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3/5 February 7, 2014
I think we all need a little more risk-taking is the banner of Owen Strachan in his book Risky Gospel. In his newest piece, Strachan bases our lack of biblical and spiritual risk-taking in our incorrect identity. In the first chapters he attempts to align our identities to that which is represented in the scripture.
Even though our culture is boasting the largest collection of films, books, and other forms of popular entertainment that portray risk, ours is one that has fallen very short of risk-taking. Strachan calls us to return to the biblical identity that would be synonymous with risk and faith.
Overall, not a bad read but it didn’t keep me engaged or motivated to finish.
Review by Daniel
start living December 27, 2013
I have seen this book categorized as "radical" and for "college students". Which I think really says a lot about the state of things in our churches. As if taking risks and being "radical" is only for the young. I am, I hate to admit it, not considered young. I am really close to 40. But in our town and congregation where most are retired, I am still just a "whipper snapper".
I would like to think that this book is aimed at the Church Body, not the youth and college ministry. The whole body needs gospel-driven discipline, to working for God's glory and not our own, committing to the you attend church (which might mean the scary M word- membership), and building an evangelistic witness that is not shameful. The "cultural lingo" maybe considered younger in general , but the lesson applies to all generations.
"God's awesomeness should propel our faithfulness."
Is this really own for the "next generation?! That seems to be selling short a whole demographic.
We were made for something more and it is time we start living like it!
The book neatly divides into two sections, 1- why risk should be a way of life for all Gospel-centered Christians and 2- how to take these concepts and apply them.
“Gospel Risk.” is defined as “trading in small things that produce a shallow defeated life for the life shaped by the gospel, one devoted to God and his glory.” (66)
Review by Heather
You want to read this book! December 21, 2013
Risky Gospel, by Owen Strachan, is chock full of the ingredients it takes to make a good book on Christian living: personal stories, biblical text, humor and applicability (did I just make up a word?) This book is for people of all walks of life and all stages of their journey with the Lord.
No matter who we are, life often feels very busy – sometimes overwhelming. We don’t want to settle for mediocre, but we do and for a hundred different reasons. And life gets hard. I think there’s a part of all of us that just wants things to be easy. But, as Owen points out, the Christian life wasn’t made to be an easy, put-your-head-down-and-get-through-the-day kind of life. We were made for more – so much more! But, that doesn’t mean life will be easy. In fact, many verses paint the opposite picture and Owen doesn’t try to hide that fact. “You follow God and you just might get asked to walk in the wilderness. For forty years.” (pg. 34) That sounds scary to some and causes us to hold back, it keeps us living in mediocre-land. To step out of that and live out the risky Gospel, we have to first understand who God is and realize our identity as His child.
Owen does a phenomenal job of pointing out the need to understand who we are in Christ and he does so by pulling out Scripture to encourage us in embracing our identity. As we do that, we gain purpose and confidence. We begin to see that no matter our station in life, we can grow, we can bring glory to God. Once we understand our identity, Owen reminds us of the importance of building our faith and gives us practical ways to do that. Then he points out something most books seem to ignore: that we will fail. We will get frustrated with ourselves and our experiences. But the story doesn’t end there – we have hope because of this risky Gospel living in us. Too many authors today give us these ways to be better Christians and then when we don’t live up to it, we feel guilty, ashamed and drowning in despair. I love that Owen is honest about the human condition, his own included, and the redemption found in Jesus. This book is set apart from others like it because it combines a solid biblical foundation, honesty about the human condition and hope/encouragement for our lives. It makes living boldly seem doable and not so scary. I definitely think this is a must-read book and will be purchasing copies for friends and family, for sure!
Review by Michelle
How do you access a real, thriving, vibrant faith? You trust a big God, and you start living like he’s real. It’s time to put our comfort and ease and false security on the line. If we know God is real, let’s pray as if he’s actually listening. If we know he’s good, let’s reflect that goodness in the world. When our problems feel big, let’s lean on the One who is bigger. Is that risky? “Sure,” says Owen Strachan. “Embrace it anyway. It’s literally the only way to live.”
|Publication Date||November 26, 2013|