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He Chose the Glory

He Chose the Glory: The Life and Legacy of Obed-Edom by Louis McCall is a beautifully written book depicting stories told in the Bible. The book details the conditions and storylines surrounding the building of the Ark and how many townspeople were eager to look inside it or treat it as a trophy, only to receive retribution for their actions. As many kings aimed to take the Ark as evidence of their triumph, the book details the many times the Ark was protected against those attempts.

The book closely follows the Ark of the Covenant, as it is well known to many people of different religions and faiths. The golden Ark contained laws on stone tablets given to Moses by God. This story closely follows the family of Obed-Edom, and the lineage connected with the Ark, which is written in a lively and colorful way that can spark a new or renewed interest in these stories and their histories.

The author follows the descendants of Obed-Edom, and how they believed that a newer covenant would take the place of the Ark, teaching future generations about God and his laws. The story also personalizes the experience through its characters. They wonder about their fate and grapple with many realities in their world, including life, death, abundance, wealth, murder, sins, and destruction. It’s a book that discusses the birth of new beginnings, including what led to the New Testament. The author does a great job of articulating many of these stories to a broader audience, creating more intriguing developments and an opportunity to debate or discuss topics associated with faith and religion.

I recommend this book for its clear narration and the author’s ability to reignite interest in a topic that may not come alive in other discussions or books. I recommend He Chose the Glory: The Life and Legacy of Obed-Edom for its excellent ability to portray Biblical stories in a new and exciting way.

Pages: 67 | ASIN: B091G4TTNT

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Diversity and Unity

Mariam Latifi Author Interview

A to Z of Mini Muslims: An alphabet book exploring all about Islam and being a Muslim teaches children the alphabet and the teachings and principles of Islam. Why was this an important book for you to write?

This lovely children’s book- A to Z of Mini Muslims: An alphabet book exploring all about Islam and being a Muslim was important for me to write as I wanted to promote young children’s religious worldviews and help dispel myths and stereotypes about the religion of Islam and who Muslims are. I wanted to also show diversity and unity through which students can be connected. I wanted to educate young children and even adults who are not familiar about the Islamic faith to empower them and to encourage and motivate them to learn about Islam in a meaningful way. My three children were the source of inspiration for writing this book. They always questioned who Muslims were and what is Islam and so I decided to write a children’s book that explored these basic foundations and principles of Islam through a fun and engaging alphabet book. Moreover, I ensured this book connected to their cultural background and hence themes of Afghanistan were embedded through the beautiful illustrations such as the three young girls dressed in their Afghan clothes on the front cover, or the Afghan flags shown on different pages. Therefore, I wanted to write this important book for children to be proud of their faith, culture and identity.

The art in this book is fantastic. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Saba Yasmeen?

Thank you so much! Yes, this book would not have complete without the wonderful illustrations by Saba Yasmeen who brought my vision to life. The art collaboration process was amazing with the wonderful illustrator Saba Yasmeen. Saba was absolutely understanding, patient and very accommodating and diligent in her work. Every detail in the images that I had envisioned, such as promoting diversity and unity and connection to the Australian themes and perspectives, Saba brought it into life. Having a working document with the first round of drafts sketches then giving written feedback and moving onto the next step really helped us focus and be on the same page. Saba was amazing in her talent and ability to come up with such gorgeous illustrations and always making sure it is exactly what I wanted. Also, to make a note, this was my first time writing a children’s book and it was Saba’s first time illustrating a children’s book. We both live on the opposite sides of the world and the process might sound like a huge challenge or impossible for some, but it was such a wonderful journey for both Saba and I. We both learned so much along the way that our collaboration was a huge success. Effective communication was the key, and I am so proud and honoured to have Saba collaborate with me on this wonderful project. Thank you, Saba, for your amazing work!

What were some ideas that were important for you to share in this book?

This is a great question. I believe every letter in my book has an important message for the readers. Some of the ideas that were important to me to share in this book was including the basic understanding and principles of Islam such believing in one God who created everything (Allah), believing in the final Prophet of Islam (Muhammad PBUH), learning about the Lunar Calendar that Muslims follow with having that knowledge of the Islamic months was important. Also learning about what is Ramadan and Eid and how visiting the sick and being good to your parents, with doing good to others and giving money as charity to the needy are all important concepts and ideas that I wanted to share in this book. I wanted to create a unique alphabet book that would connect to our readers in a meaningful way and that would be a valuable resource to share and have in any classroom and library. This book has already been well received with winning the 2022 International Book Award as a Finalist in the Children’s Religious Category and as a Finalist in the Readers’ Choice Book Award for the Best Children’s Book 3-7 and with further receiving the Five Star Seal from Readers Favourite.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Well, this is such a good question! Before I had published my first book, I had already written my second children’s book and was looking at having it published very soon. But then I decided to wait for the right time. However, it will be available in the near future, and I will definitely be updating my wonderful followers when this happens 😊

Author Links: GoodReads | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Website

The A to Z of Mini Muslims is a perfect book for children of all ages to help them learn all about the religion of Islam. It is a simple and easy book to read which explores the teachings and principles of Islam through beautifully set out vivid illustrations. Your child can read and learn so much about the basic foundations of Islam, thereby nurturing their development. This book is a great source of motivation to engage children from all ages in learning about the beautiful religion of Islam.

Our Church Mothers

Our Church Mothers by Gwen Ehrenborg follows seven inspiring women in the history of Christianity; Katharina Luther, the first lady of the Reformation; Susanna Wesley, the Mother of Methodism; Catherine Booth, co-founder of the Salvation Army; Mary, the Mother of Jesus; St. Clare, best friend of Francis of Assisi; Mother Teresa of Calcutta; and Judge Deborah. The author introduces the women individually and their accomplishments in the Christian practice. In addition, each woman has written letters sharing their experiences with finding their voice in the church, marriage, and having a family.

Author Gwen Ehrenborg has done her research and her knowledge shows all throughout her informative book. The author brings women from different cultures and countries together to share their experiences and show readers how they became chosen to lead others. Readers get to dive deep into these amazing women’s lives and see how they came to be. I found each one of their stories to be very compelling. We learn of their accomplishments in the church and we also get to understand the struggles and sacrifices that they have made for God; and I certainly walked away with a deeper appreciation for them. Readers also learn of their mentors, husbands, and the families they’ve built along the way.

This is an educational and inspiring book. We get to see the respect and appreciation that many people have for these women. However, depending on these women’s cultures, some of them were not seen as equals to their husbands, so they faced significant struggles regarding having a voice in the church. The author includes discussion questions at the end of the chapters; which helps readers begin deep and meaningful discussion with others on the subject.

Our Church Mothers is an illuminating and encouraging read that I recommend to those who are strong in faith or anyone looking to learn about strong women in history. Through these women, readers learn how to be selfless, care for others, and to love everyone, but most importantly readers learn to never lose sight of their faith.

Pages: 251 | ASIN :  B09H2XVLHM

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Something We Never Imagined

Colton Dust is a talented young writer who lives in California and works for a respectable local news company. Colton’s sheer talent as a columnist, producing stories about his views, has created quite a stir within the community. Colton denies that there is any need for a God, if one exists at all. Emma Lee, a competent and charming young woman, enters the picture. Colton catches her attention in a chance encounter, but his attitude leaves a foul taste in her mouth. Days pass and Emma only finds out that she disagrees with his morals as well. Despite this, both characters are drawn to each other inexplicably, and it is only a matter of time until they cross paths again.

Something We Never Imagined, by Douglas J. Wemple, is a fascinating read about faith and love. Wemple’s work is centered around the young and ambitious Colton Dust and Emma Lee, a struggling but resourceful young woman of faith. Both characters are highly relatable and will quickly draw readers into their tale. Despite being raised in a Christian family, Colton believes that a person is accountable for their own destiny and should not believe or rely on a God he isn’t even convinced exists. Emma Lee, on the other hand, is a fervent believer that God not only exists but should be the focus of one’s life despite the fact that she’s constantly tested by life circumstances. The conflict of their principles is one of many factors of the book that captured my interest, and I became emotionally invested in both characters.

Wemple’s writing style is easy to follow, and it is also encouraging and uplifting, giving readers faith. The author seamlessly conveys the message that forgiveness and faith in God are essential for finding meaning in life.

Something We Never Imagined, by Douglas J. Wemple, is a heart-warming and eye-opening read I can highly recommend to those who enjoy contemporary Christian romance.

Pages: 377 | ASIN: ‎ B09ZF19P2J

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Walking on the Water

Aimy Ellen’s emotionally-resonant memoir, Walking on the Water, follows a devout Christian woman as she navigates her life through its ups and downs as a single mother and the miracles her faith has brought her. Born into a Baptist family, the author developed a deep relationship with God and has since lived by His words. She prayed for a happy life and a good family and eventually married. However, having a child took longer than expected. After more than a decade, she gets pregnant and a year later her husband leaves her to raise her son alone. She constantly prays to God for her son’s safety and happiness and her faith never waivers. In an unfortunate turn of events, her son is assaulted and from there on Aimy and her son begin to believe in miracles, angels, and God’s power.

Aimy Ellen has written a powerful and impassioned memoir of her son’s remarkable recovery from a near-fatal assault. Aimy’s only son, Alex, was found critically injured on the side of the road, a victim of an armed robbery, with life-threatening injuries including a punctured lung, shattered ribs, and a bullet wound. Rather than abandoning all hope, she turns to the Lord and places her complete trust and faith in Him as she always has. Aimy shows readers that her faith in God and her belief in miracles helped her son pull through this tragic event and encourages readers not to give up no matter how difficult the situation.

This significant moment in the author’s life, relayed in a riveting memoir, serves as a testament to her faith. Her writing style is easy to follow and ensure that her uplifting and inspiring message comes across in a profound way. This poignant and sentimental book shares a remarkable story of faith in the face of adversity.

Walking on the Water is a great book for readers that have doubt in their heart about God, as it will help reaffirm their belief. I think this book would also be an impactful read for those that remain strong in faith as it will serve as a compelling story of one persons trials and tribulations and shows how miracles can happen when you have faith.

Pages: 82 | ASIN: ‎ B07KXMTPTT

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“You deserve all you can get.”

Sharon Hayes-Martin Author Interview

The Future Survival Guide discusses how Christianity can help bring you peace and forgiveness after surviving abuse and coping with the memories that remain. Why was this an important book for you to write?

I wrote this book because so many are fledgling after years of adulthood, held down by past events, or outright ignorance not because of laziness but rather having trusted wrong, and they are still punishing themselves for it instead of assessing it and casting it aside in order to be free. I believe if I reach a decent percentage of readers they will share “The Future Survival Guide” with others.

What is one piece of advice someone gave you that changed your life?

Being a plain, overweight child, I entered adulthood with a range of insecurities. I did look a lot better as an adult, but psychologically I was still that plain unpopular girl. When I was 22, I was offered a job that paid more than I ever thought I’d be making, and the first words out of my mouth was “I don’t deserve that much.” Interestingly, that was my mindset, but his reply still resonates to this day. It’s been years so I don’t remember his name, but I do remember the hard look he gave me when he said, “You deserve all you can get.”

What do you hope is one thing readers take away from your story?

That my book is God inspired and it was put on my heart to write for them. What I’ve observed and learned over the years is in those pages. So it is from His wisdom, and my strength arrived from the same, that I trust all who reads “The Future Survival Guide” will personalize whatever touches them in those pages.

Author Links: Amazon | Website

Many enter adulthood damaged, haunted by remembrances that pipe-in during the quiet times, causing their transition into adult life to be laden with challenges. It may take years, but most eventually get a footing. Yet, for some, the ugly memories can clarify, serving up torment that they inflict upon others. The Future Survival Guide is for everyone, but it’s also a road map to freedom, to strength and peace of mind for those who need it.

The Future Survival Guide

The Future Survival Guide is written for readers who are seeking clarity and freedom from the damaging experiences they have had in life; whether as a child or an adult. Author Sharon Hayes-Martin candidly discusses how Christianity can help bring you peace and forgiveness. The author covers topics such as surviving abuse, cult churches, the saved and unsaved and many more significant topics.

Author Sharon Hayes-Martin has written an enlightening guidebook that is designed to help readers become a better version of themselves. The author uses a conversational tone throughout her book so it felt like I was speaking to a teacher or a mentor the whole time I was reading. With this eager and passionate tone, the author conveys the vast knowledge and experience she posses, and l was eager to know more.

Even though this book is written from the author’s perspective I never felt like she was trying to convince me to turn to the Christian faith, rather she discussed what the faith has to offer. Hayes-Martin covers heavy topics such as suicide and depression and I appreciated that she openly shares her experiences with us and how she was able to come through to the other side and be in a better place. I also enjoyed the fact that this is a short read that is packed with useful information.

One aspect of this book that I found to be interesting and helpful were the details of cult churches and Christian predators, which are hustlers and grifters. This served as a warning sign to all and is a great way for readers to open their eyes to this threat. This is a difficult topic to cover and I commend the author as she is not afraid to also tell the dark side of Christianity in order to help people. The author provides readers with pragmatic tips to avoid these situations when being introduced to the Christian church and she recommends to do your research before committing to one church.

I highly recommend The Future Survival Guide to readers who are curious about Christianity and to those who are lost and want to be put on the correct path. Hayes-Martin provides readers with critical information and actionable advice they need to make informed decisions so that they can safely give faith a chance and find their way to freedom.

Pages: 106 | ASIN: B09WTN43KW

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Salt & Light; The Complete Jesus

Salt & Light: The Complete Jesus is an illuminating scholarly work on the authentic Jesus and his teachings. Dean lays out three important questions in the beginning of his book about Jesus, his existence, his teachings and what he offered to humanity; all delivered through a critical lens. Dean sets out on a daunting journey of finding the ‘authentic’ Jesus without any bias and only sticking to available evidence.

The beginning of this informative book contains information on different sources the author used and then the book dives into the Gospels, Jesus’ disciples and other topics, to make his case.

Each chapter has an intriguing question at the beginning, which is then followed by compelling arguments. Readers are not made to take sides on those arguments, but are allowed to critically think and decide for themselves.

The simple use of language throughout this book ensures that the information being conveyed is easily understood by anyone, and I think the text is much more powerful because of it. Photographs and other pieces of historical evidence are provided in this book which breaks up the long pieces of text. They are great visual additions that make this book much more engaging.

While I am spiritual, I certainly don’t have the level of knowledge of Christianity that the author does, and I had a bit of trepidation going into this book because of that. But the author provides readers with all the necessary information they need in order to understand the book. I feel like I walked away from this book with a lot more information on the subject, which will allow me to confidently partake in a discourse on this topic with other people.

I was mesmerized by the cover of this book because I felt like you are playing a word puzzle and finding Jesus in the scramble; which I think is a metaphor for this book, or maybe life too. While I think the book contained easy to understand language and the chapters fully covered a topic before moving on, I feel like this book is not something you finish in one sitting. There is a lot of thought-provoking information in this book that takes time to absorb. Going through the book, there were several ‘aha’ moments for me about Jesus and his teachings.

Salt & Light: The Complete Jesus by Jonathan Geoffrey Dean takes on a controversial topic in a way that is comprehensive and impartial. This is an enlightening book that provides the reader with the critical information they need to unravel the mystery of Jesus.

Pages: 211 | ISBN: 978-1-03-913143-9

www.saltandlight.ca

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