Tuesday, August 18, 2015

It's Here! For the Love. . .

It's here!!!  Jen Hatmaker's new book was officially released today and I couldn't be more excited.   Several months ago, I had the privilege of being chosen to serve on her "Launch Team", so I received an advance copy of the book.  I love books, and actually enjoy reading, but quite often don't make the time to sit still long enough.   The books I choose must be VERY engaging to keep me interested, because I now seem to have so many things vying for my attention (plus a bit of ADD, I'm sure).

For The Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards is one of those books!  It is a series of essays on a variety of topics that relate to women today.  In her casual, witty style, Jen makes you feel like you are sitting down and chatting with your best friend.   She is funny and entertaining and there are several instances that I quite literally laughed aloud or nodded my head in agreement.   Through her writing, however, Jen is able to speak into your heart, reminding you of what is important and true.
Here's a recent video clip of Jen.

It is a wonderful time to be a woman in America.  We have opportunities afforded us that our grandmothers never would have believed possible.  With those opportunities come responsibilities, however, whether real or imagined.   There is increasing pressure to keep up with the Joneses (whomever they are), to produce Pinterest-worthy lunches and parties for our children and mates and to be the Wonder Women of our families and churches.    It is so easy to get caught up in the lies that we are "not enough", that we need to dress a certain way, behave a certain way or even own particular brands.   Yet, instead of banding together to support one another through the challenges of dating, marriages, children and just life itself, we become judgmental towards ourselves and others.

Life is hard.  If we spend our days focusing on our failures rather than our successes, on rejoicing in the failures of others rather than being happy for their successes, what have we really accomplished?
This book challenges the notion that we need to be all things to all people.  As Jen states in the book, “We measure our performance against an invented standard and come up wanting, and it’s destroying our joy.” God extends GRACE to all of us, so why is it so hard for us to accept it and then extend it to others as well?   I don't know about you, but I NEEDED to hear that message, and then to be reminded of it from time to time as well.
I hope that you'll get a copy of the book and read it for yourself.  Jen is going to be leading an online book study of For The Love through www.faithgateway.com beginning September 19.   This fall, I am hoping to gather a few friends again to do our own version of the book study---it's always more fun to do something like this together and hear the opinions of others.    If you are interested in the online book study, you can click here to read more about it and even see a video of Jen talking about the book.

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Kelly Blackwell @ Heres My Take On It said...

Thanks for sharing about the study. I am definitely going to look it up!

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