Friday, June 6, 2014

{Review} Restless

Some of the moments that have shaped me the most have been the hardest to walk through. But they matter. Those seasons of heartache changed me and showed me how much I need God. The grieving and adapting and resolving are often processes, but those trials continue to shape my perspective of what God is doing and wants to do for his glory – in my life and all around me.

This idea isn’t new to me. I spent time thinking about it when I worked through Donald Miller’s “Storyline.” God’s glory – especially in the hard times – became even more real to me as I read Jennie Allen’s “Restless: Because You Were Made for More.”

Like “Storyline,” this book prompts introspection of where you’ve been and where you’re going – and why that matters. Both authors also use Joseph’s life has an encouragement that what could have broken us can still be redeemed.

After decades of suffering, some of which came by the hands of his brothers, Joseph still embraced redemption.

But Joseph said to them, "Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.

Joseph was able to speak kindly to those who had hurt him because God changed him. God saved his life – and likely others – because Joseph realized suffering was just part of the story. His brothers weren’t going to fulfill him, only God would.

Sure, Joseph’s life was messy. So is mine. I’m guessing yours is too.

But God just needs us to bring it all to him.

Jennie Allen energized me to live intentionally – for God’s glory alone. What we say to people, where we send our kids to school, how we prioritize our marriage and other relationships, who we invite over and in, where we go, how we spend our time and our money, and what we teach our kids ... all of that matters.

“Restless” is a book that encourages and challenges on the same page. It’s packed with truth I wanted to highlight with my pen and absorb with my heart. There is space to write and process and I know I’ll revisit these pages over and over again.

My word for this year is LIGHT. And God’s been incorporating that single yet powerful word into nearly everything he’s teaching me this year. It carried over while I was reading “Restless” and learning more about how God’s glory exists in my everyday life.

“We are souls undone and rebuilt by the Spirit of God. As God surveys this earth, he sees light and darkness. And he sees his light, his Spirit wandering through neighborhoods, offices, schools, Walmarts, Chick-fil-A playgrounds, and eating breadsticks at Olive Gardens. We possess God and are filled with him for the very same purposes that Peter, John, Paul, Mary and Luke in the early church were filled with him. We are filled with God to pour him into the darkness, pour him into the broken souls who are starving for something.”
{Jennie Allen in “Restless”}

And that starts wherever you are. Messes and all.

I received a copy of "Restless" from Booklook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review. So here it is, my honest opinion, although be glad I limited it. I could share quote after quote and talk for days on this one. 

I'm linking this review with my friends at Circles of Faith, where you can find more book recommendations in a monthly post dedicated to such.

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  1. I am doing the Restless bible study...Really powerful and loving it! It is so important to learn from our past and not try to push it away or ignore it. Our past matters!

  2. Don't you love books that you're tempted to talk for days about? They are my favorites. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this one.

  3. I have her book on my pile to read! Can't wait to read it and thanks for sharing your story!

  4. KristinHillTaylor6/07/2014 10:42 PM

    Thanks, Beth! Hope you're having a good weekend. Chasing God is up there as a favorite of mine too - so glad you're enjoying it. :) I have "Anything" on my Kindle, so hopefully I'll get to that one too, eventually!

  5. KristinHillTaylor6/07/2014 10:42 PM

    You'll love it, Jennie!

  6. KristinHillTaylor6/07/2014 10:42 PM

    Yes, and this is certainly one of those. This post could have been MUCH longer. :) Thanks for stopping by, Janet!

  7. KristinHillTaylor6/07/2014 10:43 PM

    I bet that Bible study is fabulous! I'd love to work through that because I know God isn't finished with teaching me about these truths. :)