It is hard to have faith when we have no idea what God is doing. Short shares her insights on the experiences of people in the Bible, and a few of her own, to help us see our story as something in a much larger story God is doing. From Moses, for example, we see God's training may take much longer than we ever thought. Other experiences help us see what happens when we try to take control of our life or when we compromise. Short encourages us to get back on the path when we wander and to let go of expectations, rather being willing to be open to what God has in store.
There are many additional insights in this book. One is that when we expect God to provide only prosperity and comfort in our lives, when those are taken away we will think He has abandoned us. (125) God sometimes takes us through hardship, holding our hand, resulting in mature faith. From the woman with the issue of blood we learn that when God delays in acting, He may be working on something much bigger than we had thought.
The lesson that had the most impact on me was from Peter's experience in John 21. (128) Jesus tells him of his future suffering and Peter's response was to ask about John, “What about him?” Isn't that what we do? God brings us into some difficulty and the first thing we notice is someone else whose life seems to be going along swimmingly. Jesus' response to Peter is wisdom for us. Don't concern yourself with someone else. Follow Jesus. Each person's life is different. We must concern ourselves with how we respond to what God has given us, not what He has given someone else.
Much of the text is the retelling of biblical stories so this book would be suitable for a new Christian. There are reflection questions at the end of every chapter so even seasoned Christians will find material for spiritual growth. Reading this book is an encouragement to stay open to what God is doing in our life, trusting in God's plans for our future as we live out our part of a much larger story.
You can read an excerpt here.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
Laurie Short is a popular speaker, author, and part of the teaching team at Ocean Hills Covenant Church in Santa Barbara, California. A graduate of Fuller Theological Seminary, she has spoken to more than 500,000 people at conferences, colleges, churches, and denominational events around the country. She has been featured on PBS, Focus on the Family, World magazine, and more. You can find out more at https://laurieshort.com/
Bethany House, 192 pages.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)