Lynn Wilder is amazing, all at the grace of God, of course. Her book "Unveiling Grace" does a fabulous job of clearly laying out what the life of most Mormans looks like, all while showing God's amazing control over her journey in this autobiographical account of Wilder's own journey out of Mormonism.
Wilder weaves key Mormon teachings, both publicly touted and kept more secret, throughout her account, pointing out the strong contradictions between Mormon beliefs and Christianity, as well as the contradictions within the Mormon faith. But Wilder also has an incredible love for the Mormon people, one that allows her to tell her story in an easy and loving way.
It's a book you'll have to read more than once or take regular notes on to really solidify the great takeaways. If you're looking for a book on Mormonism that's more of a story than a straight-forward non-fiction, this book is for you. And if you're merely interested in different religions, this is a good book. This is a good book for any believer to read.
*Disclaimer: I received this book for free from BookSneeze in exchange for my honest review
Few times do you hear a family's story as compelling as that of Lynn Wilder's family. In her book Unveiling Grace: The Story of How We Found Our Way Out of the Mormon Church, Lynn shows how the truth of the grace of Jesus, the cross, reached her (and her husband, three boys, and one daughter) even as they had been well-established in Mormonism for over 30 years.
I have studied many other religions before, and even the beliefs of the Latter-day Saints, but I am always left wondering, what does this religion look like to the average follower. Lynn shares a truly "insider" perspective having served with her husband, Michael, in a number of positions within the church and Lynn herself worked as a professor at BYU in Utah. If anyone can be an authoritative source, it is this family. Plus, Lynn and Michael did not grow up in Mormonism, but rather were converted as well-educated adults.
The book itself is broken up into three sections: Mormon Bliss, Cracks in the FaÃ§ade, and Starting Over with an appendix in the back that charts the differences between Mormonism and the Bible. The Wilder's 3rd son, Micah, was passionate about Mormonism until he started reading the New Testament while on his missions assignment in Orlando, Florida. As he read, he began to understand, and he encouraged the rest of his family and friends to read the New Testament, "as a child would read it." In this way, the truth of God's Word changed their lives forever.
As a final note, I have to mention how thankful I am to Lynn Wilder for being brave enough to even write this book. Some would like to portray Mormons as being the same as anyone else in mainstream Christianity, but after reading this book, there is absolutely no way you can maintain that view. She very clearly outlined the differences both in theology and practice so that the reader is left to consider a lot of things. I was encouraged to read my Bible more to truly know what I believe and not just rest on what others have told me. Everyone could use that reminder.
5 out of 5 stars
I received a free copy of this book from Zondervan through the Booksneeze program in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Lynn K. Wilder and her husband were Mormon converts who, in their quest for spiritual truth, rejected the Christianity of their upbringing. They lived and breathed Mormonism. They believed everything that the church told them. Then their world came crashing down. Their son, whom, along with his brother and sister, had been raised in the Wilder's "forever family", took it down. Well, maybe not him, but God instead.
If you have ever wondered what Mormons believe and how they live, you will want to read this book. I learned things that I never knew from someone who "walked the walk and talked the talk". Mrs. Wilder knows what she is talking about, and she does it respectfully. Once you read the truth about the church from a former insider, you will understand a little more about how Mormons think and believe. You will, hopefully, be better able to witness to these lost people.
Given that Mitt Romney, former challenger for the presidency of the United States, is a Mormon, you might find that you know little about the faith that he professes. Yet you're curious. Get this book.
Unveiling Grace is a well-written book that I think you will find not only enjoyable to read, but enlightening as well.
Unveiling Grace is a personal account written by Lynn Wilder about how the Lord drew her deeply involved family out of the tentacles of the Mormon church and into a close communion with Him. The book contains her story, as well as a glossary of Mormon jargon, a brief comparison of LDS versus Biblical doctrine and information on ministries that reach out to the LDS population.
I was captivated by this book. As I do not have the best self-discipline, I usually try to avoid books (aka fiction) that will cause me to neglect my motherly duties, and I didn't figure this would be one of them- but it was. I ended up using a precious nap time and a couple late nights to read through this book. Wilder writes with raw honesty and descriptive passion, as she retells a brief summary of her childhood and how she became thoroughly enmeshed in the LDS church with her husband before the Holy Spirit called them to a true relationship with Jesus Christ. She wrote that their conversion to Christianity came through truly reading the New Testament and seeking truth from the words of Jesus, not what we are told by mere men and human authorities; I believe that not only Mormons, but all Christians, should take this to heart! We need to focus on the Word as the only source of truth, look to it as confirmation for all our actions, so that we can speak it, live it, breathe it. I loved that the book was filled with Scripture references (it is a testimony to her knowledge of the Word that she has tried to apply to her life). I loved that you could see how the Holy Spirit (referred by Wilder as the Dancer of grace) worked within her life to draw her one step at a time to recognition that no matter her status, she was indeed depraved like Saul before his conversion, and no amount of good works, temple recommends or esoteric exaltations would bring her into the presence of the Almighty. I loved that she kept the focus and glory upon God and though pointing out the errors within the LDS church, she maintained respect for the individual. I loved how the book showed the transformation of the Wilder family from a testimony of what they had done for God, to what God had done for them.
I would definitely recommend this book to friends. I agreed to review it hoping to learn what makes some of our dear LDS friends click, and finished with a heart grieving from all the deception and half-truths, and a passion for the deliverance of their souls from the only One worthy of praise.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÂ® book review 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
This is an in depth look at the conversion of the Wilder family to Mormonism and how they in time came to know the true Saviour. Micah Wilder is Lynn's son, and it was his questions and searching that started the whole family on the path to a big change. It's neat how Lynn can now look back and see how God by His grace was protecting and gently prodding them even when they weren't searching.
They were all very involved and enmeshed in the LDS church, doing everything they needed to in order to gain the best heavenly life in the hereafter, but the Bible says, "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faithâ€”and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of Godâ€” not by works, so that no one can boast." (Eph 2:8 - 9) This verse is essentially what they came to understand.
This book is a fascinating look into the modern Mormon church and culture.
I received this book for the purpose of an honest review from Zondervan. My opinion is my own. Thank you Zondervan.