I signed up for Waterbrook/Multanomah's Blogging for Books, where I receive books for free in exchange for a review. This is my second book. BfB has a system whereby books are offered to you for review according to your interests. About the time I decided to choose my second book, there was a glitch online and I was only offered a very small selection in categories that didn't apply to me (think men's and ministry) plus a few women's books. One was Lioness Arising by Lisa Bevere.
Apparently, Lisa Bevere is a Christian author. A successful one. I'd never heard of her. No big deal, I've never heard of lots of Christian authors. I was intrigued though. Becoming a lioness would take me far out of my comfort zone, but I could use some shaking up. The jacket cover said this about Mrs. Bevere: "Passionate. EDGY. Relatable. POWERFUL. Funny." Funny. I like funny. So I began to read. In the five (out of 11) chapters I managed to choke down before I finally gave up, I did not glimpse this woman's humor. OK, it isn't a humorous topic. This is serious business, becoming a lioness for God. The entire first two chapters, all I read was "me, me, me, my, my, my, I, I, I". I forced myself to keep reading. I honestly wanted this book to get better. Finally, in chapter three, a nugget, a glorious wake-me-up nugget. Two pages later... Wait. Seriously? More of nothing. The chapter ended with a few pages more of "good stuff".
I don't have a lot of free reading time. I was wasting it all. I was so sick of her references to the reader as "lovely ones". That's something a dear friend of mine might say, but only because she is kooky like that. No one says that to strangers. I also didn't care for her use of The Message for most Biblical verses. Why would lionesses need a paraphrase? Give me the meat of a real Bible. Thankyouverymuch! On page 71, Mrs. Bevere mentions Christians being forced to denounce the Lord or be put to death. She references the Inquisition. Really? You can't think of any more current time/place where this same thing is going on? There are Christians martyred around the world all the time. Today.
In chapter 5, something comes up about her discomfort speaking in front of men though she is a lioness before women. My immediate thought (though this may be an unpopular stance) is that women have no business ministering to grown men. I don't believe it's Biblical. I'm not saying men can't listen to and even glean interesting insight from a woman's point of view. I am saying a man's pastor and main source of Biblical truth should come from men. Just moments later, Mrs. Bevere tells of a woman who felt the same way and shock! once she read her Bible, she came around to see just how wrong this belief is.
I read a few lines and concepts that I felt a take home message, like "...let's find our feet, turn around and run hard after God" and "God's love was supposed to be a banquet, not a burden" (referencing Matthew 23:4) but honestly, there's a little too much Lisa Bevere and not enough God. I cannot recommend this book. I see by the four pages at the beginning of the book, though, that plenty of others are happy to do that.
Want to read Chapter 1 for yourself? Here.
I was provided with a free copy of this book by Waterbrook/Multnomah in exchange for my honest opinion.