Saturday, January 12, 2013

Book Review of Fresh Air by Chris Hodges

Fresh Air
by Chris Hodges
ISBN 978-1-4143-7125-2
Published by Tyndale
Momentum Imprint
Reviewed by Clint Walker

Ever felt stuck? Ever felt stuck in your spiritual journey? Ever wonder if you are really growing? Or wonder why you don't feel as connected to God as you once used to? So did Chris Hodges, and he was a pastor of a growing church. However, somehow, God graced Pastor Hodges with a new wind of hope, and a path toward greater spiritual depth and vitality. Fresh Air contains the story of how God revitalized Chris Hodges' faith, and how he believes God can do the same for you.

Hodges begins by introducing and describing the spiritual malaise that many of us feel. He goes on from there to challenge his readers to examine their hearts, and to take on some attitudes that will be helpful for them to become unstuck.

In the second section of his book, Hodges walks believers through some basic spiritual practices that will help them grow and stay connected to God. Among these spiritual disciplines are good stewardship, prayer, Bible study, sabbath, worship, and community. Nothing earthshaking here. But Hodges does a good job of presenting important spiritual disciplines in a way that they can bring renewal to a weary or seeking soul.

Throughout Fresh Air, Hodges uses the metaphor of breathe to describe what God is willing to do to revive his people. This is an apt metaphor. It is helpful because breathing is central to living, and thus he explains the journey of discipleship as a journey toward real, vital, powerful living. Also, the language of air corresponds with the Biblical understanding of the presence of the Holy Spirit as being like wind or breathe. Thus, as he describes the way of getting unstuck in life, he describes it in terms of the Holy Spirit transforming our lives. Very biblical.

I think this is a great book. It is straightforward. And it will be just the right word for someone who is wondering what next in their spiritual journey.

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