Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Christian Survival Guide... by Ed Cyzewski

A Christian Survival Guide

If you have ever asked yourself "What the hell do I do with the Book of Revelation?" then part of this book is for you.
(Some of it is absolutely beautiful. I love Revelation. But the chaos and the One World Order political overtones are enough to leave me terrified.) 

If you think you're a failure at evangelism because you can't get up the courage to "mug" people on the street with the Good News, then part of this book is for you. (And don't worry... there *is* a more whole life/shalom type of evangelism.)

If you want to experience Church as more than just that-white-building-with-a-steeple, but you don't know how to find a good one, then part of this book is for you. (It only took me twenty years to realize that "Church" should be used to describe a pack of Christians, not a stationary structure.) 

I did not read all of this book. Let me say that upfront. At this point, I didn't want to read the chapter on evil, hell, or violence in the OT, and I don't struggle with Genesis. 
(Main point of Genesis 1-3 being that God created a glistening, brand-new, wild, wondrous world with his Words, and we should stand amazed.) 

What I did read, though, were some thought-provoking and ultimately reassuring chapters on Prayer, Doubt, Community, Money, Apocalypse, and the Holy Spirit. 

It is possible to drive ourselves mad trying to master Christianity- as if it were an engine and we needed to take it apart and put it back together. 
Personal relationships fall apart and blog firestorms erupt because we are sure that we are putting those parts together The Right Way. 

We can hurt ourselves and other people deeply when we think it's our task to get our faith- and their faith- rolling and then keep it on the straight and narrow. A rather mysterious relationship with God Himself- a search for truth beauty and goodness- becomes a fight to keep it all together. 

I think, along with this book, readers should try Mike Erre's Astonished. That is another volume that deals with truth and paradox, life and eternity. 
I think they would combine admirably. :-)

Thank you Kregel Books for my review copy!

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