I was sent this book to review by the wonderful folk at The Good Book Company, who have published some great stuff recently, and a friend there suggested that I might enjoy Chester’s Enjoying God. Having loved Tim’s recent books including the brilliant Who On Earth is the Holy Spirit? and his contributions to thinks like Keswick’s Captivated, I was excited to read this book. Gladly, I can report that I found this book to be good for a number of reasons.
This book is good because it is rooted in and shaped by the Doctrine of the Trinity. Tim is well placed to write on this vital topic – and the way that he threads the Doctrine of the Trinity into the tapestry of life is refreshing and challenging.
This book is good because it is unrelentingly biblical and points toward the place where the Bible comes to life, the church. Part of the story (more in the next paragraph!) that Tim is telling (or sharing – this isn’t clear, though it would be good to know, as it has the ring of truth and also touches on some painful and powerful things) thought this book should touch on conversations about the value or otherwise of the local church, as well as what it means to follow Jesus when we aren’t gathered. This is a book that would be worth reading for those of us who struggle with a life apart from Jesus – whilst also thoroughly enjoying life with Jesus’ people.
This book is good because it engages with real life. One of the best bits of this book is that it started with a story we can all identify with – a morning with a couple and their believable life. It goes on to unpack how each chapter, each angle on the goodness of God and what it might mean to enjoy the doctrine of the trinity, influences and impacts the everyday grind of longing and living for Jesus in the world we find ourselves in. This structure isn’t strained – as a reader of many books and stories, I wondered and hope that this is a real story of a real couple who have met the real Jesus – yet at the same time it demands that reader really think about the way in which Jesus is engaging with the real world, the way that the Holy Spirit is coming in power into the mundane scenes of our lives, and the truth that the Father is ultimately in control. This is a good book, because ultimately it tells a good story, and it brings goodness into that story.
Overall this book is a beautiful promise of what God is up to and the world we will live in. I think that it lives up to the promise of inviting the reader – wherever they are in their journey with God – to enjoy God. I’ll be recommending it widely – even as I’m still waiting for Tim to write an Academic Theological book on the Trinity. But there we go.