Today I’m excited to have my guest book reviewer, Katie Atkins, back with us. Katie has previously shared a review of “Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full”. And today she’s back with us to give her thoughts on the moving book, “Every Bitter Thing is Sweet” by Sara Hagerty. Welcome Katie!
As I approached my sixteenth birthday, I was confident in my path. I had my plans laid out for the future, plans for success. I was dating a great guy, my family life was rocky but stable, and my dreams were right at my finger tips. Oh how time changes things; within a few months of my sixteenth birthday my parents were in litigation for a divorce, my great guy had broken my heart, and I was fighting to stay on top of my homework, not really giving my grades a second thought. When my world stopped working, it was so easy to be resentful and harbor anger towards my God. It was the simple path to dwell in my bitterness each and every day. As I read Sara’s story in her book, Every Bitter Thing is Sweet, I was taken back to that place and reminded of God’s imminence.
What does it look like to know God’s nearness when your world stops working?
Sara Hagerty found Him when life stopped working for her. When her faith was challenged by life’s circumstances she looked toward God, called out to Him, and allowed Him to fill her. Through her infertility she sought her Abba Father. Through the adoption process she chose to adore her God. When her husband’s business went under she trusted in the ultimate provider.
Sara writes of the days that were easily sinking her deeper and deeper into the unknown; the days that the chaos of life was overwhelming. “But God is showing me that His aroma can rise up out of and even over the chaos. His word is seeping into my heart as I scrub dishes. Thoughts of His nature quicken my pulse when I am still in sweatpants, while the children chat over breakfast cleanup or lunch preparation. Adoration is working its way into my life, here.”
In this book, I was reminded that “A satisfied soul loathes the honeycomb, but to a hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet.” Proverbs 27:7.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to just be hungry for my God for a season. I want to live in hunger for Him daily, moment by moment. I want the kind of hunger that draws me to Him. That fills every bitter circumstance with the amazing opportunity to know Him more and more. This is what brings me straight to the sweetness of His presence daily.
As a mom, I struggle with allowing my circumstances to dictate my day, allowing my feelings of the unplanned to sink me into a bitterness that drags my mood and emotions down. But Sara reminds us that God sees us.
“He saw me. He knew me. He knew my ‘now’ moments—unexpected meltdowns, my day gone awry, this life bursting, and my feeling I could barely manage. He didn’t stand distant, but He spoke in: I see you.”
Sara’s story was a reflection of mine in so many ways. Her desire to know God in an intimate way, to adore Him with all of herself is a mirrored reflection of my heart cry to the Lord. May I remember that Jesus is big in my small, unseen moments. Glorious monotony. He came for these very days.
Click here to buy “Every Bitter Thing is Sweet”.
Katie Atkins is a Christ-follower, work-in-progress. She is a wife to an incredible husband and the mom of two amazing children. While not a professional writer, she enjoys putting pen to paper and sharing her story with others. Katie loves to read (anything and everything), she seeks out ways to be adventurous with her kids, and after 12 years of marriage, she is learning to cook. She works each day to live out the words of Philippians 3:12-14 with all that she is. She blogs at Treasuring Christ Daily.
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