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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Growing Up Amish by Ira Wagler

Ira Wagler was born into an Old Order Amish family, but he was not meant to walk the same path as his forefathers had for so many generations.  In his memoir, Growing Up Amish, Wagler recounts his life, his struggles, questions, adventures and his ultimate decision to leave the Amish lifestyle behind.  It was not an easy decision, as it would mean leaving his family and everything he knew, as well as losing his salvation (or so he thought).  Wagler spent about a decade testing boundaries, having one foot in and one foot out of the Amish community.  Each time he returned from the "heathen world," he was intent on making it work... and yet, he just wasn't able to conform to the laid-back, "ignorant" lifestyle his peers were so comfortable with.  Wagler learned a lot through his adventures (and misadventures), but the best thing he learned was to have a personal relationship with God.

I have always enjoyed reading Amish fiction, but it was truly intriguing to read this true-life story of someone who grew up in the community.  I had no idea that the preachers were chosen by vote, and had to serve whether they wanted to or not, also disregarding whether they were good at it or not!  The Amish lifestyle, from a far, looks peaceful, quaint and easy going.  But the rules are strict, and vary from community to community.  There is very little room for creativity or deep thinking, at least according to Wagler.  This book was pretty eye-opening!

I Review For The Tyndale Blog Network
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Tyndale Blog Network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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