Reviews: family entertainment, documentaries, resources, books, music
AFA Staff
AFA Journal staff reviews movies, books and other resources

Like Arrows tells the story of a couple from the birth of their first child through their 50th wedding anniversary.

June 2018 – Parenting journey focus of new FamilyLife feature film
FamilyLife teamed up with Kendrick brothers Alex and Steven to produce Like Arrows, a powerful new movie about the journey and responsibility of parenting.

The film follows couple Charlie and Alice from their first pregnancy through their 50th wedding anniversary and highlights all the joys and trials in between to show the crucial impact family has on the next generation. Charlie and Alice learn that biblical faith, relying on God’s Word, and intentional parenting are central to the way they function as a family.

Like Arrows is entertaining, comical, engaging, convicting, and emotional. It will encourage and challenge parents as it clearly depicts the value of children and the importance of family as God designed it.

It is not rated but does address – not condone or accept – some hard topics such as unwed pregnancy, teen drug use, doubting the existence of God, an implied sexual situation involving a teen, and estranged parent/child relationships. There is an unnecessary sexual reference made between a husband and wife and several uses of “screw(ed) up.”

Like Arrows showed in select theaters for two nights only and will be available later in other formats. It is an introduction to The Art of Parenting, a new FamilyLife Bible study curriculum. The eight-lesson study is available free online, and hard copies are available. Learn more at 800-358-6329 or visit familylifeministries.org.

Rebecca Davis

undefinedInto the Night: The Crisis of Western Civilization
Attorney Ivy Scarborough’s insights into history, the tumultuous present, and the uncertain future are thorough and gripping in this volume of almost 900 pages. As a frequent commentator via radio, television, and print, Scarborough often shares insights based on his travel to world trouble spots such as Afghanistan, El Salvador, Israel, Somalia, Bosnia, Sudan, and Kosovo – often in times of war.

For several years prior to 9/11, he predicted on various news outlets that there would be a catastrophic terrorist attack against the U.S. in the near future.

Other scholars have heralded his work. Dr. John Adams, Union University vice president (retired), said, “Into the Night is disturbing, precise, and both condemning and filled with ways of climbing out of the pit we have dug for ourselves.”

Dr. James Wilson, Irish historian and director of the Centre for British Studies in Coleraine, UK, called it “arguably the most profound thesis concerning Christianity and Western civilization to be penned since A.D. 413 when Augustine wrote The City of God.”

In addition to an extensive bibliography are helpful indexes of names, Scriptures, and subjects. Though out of print, some new and used copies can be found at online booksellers, and a Kindle version is available at intothenightbook.com.

Randall Murphree

Paul, Apostle of Christ

undefinedJames Faulkner (left) plays Paul; Jim Caviezel portrays Luke.

Paul, Apostle of Christ recounts the last days of one of Christendom’s most influential men as he is imprisoned and awaiting execution.

The film follows the friendship between Paul and Luke as they seek to make the most of Paul’s last days on earth. Determined to write and preserve another book that contains Paul’s teachings, Luke risks his own life to visit Paul in prison and glean more godly wisdom from him before it is too late.

At the same time, Christians in Rome are in fear for their lives while Paul is fighting an internal battle as he is haunted by his former persecution of Christians.

Paul, Apostle of Christ is rated PG-13 for some violent content and disturbing images. Christians are depicted being burned at the stake, and it is clear that Paul is beheaded, although it is not actually shown onscreen. Strangely, Luke uses the Lord’s name in vain twice, and the last scene, in which Paul enters heaven, raises theological questions.

Well done and informative, the film was still playing in theaters nationwide as of press time. For more information and related content, visit paulmovie.com.

Rebecca Davis

undefinedNew series: help loved ones conquer life-crippling issues
New Life Ministries celebrates 30 years of ministry this year with the new Arterburn Wellness Series, a resource for family and friends of loved ones suffering from various crippling life issues or addictions.

NLM founder Stephen Arterburn is among the nation’s top names for addiction recovery resources – for addicts themselves and for those who love them.

In Understanding and Loving a Person With Alcohol or Drug Addiction, he and co-author David Stoop address the latter group, helping them perceive the power of addiction and how to help others find healing. Readers are equipped to develop a plan with practical ideas to encourage healthy choices and how to help without enabling.

In Understanding and Loving a Person With Sexual Addiction, Jason B. Martinkus shares his story. When he confessed his infidelity to his wife Shelley, it didn’t seem the marriage could survive. Fortunately, it did.

Both are now involved in broader ministry, he as president of Redemptive Living, she as an author and minister to women experiencing sexual betrayal.

The Martinkuses joined Arterburn as co-authors to offer practical pointers on recognizing if someone has a sexual addiction, grappling with the roller coaster of betrayal emotions, developing boundaries, and navigating the battle to restore relationships.

Books on understanding and loving those with attention deficit disorder, depression, borderline personality disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder are also available. Books on narcissism and bipolar disorder will follow shortly.

Arterburn’s Every Man titles, e.g. Every Man’s Battle, are his most familiar books. Available at store.newlife.com.

Randall Murphree

undefinedLive a life of prayer
What Christian doesn’t want to live a life of prayer? But prayer is too often an enigma, a mystery that believers never learn to appropriate and navigate in a daily life following Christ.

In How to Live a Life of Prayer, quotes and insights from four giants of the faith are gathered together in this concise volume to help readers learn to do what the title says.

John Wesley, E.M. Bounds, and Andrew Murray all went on to glory more than a century ago. S.D. Gordon joined them in 1936. Yet, all four men have a lot to offer contemporary Christians seeking to enhance and invigorate their prayer life.

Editors organized the spiritual gems into the categories of who, what, where, when, and why. The words of these classic Christian writers address questions and concerns people have about prayer, e.g. exploring a variety of topics including the purpose and power of prayer, hindrances to prayer, and Jesus’s habits of prayer.

How to Live a Life of Prayer will encourage readers to cultivate a vibrant, two-way communication with the God who longs for communion with His people.

An index cites scriptural references and teachings on prayer. It is a small volume that can have big impact on anyone serious about improving a relationship with God through prayer.

Randall Murphree