Stepping Heavenward

Stepping Heavenward

by Elizabeth Prentiss
4.2 26

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Stepping Heavenward 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Read this book only if you truly desire to be challenged, convicted and encouraged. It will mean nothing unless you're totally committed to Christ. Elizabeth Prentiss learned what the crucified life is, through each act of service to her family, and in doing so showed us all the path of Love.
michelemorin More than 1 year ago
“Write what you know.” It’s good counsel, and, if followed, results in a kind of authenticity that can’t happen if the author attempts to write outside her realm of real-life experience. Maybe that’s why people are still reading Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss, a fictional journal that follows the life of Katherine Mortimer from her first entry at age 16 [“How dreadfully old I am getting!”] to her final entry just before her death. Like the author, Katherine lost her father at a young age and suffered from a variety of physical ailments. The intersection between fiction and reality becomes even more pronounced as Katherine struggles to allow her suffering to “do its perfect work” in her life. Through weariness and discouragement, through joy and fresh resolve, the message of Stepping Heavenward is ageless and relevant to wives and mothers set in all times (and might just encourage their men-folk, too). Written in 1869, the quaint style and slow pace is charming, and I smiled at the extreme modesty of that era in which babies just appeared in the narrative with only veiled references to pregnancy (and certainly none whatsoever to the delivery!), and I winced at the eagerness of mothers to have their children’s gums lanced to ease teething discomfort [really??] and at the prevalence of infant mortality and debilitating illnesses. These were hard times compared to the 21st century, and yet Elizabeth harnesses Katie’s sufferings and points her readers to a God who “notices the most trivial act, accepts the poorest, most threadbare little service, listens to the coldest, feeblest petition, and gathers up with parental fondness all our fragmentary desires and attempts at good works. Oh, if only we could begin to conceive how much He loves us, what different creatures we should be!” It was heartening to see Katie’s trajectory of growth and to receive her offerings of homely wisdom: “One must either stop reading the Bible altogether, or else leave off spending one’s whole time in just doing easy, pleasant things one likes to do.” (And this was written in the days before binge-watching Netflix was a thing . . .) In an era when women were not encouraged to read deeply or to flex their theological muscles, Elizabeth Prentiss offered solid teaching on various topics, all embedded within the narrative arc of Katie’s life. On the sacred versus secular dichotomy: “You speak of going back to your music as if that implied going away from God. You rush from one extreme to another. The only true way to live in this world, constituted just as we are, is to make all our employments subserve the one great end and aim of existence, namely , to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.” On mothering: “What a fearful thing it is to be a mother! But I have given my children to God.” “When you speak contemptuously of the vocation of maternity, you dishonor, not only the mother who bore you, but the Lord Jesus Himself, who chose to be born of a woman, and to be ministered unto by her through a helpless infancy.” On perfectionism: “I am a little afraid of ‘good people.’ I fancy that they are always criticizing me and expecting me to imitate their perfection.” On prayer: “I have learned, at least, to face and fight such distractions, instead of running away from them as I used to do. My faith in prayer, my resort to it, becomes more and more the foundation of my life, and I believe . . . that nothing . . .finish reading at Living Our Days
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She really loved God with all her heart!!!!!!!!!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book. Love the story. In my opinion it should be a must read for all Christians. My only complaint is there were a few words you have to figure out yourself because of the digital reproduction. Some of the words I could never figure out and just had to skip them But it was not a big deal for me. It did not change the meaning or message of the book. Love the book!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This book has helped draw me closer to the Lord. I recomend that all girls read this book.