Friday, August 17, 2007

Soon to be a Major Motion Picture, by Donna Partow

Are you female? You probably need to read this book. If you live in town and want to borrow my copy, I'm glad to lend it to you. (Or you could go and buy your own. But I think I got the last copy at Parable.)

Basically the message of this book is, "Hey! It's not ABOUT you! It's about God." Think your life warrants the attention of the multitudes? Do you crave attention, sympathy or a general audience? Partow does a really good job of combining humor with truth (and plenty of scripture to back her up!) to drive the point home that your life isn't the worst and your problems do not belong in the Guinness Book of World Records. She relates (generically) how she always felt her problems were monumental and deserved the attention of everyone's ears. She talks about how she craved sympathy and did a very good job of growing mountains out of molehills.

Do you feel hurt by the church? She borrows from JFK and suggests, "Ask not what your church can do for you but what you can do for your church." In other words, quit whining and moaning that you have been hurt worse than anybody else. Even if you are right and the rest of the world is wrong, your responsibility is not to throw a pity party, is it? No, it's to "turn the other cheek." It's to "be kindly affectionate towards one another in brotherly love." It's to take responsibility to provide as much peace in any given situation that is possible -- and to realize that you haven't got it worse than anyone else in the history of the universe.

Is your marriage bad? Her first marriage was probably worse but, regardless, you probably don't have bragging rights. Have your friends hurt you? Stand in line. Partow, using scripture, does a right good job of putting issues in their proper light of (?) viewing problems as God does. Which typically isn't a problem for Him, if you think about it!

She isn't downplaying trials or tribulations but she is encouraging us to look towards the good. She's encouraging us to seek after Christ and hand our problems over to Him and to ask Him to show us how important (or unimportant) they really are. She is encouraging spiritual growth and maturity over petty bickering and pity parties. The messages is: Everyone has it rough and you aren't any grand exception.

I think it would benefit the large majority of Christians to realize this fact. We tend to like to move ourselves up to the head of the table, instead of taking the lower seat and being asked to the front by the Master. We like to think our trials are the most impressive and that we are just being put to task (for no good reason). It would behoove us to keep our mouths shut and learn to quiet our hearts so that we can better hear what God is speaking to us through the time of testing. Nothing is impossible with Him but we sure like to make it sound like it is, don't we?!

I'm very glad I read this book. It caused me to reevaluate how I even present a prayer request to my fellow believers! We ARE supposed to ask for prayer and support each other in it, but none of us need to try to live as if we own rights on the best tragedy EVER.

I needed the reminder. It was a very funny kick in the pants sort of book. I can't recommend it enough. Think about how much better the body of Christ would function if we realized we were just a part and not the whole? A wholly important part -- but a PART, nonetheless.


1morechapter said...

Thanks for this review. Might have to go on my '08 TBR.

Missi said...

wow, good review, now I want to read it:)

Anonymous said...

Hello! You visited me last weekend, and it has taken me all week to return the visit. However, I am glad I visited after you wrote this review. The book sounds great! Thanks!

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