Oh man, I don't really know how to review this book because the 5 stars I'm giving it is very much a result of my current place in life. I've been questioning the faith I grew up with for the last 5 years in a half-hearted kind of way but only in recent months truly began to feel things I've believed in my past and things I currently feel are right have been in direct opposition. It's become a full out struggle that is scary and disheartening. As I have learned some of the terrible atrocities currently being committed in the name of Jesus, my heart has broken and I lose hope daily.
This book has given me back some hope.
There were a lot of parts in this book that made me feel that all my doubts and thoughts, questions and fears were validated, but this is the one that stands out to me the most.
"....so many people are hostile to the church, many for good reason. We reclaim the church as a blessing... not only because that is what Jesus intended from the beginning but also because serving people is the only way their perceptions of the church are ever going to change. This is why it is so toxic for the gospel when Christians picket and boycott and complain about how bad the world is. This behavior doesn't help. It makes it worse.... We are all created in the image of God, and we are all sacred, valuable creations of God. Everybody matters. To treat people differently based on who believes what is to fail to respect the image of God in everyone. As the book of James says, "God shows no favoritism." So we don't either."
I feel like I'm oversharing but the immensity of the relief I felt when I read this book with my father and he agreed with me that this is actually "good news" made me cry. Maybe I can still be a Christian after all.