THE HOLY WILD: Trusting in the Character of God
Mark Buchanan
Multnomah, 272 pp., $12.99

Risk and Rest

Can God be trusted? "Can we both risk for him and rest in him?" asks Mark Buchanan. How do we become intimate with God, and thus enter the "Holy Wild"?

If we desire to leave the "Borderlands" of Christianity (conversion without regeneration) and enter the "Holy Wild" (living face-to-face with God), we must know God so deeply that we will risk everything for him, Buchanan writes in this book, new this year to paperback. With this risk in mind, he unpacks some of God's attributes that would invite us to trust him, including God's love, faithfulness, wrath, mercy, holiness, creativity, and glory.

Buchanan, an excellent storyteller, offers a potpourri of ideas that are less about new insights than they are gentle reminders of who God is and why we can trust him. Through Buchanan's expressive writing, readers become reacquainted with the amazing beauty of creation ("a gallery of wonders"), the importance of the church (even with its flaws), and the wisdom of Sabbath-keeping.

He emphasizes that God's love for us is as "tenacious as oak roots, potent as a typhoon. It is abrasive as much as it is soothing. It scours and breaks us before it sets us right—in order to set us right. It never lets us alone."

THE BARBARIAN WAY: Unleash the Untamed Faith Within
Erwin Raphael McManus
Nelson Books, 160 pp., $16.99

The Christian Visigoth

Forget "safe" religion. In this compact, pithy book, Erwin McManus, lead pastor of Mosaic in Los Angeles, calls Christians to rethink the Christian life. Whom did God create us to become? What is our divine destiny?

McManus enthusiastically paints a portrait of Christians as risk-takers, renegades, and ...

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