Moving From Broken To Beautiful Through Forgiveness is an inspiring gem by Yvonne Ortega. It is book 3 in the Moving From Broken To Beautiful series, although I read it as a stand-alone book with no issues. Yvonne starts her introduction by congratulating the reader on picking up a book on forgiveness. "You show courage and a positive attitude." She then goes on to explain, in her candidly loving way, that she has no intention of pressuring you or giving you an extra burden to carry by expecting you to take steps you're not ready for or by making you feel more guilt than you already possibly do.
Whether you are tired of being bogged down by your own negative feelings toward someone who's hurt you, or whether you simply feel that it's time to do "something" to move on and let go of past harm; this book is for you. Yvonne's sincere kindness pours from the pages as she reminds you of God's grace waiting to embrace you if you dare to take the treacherous steps into the vast unknown.
First, she reaffirms in clear, concise language exactly what forgiveness is not. For example, forgiveness does not mean the person gets away with wrongdoing. It also does not mean that you forgive the person right away. What a relief for those of us who struggle with this concept, to truly realize that it's an ongoing long-term process rather than an overnight cure.
Next, Yvonne explains to us what God says about grievances and bitterness, and how God says we should treat our enemies. These truths may be hard to swallow depending on your stage of forgiveness, but they're necessary to discover. I love that Yvonne takes great care to not accuse or shame the reader, which would risk opening further wounds on an already difficult trek.
Finally, we learn the steps of forgiveness. This is not a quick and easy method by any means, but it is gentle to the soul and will make you feel better about any progress you've made rather than feeling worse about how little distance you've covered.
Each chapter ends with activities, affirmations, scriptures, a prayer, and built-in journal pages to help you on your journey. This book could easily be done as a weekly study with a trusted friend or women's group, or on your own with your bible and a cup of coffee. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is open to the need for forgiveness, whether you are just considering the path from an arm's length or if you have already been on this course for a while and would just like a gentle nudge and guidance to keep you on the road. It's also worth noting that this book is loving enough that it would be suitable for someone just starting their journey with Jesus and looking for biblical guidance to forgive past sins - including their own. 5/5 stars.
*Disclaimer: I received a free print copy of this book from the publisher via BookCrash for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions are my own.*
About the author (back cover copy):
Yvonne Ortega survived and thrived after breast cancer, divorce, single parenting, car accidents, and multiple family losses including the loss of her only child. It's her passion to help others find the same hope and beauty she's discovered, despite the losses. She is the author of Moving From Broken To Beautiful: 9 Life Lessons To Help You Move Forward and Finding Hope For Your Journey Through Breast Cancer, Revell 2007.
Yvonne is a Licensed Professional Counselor, bilingual professional speaker, and speaker coach. YvonneOrtega.com