When a phenomenon is so large that it gets everyone talking, even people like me, who wouldn't normally buy such things, are curious to discover what it's all about. The Shack, originally printed in a run of 15 copies at Kinkos, has been #1 on the paperback bestseller lists for most of the last six months. That is an extraordinarily long run. In our ephemeral world, even a big bestseller will likely spend only a month at the top. All of which is just a long-winded ruse to get you to visit my new blog where I discuss the book: http://true-small-caps.blogspot.com
Derek, I just finished reading "The Shack", and my opinion is that it's not all it's cracked up to be.. Very goood story, but not anything new. However this book is popular among evangelical type Christians, so to them I guess it's something new.
I'll take a look at your blog.
Good reviews on your blog, Derek. I noticed a couple of familiar titles, there.
My spiritual director encouraged me to read The Shack, and she's a theology professor at a Catholic university. She thought it was wonderful, so I went out and bought it. My reading time is limited, as after doing my daily round with emails, discussion forum, lecture planning, meetings, and spiritual direction sessions, I've generally little appetite for books, magazines, newspapers, et. I have read half the book, however, and have enjoyed it so far. My sense is that it helps people with theodicy issues and also brings home the relevance of God as Trinity. I'll report back later after I'm done with it.
I read it probably 6 months ago after my wife asked me to read it... I really enjoyed it. I think it is an "evangelical" sensation because they don't emphasize the experiential side of Jesus Christ, and to read that book makes the person of Jesus, and the Fatherhood of God, more real... its a good read, I recommend it to anyone.
Talking about evangelicals ... a book that's been getting a lot of buzz in the blogosphere is Quitting Church by Julia Duin. I haven't seen it myself. But apparently, megachurch-goers are now becoming dissatisfied with all those branded, business-planned, demographically-researched programs.
I can understand that also... evangelicals must be getting tired of reading and talking about Jesus and are desperate to experience the reality of His love for them.
I absolutely loved the book.
Phil, I am wondering how you are finding it from a Catholic perspective? Is all the imagery compatible with Catholic theology and dogma?
Hi Jacques. No, I didn't find anything in "The Shack" that seemed too problematic. If you read the reviews on Amazon.com, you'll find all sorts of objections, most of which don't carry much weight. Still, any attempt to describe the interactions of the Persons of the Trinity is analogical, and so is bound to limp, at times.
I came across this interview with Paul Young, author of The Shack. I've been meaning to get my hands on a copy, and after watching him speak, I'm gonna make it happen.
He's so genuine and clear. Interesting to hear about the very humble beginnings of this explosive move of God.
Find it labeled "Paul Young Interviewed by Kris V." dated June 4, 2009.
Much love to you all, Shasha
Thanks, Shasha! Great interview.
This truly is a special book and it's obviously meeting a need for many. We haven't dealt with theodicy issues nor the Trinity in a very deep manner in most churches, but people obviously wonder about these things. So glad to see a book like this one on the best-seller list.
I was moved by it. At points the character development flagged, but goodness, how to render the Trinity? He didn't have to be completely theologically correct, as you'd have to take some poetic license instead, or the characterizations would simply be impossible. The author has a deep sense of what must be turned over to God for healing that really does hurt us and takes us where we don't want to go. And the story grabs you by the heart almost right from the start.
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