Friday, July 2, 2010

Book Review: Wild at Heart

First and foremost, what a great book! That might be obvious with the time this book has spent on the bestseller list, but it needs to be said, this is a great book. John Eldredge does a fantastic job of unpacking masculinity and what God calls men to be. Wild at Heart, subtitled Discovering the Secret of a Man's Soul, does just that. John takes a look at what makes the masculine heart and soul come alive and then explores how we need to call that out in our journey to manhood.
He starts off the book by addressing "the wound". This is huge and before you can get to the "rest of the story", you have to start by healing your wound. Everyone has wounds and John does a great job of unpacking the wounds most men receive and how to recover their masculine hearts, given to us in the image of a passionate God.
John explores three big theme's that he says are essential to men; a battle to fight, a beauty to rescue, and an adventure to live.
A battle to fight: I think this really hit home for me as I watch my 3 year old nephew play. He is all boy and it is clear when every stick turns into an imaginary gun or sword that will be used to defeat the "bad guys". He is always ready to take on any "bad guy" that stands in his way. John Eldredge says that at some point, that warrior spirit was crushed and pushed down. As he says, our churches today are filled with "really nice guys" but we need to be reclaiming our warrior hearts, hearts that are God given!
A beauty to rescue: To me, this ties into a battle to fight, deep down men want to have somebody to fight for and women want to be fought for. That is why timeless fairy tales, generally, have the story line of a damsel in distress being rescued by her knight in shining armor. To me, this brings back memories of my college days when I was pursuing and dating my wife. The dates I would plan, the hours spent talking to one another, I was fighting for her heart. The book then challenged me to continue that fight. Often times, once we hit marriage a man's mind shifts, it goes from fight for her heart to I have her heart...what now? John did a great job of reminding me to fight for my wife's heart on a daily basis and I have found when I pursue my wife, her heart comes alive!
An adventure to live: This last section tied everything together. With a battle to fight and my beauty to rescue, it is going to be an adventure. The big thing I realized is that my beauty wants to live the adventure with me, and I love that! The adventure is so much better when I get to share the adventure's with Heather.
John makes that point that in most churches today, if you look around you will find that the majority of Christian men are bored. I think this book does a great job of exploring the masculine heart and what it will take to recover our hearts and live how God designed us to live. I would highly recommend this book to anyone. Now that I understand my past and the journey that God has me is anything but boring!

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers 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 Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising

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