pratchett spoofs fantasy clichés--and everything else he can think of--while marshalling a profusion of characters through a madcap adventure. The Colour of Magic is followed by The Light Fantastic. --Blaise Selby --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"Ingenious, brilliant, and hilarious." -- Washington Post

5. Lig op ‘n Chirug se Pad
Hierdie boekie wat geskryf is deur Dr Muller Botha is ‘n getuienis van hoe God in ‘n mense se lewe ‘n werklikheid is. Oom Muller is iemand wie se lewe getuig van hierdie noue verhouding met God. Dit is ‘n bemoedigende boek vir elke gelowige. Hierdie boekie is ongelukkig nie beskikbaar in die boekwinkels nie. Indien jy belang sou stel in die boek is jy welkom om met my kontak te maak en ek sal vir jou Oom Muller se kontak nommers gee.

4. For the time being.
For the Time Being
Annie is brilliant and honest! I was introduced to her(as to so many others) by Breda Ludik who is one of my Mentors. If you want to read art, faith, pain, love in words. Then this Author is a must read. Her best book according to me is Pilgrim at Tinker Creek.

Editorial Reviews Review
Over the last three decades, Annie Dillard has written about an uncommon number of things--predators and prose, astronomy and evolution, the miraculous survival of mangroves. Yet the sheer range of her interests can be deceptive. Whatever the subject, Dillard is always (as she wrote in Living by Fiction) practicing unlicensed metaphysics in a teacup, always asking the fundamental questions about life and death. And this epistemological interrogation continues in For the Time Being. Here Dillard alternates accounts of her own travels to China and Israel with ruminations on sand, clouds, obstetrics, and Hasidic thought. She also records the wanderings of paleontologist and spade-wielding spiritualist Teilhard de Chardin, whose itinerary (geographical and philosophical) has certain similarities to her own. But as she ties together these disparate threads with truly Emersonian eloquence, it becomes clear that God's presence--or absence--is at the heart of her book.
There are, of course, facts aplenty here: the author is among our keenest living observers of the natural world (check out her soft-core account of two snails mating in chapter 7). But all roads lead Dillard back to God, who seems to be practicing a divine variant of benign neglect:
God is no more cogitating which among us he plans to be born as bird-headed dwarfs or elephant men--or to kill by AIDS or kidney failure, heart disease, childhood leukemia, or sudden infant death syndrome--than he is pitching lightning bolts at pedestrians, triggering rock slides, or setting fires. The very least unlikely things for which God might be responsible are what insurers call "acts of God."
Natural calamity is an old fascination of the author's, going clear back to Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and Holy the Firm. Here it allows her to make her strongest argument yet on behalf of the Almighty's laissez-faire policy--while suggesting that His immanence in fact depends on our belief.
Yet even in her earnest pursuit of holiness, Dillard tends to hit the occasional speed bump. At one point she throws up her hands in exasperation and declares: "I don't know beans about God." This is hardly the stuff of an airtight theological argument, is it? But happily, Dillard possesses the same quality she ascribes to Teilhard, "a sort of anaerobic capacity to batten and thrive on paradox." So her contradictions are worth more to the reader than her consistencies. They enrich her narrative, yanking her back from the precipice of easy (or even moderately easy) belief. And Dillard's penchant for paradox ensures that For the Time Being--which aims, after all, to encompass God and all his works--always operates on a human, heartbreaking scale. --James Marcus --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Writing as if on the edge of a precipice, staring over into the abyss, Dillard offers a risk-taking, inspiring meditation on life, death, birth, God, evil, eternity, the nuclear age and the human predicament. This unconventional mosaic, portions of which were first published in different form in Raritan, Harper's, etc., interweaves several disparate topics: the travels of French paleontologist and Jesuit priest Teilhard de Chardin in China and Mongolia, where his team in 1928 discovered the world's first fossil evidence of pre-Neanderthal humans; the life and teachings of the Baal Shem Tov, the 18th-century Ukrainian Jewish mystic who founded modern Hasidism; a natural history of sand?an epic drama of rocks, glaciers, lichen, rivers?and of individual clouds as witnessed by painters, poets, naturalists, scientists and laypeople. Rounding out this fugue are Dillard's visits to an obstetrical ward to watch healthy newborns emerge; her survey of tragic, horrific human birth defects; random encounters with strangers; her trips to Israel, where she visited Jesus' birthplace, and to China, where, at the tomb of the first Chinese emperor, Qin?mass murderer, burner of books, Mao's idol?she inspected the terra-cotta army of life-size soldiers who guard Qin in the afterlife. Dillard's unifying theme is the congruence of thought she detects in Teilhard, Kabbalists and Gnostics: each impels us to transform, build, complete and grant divinity to the world. Her cosmic perspective can seem like posturing at times, yet it succeeds admirably in forcing us to confront our denial of death, of the world's suffering, of the interconnectedness of all people. Her razor-sharp lyricism hones this mind-expanding existential scrapbook, which is imbued with the same spiritual yearning, moral urgency and reverence for nature that has informed nearly all of her nonfiction since the 1972 Pulitzer Prize-winning Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. 60,000 first printing.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

3. To the Point
To the Point
If you are a cricket lover this is a very good, sad, funny and inspiring book. I just realised that we need to pray much more for these young men and woman who have the wonderful opportunity to be hero’s for our children. The Author Steve Smith did a wonderful job.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description
There’s something about Herschelle Gibbs – a certain quality that has endeared him to cricket fans in South Africa and around the world. Despite the frustrating on-field inconsistencies of this towering talent, and the messy and very public personal troubles that have tracked him through the years, Herschelle remains one of South African cricket’s best-loved sons In To the Point, Herschelle talks very frankly about the ups and downs of his personal and professional life. He covers the big cricketing moments – from that dropped catch at the 1999 World Cup to the famous ‘438’ game against Australia and the six sixes at the 2007 World Cup – as well as controversies off the field – the marijuana-smoking incident in the Caribbean, his problems with alcohol and his stint in rehab, his divorce, the multitude of women and the strip-club video. He also deals honestly with the match-fixing controversies … and their repercussions.Herschelle gives his opinions on his teammates and the best players he has encountered over the years, and describes what it’s been like to be part of the Proteas set-up for the past fourteen years, through the controversies of its various captains and coaches.To the Point is, of course, a spicy story of excess – women, alcohol, money … and plenty of runs – but underlying it all is a warm and generous man who wears his heart on his sleeve.

2. The Ragamuffin Gospel
The Ragamuffin Gospel
This is one of those books that explain the gospel in a true and honest way. If you are in need of grace this is for you. If you are tired of church and feeling you are not making it. This book is for you. I have enjoyed this book and is planning to give it as a present to some of my fiends.

Editorial Reviews Review
Brennan Manning wrote The Ragamuffin Gospel "for the bedraggled, beat-up, and burnt-out," the marginalized folks to whom Jesus ministered: the children, the ill, the tax collectors, the women. In other words, the ragamuffins. Manning understands better than most that behind our facades of order and self-assurance are inadequacies that can find healing only in Jesus. While the powerful and religious elite challenged him, Jesus embraced and healed and fed the needs of the ragamuffins. Jesus delivered love, healing, and, most of all, grace.
Grace is defined as "the freely given and unmerited favor and love of God." But, as Manning points out, we have "twisted the gospel of grace into religious bondage and distorted the image of God into an eternal, small-minded bookkeeper." In reality, God offers us grace immeasurable. Brennan Manning gently encourages us to embrace that grace in the face of our greatest needs. And Manning certainly knows whereof he speaks, having taken a journey from priesthood and academic achievement through a collapse into alcoholism. Manning came face to face with his need, finally abandoning himself to grace. And he invites us now to join him in a life of grace.
Manning is without doubt one of the most eloquent writers on the subject of grace because he openly shares his own pain and struggle to help readers deal with failure and inadequacy. And he sweetly challenges them to do the same. --Patricia Klein --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Brennan Manning does a masterful job of blowing the dust off of shop-worn theology and allowing God's grace to do what only God's grace can do--amaze." -- --MAX LUCADO Bestselling author of Come Thirsty and The Gift for All People
"So much religion is conveyed to us as bad news or bland news that we are immensely grateful when it is spoken freshly as good news. This is a zestful and accurate portrayal that tells us unmistakably that the gospel is good, dazzlingly good." -- --EUGENE PETERSON Author of The Message
Product Description
A Furious Love Is Hot on Your Trail! Many believers feel stunted in their Christian growth. We beat ourselves up over our failures and, in the process, pull away from God because we subconsciously believe He tallies our defects and hangs His head in disappointment. In this new edition--now with a foreword by Michael W. Smith, testimony by Rich Mullins and the author's own epilogue, "Ragamuffin Ten Years Later," Brennan Manning reminds us that nothing could be further from the truth. The Father beckons us to Himself with a "furious love" that burns brightly and constantly. Only when we truly embrace God's grace can we bask in the joy of a gospel that enfolds the most needy of His flock--the "ragamuffins."
About the Author
Brennan Manning is often on the road, speaking of God's unconditional love at church retreats and conferences. A popular author, his other books include The Signature of Jesus and Abba's Child. Brennan and his wife, Roslyn, make their home in New Orleans.
From AudioFile
Manning's work comes with a foreword and a testimony, both evidence of its power. That's a heavy load, but the book largely lives up to it. Scott Brick's delivery helps; it may even be better read aloud than silently because Manning writes so much for the ear. Sounding like an educated but folksy minister--he is pitching his account to the "ragamuffins" of the world, after all--Manning piles image upon vivid image. Brick picks up this cadence and pounds away at Manning's message of an all-embracing love that emphasizes grace over judgment, perhaps grace even over dogma. Brick's voice is both dramatic and reassuring. G.T.B. © AudioFile 2006, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine
1. Healing the Violance
Healing Our Violence Through the Journey of Centering Prayer
I have read this twice and certainly would read it again. This is a must read/listen.

Product Details

  • Audible Audio Edition
  • Listening Length: 6 hour(s) and 8 min.
  • Program Type: Audiobook
  • Version: Unabridged
  • Publisher: St. Anthony Messenger Press (March 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003B51JS8

Editorial Reviews

Product Description
Two internationally known spiritual guides explore integrating our inner and outer journeys. They challenge us to confront our inner and social violence and bring it to healing and transformation in a sacred and ecumenical context. Rohr and Keating each give insights on awakening to God's friendship, coming to know God and ourselves, growing in love through centering prayer, facing evil around us and our demons within us as well as opening our deep selves to divine therapy which heals our wounds. They invite us to become who we already are.
These conferences will appeal to those beginning and those more seasoned in centering prayer. The deep wisdom of two spiritual masters is a sacred and transforming gift plunging us into the ocean of divinity that surrounds us.
©2002 Richard Rohr, O.F.M. & Thomas Keating, O.C.S.O.; (P)2002 St. Anthony Messenger Press

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