Half-way through this book, Any Braner quotes his friend Bob. Bob's thoughts were an affirmation of everything that Andy was learning, and they could be a reorientation for the evangelical church.
Bob said "Andy, the key to growing in your own spiritual formation is to encounter Jesus in the fear and pain your life has served. We all have specific moments in our lives that change our trajectory, and most of us just try to hide it and move on. But what happens is that point of fear becomes the place we make every life decision."
We all fear things. The question is, what will we do with that fear?
Specific to the topic of this book, what do we do with the fear of the Other and the Unknown that we encounter as Christians journeying in the Wide World?
How do we translate all the evangelism training and the carefully taught apologetics into our daily life with the unconverted- whom we meet down the street and across the world?
Now, Andy Braner admits that this book has a target audience. He's aiming for the American Evangelical, who knows how to move within the church culture and how to talk to their fellow Christians, but who isn't sure what to do with the Rest of the World.
How do we move into true understanding of other people, without turning into some kind of Universalist?
How do we give others what matters so much to us (the Gospel) unless we have common ground to stand on?
"No Fear in Love" is a short, story-driven, powerful read that takes us back to one point, again and again. God calls us to love, He gives us His love, and love casts out fear.
Whether you're dealing with a hot-button political issue, or talking to a person who practices a very different religion, there is a way to handle it with grace for everyone's good and God's glory. That's what Andy says.
"These issues aren't impossible. They do take a bit more thought and action than we usually see. They take time. They take a heart of caring for another human being, a heart that is at the core of our faith tradition." ~Andy Braner
I thank Baker books for providing me with a review copy.