Every Tuesday morning, I review a book that I read recently. If you missed any, you can read past reviews here. This week’s book is Sensing Jesus: Life & Ministry as a Human Being (kindle version) by Zach Eswine. This is the second book I’ve read by Eswine. You can read my review of his book Preaching to a Post-Everything world here.
Here is my one criticism about Eswine and his writing. His stuff is great. It is challenging, soul stirring, makes you think. He just takes a long time to say it. What he says in 5 pages I feel could be said in one. Outside of that, his books are great and this one is no different.
That being said, if you are a pastor or thinking about becoming a pastor, you would do well to work your way through this book and chew on what Eswine lays out. Many pastors, in response to the call God has placed on their lives have forgotten how to be human or that their ministry is to human beings, not robots or masses.
Here are a few things that jumped out in my reading:
- If there is anything exceptional about me and about this ministerial crowd of mine, it is that we are exceptionally broken.
- God is the remembered one. But this does not mean we are forgotten – not by him. Not by a long shot. In fact, being remembered by him means we no longer fear being forgotten by the world.
- We cannot fully magnify God without confessing that we are not him.
- Greatness, even in ministry, cannot escape humanity.
- Our goal of greatness is not the problem. How we define the word great is.
- The problem we have rises when we suggest that obscurity and greatness are opposites, that fame in our culture and greatness as God sees it are synonyms.
- You cannot glorify God by trying to become him.
- The Bible simply does not teach us that if we say the right words, right things will follow.
- How come so much of our Christian knowledge robs us of joy, wonder, awe, play, dependence, and the need to learn and humility?
- Sanctification is the work of God’s free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image of God and are enabled more and more to die unto sin, and live unto righteousness.
- Going all out for God means more than going all out for our sermons.
- One can receive accolades for preaching Jesus, yet at the same time know every little about how to follow Jesus in the living rooms of their ordinary lives.
Here is an interview that Zach Eswine did with Justin Taylor about this book: