Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Book Review Followup

I was both gratified and pleased at the reponse that I got from my review on the book "The Shack". I thank every one of you who commented !!

I think I need to respond to the last comment which came to me indirectly. Nicki , from Australia, asked to post my review on her blog site and of course I gladly gave her permission. She received a comment that she forwarded to me in the comment section of my last post. ( you can go read it if you haven't seen it yet)

This comment surprised me because it is a comment posted by Wayne Jacobson who is obviously a friend of William Young and was involved in the publishing of The Shack. You can find his own book advertised and endorsed by William Young on the last page of The Shack.

I sent a response to his comments about me and my review to Nicki and I thought I would post it here also for you .

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Dear Wayne….

I understand that you would want to defend your friend, William Young, (author of The Shack) especially since you have endorsed each other’s books.
I am quick to defend my friends too… but I am even quicker to stand in defence of God when I see that He is ill spoken of or falsely represented.

You said about The Shack , ”People are free to read and question it, enjoy what helps them see God more clearly and toss out those things that don’t”

I did just that... I questioned and tossed out!!
Did it offend you that I did it in a public forum? The author made his thoughts public …. Does that not give me the right to respond publicly? Or give Nicki the right to post my thoughts on her blog if she trusted my opinion?
I learned from your site (http://www.lifestream.org/LS.Reading.html) that “The Shack” was rejected by religious publishers and ‘Windblown Media’ was ‘birthed’ for the purpose of getting the book out. I think that says something about the content of The Shack – publishers are usually willing to go a fair distance into controversial material … The Shack was obviously beyond their comfort zone.

You also said “This is an excellent look at a relational God, but anyone can take the analogy too far and see something in it the author or publisher never intended “ What did I see that was not intended? Where did I take the analogy too far? If the analogy doesn’t work except in the author’s mind… why did he use it?

And “my religious preconceptions”? It was not my own religious views that were challenged by the book but its very conflict with the scriptures themselves! Show me where in my post I represented the Word in an erroneous fashion.

You also said, “Maybe she missed the point!” What point did I miss? Or as you say “She has distorted and misinterpreted a lot of what is in The Shack” -- what did I distort and misinterpret?? You gave no examples, nor did you specifically refute anything I said. I was careful to represent as clearly as I could what I saw that offended me.
I am not the only one to be offended … and I wrote my review to give those who have or will read the book and be disturbed by it, some support – as I articulated in my post.

People are of course free to read the book and decide for themselves – but I think I have a responsibility to raise an alarm if I see there is need for one. If I come across a washed out section of highway around a curve... I’m not going to say “Oh well, I’ll let the next vehicles just find out for themselves..” No, I will put up flags or signs to warn oncoming traffic of danger ahead…so that they can proceed with caution.

I stand by my original concern with this book and I think the simple fact that ”it is connecting with people in a powerful way “ is not a good enough endorsement. So does the “The Secret” (Rhonda Byrne) connect with people in a powerful way.

7 comments:

Lovella said...

Julie, I so appreciate your firm foundation and your steadfastness in not bowing to some of the publics pressure.

I read all the comments from your review and really I am so proud of your giftedness. I truly am.

James Janzen said...

You go girl!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for doing all that research and printing your findings. Much appreciated! ON CHRIST THE SOLID ROCK I STAND!!

Sara said...

Today I learned that a friend has purchased a copy of the book for me, so I shall be reading it (eventually; I've already got a stack of books awaiting my attention) with your points in mind. I haven't had a chance to talk to her about it but look forward to sharing your information with her. Thank you!

Vicki said...

Julie, thank you for sharing your wisdom - you are truly using the gifts that God has given you.

Judy said...

Wonderful follow-up, Julie!

I look forward to reading more book reviews on your blog. With so much too read out there, a little guidance in what to choose is so appreciated.

Sid said...

My wife is reading the Shack and continues to tell me the same "this is deep". It's sad to see that she doesn't consult the Scriptures but instead "The Shack".

Can you tell me what page the comment that The Father made about not wanting to make people Christians. I'm sure this will help. I refuse to read it but if you can give me actual page numbers it will be a blessing.

Have you thought of a concise post as such? Tha could help us witness to people who are creating "The Shack" as another Holy Book.

I also wrote to equip.org on their research but they didn't have any page numbers or reference points.

Anything helps,
Sidney
Louisiana