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Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The Brave Art of Motherhood by Rachel Martin

Three books have spoken deeply to my heart this year. One line in Bob Goff's Everybody Always keeps coming up to me. "What if we weren't afraid anymore?" I have lingered in Dr. Barry C. Black's Nothing to Fear. The Brave Art of Motherhood has been the third installment in my semester of God turning my heart upside down. It's not that I haven't been brave. I have done plenty of things that take gumption. The thing is that I have done those things through fear and they have caused so much pain to release.  I picture myself packaging up presents, leaving them on doorsteps, and running. Maybe no one will know it was me. I want to be brave enough to bear my pain for the healing of others and greater glory of God. 

This book grabbed my attention because of three words that I pray for regularly. Brave. Art. Motherhood. I come form the tribe of "I'm not equipped for this." Somehow, with no formal training, I am here. I have realized that desperation can very often lead to depth. I have realized how unequipped I am to mother and create. That has led my heart to try things and ask God for things that the equipped person would not ask for. It requires something extra. Creative engineering requires you to say that you are not like other people. You don't fit in. You are going a different way. Putting yourself out there like that feels painful. 



God has prompted some complete changes in everything I am doing. He has been moving my heart to do new things in new ways. I move when he says to move. My trouble has come in the form of being stuck. The voices in my head and the voices out of my head tell me all of the reasons that I cannot do it. I can't see my way to the next step or I get lost in helping others and I cannot see my way back to the thing I desired to do. Then this.



Often in motherhood, my mind is always spinning and I can't think. Rachel didn't just write a book telling you not to be stuck anymore. She wrote a book telling you how to bravely hunt down your dreams and make them your reality. It's comprehensive and directional. Keep following the steps. Here are the steps. You can live again. You can quit blaming others for your failure. You can live out the life you are desperate to live. You can quit hiding and enjoy your life. I can't recommend it enough.




Rachel's story is powerful. Her trauma is relatable. Her help is needed. If you need help with any area of your life, I urge you to get it. If it is a business, a health change, debt relief, or simply not being afraid to jump in the pool, you'll find courage in the pages. 

What do you want to be brave enough to do? This is your how to.



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This book was graciously provided by Waterbrook Publishers for review.

Monday, September 17, 2018

The Life Giving Leader by Tyler Reagin



The Life-Giving Leader: Learning to Lead from Your Truest SelfThe Life-Giving Leader: Learning to Lead from Your Truest Self by Tyler Reagin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is one of those books that makes you pause and think about the type of person you want to be as well as what is needed from a leader. So often, we see churches being run like businesses. They plow people down to get where they want to go and then blame those other people for the issue. This book challenges that whole mentality. Tyler reminds us that we aren’t here to build our church. We are here to serve and build up people. One of the great goals of leadership is humility. Vulnerability with others is where true connection and life change occurs. I enjoyed reading this and was moved by several ideas in the book. I passed it on to my 11 year old who has tremendous leadership qualities that need to be used for God’s glory. She got a lot out of it and it has opened up some great dialogue for us.

With all of that said, there were a few points of the book that seemed like they needed a good edit. The thoughts were a little scattered. One reviewer I read said that the book gave no real steps to achieving these leadership goals. I could see that. For me, as I read, I made the words a prayer. There were some practical points about humility, vulnerability, and building others up. All in all, it’s a helpful and needed book.

Tyler is the president of Catalyst. I can see how his extroverted style would be a great asset there!

*I loved seeing that Tyler was in the youth group of our favorite Archbishop, Foley Beach.


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**This book was graciously given by Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers for review.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

The Daily Question For You and Your Child

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
It's launch day for this great little book! We received this a few weeks ago. It is supposed to be you and one child, but we decided for all five of us to do it. This has been tons of fun. I thought that some of the questions were silly at first, but then I realized how interesting it would be to see your answers about simple things evolve over the years. I have also learned things about my children...things I wouldn't think to ask. One question was a talent they wished they had and one was something they wished they could learn to cook by themselves. We are doing the things. I'm even learning more about my husband. We do this at a meal time each day. All the girls look forward to answering the daily question.

We also had to write a story about a talking grapefruit together one day. We each wrote a line. It was pretty humorous.

"Once there was a talking grapefruit. It's name was Grapey Raisin. He worked in a politician's office. He had a dog named Fruity and a unicorn named Tooty. He married an eggplant named Tabatha and they opened a bistro in New York City." 



Friday, August 24, 2018

A Spoonful of Grace by Annette Hubbell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
My girls and I have been reading through this devotional. I wanted to share it with you because it would be a great devotional for the busy back to school time. I was pleasantly surprised with the depth and insight Annette packed into each day's snippet. Each day holds a scripture segment, a prayer, and some thoughts to ponder. She addresses many things our kids need to hear. It is a good reminder to focus first on the word of God and what he desires for us each day.

Description:

We have been reading it at breakfast. Check it out on Amazon.





Thursday, August 09, 2018

The Eternal Current by Aaron Niequist


My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I have been following The Practice Tribe at Willow Creek for quite some time. I found it fascinating that a church that is your typical contemporary church would invite a liturgical service into their midst. Aaron Niequist said that his heart grew weary of four rocks songs and a hymn on Sunday mornings. He was tired of the pep rally and yearned for his heart to be pastored.

Tucked in the pages of this book are ancient practices that makes us better worshippers. They invite us to give our whole selves to God and let him rake us over and rebuild us. Worship is meant to become a prayerful, intentional space.

I have hundreds of highlighted notes from this book. I loved so much of me. It challenged me. One of the things Aaron said that stuck with me is that many of us have a wealth of knowledge about the river, but few of us have ever swam in it. “Contemplation becomes an attentiveness of spirit that shifts the seeker from an ordinary reality to the Kingdom of God.”

I want to write a note about it from every single page. If you are looking to deepen your faith and think more widely about what God is doing with his kingdom around you, read it.

*I was a little hesitant to read this when I saw that Aaron had been on staff with Rob Bell, but I read on anyway. It was lovely discovering with him.