Top positive review
Not what I thought...its really about outlook and relationships
Reviewed in the United States on January 26, 2016
This was not an easy book to read....I got this book after reading the Reason for God and having serious doubts in my faith due to a string of really bad life experiences in the past 4 years: miscarriage, infidelity, divorce, depression, loss of multiple friendships, death of youngest sibling, the list goes on .... and I'm one of those people who did their best to please God and live a good Christian life style. Yet despite my efforts life just kept hitting me with some really hard punches. After reading the Reason for God last month I was at least convinced that God was real but I was still struggling to understand my life and what happened to me and WHY. I saw counterfeit gods and saved it in my to buy list on Amazon for many months.
I was uncertain about reading it fearing it would just make me more angry with religion than I already was. So I took a risk and eventually downloaded it.... After the first chapter I wasn't sure I liked it... the examples given seemed to say that if you weren't fortunate enough to end up with good relationships it was somehow due to your lust and idolatry. The Leah Jacob Rachel marriage debacle didn't help because of the many hot messes in the bible that God allowed its a pretty big one. Its also probably one of the most misinterpreted bible stories used tell women to stay in unloving unfaithful marriages because God will bless them.... Or that ongoing debate of how not wanting to be single and wanting a stable marriage and a family makes you either ungrateful, desperate, or lacking in faith.
Despite my opposition I kept reading....I'm glad I did....., the book got MUCH better the explanation of idols as not something we do wrong but actually the foundation of all sin and original sin was the catalyst for idolatry, the desire to live apart from God and manage our own lives as if we can control something..... The concept that in this broken world so many factors play into the lives we end up with and lack of FAITH has NOTHING to do with it was like taking a breath of fresh clean air. That one negative belief that has kept me in bondage for YEARS is that I can earn brownie points with God by being a good church going, tithe paying, Sunday school teaching, bible reading, Christian only music listening, modest dressing, polite, abstaining Christian woman. Finally a pastor was admitting that life isn't all about moral behavior and you can't earn your way into blessings or God's mercy and grace. Don't get me wrong I think moral behavior is important but it has to be for the right reasons , which is to glorify God, frankly most examples I had seen were based on getting human approval or people pleasing which is a form of idolatry.
He discussed this in excellent detail. He went over every area of idolatry and male and female idolatry and really explored this basic sin. He even admitted to maintain his own idolatry and that its an ongoing process.... for the first time in years I didn't feel like a lonely loser Christian who somehow didn't have faith the right way to not have a crap life.... In the end I not only understood the idols in my life that I needed to work on but I had a renewed hope in God that despite I was 40 divorced single and childless I still have worth in Gods eyes. But God doesn't judge me and he loves me and sees how hard I try. I just have to work on letting God love me in the ways the humans in my life haven't and healing is waiting for me if I'm willing to let go of what the world/church says my life is supposed to look like... God Always will love me and Always has I just couldn't see it because I placed to much importance on my human relationships for happiness. Don't get me wrong I'm not going to become a hermit. I will however be thankful for the family and friends I have left, and focus on replacing my idols with the love God has always had for me.
With each passing day being alone is not feeling so lonely. Thanks for this book. If anyone who reads this has experienced any life hardships or doubts or you are just feeling lost in life then read this book... its really surprisingly nothing like what I expected at all and I'm so thankful for that.
Tip: Be sure to check the footnotes esp on kindle he gives a lot of information for further study to let go of idols and experience God love, as well as, he gives good points that can't fit in the book. He took one section about the slave girl when discussing power and pride idolatry and in the notes was very clear that taking abuse or neglect was not acceptable and that biblical times had certain standards. All I can say is if you are struggling in your relationships in life or your relationships with God read this book