Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

FlyBy Promotions Review: Grace Unplugged by Melody Carlson and Own It by the DiMarco’s #grow4christ

on September 26, 2013

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About the book:

Grace Trey is an 18 year old singer as passionate about her Christian faith as she is her phenomenal, God-given musical talent. Both traits come from her father, one hit wonder Johnny Trey who found Jesus after losing his chart success two decades ago.

When Grace encounters her own music break of a lifetime, the sudden dive into the “real world” puts her deeper beliefs to the test. Pop superstardom is just within reach but appears to require some spiritual compromise. Will Grace reject her faith, or will she own it?

Grace Unplugged is based on the motion picture of the same name starring AJ Michalka (Super 8) and Kevin Pollak (A Few Good Men) with performances by award-winning artists Chris Tomlin and Jamie Grace.

About Melody Carlson:

Melody Carlson has sold more than five million books. A professional writer for twenty years, she recently received the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award. Melody has two grown sons and lives with her husband in the Pacific Northwest.

My Opinion:

This was an excellent book – it starts out with 18 year old Grace who is struggling to be her own person under her parent’s roof and she loves to play and sing music – given that her dad is a one-hit wonder it’s no surprise where she gets her talent, although God plays the ultimate role.  One day when an old friend of her dad’s pops back into his life she gets and idea and leaves her family to head to California so she can make it big and chase her dream.  As she watches another famous singer, who she idolizes, fall down and struggle, Grace enters her own struggles – more than she ever had while at home with her parents.  Drinking provides and escape and she gets a rude awakening to how people use each other in show business.

One would think her parents would chase after her and drag her back but that isn’t to be, he dad goes after her once but after realizing that they’ll have to let her learn her lesson on her own – they begin praying, harder than they’ve ever prayed before.  Grace doesn’t want her parent’s faith, one she sees as stuffy and void, until a young man walks into her life and shows her how to own her own faith – not her parents.  This book really reminded me of the story of the prodigal son in the Bible – but I won’t give all the details away because it’s such a great book I want you to read it for yourself.

After I read this book, in one day, I promptly passed it on to my 11 1/2 year old daughter – she was a bit surprised when she came across “premarital sex” but I told her that it’s fine as it was a conversation between dad and daughter in regards to purity.  Of course, there were rumors of Grace “playing house” with an actor but never was there any acts of anything going on although she does wonder if she can keep the said actor if she has a physical relationship with him.  Since I read this first I felt comfortable in giving this to my daughter to read with it’s redeeming message and God is always shown as playing a role even if it doesn’t look like He’s there.

About Own It:

The movie Grace Unplugged tells the story of Grace Trey, an ideal Christian teenager who is also a phenomenal singer. But when she is pushed into the “real world” at the tender age of eighteen after getting the music break of a lifetime, her faith is put to the test.

Own It mirrors the film by asking what it means to really “own” your personal faith rather than just automatically following in the footsteps of parents, friends, or other influencers. Best-selling authors Hayley and Michael DiMarco help readers understand what to do when faith meets real world challenges.

Without solid beliefs, poor choices are likely to follow. You must take the time to really know who you are, who you are becoming, and who God made you to be. It’s your personal faith . . . own it!

About the DiMarco’s:

Hayley DiMarco is the best-selling author of more than thirty books including Dateable, Marriable, Mean Girls, and The Woman of Mystery. She has been a featured speaker at Women of Faith, Precept National Women’s Conference, and MOPS Intl. among others and has consulted on the creation and enhancement of some of the largest stadium events for teens and young women in North America.

Michael DiMarco is a skillled communicator and teacher who has authored more than a dozen bestselling books including the 2010 Christian Bookof the Year for Youth, B4UD8 (Before You Date). He and his wife, author Hayley DiMarco, have one daughter and live in Nashville, Tennessee.

My Opinion:

This is a companion to the novel, Grace Unplugged, and while I’m still reading it I’ve read enough to know that this is an important book to read, whether you’re new to Christ, searching or have been a Christian for years.  I really appreciated the book when it says one can’t pick and chose what one believes in the Bible, either it’s all true or none of it’s true.  It seems lately that this is the message going on in churches today, that one can pick what fits their life and discard the rest – “oh, Jesus didn’t mean He was the only way to Heaven” or “such and such isn’t a sin because God loves us all” or “there is no Hell, we don’t need to be aware of sin, and so on”.  The question is do you own your faith or are you renting, borrowing or faking it?

Through out the book the authors give examples of how their faith wasn’t their own and how they came to own their own faith.  My children may not make the choices I want for them in life, but I have to give them to God and let Him lead their choices and their paths – that comes as part of owning your faith to let Him lead you – is it scary?  Yes, it can be sometimes – I have no desire for my daughter’s to work outside the home but I know my plans aren’t necessarily God’s plans for them.  I can’t make someone else faith mine – I borrowed my parents perceived faith growing up, but it wasn’t real now that I look back on the choices I made.  Even today I still have doubts if my faith is really my own but instead of borrowing sometimes I feel like I’m faking it – I can talk the talk and walk the walk – sometimes I know it’s Satan waging battle over me too.

Once I finish this I plan on passing this on to my daughter as well and once my other two children make their decision publicly for Christ they’ll be reading it too – I think it should be required reading.  The Lord doesn’t want us lukewarm so we have to decide if our faith is our own and if it’s not are we borrowing, renting or faking and then we have to decide are we going to disown it or are we going to own it?  This book isn’t for the faint of heart, it asks some tough questions, but questions that need asked all the same and unfortunately aren’t getting asked in most churches today.

(c) 2013, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws


One response to “FlyBy Promotions Review: Grace Unplugged by Melody Carlson and Own It by the DiMarco’s #grow4christ

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