I have to admit, I was hesitant to read “How to Have Your Life Not Suck” by Bianca Juarez Olthoff. Judging this book by the cover (or at least the title), I assumed it was just another feel-good-about-yourself, slightly-based-on-Scripture, health-and-wealth-gospel-ish type of message. But I have heard Bianca speak on a few occasions, and because her speaking is powerful and Biblically based, I decided to give this book a chance.
This book wasn’t just her take on a one bible story that she stretched to fit her agenda. It was full of real-life examples of lessons learned from Ruth and Naomi. And what she is teaching isn’t just from the book of Ruth, it is supported by Scripture throughout the Old and New Testament. To balance her own experiences, each chapter ends with “Thoughts from a Therapist” where Dr. Deb talks shares practical advice on how to implement these truths in your own life. The combination of biblical truths, humor, the therapist’s information and Bianca’s stories rounded this book out wonderfully. Whether you are new to Christianity or a life-long believer, there are things in here for you. Bianca’s writing is perfectly written so that it doesn’t come across as lofty, but the information isn’t “dumbed down”, either.
One thing to note before reading this book, Bianca does tend to write the way she speaks, with humor and sarcasm. For example, the first chapter is titled “Acceptable Stalking”. She isn’t literally advocating illegal stalking. So approach this book with a bit of fun and you will be fine. She did have two places where she insinuated cuss words, which I didn’t think was necessary, otherwise, I highly recommend this book for women of all ages.
If you are looking for a book that isn’t just another self-help book that leaves you feeling good about yourself for a few minutes, but is a book that will actually help you change your thinking, your relationships, and your priorities, then this is it.
Christine is the Lead Pastor at ARK United Methodist Church, a church replant in North Sioux City, SD. She is also a Ministry Coach with MOPS Int’l, wife to Matthew, a foster and bio mom to 6 kids, and an aspiring chicken homesteader leaning on the grace and hope of God amidst life’s messes. You can see more of what Christine is reading by following her on Goodreads and Instagram.
Connect with her on Instagram as cececappetta