Grace: More Than We Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine by Max Lucado is the author’s latest offering as he encourages readers to consider the depths and magnitude of God’s grace. The book is written in typical Lucado style: short chapters filled with various life illustrations to help explain the graciousness of God. Offering stories from his own life to stories abroad, Lucado paints pictures of how grace has worked in the lives of many people – from salvation from sins to deliverance from life threatening diseases. The book attempts to warm the hearts of readers in this devotional style writing by exploring how God can forgive sins and how that will lead to dramatic life change in anyone who fully grasps what God has done for them through Jesus.
If you are looking for a “pick me up because I’m feeling down on myself as a Christian” book, then this book may be a remedy for your hurting soul. However, I have some serious reservations about the book and believe it has some fatal shortcomings. The greatest flaw to the book is that it never addresses how a person receives the grace of God and becomes a disciple of Jesus. In fact, Lucado states, “I have no tips on how to get grace. Truth is, we don’t get grace. But it can sure get us.” (Location 406, Kindle edition). This lack of explanation as best leaves people wondering if they are in a relationship with God or not, and at worst can leave the impression that everyone is already saved by the sacrifice of Jesus without any response or action by us at all. Grace apparently just happens, leaving me to wonder if God has asked me to do anything for him or if I’m just saved because grace somehow “gets us.” I have found other Lucado books useful but was terribly disappointed in this massive omission.
Further, it is disappointing that the book spends far more time in illustrations from life than a deep exploration of God’s word. Some chapters will contain a page or two of illustration but far less from the scriptures. There are many moments where the author uses great stories from the Bible on grace but spends so much time modernizing the story that the impact of grace can be easily lost. I wish the author would have led us in a study of grace from God’s word rather than illustrating the effects of God’s grace in the lives of others.
If you are looking for a light, devotional reading about grace then this book is for you. But if you want a deeper study on God’s grace from scripture, I would recommend passing on this book.
*This book was provided to me free of charge from Thomas Nelson in exchange for an unbiased, honest review.