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Glimpses of Grace Paperback – 21 Jun 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Crossway; First edition (21 Jun 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1433536056
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433536052
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.2 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 277,191 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Sometimes life feels a lot like a burden-day-in and day-out its the same chores and tasks, challenges and discouragements, anxieties and responsibilities. Dust bunnies show up on the stairwell, social commitments clutter the calendar, and our families demand daily attention and care. At times, just catching our breath seems like an impossible feat. So where is God in all of this? Does he care about the way we unload the dishwasher or balance the budget? Do the little things like changing diapers or cooking meals make a difference? And how can we use our spheres of influence for God's glory and our joy? Whether you are a stay-at-home mom or a working woman splitting time between the office and home, Gloria Furman-writer, pastor's wife, cross-cultural worker, and mom-encourages us to see the reality of God's grace in all of life, especially those areas that often appear to be boring and unimportant. Using personal examples and insightful stories, her richly theological reflections help us experience the gospel's extraordinary power to transform our ordinary lives.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Daisy malone on 3 July 2013
Format: Paperback
This is a great read.... I couldn't put it down! I would recommend it to both new and mature Christians. Very helpful book to help see the Glory of God in everyday life!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 89 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
A Gospel-Driven Guide 30 Aug 2013
By Tim Challies - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I am sure that almost every homemaker, every mother, every woman, has experienced the disconnect between what she knows and what she feels, between knowing that her calling is good and the reality that it can be exasperating and so often feels unfulfilling. In Glimpses of Grace Gloria Furman brings the gospel to bear on a woman's distinct calling and calls her to treasure the gospel in her home. Speaking on behalf of Christian women she says,

"We need to know: What does the gospel have to do with our everyday lives in the home? How does the gospel impact our dish washing, floor mopping, bill paying, friend making, guest hosting, and dinner cooking? How does the fact that Jesus himself bore our sins in his body on the tree so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness make a difference in my mundane life today?"

The big question she explores is simply this: How does the gospel change the way a woman lives out her calling as a homemaker?

In the first section of the book she looks at the gospel, saying "Theology is for homemakers who need to know who God is, who they are, and what this mundane life is all about." My favorite chapter here is "Don't Smurf the Gospel." Furman is both amusing and convicting as she writes about the importance of properly defining the gospel and properly distinguishing between the gospel itself and its many implications and applications. If "smurf" is a word the Smurfs used when they didn't know what else to say, "gospel" is a word many Christians use whether they really meant it or not. It's a word that may mean very different things to different people, so Furman calls for clarity and precision in its use.

The second section, the bulk of the book, looks at a homemaker's many callings and shows how the gospel speaks to each of them. The chapter titles give a sense of the subjects and the tone: "Divine Power and Precious Promises for the 2 a.m. Feeding," "All Grace and All Sufficiency for Every Dinner Guest," "Treasures In Jars of Clay, Not in Fine Bone China." One of the stronger chapters in this section is "The Idol of a Picture-Perfect Home." I appreciated this chapter because there is such a clear gospel remedy and gospel application to the kind of heart idolatry that desires and demands the illusion of a picture-perfect home.

I will turn it over to Kristie Anyabwile to provide her perspective on the book since she writes as a member of the core audience:

"We need gospel fuel to joyfully serve our families, and that's what Glimpses of Grace provides. Many days I unload a barrage of law upon my family, when what they need from me is grace, encouragement, and reminders of God's faithfulness. I thank the Lord for using Gloria to point me to the glorious gospel of his grace so that I might extend the same grace to my husband and children. As homemakers we can be smothered by the ordinary, blinded by the mundane, living in a fog of routine and fatigue, unable to see how to clean messy noses or break up sibling squabbles for the glory of God. In Glimpses of Grace Gloria helps to lift the fog by showing us how the gospel can change our perspective as we serve and love our families."

Aileen and I both read this book and both enjoyed it a lot. We saw that Gloria uses both precision and grace as she shows that the good news, when properly understood and carefully applied, must transform the way a woman carries out the task the Lord has given her.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Gospel Centered and Down-to-Earth Practical! 20 May 2013
By Alicia - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was a fantastic and easy read! Gloria Furman's writing is witty and conversational but by no means "fluffy." Through much of the read I felt like I was sitting opposite Gloria at a café table enjoying fun and edifying conversation over pumpkin spice lattes. There is a good balance of personal stories and life lessons mixed with sound theology. But the best and most encouraging thing about Glimpses of Grace is its center on the Gospel. Every page points to our great Redeemer and how the finished work of Christ transforms our lives.

While this book is written from the perspective of motherhood and homemaking, the premise is highly applicable for anyone in all walks of life. Furman fleshes out how the Gospel impacts every mundane part of our lives. And you don't have to be in the thick of motherhood to know what mundane looks and feels like--we all live there don't we? As a single adult with no kiddos, I feel like I've gleaned much from this quick read both in my spiritual walk and my ability to understand and encourage the mothers in my circle of friends. Most importantly however, this book has helped me grow closer to my Savior and deepen my understanding of the Gospel.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Must Read Book 3 Jun 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I received a copy of this book at no charge for the purpose a an honest review.

This book is an incredible read, in fact I would go as far to say it is the best book of encouragement I have ever read for moms. However, I do not believe it is only for moms. I think any woman (or honestly any reader) would benefit from this book. It encourages and points you continually to Christ which is the only thing that can help you when it boils down to it. Many want to give you lists of rules or instructions but this book points you to Christ for answers, because of what He has already done and will do for us. It is encouraging to your faith so you hold your gaze on Him as you faithfully work in the mundane.

The author has an unique way to hold the reader's attention. She opens herself up in a way that is completely beautiful with all honesty and makes you wish you were her friend. In fact you don't even have to wish for she welcomes you in such a way you feel as if you are listening to a good friend. It feels like she understands your very own struggles in the mundane of life then she cheers you on to remember what Christ did and the promises that are true. This is an unusual gift for writers and she has it. I hope to see many more titles come from her.

Logistically the book takes you through many passages of Scripture and helps you see how your calling as a worker among the mundane is indeed miraculous. It is a place that God uses you in huge ways. We must remember who we belong to and what we have in Him regardless of where we are placed. The author states the reason for this book is so we can know, "Theology is for homemakers who need to know who God is, who they are, and what this mundane life is all about." The rest of the book unpacks this for the reader. In fact the "biggest questions explored in this book are: What does the gospel have to do with our lives in the home? and How does this grace change the way we live?"

You see the gospel is not a one time event but it is an everyday grace we need to remember as we live in it day by day or even moment by moment. Furman takes you through how to do this as a homemaker. She addresses how the gospel applies in mothering, marriage, keeping the home, friendships, pain and more. Pick it up and read it. You will not be sorry!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Extravagant Grace for an Ordinary Place 18 July 2013
By E. Hankins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
It's...

not...

just...

me.

Again and again, God used Glimpses of Grace to remind me that my experience is simply ordinary; and that's a good thing! My struggles, trials, and challenges aren't all that unique; they are, in fact, common to human existence. Some days ARE hard. Some seasons ARE lonely. Sometimes, we hide in the closet and let the tears flow freely. It's all normal in a broken world. It's okay. God has given us grace in Christ and continues to supply all that we need.

Gloria Furman and I have been reading a lot of the same authors. The influence of John Piper, Milton Vincent, Wendy Alsup, D.A. Carson, John Calvin, Jeremiah Burroughs and many others was evident throughout Glimpses of Grace. Gloria isn't uncovering new truths in her book but simply restating the one, essential truth about what God has done for us in Christ again and again and again. She faithfully applies this Biblical truth to home life with a conversational tone and sense of humor that helps her reader treasure God, savor the beauty of Jesus, and keep her eyes on the Gospel by which we can behold the glory of God (pg. 67). She reminds her reader of the importance of taking "...pains 'to study Christ.'" She writes: "We study Christ because we've been saved for the purpose of being transformed into his image, and in our beholding, the work of transformation occurs" (pg. 68).

Reminiscent of John Piper's book, Future Grace, Gloria Furman reminds us to look back and to look forward (pg. 85) and persevere:

"Faith looks backward to the cross and believes that Jesus has purchased every spiritual blessing for us with his blood (Eph. 1:3). Faith also looks forward to the reward of all that God has for us in Christ. This is the kind of faith that changes the way you live today and makes you into a homemaker whose goal and delight is in God and in being conformed to his image" (pg. 165).

I'm not sure if it was my "mommy brain" reading the book, Gloria's "mommy brain" writing the book, or some combination of the two, but there were several times throughout Glimpses of Grace that I had difficulty following Gloria's train of thought. This doesn't necessarily diminish the content of the material; it just made me feel a little scatterbrained at times as I tried to wrap my mind around what the author was trying to communicate. It sort of reminded me of walking in on the middle of something; I wasn't always sure where it started or how I got quite where I was, but it was beautiful nonetheless.

Gloria sees and communicates the Gospel clearly in many little life moments and shares these anecdotes with her readers. These chapters are encouraging to those who are seeking to "preach" the Gospel truth to themselves again. This is not a practical "how to" book, but an example of how one mom seeks to apply Gospel truth on a daily basis in her home. I think Glimpses of Grace will be an edifying read to all who desire to savor the beauty of Christ afresh (pg. 58).

*Many thanks to Crossway for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Jesus in the Mundane 2 Sep 2013
By A. Whipple - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home is a book I am glad I have read. Gloria Furman and her husband are missionaries in the Middle East, but that is not this book's focus.

Instead, Furman shares how the simple and mundane things of life...really just life...can be used to and should be used to reflect upon our saving grace through Jesus Christ. I really appreciated her writing style. She is easy to read and practical.

She talks about life, laundry, hospitality and serving. She discusses friendship, motherhood, and me-time. Most of all, she keeps the focus on Jesus. Furman writes...
"You muscle through the days and pray the nights pass quickly. You lack thankfulness to God for the gifts he's given you; you avoid reflecting on the day out of guilt over your failures. You fantasize about how other women live, your prayers lack emotional attachment to your heavenly Father, and you feel lost. You're right. You can't do this anymore, and neither can I."

Then she later says,
"Whatever the 'this' that you desperately feel you can't do anymore, it's ultimately not about your circumstances. It's about peace with God. And God has provided a way for you to have that peace that dominates any and all circumstances, regardless of how difficult they are."

Glimpses of Grace is a book full of value. Thoughtful and practical, while focused on Jesus it is a book I can recommend. As I was reading I started off strong...I was riveted! Then I think I allowed myself to be distracted (probably by another book), and I didn't finish as strong. (I honestly don't know how much of it was me and how much was the book.) Regardless, this is a book that is encouraging for a woman, especially a homemaker, and especially if she has young children, though practical for all women.

Thank you, Crossway, for providing Glimpses of Grace for review purposes. All opinions are my own.
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