Apr 25, 2011

Book Review - Max on Life

Max On Life: Answers and Insights to Your Most Important QuestionsOne of my favorite Christian writers is Max Lucado.  As a new Christian, my life and walk with Jesus was significantly impacted by the book Six Hours, One Friday.  For many years I have gobbled up Max's new books and read through them.  Max's writing is devotional in nature.  He has taught me how to see and appreciate the grace and love of God on a much deeper level.  Max is a pastor and writes profound truths in a simple, poetic style.

His new book, Max on Life, is a much different read from his previous ones.  In this book, Max answers 172 questions from the thousands that have been posed to him by readers and church members in the last 25+ years.  These are real questions from real people who have real struggles with life and faith.  Max opens the book by helping the reader to understand that life is full of questions - real, important, and challenging questions.  These questions radically impact our theology of God and our pursuit of Him.  This may Max's most pastoral book so far.  He shows the tenderness of a pastor and the craft of a theologian to provide honest, readable answers to real struggles.  As you read this book, you are hit with the subject of the depth of God's forgiveness, the reality of pain and God's purpose in it, the reliability of Scripture, the personal struggle of prayer, reconciling the pain of broken relationships, balancing work, money, and the church, assurance of life after death, and how to grieve lost loved ones. 

Overall, Max on Life is a very good book.  It's written in such a way that someone can search through the questions to find one that they have been dealing with very easily.  In most situations, Max provides very biblical and helpful advice.  One of the strengths of the book is that it is extremely practical and deals with many of the questions that people are asking.  The book's weakness is that it doesn't go into detail to really deal with some of the theological issues regarding sin, salvation, evil, suffering, etc.  In an attempt to deal with questions in a timely way and within the space of one page Lucado skims the surface without providing a theological bedrock from which to make sense of these real-life issues.  It may have been helpful if he would have offered some "For Extra Reading" recommendations for people interested in studying deeper.  However, anyone familiar with Max's books will know that he writes from a devotional, pastoral style.  He stays true to form in this book.  That is what makes his books so endearing and helpful to so many people.  I think Max on Life is a welcomed addition to most any layperson's library.  Almost anyone would resonate with several questions and find themselves saying "That's a question I have had."  It reads like having a cup of coffee at the local coffee shop and asking one of the most influential pastors some of life's most pressing questions.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”