Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Book Review: What Women Fear by Angie Smith



From the back of the book: In What Women Fear acclaimed writer and speaker Angie Smith admits, "Fear is a major part of my testimony" as she talks openly about significant struggles she has experienced. Giving a voice to the problem, she says, "I truly believe every single one of us struggles with some type of fear, whether it's fear of flying for fear of being 'found out.' Maybe you don't worry about dying, but you get sick thinking about the fact that you might fail." 

Instead of suggesting that those who love the Lord would never fear, Angie blends her own experiences with those of men and women throughout Scripture to help us start dealing more effectively with these true, human emotions.

Over the past few years, I've read quite a few books that approach fear and/or anxiety from a Biblical perspective. Anxiety and fear were something that I dealt with on a near daily basis while pregnant, and so I was desperately looking for a way to calm my mind and experience some peace. Then again, when I found out that I had skin cancer, my library list was filled with books that I hoped would help me through the situation.

Unfortunately, I felt like most of the books I chose essentially said either, 'Because of Jesus we just don't need to be afraid of earthly things' or 'God says not to fear--the end'...which is all well and good, but not so helpful when you're already in the midst of fear and/or anxiety. Thankfully, Angie Smith's book was different--just as the back of the book mentioned, Angie took an approach of saying that we are all going to experience fears, but that there are a lot of great examples in Scripture for how to deal with those fears while we're in the weeds

And more than that....more importantly than that...Angie is real in her writing. I'm going to be blatantly honest here--sometimes when I'm reading books by Christian authors, I don't get a sense of authenticity. Sure, they may share about small difficulties or frustrations, but I do sometimes feel like I'm hearing from the illusion of a person rather than the real person. I know they're probably not perfect people in real life, but sometimes that's how it comes across on the page. It's a lot like what we talked about yesterday for Messy Mom Monday--Angie is willing to share not only what she has together, but also what she doesn't. She's candid about the parts of her life that are a little messy, and that in turn encouraged me (again) that I don't have to be perfect to be a woman after God's own heart.

Overall: 


That said, one caveat that I hate saying, but sincerely hope Angie would understand if for some strange reason she ever came across this review-- if you're unfamiliar with Angie Smith, she has an amazing blog called Bring the Rain that was initially started after she and her husband found out that the daughter that she was pregnant with would not survive. As you might expect, Angie talks about her experience and her story in What Women Fear as well. Angie's writing about her daughter Audrey is beautiful, tragic, inspiring, and absolutely worth reading...but I probably couldn't have read it while I was pregnant. Heck, I couldn't even read fiction about pregnancy loss while I was pregnant, and HATED when I'd be deeply immersed in a book only to discover storyline about pregnancy loss (The Time Traveler's Wife, anyone?!), and often wished that someone would have included some sort of warning so that I could have made a better decision about whether or not to read a particular book at that particular time based on my own mental health. Maybe that's just me, but ever since then, I've tried to include such disclosures about books that I'm reading...so that's what I'm doing here. I hope you all understand.


Disclosure Statement: I paid for What Women Fear out of my own pocket, and did not receive any payment or perks for writing this review. As always, all opinions are my own.

3 comments:

  1. This is exactly what I needed to motivate my reading! Great review Mere!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh, now this is on my MUST READ list. I was wondering if this book was the same Angie Smith as the blog. I love her blog. You're right she is authentic. I wish I had a reader so I could start it right now!

    You know I deal with anxiety disorder and depression every day of my life. My guess is this would be very helpful.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am definitely buying this book. As you probably know, I struggled a LOT after having Brayden. After Kenley, I feel much better but it doesn't hurt to keep bettering myself. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete

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