Saturday, July 20, 2013

Book Review: Confessions of a Raging Perfectionist

When my copy of this book came in the mail, I sat down to admire it and noticed a small smudge of residual sticker goo on the front, right beside the title.

Oh, no!

I immediately went to work attempting to scrub it off. Then I realized I’d made a small indentation in its place.

Oh, no!

I rubbed at the spot a little more to try and smooth it out. Then I sat back, reread the title of my new book, and laughed out loud. “Confessions of a Raging Perfectionist”—oh, yes, this book was written for me!

Chronicled in this book are Amanda Jenkin’s efforts to find freedom from the burden of perfectionist tendencies. Each of the twelve chapters explores an area where the temptation to be a perfectionist is strong: vanity, money, recognition, relationships, parenthood, plans, pride, testimony, obedience, diet coke (striving to give up minor addictions that threaten to take the place of God in our lives), happiness, and freedom. The parenting chapter was my personal favorite, though all spoke to me in some way. Jenkins uses subtle humor, personal experience, and Bible study to explain her journey and help readers with theirs.

The book concludes with a healthy section of discussion questions for personal or small group use. Each chapter includes key Scripture verses, life application, and prayer. It’s easily one of the best and most useful discussion guides I’ve seen in some time, though it really digs deep. Small groups will get the most of it if participants already know each other well.

I earned my copy of this book by participating in Tyndale’s Summer Reading program and was not required to write this review. But writing the review may help me earn another book! I’m also pleased to recommend it to you.

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