Be Bold – a coloring devotional review

Be Bold Book Cover Be Bold
Ellen Elliott
Young Adult Nonfiction
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
March 1, 2017

Be Bold offers an outlet to simultaneously focus on God's Word and express creativity. Using scripture as the foundation for her designs, Ellen Elliot takes readers through a series of inspiring verses reinforced with short devotional writings. Topics include joy, hope, self-image, peace, and more. Each coloring page and corresponding devotional will help the reader develop a closer relationship with the Heavenly Father.

My Thoughts

This book has a month’s worth of 31 devotionals. On the right side of the page, there is a Bible verse, a theme and a short  5-minute devotional.  On the left side is a page to color.   Some of the themes are: Believe who God says you are, Choose joy, Jesus never changes, and Trust in the Lord.

The book is marketed to teens – but, I think it would be fun for any age. I thoroughly enjoyed it and my teen years are a very distant memory!  Coloring is a great stress reliever and I enjoy coloring pages where there is a focus on Bible verse. I find myself thinking about that truth while I color.

What I liked

  • At the back of the book are 12 blank pages to write prayers or notes
  • The coloring pages are bold and whimsical, not tiny details.  Fun to color!
  • The pages are a thicker paper.

What I didn’t like

  • The pages aren’t perforated. I often prefer to tear the pages out to color them
  • The pages don’t lay flat – not a deal breaker for me but could be a challenge if you are left handed.

I would recommend it to

I think it would make a great gift for a teen or tween.

I have received a copy of this book from Tyndale for an honest review of the product.  

Zip It – a book review

Zip It Book Cover Zip It
Karen Ehman
February 7, 2017

Zip It empowers readers to put into action the advice and commands of Scripture concerning the tongue. Karen Ehman now takes a deeper look and offers practical how-to's that will inspire you to use your words to build, to bless, to encourage, and to praise. Each entry ends with both a challenge that will help you carry out the directive in the verse and a prayer prompt. Rather than a traditional devotional, the entries in Zip It build upon each other, equipping you with new habits in how to, or not to, use words.


My Thoughts

I read this book during the 40 days leading up to Easter.  Each morning I took jotted a line from the book on the top of my journal page. It was a visible reminder throughout the day to be aware of my words.

Some notes I wrote in my journal:

  • Praise not put downs
  • Our thoughts are the birthplace of our words
  • Don’t say something permanently painful because you are temporarily ticked off.
  • Take time to cool down – then address issues
  • Are my words truth and hope or confusion and discouragement?
  • Listen to the Holy Spirit and be yourself.
  • Jesus knows my thoughts. How does he feel about the way I treat myself?
  • Put my mouth on a ten-second DRV delay.
  • Are my words appropriate, gracious and necessary?

What I liked

  • Each day was structured with a Bible verse, a short lesson, Today’s Takeaways, Lessons for the Lips and a prayer.
  • There were lots of practical suggestions on how-to’s to use your words to bless and encourage others.
  • This isn’t a book you read through in a few hours and then set on your shelf.  I feel I gained practical tools for my tool box to help me in my journey of being a blessing and not negative and hurtful with my tongue.


I would recommend it to

Anyone looking for a devotional that has depth and practical application.

Sum it up

The tongue is a powerful tool that can be used to encourage and build up or tear down and hurt. You have the choice on which way you use it.

I have received a copy of this book from Zondervan for an honest review of the product.  

Tranquility – A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal (Book Review)

Tranquility - A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal Book Cover Tranquility - A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal
Inspirational/Prayer/Coloring Journal
April 18, 2017

The theme of this journal is tranquility which is a state of calmness, peacefulness, and serenity. Color and journal while you let your mind soak in the truths of God's Word.  It is a beautifully bound 6”X8” hardcover book, perfect journal size, fitting easily into a bag or backpack. Each page has a design to color and a quote, a prayer, a Bible verse and a space for journaling. There are more than 100 designs to color and 40 prayers.


My Thoughts

I reviewed Gratitude: A Prayer and Praise Coloring Book last October.  I was a novice in the world of adult coloring books six months ago.  Now I’m addicted! So, when this gem from the same Living Expressions collection came along to review, I jumped on it.

It does not disappoint as it is just as lovely as the Gratitude journal. I love the way it feels in the hands. The cover is thick and has texture. The quality makes it perfect for a gift.

A Side Note

A friend turned me on coloring with gel pens.  While I love my Prismacolor colored pencils (I have the 24 count and dream of buying the 72 count), I LOVE gel pens. They are so smooth and bright and oh-so-fun! I got a set of 100 pens from Costco for $20 that I would recommend.  There are doubles in colors, but that’s good -I can have one set upstairs and one downstairs so I can color whenever the urge strikes!  I have also gotten a couple of sets from Amazon for gifts.

What I liked

I love the concept -an opportunity to sit quietly with God and allow your mind to center on the truths of Scripture as you color. Combining coloring with journaling allows you to put your thoughts into words.

Tranquility is something I have found I have to be intentional about in our busy society. This journal gives you the tools to be intentional.

What I didn’t like

The pages have some bits colored – kind of setting the theme. I would prefer they didn’t have any color – but it is by no means a deal breaker.

Who would I recommend it to?

I would recommend it to anyone who is creative, likes to color and journal and wants to go deeper with God.



I have received a copy of this book from Tyndale House for an honest review of the product.  

Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman – Book Review

"Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" Book Cover "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!"
Richard Phillips Feynman, Ralph Leighton, Edward Hutchings,
Biography & Autobiography
W. W. Norton & Company

Richard Feynman is a quirky, practical joker who is also a brilliant physicist.  Here he recounts his experiences with working on the atomic bomb, cracking uncrackable safes, as well as playing the drums and learning to paint.  His book reflects his insatiable curiosity combined with his passion for learning.


A few months ago my husband emailed me a link on Richard Feynman. Apparently,  Bill Gates is such a fan of Richard Feynman he bought the rights to all his lectures and posted them online for free.  Out of curiosity, I added his book, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman to my to-read list.

I chose it as my first read of the new year and have been surprised at how much I enjoyed listening to the audio copy from my local library.  January winter nights passed by quickly as I sat by the fire coloring with my cat.  (My cat wasn’t coloring, he was sitting on me while I tried to color and listen to the book.)

I think I enjoyed this book so much because it gave me a glimpse into the way someone else thinks. I would have thought a book written by a Physicist would be boring and hard to understand.  But it was just the opposite.  Mr. Feynman is a funny guy and I just laughed and laughed at his practical jokes. He is also curious and always learning.  If you watch the video in the above link on Bill Gates, you will see his face light up as he describes fire.  Seeing how other people think stretches me and reminds me that my way isn’t the only way -or even the best way.

His tone is conversational and some of the chronology is not in order.  At some point, I got confused if he was on his second or third wife.  My approach to information is to take what is useful and leave the rest. So it’s worth noting that Richard is a colorful character and some may find parts of his stories and language to be offensive.

In one sentence, how did this book change me?

You can accomplish a lot in life by being curious and just being your own quirky self.

Who would I recommend it to?

Someone who likes history, biographies and enjoys laughing.


“I don’t know what’s the matter with people: they don’t learn by understanding; they learn by some other way—by rote, or something. Their knowledge is so fragile!”

“the whole problem of discovering what was the matter, and figuring out what you have to do to fix it–that was interesting to me, like a puzzle”

“When it came time for me to give my talk on the subject, I started off by drawing an outline of the cat and began to name the various muscles. The other students in the class interrupt me: “We _know_ all that!” “Oh,” I say, “you _do?_ Then no _wonder_ I can catch up with you so fast after you’ve had four years of biology.” They had wasted all their time memorizing stuff like that, when it could be looked up in fifteen minutes.”

“And Von Neumann gave me an interesting idea: that you don’t have to be responsible for the world that you’re in.”

“attitude that anything can happen, in spite of what you’re pretty sure should happen.”

“All the time you’re saying to yourself, “I could do that, but I won’t”—which is just another way of saying that you can’t.”

When Rejection Hurts

uni_ss_6-13-01-768x768“Brat.” His words cut through the dark Christmas night. Hot tears slipped unnoticed down my cheeks.  I now know he was speaking from a place of his pain. I wish I could go back to that moment and look into the eyes of my seven-year-old self.

I would tell her those words don’t define her.  I would tell her it was not her fault. I would tell her to spit the poison out before it had a chance to tangle around her soul.

I would hug her tightly and tell her –  You are loved. You are cherished. You are wanted.  You are valuable.

Rejection hurts.

Nobody likes rejection. Ever.

How do you move from hurt to wholeness? As the years go by, I realize more and more it is a process, not a moment. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever be there – but then I look back a decade or two and can celebrate the progress.  I recently read an excellent book on the subject.  In Uninvited, Liza Turkerst’s new book, she shares her story of rejection and her journey to wholeness.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book:

“My identity must be anchored to the truth of who God is and who He is to me.”

“Live loved”

“I had the truth. But I had not applied the truth. Therefore, my mind did what my feelings wanted.”

“It’s not deciding in my mind, I deserve to be loved. Or manipulating my heart to feel loved. It’s settling in my soul, I was created by God, who formed me because He so much loved the very thought of me. When I was nothing, He saw something and declared it good. Very good. And very loved.”

“Which has really gotten me to thinking about all the many times I assign thoughts to others that they never actually think. I hold them accountable to harsh judgments they never make.  And I own a rejection from them they never gave me.”

“Rejection isn’t just an emotional feeling. It’s a message that alters what you believe about yourself. And the minute you sense that happening is the minute you must stop the runaway thinking with truth.”

“Think about why it hurts so much when other people say or do things that make you feel rejected. Isn’t it in part due to the fact they just voiced some vulnerability you’ve already berated yourself for?”

I am learning to replace the hurt with truth. And to no longer live in bondage to others words but live in the wholeness of who I am in Christ.

Want more? Check out Lisa’s new book Uninvited. She also has lots of free uninvited-3dgoodies at Uninvited book. 

  • Audio Sample of Uninvited
  • Assessment on rejection
  • 5-day challenge
  • Chart for replacing lies with truth
  • Bonus chapter “What is it like to do life with me?”

I love you my friend and pray that you too will strive for the freedom in Christ.  Liza’s book is a great resource, but I would also encourage you to study the Scriptures. It’s the best source truthful thinking.  Get started with a google search like, “God loves me Bible verses.”  Live loved my friend!


This post is part of Lysa TerKeurst’s Uninvited Book Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with many other inspiring bloggers. To learn more and join us, click here.


BookLook Bloggers has provided you with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.