Friday, June 24, 2016

AMTC Stands With Orlando with “Love Different” Red Carpet Movie Premiere

Actors Models and Talent for Christ (AMTC) plans to bring a night of comedy, love, and restoration as they Stand With Orlando during this time of tragedy. With the realization that laughter can bring healing and hope for the future, AMTC will be hosting a free Red Carpet Premiere of the feature film, Love Different, on Saturday, July 2nd, 8:30pm, at Gaylord Palms Orlando. Filmmaker Anthony Hackett, leading lady, Jenn Gotzon (Frost/Nixon, God's Country), and many other actors from the film will be in attendance to show their support for Orlando. Families of loved ones lost, friends and everyone else are welcome to attend the Stand with Orlando Red Carpet Premiere of Love Different. Please RSVP to AMTCmovies@gmail.com if you would like to attend. There is a parking charge associated with visiting or staying at Gaylord Palms Resort.

The movie, filmed in Baltimore, is a hilarious story that’s been bridging racial hatred and relational tensions through comedic scenarios filled with laughter and an uplifting plot allowing people to better understand each other and learn how to love different. Actress Jenn Gotzon says, "The movie's scenes serve as a vehicle to better understand each other and how to love different." 






For more info on event: Stand With Orlando Red Carpet Premiere 
 For more info on AMTC: Actors, Models & Talent for ChrisActors, Models & Talent for Christ
For more info on movie: Love Different


Please share with people in the Orlando area and use hashtags #AMTC #StandWithOrlando #MakingGoodBolder #LoveDifferent

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Awakened

Awakened is a supernatural Christian thriller about spiritual warfare, written by Eugene Cuevas, who also shared co-directing credit with Brian R. Reed. Synopsis (from Amazon): Newspaper reporter Jacob Harker (Rob Boltin) loses his job, forcing he and his wife, Haley (Gwendolyn Edwards), to move into a small rental house owned by Webster Cain (Michael Monks). In the process of moving in, Jacob discovers a discarded audio recording of 60’s blues singer Carol James (Hannah Hughes). Captivated by the voice on the recording, Jacob conducts an investigation into Carol James’ life and death.  Through his pursuit, Jacob becomes haunted by an evil spirit. While the spirit seductively persuades Jacob, drawing him deeper and deeper into its own malicious plot, the spirit attacks and terrorizes Haley, creating both fear and distrust in the Harker’s home. Haley sees her husband turning into someone less recognizable each day.




MY REVIEW: To be fair, I need to say upfront that I am not a fan of horror films, especially those that have possibilities of happening. As a Christian, I do believe in spiritual warfare. So, it did take several attempts for me to watch it since I would periodically tune it out. Kudos, btw, to Charles E. Lee for his suspenseful music. I did not dislike the film, and actually liked it better than I expected, but it did not live up to it's full potential. There were some parts that I could not really understand what was being said; it seemed a bit muffled. I also thought the orange/brown tones were a bit overdone, although I do understand that it helps create atmosphere.

My larger concern, though, was how little the Harker's seemed prepared for dealing with spiritual warfare: Jake and Haley seemed to be more cultural Christians, although Haley was more open to embracing faith. The pastor in the film was very likeable and knowledgeable, and gave a truthful representation of what may be happening without either downplaying or encouraging the possibility of demonic activity. I just know that I would like a bit more prayer support from others than Haley seemed interested in receiving.

Hardcore horror fans may find it all a bit tame, but I thought the film did a good job of telling a story of a person who slowly slipped into evil without even realizing the grip it had on him. A few tweaks here and there would have made it a better film, and they were more on the technical side than the writing or acting. If you are a fan or suspense or thriller dramas, this is a film you should consider. It also can open a door to conversations about the reality of evil and unseen forces. It definitely brought Ephesians 6:12 (For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.) to life for me.


Disclosure: I received this DVD compliments of Word Films and Edify Media Inc for my honest review. They are also offering a giveaway copy of this DVD. Please let me know through a comment on blog (or Facebook) that you want to be entered. All entries must be received by Saturday, June 25, 2016.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Mother & Son: The Respect Effect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

The idea of moms respecting their sons may sound alien to some, but it seems to ignite curiosity across the board. It is easy to relate to the need for all of us to feel a mother’s love, but is that the same thing as respect? Even for young boys, the effect of respect is nothing short of astounding when applied properly.  Moms yearn to learn anything that better helps them with their sons. After all, they love their boys, but many find them more difficult to parent than their girls, especially from age four and up. What makes this all the more urgent is that moms are coaching fathers to love their daughters, but no one has said boo to moms on specific ways to show respect to their sons, at least not in a way that is applicable and fully explained. All realize that little girls need daddy’s love, but who is strongly promoting the truth that little boys (and big ones) need Mom's respect? No wonder mothers feel left in the dark on this topic. (publisher)


TOPICS COVERED INCLUDE:


  • The 6 desires God seeded in your son
  • Why a mother’s love is not the same thing as respect
  • Respect: the key to your son’s heart
  • Who’s respecting whom: mother or son?
  • Unconditional respect: a biblical idea
  • Top 6 mom misconceptions
  • How to see the man in your son
  • When you should discipline
  • It’s never too late: quick-start tips for those who feel short on time
  • 21 days of inspiration for the respect effect
  • Encouraging scriptures for parenting your son with respect
My Review: The book has information that is valuable, yet something about it just grated on me as I read it. There seemed to be more than a hint of condescension in the tone when addressing mothers. I thought perhaps I was taking it too personally since I have been aware for decades about the male need for respect, even in little boys. The author kept trying to say how women think to the point I could almost believe I am not female. People, both male and female, are individuals with varying traits. So, to be fair, my annoyance may have colored my reaction to the book.

The word RESPECT is vital to the book but was also overused. Much of the suggested dialogue between a mother and son was stilted, but did give good suggestions and outlines. I come from a different generation, so my experiences may be different than that of a young mom raising a child today. So, this could be a valuable resource for those who are unfamiliar with the male need for respect. And, I know several women who think like the author assumes all women think. Don't get me wrong---there is nothing wrong with those thoughts and personalities, they just aren't universal. And, I am certain that no offense was intended in the writing, especially since Dr. Eggerichs specializes in the importance of showing respect to others. I am sure many will also find the success stories encouraging. Letting your son (and all males in your family) know that you love them is important, too, but letting them know you respect them is essential. And I do respect the time, effort, hard work, and thoughts Dr. Eggerichs put into research and writing this and that he is changing lives and relationships for the better.



“We’ve coached fathers on how to love their daughters, but we’ve not coached mothers on how to meet the need a boy has to feel respected for who he is. This is what Mother & Son is all about.“ – Dr. Emerson Eggerichs 

Esther: The Belle of Patience

Esther: The Belle of Patience is the most recent book in The Adventures of Rooney Cruz. Bible Belles highlights five "superhero" women of the Bible: Hannah, Esther, Abigail, Ruth, and Deborah. Each of these women has a super power to they use to serve God and this series highlights that to teach young girls a valuable lesson. 

Rooney's guardian angel, Mari, takes her on an adventure to learn about each of these women and helps her to own their superpower for her own transformation into a superhero. These adventures also help Rooney learn more about God's love for her and that he has gifts that give her inner beauty and strength to be equipped in her life in resolving problems and making a difference that counts. Book 1 was Hannah: The Belle of Prayer, and future books will teach on Bravery, Loyalty, and Leadership. Created by Erin Weidemann and illustrated by former Disney illustrator, Rob Corley.



Bible Belle's Esther: The Belle of Patience from Bible Belles on Vimeo.

My Review: First off, I was a bit hesitant when I was reading guardian angel and super powers, but that was gone within seconds of getting into the book. These are stories about women in the Bible who have modeled character traits that are invaluable. Women in the Bible rarely receive as much attention as the men and girls do need role models they can look up to as they are developing their faith and character. I hope they expand beyond the original five planned for this series.

In this particular book, the story of Esther is retold in a simple tale that is easy for children to understand, but with an emphasis on the patience of Esther as she took time to fast and pray for the right time to approach the king and to present her request. The Biblical story is then applied to the problem that Rooney is facing with a soccer teammate and her coach who never seems to be listening when she tries to point it out to him. I had never really looked at Esther as a lesson in patience (admittedly, not one of my virtues), so it made me look at it from a different angle too. The writing is great and the illustrations are fantastic! I highly recommend, not just this particular book, but the entire series. Since this is just book 2, looks like I will need to practice patience as I wait for the rest of the series. Visit the website at BibleBelles.com

Many thanks to Propeller Consulting and FlyBy Promotions for the opportunity to review this book at no cost to myself. All opinions are my own.


"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Chasing Grace DVD

Chasing Grace, starring Michael Joiner (‘The Grace Card’), David Temple ('The Last Passport'), Rusty Martin (‘Courageous’) and Ashlee Payne (‘Red Dirt Rising’), tells a story of two brothers who are opposites in many ways, yet have an undeniable bond. When an unthinkable accident occurs, blame and unforgiveness tears the brothers apart and impacts the lives of family and friends. Slowly, as more secrets are uncovered, the truth emerges, but not without a lot of pain and consequences as each person deals with the loss of Grace. share a close bond, despite the different paths they have taken, until an unimaginable event takes place. As the story unravels, buried lies--- and truth are both discovered. Chasing Grace is loosely based upon true events and is an adaptation of writer/director David Temple's novel Discovering Grace. This powerful story about the redeeming power of forgiveness also stars Billy Dec, Leon Pridgen, Mitzi Corrigan, Vanessa Ore, and Abigail Rose Cornell as Grace. It is produced by Catalyst Pictures, LLC and distributed by Word Films.


My Review: This is another I am a bit on the fence about. I liked it, but I didn't love it. Great message, but it was a little slow in getting to the purpose of the film and I sometimes got confused during the telling of the story. Layers of the story were revealed throughout the film, but some never did make complete sense to me. Of course, part of my experience was simply a personal inability to comprehend why anyone would act or react to a situation the way they did. I needed more indepth into characters than what was provided; there was some black, white, and a few shades of gray, but not enough color to characters for many to feel a connection. The acting, music, and cinematography were all good, but my mind did tend to wander. It's more of a 3.75 for me, but I will round up and give it 4 stars.
 

Disclosure: I received this DVD compliments of Word Films and Edify Media Inc for my honest review. 

Chasing Grace website


21 Myths (Even Good) Girls Believe about Sex

21 Myths (Even Good) Girls Believe about Sex: Pursuing Love with Passion and Purity by Jennifer Strickland (U R More) reveals some of the untruths that many have about love, sex, dating and more. This is a frank discussion of lies you may have been told and explores a variety of topics to uncover the truth of God's plan for sex and purity in comparison to what today's secular culture says. Written primarily for teen and college-aged young women, there are truths to be discovered by females---and males---of all ages. 

 

Filled with personal anecdotes and experiences of those who have experiences of the varying topics, Biblical wisdom, and the author's personal stories and thoughts, this book is a frank and refreshingly honest discussion that does not offer condemnation or shame. There is guidance offered, but not in a bombastic "turn or burn" style that only criticizes. Whether the reader is a victim or is making an active choice, love and acceptance are freely given...but with a balanced viewpoint that is Biblically sound. On the negative side, some seemed a bit too simple and naive. People do not always respond to your sincerity when you say love someone while not condoning their lifestyle. I totally get it, but have also watched the world become angrier and more bitter if everything they believe is not embraced. However, I do agree with what Jennifer said about loving people and treating them with respect. 

 

I do highly recommend this book as a great resource for all. Whether you have not yet begun to date or if you have been through so many experiences that you feel it is too late to change---or, like many of us, somewhere in between, the book has truths that we all need poured into our lives.

Disclosure: I received a free download of this book from the author. However, all opinions are my own.

 

About Jennifer Strickland: As a speaker, Jen draws upon her life as a former professional model to help women and girls find their beauty, value, and purpose. Unveiling the lies of the media about women's worth, Jen deposits true value in her listeners' hearts. She speaks on college, high school, and junior high campuses (public and private); at recovery centers, women's prisons, sororities, and at womens' and girls' events. She is also speaks at writer's conferences and to women in leadership. Visit her website at U R More with Jennifer Strickland.

 

 

Friday, June 3, 2016

Phil Wickham - Children of God CD

CHILDREN OF GOD by Phil Wickham has a few musical twists and turns, but with songs that are sure to please his fans. This is the first he has recorded since undergoing surgery to remove a vocal polyp in 2014. He has a new sound and a revitalized energy in praising God and music from this CD is eagerly anticipated by fans planning to attend a concert. Wickham is currently on tour, including many stops with "Chris Tomlin's Night of Worship in America," and a few other dates with a variety of artists. 
 

My Review: I have been enjoying the CD. Not every song is my style or grabs my attention, but, there are also none that have me reaching for the volume control. It starts out with my favorite on the whole CD, "Doxology/Amen" but there are many others. I tend to be more of a ballad style, so some of the more upbeat distracts me from worship-mode. Those are a little too over-produced for my personal taste, but that's okay. The CD provides a bit for all. Others that I really love on the CD are "The Secret Place" (featuring Madison Cunningham), "My All in All," "As It Is In Heaven," "Spirit of God," and my next-favorite, "Starmaker." But, as I said, none are bad. I give it a 4.25 stars. 

BUY LINKS:
1. iTunes
2. Amazon
 
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this CD from FlyBy Promotions for the purpose of writing a review.