I have been hearing a lot of good things about this book from other bloggers I follow so it definitely has been on "must read list" for awhile. The basic premise of the book is helping to awaken the hearts of women today, to call out the lies that we have blindly believed for too long from Satan, but also speak the unchanging truths to our hearts that we are worthy.we are beautiful. we do have dignity. and we are called to be fierce (think Joan of Arc, the young woman solider). I have to be honest, I have read of TON of books for women dealing with some of topics and other related ones like body image/self-esteem, but this one by far has been the best in comparison. Honest and heart-felt it spoke truth to areas of my heart that have been bogged down for too long believing some of those lies. This book will not help solve your emotional issues with body image, self hate, self-esteem, etc. over night, but for me personally it definitely help me grow more aware and understand myself better.
The book starts out in the beginning, with the story of the fall of Adam and Eve and how that set up humanity for a struggle in life to battle against the lies of Satan. Amanda writes, "The Father of Lies has to start somewhere. Satan's biggest defense, one of his greatest weapons against us, is doubt. If he can get you to start doubting that God loves you then he begins to work his way into your heart and soul....we can start to recognize this by starting with the first lies Satan tells us as women" (pg. 20). And what are some of those lies? Ones many, many are too familiar with through the journey of their own life (including me): that you are not good enough, unworthy, unlovable, not pretty or thin enough,you need more make-up, and it just goes on and on.
Section two of the book focuses on the real triumph of God's love in our lives, which is really the only force that helps us love and see ourselves as He does. In the last section of the book, this is where Amanda really offers a full punch and speaks truth to your heart on all the above issues and more. One thing she spoke of that I never really considered before was that it takes humility on our part for love to happen and flourish. We spend much of life at times building up walls around our hearts so we will never be hurt, but in that process we prevent joy, peace, and love from entering the deepest parts of our heart that need those things most. Pope Benedict XVI once said, "God loves us; we need only summon up the humility to allow ourselves to be loved." Amanda talks about what it really means to be a woman of strength and dignity; and to live it with a certain 'fierceness'.
One of the most powerful things for me in the book was when Amanda talked about the lies we have come to believe and make our own; that if we are told something enough times, we really believe it to be true. She wrote of this analogy that just registered so deeply in my heart: "The lies are beat into our heads and hearts and they make their home within our souls. In many ways these lies are similar to trenches often used in warfare. Troops dig their way into the ground and hide out in the trenches. In order to keep troops safe from incoming bullets and incoming fire, the trenches must be dug very deep into the ground. The deeper the trenches, the safer the troops were from enemy fire. If the trench was shallow troops risked poking their heads or limbs up and being shot. Troops dug trenches so deep that they could stand up in them comfortably. Satan's lies work in the same way. The deeper he buries his lies in our hearts, the safer the lies are and safer he is. If he only buried his lies knee-deep in our hearts he would risk attack from his enemy (God) and his defense would be blown. So he tells us more lies, locks us in more coffins and entrenches his lies on our hearts. These lies are entrenched so deeply that if we aren't careful, we too join in the battle, and defend Satan. When we begin to defend Satan, we give him room to dig his trenches even deeper in our hearts, often to disastrous ends" (pg. 64)
Reading this book has been such a blessing for me in my own journey as I continue to work to on loving myself as God does, and undoing some of the lies I have believed for too long in my life. No matter how deep our darkness is, God is still deeper. There is never no pit of lies so twisted, no trench so deep that God cannot reach into it and totally transform our hearts.
I pray that you may blessed as I have in reading this book...