First I do want to give credit to Michael and Hayley Dimarco for the premise of this book. I think the ideas that they are trying to convey are needed in today’s Church. We are so enamored by life that, at times, we forget the basis of our faith, which is dying to the flesh so that we may live for Christ. I was honored to be able to receive an advanced proof of this book, and to share my honest opinions.
One really good chapter that was in this book was entitled “Less is the New More”. The focus of this chapter was the tendency for all of us to fall into covetousness. This is a major struggle I think for everyone. In this chapter the Dimarco’s make some excellent points. One point they make is if we are not caught up in more we are better able to give that which we do have. There are many other great points to this chapter, but again my job is to draw you to read the book, not tell you everything it says! Ultimately, and I believe this is a point the Dimarco’s make fairly well, covetousness is choosing an idol over our LORD Jesus Christ.
However, I am going to address a very common flaw I find in people who love to mention Mark 10:25. For those of you who are not familiar with this verse it states: “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” In this section of Chapter 3 (Dimarco 94) they almost argue that you have more faith if you have fewer possessions. Although I agree, that there are wealthy people who feel as if there is no need for Christ, I’m blessed to know many wealthy people who use their wealth to further the gospel of Jesus Christ. People who will reach out to those in need, not to have their name praised by men, but people who give in secret and who will receive their reward on the day of the Bema judgment. These people should not be ignored or forgotten because many of them have simply chosen to be good stewards of that which the LORD has blessed them with.
Another great chapter is chapter 4 which is “Weakness is the New Strength”. Again this chapter was very easy to read, and started off with a good illustration of the fact that since the creation of man we all have pursued strength. It continues with the example of the tower of Babel, Satan, and even Peter, who, until after the resurrection of Christ, often tried to attain in his own strength. This chapter had great flow, and was a chapter that challenged me and yet also encouraged me.
Now, I need to give some of the problems I see with this book. This book is not for someone looking for an easy read. The reading of this book was rather challenging. I wish it was due to content, but really it was related to flow. Until I got to about chapter 2 I had a very hard time even following the flow that Michael and Hayley were trying to develop. Another major set-back to this book was the constant inserting of “Here Lies…” I am a huge believer in being personal in the way you write, and sharing your struggles and set-backs as well as your victories, however, this caused me a lot of frustration as it didn’t work with the flow that they were already having a problem developing. I think what they shared was great, and ultimately I just waited until I finished the book to read those entries.
I also noticed some things that made me sit back and scratch my head wondering what they meant. For example, in Chapter 1 the Dimarco’s write “Death threatens a part of you, if not all of you (Dimarco 26).” Last time I checked death was always a threat to the whole and not to just a part. Especially in the topic of dying to our flesh, our whole flesh needs to be dying so that we might walk in the newness of life that is found in Christ Jesus. Then in Chapter 2 they have a paragraph that starts, “In our squalifies us from the fight; it means we’ve love, we’ve been taken down, and they’ve won (44).” I don’t even know where to begin on this as when I looked up squalifies in the dictionary I couldn’t find a result.
For me, I am going to have to rate this book a 2.5 to maybe a 3. Since this is an advanced proof it is my hope that they go through and are able to clean up the flow, and make it a little easier for the reader to follow. As I said to begin with I think the premise to this book is great, and with some cleaning up I think this would truly be a good book.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Crossway as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”