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Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul [Kindle Edition]

John Eldredge , Stasi Eldredge
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (574 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Every woman was once a little girl. And every little girl holds in her heart her most precious dreams. She longs to be swept up into a romance, to play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure, to be the Beauty of the story. And yet―how many women do you know who ever find that life?


Most women think they have to settle for a life of efficiency and duty, striving to be the women they "ought" to be but often feeling they have failed. Sadly, too many messages for Christian women add to the pressure. "Do these ten things, and you will be a godly woman." The effect has not been good on the feminine soul.


The message of Captivating is this: Your heart matters more than anything else in all creation. The desires you had as a little girl and the longings you still feel are telling you of the life God created you to live. He offers to rescue your heart and release you to live as a fully alive and feminine woman. A woman who is truly captivating.



Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

John Eldredge became the Robert Bly of evangelicalism with his blockbuster Wild at Heart. Now he teams up with his wife, Stasi, to encourage women to connect with their deepest desires. To facilitate this, the Eldredges reveal in the first chapter what every woman's three core desires are: to be romanced, to play a role in her own adventures and to display beauty. (This formula will be familiar to Eldredge's fans, as Wild at Heart offered a similar tripartite model of men's desires.) The rest of the book is an extended reflection on these three impulses. Drawing heavily on popular films to prove their points, the Eldredges warn that most women tend to become either controlling or needy. Godly women, in contrast, should see God as the ultimate lover, and look to Eve (and not, say, J. Lo) as their model. Also, women should form close, intimate friendships with one another, à la Ruth and Naomi or the ladies in Fried Green Tomatoes. These are all unoriginal themes, which evangelical women's writers have been recycling for years. Christian readers who embrace a robust egalitarianism will not find the Eldredges' perspective congenial. Regardless, the book is likely to fly off the shelves, purchased by all those women who gave Wild at Heart to their husbands, brothers and dads. (Apr. 14)

Review

"Authors John and Stasi Eldredge interpret their own work with a brisk cadence that switches from John’s clear tones and pitch to Stasi’s youthful, vibrant vocal personality. Their energetic delivery captures their feminine view of women in relation to God with contrasting voices that match voice to mood with a male-female technique. Their depiction of assorted characters from movies and books supports their theories, which seem to border on pop psychology, rather than biblical content. They deftly deliver vivid but simple character sketches with a versatile range and skill that humanize God as a “lover” and “romancer.”  Their lightly accented enunciation animates and freshens the entire reading, which emphasizes their woman-centered point of view." 
G.D.W. © AudioFile Portland, Maine

Product Details

  • File Size: 1818 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (July 10, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001E96LPE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #212,243 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
356 of 367 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Believe it or not, 'Captivating' is a blessing. October 9, 2005
By Lara
Format:Hardcover
I just spent the last 10 minutes reading or skimming through the 60-some reviews on here. Interesting to note that most people either love or hate the book. Personally I love it. When I read I find myself tearing up over various issues that fully resonate with my heart. I also promise you that I am not your typical 'gushy', chick-flick watching female. To be honest, i'm much more tomboyish and struggle to be feminine instead of 'tough'. But I believe God plants in woman many universal core desires and that is what 'Captivating' addresses. I give this book 4 stars and am going to explain why by addressing issues OTHER people had with the book's content.

A warning, this could be long. I love to write. I beg your indulgence.

First off..the title of the book, 'Captivating'. I saw one review that claimed this title is negative and implies men being captives of women. How misunderstood! In my evening Bible-reading, I came across this verse in Proverbs(5:18.19) 'May you rejoice in the wife of your youth...may you ever be CAPTIVATED by her love.' So yes, for the record, being captivating is very Biblical.

Secondly, comments about the 'over-use' of movie references and pop-culture. I've noted that much of our Christian culture has always been AFRAID of popular entertainment. I agree that there is a great necessity for discernment, but at the same time, we must address society WHERE IT IS. This book does not seek to REPLACE the Bible, but to encourage us to see God in everyday things. How many of us never go to the movies or listen to the radio or read classic literature? very few indeed. Is it really so terrible to draw truth from fiction? Fiction is not synonmous with lies, yet some still chose to believe this. God is the author of our creativity..
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169 of 177 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Message from a skeptic.... December 1, 2005
Format:Hardcover
I decided to read this book because I'd been told by multiple people that I respected as Godly women to read this. And I was given the warning- you might hate it at first, but get through the first few chapters and see what you think. I was skeptical, and reading the first few chapters I wanted to chuck the book across the room. I'm far from a Bibical scholar, but I value Scripture a lot and I think we're called to be skeptical of people's interpreations.

I do not think that John and Staci Eldredge have everything right. But I think "Captivating" speaks to our need for God to meet us deeply, personally and intimately. I hear many people saying- I don't relate because I don't need someone to rescue me. Well then, why do you need Jesus? I think I believe a lie that "God loves sinners- His grace is sufficent for sinners- sinners need Jesus to save them...but now, I'm a Christian (a saved sinner) and yeah, I still need grace and He loves me, but I'm no longer in need of rescue." God wants more for us then this- read Romans 5- read 5:8 (while we were still sinners Christ died for us- AMAZING)...now keep reading- it doesn't end with salvation...Paul says "HOW MUCH MORE" multiple times in the next few verses talking about what God has FOR us after our conversion. It never stops being about God rescuing us, or our need.

What I love about this book is that it does beat the idea that God loves us. And you know what- I don't think we ever really learn this lesson and need to stop hearing it. This is not a Barney "God loves me" now let's all run and give eachother hugs- it is learning that God's love is totally life transforming.
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102 of 109 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Balm for a woman's soul May 2, 2005
Format:Hardcover
"As a new Christian, the first book I picked up on godly femininity I threw across the room. I never picked it up again. In the twenty-five years since, I have only read a few I could whole-heartedly recommend. The rest drive me crazy. Their messages to women make me feel as though, 'You are not the woman you ought to be --- but if you do the following ten things, you can make the grade.' They are, by and large, soul-killing. But femininity cannot be prescribed in a formula."

So begins (or very nearly begins) CAPTIVATING, written by John and Stasi Eldredge. The "I" in question is Stasi, but it's her husband John you are more likely to be familiar with. He's the author of THE SACRED ROMANCE, WILD AT HEART, and a number of other books that promote an adventurous and cathartic brand of Christianity. Whereas WILD AT HEART tailored that message for men, CAPTIVATING looks to tailor the message for women and is likely to have similar bestselling results.

But even though femininity cannot be prescribed in a formula as the introduction says, CAPTIVATING's premise is that there is an essence that God has given to every woman. "We share something deep and true, down in our hearts," Stasi writes. And it's this universal feminine heart that CAPTIVATING hopes to expose, heal, develop, and celebrate.

That this feminine heart needs healing is not hard for the authors to evidence. "Every woman I've ever met feels it --- something deeper than just the sense of failing at what she does. An underlying, gut feeling of failing at who she is. I am not enough and I am too much at the same time. Not pretty enough, not thin enough, not kind enough, not gracious enough, not disciplined enough. But too emotional, too needy, too sensitive, too strong, too opinionated, too messy.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good for your inner little girl
It's a very empowering and enlightening read. Very good for your feminine soul.
Published 18 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great product, delivered in a timely manner, condition good as described.
Published 1 month ago by Michelle Nieb
3.0 out of 5 stars This book works better in a group with the study guide
This book works better in a group with the study guide. It just seemed to list all the struggles and pains I have but I didnt see any solutions.
Published 1 month ago by Taz439
5.0 out of 5 stars A love letter to Christian women
This is one of my security blanket books. A love letter to Christian women. Very deep and beautiful booK!
Published 1 month ago by Amber Farnum
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes a great gift, and I recommend it not only for ...
John and Staci were spot on with this book. Makes a great gift, and I recommend it not only for ladies to read, but men, you should read this too. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kevin F
3.0 out of 5 stars Some good stuff, but they assume the most traditional gender roles...
This book has some good stuff in it, but the authors assume the most traditional gender roles ever! It is really annoying, that they also assume that all women find makeup... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Andrea
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read for men!
I read Wild at Heart; and was forced to read Captivating by our Men's Bible Study Group :( I then purchased the book on CD and listened to the book a second time with my wife in... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Jeff Schuster
1.0 out of 5 stars Such A Waste Of Time!
I found this book unoriginal and uninspiring. It is so repetitive I could hardly stand to finish it. Read more
Published 1 month ago by freedom
5.0 out of 5 stars The title explains how I feel about this book "Capitvating"
I loved this book, I am in a book study at my church and this was the chosen book for the 4 month (meeting once a month) period, The title is exactly what this book is... Read more
Published 1 month ago by D. Bradley
5.0 out of 5 stars Great reminder of how God sees me
My favorite book. I read it several times, and just started it again. (Sometimes I even read it as a Bible study and look up the verses myself. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Leah L.
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