Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Book contest update...

I forget what number I'm officially on. I'll double check, but I think Erin finally took the lead. Oh well, at least I held her at bay for 5 months. I should be proud of that.

Here's what I've finished reading lately:

Deep Justice in a Broken World -
by Chap Clark & Kara Powell
I read this one as I prepared for my sermon on Micah 6:8. It's one of those books that frustrated me to no end while still causing me to dream big. There were moments when I was left with that typical feeling of "I'm not doing enough. I suck." yet I found that it was balanced out with "What can I do?"

I'd recommend reading the book if you're currently thinking about how you can get students involved in doing justice or if you are currently involved (or would like to be involved) in some type of justice ministry in your community or church. It also contains some very good discussion starters and personal reflection questions at the end of each chapter that will help you think through the practical "what can I do" type of questions.

Why We're Not Emergent (By Two Guys Who Should Be) -
by Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck
I've read a lot of emerging/emergent books over the past few years, so I thought I'd give this one a go as one of the opposing voices against the emerging church. I was a little skeptical, because I find any book that tends to speak against something usually does so in a very arbitrary manner that often leads to taking things out of context from a small number of sources.

This book takes the typical swings at Brain McLaren, Doug Pagitt, Rob Bell, Dan Kimball (and the another usual emerging types), but I found that they actually carried themselves quite well. I felt they didn't come across as "You suck because MY way is right", but they really tried to engage in some good arguments about some issues in the emerging movement.

All that said, if you're at all intrigued or interested by the emerging church, this may be a good book to read through as it will show you part of the flip side of the coin (if that makes any sense).

When the Wind Blows and Double Cross - by James Patterson
Nothing significant here. I was just looking for some more fiction to read and since I liked Patterson's other stuff I didn't stray far. But "When the Wind Blows" was a little weird even for me. I mean, it's a thriller/mystery about genetic experiments that cause children to have wings which they can fly with. "Double Cross" was a pick up from the library before my four day work break and it was ok.


Knotter said...

FYI, for those of you who are keeping count at home. I have now finished 16 since January 1st of this year.

jon said...

i'm glad to hear you say "why we're not emergent" isn't as bad as the title indicates, because the title alone ticks me off. and i'm not even that into the emergent trend. i just think it is by far so preferable to the main form of evangelicalism that it is "emerging" from that i shake my head and ask what exactly bookwriters like this are even trying to accomplish.

the best critiques i can think of for emergent church folk are also critiques i would make against MOST evangelicals they are emerging from, so i don't really get the hub-bub.

but i'm glad the book is thoughtful and comes across good. that's refreshing to hear.

Knotter said...

I think most people read the cover and toss the book aside. I just knew that I had to read "another" voice.

These guys write about the fact that they'll probably never change people's minds, but at least it can be a place to continue dialogue (which is what emergent tends to be about).

I really appreciated the tone with which they speak of the church today. The one guy is a pastor who seems to really LOVE the church that he is at, imperfections and all.

It was refreshing to almost see that twinkle in his eye when he spoke of his congregation.

If you ever read it, I'd be curious to hear your take. I've only actually read one other review of the book and I hardly understood the review!