TO BE TOLD: Know Your Story, Shape Your Future
Rebecca Kai Dotlich, . . WaterBrook, $11.99 (160pp) ISBN 978-1-57856-948-9
When confronted with an interesting person, we often wonder, "What's his or her story?" Allender, a professor of counseling from Mars Hill Graduate School near Seattle, urges us to ask that question of ourselves and then pay close attention to the answer, as it reveals not only who we are but also who God is in our lives. "You are a story," he says, "authored by the greatest Writer of all time." Allender is generous in telling his own story—one including drug abuse, childhood sexual abuse, a conversion to Christianity and, finally, a call to work with others who were sexually abused. He blends an understanding of psychology and spirituality with a gentle, inviting tone, ending each chapter with a few key questions for journaling. The goal is that we begin to see how we are "coauthors" with God of our own story. This is no shallow reflection—Allender walks us through the painful parts of our story, emphasizing that our "plight is also our redemption." While our culture is fascinated with watching or reading other people's stories, this book skillfully reminds us that we each have a story of our own, which we need to face boldly and lovingly.
Reviewed on: 01/24/2005