Thursday, August 29, 2013

The Secret Thoughts of an unlikely Convert, Rosaria Champagne Butterfield

My wife read this a few months back and encouraged me to read it.
I know that I am prone to exaggeration when it comes to recommending books. But really, you simply must read this 150 page masterpiece.  I just could not put it down. In fact I did with this book what I rarely do with a paperback - I read it again. Actually I did with this book what I never ever do with a book - I annotated in the margins! There were simply so many lessons that leaped out screaming at me - Take note!
So what were the lessons?
In the forward Ken Smith notes that Rosaria's story was the answer to the prayers of the congregation over many years. It might not seem very significant that one person is converted but this book will be an ongoing answer. Who knows what The Lord might do through the conversion of one person. Church pray on.
The doctrine of conversion so down played these days in the evangelical world is given a high place in his little volume. The author refers to her own conversion as the train wreck and the impact of a God on her life. Slightly different from the easy believing that abounds today.
Ken Smith's warm questioning approach to evangelism is surely a vital method to learn from.  Sadly many Christians would have gone for the harsh newspaper article lambasting any in sight approach . His kind letter of opposition was used of God to open this lady's heart. Stop trying to answer all the questions and start thinking about better questions?
If you really want to reach someone with the gospel be ready for the long term approach. Two years Ken Smith and his wife invested in Rosario's life.
The church that God uses is strong in preaching and strong on compassion. The church that the author attended was able to counsel her an not farm her out to  para church ministry.  The church is competent to counsel.
The author reminds the reader that homosexuality like all sin is symptomatic and not casual.
On worship the writer asks some key questions. If God tells us how to live does that include how to worship? Is God pleased with creativity in worship? How much creativity does God want? So net time I am asked why I sing psalms exclusively I m for asking, why you don't?
A truly must read.