Meanderings of a Minister

Living Close to God When You’re Not Good at It by Gene Edwards
November 14, 2011, 1:58 pm
Filed under: Book Review

Gene Edwards begins his book on experiencing the presence of
the Lord by saying he has read hundreds of books on the subject and found none
helpful.  He states that the people that
wrote them must have been “more spiritual” than he.  He says that their approach did not help
him.  He goes on to explain that he is
just too “unspiritual” to get what they were trying to teach.  I am afraid Gene Edwards has discovered what
those authors experienced.  They tried to
take a lifetime pursuit and put it into the form of a book that could be held
in your hands because they wanted to be a help.
In his words, they failed to communicate the depth of their
experiences.  I fear Gene Edwards has
done the same.

Edwards says that the “spiritually inept” need to learn to
just spend a few seconds connecting to the Lord by quieting your heart,
dwelling on a scripture, slowly breathing and speaking the Name of the Lord,
expressing your love to Him and then repeat often throughout the day.  While I do not doubt that Edwards has found this
extremely helpful in his own life, I am not sure he has done much in the way of
expressing this so that it is accessible to others.  He has discovered that some things are just
between you and your Lord.

This book is repetitive.
He attempts to explain and apply each of his practices in a chapter,
often repeating parts to make sure you get it.
He then goes back to a section called revisiting and restates the same
principles he had already enumerated without adding any content to make these
additional chapters necessary.

He then adds a section on corporately applying these
concepts without any specific instructions or applications.  He simply makes sweeping statements about the
danger of getting close to Jesus, how this should be a team effort and that it
is possible, but does not help us understand how it can be practiced.

Living Close to God When You’re Not Good at It was a great
disappointment, not because it is simple, but because it is not new, which he
admits as a post script.  Also, because
it is poorly written and because it is just too hard to communicate the depth
of your own experiences to a hungry audience and have them get your life
journey in a few scant pages.

I was given this book by Multnomah Publishers free, for review.


3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

What does the phrase “…statements about the
danger of getting close to Jesus…” mean?

That leaves me wondering. That’s a new concept for me.

Comment by Katherine Carter

In the book, he says that growing closer to Jesus will cause you to do things that others might not understand. It might have you give someone your rent money so they can go to a doctor (my example) or break an expensive jar of perfume and use it selflessly to worship Jesus. When we act so selflessly, people don’t always get it.

Comment by pastorjackliberal

This phrase is taken from your book review: “…statements about the danger of getting close to Jesus…” I’ve never heard of this before? Is this something that is discussed in other books or is it something this author has come with?

Comment by Katherine

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