THREE HOME RUNS

Welcome to the ACAC Bookmama’s Blog!

For my first set of reviews I decided to start with some “oldies but goodies”, books that have significantly influenced how I see the world and live my faith.  If you’ve read them, feel free to share your thoughts, regardless of if you agree with me or not.  If you haven’t read them consider picking up one of these books as an investment in  your own spiritual growth.

SEX GOD, Rob Bell

I bet you thought this was going to be a boring little church lady blog, huh?  At some point I will post a thought or two about Rob Bell’s Velvet Elvis, another home run in my opinion.  But this week I’m excited to introduce some of you the Sex God, Bell’s effort to unwrap the complex connections between our humanness and our spirituality.  Weaving together history, ancient Jewish customs, Scripture and contemporary stories, Bell skillfully leads us to a deeper understanding of ourselves as sexual beings created in God’s image.  His writing style can sometimes reflect a little too much self awareness as evidenced by a  few too many attempts to be funny or coy, but there’s something of value in here for everyone.  Parents will find the chapter “Angels and Animals” useful in understanding where we as people of faith may be able to find more creative ways to teach our children to manage the powerful, natural inclinations that are a part of puberty; Married couples will find in “Under the Chuppah”  a challenge to a deeper level of covenant commitment;  Single people of faith will find the whole book unashamed to consider that God himself created us as sexual beings and that singleness does not make you an amorphous, asexual being.   To me the most significant theme running through the book involves all of us as future members of the great wedding pictured in the book of Revelation.  If you want to know how Bell moves from the earthiness of our sexuality to the holiness of the Bride of Christ, you have to READ THE BOOK.  You won’t be sorry.

OUT of SOLITUDE, Henri Nouwen

For those of you who might find Sex God a little too new, I offer you something old.    If you’ve ever been to my office, I’ve probably sent you away with a copy of this little book.  I give it to everyone because quite frankly, it’s changed my understanding of what God wants us to be about and how we are to go about doing His work in the world.

You might need to read this book if:

  1. You like short but powerful reads. (It’s only 63 pages and it has large print!)
  2. You are busy, busy, busy and looking for PEACE.
  3. You want to cultivate a clearer sense of God’s guidance in your life.
  4. You are an over-functioning over-achiever–you know who you are.
  5. You spend a lot of time helping people in crisis or you are in a crisis of your own.

The simple and profound message of this book is that you are not the source of your strength or the source of your success.  Once we cultivate an inner awareness of God moving in this world our approach to everything we do, working, playing and caring for others, will be deeply changed, to the glory of God.

THE IRRESISTIBLE REVOLUTION, Shane Claiborne

WAKE UP!!!  That’s the message of this book.  Here is the story of a young believer drawn deeper and deeper into relationship with Jesus through his experiences as a  college student visiting (and eventually living with) the  homeless.  Don’t read this book if you like the state of your spiritual life. I’ve told everyone I know that the first 100 pages of this book woke me up from a slumber and showed me an irresistible picture of God’s Kingdom of God.  Perhaps what I should say is that this book helped me see that I was slumbering, all along thinking that I was moving passionately toward making God’s Kingdom a reality in the world around me.  By being both winsome and challenging Claiborne showed me how wrong I was about where I thought I was and what I thought I was doing.  “Wake up!” was the message of this book and wake up was exactly what I did.  I find it troubling how easy it is to fall back into the comfortable slumber that makes you numb to what God is doing in this world.  (But that’s a conversation for another day.)

While I LOVE this book (I really do), I’m aware that some of Claiborne’s attempts to wake us up through shock therapy could cause some to miss his message of love  and action in the name of Jesus.  Still I highly recommend it.  If you’ve read it let me know what you think.

Well that’s it, three to begin, all home runs for sure.  I’ll be posting a new list on this site once each week. I’m hoping you’ll visit the site often.  And I’m hoping you’ll tell me what you’re reading.  Until then, read something!  Why?

BECAUSE THE BOOKMAMA TOLD YOU TO! bookmammahead1

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