A Brief Theology of Periods (Yes, Really): An Adventure for the Curious Into Bodies, Womanhood, Time, Pain and Purpose–And How to Have a Better Time of the Month – Rachel Jones

A Brief Theology of Periods (Yes, Really) Rachel Jones
A Brief Theology of Periods (Yes, Really): An Adventure for the Curious Into Bodies, Womanhood, Time, Pain and Purpose - And How to Have a Better Time of the Month by Rachel Jones
Also by this author: 5 Things to Pray in a Global Crisis (5 Things), A Brief Theology of Periods (Yes, Really)
Published by Good Book Company on May 1, 2021
Genres: Non-Fiction, Christian Life, Theology
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The average woman has 500 periods in her lifetime. And whether yours are mildly annoying, utterly debilitating or emotionally complicated, most of us have at one time or another asked: Why?!
This warm, light-hearted, real, honest and at times surprising book gives a biblical perspective on menstruation, as well as a whole lot more. Beginning with periods, Rachel Jones takes readers on an adventure in theology, weaving together wide-ranging reflections on the nature of our bodies, the passing of time, the purpose of pain, and the meaning of life.
One thing is for sure: you've never read a Christian book quite like this one.
Whether you're in need of hope and help, or are just downright curious, you'll be refreshed and encouraged by this book. As Rachel puts it, "Whoever you are, my aim is that you reach the end of this book celebrating who God has made you, how God has saved you, and the fact that he speaks liberating and positive truth into all of life's experiences (even periods)".

In A Brief Theology of Periods, Rachel Jones shares insight into the role of periods in women’s lives. She acknowledges the widely varying range of experiences that women have based on their ages, life situations, and health issues, and shares anecdotes from her own and others’ experiences. She encourages women to develop a strong theology of the body, leave behind unnecessary, destructive shame, and think through the emotional impacts of their time of the month. Jones also writes about historic social stigma surrounding menstruation, and thoughtfully addresses parts of Leviticus that deal with monthly bleeding. She outlines the honest, unfiltered reactions that Christian women often have to this part of the Bible, but puts these passages in context with an understanding of Israel’s ceremonial laws.

A Brief Theology of Periods is interesting and unusual, and I appreciate Jones’s courage in writing about something that Christians are so often silent about, or don’t know how to discuss in a constructive way. She encourages women to encourage and support each other, especially when they are dealing with health issues that make periods complicated, and reminds readers that Jesus is familiar with and understands pain. “Whatever you do or don’t feel comfortable sharing in your small-group prayer times, there’s nothing you can’t share with Jesus in your personal prayer times. He sees. He knows. He’s listening.” She also encourages women who struggle with irritability and other significant PMS symptoms to find peace in the gospel. She pushes back against secular messages of total self-acceptance, saying that we should feel rightly ashamed of our wrong behavior, but she emphasizes that Christ provides rest for us in his total forgiveness and mercy.

Jones covers a variety of issues, and keeps this book accessible and relevant to Christian women of different ages, backgrounds, and life situations. Not all women will be interested in this book or feel represented here, but Jones addresses young women and older women, married and unmarried, with children or childless, and with or without significant pain or emotional upheaval around that time of the month. She also encourages men to read this book to develop a better understanding of this experience and women around them. Not everyone will agree with or connect with everything in this book, but it is a great conversation-starter for Christians, and will hopefully help Christian women develop a stronger bodily theology and become more equipped to have supportive conversations with others about this topic.