My Top Albums From 2012

Each January I enjoying asking "What musical releases were significant last year?  Here are my favorite albums from 2012.

1.  Bethel Live - For The Sake of the World

Many describe this cd as mesmerizing. It's true. The layered instrumentation is unique, electric and brilliant. The songs are great and performances significant. The songs are intended for churches to use in their services. It's the most groundbreaking cd of the genre since at least Hillsong's A Beautiful Exchange (2010) album.

2.  John Mayer - Born and Raised

John Mayer is an artist and his 2011 release Born And Raised continued to showcase his talent. This time he turned heads by showcasing a western vibe that really works. I love the pedal steel. His lyrics showed someone owning up to his flaws.

3.  The Killers - Battle Born

The Killers surprised me. They had taken time off as a band after a disappointing previous release. Their new cd is their strongest ever. The lead singer wrote some incredibly vulnerable lyrics that endear listeners. I'm proud of them and consider Battle Born the most under-appreciated release of 2012. 

4.  Phil Wickham - Singalong 2

Phil Wickham released a free live CD of him playing many of his well known worship songs.  The recording features him on acoustic guitar singing along with a room full of people that know his songs well.  They sing out confidently and inject so much life into this CD.  It was free and inspirational.  I find myself continually referring back to this recording.

5.  Foo Fighters - Wasting Light

I purchased this as my first Foo Fighters CD knowing they are a great band worth listening to.  These guys practically define Rock and Roll.  The songs are great and so fun to turn up loud.  The band's creativity and passion continues to stand out.

Honorable Mentions go to:  Maroon 5 - Overexposed and Owl City - The Midsummer Station.

What were your favorite albums of 2012?

Book Review: Surfing For God

"Every time a man knocks on a brothel door, he is really searching for God." - G.K. Chesterton

In today's world many men have exchanged brothels for websites. Author Michael John Cusink believes that many men today are surfing for God.

In his book Surfing For God Cusink likens the brain to a field of tall grass. Our habits blaze trails through the grass that are easier to retrace later. Poor habits often become paths of least resistance we repeatedly tread. Cusink points out the importance of creating new habits and "letting grass regrow" in areas we want to avoid. 

He encourages men to embrace silence and solitude. Cusink also advocates working-out and hiking as ways of renewing our minds. 

I first heard about this book from Relevant Magazine when they posted an excerpt on their website. I so appreciated the excerpt that I acquired the book. 

I was profoundly encouraged by the book. It opened up opportunities to share Cusinks ideas with other men. 

I applaud Cusink for addressing an often taboo topic with directness. His ideas help me better respond to the temptations I encounter in our world.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://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.”