Thursday, December 5, 2013

Beautiful Outlaw by John Eldredge

I have a confession to make.

I hate pictures of Jesus.

All except a few--like this one.
Head of Christ by Richard Hook

This one seems to show a Jesus I can touch. One who doesn’t mind laughing, getting his hands dirty, and who is strong enough to deal with my stuff.

Beautiful Outlaw focuses on this version of Jesus. Not the one of Renaissance paintings. Not the one who always has a clean robe and perfectly coiffed hair. The one who would never be angry. Or if he did manage to work up that emotion, he’d be too weak to do anything about it.

John Eldredge introduces us to a playful, determined, fierce, human Jesus. One who had to learn to walk.
Walking with God by Morgan Weistling
One who joked with His buds on fishing trips. One who intimately knows what it’s like to be tired and hungry and bone-weary of meeting everyone’s needs, but who met those needs anyway. One who not only turned over the money-changers tables and drove out the livestock, but who also took the time to uncage the doves and release them before knocking that table to the ground.

That’s the kind of Jesus I want on my side. One who refuses to let anyone stand in the way of His mission to redeem the world. Not the Pharisees. Not criticism. Not even his friends and family. This Jesus will refuse to let anyone stand in the way of His mission to make me like Him. Not my past. Not the enemy of my soul. Not even me. Thanks be to God!

This non-fiction book has changed the way I see Jesus. It’s changed the way I read the Word. I used to ask, “What does this passage tell me to do?” Now I also ask, “What does this passage tell me about who Jesus IS?” There’s a world of difference between those two questions. Both are necessary.

What does this have to do with the Christmas Season?

Simply put: Christmas is all about Jesus.

Just Jesus.
Kissing the Face of God by Morgan Weistling


  1. I love to think of Jesus as a tiny baby and how his mother must have loved him as only a mother does.

    mauback55 at gmail dot com

    1. Me too, Melanie. That's why I love those two pictures by Morgan Weistling. It helps me to remember that Jesus wasn't just pretending to be a man. He *was* a man. Fully man and fully God. My puny mind cannot wrap itself around that fact, but that doesn't make it any less true.

  2. Very powerful, Lora. I agree with you about the pictures of Jesus. I saw some at the art museum in Eureka Springs, Ark., at the Passion Play that changed my viewpoint. A similar book that changed my view of Jesus is God Came Near by Max Lucado.

    1. I've heard of that book, Susie. I'll have to read it. We went to see The Christmas Candle movie right before Thanksgiving. (I'm normally a never-do-anything-Christmas-before-Thanksgiving kind of gal, but I wasn't sure how long this one would be in theaters. I recommend it. We enjoyed it very much.

  3. I often picture myself walking along the Sea of Galilee with Jesus, listening to Him teach. I love the photos of Jesus laughing. And I'd like to read this book! Thanks for telling us about it.

    1. Your welcome, Patricia. I'm on my second time through this book, reading it as a devotion. (One chapter a day.) I need the time to process what I just read. Hope you become better acquainted with Jesus. One thing is certain. We can never know him too well. :)

  4. Full disclosure; I'm Lora's husband. I enjoy reading her posts very much in that they allow me to better know the woman I married as she exists today. Like many "experienced couples," we often fail to get or make time for serious conversation. Reading her blog entries is an enforced way for me to listen to her heart, that of a daughter who truly loves her Father.