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  1. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    25.5 hrs • 8/16/2016 • Unabridged

    Nine hundred years ago, a vast Christian army, summoned to holy war by the Pope, rampaged through the Muslim world of the eastern Mediterranean, seizing possession of Jerusalem, a city revered by both faiths. Over the two hundred years that followed, Islam and Christianity—both firm in the belief that they were at God’s work—fought for dominion of the Holy Land, clashing in a succession of chillingly brutal wars: the Crusades. For the first time, this book tells the story of that epic struggle from the perspective of both Christians and Muslims. A vivid and fast-paced narrative history, it exposes the full horror, passion, and barbaric grandeur of the Crusading era, leading us into a world of legendary champions—such as Richard the Lionheart and Saladin—shadowy Assassins, poet-warriors, and pious visionaries; across the desert sands of Egypt to the verdant forests of Lebanon; and through the ancient cities of Constantinople, Cairo, and Damascus. Drawing on painstaking original research and an intimate knowledge of the Near East, Thomas Asbridge uncovers what drove Muslims and Christians alike to embrace the ideals of jihad and crusade, revealing how these holy wars reshaped the medieval world and why they continue to influence events today.

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    The Crusades by Thomas Asbridge

    The Crusades

    25.5 hrs • 8/16/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 4.7 hrs • 8/9/2016 • Unabridged

    LIVE A LIFE OF MEANING AND CONNECTION Instead of pushing for perfection A few years ago, I found myself exhausted and isolated, my soul and body sick. I was tired of being tired, burned out on busy. And, it seemed almost everyone I talked with was in the same boat: longing for connection, meaning, depth, but settling for busy. I am a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, neighbor, writer, and I know all too well that settling feeling. But over the course of the last few years, I’ve learned a way to live, marked by grace, love, rest, and play. And it’s changing everything. Present Over Perfect is an invitation to this journey that changed my life. I’ll walk this path with you, a path away from frantic pushing and proving, and toward your essential self, the one you were created to be before you began proving and earning for your worth. Written in Shauna’s warm and vulnerable style, this collection of essays focuses on the most important transformation in her life, and maybe yours too: leaving behind busyness and frantic living and rediscovering the person you were made to be. Present Over Perfect is a hand reaching out, pulling you free from the constant pressure to perform faster, push harder, and produce more, all while maintaining an exhausting image of perfection. Shauna offers an honest account of what led her to begin this journey, and a compelling vision for an entirely new way to live: soaked in grace, rest, silence, simplicity, prayer, and connection with the people that matter most to us. In these pages, you’ll be invited to consider the landscape of your own life, and what it might look like to leave behind the pressure to be perfect and begin the life-changing practice of simply being present, in the middle of the mess and the ordinariness of life.

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    Present Over Perfect

    Foreword by Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW
    4.7 hrs • 8/9/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 6.9 hrs • 6/6/2016 • Unabridged

    The Pilgrimu2019s Progress, written by John Bunyan over 300 years ago, is one of the most widely-circulated books ever to be published in the English language. In spite of its popularity in the past, many people today are not familiar with this masterpiece. Join respected pastor and theologian Dr. Derek Thomas as he takes readers along this allegorical journey, showing that Christians have as much to gain from this book today as they did hundreds of years ago._x000D_

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  4. 6.0 hrs • 5/17/2016 • Unabridged

    Shame has no place in the purpose, plan, and destiny God has for you. Because shame lies to us. It robs us of the very freedom we long for, and shackles us in the prison of our past. “I know. I’ve been there,” writes Christine Caine. “I was schooled in shame. It has been my constant companion from my very earliest memories. I see shame everywhere I look in the world, including in the church. It creeps from heart to heart, growing in shadowy places, feeding on itself so that those struggling with it are too shamed to seek help from shame itself.” But you have the power to move past your past, and step into a future that God has prepared for you—in freedom. In Unashamed, Christine Caine reveals the often-hidden consequences of shame—in her own life and the lives of so many Christian women—and invites you to join her in moving from a shame-filled to a shame-free life. In her passionate style, Christine leads you into God’s Word where you will see for yourself how to believe that God is bigger than your mistakes, your inadequacies, your past, and your limitations. He is not only more powerful than anything you’ve done but also stronger than anything ever done to you. You can deal with your yesterday today, so that you can move on to what God has in store for you tomorrow—a powerful purpose and destiny he wants you to fulfill. In Unashamed, you will discover that God has already won the victory over sin and its shame and how to break free from believing the lies of the deceiver. You will discover how to define yourself not by shame’s lies, but by God’s truth. You need not live bound by shame because you have been set free. Join the journey. Lay ahold of the power of Jesus Christ today and step into the future—his future for you—a beautiful, full, life-giving future, where you can even become a shame-lifter to others. Live unashamed!

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    Unashamed

    Produced by Zondervan
    Reader Jay O'Shea
    6.0 hrs • 5/17/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 5.9 hrs • 10/6/2015 • Unabridged

    Today we live in a culture that says, “My life should be easy and work well for me.” This attitude, called entitlement, influences our most important institutions: family, business, church, and government. Its effects are devastating, contributing to relational problems, work ethic issues, and emotional struggles. It comes down to this: people are not getting to where they want to go, because they don’t know how to do life the hard way. Their entitlement keeps them from tackling challenges and finding success. This book provides principles and tools for change. It teaches people the skills of learning to tackle and resolve matters that are difficult, rather than avoiding them, giving up too quickly, or hoping someone else will do it for them. The habits gleaned from this book will lead to success in the reader’s relationships, finances, self-care, and work. When the reader faces what must be faced, he stands to meet his goals and resolve his struggles better and faster. In that sense, this book brings a great deal of hope and positivity to a tough arena of life. The hard way is simple: it is facing any challenge required to accomplish what matters most. Anything worth doing will have a cost of being hard to do. But when we learn how to do the right things, and push through the pain that comes, we stand a much better chance of success. Sometimes trials are put upon us, such as a troubled marriage, a failing business, or an illness. At other times they are opportunities where we need to take a risk, such as starting a part-time business, or simply being vulnerable with someone. At still other times they are problems that must be faced, such as a troubled teen, a conversation we have been avoiding, or a team at work that needs to be restructured. Whatever the context, the hard way is the first and best way to approach a good outcome.

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    The Entitlement Cure

    5.9 hrs • 10/6/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 6.2 hrs • 9/22/2015 • Unabridged

    What can Jezebel, the Bible’s wickedest queen, reveal about God’s holiness and power and even about his sense of humor? What about the Woman at the Well—the one with five husbands and a live-in lover? And what of the prostitute whose tears bathe the feet of Jesus in front of people who despise her? There are also “wicked good” women like Deborah, Ruth, Hannah, Abigail, Esther, Mary, and more. What do their lives tell us about God’s invincible love and his determined plan to save us? In Wicked Women of the Bible Ann Spangler tells the stories of twenty wicked and “wicked good” women in greater detail. At the end of each story, Ann provides a brief section including additional historical and cultural background as well as a brief Bible study in order to enhance the book’s appeal to both individuals and groups. The stories of these women of the Bible reveal a God who is not above it all but who stoops down to meet us where we are in order to extend his love and mercy.

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    Wicked Women of the Bible

    6.2 hrs • 9/22/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 6.9 hrs • 9/13/2015 • Unabridged

    We all yearn to look back to find we lived a life of significance. But is it even possible anymore? Considering the amount of distraction and pressure that exists in society today, living a fulfilling life may seem like an unachievable dream. But it is not—not with the nine habits outlined in this book. New York Times bestselling author and widely known blogger, Rachel Macy Stafford, reveals nine habits that help you focus on investing in the most significant parts of your life. As your hands, heart, and eyes become open, you will experience a new sense of urgency—an urgency to live, love, dream, connect, create, forgive, and flourish despite the distractions of our culture. By following each daily Hands Free Declaration, you will be inspired to adopt mindful daily practices and new thought-processes that will help you: • Make meaningful, lasting human connections despite the busyness of everyday life. • Live in the now despite that inner nudge pushing you out of the moment toward perfection and productivity. • Protect your most sacred relationships, as well as your values, beliefs, health, and happiness, despite the latent dangers of technology and social media. • Pursue the passions of your heart without sacrificing your job or your daily responsibilities. • Evaluate your daily choices to insure you are investing in a life that matters to you. With a Hands Free Life perspective, you will have the power to look back and see you didn’t just manage life, you actually lived it—and lived it well.

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    Hands Free Life

    6.9 hrs • 9/13/15 • Unabridged
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  8. 5.4 hrs • 8/12/2015 • Unabridged

    Geri Scazzero knew there was something desperately wrong with her life. She felt like a single parent raising her four young daughters alone. She finally told her husband, “I quit,” and left the thriving church he pastored, beginning a journey that transformed her and her marriage for the better. In The Emotionally Healthy Woman, Geri provides you a way out of an inauthentic, superficial spirituality to genuine freedom in Christ. This book is for every woman who thinks, “I can’t keep pretending everything is fine!” The journey to emotional health begins by quitting. Geri quit being afraid of what others think. She quit lying. She quit denying her anger and sadness. She quit living someone else’s life. When you quit those things that are damaging to your soul or the souls of others, you are freed up to choose other ways of being and relating that are rooted in love and lead to life. When you quit for the right reasons, at the right time, and in the right way, you’re on the path not only to emotional health, but also to the true purpose of your life.

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    The Emotionally Healthy Woman

    5.4 hrs • 8/12/15 • Unabridged
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  9. 8.7 hrs • 7/28/2015 • Unabridged

    People are leaving the church J. D. Greear pastors. Big givers. Key volunteers. Some of his best leaders and friends. And that’s exactly how he wants it to be. When Jesus gave his disciples the Great Commission, he revealed that the key for reaching the world with the gospel is found in sending, not gathering. Though many churches focus time and energy on attracting people and counting numbers, the real mission of the church isn’t how many people you can gather. It’s about training up disciples and then sending them out. The true measure of success for a church should be its sending capacity, not its seating capacity. But there is a cost to this. To see ministry multiply, we must release the seeds God has placed in our hands. And to do that, we must ask ourselves whether we are concerned more with building our kingdom or God’s. In Gaining By Losing, J. D. Greear unpacks ten plumb lines that you can use to reorient your church’s priorities around God’s mission to reach a lost world. The good news is that you don’t need to choose between gathering or sending. Effective churches can, and must, do both.

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    Gaining By Losing

    Foreword by Larry Osborne
    8.7 hrs • 7/28/15 • Unabridged
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  10. 26.5 hrs • 6/2/2015 • Unabridged

    C. S. Lewis is the twentieth century’s most widely read Christian writer and J. R. R. Tolkien its most beloved mythmaker. For three decades, they and their closest associates formed a literary club known as the Inklings, which met every week in Lewis’s Oxford rooms and in nearby pubs. They discussed literature, religion, and ideas; read aloud from works in progress; took philosophical rambles in woods and fields; gave one another companionship and criticism; and, in the process, rewrote the cultural history of modern times. In The Fellowship, Philip and Carol Zaleski offer the first complete rendering of the Inklings’ lives and works. The result is an extraordinary account of the ideas, affections and vexations that drove the group’s most significant members. C. S. Lewis accepts Jesus Christ while riding in the sidecar of his brother’s motorcycle, maps the medieval and Renaissance mind, becomes a world-famous evangelist and moral satirist, and creates new forms of religiously attuned fiction while wrestling with personal crises. J. R. R. Tolkien transmutes an invented mythology into a gripping story in The Lord of the Rings, while conducting groundbreaking Old English scholarship and elucidating, for family and friends, the Catholic teachings at the heart of his vision. Owen Barfield, a philosopher for whom language is the key to all mysteries, becomes Lewis’ favorite sparring partner, and, for a time, Saul Bellow’s chosen guru. And Charles Williams, poet, author of “supernatural shockers,” and strange acolyte of romantic love, turns his everyday life into a mystical pageant. Romantics who scorned rebellion, fantasists who prized reality, wartime writers who believed in hope, Christians with cosmic reach, the Inklings sought to revitalize literature and faith in the twentieth century’s darkest years—and did so in dazzling style.

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    The Fellowship

    26.5 hrs • 6/2/15 • Unabridged
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  11. 6.6 hrs • 5/26/2015 • Unabridged

    Undone is author Michele Cushatt’s quest to make peace with a complicated life. It is an honest confession of a diagnosis of cancer and the joys and disappointments of motherhood and marriage, ripe with regret over what is and yet still hopeful for what could be. With enough humor to ease the rawness of the story, Undone takes the reader on a roller coaster two-year journey through the unexpectedness of life. A look back makes Michele long for a do-over, the chance to make fewer mistakes and leave less of a mess to clean up. A look forward makes Michele wonder if all her attempts to control life have robbed her of the vibrancy of it. And in the middle of this internal chaos, she finds her once-pristine house filled with the sights and sounds of three small, uncontainable children who just want to be loved. In the end, Undone turns complication into a beautiful canvas, angst into joy, and the unknown into an adventure, revealing that sometimes life’s most colorful and courageous stories are written right in the middle of the mess.

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    Undone

    6.6 hrs • 5/26/15 • Unabridged
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  12. 6.5 hrs • 5/5/2015 • Unabridged

    How do you explain a love that has no explanation? What will happen if you let it touch your heart? God loves you not because you are flawless, not because you are a perfect person, but just because you are. In Life Changing Love, John Ortberg reveals the God you’ve longed to encounter: a Father head-over-heels in love with you, his child, who is intensely committed to your highest joy. Ortberg takes you to the very core of God’s being to discover a burning, passionate love that gives and gives and gives. He explores the life-changing ways this love has expressed itself through Jesus. And he shows how you, like Jesus, can love your mate, your family, your friends, and the world around you with the same practical, transforming love. Dispelling your fears and misconceptions of God, Life Changing Love brings you face-to-face with the love that frees and empowers you to love.

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    Life-Changing Love

    6.5 hrs • 5/5/15 • Unabridged
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  13. 12.8 hrs • 4/1/2015 • Unabridged

    Confucius is perhaps the most important philosopher in history. Today his teachings shape the daily lives of more than 1.6 billion people. Throughout East Asia, Confucius’ influence can be seen in everything from business practices and family relationships to educational standards and government policies. Even as Western ideas from Christianity to Communism have bombarded the region, Confucius’ doctrine has endured as the foundation of East Asian culture. It is impossible to understand East Asia, journalist Michael Schuman demonstrates, without first engaging with Confucius and his vast legacy. Confucius created a worldview that is in many respects distinct from, and in conflict with, Western culture. As Schuman shows, the way that East Asian companies are managed, how family members interact with each other, and how governments see their role in society all differ from the norm in the West due to Confucius’ lasting impact. Confucius has been credited with giving East Asia an advantage in today’s world, by instilling its people with a devotion to learning, and propelling the region’s economic progress. Still, the sage has also been highly controversial. For the past hundred years, East Asians have questioned if the region can become truly modern while Confucius remains so entrenched in society. He has been criticized for causing the inequality of women, promoting authoritarian regimes, and suppressing human rights. Despite these debates, East Asians today are turning to Confucius to help them solve the ills of modern life more than they have in a century. As a wealthy and increasingly powerful Asia rises on the world stage, Confucius too will command a more prominent place in global culture. Touching on philosophy, history, and current affairs, Confucius tells the vivid, dramatic story of the enigmatic philosopher whose ideas remain at the heart of East Asian civilization.

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    Confucius

    12.8 hrs • 4/1/15 • Unabridged
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  14. 18.5 hrs • 3/1/2015 • Unabridged

    A landmark new translation of the ancient Chinese oracle and book of wisdom Pose a question, then toss three coins (or cast your yarrow stalks) to access the time-honored wisdom of the I Ching. The I Ching, or “Book of Change,” has been consulted through the ages, in both China and the West, for answers to fundamental questions about the world and our place in it. The oldest extant book of divination, it dates back three thousand years to ancient shamanistic practices involving the ritual preparation of the shoulder bones of oxen. From this early form of communication with the other world, it has become the Chinese spiritual book par excellence. An influence on such cultural icons as Bob Dylan, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Philip K. Dick, and Philip Pullman, the I Ching is turned to by millions around the world for insights on spiritual growth, business, medicine, genetics, game theory, strategic thinking, and leadership, and of course for the window it opens on China.

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    I Ching

    Translated by John Minford
    18.5 hrs • 3/1/15 • Unabridged
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  15. 5.6 hrs • 1/16/2015 • Unabridged

    Keep It Shut by Karen Ehman explores how to better control your tongue, knowing what to say and how to say it, and realizing when it is best to say nothing at all. From Bible times to modern times, women have struggled with their words: what to say and how to say it, what not to say, when it is best to remain silent, and what to do when you’ve said something you wish you could now take back. In this book a woman whose mouth has gotten her into loads of trouble shares the hows (and how-not-tos) of dealing with the tongue. Beyond just a “how not to gossip” book, this book explores what the Bible says about the many ways we are to use our words and the times when we are to remain silent. Karen will cover using our speech to interact with friends, coworkers, family, and strangers, as well as in the many places we use our words in private, in public, online, and in prayer. Even the words we say silently to ourselves. She will address unsolicited opinion-slinging, speaking the truth in love, not saying words just to people-please, and dealing with our verbal anger. Christian women struggle with their mouths. Even though we know that Scripture has much to say about how we are—and are not—to use our words, this is still an immense issue, causing heartache and strain not only in family relationships, but also in friendships, work, and church settings.

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    Keep It Shut

    5.6 hrs • 1/16/15 • Unabridged
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  16. 5.2 hrs • 12/30/2015 • Unabridged

    Have you ever felt that your life—and budget—is spiraling out of control? Do you sometimes wish you could pull yourself together but wonder exactly how to manage all the scattered pieces of a chaotic life? Is it possible to find balance?

 In a word, yes.

 Ruth Soukup knows firsthand how stressful an unorganized life and budget can be. Through personal stories, biblical truth, and practical action plans, she will inspire you to make real and lasting changes to your personal goals, home, and finances. With honesty and the wisdom of someone who has been there, Ruth will help youdiscover your “sweet spot”—that place where your talents and abilities intersect;take back your time and schedule by making simple shifts in your daily habits;reduce stress in your home and family by clearing out the clutter;stop busting your budget and learn to cut your grocery bill in half; andbring order to a messy life and create a practical cleaning schedule that works.

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    Living Well, Spending Less!

    5.2 hrs • 12/30/14 • Unabridged
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