Today’s review for the Books to Buy For Christmas series was written by author and speaker, Deb Watson. Deb’s book “Kiss Goodbye: God’s Presence in the Dark Night” is available through www.debwatson.net or Amazon.com
It was during the wee hours of the morning, during a sleepless night that Larry Crabb felt a hint of intrigue that God was speaking to him. He says that when he got tired of his own whining, a verse came to his mind. Hosea 5:15, “…in their misery they will earnestly seek me.” Larry began to wonder if God was speaking to him—he understood the misery part, but began to ponder what it meant “to earnestly seek God.” Prompted by this, he began to explore how he might hear God speak to him from the Bible. He realized that he didn’t want a verse to stir him, but rather wanted to hear God tell him His story.
In Larry’s words,
“A series of questions began to pour out of me: God, why did you write Genesis? What do You want me to hear You say in Leviticus? Could you tell me why I should bother to read, let alone study, Obadiah? I think I have some idea of what Romans is about, but how are You talking to me in Jude or Revelation?”
Larry’s final question, “Come to think of it, why did You write each of the sixty-six books?” became the impetus that drew Larry into a four year study to understand the story that God was telling in the Bible, what was the plot and how did each chapter advance that plot.
Larry’s perception of God was greatly influenced by his father. Several times throughout the years, he remembered hearing his father passionately tell him,
“The Bible is a love story that begins with a divorce. Everything from the third chapter of Genesis through the end of Revelation is the story of a betrayed lover wooing us back into His arms so we can enjoy the love of family forever.”
Thinking on that statement, Larry became aware that God was telling a story—a love story that begins in chapter 1 (Genesis), continues for sixty-four chapters (Exodus through Jude), and reaches its climax in chapter 66 (Revelation). By seeing the Bible as sixty-six chapters, rather than sixty-six separate books, hopefully you will grasp that the Bible is truly God’s love story to each of us and you will be encouraged by what great lengths God is willing to go to woo each of us back to himself.
Larry wrote this book from such a personal perspective, that I was enticed to want the same intimacy with God. Throughout the book, Larry has an ongoing dialogue with God: asking God what He is saying through each book, and then listening for God’s response. I found each dialogue to be very challenging.
This is not a book that you will sit down and read cover to cover, but it is a book that will stir something deep within your soul, and awaken within you a desire to truly know your creator and the plans and purposes He has for your life.
Being an avid reader, I love to choose the book that has had the greatest impact on my life during the year, and then give it as a Christmas gift to my children, parents, and extended family. This year, I will be gifting more than a dozen copies of “66 Love Letters: A Conversation with God That Invites You into His Story” by Larry Crabb.
Thank you, Deb. At first, this book sounded a little…. boring to me. Now though, you’ve got me intrigued! Thank you!
Here are all the books that have been recommended thus far:
If you click on any of these book links and subsequently purchase one, I will get a small commission from Amazon. I have decided that all commissions will go toward my family’s Well Fund, to try to build a well for a needy community in Africa.