"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

03 June 2012

Spring Reading Challenge Book Review #9

This book blew me away!

This was one of the best books in the Christian non-fiction genre I have read in a LONG time, not counting One Thousand Gifts.  It needs to be savored....just like a good cup of coffee....which....the author, Nicole Johnson, of Women of Faith, describes as living a full life.....live a life as those it were a fresh-brewed cup of coffee....rich and meaningful.  

She is real, honest, and the book is full of God's Truths which is something I've needed these last couple of months as I've read through it, highlighted it and done some of the journaling exercises.

The book caught my eye when I was browsing books onine because of the fact that she compares our spiritual walk to a good, freshly brewed cup of coffee...and I am all about coffee!! She has a writing style that is personal and it seemed  like she was speaking just to me!  I also liked the fact that she included a lot of personal experiences, some of which were heart-breaking but so honest and real and things I could (for the most part) relate to.

It is a book I will be going back to over this summer when I have time to really sit, meditate and journal.  (This is what I miss about having my afternoons free......with this full time job, I just don't have the time during the school year to just SIT and JOURNAL! I have to wait til just a couple of evenings a week and that's so hard for me.) But with this book and some of her ideas, I can find time now to sit for 10 minutes and start writing/praying/listening.

The book is basically about waking up our souls!

She discusses how vital it is to be in friendships (other than our spouse), and to embrace our beauty, sexuality, and listen to our longings. She identifies the differences between a longing, a dream, and a wish. This was kind of new to me and I really liked that chapter. I plan on identifying what wishes I have, what my real dreams are and what the roots of my longings are. It is hard to explain exactly what she was trying to convey......you'll have to read it for your selves!!

The beginning centers on totally surrendering to God (a nice review) and one chapter centered on anger which I found particularly helpful. For so many Christians, anger is a "sin" and it isn't!!!! It is an emotion given to us by God...even God became angry (righteous anger) and in the last couple of months my husband and I have had a situation crop up that had us in MUCH "righteous anger". It's what we do with our anger that might be a sin. The author gave some very good ideas of how to deal with anger and get to roots.

She talks about changing our world and enriching our relationships/marriages/friendships and these chapters were my favorites.  Everything was so timely for me, and I wish I could reach out to a couple of estranged friends I have and show them this book.....I think it would improve the situation if they could grasp hold of these ideas.

I plan on using parts of this book in my small group as it goes along nicely with some of the topics we are currently discussing about spiritual oppression.

The book was also chock-full of amazing quotes. One of my favorites was this, by Helen Keller:

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired, and success achieved. "

And this Scripture:  

"All my longings lie open before You, O Lord;  my sighing is not hidden from You."  Psalm 38:9 

She includes some ideas for starting and writing in your own journal, and the back of the book has discussion questions for each chapter.  I read this as a devotional book over a period of about 6 weeks but this would also make an excellent small group study if you added more Scriptures.

I think this book is appropriate for ages 17 and older.

On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the highest, I rate this a 10! 

Since this is the month that the Spring Reading Thing Challenge ends, I will give the update here.  (guidelines to this reading challenge can be found at Callapiddar Days blog).

Books I've completed during this challenge:

  • Mudwoman by Joyce Carol Oates
  • Eternal on the Water by Joseph Monninger
  • The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  • The House I Loved by Tatiana de Rosnay
  • Flies on the Butter by Denise Hildreth
  • Never Knowing by Chevy Stevens
  • The Silver Boat by Luanne Rice
  • Iron House by John Hart
I also started Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell but I did NOT like the topic the book was portraying so I returned that one to the library.

I am currently finishing up Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges (non-fiction) and still working through Protecting Your Family by Charles Stanley (Bible Study).  I am also in the middle of Defending Jacob (contemp fiction) by William Landay

1 comment:

Susanne said...

This sounds very interesting.

I can't believe there is only a few more weeks to the reading challenge. I returned a book to the library too from my list because I didn't like the subject matter. It's not a type of story that I like at all, so I stopped after a few chapters.