Author Susan DiMickele shared that yes, women are called to follow Jesus, but she also threw out a quite relatable question on page 13, "Could somebody just please show me how it's supposed to be done?" I related to her question. So often as Christians, we just point out something for someone to do. Our words are many and it would be so easy to just show someone the way! Lead by example. I appreciated her candid struggle with not being shown how to do something new. Her question inspired me to do more than just talking about how to do something.
Thus the central theme of the entire book. She pointed working women to the working women of the Bible as our mentors. Interesting to me was the explanation of the two types of prostitution back in the days of Rahab. Who knew one type was accepted more so (ritual) vs. commercial, which was not as preferable of a way to "make a living" as a ritual prostitute was back then.
There were so many interesting facts I learned from reading Working Women of the Bible. One of them was found on page 123 in which the author stated, "Esther is like a glow stick - you can't turn her off." I appreciate this visual and how Esther also seemed to me to be a bit of an Energizer Bunny with regard to the King. It was the way in which the author explained in context the life of each woman mentioned and the challenge which led to the underpinnings (faith and mission combined) of each working woman which allowed each story to stick in my brain cells. I have never looked at any of these women in the way in which the author shared with such attention on history and context. For these reasons I announced at the beginning of this review that this book truly was anointed. It truly was life changing for me.
The author stepped aside and was the vessel not the star in each chapter. The working woman in each chapter (as well as Jesus in the last chapter!) was the star. Lastly, I appreciated on page 160 learning the difference between worry and ponder. Also, "We have much to gain from Lydia's style. Many of us expect Christian women to be culturally insulated- even dull and boring. We've bought into a lie that we lack spiritual depth if we like to shop or wear leopard-skin pants or paint our toenails bright red. Even worse, some career women think they have to give up their style first in order to follow Christ. I once heard a pastor refer to this myth as the "second conversion." Once new Christians come to faith, they think they have to conform to a set of "Christian" cultural norms. They have to dress a certain way, attend certain church functions, and abstain from certain activities. It's all rather exhausting. I'm not buying it. And neither is Lydia...." (page 191).
My only one eensy beensy criticism is that I did come across several editing oversights throughout the book. I would not have mentioned this in my review but the last typo on page 191 could not be overlooked. The author mentioned a "shrinking violent." I bring this fact up because here in South Florida where there is a large Spanish speaking population in our Bible studies, this comment no doubt would have been confusing as the term "shrinking violet" (with the language barrier as slang statements often have to be explained) may have been questioned, but to not have the correct term to begin with, the entire point may be lost on the reader.
Every church serious about mentoring women according to the Bible's standards should buy this book for their Bible study. Women need women and this Bible study would be excellent in a group study situation as the author is so relatable to the working Christian woman. We all need Titus women in our lives and this book contains many!
Purchase: http://www.bible.acu.edu/leafwood/pg.asp?ID=196 and to learn more about the author please visit her blog http://www.susandimickele.com/
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Leafwood Publishers as part of their