Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | April 19, 2015

‘What about the Church?’

“What About the Church” contains six separate booklets of sermons prepared and presented by Russell M. Stendal.  Each sermon is about the responsibilities we have as God’s people living in the end times and on this side of the new covenant.

Our denominations, groups and organized movements don’t measure up to God’s standards.  The Scriptures don’t outline the structure of the church other than what Paul says in his letters.  Pastors and church leaders may not approve of Stendal’s thoughts on tithing.  It is actually the most enlightening part of the book.

I have read several of Stendal’s books and have found them particularly thought-provoking.  I would have enjoyed hearing these sermons presented.  He does not sugarcoat his message.  Some of his messages are hard to hear.  He bases his writing on the Scripture, and he has an interesting theology.  I am sure that it comes from his life raised on the mission field and living as a missionary all of his life.  He has written many books, including “Rescue the Captors” about his experience as a hostage of Marxist rebels in Colombia,  South America.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Life Sentence Publishing, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | April 17, 2015

Making Peace with an Unexpected Life

undoneMichele Cushatt has been living an unexpected life.  Divorce, single motherhood, a second marriage with the challenge of a blended family have all helped to create a chaotic life.  And just when she thought she had everything under her control, a cancer diagnosis threatened to take away every ounce of peace she had regained.

Through cancer treatments and family crises and obligations, Cushatt found peace in the midst of chaos, and shares what God has taught her through her unexpected life experiences in her book, “Undone”.

Did you plan a peaceful, predictable life that you could control and did it all unravel and come undone?  God brings us to a place of undone so He can put it back together more beautifully.  Cushatt’s story sounds grim at times, but the way she’s lived her life is inspiring.  She could have given up, become angry and bitter but instead she gave the results to God and has shared her story with others so that we, too, can see what god can do with an undone life.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Booklook Bloggers, as part of Thomas Nelson‘s Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | April 17, 2015

Hannon’s Men of Valor series promises to be another winner

buried secretsWhen a small-town police chief and a county detective work to solve a 24-year-old mystery, the sparks begin to fly.  In “Buried Secrets”, the mystery becomes more complicated when two of the three witnesses to the mystery die under mysterious circumstances.  As the romance between the chief and the detective heats up, so does the case.

Lisa Grant, Carson Police Chief, is looking for a calmer life in a small town after nearly dying in Chicago.  Mac McGregor, former Navy Seal and current county detective, is looking to settle down and raise a family.  When he meets Lisa, he knew she was something special.  She also had a feeling there could be more to the relationship; however, they had to stay focused on the case and could not socialize while they were working together.

Irene Hannon has a remarkable talent for weaving two stories into one–the romance with the suspense.  It was nice to see a romantic story where the two subjects are not fighting against each other and instead are developing a mature relationship.

Even though from the beginning you know the general scenario, there is enough suspense to keep you wondering.  If you haven’t read Hannon’s previous books/series, this is a great place to start.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | April 17, 2015

Family comes first for the Caselli’s

TruthAs the Caselli’s story continues in Book V “The Truth: Salvatore’s Revenge”, another generation has grown up and started careers and love stories of their own.  Vincenzo’s daughter, Alyssa, who is now a United States Marshall, has stumbled across her Uncle Marquette’s long-sought after enemy.  Marquette had spent his entire life and career searching for the leader of a Sicilian mafia family, Salvatore Ponerello.

Once again, Ta’Mara Hanscom has told a family story filled with love, romance and intrigue.  Only this time, she includes a little suspense and a lot more romance is blooming, this time among the younger generation of the Caselli family.

After five books covering almost 50 years, the Casellis are becoming a part of my family.  I love their family dynamic and how no matter what happens, they are family and nothing can happen to come between them.

I can’t wait for the sixth book to hit the shelves to see what happens next.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 23, 2015

The Caselli story continues… “The Gift”

the gift

(WARNING:  CONTAINS SPOILERS if you haven’t read previous books).

In many ways, I feel like I’ve grown up with the Caselli family–Tillie, Noah, Rosa, Guiseppi and the whole clan have become very dear to my heart.  Book IV, “The Gift”  The Story of Annie Laurie” is my favorite so far.  Tillie is a good person and her faith is genuine; however, in the last few books, I was almost annoyed by her behavior.  Even though I knew she was doing the right thing, or at least what was right for her, it was the way she came across that bothered me.

At the beginning of “The Gift”, Tillie and the kids have had time to grieve and are beginning to get their lives back.  When a moment of forgiveness comes, Tillie finally finds her way back to being the person she was in the earlier books in the series.  It was such a relief.

Ta’Mara Hanscom’s books are filled with God’s truths.  Hanscom’s desire that readers will find a new perspective on love, forgiveness, obedience and God’s plan for marriage is finally achieved in Book IV.  I’m excited about reading future books in the series and will be a little sad to see them come to an end.

Click here to purchase for Kindle from Amazon.com.  Click here to purchase in paperback.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 20, 2015

You can live the life you long for

Psalm 139

For the choir director: A psalm of David.

O Lord, you have examined my heart
    and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up.
    You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.
You see me when I travel
    and when I rest at home.
    You know everything I do.
You know what I am going to say
    even before I say it, Lord.
You go before me and follow me.
    You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
    too great for me to understand!

I can never escape from your Spirit!
    I can never get away from your presence!
If I go up to heaven, you are there;
    if I go down to the grave,[a] you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning,
    if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
    and your strength will support me.
11 I could ask the darkness to hide me
    and the light around me to become night—
12     but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day.
    Darkness and light are the same to you.

13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
    and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
    Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.
15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
    as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
16 You saw me before I was born.
    Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
    before a single day had passed.

17 How precious are your thoughts about me,[b] O God.
    They cannot be numbered!
18 I can’t even count them;
    they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up,
    you are still with me!

19 O God, if only you would destroy the wicked!
    Get out of my life, you murderers!
20 They blaspheme you;
    your enemies misuse your name.
21 O Lord, shouldn’t I hate those who hate you?
    Shouldn’t I despise those who oppose you?
22 Yes, I hate them with total hatred,
    for your enemies are my enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
    test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 Point out anything in me that offends you,
    and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

unstuckUsing Psalm 139, Pay Layton helps us identify where we’ve gotten stuck and how to get unstuck and live the life we dream of.  Have you ever wondered if you have anything to offer the world–that you are , indeed, the first person God didn’t have a purpose for?

Throughout the pages of “Life Unstuck”, Layton points out the lies we’ve been led to believe and how to exchange them with the truth.  She openly and honestly shares her life experiences and how she got unstuck.

My favorite chapter was “Unstuck Purpose” which contains “Unstuck Truth #13 The Purpose of life is a life of purpose!”.  She highlights five purposes God has for each of us.  Each chapter ends with a free resource you can receive by visiting life-unstuck.com.

No matter what has caused your life to be stuck, God’s promises can bring you to a point of unstuck living.  There are some truths you need to hear, and Layton tenderly and compassionately presents them in “Life Unstuck”.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 20, 2015

Hearing God is easier than you think

voice of godIf you make the effort, you can hear God talking to you.  In the revised and updated edition of “You Can Hear the Voice of God”, Steve Sampson lists the ways in which you can hear God’s voice and what your part is in the process.  You must be willing to sit still and listen for His still, small voice.  We are often so caught up in our praying that we forget to listen.  God desires to have a conversation with us.  Once you get past his seemingly endless examples of how he has heard from God, which are useful in some ways, Sampson’s book is a helpful resource.  However, some people may find his chapters on visions and dreams outside their realm of acceptance.

I believe Sampson used too many of his own examples and made some chapters more about Him than God.  The last seven chapters are the most beneficial.  In particular, chapter 17 which is entitled “Practical Guidelines for Hearing From God” is the most helpful chapter in the book.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Chosen, a division of Baker Publishing  Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 20, 2015

Do you believe in Hell?

hellMost people believe in Heaven, but fewer believe in Hell and, according to Gary Frazier, author of “Hell is For Real”, only one-half of one percent believe they will go there when they die.  In his book, Frazier separates fact from fiction about Hell and helps us discover truth and understand the Scripture that discusses Hell.

With all the books about Heaven, it is easy to get trapped in the deception that everyone will go to Heaven.  But the sad reality is that people who don’t believe in God and don’t believe that Jesus is God’s Son who died for our sins and was resurrected will go to Hell.

“Hell is For Real” is a blunt, honest look at an important issue.  It matters more than we might think.  The consequences of living life apart from God is an eternity in Hell separated from our loved ones and the One who created us.

The message for believers is the importance of talking to our loved ones and anyone who God places in our path about salvation and how to get to Heaven when we die.  Some people will be offended by this book while it may open the eyes of those who are genuinely searching for answers.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Gary Frazier is a speaker and writer on the subject of Bible prophecy, the Middle East and current events.  He is founder of Discovery Missions International and serves as associate teaching pastor of Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano, Texas.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

blackguardThe third installment of The Caselli Family Series, “A Blackguard’s Redemption”, finds Alex and Tillie relocating to Rapid City, South Dakota, because of Alex’s political aspirations.  Being closer to Noah means Tillie will find out the secret her parents have hidden for years.  Will Noah be able to handle the temptation?  What will Tillie Do?  More importantly, will Alex finally step up to the plate and be the husband and father he needs to be.

At first, the story was hard to get into but once the action starts, the book is hard to put down.  The hidden things become known and the lies are brought out into the open.  I love these characters.  Tillie has definitely lived up to her nickname, Angel.  I love the family dynamics with all the brothers taking care of little sister who makes it plain that she can handle herself.  She shows true courage in life and in marriage.  She strives to be a godly woman even when people do not understand why she does the things she does.  Her beliefs about marriage may be outdated, but they are admirable and should be practiced by more people in our world today.

I can’t wait to read Book IV…

Click here to purchase for Kindle from Amazon.com.  Click here to purchase in paperback.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 8, 2015

‘Twisted Innocence’ Nook Giveaway

twistedHolly’s party girl days came to an end after a one-night stand ended in an unplanned pregnancy.  Giving up her wild days to raise her daughter, Lily, Holly wants nothing to do with the father of her child.  When she finds out he is back in town and might have been involved in a murder, she uses her private investigation agency to track him down to see what his intentions are.

However, the tables are turned when he kidnaps her and Lily and demands her help to prove his innocence and to protect him from the drug lord who set him up and tried to kill him.  Meanwhile, Holly’s sister Cathy is trying to get her fiance pardoned so the real killer can be found who happens to be after Creed, Lily’s father.

I was hooked on Terri Blackstock’s “Twisted Innocence” from the beginning and couldn’t wait to see how the story ended.  The ending was simply perfect.  Redemption is a beautiful thing.

In Terri Blackstock’s third and final book in her Moonlighters series, Twisted Innocence, readers are in for a story of suspense and redemption. Dangers old and new threaten Holly and her baby, and lives are demanded as sacrifices for love. Through a complex web of mistakes and regret, redemption is the one hope Holly has left to hold on to.

Celebrate the series’ final release by entering Terri’s Nook giveaway!

twisterinnoncence-400

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A Nook GlowLight
  • The entire Moonlighters series

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on March 8th. Winner will be announced March 9th on the Litfuse blog.

twistedinnocence-enterbanner

{NOT ON FACEBOOK? ENTER HERE.}Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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