Noted Oregon communicator, Jeanette Chaffee demonstrates “God’s power” really does show up “best in weak people” (2 Corinthians 12:9) in her new short story compilation titled, Extravagant Graces. The collection contains twenty-three true stories, each one different, dramatic and life-changing. Yet all display a single theme that God works best in and through painful, often impossible and tragic situations.
Chaffee begins with “Terror in the Sky,” her personal encounter with terrorism aboard flight TWA 840 April 2, 1986 where she “survived the midair explosion of a terrorist bomb less than fourteen feet away from her.” That experience brought to vivid life Max Lucado’s quote, that ends her story, “You hold my life and breath and eternal future in Your loving hands.”
Missionaries Don and Carol Richardson’s narrative “Behind the Peace Child,” takes place in Papua, Indonesia. Their dangerous work with cannibal head-hunters in1962 taught them the tribe’s philosophy of friendship and the “peace child” that led to a “spiritual and social revolution from within.” Their experiences with the Sawi tribe are captured in their bestselling book the Peace Child.
In “A Different Kind of Father,” David Stoop, founder and director of the popular “Center for Family Therapy” shares the impact on a child of an emotionally distant father. An unresolved issue until David learned from his own children “blocking bad feelings also meant blocking good feelings.” That realization led to emotional healing wrapped in what he today calls the “three myths of forgiveness” and his training as one of America’s top certified clinical psychologists.
For these and other stories Chaffee listened to early “transcriptions” of interviews with influential “political and spiritual leaders” she wrote about over thirty-five years. Narratives include familiar names such as Stephen Arterburn, founder of New Life Ministries. Shirley Dobson, chair of the National Day of Prayer since 1991 and Elizabeth Elliott, wife of evangelical missionary martyr, Jim Elliott.
For “Extravagant Graces” she conducted “fresh” interviews with “the children—now adults” and families of the original interviewees. Then added “Extravagant Quotes,” short and snappy quotations from the likes of Henry Cloud, Shirley Dobson, Elizabeth Elliott and others to complete the book.
If you’re in need of hope, need to be reminded that God is in control, that He is faithful and trustworthy in all circumstances, Chaffee’s inspiring and encouraging narratives are a must read. They’re about real people challenged by dangerous, sometimes tragic situations who faced “impossible odds” with God.
‘Extravagant Graces: 23 Inspiring Stories of Facing Impossible Odds,’ by Jeanette Chaffee, Westbow Press, 2014, 240 Pages, 978-1490829760, $17.95
Midwest Book Reviews—”Gail’s Bookshelf” October 2014
FaceBook: Gail Welborn
‘Extravagant Graces: 23 Inspiring Stories of Facing Impossible Odds,’ by Jeanette Chaffee
This collection of 23 thrilling stories includes the tale of Jeanette Chaffee’s incredible survival of a midair explosion on TWA Flight 840. You can also read about Don Richardson’s remarkable experiences with headhunters, go behind-the-scenes into the amazing life of Elisabeth Elliot, meet NFL player Donnie Dee, and find out what happened to the singer of the Happy Days theme song.
What was it like being the daughter of evangelist Billy Graham? What were the last words of Dr. Francis Schaeffer? What troubled Shirley Dobson?
Learn about the musical miracle that took fifty years to be revealed. Discover how a nine-year-old orphan helped reform a cannibal tribe, and much more. The book includes over 60 photos, many rare and unpublished.
Reflections On Life, by Staci Stallings
Reflections On Life ~ A collection of short stories that will uplift the weary traveler on life’s highway. Filled with God and all things Holy Spirit, this is a book you can’t afford to miss.
Nothing But A Miracle: Life’s Outtakes – Year 4, by Mr. Daris Howard
52 stories, one for each week, from the popular story column Life’s Outtakes. These stories are a humorous and inspirational view of community and family life. From the inspiration of a dying soldier’s last desire in “Singing To The End Of Life” to the humor of “Football Through The Eyes Of A Child” these stories will keep you laughing and make you think about what is really important in life.
Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings: 101 Stories of Gratitude, Fortitude, and Silver Linings, by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Amy Newmark, Laura Robinson and Elizabeth Bryan
Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings will inspire and uplift readers with its stories of optimism, faith, and strength. In bad times, and good, readers will be heartened to find something good in each day. A great Christmas gift and start to the New Year.
What are you thankful for today? The stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings will inspire readers to stay positive in dark times, because there is always a silver lining and we all have plenty be thankful for.
Elderberry Croft: The Complete Collection, by Becky Doughty
The Coach House Trailer Park is the last stop down the road of life for most of its residents. But a new girl sweeps into the neighborhood, charming them all with her wild nature, her elderberry gifts, and her outrageous laughter. What brings the mysterious Willow Goodhope of Elderberry Croft to this dead end place? From what—or whom—is she hiding? A collection of twelve short stories, Elderberry Croft is the tale of one woman’s journey toward hope, and the people whose lives she transforms along the way.
Extravagant Graces Trailer
Jeanette Chaffee features 23 stories of facing impossible odds with stories from missionaries, musicians, athletes, and world-renowned speakers.This collection of 23 thrilling stories includes the tale of Jeanette Chaffee’s incredible survival of a midair explosion on TWA Flight 840.