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The Phone Tree Edifier
5 Stars Out Of 5
...an intimate conversation...about life
January 23, 2014
The Phone Tree Edifier
Review: The appeal of Jennie Allen is that she has an uncanny way of simplifying and personalizing every Biblical message in such a way that others can see themselves more clearly. Her tone, her words, her brutal honesty all reveal a desperate hope for God.
In Allen's Restless DVD, viewers will experience an intimate conversation with Jennie and her friends. They will be faced with questions about life. They will have to define and deal with self. They will discover the power and influence of God as it relates to life purpose and meaning.
Recommend: This DVD is definitely a rich and meaty resource and would be of great benefit to anyone interested in getting real with who they are. I would recommend it, as I believe it speaks in a very truthful and much needed way. I would offer, however, that it would be ideal to have it coupled with the study guide.
In eight 20ish minute sessions, passionate Bible teacher Jennie Allen encourages those who feel spiritually restless that God does have a purpose for their lives. The series begins with understanding our restlessness and God's plan, then moves into discussion of our personal gifts, times of suffering/hurt, the places He has us, the people who surround us, our passions, and a closing of how this all fits together.
Each video session begins with participants from Allen's female Bible study candidly sharing answers to questions as the camera cuts creatively from one to the next. Then the film delves into the core lesson where Jennie (in more of a lecture/sermon style than an interactive Bible study) tells stories, shares from the Bible (especially focusing on the story of Joseph), and preaches words of encouragement and inspiration. Allen's story-telling is great, and is really the heart of the lesson.
Despite the content being very good, I felt like something was missing. I received this DVD for review by the publisher without the corresponding study guide, and I imagine the study guide would have made the difference. As it is I found the DVD only "okay"-I just was not emotionally/mentally prepared for each lesson or for the author's very passionate lectures. The intensity, in fact, was a bit much for me; and the cohesion (probably brought together by the supplementary materials) was lacking.
Without knowing what the study guide and leader's manual entails, I do not feel strongly enough about this series to recommend it, but I also expect that this may be a great video for any women's (perhaps even men's) Bible study using the DVD as supplementary material-that is, with an engaging lesson/discussion facilitated by a local teacher/leader, followed by this video as an encouraging "wrap up" of the "real" lesson.
[I received a complimentary copy of this DVD from Thomas Nelson.]