I confess I chose this book because it was aimed at Tweens and Teens and I was hoping my daughter would show some interest. Although she said she did not want to read it at this time I realized I still needed to; I set about the task hesitantly. I thought really, what is Max Lucado's daughter going to be able to share with me, coming from what I assumed was a pretty cushy Christian start in life. I mean really, if you get to choose a Dad and you are an aspiring Christian writer then I think Max Lucado would be a pretty convenient Dad to have. However, I was pleasantly surprised with Jenna's down to earth style, complete with rebellion, confession and her authenticity in sharing her own struggles with coming to terms with dreaded complacent Christianity and faith "blahs". I also liked the glimpses she shared of her very real, faithful parents planting seeds of faith by living out their own lives of faith.
Sharing some of her own personal stories and the real life stories of other Christians who have experienced the Savior in a unique life-changing way, whether by tragedy or revelation, Jenna gets to the heart of the problem of our boredom with God. Ultimately it is us. She does not come off preachy, and one of the stories had actually me in tears. She is honest about her own complacency and writes in a way that has that "over coffee" feel to it. As if you are talking with your best girlfriend who you know you can be honest with without holding back.
I think you will like this book and find it useful and encouraging if you fall into one of the following categories:
A. You are a Christian girl or woman
B. You are looking for inspiration for your faith
C. You are bored or uninterested in all things Christian
D. All of the above
Seriously, although this is an easy read it is not without thought provoking challenge and It does not feel like condemnation being heaped on your lack of zeal for spiritual things. Jenna definitely provides a few sparks to spur the flames of faith. She comes along side the reader and encourages them to dig deeper, and question themselves on why they are bored with God and gives suggestions on how to get un-bored .
I would recommend this for tween girls, small group book discussions and moms of tweens.
I think it is never a bad thing to shake up our faith. Bored or not.
Who knows, maybe my girl will eventually come around.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÃÂ®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
If you are looking for an inspirational book for a teenage girl, I recommend "From Blah to Awe: Shaking Up a Boring Faith" by Jenna Lucado Bishop. And, though it's written for teenagers, I have no problem recommending it for "older" young women, too. Bishop is a capable mentor for young women who long to grow deep faith.
In this book, Bishop answers the questions, "Why do I get bored with God?" and "Does God care if I am bored with Him?" She writes as if she is speaking directly to the reader, sharing the stories of other young women, her own experiences, and solid Bible truth. After introducing each topic, she moves into a section of the chapter called "Going Deeper." She then sums everything up by answering the questions, "Why do we get bored with God?" (where she presents the reason from that particular chapter) and "Knowing this, how do we get unbored with God?" (where she presents the chapter specific answer). In the second part of the book, the summary questions are "Does God care if we are bored with Him?" and "Knowing this, how do we get unbored with God?" Scattered throughout the book are questions for the reader to reflect on and journal space for her answers.
I think Part 1 of the book can be summarized in a quote from Chapter 5:
"To have a zealous faith, we have to want it, choose it, and then have the discipline to maintain it."
In a gentle, fun, and encouraging way, Bishop shows her readers how this is done. Then she moves into Part 2 where she helps readers understand that God loves them and wants an intimate relationship with them. Living a life that glorifies His name is far from boring when we know and walk with our loving Creator God.
Thank you, Thomas Nelson Publishers, for sending a complimentary eCopy of this book for my honest review.
This past weekend sixteen of us from my church went to Lansing, Michigan for the Music Matters conference.
Because of the excellent sessions - and our brainstorming times afterward - we came back refreshed and renewed and ready to worship God in mind, soul, and spirit.
The services on Sunday were such a blessing. Was it because something had changed externally or was it because I had changed? Both!
I have gone to church quite faithfully throughout my adult life, but I can honestly say I've never woken up on Sunday and been filled with so much joy and expectation. Plus, when I noticed that it was 7:00 p.m., I was disappointed that the evening service was almost over. I've felt that way maybe three times in my life.
It wasn't simply an emotional response, a high so to speak. It was something much deeper, much more real.
And that's what Jenna Lucado Bishop - the daughter of my favourite non-fiction author, Max Lucado - writes about in From Blah to Awe.
The book is written with a teen girl audience in mind, but I enjoyed it immensely and would recommend it to anyone, girls and women especially, who finds their faith has grown dry.
The author covers such topics as feeling blah (as the title suggests); identifying the ugly areas in our hearts; how our flesh (our selfish desires) gets in the way; identifying those things that occupy our thoughts; our need to be accepted by those around us, a need that often overshadows our need to be accepted by God...
I especially appreciate the contemporary retelling of a handful of Bible stories. Like her father, Bishop makes them come alive while remaining true to the biblical text.
I also like the stories of young women who are making a difference in the world and the space included in the book for journaling the reader's thoughts and answers to the questions the author presents. The To Sum It Up section at the end of each chapter is also extremely handy.
As I've said before, I highly value honesty, and Bishop exhibits this clearly. She shares the truth about her own heart and her own relationships, about the times she has felt blah about her faith and her God.
As readers put into practice the suggestions in the book and as we seek to worship God in mind, soul, and body, we will go from blah to awe.
I would highly recommend From Blah to Awe and appreciate booksneeze.com for the free e-copy in exchange for this review.
Good Book For Moms and Daughters to Read Together~
February 5, 2012
This book is written by Max Lucado' s daughter~ Jenna. It is written to teen girls to help them keep their faith alive and exciting.
While I love the idea of this book ~ I do want to say it starts out with some adult conversation~ such as prostitution and drugs. I recommend parental involvement for that reason.
I remember being a teenage girl trying to follow Jesus. The world calls for attention and the bright lights are always shining to grab our attention. In this book Jenna introduces several girls with real teenage issues that every teenage girl can relate to. She gets really honest and shares her own struggles as she was trying to make her faith her own. Jenna challenges the reader to not keep God in a box or create our own idea of what God is~ but instead through the Bible she shows who the God of the Bible really is and why it is so important to give Him your life.
She challenges the reader to explore a more radical relationship with Jesus. The book encourages that through Bible reading and praying ~one will find more than Bible stories but also the solutions to all of life's problems and a guide book for this life we live.
I give this book 4 stars and think it a great book for mom and daughters to read together.
I was interested by the title From Blah to Awe. It was written by the daughter of my favorite author Max Lucado. Jenna Lucado Bishop has truly followed in her fathers footsteps. Jenna Lucado Bishop really touched on something that many Christians really do not like to fess up to. Being bored with Church, God and just with life itself. The book is written for young teens, but adults can truly be blessed by this book also. I really enjoyed the book. It made me take a good look at my attitude towards God. Young and old do get bored, but we need to not stay there. There was a part of the book that really touched my heart. She said God did not create us to be bored, He created us to be in a relationship with Him. She also spoke about the time God revealed Himself to Moses. Moses did not understand what he was asking from God, but God in all His glory before revealing Himself. He covered Moses so that he did not die by Gods glory. It reminded me of the God that loves me. How can I be bored living in the love of God. Thank you Jenna Lucado Bishop this book was truly a blessing to me, and I know that it will be a blessing to those who read it. I really recommend this book pick it up and stop feeling blah and begin feeling in Awe towards God.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the 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."