Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Crazy Love - Chapters 9-10

Crazy Love – Chapters 9-10
This marks the end of the book, Crazy Love by Francis Chan. I hope you enjoyed the book and the chance to talk through it with everyone. I had a blast and really appreciate the insight you have all shared. I can honestly say that I read it with different eyes because of the comments that everyone contributed. Here are my thoughts on the last two chapters:

1. Page 150. The guy getting his teeth all taken out so that he would never be distracted from the mission field was pretty intense.

2. Page 154 -155. I had no idea Rich Mullins was like this. I was a huge Christian music snob growing up and missed a lot of the great stories behind the music. I love that Mullins constantly fought against people trying to put him on a pedestal.

3. Page 159. How do you feel when you bump into stories about miracles like the one with Brother Yun’s broken legs?

4. Page 166. I like that Chan lays out that the solution or opportunity is not the same for everyone. For some people, they’ll quit their job and head to the mission field and for some others, they’ll work harder at the job they already have. It’s frustrating to me when people propose a one size fits all solution.

5. Page 166. If there were two camps in the Stuff Christians Like Book Club, I was clearly on the “pro-Crazy Love” side, but I can understand the push back people are having with statements like page 166, “The stories in chapter 9 are brief snapshots of how a few people have lived out true Christianity in America …” The challenge is who decides what “true Christianity” is?

6. Page 167. “Have you ever said: “I was made for this moment?” I have and it’s usually not the moment I would have expected it to be. How about you?

7. Page 168. “We try to set our lives up so everything will be fine even if God doesn’t come through.” Ouch, that one hit home.

8. Page 169. “I’ve made a commitment to consistently put myself in situations that scare me and require God to come through.” I love that and that’s something my wife and I are actively praying about right now with a few things that are coming up.

9. Page 172. “The world needs Christians who don’t tolerate the complacency of their own lives.” I agree with this 100%.

10. Overall, what did you think of the book? Did you love it? Did you hate it? Would you tell friends to read it?

Those are my thoughts, what are yours?


Charlanne said...

So, I definitely loved the book, maybe partly because I love Chan. But I was so challenged, and I like books that challenge me and make me think. I agree that the comments here made me read it with different eyes, sometimes defensive eyes, I'm not gonna lie. But it's good for comments to make me think, too, right?

I read this article one time that described Rich Mullins' lifestyle and that at some fancy "after-the-Dove-Awards" party, he actually started serving his fellow musicians, and they didn't even all notice it was him!

I loved Chan's point that God is not a "duplicator." If we were all called to the same thing, so many of those awesome ministries would not have happened. It's like how Aslan says in the Prince Caspian movie that "things never happen the same way twice." I really want to seek how God wants me to live outside of complacency. That scares me to think I might stay complacent, but it is so subtle sometimes...if we don't do anything to make sure it doesn't happen, isn't it just bound to happen? I do wonder who decides about "true Christianity"? He does seem to be promoting that we each need to seek what God would have for us. But isn't that scary, too, like isn't that how so many factions occur in our Christian circles because each decides what is right in their own eyes...hmm...

The concept of waiting for God to come through was pretty home-hitting. My husband and I have been seeking God about our future. And we're such planners that we want to have it all figured out now, but we felt God telling us to wait. We believe we'll be moving this summer, each making a job change, but we don't know where yet, and we believe aren't supposed to figure out our options until later. That's definitely a faith leap for us...waiting for God to come through in this area.

All in all, a good read, and I definitely would tell my friends to read it (and have).

And high five for the book club! I hope we do it again.

Live Intentionally said...

John, I loved the book. I just wish I would have come across your blog/book discusssion earlier.

A friend and I read and discussed the book together a couple of months ago and it so impacted me that my wife and I are reading/discussing the book together now.

I think the reason why I liked the book so much is because it really resonated with what God is stiring inside of me - a discontent with my AmeriChristian lifestyle which tends to be lukewarm and mostly about using Christian principles in my quest for a comfortable, self-sufficient life.

I know God is calling me towards something new, something more than that, though I don't know what that looks like yet.

- Paul

Leanne said...

I think Rings was my favorite of all of the stories.

Chapter 10 seemed like a reality check. (Finally) I liked that he called for discernment and prayer to discover where God wants you to be. He acknowledges it as a process.

I mean, who knows? Maybe that rich man went away, lamenting that he couldn't sell everything to follow Jesus, and he prayed about it and thought about it and talked about it with his trusted friends, and discovered that God did have a use for him. Maybe he was the rich man who gave up his tomb to Jesus, or an early member of the first church, sharing his possessions.

Overall, I wouldn't have written this book this way. There was too much see-sawing between condemnation and the good news, and frankly, it reminded me of the manipulation I felt when he spoke at Outreach. There were too many times when leaving out the good stuff could have meant that I stopped reading. It was only the fact that I was reading with you all who encouraged me to finish it that I did.

Because his message is good and hope-filled, and I think I might read it again, in fact, slower and with Bible (and Bible commentary) in hand.

Thanks for leading this, Jon. I look forward to the next one!

Teachertraveler said...

I loved this book. Today reading everyone's comments, I was reminded of a conversation I had with a friend yesterday. She had gone to a pastor to ask for advice about issues in a Bible study she was leading. She complained how the pastor had challenged her personally. She kept saying, "Well, he could have said it nicer and not been so harsh." Finally I said, "Yeah, but would you have listened or just written it off as optional?" She was silent for a while, then realized she was just pissed off that she was challenged to change.

I think many people are put off by how Chan says things, but what is the alternative to his message? Not love your neighbor? Not love God with all you have? Don't ever feel bad about wasting the time, treasures and talents God's entrusted you with?

We're called to a higher standard. I've read and reread page 103. It's not about trying harder, it's about being transformed from the inside out.

What I've personally found is that it's changed the way I interact with people. Annoying, mean people don't bother me as much as they used to. My impulse to buy, buy, buy for myself is gone...just gone. I find myself craving the Word. This isn't a habit anymore or an obligation, this is real. This is love.

Paul, I too am being called to something new and I don't know what it is yet. What I do know is that God has a habit of surprising me and blowing away my dreams--they were always too small. Blessings!

tim m said...

2. I lived in Wichita when Rich Mullins was there. The book about him, “An Arrow Pointing to Heaven” gives a lot of good stories. If you don’t have time to read the whole book, his quotes are all in bold.

One of my favorite stories about him is when a priest gave him a ride. The priest didn’t know who he was, and when the song “Awesome God” came on the radio, the priest said, “I love this song.” Rich said, “Thanks.”

It makes me think of how we comment on things of beauty (sunset, Grand Canyon) and God whispers, "Thanks."

4. I agree wholeheartedly. A great example is when Jesus tells Peter in John 21, “Don’t concern yourself with John or anybody else. Just follow me.” I remember a group in the early 80’s that said everyone is called to foreign missions, and if you didn’t go overseas, you couldn’t be a Christian. That made a lot of my friends feel guilty for not obeying the call of that mission group, and instead following what they thought God had placed before them in their own house or town.

Monica said...

I don't know exactly what my thoughts are on the book. I would have to say that I neither loved it nor hated it. I really enjoyed the comments, pro and con, a lot more. Maybe that's an indication that I read too fast and the comments made me think a little deeper. I agreed with a lot of what he said, but how he said it sometimes came off as judgmental.

I think that my problem with the book is that it didn't go in the direction that I expected. I couldn't wait to dive into the depths of God's love. Instead, all I got a comparison of those who dove (the obsessed) and those who didn't (the lukewarm). Not bad, but it didn't inspire me much at this time.

4. I do love the point that God's call in our lives will be as individual as we are. We each have a unique way of reflecting God's love that no one else can duplicate.

6. I have recently been put in a spot of seeing that I was made for this moment, and that God has been preparing me for something I definitely did not expect.

8. I didn't really like the quote on page 169. I think it's probably just the way that Chan worded it and I'm being too picky, but it felt a little like he was going to throw himself off the temple parapet to test whether God would catch him. The question should not be whether it's big or small, scary or boring, but whether God is calling you in that direction. I do think that the more times that we say yes to God, we will have to start to make more leaps of faith.

I really enjoyed the book discussion, and I liked that it was a lot of different opinions.

Abby said...

I loved how he made the point that God is not a duplicator. My life is at a crossroads right now and its easy to look at someone else's life to see what they have done, but its great to remember he's writing my story uniquely.

I was in tears reading through the stories of people who have been completely sold out to God.

In all I think I agree with Monica. Maybe I read it too fast, or like Jon said, maybe its just where I am in my life that it doesn't really strike me. Most of the time while reading the book I kept thinking "and?..." It made GREAT challenging points but I would have liked for him to go more in depth into his points.

I wanted steak and I feel like I got lunchmeat; it was good but not satisfying.

Charlanne said...

I agree digesting a book a little slower is helpful in processing it. Maybe a chapter a week would be easier bites to chew.

Phil Hoover, Chicago said...


I still read your blogs regularly...they are a highlight of my day...and yes, I did like Chan's book. I'm still wanting to come to Atlanta again...just not sure when that will happen.

daphne said...

I liked the book and was challanged but I did not love it. I did however love 'book club' and hope to do more.

Would I suggest this book to others? Sure but more if I hear, 'should I read Crazy Love?' I would say yes. It encouraged me to Love. My biggest challange is to love my mother, my husband, my family and the people God puts in my path. Will that help His Kingdom as much as Mossy Foot Guy? I say YES. I closed the book tonight and wished someone were here for me to love. Let's hope I still feel this passion in the morning. ; )

Marni said...

I'm just gonna answer #10 if that's okay. I have to much swirling in my little ADD-like brain to write out the other thoughts...

I really liked the book. I have and will recommend it to others to give another perspective on how they might could see God.

I thoroughly enjoyed the comments. It's always neat to see how many people can read the same book and have many different takes. I loved that. Even reading the comments from the ones who didn't like the book at all because of the comments THAT generated.

Jon, I really hope you consider more book clubs. This was a blast and it let me get to know some other blog believers in a better way. Thanks for that.

Nick the Geek said...

OK, I've held off to make sure that others got to say what they think before jumping in because I am pretty dominating and felt is would be better to wait.

Over all I really enjoyed this book and I'm going through it again with the DVD in a small group for College and Careers (young adults).

The stories of what others have done has really challenged me. I don't think it is about what you can sacrifice because none of it it yours when you think about it. That is the cost of following Christ. I think it is really a question of how you will express your love for Christ.

I wish he had put some stories in about people showing their love in a more every day kind of life. Sure I know that he was showing the biggest and best examples, but I feel like it was intimidating, even for me.

I try not to fluff my ego because it can get out of control, but the truth is I could have done pretty much anything. I know anyone could do anything with their life but I mean I have the ability to do whatever my desire is and to be one of the best at it. That is how God made me. I wanted to go into medicine before I listened to God's call in my life and now I'm working for very little money for a bunch of ungrateful people. I could go into much more detail about what I've sacrificed because I love God but that isn't my point. I felt intimidated by the examples given to the point of wondering if I could ever give enough.

The truth is none of us can ever give enough, and that is important to understand. We are all operating in grace here no matter how big a sacrifice we make. I feel better when I think that these people probably looked at others as being bigger and better Christians. Some might look at a person like myself.

We are looking the wrong way when we do that though. We should watch Christ alone and find encouragement in these kind of stories because God has lifted up these individuals as an example to us so we can know that we can overcome through Him as well.

Once I took a step back and wrapped me head around this and cleared the tears from my eyes from the joy of the power that God has shown to us instead of the grief of my failure I was motivated to grow closer to God. so I would worry less about what I have to sacrifice and focus more on what He can sustain me in.

Anyways, I encourage those finding fault to look into the video series. Chan does a great job of filling in the blanks and the group I'm with has been encouraged already just one chapter in. I have warned them against being discouraged and condemned so I hope and pray they will only be lifted up as we go through this.

Anonymous said...

Wow. After our own small group study, I've actually spoken with some in the group who have doubted their salvation as a result of examining their own lives in view of what the scripture says!

jay said...

How do you know Darien Gabriel?

Ashley said...

Although I bought the book and intended on participating in the discussions, I haven't been able to because I'm a student, and 1) Wednesdays have been one of the days where I am at school for about 8 hours 2) I've just been busy and haven't had time to answer the questions. I do plan on finishing the book (I started it over Christmas break I believe...since the term has started, I haven't picked it up. But I plan on finishing it over spring break!) So I will be visiting this site so read over the questions and comments later. :)

JMom said...

I loved this book, too. I heard about it from your site and actually gave 14 copies away to other people because I thought it was incredibly challenging.


AnnaMeadows said...

I haven't read the book yet, but I keep hearing awesome things about it! How do you keep up with THREE blogs? . --Anna

Jon P. said...

I have read Crazy Love and am presently leading my office staff, house church group and my men's Bible study through this book. God is using it (and other influences) in my life to stir me after being a believer for 37 years, and honestly being more comecerned with my personal comfort. If you haven't seen the YouTube of Francis on the balance beam, watch it: He says omre in 4+ minutes than I have heard much of my life as a believer.
I thank God for Francis Chan and his book, Crazy Love... I just pray that I don't allow myself to slip back into comfortable complacancy...

Meg said...

I love the gemstones that God lines the road to heaven with ... I'm referring to you, your thoughts, and your wonderfully refreshing blogs! Can't wait to dig into Crazy Love - It's on my summer reading list. Thanks for your thoughts and devotion.

Anonymous said...

I'm bummed I came in late on this! Solid book. The guy has a heart for Christ that just bleeds through the pages.

Tina Dee Books said...

Bummed I came in late on this also.

What's the next book we'll read through and when do we start?

Facebook: Tina Dee
twitter: TinaDeeBooks

Someone, let me know!

Debbie Crystal said...

God used this book to spur me into moving from my comfortable, corporate job with benefits into a position as an Executive Director of a crisis pregnancy center ministry that was failing financially (and in every other way...board issues, employee issues, etc.). The last year has been a absolutely wild ride and it isn't over yet. God has engaged and changed my husband and me in ways I never expected.

Would I do it again? I would have to.

Jerry DePoy Jr. said...

This is one book I could read several times, and find a new/deeper meaning on every page.

- Jerry DePoy

Naomi said...

Brother Yun actually came to our school last year to speak. He has an amazing testimony.

I do have this to say for Brother Yun: His deeply contagious passion for God far outweighs the fact that he got up and walked out of the prison with broken legs.

He is in love with Jesus, and when you hear him speak, if you are around him, or read his life story you cannot deny his love for God.

Neyhart said...

this was a very good book. i just now rediscovered this blog. now i have to catch up on reading your posts!

Terrace Crawford said...

Thanks for your thoughts on the book. It's on my MUST READ list. I can't wait to dive in.

--Terrace Crawford

龍舌蘭之吻 said...


HI:nice to meet you!

Thanks to friends all over the world to Taiwan to help the flood of support and also wishes everyone peace and happiness!













Anonymous said...

I'm the small groups pastor at my church in Indianapolis, and just this week, our entire church is doing "Crazy Love" for the next ten weeks, even the youth.

The book is incredible! I've been a Christian since before I could spell, and Chan's fresh perspective took me to a whole new place spiritually. Chan is this generation's A.W. Tozer.

Vevystefana said...

i loved it and told all of my friends that i talked to about it to read it. :)

It helped me to make the decision to leave the amazing christian college i was going to, in order to be serving as staff in my youth group here at home.

kellylriley said...

Thought you might enjoy this philosophical discussion of alcohol in the bible.

I wanted to send it to you but didn't see a contact link, this is not a comment on the above post.

Christ turned water into wine! Kelly Riley

kellylriley said...

Thought you might enjoy this philosophical discussion of alcohol in the bible.

Christ turned water into wine! Kelly Riley

kellylriley said...

sorry for double post.

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Trina said...

Dang, I forgot you had this blog too. I've been trying to finish reading Crazy Love for the last 2 months. I sob after every chapter so its been pretty intense for me. I think I'm on chapter 6. I'll have to pick it back up and come here to see what you all are saying.

victoria said...

I loved this book, but not because I easily agreed with everything in it; it is a book that challenged me, offended me, and made me think.

I love books like that!

I recommended it to my church's bible study when they finished and was looking for something to continue meeting around. So far they are coming together tomorrow to discuss chapters 1 and 2. I hear they are really enjoying it already.

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Have you quit the show? Is there a post declaring you are abandoning this blog?

CFloyd said...

Is there a post declaring your abadonement of this blog? What up?

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