Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton starts off like all/most memoirs---"Here is my life laid open for you to see the mess I've made of it,"---but it ends with life-changing insights about our true selves, love, God, beauty, marriage, raising children, church, breathing. No wonder Oprah picked it up as her latest Oprah Book Club 2.0 selection.
Glennon Doyle Melton felt like a pretty little girl until she was ten years old. When she started her growth spurt at adolescence she stopped feeling pretty. In order to numb the pain of this disappointment she started to binge on food and then purging (bulimia.) Later, she did the same thing with alcohol and drugs. She thought she was broken, a person who couldn't handle pain. Her first crisis in life came at age 26 when she was learned she was pregnant while she was wasted, sitting on the floor of the bathroom. She used this crisis to get herself the help she needed to stop drinking/drugging. She married the father of her baby, Craig, and thought now life would be perfect. It wasn't. As a stay-at-home mom with three children, she often felt like her life was a sham. One day, while attending a therapy session with her husband, he revealed he had been sexually unfaithful to her, that he was a sex addict. Enter crisis number two.
Now Glennon has to get down to the hard, hard work of learning to love and cherish herself so she can determine if the marriage can be saved or not. But more importantly if she is willing to unlearn all the lessons she has learned in her life up to that point about the way that women are supposed to behave in our society. Eventually she feels like she has been stripped naked and what remains in faith, love, and hope. Sounds like I Corinthians 13, doesn't it? She allows herself to be vulnerable enough to be open to the "teacher" when she appears and to pay attention to the lessons she provides.
These life lessons Glennon shares in the last 50+ pages of the book. So many of them I need to learn myself. I want to copy down all the quotes, the paragraphs, the chapters and carry them around with me so I too will be open when the teacher appears to help me. I want this for all mankind, especially those in my family who are hurting in their own ways. Life changing.
The following is for me, but you can read it if you want, as a guide to help me find those special parts of book I may want to look back on later.
- An interview with Oprah and Glennon.
- Lessons gained during hot yoga where she learned about the Journey of the Warrior and realized she was a warrior, a love warrior. Pages 196-206.
- Feeding ourselves; giving ourselves what we need---not too much or too little. Pages 207-208.
- Breathing exercise which leads to revelation that "I'm loved just as I am," and that God is not defined by human limitations. Pages 214-217.
- "You are not what you have done", a paragraph that could be a healing salve in a relationship in trouble. Page 218.
- Grace from God makes no disclaimer. It is for all or none. Page 218.
- God created women as a Warrior (Ezer). We no longer need to look for heroes in our life, we can be our own hero because we are warriors. Page 222-223.
- A church which welcomes all, where the minister declares he not here to add barriers between God and people; he's here to remove them. Pages 228-30.
- Glennon's message to children about God. Pages 231-2.
- Our lives as a triangle---body, mind, spirit. All parts need to be healed for our wholeness. Page 233.
- Listening to the teacher to take care of ourselves. Page 236-39.
- Talking to children about what it means to be "sexy" defined as true beauty, loving slef and radiating beauty for within, not attempting to reflect what the world thinks women should look like. Pages 252-4
- Saying sorry to the body. It is almost a prayer. Page 256.
"Marks of the Warrior. There's nothing here but what nature insists upon. This is me. Naked, unashamed, stripped down to my barest essentials. Just me. Just me is all I'll ever offer anyone." -pg 257.
Rating 4.75 out of 5 (the middle part is pretty upsetting, so couldn't give the book a clear 5 star rating.)
Book obtained from the public library, but now I need to purchase my own copy of the book so I can highlight sections.