I’ve been reading a lot lately. Here are two mini-reviews of two rather excellent books:
A God Sized Vision by Collin Hansen and John Woodbridge.
I loved this book for many reasons. It’s a novel idea–to present a basic history of revival. Revival is a subject I had little knowledge of, other than being part of “revival meetings” at times. What Hansen and Woodbridge describe are historic movements of the Spirit upon a nation or group of people. What I love is that they don’t whitewash the warts of the leaders in each movement, they chronicle the excesses of movements, and they generally put forward the idea that revival in a country is something that God decides to do when He decides to do it. But, as people of God, it’s something we should pray for. This book really inspired me to pray harder and longer for revival in our midst. I’m challenged by the fact that revival isn’t for those people “out there” who we think need to change but it happens first among the people of God. I highly recommend this book. It’s not too long, it’s wonderfully readable, and it will inspire you to greater depths of faith.
Spiritual Rhythm by Mark Buchanan
I received this book to review as part of my involvement in the Amazon Vine program. When I saw that it was available, I immediately snatched it up, even though I already had a stack of books in the que. I’ve always enjoyed the work of Buchanan, pastor of New Life Community Baptist Church in Duncan, British Columbia. I’ve read other of his books, such as Your God is Too Safe and others. He’s a profound thinker and an amazing writer. He’s the rare pastor who can articulate good sound theology . . . and write well. Spiritual Rhythm explores the spiritual concept of seasons. Mark’s assertion is that if we are to be fruit-bearers, we must understand the concept of seasons of spirituality. He then mines Scripture and shares powerful truths for each season of life. He’s also painfully honest without being melodramatic. And as a master wordsmith, he doesn’t waste a word. I find myself soaking this book in a chapter or two at a time and then thinking deeply about each section. Mark talks biblically and with doctrinal precision about subjects such as sin, repentance, and the spiritual disciplines of prayer, Bible reading, and church involvement. I highly recommend this book. It was a terrific read and a boon to my spiritual life.