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186 of 201 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars Left me undone,
Captured immediately by Ann's incredible gift of pen, I learned that life dealt her several seemingly cruel hands. The book begins with the story of the loss of Ann's sister, Aimee, who was literally crushed in front of her family by a trucker who simply didn't see her. As a mother of young children, the sheer angst of Ann's telling made me want to crawl in bed with my little ones and hold them close to me forever. A mother's heart wants to protect...and yet with raw authenticity Ann cracks open the question we all have asked at one time or another, "How can a good God..."
Her answer comes in what I found to be a most unlikely place. Thanksgiving.
I always thought of myself as a thankful person before reading this book. I know I have been blessed...or at least I can look at my life and see good things I call blessings...and they outnumber the bad things I call something else. But Ann made me think beyond my limitations...in fact urging me to put on a whole new set of eyes to see the deep thankfulness in both the good and the bad. A task not humanly possible.
But nothing is impossible with God. She calls it eucharisteo. And I admit to letting it roll off of my lips in those sacred moments of deep thanksgiving.
And so I began, with great excitement, counting my blessings with Ann. Little gratitudes found along the way. A soft little cheek here, a song lyric there...Before I knew what was happening, I began seeing thanksgiving in things I had overlooked for a lifetime. In a recent blog post, I wrote these words describing this new way of seeing:
"I'm seeing them EVERYWHERE of late...picture must needs! And me with no real camera! I'm eaten inside with the desire to capture the deep thanksgiving...the things the Lord seems to be doing just for me in the sky...with those clouds...and those mountains and when, tell me WHEN, did those mountains I've loved all my life begin looking so glorious in the fall? Someone MUST needs take a picture!"
Indeed...the Lord seems to have given me a new set of eyes. And rather than calling only the good the blessing, I now clearly see the radical, hard thanksgiving in the bad.
Though I say that with a hint of fear.
Because a part of me still lives in fear that if I invite God to bring me wholly into Him, great sacrifice...loss...will be required of me to get there. I know that in this world we will have troubles...and I know that suffering is means God uses to draw us unmistakably to Him. I know He can be trusted. I know He is good. But the fear remains. What if God must take something (someone?) from me to bring me to Him most fully? I cannot ask that of Him.
Angie Smith, at a recent conference said (paraphrased) about the loss of her infant daughter , Audrey Caroline, "for all that her death has brought me...the understanding of God, the opportunities to comfort others and show them God's grace...I would still rather have Audrey." And my heart nods in agreement. This describes the words of my heart.
Beautifully and fully, Ann weaves comfort to my fear when she says, "It is impossible to give thanks and simultaneously feel fear" (p. 203). And now I know the reason for the thanksgiving...the counting of the blessings...graces. So many times God calls us to remember and give thanks, for as we remember His good works, His salvation, His provisions, protection...we give thanks...and are built up, given peace and hope that He can do it again. Knowing this helps me take one step closer to the fullness of Him and realize it as an area where He continues to work.
His work is grace.
And I can not only count my gratitude, I can actually BE grace to those around me. "A life contemplating the blessings of Christ becomes a life acting the love of Christ" (p.184). And "to give the thanks away. That thanks-giving might literally become thanks-living" (p. 192).
I am not the same. Upside down in a right-side-up world and wanting to stay there. Seeking the thanksgivings of each day with a fully devoted heart knowing that I'll have to read it again...and probably again. So many are the thoughts of my heart right now...so many are the ways I feel challenged to look beyond circumstances for the thanksgiving in life. So fully have I decided to live in this dare of the right now...that all I have to say to Ann Voskamp (and to my Savior) is:
One Thousand Thank-You's friends.
Brooke McGlothlin, of A Life in Need of Change
62 of 64 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars A work of exquisite beauty.,
Out of the depths and front lines of some of life's hardest circumstances, Ann has come forward delivering one of God's most powerful instructions, one that we overlook, though it's the most-often used command in all of Scripture: Do not fear. Ann, in her book, says "It is impossible to give thanks, and simultaneously feel fear." So her answer, her gift that she has written out here in this book, is a profound movement of Thankfulness. Gratitude. Grace. All of these things abound within the lines and word pictures that she paints so beautifully.
One Thousand Gifts is a life-altering and heart-shaping work. Each page is rich with story and beauty... I found myself lingering on each page, drinking them in slowly, not wanting the journey to the back cover to end. This book is not only revolutionary in content, it is crafted by a master of the written word. Ann Voskamp has delivered us, and skyrocketed the art of writing into unknown heights with this book.
I have found myself in awe of Ann's story. She weaves it delicately and carefully, each word connected to another, creating lines upon lines of unending beauty. The result is a stunning basket of story, and its contents cradle one of God's greatest gifts to his people: Grace.
To say this book is exquisite is an understatement. It is a true masterpiece in every sense of the word, and I am better for reading its pages.
Do not hesitate for one moment. Buy this book and allow God's overwhelming Grace to soak in through the comfort and dazzling beauty of Ann Voskamp's words.
53 of 56 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read ... for more than a thousand reasons,
Ann Voskamp's heart for the beautiful ordinary resounds with my own desire for the great sacred-secular collide in my life. She eloquently speaks to the holy plain ... and the holy pain. Reading through the pages of One Thousand Gifts crystallized lessons the Lord had been quietly revealing in my heart over the past months.
As she shares the stories of her own struggles, her own failures, and her own learning, I find myself hearing not the words of a gifted writer. Instead, I hear from the Word-Giver, He who reaches down and reveals that "ugly beautiful" that Ann lists ... He who takes her story of teaching sons to find joy through giving thanks and turns my heart toward gratitude as well ... He who moves among the one thousand plus gifts on her lists and makes the searing imprint of joy and thanksgiving - the eucharisteo - in my own heart.
Yes, her writing is poetry. Many times I have likened her keystrokes to an artist's brush, her screen to a canvas ... and all that remains true. Certainly our Lord has gifted her with words, beautiful and poignant. But in this book, in these writings, when all is stripped away - when the stories are told and the listings are finished - what remains is The Gift ... He is there. And He has called to me, "Come. Count. Cherish. Be Changed."
With gratitude to Ann for graciously allowing me to read One Thousand Gifts and with no hesitation or reservation, I urge you to add One Thousand Gifts to your must-read list in the coming year.
Teri Lynne Underwood
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5.0 out of 5 stars One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are
This is undoubtedly the best book I have ever read! Have sold over 200 of them to friends and neighbors! Outstanding book! A classic! A must read for men and women!
Published 15 hours ago by Bernice Shupe
2.0 out of 5 stars So disappointed
I ordered this book because it had such wonderful reviews and I thought I would enjoy it. I got 20 pages in and it just dropped off. I didn't get it at all.
Published 1 day ago by Jamie Southworth
5.0 out of 5 stars Eucharisteo
Excellent book. On my second reading now. I have bought and shared 8 copies with friends & family.
Published 2 days ago by Mule Skinner
5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh Glasses for the Weary
Light pouring in through my windows as I make a weekend breakfast for my family.
The smell of bacon cooking.
Published 3 days ago by J. Monroe
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoughtful poetic book
This is the kind of book that needs to be read slowly, thoughtfully...I'm enjoying it very much as I think about how to live the next part of my life.
Published 3 days ago by Linda M. Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,000 Stars
Ann Voskamp's style of writing is poetic and straight to the heart - like she's whispering sweet secrets in your ear.
Published 4 days ago by Bjoy
5.0 out of 5 stars life changing
Beautifully written eye opener to the very essence of what is important in life. I smile a lot more over the precious gifts I receive every day as I take notice and live a fuller,...
Published 4 days ago by Roberta Lynn Sweat
3.0 out of 5 stars Not my cup of tea...
I did find inspiration in the beautiful prose of this book, but often felt the message got lost in the effort to always sound profound or poetic.
Published 4 days ago by DJU
5.0 out of 5 stars The Book that keeps on giving
When I requested Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts, I wasn't sure exactly what I was going to be reading.
Published 4 days ago by Debra M. Hoosier
4.0 out of 5 stars Thought Provoking
Author is eloquent and bare bones real in the telling of her Christian faith journey. Most of us have all the faith we'll ever need...until it's called upon to be used.
Published 8 days ago by Sandra K. Bennett
95% buy the item featured on this page:One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are
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