This book, adapted and expanded from another of the author's numerous works on the Bible, follows the "daily devotional" format (one-page sermons, one for each day of the year, exhorting followers of Jesus in a particular matter, and suggesting related ideas for meditation during the day). Most of these devotionals are essentially useless as spiritual exercises, typically because the subjects (e.g., Christian interaction with the lives of others) are far too complex for such truncated presentation. This book fares no better. Some (myself included) may find its folksy familiarity offensive. For example, the meditation from January 6 begins "Precious one". Precious to whom? Certainly not to the author, who likely knows nothing about the reader. To God? Yes, but that is a serious matter which the author's usage (a form of introductory address) trivializes. To Jesus? Absolutely, but only the Son has been commissioned by the Father to call us to God in this way. I have to conclude, just from this, that the author is either thoughtless, or very arrogant. More substantively, the author's frequent reliance on Paul for her ideas gives away the undercurrents of the book. Pauline thinking is largely driven by obsession with sin, the burden of the "old law" which Paul despises, but from which he never escaped. Liberty in Jesus, on the other hand, is driven by commitment to others, in the example of Jesus' love (Jn. 15:12). The commingling of the two is toxic. It doesn't take long (January 23) for the author to offer the reader this poisonous cocktail: "I realize that the answer (to moral failing) goes back to the problem of inherent sin." (my parentheses). This point of view is reinforced from time to time, throughout the book (e.g., February 15: "Sin has its roots in independent action.", March 15: "Have you seen self as the root of sin?", and elsewhere, in variant forms). There you have it--the depraved nature of humankind, a concept engendering that self-loathing which underlies so much of humanity's misery. All of the sweetness which the author lays over this concept simply masks the toxin. The giveaway comes early in the book: "One of Satan's most effective strategies (for maintaining guilt or regret) is to remind us of sins we've already confessed ..." (March 9; my parentheses). Apparently, it does not occur to the author that this "strategy", usually in the form of a "lest we backslide" formula, is the basis for so much sermonizing by those pastors who see the devil lurking in every new cultural expression. How I wish that the author had found her way beyond these old traps. She writes well, and could have done far better. The title of the book itself could have led her in the right direction: Lord, I give you this day, because I love you. Unfortunately, it did not happen.
I am usually not a fan of devotionals because they are never really deep, nor do they really give you more than just a portion of Scripture. This one was refreshingly different.Kay Arthur incorporates Biblical truths in a small way that makes you want to open your Bible and dig in deeper, rather than "be done for the day".
This book is also beautifully bound with an attached ribbon bookmark which makes it a great gift choice.
"I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review."
This is a wonderful daily devotional to have. I thoroughly enjoy the daily insights as well as verses that accompany the thought and challenge. Ms. Arthur does a great job in such short paragraph's to challenge us to start our day with prayer and dependence on God. I love all of Kay Arthur's Bible studies and this devotional has her touch all over it. The questions she challenges us with really stir the heart. There is the right mix of challenge and encouragement. I recommend this to anyone looking for a short daily devotional.
I received this free from Waterbrook Multnomah in exchange for my review.
I collect devotionals :). I'm glad to have added this wonderful book to my collection. Would you like to have 366 meaningful daily appointments with God? Are you willing to give each of your days to God? The book starts off with one of my all-time favorite hymns, "I Surrender All" by Judson W. Van DeVenter. The author, Kay Arthur, encourages readers to surrender all (including each day) to God and in turn find our strength, healing, hope, guidance, peace, joy, and encouragement in Him and His Word.
Each day's reading is only one page long and ends with a prayer. It includes one main Bible verse(s) in bold letters and then a few other relevant Scriptures. There are no themes or categories. There's no table of contents, either. Therefore, you never know what to expect from day to day's readings. At the end of the book, there are five blank personal pages for readers to write their notes or prayers.
You're invited to lay it all down at the feet of Jesus and spend time dwelling in His presence, resting in His grace, mercy, love, & faithfulness, and meditating on His Word. Any book which prompts readers to dig deeper in the Bible and rely on God's wisdom is a great book in my opinion :). Come taste and see that the Lord is good! When you give God your days, you will experience the beauty of surrendered and grace-filled living, no matter what challenges come your way. I really enjoy absorbing God's truths into my heart and mind day after day through using this devotional.
~I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for my honest review. The opinions are my own.
I didn't read the subtitle (366 Appointments with God) when I requested this book, so you can imagine my surprise when I received a daily devotional book. I was expecting a "regular" book, so I had to reset my expectations in order to write this review.
First of all, it's difficult to write a review on a book when you haven't had the opportunity to read all the way through it. Kay Arthur is a great Bible teacher though, so based on the portion I read and some of her radio broadcasts I've listened to, I can recommend her materials when you're looking for sound doctrine.
This book is actually an adapted compilation of a large amount of her writing (the copyright page told me so!). There is one "emphasis" verse that each devotional is written around, as is typical of many devotionals, along with a short sample prayer at the end of each day. I struggled with deciding whether I could actually recommend this book, since it's a devotional style (think "milk") rather than mostly Scripture with a smaller percentage being commentary (think "meat"). Personally, I would rather spend the time reading words straight from Scripture.
However, I think it could be a great "in addition to your regular Scripture reading" book. She makes some interesting points and has some thought provoking questions related to some of the Scripture she uses. On that basis, I can recommend it.
As a final note, the majority of the Scripture is quoted from the New American Standard Bible, with some being from the King James and New King James versions. I know that may influence some readers' decisions on whether or not to look into it, so I wanted to add that as well.
I received this book for free via WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. The perspectives above are entirely mine.