Insignificant struck a chord for me, and I imagine for many others who wonder why the daily grind matters, who wonder where meaning can be found. In the midst of incredible difficulty and personal soul searching Chris Travis writes with an honesty that is refreshing and humbling. Sometimes personal writing is indulgent or patronizing, this was neither and I cannot imagine a book more appropriate for the those who wonder if they matter.
Like a lot of people, I was blown away by Crazy Love and other books and teachings by Francis Chan. In fact, his books sort of ruined me. As a book reviewer, publishers expect me to offer an honest review of the new releases they send me.....while I continued to do so - in the back of my mind- every book was compared to Crazy Love.
The bar was simply set too high.
....and then came inSignificant.
Finally a book that I can wholeheartedly recommend. In this fairly small book - 150 or so pages - easy to read - humble tale of a pastor turned middle school teacher - Chris Travis offers an approach to life that is not only biblical, but relevant to the average person.
There so much to love about this book. I received it yesterday and couldn't put it down....but I am far from "done" with it. I plan on going back through it to soak up the lessons again. (and then pass it on - this book is too good to keep to myself)
And now for the review - Chris Travis taught math in the most dangerous middle school in the New York City School system for two years...and that is the main background of this book. Through this experience he learned how to navigate life focused on God.... and live a life that is truly Christ like - even if that means staying almost completely insignificant and irrelevant according to the world's standards. (and even if he really didn't WANT to some days, dare I say most days)
Unlike many other Christian books, Chris Travis does not spend time helping you figure out how to find your life purpose - in fact, he addresses that and other commonly held "religious" notions in a really interesting way. His take on some of the parables is refreshingly real.
The conversational style will draw you in and the lessons will change you from the inside out if you let them. If you have ever felt insignificant or burdened by the mundane of your life - discouraged that you are not doing something BIG for the kingdom....this is the book for you. - (And if you are doing something BIG, I still suggest you read this book - it may help you gain perspective.)
5 stars without any hesitation
* Thank you Bethany House for providing a free copy of inSignificant for review. -and for restoring my faith in the Christian publishing world. : )
InSignificant is an important book with the challenge that "you matter in the surprising way God is changing the world." I enjoyed every minute of this beautifully written story. I am thankful for the vulnerability and wisdom that Chris Travis shares with us. He is the Middle School teacher we all wish we had and is currently a pastor that is working to live and serve a small struggling community in New York City in a way that counts. I am encouraged by this book and would love to see InSignificant in all my friends hands.
As someone who has personally experienced a truly horrible job - the kind that makes you dread the coming day and feel physical anxiety, fear and sadness every Sunday night - I could really relate to this book. This book is for anyone who has ever had to endure a tough - or downright miserable - experience. The type that keeps you asking, "why am I here?" and "why does this part of my life have to suck so bad??" This book shows how an everyday guy was able to get through some of the darkest days of his life and inspires hope that even in the worst of times, we too can find meaning and purpose in our lives. I really loved this book and recommend it to anyone who has ever questioned why bad things happen to good people.