God Makes Lemonade: True Stories that Sweeten and Inspire
God Makes Lemonade: True Stories
Similar to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, this book is an anthology of true stories that showcase people who sought the good in horrible circumstances. Through trials and tragedies, the stories collected in this book showcase the positive elements or outcomes that can result from our suffering, whether big or small.
Jacobson's stories are well-written and positive. Though the circumstances are often extreme, it is encouraging to see how well these situations turned out for others. It is inspiring to see how many are from young parents, children, or people whose stories are not yet complete; knowing that others can find hope in the midst of trials helps us to dig in our own heels to do the same.
I received a free copy of God Makes Lemonade: True Stories that Sweeten & Inspire from Lemonade Books in exchange for a free review.
November 2, 2011
Refreshing drink of encouragement
Has life handed you a few lemons? Some much larger than others, I bet.
Well, Don Jacobson has compiled a collection of "true stories that sweeten & inspire" in his book God Makes Lemonade. In this collection, Don (who is the former president and owner of a major publishing company, Multnomah) has given us several true, short stories written in the words of the people who experienced them. Each story is unique, though they all share the quality of reminding us how God truly does turn some very sour life situations into a sweet, refreshing drink of Living Water when we need it most.
Some stories will make you laugh, many will make you cry (or at least get a little moisture in your eyes)...but all do remind you that you are not alone in the trials you face in life.
From a story of a father who learned to show love and grace to his son after initially belittling him for his uncontrollable bedwetting problem, to stories of dire financial straights and the strength that came through enduring those times and learning of God's loving provision first-hand, to stories of unexpected and unwanted health issues, to a story of twins who share a unique bond that is miraculously enhanced through a life-threatening tragedy...so many true life events and lessons...straight from those who have lived them.
If you so choose to read this first installment of a planned series, you may discover that you even know someone who has written in it (as I do!). You may even feel led to submit your own story. Additionally, by purchasing this book you will be benefiting the LemonAid Foundation which is a foundation that directly supports single mothers ~ a group of people Don Jacobson and his wife Brenda are passionate about helping.
October 27, 2011
Warning: May provoke tears
Jacobson has collected an entertaining, inspiring set of stories in God Makes Lemonade. I absolutely loved this book! The stories will grab your heart and bolster your faith. Anyone can find something to relate to within it's pages, whether you are struggling with cancer, with financial struggles due to losing a job, or struggling to parent a child with disabilities. The best part is knowing that the stories are true, that other people are experiencing similar things, and God is sustaining them through it.
God Makes Lemonade reminded me that God has a bigger plan at work in my life, a plan I might not see when I am in the midst of a painful time. These stories show that God doesn't leave us where we at, and they truly do inspire hope.
I suggest reading this book with a box of Kleenex nearby. I highly recommend this book and give it 5 out of 5 stars.
Disclaimer: Book was received courtesy of the publisher via Glass Road Public Relations for the purposes of this unbiased review.
October 27, 2011
Don't expect a Christian emphasis
Ã¢ÂÂThe stories in this book,Ã¢ÂÂ says Don, past owner of Multnomah Books, Ã¢ÂÂare about everyday folks who are surprised by unexpected sweetness in the midst of sour circumstances.Ã¢ÂÂ (xiii) These real-life stories are from people in all kinds of circumstances. One thing they have in common is hope.
The stories include a marriage saved by cancer, priceless lessons learned from being fired, a woman who rediscovered her artistic ability because of an eye injury, a job because of empty Coke bottles, a ministry rising out of the overdose death of a son...
Most of these stories could be called Ã¢ÂÂordinaryÃ¢ÂÂ in every sense of the word. They are experiences you've had or heard others have had. But, as one writer says, Ã¢ÂÂExcept that to me, the experience was anything but ordinary. Indeed, it was the extraordinary encounter I needed to reorient my life.Ã¢ÂÂ (165)
So the stories are not unusual. There are, in general, no awe inspiring appearances of angels or miraculous healings. They are just events that happen in the course of life. What is amazing, however, is the timing of the events. They happened right when needed. And the other amazing aspect of these stories is that the event was observed! How often do inspiring events happen in our life and we just fail to Ã¢ÂÂseeÃ¢ÂÂ them? Maybe we are too busy or too self absorbed. Perhaps the major lesson I learned from this book is that awe inspiring and life changing events are happening around us. We just need to be looking for them and be open to their inspiration.
This is not a Ã¢ÂÂChristianÃ¢ÂÂ book in the sense that Christianity or a Ã¢ÂÂChristianÃ¢ÂÂ experience is rare in it. Most of the stories are inspiring in that people change their lives for the better, but not because of God or Jesus. There were a couple of stories where God received the credit, so to speak, but that was rare. This book is in the style of Chicken Soup for the SoulTM series. I was a bit disappointed in it, hoping for more glory given to God.
Jacobson's desire is that this series will help fund initiatives to serve single mothers and their children through the LemonAid Foundation.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
October 26, 2011