The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own and I have not been paid for them. Booksneeze.com has given me a complimentary copy of this title for review.
This extraordinary book, written by Darren Whitehead and Jon Tyson and published by Thomas Nelson Publishers, is a beautifully crafted treatise on the reality of the life that God offers to the inhabitants of this fallen world. Honestly, I had my critical claws sharpened and ready to pounce, but then the authors “had me at hello” when they quoted C.S. Lewis' work Mere Christianity. The title is drawn from this quote, “And that is precisely what Christianity is about. The world is a great sculptor's shop. We are the statues and there is a rumor going round the shop that some of us are some day going to come to life” (Whitehead, Tyson 2011, 5). With the cacophony of conflicting voices in the world today; and more precisely within Christianity, it is refreshing to hear that the rumors that we have heard of God's love are true. In the dank and empty darkness of Postmodernism, Jesus still shines as the light of the world. Christianity's purpose is to reflect that light to the lost.
Forgiveness is the cornerstone of Christianity and our relationship with God. The authors address this issue in Chapter Six, which is entitled Giving Up Your Freedom , “This is not something we can conjure up out of the willpower of sheer human kindness. It is only possible when God imparts his grace to us, the same grace that caused Jesus to suffer for our evil and sin” (Whitehead, Tyson 2011, 87).
I would be remiss if I did not mention my disagreement with one story within “Rumors of God.” Catherine began a ministry to women who worked in strip clubs. She would apply their makeup before they “performed.” Some of these women were saved in the process, but this begs the question of “any means to an end” in ministry. The authors acknowledge this question in the “Reading Group Guide” for Chapter One at the end of the book.
“Rumors of God” is a well-written and heartfelt book that deals with hard questions and God's answers to them. I would recommend this book to anyone seeking a deeper relationship with God. C.S. Lewis sums up the trend of humanity, “We are. . . like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased” (Whitehead, Tyson 2011, 19). May we hear and believe the true rumors of God.
Rev. Patricia Paige Harrison