Jackson, Neta. The Yada Yada Prayer Group Gets Caught. Nashville: Integrity Publishers, 2006.
This is the fifth installment of the story of twelve diverse women who meet at a Christian women's conference because they are assigned to the same prayer group. When tragedy befalls one family, the group acts beyond the limits of the conference to become the Yada Yada prayer group. When tragedy finds the main character Jodi, she realizes just what this sisterhood of prayer partners means to her. She grows in her faith and her own Christian understanding. Not everyone experiences the same life, even if they live in the same town or attend the same church.
Once again, Neta Jackson has created a community of women that I can relate to and she steps on my toes a little. As I've read this series, I just get more and more connected to the characters. What's going on with them? What is going to happen next? How are their bonds going to be strengthened and challenged and shredded and strengthened and challenged and... I am finding myself looking up the scriptures referenced instead of just reading over them. In this book, I'm seeing Philippians 4:6 as a recurring note to myself. I need to think about this one more!
One of the biggest events is the merging of two churches into one. What a step and commitment of faith. I kept thinking about my own church and what would I say and think and do if we decided to join with another church (or have another church join with us). I'm glad to see this example and feel its realness.
Here's something that stopped my thoughts: "And then we get tangled up in our own mess. Sometimes God lets us flounder there a while, all tied up until we yell, 'Uncle!'" (Jackson 334). How many times have I been tied up in my own plans and not willing to listen to God's? How many times have I tried to justify my own actions because of my desires and not because I felt it's God's plan? Thankfully, God forgives me EVERY time I do my own thing and then realize it's not HIS thing. I'm also, like Jodi, trying "to learn what it means to use 'spiritual weapons,' but I still fail so often. Forget to pray until things fall apart" (Jackson 365). Reading this series has helped me focus. I'm moving out of prayer kindergarten. I'm learning deeper about having faith in God, "no matter what" (Jackson 372).
Only one more book in the series (I think). What am I going to do when these women aren't in my life anymore? Fiction will become a reality. I will look a little differently at my own circle and friends, remembering the Yada Yada stories. I will put my trust and faith in God and grow.