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JFH Staff Book Review

I Am Second: Real Stories. Changing Lives.

Doug Bender and Dave Sterrett
I Am Second: Real Stories. Changing Lives.

Page Count: 240 Pages
Street Date: January 3, 2012

The I Am Second movement (visit for more info) is one of the biggest things going in Christian ministry today. Celebrities, athletes, and musicians have sat in the chair to tell the story of how they came to put God first in their lives. The ministry has been a success and has helped to lead many to Jesus. The movement started because of a vision and passion of sharing the love of Christ by founder Norm Miller. Miller may not be a name you are familiar with, but he is Chairman of the Board and the face of industry giant, Interstate Batteries. He began as a traveling salesman for the company, but worked his way up to his current position after many years of hard work and dedication.

My initial reaction to hearing of an I Am Second book was mixed. On one hand I think it's an amazing ministry, but the other hand had me believing you were going to get the same exact product found on the website; I even had a brief thought that perhaps they were just trying to cash in on the success of the site. I was way off base.

The book actually has two authors, Doug Bender and Dave Sterrett, who did a great job of making the website's videos come to life. While the videos themselves are hard-hitting, the way the stories are crafted within the book provide a new spin. Bender and Sterrett take the stories from the videos and put them into a sensible order. They use the major quotes from the videos coupled with their story-telling ability to make the stories tangible and easy to follow. Each story averages around 5 to 6 easy-to-read pages and features a picture of the subject before the start of each chapter. Most of the people selected for the book have some sort of claim to fame, but there are also stories from normal, everyday people as well.

From the beginning with Brian "Head" Welch, possibly the movement's biggest poster boy, to the closing story of founder Norm Miller in the finale, I Am Second is full of conversion stories ranging from drug abuse, alcoholism, hatred and racism, prostitution, gluttony, losing faith in God or any number of combination of each. The book features stories that those who feel their life is too far gone for saving can relate too, but also features stories that struggling believers can relate to as well. The second subject featured, Daniel Montenegro, tells the story of how Head and his I Am Second billboard and video opened his eyes to a loving Creator.

Whether it's NFL quarterback Sam Bradford, MLB slugger Josh Hamilton, pro skater Brian Sumner, soul surfer Bethany Hamilton, CCM mega-star Michael W. Smith, Biggest Loser Michelle Aguilar, or a pastor addicted to pornography in Nate Larkin, I Am Second is full of life changing stories that will have you flying through the pages. The book also feature QR codes that link to each person's video as well as links to similar stories as well. The book even features a nice section of black and white photos of each person in the middle. More importantly, the end of the book tells who should be first, how to become second, and gives an outline on how to give your life to Christ. Overall, I Am Second is a book that's worth picking up for yourself or for giving to a friend or family member who is on the fence--or worse--about their faith.

- Review date: 2/10/12, written by Michael Weaver of


. Publisher: Thomas Nelson
. Page Count: 240 Pages
. Street Date: January 3, 2012
. Buy It: (Hardcover)
. Buy It: (Kindle)


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