This is week two of the Advent Season. Much like Lent, believers would fast and pray from mid-November until Christmas. Originally, it was a time for believers to prepare themselves for baptism, but during the Middle Ages, the focus changed to the Second Coming of Jesus. Only in recent years has the focus changed to the Nativity.
Last week we looked at hope for the season of advent. In many ways, peace is closely related. All the same stuff that attacks your hope will usually first steal your peace.
What do you do when circumstances besiege you, bombard you on all sides that peace in this season of blessing is unrealistic? Naive? Childish?
Peace wasn’t a feeling or an absence of that nagging fear I couldn’t seem to shed. . . . For me, peace has always been a person. ~Michele Cushatt, Undone
Description from Amazon: Undone: A Story of Making Peace with an Unexpected Life
Undone is author Michele Cushatt’s quest to make peace with a complicated life. It is an honest confession of a diagnosis of cancer and the joys and disappointments of motherhood and marriage, ripe with regret over what is and, yet, still hopeful for what could be.
With enough humor to ease the rawness of the story, Undone takes the reader on a roller coaster two-year journey through the unexpectedness of life.
A look back makes Michele long for a do-over, the chance to make fewer mistakes and leave less of a mess to clean up. A look forward makes Michele wonder if all her attempts to control life have robbed her of the vibrancy of it. And, in the middle of this internal chaos, she finds her once-pristine house filled with the sights and sounds of three small, uncontainable children who just want to be loved.
In the end, Undone turns complication into a beautiful canvas, angst into joy, and the unknown into an adventure, revealing that sometimes life’s most colorful and courageous stories are written right in the middle of the mess.
What I Thought
Hope gets the final word in my life. ~Michele Cushatt, Undone
Wow. For all the words I know, that comes closest to summing up this book. I don’t always race through nonfiction books, but I had trouble putting this one down. I regularly made time for just one more chapter, and I postponed a couple of chores so I could spend more time reading.
Michele doesn’t cushion the blows in her story. She shares with great emotion the life she’s lived. She opens the curtain so we could see her at her most frail. The moments she utterly failed and the take-your-breath-away moments she wondrously got right.
While I’ve not struggled with the same problems and health concerns as Michele, I found my self relating to her anyway.
My life’s journey was very different, yet I found similarities, which is probably why her story spoke so clearly to me. I loved the truths she discovered, the gentle moments when God whispered, “Nothing will be able to separate you from me.” And the best: I could hear Him whispering to me too.
This book is so full of hope, so overloaded with the challenge to believe God and rest in His peace, that I want to share it with others.
The Bottom Line for Undone – 5 stars
Sometimes messy is the necessary beginning to the makings of extraordinary. ~Michele Cushatt, Undone
It’s not often I give a hearty five-star, everyone-should-read-this, review, but here it is. This is one of those books that can change your perspective, and thereby change your life. What do you have to lose?
About the Author
A lover at heart, Michele Cushatt communicates with a rare warmth and transparency that draw people in. Within minutes, men and women feel like they’re hanging out with an old friend, often laughing one moment and tearing up the next. A three-time head and neck cancer survivor and parent of “children from hard places,” Michele is a (reluctant) expert of trauma, pain and the deep human need for authentic connection. Thus, she’s absolutely committed to sharing her honest struggles, experiences and questions, so you know you’re not alone in yours.
Michele and her husband, Troy, live in Colorado with their six children. She enjoys a good novel, a long hike in the mountains, and a kitchen table filled with people.
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DISCLOSURE: I purchased this book myself and was not asked by the author or publisher for a review. The opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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