November 26, 2012

Nowhere but Up: The Story of Justin Bieber's Mom

This book was not what I was expecting, coming from a pop star's mom.

Instead I found a heart wrenching testimony of an abused girl who desperately wanted to be loved.

I also wasn't expecting an overly Godly book from a pop star's mom.

But that's what I found, a story of a woman who sought God in her pain and glorifies Him through her story.

Pattie's experiences of sexual abuse are shared in an honest and no holds bared way, which may be hard for some to read. It was hard for me. You feel her pain, a pain God is healing, but is not completely gone. I really appreciated this honesty. Just because you become a Christian doesn't mean you don't suffer with pain or mess up sometimes. God heals in his time, not ours. And He often does this by building our trust, letting us learn in time, He is trustworthy.

I'm reading another book right now called 'C is for Christmas' by father and son, David and Warren Wiersbe. In a section about hope they talk about how the Holy Spirit sustains us and builds us up in our walk with God. I found it encouraging and thought I'd share it here:

"The Holy Spirit does not let us focus on what is wrong or painful. He consistently points us to Jesus, who is our source of hope. The Spirit works to reproduce the character of Jesus in us, genuinely transforming us. The hope provided by the Spirit is not a trickle, but a constant stream, so that we 'overflow with hope.' That doesn't mean we ignore life's realities or turn a blind eye to serious issues. It means having an undefeated forward look because the Holy Spirit is present and at work in us."

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

I learnt a lot from reading this book. One thing that was really interesting to me was how she thought of God before she became a Christian. She was completely disinterested in Him. It gave me a better understanding of how non-believers feel and think and how to be more sensitive to this.

This also reinforced how we as Christians are not here to convert people to our religion, make them agree with us or prove that we are right, but we are here to share the Truth and love as Christ loved so that HE can change their lives.

Pattie just needed one person to love her like Christ loves her. That's all it took.

After I read this book I went online and read a bunch of reviews. Most were kind and respectful, but some were not. Some said things like she needs to 'get over it' or called it a' pathetic book' mocking her abuse.

This is why so many women who are abused never speak out. They are afraid of being mocked or told to get over it. They are afraid the feelings of unworthiness will be affirmed by comments like this.

One reviewer said the book was too 'Jesus-y.' But for me that's what made this book so special.

Jesus is the one, and only one, who will never  let you down, never  mock you and never  tell you to get over it.

He is a man of sorrows, which means he feels our pain and grief deeply and suffers along with us. Long ago a prophet named Isaiah described Him this way:


"He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him."

When he sees us weeping in our pain he comes and sits and weeps with us.

In the gospel of John we see a woman weeping because her brother has died. Jesus doesn't go to her and tell her to stop crying and get over it, instead he weeps with her, then takes her to the tomb and raises her brother from the dead! That's what he can do for you. Come to Him and He'll weep with you, He can raise you from the pain and deadness in your life.

He also knows what it feels like to have your trust betrayed, to be hated and despised.

The name Judas brings up thoughts of betrayal, but what we often forget is that Judas was one of Jesus's closest friends. Jesus knows that feeling of complete betrayal from someone he should have been able to trust.

Jesus asked "Whom are you seeking?" They answered Him, "Jesus of Nazareth." Jesus said to them, "I am He." And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them" John 18:5

Unlike those who abuse and betray, Jesus is trustworthy and kind. He will build you up and remind you, you are worthy in Him. When you come to Jesus, you will never be alone.

Pattie is a brave woman to share her story. The amount of women who have scars of child sexual abuse is staggering and I pray this book speaks to woman out there who have been used and abused, that there is a God who loves you, you are not alone. And when you mess up He's a God of second chances, third chances, seventy times seven chances. His grace is sufficient, He is enough, He is all you need.

On the lighter side, if you are a Justin Bieber fan, yes, she talks a lot about him too. :)  From when she first heard him cry (sing), to raising him as a single mom, and how he got into the music business. I loved reading about their relationship. Pattie loves her boy and Justin is a wonderful example to kids everywhere on how to treat your parents with love and respect. I highly recommend this one.

Buy it HERE on Amazon




19 comments:

  1. I really sense god in both their lives - pray God continues to bless and keep them. I look forward to reading as I am also a fellow SA survivor who lived long. As an unbeliever before at age 28 accepting Christ. Thanks for the review and your insights.

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    1. Hi Dawn, glad you stopped by. God bless :)

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  2. Wow! Sounds like an excellent book! One of my, "must reads" for the coming year!
    Thanks for your link up Tuesday on UNITE! What a fun way to connect with so many Godly women, such as yourself!
    Blessings,
    Jen

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    1. Thanks for the kind words Jen. Pattie's story is very inspirational. Glad to hear it's on your must read list. :)

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  3. Sweet! Yeah, I never would have expected like this from a pop star family story. There's redemption everywhere, isn't there?!

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    1. Yes! God is good and finds us just where we are. :)

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  4. Hi Cathy, I would never have even sought this book out but now you have made me curious. i will be looking to get one to read. i so much prefer God glorifying books about others than fiction these days.
    God bless and thank you so much for linking up on Winsome Wednesday. I look forward to seeing you there again next week
    Tracy

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    1. To be honest I was a little embarrassed to take this book (about a pop stars mom) out at the library, not knowing what it was all about, but I saw it was selling at christian book stores so I thought I'd give it a try. I'm so glad I did. She definitely glorifies God in her book. It's beautiful.

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  5. Thank you for a great, and surprising review.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Meredith! Hope you get a chance to read it. :)

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  6. wow, i love that she is using her platform to bring glory to God! how wonderful! thank you for sharing.

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    1. You can feel her love for God and a real relationship with him in her book. That's what I loved about it the most. :)

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  7. I had seen this book and wondered about it. Thanks for your review.
    Found you through Renee's blog hop. :O)

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    1. Glad you stopped by, it's a great book, hope you get a chance to read it too. :)

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  8. Great Review Cathy. Now I want to read this. You have made me curious and I really enjoy memoirs. I think you might enjoy my memoir: "Elsie- Adventures of an Arizona Schoolteacher 1913-1916." It is on Renee Smiths blog hop. You can look at the website there and let me know if you'd like to read it. I would like to be your Goodreads friend, if I could figure out how to do that. I see we have a number of books in common. We were missionaries for 40 years and we are now retiring. The Lord has sustained us and blessed for many years. I am an avid reader and look forward to your recommendations.

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    1. Hi Barbara, I would love to be friends on goodreads! Your book sounds interesting. I'll check your website out. Thanks for stopping by! :)

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  9. Replies
    1. In more ways then one. :) She was encouraged to abort her baby, glad she chose life!

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  10. You made me very interested in Pattie's book, Cahty! Thanks for sharing this at Doorkeeper. Blessings!

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Feel free to leave your own thoughts in the comments. I try to respond to all of them by the end of the week. : )

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