Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Book Review: In the Presence of my Enemies

I've recently been accepted into the ChristianAudio Reviewer's Program to download some audiobooks, listen to them, and write a short review. Here are my thoughts on Gracia Burnham's book, In the Presence of my Enemies.

I remember seeing the book In the Presence of my Enemies at my local Christian bookstore when it first came out in print. The cover always grabbed my attention, and when ChistianAudio offered me a chance to review it, I jumped. I don't read many biographies, probably because I prefer to think in terms of the abstract, but I found much to think about when reading (listening to) Gracia Burnham's account of what happened.

The narrator greatly pulled me in. She sounded scared, concerned, wise, reflective, as though she had lived through the events she was narrating. She's narrated other audio books as well, including Dante's Divine Comedy.

In the Presence made me ask myself how I would feel. What would I do? How do you view your enemies when they are standing over you? I couldn't help but think of some of the despair exhibited in the Psalms. Gracia Burnham did despair. But she also grew from her experience and learned a few things about God's love and grace through her ordeal. And I think I did too.

The only drawback for me personally was when she explained why she thought God allowed it all to happen. She basically felt that God's hands were tied on the issue since He's given us free will. I believe the Bible teaches that the terrible events and things she suffered, that we all suffer, are part of what God has ordained from before time began and is working "for the good of those who love him, those who are called according to his purpose."

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