So far I have found three different publishing companies that will send me free books. All I have to do is write an unbiased review of the book and post it around the internet so other people can get a preview of what is being written. (By the way, we have an extension of this blog at Book Review Thoughts.)
Soooo…..one of my recent discoveries, Booksneeze, sent me a book by Scot McKnight simply called Fasting*. The book is part of a series of books written on the so-called Ancient Practices Series published by Thomas Nelson and somehow or other associated with Phyllis Tickle (she might be the series editor or something like that). I started reading Fasting last night and, frankly, for as much grief as some people give Phyllis Tickle, I’m surprised she’d want to be associated with something so orthodox**. Anyhow, here’s an appetizer from the book:
I have come to this conclusion about fasting: when the grievous sacred moment is neglected and instead we focus on the results, fasting becomes a manipulative device instead of a genuine, Christian spiritual discipline. Far too much of the conversation today about fasting is about what we can get and not enough about the serious and severe sacred moments that prompt fasting. (xxi)
If an author can jolt me out of complacency in the introduction, he has done a pretty good job and I think I can expect to be similarly jolted later on in the book. I am looking forward to more challenging thoughts as I continue on through this book.
*This is not my official review of the book.
**I was especially amused at the cunning and crafty way McKnight placed John Piper’s name between that of Dallas Willard (known protestant heretic) and Thomas Ryan (apostate Roman Catholic) in order to demonstrate that we are not so different after all as long as Jesus is who binds us together. (See pages xvii-xviii)