Monday, September 1, 2014

Review: What Your Heart Needs for the Hard Days

What Your Heart Needs for the Hard Days
By Holley Gerth
Revell, 2014


In this uplifting book, Holley Gerth invites readers to sit down with her to be filled with the strength, peace, and joy that come from God's promises to us. Each of the 52 devotions based on the Psalms will help weary women remember that God is good and we're all in this together. Whether it's a bad hair day or a broken heart, Holley offers hope and encouragement to get us through whatever life brings.

Women need that kind of encouragement because we all have hard days--days that make us want to give up, retreat inside ourselves, and drown our sorrows in a pint of ice cream. And while we may crave all sorts of things to ease the pain we feel in our hearts, what we really need is truth. We need to be confident in God's character and his promises. We need to remember--and celebrate--who he made us to be. And we need exactly the kind of encouragement Holley Gerth loves to offer.

My thoughts

What Your Heart Needs for the Hard Days by Holley Gerth is a beautiful book for personal reflection and encouragement. It contains 52 meditations, each entitled with an important truth drawn from the Psalms. As Holley says in the intro:  "The book of Psalms is like a table covered with God's goodness. It's a place I'm often drawn to when I'm feeling down." I enjoyed reviewing this book and look forward to using these meditative thoughts over the next few months.

Each chapter begins with a short illustration or life observation, and ends with the opportunity to talk to God and listen for His voice. This devotional could be read as a daily or weekly devotional, and can be enjoyed by both new and seasoned believers. It also makes a great way to lead into a time of Bible study.

No matter where you are in life or what you're going through, there's just something special about the way the psalms speak to us, which is why I was initially drawn to this devotional, and Holley beautifully highlights many spiritual truths. I once heard a pastor say that we are either in the middle of a painful time, just coming out of one, or will soon be entering one - so everyone will find this book helpful and uplifting. In fact, its theme reminds me of the classic Streams in the Desert by L. B. Cowman.

Here are just a few quotes from the book that spoke to me:

You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry (Psalm 10:17).  "What if God's cheering as you take your first step into a day that's not one you want to face? What if instead of saying, 'Get it together,' he's whispering, 'Let's do this together'?"

Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings (Psalm 63:7).  Jesus "put himself between us and this world. He stretched out on a cross, and with his arms spread wide like wings, he said that we could all come there for protection."

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul (Psalm 23:1-3).  "A full schedule and an empty heart is a sure sign that it's time to draw closer to the Shepherd again."

I recommend What Your Heart Needs for the Hard Days as a devotional resource. This book can be purchased online at CBD, DeeperShopping, B&N, and Amazon.

Holley Gerth

        Holley Gerth is a bestselling writer, certified life coach, and speaker. She loves connecting with the hearts of women through her popular blog and books like You're Already AmazingYou're Made for a God-Sized DreamOpening the Door to Your God-Sized Dream, and You're Going to Be Okay. She's also cofounder of (in)courage and a partner with DaySpring. Holley lives with her husband, Mark, in the South.
        This book is the perfect companion to Holley's book You're Going to Be Okay.

Meet Holley online at, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Thank you to Revell for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

1 comment:

  1. I loved this devotional Carole. These past few weeks it has sustained and comforted me in the many trials of life. The Psalms are so full of encouragement, hope, situations we can relate to as David expresses his deepest feelings. And Holly, well, she is just amazing at putting the words down on paper.