Saturday, February 19, 2011

Favorite Book 1: Not Alone

Originally Posted on My Praying Chairs on Friday, December 10, 2010

My Favorite Books: Entry One

Category: Caregiver Devotion:

Not Alone -  by Nell E. Noonan:

  [My personal note: During this joyous season when we celebrate the birth of God’s only Son, Christmas adds additional stress for those who provide daily, on-going, grinding, and sometimes draining care for loved ones.  If you need an extra gift, Not Alone is an easy to digest devotion book that will enlighten and encourage anyone involved in care giving: spouses, children, parents, hospital chaplains, pastors, nursing home administrators, and even yourself. ] 

Not Alone / Encouragement for Caregivers by Nell E. Noonan (Upper Room Books 2009)
          Mrs. Noonan is a devoted caregiver to her husband and writes from a heart faithful to him and to her Lord Jesus. Each of the 150 short devotions includes a personal experience, a prayer, and a Scripture to encourage those who provide constant, daily care for loved ones.
          This is a “take-along” book that can slip into a busy woman’s purse or a guy's back pack. Mrs. Noonan is not one for wallowing in sackcloth and ashes so her words uplift and encourage.. I’ve read through this collection more than once and I continue to re-read random entries many times a week in my devotion—or desperation—times.
          Not Alone is a profound personal touchstone in my days and I often give copies of this treasure as gifts. Solace, comfort, and wisdom abound in all three sections: Brokenness and Blessings, Tears and Laughter, and Exhaustion and Resurrection. Mrs. Noonan approaches disappointments, heartaches, family, writing, and care giving in an honest and fresh way that lifts the spirit and demonstrates hope.
          I can attest with Nell that,“The LORD is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18.

How Not Alone got on "My List"
For months, one family medical crisis after another had chased me in endless circles. Crying in my milk on one of my routine, too-much-to-do and not-enough-time days, it hit me that I had forgotten many of our friends, neighbors, church and family members who were experiencing difficult and serious times and that they, also, needed encouragement. Making phone calls seemed inappropriate, I was in no state to make personal visits, and my depleted greeting card box mocked me. I sighed. So, in dirty sweat suit and with no make-up, I made a mad dash to our local Christian bookstore and quickly grabbed a handful of cards. Then, for a reason I can not explain to this day, I picked up a copy of Not Alone. That was well over a year ago and while my precious copy is now earmarked, filled with high-lights, turned down pages, penciled notes, and dirty finger-prints, I seem to navigate confusing and difficult days with a profound peace. Seeing God’s love and provision through the eyes of another traveler has healed my spirit and lightened my own load.
Thank you, Nell, for sharing your heart.

The Closer Walk Christian Bookstore, Fredericksburg, TX ( ) often keeps this book on the shelves but will special order it for you. Not Alone  is also available from Amazon and The Upper Room.

May your reading—and gift-giving—be blessed,

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