Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Journey Through Their Lives - A New TOS Review!!

Reading as a family is a natural occurrence in our home, although it does not happen as often as I'd like.  That is mostly due to scheduling, but I am trying to change that aspect of our lives so that we spend a little time each and every day together and focused on a similar trek.  And I am always looking for another good book.  I used to be a voracious reader, but as I've gotten older added in kiddos and a busy life my reading is quite limited  - so it's always a joy to me to find a book that is a great read and that I can use as a read aloud with the family.
The Product:
The book I received from Apologia is called Journeys of Faithfulness and is written by Sarah Clarkson, a homeschool graduate as well as author of another great book -  Educating the Wholehearted Child. Journeys of Faithfulness: Stories of Life and Faith for Young Christian Women is a 232 page book that tells stories about four Biblical heroines through the lens of a fictional history.  After each story there is a devotional written from Sarah's personal experiences highlighting similar areas in her own life as had been discussed in that chapter.  There are also Bible Study questions for each chapter that serve as a way to tie it all together and for the reader(s) to apply the truths learned or discussed in their own lives. At the end of each chapter there are "journey journal" pages where you can write down insights and thoughts you have collected through your reading.

For just $13 you can get a sneak peek into what the lives of these women might have looked like -women like Mary & Martha, Esther, Mary - the mother of Jesus, and Ruth. The book is divided into four sections where each woman is talked about over 3 chapters, making the book a total of 12 chapters.  The stories are not taken straight from Scripture, but rather a mix of the historical times and other Scriptures sprinkled with great storytelling.  Sarah Clarkson is a master at telling the story - using words which are both expressive and insightful to build a wonderful picture in your mind.  This word picture all but transports you to the time of the stories allowing you to be an onlooker in their lives.

Our Experience:
This book is intended for young women ages 12 and up, but I was sure after reading the sample of the first chapter that my girls were hooked.  I remember reading it to them at lunch time one day and when I came to the end of the chapter they both 'awwed' because they wanted to hear more.  It's one of those cliffhanger books where you  might already know the story, but the way that it is being told is so new and intense that it draws you in and you want more.

When we got the book in our hands, both my 9 and 7 year old girls were ready to read hear more. I am amazed that the way this book was written, with its choice of words, even caught the attention of my 3 year old son. He has been transformed a little too especially from the story of mean Martha turned joyful girl.
We are progressing through this book together at a slower rate (although I am reading ahead because I just don't want to wait) and trying to really take some time and think about the discussion questions and talk through them.  Just so you can get a glimpse of what I mean I want to share some of the girls answers from our first Bible study section.  The Scripture reference was Ephesians 3:14 - 19 and we were asked what it means to be "rooted and established in love".  Here are there answers:
Arianna said, "It's like you are swimming in his love."
Audrie says" It's like we are a tree stuck in the ground - we are stuck in God by love."
The next question asks us to describe what God offers us as we read through 1 Cor. 13.
Arianna - "It is hope; it doesn't fail. Love is kindness.  I need to work more to be like that."
Audrie - "It doesn't brag."
I know that we will be reading this book again when they both are older and I plan to share their thoughts with them then too.  I love how this book has been broken down and how it makes each of these 'bigger then life' characters of the Bible come alive and how Sarah is able to connect them so well to our own lives.

My Thoughts:
Every woman, young and old alike, need to read a copy of this book.  The transparency you see in Sarah's devotionals coupled with your own process of digging deeper into the Word through the Bible Study sections will cause true transformation if we let it.  We can be transformed just like each of these women were as they faced their own Journeys of Faithfulness.

I hope you take the time to read how other Crew members felt about Sarah's book - just click the banner below.


*** I am a member of The Old Schoolhouse 2011-2012 Crew and receive free products and services in exchange for a thorough and honest review. Though I am compensated with free products, I am not compensated in the form of money for any of my reviews. My reviews will always reflect my honest opinions, findings, beliefs and experiences with the products and services that I receive.***

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