Monday, October 3, 2016

Book Thoughts - Made Well by Jenny Simmons

Made Well: Finding Wholeness in the Everyday Sacred Moments by Jenny Simmons
publishes 10-4-16
208 pages

Synopsis -

From the woman fighting cancer to the man who has lost his child to the girl sinking into depression, so many of us are engaged in daily battles as we long for healing. When he walked the earth, Jesus said to an unwell man, "Do you want to be made well?" His invitation stretched beyond physical healing--he sought to restore the soul. The same invitation stands for us today.

For anyone struggling on the journey toward wholeness, singer/songwriter Jenny Simmons offers a resting place and a friend along the way. With personal insight into emotional pain, she invites readers to encounter a God who is working out their restoration--often in surprising "half-baked" ways. Her humorous and inspirational prose lights a path toward wholeness. Anyone trying to find their way to spiritual, mental, and emotional healing will benefit from Jenny's vulnerable and compassionate stories of being made well in the midst of a messy life.

My thoughts -

"In the beginning, you were made well. Designed with divine imagination, shaped by sacred hands, and crafted by the Curator of creation. You and I were called good. We were already enough."

With this beautiful affirmation, Jenny Simmons invites readers into her theology of being made well. This is a theology of a journey, where health and healing are not synonymous; a theology not of depraved sinners but of beloved children; of a partnership that is equal parts divine grace and human willingness. This is a theology of choice - our choice, every day, to look for the small moments of our lives where we are being made well.

I discovered Jenny Simmons the author last year, when I read her first book, The Road to Becoming, because a friend asked me to. She was my favorite author discovery of the year. When I was given the chance to be on the launch team for this, her second book, I couldn't get in line fast enough. 

Simmons is a beautiful writer - her words have a way of weaving themselves into my heart, tugging out emotions I didn't expect in places I wouldn't have predicted. She is honest and raw, and doesn't hesitate to share the broken places in her own life, which allows her reader to feel the truth of her words. She is tender with pain - she doesn't discount it, but she doesn't wallow either. She holds pain in sacred hands, allowing her reader to experience it, while inviting them to move forward into the healing that awaits. 

"Sometimes the best thing we can do for someone in pain is to sit on the other side of the door and slide our fingers under the threshold so they know they aren't alone."

This book was beautiful and powerful. Once again, Jenny Simmons has written potentially my favorite nonfiction book of the year. Highest of recommendations - don't miss this one!

Finished 9/4/16
Source - ARC from publisher - thank you!
MPAA rating - PG for frank talk about suffering
My rating - 5/5

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