This Life I Live by Rory Feek
This Life I Live is the story of Rory and Joey Feek. As the cover says, it is about "one man's extraordinary, ordinary life and the woman who changed it forever." I really like that subtitle.
Actually the first half of This Life I Live is primarily about Rory and his life's journey up until meeting Joey. He shares details of his family life growing up and the challenges he overcame to live a life for God as a new Christian before he met Joey. It isn't all a pretty story. Like most of our stories, it is painful to read about mistakes he made, but he also shares how God has used those life experiences to grow him and, ultimately, to make him a better person. Rory shares how he believes we are all doing the best we can with what we know and he doesn't hold grudges these days. I think there is a lot of truth to that.
In the second half of This Life I Live, Rory shares about how he met Joey and about their life together. He shares the facts of their life on the farm and how they got into the music business. He also shares how they grow closer through their years as husband and wife. Rory writes about how they prayed together and looked to the Bible to find the answers they needed. He shares things candidly and openly as he talks about their strengths and weaknesses and how God worked in their lives. Rory also shares about how Joey didn't want to have children initially. He says, "That worried me. For her. I had spent enough of my life trying to control things and "have it my way" to know that usually whatever it is that we refuse to give to God is probably the one thing He wants from us." I think there is a lot of truth to that. And Joey eventually did give her fear and reservations to God and they had their daughter, Indiana, together. Throughout the book he shares other bits of wisdom that he has gleaned through his life's experiences too.
For me, This Life I Live was a fascinating read. I read this book in two days. I am one of those few people who didn't follow Joey and Rory on television, on the radio or on Rory's blog. But one day a couple of weeks ago, I saw Rory on The Gaither show featuring singer Bradley Walker, who sang at Joey's funeral. This program was also filmed on Rory's farm and produced by him. After I watched it, I knew I needed to read his story. I am so glad that I did as it touched me in many ways. Rory does have a gift for story-telling and his stories mesmerized me. Some made me cringe and some made me smile. In the end, I cried with Rory at the loss of his beloved Joey. Isn't that the way of life? I would encourage both those who are long-time fans and those who aren't familiar with them to read this This Life I Live. Rory inspires us to all live a better life.
I received This Life I Live from Thomas Nelson Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for this book.