Friday, February 14, 2014

Bounce Back by Julie Clinton - REVIEWED

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

Julie Clinton

and the book:

Bounce Back
Worthy Publication February 14, 2014

***Special thanks to Leeanna Case of Worthy Publishing for sending me a review copy.***

Julie Clinton, M.Ad., M.B.A., president of Extraordinary Women, has spoken to hundreds of thousands of women as host of E-Women conferences all across America, and is author of Extraordinary Women: Discovering the Dream God Created for You, the devotional Living God's Dream for You10 Things You Aren't Telling Him, and A Woman's Path to Emotional Freedom. A woman of deep faith, she cares passionately about seeing women live out their dreams by finding their freedom in Christ. 

Visit the author's website.


When Your Heart is Empty and Your Dreams Are Lost

Brokenhearted, disappointed, and wanting more from life—if we are honest, most of us have endured a season or two or incredible difficulty. Julie Clinton sees and hears the needs and concerns of women all over America on a regular basis. She shows the way forward when all seems lost. In this transparent and encouraging book she walks beside her readers, revealing three steps to a more fulfilled life: breathe, believe, and bounce back. Clinton provides wisdom and encouragement to help women rediscover their joy and strength.

Product Details:
List Price: $14.99
Publisher: Worthy Publishing
ISBN- 978-161795-107-7

What you see as a tragic reduction of  your life, God sees as an opportunity to rebuild what might truly become the new and improved you.”  (p.55)

When I saw Julie Clinton’s name on the cover of this book, I knew there was healing within its pages.  I’ve attended her Extraordinary Women of Faith conferences a couple of times, and when she speaks, she speaks words of life and truth.  Bounce Back is an amazing book filled with practical steps that anyone can choose to take when they face difficult or uncertain circumstances.  Julie explains a lifelong process that allows spiritual and emotional growth opportunities.  Breathe. Believe. Bounce Back.  

She explains each part of the process in the context of Loss experienced through Death and Disease, with Failure, with Disappointment and Rejection.  Life contains all of these at some point, and at other points they all crash around you at once. It is in that moment you have the choice to Breathe – Believe – and Bounce Back.

This isn’t a magic formula.  This plan is one of hard work, small but consistent steps forward, and an absolute trust in Christ’s unfailing love for His children.  Julie gives Scriptural examples, verses to meditate on and a lot of meaty information for readers to digest and thrive on!!  When you sit down with this book, don’t forget a pen and highlighter!  There will be lots of passages you will want to revisit!

How I thank God for this book!! He knows how to get my attention!! Praising Him today for Julie Clinton’s obedience and ministry!


Face the Trouble
Behind the Smile
After you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace,
who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will
himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.
—1 Peter 5:10 (esv)
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.
—Albert Einstein
I look into the beautiful, shining faces of literally thousands
of women every year. I can close my eyes right now and see so
many of these women with sharp clarity—in many cases, I can
recall the sound of their voices.
The vast majority of them have a desire to be women of faith,
with spiritual depth and vibrancy.
They are mature and accomplished women who, in many
cases, have families and careers.
They are seeking women, wanting deeper, richer, and more
meaningful lives.
Even so . . .
Just behind their smiles and warm greetings . . .
I often see a depth of pain and longing that is immense and
persistent. In their eyes I see hurt. Anger. Sadness. Discouragement.
Hopelessness. Desperation. I count it a high privilege
to be able to pray with many of them, and to give at least a few
words of encouragement.
There was Susan, who started her first sentence to me with
a smile that dissolved into tears and that ended in a long, silent
hug. When we were finally able to converse a bit, she shared with
me that her husband of twenty-eight years had walked away
earlier in the year to be with a woman half his age—a waitress
he had met at a cafĂ©, with whom he’d had a one-night fling that
turned into an affair. She wasn’t sure if he’d be back or if she’d
want him if he did come back. She was conflicted and angry and
didn’t want to have either set of emotions.
There was Audra, who had lost her mother to a suffering
disease and ultimately dementia. She couldn’t stop asking, “Why
didn’t God step in and heal her? Why didn’t God allow her
to stay mentally and emotionally strong?” Audra believed her
mother was now safely with the Lord in paradise, but she was
still reeling from two years of intense caregiving and the deep
pain of loss. Her mother had been her best friend.
There was Cynthia, who had started having nightmares
related to intense sexual abuse from an uncle when she was a
child. “Why now?” she questioned. She admitted that at times
she felt as if she was losing her mind. She had not thought about
these experiences for more than two decades, but now she felt
Face ace the Trouble rouble rouble rouble Behind the Smile
haunted by them. She dreaded going to bed at night, fearful of the nightmares that seemed to be recurring more regularly.
There was Dorothy, an older woman who said she desperately wanted to be free of the resentment she had held against her former husband for more than thirty years. He had put her and their children through bankruptcy and the loss of a comfortable lifestyle and then abandoned the family, leaving her to fend for herself financially and raise three young children as a single mother. And then, like bad icing on a bad cake, he had reappeared with a new wife and two adult children, asking for her forgiveness “twenty-five years too late.” She said, “I told him I forgave him, but I really didn’t. I felt angry and cornered by his asking for forgiveness in the presence of these three people I didn’t know. That was several years ago. Rather than feel better as time goes by, I feel even deeper resentment. I don’t want to be a bitter old woman.”
There was Maryanne, who had lost a fifth pregnancy, this latest one at six months. She had a deep and abiding desire for a baby. The miscarriages were wearing on her relationship with her husband, especially as they explored expensive options for medical intervention to assist them to conceive or, in her words, “to heal my broken uterus.” She was not at all interested in pursuing adoption, and she certainly was not interested in even considering a fulfilling life without a “child of our own.” She was almost frantic in her quest for a baby and had a suspicion that God might not be as good as she had been told He was.
Each of these women had a deep desire for:
• God’s presence. They each wanted to feel God in their
lives, emotionally and spiritually. They wanted a deeper,
dearer, more direct relationship with a loving Lord.
• a personal miracle. They wanted new freedom and
healing of a kind they knew could only come from
Christ Jesus.
• the ability to let go of the past. They each wanted a release
from emotions they knew were negative and limiting,
but they had no clue about how to release their pain.
• more enthusiasm for living. They each had a deep
longing for more energy and more zest in their lives. As
one woman said, “I want to get up in the morning eager
for the new day. I’m tired of feeling that the best place
for me to live is in bed with the covers pulled up over
my head.”
• greater authenticity and fulfillment. They each felt a need
to be “the real me” without criticism or limitation. They
wanted fulfillment in their life and ministry, including a
strong sense of purpose and a role to play in God’s plan
for the world.
These women are not isolated examples. They are the
mainstream of our world and of the church. Half of the women
who come to our conferences are single, for various reasons.
Some of them are married, yet still feel single because their
husbands are inattentive, absent, or unsympathetic to them most
Face the Trouble Behind the Smile
of the time. A significant percentage of them have suffered or are
suffering from a stress-related disorder or an eating disorder.
Most of them have endured pain or disappointment of some
variety—in their relationships, in their health, in their work life,
in their childhoods. The pain has lingered and festered and they
long to be free of it. They have a deep desire to break out of the
“what if,” “if only,” and “paralyzed in the present” state in which
they find themselves.
They often feel overwhelmed, stressed out to the max, and
stuck in their lives.
When I ask the women to describe their lives today, I often
hear these words:
• overstressed
• overworked
• underappreciated
• underpaid
• burnt out
Many of the women admit to having more than one of these
words as a descriptor for their lives—and some lay claim to
all five!
I can guarantee you this: the women who provide these
descriptive words do not want to live the way they are living.
Most of them simply don’t know how to break out of being
burdened, in bondage, or carrying emotional baggage that is too
heavy for one person to carry. They realize something is broken,
but they don’t know how to fix it.
They want to be set free, break out, and bounce back!
They are the reason for this book.
You may not directly relate to Susan, Audra, Cynthia,
Dorothy, or Maryanne, described above. But I suspect you
do relate to their feelings and their yearnings. And if not you
personally, you very likely know someone who does have their
experiences, feelings, or deep longings.
My overarching word to you today is this: hope.
God does love you.
He does want a better life for you.
And He does have a way for you to move from where you
are, to the better life of your future. You can bounce back..

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