Awakening Faith by James Stuart Bell

Title:  Awakening Faith:  Daily Devotions from the Early Church
Author:  James Stuart Bell with Patrick J. Kelly
Year:  2013
Publisher:  Zondervan
With this book, readers are provided a collection of daily devotions from some of the earlier founding fathers of the Christian church.  There is a short devotion for each day of the week on a various topics, but there is no real continuity of theology in certain matters.  Also, the source for these daily brief writings is not given.  I thought there needed to be more cohesiveness so as to create less confusion for the general reader.  Let’s face it, this could be a daunting and some might say difficult undertaking to read these early writings.  I wanted more information on where these writings came from, and I think others might too, especially if they are interested in learning more about the early church.  I think the idea of presenting readers with thoughts of early church leaders is interesting and would encourage readers to research more about this interesting subject.
There are some inspiring and wonderful pieces I very much enjoyed reading, and I also liked the wide time period chosen (7-8 centuries) as well as the cultural or ethnic backgrounds of the writers.  I found the brief notes in the back of the book about each author interesting and informative.  I also liked that the readings were short and fairly concise, so it was easy to take away what I wanted or needed from a particular days’ excerpt.  Very important to me was the use of Scripture with the writings and the thoughts about the Scripture and not the other way around of using Scripture out of context to fit an author’s viewpoint.  The rating I assigned is based on my opinion that some readers might take all of these writings as biblically and theologically sound when they all are not.
My rating is 3 stars.

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility.  Other reviews can be read at .  Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at
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