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Saturday, July 28, 2012

'Every Burning Bush' by Brandon Clemets

Happy Friday All...Just got back from taking Brat 2 and 3 to Brave. Fun movie...highly recommend it. Brat 1 was unable to join us as she is in Spokane playing soccer in 90 degree heat.

I'm so jealous I could scream...it's cloudy and blah here..typical Snohomish County summer.

Well, this book..what do I say? You want me to turn down a book ? Make sure there is something like,"Christian fiction" listed in the description. "Christian",  anything really. I know, I know, I preach equality and acceptance of all everywhere I go and yet I am a closeted anti-religious person.

Now, before you banish me with the other sinners hear me out. I went to catholic school for 10 years. I was made fully aware that everything I did was watched and judged by almighty himself. I sat through mass after mass , I don't remember anything they said as it was booooring.

God is watching , so look enthralled.

The only details I remember about mass were when Nicole W. passed out on Ash Wed. Father Olson swung that incense around like a discus thrower.  Incense overload...it was FANTASTIC.

Or how about my poor friend Mariam who huddled in the pews with me in 3rd grade? We were rehearsing whatever confession we could come up with last minute. I can still here Father Olson BOOMING," Mariam!! That is the same confession you told me last time!!!!".

Oh and Lent...yes Lent. I gave up chocolate. I would have rather given up my spleen. It was horrible...year after year I did this one. Around 8th grade, I had a epiphany. I was angry. I was angry at the exhaustion of trying to be so good for something that was never going to pan out.  I suffered without my meds (chocolate) and God still let's horrid things happen...bring on the Godiva.

Face it..being bad was a hell of a lot of fun.

I could go on and on but why? I could tell you how I have had friends recently become born again Christians and inform me that other  friends of ours, who they used to love, will burn in the fire of hell. They aren't judging as they love these GAY people still, but God will get them in the end. I couldn't block them off my facebook, phone list, frankly, my  life quick enough.

Do I sound angry? I am . I am livid. There were years I played the games, joined the teen clubs in high school  (really only to check out the boys)  yet I never bought into it once. Got married in a church that I had absolutely no attachment to. I did what I had to.  I remember begging FireHusband to run to Vegas, I almost had him but in the end we were to young to do what we wanted . We did what was expected.

Around 25 I decided I was done. I just had the girls baptized . I sat there during the service and it hit me like a brick..,"what am I doing?????". From that day on I was done.

Now I realize that I have pretty much offended 95% of folks who may be reading this. 10 years ago I would have cared. 10 years ago I would have wanted to be liked as that was how I was raised. Don't worry about being yourself, just be accepted by everyone around you. Play the game so to speak.

Not anymore. I don't walk around picking fights for crying out loud. My daughters, and FireHusband have a  belief and occasionally they have gone to church on they're own accord. I have never stopped them , but I don't join them. I tell them why and everyone seems content.

For whatever reason I picked this book up last Thursday evening. I was glued from page 1.

A gritty, emotionally gripping story about forgiveness, family, and the sometimes tragically painful sins of the church.

Jack Bennett has a wife, two kids, the perfect job--and the perfect affair. When he is caught and it all comes crashing down, Jack is left with no one to turn to. No friends. No family, except his recovering drug addict of a sister.

On a Sunday morning drive, he sees a homeless man locked out of a church service, banging on the door. He stops and offers the guy a cup of coffee. He asks the man his name, and the guy says Yeshua. As in, Jesus.

Jack's not stupid. This isn't the real Jesus. But with nowhere else to turn, Jack forms an unlikely friendship with this eccentric homeless man--one that will test his idea of truth, faith, love, and forgiveness. (Amazon description)

You would think I would have run for hills...look at the words, "church, forgiveness,..JESUS!" Eeeew.

So, Jack Bennett. I got him. I was him. How many of us haven't felt a little ripped off by life? Job is less than thrilling, childhood is something we would like to erase, marriage and kids a little tougher than planned?

Jack is bored with everything. He has a wife, a girlfriend on the side, a severely screwed up sister. He had a childhood from hell filled with abuse. There is drugs, sex and all the above. Then  along comes a guy, says he is Jesus and starts to hang out with Jack. Now, there was a couple of times Yeshua  (Jesus) started to sound preachy and I about tossed my kindle aside (like I would toss my Precious..hahahahaha!),  I hung in there.

Here is what made this book so fascinating. Jack is talking to you, the reader. It was a little eerie at times as I may have started answering his questions. I read this really late into the evening mind you...who are you to judge? When he would ask," do you feel like I do when the word ,'church' is mentioned? Do you want to crawl out of your skin?". YES I do!

Yeshua agreed with him on his hate of what people have done to church..the right wing christian religion.
Jack is angry. He is angry at people's version of church. He is angry at what people have turned Christianity into. It has become the religion of the haves and the haves not.

This book is honest. There is swearing and anger. Do you have any idea how refreshing it is when Jack told his wife about his affair? The woman didn't say, "Well, God expects me to forgive you my weak husband. Bless you." No, she swore, yelled and hope he died a slow death.  God was NO where in that conversation. Dialogue was honest,  not Jesus speak. This is what kept me going through this book.

(Spoiler) The main character did not become all God like or nauseating like Kirk Cameron  .
He was still confused at the end, but more at peace. Strangely, so was I

The book actually has a slight mystery to it, which I did NOT see coming at all. In the end I had some clarity regarding religion. I don't need to be angry at God.  People came up with the rules, not God. I think I needed that reminder.

Read the book, would love to hear what others think.


  1. Thanks for this review! So glad you felt more at peace after reading, and that you were reminded that you don't need to be angry at God. So cool.

    Appreciate you reading!

  2. Still don't get it completely ..however message was recieved:)