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Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way Paperback – 19 Feb 2013

4.8 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (19 Feb. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310335280
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310335283
  • Product Dimensions: 13.9 x 1.7 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 381,247 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Bittersweet: Thought on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way provides an outstanding survey which maintains that to live a balanced life, we need both the bitter and the sweet. Bittersweet contains depth and complexity: it's offered in change and recognition of spiritual gifts, and is presented here as a positive, moving force in any life. Spiritual and new age libraries alike will relish the concept! -- The Midwest Book Review

BITTERSWEET: THOUGHTS ON CHANGE, GRACE, AND LEARNING THE HARD WAY provides an outstanding survey which maintains that to live a balanced life, we need both the bitter and the sweet. Bittersweet contains depth and complexity: it's offered in change and in recognition of spiritual gifts, and is presented here as a positive, moving force in any life. -- The Midwest Book Review


BITTERSWEET: THOUGHTS ON CHANGE, GRACE, AND LEARNING THE HARD WAY provides an outstanding survey which maintains that to live a balanced life, we need both the bitter and the sweet. Bittersweet contains depth and complexity: it's offered in change and in recognition of spiritual gifts, and is presented here as a positive, moving force in any life. -- The Midwest Book Review

--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From the Back Cover

'The idea of bittersweet is changing the way I live, unraveling and re-weaving the way I understand life. Bittersweet is the idea that in all things there is both something broken and something beautiful, that there is a moment of lightness on even the darkest of nights, a shadow of hope in every heartbreak, and that rejoicing is no less rich even when it contains a splinter of sadness. 'It's the practice of believing that we really do need both the bitter and the sweet, and that a life of nothing but sweetness rots both your teeth and your soul. Bitter is what makes us strong, what forces us to push through, what helps us earn the lines on our faces and the calluses on our hands. Sweet is nice enough, but bittersweet is beautiful, nuanced, full of depth and complexity. Bittersweet is courageous, gutsy, audacious, earthy. 'This is what I've come to believe about change: it's good, in the way that childbirth is good, and heartbreak is good, and failure is good. By that I mean that it's incredibly painful, exponentially more so if you fight it, and also that it has the potential to open you up, to open life up, to deliver you right into the palm of God's hand, which is where you wanted to be all long, except that you were too busy pushing and pulling your life into exactly what you thought it should be. 'I've learned the hard way that change is one of God's greatest gifts, and most useful tools. Change can push us, pull us, rebuke and remake us. It can show us who we've become, in the worst ways, and also in the best ways. I've learned that it's not something to run away from, as though we could, and that in many cases, change is a function of God's graciousness, not life's cruelty.' Niequist, a keen observer of life with a lyrical voice, writes with the characteristic warmth and honesty of a dear friend: always engaging, sometimes challenging, but always with a kind heart. You will find Bittersweet savory reading, indeed. 'This is the work I'm doing now, and the work I invite you into: when life is sweet, say thank you, and celebrate. And when life is bitter, say thank you, and grow.' --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A real book about real life and how as sometimes it sucks and other times it's great. A book about finding God in all areas of our lives - in the pain, the happiness, the bleak, they joy.. in everything. Through this book God spoke to me about different things and I am glad I stumbled across Bittersweet.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love this book. It is for anyone who struggles with the fast pace of life and the constant pressure to achieve perfection in whatever we do whether its in our career, marriage, relationships, parenting, home making, even baking! It reminds us of God's grace and that busyness and perfection doesn't bring true joy. Shauna reminds us that LIFE is bittersweet - you can't have the sweet without the bitter and she challenges us to see the "bitter" seasons in life as times that shape us and change us and make us grow. I would thoroughly recommend this book over and over again.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Lovely book. So down to earth and real. Chapters are short enough to use kind of as a devotional "thought for the day" book which is great for a busy mummy. But nice to read more chapters too. Will likely get other books from this author as this is my first one.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is about life...ups, downs..and like the tide...fullness and emptiness...it's gut-honest...saying things we are and think but seldom admit...but always, always with a note of hope...and celebration for the miracle and incredulity of life.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Short stories, from the author's life, dealing with everyday problems and showing what the life really is and which small battles we all fight.
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Format: Hardcover
For a long time my favourite book has been the lovely orange book that is Cold Tangerines. Well, the long-awaited next book by Shauna Niequist is the equally beautiful pale blue book that is Bittersweet. The full title being Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way.

The analogies with food and meals really connected with me as I read - like a delicious and beautifully prepared meal, I wanted to read more and could have wolfed it down, but chose instead the restraint of reading slowly. Each chapter is self-contained - an observation, a recount of an ordinary event in her life. That's what resonates so well as you read it -thinking "that's my life" "I've felt like that" "I wasn't sure other women felt like that too". It's about seeing God in the ordinary. It's about real , authentic life. It's about learning and growing through all of life - sad and hard times included. To me, it's a picture of what Romans 12 v 1 is like in real life for a Christian woman living in the west in 2010.

I love it - am about to start reading it again . I highly recommend it and hope many of you get to read it. Two friends made the same comment to me last week, straight after reading the first chapter "that's my life, it's what I'm going through". Her writing about it has given them hope. Shauna's writing appeals to all sorts of women - all ages too. Reading Bittersweet, I feel my shoulders relax and I take a deep breath, thinking "it's ok, there's someone else who feels like me, I'm not alone".
Buy it, read it, give it away - this book is fantastic!
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