Monday, April 25, 2011

Craving Grace by Lisa Velthouse

The subtitle of this book (Craving Grace by Lisa Velthouse) is “a story of faith, failure, and my search for sweetness.” This is a very nice concise summary of the book. It is the story of the author’s search for an understanding/experiencing of God’s grace. She wrestles with ideas of earning God’s grace, manipulating Him to gain grace, and other nuances of attaining grace. The understood point throughout all of this is that God’s grace is completely un-earnable, totally a GIFT from Him.

I enjoyed this book much more than I imagined I would. It was deep, but manageable. The thoughts about grace inspired a lot of thought and searching about my own life in relation to God’s grace. We so often feel that we can manipulate God into “gifting” or doing good things for us, but that’s really not what grace is about! I really identified with Lisa’s root struggles and amazement at God’s true nature and grace which is so undeserved; a true gift—for me!

I also liked the theme of fasting. It was told from such a different angle, with the fasting from sweets; it challenged my thinking about why fasting is important, and warned me away from thinking of fasting as a way to “get” God to do something for you.

The style of the book was a little odd, I didn’t really get the way the chapter titles skipped back and forth from three years ago to current times. I found I was less confused if I just didn’t read the chapter titles! But it didn’t detract from the book.

My final summation of the book is to say it is certainly a valuable read. It’s challenging and should be read and thought over—it’ll grow your ideas of God—and yourself. I also think it would be a wonderful book for a group Bible study or a Christian discussion group—it brings up so many great ideas for discussion/thought. Read it! It’s time well spent, and you will find yourself thinking about the topics long after reading the book.

Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes; I was not required to write a positive review.

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