01 June 2006

Book Review

I haven't read a book. Well, I have read a lot of books. But I haven't read this book. Not yet. I'm going to tho, based on this review. And based on a couple of others I've read. But I'm also intrigued. This is a book written by the son of an author who was fairly influential in LightHusband's and my lives during our youth ministry years. This author died relatively young, but it's clear that he lived a life of integrity with his family, such that his son is now writing influential books too. But read the review and see for yourself. It's not so much a review, as it is a conversation with the author. At the end is a list of other reviews. And the book is going on my reading list.

Here's a bit of a quote to get you thinking ... it's part of the conversation with the author, but not part of the book:

It's difficult to work in the church. There are so many egos and insecurities. So many ways that the church has absorbed the values and mores of the culture (sigh). I don't know what the specific "resistance" is that you experienced. Most churches are simply secular institutions with a religious veneer. There's a driveness to succeed, to produce results, to grow numbers, to be productive and efficient--just like any American profit-making institution. Unfortunately, this is all in contrast to the Spirit, message, and life of Jesus. Jesus, to be truthful, is unproductive (in the world's terms), inefficient and the "results" of his ministry are ambiguous (the disciples flee, misunderstand his identity and intentions, etc.).

"Success is not a name for God" Martin Buber once said, nor is it a name for Jesus. And yet most churches and pastors want to succeed. If not success, then what is it we're after? Faithfulness. Transparency to God. Obedience (which etymologically means "to listen"). Our job is to be faithful, Mother Teresa once said, not successful. We don't need churches speaking spiritual truth we need churches that know how to embody the spirit.

Now click here and go read the rest for yourself.


Blogger kate said...

Thanks for the word, Sonja. I've added it to my "to order soon" pile, also.
I think I asked this before, but ... has the church ever done a book club sort of deal ever? This looks like a great place to start, if anyone's interested.

6/01/2006 10:29:00 AM  

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