If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success. – Ecclesiastes 10:10 (NIV)

When I first read the above verse, I immediately thought that the verse would compare the unsharpened ax to a sharpened ax. Nope. Note if an ax edge is unsharpened that “more strength” or effort is needed to complete the task.

*photo credit: Adam Baker, Creative Commons

*photo credit: Adam Baker, Creative Commons

We often give up when things are not going our way, when the tools of our mind/body are not up to the project we are working on. Perseverance, keeping at something despite the difficulty, is the key to success. We need to stop blaming our tools and instead keep moving forward.

Ecclesiastes 9:13-18


Read Ecclesiastes 9 this morning. This story, towards the end, stuck out to me. Verse 17 seems to be key.

“13 Here is another thing that has made a deep impression on me as I have watched human affairs: 14 There was a small city with only a few people living in it, and a great king came with his army and besieged it. 15 There was in the city a wise man, very poor, and he knew what to do to save the city, and so it was rescued. But afterwards no one thought any more about him. 16 Then I realized that though wisdom is better than strength, nevertheless, if the wise man is poor, he will be despised, and what he says will not be appreciated. 17 But even so, the quiet words of a wise man are better than the shout of a king of fools. 18 Wisdom is better than weapons of war, but one rotten apple can spoil a barrelful.” – Ecclesiastes 9:13-18 (NIV)

Tide and Tempest by Elizabeth Ludwig


Bryan Note: I would like to welcome my wife, Tabitha, to JBG with her debut book review of Tide and Tempest. I love her review’s conclusion. Enjoy!

Tide and Tempest, by Elizabeth Ludwig, is a story about Captain Keondric Morgan who has just docked his ship, the Caitriona Marie, in New York Harbor. His plan: reload supplies, make repairs to the ship and then be off delivering more cargo. However, a deathbed confession about a poisoned traveler, Braedon McKillop, has the good Captain worried about Braedon’s fiancé, Tillie McGrath, and the danger she may be in without her knowledge. Now Captain Morgan, his first mate, and brother Cass have to protect Tillie from harm and from each other’s love for her.

Tide and Tempest

Apparently this is the last book in the three-part Edge of Freedom series. Being the only book in the series that I have read, the author did a great job of allowing me to know some background of what has happened with the characters up until this point. The cast of characters in this book was extensive. I found the constant switching between a character’s last name and their “Christian name”, as the author put it, very confusing and hard to keep straight.

The digital copy I received had numerous glitches (Kindle version). For example, several words had letters missing or the author’s name would appear randomly between paragraphs. This made the book both hard to read and comprehend.

Overall, Tide and Tempest is a story of two acquaintances trying to figure out a mystery surrounding a ring and fall in love in the process. The typical Christian fiction book: a little mystery, a little scripture/prayers recited, and the boy always gets the girl…after he falls in love with her at first sight. Sigh.

I was given a copy of this book by Bethany House. All opinions are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.

Off Campus – Fallout: Fire Emblem Awakening


NOTE: Spoilers ahoy!

I am not happy.

One year, twenty-plus hours later, I have completed Fire Emblem Awakening. I spent hours upon hours fighting for the Halidom of Ylisse. I grew to love the characters just as one would with a good book. Yet, in the final levels of the game, the developers violated the rules they had set up from the beginning.

In most games, especially in JRPGs, you expect a certain level of dramatic tension AND a consistent way to represent it. After a while, you assume the story will direct itself, while you do all the fighting/hard work of progressing the story. In Fire Emblem Awakening’s case, what had been a fairly linear story was suddenly injected with player choice.
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