The Coming Israel Awakening
By James W. Goll, Chosen, softcover, 272 pages, $14.99.
This book starts with a bang by detailing a 2006 vision in which an angel appeared before author James Goll wearing a glowing robe and a gold sash emblazoned with the words: “Israel Awakening.” From there, Goll never lets up. He delivers a combination of history lesson, prophetic revelation and a stirring call to action. Many readers are likely to feel embarrassed after reading the author’s recap of the church’s shameful history, which ultimately helped fuel Adolf Hitler’s murderous elimination of 6 million Jews. Echoing the cries of “Never again!” heard in Israel, Goll urges Christians to let that be their watchword in standing against the anti-Semitism rising again across the world. The Coming Israel Awakening is also excellent resource material, including an overview of Israel’s history, a recap of revivals and Holy Spirit movements, and a list of referral ministries. It will also inspire readers with such facts as: Christianity is the world’s leading faith (twice the growth rate of Islam), it is mushrooming in Africa, and it has created an explosion of conversions since Israel’s rebirth in 1948. —Ken Walker
What to Do on the Worst Day of Your Life
By Brian Zahnd, Christian Life, hardcover, 160 pages, $14.99.
Brian Zahnd, senior pastor of Word of Life Church in St. Joseph, Mo., uses David as an example for how we should respond on our worst day. On David’s worst day, he and his men returned home to find their city burned, their houses looted and their families kidnapped. Their first response was to weep. Zahnd affirms that God does not expect us to deny our sorrow but also explains there is a time to stop crying and start rejoicing. Holding on to grief, he writes, will turn it into self-pity and keep us from victory. He discusses other steps that must be taken: resist bitterness, find encouragement in God, receive a word from God, reorient vision, regain passion, attack, recover all, celebrate recovery, give. Zahnd doesn’t deny that tragedies and difficult events create heartbreak. But he balances empathy with challenge. He states that emotions and the reality of situations must be acknowledged but that we must also keep moving forward, believing God will fulfill His promises. —Leight DeVore
Praying for Those You Love
By Jack Hayford, Chosen, softcover, 176 pages, $13.99.
Christians have always held a strong desire to share the good news with others in hope of leading them to Christ. That desire is even greater when trying to reach loved ones. Jack Hayford explains that instead of trying nonstop nagging or guilt trips, the best way is to live a godly example and pray consistently. Hayford begins by emphasizing the reality of spiritual warfare and the need to intercede in prayer for loved ones instead of using condemnation and judgment. He gives solid, practical teaching on how to pray, the power of prayer, and even praying for someone you don’t really want to pray for. Winning loved ones to Christ requires patience and faith. But Hayford provides encouragement and instruction for anyone wanting to stand in the gap for family and friends. —Jeff Friend
More Than a Theory
By Hugh Ross, BakerBooks, hardcover, 304 pages, $17.99.
As author Hugh Ross notes, what people believe about the origins of life colors every other aspect of their views on our existence and is one reason the creation-evolution debate rages on nearly a century after the infamous Scopes Trial. Yet, as the oft-published astronomer and founder of Reasons to Believe points out, this issue is more than a “young earth vs. atheists” dispute. He identifies nine major perspectives. His thesis will upset many. Young-earth creationists will dispute his belief in a universe more than 13 billion years old, and evolutionists will carp about his statement that they seek to censor any theory that differs from Darwinism. The book’s scientific terminology and discussions may lose many lay readers. Yet those interested in a detailed exploration of creation will find “More Than a Theory” quite useful. And, Biblical supporters will appreciate how Ross draws a picture of a highly complex world that, scientifically speaking, started with a Creator. With best-selling atheist Richard Dawkins reportedly set to release another book soon, Ross’ contribution is a valuable one for Christians searching for solid proof of divine origins. —Ken Walker
Free Yourself to Love
By Jackie Kendall, FaithWords, softcover, 256 pages, $13.99.
It’s not a matter of if you’re going to be greatly wronged; it’s a matter of when. If it hasn’t happened already, forgiveness will become your greatest challenge. Jackie Kendall tackles the nitty-gritty of handling damage done to us and exposes the subtle but common ways people exercise pseudo-forgiveness. Some people minimize offense, others rush to forgive without feeling the pain and trauma, and the “big-hearted” explain away the behavior, while others cover up or keep emotions in check by being highly driven. It may all be “natural” behavior, but Kendall points out that no matter how you dress it up it still enlists you in the Victim Entitlement Society. The person most affected is you: “Unforgiveness is a form of self-abuse,” she writes. In fact, for a Christian, she says it is an “oxymoron.” “Love is one of the key characteristics a follower of Jesus should display, and forgiveness is a synonym for love,” Kendall writes. Her dramatic personal history and many other stories shared underscore “forgiveness tools” and biblical principles to help you be a person who authentically forgives. —Marsha Gallardo
By Twila Paris, Koch Records.
Music veteran Twila Paris is back with a solid collection of gentle pop that is in keeping with her past work. Though far from edgy or innovative, this clean-sounding album is quite good at points, particularly with “You Lead Me,” which has a jazz-piano motif that reminds one of Ginny Owens; and “Alleluia,” a pretty ballad that brings to mind Amy Grant. It’s probably the best song here, although “We Know Love” and “You Are a Great God” are good and occasionally offer just the right touch. The biggest criticism here is that this album can at times seem cloying, or at least too mild-mannered. But much of this quiet music is tailor-made for a Christian women’s conference, especially the snappy “Live to Praise You”; and that’s undoubtedly the target audience for this pleasant collection of biblically based songs. —Cameron Conant
By Hillsong Kids, Integrity Music.
Follow You offers rousing songs wrapped in melodies that will immediately capture kids’ attention and spirits. From the get-go children will sing and praise—and bounce and head-bob. Even the most reserved child (or parent) will get into the groove hearing the young audience sing along. The title track is a fun, energetic, rocking song about prayer and declares that “nothing will ever stop me from living for You.” “Spinning Around” reminds us that God is everywhere and His love is deep and wide. The slower ballad “Trust and Obey” is a song of commitment to doing what God says. A highlight is “I’m So Glad/ You are Here (the Same Power).” Hearing the younger vocalists leading the crowd in declaring their need for Jesus is particularly moving. The music on this CD is certainly geared to a young audience, but there is nothing childish about the lyrics and truths presented. Children will be encouraged to devote themselves to the all-powerful, all-loving, ever-present God. The fun energy on this live recording will remind kids that God is not boring—a reminder that “big church” needs from time to time. Kids can also join in the action with the DVD, which features music, memory verses, teachings and funny moments. —Leigh DeVore
I Believe There Is More
By Don Moen, Integrity Music.
As enjoyable as high-energy, fast-paced praise and worship music is, there is something refreshing about the simple, easy-listening music Don Moen offers on his latest release, I Believe There Is More. His collection of 14 songs, including nine tracks he wrote or co-wrote, are more mellow than most of the worship music offered today. But that certainly doesn’t diminish the power his music will have to help listeners enter the presence of the Lord. Moen goes a little country on “Thank God I’m Free,” an energetic song of praise. Title track “I Believe There Is More” is a song of faith declaring that even though God has done great things so far, He is going to do still more. “O God of Abraham,” with a Celtic touch, declares that God can do anything. “I’ll Say Yes” is a song of “casting aside any fear and price” to obey. Although this album isn’t the rousing music some might be used to, there is a sense of peace that comes through in Moen’s straightforward yet more mellow approach. Listeners will be encouraged and renewed as they allow the music and lyrics to wash over them. —Leigh DeVore
By Mike Dellosso, Realms, softcover, 320 pages, $13.99.
Mark Stone hears eerie screams and seconds later someone dies. He is determined to find out what the screams mean in hope of saving lives. When he hears the screams during a phone call with his estranged wife, he is even more invigorated to figure out why this is happening and how to stop it.
By Deborah Raney, Howard Books, softcover, 320 pages, $13.99.
Still grieving the deaths of his wife and daughter, Doug DeVore can hardly keep going for his other five children. Their day-care owner, Mickey Valdez, becomes a steadying force in their upside-down lives. Doug and Mickey begin a whirlwind courtship and quickly marry. But soon they both face new expectations and overwhelming emotions.
By Beverly Lewis, BethanyHouse, softcover, 368 pages, $13.99.
Grace Byler comes from an ordinary Amish family. But they have secrets. When her mother disappears, Grace calls off her marriage to her long-time sweetheart. While she tries desperately to put her life back together, she questions all she has known and been taught. But in the midst of the turmoil, Grace senses God’s love and mercy.
SAMPLE THE SONGS
For song samples, video clips and more on the artists featured in this month’s Vibes, click here.