Tuesday 10 January 2012

Hit By Friendly Fire

I first came across Michael A Milton as an author by reading his striking book of short essays 'Small Things, Big Things' published by P & R in 2009.  It was so winsome and out of the ordinary that I couldn't help but like it, even though I didn't agree with it all.  So when his name came up in the list of new titles being brought out by EP Books I was intrigued, and latched onto the book when it arrived just before Christmas.  It is a very different read than the other - much shorter, more focused, and more restrained.  Milton handles a subject more prevalent than Christians would like to admit, that of being hurt or betrayed by fellow believers.  He correctly identifies this as being deeply emotive and takes on the role of caring pastor - sensitively applying the scriptures.  Joseph and the Apostle Paul are particularly used as case studies, but Jesus himself of course as the supreme example.  They are returned to repeatedly within Milton's step by step process to help bring healing: 'take up your cross; take off your crown; go to your Gethsemane.'  I have to say that while I don't think Milton has rightly engaged with Paul's meaning in Philippians 3:10-11, I do think his overall principles are sound and profitable.  Indeed they apply to many other types of hurt, and I found a dose of his medicine helpful although not palatable.  Thus, by being capable of extension from the particular to the general, this little book packs a big punch.  It is kind on the pocket too at £4.99.

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