Through the Waters

Book Review: The Artisan Soul

The Artisan Soul by Erwin McManus book cover

Erwin McManus is a pioneering faith leader in the Los Angeles area, and although he has written a number of books throughout his lifetime, he deems The Artisan Soul: Crafting Your Life into a Work of Art his quintessential work. Given this book's potential to cast a wide swath of societal influence, it's not hard to see why.

The Artisan Soul is McManus's powerful treatment of human creativity. From his perspective, our understanding of creativity has suffered from a number of myths over the past few centuries. One of these myths is that some people are creative (artists) while others are not (non-artists). He posits that, if people are created in the image of God, and God is essentially creative, the One who made us and the glorious world around us, then doesn't it stand to reason that all of us humans are essentially creative at our core? This is the concept of the artisan soul, that each human soul is creative in its essence, that one of our greatest capacities as humans is to make manifest in the material universe that which begins as but a tiny spark in our imagination. We convert the invisible into the visible.

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Book Review: Soccer Fitness & Training Log

wall with graffiti on it

Soccer Fitness & Training Log is a comprehensive training guide written by Darren Pitfield, a professional soccer coach with ten years of coaching experience and an academic background in physical education, sports science, and the physiology of maximum exercise intensity. The book is a 29-page guide that can be utilized by players for self-coaching or by coaches/parents for youth player development. I have used this book as an adult recreational player to improve my soccer fitness and skills over the past year.

There are multiple advantages to this book, each of which serves to benefit the player under its guidance. One tremendously helpful feature is the book's chart of a twelve-month training schedule, illustrating how training intensity can wax and wane as a function of the fall and spring soccer seasons. This "bird's-eye view" of the training year also offers suggestions as to which aspects of player development can be focused upon week by week.

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