Monday, August 29, 2011

"A Confident Heart" Review and Give-Away



"A Confident Heart" is a newly released book written by Renee Swope of Proverbs 31 Ministries. I have had the privilege (and challenge) of reading this book and want to take a few minutes to encourage you to do the same!!

First of all a bit about the book...from the back cover, "Ever feel like you're not good enough, smart enough, or valuable enough? Renee Swope understands. Even with a great family, a successful career, and a thriving ministry, she still struggled with self-doubt. Sharing her own personal story, Renee shows you how to rely on the power of God's promises to find the security you need and the confidence you long for!"

What do you think? Are you interested? Does this sound like a book you want to read?? If your answer is yes, scroll to the bottom of this post for a chance to win a copy, but if you're still not sure, read on...

Now for my review...when Renee asked me to read an early copy of ACH, I was thrilled! I have enjoyed her blog for years and appreciated the times I've heard her speak, so I knew her message was one I needed. After sending her my yes, Renee responded with, "I pray this book encourages your heart." Instantly I had the thought, "I pray this book changes my heart."

I knew her story would be encouraging, but my problem is I've read many encouraging stories and I wanted more, I needed more. You see doubt could be my middle name and I think Thomas could have been my brother! I knew it was time for a change and I believed God could do that through Renee's book.

So I jumped into the book with excitement and enthusiasm, eager to see how God would answer my prayer. After the first few chapters, I found myself realizing that I was not alone! As I read Renee's story, I read much of my own - depression, never being good enough, the comparison game, feeling empty, failure... I could relate and found relief, but then I read on.

About halfway into the book I realized our stories were no longer the same. As Renee wrote about living beyond the shadows of her doubts, I knew I was still standing in mine. Honestly there were times I wasn't sure I would finish the book - sometimes the truth hurts and this book is full of truth!! But in the end the truth always helps and friend, I promise if you read this book, you will be helped!!

I could write for days about how "A Confident Heart" has helped me, but instead I want to share a quick story...

Just two days ago my little Joy (my 6 year old daughter who is sometimes too much like her mother) was in tears. I asked what was wrong and she gave me the answer I know all too well, silence, only to be followed by "nothing" when I asked again. It was then her little sister says to me, "Joy said she is dumb." As we talked, she couldn't tell me why she was dumb or what made her feel this way, but having said those same words and others like them, I felt I knew what was going on.

One thing Renee writes about is AM/FM thoughts. Take a minute and think about the last thought you had of yourself and ask yourself this question, "Was it for me or against me?" This may sound like a simple task, but do it often enough and you may begin to see a pattern. I know, that happened to me and all too often my thoughts were of the AM type - they were Against Me, not For Me. I'm sorry to say there was no static on this station; the negative message was all too loud and came through much too clear. The problem with this is - how a women thinks is often how she lives.

So back to Joy, eventually I asked her, "Who said this? Who told you, you were dumb?" She didn't know, so I went on to share how this wasn't true, how it was a lie and we have to make a choice not to listen to the lies. We talked a bit more and replaced that lie with truth. She even said, "I guess if I don't know how to do something, I can just learn." Then she smiled and returned to the life of a 6 year old.

Her tears were gone, but mine had started to fall. I'm grateful to think perhaps my little ones won't have to walk the same road I did - one that was filled with self-doubt and endless AM thoughts. I know they will experience these thoughts, but I'm thankful that as I learn to replace my doubts with God's truth, I can teach them to do the same. There was a time when I didn't know if that was possible, but just like Joy, I'm going to turn the channel and cling to His promise, "I CAN do all things through Christ who strengthens me!!"

Like I said, "A Confident Heart" has impacted me greatly and I know after reading it you will say the same! So now for the give-away, click on the comment button below and share your thoughts with me - Why do you want to read ACH? or What AM thought do you need to replace? If you do not have a blog account, just click on the comment button and choose to leave a comment as "anonymous." Just don't forget to leave me your name and an e-mail address so I can contact you if you win.

Finally, some links. For another more great thoughts on the book and another chance to win, visit my friend, Kimberly by clicking HERE!

One for you to order Renee's life changing book for yourself. :) Visit the Proverbs 31 store by clicking HERE!!

And the link to Renee's blog, which is always full encouragement.

And a thank you to Renee's publishers at Revell Thank you for this copy of the book to give away and for the chance to be a part of Renee's blog tour.

Come back on Sunday when the winner is announced!

38 comments:

  1. sandra b. sanjanbb@yahoo.com I really appreciate the chance! God does so much!!!!

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  2. My name is Angie and I am 28 years old. I have 2 kids, a 4 year old son, Charlie, and a 10 month old daughter, Estelle. As long as I can remember I have lived with AM thoughts, including thoughts that have been reinforced by members of my family and people I've grown up with. I've been a Christian for almost 10 years now and I still live in the shadow of these AM thoughts. This year I've committed to battling out these thoughts before they destroy me and poison my family. I came across the 7 Day Doubt Diet and I know that I need more. I would be so appreciative to have a copy of this book, I know it could change my life and the lives of my family who love me despite the love I haven't had for myself. Angiehorn13@gmail.com

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  3. The AMFM thoughts sounds like a good exercise
    For me.... Haven't thot of myself as " doubting " but learning I've got some thinking that needs to change.
    I'm gonna be 55 this month, it's never too late to learn. Please count me in for the drawing. Bless you, bless Renee, & thank u Jesus for Yout FM thoughts toward me!

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  4. I've lived with self-doubt all my life and have cheated myself out of many opportunities because of it. I started Renee's email series, The 7-Day Doubt Diet, this morning in preparation for an ACH study starting in September.

    I've already purchased a copy of ACH and it should be here this week. If I were to win this giveaway I will give the book to my daughter who seems to have 'inherited' my lack of self-confidence.

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  5. Jill, this is a fabulous review...and makes me want to go pick up the copy of ACH that I already have. You don't have to enter me into the contest, but I wanted to tell you how much I related to the AM/FM thoughts idea. Bless Joy's little heart, she is one of the brightest little girls I know, and yet self-doubt can set in and fill our hearts and minds with lies. GREAT job as a mommy, combating those lies with truth!! It's so amazing to see what God is doing in and through you, Jill...right there at home, your greatest ministry! :) Love you, girl!! And I will read ACH soon. :)

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  6. This is a great review of a book would be a great read. Something we can always use to grow as a Christian. Thanks for your little note about Joy (what a great choice of a name for her as she is a Joy) - Your answer to her was very spot on - we all can learn how to do things right. We don't need to be perfect but be vessels - ready to grow to be like Him.

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  7. Hi, sweet Jill! This book truly is so encouraging and SO equipping! And I am with you...the AM/FM thoughts really impacted my heart, too. :)

    I know whoever wins the copy of the book will be blessed! God speaks so tenderly through Renee in it!

    And thank you for the link. :) I will be sure to let my readers know they can find another review and giveaway here, too!

    MUCH love to you,
    K :)

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  8. I would love to win the book: ACH!!!

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  9. Thank you for reviewing this book and for offering a giveaway. I know that self-doubt is a common problem, but it doesn't make it any easier to deal with...I would love to win this book, so I can share it with a precious friend, who is going through an extraordinarily-difficult time. I can't share the details, but she could use any spare prayers you can give!
    Thanks!
    Rhea
    gallerhea@yahoo.com

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  10. Heidi heidiforward@hotmail.com
    I struggle so much with my confidence and feelings of not being good enough. Like you, I am starting to see this in my 6 yr old...I need to read this!!

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  11. I have had negative words following me all my life. From my parents telling me I can't do whatever I am trying, to critical words and rejection from many friends and family. I am trying to overcome all of this, in raising my boys, in my marriage, and my home business. I would love to read this encouraging book in hopes that my thought pattern would be changed.

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  12. I, too, have struggled with doubts most of my life.....always felt unwanted and in the way as a kid and then had that feeling affirmed as an adult when my Mom told me she had never wanted me....I was the 5th of 7 children. I married too young to a guy who verbally abused me and our kids, which didn't help my lack of esteem at all and was beginning a life of doubt for our daughter. With God's help and a very loving second husband I have come a long way. I have my book and am ready to start the study with Melissa in a few days. I would love a copy of this book for my daughter. Thank you for the chance to win one.

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  13. I definitely need to get this book. At the age of 62 I'm still a mess! I have never felt loved, wanted, or needed. I have been lied to, cheated on...you name it. I have tried my best to change my attitude about myself. I have prayed about it, cried about it, prayed about it, cried about it..but the worthless feelings keep creeping back in.

    Thanks for a chance to win this book.

    judyjohn2004[at]yahoo[dot]com

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  14. I have chosen to leave a church of which I have been a member and a big part of for 18 years. It is such a hard journey, for me, and not one I ever expected to take. I seem to be walking through "the valley of the shadow of doubt" and need to find peace. I am in a very difficult place.

    cnichols9844@bellsouth.net

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  15. Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of this book!
    I am a pastor's wife and we are supposed to "have it all together"...well I don't! I'm on a journey of learning to trust God alone in all of life. I would love to be able to read "A Confident Heart"!
    Jennifer
    jenmom1707@yahoo.com

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  16. I'm AM person. I belong to a few clubs and do volunteer work but i feel so out of place with the people I'm around. They seem to have it together. Their hair, clothes and personalities. That's why enough can't be said to parents about showing and telling their kids how special they are in God's eyes. If they learn it when their young they have more self-esteem and make better choices.
    Thanks. Sharon
    dollgirl48@yahoo.com

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  17. I am a stay-at-home mom of 3 children (11, 9 & 2)...and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt it is what the Lord called me to. But I have struggled with not ever feeling adequate or worthy in any thing I do-no matter how small. I am a perfectionist but lately do not even attempt if I don't feel I can exceed my own expectations. I can see these traits beginning to be exhibited in my own children, and your blog was truly a blessing today. I would love to have a copy of Renee's book.
    Crystal H.
    halljow@yahoo.com

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  18. I want to read ACH because I really struggle with self-doubt, and I need some Godly help with that.
    Kris
    Lvnglyf73@aol.com

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  19. Thank you so much for this blog!! I really need to stop those AM thoughts - my biggest is "Every decision you've ever made is wrong." I am really looking forward to getting into this book
    !!

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  21. The buzz about this book is amazing, I can't wait for the bible study to begin.....Thank you, for posting about it, I so enjoy reading everyones comments.....Lisa

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  22. When Doubt says I'm a failure.. Feel it Every day!

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  23. This book sounds SO encouraging and something that this mom of five could really learn from:) Thanks for the chance to win!

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  24. I'm ready to leave behind a life of insecurity and rely on my savior for every day help and become self-assured because I'm a daughter of the KING. This book sounds like something I really need!

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  25. I did the 7 day doubt diet with Rene & I still have them in my inbox. I go back to them often. I've been down some hard roads during my life & @ 53, I'm trying hard not to repeat them. I have so many things that haunt me from my past. The AM thoughts overwhelm me @ times. I need to learn to focus on the FM thoughts more often.
    I've been told my whole life that I am a disappointment, but I just keep telling myself GOD doesn't make junk.

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  26. Ian 63 years old and see a me in every thing you said. I need this book

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  27. This has been a struggle of mine for a long time. I am trying really hard right now to fight this struggle and become more confident for Christ. I have been wanting the book since before it came out and have not been able to purchase it yet. I am looking forward to when i am able to get it and read. Thanks for offering this give away. God Bless!

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  28. I get so much from Renee everyday. I am a single unemployed mother and I have no transportation to even try to find a job. I do thank God everyday for the blessings I do have there are so many that are worse off than me. I would love a copy of this book to guide me and to pick my spirits up. After I read the book I would love to pass it to other ladies at my church so they can receive a blessing also.

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  29. As I read blogs and posts from facebook from many christian women including Proverbs 31, Joyce Meyer, and Beth Moore, I find that I am not alone. Sometimes I feel since I am reaching my mid life I am struggling with my confidence. (I just turned 45, Sept 1st.) There are so many resources available, but one never knows what will help them. I feel that Renee has many experiences that may be similar to mine. Her book could be my answer to a “Confident Heart”. Thank you for sharing your encouraging words and the the generous give away.God bless!

    rjhurley@windstream.net

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  30. Anonymous
    jimmieann5@att.net Jimmie
    I don't think we ever mature to the point that we are truly confident. There is so much to pray for and the list grows longer each day. Just when we think that life is evening out then something else rocks our world with more news of items to pray about. I can not imagine what our grandchildren are going to have to deal with in this physical world.

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  31. I am so excited about your book I would consider it a true blessing if the Lord provided me with a copy.

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  32. I am trying to read more uplifting and inspirational books to grow in my walk with the Lord. I would live to read A Confident Heart!

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  33. I am trying to read more inspiring books.I would love to share with family members and a friend who is struggling with self doubts and many fears from her childhood. Thanks for the opportunity to enter. God Bless

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  34. Self-doubt is something I struggle with on a daily basis. I am commited to turn this around.

    Michelle M
    mfrye917@hotmail.com

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  35. Self-doubt is something I struggle with on a daily basis. I am commited to turn this around.

    Michelle M
    mfrye917@hotmail.com

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  36. A Confident Heart has reminded me of the love that my Savior has for me and the confidence that He has in me. He created me for a purpose and He's not going to fail me. As long as I continue to walk with Him.

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