Monday, January 09, 2012

Have a Little Faith Giveaway

My sister-in-law Katie sent me the book: Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom. I had read Tuesdays with Morrie, loved it, and had equally high expectations of this read.

I was not disappointed.

Let me preface this review by saying that many Christians may not like this book. While my husband has not read this book, I think he would be one of the people who does not like it. This is not a Christian book. It is written by a Jewish man. It follows the life of a Jewish Rabbi and a Christian pastor. 

I do not think this is a book that will bring non-Christians to the Lord. However, I do think that if you are a Christian and you know what you believe, this book will help you to be a better Christian and a better person and a better member of society. 

That can sometimes be interpreted as universalism. As not having a moral absolute. I am not encouraging either of those schools of thought. I do believe that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life, and that no one can go to the Father unless through Him. But I also believe that we can come together with people of different thoughts and beliefs and find our common ground so that we can live together in a healthy way.

I won't get into a big synopsis of what this book is about. I will, however, provide a few of my favorite quotes from the book. This book really makes you think about your faith. About kindness. About loving our neighbor.

We as Christians get so caught up on the "big commandments" but Jesus told us that the greatest was to love our neighbor as ourself. Are we doing that?

I plan to give this book away, so leave a comment if you would like to be entered in my drawing for a free copy of Have a Little Faith. I will randomly pick a winner from the commenters so include your email address so I can contact you. (Also, please only enter if you are in the USA or and APO address as it costs too much for me to mail to other countries. Even Canada! Sorry to all my Canadian readers!)

"Lord, I've done x amount of good stuff on earth. I have tried to follow your teachings and to pass them on. I have loved my family, I've been part of a community. And I have been, I think, fairly good to people. So, Heavenly Father, for all this, what is my reward?" And what do you think God will say? ... He'll say, 'Reward? What reward? That's what you were supposed to do!'"
“Faith is about doing. You are how you act, not just how you believe.”
"It is far more comforting to think God listened and said no, than to think that nobody’s out there."
"Nothing haunts like the things we don't say."
"There was a sermon where he brought a squash and a piece of wood, then slammed each with a knife to show that things which grow quickly are often more easily destroyed than those which take a long time."
"He had a way of looking you in the eye and making you feel the world had stopped and you were all that was in it."
"Personally, I always wondered about authors and celebrities who loudly declared there was no god. It was usually when they were healthy and popular and being listened to by crowds. What happens, I wondered, in the quiet moments before death? By then, they have lost the stage, the world has moved on. If suddenly, in their last gasping moments, through fear, a vision, a late enlightenment, they change their minds about God, who would know?"
"You can't work your way into heaven. Anytime you try and justify yourself with works, you disqualify yourself with works. What I do here, every day, for the rest of my life, is only my way of saying, 'Lord, regardless of what eternity holds for me, let me give something back to you. I know it don't even no scorecard. But let me make something of my life before I go...'”
“A little girl came home from school with a drawing she’d made in class. She danced into the kitchen, where her mother was preparing dinner.
                'Mom, guess what?' she squealed, waving the drawing.
                'What?' she said, tending to the pots.
                'Guess what?' The child repeated,waving the drawing.
                'What?' the mother said, tending to the plates.
                'Mom, you’re not listening.'
                'Sweetie, yes I am.'
                'Mom,' the child said, ‘your’re not listening with your eyes.'’’
As Mitch was on his way out of the cold building and saw many homeless people wrapped in blankets on the floor, trying to sleep he wrote: "It’s hard to express what hit me then, except the thought that every one of those bumps was a man, every man was once a child, ever child once held by his mother, and now this: a cold gym floor at the bottom of the world."
"If we tend to the things that are important in life, if we are right with those we love, and behave in line with our faith, our lives will not be cursed with the aching throb of unfulfilled business. Our words will always be sincere, our embraces will be tight. We will never wallow in the agony of ‘I could have, I should have’. We can sleep in a storm. And when its time, our goodbyes will be complete."
"'The second death. To think that you died and no one would remember you. I wondered if this was why we tried so hard to make our mark in America. To be known. Think of how important celebrity has become. We sing to get famous; expose our worst secrets to get famous; lose weight, eat bugs, even commit murder to get famous. Our young people post their deepest thoughts on public web sites. They run cameras from their bedrooms. It’s as if we are screaming Notice Me! Remember Me! Yet the notoriety barely lasts. Names quickly blur and in time are forgotten.' He was near tears, 'Who do I blame?' he kept asking me. 'There is no God. I can only blame myself.'

"The Reb's face tightened, as if in pain. 'That,' he said, softly, 'is a terrible self-indictment.' Worse than an unanswered prayer? 'Oh yes. It is far more comforting to think God listened and said no, than to think that nobody's out there.”

"But I realized something as I drove home that night: that I am neither better nor smarter, only luckier.  And I should be ashamed of thinking I knew everything, because you can know the whole world and still feel lost in it.  So many people are in pain - no matter how smart or accomplished - they cry, they yearn, they hurt.  But instead of looking down on things, they look up, which is where I should have been looking, too.  Because when the world quiets to the sound of your own breathing, we all want the same things: comfort, love, and a peaceful heart."


Lisa Cronk said...

Buttercup said...

This sounds great. Thanks!

Patty PB said...

I've actually read many exceprts of this book, and I loved what I read. Personally, I don't agree that because someone's a Christian, they wouldn't like this book. (The exceprts I read were actually sent through email, by my Catechism teacher back home!!) I think, if anything, it helps us realize that Jesus came to the word not to divide, but to unite, and that his message of love is not exclusive to those who have a certain set of beliefs, but to all mankind. I COMPLETELY agree with you in that sometimes, people from other faiths, help us realize what the love of God is like, in ways we never thought possible... rock on!! :)

Jenny said...

I read this book last year and also really enjoyed it!

Diane said...

Susan said...

These are awesome excerpts and so thought provoking. Thanks for sharing!

Tiffany said...

AW said...

I hope it's not too late! LOVE Mitch Albom. Have 3 of his other books.

the weathersbees @

Samantha said...

Would love to win!