PURSUED BY THE SHEPHERD: Every Woman's Journey from Lost to Found
Karon Phillips Goodman
Christian women from across the spectrum have heard sermons, read books and discussed the various facets of Christ as shepherd. This mental picture is as old as scripture itself and so powerfully depicts the exactness of Jesus's loving, complete and constant care for his "sheep." Author Karon Phillips Goodman offers fellow Christ followers a beautifully designed collection of brief chapters that hone in both practically and with loving inspiration the many definitions of God's shepherding care.
Goodman has fashioned her text around seven fully-developed themes that detail the real-life scenarios women frequently find themselves mired in and apart from God's intimate counsel and direction on a daily basis. These topics are presented so thoughtfully and are so relatable that women, young and old, will resonate completely with Goodman's stories as well as the heartwrenching dilemmas they experience throughout their lifetime.
Goodman walks with her readers through those hard spaces of time when they are: misguided by mistiming, misjudgment, mistakes, misdirection, or mistrust; when they experience lostness due to the darkness of lost humility, priorities, self-control, forgiveness, security and purpose; or when believing women feel alone in hiding, denial, sorrow, doubt and prayer, and need rescue. Goodman also encourages Christian believers to take heart that He redeems with a sure, ready, wise and responsive love; that He will grow them up as they trust in His perfect control, presence and plan. Coming full circle, readers will discover how Christ shepherds them into becoming vibrant instruments of perseverance, faith, obedience, service, grace, promise and purpose.
As women peruse this text, they will find special spots to settle in depending upon what they're currently dealing with in their lives. For those who are in the harried pace of a hectic life, where struggles with the world's idea of success and worth bombard them, Goodman's devotional on "Misguided by Misvalue" will provide some redirection and helpful tips for seeing what is important as opposed to what is not. Women who are feeling so very lost and far from Christ will take comfort in Goodman's personal narrative on Christ's dramatic love in "Found No Matter How Lost" that rescued her even when she determined to stay lost, in the dark and alone. She writes that Christ's grace is far too big and His plan is always better than our shortsighted choices.
For those believers who are lacking in trust, Goodman challenges them to grow in this discipline by abiding closely in God's presence, one day at a time. She also tells of a period "Growing Trust in His Presence" when she could not even look to tomorrow because today's pain was so immense --- but in that place of dependency, she found that the Shepherd matched her inadequacies with an abundance of comfort, reassurance, grace and peace. What better picture of love, full and complete, is there than this pursuit by the Shepherd Lord?
--- Reviewed by Michele Howe
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