Thursday, April 19, 2012

Stories Behind Women of Extraordinary Faith by Ace Collins

This book was another of my going away presents. In fact, it was a present from Amanda, and it's all the more precious because this was her well-loved copy (although to be honest, she kept it in excellent condition).

Basically, this book is a collection of 20 short autobiographies of women of faith. Some of them, like Catherine Booth, Lottie Moon and Mother Theresa are famous, and some, I'm ashamed to say, I've never heard of (like Sophie School, Daisy Low, etc) But after reading this book, I can say that all these women have garnered my respect.

Even in the lives of those whom I've heard about, the book manages to bring something fresh and unknown in it's writing. I've never heard about Catherine Booth before the Salvation Army, to name an example. And most of the time, even though each autobiography is so short, I feel like I've managed to understand each women's faith.

I also loved how this book doesn't go by the conventional definition of faith. Before I'm misunderstood, let me (try to) explain. Most of the time, the examples I think of are like Catherine Booth, Mother Theresa, etc. Those that have worked in an overtly religious organisation. But the book shows that even in the secular world, it's possible to be a Christian and live a life of faith. For example, Laurie Prange, a Hollywood Actress. There are many more, from Gospel singers to doctors, all inspiring.

Of all the stories, I think the one about the Unknown Woman of Faith was the most inspiring. She might very well be thought of as an ordinary woman, and she certainly isn't well-known. But she's a living example of how even an ordinary person like me can make a difference in someone's life. Even if it's just a difference in one life.

All in all, this is the kind of book you'd want to read when you want to be comforted, when you want to be inspired or when you just want to read something interesting. It's comforting to know that others have also walked the walk of faith, and whatever you're facing can be overcome. It's inspiring to know that other's have done such marvellous things and you can do too. And of course, the lives of such women are naturally interesting.

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