"Not of This World" by Jessica LeeAnn is a story about a young lady named Tamar. Tamar is saved, sanctified and Holy Ghost filled. She was raised by her grandmother and has grown into a beautiful, God fearing young lady. In this story, Tamar struggles with desiring to be independent from the watchful eye of her grandmother and loving herself. After landing her dream job, Tamar begins to drastically change and her family and friends try to understand why.
This story is a page turner from beginning to the end. The plot line is unique and does not have your typical ending. This is a wonderful eye opener of how conforming and desiring the things of this world can draw us away from those who care most about us and our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Tamar's conflict will help you understand that any one of us could find ourselves in her situation. We must draw near and grow in our relationship with Christ and His keeping power!
Overall, if you enjoy reading a good story with a little drama, but a serious message, then "Not of This World" is the book for you! I give this novel 5 stars. There aren't many novels out there that teach on holiness and a closer relationship with Christ. I can't wait for Book 2.
Are you a survivor of childhood abuse? Do you want to learn practical ways of overcoming your past? Then this book is definitely for you! "I Reign: A Survivor's Guide to Thrive" by Minister Annie Bell is a dynamic resource. Minister Annie describes her experience of being abused as a child. She goes on to then empower other survivors by including exercises for them to thrive. "I Reign" is a Christian resource that includes researched based data and other resources for trauma victims. Minister Annie tells her readers that they can't truly "Reign" without building a relationship with Christ. This relationship is vital to their complete healing.
I truly enjoyed reading this book with my online book club. It is not only for the victims of child abuse but for anyone who desires to grow and overcome their past. She also has a workbook for deeper study with small Bible study groups, or book clubs. I don’t normally care for non-fiction books, but this one is amazing! It is a very easy read and it was hard for me to even put it down. Minister Annie Bell wrote in a very loving and concerned tone and I found myself in tears more than once.
Overall, I was blessed by this book! I am grateful that my book club chose it to read. This book answered many questions and also equipped me to run-on in Christ because in Him "I Reign" over all of my past pain. I have the victory in Jesus Christ!
I gave this book 5/5 stars, and I would recommend it to all individuals that desire to overcome and gain victory in their lives. You will not be disappointed!
Hope-in-Christ Book Club had the privilege to read an amazing book, "I Reign: A Survivor's Guide to Thrive." After reading and discussing this great resource, we then were honored to interview the author, Minister Annie Bell. Minister Annie is an amazing leader and mentor, called by God to survivors of childhood trauma and her ministry focus is stopping child abuse and sex trafficking. Below is the interview questions and responses from Minister Bell:
1. What made you decide to tell your story to the world?
"In my years of researching childhood trauma, I found that there are not a lot of spiritual resources out there and I wanted to create one for others to use. I also realized that I was still suffering and I ran across others who were unable to resolve their trauma. I wanted to help people realize why they do what they do and how to fix it."
2. How much research did you have to complete before finishing your book?
"I had to complete over 10 years of research. I did research from the scientific side and study of psychology from a Christian point of view."
3. How did your family handle you sharing your story?
"My family was very supportive because I prepared them before time and made them aware that they may be named in it."
4. What is your favorite scripture(s)? What scriptures keep you going?
There are several.
"One is Psalms 118:17" (NKJV) , "I shall not die, but live, And declare the works of the Lord." "I like this one because there is a reason why we are still alive."
"Another one is Jeremiah 29:11" (NKJV), "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." "This makes me to latch on to the confidence that He is the author of a good end."
"Finally, Isaiah 54:4" (NKJV), "“Do not fear, for you will not be ashamed; Neither be disgraced, for you will not be put to shame; For you will forget the shame of your youth, And will not remember the reproach of your widowhood anymore." "I like this one because I will not be ashamed of believing in God."
5. How did you feel when you first saw your story in print?
"It was surreal. I had a myriad of feelings at first. It hit me that people who I didn't even know would know some very intimate details about me so I felt a bit embarrassed. I got over that pretty quickly. LOL. Then there was an overwhelming sense of accomplishment and fulfillment. I am still amazed at what God is doing through this broken vessel."
6. How did you manage to type your story without tearing up every second?
"Well, I actually cried a lot because I had to allow those feelings to come back, resurface, so that I could write it. I had to stop a few times and come back to it because of the tension that I felt having to replay the events."
7. At anytime, did you think of asking someone else to write your story?
"I did consider it but I really believed that God wanted me to write every letter of every word and every word upon every sentence, etc. Now I see why; while writing this book, I was able to go to another level of healing that would not have been possible otherwise. This healing journey is truly an amazing one when we let God be the pilot."
8. What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
"I would say remember that life continues to happen so make a schedule that you can stick with. For example, two hours twice a week. Also, create a social media platform. This will assist you in creating a following. This will help you when trying to get published; the publishers will see that you have a following. Finally, self-publishing is a good route to take.
Writing My Wrongs by Shaka Senghor is an autobiography. Senghor tells about his life in the streets as a drug dealer to turning his life around in prison. He explains how he didn’t really want to change, and how he loved the streets and fast money. As time passed, he describes how his anger became toxic and made him realize that change was inevitable. He was self-destructing. Later, he served time in prison for a serious crime and there began to turn his life around. He took training behind bars but found that the paper was of no value when released. He continued to work to keep males out of the prison system.
I thought that this was an amazing story of a young man desiring to change his life and helping others to understand that it is not an easy task, the individual has to play an active roll in the process. He was very honest about his experience. I thought that he could have left out the profanity in his descriptions. Although the profanity helped to paint a picture of the life he lived, it became a distraction for me being an individual that does not use those words.
Overall, I thought that it was a great testimony of his life and overcoming his struggles to walk out his life’s purpose. He now work’s to turn around other young men that are going down the same path that he did.
I gave the book 4/5 stars. However, as an educator, I would not recommend it to my middle school students due to excessive use of profanity.
*I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.