Sunday, April 21, 2013

Glimpses of Grace by Gloria Furman

Glimpses of Grace by Gloria Furman - a book review by papertapepins

by Gloria Furman

Sometimes life feels a lot like a burden—day-in and day-out its the same chores and tasks, challenges and discouragements, anxieties and responsibilities. Dust bunnies show up on the stairwell, social commitments clutter the calendar, and our families demand daily attention and care. At times, just catching our breath seems like an impossible feat.
So where is God in all of this? Does he care about the way we unload the dishwasher or balance the budget? Do the little things like changing diapers or cooking meals make a difference? And how can we use our spheres of influence for God’s glory and our joy?
Whether you are a stay-at-home mom or a working woman splitting time between the office and home, Gloria Furman—writer, pastor’s wife, cross-cultural worker, and mom—encourages us to see the reality of God’s grace in all of life, especially those areas that often appear to be boring and unimportant. Using personal examples and insightful stories, her richly theological reflections help us experience the gospel’s extraordinary power to transform our ordinary lives.

In the beginning of the book Gloria says that often the encouragement given to someone in the midst of raising children is something like "this too shall pass" or "grin and bear it", and then we talk about what we're going to do one day when we get our life back. Those phrases used to sum up what she felt. If she could just get through this season of life, then perhaps she would be able to serve the Lord and be content. She'd be able to have a 'proper' prayer time, uninterrupted, and her spiritual life would be so much better. Until finally she came to believe that we need to glorify God in whatever we do, even in the ordinary and mundane. Even in washing the dishes and 3 am feedings. She says "The biggest questions I want to explore in this book are these: What does the gospel have to do with our lives in the home? How does this grace change the way we live?"

Everyone wants to be content, but it seems elusive. Contentment is something that has to be learned. It's an issue of the heart, not brought about by circumstances, and discontent in the heart must first be dealt with. Then we can be content in whatever circumstance we find ourselves, even the ones out of our control. Paul says in Phillipians that he has "learned the secret of being content" Phil 4:13.

I appreciated to candid look into the author's life and thoughts. It is not so much a new revelation as a new way of thinking about it, kind of one of those "Well when you put it that way..." moments. An encouraging read for every mother in the trenches! There can be joy and contentment for you, too.

I received this ebook from Netgalley and Crossway for the purposes of an honest review. My opinion is my own. Thank you Crossway.


Gloria Furman is a wife, mother of three young children, doula, and blogger. In 2008 her family moved to the Middle East to plant Redeemer Church of Dubai where her husband, Dave, serves as the pastor. She is the author of Glimpses of Grace and blogs regularly at The Gospel Coalition, Domestic Kingdom, and Life In Arabia.

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