Welcome to Day #5 in the Love & Marriage mini-series!
I’m so pleased to bring you a book review as part of this series. What does being a boy-crazy girl have to do with love and marriage? Quite a bit actually! Whether you were this kind of girl, are raising one, or know a few- this book is a great resource about what True Love is really all about and how Jesus is right there with you; writing your story and giving you the strength to trust Him as He turns the pages of your life.
Photo credit: Revive Our Hearts site
As I read this book, I saw so much of myself from my teens years. Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl, by Paula Hendricks, should be read by every female tween, teenager, and 20 something…and their mothers (who still might be dealing with the aftermath of their own boy-crazy tendencies). Paula candidly walks you through her bumpy journey for love and exposes the lies that we too often believe- regarding our worth. This book is like a cherished letter from your big sis; lovingly and vulnerably sharing her diary with you, in order to help you avoid similar heartbreak, “When [we] tried to force our fairy tales, we were acting more like orphans than adopted daughters of God (see Romans 8:14-17). We mistakenly thought we had to fend for ourselves. Can you believe it- princesses of the King acting like poor beggars?” This spoke straight to my heart, as God has often revealed that I act like an orphan…protecting myself, worrying about my needs, putting up walls, forgetting His promises; when in reality I am adopted by the King and privy to all the love, forgiveness and benefits of His Kingdom (see 1 John 3, Galatians 4, Psalm 103).
Paula also unpacks the important difference between counterfeit and real repentance. How often do we cry over the consequences of our sin but not over the fact that we have sinned against God and have grieved the Holy Spirit? Paula’s book is an invitation to get off the insecurity train and climb aboard the ocean liner of God’s love. Let His truth and freedom wash over you as He turns back the pages of your heart with this little sparkling gem of a book; it just might make all the difference.
*Disclaimer: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review
My friend, and bible teacher, Carrie Gaul introduced me to Paula through her facebook page. A few weeks ago I had the distinct privilege of hearing Carrie teach again (this time for upcoming radio broadcasts for Revive Our Hearts). Paula was there and I should have introduced myself, instead of letting my insecurities get in the way. A few days later we connected online and Paula graciously sent me a signed copy of her book for review and a giveaway for y’all! Here’s how you enter this giveaway (follow all three simple steps to qualify):
2. Share this blog link on your facebook page and/or twitter.
3. Leave your first name and last initial and that you “liked and shared” in the Comments Section of this blog (if for some reason the comments section does not work for you, you can e-mail me telling me that you liked and shared).
One winner will be announced here on the last day of the Love & Marriage series, so stay tuned (and don’t delay in entering)!
If you still are not convinced that this book review has much to do with love and marriage, let me try and persuade you further. This book is an important reminder to identify the lies that we believe about our love life. There are many couples that have entered into marriage with a lot of baggage from past relationships, and often impurity in their relationship with each other too. I think we believe a lie that once we are married we will not be affected by these pre-marriage desicions. But, there are consequences for sin. Oh yes, there is forgiveness available, beautiful undeserved forgiveness… but, what blessings have we robbed ourselves of in the process? More importantly, what damage have we done to Jesus’ name while we have represented Him (whether or not the sins are privately or publicly known)?
Yesterday’s post by Deb and tomorrow’s post by Ben and Kenzie are two real life examples of couples who truly did things God’s way, of course they are not perfect, but, by God’s grace they walked in purity, according to His Word and Strength. That is reason to celebrate! Their testimonies give me hope for my kids…that they can look to them as real-life examples of purity. We long for our kids to have more success in this area than we did.
For those of us who did not enter into marriage this way, we need to repent and receive His forgiveness and mercy and extend it to our spouses and ourselves. I found some sobering and also spectacular news tucked away in Psalm 89, “If his sons forsake My law, and do not walk in My judgments, if they violate My statutes, and do not keep My commandments, then I will visit their transgressions with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. But I will not break off My lovingkindness from him, nor deal falsely in My faithfulness. My covenant I will not violate, nor will I alter the utterance of My lips” (vs. 30-34).
Sobering because sin is serious and there are consequences, BUT, God keeps His covenant with us, His children. Just like with our children, we set guidelines for them for their protection and ultimate benefit, but when they step outside those parameters, we must discipline them, BUT our love hasn’t changed, in fact, it should be out of this love that we set the guidelines in the first place. Oh friends, isn’t that a tangible picture of the gospel, the good news? We do step out of the parameters, the law and commands of God’s Word, BUT He knew we would sin, again and again, so He sent Jesus to step in for us and take our punishment. And if we accept this love (Jesus’ sinless life, His bloody death for our sins, His supernatural resurrection) and repent of our sin and make Him Lord of our lives, then we are new- washed clean, once and for all, accepted… orphans no longer, but heirs to the King, children of the Most High God!
I don’t know about you, but that is cause for celebration. This is True Love.
1. If you want more information on becoming a Christian see this post by Dr. David Jeremiah that clearly and concisely leads you through the gospel message. Please strongly consider the good news, the unconditional love and salvation, that is found in Jesus Christ alone; a costly gift waiting to be opened, by you, today.
2. Do you have unconfessed sin in your life, or in your marriage? As hard as it might be to bring your sin to light, we encourage you to prayerfully do so. We are praying for you, for wisdom, true repentance and spiritual freedom. Oh how He loves you and longs to set you free.
3. We hope you enter the giveaway and that you win! Of course only one of you can win this time, BUT, Paula’s book, and the Revive Our Hearts radio program about her story, are both available for purchase here!