I was unsure what to expect when I picked up this book but I found it an easy read, interesting and full of wisdom! Hannah defines the premise of the book as follows “…much of our emotional instability is rooted in pride. Not simply pride in our intellect or our physical bodies, but a pride that prioritizes our emotions as the source of truth.” All of these elements are fully explored and parallels are drawn to nature. I think I leant as much about gardening as I did about humility! This comparison did make an intangible concept, humility, far easier to relate to. Memorable lines include:
“Pride convinces us that we are stronger and more capable than we actually are. Pride convinces us that we must do and be more than we are able. And when we try, we find ourselves feeling “thin, sort of stretched . . . like butter that has been scraped over too much bread.” We begin to fall apart physically, emotionally, and spiritually for the simple reason that we are not existing as we were meant to exist.”
“You may have thrown off the yoke of religious form, you may be working for the greater good, but it’s entirely possible that you are still plowing under your own direction and strength. Instead of embracing Jesus as your Messiah, it’s entirely possible that you’ve become your own messiah.”
“And it is through this worship, through recognizing His rightful place, that we are finally humbled.”
“And here is how humility brings rest to our internal life: Humility teaches us that “God is greater than our heart.” Humility teaches us that we don’t have to obey our emotions because the only version of reality that matters is God’s.”
“In other words, humility teaches us to be less concerned with knowing the answers and more concerned with learning the answers.”
My favourite paradigm shift was when I perceived the relationship between humility and rest. I found the writing a little slow but otherwise really enjoyed it, a 4 out of 5 on the en-JOY-ment scale.
From the back cover:
The Blue Ridge Parkway meanders through miles of rolling Virginia mountains. It’s a route made famous by natural beauty and the simple rhythms of rural life.
And it’s in this setting that Hannah Anderson began her exploration of what it means to pursue a life of peace and humility. Fighting back her own sense of restlessness and anxiety, she finds herself immersed in the world outside, discovering a classroom full of forsythia, milkweed, and a failed herb garden. Lessons about soil preparation, sour mulch, and grapevine blights reveal the truth about our dependence on God, finding rest, and fighting discontentment.
Humble Roots is part theology of incarnation and part stroll through the fields and forest. Anchored in the teaching of Jesus, Anderson explores how cultivating humility—not scheduling, strict boundaries, or increased productivity—leads to peace. “Come unto me, all who labor and are heavy laden,” Jesus invites us, “and you will find rest for your souls.”
So come. Learn humility from the lilies of the field and from the One who is humility Himself. Remember who you are and Who you are not, and rediscover the rest that comes from belonging to Him.
Thank you to Netgalley and Moody Publishers for this advance copy.