Thursday, December 28, 2006

Book Review: Going Places With God

The problem with studying the geography of Israel is that it can quickly become divorced from the life-changing truths of Scripture. After all, how do hills and valleys help you grow closer to God? Wayne Stiles has the answer to that in his new book, Going Places With God: A Devotional Journey Through the Lands of the Bible. I am often asked what is the perfect follow-up to a trip to Israel. My typical answer (“read a Bible atlas”) just got better: read and meditate on the truths of this devotional guide. What makes this book so good is that it takes “boring” details of Scripture and shows how they are profitable for life and godliness.

Here’s an example: Stiles shows how the geography of Joseph’s brothers tending their sheep brought Joseph to slavery in Egypt and ultimately Israel’s deliverance from famine. Unless you understand the geography, you won’t fully appreciate God’s sovereignty. The author draws from that just how we should relate to our sometimes bewildering circumstances. In another story, Israel has to travel all the way around Edom, and Stiles explains that in God’s plan, sometimes the long way is the best way.

I love too the way that Stiles draws beautiful word pictures. With him as guide, I picture myself one day walking along the shores of the Sea of Galilee and another day watching the sunrise from the Mount of Olives. A pastor for fourteen years, Stiles is a truly gifted communicator with a knowledge of where people are hurting today. One devotional will encourage you to increase your trust in the all-powerful God, and another devotional will challenge you to take heed lest you fall. Familiar lessons some, but brought to life from places in the Bible that you would never otherwise look.

I love the geographical nuggets contained in this book, but the reason that I am recommending it is this: Going Places With God will challenge you to live a radical, Christ-centered life. The book came out a week ago: I encourage you to buy it, read it, and buy a couple for friends.

You can see more about the book and its author at this website. The book lists for $15, but Amazon has it for $10.

[Update: The free copies have all been claimed.]

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6 Comments:

  • I would love for you to send me a copy of the book, "Going Places With God" and write a review!
    My email is ellena_sabater@yahoo.com.au.

    Just email me and then I will give you an address.
    Thanks!!
    Ellena

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Dec 28, 05:56:00 AM  

  • Speaking of photos, I saw you have one published in this month's BAR!!! Congrats!

    By Blogger psychobob, at Fri Dec 29, 10:51:00 PM  

  • Hi Todd, I hope I'm not too late to request a copy - the book sounds really good. I've been to Israel where I travelled with JUC for about 3 weeks and saw so much that helped me to understand God's Word better. I live in the UK and I'd want to cover the postage cost if you can send me a copy. I'm seriously considering beginning a blog but in any case I would post an amazon review. Thanks for all the work you do on your blog! I just discovered you a few weeks ago and especially enjoyed the post about 'no room in the inn'. I'll send you my address by email if I'm on time and you get back to me! Thanks, Colin.

    By Blogger Colin, at Sat Dec 30, 04:37:00 AM  

  • I'm interested!

    Lisa who sees you at church :O)

    By Blogger lis, at Sat Dec 30, 05:33:00 AM  

  • Colin, Lisa and Mrs. Martinez - please email me at the address on the blog sidebar. Thanks.

    By Blogger Todd Bolen, at Sat Dec 30, 07:29:00 AM  

  • yes, and if you give Lis a copy, then I can read it when she is done. Sounds excellent. Thanks for the recomendation.

    By Blogger kate, at Sun Dec 31, 01:42:00 AM  

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