“Choosing to See” by Mary Beth Chapman – book review

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Choosing to See by Mary Beth Chapman Review

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.
My Thoughts-
After reading “Between Heaven & the Real World- My Story” by Steven Curtis Chapman I really wanted to read Mary Beth Chapman’s book, “Choosing to See“. I became a Christian in 7th grade, 1990. One of the very first Christian artists I listen to was SCC. I loved his sounds and loved that he opened up about his family through out the years. My heart broke when their daughter died from a tragic accident. I wanted to see the Chapman life from the woman’s perspective.

My plan was to read this book in two weeks and have my review up soon after that. Little did I know how much this book would impact me and set me off emotionally that it would end up taking almost two months to read. This was a good thing, this book gave me hope. I have suffered with depression and anxiety since I was in my early 20’s. I had down moments as a kid but never this deep depression and as a Christian I felt like a failure in my faith and a failure as a wife. I didn’t know what was wrong with me or how to “fix” it, I was praying and reading the Bible, I felt like I was letting God down. My loving husband encouraged me to see a doctor and they prescribed medication to help with my depression. I was taught that if I had to rely on medication to help my “mood” that I wasn’t trusting God enough. However with medication and some counseling I started to feel “normal” again. I share my story only because Mary Beth Chapman’s story felt so much like mine. This gave me a connection I never thought I’d have with a complete stranger. In turn each of her stories pulled my heart out, I’d often cry, sob. I wanted to shout, “Don’t worry, you’re not alone!” to her.

Mary Beth Chapman shares of meeting Steven Curtis Chapman and her struggles of learning to be part of two. Her depression that followed and her journey to healing. She also shares the joys of birthing 3 kids and their up’s & down’s of adoption their 3 other children. She also shares how they helped other families adopt and their foundation they started. She also shares the loss of her daughter, Maria and how she felt like she was loosing her son Will because of the accident.

Reading the loss of a child from a mother’s perspective is heart wrenching. We had almost lost our middle daughter twice because of Type 1 Diabetes and I can’t even image the pain Mary Beth went through and still goes through, because my heart still cries thinking about almost loosing my daughter. This was one of the areas in the book that took me the longest to read through. So many tears and prayers have been put out towards the Chapman family. I know they lost their daughter, Maria, over 9 years ago but I feel they still need prayers. There is an empty place in their heart that will never be filled again and I know there are days that hole has to hurt so badly.

What I loved, can I say love about this? What I love is that Mary Beth has been so open, she shared her diary entries with the world. She does share a message of hope, hope in our God and creator but she also doesn’t leave the book with a “happily ever after” ending. She keeps it real. The reality of depression, the reality of loosing a child. It will never feel ok but she will be ok with God’s help.

I encourage you to read both Mary Beth Chapman and Steven Curtis Chapman’s books. They are two different perspectives of a Christian married couples life together. Both books will have you laughing, saying “aww” to their love, rejoicing and crying.

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