Here is a list of random things I’ve discovered recently that I really love. If any of them look interesting to you, I hope you click on the links and try them out. FYI, these are not paid endorsements. Just me being a good friend.
1) A Great Bible Reading Plan: I try to read my Bible every day. For the last several years, I’ve just been reading whatever scriptures come into my life through church, books or Bible studies. I sometimes spend weeks lingering in one chapter or book of the Bible. And that’s totally been working for me. But recently, I decided I wanted to read the Bible all the way through. I’ve done it before, but, honestly, it’s been years. Thus, there are less popular (?) books of the Bible I probably haven’t read in a decade or more. I want to change that.
There are many different ways to read the Bible from cover to cover, and each method has its merits and its downfalls. For example, I’ve tried reading the Bible straight through from Genesis to Revelation. Inevitably, somewhere around the middle of Deuteronomy, I find myself drowning in Old Testament law and genealogies, starving for something immediately applicable to my daily life. After looking for a Bible-reading plan that fits my needs, I found one I really like a lot.
It takes you through about 4 books of the Bible at a time. You read a few chapters from one each day, then a few from the next the following day, etc, until you’ve completed all 4 books. Then you move on to 4 new books.
I like the consistency of being able to stick with a story until it’s complete, but the variety of going back and forth between Old Testament and New Testament every other day. It comes with dates, if you want to follow a schedule, but I don’t do that. I’m just reading at my own pace until I finish the whole Bible. If you want to see this plan by Heartlight, you can click here.
2) A Great Internet Filter: A few months ago, my daughter turned 11 years-old. So, in preparation for her entrance into middle school, we bought Rebekah her very own notebook computer. Up until that time, we did not have an internet filter, because, frankly, I’m the only one who uses the home computer, and as it turns out, I don’t much like porn. But when my sweet, innocent, pure, undefiled 11-year-old started clicking around the internet, I realized it was high time to keep the creeps from entering my home and her heart. Thus, I installed Safe Eyes. There are numerous benefits of Safe Eyes, but here are the main things I love about this filter:
a. For one low price, you can set your filter for up to 3 separate computers and multiple users.
b. You can set different filters for every user in your family (Rebekah’s filters are set higher than mine.) You can set filters for content, for time and for personal information shared.
c. Safe Eyes sends a text-message to my phone every time my daughter gets on line or exceeds one of the limits I’ve set for her.
d. Safe Eyes sends me a usage report at the end of each week, showing me exactly what sites were blocked, what sites she visited and how long she was on each site.
3) A Great Book: I’m terrible at writing book reviews. Though, I absolutely LOVE books in general; and rely heavily on book reviews to make my own purchasing decisions, I don’t like writing book reviews on my blog. Why? Because I have to enjoy a book thoroughly from cover-to-cover before I feel like I can recommend it with a clear conscience. And, truth-be-told, I only have about 5 book-describing adjectives in my vocabulary: Awesome, Thought-provoking, Witty/Hilarious, and Life-Changing.
Really though, for me, the true measure of a great book is how many times I read portions of it aloud to my husband. And really, how do you articulate that in a book review? It’s harder than it looks.
All that to say, Stuff Christians Like is Awesome, Thought-Provoking, Witty—and Hilarious. It wasn’t Life-Changing, but few satirical books are. I read ENTIRE CHAPTERS of Stuff Christians Like to poor, unsuspecting Jon. No lie. Entire chapters. I couldn’t put it down. Or stop reading it aloud.
Stuff Christian’s Like is written by Jon Acuff, the author the wildly popular blog by the same name. I’ve been a fan of Acuff’s blog for quite some time, and can often be found reading it aloud to my husband. I was so excited about the release of Acuff’s book, I actually pre-ordered it. I don’t do that very often. It was all I dreamed it would be, and more. (See why I don’t write reviews?)
If you’ve been around Christianity for more than a few years and you think Christians are funny, you will love this book. It’s Awesome. And Hilarious.
4) A Great DVD Series: Ten years ago, when my middle-schooler was just a tot, I fell head-over-heals in love with Veggie Tales. When Phil Vischer, the creator of Veggie Tales, wrote his autobiography, Me, Myself and Bob, I fell head-over-heals in love with Phil’s heart. When I got the opportunity to hear Phil speak last year at the Writing for the Soul conference, I fell head-over-heals on top of the other conference attendees, as I pushed and shoved to be first in line to meet Phil. I think I sat on (yes, on) his table for an hour or more, so I could be first in line to have him sign my stuff AND get a picture with him. We’re great friends now. Here is Phil and me at the conference.
And here we are at a recent family holiday gathering in Phil’s home.
And here we are just hanging out with our spouses on a recent date night.
What with our families being so tight and all, I was not surprised when I fell head-over-heals in love with Phil’s latest DVD series: What’s in the Bible?
Again, because I totally stink at writing reviews, I will simply say my children LOVE this series. It’s Awesome, Thought-Provoking, Witty/Hilarious and Life-Changing. If your heart is to equip your children with a strong Biblical foundation, and gain a ton of Biblical knowledge right along with them, What’s in the Bible? is for you.
The songs and characters have already integrated themselves into the Cooper Family Culture. It’s great to have new material to add to our repertoire.
And here is the most Awesomest thing of all! My friend Lisa Smith is hosting a give away this weekend for the recently released What’s in the Bible, Part 4! A freaky side-note? Lisa and I did not plan on talking about this on the exact same day, or ever. Purely coincidental. She asked me if I’d send my readers to her give away. I told her I’d add it at the end of my post. Then I asked her what she was giving away…and it was the very thing I was posting about. True story.
Now, get over there and enter to win…and have an Awesome, Thought-Provoking, Witty/Hilarious, Life-Changing weekend!