Is real friendship too risky?
We live in a world where real friendship is hard to find. Suspicious of others and insecure about ourselves, we retreat into the safety of our small, self-made digital worlds. Tragically, even the church can become a place that reinforces this isolation. Jesus models a much richer vision of friendship. Scott Sauls, pastor and teacher, invites you to see the breadth of Christ’s love in this audio book, Befriend.
- Even better than the first, but..,
I like what Scott Saul's has to say in this book, and in his first book...a lot! In fact, I most highly recommend this one. My only critique is that this book is not really that different from the first. Many of the stories and anecdotes are the same, and the overall themes and tones of the writing are the same. So if you've read the first you will find this one to be a good reminder of what was said in the first, and you will appreciate some elaboration and extension of some of the ideas from the first book. If you haven't read the first book, you will be better off just reading/listening to this one. It's better and there's little you will miss out on from the first. By the way, since this is an audio review, this one is very well read and easy to listen to.
- Scott Sauls helps us to show real friendship to others.
The theme of grace permeates this book as pastor and author Scott Sauls looks at befriending different groups in this book. As he did in his outstanding first book Jesus Outside the Lines, he hits on many “hot buttons” that are in the news as I read the book, perhaps even more than Scott could have ever imagined. Among the people he asks us to befriend are those who are concerned about women’s rights and the unborn, Syrian refugees (where he talks about sanctuary cities), those who vote against you, those who are of different races from you and sexual minorities (LBGT). In our greatly divided nation, this is an extremely timely and helpful book.
The book is written to help you start to live a more abundance, fruitful life. It contains 20 essays about befriending others. Like his first book and blog, Scott’s writing honest, transparent and challenging. He consistently pushes me to get out of my comfort zone (which is a good thing). Throughout, he uses helpful stories to illustrate the points he makes in the book.
He begins the book by looking at false friendship - digital, transactional, and one-dimensional and then brings in C.S. Lewis’s definition of “real friendship”, which is vulnerable. This book is about real friendship. The 20 essays included are about what Lewis calls real friendship.
Scott suggests three different ways to read the book:
• With others in community, with those who are different from you.
• Read one chapter a day.
• Read like you would a normal book, which is how I read the book (or more accurately listened to the audiobook which was well narrated by Dean Gallagher).
At the end of each chapter he includes a helpful summary, scripture verse and questions to help you go deeper with content of that chapter.
There is a good chance that you will not agree with Scott’s perspectives on all of the issues covered here, and that’s just fine. He is always challenging, but not in a divisive or disrespectful manner. Highly recommended.
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