God's Empowering Love for Us in the Midst of Our Mess
Life is messy. And Christians are not exempt. Unfortunately, this is not the message we tend to hear. We're told to be moral, look good, and set a positive example. After all, as some people may tell us, we're the only Jesus some people seeso we better make him look good. That's a heavy burden. And so we work feverishly to hide our messes from each other and from God for fear of judgment . . . all the while wondering how we can ever be loved.
But Christianity is not about being less of a mess. It's about admitting that we need to be saved from trying to clean ourselves up. In Beloved Mess, author and blogger Kimm Crandall frees Christians to live with the assurance that God loves us right here, right now. He's not waiting for us to clean up our act before we're worthy to come to him. He wants us to stop trying to fix the mess so that we can allow him to wash it away for us.
"Kimm unpacks the wonder of God's mercy with honesty and courage and shows how it reaches all the way down to every dimension of our hearts and lives."Justin S. Holcomb, author, On the Grace of God
"Read this short but life-changing book, go back to it again and again, and see yourself falling more in love with the One who loved us and gave himself for us."Jessica Thompson, author of Everyday Grace
|Publisher:||Baker Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.50(d)|
About the Author
Kimm Crandall is a mother of four and the author of Christ in the Chaos. The founder of Dropping Keys Ministries, she is a frequent blogger on popular Christian websites such as Key Life Network (keylife.org) and Logos's Faithlife Women. She has been a featured guest on several nationally syndicated radio shows such as Haven Today and Steve Brown, Etc. She also speaks at conferences and retreats for churches and parachurch organizations.
Table of Contents
Foreword Elyse Fitzpatrick 9
1 I'm a Mess 19
2 The League of the Guilty 31
3 The Imposter, Myself, and I 43
4 An Exposure That Leads to Freedom 59
5 Romans 8:1 on Repeat 71
6 Stubborn Grace 83
7 Doubt Is Not a Dirty Word 99
8 Living in Our Belovedness 115
9 Kissed by Grace 129
Appendix: Gospel Truths for the Beloved 143
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Have you ever read a book that you felt you could have written yourself? That asks and answers the exact questions you have about life and God and religion? That touches you deep down in your soul and brings you comfort like none other before? Beloved Mess: God’s Perfect Love for Your Imperfect Life by Kimm Crandall is that book for me. Kimm describes Grace perfectly. “As you likely know, the process of stain removal is not so much about the stain disappearing as it is about transferring the stain from the soiled garment to the clean cloth. It is suggested that you use a white cloth as a blotting rag. This way, when blotting the stain with the rag soaked in stain-removing solvent, you will begin to see the stain transfer onto the white rag. There is an exchange that happens between the two pieces of material. The dirty one becomes clean as the stain is transferred to the clean white blotting rag. What once was dirty has become clean because what once was clean took the stain onto itself. Grace is the solvent that allows the stain to be lifted.” What a perfect description on what Jesus has done for us. She also reminds us that Grace is messy. That “it is often not given to the person who we think deserves it.” That it is “shocking, unnerving, and doesn’t make sense.” That HIS grace is perfect and no matter what we’ve done he continues to extend us that beautiful grace, over and over. And His grace is stubborn, “The very moment I am sure I have infuriated God is the exact moment that gives him reason to love me all the more.” Crandall’s chapter on Doubt has been a life changer for me. As Christians, we often worry that if we doubt God or occasionally question his existence we are not truly saved. “The weakest believer among us receives the same strong Christ as does the believer whose faith seems unmoved.” And that, “strong faith-or, more appropriately, your lack thereof- is not connected to some cosmic feeding tube of God’s grace. He does not dole out his love and faithfulness based on the strength of our trust.” She reminds us that when we struggle with unbelief that we don’t have to sink, that we can rest knowing that these doubts may be part of our growing process in Him. If you’re looking for a book that let’s you know you don’t have to be perfect or have it all together to be beloved by our creator- this is it. We are his beloved. In our mess, in our doubt, he is reaching for us. Wrapping his arms around us and he never, ever stops loving us. He forgives us over and over. We’re all sinners and fall short if his glory, and only by this grace are we saved.
“When we stop stuffing down and hiding our failures, we see that God really does love us just as we are. This is freedom! We are no longer enslaved to our shortcomings. We no longer have to hide in shame.” I just finished reading Beloved Mess: God's Perfect Love for Your Imperfect Life, the newest book by Kimm Crandall, that releases this month. I approached the book as just another book to blog about, one that is outside my usual sphere of reading. What I found was a book that impacted me deeply – an intelligently written book that speaks straight to the heart – and it has left its mark on me. Beloved Mess addresses those Christians Crandall who don’t have it all together, who are a mess, struggling with sin, addiction, brokenness, or just the craziness of life. It proceeds to show us that we are all messes, and that we are deeply loved by God, not despite our mess, but right in the midst of it. “The good news,” Crandall writes, “is that God loves the real version of you, not the cleaned-up, funny, talented, presentable you.” Using personal stories from her own life and a strong theology of grace, she sheds light on the messes of our lives and implores us, over and over, to understand that we are God’s Beloved. Reminiscent of Brennan Manning’s The Ragamuffin Gospel, Crandall’s book takes the reader by surprise with its frankness, breaking down walls of so-called propriety so that the truth can get through - and what a sweet truth it is! The book is extremely accessible, and is an enjoyable read. We all need to be reminded from time to time of the radical love of God, and this book does that very well. I highly recommend that every Christian, especially those who, like me, struggle with doubt, self-worth, and sin that leaves us wondering about the real extent of God’s grace. Beloved Mess is sure to leave you changed.  Kimm Crandall, Beloved Mess, (Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 2016), 67.  Ibid., 57. The Patriot Principle FTC Disclaimer In accordance with FTC guidelines for bloggers, I would like to be clear that many of the books (including this one) reviewed on The Patriot Principle are provided by the publisher/author free of charge. I am not compensated for my reviews. All of my opinions are my own and are in no way influenced by the way I obtain my materials. I am not required to post a good review in order to obtain the book, nor will I give a good review if I think the book is not good.
I am a mess. Truth is, so are you. The beautiful truth is that God calls us His beloved, in spite of our messes. God’s grace is greater than all of our sins. He freely gives His forgiveness to all who ask! Beloved Mess is a short, 149 page, book. It will sink you in and you will be hooked. I was not able to stop reading until I was finished! I love how the author is so real. She puts herself out there for us to see. She opens up in an intimate way so we can better understand that no one has it all together. That we are all in need of God’s grace. This is a wonderful book, and has found me in a season of life where I so desperately needed to hear this message. I highly recommend this wonderful book to you all! I give this book a 5/5 stars.