The Dave Test
A Raw Look at Real Faith in Hard Times
by Frederick W. Schmidt
"The Dave Test is a true and beautifully written book about that most important of questions: What do we do when everything falls apart for us or those we love?"
—Greg Garrett, author, The Other Jesus
When life is at its tattered edges and you are faced with seemingly impossible decisions, the Dave Test is a set of searingly honest questions you ask to become the best, most honest self for you, your friends, and your family.
"Far too many churches are places where people are expected to show up with the rough edges planed off or hidden, minds clear, and hearts aligned. We need to find new ways to welcome people who are struggling."
To pass the Dave Test is to face reality, loss, and grief without denial or phoniness or cover-up, to face it in all of its uncompromising demand.
Suffering and sorrow are not things God sends our way, but they can and do radicalize life. We can allow that radicalization to grow within us. We can let it change, deepen, and ennoble us. Or we can run from the challenge it presents.
Fred Schmidt has a singular ability to translate chronicles of loss and pain into a sanctioned call for honesty about faith as it is lived and as it is allowed to mature in us." Read what Phyllis Tickle and others are saying about The Dave Test.
For more writing from Fred, visit his Patheos blog, "What God Wants For Your Life," here.
So much of our religious language seeks to insert meaning where there may be no meaning, or conversely to absolve God of a responsibility God doesn't even own.
Schmidt’s book speaks to my deeper longing as someone of faith who is aware of her process of aging, someone who sits with others in spiritual direction and ministry, and someone who is often tempted to look at the world with despair.
We’re all “walking wounded” but won’t find the community we’re looking for until we all take a chance and just start being honest about that.
The Dave Test is a work of searing insight that empowers you to be a blessing and not a curse.