Adoption · Books · Organization · Religious · Reviews

7 by Jen Hatmaker {Book Review}

Description:
American life can be excessive, to say the least. That’s what Jen Hatmaker had to admit after taking in hurricane victims who commented on the extravagance of her family’s upper middle class home. She once considered herself unmotivated by the lure of prosperity, but upon being called “rich” by an undeniably poor child, evidence to the contrary mounted, and a social experiment turned spiritual was born.

7 is the true story of how Jen (along with her husband and her children to varying degrees) took seven months, identified seven areas of excess, and made seven simple choices to fight back against the modern-day diseases of greed, materialism, and overindulgence.

Food. Clothes. Spending. Media. Possessions. Waste. Stress. They would spend thirty days on each topic, boiling it down to the number seven. Only eat seven foods, wear seven articles of clothing, and spend money in seven places. Eliminate use of seven media types, give away seven things each day for one month, adopt seven green habits, and observe “seven sacred pauses.” So, what’s the payoff from living a deeply reduced life? It’s the discovery of a greatly increased God—a call toward Christ-like simplicity and generosity that transcends social experiment to become a radically better existence.

My Thoughts:
Simplifying is a thing these days. There are loads of books and magazine articles showing ways to cut down and live with less. Jen Hatmaker decides to take it one step further and live with SEVEN. Each month she and her family pick a theme {food, clothing, possessions, media, waste, spending, and stress} which all revolve around the number “7“. 
Gathering some friends and her family, she embarks on a journey of fasts. “Seven will be an exercise in simplicity with one goal: to create space for God’s kingdom to break through.” (from Intro of ebook) After introducing her project and friends “the council”, you get a month to month diary account of her experiment. Her goal is to be changed and transformed to follow Jesus more authentically. It seems to work.
I liked Jen’s writing. She is funny, open, engaging, and you feel like you could be sitting at a coffee shop chatting with her when you read. You meander through her months learning about the topic but also about her upcoming adoption (which I certainly enjoyed), her daily life, and some of the pop culture things she enjoys. Her failures and reality are also present, she lets you know where she falls short and what she is doing to work on these issues. I don’t know about you but that inspires me. It feels like a conversation too in that I wondered if a few sentences of what she relates would have been better left unsaid.
I was reading the chapter on giving away stuff right before we had to go through all of our stateside storage and get rid of about half. Perfect timing as I felt prepared to be less sentimental and more brutal. 
The idea of 7 is catchy. It caused me to at least ponder the possibility of following in her footsteps and it has spurred on others like this blog which my friend, Janine, (who had not read 7 and did not know I was) shared with me. I think Jen Hatmaker may have caused a little revolution here. 
I enjoyed reading 7 and would recommend it.  Do keep in mind this is her, her life, and her revelations and not a “how to” guide to living with less. Your take away may be different then mine, but you will be challenged.
This book was given to me by NetGalley and B & H Publishing Group in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review.
Adoption · Giveaway · Jewelry · Reviews

Blueberry Silver Jewelry Review and Giveaway

africa_stamp_001_copyAngela of Blueberry Silver is in the process of adopting!  I met her via the Internet because she is using the same adoption agency, America World Adoption, that brought Asher to us. 100% of the profits from her shop Blueberry Silver go towards the adoption! Please consider making a purchase to help one orphan find a home!
I asked Angela if I could review the Africa piece and trust me it is as precious in person as pictured. (And by that I mean her picture, the one I pulled from her website, not my photos. My camera did not capture the beauty of it!) I like the silver disk and the little pearl compliment, so cute!  I have worn it most of the week and have had people rave about it! I really love it too!! Each time I glance at it in the mirror while washing my hands or drying my hair, I am reminded to pray for Angela, Katie, Janet, Donna and my other friends who are in the process of adopting.

The Africa necklace would be a perfect choice for someone adopting from there, someone with a missionary who lives there, or a prayer warrior and even as a reminder to pray. However, Keep in mind when you visit Blueberry Silver, Angela and her mom offer various creative choices and many can be customized! They are very willing to work with you and are a delight! Here is a small sample…

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and
Just for one of my readers
Blueberry Silver is offering this cute silver
Birdie necklace
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Below are the various ways you can enter.
Please remember to leave one comment for each.
Comments will close at midnight on Monday, October 11TH.

TO ENTER:

Follow Blueberry Silver on Facebook. (They do monthly giveaways – it is worth following!  There is one running right now, so check it out!)

BONUS ENTRIES:

  1. Visit Blueberry Silver and tell me one other item you would like.
  2. Follow her blog at The Daily Ditch
  3. Follow Missional Mama (me) on Google Friend Connect.
  4. Blog about the giveaway and leave me the link.
  5. Subscribe to the Blueberry Silver Newsletter
  6. Add my button to your blog and leave a link.
  7. Add the Daily Ditch blog button to your blog and leave a link.
  8. Order something from Blueberry Silver and let me know what you ordered!
  9. Tweet about the giveaway and leave me a link.

Please remember that ordering from Blueberry Silver, helps bring one child home!

This product was given to me in exchange for my honest opinion. I was not obligated to give a good review.