Gods At War

gods at warIdols are defeated not by being removed, but by being replaced.” Kyle Idleman ends many of the chapters in Gods At Warwith that phrase. Through this offering, Idleman seeks not only to help the reader identify what idols strive to take the place of God in his/her life, but what steps to take to remove that particular idol.

Last summer we studied Kyle’s previous book, Not A Fan, with our youth group. I know of several individuals and groups that worked through that book and were challenged by what he wrote. I was anticipating much of the same in Gods At War and found it to be a good read. The author brought the issue of idolatry into our modern context and identified several ways that idols still exist in our lives.

While not just pointing out the problem, the author also provided tools to help the reader deal with the problem of idolatry. At the end of the chapter, Idleman offered questions that served to identify if a particular issue had become an idol and also some steps to remove that idol by replacing it.

An added bonus in the book were the stories of people who had overcome various idols. I was fortunate to read the Kindle version of the book which contained links to brief video clips of the people whose stories were shared. It brought to life not only the pain that idolatry can bring, but hope that those idols can be replaced.

Gods At War is a good read for both individuals and groups to work through together.

(I received this book through the BookSneeze program in exchange for my review)

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Flexitarianism

During the summer our students have been studying the book “Not A Fan” written by Kyle Idleman. It’s a been a good study and is an excellent read for either students or adults.

In our discussion last night, we were talking about how at times we can be selective when it comes to following Jesus. The word the author used is “compartmentalize.” It’s where I give part of my life to Jesus, but I hold something back.

That is when we were introduced the concept of flexitarians. I had heard of vegetarians and even people who were vegan, but not flexitarians. Several years ago MSNBC had an article on the new trend in eating. It’s an interesting look at how people approach lots of things, including food and Jesus.

Here’s what one flexitarian said, according to MSNBC:

“Sometimes I feel like I’m a bad vegetarian, that I’m not strict enough or good enough,” the 28-year-old bookkeeper from Concord said recently. “I really like vegetarian food but I’m just not 100 percent committed.”

The article continues:

“These so-called “flexitarians” — a term voted most useful word of 2003 by the American Dialect Society — are motivated less by animal rights than by a growing body of medical data that suggests health benefits from eating more vegetarian foods. ‘There’s so many reasons that people are vegetarians … I find that nobody ever gives me a hard time when I say I usually eat vegetarian. But I really like sausage.’”

The challenging statement is in the first quote.  You can fill in the blank with anything – food, exercise, even Jesus – “I really like                                  ,  but I’m just not 100 percent committed.”

Where are we living as a flexitarian?