Review: Fear and Faith by Trillia J. Newbell (Moody Publishers)

OK you may be wondering why I am reviewing Trillia Newbell’s Fear and Faith—a book for women. I found myself wondering how I related to so much of what Trillia wrote. Don’t get me wrong. Fear and Faith is geared towards women. She addresses seven prevailing fears for women—fear of man, the future, other women, tragedy, not measuring up, physical appearance, and sexual intimacy. But she fundamentally deals with core fears of the human heart.

Fear and Faith is about how, when we place our security in the Lord, we too can wear strength as our clothing (Proverbs 31:17)” (18). We do that by fighting fear with the fear of the Lord (17). She says later, “We fear Him because we know Him—a knowing that is intimate and initiated by Him” (113). Knowing God produces a healthy fear that destroys the destructive kind of fear.

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Review: Matt Appling’s Life After Art

Appling contends, “There are a lot of things you and I used to know about life and faith  and the world. No one taught us these things, they were just given to us by our Creator. But over the years, this native knowledge about the world around us got covered up. And that has shaped and colored our lives in negative ways ever since then” (13). From his experience as an art teacher, he tells us how many of children lose this knowledge and wonder at art and the world.

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Review: Ruthie Delk’s Craving Grace

The author herself states in the introduction that there are no earth-shattering truths in this book, and you won’t read anything that hasn’t been said before. However, for a Christian who hasn’t come to understand the biblical gospel and has just relegated the gospel to the method of entry into the Christian life, these simple truths can have earth-shattering, life-transforming effects.

Craving Grace centers around The Gospel Eight diagram, which evolved as Delk grappled with what it looks like in real life to preach the gospel to yourself. It is a visual to help understand the tug-of-war between faith and unbelief and how a Christian could almost simultaneously live like a spiritual orphan and God’s child. It is a tool to remind us of the gospel that brings freedom and life and hope. “This diagram shows both the believer and the nonbeliever that the solution to our despair is the same: we both need to run to the cross and put our faith and trust in what Jesus has already done for us” (23).

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Review: Trillia Newbell’s United

It has often been said that Sunday morning is the most segregated time of the week in America. You have predominantly white churches, and you have ethnic churches of all sorts–Hispanic churches, Chinese churches, Korean churches, African American churches. It’s rare to see churches that are ethnically diverse. Homogeneity is even more prominent in Reformed circles. During my graduate studies I attended a Reformed church for the first time, and I was one of only three non-white members. Though there were some difficulties, to me they didn’t ultimately matter because I was ecstatic to be part of a gospel-centered church where the Word of God was preached faithfully and the doctrines of grace were cherished.

The wider evangelical world has focused on issues of ethnic diversity and reconciliation for some time, with prominent white and non-white voices such as Rachel Held Evans (Caucasian American), Soong-Chan Rah (Asian America), Brenda Salter McNeil (African America), and Orlando Crespo (Latino American).

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Review & Giveaway: Hannah Anderson’s Made for More

First it should be stated emphatically that Made for More isn’t a book for women only. Hannah makes specific application for women, but the overall principles are foundational ones. “It’s a call to recover the image of God in our lives—to re-imagine not simply what it means to be woman but what it means to be a person made in the very likeness of God Himself” (11). So the call is not for biblical womanhood in ambiguous terms, “but first and foremost as a person destined to be like your God” (13). That’s something women and men can get behind.

I appreciated how each section and chapter drive the reader towards this vision. The book is organized around Romans 11:36, “For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.”

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