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5 Stars Out Of 5
Book Review: Soar
April 21, 2011
Are you ready to accept God's Power? Then this is a book for you. The Author of Soar is Kenny Luck who is the men's pastor at Saddleback church in Lake Forest, California. The first chapter in itself challenges you as he takes you on a trip to fly a glider. As he is high in the air the pilot offers him the stick to steer the plane, but as he takes the stick over the pilot shouts "Don't Fight Me". As he draws his hand back he then tries to take over the stick again, but it's the same result the Pilot again shouts "Don't Fight Me".In this story he talks about how we are being led by God and the Holy Spirit we need not to fight them, but to be led by them in order to figure out who we are in Jesus Christ.
Go out and get this book today. It will change your life and thinking.
I chose to read and review Kenny Luck's book because the title, "Soar," intrigued me and the question on the cover grabbed me: "Are you ready to accept God's power?" I want to soar and I want to be filled with God's power - so reading this book made sense.
Reading the book has been fruitful. Luck does an outstanding job of thoroughly dissecting and presenting the person and ministry of the Holy Spirit in fresh ways. I consider it a unique theological work and a solid Biblical study. What keeps it fresh and stimulating is his creative approach and contemporary illustrations. Each chapter begins with an image or story and that theme is always perfectly related to whatever aspect of the Holy Spirit he's discussing. For example his stories of flying an airplane, receiving a special Christmas gift, and his son's broken arm are all outstanding images for understanding certain aspects of the Holy Spirit. Some chapters clarified my understanding, in some I learned something new, and in some I discovered a new, refreshing way to present an old concept.
Luck divides the book into three sections, which I found helpful. Part 1, "Transitions" deals with changes in the way we normally think about the Holy Spirit. Part 2, "Transformations" discusses how the Holy Spirit impacts and changes us. Part 3, "Transactions" points to how the Spirit impacts others through us. This is a nice summary of the purpose and ministry of the Holy Spirit, but it also allows readers to focus on each aspect of the Holy Spirit's ministry for an extended period of time.
And when I say an extended period, that's what it really needs to be. "Soar" cannot be a quick read - nor is it intended to be. Since I was reading it with the intent of writing a review, I tried to read through it somewhat quickly. But I would have benefited even more if I had really taken the time to utilize the great study guide, either alone or in a group setting. A group setting would, I believe, bring about the most beneficial study. Luck has put great thought into how to apply what the reader learns along the way. While my reading was fruitful, it could have been abundantly fruitful if done within a group.
I do have two criticisms or concerns. One is Luck's repeated references to his earlier books. I found his repeated parenthetical comments referring to something he covered in one of his previous books as intrusive to the flow. A comment in the Introduction or in a footnote along the way mentioning that reading his previous books would be helpful could suffice. By weaving the repeated references into the book itself I found myself asking "Should I stop and read that book before continuing? Is he trying to sell me his previous book? Is he saying I can't understand this without reading his previous book?" I kept wondering what it would be like if, during my sermons, I repeatedly said "I covered this last week, last month, etc."
My second concern is that the book is billed as part of the "God's Man Series," which means it's written for men. That's where the deception comes in. While Luck does, at times, try to draw some application to men, I found those applications fitting for women as well. Nothing he said screamed at me "This is for men only." Since it's billed as for men, I wonder how many women will ignore it and thereby miss what could be a vital study and life-transforming experience.
Neither of these concerns keeps from recommending this outstanding book. God blessed me - or should I say the Spirit blessed me as I read, studied, and prayed. In fact, I was deeply moved be Luck's repeated use of passages from John, Romans, and Acts. Perhaps our Lord knew I was planning on preaching from John during Lent, from Romans next summer, and Acts next fall! For me, it was God's sign that the book was meant for me. Read "Soar" and you will find it meant for you as well. (I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.")
Soar is an amazing book that examines the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. Intended for use as a men's group study, Luck explains in concise language who the Holy Spirit is, the transformations He desires to make in believers' lives and the impact He will make on their world as the God Men follow the Spirit's guidance. Whether you are looking for a personal study or a group investigation, Soar will definitely provide you with a challenge and alter your approach to living a God-conscious, Spirit-led life.
Who knew that the common situations of life could teach so much about the Spirit? With humor and contemporary relativity, Luck's introductions include stories of his son's broken arm, an approaching tsunami, and Christmas surprises to unlock the mysteries of the Holy Spirit's work in our lives. Regardless of your personal beliefs, the book is very approachable for all believers without making a stance on the controversies that divide us on this topic.
One of the best -- and most challenging -- books I have read in quite some time. I plan to revisit Soar in the future as well as read the other volumes in Kenny Luck's God's Man series. I highly recommend you check out this volume!
I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
SOAR by Kenny Luck is a book for and about men. Along the way we read some things that we don't want to hear; and along the way we read some things that we need to hear. It's a book about the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives, and sometimes the Spirit is working long before we realize that He's there.
Pastor Luck is president of Every Man Ministries, and this book really is about every man. The men who haven't discovered the Spirit yet, and the prayer that they will come to know Jesus; the men who have recently discovered the Holy Spirit at work, and the prayer that they will grow; the men who are devoted Christ followers and the prayer that they will persevere.
Luck invites us to examine our faithfulness which he describes as the only character strong enough to defeat our moods or feelings in our moments of crisis or testing. It is the one thing required when we meet a command or priority of God and don't want to do it. Yes, he reminds us, sometimes even God's men don't want to follow God's will, but faithfulness allows us to answer God's call even when the World says â€˜no'.
We are also reminded that we may not see many big opportunities to help others, but the smaller opportunities are found at every corner, if we just open our eyes to them.
This book is easy to read, and does contain some nuggets of information on recognizing the work of the Holy Spirit in every man's life, but it's a little to â€˜general' for my taste. It's a basic christianese book: a quotation from a Christian writer at the beginning of each chapter, plenty of scripture references, throughout and a prayer to close each chapter.
Pastor Luck works with the Men's ministry at a very seeker friendly church, so the seekers among us would probably find this helpful, (and if I had read the first three books in the series, I might have been better able to engage).
Overall I think it's too â€˜churchy' to appeal to the general public and not deep enough to appeal to the average member of the small churches scattered across America.
(I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for writing this review)
I like the flow of this book. Written for men, about the person of the Holy Spirit, it's filled with anecdotes and examples taken from both the Bible and everyday life. For instance, Muhammad Ali and "Smokin' Joe Frazier are compared to Goliath and David.
The author demonstrates self-control growth of choosing to become a man of God by using an example of his son, Ryan. He goes on to clearly make his point by equating our sinful nature to that of a boy.
It's laid out with three sections: Transitions, Transformations, and Transactions. A workbook and questions for chapter-by-chapter study in the back. Good to use for a personal or a group study.
Thank you to FirstWildCard and Staci Carmichael at WaterBrook Press for my copy.