Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Prodigal by Brennan Manning (A book Review)

Brennan Manning spent the majority of his life teaching and living out the love and grace of God. Being a man who had experienced much pain and failure in life, Manning understood life as a ragamuffin and knew he was but a beggar at the door of God's mercy. He was a man that was overwhelmed by the grace of God. He wrote many books about this grace with his most famous being The Ragamuffin Gospel, a book that has impacted millions including myself.

Manning chose to write a novel for his final book before his death, and he chose to do a retelling of the parable of the prodigal son, a parable that was the parable of his own life and experience coming home to God his father. The novel is called simply The Prodigal and is coauthored by Greg Garrett.

The Prodigal tells the story of Jack Chisholm, a mega-church pastor and author known for his slogan, "We have got to do better." After a night of drinking in Mexico which leads to an affair with his assistant, Jack's world crumbles in on him. He loses his family and is dismissed from his pastoral position and goes back to Mexico to drink his pain away and consider what few options he has left. His father that he hasn't spoken to in years comes to Mexico to take him home, the small town in Texas where he grew up. While at home, Jack reconnects with his family, with himself, and ultimately with the God who loves him.

The Prodigal, like the parable, is a story of grace. It is a story of failure and disappointment and how God's love and grace toward his children is much greater than any failure and disappointment. Life is full of pain and trouble but God's love never changes and his grace is never ending.

This is a good book for those wanting to read a story of how grace extended and received can impact an individual life, a family, and a community. It was Brennan Manning's story and it is our story if we return to the father.

This book was provided by in exchange for an honest review.