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Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace


After experiencing the death of both parents, Margaret McSweeney recognized the importance of community like never before. Through these difficult times in life, she learned how God uses gritty circumstances to conform us to the stunning image of Christ.

McSweeney also realized that she was not at all alone. It is for this reason that she decided to compile essays into an inspiring book: Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit Experiencing Grace. Through this collection, readers will be...

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Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace

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After experiencing the death of both parents, Margaret McSweeney recognized the importance of community like never before. Through these difficult times in life, she learned how God uses gritty circumstances to conform us to the stunning image of Christ.

McSweeney also realized that she was not at all alone. It is for this reason that she decided to compile essays into an inspiring book: Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit Experiencing Grace. Through this collection, readers will be encouraged by the heartfelt writings that deal with loss and hardship in a real and honest way. Respected authors such as Shaunti Feldhahn, Melody Carlson, Debbie Macomber, Robin Jones Gunn and others help remind every woman that they are not alone and that no circumstance is beyond the grace of God.

McSweeney uses the metaphor of a pearl in order to better describe the situations that ail us all. When an oyster takes in a piece of sand in order to create its coveted masterpiece, it is initially painful to the soft flesh of the creature. But after the pain, appears a clean, white symbol of simplicity, purity, and endurance that any woman would be proud to wear. McSweeney believes that each woman is a pearl and together, form a necklace of great worth. In this book, readers will discover community and encouragement: women are alone in neither their pain nor victories in life.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802458629
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/1/2009
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

MARGARET McSWEENEY lives with her husband, David, and two teenage daughters in the Chicago suburbs. After earning a master's degree in international business from the University of South Carolina, Margaret moved to New York City to work at a large bank where she met David. Margaret is the editor of Pearl Girls, author of A Mother's Heart Knows and co-author of Go Back and Be Happy. Charity and community involvement are very important to Margaret. She has served on the board of directors for WINGS (Women in Need Growing Stronger) for over six years.
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Table of Contents

Susan May Warren: Angels of Forgiveness
DiAnn Mills: Cinderella
Andrea Jones Mullins: Pushing Back the Darkness
Nicole Braddock Bromley: The Secret is Out!
Dianne Neal Matthews: The Ties that Hold
Rebecca Ondov: The Darkest Night
Brenda Neuhaus: Strength in Weakness
Michelle McKinney Hammond: Fruit for Thought
Jami Kirkbride: A Safe Embrace
Marcia Lathrop: Man's Refuse, God's Jewel
Lucinda Secrest McDowell: If We Are Willing, God is More than Able
Lisa Jefferson: A Life-Changing Phone Call
Mary M. Byers: The Miracle at the Post Office
Shannon Woodward: The Gift
Kendra Smiley: Half Empty/Half Full
Crystal Bowman: Little Ol' Me
Felicia Middlebrooks Hill: Saying Good-bye to My Friend Regina
Virelle Kidder: Running to the Finish Line
Heather Gemmen Wilson: A Secret Club
Nancy Sebastian Meyer: Between a Rock and a Hard Place
Rita Canning: Rainbows: The Language of God
Jane Hampton Cook: My Weight Loss--A Heart Change
Bonnie St. John: Let God and Let Go
Lori Kasbeer: Finding God in the Waves of CHange and Brokenness
Jennifer Schuchmann: Getting Lost and Found
Cynthia K. Stiverson: "What Goes Around Comes Around"
Kimberley Woodhouse: As Seen on TV!
Karen Granger: Sacrificed Dreams
Pat Ennis: Abandonment to Hope
Kathi Macias: Learning to Set Up Chairs
Brittney Thomas: Learning to Dance
Kristin Billerbeck: I Just Don't Fit In
Deb Kalmbach: To God Be the Glory
Tricia Goyer: God's Plan...Not Mine
Meg Wilson: Hope After Betrayal
Shaunti Feldhahn: God's Generosity
Camy Tang: Good for Me
Carol Kesner Ruhter: Releasing the Rope
Debbie Macomber: From a Marriage on the Rocks to One Built on The Rock
Elizabeth Musser: The Treasure in Our Suffering
Rachael Phillips: Future Perfect--Who, Me?
Melanie Talbot Montgomery: God Stayed with Me
Robin Jones Gunn: My Capsized Life
Sharon Thompson Rhea: Marissa and the Bear
Nancy Moser: Waiting and Delighting
Stacie Ruth Stoelting: Pain Forms Pearls
Sarah Chapman McManus: Hope Lives
Michele Guinness: Finding My Father
Dawn Meehan: Time
Mary E. DeMuth: Spill Your Guths to God First
Melody Carlson: Perfect Delusions
Carolyn Rhea: Thy Will Be Done?
Maureen Lang: Proof of Strength... It's in the Genes
Jenny Tarter: No End in Sight
Trish Perry: Bigger than Fear
Patricia Crisafulli: As Tough as Pearls
Nanette Swick: "God Has Heard"
Marti Wibbels: A Season of Sorrows, A Season of Hope
Wendy Alsup: My Good and His Glory
Danielle E. Crowell: Miracles and Healing
Deborah Raney: Abba, Our Father
Anna G. Joujan: "On This Day"
Karla Porter: A Birth and a ReBirth
Julie Scudder Dearyan: Looking Backward for Forward Faith
Chris Shenk: Everyday Pearls

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 12, 2010

    more from this reviewer


    Margaret McSweeny says this about the book, "Perhaps you have heard the story of the oyster that unexpectedly gets a piece of sand stuck inside it's shell. Nacre coats this irritant and creates a pearl. Like the oyster, we encounter unexpected grit in our every day lives" illness, loss, disappointment, pain changes.and the list goes on. However God's nacre of love and grace covers our pain and transforms us into precious pearls. Pearl Girls!

    .As women, we are connected through our shared experiences. Together, we create an iridescent pearl necklace, with demands and stress of everyday life, many women become secluded and disconnected from one another and from God!...The ladies in this book and I connect to make a difference in the world. All proceeds from this book go to two charities."

    This is a very unique and special book that gathers authors I've seen on the book shelf at my job, interviewed or reviewed their book on my blog. It was very sobering to read many of these authors' stories. I'm so thankful to have received a review copy of this book. The stories in this book are honest, heartfelt and inspirational. More proof that we are all a work in progress. God does His best work in our lives in times of troubles in community and the body of Christ!

    Elizabeth Musser states in her story, "I truly believe that God never wastes the pain in our lives.Pain called me to God and made me completely dependent on Him. God gave me the strength to carry on!", author of The Swan House.

    Robin Jones Gunn author best know for the Sister Chicks series said, "Yes, my life capsized. But I was being carried along on the unforced rhythm of God's grace."

    Many of the authors in Pearl Girls share their struggles and some very personal situations they encountered. I loved how vulnerable and honest there stories were and how they acted or reacted in having to trust God completely in their crisis! God deals with us and loves us in a very personal way. He is involved in every detail of our lives, their stories show this in a real way.

    "God was a lifeline, He was holding my hand, I clung to God's hand like I'd never clung before. I knew that without Him, I would drown-simply to escape the pain." Melody Carlson.

    You'll be encouraged as you read these stories. I was.

    Nora St.Laurent - Finding Hope Through Fiction

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  • Posted September 21, 2009

    Stellar stories of growing through adversity

    Pearl Girls edited by Margaret McSweeney is an moving book filled with stories to encourage your heart. A pearl girl is any woman who has turned the grit of her life into something beautiful, and each one of the authors of the stories within this book is a true gem. The stories run the gamut from hilarious to heart-breaking to hopeful. It's not the kind of book you want to zip through in one reading, but to take time to savor each story and take in its full message. Stories of rape, abuse, and depression all offer hope to readers that there is beauty on the other side, beauty offered by God, friends, and family. Some stories will give readers perspective on their own lives, others offer comfort in the knowledge that we are not alone, but all will touch the heart. All proceeds will benefit a safe house in the Chicago suburbs and women and children with AIDS in Africa.

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