Friday, January 7, 2011

Book Review: The Grace of God

Just finished reading "The Grace of God" by Andy Stanley.  This book kind of surprised me with how much I liked it.  I received it from a competition on Michael Hyatt's blog (he's the CEO of the publisher, Thomas Nelson).  Even though I love Andy's preaching and leadership, I wasn't as excited as I should have been about the book.  I'm not even sure why.  And it even started a bit slow, but man did it pick up speed!!
It's such a great look at God's grace from creation all the way through to the beginning of the church.  We mistakenly link grace to Jesus and the New Testament, but Andy shows how it was there from the beginning of God's story.  He does such a great job at taking stories we may be familiar with and showing us how God's grace was filling that story.  He shows you context, history, and details in those stories that you didn't know about before.
Finally, he finishes with how grace should impact the church.  The final chapters are a bit haunting in how we operate in the church.  Grace should certainly be the mark of Jesus' church.  As Andy says, "The church is most appealing when the message of grace is most apparent."  If our churches will dish out grace like warm biscuits than the world will desire it.  But too many of our churches look inwardly, focus on the 'law', and create churches for church people.  Hear just this one last thought, "Like every church, we fight the gravitational pull toward creating a church for church people.  But that's a fight worth getting involved in.  It's a fight more and more churches are undertaking.  But I don't understand why every church wouldn't determine to become a church for unchurched people."  That's stinging to me.
Well, I'd recommend this book to anybody.  If you're not sure what you think about grace, explore it here.  If you've struggled receiving grace, or giving it, this book is for you.  If you're a church leader, this book is for you.  It's easy to read, paints a great picture, challenges, and encourages.

Overall Grade: A


No comments: