Let me begin this review by saying that when I chose this book I thought that is was written by a different Lisa Harper. The Lisa Harper that I assumed was the author of this book is a well known speaker at mostly Christian women’s events and an author as well. The Lisa Sharon Harper who is the actual author of this book is also an author and a speaker, but with a much different focus. I thought I was getting a book about God’s Word that may be somewhat light and an easy read. What I got instead, with The Very Good Gospel, was something much deeper and focused on justice through the light of God’s Word and works. With that said, this book was still an interesting read.
Lisa focuses on a few main things all wrapped up together; the brokenness of the world that we live in, what God intended for us and what He can do for us in this brokenness, and shalom. This isn’t a book of light, fluffy, feel good topics. Lisa addresses such issues as equality, race, brokenness, shame, hurt, hate, war, and more. Lisa addresses these topics from a very personal place with stories from her own life and real life examples. All of this helps to bring a tone of gentleness to what in reality are hard things. She also intertwines Scripture and deep theological studies of God’s Word that relate to whatever topic is being discussed.
We cannot deny that we live in a broken and hurting world. It is easy to see this, just read a newspaper, turn on the TV, look at social media, the brokenness is everywhere. The heart of The Very Good Gospel points us toward the fact that in the midst of all this junk, God wants to heal, restore, and be in relation. That right there is the gospel message; a God who wants to work in and through us to have shalom.
This book was not my typical read. I will say though that for the most part I got a lot out of it. There were parts where I had “ah-ha” moments. There were other parts that I just read through. There were parts where I thought, “Hmm, I’m not sure I agree with that.” An interesting part of this book, that adds to it, at the end of most chapters there are questions and activities for self reflection. In my opinion this book would be a great read for someone who wants to know more about social justice in the light of God’s Word. Although, many others could get a lot out of this book.
I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.