I am thrilled to bring you the interview with author Beth Guckenberger. I was on Beth’s book launch team for her book, Start With Amen. It was a book that made a huge impact on me. I am so glad I had an opportunity to interview Beth. You can read my book review of Start With Amen here.
Enjoy my interview with Beth!
1. Your book was incredibly raw and honest. Were you nervous about being so vulnerable with your readers?
Beth: Yes, but it didn’t seem worth the effort of writing without being real. So much pretend is in the world, and I grow most when I honestly exchange with someone. This was my best attempt at starting the exchange. My hope is readers have conversations of substance with people in their life as they process their own insights with each other.
2. For our readers who may have not read Start With Amen, can you share Why Start With Amen? (Side note; this is something I really wrestled with as I read your book, but it felt like such freedom once I worked through it in my own life)
Beth: Starting with “amen” (which means ‘so be it’) is more a posture than a prescription. It means beginning with the realization he is sovereign, and worthy to be surrendered to. Letting go of my agenda right from the start breeds freedom. Then I ask or confess like I would in any normal prayer, concluding by acknowledging who I am addressing, “dear Jesus…” Inverting my prayer life has allowed me to release control, worry, fear and embrace peace, spiritual confidence, freedom.
3. How has the Lord used your book, Start With Amen in your own life?
Beth: The idea of starting with amen has been a tremendous part of my spiritual maturation. The actual book was an act of obedience and any time we say yes to Jesus and then grow through the discipline of following through with that ‘yes’, we are changed.
4. My blog is all about reading and books, can you share with your favorite book was as a child?
Beth: I loved novels, and probably Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume was one of my favorite stories. As I grew, I appreciated true stories and today read more of those than any other kind.
5. What’s a book you are reading now?
Beth: My friend, Lauren Casper, just wrote a book It’s Okay About It about her autistic son. I am in the middle of it and appreciating her warm, conversational tone and spiritual insights.
6. When you are writing, do you have a daily ritual you follow?
Beth: I have no ritual! I do lots of travel, so I wrote a bunch of Start With Amen on a plane, or in a hotel room. Once I am under a deadline, I write whenever I can (I have a houseful of kids!) usually in my room (where I can shut the door!) and with a Diet Coke in hand.
7. Who do you consider to be a “hero in the faith”?
Beth: Oh, no doubt, my mom. She reads her Bible so much and has a enthusiasm for it’s fresh insights, despite the fact she’s been studying it for 50 years! I appreciate how she gains strength from it for her life, relationships and calling.
8. Are you working on another book?
Beth: Always! I always have an idea or two floating around my head and my hard drive. I am working on three proposals right now, we’ll see which ones stick around. Thanks for asking!
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