I'm late in the game getting my hands on this book but I trust in God's timing. I'm a pastor's wife and this book has been added to my "Give When..." pile. When women miscarry, I give them "I'll Hold You in Heaven." Now, thank you Lord, I have a book on hand to give parents who are grieving the passing of older children. As soon as I finish writing this review, I'm ordering one for a mother in our church whose 18-month old drowned in a pool. I'm also ordering a copy for the first cousins who were outside playing with the child and thought she had gone inside the house. Each one will identify with someone in Mary Beth Chapman's book.
"Choosing to See" is full of love--massive, God-sized love. Chapman and Vaughn do an excellent job of conveying that undeniable love in the midst of confusion, disappointment, and agonizing heartbreak.
You'll come away with a great introduction to Mary Beth Chapman. She shares her struggles, her flaws, and her hilarious sense of humor. Reading late one night, I was afraid I would wake my family with snorts of laughter when I read Mary Beth's account of white-water rafting!
I loved how she prefaced each chapter with a few lyrics from songs (many were Steven Curtis Chapman's) which reflected what was taking place in their lives.
This book is well-written and so engaging I had a hard time putting it down. It is a must-read for anyone who is grieving the death of a loved one--especially a child. And the book is for those who long to understand and be a comfort to those who are grieving.
I have read over a hundred Christian books in the past few years and would place this in the top (3) Three of BEST BOOKS I've ever read. Mary Beth is so open with her life - not only as the wife of an amazing Christian recording Artist but also the struggles that come with the Journey of life itself. She shares so openly the highest joys and the saddest sorrows that have become part of her life journey. Her story is at times very heart breaking yet (and even at the sames times) SO encouraging. You will catch yourself crying in one chapter and laughing a few pages later. The amazing faith of this entire family is repeatedly shared page after page and should be a reminder to each of us that when we fix our eyes on Christ, and faithfully walk in the promises of HIS word- there is hope- we can do Hard,..because spring is coming.
Mary Beth gives glory to God and preaches a great sermon, when she is talking about God. I thank her for that. However, she does write as if she is the only one in the world that has felt pain. She belittles people for trying to comfort her by saying they lost a parent or a pet in a similar manner as how they lost Maria. I feel so bad for those people if they read her book. Losing a pet or a parent can be extremely hard and I was offended how she acted like no one has known the pain she has gone through.
Another aspect I didn't like about this book was how sex obsessed Mary Beth is. During her daughter's funeral she gives a eulogy in which she talks about how Maria walked in on her and Steven having sex (she sounded like she thought this was funny that a 4 year old saw something she shouldn't have) and how besides Steven another person who loved her "boobs" was her daughter. Pairing the two made it sound like the little girl liked her mother's chest in a sexual way. At another point Mary Beth, Steven and a friend of theirs all get into the same bed and Mary Beth makes a crack about how this friend can finely say she slept with Steven Curtis Chapman. I believe this happened the day of her daughter's death. She sure must have been upset to be thinking like that. She also tells us stories of how when she decided it was time to have a baby she insisted Steven come home and have sex with her. She gets kind of detailed about it. At another point in time a fire breaks out on the outside of their house. She takes the time here to mention how funny it was that her thin night gown got soaked and plastered against her body while she was using the hose to put out the fire. These are visual images I would prefer not to think about especially from a family I had so admired in the past.
Mary Beth tells us several times that she never wanted to be famous or write a book. But her book tells us she is very eager to have everyone know intimate details of her married life.
Other offensive content was how she supports the pill (which can cause abortions), she is a big supporter of Disney (Disney is affiliated with the company that made the movie The Temptation of Christ which mocks our Lord and they support anti-Christian organizations) and she acts very snobby about her whole situation.
I hope this doesn't sound too harsh but I want other Christians to know that there is very offensive content in this book. I don't think a true Christian would feel right about letting such stories into their mind.