Sunday, May 24, 2015

Everyday Grace: Infusing All Your Relationships with the Love of Jesus by Jessica Thompson

Bethany House Publishers (April 21, 2015) 208 pages


t's hard, sometimes, to get over that thing your husband said weeks ago; or to resolve that tension with your colleague at work; or to fix a lifelong friendship that's taken a bad turn. The biggest problem with relationships is they always seem to involve sinners--including ourselves. So how can we form strong, resilient bonds with people who, like us, are bound to mess up?

Thankfully, it's not all on us. Through stories and biblical teaching, Jessica Thompson helps us move beyond trying to "fix" the people we interact with, and shows us a better way. Though our relationships may be marred by tension and frustration, because we are welcomed and known by Christ, they don't have to stay that way.

My Thoughts:

In this book, Thompson makes it clear that she's not giving you a "to do" list on how to have better relationships, because there are plenty of them out there already. The main message of the book(for me) is to remember Christ's love and sacrifice for us, and to remember that when dealing with the stresses that come with relationships. You can't go wrong with that advice!

There are plenty of Bible verses and events/people from the Bible discussed. There's also plenty of personal stories. I appreciated how honest Thompson was concerning her own struggles. There's plenty of good stuff in here. Because of that, I hate to admit that I didn't overly connect with it. Again, I connected with plenty of things here and there, but I never felt such encouragement that I was running to it. It seems like the main message was similar to Treasuring Christ When Your Hands Are Full. I loved that book and it is the #1 gift on my list for new mommies. That book is much shorter, though, and focuses on the land of Mommy. This one covers more relationships, like with your children, husband, coworkers, etc. Still, it came off a bit repetitive to me, and with very little practical advice to put into practice, other than remembering Christ's love and sacrifice for us, I left the book a bit less than encouraged. Since I had a hard time connecting with it, I didn't feel the desire to just sit and read it for longer periods of time. Taking longer to read probably had more to do with my disconnect than anything else. There are always exceptions, but I feel like more often than not, reading non-fiction in a shorter amount of time(with plenty of highlighting for later encouragement) has the greatest impact on me. We're all different there, of course, and that most likely changes in different seasons of life

There's plenty of nitpicking I could do. I don't share the same beliefs about what the Bible teaches with everything that's in here, but that's no surprise by now, I'm sure. ;) Still, there IS plenty of good stuff in here, and I'm not going to tell you not to read it. I imagine many out there will get great encouragement from it.

I'll leave you with a quote from the book after a talk about judging other mommies on staying at home/working out of the home, homeschool/public school/private school, processed food/organic food, the time we allow our children to spend with media, etc.

"We all take pride in how hard we work. We are trying to earn our own approval or others' approval or even God's approval. We wear our "hard days" like a badge of honor, making sure everybody knows all the adversity we had to endure that day. Again, let's be sure we know the driving factor. We are looking for validation in our work. We are looking to prove that we can earn our keep, that we are worth something, that we have value and meaning. The problem is that the very thing we are looking for in our own work performance, we already have in Jesus' performance and in his work." (page 172)

(Note: It's driving me insane, but I quoted it as is. I'd love to capitalize the "his" in reference to Jesus, though.) :S

*I was provided a review copy, in exchange for my honest opinion.


Purchase Link:

Everyday Grace: Infusing All Your Relationships With the Love of Jesus


1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a good read. I enjoy books on relationships from time to time!