book review: bittersweet [thoughts on change, grace, and learning the hard way]

Written by Crystal Rowe

Crystal has a heart for making the church and the Christian faith real and relevant to the world around her and is passionate about serving others in the name of Christ. Crystal is married to her perfect match, D and is Mommie to A and the two sweetest kitties on earth.

July 26, 2011

There’s a theme that’s been running through my life over the last seven months or so. Books I read, music I hear, conversations I have … they all keep coming back to one thing: storytelling.

I was first introduced to this book sometime back in September by a friend of a friend. Like so many others, it stayed on my “to-read” list while other books kept coming in to be reviewed. But somehow I kept coming across it over and over again, with an inner urging to pick it up and read it.

So I finally did. And I was hooked from page one. Shauna uses every page to tell stories. Stories of her struggles, her family, her faith. Stories of friends & family near and far, stories of God immersing himself in the ordinary events of life.

We all experience change in our lives. Sometimes it’s good change, which we embrace with open arms and cheerful exhaltation. And other times, it’s incredibly painful change. Job loss, broken relationships, death of a child or parent, leaving the place we call home to find our way.

But no matter what changes come our way, God promises to be there, working through the good and the bad, sharing his grace along the way.

Shauna’s story helps us all see the beauty in our own stories. There’s power in telling our stories. Someone else who has lived something similar may need to hear that we’ve been there too. And when we tell our stories, they release their captivity on us. We begin to see the beauty in the midst of all the cracks. God’s grace shines through in a way that we wouldn’t see if we kept the stories all to ourselves.

This book masters the art of storytelling. In a beautiful and heartfelt way, Shauna invites us all into her life. She shares with us some of the most bitter moments she’s experienced, as well as some of the most sweet. And in the end, she leaves us with a prayer and a challenge:

My prayer for you is not that you live a life that’s only sweet and never bitter, but that in even the bitterest of moments, you will find the comfort of Christ, deep and enduring, powerful beyond all imagination.

Amen. And let it be so.


Note: This book is part of the 2011 Summer Reading List. Check out this book and more from that list below…

1 Comment

  1. Anonymous

    Another book to put on the ol’ Amazon Wish List. 🙂  


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book review: bittersweet [thoughts on change, grace, and learning the hard way]

by Crystal Rowe time to read: 2 min