Tuesday, May 11, 2010

O Me of Little Faith (Book Review)

Note: This review was originally posted on my friend Matthew Paul Turner's blog. Be sure to also check out the follow-up discussion at Jason Boyett's blog.

I have always enjoyed Jason Boyett’s writing. I became familiar with him when, on a whim, I picked up his “Pocket Guide To The Apocalypse”. His good-natured sarcasm, combined with the fact that he takes the time to “know what he’s talking about” had me at “Hello”. Since then, I’ve read several of his other “Pocket Guides” and I follow his blog. When Boyett announced that he was releasing a new book with the provocative title, “O Me of Little Faith”, it would be an understatement to say that I was interested in reading it.

Now that I’ve read it, I must confess that Jason Boyett has created a problem for me. On one hand, he seems to have unknowingly written his book about me. I am a confirmed doubter. For me, faith and doubt are like eternal dance partners. It seems to me that “faith” is more closely related to words like “trust”, “confidence”, “hope”, “commitment”, and has less to do with words like “certainty” or “convinced”. I can’t turn off the questions. I don’t generally find books on apologetics helpful. I resonate with the man who cried out to Jesus “Lord, I do believe. Help my unbelief” in the gospel account. On the other hand, not everyone is like me. I’ve found that some people aren’t given to such incessant questioning, and that the things that are issues for me aren’t issues for them.

So here’s my problem: Jason Boyett has written a beautiful, hopeful, gut-wrenchingly honest book for people like me. I can’t even begin to tell you how refreshingly helpful it was, and how much life it breathed back into my faith. But, at the same time, I realize (as Boyett seems to) that for people who aren’t like me, this book could be devastating. He doesn’t shy away from hard questions, and he doesn’t answer them. He doesn’t defend the status-quo. He doesn’t whitewash problems. He makes no attempt to win any debates. He speaks with poignant honesty as one who is deeply committed to hope. I can’t recommend this book to every Christian I know. However, I know that I will, without hesitation direct my fellow faithful doubters to this beacon of hope. It is a well of living water that I will return to again and again.

1 comment:

Kay said...

You have written the review that I wish I could have - especially that last paragraph.

Having read Jason's book I am now moving onto "Faith and Doubt" as he recommended in the book. :) I hope I like it as much as I did OMOLF.