Parenting by the Book: How Strong Women Pray
by Sylvia Cochran
Book Review: How Strong Women Pray
This is the fourth book by highly praised motivational speaker and no-nonsense Christian strong-woman Bonnie St. John. Qualification for motivating others did not come after long hours of college course work in family counseling, fiscal success, or attendance at seminary; instead, it is directly related to her unwillingness to take a defeatist attitude to life.
Ms. St. John has survived childhood abuse, a divorce, and a physical disability – only to rely on the power of prayer to ferret out the life’s lessons God intended her to learn. This enabled her to go on and graduate from Harvard University, become the first African American to win Olympic silver and bronze at the 1984 Paralympics in ski racing, become appointed to the White House National Economic Counsel, and to finally share her learning experiences and prayers with women and men across the country
It is a collection of 27 accounts of the power prayer holds. Amy Grant shared with Ms. St. John what it means to make time to pray, while Della Reese advocates her highly structured routine; Edie Falco divulges that prayer was the key to sobriety while other women share from their hearts the experiences with prayer while in positions of highly visible responsibility.
The power of this book rests in the duality of purpose: on the one hand it emphasizes Bonnie St. John’s long held belief and understanding that there is no adversity so difficult that it cannot be overcome or weathered with prayer; on the other hand it reveals to a sometimes jaded audience that no matter who you are, how much money you have in the bank, how great your name recognition and seemingly well put together your life may be, deep inside each and every one is a mess and only the power of God can bring order to a disordered life.
HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY intersperses biographical sketches of well known celebrities with suggestions for how to have a vibrant prayer life that will fit into any schedule. Christian parents will do well to read this book first alone and then with their kids to arrive at the realization that every person is offered by God the opportunity to lead a life filled with joy that is not dependent on fame or fortune but instead rests solely on the individual’s choice to recognize the personal joy in her or his life and actively – through deed and prayer – seek to achieve it.
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