4 New Christian Books to Add to Your Reading List

Reading is one of the best ways to pursue growth in your faith. A good devotional or Christian book won’t just affirm your current views or ideas, but present biblical ideas, concepts, and more to help you confront the walls you face in your faith and life, and inspire change and action.

2016 is set to be a year packed with some pretty exciting new Christian books, a few of which are already available to read! Here are four new releases that you won’t want to miss out on—get all four ebooks now and start reading.

4 New Christian Books to Add to your Reading List

 

Find balance with Alli Worthington’s Breaking Busy

When someone asks you how you’ve been, do you find yourself frequently replying with, “busy”? If you’re feeling stuck, scattered or stressed by how busy you are, Breaking Busy: How to Find Peace and Purpose in a World of Crazy is a must-read.

With a forward by well-known author and speaker Christine Caine, Alli Worthington brings together research in social and positive psychology with what the Bible says to help readers know themselves, know God, and ultimately to find peace and purpose in a world where being “crazy busy” is the new normal. Each chapter in Breaking Busy covers topics such as finding connection in relationships, finding your value in God, and God’s calling for your life.

 

Dig into spiritual disciplines with Preston Yancey’s Out of the House of Bread

In Out of the House of Bread: Satisfying Your Hunger for God with the Spiritual Disciplines, author Preston Yancey leads readers in a new direction of spirituality through the symbolism and experience of the spiritual disciplines made plain by the baking of bread. This book is way more than a “bake-along,” though it does start out with a tasty, bread recipe. Yancey says in the introduction, “Bit by bit we’ll . . . talk about how being present and focused in the making of this bread is a lot like being intent and focused in prayer.”

This book will lead you into the practice of spiritual disciplines that are meant to cultivate awareness of ourselves in relation to God, cultivate a relationship with God, and cultivate our relationships with other in community. Out of the House of Bread is well-structured, guiding readers through three parts, each intended for three weeks of study, of disciplines and thoughtful reflection.


Read true stories with a hopeful response in Reggie Dabb’s Just Keep Breathing

Dabb wrote this book in response to thousands of letters and messages he’s received over the 25 years he’s spent speaking in schools and at events, sharing his personal story and the inspirational message that “you can’t change your past, but you can change your future.” In Just Keep Breathing, he shares the real letters and messages of individuals and youths in crisis, and answers them. The result is an honest conversation between Dabbs and the author of each letter, exchanging real thoughts, hardships, and hopes. Dabb approaches each letter with the view that people in crisis don’t need “fixing,” but that their greater needs need to be listened to and valued.

 

Discover joy in a walk through the book of Philippians in David Jeremiah’s Count It All Joy

The apostle Paul wrote his most personal letter while abused and abandoned in a Roman prison. He wrote to believers who lived in the shadow of the Roman tyrant, Nero. And yet this letter, Philippians, is the one of the most joy-filled epistle in the Bible. Weaving together modern stories and historical detail, author David Jeremiah explores Philippians verse by verse, showing us what it means to be joyful in spite of circumstances. Whatever you are facing today, Count It All Joy will inspire you to find the joy that Jesus promises.

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

4 New Ebook Bundle Deals to Build your Relationships

Leading up to Valentine’s Day, Vyrso has put together four ebook bundles to help guide, strengthen, and counsel relationships. You’ll find resources packed with biblical advice and support on marriage, healing hurt relationships, counseling others, and more. These bundles are available for a limited time only, through 2/15!

Add all four ebook bundles to your library!

Healing & Marriage Bundle

Healing & Marriage Bundle

This bundle features two ebooks focused on healing for a hurting spouse and how to seek redemption and romance in a married relationship. Add this bundle to your digital library for just $5.99—that’s 78% off!

You’ll get Marriage Triage: A Guide to Healing for the Hurting Spouse by Stephen Goode and Choosing Him All Over Again: A Story of Romance and Redemption by Juana Mikels.

In Marriage Triage, Goode writes to tend to the wounded Christian whose marriage is in crisis. When the biblical model of marriage has been broken, Marriage Triage will encourage the hurting spouse to make biblical choices when tempted to give in to emotional decisions.

In Choosing Him All Over Again, Mikls uses her own story of marriage and redemption to help others looking to reconcile their marriage. Mikels tells of her leaving her home, husband, and friends to seek peace and happiness—instead she found Jesus. As her faith grew, God rekindled a longing for her to be reconciled to her husband. See how it all plays out in Choosing Him All Over Again.

 

Military Spouses’ Bundle

Military Spouses' Bundle

Military families and the spouses of those who serve in the military experience a whole different set of challenges and stressors than a non-military family. With this bundle, you’ll get two helpful and encouraging resources to provide some extra guidance on living apart from family, reintegrating after a homecoming, and more, all from an author who has first-hand experience in the matter.

You’ll get two ebooks from Carrie Daws, a writer and military spouse—Reintegration: A Military Spouse’s Biblical Guide to Surviving After the Homecoming and Your Extended Family: A Military Spouse’s Biblical Guide to Surviving Within and Without Your Family. Add this bundle to your digital library for just $1.99—that’s 92% off!

In Your Extended Family, Daws writes on what the Bible says about dealing with and how to live apart from family, and provides practical answers to the realities of loneliness and depression that can take over with the stress of deployments and more.

In Reintegration, Daws addresses how families left behind best deal with the transition of a military spouse before and after deployment. Daws says that while the Bible doesn’t specifically mention reintegration, God still gives great advice on preparing our hearts and minds so that our marriage can thrive even through reintegration.

 

Counseling & Relationships Bundle

Counseling & Relationships Bundle

Get two ebooks packed with help to overcome anger and resentment in relationships and advice on counseling couples.

You’ll get Overcoming Emotions That Destroy: Practical Help for Those Angry Feelings That Ruin Relationships by Chip Ingram and Dr. Becca Johnson and How to Counsel a Couple in 6 Sessions or Less by Dr. H. Norman Wright. Add this bundle to your digital library for just $5.99—that’s 79% off!

In Overcoming Emotions that Destroy, Ingram and Dr. Johnson guide readers through dealing with anger and help readers identify whether they are “spewers, leakers, or stuffers.” Readers also learn the difference between good and bad anger, how to gain control of their anger, and how to direct it toward constructive ends. The authors cover solid biblical principles as well as the psychological aspects of our emotions, showing readers how they can actually be constructive tools used by God to transform lives and relationships.

In How to Counsel a Couple in 6 Sessions or Less, addresses major marital issues of communication, family issues, decision making, and more. This highly-practical resource for pastors, or anyone in ministry, can be a helpful tool for working to diagnose problems and refer couples to a professional, if necessary.

As Long as We Both Shall Live & Study Guide Bundle

Get As Long as We Both Shall Live: Experience the Marriage You’ve Always Wanted by Dr. Gary Smalley and Ted Cunningham along with the study guide for just $9.99—that’s 72% off!

This paired collection is a great resource for anyone—pastors, small groups, couples—seeking to learn more about building and sustaining a healthy marriage and what the Bible says about marriage.

Smalley and Cunningham show couples how to defuse the ticking bomb of unrealistic expectations and arm their marriage with healthy communication and honest intimacy.

———

Hurry, these bundles are available for a limited time only, through 2/15!

Add all four ebook bundles to your library today.

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Divine Affection: An Excerpt from Beth Moore’s, Audacious

Beth Moore's Audacious

What does it mean to audaciously love Jesus? Beth Moore, in her latest book, Audacious, seeks to explore this question. In this exclusive excerpt from Audacious, you’ll find inspiration on how to love God and people, as addressed in Mark 12:28—31. Don’t miss your chance to win one of five signed copies of Audacious—this giveaway closes February 5.

————————————————————

One of the scribes approached. When he heard them debating and saw that Jesus answered them well, he asked Him, “Which command is the most important of all?”

“This is the most important,” Jesus answered:

Listen, Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.

“The second is: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other command greater than these.” (Mark 12:28–31)

The tendency of our human nature—at its best—is to reverse the order and make the second command first and the first command second. In other words, first love the ones you can see, then love the One you can’t. It seems perfectly reasonable but, in the exchange of places, we choke the supply and toss the filter. The irony is that the second most important command cannot displace the first without robbing itself. To love God more is never to love people less. It’s to love people best. It’s to relieve them of the responsibility of being your false Christ. It’s to keep their sins against you from being unforgivable and your sins against them from being ignorable. It’s to guard them from our mean-streaks and strong human tendencies to respond to disappointment with punishment. It’s to keep the people close by from cutting their wrists on the razor-sharp blades of our insecurities. It’s to dull the edge of our cravings to be adored. It’s to untie the double knots of codependency. It’s to let the affirmations of others be the overflow and not the essential source of our emotional survival. To love God is to guard man.

Divine affection is a floorless wellspring with the capacity to water every inch of ground your life will ever cover. It makes you capable of loving someone you can’t and appreciating someone you don’t—and not because God suddenly gives you a case of cataracts to keep you from seeing what drives you crazy. God’s love is not blind. Divine love outsourced to human hearts is smart, knowing, and discerning. It is not capped but it is also not easily conned. True love sees. You set your sight with laser-thin focus on Christ alone and, suddenly, your peripheral vision tears wide open and, there, staring straight ahead, you catch a glimpse of an entire vista.

For with You is life’s fountain. In Your light we will see light. (Ps. 36:9)

The catch is, you plant your feet on a land of these wonders only on the other side of faith. We are called by Jesus to jeopardize everything we have and everything we are on this one supreme love, counting all else as loss for the surpassing value of knowing Christ. Only after the risk do we discover the reward: with Him came everything else of ultimate value. Jesus gave voice to a promise in Matthew 6:33 that we can press against our pounding hearts when we fear what we could lose:

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.

To clip the concept in this chapter into its simplest terms, to audaciously love Jesus Christ is not only the best thing you could ever do for yourself. It’s the best thing you could do for those around you even if, at first, they beg to differ. Every relationship in your life stands to benefit from your bold, adventurous affection for Jesus Christ [Click to tweet!], not because you will run them down with a gospel eighteen-wheeler, but because you will walk the gospel out right in front of them. Audacious is not obnoxious. If our spiritual fire burns people instead of warming them, we have zeal without knowledge. When time affords us the luxury—and it doesn’t always—the most effective gospel is show and tell [Click to tweet!]. You share Jesus with your heart by the way you love, with your hands by the things you do, and, yes, of course, you share Jesus with your mouth. Sooner or later, you won’t be able to keep from it. Audacious love unties the shiest tongue.

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

5 Biblical Truths on the Importance of the Body God Gave You

What Does God Say About Your Body?

In the Christian church, we spend a significant amount of time caring for our spiritual health. We focus on creating prayer habits, we engage in the church community, and are intentional about reading the Bible. It’s clear why these things matter. But does God care about how we care of our physical bodies, how healthy or in shape we are? Learn from Rick Warren in this excerpt from The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life.

The Christian family I grew up in attended church services every week. I have listened to thousands of sermons on what God has to say about our souls, our minds, our wills, and our emotions. But not once had I ever heard an entire sermon on God’s view of our bodies. The subject was completely ignored. This is why most people still have no theology of health. While our culture is obsessed with physical beauty and sexy bodies, many believers ignore their bodies as if they don’t matter. But they do.

God has a lot to say about the importance of the body he gave you. It is talked about through the Bible. But for the sake of brevity, let me show you just one chapter of the Bible, 1 Corinthians 6:12 – 20:

“I have the right to do anything,” you say — but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything” — but I will not be mastered by anything. You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! …

Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

Wow! This is definitely an in-your-face, tell-it-like-it-is, no-holds-barred description of what God considers to be the right and wrong use of our bodies. In this and other passages of Scripture we learn five radical truths about our bodies that run counterculturally to everything you hear today.

1. My body belongs to God. It is his property, not mine. I don’t own it, God does. He created my body, and he expects me to use it the way he intended for it to be used. Now we naturally rebel against this idea. Our culture teaches us, “My body is mine to do whatever I want to with it.” But God says, “No, you’re wrong. It’s not your body, because you didn’t create it. I made it, and I loaned it to you to live in while I put you on earth, and I expect you to take care of my creation.”

The fact is, everything you can see on earth was created by God. He made it, and he owns it. What you think you own is really on loan. The Bible says, “The body … is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body” (1 Corinthians 6:13).

Today we make the same common mistake Greek philosophers did thousands of years ago. Aristotle, Socrates, and Plato believed in dualism,4 which included the idea that your mind (or spirit) is important, but your body isn’t important spiritually. They devalued the body. In fact, some Greek philosophers taught that your body is evil, so it really didn’t matter if you messed it up.

The Bible tells us the exact opposite. Your body is holy because God made it, and everything God makes has a purpose. We are to bring glory to God with our bodies, so we can’t compartmentalize our lives and think that we can divorce our bodies and live as if only our spirit matters. [Click to tweet!] God owns your body!

2. Jesus paid for my body when he died for me on the cross. As we saw earlier, 1 Corinthians 6:19 – 20 tells us that our bodies have been bought!

Millions of TV viewers love watching American Pickers andPawn Stars because it’s fun to guess how much old items are worth. The owners often think something they own is more valuable than it really is. But the reality is that something is only worth whatever someone is willing to pay for it! You may think your house is worth more, but it’s really only worth what a buyer is willing to pay for it.

God has never made a person he didn’t love. If you want to know how valuable your life is to God, just look at the cross. With his arms outstretched, nailed to the cross, Jesus was saying, “This is how valuable you are to me. I love you this much! I’d rather die than live without you.” You are priceless.

Now, if you are worth dying for, don’t you think God wants you to take better care of yourself? If you bought a million-dollar race horse, would you feed it junk food and keep it up all night? Of course not! You would protect your investment. The fact is, Jesus has made an investment in you. He paid for your life with his life, and he expects you to take care of his investment.

3. God’s Spirit lives in my body. When you say yes to God, accepting by faith what Jesus did for you and trusting his grace and forgiveness to save you, then God puts his Spirit inside you as a guarantee of your salvation. The Bible says it like this: “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” (1 Corinthians 6:19).

When God puts his Spirit inside you, your body becomes a temple of God, a residence for his love. So let me ask you this: If you saw someone vandalizing or damaging a temple dedicated to God, wouldn’t you consider that a crime? Of course! But you abuse and vandalize God’s temple, your body, when you deprive it of rest and sleep, overeat, put too much stress on it, and fail to take care of it.

4. God expects me to take care of my body. I am not the owner of my body, but I am the caretaker, or manager, of it. The word formanager in the Bible is steward. Taking care of my body is an issue of spiritual stewardship. In fact, God tells me that one day I will have to give an account for how well I managed everything he gave to me, including my body. I will stand before God and have to answer the question, “What did you do with what I gave you?”

In The Purpose Driven Life I explain how your life on earth is a test, a trust, and a temporary assignment. This life is preparation for our next life, which will last forever in eternity. God is testing you on earth to see what he can trust you with in eternity. He is watching how you use your time, your money, your talents, your opportunities, your mind, and yes, even your body. Are you making the most of what you’ve been given? God isn’t going to evaluate you on the basis of the bodies he gave to other people, but he will judge what you did with what you have been given.

5. God will resurrect my body after I die. God never wastes anything. He gets themaximum use out of all he creates. Right now you are living in the 1.0 version of your body. You will get the 2.0 version of your body in heaven. The Bible says, “By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also” (1 Corinthians 6:14).

We don’t really know what our resurrected bodies will be like, but we do have a few clues. We know that after Jesus came from the grave, he walked around Jerusalem for forty days in a resurrected body. He was seen multiple times by many different groups of people, including one event where more than 500 people saw and talked with him. So we know that other people will still recognize you in the new 2.0 version of your body in heaven, but there will be one major difference: in heaven your body will be perfect, with no blemishes, no broken parts, no wounds, and no pain.

Did you notice the phrase by his power in that last Bible verse? This is what makes The Daniel Plan different from other approaches. It is built on trusting in God’s power to help you change, not merely your own willpower. Let’s be honest. Willpower works for a few weeks, or maybe a month or two at best. This is why New Year’s resolutions never last. Trying to change by willpower alone is exhausting. You can keep it up for a while, but it feels unnatural and stressful to force yourself to be different simply on the basis of willpower.

In The Daniel Plan you will learn the power of prayer, the power of faith, the power of letting God’s Spirit refocus your thoughts, the power of fellowship and community in a supportive small group, and most of all, the power of God’s Spirit inside you, helping you to make the changes God wants you to make and you want to make.

————————————————

Join Rick Warren, Dr. Daniel Amen, and Dr. Mark Hyman in The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life and learn how to optimize your health in the key areas of faith, food, fitness, focus, and friends. Through 1/12, save on companion devotionals and ebooks to The Daniel Planget The Daniel Plan Jumpstart Guide: Daily Steps to a Healthier Life for just 99 cents and The Daniel Plan 365 Day Devotional: Daily Encouragement for a Healthier Life for $1.99!

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Read Matt Chandler’s Ebook for Free

On February 19 and 20, Matt and Lauren Chandler are hosting The Mingling of Souls Marriage Conference to talk about God’s good design for love, marriage, sex, and redemption.

Then when you follow the Mingling of Souls Marriage Conference Faithlife Groupyou’ll get free access to Matt Chandler’s ebook, The Mingling of Souls, from January 15 through February 15.  

When your copy of the ebook is unlocked, you’ll be able to follow along with Matt and Lauren as they lead a book study, so you can ask questions about marriage and intimacy as you read. 

Here’s an exclusive excerpt from The Mingling of Souls. Throughout the ebook Matt Chandler takes a look at The Song of Solomon and unpacks it’s candid—and timeless—insights on romance, dating, marriage, and sex. He applies it through practical, real-life examples helping the reader to connect with the text. 

Still Staying—I’m Not Going Anywhere

I'm Not Going Anywhere

“Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm, for love is strong as death, jealousy is fierce as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, he would be utterly despised.” (Song of Solomon 8: 6–7)

For the record, the word for “love” in this passage is that word ahava. It’s the clinging love, the “I’m not going anywhere” love.

Ahava is as strong as death. Its flashes are fiery, sourced in the consuming fire that is God. All the oceans covering the earth cannot drown ahava. It is worth more than all the treasures of the world.

If we’re going to be faithful to the end, we will often have to lean into the covenant that we made with our spouse and with the Lord. We will need to access again and again, by God’s grace, this devoted ahava, which says, “It’s not an option for me to go anywhere because Jesus would not abandon his bride.”

I have been physically fit my entire life. I am tall and lean and have always been strong for a man as lean as I am. I have been told I have a powerful presence. I like to have fun, I like to goof around, and I have been blessed with what seems to be a boundless amount of energy. These were things that attracted Lauren to me. She often described me as our family’s “recreation coordinator.”

But then I got sick.

And all of that strength and vitality, in a matter of months, simply vanished. The ability to be playful, the ability to be creative, the ability to goof off were gone. Not only that, but my ability to really take care of myself, to do fairly simple tasks, vanished. I couldn’t even take a shower by myself, and the kind of accompaniment I needed there was not sexy, all right?

I lost the ability to even stand.

I lost so much of my ability to, in a way, be myself. There was no way I could romance my wife. My desire for sexual intimacy was gone. For a while I began to wonder what the brain surgeries had done to me. I wondered if, should I ever get over this cancer stuff, I would always be unable to do some of the things I enjoyed so much. Maybe I was going to be broken this way for a long time.

Lauren saw me at my worst. I wasn’t in that kind of depressive “I hate everyone” mentality, but I was at my worst in terms of being very weak, unattractive, unstable, unable to get myself to the toilet so I could vomit and lie on the cool tile of the floor. I was a mess. And in those moments, I praised God for ahava love. As I look back, I still praise God for ahava love.

I praise God that this flighty kind of Cupidian, Valentine-y, emotive love isn’t what we’re hoping will hold us all together! Praise God that the love we trust to keep us from falling apart is ahava. Praise God that as miserable and messy as I was, my wife was a regular reminder of God’s grace to me. (Click to tweet) She didn’t turn and run. She stayed with me, helping me, loving me, and carrying me. Lauren demonstrated her love toward me in this: that she lived into an ahava love even when I could not reciprocate.

———

To read more follow the Mingling of Souls Marriage Conference Faithlife Group and you’ll get free access to The Mingling of Souls from January 15 through February 15!

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Top 20 Authors to Watch in 2016

Authors to Watch

With so many upcoming releases from talented Christian authors, 2016 is shaping up to be an exciting year for readers. We reached out to the most popular Christian publishers and asked them about their top picks for authors to watch in 2016.

Packed with seasoned authors and up-and-coming writers alike, we’ve compiled a list of our top 20 authors who have new books coming out this year and put them in order based on their books’ release dates.

There are so many exciting and new projects coming this year! Take a look:

1. Dave Willis

Dave Willis is a pastor and the founder of StrongerMarriages.org, which has a total weekly reach in the millions. He speaks regularly at conferences and churches across the country, as well as on podcasts and webinars, on issues ranging from leadership to social media strategies to marriage. Don’t miss Dave’s new bookThe 7 Laws of Love. In his ebook, he presents seven laws of love found throughout the Bible, then works through the practical insights offered when these truths are lived out in any significant relationship—including with one’s self, God, spouse, family, friends, neighbors, and even enemies.

2. Lauren Chandler

Lauren Chandler is a wife and mother of three. Her husband, Matt Chandler, serves as the lead teaching pastor at The Village Church in Dallas, Texas. The Lord has taken Matt and Lauren on a challenging journey, beginning with the November 2009 discovery of a malignant brain tumor in Matt. Lauren and her family have been given a deeper trust in clinging to the Lord and his cross during this appointed season of valleys and storms. Learn from Lauren about God’s unchanging love for his people, even when we don’t feel like it’s there in her new release, Steadfast Love, available now.

3. Nabeel Qureshi

In 2014 Nabeel Qureshi released, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim’s Journey to Christ which details former his journey as a former devout Muslim describes his dramatic journey from Islam to Christianity, complete with the friendships, investigations, and dreams and visions he encountered along the way. Since his conversion Nabeel has made ministry his full-time occupation and he now serves as a speaker with Ravi Zacharias International Ministries and holds an MD from Eastern Virginia Medical School, an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University, and an MA in religion from Duke University. Nabeel is releasing two new ebooks that build off of his first release including a study guide and a ebook exploring if there can truly be no God but one.

Releasing in April, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus Study Guide: A Former Muslim Shares the Evidence that Led Him from Islam to Christianity, builds on the powerful story and arguments Nabeel shared in the orginal, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus. Both Nabeel Qureshi and co-author Kevin Harney take viewers deeper into apologetics and evangelism among Muslims with this complete study course.

Available in August, look for Nabeel’s No God But One: Allah or Jesus?, where he examines Islam and Christianity in detail, exploring areas of crucial conflict and unpacking the relevant evidence. Both religions teach that there is only one God, but who deserves to be worshiped, Allah or Jesus?

4. Alli Worthington

Alli Worthington has set a goal focused on helping women live the life they were created to live. As an author, speaker, blogger, the Executive Director of Propel Women, and co-founder BlissDom Events, Alli has helped individuals, small business owners and Fortune 500 companies be more successful. Alli’s no-nonsense, guilt-free take on motherhood, parenting and balance has led to appearances on The Today Show and Good Morning America. And we are looking forward to Alli’s new ebookBreaking Busy releasing at the end of January. In Breaking Busy, learn how to stop chasing what leaves you empty and start doing what you were created to do.

5. Bethany Hoang and Kristen Deede Johnson

Bethany Hoang and Kristen Deede Johnson are on a mission to prove that Christians are called to bring justice. Bethany engages leaders around the world with the critical connection between justice and spiritual formation and regularly speaks on behalf of the Institute for Biblical Justice for International Justice Mission. Kristen is the teacher and writer in areas of theology, culture, formation, and political theory at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan. These two have teamed up to write The Justice Calling, releasing in February, an ebook that dives into different justice movements and shows how the Bible calls us to engage in the battle against injustice. Bethany and Kristen connect justice to Scripture, the character of God, and the long traditions of the church so that our passion meets perseverance and justice becomes an enduring and integrated part of our life and faith.

6. Paul Pastor

Paul J. Pastor is a writer, editor, and grassroots pastor living with his family in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge. His work finds beauty and timeless wisdom in issues of faith, culture, and modern Christian ministry. Coming in Febuary, look for his first ebook, The Face of the Deep: Exploring the Person of the Holy Spirit. The Face of the Deep invites you on a quest for the Holy Spirit that journeys through our world and Bible. The adventure is infused with wonder and symbolic imagination—from the black void of Genesis 1 all the way through the explosive re-creation at the close of Revelation.

7. Voice of the Martyrs

The Voice of the Martyrs is a non-profit inter-denominational Christian organization dedicated to assisting persecuted families worldwide with five main purposes that include: to encourage and empower Christian to fulfill the Great Commission to provide practical relief and spiritual support, to equip persecuted Christians to love and win to Christ those who are opposed to the gospel, to undertake projects of encouragements, helping believers rebuild their lives, and to promote the fellowship of all believers by informing the world of the faith and courage of persecuted Christians.

Coming this March, the Voice of the Martyrs is releasing a collection of true stories from Christians facing persecution in the Middle East, I-Am-N: Stories of Christians Facing Islamic Extremism. Wherever we live, we have camaraderie with those who are persecuted—come meet their families, read their stories, and deepen your faith in a God who gives us the courage to shine in a dark and hurting world.

8. Holley Gerth

Holley Gerth loves Jesus and enjoys encouraging the hearts of women through her popular blog as well as books like You’re Already Amazing, You’re Going to Be Okay, and You’re Loved No Matter What. Not only is she a successful author, but she is also a certified life coach, a writer for Day Spring, has her Masters in Counseling, and helped cofound (in)courage.me. Coming in March you’ll find Holly’s new ebook, You’re Already Amazing: LifeGrowth GuideWith more than 80,000 copies sold, You’re Already Amazing has clearly resonated with the hearts of women. Now Holley Gerth fans have the opportunity to go deeper into the book and into their own hearts with the accompanying LifeGrowth Guide, perfect for either small group use or individual study.

9. Logan Wolfram

Logan Wolfram is the executive director and host of Allume, a conference for Christian women to meet up and encourage one another. Logan loves to write, connect, and encourage women. This March don’t miss Logan’s first release Curious Faith: Rediscovering Hope in the God of Possibility. Curious Faith focuses on the innate curiosity to explore, marvel, and believe there is more to life, and explores the possibility of a god who is unlimited, unpredictable, and ever-loving. In these pages, Logan invites you to overcome feelings and outside circumstances that inhibit growth and rob you of hope.

10. Andy Crouch

Andy Crouch is the executive editor of Christianity Today and the author of books such as Culture Making and Playing God. Andy serves on the governing boards of Fuller Theological Seminary and Equitas Group, a philanthropic organization focused on ending child exploitation in Haiti and Southeast Asia, and is also a senior fellow of International Justice Mission’s Institute for Biblical Justice. This March look for his new releaseStrong and Weak: Embracing a Life of Love, Risk and True Flourishingan ebook all about true flourishing and that it surprisingly requires being both strong and weak.

11. David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons

David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons, co-authors of the bestselling ebook, unChristian, have teamed up to write a new release coming this March, Good Faith: Being a Christian When Society Thinks You’re Irrelevant and Extreme. Good Faith works through the growing problem of trying to live faithfully in a culture that seems increasingly hostile. Written with a hope to help Christians understand what they believe and why, Good Faith invites readers to understand the heart behind opposing views and show them how to be loving, life-giving friends despite profound differences. David is president and majority owner of Barna Group, where he has supervised or directed interviews with more than 500,000 individuals and overseen hundreds of nationwide, representative research studies. Gabe created Q, a learning community that mobilizes Christians to think well and advance good in society.

12. Gwen Smith

Gwen Smith is the author of Broken into Beautiful and one of the three co-founders of Girlfriends in God, a conference and devotional ministry with more than 500,000 subscribers from all across the world. This March don’t miss Gwen’s new release, I Want It All: Exchanging Your Average Life for Deeper Faith, Greater Power, and More Impact. Smith knows how easy it is to think I can’t make a big difference for God because I’m just an ordinary woman with an ordinary life. But she is confident that God created us to join him in doing amazing work in the world. He created us to live with abundant joy, courage, and influence. I Want It All will ignite a fire in your heart to experience more faith, more power, and more impact.

13. Sean McDowell

Sean McDowell is an educator and a popular speaker at schools, churches, and conferences nationwide. He is author of Ethix: Being Bold in a Whatever World, coauthor of 77 FAQs About God and the Bible, Experience Your Bible, and Understanding Intelligent Design, and is currently pursuing a PhD in apologetics and worldview studies. His latest project, coming in March, is the ebookA New Kind of Apologist. McDowell edited and collected contributions from more than 20 leading apologists for A New Kind of Apologist, and it will be your new favorite go-to resource for effectively defending the Christian faith in our changing culture. Readers will discover and adopt fresh strategies for reaching those who are outside the church with the truth of the gospel.

14. John Piper

John Piper is a widely respected theologian and bestselling author who served as Pastor for Preaching and Vision of Bethlehem Baptist Church for 33 years. He still serves as chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary. In 1994, Piper founded Desiring God Ministries, which provides Piper’s sermons, articles, and information on titles he has authored. Several of Piper’s books have been Evangelical Christian Publishers Association Christian book award winners including What Jesus Demands from the World, Pierced by the Word, and God’s Passion for His Glory.

You won’t want to miss his new release coming late March, A Peculiar Glory, that explores why Christians have declared the Bible to be the Word of God. Piper unpacks what Scripture teaches about itself from Genesis to Revelation, its unique “self-authenticating” nature, and its unparalleled ability to showcase God’s peculiar glory. In it you’ll find a solid foundation for Christians’ unshakable confidence in the Bible.

15. Bobby Conway

Bobby Conway serves as lead pastor of Life Fellowship Church near Charlotte, NC. He is a graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary (ThM), Southern Evangelical Seminary (DMin), and is a PhD candidate at the University of Birmingham, England. He is the author of The Fifth Gospel and Doubting Toward Faith and is the founding host of The One-Minute Apologist. Look for his new ebook, coming this April, Does God Exist? Bobby has spent time answering a lot of the hard, and sometimes confusing, questions and mysteries of the Bible. In Does God Exist? you’ll discover life-changing answers to these questions and more: If God is good, why is there evil? How can a loving God send people to hell? Who made God anyway?

16. Jen Wilkin

Jen Wilkin is a speaker, writer, and teacher of women’s Bible studies. She has a background in women’s ministry, and has organized and led studies for women in home, church, and parachurch contexts. She is the author of Women of the Word: How to Study the Bible with Both Our Hearts and Our Minds. Look for her newest release coming at the end of April, None Like Him: 10 Ways God is Different from Us (and Why That’s a Good Thing). In None Like Him, Jen Wilkin leads readers on a journey to discover 10 ways God is different from us—and why that’s a good thing. In the process, she highlights the joy of seeing our limited selves in relation to a limitless God, and how such a realization frees us from striving to be more than we were created to be.

17. Lecrae Moore

Lecrae is a Grammy award winning hip-hop artist whose 2014 album, Anomaly, debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200, Rap, Digital, Christian, Gospel, and Independent charts. His seven studio albums and mixtapes have sold more than 1.5 million copies. You won’t want to miss his first book, coming late spring. Written as an autobiography, Unashamedis the story of Lecrae’s journey to faith and freedom. He holds nothing back as he divulges the most sensitive details of his life, answers his critics, shares intimate handwritten journal entries, and powerfully models how to be Christian in a secular age.

18. Andrew and Rachel Wilson

Andrew Wilson is a pastor at Kings Church in Eastbourne in the United Kingdom, a columnist for Christianity Today, and the author of numerous books. This June look for a book co-authored by both Andrew and his wife, Rachel, The Life We Never Expected: Hopeful Reflections on the Challenges of Parenting Children with Special NeedsThe Life We Never Expected details how Andrew and Rachel answered the question, what do you do when hard or painful circumstances turn your world upside down, resulting in a life you never expected? after both of their children were diagnosed with regressive autism. Refreshingly honest, this book explores the highs and lows of raising children with specials needs, reflecting on the broader question of how to cope with suffering of all kinds.

19. Perry Noble

Perry Noble is the author of Unleash!: Breaking Free from Normalcy and Overwhelmed: Winning the War against Worry. He is the founding and senior pastor of NewSpring Church, which was rated #2 on the Outreach 100 America’s Fastest-Growing Churches list in 2013. His primary concerns are being a servant to Jesus Christ; a husband to his wife, Lucretia; and a father to their daughter, Charisse. Perry is also passionate about seeing people meet Jesus, leading his church staff, and pouring himself into other church leaders on a local and global level.  This summer don’t miss his new release, 20 Questions to Ask Before You Date.

20. Raechel Myers and Amanda Williams

Amanda Williams and Raechel Myers are the co-founders of She Reads Truth, a blog, app, and social platform to encourage women to stay in the Word of God everyday. Their ministry started as a small group of strangers on the internet who wanted to be more intentional about reading God’s Word. What began as a casual conversation is now an entire community of women all over the world in pursuit of Jesus.

Amanda is crazy about words. True words are her favorite, one of many reasons she adores her role as Chief Content Officer of She Reads Truth. Amanda enjoys dancing with her kids, reading herself to sleep, and explaining that her maiden name really is Bible. And Raechel loves God’s Word. A reluctant writer but lover of story, she delights in the evidence of God’s beauty, goodness, and truth in everyday life—just ask her kids. Look for their upcoming ebook She Reads Truth coming this fall. Born out of the experiences of hundreds of thousands of women who Raechel and Amanda have walked alongside as they walk with the Lord, She Reads Truth is the message that will help you understand the place of God’s Word in your life.

________________________

Share this list with your friends, church, small group, and family!

TwitterShare FacebookShare

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Happy New Year—Get Four Free Ebooks Today Only!

Ring in the new year with four free ebooks and read them with Vyrso’s free ereader app! With the Vyrso app you’ll read your new ebooks, discover more freebies, and enjoy features such as one-touch Bible references, and highlights and notes that sync across all platforms.

Add all four ebooks to your library for free today—12/31!

Hope . . . the Best of Things by Joni Eareckson Tada—free through 12/31.

Hope..the Best of Things

This special booklet guides readers toward a fresh perspective on suffering that is grounded in this beloved author’s life experiences and journey with God.

For forty years, Joni Eareckson Tada has lived in a wheelchair as a spinal cord-injured quadriplegic. And the heaven-sent hope found only in Christ has saved her life.

Seeking to share stories and scriptural encouragement, as well as hard-won insights about suffering and the goodness of God, Joni has written this special booklet so that those who long to find hope will draw closer to God and develop new eyes toward their difficulties.

 

Becoming Fearless: My Ongoing Journey of Learning to Trust God by Michelle Aguilar with foreword by Jillian Michaels—free through 1/1.

Becoming Fearless

As the Season 6 winner of The Biggest Loser, Michelle Aguilar goes beyond her grand-prize victory to inspire readers to overcome fear.

“I will never forget the emotions that night as I stepped up to the scale and won the title as America cheered me on. It was an unforgettable journey from ‘little girl lost’ to ‘champion crowned,’ and the priceless gift I’d been given—to become fearless—is one that will keep on giving.”—Michelle Aguilar

Michelle Aguilar’s inspiring story goes beyond her grand-prize victory on television’s immensely popular The Biggest Loser.

Becoming Fearless is about having faith in God when you’ve lost faith in yourself.

It is an encouragement to “feel the fear” in any obstacle in life without being paralyzed by it. And, it is a story about reconciliation between Michelle and her mother, an exploration of the difficult and freeing work of forgiveness, and a reminder that what you learn on the journey is even more important than the destination.

 

Rearview by Mike Dellosso—free through 12/31.

Rearview

Get a featured novel from the popular 7 Hours Series!

In each installment of 7 Hours, a character is visited by the enigmatic Thomas Constant, who makes a heart-stopping statement: “You are about to die. But you may choose from one of three options: Live seven more hours, travel back in time and relive seven hours, or accept the inevitable and die now.”

Professor Dan Blakely has it all . . . until a false accusation leaves him in financial ruin with nothing to fall back on and little hope.

In a moment of desperation, he decides to do the unthinkable. But when he loses control of his SUV and careens down the side of a mountain, his plans take another turn.

Trapped beneath the frame of his mangled vehicle, Dan is visited by a mysterious stranger who offers him three choices. Filled with regret, Dan makes a decision . . . but little does he know that his troubles have only just begun.

Emissary by Thomas Locke—free through 12/31.

Emissary

Add the first ebook in the Legends of the Realm Series by Thomas Locke.

Hyam is a likeable lad who will make a fine farmer someday. But he carries a burden few can fathom.

As his mother slips toward death, she implores him to return to Long Hall, where he spent five years as an apprentice. It was there that Hyam’s extraordinary capacity for mastering languages came to light–and soon cast him into the shadows of suspicion. How could any human learn the forbidden tongues with such ease? When Hyam dares to seek out the Mistress of the Sorceries, her revelation tears his world asunder.

He has no choice but to set out on the foreboding path–which beckons him to either his destiny or his doom. An encounter with an enchanting stranger reminds him that he is part hero and part captive. As Hyam struggles to interpret the omens and symbols, he is swept up by a great current of possibilities–and dangers.

———

Add one more for just $0.99Through December 31, get Knowing God Knowing Myself: An Invitation to Daily Discovery by Cecil Murphey for just $0.99.

Knowing God Knowing Myself

Bestselling author Cecil Murphey has enraptured countless readers with his lyrical style and deft storytelling, selling millions of books and winning numerous awards.

Yet behind the scenes of his successful career, Murphey is on a personal quest for a deeper knowledge of God and himself.

Out of this thirst for the transcendent comes Knowing God, Knowing Myself, a collection of reflective statements captured with Murphey’s inimitable style.

Whether readers begin with a desire to know God or to know themselves, Knowing God, Knowing Myself will invite them to discover how these two longings are inextricably entwined.

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Looking for a New Year’s Resolution?

Resolutions

2016 is just three days away, and it’s time start setting those New Year’s resolutions! This year, we want to encourage you to memorize scripture!

Memorizing scripture may seem a bit old-school—but there are so many benefits. From helping you rest in God to meditating on words of hope to hold in your mind as you go through out your day, memorizing God’s word lets you find an internal source of joy and hope, no matter your circumstance.

Robert J. Morgan writes about memorization in his ebook, 100 Bible Verses Everyone Should Know by Heart saying, “It’s vital for mental and emotional health and for spiritual well-being, it’s as powerful as acorns dropping into furrows in the forest. It allows God’s words to sink into your brain and permeate your subconscious thoughts. It saturates the personality, satiates the soul, and stockpiles the mind.”

To encourage you as you embark upon 2016, we have grabbed 20 verses to memorize from Robert’s ebook:

1. Genesis 1:1 – In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

2. Romans 6:23 – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

3. 2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness

4. John 14:6 – Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

5. Isaiah 53: 5 – But He was pierced because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities; punishment for our peace was on Him, and we are healed by His wounds.

6. Psalm 100:5 – For the LORD is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations.

7. Romans 8:28 – We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose.

8. 1 John 1:7 – But if we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.

9. Psalm 55:22 – Cast your burden on the LORD, and He will support you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.

10. Romans 12:2 – Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.

11. Proverbs 1:7 – The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.

12. Galatians 5:22 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith.

13. Psalm 118:24 – This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

14. Revelation 12:12 – Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.

15. Philippians 4:7 – And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

16. James 1:5 – Now if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without criticizing, and it will be given to him.

17. Ephesians 2:8 – For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift.

18. Colossians 3:17 – And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

19. Isaiah 9:6 – For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

20. Revelation 21:1 – For a child will be born for us, a son will be given to us, and the government will be on His shoulders. He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

———

Grab 100 Bible Verses Everyone Should Know by Heart today! Through it you will discover the importance of memorization and find 80 more verses selected to help you meditate on the goodness of God!

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Vyrso’s Best-Sellers for 2015 — Reader Favorites

Vyrso's Best of 2015

The results are in for this year’s top 20 reader favorites on Vyrso! In 2015, Randy Alcorn and Matt Chandler were crowd favorites, and marriage, religious history, and apologetics were popular topics.

If you’re looking for a little help with this year’s resolutions, this list is the perfect place to start. These titles are ideal for growing in your faith, learning more about the Bible, and improving relationships.

Grow your digital library with the most popular reads from 2015!

Download 19 of the ebooksthis link will add all ebooks on the list, with the exception of the Wiersbe Bible Study Series, to your cart.

Plus get the entire Wiersbe Bible Study Seriesthis link will add all 45 ebooks in the Wiersbe Bible Study series to your digital library.

2015 Reader Favorites

1. Counter Culture by David Platt

2. Happiness by Randy Alcorn

3. The Mingling of Souls by Matt Chandler

4. Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi

5. The Four Seasons of Marriage by Gary Chapman

6. Good or God? by John Bevere

7. Onward by Russell Moore

8. What I Wish I’d Known: Insight from Leading Women in Ministry by 26 well-known authors, including Kay Arthur, Elyse FitzPatrick, Liz Curtis Higgs and more —get it free!

9. Brimstone by Hugh Halter

10. Fight: A Christian Case for Non-Violence by Preston Sprinkle

11. The Façade by Michael Heiser

12. Beyond Opinion by Ravi Zacharias

13. 60 People Who Shaped the Church: Learning from Sinners, Saints, Rogues, and Heroes by Alton Gansky

14. The 100 Most Important Events in Christian History by Adrian Curtis, Randy Petersen, and J. Stephen Lang

15. 10 Questions Every Christian Must Answer by Alex McFarland and Elmer L. Towns

16. Truth Considered and Applied: Examining Postmodernism, History, and Christian Faith by Stewart E. Kelly

17. Faith on Trial: Would the Testimony of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John Stand Up in Court? by Pamela Binnings Ewen

18. Developing a Biblical Worldview: Seeing Things God’s Way by C. Fred Smith

19. Wiersbe Bible Study Series by Warren Wiersbe

20. A Year of Prayer by John MacArthur

Make sure your friends and family don’t miss the best-sellers of 2015—share this list now!

TwitterShare FacebookShare

Stay tuned to all the best deals and latest news on Christian ebooks: subscribe to Vyrso Voice today!

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

The Christmas Baby

The Christmas Baby

Merry Christmas! 

As you spend time today focusing with family and friends on Jesus, the reason for the season, the Christmas baby that was born so long ago and the hope that he brings, reflect with a thoughtful post by Don Wilton.

Surely no birth has ever garnered more publicity than the birth of our Christmas baby. How well acquainted we are with all the hoopla that surrounds the announcement, the nine month wait and the birth of that little person – so wonderfully made by the specific design of our Lord and our God.

Every baby, without exception, fashioned by the foreknowledge of God and designed to look like God, love like God and live with God forever.

At least this is how God intended every baby to be. But sin interrupted His mighty plan. And so it is that from birth not one single baby is ever born with an ability to look like God or love like God or even live with God.

Here comes the Christmas baby.

This baby, according to God’s gracious love for man, is the only means by which all sinners can be reconciled to a holy and righteous God. (Click to Tweet!)

It was because he was born that all people can look like God and love like God and live with God forever. So, this Christmas baby is well worth seeking after. A visit to his birth manger is not optional if, in fact, any person has any prospect of looking like God and loving like God and living with God forever.

What a story unfolded . . .

First, there was the announcement of the birth.

Mary’s world must have been rocked, to say the least. God chose one very precious young lady to carry the Christ baby. Extreme surprise must have been followed by extreme shock. “Horrors” she might have thought – especially considering the potential scandal.

But God was involved all the way – just as he is involved in the birth of every child. Only he is the giver and taker of life. So Mary’s horror was quickly soothed into a contented silence that always comes when God speaks.

Second, there was the birth itself.

How very unkind of the Inn Keeper to turn his back on a very pregnant young lady. My, how times have changed. Today he would be sued! We would all have it in for him -with no pun intended!

But what if we really understood he said “sorry young lady, no room here,” because he could not help but say this? To what extent was God involved in His master plan for the redemption of all mankind? Unless, of course, we want to imagine some sorry little Inn Keeper had enough power to interfere in God’s sovereign plan.

Anyway, he said “no room” because God fully intended for the Savior of the world to “suffer in all points just as we do” – yet without sin. This suffering was the very suffering Jesus would carry with Him all the way to the cross. There our suffering and sin would be put to death with Him and then buried in a grave to rise no more. This Christmas Baby would identify with us in every way.

Third, there is a  very important thought about the birth of the Christmas baby. 

Everyone in the world was impacted by it.

At the time when this all happened, there were a bunch of people who found themselves immediately caught up in this beautiful little baby’s birth. A close examination of them takes us exactly where God intends for us to be taken.

Think about the shepherds, the angels, the wise men, the King (Herod) and his court, as well as the by standers who we will never be able to properly identify.

These people represented a cross section of society. They were commoners, small business owners, shop keepers, academics, camel riders, court servants and rude monarchs! Just like Jesus! Right there at the manger it all came together.

One humble young lady giving birth to one precious little baby boy in a smelly stable while covered in a mixture of hay and cow poop!

This is Jesus. The Son of the Living God!

He was the same one who would go to a cruel Roman cross and take upon himself the sin of the world. He was the same one who would conquer sin and death and the grave. And he was the same one who would ascend to be seated at the right hand of the Father and now making intercession for you and for me.

Who exactly? It was the “you and me” who first heard the news about His birth. It was the same “you and me” who sent him to the cross. And it was the same “you and me” who, because of His glorious resurrection, will be raised up to walk with Him in newness of life. 

The same “you and me” who will come back with Him when He returns to this earth – not to be surrounded by the difficult and the damning, but to be clothed in the robes of the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

This is the Christmas baby.

———

Don Wilton is the senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Spartanburg, South Carolina. He is the founder and president of The Encouraging Word, a broadcast ministry, and is passionate about hosting teaching tours to the Holy Land each year including Israel, Egypt, Jordan, and Rome.

Comments:   |  Leave a Comment...

Copyright 2016 Faithlife / Logos Bible Software