Sunday, April 10, 2011

Plain Wisdom - Cindy Woodsmall & Miriam Flaud

Summary from Good Reads: Best-selling novelist Cindy Woodsmall might seem to have little in common with Miriam Flaud, a woman immersed in the culture of Old Order Amish. But with nine children and almost 60 years of marriage between them, Cindy and Miriam both have found the secrets to facing life with strength and grace. Whether enduring financial setbacks, celebrating new babies and times of prosperity, grieving the crushing losses in the deaths of family and friends, or facing disappointments with their respective communities—through it all they find guidance for each day by looking to God.

With poignant recollections, unexpected insights, and humorous tales, the two women welcome you into their unique friendship. You’ll also gain a rare glimpse into the traditions and ways of the Amish as Miriam recalls special occasions and shares family recipes throughout the book.

Plain Wisdom is a heartwarming celebration of God, womanhood, and the search for beauty that unites us all. So grab your cup and your quilt and settle in for a soul-comforting read with Plain Wisdom.

This non-fiction collection of stories sprouted from an unlikely friendship between author Cindy Woodsmall and an Old Order Amish wife and mother named Miriam Flaud. As the two women watched their friendship grow, the idea of a book began to form and then materialize. The result is this simple, but precious, collection of short stories from the lives of both women.

Woven through Plain Wisdom are stories showing how God has taught both women similar lessons through life despite their very different cultural background. As the book ranges in topic from friendship to spiritual growth to painful times and everything in between, readers are drawn into the lives of these two women. Though their lifestyles are very, very different, it is obvious that much in their hearts is the same.

The book threw several surprises my way, too, as my understanding of the Amish and their ways was broadened. I came away with a clearer picture of their grasp of grace. Their simple life is not a way to obtain salvation. Instead, it is what they believe is the best way to work out and live out their salvation, allowing their lives to be uncluttered by the distractions of modern technology. While I'm sure legalism rears its ugly head on many occasions, I am convinced that it is no more prevalent for them than it is for us.

A special thanks to WaterBrook Multnomah for allowing me to review this book in advance for my review.

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