I first read Stepping Heavenward by Elizabeth Prentiss in the car on my way up a mountain. It was not one of my better decisions. Despite the nausea in my stomach, the book was nothing but enjoyable. Stepping Heavenward, first published in 1869, is the diary of fictional Kate, a young girl straying in her walk with Christ and in her love for those around her. Well-written, romantic and insightful, it chronicles her journey to adulthood in a way that is both lyrical and realistic.
The events chronicled in Kate’s diary are not grand, but her rather domestic struggles and her spiritual fights are still relevant to Christian women today. I found this book challenging in a practical sense. It’s the kind of story you feel good after reading but aren’t particularly entranced. It’s like eating whole wheat bread. Trust me, you’ll be better for reading it.