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Joanna’s Ebooks’ Review

I am quite thrilled to see how God is nurturing Joanna’s love for books now. Despite being deprived of physical books, we are glad to have found NetGalley–a platform that provides ebooks in exchange for reviews.

In this post, I’d like to share an extremely brief and concise feedback on Joanna’s recent reads.

1. Where Are You Hiding God? by Elizabeth Zartl
Despite its story’s simplicity, the book is a good tool to teach children about God’s omnipresence, which build’s their faith and confidence in Him. The illustrations’ colors are certainly attractive to young readers and the choice of words are suitable for kids. You may get your copy here.

Find more details by clicking the image.

2. Benji and the 24 Pound Banana Squash by Alan Fox
This is a book on a young boy’s adventure in growing his very own banana squash. It encourages children to pursue an adventure worth-trying and teaches the value of patience. The story line is exciting and yet I would say that some parts of the story line have more rooms for simplifications. Toddlers may get confused for the long narrations in between. Other than that, the photos are quite eye-catching and make toddlers absorbed in reading the whole book in one sitting.
3. A Book for Benny by Judith Koppens
 The colorful illustrations in the book vividly reflect the story line. It’s such a good read for kids who love books and dogs. 🙂

4. Fairy in the Kettle by Pauline Tait
The cover is quite attractive and the summary of the story is good. Although the description on Amazon says that “it’s perfect for preschool and primary children…”, I honestly think that the story line is a bit wordy and is still too much to handle for those using English as a Second Language. Other than that, the artist who illustrated the story obviously exerted efforts to make the narration come alive.

As parents, we may not be able to afford to bring our children to many places around the world but reading books to them will definitely make them experience imaginary adventures.

What is the latest book you have been reading to your kid/s? Share them with me in the comment box below.

If you found this post interesting, you might want to visit this previous review.

As I always say, enjoy your journey with God…and that includes reading to your growing child! 🙂

Leaning on Jesus,

5 Apps Worth Installing If You Are Seeking Spiritual Growth

I once found a striking quote that says,

Technology quote

I totally agree and I would like to borrow its style and amend it a bit to make it suitable to what I am about to share with you. I would say that,

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When I went back to the Philippines early this year, I had a chance to buy my very first affordable brand new smartphone from Oppo as recommended by a dear friend. One of my prayers is for God to enable me to use it for His glory.

To do so, I installed a few apps, which I thought would help me grow continually as a child of God. Now I am listing down the apps I found really beneficial for my spiritual nourishment.

Bible Schedule App1. Bible Schedule. If you look for it on Google Playstore, it should look like the image on the left if you are reading this post on a PC. I used to follow Bible reading plans printed at the back of my Bible or a plan printed on a sheet of paper. After installing this app though, I found it convenient to check my Bible Reading Assignment daily on my smartphone.

This app offers variety of Bible Reading Plans. I followed the sequential plan this year and hopefully, this year will be my tenth year of finishing the Bible from cover to cover after becoming a Christian. You may choose to read the Bible chronologically or anyway you want using the app. I assure you that it will help you stay motivated in trying to know God better by reading your Bible systematically.

Reading the books of the Bible in order will be my goal next year, Lord willing.

Bible Schedule App (1) 2. Logos Bible.  What I love about this app it is it provides access to wonderful ebooks. How I wish Kindle app was available in Bangladesh or that Kindle Reader could be shipped here! However, it is a blessing that God led me to this app as this serves almost the same purpose as Kindle does in providing quality ebooks. The advantage of this app though is its niche–it specifically caters to Christian readers and provides Christianity-related epubs. Right now, I am enjoying reading a soul-stirring ebook named “The Necessity of Prayer” by E. M. Bounds using this app.

Bible Schedule App (2)3. Pray Through. This app is only highly recommendable for people who can stay focused on praying while using their phone. I would like to mention that this app is helpful in enlisting prayer requests and helps you feel accomplished in remembering the people who asked you to intercede for them. As you reach your list’s end, it will give you a prompt saying that your list for the day is finished. I still keep my written prayer list on my journal  and use it to avoid distraction. If you happen to be reading this, I will be privileged to pray for you as one of the ministries I have decided to revive this year is praying for others. Please write me a private message on my Facebook page.

Bible Schedule App (5)4. Bible.is. I have been using this app even on my old Symphony Smartphone in the past until now. It is really handy when reading through difficult books in the Bible (e.g. prophetic books and a few books in Pentateuch like Leviticus and Numbers). I must admit that reading the said sections can doze me off so I find the dramatized reading of the passages from those sections absolutely helpful. Please note that while listening to this app, I still keep my Bible open and follow the reading assignment with my eyes (wide open!) 🙂

Bible Schedule App (6)5. Abiding Radio. This is an online streaming of both old and contemporary hymns. You may choose to listen to instrumental, sacred, kids’ and seasonal arranged hymns. It also features different Christian musicians and groups of singers so expect to be blessed and edified by the songs you’ll hear from this app. Their songs are mostly deplete with Bible-based lyrics and heavenly melody and harmony. 

This might look like a very limited list and I don’t claim to know all the best Christian apps around but the ones I mentioned are proven to be helpful. I would love to discover more apps and maybe you are the one who can help me find more apps that are worth installing. Please share them with me and other readers of this blog in the comment box below. 🙂

If you find this reading helpful, you may also want to read this previous post.

My prayer is that we, His children, will be consumed with a desire to know Him deeper by saturating our minds and hearts with things about Him. Doing this entails facing a lot of tests from God to see if we would live out what we learn from His word.  It can also mean struggling with attacks from Satan to make us doubt God’s love and mercy. The only way we can triumph over the blitz of the devil to make us down is by putting on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-20). I hope the apps I mentioned above will help you strengthen your faith and relationship with our loving and ever-faithful God.

As I always say, enjoy your journey with God!

Leaning on Jesus,

Review: Planning Your Life God’s Way by Dr. Timothy Berrey

Are you facing a tough situation? Are you on a crossroad? Are you feeling hopeless in your situation and you don’t know which step to take next? Are you seeking your purpose in life?

Thousands of books have been written on decision making but this e-book, Planning Your Life God’s Way by Dr. Timothy Berrey, is highly recommendable for anyone! Click here for more info.

I am privileged to be given a chance to read this written work of my professor through the gracious kindness of his dear wife.

Here are my five reasons you should not miss reading this e-book:

1. It’s scholarly written and yet reader-friendly.

Points made in the book are not simply elaborated with explanations but are well-supported by secular and biblical examples.  I can’t deny the fact that the author himself is a well-read person. You will definitely learn more about both prominent and unpopular characters from his readings through his writing!

2. It’s filled with proven ways on how to make decisions.

You will never doubt the ways penned by this author as he and his wife live by them! Just to let you know, my husband and I are witnesses of how they deeply honor God and His word in their decisions. You can also check their website here. Be blessed by their future posts!

3. Its price is quite reasonable.

Click the image for more info.

Go and check more info here. In fact, he has written another book called, “From Eden to Patmos.” I have to confess that I left my copy of that book in the Philippines because I had a 10-kg baggage excess the last time I left the Philippines but I will definitely go back to it as the Lord wills.

4. It’s beneficial for all people regardless of their race or religious background.

How I wish I could just summarize the principles written on the e-book but that will defeat the purpose of this post. I want you to grab your copy and read it by yourself. 🙂 I assure you that the beginning chapter will make you so engaged to reading it that you will want to finish it in one sitting. As the author himself expressed, God wants you to enjoy a blessed life by making the right decisions with the guidance of His word.

5.  It’s a substantial read.

If you are a reader like me, I am certain that your diary or journal will never be left empty, but will be filled with quotable quotes from the author himself. I believe that this work is a fruit of his discipline and family’s prayers. You will never regret reading this.

Since I cannot keep the jewels of wisdom from this e-book to myself, I appeal to you to grab your copy and enjoy the life God has given you!

How about you? What’s the latest book you have been reading? Please share your review with me and I will try to find a way to get a copy of it either from Amazon or any internet site. 🙂

Enjoy your journey with God!

Leaning on Jesus,

Day 3: Bible Lands Exploration 2016 Part 2

I know. I would like to sincerely apologize for making you wait this loooong for the sequel of our group’s Bible Lands Exploration 2016-Day 3. I hope it’s still fine if I share with you this long overdue post. I so appreciate your patience! 🙂

Now, let’s have a quick recap before I continue sharing photos of our Bible Lands Exploration 2016. specifically Day 3, Part 2.

Feel free to click on the links below to review my album. 🙂

General Review of Bible Lands Exploration 2016
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3 Part 1

So let’s resume our virtual tour around Israel! You must have read that we visited King Herod’s Aqueduct and Caesarea Maritima National Park on Day 3. Then our…

Next Stop: Tel Megiddo National Park.
Description: This is an archaeological mound of great historical significance. Many battles were fought here and this is said to be the site where the Battle of Armageddon between Jesus and Satan will take place in the future. Walking through the site, we were shown and told of the many layers of history evidenced by the ruins all around. We also saw how an ancient chariot and stables looked like. Today, you can still see many palm trees and rock flowers all around the area. Across from Megiddo Park is the beautiful view of the Jezreel Valley,  the valley where Gideon led the Israelite’s victory against the Midianites, Amalekites and children of the east. In addition, we were privileged to walk through a water tunnel inside the park, which is said to be the main source of water in Megiddo.
Biblical References: A few passages in the Bible that mention this prominent place are Joshua 12:21; 17:11; Judges 1:27-28; 5:19-21 and so on.
Photos:
Megiddo National Park -March 2, 2016.jpgMegiddo Ruins.jpgJezreel Valley View.jpg
Water Tunnel- Megiddo PARK.jpg

Megiddo Water Tunnel by Brother Kenneth Cheong.jpg

A beautiful shot of Megiddo Water Tunnel by Bro. Kenneth Cheong.

Next Stop: Ein Harod
Description:
Do you remember when Gideon was tasked by God to conquer the Midianites and he had to choose warriors from thousands of men in Israel? This was the site where Gideon brought those men and eventually, chose 300 men out of those many courageous fighters. The ones who lapped water as dogs were chosen to fight with Gideon.
Biblical References:  Judges 7
Photos:

Ein Harod.jpg

There used to be water spring here but time has caused this place to dry up. Thanks to Bro. Jerry Teng for capturing this beautiful view of Gideon’s Spring.

EIN HAROD (2).jpg

Ein Harod (3).jpg

Reflection:

These places are testaments of how Gideon trusted God’s wisdom. We can remember that God is not concerned about our skills when we are facing our battles. He is concerned about our faith. Are we willing to surrender our earthly battle plans to win against our spiritual foes? Let’s trust God’s word in fighting our spiritual warfare.

Last Stop: We capped off our day’s exploration with a sumptuous dinner in Leonardo Hotel in Tiberias and went to bed early so we could have enough rest for our next day’s journey.

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I hope you enjoyed looking at the photos and may God bless you in whatever you are doing! Please watch out for my next post on how our DAY 4 of Bible Lands Exploration fared last year! 😉 Thank you so much for your time. 🙂


What Life is Like in Bangladesh Part 2

What my life is like in Bangladesh is in demand. Many of my online students are still in awe after hearing that we are missionaries here in Bangladesh, I am posting a few more photos I took around my husband’s village years ago. The following informative pictures should give many of you, my friends and relatives, an idea what it’s like to survive in a Bangladeshi village. 🙂

Brace yourself if you are not so used to facing culture shock. 🙂 Let our virtual journey begin!

  1. People in the villages still continue to cook using this clay stove.

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  2. Women cut/slice their meat and other raw ingredients using what they call “boti.” No, knives are not commonly used by Bangladeshi women in the villages. 🙂1915378_1288640861151_6672681_n
  3. Most families in the village own a man-made pond where they can grow their own fish.
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  4. While hollow blocks are commonly used in building houses and constructions in the Philippines, bricks are the ones favored by builders here in my adopted country.
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  5. In the villages of Bangladesh, rickshaws rarely exist. They have what they call “van” and it is the most common mode of transportation by village peopleIn the Philippines, if you hear the word “van”, you’ll think of a vehicle that can accommodate about 10 people.  Now, take a look at the big difference. 🙂

    Van in Bangladesh vs. Van in the Philippines.jpg

    I love taking Bangladeshi vans in the village though. 🙂 It allows you to view the beauty of the green meadows clothing the whole village. 

  6. People mourn over their deceased loved ones in their homes and they don’t provide any coffin for them. The bereaved bury their loved ones’ corpses as they are beside their homes using clay soil.
    funeral-in-Bangladeshi-villages
  7. You cross the river with wooden boats. In my experience, I remember Jesus and His disciples every time we cross the river by boats.
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  8. Most vendors in Bangladeshi markets are men. They have a very patriarchal society. Take note that men also buy groceries for their families. 1915378_1288658061581_7850140_n

Some people pity me upon hearing that as I live in Bangladesh, I have to go through a lot of adjustments. However, I consider it a privilege to be serving my husband in his home country so he can pursue the call God gave him–to win souls for Christ. To me, going through a culture shock is a cause of inconvenience, yes, but God is working in my heart. There’s a mission work in progress within me and even though I don’t realize what He wants me to do with the experience I have been having here in Bangladesh, my calling is to remain steadfast in my faith that He is doing something. His mission work through us and in us is ongoing.

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P.S. I stayed in the village for a year and that’s how I was able to learn to speak Bengali. A year later, I had to face another  acculturation when we moved to Dhaka. Hopefully, I can share with you a few photos I took around Dhaka so please stand by for the sequel of this post. 🙂

Also, I hope that this list would prepare you if you are considering to come over and visit us in the future. 🙂

 

 

 

Christmas Giveaway

Year 2016 is almost over. Looking back at how year 2016 went for me makes me stand in awe of God’s goodness. I saw His daily grace and provision for my family, His deliverance in times of our adversities and forgiveness in our failures to please Him at times. The thought of God’s undeniable myriads of boons upon my family is entirely humbling.

The question I have been asking myself is, “What can I do to thank God in return?” The answer is nothing. And yet, I believe that the least I can do is use whatever time and talent He entrusted me to bless others (I hope…).

So to celebrate God’s kindness upon my family and me, I would like to share a Christmas giveaway to you who are interested. I am sharing these free-printable-spiritual-journal-pages. My desire is that these journal pages would motivate you to journal your lessons from your walk with God and develop your “gratitude-attitude” further in year 2017.

SUGGESTIONS: 

  1. Buy a 5×7 three-ring binder.
  2. Print one page of the first five pages.
  3. Print the page that looks like this 365 times. 😉

journal-entry-page

4. The “Random Thoughts” page is optional but it’s great for writers. 🙂
5. Another great idea would be to go to a printing shop and have them assemble your bound journal. 🙂

I wish I could do more but these will be all for now. Enjoy and have a Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas