Food for the Soul
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Audra Jennings

Audra Jennings is a publicist with Litfuse Publicity Group.

Posted 6/30/11 at 11:04 AM | Audra Jennings

CBA "Ministry in Action" Bike Project to Benefit Atlanta Ministries

CBA “Ministry in Action” Bike Project at ICRS 2011

to Benefit Eagle Ranch, SafeHouse

Children and Family Ministries in Atlanta

 At this year’s International Christian Retail Show attendees have the opportunity to help two local Atlanta children’s and family ministry organizations through CBA’s Ministry in Action outreach.

Ministry in Action will assemble 100 bicycles during the event’s three days, July 10-13, in Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center. The project aims to give back to the Atlanta community, which is hosting the annual retail convention and trade show, by demonstrating the industry’s ministry and mission purposes through acts of service.

The bikes will be donated to Eagle Ranch and SafeHouse Outreach. Ingram Content Group’s Spring Arbor will sponsor the event.

Curtis Riskey, CBA executive director, said, “Tangible outreach helps position Christian stores as ministry servants in their local communities. Initiating ministry helps retailers make a compassionate statement in their communities and helps them align with local churches in reaching those in need through retail ministry. I urge all ICRS participants (both retailer and trade) to help touch people’s hearts with this compassionate project.” FULL POST

Posted 6/28/11 at 12:09 PM | Audra Jennings

Public Bible Exhibit to be a part of ICRS Atlanta

Bible Legacy Exhibit and Public Worship Service

to Open Christian Convention

Free public Bible exhibit to be a part of the International Christian Retail Show

to be held at the World Congress Center July 10-13

 A public Christian worship service and a free Bible legacy exhibit will help launch the International Christian Retail Show at Atlanta’s World Congress Center July 10-13.

The 6-7:30 p.m. Sunday evening Worship Him service will feature Randy Frazee, who will speak from his latest work with pastor and author Max Lucado, The Story¾an overarching multimedia epic of God’s story through time that’s still relevant today. Nicole C. Mullen will sing new songs from her upcoming worship album, Captivated, a homage to Jesus Christ’s majesty. Atlanta’s North Point Live will also lead worship songs during the service.

The Duggar family, stars of the TLC reality show 19 Kids and Counting featuring Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar and their 19 children, will perform introductory music at the open-to-the-public Sunday, July 10 Worship Him service. FULL POST

Posted 6/28/11 at 11:54 AM | Audra Jennings

Understanding youth culture and their faith

“A story with the power to change the direction of your story.”

~ Leonard Sweet, best-selling author, professor, speaker

Have you ever wondered if there is a bigger plan to your life or if everything just happens by chance?

In his newest book, The Blackberry Bush,David Housholder will take you on a journey across two continents to discover that your life may be bigger than you think and that even the worst of mistakes can find redemption.  While on this journey, he will also examine today’s youth cultures and their complex relationship with the Christian faith.

Through his book, Housholder hopes to help adults better understand the teen cultures of today. He also helps parents whose teens and young adults aren’t going to church, but are looking for a way that might nudge the children back “home” to church without being “preachy.” FULL POST

Posted 6/16/11 at 3:53 PM | Audra Jennings

Complete Common English Bible Released Digitally Before Print

In a nod to the revolutionary changes occurring in publishing, the new complete Common English Bible (@CommonEngBible – http://twitter.com/CommonEngBible) is now debuting in 20 digital platforms, almost two months before print editions will be available in stores. It’s currently online at http://commonenglishbible.com/ along with a search widget users can download to their blogs and websites.

The digital editions of the Common English Bible are Kindle, iPad, iPhone, Nook, Sony, Olivetree, Logos, BibleWorks, Accordance Software, ChristianBook, Kobo, OverDrive, Blio, Copia, Lightning Source, and YouVersion. The introductory suggested retail price of all electronic versions is $5.95 and will increase to the regular suggested retail price of $9.95 September 1. The new translation will also be searchable through Bible Gateway (http://biblegateway.com/), and Bible Study Tools (http://biblestudytools.com/). FULL POST

Posted 6/14/11 at 12:09 PM | Audra Jennings

The science of love

The Bible clearly tells us that we are to love one another; it also proclaims that we are to bear one another’s burdens. Research has revealed that when we show concern for others—empathizing with a friend who has lost a loved one, mowing the lawn for an elderly neighbor, or volunteering to mentor a school-aged child—we improve our own health and well-being and embrace and give voice to our deeper identity and dignity as human beings. Not only does Stephen Post, author of The Hidden Gifts of Helping, have first-hand knowledge of this from his own experience, he has actively led research on the topic as the President of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love.

The Hidden Gifts of Helping includes some of the findings of Godly Love National Survey (GLNS), a full national survey of over 1200 adults. The results show that 80% of Americans, report at least one experience of God's love in their lifetimes, and that this has uniformly enlivened their benevolence. In fact, 45% of Americans feel God’s love at least once a day. FULL POST

Posted 6/14/11 at 11:59 AM | Audra Jennings

What are your kids learning on the ball field?

As young athletes take to the baseball field this summer, parents have an opportunity to coach their children on skills  much more difficult to perfect than throwing a curve ball or when to steal a base. With the help of authors Kathryn Nixon and Ana Boudreau, parents can teach children the art of self-control and practice of patience.

Nixon and Boudreau’s books, The Spirit in Baseball and The Spirit in Football, are based on the fruits of the Spirit as seen in Galatians 5:22-23, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”  

The Spirit in Baseball applies the fruits of the Spirit to each aspect of playing the game of baseball, such as:

  • I LOVE my teammates. They are my friends. We spend a lot of time in the dugout together!
  • I am PATIENT and happy to wait until it is my turn to bat.
  • I do my best to be GOOD to others. I congratulate the other team if they win the game.

The Spirit in Football focuses on the same virtues and format, but applies the fruits of the Spirit to football. Some examples include:

  • The fans cheered with excitement and JOY as our team scored the first touchdown of the game.
  • If we are upset about a penalty, instead of acting out in anger, God calls us to react with GENTLENESS and respect.
  • We must show SELF-CONTROL by not losing our temper when we are tackled aggressively by the other team.
http://www.thespiritinsports.org/

Q&A with Kathryn Nixon and Ana Boudreau,

Author of The Spirit in Baseball and The Spirit in Football

Q:  What inspired you to write a children’s book about sports?

KN:  I was inspired on two different levels. One was watching my husband Trot’s character when he was playing professional baseball. I was inspired by how he interacted with his team. Most people don’t realize that in Boston, the year they won the World Series, the Red Sox were a strong team spiritually and physically. I wanted to show children that they can be a strong Christian and share those beliefs with their teammates while still being an exceptional player. And my other inspiration came from God. I just really felt Him laying it on my heart to write this book for parents and coaches. 

Q:  You (Nixon) and Ana Boudreau worked together to write The Spirit in Baseball and The Spirit in Football. How did you and Ana first meet?

KN:  We met through a mutual friend—Ana was painting murals in the children’s preschool building at our church. That was about the time I was thinking about writing the book. It was just God’s timing. We were able to write and do the artwork together. And we’ve become very close friends.

Q:  What inspired you to apply the fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) to baseball and football? Do you think it will be easier for children to understand each character quality when applied to real life? 

AB:  There are so many valuable life lessons and character building opportunities in team sports. The Spiritin Sports series emphasizes God’s fruits of the Spirit in relation to how we respond to them. All of the virtues God gives us in the form of the fruits of the Spirit flow perfectly into teachable moments in relation to sports. The Spirit in Baseball and The Spirit in Football provide concrete examples of how these particular virtues can be used in sports, with situations they face every day.

Q:  There are many amazing qualities children can learn from being involved in sports. Can you share with me some lessons children gain from competitive team sports?

KN:  Competitive team sports teach children how to work well with others as a team. They learn to trust in others and to be confident in themselves. It keeps them active. It keeps them healthy. I think the virtues of the fruits of the Spirit can really shine through as they experience love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and gentleness towards others. And it especially helps them to demonstrate self control. Each of these virtues can be learned from this book and by playing the sport—even if they are sitting on the bench. They are being taught the character qualities that they will need through life. 

Q:  Sports sometimes bring out the worst in parents. Do you believe your books will also remind parents that it’s not just about winning but about character growth?

AB:  As parents are reading these books to their little athletes, it is our hope that the seed of God’s word will also be planted in their hearts as well. Many times, team sports require parents to use these virtues as much as their players, and this book helps bridge conversations that can be meaningful for both parent and child. We hope our book strengthens parents’ understanding that God’s will for their children is of upmost importance, and that is not always shown through winning the game but, more importantly, through how it is played.  

Q:  What are your dreams for your books? How do you hope they will impact the lives of children?

KN:  My main dream would be to spread God’s love and His word along with the virtues we all need to instill in ourselves and our children. I pray that these books can make their way around to kids all over the world. I’m not worried about the sales—just about getting God’s message out. We had The Spirit in Baseball printed in Spanish, and it is reaching children with missions all over the world. We want children to learn how to play the game God’s way. 

Q:  Do you plan on writing more books?

 KN:  We would like to do a basketball and a soccer book. 

The Spirit in Baseball - ISBN: 978-1-4507-7625-7/28 pages/hardcover/$14.99

The Spirit in Football - ISBN: 978-0-6153-8669-0/28 pages/hardcover/$14.99

byKathryn Nixon & Ana Boudreau

The Spirit in Sports Publishing

Posted 6/14/11 at 11:40 AM | Audra Jennings

Popular author to donate book proceeds to India

Randy Singer is a highly regarded author, and his legal thrillers are often compared to those written by John Grisham. In fact, one of his books is in the running for the ABA Journal’s Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction along with novels by Michael Connelly and John Grisham. The Prize will be awarded in conjunction with the Library of Congress National Book Festival in Washington, D.C., in September. 

Singer does not only want to entertain readers with the twists and turns of the story, but in the case of False Witness, he wants to inform readers about the challenges of Dalits in India. He believes that most Americans are unaware of the extreme persecution happening there. He is donating all of the proceeds from the sales of the book to the Dalit Freedom Network. FULL POST

Posted 6/13/11 at 11:14 AM | Audra Jennings

David C Cook Acquires Integrity Music From Integrity Media Inc.

Effective June 1, 2011, David C Cook and Integrity Media reached an agreement whereby Integrity Music became part of the David C Cook family. The decision to acquire Integrity Music was motivated specifically by David C Cook's desire to expand its global impact in the area of worship. Per the agreement, David C Cook has acquired only those assets specific to Integrity Music. Integrity Media, based in Mobile, AL will still exist consisting of Integrity Direct, Integrity Worship Institute, and the international companies in the UK, South Africa and Singapore. Industry veteran C. Ryan Dunham, formerly David C Cook's senior vice president of sales and marketing, will serve as president of Integrity Music, effective immediately.

"At David C Cook we are committed to the Great Commission. Our mission is to 'Equip the Church with Christ-centered resources for making and teaching disciples who obediently transform today's generations.' We are delighted to have Integrity Music join the David C Cook family in serving the body of Christ," states Cris Doornbos, CEO of David C Cook.

"The acquisition of Integrity Music makes sense from both a ministry as well as a business standpoint. Both organizations are widely respected for their international reach and their worship music catalogs," states Ryan Dunham, Integrity Music president. "David C Cook is no newcomer to the worship music ministry. In 1993 Cook acquired Kingsway, a worship music company in Eastbourne, England, and partnered with EMI Christian Music Group to produce the Thank You Music song catalog. Kingsway artists include Matt Redman, Tim Hughes, Brenton Brown, The City Harmonic, and many others whose original songs are shaping the way a world-wide generation of Christians experiences worship," continues Dunham.

Integrity Music has profoundly influenced the worship music culture over the past 24 years. "Cris Doornbos and I share a deep passion for serving the global church and for the role worship music plays in making disciples around the world," says Integrity co-founder and CEO Michael Coleman. "As Integrity prepares to celebrate 25 years in ministry, I look forward to seeing the expanding impact of Integrity songs and products around the world."

The acquisition benefits David C Cook by adding an even greater variety of worship titles to the organization's current offering. It will also benefit Integrity worship artists and writers by providing a fresh perspective and an ownership structure as part of a nonprofit with an expanding realm of influence. Most importantly, it will provide the global church more options than ever for meaningful worship.

"I am honored that Michael Coleman, a man whom I highly respect and who has meant so much to the worship music movement, has chosen to entrust us with Integrity Music's worship catalog," Doornbos says. "Our vision for Integrity Music songs and recordings is to see them sung by people in their native languages in churches all over the world."

Integrity Music will operate independently within David C Cook as a Strategic Ministry Unit and be relocated to the company headquarters in Colorado Springs after a transition period of 3 months. Distribution of Integrity Music products in the U.S. will continue through Provident-Integrity Distribution and Columbia and Sony Music Distribution.

Since 1875, David C Cook continues to be a leading nonprofit global resource provider serving the Church with life transforming materials. Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Co, with offices in Elgin, Illinois, Paris, Ontario, Canada, and Eastbourne, UK, David C Cook resources are published in over 150 languages, distributed in more than 80 countries, and sold worldwide. The Kingsway music division produces over 30% of the top 500 praise and worship songs sung around the world. For more information, visit www.davidccook.com.

Posted 6/7/11 at 10:42 AM | Audra Jennings

Let God Change Your Life

Let God Change Your Life by Greg Laurie

You’re in for a Change

Evangelist Greg Laurie makes the case that real

Christian change moves us beyond the norm

Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX—The first-century believers who followed Jesus Christ were men and women who turned their worlds upside down to follow the Messiah, and they lived the Christian life as Jesus presented it to them personally. They didn’t have the luxury of a passive and lukewarm existence. Instead, they had to draw clear lines in the sand about what following Christ really looked like. The good news is that, even in our current culture, we too can participate in this kind of lifestyle.

In his new book, Let God Change Your Life: How to Know and Follow Jesus, evangelist Greg Laurie describes the factors that impact true life change in clear, practical, and thoroughly biblical terms. His conclusions will challenge Christians to trade in their passive preconceptions about God for an active faith that reflects the image of Christ. A call to shed the skin of cultural Christianity, Let God Change Your Life details the transformation that occurs when we take what Christ really said and live as if His words were actually true.

What we often perceive as the Christian life is, in many ways, not what the Bible teaches. Imagine what it would have been like to be a follower of Jesus; first-century Christians walked away from their old lives just to be where He was. What they learned, sitting at His feet, was discipleship. And when His work on earth was done, first-century Christians took His words and example and spread out, teaching the gospel to everyone.

We need to ask ourselves whether we are living the Christian life as Jesus meant for us to live it. Are our lives challenging? Exciting? Do they have purpose and direction? Or do we find ourselves depressed and afraid? If your Christian experience is dull, unfulfilling, or boring, then it’s time to seriously examine the statements of Jesus regarding discipleship. What you’ll find is that the call of Christ on your life was never meant to be half-hearted and partially powerful. The natural outworking of a Christ-transformed life is a vibrant and revolutionary desire to know God, learn His ways, and lead others to Him.

“Are you a laborer in the harvest?” Laurie asks. “The complainers are many. The observers are many. The spectators are many. The critics are many. But the laborers are few. We need laborers in the harvest. Will you become one?” Let God Change Your Life is a bold challenge to Christians everywhere to rethink their lives in terms of dynamic New Testament living.

About the Author: Best-selling author Greg Laurie (Gold Medallion winner for The Upside-Down Church, Lost Boy, and more) is senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, one of the largest churches in America. Founder of the Harvest Crusade, Laurie’s nationally syndicated radio program, A New Beginning, is broadcast on more than 500 radio outlets around the world. Along with his work at Harvest Ministries, Laurie serves on the board of directors of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse, among others. For more about Pastor Greg, visit his personal homepage at www.greglaurie.com.

Let God Change Your Life: How to Know and Follow Jesus by Greg Laurie

David C Cook/June 2011

ISBN: 978-1434-70207-4/208 pages/paperback

www.greglaurie.com

 

Posted 6/7/11 at 10:34 AM | Audra Jennings

Maybe "I Do" Is Better than "Just Don't"

Young and in love by Ted Cunningham

Maybe "I Do" Is Better than "Just Don't"

Ted Cunningham celebrates young love with wisdom and advice.

Early marriage might not be a problem; instead, it might just be a solution. In Young and in Love: Challenging the Unnecessary Delay of Marriage, Pastor Ted Cunningham boldly suggests that early marriage is not as harmful as many believe and even offers it as the solution to staying sexually pure. He guides young adults through the arguments against early marriage and then reveals the secrets to creating a healthy, successful and life-long relationship in early adulthood.

Over the last century, statistics show that the average age for marriage is increasing and many couples are choosing not to marry at all. According to Cunningham, the message being taught is to "delay marriage, be independent, finish college, build your career, save up your money and have sex outside of marriage." Couples are being told to wait until they have it all figured out, but they are paying the price of their purity with this delay.

Cunningham believes that young love should be celebrated, even promoted. Early marriages can be God's will and often provide the key to sexual purity. When young adults fall in love, they develop intense desires to be with one another emotionally, relationally and, yes, sexually. He validates this early relationship and chases the foxes that seek to delay or destroy the bud before it can turn into a blossoming marriage (Song of Solomon 2:15). He praises this budding love, calling family and friends to recognize it with a wedding, and challenges all unnecessary delays to marrying in one's early twenties.

Young and in Love by Ted Cunningham

Explaining where the arguments against young marriage often go wrong, Cunningham offers wisdom on how to know if you are making the right choice including the Four C's: Character, Chemistry, Competency and Calling. He'll help readers understand what it takes to be ready for marriage. And along the way he'll show that the answer to staying pure might be to prepare for marriage. Because it's often easier to say "Let's wait" when "I do" isn't so far away.

According to Cunningham, "Ultimately, Young and in Love honors marriage and encourages marriages in the making. This is not another purity book teaching you how to suppress any and all feelings of love. No way! I want you to express your love and then enjoy marriage. So, if you kissed dating goodbye, it's time to say hello! If you have kept true love waiting, I tell you now, wait no more. Get married!"

Young and in Love packs a mighty hard punch in a velvet glove of humor and wit. Readers will feel validated in their young love. They will be given the tools to make a wise commitment, and they will be challenged to not delay what God is knitting together. Plus parents and pastors who feel concerned about a relationship will be given wise counsel in order to help their young adults prepare for a godly marriage.

Young and in Love: Challenging the Unnecessary Delay of Marriage by Ted Cunningham

David C Cook/June 2011/ISBN: 978-0-7814-0447-1/224 pages/paperback/$14.99

www.davidccook.com ~ www.tedcunningham.com

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