Sight and Sound


BOOKS

25 Tough Questions About Women and the Church
By J. Lee Grady, Charisma House,
224 pages, paperback, $9.99.

Following up his 10 Lies the Church Tells Women (Charisma House), J. Lee Grady takes an egalitarian approach to the question of women's roles in 25 Tough Questions About Women and the Church. Grady seeks to provide biblical answers to the types of questions women have asked him in ministry settings around the world or in his role as editor of Charisma.

Although not all women can relate to being abused, Grady starts with an all-important question that acknowledges the heartache in many a woman's life: Is there a way to find total freedom from the resentment I feel? He goes on to address such issues as what to do when marriage and ministry collide or the question of men "covering" women in ministry.

His use of historical and contemporary examples of women, including Catherine Booth, Susanna Wesley, Aimee Semple MacPherson and even former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir, reveal how women through the centuries have dealt with some of these difficult questions.

Grady, himself a father to four daughters, also adds a touch of humor to this controversial subject with chapter titles such as "Men Behaving Badly," "Are Women Elders Called Elderettes?" and "Pastors Who Wear Lipstick."

Even Christians who take a complementarian approach to women's roles will appreciate the care that Grady has exercised in answering questions women pose every day with regard to their roles in the home, church and on the job. One thing he doesn't do is offer a one-size-fits-all answer, and that many women will appreciate.
Christine D. Johnson

Inviting God's Presence
By Larry Keefauver, D.Min.;
Warner Faith; 320 pages; paperback; $14.95.

Pastor, regular Ministries Today columnist and CBA best-selling author of the Lord, I Wish series, Larry Keefauver writes in his preface: "Many religious books explore how to know God. This book explores how to experience friendship with God."

Inviting God's Presence is an interactive guide that includes a 12-week study journal, and the use of Scripture, music and calls to action to move the participant into the presence of God.

Weeks one through eight lead readers through ways to tear down walls that block out God's presence: walls such as silence and mistrust, loneliness and selfishness, anger and confusion, disappointment and monotony, despair and unknowing, greed and guilt, unworthiness and legalism.

The studies of weeks nine through 12 will leave the participant listening and abiding, comforted and loved unconditionally, accepted and forgiven wholly and holy in God's presence.

Designed for the unbeliever and believer alike--anyone hungry for God and more of His presence--this book will benefit all who take this journey. Keefauver leads us to walk with God, and to abide with

God, not just to perform religious duties for Him.

The author is convinced that such a journey was meant to be life-changing, seeing that God's ultimate intention is that we become best friends with Him. This book is a great resource for small groups.
Pamela Robinson

Souls Harvest: Out of Revival
Fire & Glory

By Bob Shattles, McDougal Publishing,
272 pages, paperback, $12.99.

For many years Bob Shattles had done everything he knew to do to try to win the lost for Christ. This was especially true after he had gone forward during an altar call for people who wanted to have the heart of God and feel what He feels. After experiencing what seemed like a heart transplant in which God took out Shattles' heart and exchanged it with His own, this Baptist pastor felt overwhelmed with the desire for every soul to escape the penalty of hell and spend eternity in heaven.

Shattles' burning passion for evangelism was not enough, however. No matter how hard he tried, his efforts were often ignored or disregarded.

This all changed dramatically, however, when he received an empowerment to win the lost like never before. Quite suddenly, in just a matter of months, he was enabled to bring many more souls to the Lord than he previously had brought in his entire lifetime. Within this short time, the combination of vision and empowerment yielded a harvest of 50,000 new believers in Jesus.

Shattles, who was pastor emeritus of Souls Harvest Worship Center in Douglasville, Georgia, died of liver cancer in July 2001. For two years after attending a meeting led by revivalist Ruth Heflin in 1998, he had experienced the "gold flakes" phenomenon in his meetings.

His book will stir again a passion for the harvest with its account of how signs and wonders follow to confirm the preaching of the gospel while addressing the question of why we should not be satisfied with evangelism or church as usual.

Shattles' stories of how people in restaurants, airports and stores were so convinced of the existence and power of God that they eagerly received Christ is sure to quickly strip away readers' complacency about not having the power of God at work in their own lives in this magnificent way. These testimonies still ignite a desire to see--and a faith to receive--miracles that will ease suffering and turn hearts toward the Lord.
Renee DeLoriea

Knowing God Intimately:
Being as Close to Him as You Want to Be

By Joyce Meyer, Warner Faith,
320 pages, hardcover, $21.99.

Anointed Bible teacher Joyce Meyer is once again "preaching good" in her latest book, Knowing God Intimately: Being as Close to Him as You Want to Be. As she states, her whole purpose in the book is "to let people know how to receive the power of the Holy Spirit that is available to us today."

Meyer organized the book into four sections corresponding to the four levels of intimacy in the Holy Spirit: God's Manifest Presence, God's Transforming Power, God's Reflective Glory and God's Everlasting Fruit. "Scripture teaches that we, not God, determine our level of intimacy with Him," she insists. "At this moment, each of us is as close to God's throne of grace as we choose to be."

As always, Scripture empowers every word Meyer gives to us. Her teaching centers on revealing how believers find greater intimacy with God only through being baptized in the Holy Spirit.

This outpouring, she illustrates, is like filling a glass with water, to its highest measure. After we receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit, God's gifts and fruit manifest in our lives. These gifts include His prayer language (speaking in tongues), available for all who are open to receiving it.

You will yearn to read this book in one sitting, but its richness and depth will cause you to tarry. A joy will come from reading it again and again.
Pamela Robinson

MUSIC

Carry Away
By Shane Barnard and Shane Everett,
InPop Records.

If you missed them the first time around, Shane Barnard and Shane Everett are back with their sophomore release, Carry Away. The album carries its own radio-friendly pop feel and worship-driven lyrics.

Listeners unfamiliar with Shane and Shane will find a refreshing vulnerability and a desire to know God in the songs. The guitar-driven title song could double as an older Steven Curtis Chapman tune with its catchy chorus and rhythm. The tender, slower-paced "Be Near" sings a worshipful prayer for God to draw close.

There's an urgent, penetrating cry for God found throughout the album. Shane and Shane have a special ability to merge Scripture, prayer and worship into music form. This is one of those albums that the more you listen to it, the better it gets.
Margaret Feinberg

Offerings II: All I Have to Give
By Third Day, Essential Records

After an initial Offerings and a brief interlude with the wildly popular Come Together album, Third Day is back for a second round of worship. Just like its predecessor, Offerings II: All I Have to Give blends live worship with in-studio recordings. Unlike the first album, both the sound quality of the songs and the transition between them is much better.

A popular band releasing a worship album doesn't raise too many eyebrows these days. It seems as if everyone is doing it, and an encore might seem like overkill. On the album cover, the band addresses the question of why they're making another Offerings record.

"God is not through with Third Day and worship," the band members write, "God is not through with any of us and worship."

And that is a good thing because I just cannot get this album out of my CD player. Beyond the contagious rock edge and lead singer Mac Powell's compelling vocals, what makes this album an absolute standout is song selection.

Third Day breathes passion into a wide range of songs from Waterdeep's "You Are So Good to Me" to Rich Mullins' "Creed." If you like Third Day or edgy worship, you're going to love Offerings II.
Margaret Feinberg


AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT

Kisses of Mercy and Peace

I was in the airport in Frankfurt, Germany. Our flight to Israel was delayed for a security check. Three hundred of us were crowded into a small, secure area. I heard a child crying 'Abba! Abba!' I saw a Hasidic Jewish father run to find his frightened child, lost in the luggage," says Ron Phillips, pastor of Central Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It was at that moment he realized, "So many children are lost in the luggage of life and need to know that God is a father."

Growing up with a tremendous need for a father's approval, Phillips decided to write a book, Kisses From the Father: Falling in Love With the Holy One (Harrison House), to illustrate God's fatherly love for those who feel forgotten or have lost hope.

By putting into contemporary language how God dealt with Abraham, Isaac, Joseph and others, Phillips brings biblical stories alive. His encouraging words, especially in the second half of the book, let readers know that God was a father then, and, more important, God is still a father, right now, for all who cry, "Abba! Abba!"

"In this day of family dysfunction, absent parents, and abusive, indifferent fathers, I want the reader to be assured that there is a father in heaven who is personally interested in every detail of their life," he says. "God, our Father, showers blessings from heaven upon our lives, kissing us with mercy and peace."
Mark Weber


CHARISMATIC TOP SELLERS

1. Matters of the Heart
Juanita Bynum (Charisma House)

2. A Divine Revelation of Hell
Mary K. Baxter (Whitaker House)

3. Pigs in the Parlor
Frank and Ida Mae Hammond
(Impact Christian Books)

4. God's Creative Power for Healing
Charles Capps (Harrison House)

5. The Three Battlegrounds
Francis Frangipane (Arrow Publications)

6. Prison to Praise
Merlin R. Carothers (Merlin R. Carothers)

7. Total Forgiveness
R.T. Kendall (Charisma House)

8. A Divine Revelation of Heaven
Mary K. Baxter (Whitaker House)

9. The Tongue: A Creative Force
Charles Capps (Harrison House)

10. The Battle Belongs to the Lord
Joyce Meyer (Warner Faith)

CHARISMA RECOMMENDS

Marketplace Ministers
By Paul Gazelka, Creation House Press,
160 pages, paperback, $12.99.

Businesspeople do not have to give up their desire for both ministry and business, says Paul Gazelka, a "marketplace minister." He explains how a business income can help support a full-time minister's vision as well as the marketplace minister's own ministry vision.

The Prayerful Spirit
By James P. Gills, M.D.; Creation House Press;
176 pages; paperback; $11.99.

James Gills says: "Prayer is tough. It is easier to tithe; it is easier to work for the Lord ... than to pray and pray unceasingly." Having a prayerful spirit is vital, though, because prayer gives us access to the power of God and reminds us that we truly need Him. Gills writes: "Prayer aligns us with God and gives us greater peace, joy and fulfillment than anything ... on Earth."

Intimate & Unashamed: God's Design for Sexual Fulfillment
By Scott Farhart, M.D.; Siloam Press;
224 pages; paperback; $13.99.

Christians short-change themselves when they turn to the world for answers about sex, writes Scott Farhart, an obstetrician and gynecologist, who gives a biblical perspective on sex. Topics covered include anatomy, sexually transmitted diseases, sex and the aging man and woman, and contraceptives. Farhart also dedicates a chapter each to singles and newlywed couples. The author wants people to understand God is not "anti-sex" and that He wants to be involved in every aspect of our lives.

Wrestling With God
By Rick Diamond, Relevant Books,
176 pages, paperback, $12.99.

Christian growth can involve a fight, but it is not meant to be a competition with God, author Rick Diamond states. He points out our goal and God's goal is the same--a relationship of intimacy and trust. Diamond discusses how maintaining this, however, requires asking tough questions, moving beyond religion and giving up control.

Las doce transgresiones (The Twelve Transgressions)
By Sergio Scataglini, Casa Creación,
224 pages, paperback, $9.99.

Sergio Scataglini, from Argentina, is one of the leaders of the Argentine revival. He teaches that Christians with even the best intentions commit transgressions that can bring a devastating ripple effect, releasing poison in marriages, families, careers and the body of Christ. Profiling 12 Bible characters who loved God yet made costly mistakes, Scataglini shows readers how to avoid 12 sins that lurk in the shadows to hinder holiness and block a believer's relationship with God.

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