Today’s review is on Because He Loves Me by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick.
Because He Loves Me explores God’s love through the gospel and how it is something we should ground our identities in it and how it can transform the Christian’s life. It reminds believers how the pursuit of godliness has to be rooted in the gospel and what God has done. The first section focuses on God’s love and the gospel and what that means for the believer, and the second section focuses on the application of the first section. It is a reminder that everything that we do ought to be motivated by the gospel. It also strives to show how the gospel can intersect with daily life . It also continually reminds readers that they are loved and have been cleansed from sin by God’s grace and love for us.
I liked rereading Because He Loves Me, and I definitely learned a lot from the first section of the book, however, the second section left a lot to be desired. Yes, there were some good truths there, but I also found the message to be confusing at times, and I also disagreed with the author on a few points. I won’t delve into that a whole lot because I am still trying to think through what would be a good response to those things. I think my biggest beef is the statement that anxiety is an issue of idolatry. And I’m sorry to say that there was a time I would have agreed the author. However, as someone who struggles with anxiety, I can that there are parts of it that do fall inline with this, but there are other aspects that I don’t what triggers my anxiety, or rather it is triggered by past trauma that I am working through. I also felt that sometimes there were verses and passages taken out of context, I can’t remember which ones, but there were definitely some that made me stop and think that they were being misused, but I could be wrong.
I also did not like chapter 10, which had several case studies in which the author shows how the different components of the gospel can be used by the individuals and be transformed by it. I do think it fails to show the importance of going deeper into those issues. Again, it could be because that was not the purpose of the book. While reminding oneself of the gospel is important, I don’t think that is the only action someone should take to recover from various issues. I think it can be helpful, but sometimes more needs to be done. I have no idea if I am making sense, and I apologize.
Alright, I fell like my review has been mostly negative, so I would like to take sometimes to share some of my favorite quotes from the book:
“True Christianity is not a program of self-improvement; it’s an acknowledgement that something more than self-improvement is needed. What’s needed is death and resurrection: gospel words, gospel constructs, gospel motives, gospel power – a loving Redeemer.” (p. 25).
“The purpose of our life is to reveal to others how wonderful He is and to glorify and enjoy Him eternally.” (p.56).
“His [God’s] disposition toward you today is what is has been since He made you His own: He loves you and longs for you to know it and savor every drop of it.” (p.91)
“…your growth inn holiness is firmly bound to your appreciation of the gospel and God’s love, for it is only an appreciation of His love that can motivate genuine obedience.” (p.109)
“Every one of the positive gospel imperatives in Scripture can be summed up in this: live a life of love because you’ve been loved.” (p.152).
Overall, I am on the fence when it comes to Because He Loves Me. On the one hand it contains some great truths that remind readers of God’s love for them and the gospel. But then there are things that I disagree with the author on, and there are parts that border on our faith being dependent on our feelings. 3.5/5 Stars,
Janelle L. C.