Friday, June 5, 2015

The Goodness of Grace~

From Good to Grace: Letting Go of the Goodness Gospel

This is a book for anybody who is trying to find some goodness in the world, or who is striving to "be good." 
It's for the fearful, the shamed, the despairing, the disturbed, the outcast, the worried, the dry and thirsty souls who really need grace. 

First, I've gotta say- Christine Hoover writes like a Puritan. I mean this is the best of ways. She delivers truth with words fitly spoken- dispensing rich theology in memorable phrases. She exalts the Glory of Christ and remains honest about the human condition, showing us God's tenderness. 
I'm guessing that Christine is a fan of Charles Spurgeon. 
Just sayin'. 

I'm afraid of oversimplifying a satisfyingly thorough book, but I feel like the heart of her message is this- Everything comes down to God's initiation, and we move in response to Him. Grace and Gratitude/ Gift and Reception/ Invitation and Welcome. 

Grace surrounds us, and permeates us. It reconciles us to God and restores us to Him in open relationship. Our reactions become colored by grace, and grace gives us the strength to reach out to the world. 

Here's a few thoughts from Christine- 

"We cannot contain love, and we cannot reach its end, but we can respond to the Love-Giver." 

"Worship develops into a craving for God. He is our safe place, the one whose wings we hide beneath. He is our companion, our security, our assurance. He is the truest peace we'll ever find. As we receive his care and loving provision for our soul's needs, we crave to be with him, and we treasure the Word where he beckons us to meet with him. Our desire is for him, and we devour Scripture looking for the ways he moves and speaks and loves." 

"The Gospel- Christ- is synonymous with grace. When we talk about our dwelling place, our home, we're talking about grace. We entered by the grace of Christ, we remain because of the grace of Christ, and our future salvation and hope are because of the grace of Christ." 

Grace cleanses us, gives us hope, teaches us how to love, provides our security, and focuses our eyes on Jesus. As we lean into grace, and rest on it, we begin to know the heart of God and become more like Christ. 

I thank Baker Publishing for providing me with a review copy of "From Good to Grace."

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