I was steaming veggies when my husband opened a package and set the book down where I could see it. Its arrival was expected, as I had agreed to write a review, but wasn’t anticipating the author’s name to stop me in my tracks.
Before cracking the book open, I felt I knew her. Turns out I kind of did…
While I am not well-known for being a perfectionist, I am a bit of a control freak–though I prefer to claim I have a leader personality…
Do you think there’s a difference?
I like to pretend I don’t associate with the perfectionist side of control, because I strive to exude grace. And I don’t need perfection. I just prefer you try to do things the best way…my way.
This is embarrassing. It gets worse.
When I agreed to review this book, I assumed it would be a light, quick read, possibly funny, with great tips to bullet point in a review for all my dear readers-turned-friends who have caught this perfectionism bug. Me not being one of them, but one who gets it enough to share the light on the other side.
It was that. I just wasn’t expecting there to be so much more.
Friends, the way He keeps pursuing me…how He insists He has better things in mind for me…the way He has never given up on me…May I never get over it. It is truly amazing grace.
“But God knows our need, which is ultimately to experience and know more of Him, and He gives Himself freely and generously. And constantly.”
~Amanda Jenkins, Confessions of a Raging Perfectionist (Learning to be Free)
You all know the name of my blog, so it is no secret I am striving to become all He has made me to be. But He keeps showing me in places unexpected…His goal isn’t the same as mine. For He’d rather have me get to know Him and what He can be in me. What He can do for me…not the other way around.
Oh mylanta, does He ever love me.
I remember Amanda from college (this is why I will call her by her first name). Which is rather bizarre as I don’t believe we ever had an actual one-on-one conversation. But I could tell you where she sat in chapel each day. A few rows up from my now-husband and I. Now that I’ve read her confessions, I regret I never made a point to truly see her when I had the chance.
Confessions of a Raging Perfectionist is written in a way that feels as if you are reading Amanda’s personal journal. She doesn’t share her discoveries, she walks you through them. She doesn’t tell you the answers, but rather shows you, through scripture, how she came up with the solutions. She doesn’t shy away from sharing the ugly realities we all have in the caverns of our souls…she surfaces them and hands them over to her Savior for us to see. For His glory.
I loved it.
Some of the places she’ll walk you through:
- How we often misplace our worth (pg 12)
- Money doesn’t satisfy. It’s never enough. (pg 17)
- The stuff we’re good at pales in comparison to the stuff God’s good at (pg 28)
- When it comes to intimacy, God follows our lead. (pg 37)
- God is not the taskmaster (pg 73)
- God’s bigger than the scary stuff. He’s got it covered –worry doesn’t work (pg 50-52)
- God is the only good in me. That’s it. He’s it. (pg 59)
And the thought I lingered on for days:
“Little did I know how filthy my righteousness was” (pg 87)
I’m not even bringing up all that I gleamed from a few of my favorite chapters, as they deserve a blog post all on their own. (The Chapters on Obedience, Testimony, and if I’m brave enough, Pride)
Friends, God spoke loudly to me through Amanda’s words.
If I had to pick the best part about this book, I would say the discussion questions in the back. She doesn’t hold back and challenges you to answer the hard. I’m tempted to take some of the most difficult ones and share my answers here in this space — my simply striving confessions.
- What do you want to be known for?
- Who do you work hard to impress?
- What weakness do you try to hide? And what would it look like for you to delight in it instead of hiding it?
- What does God see when He looks at you? (I’ve answered this one HERE).
- Who do you love more than God? (ouch)
- Why is it difficult for you to put God first? (she’s killing me here)
- What are your current expectations of God?
- What are the attributes unique to you that make you beautiful in God’s eyes?
Don’t you think we should talk about these?
I’d love it if you would put this book on your must-read list. I’ll tell you what–you can get started now by reading the First Chapter for FREE HERE. (When you’re done with it, let me know and we’ll talk about how beautiful your feet are. Oh yes, I’m serious.)
There’s also a wonderful Q/A with the author found HERE that’s worth your time.
Some more reviews and one place you can purchase is found HERE. (I’m not an affiliate–just trying to make it easy.)
And you can expect to hear more about this from me sometime soon. I’ll let it sink in a bit as I know (and Amanda talks about it), God’s not done writing my story.
How about you, friend? Are you a perfectionist? Are you intrigued by anything I mentioned above? I’d love to hear.
Thanks for sharing your time with me.