***THIS BOOK IS A MUST READ***
After I received the book I dove right in, excited to get started reading it (I actually read the book within 2 days!). Once I really dove into the book, I knew I was in for a ride, because in the very first chapter Preston brings up the story of Jeffery Dahmer. Now I won't go all into detail of the story and the lesson along with it, because I really want you to just buy the book! However, I will tell you that from chapter one, within the first couple pages even, I knew Preston wasn't playing games and this wasn't just another book about Grace.
Throughout Charis Preston takes stories from the old testament (you know that dusty, confusing, beginning half of your Bible) and points out how much it is all soaked with God's grace and His love. I have always struggled with the old testament because it's not all sunshine and rainbows (well there is that one rainbow), but there is some tough stuff in the old testament. Reading this book has helped me to look for the grace in the old testament and it is everywhere!
One of the main themes in Charis is that God loves you. No matter what you have done or are doing now God values you, He loves you and He can still use you. God has a stubborn love for us that we will never quite understand. One of my favorite quotes from the book that really resonated with me was:
"When you are apethetic towards God, He is never apethetic towards you.
When you don't desire to pray and talk to God, He never grows tired of talking to you.
When you forget to read your Bible and listen to God, He is always listening to you."
I also found this book really challenging. I have always thought that I am pretty good at loving people from different walks of life, but after reading this book I have realized that I just torated a lot of people and not genuinely loved them. The one part in Charis that really stuck with says:
"I think many Christians are willing to put up with social outcasts and misfits, but this isn't grace. It's tolerance. Where there's no pursuit, no stubborn delight, there's a superficial Christianese grace ("bless this food to our bodies") but it's not charis. God aggressively values and uses thugs and misfits to build His glorious kingdom.... He doesn't just give them a bowl of soup and shuffle them out of the church. He gives them responsibility - the hallmark of genuine value." - Preston Sprinkle
All in all I really loved this book! It is one of the best books I have ever read, and I read a lot so that is saying something. It was really encouraging, yet challenging and thought provoking. I don't know what else to say other than it is a fantastic book, and I highly recommend that you check it out!
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