Craving Grace… a Tyndale Review

For Lisa Velthouse’s whole life, Christianity had been about getting things right. Obeying her parents. Not drinking. Not cursing. Not having premarital sex. Vowing to save her first kiss until she got engaged, even writing a book called . . . well, Saving My First Kiss. (This, it turns out, does not actually help a girl get a date.) Yet after two decades of trying to earn God’s okay, she found her faith was lonely, empty, and unsatisfying. So she turned to more discipline, of course: fasting! By giving up her favorite foods—sweets—Lisa hoped to somehow discover true sweetness and meaning in her relationship with God. Until, one night at a wedding, she denied herself the cake but failed in such a different, unexpected, and world-rocking way that it challenged everything she thought she knew about God and herself. Craving Grace is the true story of a faith dramatically changed: how in one woman’s life God used a bitter heart, a broken promise, and the sweetness of honey to reveal the stunning wonder that is grace. (from the cover jacket)


Lisa Velthouse’s book Craving Grace is a memoir and reads as such.  She shares her struggles, shortcomings and heartache as she journey’s through life as a 20-something searching for God’s favor.  And, for Lisa, it is in the search that she finds what it was she was craving… grace.  God’s grace.


It’s seems as if discovering grace is one of the buzz words in Christian bookstores these days.  Seemingly endless titles exist written by one who discovered, sometimes by accident, the depth of God’s grace in their own life and have written their story for others to read.  It also seems that most of these works have been written by women who have always been “good” but find themselves missing a loving relationship with their Savior.  


Lisa Velthouse’s Craving Grace is raw.  It is honest.  In fact, some may say there is way too much TMI (too much information) revealed in the pages of her book.   Honestly, I might agree with that.  While this isn’t my favorite book on grace, Lisa does share a short, sweet story in her second chapter that, in my opinion, sets her book apart.   


Lisa shares of a rabbi in a Jewish classroom who, on the very first day of school, passes out brand-new copies of the Torah to his 5-year old students.  As the students watch, the rabbi places a small square of wax paper on top of each copy of the Torah.  After he finishes covering each copy of the Torah, he drops a small amount of honey on top of the wax paper.  When all the students have a copy of the Torah in front of them topped with wax paper and honey, he tells them to taste the honey and says, “Never! Forget! What God! Tastes Like!” (paraphrased  from Craving Grace pages 13-18). 


It is this sweet story that becomes the backbone of Velthouse’s book and her journey to taste grace… to taste God.   She finds that keeping rules and being a good girl are unsatisfying without the sweet taste of God in her everyday.  And, that in tasting God, she sees that He is good and loving in her life.


Tyndale House Publishers will release Lisa Velthouse’s book Craving Grace in May 2011.  Craving Grace will be available in both hardcover and ebook form.


Lisa Velthouse also blogs at www.lisavelthouse.com.


**disclaimer… I was sent a copy of this book because of my affiliation with Tyndale Blog Network.  I received no other compensation.

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