*Thrifty Living * Homeschooling * Natural Living * Creating * Baking * Learning * Exploring * Subscription Boxes * Childhood Cancer* Death of a Child*



Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Approval Junkie

I wasn't familiar with Faith Salie's comedy before this book so maybe should have researched her before attempting her book Approval Junkie. I thought it sounded interesting though so decided to give it a go.

It was around page 27 when I started to realize it wasn't funny and more awkward and trying too hard. It was when she proclaimed, "I'm not crazy about John. I'm sane about John. I've got scar tissue, and I'm not worried about his cutting me. I was crazy about my wasband. I pinned all my happiness on him." Sorry...but it makes me uncomfortable reading a book where a woman actually says that about her current husband verses her ex-husband. It makes me wonder what poor John feels about this statement.

I got to page 60 when Salie describes learning some sex tips from her brother. I get that it was intended to be humorous but I found it desperate and inappropriate. Many comedians use sexual topics to get laughs but I find there is a fine line between funny and "I'm trying way too hard." At this point I realized I didn't like Salie's story, and find no humor in her "comedy" so decided to stop reading.

This book was given to me by Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.
 

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Can I Just Hide in Bed

Can I Just Hide in Bed 'Til Jesus Comes Back? by Martha Bolton and Christin Ditchfield has been a wonderful resource for me this month. This book dives into how to face life with courage; something that can be hard to do when you've been stressed to the max or exhausted by life. It happens to us all...a point in our life where that one extra piece of straw just breaks our back and we have to find a way to pick ourselves up.

The authors share their real life struggles with depression and anxiety and include humor because laughter really is the best medicine. It's a very light read about some very serious matters and includes many encouraging verses and ways that we can help ourselves but always with the reminder that God is on our side. He is where our strength and courage can come from when we can't face things alone.

This is not a preachy book whatsoever but feels more like a chat over a cup of coffee with a good friend. This for sure will be going on my shelves to be read again.

This book was given to me by Tyndale Publishing in exchange for my honest review.
 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Only Love Today

Only Love Today by the best-selling author of Hands Free Mama, Rachel Macy Stafford, reminds us to breathe more, stress less, and choose love. It is separated into sections based on the four seasons and is a book of encouragement rather than a devotional.

The premise is a good one but I was reminded while reading this of why I didn't finish her first book, Hands Free Mama. Stafford tells us what to do instead of how to do it. The writing is often too poetic to really get deep and I feel that I'm reading one of those memes where someone is trying to tell a depressed person to "cheer up!" and they are like "Why didn't I just think of that?! All better now!"

   Don't get me wrong, there is a lot of good in this book but I didn't feel those earth shattering insights that I get from other books. I stopped half way as I was already starting to feel like the book became repetitive.   

This book was given to me by BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.
 

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Peace In The Face of Loss

I think one of the most helpful things in dealing with grief is meditation and reflection. Peace In The Face Of Loss by Jill Kelly has been one of the most helpful books I've read since losing Jacob close to four years ago. 

 While it is written by a mother who has lost a child and deals a lot with child loss I think it would be great for any type of loss (spouse, parent, sibling, etc.) as it is basically digging into God's word to understand why bad things may (will) happen in our life, how there is a purpose in our pain, how we can lean on God during those times, etc. As a matter of fact, I got so much more than comfort for my grief from this book but also some sound advice for dealing with anxiety, worry, and so on. It is a very comforting and wise book.
   
   I keep very few books after reading them but this will go onto my shelves. I have a small shelf (that is growing in size) of books dealing with loss that I reread or pull one out from time to time to give to a newly grieving person. This book is leather bound and a would make a great gift for someone who has lost a loved one.
 

Monday, April 10, 2017

We Stood Upon Stars

We Stood Upon Stars by Roger W. Thompson is all about finding God in lost places. The subtitle spoke to me immediately as that is often when I feel closest to God - out in His masterpiece of nature, feeling the sun upon me and hearing the birds sing. 

"Spearfish Creek descends from heights of the Black Hills like a chinook wink. The canyon whispers of a previous age, a sacred time, when people communed with creation. They were drawn to the mountains because language there spoke of a Creator.
    No one seemed to speak this language anymore. Motorcycles and buses of tourists sped through the canyon from waterfall to waterfall, with brief stops so people could insert themselves into photos to prove they'd been here. We are not meant to be tourists in this life. We are all travelers, like those before and those after. The proof we've been in a place is the part of us we leave there. We know we've been somewhere special because we are forever different as a result of it.
    This land and time are gifts. If we stop long enough, we might hear in the wind the voice of a Creator. We don't have to search for it. It has always been and always will be. We just have to remember the language." Page 142-143

This book calls us back to the wild, to our Creator and what He created. It reminds me of the John Muir quote of "And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul."

Each chapter begins with a drawn map of the area with suggestions of places to visit, eat, etc. then goes on to tell a life lesson Thompson learned while on that particular adventure.  While I got a lot out of this book I felt as though it was a bit disjointed. It would go from a trip he took while single, to one he took with his children, to one of the first trips as a newlywed. That back and forth made this book not flow so well.

This book was given to me by Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.



 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Tranquility

Tranquility published by Tyndale Publishing is a prayer and reflection coloring journal.  I find that meditative art can be very relaxing and a time to focus on God's words. By coloring a page which focuses on a specific verse I am able to memorize it a lot quicker. 

This is such a beautiful journal. The cover is very thick and inside you'll find verses, quotes, coloring pages, and blank spaces to make this your own. I think it can become a very beautiful collection of your thoughts and prayers to reread over and over again.

This book was given to me by Tyndale Publishing in exchange for my honest review.
 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

And Still She Laughs

When I learned of Kate Merrick I knew I had to read her book. Her story and mine are quite similar - both our children were diagnosed at the same age with the same type of cancer, both spent three years battling the monster before passing away, and both of us are trying to find joy in the aftermath. 

And Still She Laughs by Kate Merrick is about a mother trying to find joy within the depths of suffering. Merrick delved into the stories in the Bible of real women who suffered deeply and emerged somehow joyful. This is not a history of Biblical women but rather Merrick weaves a bit of their story within her own, making this a very relate-able story to anyone who has suffered pain (and haven't we all?). 

"We want the blessing of a Christian life but none of the pain. We think twice about diving in, risking love because we might lose it, risking reputation, comfort, all these things we think will keep us safe and happy." (p. 170)

Merrick digs deep into the fact that our culture equates being loved by God by being blessed by Him by receiving the life we ask for. It's the type of thinking that leads so many people to discontentment, and sadly leads people astray from God Himself. If our lives are rough we must not be loved by Him, if our prayers aren't answered in our ways we must not be blessed. While in reality the Bible points out that we must "take up our cross daily" and that the path of a Christian is narrow and hard but that the rewards are worth it. THIS is what Merrick comes to realize while searching the Bible and stories of hardship and pain.

"Choosing to live for eternity is such a game changer. It holds much meaning for the future, yes, but for the here and now it brings with it the ability to laugh. A hundred years ago, when I was in college, my pastor used to say "You do what you believe." He meant that we say much-we talk, talk, talk-but what we do speaks louder. We can talk until we go hoarse, but our actions show what our faith actually looks like.
    If I believe I will see Daisy again, I can grieve, but not as those without hope grieve (1 Thess. 4:13). I can cry and hurt and wail and get it all out, but I can be confident in our future reunion (1 Thess. 4:14). I can wonder joyfully about her and what she's doing. I can picture her in Heaven riding a bear-or any of the crazy animals she loved so much-while eating a juicy mango, wild and free. I can see her meeting new friends and Jesus swinging her around like an airplane. I can trust she is well, she is whole, and she has done more than the things on her bucket list. 
   I believe she is with the Lord. I can rejoice in that, and maybe, if I really think hard about it, I might even be able to laugh."

It comes down to the fact that as children of God, who know that the treasure of eternity awaits us, we can find joy within any circumstance because we know that a reward far better will be ours. That's not to say we can't grieve, but within our grief we can find hope. In our pain we can find purpose. In our trials we can find wisdom.

1 Peter 1:3-8:
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you,
5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.
6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.
7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 
 
This is not just for the grieving. As a matter of fact, it's more for any pain and suffering you may have experienced in life. As we all suffer, we all can use this reminder. This book will be going on my shelves to be read time and time again.
 
This book was given to me by BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.  

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails