Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Book Review: LOVE by Calvin Miller - a Bible study guide

LOVE by Calvin Miller is a six-week Bible study, mainly to be used by small groups, but I found it was ok to use as an individual study, too. It is part of a Bible study series on “The Fruit of the Spirit”.

I really liked the format that this Bible study used. Each week has it’s own memory verse; plus each week’s “lesson” is divided into six daily mini-lessons. Each daily “mini-lesson” centers on its own verse(s) and its own topic; plus every day there are two questions for personal reflection. The seventh day is the group discussion questions.

I found the weekly topics (as well as the sub-topics used on the daily lessons) were very well thought out, and used a good assortment of different verses pertaining to love. There was enough background content included in each section that helped you to think, but not enough to give you all of the answers yourself. You really had to think about things and had to “dig deep” within yourself to answer the questions (most of which were directed at your personal feelings, etc.)

The seventh day of each weekly lesson had about six group discussion questions to answer and discuss together. The book said the group discussion should last about 45 minutes, but unless you have a really talkative group, I don’t think the questions would necessarily take 45 minutes to discuss. A lot of the group discussion questions were still slightly personal in nature.

As stated earlier, I really liked the format of this book, and would like to study from the other books in the series. My only “drawbacks” are: I thought the group discussion sections should have more questions, and maybe not so many that are really personal in nature, because not everyone likes to share their feelings in a group setting. Also, I wish the book would have just a few “hints” for the group (or group leader) to use to at least get a conversation/discussion started. Most books have these, and while sometimes they aren’t helpful, or aren’t used by the groups, I find it’s a good place to start if the group needs a little help in getting started. Overall, I would recommend this book for small groups and/or individuals to use.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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