Sacred Endurance: Finding Grace and Strength for a Lasting Faith
By Trillia J. Newbell (InterVarsity Press)
Unlike many Christian speakers and writers, Trillia Newbell grew up an atheist. Today the University of Tennessee graduate serves as director of community outreach for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. As a high school track state champion, Trillia learned the importance of endurance and understands as a believer the magnitude of Sacred Endurance: Finding Grace and Strength for a Lasting Faith.
The author begins with the story of Mahalia Jackson singing “How I Got Over” prior to Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Using Scripture, personal stories, relatable examples and practical advice, Newbell takes the reader from the starting blocks of God’s call to “press on toward the goal” through the curves and straightaways of life to crossing the finish line.
Chapter titles include “Enduring and the Mind,” “The Heart Needed, the Strength Supplied” and “Falling and Getting Up.” The wife and mother of two school-age children covers such topics as grace, anxiety, suffering, freedom, focus, faith, prayer, pain, belief, complacency, confusion and clarity. She emphasizes the importance of the “great cloud of witnesses” and the church. An appendix examines what happens when a Christian doesn’t endure, and discussion questions facilitate group study.
Trillia Newbell admits she had the talent to run track in college but not the heart to endure. Her book provides insight not only into the principles of running “the race that is set before us” but also the heart needed to finish. Worthy to be heavily underlined or marked with a myriad of post-its, Sacred Endurance should be read and referred to again and again.
Kathy Robinson Hillman, former president
Baptist General Convention of Texas