Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Shack, by William P Young

Read and reviewed in September, 2009. Released later

A book like no other I can remember. A man's daughter disappears while on a camping trip. Later evidence is found that indicates that she was kidnapped and murdered by a serial killer, but her body was never found. Meanwhile, the man sinks into a deep depression. He is able to function, but just barely. Suddenly, he receives a note asking him to meet someone at the abandoned shack where his daughter's dress was found. He finally decides to go, and there he meets the Holy Trinity, in the form of a large black woman, a flighty Asian woman, and a Jewish carpenter. During what seems like several days, he begins to understand that religion is not true faith. Faith is relationship, loving reciprocal relationship with God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. That kind of love and relationship spills over into all our relationships with each other - family, friends, casual acquaintances, and even strangers. Relationship is about joy and expectancy, not duties and expectations. This is a book that will stay with me for a long time. One that I hope will have a lasting effect on my own relationships with God and with other people.

From reading other's reviews and talking with people, I gather that some are hung up over the idea of God being seen here as a woman. I don't think that's the point. The point is that God can't be limited by us, humans, His creation. He is Almighty, Sovereign Lord, and He can present Himself any way He wants to. (Yes, I know I am using the masculine pronouns, but that doesn't mean that I see God as a man. He isn't a man; He is God. He is All in All, and will not be limited by what we think or imagine He is.)

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