Picking Dandelions: A Search for Eden Among Life's Weeds

Picking Dandelions: A Search for Eden Among Life's Weeds A memoir for the rest of us No great shocking conversion, just the beauty of simply belief Picking Dandelions is a memoir, a perspective of the life of Sarah Cunningham Beginning with her conversion story, traveling on with her through the crazy growing up days, and ending up in a place where she looks back on her life to see the hand of God, the reader finds wit, wisdom, humor, and delight.These are the stories of faith I enjoy reading Give me your ordinary life with your ordinary faith and A memoir for the rest of us No great shocking conversion, just the beauty of simply belief Picking Dandelions is a memoir, a perspective of the life of Sarah Cunningham Beginning with her conversion story, traveling on with her through the crazy growing up days, and ending up in a place where she looks back on her life to see the hand of God, the reader finds wit, wisdom, humor, and delight.These are the stories of faith I enjoy reading Give me your ordinary life with your ordinary faith and tell me how God broke through to make it a life adventure I do enjoy the strong testimony of life altering moments of conversion for some, but I also enjoy the sweet awakening in ordinary lives After all, the same blood saves both.Sarah Cunningham notes her first encounter with God by saying Somewhere between holding lightning bugs hostage in glass jars and sledding at mach speeds down Pennsylvania hillsides, I stumbled across the One referred to as God And further, Jesus made my hair fly back in the wind and that was enough for me I found this simply beautiful.What follows is a recounting of the her life as she continued in her faith It is a sweet recounting, filled with imaginative comparisons and always with fondness for her elusive faith Isn t that true for all of us She ends the book with stories of the impact and influence of her grandmother s love for gardening She discovers a connection between a life of discipleship and tending to a garden by stating I realized the secret my garden loving grandmother shared with God Picking weeds is a beautiful thing I loved this book for the way the author captures her walk with Jesus, it is in the sweet and enduring telling of the relationship I recommend it highly I enjoy having the opportunity to read new books, and lately I ve been seekingnon fiction to read I found that Sarah Cunningham s writings were being compared to Donald Miller, so her newest book , Picking Dandelions, caught my interest Sarah begins the story with her early Christian conversion, and how she learned to keep growing as a Christian throughout her life into adulthood The stories are a collection of events that range from her experience of 9 11 to her job as a teacher The I enjoy having the opportunity to read new books, and lately I ve been seekingnon fiction to read I found that Sarah Cunningham s writings were being compared to Donald Miller, so her newest book , Picking Dandelions, caught my interest Sarah begins the story with her early Christian conversion, and how she learned to keep growing as a Christian throughout her life into adulthood The stories are a collection of events that range from her experience of 9 11 to her job as a teacher The sections of the book provide a nice transition into each phase where she was discovering new things about her faith through these events that happened The story uses humor well, and the people featured in the story are memorable When I first began the story I thought it might be about the problems in the church but that was only a minor part, but her view and experience with what she has witnessed in the church definitely makes me interested in what she has to say in, Dear Church Letters from a Disillusioned Generation Some of the incidents she witnessed in the church are bad, but not shocking because I ve witnessed similar Hopefully this book brings a small awareness of those problems The comparisons to Donald Miller seem to drift no further beyond the hope to change the church, and the sense of humor I actually found Sarah Cunningham to be a bitrelatable because my upbringing wassimilar to hers This book is a good read for anyone If you re a Christian you ll probably find it as an encouragement to keep continually trying to grow in your faith instead of forgetting about it amongst life s obstacles You can find Picking Dandelionsavailable at I have to admit, I m a fiction fan This is the first memoir I have read that wasn t assigned for a school project That being said I fell in love with this book Sarah has a way of telling her story that makes you feel like you have been there every step of the way As she walks us through her childhood I was brought back to that same time in my life How many of us jumped from rock to rock to avoid the lava in the yard Did you sit in on, what my mom called grown up meetings, and sneakily ma I have to admit, I m a fiction fan This is the first memoir I have read that wasn t assigned for a school project That being said I fell in love with this book Sarah has a way of telling her story that makes you feel like you have been there every step of the way As she walks us through her childhood I was brought back to that same time in my life How many of us jumped from rock to rock to avoid the lava in the yard Did you sit in on, what my mom called grown up meetings, and sneakily make your vote known Who was that senior that asked you out as a freshman that you turned down Not only does Sarah show us these parts of her life but she leads is through them with purpose teaching us what she learned from them.Sarah show us glimpses into her time working in soup kitchens and homeless shelters and the wacky conversations that actually meant a lot that she had with the people there We get a glimpse into the aftermath of the World Trade Center disaster There is no way around it, expect to cry during this part The conversations Sarah has there are moving Who knew that while on a search for Eden disaster and heartache would be what brought you the closest to it.Sarah shows us her endless efforts to fix her flaws From her thoughts as a beginning gardener about just sprinkling some weed killer on them and hoping they all die and never come back, to the moment she discovers constant weeding is the only way to make her garden flourish, then to the realization that no matter how much you weed you need a master to fill up the empty holes in order to achieve that full life Each step along the way we, as readers, begin to see the yellow, dried up flowers the weeds have chocked out and the need for constant weeding, but most importantly the need for a Master in our lives.There are many little seeds that this book has placed in my heart This is how people grow, running into walls, but helping each other to grow again What a great outlook to have on growth Some things have to die so that others can live It s a hard Concept to accept but one that when accepted can change every aspect of our lives The dandelion s value is not determined by the quantity in which they grow, but by the insightful eye of the receiver What a Receiver we have that allows us, in our times of failing, to still be able to come to Him and be valued by Him Pushing Dandelions A Search for Eden Among Life s Weeds is a memoir of Sarah Cunningham, who has previously published a book called Dear Church Letters from a Disillusioned Generation Ever since reading Dear Church , I ve wanted to readfrom Sarah because I connected so much with her first book And I guess I was hoping to find outof the story behind that book.But that isn t what I found in reading Picking Dandelions Instead I found a story, still similar to mine, but diver Pushing Dandelions A Search for Eden Among Life s Weeds is a memoir of Sarah Cunningham, who has previously published a book called Dear Church Letters from a Disillusioned Generation Ever since reading Dear Church , I ve wanted to readfrom Sarah because I connected so much with her first book And I guess I was hoping to find outof the story behind that book.But that isn t what I found in reading Picking Dandelions Instead I found a story, still similar to mine, but divergent enough to keep me interested without throwing myself completely into a yup, that s me, too type of self help mindset that I ve done with other people s memoirs This is a very good thing, in case that isn t clear, because it requires me not to check out of my own story while taking in someone else s.For some reason the intro and first chapter were very slow for me, but after that, the pace picked up very quickly Where I really homed in are the chapters on Sarah s assisting efforts at Ground Zero after 9 11 Part of this is because I had just watched the movie Reign Over Me and part because it is such a seminal moment in our generation s history, but I was gripped by this section of Sarah s story What I appreciated most is the comparison of the recovery and support effort to be an incarnation of real community and church loving neighbor over ourselves I tire so easily with church being our own patting ourselves on the back at church or being inward focused that I long for apermanent outward focus like that, though not necessarily needing to be that extreme.And other examples exist in other stories Sarah tells, about teaching experiences, her chance to lead in ministry at a church, or making up a blues diddy at a homeless shelter Sarah maintains an easiness about her story that pulls you in, yet disarms your own storied conceptions to listen intently to her s.I definitely recommend Picking Dandelions, and hope Sarah has another book project coming soon Sarah Cunningham offers readers an engaging, honest conversation through personal stories on what it means to have a relationship with God while balancing the realities of adulthood and youthful idealism I absolutely adore this author s writing style It was simple, smart and funny all at the same time Loved this memoir.One of my favorite quotes, Apparently, even when you do everything in your power to propel yourself in a certain direction, the wind doesn t always cooperate with your deepest desires Sometimes it just moves the way it wants to And then one day, when you re quiet, and you accept where the gust is taking you, you gradually learn to trust that the force behind the wind knows b I absolutely adore this author s writing style It was simple, smart and funny all at the same time Loved this memoir.One of my favorite quotes, Apparently, even when you do everything in your power to propel yourself in a certain direction, the wind doesn t always cooperate with your deepest desires Sometimes it just moves the way it wants to And then one day, when you re quiet, and you accept where the gust is taking you, you gradually learn to trust that the force behind the wind knows best This is a delightful book and I laughed a lot The writing is fresh and original The author shares experiences growing up in church and her search for a deeper relationship with God She shares her memoirs with ingenuousness Many readers will identify with her childhood experiences either from the child or the parent persepective This book is great read for Christians and seekers alike It is an honest look at growing in God. If you like Anne Lamott, Elizabeth Gilbert, Kath Norris, pick up Sarah Cunningham s new memoir A departure from her first collection of essays about organized religion, this series of stories about growing up in ultra religious territory is funny, witty, and intelligent. Great read Sarah s Cunningham s memoir will be released on Monday, February 1, 2010 I will be posting my review of the book on the devotional blog www.under the fig tree.comCheck the site on Feb 1st for my thoughts Great read Sarah s Cunningham s memoir will be released on Monday, February 1, 2010 I will be posting my review of the book on the devotional blog www.under the fig tree.comCheck the site on Feb 1st for my thoughts This book just came out yesterday It was written by one of my best friends, who also happens to be one of the greatest people I know I am going to open it tonight and sure I will finish it in one sitting This is her second book and I am sure it will be just as good as her first.

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