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Friday, February 15, 2019

Book Review: It's Not Supposed to Be This Way by Lysa TerKeurst

BOOK review
Started on: 29 January 2019
Finished on: 5 February 2019

Title: It's Not Supposed to Be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered
Author: Lysa TerKeurst
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Pages: 256 pages / 287 pages (e-book)
Year of Publication: 2018
Price: Rp377,737 (

Rating: 5/5
"Humans are very attached to outcomes. We say we trust God but behind the scenes we work our fingers to the bone and our emotions into a tangled fray trying to control our outcomes. We praise God when our normal looks like what we thought it would. We question God when it doesn’t. And walk away from Him when we have a sinking suspicion that God is the one who set fire to the hope that was holding us together."
Lysa TerKeurst is an author, speaker, and president of Proverbs 31 Ministries. In this book, she gives us permission to acknowledge our own pain and disappointment by courageously exposing her own. Life often looks so very different than we hoped or expected. And so many times, we feel disappointed, disillusioned, and we quietly start to question God's goodness in our lives. This book will help and guide us to overcome our disappointments and shift our suspicion to God is cruel to the assurance that God is protecting and preparing us. Lysa TerKeurst does it by pointing us squarely to the sovereignty and faithfulness of God.

"What if disappointment is really the exact appointment your soul needs to radically encounter God?"
"This book is for every believer who has ever asked the question, 'Why, Lord?'"
I've been a fan of Lysa TerKeurst's writing since I read her book Uninvited back in 2017. She's always been very personal and doesn't shy away from showing her vulnerability in the book she writes—which I really love, because I believe a lot of people will be able to relate to her honest feelings and emotions. Uninvited was a book about dealing with rejection; whilst this one is about dealing with our disappointments. As she was writing this book, Lysa experienced that disappointment firsthand when she discovered that her husband had an affair. And whatever disappointment we're currently experiencing, Lysa guides us to overcome them and see our disappointment through a new perspective. The disappointment that is exhausting and frustrating us holds the potential of so much good—but we'll only see it as good if we trust the heart of the Giver.
"I don't know when these disappointments, big and small, are coming my way. They just show up. An unexpected guest that I don't know what to do with.
This guest of disappointment exhausts me.
But I don't have to tell you that.
It frustrate and exhausts you too.
Life isn't turning out the way we thought it would."
"We want God to fix it all. Edit this story so it has a different ending. Repair this heartbreaking reality.
But what if fixing, editing, and repairing isn't at all what God has in mind for us in this shattering? What if, this time, God desires to make something completely brand-new? Right now. On this side of eternity. No matter hw shattered our circumstances may seem.
Dust is the exact ingredient God loves to use."
This book consists of 11 chapters through which Lysa will cover several different topics related to disappointment. One of the things that I want to point out is that at the end of each chapter, there's a part called Going to the Well. It's a recap of all that we have learned from that chapter, so we don't forget the good stuff along the way. Each 'Going to the Well' section will include statements to cling to, scriptures to soak in, questions to think on for reflection, and a prayer. I find this section to be really helpful as it helps us highlights the important things that we need to remember from that specific chapter. In this review, I will be sharing some parts of this book that really struck a chord for me personally.

The first one is the analogy that Lysa TerKeurst used in one of the chapters called When God Gives You More Than You Can Handle. It's an analogy about the potter and the clay that comes from Lysa's friend whose mom is a professional potter. She said that wise potters not only know how to form beautiful things from clay, but they also know how important it is to add some of the dust from previously broken pieces of pottery to the new clay. This type of dust is called 'grog'. To get this grog, the broken pieces must be shattered to dust just right. If the dust is shattered too finely, then it won't add any structure to the new clay. But when shattered just right, the grog dust added to the new clay will enable the potter to form the clay into a larger and stronger vessel than before. And it can go through fires much hotter as well. I think this analogy relates to our season of suffering, through which God allowed us to be shattered just right so that we will be refined and built into a stronger and more beautiful clay. God is making our life stronger and more beautiful than ever, so we need not question the necessary ingredients needed to make it that way. This analogy taught me to embrace God's process and we just have to trust the Potter's hand that's currently shaping our life.
"If I want His promises, I have to trust His process.
I have to trust that first comes the dust, and then comes the making of something even better with us. God isn't ever going to forsake you, but He will go to great lengths to remake you."
"But here's the craziest thing of all. God doesn't want you or me to suffer. But He will allow it in doses to increase our trust. Our pain and suffering isn't to hurt us. It's to save us. To save us from a life where we are self-reliant, self-satisfied, self-absorbed, and set up for the greatest pain of all... separation from God."
"To trust God is to trust His timing. To trust God is to trust His way. God loves me too much to answer my prayers at any other time than the right time and in any other way than the right way. In the quietness of all that doesn't feel right, this truth does."
Another part that was memorable from that chapter for me was about a saying that everyone likes to throw around: "God won't give you more than you can handle." But that's not actually in the bible. God does say He won't allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear and that He always provides a way out (1 Corinthians 10:13), but that's not the same as God not giving us more than we can handle. He sometimes will allow more. However, God doesn't expect us to handle it, He wants us to hand it over to Him. God doesn't want us to rally more of our own strength, He wants us to rely solely on His strength. This was such a revelation to me because I was one of those people who liked to throw that phrase around to encourage people. Now I learned that whenever someone came to me with a heavy burden, all I have to do is point them back to God.

The last thing that I'd like to share in this review is from a chapter called Exposing the Enemy. In this part, Lysa TerKeurst stated that temptation only works if the enemy keeps the consequences hidden from us. That's why she said that she wish every temptation had a warning label on it, so that we'd know what we were getting ourselves into. This part was really eye-opening for me because it helps me to resist temptation. Because instead of giving in to temptation and having instant gratification, I will think of the long-term consequences that will emerge from that sin. A quote by Levi Lusko sum it up really well: "When God says 'don't', we should read it as 'Don't hurt yourself'."
"And I've learned one more important fact: my hope isn't tied to my expectations finally being met in my way and in my timing. No. My hope isn't tied to whether or not a circumstance or another person changes. My hope is tied to the unchanging promise of God. I hope for the good I know God will ultimately bring from this, whether the good turns out to match my desires or not."
Of course there are still so many more encouragements and lessons that I got from this book. But if you are currently struggling through disappointments, I would suggest to pick this book up yourself and see which part struck a chord with you. I am so blessed by this book and am really grateful that Lysa TerKeurst is willing to open herself up to be a blessing to other people—using her pain for the glory of God. After reading two of her books, I will definitely read anything that Lysa TerKeurst is going to write in the future 💖.
by.stefaniesugia♥ .

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