Monday, January 09, 2012

Snow in Okinawa!

So last Saturday we all enjoyed playing in the snow.  No, it does not snow here, but our local shopping center decided to rent a snow making machine and let the kids slide and make snow people and enjoy the cold white stuff.

It was really warm too, like 65 degrees F, so most people were dressed in shorts and flip-flops which made a nice contrast to the snow.  The girls had an absolute blast for the 5 minutes that the snow lasted.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Book Review: Extraordinary by John Bevere

This book doesn't quite live up to its title.  While Extraordinary makes many excellent points, there are also a couple that I disagree with.  The title, Extraordinary, refers to the kind of life that God would have us to live.  

Too many people focus only on what happens here and now with little thought of what happens afterwards.  Too many Christians focus only on what happens afterwards and do not put enough effort or thought into life here on earth.  Bevere stresses that while we do have the knowledge and assurance of eternal life, we ought not neglect the life we have on this world.  Christians ought to be the pinnacle of excellence in every field.  The world should emulate our excellence, he writes.

How we can live this “excellent life” is through a “grace-powered” life.  Grace is not just the basis for which we are saved, but it is an empowering force that enables us to live a life that is pleasing to God.  When we live this way, we “bring creativity, insight, resources, and other benefits of life and Godly power to those we influence.”  In other words, as we look for ways to reach out to the hurting, we can influence others in every area of our life.

While these and some other good points are made and backed by scripture, the problem I had was with two other points.  First, Bevere states that it is due to our lack of faith that God does not work as much as He could in our life. While this is true, I feel he takes it too far when he states “it’s ludicrous to believe that God doesn’t want us healthy.”  In Bevere’s view, if we had enough faith we would always get healed.  Worse, he goes on to say that when we stand before God, we will be judged on how much faith we had.

The second problem I had is when Bevere states that “men and women will determine whether or not the will of God gets done on this earth!”  While I do agree that we do not always listen to what God wants us to do, I do not agree that God’s Will is subject to man.  I believe that God’s Will will be accomplished regardless of man.  If God wants to use you to do something and you refuse to do it, then God will have someone else do it instead.  God will always do what He wants to do, when He wants to do it.  To suggest that God is limited by us and our faith is an extraordinary, but misleading, claim.

This book was provided by Waterbrook Multnomah Press in exchange for an honest review.
The opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced in any way.