Heart Wide Open, Book Review

Heart Wide Open: Trading Mundane Faith for an Exuberant Life with Jesus
by Shellie Rushing Tomlinson

With a little Southern charm, a little friendly honesty, and a lot of genuine passion for God and His Word, Shellie Rushing Tomlinson’s book, Heart Wide Open, encourages women to trade in formulaic devotions and rigid expectations of ‘quiet time’ for a real and relevant adventure of living every moment with God.  After struggling herself with routine faith, she finally got honest enough to say, “God, I don’t love you like I should, but I want to love you.  Help me!”  That heartfelt prayer stirred up a passion for His Word that spills over into the pages of this book.Heart-Wide-Open_HighRes

The book reads easily and naturally, like sharing a conversation with a passionate Jesus-girl over a cup of coffee.  Each chapter is subtitled with an honest prayer such as, “Lord, I want to abandon everything to follow you, but I’m scared of what that might look like!”  With these prayers, Shellie covers issues such as building faith, obedience, what to do when you don’t like reading the Bible, and loving others even when it’s difficult.

Each chapter ends with a short prayer to start you on a journey of inviting God to help you in the weak areas and in the midst of your faith struggles.  In the back of the book, Tomlinson includes a Bible study and discussion guide that would help individuals and small groups go deeper.

Sometimes we feel like we need to already love God’s Word, know God’s Word, feel close to God, be full of faith, and have it all together before we come to Him.  But this is a book that helps you pursue Christ even when it’s hard, you don’t feel like it, don’t know how to do it, or maybe even don’t have a passion for it and yet you truly you want something more in your relationship with God.  You bring all that to Him, all that weakness, all those shortcomings, and ask for His help.

I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”