Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. (And then I went and bought a bunch of copies to give away to my friends and family.)
A few years ago, I came across some beautiful artwork that wove Scripture verses with watercolor in a way that brought the words to living color. It was breathtaking and I couldn’t wait to see more of this artist’s work and to share her prints with my friends.
The artist is Ruth Chou Simons and she has been sharing her art through her blog and online shoppe GraceLaced for several years now. She is also writes regular posts on Instagram where she offers encouragement and hope, and glimpses into her life as a wife and an “unlikely mama” to six boys.
Last fall, I was privileged to help welcome Ruth to the Women Encouraged conference retreat here in Grande Prairie, and this summer I am thrilled to be included in the launch team for her book which releases September 1st, 2017.
This beautiful book, titled GraceLaced: Discovering Timeless Truths Through Seasons of the Heart is more than just eye-candy, full of pretty pictures, though it is full of beauty, and engaging illustrations.
Whatever season of life we find ourselves in, we need our hearts in tune with Scripture, eyes directed toward Christ’s work on our behalf, and a deep awareness of the way the Holy Spirit works in our lives. Ruth set out to assist us with this through this book, and she has accomplished her goal very well.
Part of what makes this book so beautiful is that Ruth isn’t offering cute Christian answers, or quippy one-liners and trite sayings designed to make us giggle but leaving us empty. Nor is she trying to replace your personal study of the Word of God.
This book functions well in its intended purpose as a worship primer, directing the reader to consider God’s work, and to hold up His truth as our standard for living, the lens through which we can see and know ourselves.
I loved the entire GraceLaced book, but Ruth’s chapter on Rest stood out to me especially.
As we enter a new school year, and our focus is on new schedules and new priorities, I was thankful for the chance to reflect on what it means to be refreshed and at rest in God. I have been spending so much of my time and energy and self these past months preparing for multiple events, schedules, needs, and agendas.
I’m so grateful for reminders like this chapter because I’m being directed to Scripture to encourage me to rest from my labors, relying on God to “build the house” and also to rest from “laboring in self-preservation and self-righteousness”, as Ruth puts it.
Ruth has genuinely been gifted with the ability to convey truth, goodness, and beauty with both a brush and a pen.
I really hope you will get a copy of this book and use it to remind yourself of the perennial truth within the Word of God. He truly is faithful in every season, always at work in us, caring for our needs, pruning us to bear more fruit.
And as Ruth so gently reminds us, “you don’t have to be blooming to be growing.”