Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Review - Amish Values for Your Family

Amish Values for Your Family
What We Can Learn from the Simple Life

Suzanne Woods Fisher
I have always been fascinated by the Amish.  They aren’t afraid to live out their faith while eschewing the conventions of the modern world.  They seem to me to be somewhat unblemished.  Their values are based on their simple life and not on what the media feeds them. There’s something about an agrarian society that focuses on faith and family that really appeals to me.  That doesn’t mean I’m ready to “go Amish”, but it does mean that I know I have a lot to learn from them.

Suzanne Woods Fisher’s book does an excellent job of bringing the life of the Amish to the reader in small digestible bits.  There are four sections with several chapters that last only a few pages each.  It’s the content of those small chapters that really resonates with the reader.  Each chapter opens with an Amish saying or proverb, and then shares a little  window into the values of the Amish and allows us to see how they can be applied in our own lives.  The chapter is followed with a “Getting from Here to There" to help us apply the lesson to our daily lives.  At the conclusion are short clips shared by the Amish community through their local paper. 

When thinking about what I took away from this book, the first thing that comes to mind is the title of the first chapter “Children are Loved but not Adored.”  How many times do we find ourselves adoring our children to a fault?  Through adoration they never learn their weaknesses, they are never allowed to stumble, and they find it difficult to be self-sufficient later in life.  I believe I see my own folly in this one as I have tended to adore my children making them less equip than they need to be for the adult world. 
Throughout the book, the focus is on family and the bond they have.  However, this bond does not exceed their faith, it comes through it.  We all need to spend more time with our spouses and our children – working, playing, worshiping.  It’s easy to let those moments get displaced by work, busyness, distraction, media.  I know I’m guilty.  I took away a deeper need to focus on the value of family rather than the value of things.  So what if we earn a lot of money and have a lot of things if our family suffers for it?  A friend the other day asked (on Facebook) how we define success.  Money wasn’t what popped into mind, it was a healthy, well adjusted family. 

Suzanne created a work that truly gives us a glimpse into the window of the lives of the Amish.  I count this book a blessing.  One day, I hope to visit the Amish communities and see their lives first hand, but until then I appreciate this opportunity to evaluate my life against the simple life and reevaluate what is important.  
I encourage all seeking to simplify life to check out Amish Values for Your Family.  In addition, Suzanne is running an exciting giveaway to coincide with the publishing of this book.  Take a look...
Enter 8/15 - 8/31!

Suzanne Woods Fisher is thrilled to announce the release of Amish Values for Your Family, her latest non-fiction release. "It offers loving ways to bring your fractured home back to life-Amish style. Read it and apply generously! It’s a beautiful book-funny, charming, soulful, and beautiful." -Mary Ann Kirkby

Read the reviews here.

To celebrate the release of Amish Values for Your Family, Suzanne has teamed up her publisher Revell Books to giveaway a Kindle, and with Bill Coleman (the amazing photographer used on Suzanne’s book covers) to give away a signed Bill Coleman original.

One Grand Prize winner will receive an Amish Values Prize Package (valued at over $200) and includes:

* A brand new KINDLE
* A Signed Bill Coleman original
* Amish Values for Your Family (for KINDLE)
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Click on one of the icons to enter. Winner will be announced on 9/2 at Suzanne’s blog. Be sure to stop by the blogs on Suzanne’s blog tour – many have copies of Amish Values for Your Family to give away.

But, wait there's more! Suzanne is running a Bill Coleman caption contest during the month of August on her blog. Title one of Bill’s gorgeous photos for a chance to win a print from Bill’s Amish Photo site and/or a copy of Amish Values for Your Family.

***  I was given this book free from LitFuse for my honest review.

1 comment:

  1. Hi April!
    Thank you for your comments about Amish Values--so glad some thoughts struck a chord with you. Especially about how we use our time, and how we value success. Excellent insights, April!
    So grateful you were part of the blog tour. Warmly, Suzanne


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