When I heard about this book, I wasn’t totally sure what to expect based on the title alone. I knew that I enjoyed several of Nancy’s other titles, but this one seemed a little different. When I finally got around to reading it, I was pleasantly surprised by the contents. This book represents both Nancy’s worldview and a powerful study into the book of Daniel. She even tackles some of the prophetic parts that many other Christian authors are scared to touch in a way that is relevant to modern audiences. This book is another great treasure among the wisdom shared by Nancy in her writings ~ Bethel
This world can be a scary place to live, especially in the times we live in today. It’s hard enough at times for us to keep our heads above the water as we juggle the trials and struggles of our daily lives, especially when we find ourselves amid crises that we did not expect. But then the struggles of our personal lives become compounded by the tumultuous social and political times we live in. It’s no wonder that we have a mental health crisis on the rise and it seems to only be getting worse. For those of us that are Christians, we want to find peace and hope, but the sounds of the chaos in our lives and world tend to drown out the peace we find. It makes us ask the question: how do we find peace when we don’t always know what the future holds?
In her book Heaven Rules, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth shares how choosing to take to heart the two-word phrase of the book’s title is the key to calming our fears and finding our courage amid a chaotic world. Nancy teaches her readers that “Heaven Rules” (sometimes abbreviated as “HR”) can become a powerful mantra that can keep us anchored to the truth of God’s word, reminding us that God has control over the micro (the tiny details of our personal circumstances) and the macro (the big picture of what’s happening in your life or even the world). By walking through the book of Daniel, we learn about the prominence of this theme through the book, as well as the consequences when even the mightiest of earthly rulers choose to ignore Heaven’s rule. She even tackles the prophetic half of the book in a way that is contemporary but also biblically sound.
However, I have a few minor criticisms that are unrelated to the content of the book:
1) I don’t understand why this book does not mention the book of Daniel in its subtitle. I believe this to be an unwise marketing choice, because people browsing for the book have no idea that the author is reflecting on the book of Daniel unless they read the book’s description online or the flap of the inside cover. That is a detail that should be included in the subtitle and the back cover so there is no confusion.
2) This small hardcover book is an awkward size. To get a hardcover book with a dustjacket on this relatively short book, they have to make it a smaller trim size that makes it uncomfortable to hold for long periods of time. I had to take the dustjacket off to read it, and even then it was still uncomfortable to hold for too long. I have never had that problem with a physical book before, so it was quite frustrating. Given its short length, this book would have been better suited as a thin paperback. I recommend reading the eBook version for this reason.
Despite these issues, this book is inspirational, as it challenges its readers to use “Heaven rules” as the lens through which they view and interact with the world. It has the power to calm our worst fears and anxieties, give hope to those who feel hopeless, and inspire courage in the fearful. With these powerful and biblical sound teaching at the forefront, this is a book that I highly recommend. Get your copy today!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review
So excited to share that the trailer for my book is now available on YouTube! Please share either this blog post or the YouTube link! I am also excited to be working on a video series for the book on YouTube and possibly a live event for the book! If you want to learn more, make sure to stay tuned!
For this next sneak peek of Beyond Your Wardrobe, I am going to share an excerpt from chapter 5 - "It's What's Inside that Counts." My next post about the book will be when it is finally available. If you want to learn more, stay tuned to this blog!
One of the problems I see with the way modesty is addressed in many churches is that it is almost exclusively based on the clothes you wear. Although some churches get it right, others struggle with making it all about the rules without addressing your heart attitude. The truth is that attitude is everything when it comes to modesty. Most of us don’t think of that, but it remains true:
The way that you dress reflects the condition of your heart.
This concept really should make you think twice when you get dressed in the morning. Your outside reflects what’s happening inside your heart. This means that there may be times when a woman may be appropriately covered, but because she still has an unhealthy desire for attention, she has an immodest attitude. In moments when I encounter young women like this, it grieves me to see them reflecting the struggles of their hearts in their clothing choices. This is why it’s important to make sure your insides match your outsides.
Before we dive into the main passage for this chapter, I want to take a look at a story about when one of God’s prophets had to learn a lesson about physical beauty. Samuel would be the last of the judges that reigned over Israel when they were governed by a theocracy (letting God be their king with human judges being God’s spokesman), but the people insisted on having a king so that they could be like the nations around them. Samuel was upset that they wouldn’t listen to God, but God assured Samuel that it would be alright and that He would reveal the right man to Samuel. The man God chose was named Saul. Through a series of events, Saul and one of his father’s servants found themselves in the same town as Samuel and God revealed that this man was meant to be king. Samuel probably knew Saul was king material from the first time he looked at him. The Scriptures tell us that Saul was tall and handsome (1 Samuel 9:2). Anointing him probably seemed like a no-brainer. God said Saul would be the one to save Israel from the Philistines. It all sounded very promising.
However, it didn’t take very long for King Saul to stop listening to the Lord’s instruction. On more than one occasion, Saul only obeyed part of the Lord’s commands instead of all of them. He started to try to solve problems on his own and do things his way. After multiple offenses and warnings, Samuel declared that the Lord had rejected Saul as king and would choose another to take his place. Eventually, the Lord would send Samuel to see Jesse of Bethlehem to choose one of his sons to anoint as the next king of Israel. To make sure that Saul would not discover his plan, God told Samuel to invite Jesse and his sons to offer a sacrifice with him. As they were doing so, Samuel saw Jesse’s oldest son, Eliab. Samuel thought for sure that he would be the Lord’s anointed. But God said to him,
“Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7 ESV)
At the end of the day, after seeing seven of Jesse’s sons, Samuel asked to see the youngest. When David arrived, straight from the fields with the herds, the Lord confirmed that he would be the Lord’s anointed.
I think it’s interesting to note that although David was described as having beautiful eyes, he was also described as being “ruddy,” or reddish, in appearance. I believe that David didn’t immediately strike Samuel’s eye as being king material, especially since Saul had been tall and handsome. I think that’s part of the reason that the Lord had to essentially tell Samuel, “I’m picking this man for his heart, not his appearance. Be prepared, because this guy might not be much to look at.”
We live in a world where we judge everyone and everything by external appearances. But in this story, we learn that God doesn’t judge a book by its cover. He cares more about our hearts being in line with His will than He does about our physical appearance. Saul might have been easy on the eyes, but he didn’t have his heart in line with the Lord. David, on the other hand, may not have been much to look at as a ruddy shepherd, but he had the heart willing to do what God asked of him. He later became remembered as a man after God’s own heart. Like David, if your heart is in the right place, that makes you beautiful to God, no matter what anyone else says. I believe that this is a lesson that we all need to learn...
Like what you read so far? Then make plans to order your copy of Beyond Your Wardrobe today! Preorder is available now for the ebook through any of the following links:
Paperback will be available on Amazon and
Barnes & Noble by February 21, 2020.
In case you haven't heard the news yet, I have a BIG announcement to make:
I am about to self-publish my first book – Beyond Your Wardrobe: Finding Freedom in Embracing God’s Call to Modesty and Unfading Beauty
It’s hard for me to believe that this dream is finally becoming a reality. Just a few months ago, it seemed like a dream that would take years to achieve. But around Christmas last year, it became clear that this was possible and attainable. When trying to decide what the book should be about, the topic of modesty was always at the top of my list. It’s surprising to me how quickly the words and the messages came together, but I guess that’s what happens when you let God use something you are passionate about. I have invested so much of my time and energy into this project, but I have also poured my heart in a message I believe God wants me to proclaim to women and teen girls that need to hear it. I hope that you will be willing to support me on this journey. Let me know if you have any questions about the book or how I'm publishing it ~ Bethel
Does this word make you want to cringe? Do you have images in your head of a woman wearing dresses from a hundred years ago, never going on a date? Do you have memories of strict rules or dress codes that drive you crazy? Then maybe you’ve had some of the following thoughts run through your head. “I don’t want to wear clothes that are out of style!” “Modesty is so out of date.” “I should be able to dress however I want; it’s my body.” Maybe, the opposite is true for you. You’ve always wanted to dress modestly, but you have a hard time standing strong in your convictions when the world tries to sell you so many lies about modesty and beauty. You wished everyone valued modesty as you do, but no one around you seems to value your standards for fashion. Either way, we all feel weighed down by a standard it seems no one can keep. It makes us ask the question: is modesty really all about clothes and keeping rules?
In my new book, Beyond Your Wardrobe, you will learn that modesty is about so much more than the clothes we wear or keeping a bunch of rules. Instead, modesty is an attitude that once you learn to adapt it will lead to a life of freedom in Christ. This begins when we choose to recognize that much of what we believe about modesty and physical beauty are lies that we must reject, least we remain in bondage to them. Then we lay the foundation for learning the truth about this incredible character trait through the lens of God’s word. Breaking down many key Scriptures into our current cultural context, it becomes clear that when we embrace our identity in Christ, you will naturally desire to dress modestly, not out of obligation, but out of gratitude for what He has done for you. Then you will look at yourself the way that God does, and you will learn how to adapt your wardrobe to be appropriate for every situation. When you do, your perspective on modesty and clothes will never be the same. With the inclusion of an appendix about male modesty and links to videos and articles online, this will not be like any Christian modesty book you’ve read before. Instead, it will be an invitation on a journey to discovering the beauty and power that modesty has for all who are will to embrace it. I hope you will consider joining me on this incredible journey.
Around February 21, 2020, the paperback will be available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The e-book will be available on Kindle, Nook, iBooks, Google Books and more. If you want to learn more about this book and this project, stay tuned to this blog!
Lion's Eyes Reviews is a blog dedicated to reviews of Christian books, most of which are non-fiction, but may also occasionally review movies and musicals. It will also feature the work Bethel does to help launch and promote the works of Christian authors.
The name is derived from one of Bethel's favorite books, Through the Eyes of a Lion by Levi Lusko. Through these reviews, Bethel hope to give Christians the tools they need to look at the world "through the eyes of a lion" so they can find the courage to "run toward the roar".
To find the detailed archives of these reviews, you can check them out here:
Books In Review
Movies in Review
Broadway In Review
To understand the rating used in these reviews, click here
Bethel Grove is a Christian young woman who loves to read and write, eat Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Blizzards, and disciple teen girls as a youth leader. What started as a hobby of writing book reviews and doing deep biblical studies eventually led her down the path of self-publishing and helping other Christian authors launch their books. She hopes to someday be a vocational youth minister and well-known author.
Author Bethel Grove
Simple Youth Ministry
Teen Girl Youth Ministry
Join Bethel's Inner Circle Newsletter
Sign up for Bethel's newsletter to receive monthly updates of Bethel's work, and you will receive a sample chapter of Redeeming Cinderella and a copy of the exclusive eBook Why This Millennial Isn't Leaving the Church for free