Sunday, February 14, 2010

'Thin Places: A Memoir' by Mary DeMuth - Book Review

Buzz this
Mary DeMuth is an author and writing mentor who has written many books. Her latest work is entitled ‘Thin Places: A Memoir.’

Mary explains the concept of ‘thin places’ this way:

“I, myself, am a thin place…. The Celts define a thin place as a place where heaven and the physical world collide, one of those serendipitous territories where eternity and the mundane meet. Thin describes the membrane between the two worlds, like a piece of vellum, where we see a holy glimpse of the eternal – not in digital clarity, but clear enough to discern what lies ahead.” (p. 11)

Please take a look at this powerful book trailer for 'Thin Places,' featuring Mary telling her story:

Mary was raised by her mother. She is an only child, whose father was her mother’s first husband. Her mother subsequently married two more times. Her family life appeared to be chaotic and non-nurturing. She endured unthinkable trauma when she was five years old. Her life changed forever at age 15 when she met Jesus, and she’s followed Him ever since (according to the profile at her blog).

At time, I thought I was reading my own memoir as I read Mary’s story. I, too, had a difficult childhood. I, too, grew up fatherless. Although I did not suffer the same abuses that Mary did, I did suffer similar difficulties. Junior high was particularly traumatic (did anyone enjoy their junior high years?!....). She endured a lot of teasing and engaged in behaviors to please her peer group that ended up working to her detriment. Regardless of all that, the Lord has done a work in her. Mary admits she still has a long way to go; so do I.

I must admit that I was shocked by some of the events that have transpired in Mary’s life, and what she has overcome. It is very obvious to me that she is where she is today because of the grace and healing power of Jesus Christ; she would readily agree. I thank Mary for opening her life to us and being so truthful and transparent. It must have been a difficult journey to relive some of those event, but there is no doubt in my mind that this memoir will be read by people who have survived similar circumstances, and will be encouraged and heart-warmed by the road the Lord has placed her on today. For me, it was a difficult read in many spots; seeing how the sins of one person can scar another. In reading her memoir, I can see that there are so areas in my story that need to be addressed. If she can do it, I can do it! I encourage you to read it yourself and pick up copies for those in your life who are currently facing and have lived through difficult struggles.

Mary is an amazing wordsmith. She has a true gift for writing, as was first conveyed to her in a note from her second grade teacher, who sent the note home one day with Mary.

Here is a paragraph I found to be amazing:

“In that holy, crushing thin place, in the ethereal place of gauzy memory, God rolls the reproach of my childhood from me. Jesus comes near, so near I can nearly feel His embrace. He enters into the place I once thought my haven, shows me its flaws. He enters my refuge – the only One who truly can be.” (p. 46)

Here’s another:

“On earth, Jesus is tempted to be a people-pleaser, just like I am. Yet, He doesn’t sin. So He can help me. Jesus walks the perfect life, yet some folks don’t like Him. Even so, He maneuvers their disapproval perfectly. Which means there is hope for an approval-monger like me. Which means I can be whole without needing the masses to shout my praises (I’m reminded of the fickleness of crowds, how on one day they chant Hosanna, the next day giving way to howls of Crucify). Jesus can be unliked. I can be too.” (p. 79)

In addition to Mary’s website, she also has a personal blog she calls Relevant Blog.  She also partners with D’Ann Mateer and Leslie Wilson on the Writing Spa, where they provide mentoring on the craft of writing. In addition, on her Wanna Be Published blog, she offers daily inspiration, education and valuable publishing information.

Here is the list of Mary’s books:

Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God: Encouragement to Refresh Your Soul

Building the Christian Family You Never Had: A Practical Guide for Pioneer Parents

Authentic Parenting in a Postmodern Culture: Practical Help for Shaping Your Children’s Hearts, Minds, and Souls

Watching the Tree Limbs (Maranatha Series #1)

Wishing on Dandelions (Maranatha Series #2)

Daisy Chain (Defiance Texas Trilogy, Book 1)

A Slow Burn (Defiance Texas Trilogy, Book 2)

Life in Defiance (Defiance Texas Trilogy, Book 3) – coming in May, 2010

Mary currently resides in Texas and is happily married to Patrick and is the mother to four wonderful, thriving children. Considering the trauma she endured in her early years, she is living an amazing and rewarding and fulfilling life. Her life is a testament to the healing power of Jesus Christ.

Mary admits that she still has a long way to go, but she is excited about the future and where Jesus will continue to lead. I look forward to following her journey.

This book was published by Zondervan, and provided to me by Mary DeMuth and the Blog Tour Spot for review purposes.


Judylynn said...

This sounds like a really amazing book. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Mary DeMuth said...

I'm humbled and thankful you read the book and offered such a kindhearted review. Thank you.

Andrea Schultz said...

Hi Judylynn -

Thanks for the kind words! 'Thin Places' is a worthwhile read. It shows how far God's love can bring a broken vessel.

Dear Mary -

Thanks for coming by to read my review. Thanks again for opening your wounds and your heart to us. I pray that Jesus continues to repair and transform your heart! He has done an amazing job so far!

Blessings -


Clicky Web Analytics