Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Outdoor Nativity Set

Christmas is just around the corner. Time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior! Sadly, what we see most in the stores and on the streets are Santas, reindeer, and snowmen. One of my Facebook friends posted on her status that she went looking for a large outdoor nativity set to purchase for her parade float but found nothing...Not at Sams' Club, Wal-mart, Lowes, or Home Depot. She didn't even see small interior ones. I recommended she check out www.OutdoorNativitySets.com.

I was so thankful to receive this Nativity set for review. My 10 year old son helped me set it up. I was pleasantly surprised and impressed at how easy it was to assemble the set. The pieces fit together like puzzle pieces. The attached assembly instructions are clear, complete with color illustrations, and very easy to follow. It took us less than  5 minutes to set everything up. I'm really pleased with this product made by Teak Isle Manufacturing, a family-owned manufacturing company in central Florida. It's made from marine grade plastic that can withstand the weather conditions for years to come. I love its simplicity, beauty, and message (reminding people of the true reason for the season). We proudly display our nativity set in front of our property for all the travelers on the road to enjoy :).

The standard size includes the Holy Family, manger, star, fences, 2 sheep, 2 ground stakes, 2 reinforcement rods, 4 reinforcement clips and 8 stainless steel screws. The following nativity add-on figures are available: Angel Set, Three Wise Men, Shepherd, Camel, Donkey, and Calf. Visit www.OutdoorNativitySets.com .

Here are comments I've received about the outdoor nativity set:
"Really pretty! I like it."
"It is beautiful....anything to do with Jesus is BEAUTIFUL!"
"Really nice. Simple...that's what I like. The material looks durable. Noticeable even in the dark with limited lighting."
"I always like nativity scenes...That's a nice one for outdoors & doesn't appear too big for people with small yards. I normally like the ones that show faces, but this one is nice for a silhouette. You definitely know what it is when you see it."
"I actually do like the set. The white really stands out, and being 3 dimensional also helps."

Monday, November 28, 2011

MissioLife

Chris Folmsbee and his team have developed a new digital small group resource called "MissioLife." It is designed to lead adults, youth, and children to actively participate in the mission of God. Its goal is to explore what the Bible says about God, others, ourselves, and the world and put all into action for missional living.

MissioLife focuses on the Body of Christ as faith communities working together to bring hope and healing to the world. It is a multi-generational approach to spiritual growth. Adults, youth, and children can all share in this communal experience together through Breathe (Adult), Image (Youth, grade 7-12), and Rhythms (Children ages 6-12).

The main concepts include the story of God, theology, identity and calling, way of life, and behaviors and expressions. Each year of MissioLife is made up of six (6 week) modules. It's a 4-year journey.
  • Year One – The God of Life: A Story of God’s Redeeming Shalom
  • Year Two – The God Who Would Be King: A Story of God’s Kingdom
  • Year Three – The God of Promise: A Story of God’s People
  • Year Four – The God of New Creation: A Story of God’s Restoration
I received a MissioLife preview kit via the B & B Media Group. It looks very interesting. MissioLife seems to be Biblically-centered, mission-oriented, and family/church-integrated. I'm looking forward to using a module in our Bible study group with international college students this coming Friday.

Are you looking for a small group resource/curriculum that can be used by all ages and is available for easy download? For more information, visit http://www.missiolife.com/. You can download some free lesson samples on the website.

Note: Please turn off my music playlist at the bottom of this page before starting the video.

Scot McKnight & Chris Folmsbee from MissioLife on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

FIRST Wild Card Tours: Live Reflectively and Live Abundantly

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!


Today's Wild Card authors are:


and the books:

David C. Cook (November 1, 2011)
David C. Cook; 2 edition (November 1, 2011)
***Special thanks to Audra Jennings, Senior Media Specialist, The B&B Media Group for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Lenya Heitzig is an award-winning author and popular Bible teacher. She and her husband founded Calvary Church of Albuquerque—one of the fastest-growing churches worldwide. She is the author of Holy Moments: Recognizing God’s Fingerprints on Your Life and also contributed to the best-selling New Women’s Devotional Bible. Heitzig serves as Executive Director of She Ministries of Albuquerque, overseeing weekly Bible studies and yearly retreats. She and her husband Skip live in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Penny Rose is the award-winning author of numerous books. Penny thrives on teaching at conferences and retreats nationwide. She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her husband, Kerry, a pastor at Calvary of Albuquerque.

Visit the authors' website.

SHORT BOOK DESCRIPTION:

The Fresh Life series was created for women who crave a profound experience of God’s Word without an overwhelming time commitment. Bible teachers Lenya Heitzig and Penny Rose challenge readers to dig deep into Scripture by using a directed study method that only requires twenty minutes a day. With a fresh approach to studying Scripture that gives newcomers as well as seasoned students deep insight into God’s Word, the latest two additions in the series explore the life of Moses and the riches in the book of Ephesians.

Live Reflectively: Lessons from the Watershed Moments of Moses (Heitzig) is an engaging Bible study on the life of Moses. He was saved from death on the Nile and raised as an Egyptian prince. He met his wife at a Midianite well, witnessed the birth of a nation as the Red Sea parted and watched water gush from a rock with one touch of his rod. He died overlooking the Jordan River. Through viewing the water moments of Moses’ life, readers will be encouraged to consider the moments in their own lives that shape who they are and who they are becoming.

Live Abundantly: A Study in the Book of Ephesians (Heitzig and Rose) challenges readers to dig deep into the book of Ephesians to find the spiritual treasure God has for them. The book of Ephesians is God’s “last will and testament” that bequeaths his spiritual treasures to His beloved children. Covering topics such as living in God’s will and receiving peace no matter the circumstances, it reveals the magnitude of every Christian’s inheritance—a gift “exceedingly abundantly above” what you could ever ask for.

The Fresh Life series teaches readers to:
· Lift up...a prayer
· Look at…God’s Word (answering questions concerning what the passage says)
· Learn about…what the passage means (sidebars define words and profice background information)
· Live out…what they have learned (personalizing the text and learning how it can impact their daily life)
· Listen to…quotes from well-known figures to build on the truths uncovered in Scripture

Readers will develop a deeper intimacy with the Lord and walk away feeling inspired to move forward in their walks of faith. Live Abundantly and Live Reflectively continue the rich biblical tradition of the Fresh Life series. They offer wisdom that will leave readers encouraged in their present situations and hopeful for the spiritual journey ahead.

Product Details:

Live Reflectively: Lessons from the Watershed Moments of Moses

List Price: $17.99
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook (November 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0781405939
ISBN-13: 978-0781405935

Product Details:

Live Abundantly: A Study in the Book of Ephesians

List Price: $17.99
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook; 2 edition (November 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1434703304
ISBN-13: 978-1434703309

MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW:
Sometimes books on Bible studies can be dry. But these two books are refreshing. I enjoy them and I'm now curious about the other books in the series. I really like the five components in each day's lesson, especially Learn About and Live Out. Live Reflectively offers lessons from Exodus, focusing on the "watershed" moments in Moses's life. The theme is redemption. The author, Lenya Heitzig, likes alliteration like me; she often used it in the book :). Live Abundantly is a study on Ephesians. The theme is the spiritual wealth and walk of the believers. These books are excellent for either individual devotional study or small group study. Dive in...Dig deep...Soak up...and then Live it!

AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER (Click on images to expand):

Live Reflectively: Lessons from the Watershed Moments of Moses

































Live Abundantly: A Study in the Book of Ephesians (Click on images to expand)
























Saturday, November 19, 2011

Let's Make Everyday Thanksgiving Day!

         Thanksgiving

Oh precious Father, as we bow
Before Thy throne today,
We count the many blessings
Thou hast showered upon our way.

The comfort of our humble homes
Our health and happiness,
The strength provided for each day
To meet the strain and stress.

We thank Thee for Thy precious Son
Who brought salvation free,
And for this mighty land of ours,
A land of liberty!

So, Lord, help us to give Thee thanks
For all that we hold dear,
Not only on Thanksgiving Day
But each day of the year.
                                                ~Unknown

"We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks, for Your Name is near; men tell of Your wonderful deeds." Psalm 75:1
"Let us come before Him with thanksgiving and extol Him with music and song." Psalm 95:2
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations." Psalm 100:4-5 

This month, I have been posting on my Facebook page each day what I'm thankful for. I think it's so good for me to be intentional about thankfulness everyday. When we focus on having a thankful heart, we are less likely to complain, get upset, be discontent, or have a bad attitude. Try it :)!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Giveaway: 250 Customizable Stickers

I'm excited to be hosting another UPrinting giveaway. I've been pleased with their products and service. Would you like to win 250 customizable stickers? These are very versatile. Great for marketing and advertisement! Wonderful for Christmastime, too...you can use the stickers on gifts and bags of goodies you give out to neighbors and friends :).

Prize Details:
- 250pcs Customizable Stickers for one winner
- 2x3.5" 70lb Label Matte, Front only printing
- 4 Business Days Turnaround time
- Free US shipping only

Entry Requirements:
1. Like UPrinting Sticker Printing Page and share how you would use the stickers if you win the giveaway.


2. Tweet how you will use the stickers if you win the giveaway and at the end of the message include the UPrinting Sticker Printing URL (http://www.uprinting.com/sticker-printing.html)

NOTE: Make sure to use the FULL URL (http://www.uprinting.com/sticker-printing.html) and not use any URL shortening tool for the tweet. Twitter will automatically shorten the URL for you.

For Extra Entries: (please leave a separate comment for each one you do):
- Follow this blog via GFC or NetworkedBlogs
- "Like" my page "Christ Alone" on Facebook
- Follow me on Twitter: @treasuredbyGod
- Share the link to this giveaway post on Facebook
- Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter

Restrictions: Open to US residents only, must be 18 and above to enter.
This giveaway will end on November 28th at midnight Pacific time. One winner will be chosen via random.org. Please make sure you leave your email address with your comment(s).

~This giveaway is sponsored by UPrinting, no monetary compensation was given and I will receive stickers for hosting.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

FIRST Wild Card Tour: 40 Days to Better Living: Depression

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!


Today's Wild Card author is:


and the book:

Barbour Books (November 1, 2011)
***Special thanks to Audra Jennings – The B&B Media Group – for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


From the time Scott Morris was just a teenager, he knew he would do two things with his future—serve God and work with people. Growing up in Atlanta, he felt drawn to the Church and at the same time drawn to help others, even from a very young age. It was naturally intrinsic, then, that after completing his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia he went on to receive his M.Div. from Yale University and finally his M.D. at Emory University in 1983.

After completing his residency in family practice, Morris arrived in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1986 without knowing a soul, but determined to begin a health care ministry for the working poor. He promptly knocked on the doors of St. John’s Methodist Church and Methodist Hospital in Memphis inviting them to help, and then found an old house to refurbish and renovate. By the next year, the Church Health Center opened with one doctor—Dr. Scott Morris—and one nurse. They saw twelve patients the first day and Morris began living his mission to reclaim the Church’s biblical commitment to care for our bodies and spirits.

From the beginning, Morris saw each and every patient as a whole person, knowing that without giving careful attention to both the body and soul the person would not be truly well. So nine years after opening the Church Health Center, he opened its Hope & Healing Wellness Center. Today the Church Health Center has grown to become the largest faith-based clinic in the country of its type having cared for 60,000 patients of record without relying on government funding. The clinic handles more than 36,000 patient visits a year while the wellness center, which moved to its current 80,000-square-foot location on Union Avenue in 2000, serves more than 120,000 member visits each year. Fees are charged on a sliding scale based on income.


Visit the author's website.

SHORT BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Depression is a serious condition—and 40 Days to Better Living: Depression provides clear, manageable steps for people to manage it, through life-changing attitudes and actions. Readers can select one or more elements of the 7-step Model for Healthy Living—Faith, Medical, Movement, Work, Emotional, Family and Friends, and Nutrition—and follow the 40-day plan to improve their lives, just a bit, day by day. With plenty of practical advice, biblical encouragement, and stories of real people who’ve taken the same journey, this book—from the Church Health Center in Memphis, the largest faith-based clinic of its type in the U.S.—may be one of the most important books your customers will read this year.

The 40 Days to Better Living series offers clear, manageable steps to life-changing attitudes and actions in a context of understanding and grace for all people at all points on the journey to optimal health. With plenty of practical advice, spiritual encouragement, and real stories of those who have found a better life, this simple and skillfully crafted book inspires readers to customize their own path to wellness by using the 7-Step Model for Healthy Living as a guide:

· Nutrition: pursuing smarter food choices and eating habits

· Friends and family: giving and receiving support through relationships

· Emotional life: understanding feelings and managing stress to better care for yourself

· Work: appreciating your skills, talents, and gifts

· Movement: discovering ways to enjoy physical activity

· Medical care: partnering with health care providers to optimize medical care

· Faith life: building a relationship with God, neighbors, and self


Along with tips from the Model for Healthy Living, the easy-to-read format features a Morning Reflection and an Evening Wrap-Up as well as a place for documenting plans, progress, and perspectives. Targeted scriptures and prayers that undergird the focus of each day’s message make this compact book an excellent choice for a daily devotional.

Subsequent titles in the Better Living series will be released bi-monthly and address key health topics including hypertension, diabetes, depression, weight management, stress management, aging, and addiction. All promise substantial support to those who are ready for a newer, better way of living—body and spirit.


Product Details:
List Price: $7.99
Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Barbour Books (November 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1616262664
ISBN-13: 978-1616262662

My Thoughts and Review:
I'm thankful that I have not struggled with depression. Yes, I've felt depressed before but it's not a constant occurrence. However, I know some people who do struggle with depression. This book offers a lifestyle adjustment and action steps you can take in order to think, feel, and live better. I like the colorful, magazine-style format of the book. Daily practices are presented in small chunks so readers don't feel overwhelmed. This book is easy to read and easy to apply. It also includes 6 true life stories of people who have conquered or managed their depression. If you struggle with depression, check this book out.


AND NOW...THE FIRST FEW PAGES: Click on the images to see them larger:
























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