Driven By Eternity
By John Bevere, Warner Faith,
hardcover, 256 pages, $19.99.
The latest book by popular conference speaker and best-selling author John Bevere, Driven by Eternity: Making Your Life Count Today and Forever, has the makings of an instant Christian classic. Bevere, author of The Bait of Satan, delves into questions everyone asks, such as: Why am I here? How can I make my life count? What will happen when this life is over? Weaving teaching and storytelling, Bevere creates a parable about the imaginary city of Affabel and six people—Double Life, Selfish, Charity, Independent, Deceived and Faint Heart—to illustrate how the choices we make in life are the keys to how we will spend eternity and what we will be doing there.
Tracee N. Mason
Between Heaven and Ground Zero
By Leslie Haskin, Bethany House Publishers,
hardcover, 192 pages, $17.99.
Leslie Haskin offers a play-by-play account of her morning routine at her job on the 36th floor of the World Trade Center, Tower One, on Sept. 11, 2001. She vividly paints the jarring scenes of people being injured, escaping, jumping or dying, but graciously avoids overly gruesome details. Haskin shares the good that God has done in her life by using this tragedy to bring her into a complete relationship with Him. Pointing out that she did not know Sept. 11 would be the last day she would see some of her colleagues alive, Haskin faces the fact that she did not tell them about Jesus, while challenging readers to love the gospel enough to share it. This survivor has allowed God's healing and grace to raise her to a new life of helping others. She has since founded Safe Hugs, a ministry for women and children who are homeless and victims of domestic violence. Between Heaven and Ground Zero serves as a gentle reminder not to forget 9/11 but even more so to carry out the Great Commission at all times.
Anna Flynn Stewart
It's Your Time
By Eddie Long, Whitaker House,
hardcover, 192 pages, $19.99.
It's Your Time: Reclaim What the Devil Has Stolen will light the flame of any believer who has been in a season of "expectation" while waiting for the blessings of God. Eddie Long minces no words as he challenges the believer to take possession of all the territory God has given him. Using ancient Israel as his example, Long shows the reader how the God of Abraham is the same miracle-working, battle-defeating God today that He was long ago. Long doesn't sugarcoat the fact that in the process of taking dominion over the land many believers will come away with permanent scars. He uses relevant topics that arise in everyday political, educational and socioeconomic settings to show where the believer should be taking the initiative to rise up and conquer. This book is full of authoritative encouragement. It definitely will pump life back into dead dreams and shelved destinies.
The Spirit-Filled Small Group
By Joel Comiskey, Chosen,
softcover, 191 pages, $12.99.
Joel Comiskey has authored 13 books, many dealing with the worldwide cell-group movement. In The Spirit-Filled Small Group: Leading Your Group to Experience the Spiritual Gifts, Comiskey challenges those involved in small-group meetings to embrace the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit in their gatherings. Practical steps are given on how to prepare for and follow the Spirit's leading, as well as ways to encourage each member to identify and use their spiritual gifts. At first the book seems almost simple (no small task for an adjunct professor who holds a Ph.D. from Fuller Theological Seminary). But Comiskey builds a strong case for the necessity of Spirit-filled, small-group ministry by revisiting the New Testament church, where members met in homes and the gifts of the Spirit were in operation. Noticeably missing from the book, by the author's own admission, are topics such as leadership training and small-group dynamics. Although more might have been included about safeguards for avoiding excesses and maintaining balance, this book inspires readers to reach for the highest spiritual goals in small-group ministry.
Angela R. Munizzi
The Supernatural Ways of Royalty
By Bill Johnson and Kris Vollotton,
Destiny Image, softcover, 232 pages, $14.99.
The Supernatural Ways of Royalty is a refreshing take on the believer's place in Christ. Rather than focusing on the curse of sin after the fall of man, this book positions itself around who the believer is as God's redeemed, His royal priesthood, and His princes and princesses. Johnson writes: "It is difficult to build something substantial on a negative." He says that by getting the believer past the stage of being "sinners saved by grace" and into the reality of being sons and daughters of God, the cry of all creation to see God's glory revealed through His children will be answered. He says Jesus' Great Commission will be filled with all the accompanying signs—the dead will be raised, the sick will be healed, and the brokenhearted will be mended. This book will set the reader on a triumphant path of being part of the glory of God not only in eternity but also in the here-and-now.
By Frederick K.C. Price, Charisma House,
hardcover, 240 pages, $19.99.
Frederick K.C. Price, pastor of the 22,000-member Crenshaw Christian Center in Inglewood, Calif., and a leader in the Word of Faith Movement, brings his teaching on prayer to believers from all faith traditions in Answered Prayer—Guaranteed! The Power of Praying With Faith. Next to salvation and receiving the Holy Spirit, Price asserts that "there is no issue in all of a Christian's spiritual life that is as critical as getting prayer right!" He instructs Christians on six different types of prayer found in the Scriptures—agreement, faith, consecration and dedication, praise and worship, intercession, and binding and loosing—and gives seven steps for receiving answers to petition prayers. Price emphasizes that "no" is not an answer believers will hear from God when they pray according to His will. Offering clear examples from personal experience, Answered Prayer—Guaranteed! directs readers to reconsider their prayer practices and challenges believers to see how faith fits into their everyday walk with the Lord.
Christine D. Johnson
By Beth Moore, LifeWay Press,
Leader Kit $199.95.
Interested in how to live a life that influences the world rather than living a life under its influence? Students of Beth Moore's new Bible study on Daniel will get an enlightening history lesson with extremely relevant applications for today. This study will help readers identify and avoid the Babylon mind-set of self-centered self-gratification and will encourage godly living in a hostile environment. The Daniel study is different from past studies by Moore in that the video sessions are done first and the homework expounds upon that material. It is an 11-week study that is divided into two parts. Part One covers living godly in a pagan world; Part Two, eschatology. Wisely, Moore avoids sounding dogmatic, acknowledging different views. She offers her position while encouraging more investigation as she emphasizes the ultimate triumph of God's invincible and everlasting kingdom.
Deborah L. Delk
This Is Me
By Kierra Kiki Sheard, EMI Gospel.
This Is Me
Kierra Kiki Sheard, fresh from whirlwind success with her debut disc, I Owe You, and her subsequent remix project, has released her newest CD, This Is Me, a collection of inspirational contemporary gospel and urban tracks. Sheard frequently offers worship and evangelistic messages on the disc in songs such as the low-key "It Is What It Is," which has a central message about life after death. The title track, also featuring a mellow vibe, is a testimonial track. The tempo picks up on danceable tracks such as "Why Me" and "You're the Only One"—songs of thankfulness and worship—the rap fusion of "Have What You Want," and the celebration atmosphere of "You." Sheard is served well by the slick production and memorable songs on the disc that will no doubt further cement her status as a promising new gospel artist.
By Virtue, Integrity Gospel.
It has been three years since Virtue's last album, Free. But the hiatus proves to be worth the wait after hearing Testimony, their most consistent and strongest album to date. Testimony comprises 14 tracks that feature the harmonies of sisters Ebony, Heather and Karima laced over hard-hitting production provided by Fred Jerkins and Lashawn Daniels. Virtue shows its growth artistically and personally with this CD. The first single, "Follow Me," is already garnering major radio airplay. Testimony also includes potential crossover hits such as "123 Praise," a hard-hitting hip-hop track featuring Christian rapper T-Bone. True to their roots, Virtue also expresses emotive songs with such tracks as "Thank You Jesus" and "Nothing Ever Mattered" as well as possible future worship classics "Holy, Holy" and "Praises to You," which features Stellar Award-winner Martha Munizzi. Testimony is a breakthrough project that should take Virtue's music ministry to the next level.
Blue on Blue
By Leigh Nash, One Son Records.
One of the new solo artists to debut this year also has one of the most recognizable voices. As singer for Sixpence None the Richer, Leigh Nash experienced breakthrough success in mainstream and Christian circles, most notably with radio smash-hit "Kiss Me." Although Nash has contributed solo work to a few compilation projects, Blue on Blue is the first full-length debut project to showcase her distinctive vocals. Like some other straight-ahead pop releases from Christian artists, Nash's Blue is the result of songwriting from a Christian worldview and revolves around marital and maternal love. Highlights include the power pop of "Ocean Size Love," the moody "Blue," the bouncy "Cloud Nine" and the sweet "My Idea of Heaven." Blue on Blue is a fitting new entry point for Nash and should leave listeners both thankful for this new beginning and clamoring to hear more from her in the future.
By PK7, Integrity Music.
Promise Keepers band, PK7, recently released a CD designed especially to ignite men into an intimate relationship with God through passionate worship. Unleashed offers 11 in-depth praise and worship songs with rock acoustics, intimate lyrics and heartfelt vocals from the cross-generational conferences in 2006. The worship is led by Jared Anderson, Drew Cline, Curt Coffield, Steve Garrett, Darwin Hobbs, Jason King, Abel Orta and Jerard Woods. The album features the up-beat, rock worship of "Hosanna." Breaking any racial barriers with jazzy acoustics and soulful vocals, "Breakthrough" creates an intimate worship atmosphere. And balancing the album, "Offering" features a men's choir sound to make the music more personal. This music is designed to help a man become all God has created him to be.
Nikeya S. Williams
New On DVD
Fox Home Entertainment $19.98
Golden Globe winner Olivia Hussey portrays the unassuming, selfless missionary Mother Teresa. This woman became a symbol of self-sacrifice, compassion and peace. Watch as the story of this humble yet incredibly strong woman unfolds on screen.
Tommy Nelson $14.99
In the second DVD created for 6- to 10-year-olds, the Horned Avenger and his pal, BLT (yes, a pig) take on BrainFreeze. This villain thinks he can freeze Speranza folks' creativity by making them lose their confidence. But the hero and sidekick help the people realize that when they are not sure of themselves they can rely on God and His creativity. Bonus features include a "how to draw" section, coloring sheets, a trivia game and much more.
Nomad, a new DVD documentary film series, presents Sara Groves: Just Showed Up for My Own Life. This is an inspiring glimpse into the life of a musician, wife, mother and fellow Christian. See Groves and her family minister to the victims of Hurricane Katrina and visit Rwanda. But even more than that, watch Groves' transformation as she follows God's call for her beyond her comfort zone. The DVD includes music from Groves as well as vignettes that could be used in small groups.