Somewhere More Holy

I order most of my books off of Amazon.  One, it’s the cheapest out there and two if you order over $25 worth of stuff, you get free shipping.  So, last week I went online to order Glenn Beck’s book, “The 7 Wonders That Will Change Your Life” but I needed another book to get me over $25.

Amazon has a wish list that you can save books you want so when I find one I think I’m interested in, I save it so I’ll have some books to choose from when I’m ready to order.

One book I saved was one mentioned in Sarah Palin’s new book, America by Heart, called Somewhere More Holy by Tony Woodlief.

God knows what I’m struggling with and at this point in my life he also knows exactly what to put in my hands.  It was these two books.

Somewhere More Holy is a book about Tony’s life.  He lost his first child when she was 3 to a brain tumor and he dealt with it by cheating on his wife.  It’s about how he was broken and through God’s grace his marriage was saved and him and his wife are now raising 4 boys.

I can’t imagine ever burying a child (it’s both me and my husband’s worst nightmare).  This book will make you cry and laugh.

At one point last night, Tony tells the story of not wanting to play with his daughter because he was watching a basketball game before he knew she was sick and the guilt and shame he feels over it.  “I was unable to see how the things we love can banish like breath.”  Then, the next page, “she (his daughter) forgave everything, and so does God, and that the only person still keeping accounts is me.” P.48-49

I looked up at my two youngest children who were playing happily on the floor with dolls and cars and started balling.

You see, I tend to think sometimes I’m a bad mother.  I think I don’t spend enough time with them.  I tend to think I could be better.  I tend to think I am scarring my kids for life with all my junk.  I even think I am unworthy of them.

This book will make you feel like you’re not alone, remind you how God does forgive and how much He does love, and make you see how important your family truly is because one day they may be taken from you.

It’s not an easy read but I got up this morning and couldn’t put it down until I finished it.

“I think it’s time to just accept it (the love of his wife), to accept the love of these children and this God I don’t understand.” P.201

I have been moved more in the last five days than I have been in a long time.  Moved to deal with my past. Moved to accept it.  Moved to follow my true north.  Moved to follow God’s.  Moved to be all God has called me to be, to be more like Jesus but to know I will stumble in the process.  And moved to love and to accept love.  And to know all things work together for my good.

I cannot recommend either of these books enough, especially if you think you have more to give to this world and something is hindering your progress.  I guarantee you will learn something.  You may even be moved like I am to see what’s important in this world and what is not and to pray for the will and fortitude to make life changes for the betterment of all.

It’s Not About Me

I read Sarah Palin’s new book, America By Heart.  It was good.  It echoes a lot of what Glenn Beck and The 5000 Year Leap say about country, pride, faith, and America.

One book she quoted in her book that struck me was It’s Not About Me by Max Lucado.  Since my husband and I have both been accused of being selfish by his family recently, I thought this book apropos.  Plus, what better way to begin the New Year?

I like Max Lucado.  As creator of the Wemmicks, he’s a special guy in my kids’ eyes.  But I’ve only read one adult book of his until this one.

Here’s the best parts and quotes:

When our deepest desire is not the things of God, or a favor from God, but God himself, we cross a threshold.

Lucado then discusses Moses in the desert and while talking to God he asks him, “Show me your Glory.” (Exodus 33:18)  Lucado asks, “Don’t we all need to be asking the same thing?”  So we can be changed forever as Moses was?

We exist to reveal His glory but we must first see and know His glory and live it in our lives.

Holy is repeated 3 times in Isaiah 6:2.  What other adjective is repeated to describe God?

God’s mercy makes us holy.

We can endure any challenge for a moment when our reward is eternity.

If it’s all about you, then it’s all up to you.  God loves us too much to give us such a burden.  He loves us too much to give us too much.  He knows our limitations and weaknesses.  Because He loves us.

Side Note:  Lucado told a story about Queen Victoria’s daughter, Alice, and how she loved her sick son so much so kissed him even though he was in quarantine.  She died a few days later.  I immediately looked this up on the internet because I had never heard of this story.  Great stuff.  Be prepared to shed a tear.

As we behold His glory, we become it.  As we become it, we reflect it for all to see.

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17

Our body is interwoven with the soul.  “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself?”  1 Corinthians 6:15  So whatever touches the body, impacts the soul.

Your body, God’s tool.  Maintain it.

Your body, God’s temple.  Respect it.

God does leave us to the consequences of our stupid decisions. But our pain has a purpose: problems, struggles, heartaches, and hassles cooperate toward one end–the glory of God.  Is there any change you have been selected to struggle for God’s glory?  “To suffer for Him.” Philippians 1:29

God will use whatever He wants to display His glory.  Nations.  People.  Problems.

God can be seen through your problems.

Your success is all about God.  God lets you excel so you can make Him known.  You are good at what you do for God’s sake.

We exist to give honor to his name.  If they know His child (us humans), then they know His heart.

There is a great section in here discussing Isaiah and when he saw the glory of God, was cleansed by the seraphs, and said, “Here am I!”  This was especially satisfying to me since I knew exactly what Lucado was getting at–all thanks to BSF!

This was a great reminder book.  Easy read and relatively short.  Great ideas and lessons from the Bible. Everything in our lives: our bodies, our struggles, our success, our salvation, and our messages are for God’s glory.  It’s all about God, not us.

Live for God.