Posts Tagged ‘Mary DeMuth’

Letting Love In: A Book Review of “The Wall Around Your Heart”


>>>Click here for access to my in-person, audio interview with Mary DeMuth, author of The Wall Around Your Heart<<<

I have had the privilege of serving on the launch team for Mary DeMuth’s new book, The Wall Around Your Heart. As a member of the team I received an advanced copy of the book to read.

I am a big fan of Mary’s blog and anticipated that the book would be excellent, of course. But it was even better than I expected.

The Wall Around Your Heart is based on the idea that when people hurt us, it is natural to want to put up defenses to protect ourselves. But Mary says that when we wall ourselves off from painful relationships, we also keep ourselves from healthy relationships that can help us heal.

Using The Lord’s Prayer as a road map, Mary walks the reader through the journey of healing from relational pain. Mary goes phrase by phrase, and sometimes even word by word, through The Lord’s Prayer gleaning insights about God’s love and the blessing of community along the way.

Immediately when I learned of this book, some old hurts came to mind. I had a feeling that God was going to use this book to help me deal with some of those old hurts.

I know that I had been harboring bitterness in my heart–even unforgiveness at points.

What really blessed me about The Wall Around Your Heart is that Mary acknowledges the yuckiness of relational pain. She acknowledges how very, very hard it can be.

Mary doesn’t sugar-coat pain. She has personally experienced more pain in her lifetime than I can even imagine. She goes into more detail about that in the book, but suffice it to say she understands pain.

What Mary does that is so different than a lot of Christian authors is that she points out the love that God has even for people who have hurt us. She notes, “we cannot love our enemies until we see the twin truths: God loves me. God loves them.”

This approach to the question of forgiveness helped me see my old hurts in new ways. It gave me more compassion and grace for those who have hurt me.

But the book is about more than just forgiveness. In a chapter titled, “May Your Kingdom Come,” Mary names five different types of kingdoms that we create for ourselves that keep us from allowing God to reign in our lives and hearts. I was really challenged by some of those!

The only aspect of the book that was a little tricky for me was a fine point about theology that I didn’t quite understand. In one or two places Mary talked about God being “sovereign” and that is a concept that I haven’t really learned much about in Lutheran theology classes I’ve had. But even at that Mary does not try to propose pat answers to the questions of why bad things happen to us.

Mary DeMuth, author of The Wall Around Your Heart

I strongly recommend The Wall Around Your Heart for anyone looking for God’s hope and healing from relational pain. It is well-written, it deepens how we think of The Lord’s Prayer, and it is full of grace.

You can order the book from my Jennifer Tinker’s Fave Titles section of the online book store at Life & Liberty or ask for it at your local bookstore. You can also listen to my in-person interview with Mary DeMuth and you can read about my two meetings with Mary and what it is like spending time with this woman of God that I admire.

My Interview with Mary DeMuth

My Interview with Mary DeMuth

On Friday, October 4, I had the opportunity to interview Mary DeMuth, in-person, about her new book, The Wall Around Your Heart: How Jesus Heals You When Others Hurt You. That interview is online now over at Life & Liberty with David Housholder where I am a regular contributor to the podcast/online magazine.

>>>Click here to listen to the interview and to find out more about Mary’s book.<<<

>>>Click here to read my formal review of The Wall Around Your Heart.<<<

Keep reading to find out more about how I got the opportunity to interview Mary and what it is like seeing her in-person. Stay tuned for Friday’s blog post where I will tell you more about my personal impressions of the book.

When I picture meeting someone I admire, I usually think of myself as really small and the person I admire as larger-than-life. I know I shouldn’t think that way, but my brain just does it without asking my permission.

I’ve been reading Mary’s blog: Your Life Uncaged for a while now and I resonate with her message so much about the freedom we can have through Jesus. Many times when I read her posts I feel like she is speaking right into my life, giving me hope and encouraging me to “live free.”

Since I admire Mary so much and her influence on me has been so huge, I expected meeting her to feel a bit intimidating.

But despite the fact that Mary DeMuth is a published author(!), an international speaker(!), and several inches taller than I am, I don’t feel small or intimidated around her at all.

I’ve seen her twice now. When we first met over the summer she immediately spoke with me as though I was a real person of value, not just some silly fan. She asked me about podcasting–something I had done exactly once for Life & Liberty at that point. But she had never done any podcasting, so she wanted to know what it was like!

It was at the first encounter with Mary that I learned about The Wall Around Your Heart and the upcoming opportunity to be on her launch team for it. When the opportunity came to apply for the launch team, I filled out my application right away. Then I tried to put it out of my mind as I did not take for granted that I would be chosen.

But one week later–on a day when I really needed some good news–I received the e-mail that I had been selected to be on the launch team!

Mary then posted a notice to everyone on the launch team inviting our ideas about how to get the word out about the book. She said no idea was too crazy.

Since she had taken particular interest in my podcasting, and since Life & Liberty has a way bigger reach than my personal blog, I pitched her the idea about bringing her on the podcast for an interview.

TascamMary loved the idea of coming on the podcast!

So then I just had to clear it with David Housholder–you know, the guy in charge of the podcast. He was cool with it, but if I was serious about doing interviews, then he said I really needed to get a Tascam. It’s “state of the art,” he said.

So, I got my Tascam and started practicing with it so I would be ready for the interview with Mary.

When I confirmed the interview with Mary over e-mail, she reiterated her interest in learning from moi about podcasting!

Our second meeting was the day of the interview and, once again, she put me at ease and treated me with respect. It felt like I was just hanging out with an old friend. I actually kind-of forgot to be all fanatical around her. I was just myself.

When we sat down for the interview I showed her how to adjust the levels on the Tascam to make sure that especially loud vocalizations would not sound distorted. It was really affirming to get to share some of my own “expert” knowledge with someone I appreciate so much.

From now on, I have a new standard for what it means to spend time with someone I admire. Mary has changed that for me. In addition to having a message that I resonate with, and writing and speaking credentials that I only wish I had, she is also kind and affirming to others–and that is truly admirable.

I hope you will click over and listen to the interview I had with Mary. I think this book is really important and will be sharing more about why think so on Friday.

What about you? Have you ever met someone you admired? What was it like for you?

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