Wednesday, February 26, 2020

21. God of Surprise

God of Surprise: The Life-Changing, Unexpected Ways God Works for Our Good. Bill Crowder. 2020. [May 2020] 112 pages. [Source: Review copy] [devotional; christian living]

First sentence: But God . . . In the film version of C. S. Lewis’s classic fantasy The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, a fascinating scene occurs as Aslan—the mighty lion that pictures Christ—is walking away from a celebration in Narnia’s palace. Lucy Pevensee, a young girl miraculously transported into Narnia, is standing with her friend Mr. Tumnus, the fawn. As they watch Aslan depart, she wonders aloud about Aslan and when they might see him again. Mr. Tumnus responds, “You mustn’t press him, he isn’t a tame lion.” Lucy’s response? “No, but he’s good.”

Crowder examines six "but God..." passages in his newest book. There are six main "but God..." passages--each receives its own chapter. But within each chapter, he sometimes elaborates more and shares others "but God..." verses.

Some of the passages examined are Romans 5:7-8; Acts 2:23-24; 1 Corinthians 1:27; Psalm 73:26, Genesis 50:20; 2 Corinthians 7:6.

The lessons he draws from these passage are good, solid, foundational.

He does share plenty of scripture. But he also packs in a lot of stories and story illustrations. In my humble opinion, there needs to be a balance of the two. If there are more stories than scriptures, it's like a top-heavy, icing/frosting heavy cupcake--not enough cake. Some people prefer more frosting to cake, that's true, you might argue.

This one worked for me--especially if you classify it as a devotional. I think if you were to try to classify it as theology, then it would come across as a bit too light and fluffy--in comparison. But as a devotional, there's enough substance to provide needed structure and instruction.

Favorite quotes:
"Death was conquered by resurrected life—bringing joy out of grief. The point of all this? By Jesus’s resurrection . . . Death is conquered—to give us life now. Death is conquered—to give us life forever. Death is conquered—to restore the created order. Death is conquered—to provide hope in our seasons of grief. The surprising truth is that the only way to defeat the power of death was for someone to die—and come back to life again."

"Contentment for the child of God is not based on what we have but rather on whose we are and who He is. It is this fundamental reality that fuels how our hearts are to process life in an often unfair world."

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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