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4 Stars Out Of 5
Reading this as a family
February 11, 2013
The original version of this book was recommended to my husband and I by a friend. My husband, who has a bad habit of starting books and not finishing them, read the book through within about a week. That says a lot just for the book itself. So we wanted a book we could read through together as a family and, since we have younger children (7 & 9) along wi a teen, we decided to try this version. We have enjoyed it thus far and my husband says it has not been vastly different from the original. And having it on the CBD reader is a cool bonus because everyone has an 'electronic' they can follow along on!
This is the teen edition of Not a Fan, which was first published in 2011. I don't know how different it is from the adult edition, but it's easy to read and has some amusing asides that will appeal to teenage readers (well, they appeal to me, so I hope they appeal to teens as well).
There are some negative reviews for the adult version of Not A Fan, criticising the way it seems to promote two 'classes' of Christian and even going so far as to suggest that these second-class Christians might not actually be saved. But I think this is a valid question for teens. How many teens are in church because that's what their family does on Sunday? And how many are there because their friends are? How many are actually in church because they want to be?
I liked the start. Idleman not putting himself up there as some almost-perfect paragon that we should all follow, but as a fallible man who has learnt some things he would like to share. There are many nuggets of truth, such as "the one thing we are most reluctant to give up is the one thing that has the most potential to become a substitute for him" (being Jesus). However, I thought that the last quarter was pretty repetitive and didn't add anything new.
The author is not afraid to laugh at himself and has that rare gift of writing humour without descending into cliche or cringe. Although I'm much older than the target age group, the message came through loud and strong. It was challenging, but it was also encouraging. Overall, a challenging and encouraging read.
Thanks to Zondervan and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.
This really was a great book. I have read through the "adult version" and it was really eye opening. We cannot just be "fans" of our Lord and Savior rather we need to be a follower. We need to be there with Him through thick and thin. We cannot just be there when it is a good time for us.
I am still working towards this mindset, but without this book I am not sure I would have really thought about it in such a clear way.
Plus the author has a great sense of humor which adds to the easy reading.
I would recommend to any Christian and non-Christain alike.
Challenging, thought provoking and very readable, Not a Fan: Teen Edition: What does it mean to really follow Jesus? opens with an uncommon introduction. It opens with an apology sets the tone of humility throughout the book.
The author states up front it is an odd way to open a book, but for me, an apologizing or humble admittance to a issue or topic makes the author, preacher or speaker much more appealing. I can learn from someone who's as flawed as me. I have trouble accepting doctrines and teachings from someone who has never wrestled with an issue.
The remainder of the book talks of the difference between a fan and a follower, an enthusiastic admirer and a committed believer. How many of us have fallen for the 'marketed' Jesus. The Jesus that loves everyone and is too loving punish or correct us. We sell an idea of Jesus that can't be found in the Bible. It's no wonder why there are so many fans and so few followers.
Using teen oriented language, mindsets and personal stories, the author challenges the reader to think about, not just accept, their relationships with Jesus.
Simply loved the section which describes Jesus sitting across the table and announcing it's time for the DTR (Define This Relationship) talk. Reminded me of the movie The Perfect Stranger.
Loved the writing, the humor and how the author points the reader to examine whether they are a fan or a follower. It's an excellent book for teens. I'm over 50 and loved it.