It’s time for another book review! If you haven’t already, feel free to check my first review – Kisses from Katie.
So, I’m going to be honest.
The first time I saw the title of this book, I was a little taken aback.
“Rhinestone Jesus? Uh – what?”
But for years, I have admired the author, Kristen Welch. I cried as I read of her visit to Kenya with Compassion International. I rejoiced with her as she established The Mercy House, a wonderful program designed to help pregnant Kenyan teenagers living in desperate poverty. I have wept as I’ve heard bits of the stories of the girls that have been rescued, and I have continually been inspired by Kristin’s faith and courage. So I ordered the book – and from the first pages, I was completely hooked.
“I trembled from more than fear. There was hopelessness everywhere I looked – endless tiny tin shanties where hundreds of thousands of people were crowded, “homes” with no electricity or running water. Plastic bags full of sewage floated in a green stream, and the ground wasn’t made of dirt at all – it was just a mountain of trampled garbage. The stench nearly gagged me.
A majority of the residents were small, unsupervised children. They called out to us, “How-ah-you? How-ah-you?” hoping we would put something into their upturned hands. We could see by their swollen bellies that they were malnourished. Their faces were filthy and covered with flies, which they didn’t bother to shoo away.
It was a hellhole, not fit for the living.
I began to cry and couldn’t stop. I wanted to shut it all out. I was angry with God. Where are you? How can You allow so much suffering?
Then I shopped and closed my eyes. I saw God’s finger pointed at my as He asked my spirit the same question: “Kristen, how can you allow this?
In that exact moment, I knew my life would never be the same.
I was a long way from home and my family. I was “just a mom”. But my faith journey that started in high school had brought me to this point. Standing in this wretched place, I realized only He knew where it was going to lead.”
Chills. And tears. As I read this prologue, it went straight to my heart. And I couldn’t put the book down.
Rhinestone Jesus is the true story of a woman who begins her Christian journey as an enthusiastic teenager who walks around the halls of her high school proudly wearing a rhinestone Jesus lapel pin. As she grows older and faces the challenges of life, she realizes that Christianity needs to go much, much deeper than the jewelry we wear. It needs to change how we act. It needs to change US, to the core.
She boldly shares the good moments of her life, as well as the bad. The pain of infertility, the near-ending of her marriage and the rebuilding of it, the heartbreaking trip to Kenya, and the realization that being “just a mom” is enough.
Her “yes” is enough.
So is mine.
So is yours.
Reading this book woke up something in my heart. As I finished, I was crying and praying. I didn’t know at that moment that a few of my “yeses” were about to begin.
Starting this website – that was my first yes.
What is YOUR yes?
I’d love for you to give this some serious thought and prayer. What is your yes? What can you do, right now, in this stage of your life?
NOTE: Giveaway is now closed. The winner will be announced Wednesday, January 14th at 9 am. Thank you for your interest!
I have some wonderful news for you. As I began writing this review, I truly wished I could pass my copy around to all of you. I want to hear your thoughts and read your notes in the margins and sit around my fireplace and talk about it. But that’s not very practical, so I contacted Kristen’s publicist at Tyndale, and she has so graciously offered to give one of my readers a copy of Rhinestone Jesus. I am so tickled for this opportunity, and I hope this book blesses whoever wins it!
There are three different ways to enter this giveaway. Please be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry (you can leave up to 3 comments).
* Leave a comment here saying why you’d like to win the book
* Share this giveaway on Facebook
* Pin this article on Pinterest
The giveaway will close on Tuesday, January 13th at 9 p.m. (Central), and the winner will be announced by Wednesday morning. Thanks for entering!
Note: I was not compensated to do this review – all thoughts are my own. Tyndale House Publishers has generously provided a copy of this book for me to give away.