Sunday, June 9, 2013

grandma's bookshelf - Victim of Grace

Life can certainly have it's ups and downs for all of us leaving us wondering what is happening and what we should do next. But as Robin Jones Gunn so wonderfully explains in her new book, Victim of Grace: When God's Goodness Prevailswe are not, "victims of circumstances. We are victims of grace." Robin says, "No matter what obstacles, heartaches, or difficulties are assailing you, you are not at the mercy of those circumstances. God still is pouring out His grace on your life and accomplishing His purposes for you in the midst of your shattered hopes." This absolutely is a book you will be so glad you took the time to read!

Victim of Grace: When God's Goodness Prevails 
Author - Robin Jones Gunn
Publisher - Zondervan

Favorite Features -
  • Robin shares in a very open and honest way, how God has walked with her through the ups and downs in her own life.
  • Each chapter introduces the reader to a woman from the Bible who was a, "victim of grace": Hannah, Eve, Rebekah, Hagar, Martha & Mary, Rachel, Mary Magdalene, Ruth, Mary and Noah's Wife - "Kindred Victims of Grace"
  • Discussion questions in the back for each chapter help you think through and take a look at what God may be doing in your own life.
In the first chapter of this book, Robin shares the situation which inspired her to write this book. She was having a conversation with a friend; and said, "More people need to tell the uncomfortable parts of their story instead of just the 'punch line' because we need to know we are not alone in the process, especially when it is painful. This is what God did when He recorded the true tales of many of the women in the Bible. He didn't airbrush their lives or make excuses for their choices. He showed them as they were. Real. Human. Flawed. And also deeply loved by the One who fashioned them by hand and knew them by heart."  Victim of Grace: When God's Goodness Prevails is a book which does exactly this!

I found this book to be challenging and encouraging; some of the moments which I'm challenged and encouraged to think more about include:
  • "There is nothing I can do, nothing to make the rain fall or the wind blow. Unprovoked by any act on my part, God gives me breath. He opens His hand and gives and gives and gives. I don't control His faithfulness. I don't initiate His mercy. I can do nothing to earn His kindness. I don't deserve His gifts. The truth is, I am powerless to stop His love for me. I did nothing to activate His goodness toward me. I am incapable of deflecting the endless showers of blessings which come from His storehouses and rain over my life. Its all grace. Grace upon grace. God's extravagant grace. Indeed, I am a victim of grace. And so are you."    
  • II Chronicles 16:9 "'The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.' (NLT) Our part in the blessing is to be committed to God and faithful in doing whatever work He puts in our path. Yet God does more than just measure out a blessing for our faithfulness. The blessing happens inside our obedience. And inside the blessing, He delights in adding a hidden sweetness. That sweetness is love." 
  • "What if you knew in the midst of your most devastating tragedy, Jesus was right there, even if you didn't recognize His voice or see His specific touches in the details of your heartbreaking situation? What if, in your most painful, hunched-over, sobbing moments, you knew He knew you by name? Would you turn fully toward Him?  
  • "Have you ever considered what your life might look like in your times of greatest surprise, upset, confusion and mystery if, from the heart, you simply said as Mary did, 'I belong to the Lord, body and soul . . . let it happen as you say'?"
Can you see why I find Victim of Grace: When God's Goodness Prevails both challenging and encouraging? This book is packed full of truth and if we are able to sit down and allow God to use it to show us how He wants to lavish His grace on us, our lives can and will be changed. Take some time to pray your way through Victim of Grace: When God's Goodness Prevails and then get ready to see how God "redeems" your hopes and dreams!
(I received this book for free from BookSneeze for review purposes)

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