Monday, October 6, 2014

{{Book Review}} The Hardest Peace by Kara Tippett

Life can be a roller coaster, with unexpected twists and turns. But when things go wrong and you enter a freefall, how do you cling to grace in the midst of fear and disappointment? Kara Tippetts knows the ordinary days of mothering four kids, the joy of watching her children grow . . . and the devastating reality of stage-four cancer. In The Hardest Peace, she doesn't offer answers for when living is hard but asks us to join her in moving away from fear and control and toward peace and grace. Most of all, she draws us back to the God who is with us, in the mundane and the suffering, and who shapes even our pain into beauty.
Within the book's pages, Tippetts looks at her life through the lens of the seasons found in Ecclesiastes chapter three. Chronicling her seasons of childhood hurt, love in marriage, heartbreak in ministry and devastation in illness, she asks this question: In the worst pains of life, is Jesus really Emmanuel: God with us? "I never expected to be planning my funeral and fighting for my next breath in my 30s," Tippetts confesses. 

"I never expected to be sitting on my daughter's bed with the sinking feeling her mama was going to die of cancer and not of old age. This is my own testimony of what is broken and ugly being made right and redeemed. The brokenness of today causes us to look at hope for tomorrow." 

While her story includes a long battle with cancer, The Hardest Peace holds wisdom for all who have met what Tippetts calls the "hard edges" of life. Whether it's a marriage you didn't expect to fall apart, a job you thought you'd never lose or a rebellious child, everyone will come face to face with at least one of these moments. 

Growing up in a strict home with a father prone to anger, Tippetts rebelled in her teens. After drugs, alcohol and men left her empty, she finally surrendered her life to Christ. However, her walk with the Lord continues to deepen and change. "Before cancer, I would have said I was on the journey of seeking grace, but in truth I was manufacturing my own faith," she reveals. "My going, doing, loving, was my faith, not my nearness to Jesus. In the depths of my illness, I was able to set aside my striving and look for God's presence in my suffering." 

As her journey unfolds in The Hardest PeaceTippetts challenges each reader to find God's grace in their own story by exploring five questions at the end of every chapter. "I am not the first to write from the grip of cancer. I am certainly not the first to write on suffering," admits the wife of a pastor and mom of four. "Many have done so before me with more clarity and understanding. I come to you in these pages as a broken woman, realizing that my brokenness may be my greatest strength --- that it may be the greatest strength of us all." 

Tippetts adds that ultimately The Hardest Peace is not a book about trying to "win" at having the hardest story, but about one broken woman who is on the journey to know peace in the midst of hard.

*My Review*
I'm not sure I have the words I need to correctly describe the impact  that this book has had on me. Kara has such a way with words, with life & grace and that is something rare in our world. 

Though she's fighting stage four cancer, this book is far more about faith and life than it is cancer. I recommend this book to everyone. 

Anyone struggling with their own battles in life will greatly benefit from reading this book. It will change your perspective, and it applies to every walk of life. 

Grace pours from these pages. The way she cries out in faith is so life changing. Wherever you are in your faith, this book will meet you there. 

Don't hesitate to read it. Be ready to go through a box of tissues. This book will make you stop halfway through the book and go apologize to your child(ren) for losing your temper with them, but you will also laugh. 

You'll start to look for all of the moments in life that  you have been missing. This book will change you. Be prepared. I am so very blessed to have had the chance to read this book! 

{{Meet The Author}}
Kara Tippetts is the wife of one excellent man and the mother of four amazing children. She supports her husband, Jason, as he is planting a church in Colorado Springs. Her story was dramatically changed in 2012 when Kara was first diagnosed with cancer. She has shared honestly the painful journey of walking through suffering and looking for Jesus through her increasingly popular blog, 

In September of 2013 her diagnosis changed, as more cancer was found in her reproductive system and brain. She lives for the graces of time, time with loved ones, time spent building community and sharing her story of living life in grace. Tippetts continues to maintain her blog where she shares her daily struggle in finding grace in all areas of life, not only in her journey with cancer.

Learn more about Kara at: websiteFacebookTwitter

I received this book free of charge from Litfuse Publicity & the publisher in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

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