Browsing Category: Books

Having a Martha Home the Mary Way {more than a review}

Having a Martha Home the Mary Way a reivew @JessicaMWhite.com

I’ve long loved the story of Mary and Martha in the Bible: One sister sitting peacefully at the feet of Jesus, the other scurrying around trying to make everything perfect for Him. There’s something about the story that touches most, if not all, of us: We all struggle to find the balance between these two women and what Jesus calls them to be.

This is such a heart-topic for me, that a few years ago I did an entire series in October {31 Days} about How to Use Your Martha to Be a Mary {Check out my series HERE}taking the every day business that we all have to do and using that to bless those around us. So often we get caught up in life that we neglect to be a Mary, that we neglect to sit peacefully at the feet of Jesus and just listen. There’s all this Martha-Busyness around us that we really do HAVE to do. This is what Sarah Mae’s new book, Having a Martha Home the Mary Way is all about!

Having a Martha Home the Mary Way a reivew @JessicaMWhite.com

Sarah Mae’s book started out, just as my series did, as a 31 days series called “31 Days to Clean”, but now it’s updated and revise:

31 Days to Clean is now Having a Martha Home the Mary Way: 31 Days to a Clean Home and a Satisfied Soul.

And this time, the battle cry is for the heart to know it can be loved and secure and identified in the One who gives us our homes and our calling. 

Having a Martha Home the Mary Way is for those of us who are still drowning a bit in housework, but who need to know that our identity is not in the work or the expectations put on us. At the heart, this book is about love, loving ourselves and others through a home that offers rest and peace and welcome. It is a move towards gentle homemaking, where we accept our limitations with grace, and offer that same grace to those who come under our roofs and into our care.

If you’ve struggled under the weight of all there is to do and be as a woman who makes a home, my hope is that you will find in this book refreshment and relief for your weary, overwhelmed soul. 

~From Sarah Mae’s email newsletter

What are my thoughts on it? I love it! The book is broken down into quick to read sections for each day of the month; a few pages of inspiration, a Mary Challenge, a journal-style page of devotions and questions, followed by a Martha challenge, with practical cleaning tasks and tips.

You can take each day as it comes, read the whole thing at once, address the Martha-housekeeping tasks, or focus on the Mary Bible-study. It’s truly fantastic and flexible, which is Sarah Mae’s entire idea. Homemaking shouldn’t be this daunting thing and it doesn’t have to be, but we also need to keep our priorities and faith in order.

The great thing about Sarah Mae’s book, and her in general, is that this is entirely a gentle approach to housekeeping. This isn’t about you need to do this, this and this, or you’re failing. This is about grace. This book is about doing the best you can and leaving the rest to God. It’s about creating a home that is filled with that grace, so that you can pour it out on those who live and visit your home.

Right now Sarah Mae is offering a special gift to anyone who purchases her book:  http://sarahmae.com/2016/03/cleaningfun/

Where can you order the book? Anywhere. You can purchase it on Amazon.com via my affiliate link {which I would so appreciate: You can read my disclosure policy here.}

*I received this book for free as part of Sarah Mae’s launch team; however, the opinions expressed here are entirely my own.

One More Step {a Review}

There are days, weeks when taking another step makes me want to scream into a pillow. The very thought of another sibling fight, another meal to be cooked, another life issue to be dealt with makes me want to leave my life at the kitchen table and walk out the front door, never to return.

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Life is hard. Sometimes, the thought of taking another step is daunting, another step in faith feels impossible. Because why did God call me to THIS mess, when someone else’s seems so much tidier?

A couple of months ago I requested to review Rachel Wojo‘s One More Step: Finding Strength When You Feel Like Giving Up, and then it sat on the shelf, because life was becoming too much and reading a book was impossible. With the new year I was determined to clean up the book reviews remaining from the old. I planned on just “getting through this” as best I could.

Sitting on a last minute flight I managed to read over half of One More Step; I sipped tentatively at it’s pages, before taking life giving gulps from it. Logically we know that other people “get it” that we’re not the only ones struggling through life, but we need that reminder so often. One More Step is that reminder.

Rachel Wojo shares about her struggles as a single mom to a terminally ill little girl and her journey to and through marriage and becoming a mom of many, while struggling through the loss of her own mother. She talks candidly about her frustrations, her anger with God, and her continual struggle to deal with life and releasing it to God over and over again.

At the end of each chapter Rachel shares a few Bible verses, Pillars of Truth, as well as a Stepping Stones…questions for you to think about and record in a prayer journal. Rachel does a fantastic job of sharing her knowledge and giving you the tools you need to discover for yourself how to take that next step.

Whether you feel like you’re lost at a dead end or just looking for how to avoid burning out, this book is book will help you unravel the rats’ nest of chaos that’s presiding in your life.

*I received this book for free from BloggingforBooks.com in exchange for my honest opinion. You can find my disclosure policy here.

Money Making Mom {a Review}

*This post contains affiliate links. You can read my disclosure policy here.Money Making Mom Book Cover

Just before Thanksgiving I received Crystal Paine‘s Money Making Mom  to review. I’ve mentioned a couple times over the past few months that things are beyond tight and that I’ve been racking my brains for ways I can make a little bit of income from home. This book is IMMENSELY helpful!

Crystal covers it all! With questions to ask yourself to find what your passions are and what you’re skilled at, to creating a business plan and putting it all in to action. She doesn’t stop there either! She talks about not only the how of making more money, but the why…which is often even more important.

One of my biggest struggles with figuring out HOW to make some extra money has been what exactly I can/should do. Crystal repeatedly touches on this in a variety of ways, from what you are good at to how much time you have to invest in earning money and how to create income that continues to grow.

If you’re kind of at a loss of where to begin making a bit of extra income or how, then this book has some great ideas! Crystal even has a free 5 day money-making course on her blog right now: Http://MoneySavingMom.com. You can order your copy of her book via Amazon {psst….it’s currently only $2.99 for Kindle!}or any where else.

*I received this book for free from BookLookBloggers in exchange for my honest review.

 

 

Books I’ve Read 2016

I found the best way to keep track of the books I’m reading; each new pick gets it’s picture snapped and shared on Instagram. You can find the current list by clicking here.

Books 2016

Finished reads for 2016:

*Homeschooling for the Rest of Us by Sonya Haskins
*One More Step by Rachel Wojo
*The Tyranny of the Urgent by Charles E Hummel
*Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman
*All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer
*Having a Mary Home the Martha Way by Sarah Mae
*The Mapmaker’s Children by Sarah McCoy
*1984 by George Orwell
*Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
*Lessons from Madame Chic by Jennifer L. Scott
*The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
*The Light Between Oceans by M.J. Stedman
*Virgins by Diana Gabaldon
*Girl Meets Change by Kristin Strong
*The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani
*The Longing in Me by Sheila Walsh
*Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Book Shop by Robin Sloan
*A Fine Imitation by Amber Brock
*Rebecca by Daphne duMaurier
*Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
*The 5 Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell
*The Trail of Fire by Diana Gabaldon
*Finding Fraser by KC Dyer
*Teaching from Rest by Sarah MacKenzie
*King Solomon’s Mines by Henry Rider Haggard
*The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline
*Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
*Persuasion by Jane Austen
*Dear Mr. You by Mary Louise Parker
*The Christmas Candle by Max Lucado
*Little House Christmas Treasury by Laura Ingalls Wilder
*The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus by L. Frank Baum
*The Christmas Letters by Bret Nicholas
*The Awakening by Kate Chopin
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The Unveiled Wife {a Review}

While doing my research for my 31 Days of Pursuing Your Husband I came across a most excellent blog, UnveiledWife. There was so many wonderful words about marriage and our relationship with our husband and God; you can bet I was excited to see that Jennifer Smith had just released a book with these topics at its very heart! I was even more excited to see that she was asking for people to review it. *

About the book, from Amazon.com:
As a young bride, Jennifer Smith couldn’t wait to build her life with the man she adored. She dreamed of closeness, of being fully known and loved by her husband. But the first years of marriage were nothing like she’d imagined. Instead, they were marked by disappointment and pain. Trapped by fear and insecurity, and feeling totally alone, Jennifer cried out to God: What am I doing wrong? Why is this happening to us? It was as if a veil had descended between her and her husband, and between her and God―one that kept her from experiencing the fullness of love. How did Jennifer and her husband survive the painful times? What did they do when they were tempted to call it quits? How did God miraculously step in during the darkest hour to rescue and redeem them, tearing down the veil once and for all? The Unveiled Wife is a real-life love story; one couple’s refreshingly raw, transparent journey touching the deep places in a marriage that only God can reach. If you are feeling disappointment or even despair about your marriage, the heart-cry of this book is: You are not alone. Discover through Jennifer’s story how God can bring you through it all to a place of transformation.

Can you see why I was so excited about this?!Unveiled Wife

I read the book  pretty quickly, it was interesting reading about Jennifer and her husband’s marriage…it was kind of like a train-wreck, too awful to look away from…your heart breaking for them. The main issue, and cause of most other issues in their marriage, was a result of Jennifer’s body not being amenable to sex, for unknown reasons it was extremely painful.

Throughout the book the topic was discussed to the point that, honestly, I was tired of hearing about it, particularly given that no one was willing to pursue professional help. This issue was almost single-handedly destroying their marriage, because it was a source of stress and not something they were comfortable discussing, even with each other. {I do realize this is a very tough subject; for a multitude of reasons men and women are extremely uncomfortable seeking help for something they feel so alone in, particularly regarding sex and infertility}.

HOWEVER, this did not prevent me from gleaning numerous gems from The Unveiled Wife!

As women, we all have an innate ability to manipulate and hurt the people in our lives. It’s like we are somehow hard-wired to know exactly the things to say and do to hurt those we love most. We all have this perception {thank you Hollywood!} of what love and romance should look like and we feel robbed and cheated when we don’t get it. It is then that one of a few things will happen: We mentally check out of our reality and into fantasy {this is the reason for the popularity of 50 Shades of Gray}, we have an affair, or we habitually seek out a new relationship thinking it will be THE ONE!

Jennifer Smith addresses all of this! And more important than addressing it, she takes back the veil of deception we cover our selves with, she points unapologetically to the fact that this is SIN. It is our own selfishness, it is unkindness and it’s wrong. Our own expectations of what marriage should be {or life in general} can destroy us and our marriages when we allow them to consume us. Jennifer does a fantastic job of showing how this very thing was not only wreaking havoc on her marriage, but on her physically and mentally.

The Unveiled Wife is raw, it is written from the heart, expressing Jennifer’s pain and struggles with her relationship with her husband and with God. She faithfully points to God, how He protected her and loved her well, even when her husband couldn’t or it hurt. Even in that, she is honest about her relationship with God, her anger at him, her feelings that He did not love her, did not appreciate all she was doing in her life for Him. She very openly discusses how twisted her own relationship with God was and how He redeemed it.

Jennifer Smith does a wonderful job of explaining her story, her experience and the necessity of being unveiled before God and our husbands. As a wife these are the two MOST important relationships in our life and it is entirely essential for us to be unveiled and completely open in both, so that we may be truly intimate.

You can find more information about Jennifer Smith’s book  The Unveiled Wife here.

unveiledwife.com Wife After God

*I received a copy of The Unveiled Wife for review purpose free in exchange for my honest opinions. You can read my disclosure policy here.