Kara Tippetts discovered how to find joy in the small moments of life. She learned how to hold tight to hope even while battling intense physical and emotional pain. And she lived out the truth that God can redeem any story.
In her final book, Kara offers gentle reflections on living and dying well. She invites us to cultivate soft hearts even when we face great disappointment. Her ideas for living are hard-won, wrestled with in the crucible of family, illness, and faith. And her constant reminder is that whether we are in the midst of dark days or mundane moments Jesus is always there, life is surprisingly beautiful, and God is forever good.
About the author: The late Kara Tippetts was the author of The Hardest Peace and the coauthor of Just Show Up. She blogged faithfully at mundanefaithfulness.com. Since her death on March 22, 2015, her husband, Jason, is parenting their four children and leading the church they founded in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Genre: Non-fiction/Religion/Christian Life/Women’s Issues
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Reflection: When it comes to tough topics, I think I tend to be fairly circumspect, preserving a bit of emotional distance. Take Just Show Up, for instance, the predecessor to this book, the one Kara Tippetts coauthored with her friend, Jill Lynn Buteyn. All about being there for the friend doing the hard hard (as Kara would say), I just about swallowed it whole. That book resonated deep in my soul and earned a place on my favorites list last year.
So I was a bit surprised by how difficult this book was. I wasn’t a follower of Kara’s blog while she still lived. If you were, you will recognize many…most…of what you’ll find in these pages. Kara takes you there, right into the heart of hard.
So, not an easy read, but one filled with beauty and goodness nonetheless. Kara’s words (delivered with inimitable panache) offer wisdom and hope and grace. Solid–even practical–advice on how to live and die well, especially within the supportive context of Christian family and community.
You don’t have to be a cancer patient for this book to move and change you. I’m still dwelling on the three-word parenting strategy used by Kara and her husband, still finding new ways to let it imbue my own parenting, for the better. And of many memorable little nuggets, this one, in which Kara captured an exchange between her and her husband following a dose of good news, is perhaps my fave:
She asked: “How is your faith so strong?”
He answered: “I don’t think I have a stronger faith, but I have a stronger memory of God’s provision for our family.”
Words to live by, those. And yes, to die by as well. Which Kara did with extraordinary grace.
Thanks to Litfuse Publicity and David C. Cook for providing me a free copy to review. All opinions are mine.
To see what other Litfuse reviewers are saying, click here.
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After words: Do you know someone doing the hard hard who might be encouraged by Kara’s story?