As I read Priscilla Shirer’s new book God is Able, I couldn’t help thinking about all the women in my life who are walking through circumstances that feel overwhelming.
- Women trudging through the debris left when their husbands chose pornography … including (for some) unexplained abandonment, moving from the first home they had recently purchased, and impending divorce papers that will mark the end of a marriage …
- An addiction that consumes her waking thoughts, raising it to idol status, and whispering lies in her ears …
- Too many friends fighting cancer … too many.
- Friends whose babies were born with broken hearts and multiple other health complications in the last couple of months …
- Financial stress that feels like a sinkhole, sucking them in the more they struggle to climb out …
- Parents being stretched in ways they never knew were possible as they love and parent a child with disabilities …
Yep, those are just a few of the people who came to mind as I read this book. This book is for ______.
Don’t be fooled, this book was for me too. You see we all have that thing. That thing that that we can’t seem to “escape or fix or solve … it’s just there” (p.1).
Shirer writes, “His chief intention … is not to blow our minds but to cause our hearts to become more inclined toward Him and aligned with His. He wants us to trust Him, believe HIm, and expect Him, until our primary goal is not that He answer our prayer exactly the way we’ve been praying it, but that we know Him more fully and intimately” (p.16).
Priscilla* writes to her readers as I would expect her to talk to her good friend — both curled up in slippers on a cushy couch sipping on something warm and flavorful. In that conversational style she unpacks Ephesians 3:20-21 — one. phrase. at. a. time.
Now to Him
who is able to do
exceeding abundantly beyond
all that we ask or think
according to the power that works within us
to Him be the glory … in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.
[*Note: After reading God is Able, you’ll feel like you’re on a first name basis with Priscilla too. Take my word for it. Read the book and see if I’m not right.]
Do you need to be reassured that …
… the time is NOW to plug into God’s ability?
… the volume is quieted (dare I say, muted) on your noisy circumstances when you turn your heart to Him who is able?
… God is concerned and is on the job — “So, no matter what we want our relationship with God and His actions toward us to be, it will always come down to a matter of trust–trusting that He is able and that His kindness toward us makes Him always willing in His infinite wisdom to do what is best. He can see more than we can see, and He can love us without needing to explain why His love needs to look like this at the moment” (p.63).
…He can handle this – big or small – He can do it ALL —“What if you and I knew He was planning to bring about a big change in our It circumstances, but that HE knows the best time for us to see it all coming together is still six months out?” (p.64).
… your circumstances don’t have to define your state of being. “Whenever you talk about what’s going on in your life, what if instead of your troubles and heartaches filling up all the subject lines, God’s name and activity took center stage? What if you had a lot more to tell about His work than about your worries? I’m not talking about becoming somebody who denies they’ve got any problems, just someone who chooses to deliberately, intentionally, verbally give God’s power top billing in their conversation” (p. 156).
There was a time, a few years back, when I had what I fondly call a little “spiritual breakdown.” It resulted in a weekend of solitude in the empty home of friends who gave me permission to stay there while they vacationed. God met me that weekend in his Word and in another Priscilla Shirer book, One in a Million. I’ve had the privilege of teaching her study Discerning the Voice of God more than once.
Interpretation: I’m a fan. God uses her to speak to me sometimes. I think she knows that I care more about what God has to say than what she has to say, so she points me to His Word again and again.
I suspect God is Able might just be used by God to meet with you too.
This is a fast, easy read. If you have that thing hanging around your neck like an albatross, that’s good news because you just might feel like reading a book about life’s adversities and troubles is too much to handle right now. Be assured, this book is not about the troubles. It’s about our God who is always up to incredible things because He cares and He CAN!
Priscilla Shirer is a Bible teacher and conference speaker with a Master’s degree in Biblical Studies from Dallas Theological Seminary. Also a popular author, her books include the New York Times best seller The Resolution for Women, One in a Million, and Life Interrupted. Priscilla is married to Jerry with whom she founded Going Beyond Ministries. They have three sons and live in Dallas, Texas.
Note: We were provided with a complimentary copy of the book through the publisher for an honest review of this title.