Take Your Time with Crazy Love
The book itself is a quick read, so I intentionally slowed down to read it over a few days.
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God is one of those books to linger in, to dwell on it, one chapter a day as part of your devotional life.
To go faster than that will miss the point of the challenges that Chan puts forth.
To rush through the reading of this little book will cause you to miss out on the calling that it gives – to consider how to live for God: sacrificially, and completely sold out to Him.
The first three chapters are some basic reminders of our theology, while the remaining chapters are a call for Christians to examine themselves in light of that.
Read the opening chapters too fast and you’ll miss the point of the later chapters.
I’ve talked with churches that will use it as a small group book, and the book points to supporting multi-media material on a dedicated website to help that process happen.
Speaking into life
This book,” Chan says, “is written for those who want more Jesus. It is for those who are bored with what American Christianity offers. It is for those who don’t want to plateau, who would rather die before their convictions do.”
“God doesn’t call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn’t come through.”
“Having faith often means doing what others see as crazy. Something is wrong when our lives make sense to unbelievers.”
The big take away challenge is how do we live sacrificially without being irresponsible?
Chan doesn’t dictate what that has to look like in your life, but he pushes you to think. He doesn’t give a specific response like give a year of your life savings away, or commit to praying for a year, but to take the time to ponder how can you live on God’s mission.
I live for mission.
I finished the book pondering these questions:
- What might it look like if we lived our lives as fully devoted followers of Jesus?
- What can we do to make this life count for the Kingdom of God?
- What does it mean for the Walker family to give itself away in mission?
- How does our lifestyle demonstrate our radical commitment to following Jesus?
- What if we spent ourselves this way:
“If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. ” Isaiah 58.10
How Crazy Love might help with Evangelism.
The book itself is not intentionally evangelistic – it is written for the church and to the church.
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God is a book clearly aimed at helping Christians evaluate their own life and participation in the work of the Kingdom of God.
Many modern gospel presentations focus on the benefit of eternal life, forgiveness of sins, and other matters of a personal or individual relationship with God.
What many short presentations lack (or omit for brevity) is a kingdom vision – how to live to your life as a disciple. It’s often “say a prayer and your in.” We don’t always share the call to radical discipleship that should follow.
I think when a Christian
- understands a kingdom-vision for life, particularly as Chan lays it out,
- lives out that kingdom vision in sacrificial giving and service
- discovers the impact of active obedience in the world
we can present our lives as evidence of that discipleship transformation. We have something we can call people into – to give their lives away now in following Jesus.
If we remain simply passive church-going Christians who lack that kingdom vision, our lives give nothing to emulate. Our passion to follow Christ isn’t visible, and Christianity remains mental agreement to a set of propositions.
Chan reminds us in Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God that following Christ calls us to give ourselves away in service for the Kingdom of God.
As we do, we can’t help but share the wonder of who God is, the motives of our service, and find the joy of inviting people to join us in transforming the world as followers of Christ.