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Book review: Christie Gardiner reimagines holiness in 'Holy As You Are'

"HOLY AS YOU ARE: Seeking Divine Moments in Your Ordinary Extraordinary Life," by Christie Gardiner, Covenant Communications, $14.99, 224 pages (nf)

Holy can be ordinary, writes Christie Gardiner, author of "You are the Mother Your Children Need." Holiness can be offsprings' tantrums (toddler, teen or any age in between), cleaning toilets, making science projects and doing taxes. Sacred are snowy sacrament tablecloths and pristine temple celestial rooms of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of course, but also sacred is the inherent messiness of life, family and repentance.

Christie Gardiner is the author of "Holy as You Are."
Christie Gardiner is the author of "Holy as You Are."
Provided by Covenant Communications

In "Holy As You Are," Gardiner reimagines the concept of holiness and encourages each woman to see holiness in ordinary life and in herself.

The book examines several facets of a holy life, including agency, personal ministering, habits, faith and questions, change, wholeness, relationships, writing one's holy stories and opposition. With each principle, Gardiner draws examples from everyday life and makes both general and specific suggestions to better incorporate the principle into day-to-day life.

At the heart of each, and the core of the book as a whole, is Jesus Christ. It is through him, Gardiner writes, that each person can find and develop holiness.

Self-help books can be discouraging. Gardiner, aware of this, balances validation of the reader's present state with encouragement to improve. Just when the anxiety starts to build, Gardiner faces it head-on and breaks the tension, helping the reader to relax and refocus on the book's main message: holiness is innate, and Christ can heal and nurture each of us.

Gardiner the author of three books, including "You are the Mother Your Children Need." She is also a motivational speaker, yogi instructor, performer and faculty member at the Utah Conservatory of Performing Arts. Gardiner lives in Pleasant Grove with her husband and three children.