Saturday, March 6, 2010

‘Dancing with My Father: How God Leads Us into a Life of Joy and Grace’ by Sally Clarkson – Book Review and Giveaway

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Sally Clarkson is a popular speaker who has worked in various ministries for more than thirty years.  She and her husband, Clay, are the founders of Whole Heart Ministries, which equips and encourages Christian parents.  They live with their four children outside of Colorado Springs, CO.  Her blog is entitled ‘I Take Joy.’

 

Her latest book, ‘Dancing with My Father: How God Leads Us into a Life of Joy and Grace,’ suggests that we should let our soul dance with delight in God.  This is from the back cover of the book:

         

When trusted author and mentor Sally Clarkson noticed a lack of joy in her own life, she realized how easy it can be, especially for women with overloaded to-do lists, to feel weighted down by drudgery and disappointment.  But rather than slogging through her days, Sally wanted to know the delight of God’s presence.  She began prayerfully exploring how to cultivate deep-rooted joy even in the midst of difficult seasons.

 

I am involved in a women’s small group at church called Gracestoration, which looks at different aspects of grace.  So I am working on that area.  But there is a lack of joy in my life, too; there is less joy than the Lord would like me to have.  So I was anxious to learn what Sally discovered.

 

A turning point came for Sally when she was observing the joyful dance of a little boy at a park in Krakow, Poland:

 

I knew I stood at a crossroad that would determine what kind of a Christian I would be from this point forward: victorious, lighthearted and free – or downcast, weighed down, and wounded.  I realize that I didn’t want to cross the finish line of life gasping for spiritual breath, clenching my teeth as I wearily crossed into the presence of God.  Although I didn’t want to be a Pollyanna, pretending away sadness, pain and difficulty and denying the real grieving that comes with loss and disappointment, I did want to find the good in all things, to experience the reality of God’s joy anew right in the middle of my trials and stresses. (p. 7) 

 

Sally places special emphasis on Jesus as the source of joy:

 

In the past couple of years, I have realized that it is as I ponder Jesus – think about Him, study Him, read about Him, model Him – that my life becomes more fully what it is supposed to be in all areas.  Jesus is the ultimate portrait of living with joy.  But even more, I have sought to understand what it means to love Him with my whole heart, as He so desires.  If Jesus, the man anointed with oil of joy and gladness was about serving others to the point of laying down His life for them, then serving others and giving myself to the cause of Christ must be the place in which I will find joy. (p. 198)

 

Sally, in her postscript, states that we all have to make the choice from our heart, before God, to follow His Son and to live a life of joy and grace.  It is an easy choice, isn’t it?!  I appreciate that Sally made that journey, and shares her finding with us!

 

'Dancing with My Father' comes complete with discussion questions at the end of each chapter, which I intend to work through.  I think this book would work wonderfully well for a women’s small group.

 

Other titles by Mrs. Clarkson include ‘The Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child's Heart for Eternity,The Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ's Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children,'  and ‘The Mom Walk: Keeping in Step with God's Heart for Motherhood.


This book was provided to me for review and giveaway purposes by Waterbrook Press.

______________________________________________________________________

I have a copy of this book that I would love to pass along to one of you! 

There are several ways to gain entry:

1) Leave a comment here on the blog, telling me about how you cultivate joy in your own life.  Please make sure to leave your email address in this format – sample[at]gmail[dot]com.

2) Follow me on Twitter; I will more than likely follow you back!  If you are already a Twitter follower, that counts, too!  Please leave an additional comment to that effect.

3) Follow me as a Google Friend on this blog; if you are already a Friend, that counts, too!  Please leave an additional comment to that effect.

4) Become my Facebook friend.  Please leave a comment to that effect.

5) Follow this blog as a NetWorked Blog Follower after you’ve become my Facebook friend.  Please leave a comment to that effect.

So there are five chances to enter!  Please limit one entry per option.

This give away is for U.S. residents only.  The deadline for entry is Saturday, March 13, 2010 at 11:59 p.m. EST.  A winner will be chosen via the Random Number Generator on Sunday, March 14, 2010 and will be contacted via email.  The best to all of you!

15 comments:

rubynreba said...

The joy in my life comes from my grandkids and I'm going to be blessed with a new grandson on Tuesday, March 9th!
pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

rubynreba said...

I am a follower.
pbclark(at)netins(dot)net

rubynreba said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Linda said...

Definitely add me to the draw. Developing joy in the Lord is so needed today's climate.
Thank you.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Linda said...

I follow on Twitter.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Linda said...

I'm a FB friend.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Linda said...

I follow you as a google friend.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Cheryl said...

I would love to be entered in the drawing. My joy comes from my family. I try to spend a lot of quality time with husband and kids.

Anonymous said...

i try to be positive...

karenk
kmkuka(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jess said...

I find my joy can come from different areas of my life depending on what's going on. Right now my sense of joy really comes from some new relationships i'm building at my church. Including a stronger relationship with Christ. This sounds like an excellent read. Please enter me in the drawing.

jroozeboom01[at]yahoo[dot]com

I was directed to your blog via Carman at Christian Book Giveaways, and i i'll be adding your blog to my reader.

Thanks.

Nancye said...

My joy comes from my family. I am blessed beyond measure with the most supportive and caring family in the world.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow you on Twitter
ID: @NancyeDavis

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Follower

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Facebook Fan

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

I follow you on Networked Blogs

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

 
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