People have been talking about the Bible for thousands of years. And now there are even more conversations flowing around the water cooler regarding The Greatest Story Ever Told. Just this month, “The Bible” miniseries, created and produced by married Hollywood couple Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, made its debut on The History Channel. Downey is best known for her role as Monica on the ’90s hit series “Touched by an Angel.” Burnett is the Emmy Award-winning producer of some of the biggest reality shows on television today: “Survivor,” “The Apprentice,” “The Voice” and “Shark Tank.”
According to an article published on The Huffington Post blog, this profoundly creative pair came up with the idea for “The Bible” miniseries in 2009, over a casual cup of breakfast tea. It took four years, but the result is an exciting, five-day, 10-hour miniseries highlighting major Bible stories, from Genesis to Revelation. The Bible comes to life through the lives of its well-known characters like Abraham, Moses, Noah, Daniel, Samson and Delilah, David, and, of course, Jesus. The television series comes to a finale on Easter Sunday.
"THE STORY OF GOD AND ALL OF US REFLECTIONS is a book to treasure. Keep it on your coffee table or nightstand to pick up again and again. The heartfelt truths and thought-provoking meditations will stir your soul. The spectacular photographs will awe and delight."
In addition to the television production, Downey and Burnett have written a novel based on the series, as well as a 30-day guidebook, a young reader’s edition, and the book to be reviewed here. A STORY OF GOD AND ALL OF US REFLECTIONS is comprised of 100 Daily Inspirations based on “The Bible.”
It’s difficult to grasp the true beauty of this book until you hold it in your hands. It is extraordinarily heavy, due to the glossy pages and dozens of stunning full-page color photos of the actual televised production. Many of the images contain corresponding scriptures. While the first devotional focuses on Genesis 1, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth,” and the photos from the series are placed chronologically throughout the book, the entries themselves are in no particular order. Some are written by Roma, some by Mark, and some they’ve written together. Each devotional is signed by the author: “R,” “M,” or “R&M,” which adds a personal, rather intimate touch. A Bible verse and an ending prayer are also included with every reflection.
As for the devotionals themselves, they are written beautifully. You’ll find an assortment of topics, like how the Bible is God-breathed, our need for friends who can hold us up when times are tough, conquering our fears, sowing and reaping, who God is, finding freedom from bondage, and remaining humble in the face of success and prosperity, with which both Roma and Mark have first-hand experience. They share their thoughts, personal stories and spiritual insight they gained while filming. Mostly they share their hearts. It is abundantly clear how much this couple loves Jesus, the Bible, and each other, and it is refreshing to see a Hollywood couple so passionate about their faith.
THE STORY OF GOD AND ALL OF US REFLECTIONS is a book to treasure. Keep it on your coffee table or nightstand to pick up again and again. The heartfelt truths and thought-provoking meditations will stir your soul. The spectacular photographs will awe and delight. But most of all, the same Holy Spirit who breathed life into the Word of God thousands of years ago is working through Mark and Roma, and through this series. If your heart is open, this devotional has the power to inspire you to take a closer look at the Bible and, ultimately, Jesus Christ. And that is even more epic than any television show ever will be.
Reviewed by Lynda Lee Schab on March 14, 2013