I did not want this book.
The book blurb made it sound like a dark, heavy treatise about getting away from sin.
Yet for some reason, I still found myself requesting this for review.
And now Look and Live is one of my Top Reads of 2014. Within the first few pages- literally just the introduction- it was clear that this was gearing up to be an entirely different book than I had expected.
The next 246 pages were a delight to read- I intentionally forced myself to slow down and make it last longer.
Rather than being focused on sin, this was a book entirely about Glory- the Glory of God, the Glory that proceeds from Him.
The Glory that we must "behold" before we can ever "behave."
The Glory that we're searching for in all the dead end roads we travel. The Glory we recognize inherently, even before we can name it
The Glory captivates us when we come to Christ, that fuels our daily life as Christians, and that we will experience for all eternity.
Good stuff here, people.
He talks about the Cross- "The Blazing Center"- the event that makes the Glory personal and intimate for every human being.
He talks about Obedience-"Let my Eyes Adjust"- and makes the most concise sense out of the License/Legalism debate I've ever read.
He talks about "Scattered Beams"- experiencing Glory in the pleasurable- giving us permission to have fun.
He talks about "Glory and Suffering," wrestling with that paradox that beauty and holiness can come wit- and through- pain and loss.
In short, I'm going to be shoving this book at various people I know with a "You'll love this. Read it."
And because Matt Papa presents such a compelling vision of God, I would even give this to a not-yet-Christian seeker. What better evangelism than a glimpse of God's Glory??
"We must begin to understand that the gospel deconstructs a man before it reconstructs him. First it teaches him he is entitled to nothing, and then it give him everything." ~ Matt Papa
Thank you Bethany House for my review copy.