Andrew Smith's Blog

My name is Andrew. Come and have a look inside my life and watch me share what is on my heart.

Fearless and Free: Inspirational Thoughts to Set Your Attitude and Actions for a Great Day! By Victoria Osteen Book Review

In Fearless and Free, Victoria Osteen explored the topic of living our lives fearlessly and how the first step is believing in His goodness. She has written a brand-new devotional to encourage readers to realize that they are already equipped to overcome their fears. Victoria shared how she had to overcome her own fears with public speaking when she took over the role of a pastor at Lakewood Church. She struggled with living in fear and she came to realize the seeds that God has already planted in her. In reading the Bible, she learned how to see herself as God sees her and how He has instilled confidence to live fearless and free. She also looks at many different Biblical characters such as: Joshua and Caleb, Esther, Moses and Pharaoh, David and Goliath, and much more and how they handle their fears and how God guided them through their fears. 

One of the first devotionals, she discussed was about God’s unconditional love and she opens up by sharing a Bible verse, 1 John 3:1. This verse talked about our Father’s love that He has for us and how we are all called to be children to God. She shared how as children we tend to believe that the only way, we will receive love from others is by performing perfectly and being on our best behavior. She revealed many of us might believe that God is up in Heaven keeping a scorecard about how perfectly we perform and live our lives. Victoria reminded readers that God loved us unconditionally and we can live free from guilt and from condemnation. She encourages readers to believe that they are a child of God and to hold on to the truth that God loves us and chose us as His own. 

I would recommend this awesome book to anyone who is ready to live freely and they are tired of living burden down by fear. I immensely loved how Victoria covered a wide range of topics from: enjoying the simple things, prioritizing your day, guarding your heart, going to God for your mistakes, releasing things back to God, having a fresh perspective, freedom from offense, don’t fall into the comparison trap, and much more. One of my favorite topics, she covered in the book was the one about having an attitude of gratitude and this is based on First Thessalonians 5:18. In this section, she taught readers to give thanks to God in all things and to find an encouraging scripture to mediate on to remind us of His faithfulness. I liked how she shared one way that can help us is to write down every day three things we are thankful for, and this in turn can help us to change our perspective. I also liked how she began each chapter by sharing a Bible verse, then a devotion filled with personal stories from her life and others, and she closed with a prayer. I truly believe this book couldn’t have been released at a better time since we are all facing the new challenges of living in fear of a pandemic of COVID-19. We are all afraid of getting it, losing our jobs, losing money, being disconnected from family and friends and the church, losing loved ones from the virus, and we’re afraid of life after all this is over. It’s easy to focus on all the negative surrounding the virus but during this trying season, we all have a choice to either live in fear of all of the uncertain or to reply on God and His promises. Victoria Osteen’s new devotional can assist readers in learning how to live fearlessly and free during this pandemic and even after it. Fear will never go completely away but there are principles we can apply in our lives to combat fear. 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Faithwords for my honest review and I was a member of the book launch team.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of Freeless and Free, check it out on

Planted with a Purpose: God Turns Pressure into Power by T.D. Jakes Book Review

In Planted with a Purpose, T.D. Jakes explored the topic of discovering your purpose amidst having to face crushing experiences along the way. Even in your pain, you can still find unexpected blessings. Jakes opens up about how he had his own crushing circumstances and one of these was when he witnessed his mother dying. Around this time, he was also speaking at other churches more, his books were becoming best sellers, and even getting a movie deal. He also shared close to this time his daughter become pregnant at thirteen. Critics was spreading their opinions and he felt depressed and crushed along with losing his mother. He shared how during these crushing times we may feel crushed and broken and we may question our suffering and where is God during it. In the book, Jakes looks at biological growth of a human and how the seed becomes a human. He revealed how no person remains a fertilized ovum and how we each grew to something greater. He shared how the Word discussed all seasons of life and how it has a beginning, middle, and the end. He explored the seed in Abraham and how the promise was found in Jesus and how we apart of the vine and how fruit eventually grows. This in turn is to illustrate our fruit bearing from our lives and God can use for our greater purposes. Throughout the book, Jakes also looked at the process of wine making and crushing the grapes, fermenting, and collecting the wine. He explored how our life is like the process of winemaking. He discussed how we have to wait and how with each generation we hate having to wait for things, such as marriage, babies, good job, eating, texting, and much more. We want everything now. Jakes shared in his own life how he had to wait seven years before he preached and he already had many messages worked on. During this time, God was working on building his character, nervousness, heart, and wisdom. 

I would recommend this life changing book to anyone who is ready to discover their purpose in life and they may currently be going through a crushing season. But Jakes encourages readers to hold on to hope and he explains how God will use everything in every season of our lives to help us find our true purpose. I immensely connect with how transparent Jakes was in sharing about the pains he felt his life with losing his mother and with his daughter become pregnant and getting thrown a curve ball in life. He shared how God used both of theses to help him find his purpose in life and how God doesn’t waste anything in our life. I liked how he looked at Jesus life and how He took our sins and how during his crushing season, He was preparing us for when we will meet Him in Heaven. I also was encouraged when Jakes reminded readers of the righteous found in Christ and God already sees us as He is. If you’re looking for a book on discovering your purpose, then read this book! 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Faithwords for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of Planted with a Purpose, check it out on

Called Out: Why I Traded Two Dream Jobs for a Life of True Calling by Paula Faris Book Review

In Called Out, Paula Faris opened up about how she became an ABC news reporter and how she wound up taking a cohost position on ABC’s, The View. In this book, she explored how she found her true calling and how God has changed her life. She also discussed how she decided to leave her position as a cohost on The View and how she stepped back from being a co-anchor on GMA weekends. Throughout the book, she was honest about her struggling with a drug of choice and that was success and how she found her identify in her work. She was working crazy hours and rarely had time off and she was missing time with her family. She shared how God got her attention and made her slow down and it only took her three times to figure it out. She suffered a concussion when someone threw an apple at her while working on GMA. A few weeks later was involved in a head on car crash when someone hit her. Then she also got influenza and pneumonia and was forced to slow down. All of this was supposed to make her slow down, but it took all three events to learn the lessons she was supposed to be learning. She revealed how important people influenced her life and how she was able to find out her calling and who she truly was inside. One of these people was David Shedd who was a retired U.S. international spy and he shared how people can find their true vocational calling. These included, “our skill sets, what we’re curious about, the skills and proficiencies our friends and mentor recognize in us”. Paula was open in sharing how she decided to change and take a step back from all of her reporting and how she found her own vocational calling. She has since gone on to host a Faith podcast for ABC News, Journeys of Faith

I would recommend this life changing book to anyone who is ready to find out their true calling. Paula Faris does an excellent job at exploring what she has learned from different faith leaders and even everyday people about how they found their own calling. Some of these included, Robin Roberts, Bishop T.D. Jakes, Dolly Parton, David Shedd, Michael Strahan, Jay Williams, and much more. I loved the humor, she shared in how she met Dolly and what she taught her about fear. I will admit I didn’t know much about her life before this book. I saw her on GMA a few times, but I didn’t really know her story. I will say, I have much more respect for her and she has a story, readers need to read to help them figure out their true calling. I loved how she also included stories from the Bible such as Joseph, David, Jonah, and even Jesus and how they found their vocational calling for Christ’s Kingdom. I also connected with Paula’s story about wanting to chase achievement and how she lost her identity in her job. I immensely liked how she revealed her struggle with learning to slow down. As I was reading this, we are all being forced to slow down or we are being forced to change aspects of our lives because of COVID-19. During this time, I think it could very well be God using this to wake us up to figuring out who we are and what He has called us to do. Her story is very relatable and I believe her story and lessons have the potential to assist readers into finding their God given calling and who they are. 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Bethany House/ Chosen for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of Called Out, check it out on

Stay: Discovering Grace, Freedom, and Wholeness Where You Never Imagined Looking by Anjuli Paschall Book Review

In Stay, Anjuli Paschall explored the topic of staying and facing our pain and past. She encouraged readers that the areas that we resist are the ones where God can greatly use to transform our lives. She pointed out how God wants us to have a deep relationship with Him and to have true intimacy. She begins the book by sharing how she attended a Christian college and how she found a group of friends. She revealed how she struggled with being unknown and how she still felt out of place. She connected with a psychology professor, Helyn Fay and she listened to her insecurities and prayed for her. This greatly changed her life and influenced her positively. She shared how she felt known for the first time and how she had a sense of belonging. She discovered the power of believing that she is loved on the inside. Throughout the book, she looked at vulnerability and how we try and hide behind things that we think will protect us. We have to be vulnerable and be honest about our secrets and trust Jesus to help us. In the book, she opened up about how she met her husband, Sam and how he proposed twice. She also shared the beautiful parts of their marriage and also the weeds and the thorns season they experienced. 

I would recommend this amazing book to anyone who is ready to face their past and they are ready to stay in the arms of Jesus. I liked how open she was in discussing her life story and she shared the lessons she has learned in her marriage. I liked how each chapter covered invitations, such as “to be an outsider, loneliness, listen, sit in the weeds, fear”, and more. One of my favorite things she shared was how she started, “The Moms We Love Club”. She shared how she was able to start Go Fund Me’s for moms who are going through a lot and how they have all changed her own life in some way. I liked how she included discussion questions at the end of the book where readers can go deeper into the book and they can ponder their own lives. If you’re looking for a book on freedom and wholeness, then read this book! 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Bethany House/ Chosen for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of Stay, check it out on

They Shall Expel Demons: What You Need to Know About Demons- Your Invisible Enemies by Derek Prince Expanded Edition Book Review

In They Shall Expel Demons, Derek Prince explored the topic of what are demons, and the hidden truths of demons and their characteristics, and what all they can do. Some of these characteristics included, harass, compel, enslave, deceive, attack the physical body, and much more. He also shared how demons enter you and how they can gain a foothold into your life. Some of these included, family background, pressures in childhood, sinful acts, laying hands, idle words, and much more. He revealed that idolatry can be traced back for four generations and it could be up to thirty people who could have been influenced by a demon and they could have practiced false religion against God. In the book, Derek shared his experience with depression and how he overcame it and his enemy. He also goes into detail about his first confrontation with demons and how he was able to learned how to case out demons. Throughout the book, he shared personal stories he witnessed demons coming out of people lives and how their lives changed afterwards. He revealed to readers 9 steps to receive deliverance from demonic powers. He also shared how to keep your deliverance from the demons influencing your life. 

I would recommend this awesome book to anyone who is bound by chains and they are under the control of satan and his demons. Derek did a lot of research in the scriptures on the power of demons and their characteristics. I liked how he revealed some of the demon’s names and where they were found in scripture. I was shocked to learn about how demons can come into your life and how we have to even be careful about who lays their hands on us an evil spirit can be released into our lives. I immensely liked how he explored deliverance and how to expel demonic powers in our lives. Some of the personal stories he shared from others was very surprising and they were eye-opening. I believe readers will be able to connect with them and even relate to them and some will see how they might even be under demonic influence. I also liked in the new edition, they included a study guide and the answers, life application questions, a memory verse, and a faith response for each chapter. If you’re ready to receive deliverance from demonic influence in your life, then read this book! 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Bethany House/ Chosen for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of They Shall Expel Demons, check it out on

Secrets of the Happy Soul: Experience the Deep Delight You Were Made for by Katie Orr Book Review

In Secrets of the Happy Soul, Katie Orr explored the scriptures of Psalms and some secrets we can use to be happier in our lives. She opens the book by revealing how she battled depression and how some days she doesn’t want to even go to church. She is a pastor wife and has three kids. She shared how she had to deal with grief when she lost her 29-year-old brother from a drug overdose. She opened up about how she struggles with being happy and how she was able to find a happy soul. She goes into detail about how the old Katie is dead and the new Katie is alive in Christ and how she is now a new creature. She also looked at the word happy in the Bible and what the Hebrew manuscripts use for this word. It is used 45 times in the Old Testament. She explained how God’s people are supposed to be happy and how it is spiritual it is in our DNA. Throughout the book, she looked at six secrets on happiness and some of these included, “happy soul is focused on God, attached to God’s Word, dependent on God’s provision, surrendered to the King”, and much more. 

I would recommend this awesome book to anyone how is feeling unhappy and overwhelmed with life. As I was reading this book, unhappiness and uncertainty is being felt all over the whole world since everyone is focused on the virus. I immensely connected with Katie and how important it is to turn our focus back to God. She encouraged readers to read the scriptures and to find out who God is and let’s try and see Him more clearly. We need to focus on that He is in control, that He is our Provider, and that He will be our Comfort in life. I liked how in each chapter she included multiple scriptures where readers can mediate on and be encouraged by. I liked how she made soul searching questions where readers can evaluate and do some soul searching. If you’re looking for a book on finding happiness and want to have a happier soul, then read this book! 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Bethany House/ Chosen for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of Secrets of the Happy Soul, check it out on

One Small Step: The Life-Changing Adventure of Following God’s Nudges by Matthew Barnett Book Review

In One Small Step, Matthew Barnett explored the power of taking just one small step to make a difference in someone else’s life. In this book, he discussed we can have Holy Spirit encounters that nudge us into reaching out to help others. He opens up by sharing how he started the Dream Center and how they have made a great difference in their community. The dream center is located in Los Angeles. It a four hundred-thousand-square-foot hospital type building that provides a place to live for the addicts, homeless, veterans, victims of human trafficking, and kids who are aged out of foster care. It’s free of charge for them. In the book, he discussed how he was the son of a megachurch pastor, Tommy Barnett and how he saw his own father take small steps for Christ. 

He shared how in 2016 they faced an impossible problem and he considered calling it quits after twenty years of ministry. They were running out of money and he decided to cash out some of his retirement to make payroll that month. He shared how he had to tell his whole staff and had to admit they are nearing failure and he opened up to readers about he had to make a choice to choose faith over his fears. In the book, he also revealed the story about how he decided to run a world marathon challenge on every continent for a fundraising event for the Dream Center. He shared how he had to deal with his fear of his blood clots returning. Throughout the event, he shared the challenges he faced and how he chose to keep going until the end of the marathon. 

I would recommend this awesome book to anyone who is ready to follow God’s nudges and to make a difference in someone else’s life. I immensely love how Matthew opened up about how he started the Dream Center and how much of an impact they are having in their community. I connected with how real he was in sharing the small steps he had to decide to take. One of my favorite stories that he shared was the story of a young boy, he met at his daughter’s track practice. He was holding his stomach and he was complaining that he hasn’t had food in a long time. So, he decided to give him some fruit and he told him that this was super fruit and this would help him to achieve his best time ever. He ended up finishing third and had his best time ever. He shared how he made this a big deal to celebrate and encourage this young boy and he also brought him a hotdog and chips to celebrate. In this example, Matthew shared how we all have the power to influence and we can choose to make a big deal out of stuff that can have the potential to change other people’s lives for the better. If you’re looking for a new book on taking small steps and following God’s nudges, then read this book! 

"I received this book free from the publisher, Chosen/ Bethany House for my honest review.” 

If you would like to purchase a copy of One Small Step, check it out on