Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Where the River Runs by Kelly Minter, and a giveaway

Bestselling author, popular speaker and musician Kelly Minter releases Wherever The River Runs: How A Forgotten People Renewed My Hope In The Gospel, August 1 from David C. Cook. The book is real life adventure of one woman's journey from Nashville's stages to the Amazon jungle where machete wielding mothers, heroic jungle pastors, faith-filled children and miracles too little experienced in the Northern Hemisphere transformed her faith. Minter's unfettered narrative pulls back the curtain on one of the most captivating places on earth and reminds us that no matter where the river runs and how deep or far it flows, it will never reach a place where the gospel is not enough.

Despite a mostly comfortable, American Christianity, Kelly Minter found herself striving for more: Not more accumulation, but a deeper experience of Christ. Wherever The River Runs (#WhereverTheRiverRuns) tells the surprising story of how this fuller meaning came through the poor and forgotten people who live along the vast riverbanks of the Amazon River that teems with piranhas, caimans and poverty. Through honest and often humorous narration, Kelly reveals the tension and deliverance that arises when we come face to face with suffering, while also reminding us that the gospel is still the best news to be had no matter where the river takes you.

Encountering widespread hopelessness and suffering along the Amazon River, Minter comes to the disturbing realization that her resources are not enough, her compassion is not enough and even her tightly wrapped theology is not enough. Here she discovers that only the hope and power of Christ are sufficient, leading her to a deeper understanding of the gospel.

"I thought that all our stuff, our fancy-dancy help, our American know-how would be the answer here, the rattle that finally got the baby to smile," says Minter. "Could it be that the tangible offerings of food and clothing were but the sideshow to a young boy in the middle of the jungle who needed to understand that God knew him?"

Her honest and engaging narrative pulls back the curtain on parts of the gospel we may be able to recite, but have never fully believed. For anyone feeling complacent in their American Christianity, Minter's story is a life-changing reminder that wherever you live, whatever your calling, the gospel is alive, powerful and always enough.

My review:
   It almost sounds heretical to admit, but I am not as interested in missions as I should be. With that thought in mind, and thinking the book sounded interesting, I decided to review it.

  The book is a fascinating and convicting read. Kelly Minter does a great job of describing her trip down the Amazon and telling about the villages she visited and some of the people she met. It is convicting in realizing how much I have compared to the people she met and tells about in her book. And even with the discomforts she tells of, it made me wish I could go on a trip like that.

  It is sobering to realize there are Christians on the other side of the world who have so little, yet are so faithful to serve God no matter what. And yet we complain so easily and are unhappy with what we have.

  We all need to read a book like this once in a while. We are too comfortable, and not thankful enough, And yet, reading a book isn't enough. Hopefully those who read the book, myself included, will be more prone to thankfulness and try to truly do something to help others.

About Kelly Minter:

Nashville-based Kelly Minter is an acclaimed author, Bible teacher, speaker and musician. Her bestselling Bible studies, including Nehemiah: A Heart That Can Break and Ruth: Loss, Love & Legacy, have each been featured by Beth Moore on her summer blog Bible study series. Minter's acclaimed books include No Other Gods and The Fitting Room, while as a musician she has released four full-length recordings and has had her songs recorded by Point of Grace, Joy Williams, Sonicflood, Sandi Patty and more. She also speaks to women around the world at events like Women of Faith, and partners with Justice and Mercy Amazon, an organization that serves in the Amazon jungle (http://justiceandmercy.org/serving/brazil/). More information on Minter can be found at http://kellyminter.com/.

Where the River Runs is available from David C Cook Publishing.

Thanks to FlyBy Promotions for the review copy.

Book trailer:

Courtesy of FlyBy Promotions, I have one copy of Where The River Runs to give away.

To enter:
Comment on this blog post. Watch the book trailer, a music video of Kelly on YouTube, and comment. Or just read the book review and comment.

I will pick a winner using Random.org 2 weeks from today on August 26.

I will only do the giveaway if I have at least 5 entries, so if you are interested, get a friend to enter.


Steven said...

Sounds like a great book! Definitely want to read it!