Reviews and recommendations for Christian books and media. Want to write a review? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss submitting your review.
Gill Albany-Ward reviews Home For Good by Krish Kandiah
This is a life challenging book on how we are all called to care for the Widow, the Stranger and The fatherless. Krish Kandiah focuses his attention on the Fatherless. We have a huge number of children who are in need of fostering and adoption. They run into thousands. It is all too easy to make excuses, to not carry out one of the fundamental commands of God. It is too easy to leave it to others. Children have little say in how they are treated and cared for. When they are removed from their birth family, they need to be placed into foster care, with a family, not an institution. To be cared for within a family who can give that child the love and security it needs is paramount for them to grow up into stable and secure adults. Read this book and be moved to DO something.
Gill Albany-Ward is one of the Manna House's valuable volunteers, serving in the shop when we need cover. She is also Mum to Evie Albany-Ward who was one of our helpful and keen Saturday staff before she went off to study at university. Gill is also a member of the Kingdom Life Church Books Club who we hope will make lots more reviews for us in the future.
Matthew Maunder reviews The Shack (Movie)
So, a quick, spoiler-free outline of this story. Mack suffers a profoundly devastating tragedy in his life that causes him to question God. A year after the incident, he gets an unusual and unexpected invite to The Shack where he faces head on the questions of his faith, and especially that of why a good and just God can allow such horrors in His own creation.
It has been quite some time since I read The Shack, but the story and representation of the Trinity gave a really interesting and truly alternative view of God's nature and our relationship with the divine which has stuck with me. I'll quickly and lightly address the elephant in the room at this point - lots of Christians had some fundamental issues with the theology of The Shack, particularly the absence of God's wrath. While I would hate to comment on the author's faith, the accusation is often levied that William Paul Young is a Universalist. Without picking that apart but instead taking the book and film at face value, what it does well is illustrate God's grace which is both heartening and reassuring to life-long Christians and can give an approachable starting point to new Christians and those yet to discover God.
So in a world where those of faith are ever more criticised and where atheists, often ignorant of matters of faith and theology, tirade at a God that they frame like a wish-granting-Genie who never come through or a child's imaginary friend for the hopeless and feeble-minded, comes this amazing and beautiful film which gives a view, or perhaps an answer to the question of how a good God can let bad things happen, how God can can be uniquely and especially fond of each of his creation and what they do with his gifts, and how God's love and grace even extends to the wretched who can do such evil in the world. It is a film that stresses the intimacy of a relationship with a truly loving God who did it all for you and for me.
The film remains suitably faithful to the book and has all the special effects and beautiful photography that a story of this imagination deserves.
Matthew Maunder has been a member of staff at the Manna House for about 5 years. You can often find him serving in the shop on Mondays and Fridays and the occasional Saturday. Matthew also built and manages this website, so it comes as no surprise that he jumped in to write a review, however self-consciously he writes about himself in the third person, now.