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.

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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!

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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.

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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!

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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!

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

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The Incarnation and Christian Spirituality

The Incarnation

This advent season, check the Vyrso blog each weekday for advent reflections that will inspire and encourage you to reflect on the true reason for Christmas. 

Take time to reflect today with a modified excerpt from Barry D Jones’ Dwell: Life with God for the World, published by IVP, an ebook written to encourage readers to discover their mission and how it fits with their relationship with God.

The most important moment in the birth of a child is the moment when the little one lets out her first cry.

It is the vital sign of life. In fact, it used to be the common practice for doctors to help this moment along by holding the newborn by her feet and slapping her backside. While the practice offends some contemporary sensibilities, it served a crucial function.

At birth, a baby’s lungs are filled with fluid. The first cry helps expel the fluid and allows the baby to take her first breath. The lungs expand. Oxygen rushes in. Respiration begins. Her life in the world commences with the rhythm of breathing in and breathing out.

We rarely pay much attention to the rhythm of our breathing unless something interrupts it. But this rhythm pulses through every moment of our lives from the first cry of life until our dying breath. The average adult takes between twelve and eighteen breaths every minute, which means the rhythm of inhaling and exhaling occurs more than twenty thousand times every day.

The rhythm of our breath is the rhythm of life.

There is a rhythm of life that pulses through the biblical vision of what it means to be human.

A kind of breathing in and breathing out—an inhale and an exhale.

The breathing in is our participation in the divine life.

The breathing out, our participation in the divine mission.

The breathing in is intimately connected to our experience of God’s personal presence. It is life lived with God.

The breathing out involves our participation in God’s just reign. It is life lived for the sake of the world.

The breathing in we often call “spirituality.”

And the breathing out we call “mission.”

At the heart and center of the staggering story of grace told on the pages of the Bible is the claim that the God of the universe experienced that first rush of oxygen into his lungs when a peasant baby let out his first cry in a stable in Bethlehem two millennia ago.

The single greatest difference between Christianity and every other theistic religion is succinctly captured in John 1:14: “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.”

In the incarnation, Jesus embodied the breathing in and breathing out that constitutes the biblical vision of what is means to be human.

In Jesus, the personal presence of God took on our humanity and “made his dwelling among us” in order to make a way for us to participate in the divine life. Throughout his life he modeled what it looks like to live in intimate connection with the Father and dependence on the Spirit.

Through faith in his work on our behalf, we participate in the divine life and are filled with the indwelling Spirit, God’s empowering presence. In his incarnate life, Jesus gave us the normative vision of spirituality, of life with God. (Click to Tweet!)

So too Jesus came, sent by the Father, to bring the just reign of God into the broken world subject to the reign of sin, death and the devil.

The Christian story knows nothing of a detached deity who watches disapprovingly as the world he made spins madly on. As the Christian story goes, God does not stand at a distance merely watching the suffering of his creatures and the brokenness of his world.

Instead he enters into that brokenness and takes on their suffering. He becomes a victim of human cruelty and injustice. In doing so he secures a hope beyond the brokenness of this world as we know it.

In the incarnation of Jesus, God made his dwelling among us as the ultimate means of accomplishing his mission to rescue and renew his good but broken creation. Throughout his ministry Jesus called people to turn away from their other allegiances and to believe the good news that in him the reign of God had come near.

After his resurrection Jesus commissioned his disciples, saying, “As the Father has sent me, I am sending you” (John 20:21). Jesus’ incarnate life gives us the normative vision of what it looks like to live into the mission of God, of life for the world.

———

Interested in reading more? Get Barry D Jones’ Dwell: Life with God for the World today.

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Celebrate this Season: 5 Encouragements for Christmas

Vyrso offers ebooks that focus on a variety of topics, from Christian living to apologetics. Through December 24, get meaningful Christmas ebooks at discount prices, and prepare your heart, and the hearts of your loved ones, for Christmas. See all deals now and don’t miss the Christmas Bundle with 13 ebooks for just $13.00!

Share these encouraging quotes about the true meaning of Christmas:

Helen Steiner Rice Quote      

“Love is the message that was sent to earth, On that first holy Christmas that heralded Christ’s birth!”—Helen Steiner Rice

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Shanna Gregor Quote

“God made a Christmas promise, and two thousand years later, that promise was delivered. “- Shanna Gregor

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Russell WIght Quote

“This baby did not enjoy peace in His time on earth. He was despised and rejected, and eventually was crucified on a cross on a hill called Calvary. The Christmas story turned into the Easter story, with the God-Man rising from the dead to conquer death and sin.”— Russell Wight

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JoAnne Simmons Quote

“The ancient prophecies that Jesus fulfilled and the hope he provides for eternity with God in heaven are the real reasons to celebrate Christmas!”—JoAnne Simmons

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MariLee Parrish Quote

“Jesus can look into any weary, dark, and hopeless soul and fill it with hope and a peace that transcends all understanding and every circumstance.”—MariLee Parrish 

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Prepare for Christmas with the Christmas bundle, plus save on helpful Christmas resources—available through December 24!

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Shepherds: An Advent Reflection

Shepherds

This advent season, check the Vyrso blog each weekday for advent reflections that will inspire and encourage you to reflect on the true reason for Christmas. You’ll hear from a variety of authors with original posts and featured excerpts from Christmas-focused ebooks.

Spend time reflecting with an excerpt from Daily Guideposts 2016: A Spirit-Lifting Devotional, published by Zondervan. This annual devotional gives you 365 days of inspiration to help you grow in your faith—discover a devotional today that was written specifically for the Advent season by author Bill Giovannetti.

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.Luke 2:8 (NKJV)

It was just a poinsettia, but to my wife it was a miracle. Margi had taken on the mammoth task of decorating the church for Christmas. Two large sanctuaries, lobbies, children’s spaces, and massive outdoor plazas fell under her designing eye.

After months of planning, shopping, and recruiting, her army of decorators went to work. Dozens of trees graced our worship centers. Thousands of lights sparkled, and countless ornaments lent their gleam. It took over two weeks, but the mission was complete. Almost.

One task remained: placing poinsettias on tables scattered throughout the coffee area. Just the right number of plants had been purchased. Unfortunately, I miscounted the tables and one was left bare.

It wasn’t a big deal in the great scheme of things, but to an exhausted worker all alone at night, it meant a lot. Margi summoned the energy for a final return to the store.

But first, on a hunch, she sneaked a peak into a box—and there, to her surprise, sat a poinsettia.

“Just a little thing,” Margi said, “but it meant everything to me.”

I thought of how God does His finest work through little things, unimportant things: like lowly shepherds, like a husband who miscounts, like a baby in a manger. (Click to Tweet!)

Prayer: No matter my life’s station, Lord, may I faithfully abide in the grace of Christ’s love.

———

Interested in finding daily inspiration in 2016? Get Zondervan’s Daily Guideposts 2016: A Spirit-Lifting Devotional today!

 

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Four Ebooks to Help You Focus on Jesus This Christmas

Christmas Sale

Christmas is coming! And it is a time to celebrate, to gather together, to reflect, and to rest in God’s perfect plan.

Prepare for Christmas with discounted ebooks and a special Christmas ebook bundle, which all focus on the mystery and the love that only Christmas brings.

Through December 24—reflect on God’s love with these four ebooks all included in Vyrso’s Christmas sale.

 

Touching Wonder: Recapturing the Awe of Christmas by John Blase

Regular Price: $12.99

Sale Price: $1.99

This bold retelling of Luke 1–2, based on Eugene Peterson’s Message translation, reads like a novel and invites readers to experience the Nativity with fresh wonder. John Blase adds his own storytelling voice to Eugene Peterson’s Message translation, exploring the familiar events from multiple first-person viewpoints.

Seeker of Stars: A Novel by Susan Fish

Regular Price: $4.99

Sale Price: $0.99

Dive into a fascinating story by Susan Fish. A story about a young boy, Melchior, who is fascinated by stars, but has rigid obligations to apprentice with his rug-making father. Then one-day his life is radically changed, he is propelled onto a new path full of danger and glory in pursuit of a special star.

A Robertson Family Christmas by Kay Robertson, Korie Robertson, and Travis Thrasher

Regular Price: $19.99

Sale Price: $1.99

Discover a heartwarming and hilarious story on the meaning of Christmas and what it’s like to spend it with the Robertsons of Duck Commander. Learn the joy and the pain the Robertson family experienced when they held a nationwide contest to open their doors to a needy child and give them the opportunity to spend Christmas with them.

A Victorian Christmas by Catherine Palmer

Regular Price: $12.99

Sale Price: $0.99

Read a beautiful patchwork of four novellas about love and joy at Christmastime by best selling author Catherine Palmer. These four novellas were previously published in four anthologies—A Victorian Christmas Quilt, A Victorian Christmas Tea, A Victorian Christmas Cottage, and A Victorian Christmas Keepsake. Return to a time when life was uncomplicated, faith was sincere and love was a gift to be cherished forever.

Prepare for Christmas with these ebooks and find more when you check out the Christmas sale!

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The Gift of Small Moments: A Perfect Plan

Gift of Small Moments

This advent season, check the Vyrso blog each weekday for advent reflections that will inspire and encourage you to reflect on the true reason for Christmas. You’ll hear from a variety of authors with original posts and featured excerpts from Christmas-focused ebooks.

Spend time reflecting with an excerpt from Daily Guideposts 2016: A Spirit-Lifting Devotional, published by Zondervan. This annual devotional gives you 365 days of inspiration to help you grow in your faith—discover a devotional today that was written specifically for the Advent season by author Bill Giovannetti.

“Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.”—Jeremiah 23:5 (ESV)

An eager crew unloaded a trailer full of Christmas trees and decorations. The annual ritual of decorating our church had begun. The biggest boxes contained about ten trees of different sizes. Each box was labeled: Tree 1, box 1 of 3; Tree 1, box 2 of 3; and so on. But we hit a snag.

There were at least two trees labeled Tree 1, and neither was complete. Other labels were wrong too. Some made no sense. Whoever had put away the trees the previous year hadn’t labeled them correctly.

What should have been a simple task collapsed into a complex riddle. One volunteer said it felt like “sorting jumbled pieces from multiple puzzles without a box top.”

I was frustrated. I believed we’d let down our volunteers.

In that same moment, I felt God’s gentle nudge: Think of what it took to set up Christ’s birth. The painstakingly detailed prophecies. The astonishingly clear promises. The growing profile of this coming Savior painted by Old Testament sages over a span of two thousand years. Every piece was in its place. Every detail arranged perfectly.

The providence of God never shone more brightly than on the day the Savior was born. (Click to Tweet!)

Tiny Bethlehem. The humble manger. Caesar’s census. The virgin shall conceive. The birth of Christ was no afterthought. It was the outworking of a grace-filled plan from the ages of eternity past.

We might have jumbled Christmas, I thought, but God doesn’t. And He didn’t jumble the details of my life either. Not even the frustrations. Or the sorrows. God’s saving plan rises above it all.

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the meticulously coordinated, ages-long countdown to that first Christmas Day. May I abide every day in the certainty of Your perfect plan.

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Interested in finding daily inspiration in 2016? Get Zondervan’s Daily Guideposts 2016: A Spirit-Lifting Devotional today!

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