Grace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life by Emily P. Freeman
Released: September 1, 2011
Many of us believe that we are saved by grace—but for too many, that's the last time grace defines our life. Instead of clinging to grace, we strive for good and believe that the Christian life means hard work and a sweet disposition. As good girls, we focus on the things we can handle, our disciplined lives, and our unshakable good moods. When we fail to measure up to our own impossible standards, we hide behind our good girl masks, determined to keep our weakness a secret.
In Grace for the Good Girl, Emily Freeman invites women to let go of the try-hard life and realize that in Christ we are free to receive from him rather than constantly try to achieve for him. With an open hand and a whimsical style, Emily uncovers the truth about the hiding, encouraging women to move from hiding behind girl-made masks and do-good performances to a life hidden with Christ in God.
For those of you who have been following my blog for a while now, you'll know that while I mostly read YA I also branch out at times. I am Christian, so once in a while those books include Christian fiction or non-fiction books. Grace for the Good Girl is a Christian non-fiction book.
Words completely fail me for this book. I have no clue how to convey to those of you who may be interested in this book, exactly what it means to me. I will say that when I was only halfway through the book that I went onto Amazon and ordered eleven more copies. ELEVEN. Why would I want eleven more copies of a book I already have? Because I couldn't count 6 people off the top of my head who I felt would love this as much as I love it. And it's the kind of book I want to have extra copies on hand, just in case I come across other people who are interested in it. And by the time the books arrived, I already knew of two other people who I was going to give copies too. THAT'S HOW MUCH I LOVE IT.
Maybe this book just came to me at the right time. Because I can tell you, I needed to hear what Emily had to share. I needed reminders of the promises God has given to us in the Bible. And I needed someone to meet me head-on and be honest with me; it's okay to be scared. It's okay to not have everything put together all neatly. Frankly, it's okay to be a bit of a mess. And I don't have to be pretend to be perfect because everything will be okay.
Well, thank goodness. If you're like me, you need to hear this. In between all of the school work and house work and relationships with those I care about and church involvement and professional school applications... well what else is there? And what if I don't measure up? Emily has something to share with us then:
That's okay. You don't have to all of this on your own.
And that's where I breathe a loud, exhaustive sigh of relief.
This book isn't going to be for everyone; but when it comes to those of Christian faith, I think it is going to have widespread appeal. Emily is so honest and encouraging, and it's perfect for those "normal" people who don't have anything drastic or exciting to share in their testimony. And for those who might have something a little more unique in their story? Well, it's for you too. I know it was definitely for me. And if only one person finds this book and decides to read it and finds something uplifting in it... well, then my job is done. I'm satisfied.
In fact, I'm going to pick it up and read it all over again. One chapter at a time, just the way I read through it before. I want to answer every question, I want to commit verses shared to memory because the last thing I want to do is finish reading this, put it on my shelf, walk away and forget.
I can't thank Emily enough for being the messenger and having the bravery to write this. And thank you so much to Graf-Martin for providing me with a review copy. This one's a winner.
Break out the road maps, find a place to go with your girlfriends and get together for a weekend. Challenge each other and open up to each other. Break through those masks! Curl on a sofa infront of a fireplace or a beach with this book, friends like sisters, and some hot chocolate. You won't regret it.