Like I was saying....

Category: Books

Three Free Books

So this week I got three free books. Looking forward to each of them.

The first one is Mad Church Disease. It was written by Anne Jackson. She grew up in the home of a pastor and has worked as a staff member of a church for quite a while. And she’s witnessed and experienced first hand the dangers of burnout related to ministry jobs. And in Mad Church Disease she explored those dangers and pitfalls closely. I was able to get this for free because I won the contest on the books Facebook page. I won it back in the fall of ’07. Seemed that it would take forever to get my prize. But it’s here now.

The next two were because of a gift card I’d received for my birthday. But I got Vintage Church by Mark Driscoll and Crazy Love by Frances Chan. Both came highly recommended.

Mark Driscoll is pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle. Interesting city. Interesting church. And it’s quite a conservative church when compared to the local culture of the Northwest. Mark Driscoll says somethings sometimes that really have rubbed some people the wrong way. But I usually appreciate the heart from which he communicates from. He can make you crack up now and then too. Vintage Church is his look at the Biblical model for church, how it is structured and effectively in action.

Crazy Love, by Francis Chan, is about what a life that is truly and passionately in love with Jesus would look like. How would that love affect the person and the way they lived their life. Francis is pastor of Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, CA. Great communicator with a heart for the scriptures. I’ve heard him speak a time or two and get his podcast sometimes too. Check him out.

So..those are my new free books. Hopefully I’ll spend some time reading them soon. When I do I’ll give a quick review!

Why are Vampires so popular?

I asked this question to a friend the other day, but it seems vampires are so much “the thing” in pop culture. Why are vampires so popular?

  • Right now the #1 movie in the country is Twilight. It focuses on a girl who moves to Washington (state) and becomes entangled with a “family” of vampires.
  • The #1, #2, #3, and #4 books on the USA Today Best Seller list are Twilight and it’s three sequels by Stephanie Meyer.
  • HBO‘s new series called True Blood has seen its ratings increase to now be its most popular series since the Sopranos and Sex In The City.
  • I read that at least 18 vampire themed movies have been released this year with more on the way.

vampires so popular

So why are vampires hot? What is making people eat up the books and movie tickets? I know it’s not because the books are outstanding literature. They’re not terrible, but not outstanding (I’ve read one and a half of the Twilight series). Is it the forbiddenness of relationships with them? Is it the fact they don’t die (a mortal death at least?) Dunno.

But at least in the way of the Twilight vampires, it seems Meyer is messing with the vampire legend some. Her vamps can come out in the day time, but their skin sparkles instead of smokes and withers away. And they can get nourishment by drinking blood from animals instead of needed it to be human blood. [The Japanese in True Blood have created a synthetic blood substitute for the vamps in that series, though they say it doesn’t taste as good as the real thing.] And they can see themselves in a mirror. No mention of garlic or stakes through the heart or holy water (that I’ve read yet at least)

Do you think vampires are hot? Why or why not?

Read a book. Get a camera?

I have a problem with books. I like to get them and read the covers and buy them and then get another before finishing the first one. So I have scores of good books that I’ve read some or most of, but not all of.

The other day The Wife needed me to order her some books for her small group she leads. Of course if you use you get free shipping if your order is over $25.00. Her order was $24 and some change. So I, being the frugal husband that I am, wanted to save on shipping. So I bought myself (another) book to get free shipping.

When the lovely box came in, The Wife saw my book in there as well. “You need another book?” I promptly explained the issue of shipping costs, free books, and my frugality. With a furrowed brow she mumbled something like “Okay…”

That night, as we were reading in bed, I had my new book in hand. There are not many things like a crisp new book to look down upon. It’s so different from the ones that your kids have jumped on, broken the spine, spilled milk on, and gotten stuffed in backpacks and gotten all scuffed. The Wife looked at it and said, “Read only that one.”  “Huh?” I said. She challenged me to read this one and this one alone until I finished it.

Always looking for a challenge, I said, “And what will I get?”

“What do you want?” she asked. Without needing a lot of time to think I answered, “The new camera I’ve been talking about!”  “Okay,” she says. “If you finish the book in a reasonable amount of time, you can can get your camera.”

I wanted her to define a reasonable amount of time. She said two weeks. HA! I said I could have it finished before she woke up with that carrot hanging in front of me. I didn’t finish it by morning. But easily w/in the week. [btw, it’s a good book. I’ll describe it later.]

So I said to The Wife, “Wifey, I guess it’s time to cash in on my reward.” Then she tries to play the surprised look. “What do you mean?” So I go through the whole recap of our conversation. And she acted like she’d never heard that conversation before.  Can you believe it?

So now I guess I have to read another book before I get to get my paws on a new camera.  Right, honey? (I know she’s gonna read this…)

Four Books in my back pack

I have a bad habit of buying lots of books and not finishing them. So I’m in the middle of four books right now. I’m not going to jump into any others until I finish some of these. But here they are:

  1. The Lost Message of Jesus by Steve Chalke
  2. Free Prize Inside by Seth Godin
  3. In A Pit With A Lion On A Snowy Day by Mark Batterson
  4. The Starfish And The Spider by Ori Brafman and Rod Beckstrom

All of these were recommended by someone or another except for the Free Prize book. And Seth Godin has been recommended before. But I had a gift card to Books A Million with me when I got that book…got to the counter and was ready to pay. Turns out the card had a ZERO balance on it.

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