About the Book
Title: The Struggle is Real
Author: Nicole Unice
Genre: Non-fiction, Christian life, spiritual Growth
Release date: August 21, 2018
“It just shouldn’t be this hard!”
Raise your hand if you’ve ever had a day where everything that could go wrong does go wrong—you lock your keys in the car while it’s running, lose control with your kids, make a mistake at the office that results in hours more work. And just when you think not one more thing could possibly happen . . . well, fill in the blank. The struggle is real, friends. It may not be major stuff. Lives are not on the line here. But it makes us feel awful . . . and then we feel guilty for stressing when other people have “real” problems that are so much more serious. Yet the fact remains: We live in a world that often feels harder than we think it should be. And so it can be easy to believe the stories we tell ourselves—that we’re doing it wrong, that we’ll be stuck in this place forever, that God doesn’t love us. We struggle to practice gratitude, to make godly choices, and to live our daily lives with confidence and contentment. So what can we do? Join popular Bible teacher and counselor Nicole Unice to discover why the struggle is real . . . and what to do about it. Nicole offers practical tools to help you navigate the daily ups and downs, and ways to rewrite your struggle into a new, God-centered life story. The Struggle Is Real is an invitation to take the hard, hurtful, and confusing moments and turn them into opportunities to grow in wisdom, strength, and joy.
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This is a good book for Christians who want to understand why life is hard. Unice reminds us that God has provided the way for us to grow stronger and smarter by going through difficult experiences. God desires to transform us and obstacles are what He uses. That may not be welcome truth but Unice helps us understand it with the heart of a counselor.
I like that Unice challenges us to look at life from God's perspective. She also challenges us to be self aware and to recognize the life God intended for us. In the section on our stories, I was again reminded how important our childhood is in influencing our adult life. She encourages us to live out a freedom cycle as we move into a new story. There are many stories included from Unices' own life and from the Bible to illustrate her teaching. She has also included questions for thought at the end of each chapter.
I recommend this thought provoking book to Christians who feel overwhelmed with life. You'll be challenged to think biblically and to live out your new story in God's love.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
About the Author
Nicole Unice is a Bible teacher, author, and passionate communicator who delights in bringing God’s Word to life in a personal and relevant way. Her training as a counselor informs her work, as she emphasizes the importance of facing our own reality and embracing the transforming power of God’s grace. Her heart belongs to Hope Church in Richmond, Virginia, where she serves as ministry director, leading discipleship and Praxis, a full-time ministry residency program for young leaders. In addition, Nicole co-hosts Hope Cast, a podcast on spiritual formation, leadership, and relationships. Nicole’s invitations to speak have taken her across the world, and her books come to life through her popular video curriculum series found on RightNow Media. Her first book, She’s Got Issues, released in May 2012 and speaks to a fundamental question of faith: Is being a Christian supposed to change me? Also available is a companion curriculum, She’s Got Issues DVD Group Experience, a six-session journey that includes interviews, questions, and teaching expanding on the book. Her subsequent titles—Brave Enough and The Struggle Is Real—help people distill the complicated stuff of life into a simple and clear path to Jesus. Nicole holds degrees from the College of William and Mary and from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. She loves creating a space for ministry and spiritual formation in the everyday rhythms of life with three children, two pups, one husband, and a whole community of twentysomethings who regularly raid her fridge. Nicole is known for making friends in all corners of the world, especially via social media. Connect with her on Instagram, YouTube, or at nicoleunice.com—and hopefully face-to-face at one of her upcoming events.
Guest Post from Nicole Unice
There’s a question we throw around that I bet means a whole lot more than we would expect. How many times a week—or a day!–are you asked: “How are you?” I don’t know about you, but the answer I hear and give the most is something like …. ”fine”, or —“busy but good!”? It’s kind of the socially acceptable answer, right? A friend asked me this question just this week as I walked into work. I was multitasking as usual while knee deep into a cell phone conversation about yet another problem. I didn’t answer her, because if I did—if I really stopped and answered—I might have started crying, right there on the spot. My lips formed the word “fine” when in reality, I was anything but—at least not in that moment. And life doesn’t always stop long enough to give a real answer…. But isn’t “fine” the socially accepted answer because it works….or does it? The reality is, we are all struggling, to different degrees and complexity levels, each and every day. The Struggle IS Real, and when you add up both the little and big daily struggles, it’s easy to understand why this hashtag social media rockstar exists—over 3 million deep at #thestruggleisreal. But if we dig a little deeper into this common complaint, we might discover a much more sinister root—and real help toward freedom and wisdom in Christ. In my newest book, The Struggle is Real, that’s what I’ve done. I address issues like:
- Life is much harder than I thought it would be, and I feel bad saying it.
- There are some things about myself that I can’t change…it’s just how I am, and it frustrates me.
- I really don’t know if God is interested in my life, and even if He is, I don’t know how to hear from Him.
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Texas Book-aholic, August 28
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Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, August 29
Carpe Diem, August 30
Multifarious, August 31
Janices book reviews, September 1
Inklings and Notions, September 2
Book by Book, September 3
Mary Hake, September 3
proud to be an autism mom, September 4
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 4
Margaret Kazmierczak, September 5
Jeanette’s Thoughts, September 6
Godly Book Reviews, September 7
Bigreadersite, September 7
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. My comments are an independent and honest review.