The plane took off for Springfield at 8:00 sharp. Seated behind two families with babies and toddlers, the screeching began before we’d made it off the tarmac. I’ve got nine kids. I get it.
Still, with that kind of noise, I couldn’t write. I was also headed to my mom’s house for an indeterminate length of time. How busy I’d be… I didn’t know.
What else was there to do but try to get ahead on future book reviews. My paperback was in my checked luggage, so I went for the next ebook on the list. Self-Surrender: The Key to Dreaming Again.
Self-help and Christian living books are some of my favorites, so I expected to enjoy at least some aspect of it. So, with a can of Coke in one hand and my laptop turned into a tablet in the other, I began.
At about twenty percent into the book, two things happened. First, the author wound up in Springfield himself. Second, I found out this wasn’t a “self-help/Christian living” book after all. By the end of the book, I just hoped I’d have an idea of what it was about. I wanted to know:
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What Kinds of Dreams Are Key?
One thing The Key to Dreaming Again does and does well is that it points the reader to the only One who can make our dreams what they should be and then make them come true. A verse that fits well is Psalm 37:4.
Delight yourself in the LORD; And He will give you the desires of your heart.”
Readers looking for a “how-to” guide to evaluating one’s dreams and aligning them with the Word will be disappointed. This isn’t that book. I’m not sure why the book is listed as “Nonfiction Inspirational.” It’s a memoir.
Sure, Rick Unruh has a point to his memories and the stories he tells, but from page one through to the last, it’s a story—of his life, those he loves, and the lessons he and they learned from the Lord as they navigated it all.
While well-written and interesting on the one hand, I wouldn’t have purchased it had it been put in the memoir category, and had I not been given a free ARC to review, I would have requested a refund. It’s just not what the title and the category portray it to be.
I am assuming that my ARC was an uncorrected proof. There were a (very) few typos that I assume will be corrected in the final printing.
Recommended for people who enjoy memoirs and stories of what the Lord does in His peoples’ lives. Trigger warning: there’s a lot of death in this book—including child loss.
And what kind of dreams are key? Those that the Lord holds the key to, of course.
The Key to Dreaming Again is on tour with Celebrate Lit
About the Book
Author: Rick Unruh
Genre: Non-Fiction, Inspirational
Release Date: July 10, 2019
“We parked our car in front of Yankton’s Federal Prison Camp and walked through the doors of the control center. ‘I’m Rick Unruh, and I’m here to self-surrender,’ I told the corrections officer. There is no way I could comprehend what those words would mean over the course of the next year, as God would begin a new work in me.”
Born and raised in a small town in Kansas, Rick Unruh was called to be in the ministry. But when he lost his mother to cancer despite her unwavering faith that God would heal her, it planted seeds of doubt in his heart. He served as a traveling evangelist for years but later faded away from the ministry.
He and his wife lost their house in a fire, but a year later, far worse pain was ahead when they lost their twelve-year-old son in an ATV accident. Just when it seemed there was hope and recovery ahead, Rick was blindsided by a federal investigation into a mortgage consulting group he’d been involved with. He was eventually charged and then sentenced to over a year in prison, embarrassed and sure that God was done with him this time. But God wasn’t finished.
This book is a testament to the God who restores us and allows us to dream again—if we will only surrender ourselves to him.
About the Author
Rick Unruh is a US MAPS missionary and is the founder of Dream Again Ministry. He holds a master’s degree in counseling from Logos University (Jacksonville, FL), with a special interest in grief ministry.
He lives in Kansas with his wife, Tamela, and travels the country sharing his Dream Again testimony, a message of hope and finding our purpose. Rick recently added workshops for the church, helping them understand and minister to the grieving.
Rick also recruits full-time missionaries to serve with MAPS.
More from Rick
I actually wrote the first chapter of my book in 2011 and then it just sat there until December of 2018. I continually have had people ask me to write a book about my story, since I travel nearly every weekend sharing my story. I could just never get the desire or focus to finish it.
After writing it, I realized, that I was hesitating because I didn’t want to go back to some of those places and dig deep, stirring painful emotions, just to write about them. I would feel the anxiety building as I was getting closer to those moments.
There is great healing in writing, but the early process of writing this book caused me to shed many tears. But, if it can help others who are struggling with the loss of a loved one or a major setback in life, and bring hope and encouragement, then it has all been worth it.
Through the Lens of Scripture.com, September 12
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 13
Simple Harvest Reads, September 14 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, September 14
Betti Mace, September 15
Spoken from the Heart, September 16
Older & Smarter?, September 17
Genesis 5020, September 18
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 19
Texas Book-aholic, September 20
Blossoms and Blessings, September 21 (Author Interview)
Stephanie’s Life of Determination, September 21
janicesbookreviews, September 22
A Reader’s Brain, September 23
Just the Write Escape, September 24
Inklings and notions , September 25
To celebrate his tour, Rick is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card and a eBook copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.