Item description for The Life God Blesses: The Secret of Enjoying God's Favor by Jim Cymbala & Stephen Sorenson...
Overview The Life God Blesses" unlocks the keys to experiencing God's blessing by exploring the characteristics of a special kind of heart--a humble heart, a listening heart, a merciful heart. Drawing from the lives of other Old Testament figures, Cymbala helps readers understand how God's blessings work.
God Is Searching for People to Bless Jim Cymbala believes that God plays "favorites"--that certain people experience his blessings more abundantly than others. Have these people learned a formula or a simple technique that will guarantee his blessing? Or is there something more profound at work in their lives? In The Life God Blesses, Jim Cymbala points out that God is constantly searching for people to bless. He s not looking for men and women with special talents or unusual intelligence or great strength but for those who possess a certain kind of heart. Find out how to have a heart that God cannot resist and you will become a channel of his blessing for your family, your church, and your world."
Citations And Professional Reviews The Life God Blesses: The Secret of Enjoying God's Favor by Jim Cymbala & Stephen Sorenson has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Charisma & Christian Life - 03/01/2002 page 88
Publishers Weekly - 08/27/2001 page 80
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Reviews - What do customers think about Life God Blesses?
God is Searching For Hearts Open to His Work Sep 27, 2006
God is looking for people who have a heart that is completely devoted to Him. This paraphrase of 2 Chronicles 16:9 is the thesis of this book by Pastor Jim Cymbala. Jim refers the reader to texts such as 1 Chronicles 28:9 and Luke 16:15 and 1 Samuel 16:7 to further demonstrate God's concern that we have a heart for Him.
Chapter one describes the sad story of a televangelist whose preaching had become judgmental and shrill, and whose life was careening out of control. He refused to listen to wise counsel, and he ended up in sin and shame. Cymbala relates this to the experience of King Amaziah in 2 Chronicles 25, a man who totally obeyed God at first, to his great benefit, but a few verses later, he inexplicably started worshiping the gods of the Edomites. When the was warned by the prophet, he wouldn;t listen, and he and the people were routed by the northern kingdom and came under God's awful judgment. We must have a heart that is completely devoted to God all the time no matter what.
The next chapter talks about how we sometimes imitate our sports heroes, but that we should really be imitating God, the greatest hero of them all (Ephesians 5:1). We should be like David, a man after God's own heart (1 Sam 13:14). Cymbala also refers us to the beautiful verse in 2 Chronicles 26:5: "As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success." The stories he tells are beautiful but they do not always make the point that we are to be imitators of God. The chapter starts out with this theme, but it then goes on to talk about seeking the Lord rather than imitating the Lord. He does get back on track somewhat with the story of a young man who was brought back to the Lord because of the godly example of his dad.
The next chapter is about looking up to God in prayer. Jim describes a woman named Silvia Glover who prays passionately for him and his ministry, and who seems to be able to read his mail, for her prayers her always right on the mark for the needs in his life. He reveals that her rough background has taught her to lean on the Lord for everything, and this is why she is such a passionate person of prayer. That is her true gift.
Pastor Jim compares her to Hannah in 1 Samuel 1. It is a reminder that the life God blesses is a life of prayer. He bolsters this point with references to Psalm 4:3, James 4:2, Psalm 86:4, and other verses as well.
The next chapter is about the power of tenderness. Jim relates a story of an accident he and some friends were in, and how the student nurse that admitted them to the infirmary screamed whens she saw them. He goes on to say that how we respond to people and events tells a lot about who we are (I didn't get the point, how did this woman's reaction illustrate this point, and what does it tell us about her? How does this relate to the Life that God blesses?)
Jim goes to explain that Josiah responded to the spiritual crisis of impending judgment in 2 Chronicles 34 with a tender heart toward God. Good scripture, bad opening illustration.
He follows it up by referring us to Mark 3:1-6, where the Pharisees haver hard hearts toward Jesus rather than tender hearts. How often we are like the Pharisees, whose hearts are not soft and pliable before the Lord. Jim says that we need to remember that it was RELIGIOUS folks with hard hearts that put Jesus up on the cross (ouch!).
In the last chapter, Jim stresses that sincere, heartfelt prayer was the way that God blessed his church and it is the life that God wants to bless now.
I liked this book. Not all of the stories matched up real well with the points that were made, but Jim shows a heart to apply the text to the lives of his people. Pastor Jim himself is an example of a life God is blessing, a life of prayer and tenderness toward others and a heart that is completely His (2 Chron 16:9). Recommended.
Not His Best May 12, 2006
This is not even near to Jim Cymbala's best book. Before buying this book I'd get his previous titles: "Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire" and "Fresh Faith" and "Fresh Power".
I highly recommend all three of those titles. They have truly impacted my life.
A truly compelling look at God's will for our lives! Nov 1, 2005
I love Jim Cymbala's writings! He is so honest, broken, and sincere. Every page oozes warmth and Christ-like generosity. This book is one of his best! I will definitely read it again for inspiration and encouragement.
Excellent and Timely Read! Mar 2, 2003
This little gem is brief (154 pages) yet contains many good spiritual points, including:
1. God deeply wants us to have listening hearts. 2. Show tenderness and mercy to those who wound us and leave them in God's hands. 3. Waiting on the Lord is the key to being blessed - let Him bless you in His time and way!
I particularly like the way Cymbala writes with a pastor's heart instead of the professionalism that seems to pervade ministry today. For example, the author sensitively uses the lives of King Uzziah, King Josiah, and Hannah to illustrate important spiritual points and how their lives serve to remind us of God's love and willingness to bless us if we only wait on Him instead of trying to "flesh it out" ourselves.
All in all, an excellent read for the person who needs encouragement and assurance that waiting on God is best for those who love Him!
Genuine Christian inspiration Sep 29, 2001
Having reread Bruce Wilkinson`s Prayer of Jabez many times,this book proves despite world circumstances,true inspiration of the Holy Spirit permeates today,and did not end with the Book of Acts.The authors wife Carols newly released book "He`s Been Faithful"is a third illustration of specific testimonies of lives redeemed thru faith in Christ. You will not put this on the bookshelf without having your faith renewed!