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The Heart Reader [Paperback]

4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 6 2000

Lukewarm believer Sam Bennett awakens from a dream to discover that he can hear the deepest spiritual needs of those around him. Frightened at first, he begins to embrace his gift and follow the Spirit's leading, with the result that many lives are touched and led to faith in Christ. In the end, Bennett's life is radically transformed, and his friends, family, and church are forever changed as they begin to "hear" the needs of others as God hears. The Heart Reader is a moving evangelistic challenge for all believers.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

This anonymous novella attempts to teach a lesson about evangelism by telling the story of Sam, a middle-aged advertising executive who is also a Milquetoast Christian. One night, the Holy Spirit gives Sam the ability to hear the inmost thoughts of all around him, a power that makes him aware of how desperately they all need Jesus. With a little help from his pastor, Sam starts using his gift to begin evangelistic conversations with strangers. When he hears a man wishing that "someone bigger was in control," Sam introduces himself and tells the stranger "who [is] really in control." Though we see Sam rebuffed once, the author concocts a fantasy in which not only Sam, but also his family and friends, win souls by the dozens, simply by having short conversations with people about the idea that Jesus can meet their needs. More miraculously, all these new converts show up at Sam's church ready to grow as Christians and to "bear fruit" by going on soul-winning expeditions themselves. At one point, one of Sam's Promise Keepers "accountability partners" objects to Sam's evangelism spree by asking, "Don't you think you're selling them an easy-believism? A repeat-after-me kind of faith?" While Sam assures his friend that he is not, the novella itself offers no such assurances. It is rather a treacly fairy tale that ignores the complexity of suffering, genuine conversion and, perhaps most disappointingly, good storytelling. (June)

Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Terri Blackstock is the New York Times bestselling author of Intervention and Vicious Cycle with over six million books sold worldwide. She has had over twenty-five years of success as a novelist.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Heart Reader Jan. 8 2003
The Heart Reader is a very interesting book. I mean it kept me turning the pages, and I loved every minute of it. It really got my spirit on fire it really helped in aiding me in witnessing. It really touched my spirit and made me just want to take out the word of God to all that don't know him, and encourage those that do know. It is kind of a guide in witnessing. I would suggest this book to anyone and everyone that know and don't know God it is. Terri is a great writer she makes you feel every word and I thank God for her being a willing vessel of God.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Heart Reader Nov. 1 2002
I loved this book, and carry it with me every where I go. Due to heavy work schedule, I read a line or two between events and am facinated with the concept of this story line. Its for anyone who has postponed or have a deep sincere soul desire to break out of their complacency to bear fruit in their life as a soul winner. It is truly a remarkable book and I would love to meet Terri Blackstock or at least have her share how she came to write the book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Concept Dec 4 2002
I read this book in one setting, and although the idea was a good we all need to evangelize and tell others about Jesus and that He is the One in control, the story bogged down somewhat and was boring in spots. Overall, it was a great idea to get people up and going for Christ. Worth the time to read. Chero'ne author of "Dancing Around the Throne"
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4.0 out of 5 stars Uplifting tale June 10 2000
The dream seemed scary to Simpson Advertising Vice President Sam Bennett, but what followed during breakfast at the diner and in the office was much more frightening. Initially, Sam kept hearing people speak their wishes and desires, but everyone denied saying anything to him or even out loud. Sam soon concludes he is actually hearing the inner thoughts of people. After talking and "listening" to his Minister John, Sam knows he focuses in on needs and desires only.
Sam begins to understand that the Holy Spirit has given him the gift to help people reach Jesus. With John, they begin to reach out in the darkness because he feels he is God's messenger assisting individuals who feel lost find their way.
THE HEART READER is a modern day Christian parable that will give much solace to fans of inspirational literature. Though the story line fails to consider human reactions by simplifying the response and recovery to pain, grief, and depression, the charcaters turn the tale into an enjoyable read that lifts the spirit of the audience. Not for everyone, sub-genre fans will soar with this novella.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Uplifting Jan. 26 2002
This book was exactly what I needed! It is a simple story with a simple message. The main character, Sam Bennent is given the gift of "hearing what God hears", the innermost thoughts of a person's soul, thus he is able to approach strangers, and speak to them of their spiritual needs. Some get angry and turn away, but others recognize their own need and are open to Christ. In this way Sam, and the others that begin to witness with him, learn how to do the work of a true Christian. The message of the story though, is that Sam, nor anyone else, does not have to know a persons specific need in order to witness, all that is needed is the knowledge that Christ is the answer. This is a story that all Christians should read, and then act upon.
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