Book Review and Giveaway—Renewed
About the Book
Book Title: Renewed
Author: Leigh Powers
Release date: November, 2017
Ministry is a privilege, but it can also be a painful experience. Unrealistic expectations, church conflict, forced resignations, and our own struggles with burnout, loneliness, and insecurity can make church feel more like a place of wounding than a place of healing. How can wounded leaders find the courage to reject bitterness and keep loving the church?
Renewed is a forty-day devotional for women in ministry, ministry wives, and lay leaders who have been wounded by their congregations. You are not alone. God sees your pain. He knows your hurts. And he is waiting to bind up your broken heart. This forty-day journey into the healing love of Jesus will help you find the courage to stop hiding and start loving the church again.
Click here to purchase your copy!
About the Author
Leigh Powers is passionate about helping women find hope and healing in God’s Word. A pastor’s wife and mother of three with fifteen years of full-time ministry experience, she is a freelance writer, Bible study and devotional author, and a graduate of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. She blogs regularly at www.leighpowers.com. You can usually find her with either a book or knitting needles in her hand—and sometimes both.
I had the pleasure of reading Renewed by Leigh Powers. The first sentence of the description caught my attention because yes, I’ve been in ministry in the church for years, and yes, I’ve been hurt. Badly. Not once but twice. It was painful enough that when we started attending our current church, I made excuses for over a year as to why I couldn’t serve. But I knew the bottom line—I didn’t want to be hurt yet again.
One of the characteristics I appreciate the most about Leigh is her godly honesty. She doesn’t water down the pain she endured. She doesn’t slander people in the church. She shares her hurt, disappointments, and fears in the light of God’s characteristics and grace. Those of us who serve KNOW the right answers. We can quote the scriptures. But when the people we love on and serve seem to turn on us, the pain paralyzes us. It can leave us hurt and unable to trust our brothers and sisters in Christ who we are supposed to do life with. Yet the truth is the church is filled with sinners saved by grace. Christ calls us not only to forgive but to love and continue to serve.
The book is broken down into four parts: Lament, Letting Go, Looking Up, Loving Again. Since I am not a pastor’s wife, I found some of the stories in the Lament section hard to relate to yet the scripture was applicable. And since my hurt was in the past, the first two sections were a strong reminder of the process I went through while the last two were more instructional to me. That is another benefit of this book. Regardless of where you are at in your journey through the pain, Renewed will meet you where you’re at. My first ministry hurt happened twenty-four years ago, yet I was ministered to through the Looking Up section of who I am in Christ and what He does for me. The Loving Again section gives the believer the courage to move forward and trust God as he/she continues in the ministry.
I would hesitate to say this book is for everyone, however, if you are a woman in ministry or someone who was in the ministry and hurt, it is a great resource.
Thank you, Leigh, for your honesty and for your godly example to continue to serve despite the hurt and your desire to help others along in the process.
Disclaimer: I received this ebook complimentary of the author and Celebrate Lit, and was under no obligation to post a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own.
Continue to the end of this blog for a $50 Amazon card giveaway.
Guest Post from Leigh
I love ministry life. Several years ago, a young woman from Southeast Asia came to my English as a Second Language class for a year. Her English wasn’t very good, and I had to tug to get a word out of her. She came every week, but I wondered how much she was getting from the Bible stories we did during each class. At the end of the semester, I asked our class to share what they wanted to tell their friends and family when they went home. She looked up at me with big brown eyes. “I want to tell people about Jesus.”
Those are the ministry moments that thrill us. It is a privilege to help people find freedom in Christ, teach God’s word, worship with the congregation, and walk alongside people in their moments of joy or sorrow. On those days I can’t imagine choosing another life. Then there are days that make me want to hang it all up and go work at Wal-Mart. Days when anonymous letters get slipped under the office door. Days when you’re the brunt of gossip, when loneliness is like an ache in your bones, or when you start sending out resumes for new positions because you aren’t sure how much longer you’ll have the one you’ve got.
Ministry can be tough. Over the years I’ve met many women who have experienced the painful side of ministry. Church conflicts, forced resignations, depression, loneliness, feelings of inadequacy, and our own struggles with faith can take a toll. That painful side of ministry can make us start looking for an escape hatch.
I wrote Renewed in the middle of a difficult ministry season. It was a hard season, but it was also a season where Jesus showed up for me in an almost tangible way. At the same time, I was also hearing stories from other ministry wives and women in ministry that sounded all too familiar. I started putting words on the page, hoping that somehow God would use them to bring healing to other women in the same way he had brought healing to me. That outpouring of hurt, healing, and hope eventually became Renewed.
Some of you reading this are nodding along right now because you’ve been there too. You love the church, but you’ve seen how ugly it can be when we get it wrong. You’ve got wounds of your own, and sometimes you wonder if you can ever risk your heart again. If that’s you, I want you to know that there is hope. God has not abandoned you. God sees your hurt, he knows your pain, and he is waiting to bind up your broken spirit. He’s waiting. Turn to him, and may you find your spirit renewed.
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To celebrate her tour, Leigh is giving away a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d4ee/renewed-celebration-tour-giveaway