(Book review) God in the Dark: 31 Devotions to Let the Light Back In


Reviewed byReviewer Kendra Smalley is studying English and professional writing at Taylor University in Indiana.

 


Introduction

TitleGod in the Dark: 31 Devotions to Let the Light Back In

AuthorSarah Van Diest

PublisherNavPress

Publication Date: April 3, 2018

FormatHardcover

Length137 pages

OVERVIEW

Written in the style of short letters to a friend, Sarah Van Diest’s month-long devotional helps provide bite-sized encouragements for Christians who find themselves caught in days of darkness. When God seems far away, Van Diest offers a daily Bible passage—often from Psalm 119—alongside a reminder of who God is and who we as Christians are in Him. She is honest with her own struggles and provides many anecdotes to illustrate her ideas. Common themes running through the book are reminding ourselves of God’s presence, power, and sovereignty, and choosing to believe in God’s promises and to walk in His ways. Though a very short book, it is solid in content.

 

              Overall, this book is packed with encouragement for Christians facing trials and rough days. Many of the Bible passages are strong selections that Van Diest examines in a short but concentraqted way. Her focus is heavily on God the Father, however, and there are few mentions of relying on the Holy Spirit’s strength and power to help us remember and choose to live in the light of God’s presence. There is also little about turning to God in prayer, which is a vital aspect of the Christian faith. While the theology that was included is strong, there are still many gaps that could have been filled in, especially since each daily devotion was only two to three pages long.

 

ASSESSMENT

Rating (1 to 5)

3 stars

I found this book to be most encouraging when I first began it because, through the book, Van Diest continues to return to the same themes. While these ideas of remembrance and choosing a life with God are important, they began to feel repetitive. The devotions could also have been expanded slightly to make room for brief mentions of prayer and the Holy Spirit. This devotion would work best as a supplemental piece, not as the core or launching point, of daily, personal time spent with God.

Suggested Audience

This book is for Christians facing trials and feeling exhausted, weary, and isolated. It is a reminder of God’s presence, as well as our duty as Christians daily to choose to live for and with Him.

Christian Impact

God in the Dark offers the type of encouragement that some Christians may need, but, overall, it does not have enough grounding in the biblical concepts of relying on the Holy Spirit and coming to God in prayer. The devotions can provide a bolster for those who feel like they’re struggling in the faith, but overall should not be their only means of daily meditating on the Word of God.

 


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About Evangelical Church Library Association

The Evangelical Church Library Association, founded in 1970, is a fellowship of Christian churches, schools, and individuals.

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