The Gospel According to Lost by Chris Seay

I really love Jesus, and I love Lost…The Gospel According to Lost by Chris Seay is a fun book.  I just read it on my flight from Bangladesh and am glad we didn’t crash on a mysterious island on the way… 

lostcover

April and I hesitantly joined the Lost bandwagon about 1 ½ years ago (here’s a blog entry from that era). Great choice. We’ve watched each episode, and smile as time deepens our confusion. In the midst of our wonder, we love the show and can’t wait to see what happens next.

Seay describes the purpose of the book as “not to erase the mystery, but to allow each of us to seek a posture that celebrates the things we do know and to embrace the mystery of things that have yet to unfold.” He does this well.

To show the connection of Lost and the Gospel, Seay points out references to faith, philosophy, history, literature, and relationships from the plot thick program. He also shares lessons from our faith that perhaps the writers never intended.   

Most chapters serve as a character study, highlighting the ways faith, doubt, fear, pain, guilt, insecurity, and history are seen in a certain Lost character.   

I enjoy the over coffee (or sushi) conversational style of the book. He writes things I can hear him say, such as, “If you didn’t cry in season four’s episode ‘The Constant,’ something is wrong with you; you were either distracted or, worse; it is possible you have no soul.”

Seay uses humor, insights, a love for Jesus, a respect for elements of pop culture and obvious passion for the program to craft the book.                                                                              

If you’re a Lost fan, I recommend the book as a fun read. Also, The Gospel According to Lost could be a great eye opening gift to Lost fans who may not be on your faith journey.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Hope Lives: A Journey of Restoration

hopelivesbookSince joining the Convoy of Hope team, I’ve been amazed at the surprises I’ve encountered in the scriptures regarding God’s heart for the poor.  I’ve grown up in the church, but missed some pretty important lessons from the 2000+ verses where He shares how He feels about those in need.

Our interns and I discuss His heart for the poor and our passions to help them during each training session.  We talk, watch videos, hear from great people and read.  The most engaging book we’ve read on compassion and His heart is Hope Lives: A Journey of Restoration by Amber Van Schooneveld. 

 


The book challenges without sending anyone on guilt trips, and encourages without letting anyone off the hook. I especially appreciate the ways Amber connects life in our own context with ways we can help others in need around the world.   It’s a book for those who drink Starbucks, update their facebooks, don’t necessarily feel called to live in the jungle but who care deeply about Jesus and others.

I got in touch with Amber and she was gracious enough to share via Skype with our fall team on the last day of the term.  It was fun.
I thought I’d pass on my thoughts on this great book.  There is companion curriculum for small groups (or youth groups). 

hopelives

Primal review and reflections

battersonJesus says the greatest commandment is to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. In his latest book, Primal, Mark Batterson takes readers on a journey to a deeper discovery of understanding just what the command means. It’s a journey to the core of Christianity, and indeed, it’s Primal.

I don’t know Mark (just met him in line to get a hot dog at a conference once), but I listen to his podcasts.  He writes like he speaks.  As I read I hear his voice in my version of an audiobook.  His words aren’t so much a theological dissertation as they are a practical account of his thoughts on each of these important areas.  He combines stories, examples from science and history, and insightful commentary.  I got a great new perspective on a command I’ve heard my entire life.

Consider these thoughts:                                       

 “A child dies from drinking contaminated water every twenty-one seconds.  Are you okay with this? That question can be and must be asked of all suffering and every injustice. Are you okay with this?”

 “The more of God’s creation I experience, the more I am convinced of this: awed silence in the presence of divine beauty is a form of worship that is often deeper and truer than sung words.”

 “I’d rather have one God idea than a thousand good ideas.”

 “Pray like it depends on God and work like it depends on you.”

 

 The highlight for me:

 The entire book is engaging, but I’m most thankful for his thoughts on loving God with our hearts.

 I’m on my way home from an emotionally intense trip to Bangladesh and Nepal, two of the world’s most fascinating yet poverty stricken countries.  While there are many ways we love Him with our hearts, Mark spends good time communicating God’s heart for the poor.  Loving God means loving what He loves and caring like He cares.  The words inspired me, and I’m thankful for their impact on all who will read them.   

 Conclusion:

This is a great book.  I suggest it as the first book for you in 2010.  It’s relevant, challenging, inspiring, thought provoking and practical.

 The message to me?  Let’s love deeply, dwell in awestruck wonder, think creative God given ideas, and work really, really hard for Him. 

 

Lastly, thank you Mark for sipping coffee at Ebenezer’s with our fall ’09 Convoy of Hope interns and now for stopping by this site on your blog tour…