Reviews & Giveaways, Social Justice

Awake: Book Review & Giveaway!

awake (photo credit)

Several months ago, I began asking the Lord to break my heart for what breaks His.  I needed to be moved, to truly feel the weight of a lost and dying world.

For some time, my heart has felt numb to the intensity of needs I see, at least on TV and video, all around the world.  I would see a newsflash come through about starving children, or human trafficking, or living conditions so unimaginable that my mind could not comprehend, and I would become so overwhelmed that even interceding on behalf of these needs would become painfully difficult.

How does one person take an issue so overwhelming and help to bring change?  How does one voice, in the midst of many voices, rise up and stir the waters of change?

One person at a time.

“If I look at the mass I will never act.  If I look at the one, I will.” – Mother Teresa.

A few months ago I joined a team of bloggers for World Help, and was blessed with the opportunity to read Noel Brewer Yeatts’ book , “Awake: Doing a World of Good One Person At A Time” during her re-launch.  Although sickness prevented me from actually getting my review posted during the launch, I wanted to take the opportunity to share with you my thoughts on this book, which is truly helping me to see, really see the needs of the world around me.


Awake is filled with the very personal stories of what Noel Yeatts encountered during her travels all around the world.  I could not help but gasp and cry and pray while reading the book.  The stories are heartbreaking.  To think that children are literally thrown away by their parents, or buried alive, or left for dead, or sold into prostitution at ages as young as 5 is too much for my heart to take.

But interlaced with the stories of heart break are testimonies of new life and victory, of children rescued and given a second chance to live, of lives transformed, of slaves being set free.

“The concept of poverty can be overwhelming, and the thought of making a difference daunting.  So we must narrow our focus.  Instead of picturing masses of hurting people, we must begin with the one suffering child.” – Noel Yeatts

This quote really undid me.  For so long now I’ve been saying I wanted to do something, something tangible like sponsor a child, or go on a mission trip or volunteer my time for a humanitarian organization.  Yet, I have become so overwhelmed while looking at the masses, that I was not able to see the one hurting child that God would have me to see.

“God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house.  God is in the silence of a mother who has infected her child with a virus that will end both their lives.  God is in the cries heard under the rubble of war.  God is in the debris of wasted opportunity and lives, and God is with us if we are with them.”  – Bono

I want my eyes to be open. I want to be fully awake, to see the one.  If every person presented with a world problem continues to close their eyes, nothing would get done.  But what would happen if together we allowed God to wake us up to the one?  I see one, you see another one, she sees another one.  Together we help three.  What if the world woke up to the fact that it’s not really so overwhelming when we choose to see with new eyes, when we choose to see the one?

The Giveaway

I am blessed to be able to give one reader a signed copy of Awake!  Just follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter below to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don’t win?  Don’t worry.  You can purchase the book here.

Consider joining our on line book study where we will meet every Friday on a private Facebook page to discuss each chapter of the book.  Be sure to download the study guide here.

Would you like to join a community of storytellers, using their voice to help change the world?

Become a World Help Blogger. Find more information here.  Sign-up here.

Together we can make a difference, one person at a time.

23 thoughts on “Awake: Book Review & Giveaway!”

  1. Rosann says:

    You said it at the very beginning. I’m always praying for God to break my heart for what breaks His and I think for the same reasons as you, that feeling of “what can I really do to make a difference, anyway?” often causes me to turn my back and focus on self once again. Because it’s so easy to focus on me all the time. I think it would be good for me to read this book. 🙂
    Rosann recently posted..A Look at Wives of the Bible — PLUS I’m Giving Away a FREE Copy of the Book!

    1. Barbie says:

      Oh Rosann, I love the stories, stories of real l life, tragedy and triumph. It will touch your heart!

  2. Sara Bowyer says:

    I would love to receive this book. This is what God laid on my heart a year ago when I was facing empty nest and He led me to foster care. What a JOY it has brought to my life to provide a safe home for a few special children!
    Sara Bowyer recently posted..You are I AM

    1. Barbie says:

      That’s so amazing Sara!

  3. Noel Yeatts says:

    Beautiful post! Love this line: “If every person presented with a world problem continues to close their eyes, nothing would get done.” Thank you so much for sharing!

    1. Barbie says:

      Thankful to be a part Noel!

  4. Janet says:

    I would love this book because I too feel overwhelmed with trying to help out everywhere and I need HELP!!! Thank you 🙂

    1. Barbie says:

      It can be overwhelming. I am learning to see the one. It’s helping to change my perspective and not get so overwhelmed.

  5. Amy E Patton says:

    Barbie, God just seems to keep putting us in the same place. (I think we first met through the 5 minutes for mom blog link up last spring). I have seen you other places; you have visited my blog. Now, we meet again as World Help bloggers. I just joined the group this weekend. I started Awake last night. My heart has been tugging away at this concept of making an impact since I returned from Thailand this summer. I am joining the 31 days link with the Nester (and you!) with a series called 31 Days to Impact in an effort to work this out for myself. Just as you said, each one reaching one can change the world. Thank you for your beautiful post. I look forward to getting to know you better. Amy
    Amy E Patton recently posted..When Life Throws You a Curveball: A Prayer for My Friend

    1. Barbie says:

      Amy, thanks so much for stopping by. I am following your blog now in Bloglovin and look forward to getting to know you more as well. I LOVE the focus for your 31 days of October! Blessings!

  6. Elizabeth says:

    Barbie, my prayer partner and I have also been sensing the Lord working on our hearts and in our lives. We have a sense of the Lord breaking down things in our lives in order to do some rebuilding.

    1. Barbie says:

      Elizabeth, that’s a good thing, the breaking and tearing down to allow a rebuilding. Blessings!

  7. Linda@Creekside says:

    Yes, yes, Barbie. One day, one soul, one act of grace at a time. Thank you for this reminder. Timely, it is. Bless you this week, friend!
    Linda@Creekside recently posted..colorblind

    1. Barbie says:

      Thanks for stopping by Linda!

  8. Susan says:

    Have tears in my eyes and ache in my heart reading your post. Am not sure I have the strength to read this book.

    1. Barbie says:

      Oh Susan, I totally understand. It can be overwhelming, but such an eye opener!

  9. Jen says:

    Barbie – Looks like an incredible book! Right up my line of interested and board work with a non-profit I am helping with! That little boys face just caught stopped me…and I had to read further! Thanks for sharing and offering this book give away! ~ Jen
    Jen recently posted..When You Don’t Feel Beautiful. UNITE Linky

    1. Barbie says:

      You’re welcome Jen! Thanks for stopping by.

  10. Heather @ A Nurse's Wildflowers says:

    Thank you for sharing this Barbie. Anytime an author is able to touch someone at a deep level, change is just around the corner. There is so much of this stuff that goes on in the world that people either choose to not discover or they choose to look the other way….and then there are the ones who truly want to help, but don’t know how.

    I know an ER nurse I work with who is one of the most amazing people I know. Right after the big Haiti earthquake hit, she left our community to help out for a week down there and she didn’t return for two years! Some of the stories she has told me are beyond shocking. You just don’t want to believe this stuff is really happening.

    The amazing thing was that she was able to see the good in what was going on. Seeing this terrible stuff brings some people out of their shell and they can make a HUGE difference. We’ve seen in the past that One person can change the entire world for ever. Even with helping one person or a small number of people, there is great potential for wonderful things to come out of it.

    I love that quote from Mother Teresa in the image:)

    You always bring so much inspiration, Barbie! Thank you!
    Heather @ A Nurse’s Wildflowers recently posted..Dayspring Christmas Sale

    1. Barbie says:

      I have a desire to travel, to help, but I am afraid I wouldn’t want to come home, and if I did, I would never be the same. But then, I think that is the point. Thank you for stopping by Heather!

      1. Heather @ A Nurse's Wildflowers says:

        I had to stop by again. Since reading this post, I’ve been thinking a lot about my ultimate goal as a blogger. I do want to make that “real difference.” I am such an opinionated person. Because of my unique job as a forensic nurse, I am always finding myself advocating for people no one else will. I love this idea of blogging to make a difference, even on the other side of the world. I may have grammatical errors in my blog posts more than I would like, but I can definitely get my point across. I’ve decided to participate in and see how it goes. It’s such a unique way to get the message out there.
        Heather @ A Nurse’s Wildflowers recently posted..Farm Update 9-14-2013

        1. Barbie says:

          Heather, that’s fantastic. You will love connecting with the other bloggers there. So blessed to have you on the team!

  11. Michele-Lyn says:


    You are so faithful and genuine. God takes notice. Your heart is fully His. You are an inspiration to me, and a gift to the Body of Christ. Your passion for the least of these is contagious. Thank you for being an integral part of this work. You bless me!
    Michele-Lyn recently posted..How do you clean dirt floors? [Revisited]

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