Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God by Sheila Walsh

Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God, by Sheila Walsh takes the reader through both the author's experience with trusting God, and through several Biblical character's journeys. We read about how the familiar face of a famous speaker and author has traveled what may be to us an unfamiliar road to get where she is, and we are given a chance to look at familiar tales from scripture with the question in mind of "how did trusting God change the outcome of their lives?"

When I started this book, I thought "Wow, this book could have been written just for me!" I couldn't wait to read it, to find ways that I could take my struggles and learn to trust God to take care of them. Yet, as I read further, I found myself disappointed that the book didn't deliver more. Ms. Walsh's style of writing is very readable, and I enjoyed her personal experience snippets. The insight into the Biblical characters' struggles was also educational. But I had three issues with the book.

1) As a personal preference, it bothered me that the majority of scriptural references were taken from the Message translation (even though the title page information indicates that the default translation should be the NKJV). In addition, the author seems to pick and choose random translations, perhaps trying to find the one that seems to prove her point best?

2) I am admittedly an anal-retentive person when it comes to grammar and spelling - especially in professionally edited and published works. There were several places that were missed in the editing process - misspelled words, missing words, or incorrect words appeared.

3) The issues mentioned above are very surface-y, and the book could have still been great in spite of those. However, I was mostly disappointed in the fact that although the book is called
Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God, it didn't seem to have any female-specific interpretations of the information presented. The author picked a majority of males from the Bible to discuss the issue of trusting God, when she could have found several more women. I understand that the information we're given on men in the Bible is more in-depth, so I would have even been satisfied if she had taken the men's struggles (i.e. Joseph, Abraham, etc.) and applied it to how a woman, specifically, could struggle with trusting God, and how to learn to turn that around.

Overall, I would rate the book as "just okay." I learned a little bit about the author as a person, and I was given several points to think about in terms of familiar Biblical characters, but as far as learning to trust God and make "Beautiful Things" happen in my own life? Not so much.

I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com review offer.