Book Review: Grace for the Good Girl

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I honestly feel like Emily Freeman and I would be best friends if we ever met.  After reading Grace for the Good Girl, I feel like I’ve had an awesome chat with my accountability partner.  Thanks Emily for diving into God’s Word and reminding me to do the same.  It’s the only way to truly hear from God in the midst of all of life’s crazy noise.  I set this book down feeling refreshed, renewed, and ready to charge headlong into His truth for my life.

  • Instead of recognizing my own inadequacy as an opportunity to trust God, I hid those parts and adopted a bootstrap religion.
  • The cross gives us permission to sit down on the inside because we have a God who knows what he’s doing.  Allow him to look beyond the girl-made hiding places you have so carefully constructed.  I know it goes against all the words the world says are admirable: self-reliant, capable, strong, and resilient.  But I am in desperate need of a source outside of myself all the time.  And so are you.
  • The sweet good news of Jesus is that he longs to call us out from behind those masks we wear to hide our mess from the world.
  • For You have been my help, and in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy.  Psalm 63:7
  • The mask of a good reputation is a hard one to take off.
  • Behavior matters.  Decisions matter.  Sin has consequences.
  • Jesus didn’t value what people thought; he valued people, period.
  • Our fluctuating humanness is there on purpose, to remind us of our need and draw us to the One who can meet it.  We don’t have to figure out the whys and the origins of every swinging emotion.  But it is so important that we admit they are there.  To embrace the color and fullness of our emotional, un-fine state is to open wide enough to receive compassion and grace.  Only then will we be able to offer that same compassion and grace to others in honest and authentic ways.
  • “To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me” (Colossians 1:29).  Who am I to decide what is extraordinary.  So anything I do as I depend on and partner with the Extraordinary One, I suppose that is extraordinary too.
  • Worship, not work, flows out of the hearts of those who believe.
  • Anything we do to get life and identity outside of Christ is an idol, even service to Christ.  He doesn’t want my service.  He wants me.  And from that life-giving relationship, “streams of living water will flow from within” (John 7:38).
    So serve.  By all means, serve.  But don’t do it from behind a martyr’s mask of duty or self-righteous obligation.  By faith, believe that you are free to do it from a place of total and complete acceptance by the only One who is extraordinary.
  • The law was designed to expose our heart condition, to make us see our guilt.  It was never meant to make us righteous.
  • Consider Romans 10:4 “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”  Are you willing to receive that righteousness, or are you still trying to work hard to earn it?  Does this gift feel freeing or offensive to you?
  • I can’t remember a time that I didn’t feel responsible.
  • He chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise and the weak things of the world to shame the strong.  1 Corinthians 1:27
  • If you are anything like me, then you know the fine art of how to be vulnerable enough so people believe you are authentic, but not so vulnerable that all your mess hangs out.  You know how to be vulnerable with boundaries.  Even though it is freeing and relieving to share our weakness with one another, that alone won’t bring much relief in the long run.
  • We may be able to hide some of the mess with each other, but we have a God who sees and knows and loves no matter what.
  • What would it look like if I allowed Jesus himself to determine my comfort zone?  What if, instead of walking into a room with a wall around me, I was able to walk into a room and move toward others in freedom?
  • The reality of finding my significance in my performance is like putting lipstick and lace on a pig’s dirty face.
  • I have issues.  I still believe the crazy lie that God’s acceptance of me is based on my performance.  I’m still living in a small story that is all about me.  That is the raw of it, straight from my ugly.  And I am left wondering what the Lord thinks about my mess.  I don’t have to wonder long.
  • My need for justice and my demand for payment have paralyzed me and oftentimes those in my family from living in freedom and joy.
  • He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  Ecclesiastes 3:11
  • For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.  Colossians 3:3
  • God, who is love, loves you.  Now, you can love others by serving as he leads.  God says you already measure up in Christ (2 Corinthians 3:5-6).  All your needs are met in Christ (Philippians 4:19).  Now, you can listen and respond to his voice.  In Christ, your spirit is united with God’s Spirit so it is possible to avoid sin (Colossians 3:5-11).  You are righteous because of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21).  Now you are free to live like it’s true.
  • Colossians 3
    Receive “let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.” v15
    Remain “let the word of Christ richly dwell within you.” v16
    Respond “whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” v17
    Remember “set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.  For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”  v.2-3
  • There is no other hope but the truth of Christ in you.
  • You are not accepted because you are good.You are free to be good because you are accepted. You are not responsible to have it all together.You are free to respond to the One who holds all things together.You do not have to live up to impossible expectations.You are free to wait expectantly on Jesus, the One who is both author and perfecter of your faith. 
  • When it seems like the situation calls for me to stand up and take charge, Jesus gives me permission to remain still, if only on the inside, to trust deeply and fully that he will be strong on my behalf.
  • When the Spirit of the living God lives inside of you, then your living is also your worship.
  • How can I get my mind to line up with my reality?  To act differently, I must think differently.  Until my beliefs change, my mask will stay on tight.  My mind needs to be rewired.
  • When I don’t set my mind on truth, my mind automatically sinks into shame.  And shame opens wide the door to fear.  It is so crafty, this fear, that I take it on as my very identity.
  • When the truth does’t feel true is when we begin to believe it isn’t.  Satan’t biggest, most effective weapon against good girls may not be lust or slander or adultery or addiction.  It’s forgetfulness.
  • I am the Lord your God.  I am you refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Psalm 46:1
  • Now to Him who is able to do far more 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.  Ephesians 3:20-21
  • Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17
  • Remember you have a choice.  Remember to let peace rule.  Remember to believe God’s truth even when it doesn’t feel true.  Remember that your life is hidden with Christ in God, you no longer have to manufacture your own safe places.  And when we forget to remember?  We don’t have to travel over mountains and rough terrain to get back to God.  Simply receive and believe that the truth is still true, and purpose to safely inside him.

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