There is no delicate way to say this, so I'll be frank: The Gospel is such incredible good news that sometimes it doesn't seem to have anything to do with daily life.
After all, isn't the Gospel our Big, Important Spiritual Truth, and everything else is just hit or miss attempts?
What could our days (full of washing dishes and stopping at traffic lights and reading to children and trying to plan family reunions and working overtime) possibly have to do with God-in-Flesh and a Cross-carried-for-us?
J. D. Greear agrees that there's a lot of Ordinary Life to live, but he thinks that every moment of our living is grounded in the Gospel that we've been given. Preaching the Gospel to ourselves throughout our days, he says, will reorient our minds, strengthen our hearts, nourish our spirits, and guide our hands.
It is this being "rooted and established" in God's love that we experience in the Gospel that teaches us what we need to know to live well. The chapter titles may clue you in: "The Gospel as Gift-Righteousness," "Changed by Sight," "Urgent Mission," "Expect Great Things," "But if Not..." and "Extravagant Generosity," just to name a few.
The Gospel is the only thing that can convince you of God's love, and it is the only thing that can grow the love of God in you.
It will show you God as the source of all the goodness, and teach you obedience to his good ways.
It will convince you of God's steady care and tenderness, and adversity will not destroy your hope.
And once you have received God's Gospel, and you know his kindness and his mercy, then you'll be able to give others what God-in-Christ has given you.
I thank B&H publishing for giving me this review copy. It was much appreciated.
This is one of the best books I have ever read. Greear does an excellent job in simplifying the gospel and sharing its beauty. He shares how to live it out daily. It is an easy read and a book I share and refer back to regularly. This is one you will keep in your library!
I sure appreciate Greear's reminder to live a gospel-saturated life. He "rediscovered" the gospel and it gave him a joy he had never known in all his years of religion. He wants us to experience that too.
He reacquaints us with the gospel and encourages us to experience grace as the driving force behind every moment of our lives. He wants us to see how the gospel makes us passionate for God, frees us from the captivity of sin and moves us to sacrifice for others.
The first part of his book is about the gospel. Then he gives us the tool, a four-part prayer, to saturate our lives with the gospel. The first two parts help renew our minds to God's acceptance of us and its value. The third part of the prayer helps us understand what responding to the gospel looks like. The fourth part helps us see the world through the gospel and moves us to "audacious" faith.
He has great insights. Want the approval of others? The gospel shows us God's approval is more valuable than anyone else's. Forget who you are in Christ? "Preach the gospel to yourself." (54) Need to change? The power comes from the gospel. He also helps us understand what a gospel-centered church looks like.
Being "gospel-centered" is not moving beyond the gospel, but continually going deeper into it. "It's about realizing that the gospel is the final answer to every issue and problem in life and about seeing the whole world through the lens of the cross." (191)
No matter the diagnosis, Greear writes,"Faith in the gospel is the prognosis." (245) "Make the gospel the center of your life." (247) I am looking forward to using Greear's prayer. It's an inspiration.