Book Review: Fresh Brewed Life


Fresh Brewed Life book cover

I was excited about this book because that creamy, cinnamony cup of coffee on the front cover looks so inviting. I was just sure that the words that followed would be just as warm and comforting as the front image made me feel. To an extent, that was true.

I love the coffee analogy. Author Nicole Johnson writes:

“To take pleasure in coffee and benefit from all it has to offer, it must be savored, not merely consumed,”

Her take is that life is like coffee — to be savored and not just consumed.

The book covers lots of areas — relationships, friendships, beauty — all through the lens of enriching your experiences. The portion that stood out most to me was the chapter on journaling. Johnson writes:

“Journaling gives us the opportunity to learn by paying attention. By writing what’s happening and what we are feeling and thinking and what’s happening, we can look at the pieces and study them more closely. … I don’t write in my journal just to record. I write in my journal to grow. Nothing else gives me the opportunity to process my life through my own observations like my journal. Because of my dogged commitment to be honest in it, God can work through it, and I can learn and grow from the lessons of life.”

Her recipe is to find a great notebook, a great pen, an amazing scented candle — “one that makes you want to crawl inside it” — and designate a quiet place in your house, early in the morning, for journaling. First, make your grocery list or your to-do list or whatever else is in your head that will distract your thoughts. Get it out of your system. Then start writing. When you’re writing you’re thinking and processing and working things out. Keep your journal with you at all times, or pretty nearby, for whenever you need it. Your journal is private so feel free to be completely honest. Don’t censor or cross things out or edit. You’ll learn the most from capturing your feelings just as they are. These are just some of Johnson’s many excellent journaling tips; enough to entice your to get started and maybe encourage you to pick up her book if you’d like to know more.

“When we are struggling, he will meet us on the pages. When we are sinning, he will reveal that to us. When we are weeping, we’ll hear his gentle words of comfort. And when we write in celebration, we can sense his joy coming through our own. … You may hear so much that you can’t write fast enough.”

Like a warm mug of coffee, this book is best consumed in sips. It’s not the kind to sit and read in one sitting or over a few days straight through. It took me much longer to read it than I thought, I think because I read the e-version. I think I would have read more diligently if I’d read the hard copy.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program.

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