I certainly have, but in recent years have turned away from him in favor of other authors. I might have stayed away if the opportunity to review his new book, Fearless, hadn't presented itself. And I rediscovered why so many Max Lucado books line bookstore shelves.
I figured Fearless would be geared toward people who actively struggle with fear, are dealing with a huge obstacle or who live with a pit of dread anchored in their souls. I think I'm fairly brave, don't have (many) phobias and feel generally peaceful, so I wasn’t sure I’d get much out of the book.
By the end of the first chapter I saw how wrong I was—and how hooked on Fearless I was! Within a few pages Lucado shows that in one way or another ALL of us live with fear and we let these fears dictate our lives, imprison us and keep us from becoming the creations God intends us to be.
It’s human nature to fear, but as Lucado points out, fear causes us to question God’s goodness and strength. It leads us to doubt, makes us hide and turns us into control-freaks. “Fear mismanaged leads to sin.”
And there is so much we’re afraid of. We fear being insignificant, overlooked and forgotten. We fear we won’t have enough money/friends/food/stuff. We fear harm will come to our children or that we won’t be able to provide for our families. We fear worst-case scenarios, the economy, terrorist attacks, the IRS, swine flu and moral decline. We fear the unknown, cancer and dying. We fear letting God down and we fear God letting us down.
Even though Fearless is a quick read, it’s chock full of truth and spiritual nuggets. If I didn’t plan to pass this book on to friends, I would have underscored, dog-eared and highlighted much of it. I might even cut out and laminate bits as well! Each chapter tackles a new aspect of fear, and the way Max Lucado strings together words and sentences leaves me impressed, inspired and enlightened. With every key stroke he points to the source of our strength, the reason we can be brave and our hope in the storm. Jesus.
Again and again in the gospels Jesus says, “Fear not,” “Don’t be afraid,” and “Take courage.” I recommend this book for anyone who wants to do just that.