Thursday, January 16, 2014

Book Review - Bent But Not Broken

I don't often post book reviews, but this one is irresistible because I want you all to read this amazing book! Bent But Not Broken is a new book by a very close friend of mine. Hubs and I first met Joel Butz and his adorable wife, Heidi, when they became our Associate Pastors in our small church nearly 20 years ago. (wow, really, that long ago?) 

They live in a different state now, but Joel and Hubs enjoy long theological talks on the phone at least once a week. The calls do not begin with "Hi how are you?", they begin with Joel saying, "So I've been thinking, what if God......?" and they are off! 

"Review of Bent But Not Broken- by Joel Butz

The author of “Bent But Not Broken” is a good friend of mine; I may as well say that from the start. I ordered this first book of his as a show of support and encouragement. To be honest, (sorry Joel) I expected it to be a bit of a chore to read. Joel is a brilliant, big-thinker with a high education and deep thoughts that often leave me intrigued and in awe. So I was concerned that this book would be too difficult to grasp and actually enjoy.

I was wrong. Very wrong. The author’s words came across as a comfortable and engaging conversation. His new ideas of how our relationship with God can look, are refreshing and challenging and always backed up with scripture and personal stories. The reader will love God more and feel more loved by God after reading this book.

Joel Butz has wrestled valiantly with each of the powerful ideas presented in this book. I have watched and listened to the process over the 20 years that I have known him. Bent But Not Broken is a beautiful Journal of Devotional Theology, as the sub-title states. It has enhanced my relationship with God in unexpected ways and I highly recommend this book to anyone who is ready for MORE.
Susie Klein"

My friends, I finished reading this short book slowly, because when I read a book in one sitting, it does not stay with me, if you know what I mean. Though it is not a "devotional" in format, it became one as I savored it with my yellow highlighter kept handy. I found myself lowering the book to my lap and looking out the window and contemplating the words I had just read. I could not stop myself from re-reading parts of it aloud to myself so that the words could resonate more strongly with my spirit...if that makes sense to you. 

An excerpt from the Forward...

"This is not a theology book. My goal in writing this book is not to tell you how to think, but to help you re-think. I am intentionally making very little effort to "prove" anything; I simply want to help you reboot your thought processes. I want you to think again about the God who loves you as much as he loves Himself. I want you to think again about the Lover who loves you with the same love with which He loves the beloved Son. I want you to think again about the God whom Catherine of Sienna knew as "pazzo d'amore, ebro d'amore" - crazed with love, drunk with love. Why? Because there is a voice and I want you to hear it calling, even as I am learning to hear it calling....Arise my darling. Come away, my beautiful one. My dove in the clefts of the rock, in the crevices of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely. Song of Solomon 2:10, 2:14 HCSB"

Bravo Joel, you have created something lovely. And as if that was not enough to be impressed by; the cover art is by Heidi Butz and the cover is designed by their daughter, Ariel! Wowza! Love you guys!

Get it HERE on Amazon

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  1. This sounds like such a loving, lovely and contemplative read Susie. I've seen you showing the book on FB, but am glad I stopped by today to get a more in-depth feel for it. I'm going to go check it out on Amazon now. Thank you.

    1. Julie, it is an interesting combo of theological study mixed with and delivered in such a loving way that it naturally leads to contemplation. You read a new way of being with God and go, "Huh, that is so much more real!". It's a keeper!

  2. This has piqued my interest. You did a great job of reviewing the book. I rarely go out and buy new books...I usually wait for them to show up in my church library (where I work). But I may have to reconsider. This sounds like something I need. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    1. Pam, I seldom buy books either. I bought it to support and honor my friend, after writing his first book. I was surprised at the beautiful and gentle writing from this high intellectual (he would not like that description! Ha!)

  3. Sound interesting, Susie! Thanks for introducing it to me.

  4. Thank you for sharing this book with us. It sounds interesting. From time to time, I do purchase books, I need to start a page for possible purchases and add this title to it.


All comments are good comments!

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