Tag Archives: resource

Book Review: “The Greener Grass Conspiracy: Finding Contentment on Your Side of the Fence” by Stephen Altrogge

Altrogge, Stephen. The Greener Grass Conspiracy: Finding Contentment on Your Side of the Fence. Illinois: Crossway, 2011. 143 pages.

Review: I picked this book up on sale at WTS Books a couple of months ago. It’s on sale for only about $6, and worth far more than that! The Greener Grass Conspiracy is one of the best books I’ve read in quite some time…and VERY convicting! With 12 short chapters, each ending with thought provoking questions, this book would make a perfect Bible study discussion guide! Altrogge is fresh, relevant, current, insightful–and, most of all, biblically grounded. He quotes from modern theologians and saints of old, and backs each of his points up with Scripture and Gospel Truth. This book was challenging and encouraging, convicting and refreshing, all at the same time.

So, what is the conspiracy? “This grand conspiracy of the world, Satan, and my heart is…[t]o have me always believing that the grass is greener somewhere else, always wishing that things were different, always dreaming of a brighter tomorrow without ever enjoying where God has me today” (pp. 13-14).

Here are a few quotes that stuck out specifically to me:

“Circumstances aren’t to blame. There’s something much more sinister at work. That something is my sinful, discontented heart. …The problem is me. I am my own worst enemy. The raging, covetous, discontented desires come from within. They’re not the product of my circumstances, and the desires won’t be satisfied when circumstances change” (p. 17).

“If you follow Jesus, you will have every spiritual need met. Forgiveness, adoption, spiritual strength, everything. And if we have all our spiritual needs met and are content with what we have, that is great gain” (p. 20).

“We were created for God’s glory. In other words, God put you and me on this planet to bring him glory. I exist to display his worth to the world and to show how great God really is. God is at the center of all things, and we exist for him. Not the other way around. Life is not about my ultimate happiness and self-fulfillment. Does God love me? Yes, absolutely. But he doesn’t exist for me. Everything exists by God and for God. The universe orbits around God.” and “Discontentment happens when I attempt to displace God from his rightful place at the center of the universe” (p. 24).

“Our goal isn’t contentment in and of itself. We’re not after a mystical state of Zen. Our goal is to be content for the glory and honor of God” (p. 25).

“Discontentment is the result of misplaced worship. It’s the result of giving our heart to someone or something that should never have it. When we stake our happiness on anything other than God, we’re going to be miserable. Why? Because we were made to worship God and find all our joy in him. Creation worships God (Ps. 19). The angels worship God (Isa. 6). When we worship something other than God, we’re out of sync with the universe” (p. 37).

“When we complain, we’re loudly saying that the blessings of the gospel aren’t enough. We’re saying that the death of Christ isn’t enough. We’re saying that the eternal fellowship with God, purchased at great cost to God, isn’t enough to satisfy our souls. We’re saying that forgiveness of sins and peace with God is nice, but not that nice. …We’re saying that God himself, who is the very definition of goodness, isn’t good enough. We would like a little something more, if you don’t mind. …Do you see the utter sinfulness of complaining? …God has emptied his pockets for us, and yet we complain.” and “The only way to cut the nerve of complaining is to regularly and actively remember and savor and apply the gospel” (p. 72).

“The only way to satisfy our thirsty souls is to find our satisfaction and strength in Christ” (p. 88).

“If we’re going to escape the Greener Grass Conspiracy, we must keep our eyes fixed on heaven. We can be content now because we know that very soon all of our longings will be satisfied. We can find happiness in the little we have on earth because we know of the riches that await us in heaven. We can contentedly endure suffering now because we know that soon Jesus will wipe away every tear” (p. 138).

Conclusion: Maybe you have a friend who is struggling with discontentment. Maybe you’re struggling with it even now. Maybe you don’t even realize that your responses and reactions are rooted in discontentment. Or maybe your small group is just looking for what book to study next. Regardless, this book is a must read. Pointing to Christ and His Gospel as our soul’s deepest satisfaction, this book will encourage, rebuke, exhort, uplift, and free your spirit into forsaking the misplaced worship of self and worshiping God, while rejoicing in the truth of the glory of Christ alone.

Featured Giveaway: Joy Bauer’s “Food Cures” – What Does “Healthy” Mean to You?!

Much of this site is dedicated to Healthy Living. Most of us value our health, but what does “health” mean to you? A while back, I shared my definition as follows:

“strong, sound & whole
body, mind & soul,
from proper rest, spirit refresh,
nutritious foods, water
& balanced exercise”

Joy Bauer has a Masters degree in Science and is a Registered Dietician and Certified Dietician Nutritionist. She is often seen on the Today show, sharing recipes and tips on healthy living. Today, I have a special offer direct from Joy!

The Prize: one free copy of Joy Bauer’s Revised and Updated Food Cures Cookbook shipped directly from JoyBauer.com! Entry Guidelines after the book review below.

Joy’s book Food Cures: Eat Right to Get Healthier, Look Younger, and Add Years to Your Life has been completely revised and updated. This is NOT your average cookbook! With 500+ pages of tips, recipes, and how to make eating healthful foods easy (instead of another burden in your life or a crazy fad diet), this book is at the top of my list for helpful cookbooks and nutrition resources! Here’s an overview:

Part 1 – “Welcome to My Office” includes two introductory chapters and tips on how to use the book and “think like a nutritionist.”

Each chapter after this includes details about various food-related health issues and a 4-step program for the targeted concern:

  • Step 1: Start with the Basics – tips and tricks for dealing with your concern
  • Step 2: Your Ultimate Grocery List – featured in the meal plan
  • Step 3: Going Above and Beyond – to maximize your results
  • Step 4: Meal Plans – a selection of breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, and fun food options (with recipes) from which to choose.

Part 2 – “Losing Weight” – Chapter 3 includes weight loss basics, formulas, charts, an explanation of how different foods affect your weight, and a plan overview for creating your own meal plan.

Part 3 – “Looking Great” includes 3 chapters on food that helps skin, hair, and your shiny whites (what Joy calls “Feeding a Beautiful Smile”).

Part 4 – “Living Long and Strong” includes 6 chapters on foods that influence Cardiovascular Disease, Arthritis, Type 2 Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Vision and Memory.

Part 5 – “Feeling Good” includes 7 chapters on foods that affect your mood, migraines, PMS, insomnia, IBS, Celiac Disease, and cancer prevention.

Finally, Part 6 – “Resources” includes how to read a nutrition label, a detailed list of references for each chapter and an in-depth index.

Still intrigued?! Well, you may be in luck! Joy Bauer is providing one copy of her Food Cures book to a lucky reader of My Journey To Lean! Want to win it?

Contest Rules:

  • Contest ends at 12:00PM EST on Friday, November 11, Tuesday, November 15, 2011. Winners will be announced on Saturday, November 12, Wednesday, November 16, 2011.
  • An email address is required when leaving a comment (will not be visible unless you put it in the text portion of your comment). This information will not be shared or sold by MyJourneyToLean.com. It will only be used to contact you if you are the winner.
  • Winner will be selected using Random.org. Winner must respond to notification email within 48 hours with shipping address and name to claim prize, or winner will forfeit prize and another drawing will take place.

6 Different Ways to Enter (one comment per entry; one entry per entry type per person – max of six entries if all are completed):

  1. Leave a comment below letting me know what “Healthy” means to you!
  2. Subscribe to http://MyJourneyToLean.com and leave a comment that you did so (if you already subscribe, just leave a comment letting me know that too).
  3. Follow @MyJourneyToLean on Twitter and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  4. Follow My Journey To Lean on Facebook and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  5. Visit www.joybauer.com, sign up for her free newsletter or complete her free diet profile, and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.
  6. Share this contest on your blog, linking back to MyJourneyToLean.com and leave a comment here with the link to your post included (comments must be left on this blog; comments on other blogs do not qualify) OR email a link to this post to 5 or more of your friends and come back here to leave a comment that you did so.

For a glimpse into the book, download the Joy Bauer.com

Resource: Kids’ FIT Interactive Website from WebMD.com

I was on WebMD.com and found this link. It has cool games that teach kids about healthy living! I immediately sent it to my sister and sister-in-laws that have small children. So cool! There’s also a “Parents” section and separate sites for elementary age kids as well as teens! Enjoy!

Resource: My Yoga Online

I was browsing the Whole Living Blog today and came across this website: http://www.myyogaonline.com/.

Check it out! You can become a member, or there’s plenty of free access items available.

Categories and Subcategories:

Videos – Yoga, Beginner Yoga, Pilates & Dance, Workplace Wellness, Meditation, MindBodyTV, Workshops

Poses – Standing, Seated, Lying, Inversions, Back Bends, Forward Bends

Community – What’s New, Wellness Diary, Blog, Forum, Directory, Newsletters, Members (become a member for full access to this portion)

About Yoga – Learn About Yoga, Yoga Anatomy, Meditation, Pranayama, Chakras, Glossary

Healthy Living – Nutrition, Healthy Recipes, Health & Wellness, Natural Beauty, Green Living

Music – Yoga Rhythms, Ambient, Mantras & Chant

About Us – About Us, Contact Us, Help & FAQ, System Requirements, Teachers, Testimonials, Media

To become a member, subscribe – it’s cheaper than buying one workout DVD per month and definitely cheaper than paying for classes ($9.95 per month for unlimited streaming HD video, or $89.95 per year).

Membership versus Free Site