The Shack A Review
For me, books are powerful and important. Obviously, the bible is key to my faith it informs me on who Jesus is and what He has done; it informs me on what it means to live faithfully with God and in fellowship with other believers. Other books are important too. From Stephen King’s novels, to Rob Bell’s books, to the poems of Rumi, to books by Tony Campolo, Dallas Willard, Phillip Gulley, N. T. Wright, and C. S. Lewis books have entertained and edified me. I am the church librarian and my email contains bookworm, because books are my passion. The printed word is magical.
This month I would like to remind you or introduce you to a small Christian novel and a recently published commentary on that novel. The novel is The Shack by Paul Young.
Mac is a grief-stricken father in mid-life about to have an extraordinary experience with God. His great sadness began four years ago on a weekend camping trip, when his 6-year-old daughter, Missy, was murdered. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment, he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack’s world forever. This compelling story explores themes of love, loss, and blame. In a world where religion seems to grow increasingly irrelevant The Shack wrestles with the timeless question, “Where is God in a world so filled with unspeakable pain?” The answers Mack gets will astound you and perhaps transform you as much as it did him.
The novel can be a hard read, but it talks about a God loves and delights in us His children. A God whose love for us knows no bounds and who wants to share with us the Trinitarian life that is a great dance of unchained communion and intimacy, fired by a passionate, self-giving love and mutual delight. This life, the life that God calls us to in Christ is unique, good, and full of music, joy, blessedness, and peace. God’s love is the womb of the universe and of humanity within it.
The commentary: The Shack Revisited by Baxter Kruger is a deep, exuberant, potent, theological study on the trinity and why it matters. You don’t have to read the Shack to read the commentary, Kruger’s book can and does stand on its own as a winsome illumination of the trinity. I can honestly say that before reading this book I was so-so on the trinity. I was open to it, thanks to my Pastor, but not completely sold on it. I needed or thought I needed to understand it more before I could accept it. I now see how my belief in a God who loves, saves, and blesses is wrapped up in and can only be completed in and by the trinity.
Please feel free to leave any comments or questions. I hope this reflection has helped you. I pray that you find this selection or another will help you in your walk with God.
Until next time, keep reading.
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