Saturday, April 20, 2013

Days Like These [A Book Review]


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Sidenote—my heart has been so heavy this past week, I just have not felt like blogging much.  I wanted to spend time being present with the ones I love and feel thankful for the life I’m living.  Just in case you missed me. :) **

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You may recognize the author of this book, Kristian Anderson, from a YouTube video that went viral a few years back…or maybe even from being on Oprah after said video.  Either way, he was a remarkable man with an incredible story.

The book, Days Like These, is a collection of blog entries from Kristian.  Kristian documented his journey living with stage 4 cancer in his liver and continued to do so through his very last days.  There are also a few additional entries written by his wife before being published.

This is the YouTube video made by Kristian for his wife’s birthday:

As you can see from this video, Kristian loved his wife and sons very very much.  This story was about his journey through cancer yes, but it was much more than that.  Through this journey he had the most incredible faith in God.  Not only did he have unswerving faith through the most unfortunate of circumstances, but it was unbelievable to see how intricately God used Kristian for His own will.

While reading this book I found myself folding the corner of every other page or so because I wanted to remember the things he was saying. It was packed with so much wisdom—and lessons we all need to learn.

For instance, Kristian writes about gratitude for those around him:

Precancer I felt I was defined by my job, my skills, and the outcomes they produced for myself, my family, or my clients…I still believe in excellence and a good work ethic, but I have realized that life is not about what you have or what you do… It’s about who walks beside you on your way.  You can surround yourself with all different kinds of people, but it’s only when you are being hammered by the storm that you learn not only what’s inside yourself but what’s inside those surrounding you.”

I think the craziest thing about this was that he never once doubted the power of God.  He knew that God was using this illness for His purpose, but he did not know how many people his story would reach, touch and change.  Myself being one of them.  He was never spiteful towards God, but instead knew of God as love, and nothing less.

I am not being punished here…My God does not delight in spiteful retribution.  If you think He does, then maybe we’re not talking about the same God.  I serve a God who promised He would never leave me or forsake me…I know who my God is and what I mean to Him.  For anyone who believes that God is some cranky old man, looking to dish a punishment on us poor unsuspecting mortals, let me tell you now—He is not like that.  Love is not like that.”

I would write down a hundred more quotes if I could because there is so many good things written, but I won’t.  Instead I will strongly urge everyone to read this book.  It is truly a heartfelt story about a man with unswerving faith.  A man whose life was shaped and molded by God without doubt, and who praised Him until his very last breath.  It is a sad book, yes.  But you will not regret reading it, it is truly inspirational.

The biggest lesson that I got out of this book is something we all obviously know, but the reminder is one we should have daily.  We’ve only been given one life, one shot to live and love and make an impact.  Treasure it.

“What am I thankful for?  I came up with a list a mile long…ultimately I came to the conclusion that I had so much to be thankful for I just couldn’t write it all down. Inside my body is something that has no purpose except to kill me.  It’s called cancer, and it’s a really nasty piece of work.  But instead of bitching and moaning, I find myself waking up every day thankful for one simple fact.  I’m alive.”

 

My Rating:

large_pink_glitter_star_with_silver_outline[22]large_pink_glitter_star_with_silver_outline[6]large_pink_glitter_star_with_silver_outline[10]large_pink_glitter_star_with_silver_outline[14]large_pink_glitter_star_with_silver_outline[12]

5 out of 5 pink sparkly stars.

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What was the last good book you read?!

***I received this book free from the publisher through BookSneeze blogger book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.***

4 comments:

  1. oooo....interest peaked!! going to have to remember this one for sure!! thanks so much for sharing! **and yes! so agree with your sidenote...such a tragic week. we've been out of town and i am so so so thankful for the time i had to just love on and enjoy my hubby & babies.**

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    1. It was a great read, but also very sad. I was crying so hard by the end of it. Another great reminder to treasure life and the precious time with our loved ones. :)

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  2. Hi! I just came across your blog and love it! Very inspirational! Thank you!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Kathleen! I really appreciate your comment. :)

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Thanks for your sweet words! I value each and every comment and do my best to respond to them all via email--so be sure to leave your email address. Hope you have an amazing day! :)