Find Your Strongest Life: What the Happiest and Most Successful Women Do Differently by Marcus Buckingham
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Very rarely am I caught off guard by a book. Before I received a message from Thomas Nelson, as one of their book review bloggers, that this book would be made available to those who were already reading something (usually it's one at a time) I had already decided that this wasn't a book I wanted to read. I had looked through the selections available and something about the title--perhaps it's the editor in me that doesn't like the combination of "strongest" and "life"...something about that irks me...don't really know why--just didn't appeal to me. The thought that this was also written by a man and I questioned how effectively he could really relate to what women are going through also made me look for something else. Then, when this offer came up to review it when I already had a book for review, I decided why not. Perhaps it would be helpful.
I had never heard of Marcus Buckingham.
I was looking forward to a spiritually uplifting book, that would affirm what God's will was for women (after all this was publisher that specializes in this sort of thing), that would point out even through the examples he gave of women who contacted Oprah after that one show, God can still use those situations; how he pointed out to those women and shared the gospel with them. How he used examples of women in the Bible and Scriptures to validate God's view of women and how He created us and how He views us.
The points in the opening chapter were really very interesting. I was intrigued by them and agreed with them -- that women are more stressed out now with all the choices. That "women's lib" for all it's whoopla really hasn't improved life that much for women. We're often too stressed out running from one thing to the other that we can't enjoy life anymore. It's been so ingrained in us that we have to work to be happy...when that's not necessarily true for everyone.
But as I read through the introduction and the first couple of chapters it occurred to me there was no mention about the Christian experience. What advantages Christian women have over non-Christian women. I can't imagine what it would be like to go through all that I am without having a relationship in Christ. That's what I expected to see.
Perhaps it was because this book was written by a man and from a man's perspective. It's impossible to completely get into a woman's psyche from a male vantage point. Women are very much emotional creatures and I found this book too analytical and not emotional enough. The only time I found my emotions engaged was reading the quotes from those women who contacted Oprah.
This is not a book I would highly recommend, though I can't say I wouldn't recommend it at all. As demonstrated by the number of higher reviews, there were some people who liked it. But it is not a book will be recommending for our church library. As a spiritual resource for busy moms and women, it was highly disappointing.
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