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Many women feel as if they do not do enough and are not enough. They're always trying hard to be good: a good friend, mom, wife, Christian, employee, or ministry leader, hoping for that "atta-girl" from God. With compelling illustrations from her own life, Christine Hoover leads readers to the understanding that they're living by a lesser gospel, the gospel of goodness, one without Christ's grace. Relying on Scripture, they can start asking, "What does God want for me?" before asking, "What does God want from me?" Women will breathe a sigh of relief at this powerful message of freedom and hope. Rather than serving God out of obligation or duty, they'll be compelled to love and serve God with great joy.
From Good to Grace by Christine Hoover was such a blessing to my soul. The message it presents is that we don’t have to earn the love that God grants to us nor do we have to earn His grace or forgiveness. His love and grace are gifts bestowed upon us simply because we are His creation. As such, we are born good enough. We don’t have to carry the stress of earning favor with God and that is a powerful message.
The comparison game is a tricky fish and affects all of us. I know it affects me. I find myself constantly comparing myself to neighbors, family, friends, and other bloggers. I wonder how they are finding success or what they are doing that I’m not doing. It’s the root of envy, jealousy, and anger and it’s something we really should all work at letting go. It’s rooted in these feelings of self-doubt and low self-esteem. We don’t feel as though we deserve the things we have so we set off on this road of trying to prove our value, sometimes by doing crazy or extreme things.
This book, From Good to Grace, reminds us that we are already good enough. Proving our worth or our value isn’t a burden we have to carry. You are deserving of love, grace, and forgiveness simply because you are, not because of something you’ve done. Now, God certainly does tell us to go and do good works. In fact, that message is shared frequently throughout out the Bible. One of my favorites is:
What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. – James 2:14-26
Christine’s message doesn’t say not to do good works or that good works aren’t important to living out your faith (they are). Rather, she is sharing a message that you don’t have to fall victim to the pressure to do all the good works and earn your way into God’s grace. It’s a great message and one I know would ease the heart of many women.
The biggest struggle I had with From Good to Grace is that it becomes sorely repetitive. It is far longer than it should be and it feels as though it reaches a point where you’re reading the same content over and over, just phrased a slightly different way. I needed the message so much that I didn’t mind the constant reinforcement but I could see it being tedious to others so I’m just putting that out there for the sake of honesty and disclosure. Overall, I thought it was a good read and in it I found a comfort I needed.