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After reading a book that defined and clarified my understanding of solidarity, it has been very helpful to follow up with a book that is extremely practical and shows me how to put Christian solidarity into practice by loving and encouraging those around me.
In her book, "Isn't it Time for a Coffee Break", Ameila Rhodes gives life lessons and personal examples to show how others often feel the same overwhelming burdens of life and that strong Christian relationships can support and encourage us. I love the subtitle of this book: "Doing Life Together in an All-about-me kind of World" because it really sums up the practical advice given in it's pages.
In chapter 2, Rhodes says we need people in our life that can provide us with H.E.L.P.: honesty, encouragement, love and prayer. Then, expounding on prayer, she gives examples of how to pray for your friends in different situations that I found extremely helpful.
In the next four chapters, Rhodes discusses four aspects of friendship that are vital to a healthy relationship: generosity, hospitality, forgiveness and unity. With each one, she clearly defines it in light of what the Bible says on the subject and gives personal examples of how it has benefitted her relationships. She also gives very creative and realistic suggestions on how to live out each aspect of Christian friendship.
Personally, Chapter 3 on generosity was one of my favorite parts of this book. Rhodes says, "Generosity pivots on the point where your ability meets somebody else's need." She then shares some creative ways her friends showed generosity, which inspired me to be more creative in that area as well.
This book would be great to use in a small group or Sunday School class that is looking to build unity and serve each other (there are even discussion questions at the end of each chapter). It is also great for personal study if you're looking for fresh ideas to grow in your friendships.
*Special thanks to Barbour Publishing, Inc. for sharing this book through Netgalley.com for my honest review.