Book Review: Simply Tuesday by Emily P. Freeman

Salt…small, opaque granules….

Too little can leave a meal lacking and too much can ruin a dish’s intended flavor.

It’s amazing how something so small can have such a big impact on a person’s palate.

Emily P. Freeman draws a similar parallel in her newly released book, Simply Tuesday (Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World). She writes about accepting and relishing being small in a world in which so many are searching for bigness. Freeman states,

I’m paying attention to the small ways that Jesus- and his kingdom- shows up in the daily ordinary, in the actual places where I live.

Freeman seamlessly weaves together personal life experiences – expressing emotions and concerns which are usually difficult to articulate. She calls to attention, through realistic applications, ways in which the human condition has become overcome with taking on the world instead of accepting responsibility for what God has given us to accomplish.

Simply Tuesday reminds me that ordinary is beautiful. That, like a grain of salt, the most profound and flavorful, if you will, things are often found in small moments.

Emily’s Prayer for the Ordinary Aunties

We confess our disrespect for ordinary time. We recognize all the ways we despise it. But we long to see with kingdom-eyes the small ways you [Lord] move in our Tuesdays. Mary we be people who see home right where we are, refusing to run into the future or pine over the past. Gently poke our sleepy souls awake.

As if reading this book isn’t amazing enough, a book club was just announced on (in)courage’s site. Be sure to get your copy and join the club!


Additional Reviews:

Note: I was sent a complimentary advanced reader copy of Simply Tuesday  in which I, in return, am reviewing.

Book Review: Downside Up by Tracey Mitchell

“Rejection reveals, alerts, exposes, defines, confirms, and is one of the greatest motivators in life.”

This is one of the opening points Tracey Mitchell makes in her book, Downside Up: Transform Rejection Into Your Golden Opportunity. This out-of-the-box view on rejection is an example of how Mitchell takes an alternative look at the role adversity can play in life.

Mitchell relates to the reader from personal experiences in her own life and those she’s encountered. More importantly, she draws relative stories from Scripture to show that rejection is an emotional wound Christ can heal.

The end of each chapter offers a list of “Chapter Principles” to not only serve as reinforcements for Mitchell’s main points, but also as references the reader can easily access in the future. Following the chapter principles are “Words of Wisdom” which consist of Scriptures and famous quotes that relate to each chapter’s main points. Finally, building on her principles and Scripture, Mitchell offers a “Plan of Action” for the reader to directly apply to their personal life in tangible ways that will last long after this book has been read.

Downside Up, by Tracey Mitchell, is not like any other self-help book I’ve read. My pen went dry from all the notations and underlining I did throughout this book. The amount of ah-ha moments made me take this read a bit slower so I could ingest all the extraordinary points being offered.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through the BookLook Bloggers. program. I was not required to give a positive review.



You can purchase Downside Up: Transform Rejection Into Your Golden Opportunity by Tracey Mitchell here.

Pure Spiritual Milk

“Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for the nourishment, now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness.” 1 Peter 2: 3

My son loves to eat!

LJ EatingHe knows when he sees me holding a fresh bottle that something wonderful is about to happen. He will cry for that bottle – and, until I get it into his mouth, he is unsatisfied.

It’s amazing to me the overwhelming amount of peace and contentment that comes over his body as he begins to drink. He literally goes from a state of total meltdown to sleep the moment a bottle is put into his mouth. He relishes in getting his craving for nourishment fulfilled.

And so, I read this verse from 1 Peter with new meaning this morning…

I read it with a stark visual representation in my head of what it means to crave pure spiritual milk…

To cry for the Lord’s kindness and interaction with a fierceness that isn’t calmed until the craving has been met…

To experience instantaneous peace and contentment upon entering God’s presence.

This is what my days should be centered around. Much like my son’s daily mission is to get nourishment – mine is to find that pure spiritual milk and to not accept any substitutions.

Happiness in the Final Surrender

Mary washing Christ's FootEach of us has struggles we face – they are life long, daily and even momentary.

I want to talk about that last one. The struggle you hang on to because it is your last means of coping or even your last shred of abnormal normalcy.

Let me use myself as an example. Like any other person existing in the main stream of today’s world, I had a difficult childhood. I say this not to point out that my parents were failures, in fact they were very much the opposite. But life is messy, and inevitable circumstance arose which changed the course of my emotional development from an early age. The result: a handful of dysfunctional coping mechanisms.
Looking back, it seemed as though I consistently rotated life’s battles like marbles within the grip of my palm – able to fall back on those remaining as I let go of one. This coping net became thinner as I began to surrender my life to God little by little.  And now I face the last of my unhealthy coping mechanisms – the final piece I need to surrender so that I may be fulling relying on Christ and not myself or any other idols.

Some of you may cut in order to find a release from the abounding pain inside you…

Others may eat hoping to fill those pot holes in your soul from others frequently traveling across it…

And some of you may even allow men or women to abuse your body, giving them the power to act out the darkness you feel inside your soul…

To stop these behaviors, these struggles, these last coping mechanisms would mean you are left fully relying on the intangible safety net of the Heavenly Father. You are unsure of what this will feel and look like, so you cling tightly to what you know – screaming out that you have already given up so much. But Christ did not die on the cross for us to live a mediocre life.  He did not endure the torture and abandonment of that sacrifice so that we may cling to what damages us instead of resting on His peace.

There was a poem my mom used to have on our refrigerator, that never escaped my mind:

As children bring their broken toys
With tears for us to mend,
I brought my broken dreams to God
Because He was my friend.
But then instead of leaving Him
In peace to work alone,
I hung around and tried to help
With ways that were my own.
At last I snatched them back and cried,
How could you be so slow?
My child,” He said, “What could I do?
You never did let go.
By: Author Unknown

Remember, as the Psalmist wrote in Psalm 118: 6, 9-11, 14-15 NLT:

The Lord is for me, so I will have no fear.
What can mere people do to me…
It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.
Though hostile nations surround me,
I destroyed them all with the authority of the Lord.
Yes, they surrounded and attacked me,
but I destroyed them all with the authority of the Lord…
The Lord is my strength and my song; He has given me victory.
Songs of joy and victory are sung in the camp of the godly.
The strong right arm of the Lord has done glorious things!