I remember the first time I read Brennan Manning. My dad had been talking non-stop about this new book “The Ragamuffin Gospel.” We were all - my brothers and sister, Karen and I - over at my parents for a holiday weekend. “You need to get this book, he said, around the dinner table that first night.” “It is changing everything I understand about grace.” And then very much like my dad, the next night he was handing out a copy to each of us. I have learned that if dad likes a book, I don’t have to buy it myself – eventually, on my birthday, Christmas, or just because – dad will go out and buy it for me.
The other thing I have learned – since I’m no longer a teen and therefore I know that I don’t know everything – is that when dad gives me a book, I should read it instantly.
The “Ragamuffin Gospel” was a life changer and since that time Brennan has been one of my favorite authors. His books can be found scattered throughout my house. There is a copy of “The Signature of Jesus” in my office. “Ruthless Trust” sits on a shelf in our family room and several copies of “Ragamuffin” can be found wherever books gather. And they do gather from time to time - This is the pile we want to lend to Mary and that’s the pile we want to give to Karen’s mom and so on.
Recently I received a copy of Brennan’s new book “The Furious Longing Of God.” After reading it, I felt like I had sat with Brennan in his living room while he just shared life. I have never met Brennan or heard him speak but I imagine it must feel a bit like this book - very personable, real, a walking out revelation of love and grace that makes you just want to know Jesus more. Anyway, I wanted to tell you about this book – looks like I get to buy dad a copy this time…
One other fun part about reading this book for me was that when I opened it, I realized that the fella that wrote the forward is someone I have the privilege of working with on another project. And then, when halfway through the read; I realized that I also had the honor of working with the fella that edited the book as well.