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Secret Sister

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I don’t usually read paranormal books, but the write up on this one said it had a “twist of the paranormal” and that intrigued me. This certainly wasn’t what I expected! It was the most emotional book I have read in a VERY long time! I couldn’t put it down. This story will tear your heart out, have you question why things happen the way they do and will make you stop and appreciate the people around you... because everything can change in a heartbeat! Probably shouldn't read this review unless you've already read the book, although what I'm spoiling happens fairly early in the book and can be spotted before then- First single “Cabin,” written from the perspective of a woman who has been assaulted, haunts listeners long after the song’s final notes fade away. The song—a battle cry for the mistreated and mishandled—was written while Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings dominated the media. “He did not have permission / But he had his way / If I tell his secret, they won’t believe me anyway,” the duo sings over wailing guitar.

If your heart’s desire is for women to grow in their relationship with one another while growing in their relationship with God discipleship groups could provide a better path toward achieving that goal. You’ll find many additional posts on discipleship on the Women’s Ministry Toolbox blog.

EVENTS & ENTERTAINING

When Ella's mother died, she finds evidence that she had been hiding a secret from everyone. Ella has an older sister, Colleen, that she never knew about. Colleen was more likeable, but still not very realistic. I don’t want to ruin anything, but there was a huge contradiction between what her personality was, and what she was meant to have lived like for the past 10 years. It just felt like lazy writing, as the two halves of her story just never felt true. Speaking of the writing, I also found the tone very uneven and inconsistent. It veered from domestic drama to psychological thriller, whilst also throwing in a level of cheese that seemed straight out of a hallmark film. When Ella Matthews looses her mother she is devastated but determined to be strong for her family; when she discovers a long hidden secret she begins to question everything she thought she knew. Ella has an older sister she had no idea existed and she wants to find her, much to husband Greg's dismay. The story itself had me. I was anxiously awaiting the moment when Cathy would figure out that she was Cathy, and not Roxanne. And I really wanted to speed ahead to the moment when Cathy's husband figured out who she was because I wanted to know how he would react.

Imagine life as you know it being turned completely upside down by the revelation that your mother had another child. A child she chose to give away and keep secret for the entirety of her lifetime. Ella is thrown for a loop, and yet part of her feels drawn to find this stranger, who is part of her mother and part of her. Generally speaking, secret sister programs invite women to secretly encourage another woman in their church. Usually, one person assigns the sisters and keeps the list a secret for the duration of the program. Typically, these programs are scheduled for a year, sometimes less, with a celebration and reveal party at the end of the program. Women may send cards, pray for their secret sisters, and often give them small gifts. Many churches ask women to fill out a form about their favorite things so they can be surprised with things they’ll enjoy. The purpose given is often building relationships and community. Jonathan Bernstein (February 27, 2020). "The Secret Sisters Find Their Voice on 'Saturn Return' ". Rolling Stone . Retrieved February 28, 2020. Hal Horowitz (February 24, 2020). "The Secret Sisters Are Simply Stellar on 'Saturn Return' ". American Songwriter . Retrieved March 3, 2020. The Secret Sisters: You Don't Own Me Anymore «American Songwriter". American Songwriter. June 6, 2017 . Retrieved January 25, 2018.I admire the heart behind secret sister programs. Leaders see them as a way for women in their church to love one another. They may pray for one another and encourage one another. This all sounds great, right? Why would I have wanted to pause our secret sister program? What are some of the challenges with secret sister programs?

Before I dive into some solutions, I want to offer some questions your team may want to use to assess the effectiveness and purpose of your secret sister program. 3 Questions to Use to Assess Your Secret Sister Program Ella has just lost her Mum and she has been charged with the emotionally traumatic task of clearing out her mother's things. As Dad and husband Greg stand on the sidelines Ella's world tips into a state of uncertainty when a box of bits reveals that Ella may have a sister she never knew about.

Around the middle of the book the story became interesting and I wanted to find out more about why Anna decided to give up her firstborn daughter. Reading the story from two POV was okay, although I enjoyed reading from Colleen's POV over Ella's.

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