Two Steps Forward Explores the lives of the four women that involved past experiences and the present.
Two Steps Forward
by Sharon Garlough Brown,
InterVarsity Press (IVP), PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, Illinois 60515-1426, Pb, pp. 335, 2015, ISBN 978-0-8308-4318-3, (also available in digital ISBN 978-0-8308-9871-8). $18.00.
Author Sharon Garlough Brown is a minister, retreat leader and author. Brown and her minister husband have served congregations in Scotland, England, Oklahoma and Michigan. Her first book in this series, “Sensible Shoes,” began with four women (Meg, Charissa, Hannah and Mara) meeting during a spiritual retreat under the guidance of Katherine. You don't have to have read the first book to get the theme of this second book. It continues the story immediately with Meg traveling abroad to be with her adult daughter, and then goes into the inter-twining stories of the other women. “Two Steps Forward” continues in the third book, now being written, called “Barefoot.”
“Two Steps Forward” further explores the lives of the four women that involved past experiences and the present. We see divorce, pregnancy, letting go of adult children, being on one’s own and trying to find a spiritual path through turmoil in life. That is Katherine’s role, as a guide. The writing style of this book keeps the reader going from one page to the next and before you know it, 300 pages have passed. The main emphasis here is on Mara with teenage boys and divorce and Meg, who is a widow and letting go of her adult daughter and her own relationships. Then, there is Charissa who is pregnant and trying to finish her advanced degree and Hannah, who is somewhat in the background here, with a male friend who is a minister.
The women are there to support each other, having met randomly during the first book’s spiritual sessions. One can identify in several situations when you needed help and it came from a friend, either well-known or someone who saw the situation and came. There is a friendliness here as though this were a long, easy-going devotional with side trips to visit other people. When you finish the book, it is as though you finished speaking with a friend.  You find in this book, that God is always there for us we only have to ask, and to wait patiently. God has a purpose in the lives of the four women and they are starting to find out what it is. 
The end of the book has a 24-page guide for eight weeks of study involving the characters and their spiritual search.
Copyright 2015 Marie Asner