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One Simple Act: Discovering the Power of Generosity Paperback – April 5, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Macomber, one of today's leading fiction writers with more than 100 million books in print, walks a new path with this nonfiction title. I've just got to share the news, she says of her book on generosity. Intentional acts of generosity can open our lives to the very best God has to offer. Macomber builds her book on the biblical story of Jesus' multiplication of five loaves and two fishes, a miracle recorded in all four gospels, using her storytelling prowess to retell the tale. She then takes readers on a journey through the true meaning of generosity (and it's not about cash): encouragement, good deeds, forgiveness and believing the best. She also delves into giving, listening and hospitality, and dips into what generosity means when it comes to Christmas, caregiving and prayer. The theme, Macomber says, is, simply, to offer what you have. She fills out her chapters with real-life stories, suggestions for Simple Acts and brief Discovery sections. This is a useful, inspiring study of an underpracticed art, written by one who has received, given and witnessed generosity. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"For many years Debbie's novels have welcomed us home. Now she invites us to come closer to the hearth of our own home and consider what our lives look like when warmed by the graciousness of a giving spirit. Thank you, Debbie, for inviting us draw near as you candidly share your heart with all your faithful readers." -- Robin Jones Gunn, best-selling author of the Sisterchicks® novels

"The lavishness of Debbie's giving-heart is proofread in her fiction....whether she's teaching us through story how to knit, connect meaningfully with others, or heal from a disease, she's does so with grace and ease. Now in her inimitable way Debbie offers us gentle and powerful reminders of true-life generosity and never drops a stitch." -- Patsy Clairmont, Author Catching Fireflies

"You are going to love Debbie Macomber. She's the bubbly friend you've always hoped to meet and the savvy mentor you've longed to know. Debbie's mission statement is captured in God's words addressed to Abraham: 'you will be a blessing' (Genesis 12:2 NIV). I'm here to tell you, girlfriend -- she's taken that promise and run with it! Blessing her loved ones. Blessing her neighbors. Blessing strangers in need. And, in turn, blessing her readers." -- Liz Curtis Higgs, best-selling author of Bad Girls of the Bible --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Howard Books; Reprint edition (April 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439109370
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439109373
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (151 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #103,309 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Debbie Macomber is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and one of today's most popular writers with more than 170 million copies of her books in print worldwide. In her novels, Macomber brings to life compelling relationships that embrace family and enduring friendships, uplifting her readers with stories of connection and hope. Macomber's novels have spent over 750 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. Eight of these novels hitting the number one spot.

In 2015, Macomber's all-new hardcover novels include Last One Home (March), Silver Linings (August) and Dashing Through The Snow (October). Paperback editions will be issued in 2015 for Blossom Street Brides (March) and her Christmas novel, Mr. Miracle (October). In addition to fiction, Macomber has published cookbooks; inspirational and nonfiction works; as well as acclaimed children's books.In addition to fiction Macomber has also published two bestselling cookbooks; numerous inspirational and nonfiction works; and two acclaimed children's books.

Macomber's Cedar Cove Series became Hallmark Channel's first dramatic scripted television series, Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove, now enjoying its third season. In addition, Macomber's upcoming Christmas novel, Dashing Through the Snow, will be adapted as a Hallmark Channel movie in fall 2015.

Macomber owns the Victorian Rose Tea Room and A Good Yarn Shop, named after those she featured in her novels. She and her husband, Wayne, serve on the Guideposts National Advisory Cabinet, and she is World Vision's international spokesperson for their Knit for Kids charity initiative.

A devoted grandmother, Debbie and her husband Wayne live in Port Orchard, Washington (the town on which her Cedar Cove novels are based) and winter in Florida.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Stacey VINE VOICE on November 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover
"One Simple Act: Discovering the Power of Generosity" by Debbie Macomber is a completely wonderful book that uses scripture and stories to show the reader that a life of generosity is not only possible, but very powerful. I was touched more than once by the personal anecdotes shared by the author, examples of how to live in a generous way and value other human beings.

This book taught me that the little things really do matter. It gave me ideas of things to do to show others that they matter, as well. This book should be a must read for every person on the planet. If everyone read it and adopted even a small bit of what is written between these covers, the world would be a much better place.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Marine Corps Nomad VINE VOICE on November 13, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Debbie MaComber, best known for her fictional books, has written a wonderful non-fictional book about discovering the power of generosity. Using her gift as a story teller, Debbie weaves little stories throughout this book. Debbie talks about being generous in the acts of gratitude, sharing, encouragement, good deeds, forgiveness, seeing others through God's eyes, giving, listening, hospitality, hope, celebrating, caring for others, taking time for eternal things, prayer, sharing our faith stories, and serving.

Debbie describes how she has applied these different acts of generosity in her life, and how it has blessed her and those around her. She gives practical advice on how we can learn to be more generous in our lives. The gift of giving isn't just about monetary giving. I know that I walked away with more ideas on how our family can be more generous to others. Debbie concludes the book with study questions for each chapter and a list of her favorite charities.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Man in the Middle VINE VOICE on January 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This was my first Debbie Macomber book, though my wife is a huge fan.

"One Simple Act" is a non-fiction book about why being generous is good for givers, with lots of practical tips. Better, it is not just another ode to guilt. Rather, it gets into the science of why generosity is also good for givers, along with numerous stories of actual instances of generosity, with plentiful tips for those interested in becoming more generous.

Many of the included stories were already known to me, such as the opening one of Corrie Ten Boom and the fleas. Others were new. I was happy to read (re-read) them all, and glad to have them all together for future reference.

The book includes useful chapters on gratitude, forgiveness, listening, hospitality, correspondence, care-giving, and prayer. Notably, many of those require little or no money, just time and attention.

This book could be read as a daily devotional, perhaps a chapter a day. I recommend that approach, as some ideas soaked in better in small doses.

Some ideas I particularly liked:
Science documenting benefits of gratitude, forgiveness and prayer
The difference between praise and encouragement
Keeping good deeds simple and meaningful
The idea that heroes are more likely to be empathic than courageous
Fred Roger's idea for explaining 9-11 to children: "Tell them to watch the helpers."

My favorite line from the book is this: "very often the ones asking loudest are not the ones the Lord would have us support." Amen, sister! Contributing to some causes only accomplishes being asked to give more.

Overall, a worthy read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bradley J. Brisco VINE VOICE on December 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I was not familiar with Debbie Macomber (and since she is apparently best know as one of "today's leading voices in women's fiction" I think I am okay with that!) until reading "One Simple Act: Discovering the Power of Generosity." I chose to read the book primarily because of the sub-title. I believe those of us who recognize how blessed we are should be quick to be a blessing to others. I discovered Macomber believes so too. In "One Simple Act" she shares through numerous stories how powerful a simple act of generosity can be in the life of another. The stories are not only treats to read, but they give very practical examples of just how easy it is for us to become a person of extravagant generosity. She helps us to understand how giving the gifts of prayer, hospitality, service, time and encouragement can have a lasting impact on both the one who receives as well as the one who gives.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Bingo-Karen Haney on December 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Probably because I like Debbie Macomber's work, I thought this book was OK. Normally I would have been cynical about it. But it is really about making the world a better place by acts of kindness. She gives examples of true stories and things based on true stories that tell how being kind and doing for others can make things better for many. With her motivating messages you find out how by just being generous and giving time, encouragement and even forgiveness can help change someone's life, including your own. These aren't things that we don't know but the examples she gives do somewhat motivate you, especially at this holiday time of the year. The fact that she invites the reader to do this and offer it up to God may be a little too much for people who aren't into religion but I didn't feel like it was being pushed at you. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised I liked it as much as I did and came away feeling a little better about my neighbors and the world.
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