Memoirs of a Bible Smuggler is the true story of Jeana Kendrick and her experience smuggling Bibles into Eastern Europe during the Cold War. Kendrick recalls the emotional highs and lows of this period. Fearing exposure and death, Jeana discusses these experiences and the experience of maintaining faith in order to serve God and protect Christianity.
At the core, this is an uplifting story about overcoming and maintaining faith during a difficult time. I’ll probably never go through anything in my life that is as terrifying as smuggling Bibles into Eastern Europe during the Cold War, but the emotions, faith, and drive to help others was relatable and heartwarming. I appreciated the candid nature with which the story is told. The story really puts you in the authors mind during that time, exploring the events as she saw them.
While this is a story based in history, this is more of a memoir that takes us through the life of a Texas house wife that’s called to serve during a harrowing time. Smuggling bibles was an idea that was new to me. But author Jeana Kendrick opens readers minds to thing others seldom, if ever, experience, and shares some profound and emotional moments. Her ability to keep the faith through it all is inspiring.
While I would have appreciated more historical context, Memoirs of a Bible Smuggler is still a riveting account of one person making a difference in a dangerous world. For any readers that need a powerful story about maintaining faith while facing adversity, or for anyone who wants to read a stirring memoir of an average person doing extraordinary things, then Jeana Kendricks memoir is perfect for you. This is a short but potent story that shows the power and importance of missionary work.
Pages: 187 | ASIN: B0971S3TTJ
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We spend the majority of our adult lives in the workplace, dedicated to following instructions and completing projects. Faith is generally not something we dwell on when we are hard at work. Many of us simply don’t think about our faith on the job. However, Jim and Martha Brangenberg and Ted Hains share with readers the importance of keeping faith ever-present in every aspect of our lives–even at our jobs.
Jim and Martha Brangenberg and Ted Hains are the authors of iWork4Him: Change the Way You Think About Your Faith at Work. In this thorough look at the many ways our beliefs and faith impact our work lives, readers will find multiple examples of the ways in which our work relationships can be forever changed by allowing our faith to mesh with our daily activities. From business practices to taking a long hard look at why we work in the first place, the team of authors covers every nook and cranny of the workplace, whatever job it may be.
I was particularly struck by the authors’ examination of work relationships and the way faith plays a role in those day-to-day interactions. When you think about it, those we work alongside are the people we see and relate to most. Falling out with a coworker is difficult, to say the least. The authors’ very clear explanations regarding damaged relationships make it clear to readers that repairing them through faith only improves our work lives and even our relationships in our private lives.
Cover to cover, the Brangenbergs and Hains provide detailed scenarios from their own lives and keep readers invested in their stories while giving them opportunities to relate them to their own lives. Throughout the book, the authors give readers workbook-style sections to reflect and relate. As a teacher and someone who regularly makes notes in the margins of books that I find especially striking, I appreciate the chance to relate the text to my own experiences and to do so in writing.
After the year we have all just experienced, it is wonderful to read about ways to bring our faith into every aspect of our lives–the workplace being one of the most neglected. iWork4Him: Change the Way You Think About Your Faith at Work helps readers see their workplace as a mission field and gives them the tools they need to live out their faith.
Pages: 300 | ASIN: B096MX8QFQ
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Secrets of Broken Pottery challenges readers view of God and how they think he seems them. Why was this an important book for you to write?
Growing up in a legalistic, performance-focused church community distorted my idea of God, the Great Potter, for three decades. Looking back, it is nothing short of a miracle that I never lost not only the Potter but also the broken pieces of my life that scattered when my clay pottery broke. My broken pottery falling into the Great Potter’s loving hands is why I wrote this book. I want to share the secrets I’ve learned about Him and my position as His pottery. No pieces of your brokenness are wasted when the Great Potter collects the fragments and takes them to the Potter’s House.
In the book, God is referred to as a potter. How did the idea for this metaphor come about?
The Bible compares us with clay fashioned by the Great Potter Himself (Isaiah 64:8).
What were some ideas that were important for you to explore in this book?
Secrets of Broken Pottery is about broken lives – broken clay pots, and their spiritual healing. Potteries crushed, shattered, cracked, smashed, crumbled, distorted, fractured, and demolished. Ruinations for every imaginable reason. Within this book, I hope, the reader will learn the Great Potter’s plan – how He holds all His clay together. I hope they will learn about His characteristics; His unconditional love, never-ending grace, and faithfulness to the generations. He will never forsake His potteries and He is always in charge of your restoration and reinstation.This book is not about a prosperity gospel or legalistic performance-focused gospel, and it does not promise that problems and brokenness will disappear if only you have enough faith, or do this and avoid that. Instead, this book is about the Great Potter, our Redeemer, who wants a relationship with His vessels of clay. Secrets of Broken Pottery – finding the blessings and spiritual growth in our brokenness.
What do you hope is one thing readers take away from your book?
The book challenges the reader to reflect and re-consider their image of God, the Great Potter, the way they see Him, and the way they think He sees them. As broken pottery we are not only perfectly safe and loved in the Great Potter’s hands, but also cherished. We are loved with the divine love that surrounds our clay pottery inside and out. We are His most beautiful and precious pottery!
I hope the reader will claim for themselves the following truth:
- Even if I am marred or broken and destroyed, the Great Potter will start all over again¾He will make something new.
- He will launch a good process, and He will never give up on me – He will see it to the end.
- None of my broken pieces go wasted.
- There is strength in broken pottery…
I wish the readers will have the most therapeutic and beautiful process on the Great Potter’s table! I hope they will be fully integrated with His unconditional and unfailing love and never-ending grace!
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Bible Verses to Remember and Meditate on for Inner Peace provides readers with 150 Bible verses that inspire faith and love. Why was this an important book for you to write?
I believe in the power and wisdom of the word of God. Many of us can easily remember and bring famous books’ or films’ quotes and song lyrics to mind. Although the Bible is found invaluable by Christians and valuable by some non-religious people, most of us may not be able to quote more than a few verses. Also, we are in a time where positive affirmations are given a lot of value to turn our lives around positively. I believe the word of God has the power to do that in ways humanly impossible
What is your favorite Bible verse from this book?
My favorite Bible verse is 1Cor 13:8, “Love never fails.” God is love. Everything and everyone around us may fail us, even ourselves, but God never fails. He goes even beyond to do above what we think or imagine.
What were some themes that were important for you to capture with these verses?
The themes that I thought essential to capture were some of God’s attributes: His mercy, His love, His faithfulness, His power, and the promises He makes to those who love and serve Him. The Bible verses have been grouped under one of those categories. Love, mercy, faithfulness, and power have many facets, and I wanted to show that there was a demonstration of that love, mercy, faithfulness, and power in each verse under each category.
What is one thing you hope readers take away from your book?
I want readers to come to a better understanding of the immensity of God’s love, mercy, power, faithfulness, and the magnitude of His promises. I would like them to come to realize that no other words have more wisdom and power than the words divinely inspired by God and imprinted in the Bible. That storing them in their hearts is the best investment they could make to grow spiritually, bringing peace, joy, love, strength, and wisdom in their lives, the true treasures.
Posted in Interviews
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Secrets of Broken Pottery: Seeing the Great Potter – Being Seen by Him is a great book for believers that are still trying to find their place in religion and their spiritual life. The author writes about the real world through bible stories. What I loved most about Heidi McKendrick is how the author gets the readers to reflect on self with just a few words. Heidi McKendrick is an excellent author because the content in the book is relatable to many readers. One not only finds answers to pressing questions about God, but also gets to understand higher powers and what is expected of Christians.
The first chapters of the book talk about the broken potter, getting readers to feel free about opening up on their failures and struggles. Heidi McKendrick will get every reader to have a self-defining moment through the text in the book. The second half of the book was also resourceful; especially for readers that often look for stories that are relatable to what they are going through. I like how the author painted the characters in the bible; they do not appear to be super-beings, rather, God’s creatures that went through what many believers go through.
Secrets of Broken Pottery is a fantastically enlightening book that will help readers boost their spirituality and be closer to God. The author’s tone is friendly throughout the discussions and makes readers feel like they are in a safe space. This book will change the way you see God and inspire those traumatized by their religious experiences to put themselves back together and walk with God once again. Author Heidi McKendrick takes readers on a spiritual journey of discovery and provides a salve for the soul.
Pages: 478 | ASIN: B0943TH8VC
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While at the Altar shares your life experiences and a list of prayers to help readers improve their spiritual connection through prayer. Why was this an important book for you to write?
It was important because so many do not believe in the power of prayer and many do feel as if they do not know how to pray. By sharing my life experiences readers get a chance to see the power of prayer manifested through my life therefore they will know what is possible for them, through prayer. I shared actual prayers so those who feel as if they do not know how to pray and can how I pray and can formulate their prayers based on the examples I shared.
What is one practical prayer that you find yourself often using?
Me thanking God for all that He has done and asking for His continued blessings, protection, and guidance for me and my family.
Where should someone start if they are new to faith and prayer?
They should definitely start with the bible with the Lord’s prayer-Matthew 6: 9-13. Read that prayer as much as you need to until you get comfortable praying what’s on your heart.
What is one thing you hope readers take away from your book?
That prayer works. That the power and presence of God are manifested in prayer and that life is better if you develop a fervent prayer life.
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Tags: author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, christianity, ebook, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, nonfiction, nook, novel, Pamela D. Smith, read, reader, reading, spirituality, story, While at the Altar, writer, writing
Praying is something many do on a daily basis. For some it is second nature and part of their upbringing. Others find themselves wanting to make a habit of praying but find it difficult to do so effectively. For so many, prayer does not come naturally, and they need guidance on how to ask for the things they seek. From asking for patience to finding answers to a trying situation, the way we pray matters. Where we pray is another dilemma many find themselves facing. Whether it be in a church pew, around grandmother’s kitchen table, or beside one’s bed, prayer has the power to change things.
While at the Altar: Becoming a Resilient, Healed, Whole Woman Through the Power of Prayer, by Pamela D. Smith, is a combination of one woman’s life experiences and testimonies and a list of specific prayers for readers to use as a guide. Smith offers readers a glimpse into her personal spiritual story and helps them understand exactly how difficult it can be to find their way to becoming a praying individual. Something we all take for granted others know how to do–Smith explains precisely how much of a struggle it can be to come to rely on prayer.
Generally speaking, I don’t find most inspirational and self-help books to be all that engaging and frankly not all that helpful. While many can be difficult and not so relatable, Smith’s book is the polar opposite. She is genuine, opens her heart to readers, and offers a very real look at what life is like living with anxiety. She willingly offers readers the opportunity to share in her heartache and walk with her as she finds the path to a prayerful life. Her life will inspire readers.
As a reader, I am especially thankful for Smith’s specific prayers throughout the book. Admittedly, I am not always comfortable with the ways or reasons to pray, and Smith gives readers like me exactly what we have been looking for. I appreciate the time and thought Smith has put into her writing. The journal opportunities throughout the reading make her book an interactive and even more useful one.
I recommend While at the Altar to any person who is seeking to make a spiritual move in their life. Smith truly strikes a chord with readers and provides advice across life experiences in a tone all readers will appreciate.
Pages: 120 | ASIN: B08714BS5V
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Secrets of Broken Pottery is an amazing book to read especially if you are familiar with the bible. The author uses different biblical figures, sharing their stories as written in the bible, but explains a different side that many bible readers may not be familiar with. Secrets of Broken Pottery is interesting to read because the author gives you a different perspective of things. The bible has many stories that bring spiritual healing and life lessons for believers. Reading this book makes you realize that there is a lot to be unpacked in the bible. Most of the stories are interesting to read and excite even young kids when they are introduced to bible studies.
In this book author Heidi McKendrick goes the extra mile and explains more than the basics that are taught in bible study. She selected a couple of biblical figures, broke down their characters and wrote about the impact they have. I enjoyed reading this book because Heidi McKendrick makes reading the bible look fun and thrilling. A story you have read more than once appears new when it is told by the author.
One of my favorite things about Heidi McKendrick’s writing is how she compares the stories in the bible to real life situations. You never know that you have gone through experiences biblical figures went through until you read Secrets of Broken Pottery. Stories from David, Joseph, Dinah and even Tamar occur in real life more often than anyone would imagine. Heidi McKendrick skillfully narrates these stories and gets one to reflect on their life and how their relationship with God is.
Secrets of Broken Pottery is a great book for any Christian looking to improve their relationship with God. In the book, Heidi McKendrick writes of different ways people connect with the almighty. Spirituality is intimate for some people and the author acknowledges that every individual’s relationship with God is different from the next person. Heidi McKendrick uses a warm language and knows how to engage with her readers through her narration.
I appreciate the author for referring to God as the great potter throughout the book. This makes the reader feel safe and at peace, knowing that the God they believe in is the greatest of all. Heidi’s language aside, I also appreciate her for the bible scriptures she shares through the chapters. Every chapter in the book spoke to me on a different level. The last chapters were however my favorite as they made me examine myself as a mortal who believes in God, and my purpose on earth.
Pages: 520 | ASIN: B0943TH8VC
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