Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Book review: Your Beautiful Heart

Celebrating true beauty in an airbrushed world can be a tough mission to accomplish. But in her book "Your Beautiful Heart," Lauren Scruggs shows the reader through personal stories that take place in real life that looking beyond, well looks, is possible and necessary to your health and happiness.

Lauren works as a fashion journalist and is the founder and editor of LOLO Magazine. She also is the author of Still LoLo, a memoir of her accident and recovery. Lauren shows her readers of "Your Beautiful Heart" that God can take your pain and give you purpose. He can turn your broken into beautiful and use the story of how He changed your life to encourage and change the hearts of people who are hurting. 

This book review was written by Alexis A. Goring, founder of this blog "God is Love".


Celebrating true beauty in an airbrushed world
(Book review of Your Beautiful Heart)

“Your Beautiful Heart: 31 Reflections on love, faith, friendship and becoming a girl who shines” is a beautiful, real-life story equipped with a timeless message for females both young and old. A book worth every bit of a five-star rating, fortified with a message that’s worth sharing. God’s glory which shines through Lauren’s story has the power to uplift, educate and inspire the world. 

The book is divided into six sections: Your Seeking Heart, Your Changed Heart, Your Obedient Heart, Your Heart for Others, Your Distinctive Heart and Your Heart Looking Forward. Every section of the book contains a minimum of four and a maximum of seven mini-chapters. An introduction sets the scene for sharing Lauren's story and an epilogue by the author closes it.

Just within the first few pages of the Introduction called “An Imprint on Your Heart”, the author Lauren Scruggs identifies a lie and a truth. The lie is from the world of fashion and beauty which tells young women everywhere that “A certain kind of physical appearance equals beauty.” As the reader turns the page, the author refutes that lie with a timeless truth: “God’s love in your heart is your beauty” and the heart of Lauren’s message is laid bare. “This book is about how God’s love makes a person breathtaking,” she says.

In “Your Seeking Heart”, the opening section for her book, Lauren spends two pages pointing out that nowhere in the Bible will you find much attention paid to a person’s looks. No deep description of a person’s outward appearance is mentioned. “And even Jesus, the pivotal person in the whole Bible, is never described in terms of his appearance,” Lauren writes. Therein the author explains her point for I believe the entire book. The point is if looks are not highlighted or touted as important in the Bible then why are we so focused on it in our modern day world?

Lauren drives her message home in the section of the book titled “Your Changed Heart” with a question posed on page 55 of chapter 07 which is called “A Heart that Knows.” Lauren asks the reader, “Have you ever thought of the Bible as God’s voice? As him coming down to speak to you and me and everyone?” Following her on the next few pages, Lauren proves why the thought behind her question is true and on page 57 she so perfectly ends that conversation with this quote, “A beautiful heart wants to know God and gets to know him through his Word.” It becomes clear to the reader as they flip through the pages of Lauren’s book that she not only knows God but loves Him and endeavors to share His love with the world. Such is the story of a person’s life transformed by God’s love. It is a testimony of how God can always turn broken into beautiful and that with God, no pain in your life is without purpose.

God used Lauren’s pain in losing her left eye and hand to launch a ministry. He worked through Lauren to not only bring healing to her own heart but to give Lauren a mission of spreading His love, joy and peace to a broken world through the sharing of her story. God continues to use Lauren as an instrument of His peace through her ministry of writing books and reaching people through her work in the fashion, print media and publishing industries. But God did not stop there! Lauren’s unique story changed her life in a special way when it led to her being interviewed on E! News by host Jason Kennedy with whom she fell in love.

Lauren and Jason Kennedy on their wedding day. Photo credits: Lindsey Brittain and Kat Harris

Later on, Jason wrote the Foreward to Lauren’s book in which he gave a poignant tribute to his now wife which perfectly summarizes the key message of Your Beautiful Heart. He said, “I’ve always been moved by Lauren’s story. She’s been through so much, and her whole life changed on the day of her accident. But then I think, So did mine. Without that day, I never would have met her, seen her gorgeous smile, or known her beautiful heart. I never would have filled her apartment with white tulips and lit candles outside her balcony that spelled “Will you marry me?” I don’t know why God chose this path for us, but I can’t help but be grateful that I got the chance to propose, that Lauren said yes, and that I will be able to spend the rest of my life with a woman who is truly beautiful—not just on the outside, but in every way that matters most.”

There you have it: What matters most is not your looks, what matters most is your heart.

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