Wednesday, January 16, 2008

We're all mixed bags.

Recently I read a book someone recommended to me and was profoundly impacted by it. It was just what I needed! It was well-written, amazingly insightful, Biblically sound, and so helpful! I have already recommended it and purchased and passed on numerous copies to others.

I ordered a second book by the same author and once again was deeply blessed. I've recommended it to others and purchased half a dozen copies to distribute.

I ordered a third -- it was very good, but the themes didn't connect as much with where I was in my journey. None-the-less, I appreciated the fresh insights into the Biblical story.

I ordered #4 -- this author really hooked me.

Wow! I could hardly believe it was by the same author. It reeked with sarcasm and negativity. It was brutal and harsh in its judgments on other believers and painted large segments of Christianity with broad strokes of horrendously ugly shades--even using coarse language to describe Christian brothers and sisters. It was full of logical fallacies, and, in my opinion, gross ignorance and perversion of the Scriptures and church history.

Could this be the same author who had so blessed me?

Yes. We are all "mixed bags" -- made of dust (Psalm 103:14) -- fallen and depraved dust. Yet, we are made in God's image, and the worst of us display moments of His beauty shining through.

Should I throw this author out the window because I have found one book with which I have profound disagreement? No! Even in it I must remain open for what I can learn and need to hear. And even if my negative evaluation of this book is accurate, it does not cancel the profound value of the others.

"Lord, help me to balance grace and truth. Help me to judge as I want to be judged. Help me to set aside the bones and enjoy the fish."

1 comment:

ANTI-ONION SOCIETY said...

I started writing my thoughts in response to this post(and how much I enjoyed it)..but as usual it ended up too wordy so I deleted it in favor of telling you myself next time I see you.
:)