Loving the Church: God's People Flourishing in God's Family by John Crotts
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I picked this up at Shepherd Press' booth at a home school convention. I highly recommend it.
From a practical and down-to-earth angle, Crotts persuades the normal Christian of the need to participate in the Body of Christ. The strength of the book is how it speaks to those tempted to drop out of church, or those who already have. He calls them back graciously and firmly, with good teaching about the church along the way. He shows HOW the church is good for Christians and an important part of our walk with the Lord. One example is that we encounter Christians at church who think differently than us, and we need that challenge. We need to see how other families live so we have a greater pool to draw from in making decisions.
Being involved in the church takes time and effort, and it is outside our comfort zone. We Americans crave our time and our comfort. More participation often means more bruises from dealing with other sinful Christians. This is an uphill battle! Crotts addresses this with realism and grace.
The cheesy coffee shop scenes and a more Baptist view of the sacraments and children were a minor hindrance to this Reformed, infant-baptist, Calvinist. But he is careful not to offend on this point. Instead, he stakes his claim in a closing punch (strong exhortation!) to return to the church.
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