Tuesday, May 23, 2017

An Invitation for "Whispers of Rest"




In exchange for my review, The Hachette Book Group, publisher, provided this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”





Today is the day! I have been awaiting this day for several months now.  Shortly after I entered into this year of 2017 sensing that my #Oneword365 would be "Stillness," I was in awe to find that Bonnie Gray was publishing a new Devotional,  Whispers of Rest, with practical daily prayer prompts and Scriptures to help find Soul Rest with God.  So, when the opportunity was given to become part of her Pre-launch Team, I jumped at the chance.  And for the past 21 days I have not been disappointed, as I joined with a great group of other readers who took up challenges to listen more closely for the sweet call of Jesus to daily become His Beloved. 



In fact, if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you've probably seen many posts with the hashtag #Whispersofrest, or #soulrest.  There have been so many beautiful offerings posted from all those who have been part of the Pre-Launch team!




As I read and listened to the prayer prompts, as I opened my eyes and heart to see touches of God's Love for me scattered throughout the moments of my days, I have been overwhelmed at God's timing.  When I entered this challenge, I had just visited my Rheumatologist and heard encouraging words.  He was pleased with the low activity of my Rheumatoid Arthritis.   But only days into this study, I was hit with a sudden flare-up of old symptoms and weakness. 



I was desperate to hear those words
of Soul-Rest
And I was overcome by a shaking
of my own abilities.

How could I join in a study
How could I be an encourager
When I felt so weak myself?


And that is the point of this book.  None of us is strong enough on our own.  Jesus is the ONE who carries all the strength. And Jesus is calling each one of us, to find our place next to His heart, resting as HIS BELOVED.


Through a series of personal stories, questions, poems, and Scriptures, Bonnie Gray gradually finds us in our deepest heart longings.  Her words have a way of cutting through the surface layers and touching the true heart without striving or pushing.  Each chapter addresses specific prayer prompts, but then goes further and invites us to participate in active ways that engage minds and bodies along with spiritual growth.


  


  

 

The Lord watches over you—
    the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day,
    nor the moon by night.

Psalm 121:5-6 NIV 

 

 

 

 




During the chapter titled "Shelter" Bonnie talks about a willow tree that was her comfort as a child:

"During sweltering summers, I'd rest under the willow, when the steel slides were too hot to touch. . . . When it rained lightly in autumn, I'd sit and listen to raindrops pelt against the pavement, staying dry under its canopy. Then, I'd pour out my heart and confide in God. I found shelter under its shade."

I too had a willow tree sheltering place when I was a child, in the backyard of my best friend. We'd spend hours up in that tree, singing songs, planning our futures, sharing our dreams.  . . .  I knew there was a connection from God for me in this particular chapter, especially as I read further and saw that the prayer prompt was to join in for a silent time of resting or contemplative prayer. If you've been following my blog, you may remember my post here, where I heard God's nudges to follow Him into a time of learning to be quiet in His presence.  


Come away with ME
my Lord whispers.
Find a stillness
in MY heart
to satisfy every aching
your own heart
has felt.

Find ME as your shelter
He calls out to my heart.

The swaying brances
of a willow tree
to cover every aching
to stir up every dreaming
to fill up every singing.


And when I came to the end of the chapter, the active challenge was to find a beautiful tree and "Rest under its shade . . . Return to a peaceful place with the One who shelters you."  In these days of walking through a trial that makes no sense to me, there is a shelter being offered from the heart of my Lord.  For every day, and every struggle, He wants to bring a peaceful shelter and a beautiful call to rest with Him.


If your heart has stirred
with a longing to find REST
in the middle of your hard,
join me in listening to the 
only ONE
who truly can bring Soul Rest.

And, I would highly encourage you to visit Bonnie Gray's Website at www.whispersofrest.com where you can find more information about ordering her book for yourself.  Your faith will be built up as you read and participate in ways to find "Whispers of Rest" for yourself.  For ordering info click here.



 

 

 

 

32 comments:

  1. I love your annual word stillness. My blogpost is about learning to be still (reflection at the Grand Canyon.) Yes, we do need others and most of all, Jesus.

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    1. Dear Amy,
      How wonderful to find another kindred heart of stillness. I will be going over to visit your website soon. Our Lord is so precious to call us to His own stillness. Blessings to you!

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  2. Beautiful post, Bettie, with a lovely testimony of how this book spoke to you and impacted your own journey of life and faith. I couldn't help but smile wryly when reading these words, which also echoed in my own heart:

    "I was desperate to hear those words
    of Soul-Rest
    And I was overcome by a shaking
    of my own abilities.

    How could I join in a study
    How could I be an encourager
    When I felt so weak myself?"

    How indeed? Only by the grace of God can we do those things. Bonnie's book has been so timely for me, too, an invitation my soul was desperate for and needed to heed. It's so encouraging and inspiring to hear how it has spoken to you! Blessing of deeper rest, soul stillness, love and hugs to you, dear friend. xo

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    1. Dear Joy,
      Oh, yes, isn't the timing of our God amazing? What we regard as being possibly "bad timing" turns out to be the "best timing" for His Blessing of Grace to be given to us! I am so deeply grateful to be walking this path with you, dear friend. These words of Bonnie's have gone into deep places of our hearts, and brought God's Presence into the heaviest of places. May He continue to lead us deeper. Much Love and Hugs to you too! xoxo

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  3. Bonnie is a wonderful writer! I'm sure this devotions are Blessings.
    Thank you for your continual support my dear friend.
    May the Lord keep you safely and guard all that concerns you in Jesus name.
    Hearty blessings to you

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    1. Dear Ifeoma,
      Yes, I am so grateful for the many ways that God brings His words of truth to our hearts! And I am thankful that you have been one of those ways too, my friend! I am glad to have supported you through prayers and encouragement as you speak and write from God's heart! Blessings to you!

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  4. I love your review, Bettie. God's timing is impeccable, isn't it? My heart is encouraged by all of this, but this truth especially gives me a boost today - "None of us is strong enough on our own. Jesus is the ONE who carries all the strength. And Jesus is calling each one of us, to find our place next to His heart, resting as HIS BELOVED." May we together travel this journey as HIS BELOVED! Love and hugs to you, my friend!

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    1. Dear Trudy,
      Oh, yes, you are so right--our God's timing is impeccable! He knows just when and how to bring the encouragement that we need to draw in closer to Him. I have been so blessed reading the different reviews today, and seeing the many ways that God drew each one into His heart. Yes, may we continue to travel together on this journey as HIS BELOVED! I am so thankful for you, dear friend! Love and Hugs to you, too!

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  5. Hi, Bettie G! Thanks for stopping by.
    I am your new friend on G+

    This sounds like a good read.
    The Hachette Book Group contacted me about reviewing some adult Christian coloring books of their's.
    I am so excited, I anticipate receiving them.

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    1. Dear Michelle,
      Thank you for stopping by and following on G+, it's so great to meet a new friend! That sounds like fun to review an adult coloring book! I enjoy those when my hands are feeling strong--they really help bring stress relief. Blessings to you!

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  6. Stillness is a great word. I lead retreats and often we talk about the need to be still. Very nice blog. glad we connected today

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    1. Thank you for connecting here also! What a beautiful word to talk about at retreats, that would be the perfect setting! Blessings to you!

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  7. Hi Bettie,
    I love your recollection of your willow tree and the special place it held in your heart during childhood. You always draw our attention back to God's creation in nature in plants and trees and flowers -- you are a true gardener of the heart -- that is your gift! I wonder if you have a new tree you look at it today and enjoy? What a great prompt of Bonnie's to follow through with and find a new whisper of God! xo

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    1. Dear Valerie,
      Oh, you are so astute at finding just the right thought and question to ask! Yes, God has given me a beautiful row of 3 spruce trees right outside my kitchen's sliding patio doors. It is where the orioles and the hummingbirds perch before they come to the feeder attached to our deck. And it's where the snow piles up in the cold of winter. God is so good to meet us in each season, isn't He? Thank you for your caring and compassionate heart, my friend! May you be blessed with new whispers from HIM also! xoxo

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  8. I loved reading this Bettie. We have kindred spirits in that we experience God outside in such big ways. U pray His peace surrounds you continually and that you keep growing in his grace as you lean on His strength. Love ya!

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    1. Dear Meg,
      Oh, yes, I am so thankful for your kindred heart that is blessed in God's nature! What a blessing to share those thoughts in our days! Thank you for your prayers and support, dear friend. It means so much to me!! Lov ya! xo

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  9. Bettie, I review books for Hatchette also. A PRIVILEGE!

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    1. Yes, such a privilege and honor to be able to join in book launches and to review precious words spoken from the heart!

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  10. Bettie - I love your review of Bonnie's new book and since our words for the year are similar, (mine is dwell) I think I need to add it to my devotional rotation. Thanks for sharing your review - we are neighbors at Meg's #TeaAndWord this week.

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    1. Dear Debbie,
      What fun being neighbors at Meg's again! I am so thankful for all of these great communities where God's gentle touches can be shared. I hope you can read Bonnie's words also--she speaks so much about the beauty of choosing to dwell with Jesus! Blessings to you!

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    2. Blessings and thanks for linking up with #TuneInThursday last week - hope to see you tomorrow.

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    3. Thanks Debbie! I am on my way there now! :-)

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  11. Ah yes... I started this a couple of weeks ago and then got so sick... but I am returning to it and oh my - it's just what my tired soul needs! I'm loving it, too!

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    1. I am glad you are feeling better, Karrilee! And what perfect timing God had--He knew you would need this soul rest available for after the storm! Blessings and Strength to you!

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  12. Thank you so much for the review of this book. I needed to read what you say here.

    God bless.

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    1. I am so grateful you found encouragement here, brother! I finally was able to download one of your "Father Ignatius" books, and I am being encouraged and blessed also!

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  13. I have to remind myself of this - "None of us is strong enough on our own. Jesus is the ONE who carries all the strength." I need to remember that I don't have to have enough strength, because He carries me and provides what I need. Thanks for this reminder, Bettie. Love and hugs to you with many blessings! xoxo

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    1. Dear Gayl,
      Yes, isn't our Lord so good to us--giving us Himself and strength just when we most need it? I am so glad that "He carries me and provides what I need." I hope that your new garden is coming along! Love and Hugs and Blessings to you too! xoxo

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  14. Your post really spoke to me. Sometimes the world gets so "noisy"... we need to calm ourselves for the WHISPERS!!! Thanks for your words!

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    1. Yes, that noise can be overwhelming. I am so thankful that there is a resting place for us with Jesus. Thanks for your encouragement! Blessings to you!

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  15. This sounds like an amazing book...thank you for sharing, sweet friend. :) I do trust you are feeling better today and that you will be able to enjoy a wonderful weekend. Sending love and hugs to you today!!

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    1. Thank you for your love and support Cheryl! Yes, God is helping me to keep going, and be patient as relief comes slowly, day by day. I hope you are able to get this book, it truly has been such a blessing. I hope you have a great Holiday Weekend also! Love and Hugs to you, my friend! xo

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