Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Multnomah; First Edition first Printing edition (September 21, 2010)
Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 8.9 inches
Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (555 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #13,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #20 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Faith #166 in Books > Religion & Spirituality > Worship & Devotion #220 in Books > Religion & Spirituality > Religious Studies > Theology
One thing is clear as soon as you pick up Sun Stand Still - it's an extremely challenging book! Pastor Steven Furtick is the lead pastor and founder of the growing Elevation Church in Charlotte, NC. He's a very talented young man, a passionate and biblical preacher, and someone who demonstrates audacious faith. The tittle of the book comes from a passage in the Old Testament describing a highly unusual event. Joshua prayed and God caused the sun to stand still for a full extra day (!) The theme of the book can be summed up in two words: audacious faith. Furtick's clear goal is to encourage us to trust God to do powerful things through us, to awake a sense of vision "lying dormant inside you for years. In short, I'm out to activate your audacious faith. To inspire you to ask God for the impossible. And in the process, to reconnect you with your God-sized purpose and potential."I found this book to be simultaneously very easy to read, and very hard to read. It was inspiring, but at times discouraging. It was easy to read because Furtick writes heart-to-heart, in plain terms. It was hard because it's so darn challenging! He succeeds at encouraging the reader to consider a faith and a life far beyond what we can do in our own strength, and for this he is to be commended. The difficult part for me is that much of what he talks about assumes the reader has a clear dream or vision from God, a definite purpose that perhaps seems too big to tackle. He says "Before you can pray a Sun Stand Still prayer, asking God to do the impossible you've got to set your sights on the specific impossible thing God wants you to trust him for in your life... When I use the word 'vision' I mean a "clear sense of purpose regarding what God wants to do through your life.
On the front end, I feel it's only fair to admit that when I first received this book, I was not a big fan of Steven Furtick. In my admittedly limited experience with the young megachurch pastor, I had found him to be brash, over-the-top, and borderline arrogant... not exactly qualities I look for in a preacher. Of course, I have generally found that it hasn't been an issue with what he has said so much as how he has said it.Since my problems with Furtick have been primarily about his methods rather than his message, I was interested to see how he came across in his first book. I wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt, and hoped this new medium would help me to understand what he's really about.The premise of the book is that most Christians fail to live life to the fullest, and never take advantage of the awesome power that is available to us through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and access to the Father through prayer. Furtick's main Scriptural text for the book is Joshua 10, where Joshua commands the sun to stand still. His assertion is that God wants to answer "Sun Stand Still" prayers for all his children, and stands ready to do so if only we will come boldly before the throne and ask God for the impossible. There are positives and negatives in the way the book works this out.First, the bad: Unfortunately, much of Furtick's bravado comes through in his writing, leading passages of this book to be almost maddeningly unreadable. From his overuse of the word "audacious" to his exhortation that people stop praying stupid, timid prayers, I found my eyes rolling several times. Also, at points this book sounded very much like the self-help pseudo-spiritual nonsense of prosperity preachers like Joel Osteen (whom Furtick has defended on multiple occasions).
Sun Stand Still: What Happens When You Dare to Ask God for the Impossible by Steven FurtickI'm not sure where to start with this review. My impressions are all over the map with this book; I like it, I hate it, I'm encouraged, I'm depressed, I wanted to quit reading it, I wanted to read "just one more chapter," and those are just some of my reactions to it. I found it simple at times and profound at times, I found it condescendingly redundant at times and full of inspired repetition at others. Honestly, I still haven't determined if I like it or loathe it. Maybe that is the sign of a "good" book or a "stirring" read.Let's get some of the technical details out of the way. The book is about faith; faith in God, faith in life, faith in action, faith in purpose... Faith... Audacious Faith (remember that, you'll hear it a lot). The book is not a difficult read and it's not loaded with deep theology. The book is broken into twenty short chapters; helpful for those readers with short attention spans or for those readers who don't have time to read for extended periods. The story is also filled with alliterated one-liner twitterific quotables; great for people who like those types of easy-to-remember inspiration snippets. There is also an equal portion of real-life testimony and personal experience to help support the message of audacious faith... I found the mixture of "cheese" and "classic" content to be almost equal portion. As I said, I have had a love/hate relationship with this book from the start to finish.I realize that my review may seem a bit unfair or lacking grace, but that is not the case. I'm sharing my opinion and an honest impression from my read. I'm not a shill or a hater of Pastor Steven or Elevation Church.
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