Book Review: Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge

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Title: Captivating: Unveiling The Mystery Of A Woman's Soul

Authors: John & Stasi Eldredge

Beginning in July, we will be reviewing one book a month that has challenged, encouraged, edified and/or refreshed our souls.

This month, Taina Ramos, CCF Women's ministry leader, shares her journey with a book that has and continues to challenge who God calls her to be.

Our stories matter; our pasts and our sin does not define us, but Christ does.

Captivating has been a guide to healing, empowering, and growth for the women of the CCF, specifically at our Women's Book Club. From the beginning, I asked God to take us deeper with Him and with each other. As I look back to the email I sent to 14 very different women in February, I re-read those words and realize now, I didn't really know the weight of my prayer.

The Lord has used Captivating to guide myself along with a group of 14 amazing women to understand the beauty God has created women to be. We discovered that our stories are matter; our pasts and our sin does not define us, but Christ does.

Beauty comes from the wounds caused by her upbringing, her father, mother, the men she loved and didn’t love her back ... beauty is in all the bad God turned around for your good.

Captivating has taken us on a unique journey through the hearts of women, their experiences, their wounds, and their sin. A woman’s journey of self discovery, searching for her true beauty and identity and finally realizing her beauty was never lost; it has always existed. It existed before creation, because her beauty is found in Christ. 

A woman's beauty is the way she loves, cares, and inspires. Her beauty is in the fierceness of a mother's protection and the sweet seductions of a wife. Beauty is the very essence of a women, and Captivating explains how that is not a reference to physical appearance. Beauty is not as society defines it. A woman's beauty emerges from her soul; the person God designd her to be. Beauty comes from the wounds caused by her upbringing, her father, her mother, the men that she loved and didn't love her back, the disappointment in friendships, the failures and disappointments life has thrown at her. Beauty is all the bad God has turned around for your good. 

This book shed light on the darkest places in our hearts. We had no choice but to ask Christ to come in and pull the deepest roots of darkness out. It caused us to finally forgive and ask for forgiveness, to stop believing the lies that say we’re not good enough, pretty enough, skinny enough, light enough or smart enough. To finally believe that we were made for a purpose and that every woman owns a beauty of her own. To finally understand the power beauty has over the people in our lives and the responsibility to use it wisely, justly and Godly.

I love how John and Stasi always pointed us to scripture -looking at Jesus as the ultimate example. Something I always told the ladies is that this book is not end all be all; our end all be all is the Word of God. I can say that this book reflected those same words. There are hard truths that Captivating will push you to face. You may even throw it across the room, but I guarantee that when you're ready, you will walk over and pick it right back up every single time.