If you follow me on Twitter, you know all too well that I absolutely loved reading through Nothing to Prove. I am such a believer in Jennie Allen and behind the ministry of IF seeking to multiply disciple-makers.
Jennie’s story of feeling so unworthy and incapable facing a growing ministry refreshed my soul. As she named fears and lies, I was able to name many of my own, both in ministry and as an individual. That nagging, stabbing lie that knows precisely when to whisper and when to shout beneath all of our performance, “You are not enough.”
“If I were your enemy, I would intoxicate you with the mission of God rather than God himself.”
“Fear speaks a dark lie over our lives, over who we think we are.”
I listened to Nothing to Prove on Audible, treasuring hearing Jennie read her words aloud with her own inflection and tone. As a southern girl, I felt so comfortable hearing Jennie’s southern accent come through. Listening to her read each page felt like having coffee with a friend or mentor.
In the pages of Nothing to Prove, Jennie Allen reframes stories of Scripture, telling them as personal accounts. She tells the story of Jesus turning water to wine through the eyes of the bride and groom. She tells the story of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet at the Last Supper through the eyes of Peter. Each and every first person narrative she created moved me to chills and tears. Each story transitioned in my heart and mind from stories I had heard and taught on to stories that took on humanity, frailty, and so much similarity to my own fears and struggles.
“Jesus wasn’t there for Mary and Martha to prove their faith to Him. He was there to prove His love for them.”
Nothing to Prove is an incredible read that I put off finishing because I really never wanted it to end. Each chapter ends with discussion questions that would be great for a small group or Bible Study to walk through together.
“You will watch God do incredible miracles if you stop looking side to side. In quietness and trust shall be your strength.”
Jennie shared so bravely about many painful parts of her story, facing an eating disorder, wrestling with showing up as a pastor’s wife, walking with her sister through a divorce, and I was so thankful to be met by her humanity, authenticity, and struggle, rather than another read of why I should be more and do more. I walked away from this book feeling less challenged and more like I had gained a new friend, while reframing my view of Jesus and all that He’s called me to.