Friday, January 22, 2016

Review: Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God by Francis Chan

Synopsis: God is Love. Have you ever wondered if we're missing it? It's crazy, if you think about it. The God of the universe - the Creator of nitrogen and pine needles, galaxies and E-minor - loves us with a radical, unconditional, self-sacrificing love. And what is our typical response? We go to church, sing songs, and try not to cuss. Whether you've verbalized it yet or not...we all know some thing's wrong. Does something deep inside your hart long to break free from the status quo? Are you hungry for an authentic faith that addresses the problems of our world with tangible, even radical, solutions? God is calling you to a passionate love relationship with Himself. Because the answer to religious complacency isn't working harder at a list of do's and don'ts - it's falling in love with God. And once you encounter His love, as Francis describes it, you will never be the same. Because when you're wildly in love with someone, it changes everything. (from the back of the book)

Review: Several years ago, this was the "it" book to read in Evangelical Christian circles. It sold over 2 million copies and topped bestseller lists, both Christian and Secular. It's still popular. And yet, given how little our society has changed, my guess is that most of the people who read it, like the rich young ruler, went away sad because they found the road too hard and the sacrifice too much. And as one of those reader myself, I can tell you - the idea of rejecting Chan's call to a different Christian life is appealing. Who wants to give away most of their wealth and time and resources? Who wants to live without the illusion of control and security? Who wants to be at the mercy of the God who thought it was "good" the Jesus die on the cross? Because I don't. And yet, I do. Chan states, clearly, why living this way, this dangerous way, is what Christ meant when He called us to follow Him. Through passionate words and timely Scriptures, Chan unfolds his thoughts on what being a Christian is suppose to mean and to look like. He does so with the premise that God loves us with a "crazy love" - and intends for us to love Him back with the same. It's powerful and enticing and scary. While I am not quite at the place where I am ready to toss of the entrapments of my rich American life, Chan's book will stay with me long after I set it down. Worth reading, in every sense.

Favorite Quotes:

"Friends, we need to stop living selfish lives, forgetful of our God" pg. 51

"In other words, God knew me before He made me" pg. 58

"Lukewarm people rarely share their faith with their neighbors, coworkers, or friends. They do not want to be rejected nor do they want to make people uncomfortable by talkinh about private issues like religion" pg. 71

"My conclusion? Jesus' call to commitment is clear. He wants all or nothing. The thought of a person calling himself a "Christian" without being a devoted follower fo Christ is absurd." pg. 85

"The reality is that, whether we acknowledge our wealth or not, being rich is a serious disadvantage spiritually" pg. 90

"Leftovers are not merely inadequate; from God's point of view (and lest we forget, His is the only one that matters), they're evil. Let's stop calling it "a busy schedule", or "bills" or "forgetfulness.". It's called evil." pg. 92

"But the fact is that nothing should concern us more than our relationship with God; it's about eternity, and nothing compares with that. God is not someone who can be tacked on to our lives." pg. 96

"I need God to help me love God" pg. 104

 "But that is exactly what we do when we fail to give freely and joyfully. We are loaded down with too many good things, ore than we could ever need, while other are desperate for a small loaf.  The good things we cling to are more than money; we hoard our resources, our gifts, our time, our families, our friends. As we begin to practice regular giving, we see how ludicrous it is to hold on to the abundance God has given us and merely repeat the words thank you." pg 120-121

"But God doesn't call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn't come through." pg 124

Bookmarks: 8 of 10

Awards: None

ISBN: 978-1-4347-6851-3
Year Published: 2009
Date Finished: 1-15-2016
Pages: 205

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