by Heather Bock
Read to the end to see how you can win a copy of this book yourself!
I don’t consider myself to be a very fearful woman, but I don’t consider myself to be very courageous, either.
Although I’m a bit paranoid around children and deep water, I don’t normally think out all the tragedies that could happen to my children. If I watch suspenseful movies (and even the old tv series Lost falls in this category for me), I will go down the path of fear, mulling over the disturbing images, imagining bogeymen and monsters lurking in dark shadows. Generally, though, I stay away from this kind of viewing, and I do ok.
However, I do unfortunately fear conflict (although my mom would tell you that this apparently doesn’t apply in my own family–sorry, Mom). I think this comes down more to the fear of man and what others might think of me than it does to following the biblical mandate to be at peace with all men so far as it depends on me (Rom. 12:18). I wish I could say it was for that reason.
I also struggle with a fear of surrender. As a woman with a God-given strong will, I sometimes want to use that will for myself, holding on tightly to my dreams and my view of the way life should go.
In addition, for a less serious fear, the older I’ve become, the more afraid of heights I’ve grown for some reason. I used to be afraid of the high ropes courses they have at camps, but I could complete them. Now, when I try, I can’t even make it to the first level. When I climbed to the top of a lighthouse a few years ago, I unsuspectingly stepped out on the outside platform with a short fence protecting it, and suddenly, I was just about paralyzed with fear.
Whatever your fears might be, whether they are about safety, health, snakes, plans, or something entirely different, Latan Roland Murphy hopes you will leave behind fear and insecurity for a life of confidence and freedom, which is why she wrote her book Courageous Women of the Bible.
In this book, Murphy chooses eleven different women from the Bible and shows how each of them were courageous in their own lives. She then applies their story to our fears today, making them relevant.
As a caveat, if you are a linear thinker who likes everything to be lined up just so, you might find some of the chapters of this book to be difficult to follow, as it seems the author hops around in her line of thinking. However, although I am a linear-type person, I was still able to appreciate the depths of wisdom written in the book, and I also found that some chapters were more in order than others.
As a woman finding surrender always difficult, I especially appreciated chapter ten, called “Crocodile Faith,” the chapter about Jochebed, Moses’ mother. I can’t imagine the kind of courage it must have taken Jochebed to entrust Moses to that basket and those rolling Nile waves. It’s ironic, though, that the mothers who couldn’t let go of their boys or couldn’t find a way to hide them, ended up losing them to the king’s deadly order. Murphy writes, “And as we consecrate ourselves–holding nothing back–we faithfully release the power of God into our futures” (pg. 157).
Another chapter I enjoyed was the very next chapter, “Safe Haven,” about the barren Shunammite woman’s courage in opening her home to Elisha, and after her miraculous son was born and then later died, her courage in trusting Elisha to save the son, that all would be well. I liked the call to be hospitable, to give of yourself and what you’ve been given, even if you feel God has not given all you had hoped. I was also inspired by the thought of the trust the Shunammite woman had in the power of God through Elisha. I hadn’t learned much about this story before, and I was glad to learn more about this portion of Scripture.
Murphy’s style of writing is engaging, with plenty of examples from her life, easily relatable. She even provides a place in the back to journal about questions she provides. If you need a boost of courage for a fear you’re facing, this book will be helpful for you.
I haven’t done a book giveaway in a while, but I have one today! If this book sounded interesting to you, or if you have a friend who might enjoy this, you can enter my giveaway by subscribing to my blog:
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I will announce the winner on Saturday, June 23, so look for it! If I don’t hear from the winner within a week, I will draw another name. Thank you!