Monday, November 01, 2010

Independent Review: A Woman and her Workplace by Rosemary Flaaten

This book by author Rosemary Flaaten was directed toward those who desire to build relational bridges in life. Targeted toward those in the workplace primarily, but the Scripture supported principles presented can be applied in any situation in life.

Scripture in TM version is presented throughout. I don't often refer to this Bible translation however I enjoyed reading this version as it definitely fit the conversational tone of the book. At first, I was slightly disappointed to read the author's tense of "we". I have struggled with past reviews as I was not drawn in to the author's supporting statements or illustrations because of the awkwardness of "we" or "us".

However, the third person tense actually became a very effective tool in building a relational bridge with me - the reader! Ms. Flaaten had a warm, comfortable, professional yet non-threatening way of relating to her reader. I enjoyed the use of various characters or case studies of women in situations. I laughed, cried and yes - - I could have been Melanie! (page 51).

The invitation to Salvation was given promptly on page 24. Possibly more of an emphasis could have been placed on sin with regard to salvation, but I give kudos to the author for including the salvation message to her reader. I applauded as I read that Jesus Christ on the Cross was the ultimate relational bridge. Amen!

A tool which was quite effective for deeper pondering of the truths presented was "Verses to Study", and "Questions for Reflection."

I appreciated many nuggets of wisdom. On page 47 the author states, "Honesty is living truthfully, and authenticity is being genuine, but integrity includes and goes beyond both of these." She goes on to explain the origin of the word integrity and quotes Henry Cloud from his book Integrity. Love it! As a lover of words and truths supporting wholeness I really appreciated her attention to detail with regard to certain character traits we must pay attention to as true believers in Christ.

Here's another gem found on page 73. (James 2:2-4 TM version is quoted) The author, "In order to develop a connection, we need to build bridges. When we look for the best in others, listen, learn, empathize, love and extend grace, we build relational bridges that can prove to be a lifeline between us. To care for someone, we must let go of the preconceived notions and relinquish our expectations of that person. To care for someone, we must acknowledge his or her present situation and give the gift of grace and acceptance, realizing that what we see is but a very narrow sliver or all that makes up that person. Godly love takes what is presented and seeks to explore and discover more about this person so he or she can be celebrated, not judged. Godly love extends grace."

My favorite story was found on page 79. Ms. Flaaten shares a personal story of people watching. She self talks and it gets ugly but so very relatable!! I learned alot about myself reading her account. I hope I will be convicted quicker when I start being critical of others after reading this chapter.

Lastly, the story on page 123 stuck out to me. Humorous and relatable. I did question the use of the "brown paper bag" as the wrapper the book came in. I felt the book was being depicted almost as a bottle of liquor - something to hide from watching eyes? Somehow the emphasis on the brown paper bag seemed awkward. I would rather her stuff the book in her purse as the book was not a bad thing in itself - this poor woman was seeking help in the situation with her boss.

I enjoyed reviewing this book. I almost regretted not being in a corporate setting where I could share it with other women possibly during a break or lunch hour. A Woman and Her Workplace would be perfect for a small group of women to read at home and discuss the Scripture and questions in every chapter at work. There were many takeaways and reminders for women in the workplace and working at home. The concept of relational bridges and the story of Esther stuck like glue. I will never think of bridges or Esther the same again.

This book reminded me that 24/7/365 no matter before or after punching a time card - I like Esther must seek to build healthy relationships with others. I have a job to do. I will do it with the help of the Lord Jesus Christ. I will do it with the strong biblical principles that under gird every bridge in life.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Kathy Carlton Willis Communications as part of their Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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