Ken Wytsma takes us on a journey down the road less traveled in his insightful offering, The Grand Paradox. If you enjoy pretentious, feel-good Christian non-sense written by men who claim to have a secret understanding of God’s will for mankind, this is not the book for you.
If you crave a voice who is willing to acknowledge the seemingly limitless ironies, and frustrations of our daily attempt to live out faith in a spiritual reality in the midst of a physical, skeptical world and the challenges we all face in the process, bon appetite.
Though Wytsma tastefully enlists the likes of Kierkegaard, C.S. Lewis and other notables to do some of the heavy lifting, the books weightier moments come from is own experience and challenge of Modern Christian convention.
I appreciate how Wytsma is not afraid to read hyperbole into the text of the scriptures. How he points out what faith is and what it is not. How maybe God’s will for our lives is less about what we do and more about how we go about doing it. And that maybe Jesus discouraged public prayer for a reason.My favorite moment in the book is when he takes on the Naval Gazing Christian Pop Culture by explaining that maybe the “righteousness” Christ spoke of was less about personal morality and more about social justice. After all, didn’t Christ advocate for the widows and the fatherless? Isn’t love looking beyond one’s own life and needs and answering those of another?
For this Church Baby (born in the church) who is a recovering legalist and an infrequent church-goer at best, I found The Grand Paradox to be full of nourishing and challenging morsels of Truth.
If Ken Wytsma is a sample of a new voice in Christianity, a voice willing to talk about what the Bible really says and doesn’t say, I might be enticed back to church. Shoot, I might even stay awhile.