Thursday, December 27, 2012

Judging a Book By It's Title

Judgements prevent us from seeing the good that lies beyond appearances.
-Wayne Dyer

I just finished two more books with childlike faith in the title. One was a children’s book called Toddler Theology, written by a Sunday school teacher for her grandchildren. The other is a devotional book called Wow Faith: Bringing the Childlike Heart Back to Faith by Marilyn Hickey. Hickey is a Christian televangelist who built a mega church in Denver with her minister husband. At 81, Hickey is still active in her ministry, co-hosting a show with her daughter, who now runs the church.

I bought the books because of the titles and knew nothing about the authors. The children’s book may be read again to the kids. The Wow book was tough to finish. Not necessarily because it wasn’t well researched or even written from the heart. It just wasn’t my language. All the references to God being your Daddy and Father knows best really threw me. Hickey talks about meditation. Choosing faith over fear. All things I believe in. But I found myself drifting to sleep every time I opened the book, as if being forced to do an unwanted homework assignment. Still, I learned something about myself from this book. I learned I am not as open minded as I like to think. Why is it so easy for me to accept angel sightings or be tolerant of different faiths like Buddhism or Judaism, but so discerning when it comes to my own Christianity? I think maybe it is the same reason teens become self conscious of their parents. Maybe it is because we really know them, flaws and all. Just maybe it was the imperfect practice of the religion by the imperfect people that influenced my religious education. I don’t really truly know anybody who is not Christian. For me, it's not as easy to judge people I don't know.

So if I were to be an objective book reviewer, I would say this is a well organized how-to book on being more prayerful, especially if you relate to sermons with multiple bible passages and literal interpretations of scripture.

One thing that Hickey said on the book cover made the most sense to me:

“Faith is not complicated. God pleasing faith is simple faith without al the extras, additives and options we so often tack onto it. God designed faith to be so simple that a child can understand it.”

Are you open minded about religion?

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