About the Author
Kristen Welch writes the popular parenting blog We Are THAT Family...you know the ones. She is an (in)Courage writer, a Compassion International blogger and a regular featured contributor to LifeWay's HomeLife and ParentLife magazines. In 2010, Kristen founded Mercy House, a nonprofit maternity home in Kenya, Africa, which rescues young, pregnant girls from extreme poverty. Mercy House is almost entirely funded by Kristen's blog readers.
The book's description
In high school, Kristen Welch wore a big sparkly rhinestone "Jesus" pin every day and carried her Bible wherever she went. (Yes, she was that girl). But she didn't realizer her faith, though sincere, was shallow; much like her artificial accessory, it would one day tarnish, no longer a true reflection of who she was.
Real life and motherhood catapulted Kristen into places and situations she'd never imagined. There came a day when she stood in the slums of Africa, poised on the brink of a risk bigger than any she'd ever taken. And she knew she didn't stand a chance - unless she was ready to put aside the rhinestones and get branded by the real thing.
Rhinestone Jesus is the spiritual adventure story of one woman who went from living safe, "good-girl" faith that didn't cost much, to realizing that God was daring her to say yes to a deeper, more authentic way. This book throws the doors wide open for any woman who's ever thought of herself as "just a mom". Read it and be inspired. Be empowered. Say yes to God right where you are - and stand amazed at how your life will shine.
I almost didn't choose to read and review this book, but I'm so glad I did.
I can relate to the author, Kristen on so many levels. I've never worn a sparkly Jesus pin to proclaim my faith, but I have worn a Jesus fish bracelet in hopes others would know where I stood when it came to Jesus. I was a good girl when I was younger - always have been. And like Kristen, God used the ministry of Compassion International to turn my life upside down. And also like Kristen, I'm just a mom - an ordinary person - partnering with God to minister to kids across the globe. But enough about me....let me tell you more about this book and why I think you should read it.
In her new book Rhinestone Jesus, Kristen Welch shares so much of her life with us. She shares what it was like for her as a young Christian, how she longed to change the world and how she struggled through the early years of motherhood and fought hard for her marriage.
Early on in the book she writes, "The Kingdom of God is revealed in sacrifice and service in the small places, especially to our children. It probably won't make the evening news or maybe even be noticed by our spouses unless we tell them, but in a quiet, obscure place, we are changing the world. Because here's the truth we must believe: we might not be able to change the whole world, but as moms we can change one person's world. And there is power in one." (emphasis mine)
I don't know about you, but I find those thoughts empowering. This is exactly why I sponsor children and why I advocate on behalf of Compassion. Changing the world for one child is worth it.
Kristen shares about the turning point in her life. After becoming a fairly popular blogger, she was invited to go on one of Compassion's blogging trips to Kenya in 2010. After visiting Mathare slum (which Kristen describes as hell), she asked God why he would allow such a thing. She distinctly felt God asking her the same thing.
God also used a young boy named Vincent to change Kristen and the way she thought about life. While visiting his home she looked around at his surroundings and his life and couldn't help but wonder why or how he could smile and look so happy. She asked him and he answered by saying, "Because I have Jesus."
After returning from Kenya...after experiencing a paradigm shift...after much prayer for direction...Kristen and her family began to pursue opening a home for pregnant women in Kenya, the first of it's kind. This book not only tells the story of how God used "a day in hell" to rescue Kristen, but also how God used and ordinary mom and family to make a difference and change the world.
I loved this book and am so glad I had the chance to read it. I received a free copy of the book from Tyndale in exchange for a review.
If you are a blogger who likes to read, you can get free books to review too. Here are a couple links to get you started - Tyndale Blog Network and BookLook Bloggers. Right now Hope Rising by Scott Todd is available at BookLook.