The Gifts of Reflection and Application {Book Club}

Brief note about our next book The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (it’s FREE and has a free audio version). Next week we do a bit of an intro / history to the book. We’ll start reading it in June and have the first half done by June 10th and then finish the book by June 24th.

July book:  Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo. To be read by July 29th.

August book: My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok.To be read by August 26th.


I feel a sigh of satisfaction and sadness as we come to the end of this book. I’ve enjoyed the slow pace (and the short chapters!) to reflect on and go deeper with you.

In the Final Thoughts I put a star next to:

“Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It’s about cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough. It’s going to bed at night thinking, yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn’t change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging.”

It starts with our worthiness because God has made him in his image and delights in us. But he also desires for us to grow and mature and that takes courage, compassion, and connection.

I just paused to glance through the table on contents and review the 10 Guideposts. This is a book to pull out every few years and reread, like a checkup on my life.

My favorite word of this book is cultivate. Brene didn’t use the word tip, or strategy, or plans, or hints. No, she encouraged us to cultivate. When I think of cultivating, I think of getting my hands dirty in gardening. Of seasons of new growth, something coming to fruition and then a period of rest. Of needing to water and weed. Of work that both has natural ending points and markers of change, yet is never done.

Cultivate and let go. It’s as necessary to let go so that space can be created to cultivate.

Look back at the ten guideposts inThe Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown:

Which was especially timely? Which has stuck with you as the weeks have gone by?

How has this book impacted you? In what ways are you better for having read it? How did it disappoint or frustrate you?

Last time to … see you in the comments for this book


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Photo Credit: Pink Sherbet Photography via Compfight cc


  1. Kimberly Todd May 20, 2014

    I accept the invitation “to join a Wholehearted revolution. A small quiet grassroots movement…” Thanks for leading us, Amy. This is a book I will come back to.

  2. Morielle May 20, 2014

    I didn’t read this book (no money in American bank account = curbing my amazon obsession and forcing me to actually read the things already on my kindle….) but y’all’s discussion certainly influenced me! Trusted my intuition/faith this week. Then mindfully avoided numbing (i.e. Facebook, finding other people) and allowed myself to grieve.

    1. Kimberly Todd May 21, 2014


  3. Alex King May 21, 2014

    I keep going back to Cultivating a Spirit of Resiliency. That’s what I’m choosing in this season. Resiliency. And knowing that it isn’t something that is just going to happen. I have to work on it. I looooved her use of the word “cultivate”. I also know I need to work on cultivating calm and stillness, but that one is going to be a little more difficult! Loved this book!

  4. Brittany May 27, 2014

    I’m a little late in the discussion, but I’m going to get over the fact that this was “supposed to” be done last week!  Looking back on this book, I see a LOT of work that the Holy Spirit needs to do in me.  I’ve had some great discussions with my husband about what play and rest and meaningful work looks like in our life. I’m trying to be intentional about authenticity and even had a great discussion about it yesterday with my language partner who is someone I’m also somewhat discipling.  Every guidepost gave me food for thought and something to work on in my life, which is pretty overwhelming and somewhat daunting.  But in addition to the guideposts, Brene gave me practical ways to make changes and, maybe more importantly, the freedom to make mistakes and not necessarily fix everything right now.

    The most significant word from this final chapter, which pretty much sums up all of my issues, was this:  “However afraid we are of change, the question we must ultimately answer is this: What’s the greater risk?  Letting go of what people think or letting go of how I feel, what I believe, and who I am?”

    This study has been a perpetual reflection, for me, on my identity.  Who am I in Christ?  What does He say about me?  All of the guideposts for Wholehearted living stem from that truth, first and foremost.  So that’s where I am beginning.

    This is definitely a book that I’ll be coming back to.  And my hubby wants to read it too, which I think will be great so that we can talk about it together.  Thanks for introducing me to this book!

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