I recently signed up to be a viral blogger. Since I enjoy reading, and enjoy blogging (writing), it was a good fit for me. I read one book a month, write a review and then select another book. It is a great opportunity for me to be introduced to different authors that I might not otherwise have read.
The first book that I read was the furious longing of God by Brennan Manning.
I must start off my review by stating that the book was not what I expected at all. I honestly thought that I was going to be reading a story that had hints of autobiography in it, but that was not the case. This was a book that dealt with and tried to define varying aspects of what it means to truly be a Christian. I thought that the second half of the book was more encouraging that the first part. I was honestly a little frustrated with the first half, feeling that the author was very impressed with himself and his views on faith.
If I was not reading the book for a review, I might have put it down and not returned to it. It was not that I felt the content was bad. In fact, most of the content and the ideas presented, I found encouraging and enjoyable. I ran into trouble when it started to come across to me that the author thought very highly of how he has lived his life. It was not until the second half of the book that I felt that the author could adequately relate to what many Christians face in regards to viewing themselves as a failure in the eyes of the Lord.
When Manning, moved towards the current state of the church and the truth that many people are becoming disenchanted with it, my interest increased. I was left thinking that more people need to read this and understand that the Lord loves us where we are. He loves us and sent His son for us, so that we might enter a relationship with Him. We would be united with Christ. I especially enjoyed the description that discussed what it meant to be like Christ – it is not about imitating that actions of Christ but about approaching life and people in the same manner as Christ did. That is a rather simple paraphrase, but I thoroughly enjoyed the fact that Manning pushes believers in a direction that is away from performance-based spirituality.
He encourages people to truly understand the Gospel and what it means to be made a new creation in Christ.
I am surprised to be saying this, but I would recommend this book to someone else.
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