Book Review

Weekend Book Review

A Confident Heart: How to Stop Doubting Yourself & Live in the Security of God’s Promises

By: Renee

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of sound mind.”

2 Timothy 1:7 KJV

A Confident Heart had been sitting on my wish-list e-bookshelf for months. The author, Renee Swope, was a speaker I’d heard on Proverbs 31 radio broadcasts, and I was intrigued by this book she had written boasting a life lived confidently. I quickly grabbed her free devotional (see The 7-Day Doubt Diet), but I still haven’t cracked the cover. When Wonderfully WOVEN set October’s theme at “Confidence,” I knew this would be the month to finally read Swope’s book.

What I didn’t know was just how poignant this book would be at this season in my life. I tend to be a worrywart. As a teen, Matthew 6 was well worn in my Bible from numerous highlights, scribbled notes and repeated readings. Needless to say, struggling with anxiety isn’t anything new for me. But when my world recently took a turn I hadn’t expected, I felt like as though my heart might give-out. It was kind of like that feeling you get going down the first and highest hill on a roller coaster . . . except this time, there was no assurance of a safe landing and I was not having fun. Sharing my awful feelings of foreboding with some of my girlfriends in prayer, my one friend (who happens to be a nurse) mentioned that it sounded like panic attacks. A Confident Heart? It couldn’t have come at a better time!

Swope tackles feelings of doubt (both of ourselves and of God), insecurities, full-blown (and often unrealistic) fear and disabling worry. She shares many of her own struggles in these areas, and I was reminded that she is an imperfect Jesus-girl just like me (and you). She nails the Enemy of our souls and the lies he feeds us. But my absolute favorite part of the book is how she incorporates scripture.

At the end of every chapter, Swope includes a personal prayer for us to read silently or out loud to the Lord, over others or ourselves. The prayer is made up of several scriptures, the references to each can be found at the bottom of each written prayer. Nothing is more powerful than praying scripture. Hebrews 4:12 tells us that God’s word is sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing our very soul. It reminds us who God is and how He sees us, and I personally believe that God loves hearing His children praying His words.

In addition to the prayers, throughout each chapter, and more specifically in the final chapter, Swope incorporates scriptures that remind us of the promises of and the confidence we can have in God. She encourages reading God’s word (with helpful hints to set up at DATE with Him every day), memorizing it, speaking it out loud, believing it, sharing it and living it.

Although my book is a library copy, I believe A Confident Heart to be a good resource to keep on hand. In fact, I would love to see it incorporated into a study Bible some day! There were too many golden nuggets to catch in one reading! The book would make a perfect companion to your own devotions (or as a weapon in your personal battle of confidence-less-ness), to share with a friend or to study as a group!

I’d love to share Swope’s conclusion to her book—a powerful prayer, based on scripture and given on behalf of her readers . . .

I pray that the glorious Father, the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, would give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know Christ better. Then you will have deeper insight. You will know the confidence that He calls you to have and the glorious wealth that God’s people inherit. You will also know the unlimited greatness of His power as it works with might and strength for us, the believers. In Jesus’ name, Amen. (Eph. 1:17-19)

p.219

Swope, Renee. A Confident Heart. 2011. Baker Publishing Group. Grand Rapids, MI.

*Originally published on WonderfullyWOVEN.com.

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