Sunday, July 8, 2012

Book Review: Living Close to God by Gene Edwards

About This Book:

Have you tried harder to have a consistent time with the Lord—but failed?
Does your mind wander during prayer, and do you run out of things to say?

Do you question why it is so hard to fellowship with the Lord?

Stop feeling like a failure at daily devotions and start walking every day with the Lord who loves you.Gene Edwards faced these same questions and struggles. And he found a better way to walk with the Lord than merely trying harder to pray and read the Bible.

In Living Close to God (When You're Not Good at It) you will discover that loving God means much more than doing your best to serve Him. You will find ways to start your day with Christ, beginning with your first conscious thought in the morning. You will learn how to fellowship with Him during even the most demanding days. And when you go to the Scriptures, you will talk with Him in a two-way conversation—just as His first followers did.
Includes a small-group discussion guide and a guide
for your own relationship with God.

I feel close to God (most of the time); I'm aware of and thankful for His presence. I know some Christians don't feel that way. Some feel God has ignored them; others feel that God doesn't love them. (Both are not true, by the way, but they're still valid feelings.) The reason I chose to review this book was that I always want to know God more and want to help others feel close to God. I was somewhat disappointed at this book since I feel like I didn't really learn anything new. However, I think the book can still be helpful for others, especially new believers and/or those who are not daily/regularly praying and reading God's Word.

The message in the book seems redundant at times. The author probably did that on purpose to keep reminding readers. I appreciate the author's honesty and simple approach to developing a closer relationship with God. Almost too simplistic :)! But it's a good place to start. Any amount of time you spend with God is better than none! The author suggests that readers think of the Lord whenever they see certain things that could have spiritual meanings in the Bible such as bread, food, drink, etc. Neat idea!

I found it a little strange that the author tells readers to set aside time in the morning (before getting out of bed) with God but not to ask God for anything. I personally spend time talking to God before getting out of bed every morning and I do ask God for something :). For example, I ask Him to fill me with His Holy Spirit and guide me to do His will, I ask Him to bless and protect my family, I ask Him to heal those who I know need healing, etc. Of course, I don't just ask Him for this and that; I spend time thanking Him, too :). I admire the author's desire to pursue Christ more intimately and to encourage others to do the same. I also agree with the author about praying the Scriptures. You can never go wrong with that :). I have been doing it from time to time but I need to do it more often.

"One of the most important things I can do is to keep an awareness of Christ in my daily life." (p.100)

Click here to download chapter one of Living Close to God.

~I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for my honest review.

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