“The middle is the place where our lives really live. This is the place where we have grown into the shapes of our souls even as we might have outgrown the shapes of our jeans.”
I’m smack dab in the middle stage with four busy kids ages eight to fifteen. The gas tank needs refueling as often as my energy level.
Time rushes by so fast and the years blur together. I want to savor the “very center of my story.”
And if you do too, then you will enjoy this book.
Lisa-Jo refers to the chapters as essays because they can all be read as separate reflections on midlife. There are 8 parts and I loved them all:
1. Why the Middle of Your Muffin Top Matters
2. Why the Middle of Your Marriage Matters
3. Why the Middle of Your Parenting Matters
4. Why the Middle of You Living Room Matters
5. Why the Middle of Your Failures Matter
6. Why the Middle of All Those Sports Practices Matters
7. Why the Middle of Your Friendship Matters
8. Why the Middle of Your Faith Matters
I loved the essay, My Favorite Muffin Top Photo, where she shares about having her picture taken with her daughter and gets so lost in the moment she didn’t notice her “generous muffin top” bulging over her jeans.
“I look at her and forget to worry about me, my hair, my pose, my outfit, my body image. All I see is her and she is the whole world, and, dear Jesus, please help me keep focusing less on me and more on her and let that spill over into other parts of my life too.”
I also loved the chapter, What You Don’t Know About Parenting, which gave words to the pain we feel when our kids struggle with failure and rejection.
In Why the Middle of Your Friendship Matters, she shares how she was terrified to speak at a conference with two of her favorite mentors and how they ministered to her.
“We live in a world where the enemy wants to trick us women into building walls between one another. Walls of comparison and insecurity and jealousy. But we are mentored by a God who builds walls of protection around His friends.”
Every essay felt like it spoke right into the middle of my life.
Lisa-Jo’s cheerful and funny personality fills her words, and makes her book enjoyable to read.
I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for being on the launch team. This book releases on July 23rd. You can preorder a book here.